Have a jewelry question? Want to place a custom order? Looking to collaborate on a project? Want to place a wholesale order for your store? I would love to hear! Feel free to drop me a line using the form to the right, or ask questions about specific items through the Etsy Shop

Brooklyn, NY

Rock That Gem is a handcrafted jewelry company providing gorgeous gemstone jewelry for you to ROCK!




Highlights from 2017 (and How 2018 Will be Completely Different)!

Rock That Gem

Running a business can feel exactly like that -- always speeding ahead and never getting a chance to stop and reflect. In this new year, it feels especially important to me to acknowledge the big accomplishments and highlights from 2017. 2018 will be completely different, and I want to remember and appreciate the special things that I worked hard to achieve over the past twelve months!

Yesterday I set aside a few hours in the afternoon to focus on doodling all the noteworthy highlights I could think of from 2017. It was so much fun to watch my hand-drawn infographic unfold. I highly recommend trying it out for yourself (no art skills required, just go with the flow)! It's a creative and joyful way to visually represent a whole year. Let's see what significant events made it into my drawing! 

RTG Highlights of 2017 copy 2.JPG

Starting from the top:

  • This was my second year as the Finance Director on the Board of the non-profit NY Handmade Collective (formerly known at the Etsy NY Team), a vibrant group of 250+ NYC-based artisans that focus on providing market opportunities and small business education for its members. My position included 10-15+ hours of work a week, and I still can't believe I found the energy to volunteer that much of my time for a second year. But we made some great progress as a Board and produced eight events, so it was definitely donated time to be proud of!
  • Etsy flew me to Toronto to present my bookkeeping workshop at the annual Etsy Canada Captains' Summit! This was such a great experience on so many levels -- the acknowledgment by Etsy of the worth and quality of my expertise, the chance to attend the conference and connect with so many foreign Etsy team leaders and bond over our shared experiences, and my very first trip to Canada!
  • The Etsy shop reached that pivotal milestone that all sellers yearn for -- 1,000 sales!
  • With online sales being harder to attain for multiple reasons (new search algorithms, market saturation, etc.) I decided to focus a good amount of my time towards in-person markets. What better way to reach customers than by actually meeting them! I vended at 10 craft fairs and markets in 2017 totaling 103 days (that's almost a third of the year!), four of which were holiday markets that covered 19 of the 30 days between Thanksgiving and Christmas. 
  • Last year was the four-year anniversary of Rock That Gem! Woohoo!
  • When I wasn't running my shop, vending at markets, and volunteering on the NYHC Board, I somehow found time to open a second creative business called With Love From Molly! There I design and create downloadable crochet patterns for clothing and accessories, and have shops on both Etsy and Ravelry. I adore crochet, and this has been a wonderful outlet to flex that muscle and share my knowledge!
  • Back to the topic of workshops, the G.I.A. D.C. Alumni Chapter (my alma mater, the Gemological Institute of America) invited me for an overnight trip to D.C. to present my Instagram Marketing workshop! This was another great honor -- I had already presented this workshop for the G.I.A. NY Metro chapter in 2016, and getting to meet fellow alumni in a new city and share my knowledge was a welcomed privilege! 
  • Did I mention busting my butt and working hard in 2017? All that effort paid off with a 30% increase in revenue over 2016!
  • And now for the cherry on the cake: at the end of the year Etsy stopped by to film a studio tour! They featured the video in their Insta Stories, and I got to draw a piece of advice to share on their Etsy Success IG account. A studio tour is a huge landmark for an Etsy shop owner, and they made it so fun and easy!
  • Best of all, for half of 2017 I was also pregnant and growing a sweet little baby boy! (If you attended any of those holiday markets I did you got to meet the growing bump!) I couldn't have made it through all those December events without the help of my friend Chloe, whose energy and vibrant personality made all the difference when I needed her to work the booths when I couldn't be there!

On that note, 2018 will be very different from 2017, in so many amazing ways! With just about 6 weeks until baby arrives, my energy has been slowing down to prepare for all these remarkable changes. I plan to put the shop on extended vacation in a week or so, and likely won't reopen until July when I've gotten into the groove of parenthood. I am welcoming this change with open arms (for lots of cuddles!). Imagine how streamlined my business decision-making skills will be when there's a little one to think about? And what sharp focus I will have with time management and projects? I made this infographic as much for my son as for me, to show how much I accomplished before he arrived, and how happy I am to change my focus and bring him into this world. I can't wait to see who I am on the other side of this!

I would love to hear your experiences with big changes in your business, whether it was parenthood, shifting direction, or taking a huge leap. Feel free to share below! 

15 Awesome Valentine's Day Cards on Etsy

Rock That Gem

Whether you're planning a big night on the town, a cozy evening on the couch, or a long-distance call with your special someone for Valentine's Day, it's always a treat to include a hand-written card from the heart. Expressing your love on paper means it can be cherished for years to come. What better place to find the perfect greeting card than on Etsy?

I put together a few of my favorite love-themed cards from some awesome fellow Etsy shop owners. You can purchase these cards directly from the talented artists who created them. I'm so excited to introduce you to their beautiful work!

Celebrating Valentine's Day with friends this year? There's a perfect card for your pal, too!

Which is your favorite card of the bunch? If you purchase one of these cards for a loved one, or just find a new artist from the bunch to crush on, let us know! 

Where in the World is Rock That Gem?

Rock That Gem

With last month being the three year anniversary of Rock That Gem (popularly referred to as an "Etsyversary", how cute!) I thought it would be fun to take a look at all the places the jewelry has traveled to around the world!

Early on in the business I tried to establish a map of order locations, but once the holidays hit the data became too cumbersome to enter manually and the project went on hold. This week I came across a fantastic piece of software that creates a nightly-updated custom sales map through an integration with your Etsy shop. With just a click of a button the map was complete!

The stats show that as of today the jewelry has traveled to 14 countries (out of 196): 

  • Australia
  • Belgium
  • Canada 
  • Denmark 
  • France
  • Indonesia 
  • Italy
  • Luxembourg
  • Pakistan 
  • Singapore 
  • Sweden 
  • The Netherlands 
  • United Kingdom 
  • United States 

Every time an international order comes through it always feels so exotic and special. I imagine the jewelry traveling with a little tiny suitcase and getting vintage stickers from each region of the journey to paste on its luggage! 

 Photo courtesy of  PinkyLaRoux

Photo courtesy of PinkyLaRoux

It's a popular goal among Etsy shop owners to have their products travel to all 50 states. As of today the map shows that the jewelry has made itself at home in 41 of them! Here are the 9 states the remain un-rocked:

  • Alaska
  • Hawaii
  • Idaho
  • Iowa
  • Mississippi
  • Nebraska
  • South Dakota
  • Vermont
  • West Virginia

It's not surprising that Alaska and Hawaii are on there since they're so far away. But Vermont? Our states share a border! It would be awesome to cover all 50 states by the end of the year. So let's have a little fun -- if you live in one of the remaining states above and place an order before someone else from your state does, I'll include a special gem present with your purchase! Just make sure to include in the Notes to Seller that you're from one of the un-rocked states. And yes, it totally counts if you're shipping a gift to a friend who lives in one of those states, they'll get two presents instead of just one! (I'll update this post with strikeouts as the states get rocked!)

Do you have an Etsy shop? What does your sales map look like? I'd love to hear! 

P.S. If you didn't have the pleasure of watching "Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?" on PBS as a kid, or just feel like taking a trip down memory lane, this episode is for you!

Rock That Holiday Gift Guide 2016!

Rock That Gem

Looking for some uniquely awesome and creative gifts for friends and family that can still be shipped in time for the holidays? I'm back again this year with a brand new last-minute holiday gift guide for 2016! (If you missed it, check out the amazing items from last year's gift guide). All of these products and digital downloads are still available to purchase online, but don't delay -- gifts this good never stay in stock for long!

 Photo courtesy of  Emily McDowell Studio

Photo courtesy of Emily McDowell Studio

Emily McDowell is a hilarious, talented, honest, and relatable artist whose original line of greeting cards has developed into an awesome brand that includes smart tote bags, mugs, and now this new line of Everyday Bravery Pins. Enamel pins have become so popular, but these feature a delightful twist -- they celebrate the small things in life to be proud of, like "Put Myself First" and "Did It Anyway". The perfect encouraging stocking stuffer!  

 Photo courtesy of  Hand Lettered Design

Photo courtesy of Hand Lettered Design

Who doesn't love the style and beauty of chalk art? Earlier this year I purchased the Chalk Art 101 online class from Hand Lettered Design, and only recently did I get the chance to take a few days to sit down and devour it all. There is so much inspiring information in this class! It took my chalk lettering skills to the next level, and Lisa is such a calm and helpful teacher. They also offer a Hand Lettering and Faux Calligraphy class, as well as a Brush Lettering class. The perfect gift for the artist in your life!

 Photo courtesy of  Little Miss Workbench

Photo courtesy of Little Miss Workbench

Speaking of chalk -- this genius little chalk device is perfect for the kid in your life! (And yes, that includes kid-like adults too!). I met Michele of Little Miss Workbench at the Brooklyn Holiday Bazaar last year (she was the booth across from mine!) and I've been a fan ever since. Evolving from wooden cameras with chalkboard displays so kids can draw what they see, her new product is equally genius -- a chalkboard cellphone! Who wouldn't love to draw the images they wish to see on their phone?

 Photo courtesy of  Lucy Knisley

Photo courtesy of Lucy Knisley

Lucy Knisley has rapidly become one of my absolute favorite illustrators. Originally introduced to her work on Instagram during Inktober (she's currently on maternity leave with her adorable new son and posts drawings of all the fun and difficult moments of new motherhood), I have devoured almost every single one of her comics-style memoir-meets-diary books. Relish quickly became my favorite of the bunch. In it she chronicles her relationship with food -- her chef mother, tasty meals abroad, and favorite recipes. It's a colorful and honest story that will make you want to get into the kitchen right away to play along. The perfect gift for a foodie! And if you fall in love with her as much as I do, she offers custom paintings to her Patreon members. A great gift as well!

 Photo courtesy of  Ohhh Lulu

Photo courtesy of Ohhh Lulu

Who doesn't love gorgeous lingerie? Sarah of Ohhh Lulu makes the prettiest custom bras and panties, sized just for you. Choose from delicate laces, buttery velvets, glossy silks, and so much more. But that's not all. In her second Etsy shop you can purchase the sewing patterns to make them yourself! Perfect for the DIY-er that loves the challenge of creating their own lovely intimates. 

 Photo courtesy of  MollyGirl Yarn

Photo courtesy of MollyGirl Yarn

Have a knitter or crocheter in your life? After purchasing some awesome gemstone stitch markers for them, your next stop should be MollyGirl Yarn (and it's not just because the brand shares my name, but it helps!). I originally fell in love with Angela's hand-dyed yarn at the opening of Woolyn in Brooklyn, and then got to meet the artist at the Kings County Fiber Festival. Her yarns are bright, colorful, and playful with a rock star edge. Purchase a fun skein or two of a yarn like this speckled Lollipop in the photo above, or make it into a full kit that includes the yarn and a pattern. Your fiber friend will thank you!

Many of these shops have discounts going on (on top of shipping in time for the holidays) so check out their social media accounts for some special codes. And if you make a purchase, feel free to let them know I sent you!

Which one are you most excited for? For yourself or as a gift? I won't tell :) 

Eating with the Seasons: Spring Menu - Dessert and Tea

Rock That Gem

This pie is perfect for spring -- light, mouth-watering, and a crowd-pleaser. You can even forgo the crust and use this filling to make little pudding cups!

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Eating with the Seasons: Spring Menu - Main and Side Dishes

Rock That Gem

In the spring we turn to lighter foods with an emphasis on steaming and boiling. The vegetables that grow in the spring have a rising energy that you can see clearly in the way they come up from the ground. Think of leafy greens, sprouts, chives, garlic, and asparagus. During this change in weather we want to embody that kind of energy as well. On that note, let's start with our spring side dish!

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Eating with the Seasons: Spring Menu - Appetizer

Rock That Gem

I put together a perfect spring menu to get you started eating with the seasons. For the next three days I will post a new recipe each day so you can create a lovely spring meal by the end of the week! Today we start with the appetizer. Remember to always chew your food well, eat until you are satisfied but not stuffed, and be thankful for all that you have!

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Rock That Holiday Gift Guide!

Rock That Gem

Shopping from the comfort of your home is the perfect cozy way to check off everyone on your list! With Christmas just around the corner, now is the time to order those gifts so they get to you right on time. Purchasing from small businesses warms everyone's hearts. The makers get to support their families, and you get to give gifts made with love to the people you love. It's a win-win!

I compiled this gift guide to give you some great ideas while also getting the chance to meet some of my favorite fellow makers. These creative shop owners are all so talented. It will be hard for you not to purchase a little something for yourself too!

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Yoga For Makers

Rock That Gem

In an effort to help relieve all of our tight muscles I asked my friend Kenzie Pause, a yoga teacher here in Brooklyn, to develop a custom yoga routine that we can easily incorporate into our days. These poses target the areas that suffer the most when you're hunched over your workbench or tight from sitting all day. Try them out and see which ones soothe your tight spots the most. You can then pick and choose poses on any given day, or complete the whole series again for a full body stretch. Repeat often -- your body will thank you!

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Book Review - Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert

Rock That Gem

I recently checked out Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert of Eat, Pray, Love fame. The book offers a wealth of great points about creativity, and I thought it would be fun to share a few that particularly resonated with me.

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