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A New Trade Show and an Amazing Symposium!

Karin Jacobson show news trade show travel

It’s been a fantastic summer – after going to Albuquerque for the Saul Bell Awards and the Santa Fe Symposium, I was off to Las Vegas to exhibit at Premier, a new trade show that debuted during Las Vegas Jewelry Week this year. It was a beautifully curated show with so many amazing designers!

Premier was part of a three show group at the Las Vegas Convention Center; inside, the entrance to Premier before the show opened; and a peek into my booth!

Highlights included chatting up an editor from Vogue; seeing my Saul Bell Award collection on display; shopping for gems at the American Gem Trade Association show; catching up with designer friends from around the country; and meeting lots of new designer friends (it's both fun and extremely helpful connecting with other people in the industry)!

My work was shown in two locations at once because my Saul Bell Award winning collection was displayed at the JCK show across town (Las Vegas Jewelry Week is not just one show, but nine shows all running at the same time!); I also got to do a little gem shopping at the AGTA show; and chat up an editor from Vogue!

Then, I was home for less than a week before leaving again, this time for the idyllic town of Grand Marais, Minnesota, for the Findings Symposium. Hosted by the Grand Marais Art Colony with a sponsorship and organizing help from the Minnesota Jewelry Arts Guild (I’m a board member of MNJAG), the symposium was a fantastic week of jewelry classes, speakers, inspiration, and fun.

Grand Marais is on the North Shore of Lake Superior, and actually has a different climate than we experience way down here in Minneapolis. (Minneapolis gets cold, but the North Shore is a whole new adventure in chilly, where the weather is very much influenced by the largest of the Great Lakes). It is also an exceptionally beautiful and completely charming part of our state.

Isn't this about the prettiest, most charming place ever??

I took a class on bead & bright setting (a type of stone setting often used with diamonds) with Bill Kenneally, and can’t wait to start trying out some of the new techniques that I learned.

Learning new stone setting techniques!

There were also fascinating artist talks by Anna Johnson and George Sawyer, and a guided hike at Sugarloaf Cove to study the local geology, which was incredibly interesting.

Clockwise from top left: George Sawyer demonstrates how a one-of-a-kind puzzle pin is assembled; Anna Johnson and I ham it up for a selfie; learning about the unique geology of Sugarloaf Cove on the beautiful shore of Lake Superior; Anna Johnson, Kari Saathoff and I showing off each others' work.

In addition to classes and lectures, we had time to hang out, chat, and get to know one another, which was truly a highlight of this week spent “up north”!

Those of us who had time before leaving town capped off the trip with a sail on Lake Superior. My friend and fellow MNJAG board member Danny Saathoff and his wife Kari (also an artist) are avid sailors and have a boat harbored on the North Shore, which they stayed on while in Grand Marais. It was so much fun and, as you can see, SO cold! (Mind you, these photos were taken midday … in June!)

Sailing with Danny & Kari Saathoff, Anna Johnson, George Sawyer, and my wonderful roommate for the weekend, jewelry designer Beth Williams! (Note the hats and coats in June! :)

It was a fantastic week and I was sorry to see it end, but excited to get back into the studio newly inspired and ready to get to work!



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