Druid Hills Couple Celebrates with Meaningful Keepsakes

During these fear-filled moments in our lives, devotion, kindness and connection to all things becomes even more vital. I’m in Ithaca with David, ensconced on our sacred land and my daughters, Alex and Zoe are delivering supplies to us as needed. Even as I’ve drawn inward, with little reason to dress each day, I’m choosing to wear my jewels because they make me feel better. And I hope that you will do the same. Their light, color and density bring joy, strength, and stability.

I am still receiving and completing jobs with clients and I’m delighted to work with you.  Aalia is available to meet you at my Kirkwood, Atlanta studio. To schedule an appointment for a custom job, repairs, or to shop, please call me at (678) 662-6156. Birthdays, anniversaries and births can be celebrated in new and creative ways, and we’re here if you need us. The online store is open and we can ship anywhere.  In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this custom jewelry story!

Earlier this year I worked on a job for Hugh and Libby’s 10th wedding anniversary. Hugh and I had met in the 1980’s at Paideia when our young kids were classmates.

Tenth Anniversary dinner celebration, 2020. 

In 2009 he and his beloved Libby, came to me with the tender request to design rings for their upcoming Buddhist wedding ceremony. Libby and I designed her rings together, playing with a combination of gemstones and metals that captured her desire for understated earth colors.

Keshi Pearl with Opposing bar-cut Cognac Tourmaline, 14K rose and white gold, 2010 by Lainey Papageorge

In preparation for their 10th wedding anniversary celebration, Libby commissioned this simple heavy gauge, oval, sterling bracelet featuring hand engraved inscriptions with personal meaning to her and to Hugh.

“Om Mani Padme Hum”
Ancient mantra referring to the innermost heart of those who seek compassion for all beings. 

“Till a’ the seas gang dry” – to Hugh, 2-3-2020 
from the Scottish poem “A Red, Red Rose” by Robert Burns first published in 1794

For Libby’s gift, Hugh selected these earrings cast in 14Kt gold from acorn caps I had found underneath the Twin Oaks in Dellwood Park.  As synchronicity would have it they had built and dedicated a meditation bench beneath those very same twin oaks. The Olmsted Linear Park along Ponce de Leon Ave, Atlanta brings joy and serenity for all who visit, especially while social distancing.

Pistachio Tahitian pearls, 14K rose gold Live Oak acorn caps 
by Lainey Papageorge

“Om Mani Padme Hum” is especially apropos at this time as we all face the extreme challenges that COVID-19 presents. In the strangest of ways, this virus is uniting us as a human family, against all odds. There are blessings hidden in everything.

To protect and cherish that which is most precious to us,
Lainey & Aalia



Girlfriends and Collectors

Anni Stokes is one of my oldest and dearest. We met at Emory College in 1972 where we were both Educational Studies majors. We also shared the memorable experience of being members of Kelly’s Seed & Feed Theater and The Dance Unit: she, an actor, me, a choreographer/dancer. I moved to Skagway in 1976 and after Anni visited, she was inspired to relocate to Juneau. It was a delight to share the bejeweled coast of SE Alaska with her. As I discovered my artistic voice in the vivid landscape, she became a Special Education teacher, using her performance and story-telling skills to gain the trust of  native Tlingit children with learning challenges. She became a beloved leader in her community.  From the beginning of my business in Alaska and throughout my career in Ithaca and Atlanta, she has been an avid supporter and  collector.

1978 Blue Opal, 14KT Filigree.
1999 Black Opal and emerald, hand engraved 18KT.
2012 Indicolite Tourmaline, 14KY, hand engraved sterling

These three rings represent forty years of jewelry making and design.They also represent forty years of friendship. Anni has worn and cherished them everyday since the moment she purchased them. On a recent visit I convinced her that they were in need of some TLC. As we repolished the stones and secured the settings I was struck by how beautifully they’ve weathered life’s ecstasies and agonies. Some things can’t be restored, like the crater in the emerald, yet each gem beams out its beauty consistently, without demand.

Looking at these rings, perhaps you too can imagine the inspired vistas; mountaintop glaciers snaking into fjords of pristine green, icy cold peaks of molten blue, the sound of a distant rumbling avalanche. These pieces are imbued with the love affair between a place in space and time. Anni felt the same way about them. The worth of collectors like Anni who sustain and encourage these expensive artistic endeavors can never be underestimated. Happy “Galentine’s” Day dearest Anni.



A Family Story Expressed Through Custom Jewelry

Jenny Kapella is a new client that found me through a Google search, even though she lives only a mile away. I was very happy to know my website and social media efforts led her to me and I was even happier to collaborate with her on this meaningful project. She wrote a lovely account of her experience working with me.

“My mother has several pieces of jewelry that have great sentimental significance and were either worn out or never worn. Lainey patiently worked with me to repurpose them to create timeless pendants that paid tribute to our family and would suit each of my nieces. Lainey was able to recycle some of the jewelry and even dental gold to help pay for the new work.

Leah is my oldest niece. She has a passion for mathematics and tech. The “emerald” in her pendant comes from her great grandmother’s wedding ring, one of the circles in the pendant is her great grandfather’s wedding ring. The gold spiral represents the Fibonacci sequence, a mathematical formula that describes curves found frequently in nature.

My mother was an artist, her medium was fiber and weaving. Melanie shares her creativity and passion for living things.  The design of Melanie’s pendant is lifted from one of mom’s weavings which depicted red blood cells. The bale of her pendant and each of the others came from the worn out Victorian wedding band of her great-great grandmother. The diamond and garnet cluster came from an earring that belonged to the same great great grandmother, the partner to that earring disappeared years ago and I am so glad it could be repurposed. The citrine is from a ring my mother designed, but the style was very heavy and would not have been worn by me or my nieces.

All of my nieces studied piano, but only Caroline continues to enjoy playing. My mother never played piano, but she did sing beautifully and performed in community musical theater. For Caroline’s pendant we chose a treble clef design, using a pale blue topaz from another ring and tiny diamonds from a tie clip that belonged to my dad.

My nieces don’t have much memory of my mother before dementia took over her personality, but in these designs a little bit of her extraordinary creativity is preserved. Thank you Lainey for your incredible patience and sensitivity.”

-Jenny Kapella, Atlanta, GA.

Designs by Lainey Papageorge, articulated by Tim Shoemaker, Atlanta, GA 2019

Gift Ideas for the First Five Days of Christmas…

Elaina Designs

Monday thru Sunday, Dec. 16-21, days and evenings by appointment
Please call, text, or email (678) 662-6156 or lp@elainadesigns.com
2116 Lanes Ln. NE, Atlanta, GA 30317 

Shop online or at www.elainadesigns.com 
Free gift wrapping on all purchases
Free domestic shipping until Dec. 20 

“On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me….”


Left to right:
Ruby, 14KY eternity band, size 6.5, $775
Jelly Opal, 18KY bar band, size 6.25, $1400
Peach Pearl, 14KP ball band, size 7, $945
Ruby “V” Ring, 18K yellow and rose gold, size 7, $1350
Rustic Triangular Diamond on 24K band, size 7, $1540


Anodized Aluminum, plated sterling chains, $180
(also available in blue)


Left to right:
Quartz Barrel and Faceted Vermeil Necklace, 20″,  $255
Quartz with Iron Faceted Chunks with Vermeil Clasp, 18″, $175
Double Pyrite Strand, Sterling Clasp, 18″,  $300


Tanzanite, Cerulite, SS, 14KYP, $1000, discounted to $700
Cerulite, 14KY, SS, $1000, discounted to $700


Multicolor Tahitian Pearls, 14KP links and diamond studded clasp, $2800

Merry and Bright,

Womens’ Group Creates Communal Jewelry

As the Holidays approach we reflect on the many things that bless our lives. For me, its been my family and my women friends. Here’s a story of enduring female friendship expressed in three pieces of jewelry communally created and communally owned.

Seneca Lake is the deepest in a series of narrow glacially carved “Finger Lakes” in central New York state. Rich in fish and fertile farmland, the Finger Lakes region sustained the indigenous tribes of the Six Nations, also known as the Iroquois Confederacy. Seneca also became the birthplace of the Women’s Suffrage Movement with the Seneca Falls Convention in 1848.

Fast forward 170 years to a group of women friends from all walks of life and political affiliations who meet beside the drumming waters of Seneca Lake. Taking a respite from their demanding lives, they came together to pick berries, make pies, gaze into sunsets and bonfires. Early morning swims and dock reveries were punctuated by sessions of talking, compassionate listening, selfless counsel, and shared grief and joy. Each one rediscovered a part of themselves as their friendships deepened, and together they became the Ladies of the Lake.

Thirty annual “Ladies Weekends” have passed on Seneca Lake and over the years many of these women have become collectors of Lainey’s work. Three years ago, Marion, the originator of the group, had a dream that each one would contribute their old, unworn jewelry to be repurposed. About 175 separate items were given to Lainey to assay, saw apart, and reconfigure. It was a mammoth design challenge and ultimately their shared experiences over the years provided the inspiration to create these three talisman designs. Saving metal elements such as the tiny hearts provided a unifying theme. The fine metals were sold for income to pay Lainey for her time and the creation of the 14K gold pendants. No money was ever exchanged among the women. The precious talismans were finally completed in 2019 and are now being passed along every couple of months from one Lady of the Lake to another.

Each exquisitely crafted piece speaks to a shared experience of female friendship that is celebratory, evoking every small thing that lifts us to rise, to love, to turn to one another with gratitude.

Happy Thanksgiving!

“Blue Sky Swim Seneca”    “Rainy Day Beside the Fire”   “Pink Sunrise on Seneca”



Lainey Honors Her Mother, Irene A. Phrydas

Thirty years ago when my mother, Irene Phrydas, was diagnosed with breast cancer at 69, there were no support programs to help her through the physical and emotional challenges she faced. Mama chose to work full time throughout her chemotherapy treatments, concealing her illness. Our family was close and we supported her and each other though the trauma of cancer.

I turn 68 this month and am happy to report I am finally healthy after the challenges of a prolonged immune deficiency. I began a series of monthly infusions at Piedmont West and across the hall was the Chapman Cancer Wellness Center.  I got to know the staff and was deeply impressed by the range of free programs they offered to patients and caregivers that engaged body, mind, emotion and spirit. How I wish that my mother, father, sister and I could have been supported by such services when she became ill. Today anyone affected by cancer, regardless of where they are receiving treatment, can attend and benefit from the insightful programs the Chapman Cancer Wellness Center offers.

Through this Trunk Show, I am able to donate thirty percent of sales from the evening to the Center. This will support patients and their families during their tender and difficult journeys with cancer, moving towards improved wholistic health. Please join me for a lovely evening graciously hosted by Susan Powell of Good Living Real Estate with delicious hors d’oeuvres and refreshments prepared by Chef Nancy Waldeck.

Wednesday, November 13, 5:30PM – 7:30PM 
Chapman Cancer Wellness Center, 7th floor of Piedmont West
at I-75 and Howell Mill Rd.

1800 Howell Mill Rd. Suite 700 Atlanta, GA 30318 
please RSVP to Alice Papaceno: (404)425-7944, alice.papceno@piedmont.org

Please visit https://www.piedmontcancerwellness.org for more information.

I believe that beauty can transform and heal us–
Lainey Papageorge

“Swimming Through Mist on the Pond”
Rainbow Hematite, Mali Garnet, Bi-Color Tourmaline Crystal, 18K Heavy Gold Plated Sterling, $1533. 



Jewelry Trunk Show Wed. Nov. 13 at Piedmont West Atlanta

Wednesday, NOVEMBER 13, 2019, 5:30-7:30PM

Please join us for a trunk show of Lainey Papageorge’s dazzling fine art jewelry with sales benefitting Chapman Cancer Wellness Center at Piedmont West, Atlanta. New works from the “Who Will Remember the Ice?” and “Pond Series” will be featured. Susan Powell of Good Living Real Estate hosts this evening with healthy and delicious hors d’oeuvres and refreshments provided by Chef Nancy Waldeck.

Piedmont West (on I-75)
1800 Howell Mill Rd. NW,
Suite 700 (7th Floor)
Atlanta, GA 30318

Please RSVP to Alice Papaceno (404) 425-7944

“Who Will Remember the Ice?”, Boulder Opal, Emerald, Sterling Pendant, $890

“Who Will Remember the Ice?” Series. Eyes of Sadness Earrings: Blue Topaz, Blue Flash Moonstone, Sterling & 14KY. $1007

Please mark your calendars for these shopping opportunities and our last Holiday show:

November 23 – November 30
limited hours, please call Aalia to make an appointment (404) 216-6870

December 1 – December 23 
Atlanta studio open for shopping or Gem Resonance, by appointment only
please call or email (678) 662-6156, lp@elainadesigns.com
2116 Lanes Lane NE, Atlanta, GA 30317

Dec 6, 7, 8, 11AM – 5PM
Atlanta Holiday Open Studio sale of jewelry, clothing and knit accessories.
Group Show with Aalia Mujtaba, Lainey Papageorge, Kathy Colt and Mary Donovan
2116 Lanes Lane NE, Atlanta, GA 30317

Enjoying our beautiful Atlanta Autumn,


“Art in the Park” Show this Sunday, Oct. 27.

Attention Atlanta Friends and Clients,
Get a sneak peek of my new jewelry offerings this Sunday at “Art in the Park,” Ansley Park Beautification Foundation’s benefit art sale. Every time I cut through Ansley Park, my brain rests as I take in the lovely median flower plantings. And that’s why I participate in this event every two years by donating 30% of my sales. It’s a great time to do some good and  shop early for the Holidays. I hope to see you there!

Sunday, October 27, 12PM-5PM
69 Inman Circle, Ansley Park, Atlanta, GA 30309

“Who Will Remember the Ice?”
Chrysoprase, Prehnite, Boulder Opal, SS, 14KW post omega back earrings, $1055

“Swimming through the Pond”
Bi-Color Tourmaline Crystal, 14K Pink & White gold married metals band, size 7, $2300

“Swimming Through the Pond”
Prehnite, Grossular Garnet, and Peridot Necklace with Vermeil Clasp, 17″, $300.



New Jewelry Series: “Who Will Remember the Ice?”

“Who Will Remember the Ice?”

My artist self found inspiration in the glaciers and colors of S.E. Alaska 46 years ago. Today my oldest daughter, Alex Van Nostrand works as an Assistant Expedition Leader on Linblad/National Geographic ships that travel to Antarctica and the Arctic Circle. Her vistas though different, are familiar to me. Her somber observations of the rapidly melting polar ice caps tear at my heart: the starving polar bears, the sea bird, seal and walrus colonies losing their homes, the delicate ecosystem of 12 different whale species losing their food supply. Meanwhile Atlanta, Venice, Ithaca and Skagway all experienced record breaking temperatures making everyone miserable, painfully aware of the looming crisis upon us and all creatures.

I tried to make what was overwhelming more palpable and manageable through the act of designing this new jewelry series: “Who Will Remember the Ice?”  As the glaciers crack into crystalline forms, a color of ethereal blue becomes visible, rising water froths, and brown earth is exposed where ice used to be. I chose stones for their symbolic hues to express these changing patterns. I am only one person, yet I have faith that beauty can be transformative.

I’m excited to premier this collection at the Green Door Studio this Friday and Saturday, October 4 & 5, 12PM-5PM. 152 Inlet Valley Way, Ithaca NY 14850. My friend, the prolific “quilt lady” Nancy Briggs, joins me in showing her striking array of quilts and wall hangings. We hope to see you there.

Who Will Remember the Ice?” Pendant I. Aquamarine, Boulder Opal, Sterling, $1100. Designed by Lainey Papageorge

“Who Will Remember the Ice?” Earrings I. Sleeping Beauty Turquoise Nugget with Pyrite Inclusion, Silver Keshi Stick Pearl, Rhodium Plated Sterling & 14KW post $1050. Designed by Lainey Papageorge.

Please note these upcoming events and shows in Ithaca and Atlanta this Fall:
October 13, Sunday 10AM – 5PM
Rasa Spa — 310 Taughannock Blvd, 2nd Floor, Ithaca, NY 14850
Gem Resonance Workshop
Space limited, no previous experience needed.
Call Abby at Rasa Spa to register:  (607) 273-1740

October 16, Wednesday 6PM-8PM
Chapman Cancer Wellness Center, Piedmont West building on I-75, 7th floor
1800 Howell Mill RD, NW, Suite 700, Atlanta, GA 30318
A jewelry trunk show to benefit cancer wellness programs
Piedmont Atlanta Health Care Foundation sponsors
Hosted by Susan Powell, Good Living Real Estate
Please RSVP to Alice at (404) 425-7944

Oct 27, Sunday, 12 Noon – 5PM
“Art in the Park” show to benefit Ansley Park Beautification Foundation
Public is invited
69 Inman Circle, Ansley Park, Atlanta, GA 30309

November – December 23 — by appointment only
Atlanta studio open for shopping or Gem Resonance, by appointment only
2116 Lanes Lane NE, Atlanta, GA 30317

Dec 6, 7, 8, 11AM – 5PM
Atlanta Holiday Open Studio Sale
2116 Lanes Lane NE, Atlanta, GA 30317


Fall 2019 Show Schedule

Lainey’s Upcoming Events

Ithaca, Juneau, Skagway, and Atlanta 
Contact Lainey to make appointments (678) 662-6172, lp@elainadesigns.com

Now through November 12
Green Door Studio —  Ithaca, NY, 152 Inlet Valley Way, 14850
Jewelry & Custom Design, Gem Resonance by appointment only

September 13 – 24
Juneau & Skagway, AK
appointments available for custom design

October 4 & 5
Green Door Studio —  Ithaca, NY, 152 Inlet Valley Way, 14850
Jewelry Show, 12 Noon – 5PM, Friday and Saturday
Handmade contemporary quilts by Nancy Briggs

October 13
Rasa Spa, 310 Taughannock Blvd, 2nd Floor, Ithaca, NY 14850
Gem Resonance Workshop, Sunday 10AM – 5PM,
Space limited, no previous experience needed.
Call Abby at Rasa Spa to register:  (607) 273-1740

October 16, Wednesday 6PM-8PM
Jewelry Trunk Show,
Chapman Cancer Wellness Center,
1800 Howell Mill RD, NW, Suite 700, Atlanta, GA 30318
A portion of proceeds to benefit cancer wellness programs
Piedmont Atlanta Health Care Foundation sponsors
Hosted by Susan Powell, Good Living Real Estate

Oct 27, Sunday, 12 Noon – 5PM
“Art in the Park” show to benefit Ansley Park Beautification Foundation
69 Inman Circle, Ansley Park, Atlanta, GA 30309

November – December 23
Atlanta studio open for shopping or Gem Resonance, by appointment only
2116 Lanes Lane NE, Atlanta, GA 30317

Dec 6, 7, 8, 11AM – 5PM
Atlanta Holiday Open Studio Sale
2116 Lanes Lane NE, Atlanta, GA 30317

With Katydids in chorus as summer draws to a close,


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