Tuesday, May 10, 2016

When a bride has a metal allergy…

When I got married 16 years ago, earrings for sensitive ears and necklaces for sensitive skin were hard to find. But today’s brides are lucky! Allergy-free wedding jewelry is accessible, affordable and as lovely as any girl could hope for.

I love making custom wedding jewelry! By the time a bride contacts me, she has already been planning her wedding for months, and her imagination is full of sparkles and dreams. So our discussions to plan her wedding jewelry are creative and fun!

As the 2016 wedding season approaches, I thought I’d share some photos from some of my recent custom wedding jewelry orders. Both of these brides had ordered titanium earrings or niobium earrings from Variya in the past, and I was honored they contacted me to create their wedding jewelry. Mira and Brittany were a pleasure to work with, and looked radiant in their custom bridal jewelry.

Mira has a metal allergy and had given up on wearing earrings after a bad experience in high school. But her mom, who also has sensitive ears, has had success wearing titanium earrings from Variya. So Mira decided to give us a try too. I’m so glad she did! She is a lovely customer and I was delighted with her on her custom designs. She looked stunning in her custom earrings and necklace made from Swarovski crystals and pearls.    

photo credit: Sean Cook

The pearls shone and crystals glittered on Mira's titanium earrings.    

Mira's necklace was made of glass pearls and a vintage style brooch.

Brittany has been a fabulous customer for many years, I was ecstatic when she contacted me for custom jewelry for her big day. We worked through a couple design ideas and the result were titanium earrings that made such a statement, she didn’t need any other jewelry! (If you click on the photo, it will open a bigger image so you can get a closer look.) 

photo credit: Erin Palmer

Brittany wanted a beautiful and subtle pop of blue to accent these lovely earrings

photo credit: Erin Palmer
Thank you to these lovely brides for sharing these stunning photos here. I'm honored that they chose Variya for their wedding day!

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

What's Happening Today: Custom Designed Necklace

This beautiful custom necklace was finished up and packaged as a very special birthday gift today.

While it's not the usual fare of earrings for sensitive ears that you read about here, the wearer-to-be does have skin that is sensitive to sterling silver, so this necklace is composed of natural brass.

What is most fun about this lovely necklace and what I just LOVE about doing custom work is the special meaning behind every custom piece. The significance of this piece is the gems: garnet, amethyst, pearl and rose quartz, and not in the way that you would probably first guess. 

Did you guess birthstones? Nope. 

This custom necklace was made for fans of the show Steven Universe! Gems are a big part of the story line, so I'm thinking it's probably I could get excited about!

I think this is such a creative and thoughtful gift. I did not know a thing about the show until I was commissioned to do this piece and although I still have yet to see it, I read a little about it and it's pretty interesting and creative. Here is a quick excerpt explanation:

 "It is the coming-of-age story of a young boy named Steven, who grows up in the town of Beach City while living with three magical humanoid aliens, the "Crystal Gems" Garnet, Amethyst, and Pearl. Steven, who is half-Gem, goes on adventures with his friends and helps the Gems protect the world from their own kind."- Wikipedia

Rose Quartz has a place somewhere in there too, but I haven't figured out where yet. Now I might have a new show to follow and I'm sure my son will be delighted to join me!

In the meantime, I had better get back to work on my titanium and niobium earrings orders for my wonderful customers with sensitive earlobes! Please feel free to contact me any time with a custom order request - I love working with my customers to come up with unique and meaningful designs!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

12 Days of Variya Jewelry

Cue the trumpets! Tune the fiddles! "The 12 Days of Variya Jewelry" is about to begin...

ONE lucky winner.

Share a snapshot of your Variya jewelry on your social media venue of choice tagged #ilovevariyajewelry and you’ll be entered to win a free gift.

TWO happy earlobes.

My metal allergies were so severe I was reacting to my own wedding ring! I’d given up hope on ever wearing earrings again … until I discovered that my sensitive ears were happy with pure titanium. No more infections, no more itching, no more naked earlobes. I’ve been making titanium earrings I can wear since 2008, and my earlobes are so happy. (Yours will be, too!)

THREE sets of gemstones.

When you order these chic titanium or niobium hoops, you get your choice of three gemstone dangle drops. These classic hoops are meticulously hand filed at the ends for smooth edges and utmost comfort for your sensitive ears. Many of my customers tell me these are their go-to earrings for everyday wear.

FOUR fun shapes for your interchangeable hooks.

You can make almost any earring work for your sensitive ears. Mix and match from my interchangeable dangles or hang your own dangles from these pure titanium or niobium earring hooks.

FIVE(ish) dollars in your pocket.

Tis the season for free shipping! Shipping’s on me for anything you order from my Etsy shop, including custom wedding jewelry. So you'll have pretty earrings in your ears and extra money in your pocket. Merry Christmas!

SIX years on Etsy.

I opened my Etsy shop in 2009. Six years and over two thousand sales later, I still love making jewelry! I never get tired of hearing my customers tell me how they're so happy to finally be able to wear earrings once again.

SEVEN days till your order ships.

Seven days is the max you’ll have to wait from when you place your order till I send it your way, with free shipping,  tucked inside a pretty box. If it’s a smaller order, like a pair of these classic stud earrings (perfect for recovering from allergic reactions, by the way), I can usually ship within just a few days. So if you’re considering ordering jewelry for a Christmas gift, order soon and you’ll get your goodies with plenty of time to spare.

EIGHT million sparkles.

You will love the way these gorgeous druzy agate drops go from silvery grey to shimmery white. They’ll look exquisite under the lights of a holiday party. These are limited edition so get them before someone else does!

NINE years old.

My sweet niece just got her ears pierced, and rather than jamming cheap metals or alloys into those young lobes, she’s wearing pure grade one titanium that won’t cause an allergic reaction. Such a lucky princess.

TEN ... a perfect ten.

That’s you when you show up at a holiday party adorned in elegant Variya dangle earrings. Many of my customers have told me they’re thrilled to be able to wear dangles again. I know how they feel.


The year David Guetta’s song “Titanium” was released (2011) and the average number of days it remains stuck in my head after I accidentally hear it on the radio. Nothing against the song, but I prefer my type of titanium. Pure, grade one. Pliable, yet durable. The answer to the cry of millions of sensitive ears! Check out this post to see what’s so great about titanium.

TWELVE pretty birthstones. 

For your custom birthstone jewelry, of course. And if you’ve never liked your traditional birthstone, don’t worry! There are alternates. My August baby friend who has always disliked the pale green peridot was thrilled to learn her alternate birthstone is sapphire. Contact me if you're curious about your alternate birthstone. I'll send you a chart to drool over. 

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Saturday - Special Deals all Weekend

I'm having so much fun with special deals this weekend! Today is small business Saturday. I'm celebrating with a $5.00 coupon with any order - perfect for gifting jewelry to someone you love and getting a little cash back for your next order! Shop small biz today and try my titanium collection, my niobium collection or a lovely necklace or bracelet! Today is a great deal - don't miss it!

Stay tuned for the upcoming deals at Instagram, Facebook and Twitter!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Black Friday is Coming Soon!


Yes, one of the best shopping days (weekend even!) of the year is just about a week away. I have some EXCITING things in store this year, so stay tuned! If you don't already, go ahead and follow me on INSTAGRAM, FACEBOOK, and TWITTER - in that order because Instagram is my fave! You'll be up to date by the minute that way - not just for Black Friday but the rest of the year too.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Titanium vs. Niobium: The Ultimate Metal Showdown

Six years ago when I first started making allergy-free titanium jewelry, there weren’t a lot of options out there. (At least not that I could find—which is why I decided to make them myself!) Since then titanium jewelry has become a lot more popular—happy news for those of us with sensitive ears!

Then a few years in to my titanium jewelry venture, I started learning more about niobium—another pure non-alloyed metal that many people with metal allergies have success wearing. I did some research, made myself a trial pair and recruited a few friends to be my guinea pigs. Success! So I added a niobium line to my Etsy shop.


Since I started this shop I’ve made over 2,000 sales and many more offline—mostly to people like me who had allergic reactions to most earrings and who had thought they were doomed to naked earlobes for life. Of those sales only three people have ever had any kind of reaction to my titanium or niobium earrings. And when we exchanged their earrings for the other metal, they were good to go.

Customers often ask me questions about which is better: niobium or titanium. Here’s what I tell them:

Hi I just ordered some titanium studs from your website. My daughter got her ears pierced in February and they still haven't healed. We have done everything we have been told except try titanium. Is this the right thing to try now and are your earrings truly nickel free? We are just really frustrated and tired of infected ears.
- Stacey*
 (*names have been changed to protect their privacy)  

Hi Stacey, 
Thank you for your order and for contacting me. I'm sorry your daughter is having so much trouble! You are definitely doing the right thing to try titanium. My titanium is grade 1 pure titanium from a trusted U.S. supplier whom I have been with for years. There is absolutely no nickel. I have yet to have a customer who could not wear either titanium or niobium and most can wear both.
~ Variya


Would you recommend starting with trying titanium first or going with niobium?

Hi Carrie, 
A lot of people start with titanium mostly because they are more familiar with it.  Both are great options.  I recommend choosing something you can leave in while your ears recover, such as small hoops or post studs.
~ Variya    


I've gotten several different earrings from you and I believe they were all titanium. Should I try niobium? Are they both equally good for extra sensitive ears? Is one more tolerated than another or does it depend on the person or are they both pretty equal? I really want the pearl post earrings but I'm not sure which metal I should go with.  

Hi Stella, 
Thank you for contacting me and for choosing my earrings! You should give niobium a try! Most people can wear both because they are pure metals. Make sure you use pure niobium (which is what I offer). If you order niobium from me and find that you can't tolerate it I would be happy to exchange it for titanium.  
~ Variya   

The pearl post earrings Stella wanted (and got!)
If you have questions about niobium vs. titanium that aren’t answered here, please contact me. I’d be delighted to help find an answer for you.