August 2012 Newsletter


Summer is synonymous with long days, warm weather and outdoor activities. As we reach the middle of this almost magical season, I find myself reflecting on another gift this season brings – added time spent with my family. I cherish the opportunity to spend additional time with my loved ones both at home and on vacation, and believe these “re-creation-al” activities are integral to regenerating our minds and souls.


Taking a vacation, whether it’s across town or across the globe, is so important for our mental and emotional well-being. Invariably, I find I come back from these experiences bursting with creative inspiration and renewed energy.


A large part of my energy renewal comes from sharing experiences with my immediate and extended family. These are the people who have helped mold me into who I am… providing both the love and support that every individual needs to thrive and excel. Taking time to appreciate the role each person has played in my life is something I find truly inspirational.

Warmest wishes,


Ashley Morgan‘s Latest Projects with Instagram


We want you to be in the know about what we’re working on and how we do it. We are regularly posting images of our work, process, surroundings and inspiration on Instagram. Featured here are some of our recent projects that provide a little insight into our process for creating jewelry.


1. Sourcing Stones


The first step in this creative process is to look through our collection of stones – searching to find the one stone that has the perfect combination of shape, color, cut and transparency to complement the piece of jewelry we have in mind. Featured in this image are tanzanite, rubies, paraiba tourmalines and diamond slices.


2. Sketches


Next, we design the piece with hand drawn sketches that highlight the integration of the materials. All of the elements must work together to form a completed piece that is visually appealing from all angles. Along with the hand drawings, we often use computer-assisted drawings (CAD programs) to create additional renderings of the pieces. This sketch shows a green tourmaline ring in 18k gold with pave diamonds and hand engraving.


3. Wax Carvings


Once we have worked out the final design through our sketches, we create the piece out of wax. We mold the wax by hand to the desired shape and texture of the final piece. Using the lost wax casting process, we create a mold around the wax carving into which we then pour the liquid metal to form the final piece.


4. Finished Product


Voila! All of our hard work pays off when we see the piece of jewelry in its final state.


Be sure to follow Ashley Morgan on Instagram to learn more about our process and to get a sneak peak of our latest projects.


Ashley Morgan Jewelry Featured at Odette Estate


Ashley Morgan jewelry will be on display at Odette Estate, PlumpJack’s newest winery. The project’s mission statement is “To highlight the feminine style of wines that reflect the unique terroir of our Stags Leap District Estate winery.” In doing so, the winery will be featuring an Ashley Morgan collection of custom silver pieces. Come view the collection and celebrate with Odette Estate at the grand opening and open house on August 4th and 5th from 10am – 3pm.


Odette Estate Winery

5998 Silverado Trail

Napa, CA 94558


Ever since I first discovered Ashley Morgan, I have been enamored with her creativity, craftsmanship and talent for designing beautiful and unique jewelry. It is for this reason that I am so excited to be able to showcase her custom silver and rough diamond jewelry collection at our new winery, Odette Estate. Ashley’s jewelry will be a perfect “pairing” for our visitors who are looking to express their individuality by selecting a special piece created by one of San Francisco’s leading local designers.”


– Hilary Newsom


The Difference Between 18k White Gold and Platinum?

White gold is an alloy of gold that is Rhodium plated. It is mixed with other white metals such as silver and palladium. White gold can be any karat, but is most often 18k. Platinum is a white metal, but unlike gold it is used in jewelry in an almost pure form (approximately 95% pure).

While platinum is more expensive than white gold, there are many benefits to creating jewelry out of platinum.

  • It is more durable
  • It doesn’t lose its color
  •  It is denser so will feel heavier than a gold ring
  • It is more malleable and less brittle so will better conform to your finger and hold stones
  • White gold will wear away while platinum is only displaced

   Mason Jar Salad (as seen on Pinterest)

We are always looking for easy, convenient, healthy and delicious meals to pack in our bags when we come to work. Recently we came across this Mason Jar Salad on Pinterest and have been loving it!


What a great idea for either fruit or green salads. Start with the dressing and durable veggies/fruits at the bottom, pile on your remaining ingredients and leave enough room at the top to shake, shake, shake. We have found that you can make these meals ahead of time as they will last up to a week in the fridge.   Of course then you can usually find us walking over to Specialty’s for a chocolate chip cookie for dessert!

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