For someone who's legally named Garnet, it shouldn't seem ironic that I have been working with stones my entire life. From a little girl who's eyes were always on the ground, hoping to add to my rock collection, to an adult who is lucky enough to have created a profession that allows me to play with gemstones all day, stones are everything to me. I had always heard about the metaphysical properties of gemstones, but I was hesitant to believe in them at first. Until the stones started to speak to me. They speak in subtle ways, not with words, but with vibrations. Each gemstone has it's own internal "soul matrix" based upon the energy life force inside. Some stones have high vibrations, like moldavite, others have slow, peaceful vibrations, like black tourmaline. If you hold them in the palm of your hand, you can feel their energies.
Clear Quartz, the all powerful healing stone
When we find that we are attracted to a certain stone, it's because the stone's vibration is matching the vibration of our energy at that time. I see this in action every time someone asks me which stone they should buy. I always ask them to tell me the first stone they were attracted to. Then I tell them that stone's properties and they are always amazed that it's exactly the stone they need at that time. The gemstones' energies are very healing and if we use gemstones as therapeutic tools, we can reach our goals faster. For example, a broken heart always takes time to heal. If someone wears or keeps rose quartz on their person, the stone of self love, healing, compassion, and forgiveness, they're broken heart will mend faster. Not only are gemstones powerful healing tools, they're also nature's history books, holding the story of our planet and the creation of the Universe inside. They are the cosmic connectors, allowing us to speak to our spirit guides, our higher selves and to connect with other realms.
Moldavite, high vibrational "alien" stone
Once I began to introduce gemstone healing into my own life, I could see and feel first hand just how effective they are as little, magical tools. I felt a duty to become an expert so that I could help others benefit from gemstone healing. I began reading books and websites about gemstone metaphysical properties and immediately hit a wall. Every resource I consulted cited some similar but also some vastly different properties for each stone. My intuition told me that some of the sources were incorrect and some were right. How was I to know what to take seriously and what to tell my customers? Then it hit me. The one common theme among the gemstone therapy was color. The color of the stone tethers to the chakra color. So down another rabbit hole I went.
I began researching everything I could get my hands on about gemstone chakra healing. Everything I learned through chakra color therapy was consistent and logical. So, I decided then and there that I would provide my own metaphysical properties of the gemstones using a blend of my own intuition, chakra gemstone color therapy and the culmination of my 7 years of gemstone research. In addition, I wanted to educate my customers on the every day use of chakra gemstone healing. I used myself as a test subject. My research had led me to the knowing that my root chakra was under-active so I decided to work on it. Our root governs our survival, fight or flight response, our place within family and community, basic needs, etc. To bring balance back to my root, I used chakra healing for a period of two weeks. During that time, I wore a pair of garnet earrings and the color red every day. I also ate root chakra foods like beets and potatoes and root herbs like rosemary. I also made sure to get outside in nature, digging in the Earth is the BEST way to root ourselves with Gaia energy. After two weeks, my root chakra was balanced! It totally worked and I felt more grounded than I have felt in a very long time.
The inspiration for my new line was born. I had a vision of personifying each chakra in human form for the Chakra Gem photo shoot. I spent hours researching my favorite stones for each chakra and flew to the Tucson Gem and Mineral show in February to source them. I chose to focus on the use of white for the photo shoot. If you combine paint in all the colors of the rainbow together, you get a grey brown mess. However, if you combine all the colors of the rainbow of light together, it creates white. Using white for the back drop and for the outfits best allowed the colored light to reflect off each model. I commissioned Kate E. Burke to create the custom pure white kimonos seen in the Chakra Gems photos.
Continuing the theme of white, I chose sterling silver and stainless steel as the metal palette. I like the juxtaposition of the soft, double layered dainty sterling silver chain with the thick, yet smooth stainless steel chain. I wanted to remind everyone that even though we are fragile, soft and tarnish-able like sterling silver, we are also strong and parts of us are impenetrable, like stainless steel. That the power to heal ourselves truly does come from within and that even though we tarnish, we can always find internal strength to shine ourselves back to bright light. When our chakras are out of balance, this leads to mental, emotional and physical weakness, eventually resulting in illness. It's so important to be both self aware and also aware of the chakra energy systems to stay in balance.
I had recently met and befriended Jodi Vander Woude, a local wedding photogrpaher who has 20+ years of professional photography experience. I was honored when she agreed to work on my project! Not only is she extremely talented, she's also incredibly resourceful. She problem solved the colored light situation we used in the photoshoot as well as provided the gorgeous 2016 Main Event Space, where her studio is located, for the photoshoot location. We had a ton of fun playing around in the woods in the Northeast getting the product shots for the line.
Jodi in action
Behind the scenes with Madison Joy, Third Eye Chakra Model
Jodi's intern, Jordan, assisted by shining one of the four colored lights on each model.
Jodi had a moment of inspiration while we were roaming around the woods in Northeast KC and asked me to stop and pose.
I also invited my friend and henna artist, Melanie Kasten, to collaborate on the chakra photo shoot. She went so far as to create henna designs for each chakra and spent several hours the night before the shoot working on each model.
I carefully chose the models based upon who I thought embodied each chakra. Luckily, I have beautiful friends who agreed to model for my new line. They were the PERFECT choice and I am so thrilled with the final results! From Root to Crown, here's the new Chakra Line:
Model: Tara Milleville
Model: Jesse Molina
Model: Alessandra Dzuba
Model: Garnet Griebel Booth
Model: Jill McKeever
Model: Madison Joy
Model: Kristen Wolf
The line launched on May 3rd at 2016 Main Event Space.
Chakra Gems is the smallest line I've ever created but I put more heart and soul into it than any other line I've ever produced. Gemstone and Chakra healing works! I'm so honored to get to play with gemstones every day and to use my skills and knowledge to help people heal themselves. Please take a moment to educate yourself about chakra healing.
Madison Joy, the Third Eye Chakra model, giving intuitive palm readings. Jesse Molina, the Sacral Chakra Model, started off the launch with a chakra aligning mediation and yoga class.
I used my personal rock collection to display the Chakra Gems.
Not pictured are the chakra healing foods I served at the event. I made a game out of telling people to figure out which food went with what chakra using the educational cards I made for the line.