If you’ve purchased from Jewel of Havana, you know most of the pieces come with a card sharing the stories and inspiration behind the jewelry you select. The stories seem to naturally follow the arc of my life but my hope has always been to provide meaningful work to accompany your life stories and celebrations.
I was recently contacted by one of the first collectors of my work. Her daughter was opening as Little Red Riding Hood in a production of the musical Into the Woods and she wanted a meaningful gift to mark the occasion for her opening night.
She selected a piece from the Into the Woods Collection and asked two things: could I get it to her in time and did I have a story card to go with it? Into the Woods was one of my earliest collections, and though I had an inspirational story behind it, I never put it in writing. I didn’t want to disappoint her so I started the process of creating a new story card for her gift.
The Backstory - Into the Woods
You may know me as a jewelry artist, but before that, I had a 25-year career performing on Broadway. One of my biggest influences has always been Stephen Sondheim. I studied everything he did and was moved by his lyrics, his mind, and his music. I couldn’t wait to get to New York and see his work in person.
25 years later, life brought me back to my hometown with a new business and a new adventure ahead.
My parents are avid gardeners and have the most beautiful property with so many nooks and crannies to get lost in nature. I was inspired to use the leaves and textures from their gardens for this collection. It seemed only fitting I would name it Into the Woods as a tribute to my family, and the beginning of a new life. Going into the unknown can lead to so many wonderful things.
I hope the jewelry pieces in this collection help you celebrate your path wherever you may be and remind you to wish, to dream, “to go to the festival”. "The way is clear, the light is good". "The prettier the flower, the farther from the path" and "Someone is on your side... No one is alone" xo Ana
Are You Game Day Ready?
Huddle Up!! Before you sit down to watch the Superbowl this weekend did you score your most important goal this week?
Valentine's Day is THIS Monday. If you want to be Superbowl ready... grab your Valentines gifts before the game. No matter who wins this weekend, you'll be the MVP on Monday morning. Let me be on your team and help you score a touchdown. 😜
Seriously though, I'm not knocking flowers or chocolates. They are lovely. But flowers wilt and if chocolates enter my house, they are gone in under 5.
Meaningful Gifts to Remind Them of You
I am so lucky things happened the way they did. There were many moments along the way it could have been different. The GYN could have stopped at the first test. After meeting the specialist and learning there was only a 2 percent chance it was cancer, I could have chosen not to have the surgery. No family history, no one seemed alarmed, etc., but thanks to a Cuban Mom and her loud worry meter, I chose the surgery and found out I was in that 2 percent.
Gifts that Give Back
Here’s Kourtney's BRProud news story about my breast cancer journey and the jewelry that was inspired by it.
Stay safe and if anything is different, go get checked. xo Ana
It’s almost that time of year again, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. Personally, I love Valentine’s Day. Bright colors, sweet treats, and acts of kindness—the day is truly about showing your love to all who deserve it.
On Valentine’s Day, I like to show my love and admiration to many people in my life, not just my actual valentine. On a day dedicated to celebrating love in general, why not spread that love to many and show you care?
All of our jewelry comes in a beautiful presentation box with a bow and a blank card for you to personalize so whether you are wanting a present for that special someone, a treasured friend, a cherished family member, or show yourself some love, check out these great gift ideas to make the day extra special and help them remember how you feel about them all year long.
Rose Quartz is the stone of unconditional love, making it a perfectly festive gift for Valentine’s Day. This necklace is one of my personal favorite gift items, it just seems to go with everything and works across all ages.
If you want to check out more items incorporating Rose Quartz, you can shop the collection here.
If you are looking for a gift that is cost-friendly, look no further. We have a ton of affordable options that will make this Valentine’s Day unforgettable. These Freshwater Pearl Coin Earrings pair well with everything, plus their color is perfect for this chocolate-filled holiday!
ANGEL WING JEWELRY
True friends can be our own personal angels—protecting us and supporting us throughout any trials we might face. Our love and thankfulness for them is immense, and Valentine's Day is the perfect time to show them how we feel.
This Double Angel Wing Necklace helps reflect that sentiment and is perfect for all the angels in your life.
PINK PEARL BRACELETS
Here is a perfect gift for the little blessings in your life. Our kids collection has a lot of great gift options that will not break the bank!
Of course, I think the Pink Freshwater Pearl Bracelet is especially fitting for Valentine’s Day, but there are many options you can choose from in the collection.
STEEL MAGNOLIAS JEWELRY
Looking for a new take on a Valentine’s Day favorite? This 3 Flower Cuff Bracelet from the Steel Magnolias Collection is sure to dazzle and stay useful way longer than any bouquet, making it a perfect V-Day gift.
The magnolia is a symbol of quiet strength and delicate beauty making this collection a favorite to exchange with friends, sisters or to treat yourself.
MIXED METAL JEWELRY
Finally, check out the entire Through the Looking Glass Collection for Valentine’s Day inspiration. This collection is all about unconditional love and seeing the world with joy and wonder and I cannot think of anything more fitting to celebrate on this holiday.
The holidays are such a busy time for me, as I am sure they are for everyone. I am just getting around to getting caught up.
In addition to the busyness, the holidays can also be a difficult time—especially when it might be the first time spending them without a loved one. (It was our first without my Father-in-law this year.)
I like to think that the holidays give us some healing power. As we sit and catch up with our family and friends, I like to use the time to keep the memory alive of those who passed and cherish those that are still with us today. I find it important to honor and remember the legacy of the ones we love, and the holidays just seem like the perfect time to do so.
When Carl Welder, who just so happens to be my husband’s cousin, approached me with an idea for a Christmas present to commemorate his late father, I could not refuse. He requested two necklaces, one for his mother and one for his sister, each inscribed with the phrase, “kisses and ice cream”. A lovely idea and an intriguing inscription—I immediately got to work in order to get the two necklaces ready for Christmas.
Now that Carl’s sister and mother have gotten their gifts, I wanted to share Carl’s wonderful story of honoring the father they all loved so much.
What was the meaning behind the phrase “kisses and ice cream”
The last year of his life, things had gone way downhill and he was basically confined to his bedroom, his living room, and his kitchen. We kept all trying to tell him that it was okay to let go, I mean he was 91 and had lived this great life—but he just kept bouncing back from a lot of different things.
Tell me about your decision to make these pieces for your family.
Well, this was the first Christmas without him this year. I knew it was going to be emotional, we were all not really looking forward to it. We chose to go ahead and be in the ancestral home where we had all celebrated before and I just wanted something very special for my sister and my mother to kind of commemorate that first Christmas without him.
I am so honored I was able to be a part of this remarkable story of love and family and help uphold the memory of someone so special.
Is there someone you want to keep close this year? If so, fill out the contact form and we can start the commission process. Additionally, if you have a story of giving Jewel of Havana jewelry this holiday season, be sure to share your story with us. xo Ana
I love celebrating mothers and daughters, but one of the things I love most about my job is working with men. I have so many husbands, fathers, brothers and friends selecting thoughtful gifts for the women in their lives, or even asking for my assistance in creating a custom piece all their own.
In a world where men are getting a bum rap by the ones who misbehave, I get to see the absolute best in them every day. They are thoughtful, they care and most of all, they love you big.
Take for example, my brother Hugo. Hugo is a teacher at Saint Joseph’s Academy and his wife, Stacia, is the principal. The school recently celebrated its 150th anniversary, complete with an entire season of celebratory events to commemorate Saint Joseph’s work in the lives of so many.
The 150th Anniversary Gala was the last of these events, a grand finale of sorts for the volunteers who had worked tirelessly for months, Hugo and Stacia included. Hugo decided he wanted to do something special for the people who had honored the school so well. He enlisted my help, searching for unique jewelry to gift to the volunteers and to his wife.
After some brainstorming, we decided that we would work together to make custom jewelry, incorporating the school’s shield. We ended up making a pair of cuff links, two rings, a pendant and a pair of earrings. Hugo has always been a thoughtful gift giver but this project was a really special one. I loved having him in the studio and collaborating on the designs.
I recently spoke with Hugo about the gifts and the use of jewelry for a very special thank you.
Hugo's Thoughtful Gifts
Why did you decide you wanted to gift them jewelry?
I wanted something that had a connection. I wanted to give them something special, so when they looked at it they knew that the work they had done was appreciated, and that they would remember all the good things of the process of putting on the events.
Why do you think jewelry has that sentimental value?
Jewelry is something you put on at special times and it carries a special connotation. I guess I was also thinking the gala was a black-tie affair and maybe something they could wear. Although being a guy, I neglected to think that the outfits had already been picked out and coordinated with jewelry!
What was actually creating the jewelry like?
It was eye-opening to see how much work goes into each piece. Not only in how careful you have to be to design everything but just everything in general. It was pretty impressive to learn. And fun to do!
The ring is beautiful and that equates to the appreciation of the school. It’s not something that was mass produced and I think they understood that. In fact, I had a couple of people ask where they could buy one when they saw it. I loved the idea that it was something that was thought out specifically for them. I wanted people that received it to know they are special.
Any final words to the recipients of the pieces?
Thank you! It was my pleasure and such an honor to be a part of the process. I’m humbled by the service that they gave to a place that I care so much about.
If you have a special occasion coming up or would like to create something unique for someone you love, don't hesitate to contact me. I'm happy to help make your jewelry idea a reality so the ones you love can think of you every time they wear it! xo Ana
I had the pleasure of delivering the last donation check of 2017 today to Mary Bird Perkins - Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center.
Thanks to all of you, the Draped In Love Collection has raised over $1000 for the Cancer Center. As a cancer survivor, I hope you never need them but I sure am glad this state of the art facility was there when I did!
Thank you for your support of the Draped In Love Collection & all of our Gifts That Give Back! xoxo Ana
If you'd like to learn more about our Gifts that Give Back, join our VIPs and be in the know for our next opportunities to shop for a cause! Plus you get free shipping every month and much more. Click the button to sign up!
This weekend I had the pleasure of being the guest soloist with the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra for their Home for the Holiday’s concert. It was a beautiful evening with a whole lot of talented people.
During the concert, Conductor, Timothy Muffitt asked if I was wearing any Jewel of Havana Jewelry. (I happened to be wearing one of my favorite statement rings and some green amethyst earrings.) We talked briefly about my “singing jeweler” journey from Broadway to Jewelry Artist & he decided since the back of the audience couldn’t see, he would take a picture & post it to Instagram from stage. LOL!! Not only is he immensely talented, he’s hilarious too!
So, if you happen to be in the audience Friday night and aren’t connected to the Maestro on Instagram, here’s what he posted live from stage.
Needless to say, I had a great time working with him and what an honor to sing with a Symphony of this caliber in my own home town! It put me right in the Christmas spirit!
If you are looking for a great gift idea this Christmas season, how about season tickets to the Baton Rouge Symphony and some Jewel of Havana Jewelry to wear on a year of dates to the symphony together! Who’s in?!
This season, I am so pleased to announce Jewel of Havana has partnered with another worthy charity.
Beginning November 1st through December 31st, 20% of all sales from our Diamond Post Earrings support the Vasculitis Foundation. Funds raised go directly to the creation of the Ilya Peckerman Vasculitis Teaching Fellowship Program,in conjunction with the Vasculitis Foundation.
In addition to funding extended education for fellows to become experts in diagnosing and caring for vasculitis patients, these fellows will also go to tri-state area hospitals and medical centers to educate primary care doctors and nurses about the early signs of Vaculitis disease, in the hopes of getting patients a quicker diagnosis and directing them to proper care for this autoimmune disease.
Additionally, for every dollar raised in the 2017 Shop 4 Vasculitis Campaign, there will be a dollar-for-dollar match by Pamela Pekerman Tenenabyev and her husband.
This holiday season, consider giving a gift that gives back!
What is Their Skin Tone?
Jewelry is an accessory that's worn directly on the skin, and often it's the first thing people notice about your outfit. So it's important to consider how the colors compliment your loved one's skin tone. Is your loved one's skin tone cool or warm?
Feel free to click on each gemstone to see our jewelry collection best suited for that skin tone!
What color clothing do they wear?
Let's say your loved one wears TEAL almost every day.
You can choose Lapis or Amazonite or other blue/teal colored jewelry for a more subtle look that matched with their favorite color. OR pick a complimentary gem like coral or rhodochrosite to make a bold statement that will POP!
If you want the jewelry to stand out then pick a color OPPOSITE what they normally wear on the color wheel.
This keeps the style fresher and allows the jewelry to take center stage! Using this technique, you avoid picking something that will clash with most of their wardrobe or feel out of place with their style.
On the flip side, everyone looks FANTASTIC in a clean white top or black top with colored gemstones as a pop of color!
I design with a full range of colored gemstones, so you are bound to find a piece that fits nicely with your loved one's personal style. Click Shop by Gemstone to explore.
Do they like delicate or statement jewelry?
Pay attention to the kind of jewelry they already wear! You'll probably get a sense if they gravitate towards big, bold statement pieces or small, delicate, elegant pieces.
And honestly, if you get this right, they'll probably love what you choose!
And if they don't wear much jewelry at all I would pick something light and delicate. They'll probably gravitate towards comfort over all else!
How would you describe their personality or the reason for the gift?
Now, the personality or reason for the gift will also affect what you choose. It's great to speak directly to the designer to get recommendations since we tend to answer these questions a lot!
Here are some common answers I give for gift suggestions:
I hope these tips will help you pick the perfect piece of jewelry for your loved one. BUT if you need a little extra help or want me to walk you through our collections, please feel free to reach out! I always respond within 24 hours!
DO YOU NEED HELP PICKING THE PERFECT PRESENT FOR YOUR OCCASION?
CONTACT US FOR ASSISTANCE
I love helping customers pick out the perfect gift so please don't hesitate to ask!
Mi casa es su casa!
I hope you feel welcome & find your perfect present at Jewel of Havana.
Let’s get started!
We're celebrating Moms this month on the blog! Next up is a hard working mother of two. Here's what her soon to be high school graduate had to say:
Sondra and Kennedie
What would you like to tell your Mom for Mother's Day?
I just want to thank you for always being there for me and wanting to spend time with me. She's a single mom and she works really hard and put me and my sister in private school. And sent me to St. Joseph's, thank God! She worked really hard even though she was by herself. Alot of people couldn't have given us what she did. She just kept going even if it was hard for her so we could have all the things that we needed. Thanks Mom!
It's May and Mother's Day is right around the corner (May 14th to be exact) This month I feature a few of our VIP Moms and their beautiful daughters! Check back over the next few days to meet some pretty amazing women and see what their daughters had to say about them!
Denise and Whitney
Shoppers often ask which is your favorite design? Well, it's like choosing between your children, you just can't pick one when you've made them all. BUT hands down, across the board, these bell necklaces seem to be the favorite of gift givers and wish list makers.
Recently redesigned, these bell necklaces have clip on gemstones that can be changed out. Choose one color or collect them all. The sterling silver bell slides easily up the chain for quick access to change out your stones.
I'll be adding more stone choices in 2017. Are there any stones or colors you would like to see added? Let me know in the comment section below!
Lapis Lazuli Leaf Bell Necklace
$12.00 - $195.00
Sterling silver philodendron leaf bell necklace. Available in ten changeable colors - lapis lazuli, aquamarine, peridot fresh water pearls, white pearls, gold pearls, black onyx, red coral, turquoise, peridot or amethyst. The pendant slides up the chain for easy access to change out your gemstone colors.
Price includes one color with 20 inch chain. (26 inch chain available. Just add chain to cart.) Additional clip on colors $30-$35 each. Add your main color choice with necklace to cart, then add any additional clip colors.
It's that time of year again and we're hitting the road for fall festivals and holiday shows. To help with your planning, I thought I'd offer some holiday gift ideas from some of our most popular jewelry collections. Click on any of the inspiration photos for gifts of jewelry that I hope will make everyone on your list smile. I look forward to visiting with you at one of our upcoming shows! HAPPY SHOPPING! xoxo ANA
Ana Maria Andricain
Ana is a metal clay certified artist creating handcrafted nature inspired artisan jewelry from her Baton Rouge studio. If you love natural gemstones and metal, welcome home!