Here's to a Happy and Balanced 2018!

Posted by Beth Cyr Kroh on

I can't believe all of 2017 went by and I didn't blog once. Well... I can believe it, but it's just kind of surprising how long it's been. 

2017 was a big year, maybe the biggest! 

We downsized our big lovely house, after selling/giving away a lot of our stuff, we moved the rest of our belongings to storage and lived in a temporary little furnished cottage while we planned a wedding, traveled, got married and prepared to move from GA to WA. 

In September we made the big move and it was pretty crazy for awhile. The trip was amazing. Moving a business to a new state was... less than amazing. I'm still working on getting my studio set up just right, but overall, it's pretty incredible. We made it through the holidays and I'm feeling so good about the new year! 

I started off by reading Deep Work by Cal Newport. I'm pretty obsessed with the podcast Hidden Brain and the host, Shankar Vedantam, interviewed Cal for one of the episodes and really made me interested in reading the book. While it's not really geared toward an artist selling online, there are a lot of tools he gives that are really helpful.

My work day is an interesting play on using social media to promote my business while not getting sucked in to the overuse/addiction/time suck that the online world can be. 

Deep Work by Cal Newport

It tied in perfectly with one of my new year's goals of scheduling. Ever since I started working for myself, I've always relished the non-schedule. The do-what-I-want-whenever-I-want felt like the ultimate freedom. Using a calendar and creating a schedule seemed opposite to that. But I've come around and so far, I'm really enjoying the effects of scheduling my time and using this amazing planner from Native Bear

planner from native bear and mug from alex kroh

Part of me wonders if I have too many goals and changes I wanted to enact for this coming year, but I don't really think so. Part of what we wanted by moving to WA was to create the life we wanted to have. Planning time for hikes every (or almost every) weekend to see all the beautiful places on the Olympic Peninsula means no work on the weekends. Having time for friends and making connections is also really important. It means learning to be efficient with my time and scheduling the things that mean more to me than sitting in front of a computer trying to run a business...

Creating art and being outside and exercising are some of those things. And in the past 4 months have seen little of those. It's about finding a balance and not working all the time. I'm pleased that in less than two weeks I've been drawing and painting again. Yesterday I took a break and went on a run through the woods and looked at the ocean (or the straight of Juan de Fuca to be technical). Everyday I'm so grateful to be here. It took be plans to get us here and we made it. Looking forward to this year full of big plans! 

cascade mountains from port townsend

(be on the look out for more mountain and water themed rings! and paintings because photos just can't capture the beauty my eyes see)

What are you big plans for 2018? Are you planning a big move, writing a book, finally cleaning out your basement to create an art space? 


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Safety in Numbers

Posted by Beth Cyr on

Image collage of EtsyMetal Safety Pin project

As artists and jewelers, making things is our way of life. It's also a way to make a living and to raise money for charities and causes we believe in. A group of my metalsmithing friends got together and each made our version of a safety pin. Some makers simply made a donation to a charity they wanted to support and are wearing their pins - others are selling pins to raise money. We can all do something in our own way to help make the world a little bit better, a little more loving and a little more beautiful. Artists in order of top to bottom/left to right: Nina Gibson, Elise Worman, Leslie Zemenek, Kathryn Riechert Jewelry, Sara Westermark, Laney Clark, Victoria Takahashi, Jennifer Lawler, Christine Rose-Mighion, Cynthia Kurth, me, Rachael Sudlow


Mine is available for purchase here - full sale price is donated to the ACLU or Southern Poverty Law Center. 


See what some of the other artists are saying:

Laney Clark - Silentgoddess - Blog:
Elise Worman EMW Metalworks:
Cynthia von der Schmuckburg
Victoria Takahashi/Experimetal - 

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Snowflakes and "winter" news

Posted by Beth Cyr on

snowflake christmas tree ornament by beth cyr

Every year I want to start earlier in getting the snowflake ornaments done - it's not quite as early as I'd like but it's at least before Thanksgiving! It is kind of hard to think about snowflakes when it is so warm out and Christmas seems so far away. Alex has been working really hard on these while I'm catching up on custom orders. We have 4 dozen listed so far. 

News for the next couple of months:

Deadline for custom work needed by Christmas/New Years is November 18th.

The OCAF holiday market is happening in Watkinsville Dec. 2 - 4th. I will have work in a booth with other Athens Metal Arts Guild Members (snowflakes included). 

I'll be having an Open Studio on Saturday Dec. 10th from 10 - 5pm. ATHICA will also be having their holiday market and several other artists in the Chase Park Warehouses will also be having open studios as well including David Hale and Erin McIntosh

December 15th begins the 2nd half of the yoga teacher training I'm staffing and I'll most likely be out of the studio from the 15th until the end of the year. 

And the end of the year will be here before we know it! 

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For 1-in-3 of you, time is running out to get a custom engagement ring!

Posted by Alex Kroh on

I recently read an interesting fact about marriage proposals: 33% of them happen between Thanksgiving and New Years. It makes sense - you’re already going to be surrounded by family and friends for the holidays so why not celebrate your engagement too? Plus holiday bonuses, extra vacation time and the warm cozy feeling that comes with the winter holidays all help make the timing feel just right.

Did you just realize you are one of the 33%? If so, now is a great time to get your engagement ring figured out. One of the first things to know is the ring size, which is easy: we can help you with that here. The more difficult part is settling on a ring design. Finding a ring that is an extension of your personality (or your partner’s if you’re planning on this being a surprise), can be a lot of work, and it’s hard to know where to begin. Thankfully, we've got you covered. We've made it easier
 than ever to get the conversation started with a new Custom Ring Design form.

Why a Custom Ring is Right For You

If you’ve been looking around the interwebs for advice on finding the perfect engagement ring, I feel your pain. There’s a lot of marketing masquerading as advice that makes me cringe a little, the worst offender being the engagement ring quiz. Who the hell came up with this tactic? I realize that, on the internet, you can find answers to life’s deepest questions via the online quiz, but I just don’t see how you can hone in on an engagement ring design based upon multiple choice questions related to your favorite alcoholic drink or your dream home. In the end, they will all recommend different types of diamonds, which we all know are a sham anyway.

If you’re looking for something really meaningful, I recommend working with a jewelry artist to have a ring handmade for you. Not only do you get to skip spending way too much time in places you’d rather not (the mall, generic jewelry stores), but many people find that it’s easier and more enjoyable than they had anticipated AND they end up with a truly special and personal ring. Many websites will tell you that this is the more expensive option, but it doesn’t have to be, especially if you’ve already decided that a diamond isn’t going to be part of the ring.

Beth offers many rings that use environmentally friendly Moissanites, which are as beautiful as diamonds and are a fraction of the cost. Or, maybe you don’t want a stone at all as part of your engagement ring, then more power to you! You should get what you want, not what De Beers tells you to get. You also might have also been told that you need to make a sketch of the design you’re after. While that can be a good place to start, it’s totally unnecessary and this can be more of an obstacle than it needs to be.

Go With Your Gut

When choosing an artist to work with, you should go with one whose overall style feels right to you. You’ll know it when you see it - artists work very hard to portray their aesthetic and values. Often times, these are reflected in the design of their website or explicitly stated in their about pages. On, you’ll notice that we’ve designed the website to reflect the things we care about: Nature, environmental sustainability, individuality, and we aren’t stuffy or elitist about jewelry. We want you to find jewelry that is special to you, that carries a deeper meaning than just something pretty to look at, and you won’t have to think twice about how the materials were sourced or how it was made.

After you’ve found an artist whose style feels right, check out the designs that they already offer. Often times the best way to customize a ring is to alter one or two elements of a ring that the designer already makes. Even if you go with a completely custom ring, the designer will likely employ the aesthetics that already exist in their current designs. Take a look at Beth’s photo gallery of custom designs here. Most of these designs are based off of her wedding ring and engagement ring designs that she already offers. Sometimes, people know the type of stone that they want to incorporate into a design, other times people want to combine multiple elements of different designs. These are great ways to come up with a custom ring.

Take The First Step

Then, get in touch, like, now! The turnaround time on custom designs will vary from one artist to the next. For instance, Beth’s timeline is typically 4-6 weeks, so if you’re aiming for that holiday engagement window, now is the perfect time to turn your ideas into reality. If you’re late to the game, it never hurts to ask anyway, or you can check to see if there are any ready to ship rings that fit the bill. If you're interested in finding out more information about BethCyr engagement rings, that's great! We'd love to answer any questions you have. It only takes a minute to complete the Custom Ring Design form and we'll get back to you ASAP.

Now, statistically speaking, 1 in 3 of you needs to get off your butt and get the ball rolling!

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Feature on Wedding Lovely

Posted by Beth Cyr on

I had a lovely feature on the Wedding Lovely blog today! 

Check it out

Yellow Gold Tree Bark Ring with green sapphire vine and leaf ring by Beth Cyr

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