Category Archives: From The Studio

09.21.2017

Work in Progress

Sommi Jewelry Instagram Feed

@sommijewelry Instagram account.

Hi friends! It has been a while since my last post, so I wanted to take this opportunity to give you all an update about what has been going on with me and Sommi. So, I’ll start by backing up just a bit. I had my daughter in March of 2016. Her name is Siena and we have been glued to the hip since her birth. I basically spent the first year of her life completely submerged in motherhood. Then, around March of this year, I started getting the “creative itch” again (insert excited emoji face here!), and I have slowly started exercising my creative muscles ever since.

Sommi Jewelry hand carved stacking ring

I’ve been using Siena’s nap times and after bed time hours to work. It has been such a slow process, but I’m really happy to say that new pieces are in the works (you can see one of the new designs in the picture above). So far, I have 8 new designs created and I’m currently working on setting them up for production (castings and molds). I’m also currently carving 2 more designs (that go with the other eight I was just talking about) and working my way through a new stand alone group that I hope will become a permanent part of my jewelry offerings (more on this later).

Sommi Jewelry Pop Up Shop Westelm Orlando

Pop-Up Shop @ West Elm when I was 7 months pregnant.

As the holiday season approaches, I’ve been thinking that I would like to get out there and participate in some local events. Hopefully, I’ll be accepted and will get the chance to meet some of you in person! I’ll be making announcements as soon as I find out any news so that you can mark your calendars, if you would like. :)

Lastly, since march of this year, I’ve been posting regularly on Instagram. So, if you haven’t yet, come follow my @sommijewelry’s Instagram account. I’m doing weekly stories showing lots of behind the scenes of everything that I’m working on, plus I’m planning to do a couple giveaways later on this year that I’ll be announcing there as well.

So now tell me, what has been going on with you?

xx,
Alexandra

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12.16.2015

Holiday Pop-up shop at West Elm!

Sommi Jewelry West Elm Orlando Pop-up

Christmas is 14 days away and time seems to be going by faster and faster as the day gets closer. I hope that you guys are able to slow down to spend time with your loved ones and to enjoy all the pretty decor that surround us during this time of the year.

For those of you who are still looking for gifts, Sommi Jewelry will have a pop-up shop at West Elm (4010 Conroy Rd, Orlando) this Saturday (December 19th) from 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm! How exciting, right? I’ll have most designs available for purchase and pretty packaging ready for gift giving. This will also be the perfect opportunity to try on pieces that you have been eying on the website. I promise I’ll let you try on as many jewels mas you would like ;).

I hope I will see you there!

xx,
Alexandra

11.06.2015

Big and Little News to Share

We Are Having A Girl

As you may have noticed, I have been missing in action on the blog for the last few months. Today is the day to get back to updating this space on a regular basis. But, first things first. I would like to start this post sharing with you some exciting news. As of today, I am 21 weeks pregnant!! I (well we :) ) had been trying to start a family for a while and we feel so unbelievably lucky to be expecting our first child, who, by the way, is going to be a girl! As expected, I felt really tired during the first trimester, but I am happy to report that I am currently feeling great.

Now that I have shared the BIG news let’s move to other updates that are worthy of mentioning too. In the past, I have played around with the idea of opening an Etsy shop for Sommi. I had gone back and forth with this idea since before I launched the main website. I have finally decided to create an Etsy space for my brand. About 70% of all the designs will be available on the new Etsy shop, but people will be able to see the full collection on the main site.

The shop will open next Monday (November 9th) and I will add 3 or 4 designs/listings every day until all the listings are up on the shop (I read that this technique can be a good approach when opening a shop to stay at the top of search results for longer). I will also be giving a 15% discount during the first 7 days for those of you who are part of my email list. So, if you haven’t yet, you can click here and sign up!

I am feeling really good about getting back into the swing of things, opening this Etsy store (just in time for the Holidays) and sharing more of my jewelry making process and new designs on the blog. Hope you guys are doing great and that you had as good as a summer as I did!

xx,
Alexandra

05.20.2015

Flowers + Jewels

Bar Necklace with flowers

Spring has been here in Florida for a few months, which means that all the plants in my house and neighborhood are blooming beautifully. I get excited every time this happens. I guess I’m becoming a little bit of a plant lady these days. Clayton tells me he wants to make me a “real” plant lady, so a couple months ago I helped him change crops in our little flower bed. Yesterday we harvested our first green beans crop and I cooked it for dinner. How exciting, right?!

Speaking of spring and flowers, I was browsing through my photo library and I found some photos that I have not shared with you. The photos are from the current collection, sitting alongside the prettiest flower arrangements made by Ashton Events. Remember how I told you that Laura asked me if I would like to take some flowers with me after we did the Luxe + Modern shoot? Well, I did take one arrangement and I used it as props for these photos.

My original idea was to create an Etsy shop for Sommi and use the photos there. I’m still unsure about whether I’ll open an Etsy shop, but I thought I would share some of the photos with you today. The color scheme for the flower arrangement was a combination of soft white, deep burgundy and, of course, green. I feel like the flowers gave the jewelry a sophisticated look and complemented the pieces nicely.

Angle Rings in gold and silver Closed V Necklace in gold Gold Shield Ring Path Ring in Silver alongside flower Arch Cuff Bracelet Point Ring Bronze Tribal Cuff Bracelet Pyramid Drops Earrings in Bronze Arch Rings in gold and silver

I hope you enjoyed the photos and, as always, if you have any comments about this post don’t hesitate to get in touch with me. I would love to hear from you!

Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend!

–Alexandra

 

02.18.2015

Editorial Shoot Featured On 100 Layer Cake

Sommi Jewelry earrings and necklaces all photos via lh photograpy

Working with other creatives is one of my favorite things. Back in September Ly Sué, from LH Photography, reach out to me and asked if I would be interested in participating in an editorial wedding photo shoot she was putting together. I usually don’t think about my jewelry as bridal. But, I was really intrigued when she told me how all the angles on my pieces would be the perfect fit for the Modern + Luxe theme of the shoot. I’m so happy I said yes to the opportunity. Working with a team of such talented creatives (such as Siuleth from Eleven Note, Laura from Ashton Events, Sherri from The Pastry Studio and Asha from Bright Frame Films, just to mention a few) was truly an amazing experience.

MODERNLUXE_editorial_lhphotography©LHPHOTOGRAPHY2014-0259 MODERNLUXE_editorial_lhphotography©LHPHOTOGRAPHY2014-0140-2

After all the hard work, the photographs were published on the 100 Layer Cake blog a couple of weeks ago. How cool is that, right? We are all so excited and proud. The shoot took place at Snap! Space, a 5,000 square feet indoor-outdoor gallery/event venue in downtown Orlando. As soon as I arrived at the venue the morning of the photo shoot, I worked closely with Ly Sué and Siuleth. I gave them a hand styling my jewelry with the stationary, as well as styling a few flowers that sat along some of the amazing food prepared by Arthur’s Catering. I was so impressed by Siuleth’s stationary work and felt so happy when she told me my jewelry was the inspiration behind all the stationary work she did.

MODERNLUXE_editorial_lhphotography©LHPHOTOGRAPHY2014-0024-3

Laura and her team, from Ashton Events, made amazing flower arrangements and styled many of the details in the shoot. I cannot say enough about their beautiful work. Those flowers were such a dream. So much so that when she asked me if I would like to take some home, I did not think twice before I said yes. You can read more about her work and the inspiration behind the photo shoot here.

MODERNLUXE_editorial_lhphotography©LHPHOTOGRAPHY2014-0011-2 MODERNLUXE_editorial_lhphotography©LHPHOTOGRAPHY2014-0018

The Pastry Studio created the beautiful cake and macaroons. Every time I walked by the dessert table, I had to contain myself not to snatch one of these little guys while no one was looking. The Pastry Studio is located in Daytona and the owner, Sherri, told me I could stop anytime at their location and they would make a fresh batch of macaroons. I need to plan a field trip to her store ASAP.

Sommi Jewelry Pyramid Drops Earrings

For the jewelry, we used the Pyramid Drops Earrings as the main focal point. I love how they draw the eye to her neck and subtlety elongate it. We then layered three Bar Necklaces that complemented the geometric theme of the shoot without overpowering the earrings. For her ring finger, we choose the Angle Ring andArch Ring that when juxtaposed created the most interesting angles making them the perfect pair. Finally, we completed the whole look with the Arch Cuff. This piece is one of my favorites, with its delicate lines and unexpected diamond shape opening. I enjoyed every minute of styling and worked hard to make sure that all the jewelry was in place while Ly Sué took these stunning photos.

Hands wearing Sommi Jewelry holding invitation Sommi Jewelry Rings

If you want to see the full feature on the 100 Layer Cake blog, you can do so here.  But before you go, make sure to watch the lovely video that Asha, from Bright Frame Films, put together of the photo shoot (below).

A big thanks to all the vendors that made this day possible:

Photography & Concept: LH Photography / Videographer: Bright Frame Films / Venue: Snap! Space / Event Design, Florals & Concept: Ashton Events Planning and Design / Furniture Rentals & Concept: Wish Vintage Rentals / Hair, Makeup, & Nails: Ali Lee Artistry / Stationery, Favors & Concept: Eleven Note / Cake & Sweets: The Pastry Studio / Hor d’ oeuvres: Arthur’s Catering / Cocktails: The Courtesy Bar / Dinnerware & Drinkware: Dishie Rentals / Wedding Dress & Veil: Malindy Elene Bridal / Jewelry: Sommi Jewelry / Model: Joy Mayfield / Custom Veil: Olivia Gray

Until next time…

xx,
Alexandra

01.30.2015

Sommi Jewelry Lookbook

I’m really happy to announce that the FW14 Sommi Jewelry Lookbook is finally up on the site! I cannot believe it has already been five months since the website launch. Has the time flown by for you guys too? I have been meaning to finish editing the photos since the launch, but every time I made progress or got close to being done, something else came up. I’m so happy to, finally, cross this out from my to-do list.

I want to give a huge thanks to the talented Becka Robinson from By The Robinsons for the gorgeous photos and to the beautiful Nikki Graham for modeling the jewelry flawlessly. I had such a fun time hanging out with these two ladies while shooting the lookbook. Although we were all business during the shoot, we made time for a couple mimosas and strawberries in between takes, which, as we all know, are a must.

I’m so happy with the way the photos came out. Here are a few vertical frames, but you can see the full lookbook on the website!

Sommi Jewelry necklace Sommi Jewelry rings and necklace Sommi Jewelry rings and studs Sommi Jewelry rings Sommi Jewelry cuff bracelets and rings

Sommi Jewelry ring and bracelets Sommi Jewelry ring

photography: Becka Robinson from By The Robinsons
model: Nikki Graham
makeup & hair: LeJeun Artistry
art direction: Alexandra Nieto

Hope you guys have a nice and relaxing weekend!

xx,
Alexandra

01.23.2015

Hello 2015

Alexandra Nieto Instagram

images via my instagram

Fist of all, Happy 2015 to you guys!! I hope everyone is already enjoying the new year and excited about all the possibilities that lay before us. It has been a couple months since I posted and I thought I would be fitting to kick off the new year with an update post. There have been a few exciting things happening in the past months, so I’m going to back up a bit and touch on the high points of 2014.

As many of you already know I launched Sommi Jewelry back in July. I’m really happy to say the launch itself went really well. I had my first orders through the website within a couple hours of making the announcement and, as you can imagine, I was ecstatic about it. Since that first day, orders have kept coming in and I have been continuously busy all the way until today. Working long hours and staying on top of every aspect of the business has been sometimes overwhelming, but rewarding in so many ways.

A big stepping stone accomplished in the last few months has been getting my first stockists. Back in September I received my first wholesale order from Rifle Paper Co.’s flagship store in Winter Park, Florida. I couldn’t believe it. I am such a big fan of their brand and their store front. Soon after that I had the opportunity to get into a second store. This time the order came from Penelope T, a beautiful boutique which carries a curated group of both big and small brands. They have two locations, one in Tampa, and one in Jacksonville. How exciting is this, right? I am so beyond grateful!

A couple collaborations are in the works as well. One of these collaborations was with a talented group of local creatives in an editorial photo shoot. It was an incredible experience and I think I will be able to share more about it very soon. The others are potential opportunities that have come up and that I hope will materialize. I will share more about them as soon as I can!

Last but not least I participated in my first “in person” event where I had the chance to set up my own little space to show and sell my whole collection. I enjoyed so much meeting customers in person, seeing their reactions as they saw the jewelry and getting their feedback in real time. The whole experience was so new to me that I even forgot to take good photos, but at least I did snap a quick one with my phone.

So that brings us to 2015! I’m looking forward to working hard and making some new designs this year. But I’ll share more about that later. I hope you all had an amazing holiday season with your loved ones and wish you all the best in this (almost) brand new year. :)

xx,
Alexandra

09.19.2014

SOMMI Jewelry now available at Rifle Paper Co.

Sommi Jewelry available at Rifle Paper Co. image via my instagram
illustration on blank note card by anna bond | rifle paper co.

Things have been a little quite around here during the past couple of weeks, and it’s time to break the silence. Recently all of my attention has been placed on making jewelry, and I honestly have not had much time for anything else. Although I hate leaving the blog lonely, there is a silver lining to this situation that has put a smile on my face for the past week. You can now find SOMMI Jewelry at Rifle Paper Co.’s flagship store in Winter Park, Florida!

They placed a wholesale order last week, and I have been working really hard to get some of the pieces to them before their big event going on this weekend. It was such a treat seeing my little treasures last night sitting along side all their beautiful products. Eeeek. I cannot believe it!

So if you are in the area you should definitely stop by their beautiful shop. They have an amazing sidewalk sale going on today and tomorrow. And while you are there you can also check out my little jewels : ).

Hope you guys have a lovely weekend!

–Alexandra

08.22.2014

Approach 05 / Path Ring

SOMMI Jewelry Path Ring

When it comes to fabricating rings one of the most challenging parts of the process is making the designs in all the different ring sizes. Since I work in wax, most times I get to re-carve each ring at least three times. For example, I have already carved the Aura Ring twice, in sizes 7 and 8, and I still have to carve it in size 6 and probably in size 9 as well. Although you learn the ins and outs of a design and the best approach to carving a piece the first time around, somehow the process can be more difficult the second time because you are not only carving, but also replicating the piece.

My “production” approach for the new collection (FW14) was to have the ring designs ready in one or two sizes before the launch and then, after the big day, I would carve the extra sizes based on the orders I received. This week I had the chance to re-carve the Path ring for a special friend and decided to take some photos along the way so I could share them with you.

When I started sketching the Path ring, I wanted to create a double banded ring that was shorter in height than the other double banded rings I had already designed. My one requirement for this ring was to have some sort of straight vertical line connecting both bands in the middle of the ring. The solution was to create the connection by making the bottom band gradually become one as a vertical line and elongating it all the way to the top band.

Wax Carving Path Ring SOMMI Jewelry

Above you can see the sequence of photos that show the main steps I took to complete the design (total of seven hours), starting with a solid wax shank and ending with a shaped ring. For this piece, I carved the main part of the design first and then I added some wax to create the small tip on top of the ring. When the wax model is ready I send it to be cast in metal and once I get it back, I polish the piece to a bright shine.

I hope you guys enjoyed taking a peek at how this ring was made. It’s nice to be back to jewelry making after spending some much-needed fun days in Vancouver. I’ll try to share more about my trip in the coming weeks!

(If you want to see more on my approach, you can do so here!)

Hope you all have a lovely weekend!

–Alexandra

07.29.2014

A Proper Launch Announcement

SOMMI Jewelry website launch.

If you follow me on social media, you have probably heard the good news. But for those of you who haven’t, I’m extremely happy to announce that my first jewelry collection and brand has launched! SOMMI Jewelry is a contemporary jewelry line designed and created by me. I begin each of my pieces with a pencil sketch which I translate by hand into wax, using ancient and modern wax carving techniques. The carved wax is then cast in materials such as sterling silver, bronze and 14K gold.

The website launch happened exactly one week ago, on July 22nd. As expected, the week before the launch was one of the busiest I have had in a really long time. Long nights and early mornings were the week’s theme to the point that, unfortunately for me, I didn’t even get to sleep during the last day and a half before the launch. As you can imagine, I was ready to drop dead by the time I launched, but thankfully everything that needed to get done, got done. There are still many things on my to-do list that I’ll be tackling in the coming weeks, one of which is finishing this collection’s look book and publishing it on the website. Right now you can see some cropped frames of the photos from the shoot in the product pages, but soon I will have a page on the website where you will be able to see all the styled photos in one place.

SOMMI Jewelry Aura Ring After the launch last Tuesday, I have been working on fulfilling my first orders (so exciting!) and getting some things in order. A big change around here is that I’m changing the company who is casting my pieces. The timing is terrible as I’m shipping my molds to a different state, and I’m figuring out all the logistics right as I launch and work on my first orders. But I realized the company I was using wasn’t a good fit for me and the quality of the product I was getting back was inconsistent. So at the moment, I’m working on sorting all this out as fast and efficiently as possible so that things can run a lot smoother later on. For the lovely people who have placed orders during the last week, this means that out of the “2 to 4 week” estimated timeframe to ship your order, most likely, I’ll be using the 4 full weeks to fulfill your order. But I promise I’ll ship your jewelry as soon as I can and I’ll work all this out so that the wait time will be cut to two weeks or less in the near future!

Thank you all so much for your support and patience during this adjustment time. Although things are a little hectic, I’m delighted to be making jewelry for some awesome people out there. It really means so much to me to have you come along with me on this journey. And last but not least, if you haven’t been to sommijwelry.com yet, I invite you to click here and take a look at the new 20 piece-collection showcasing bohemian, tribal and edgy jewelry that I have created. I truly hope you will love the jewelry as much as I have enjoyed making it!

–Alexandra