ADORNMENT AS SPIRITUAL PRACTICE: COMMUNING WITH JOY SMITH

Channeling the Divine through the decadently bejeweled, artist and mystic Joy Smith is raising the mystical-material vibration ever higher with her transformational talismans.

Sculptress and seer Joy Smith believes that adornment is an intimate conversation—between the creator, the wearer, and the Divine.

Inspired by nature’s potent mysteries, and the light of Divine beauty that resides in every being, the artist’s ethically sourced, recycled gold pieces spark an emotional exchange between the the universe and each of us.

For Smith, connection to the Divine is always available, and through our talismans we can bring our personal conversation with the heavens all the way down to Earth.

With her newly-launched Light Sessions, Smith is raising the material-mystical vibration even higher. During these custom experiences, she uses song, meditative chants, and Reiki to channel a one-of-a-kind talisman that supports your distinctive transformation and growth.

Spirit is absolutely everywhere. Why not dress her in radiant gold?

(Hint: Start decking out your Divine with some inspo from Joy’s jewel-drenched Instagram feed!)

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Ruby Warrington: What are your own personal talismans?
Joy Smith: I wear pieces according to what I need—so I can beam my light out everywhere. I have different pieces that embody different feelings for me.

For example, I have a custom piece I made for myself that’s super special. In Milan, on a retreat with Deborah Hanekamp, we hiked to a pagan ritual place, where I found what looked like a piece of a ceramic vessel glinting in the grass. I could feel that it was infused with a spirit that wanted to help me with my healing work, and so I set it into a ring, which I wear when I’m creating pieces, and during my Light Sessions.

Even talking about it takes me back to that place. In the future, I’d like to go on pilgrimages to sacred sites to source similar pieces as part of my work.

 

My Moon, My Light Necklace

RW: Your pieces have a strong spiritual essence. What’s your relationship to organized religion?
JS: The dogma of different religions can get messy, but the essence of spirit is what’s precious to me. I connect to the idea of the Holy Spirit, which I think of as our connection to the Divine—the spirit in us. My work is about activating that in others. I’m also super interested in world religions. I see the common thread and that’s fascinating to me. All the stories are the same, just different characters.

Having grown up Catholic, I still connect deeply to the iconography. I see the etchings in my designs as radiating light, and my goal is to elicit the idea of “heaven,” which I define simply as the place where great spirit lives … bliss.

 

Guardian Rustic Shield Ring

RW: What do you see as the intersection between spirituality, craftsmanship, and art?
JS: I never thought I’d make jewelry. I knew I loved art history, and wanted to be a painter. I also connected to artists, as I felt they were connected to something spiritual with their work. I wanted that connection to come through in my work, too. I also love fashion because I see the spirit of the designer in it. It’s like art to me.

I fell into jewelry through the sculpture of making it. I initially wanted to be a fine painter, but didn’t think I was good enough and I couldn’t relay my message effectively at that time in that medium. Now, I express myself spiritually through my pieces as they relate to how I feel on the inside. I want them to be infused with feelings of beauty and light, and for this to be reflected in how I adorn myself on the outside.

I believe God, spirit, etc., created us as an expression of the beauty of the Divine. I make it a point to meditate and pray before I make my work. When we work in this way as creators, that’s spirituality to me.

The artist at work

RW: What do the concepts of God and the Divine mean to you?  
JS: I believe God and the Divine are forms of the highest spirit, a spirit greater than ourselves that also lives within us and is part of us. That guides and protects us and loves us unconditionally. Neither are religious terms for me- I see them as a universal Spirit.

My own spiritual breakthrough came in my early twenties, when I had a very severe panic attack, and found myself debilitated by anxiety. My first teacher asked about my spiritual practice, and she gave me my first spiritual book, Marianne Williamson’s A Return to Prayer. I still read it every day. It helped me remember how to pray—how to connect to God—in a spiritual way.

RW: “Light Language” is such a glorious phrase—tell us about learning to speak this language, and how clients experience it during your “Light Sessions.”  
JS: “Light Language” is how I describe my conversation with the divine, something that comes out in channeled melodies, or prayer. The term came to me via my guides during an Akashic records reading—and this really is how I feel about my conversations with God. The Light Language also comes through as automatic writing, which I carve into my talismans and artwork.

I came up with the Light Sessions since my work can be very solitary and I knew I wanted to connect with people on a deeper level. And my Light Language becomes vocal, as if I’m speaking in tongues, during one-to-one with my clients. I see it as the language of love, as expressed in my creations.

The Light Sessions are about channeling creations for transformation. We talk about stones and the style of the piece, and then my clients give me their intention and lay on my table, and I’ll either sing melodies of prayer or do Reiki and channel messages that come to me.

Afterwards, we create an intention candle together and they go home with their candle to pray / meditate with their intention in mind, and I go home and channel that energy while creating the piece for transformation. The plan is to also make this available to couples as a custom ring engagement ceremony.

RW: Who is the “Communion Woman”? 
JS: Women who wear my jewelry have a strong sense of self. The common thread is that they have a connection to spirit, and that they’re all powerful in their own right. A lot of my clients have often been through a lot emotionally.

Having experienced challenges in their lives, they have been led to work on themselves spiritually, in order to connect more deeply to themselves and to the Divine. They’ve already found this connection, and want to explore more deeply what it means for their lives. A lot of their work is in service of the greater good. They have that depth.

Discover more about Communion by Joy’s sumptuously sacred jewels HERE, and book a custom Light Session with Smith in LA. 

MOONERS & SHAKERS: WHAT IS A PHOTOGRAPHY HEALING SESSION?

With her Embrace The Light photography healing sessions, Moon Club member Tanya Alexis is helping others share the beauty of their energy with the world …

A photography healing session is …
The aura adventure begins at a location where feel you are your most authentic self: in your home, at the ocean, in the woods … anywhere you feel joy! We will find a quiet spot and you will spend 15 to 20 minutes receiving Reiki channeled through me.

After your healing session, we will spend the next 40 minutes photographing you at your most peaceful, at your most joyful—meditating, dancing, twirling, moving your body in any freeing manner that makes sense to you in that moment. During this time, I will shoot 36 frames of film.

Following the session, you and I will sit together while I rewind the film, holding an intention of authenticity and love. When the time is right, I will open the bottom of the camera to let the light in, to let your light in.

One to two weeks following our session, you will receive three to seven beautiful color photographs. A completely unique mixture of film, you, me, and light, they are not to be photoshopped. They will be yours to keep as a reminder of who you truly are, your vibrant spirit.

The inspiration for the idea …
My partner passed a few years ago, and on the anniversary of his death I went to the place we spread his ashes to pay my respects, to take photographs, and to grieve. The next day when I went to drop the film off at my lab, I opened the bottom of the camera thinking the film was rolled up. It wasn’t. I quickly closed the bottom, heartbroken that the images were going to be ruined. But they weren’t. Instead, I discovered something new to me, a way to create beautiful effects that expressed how I felt inside.

It would be another year before I used this technique intentionally. I was photographing a dear friend who happens to be a healer in Los Angeles. I felt compelled (as my intuition strongly suggested) to expose some of her film to light, to see if I could mix her energy visually onto the film. It created some incredibly powerful images, and I knew I wanted to create more work like this, perhaps find a way to incorporate photography into a healing session.

About nine months later, I photographed another incredibly powerful Los Angeles healer. This time, I wasn’t worried I was going to ruin the film. I just went for it, and after I saw her images—even thought my belly was filled with butterflies—I knew it was time for me to create a way to share this experience with others. It was time to encourage others to see their inner beauty, strength, and abilities, and to help them share these numinous aspects of themselves with others.

The work as a reflection of a personal healing journey …
When I received a phone call telling me my partner had been in an accident and had not survived, I was heartbroken. But even during the earliest days of grieving, I knew his passing was meant to break me open. The love we shared was palpable, and I chose to honor him, to honor us, by putting in the work to heal from losing him, and perhaps more importantly to heal all the aspects of myself.

I began meditating more. I wrote to him every day. I began having weekly energy work. I began being kinder to myself, making self-care a priority. During this process, I would take photographs to work through the various emotions that arose. I was just getting to a point where I thought everything would be okay, and then … my father passed. And my heart broke again, but it was different this time. I knew from the beginning of grieving his loss that it was in my power to heal myself.

Not long after my father passed, I took a Reiki 1 and 2 course, followed later by more advanced and Master Reiki training. I intended to use it solely as a way for me to continue to work through all that needed to be released and sifted through in me.

But the more I healed, the more I realized healing myself AND healing others was always meant to be a part of my path. And then, one day, I had lunch with an incredibly vivacious 91-year-old, and she asked me what I would want to do with my life, if I could do anything. I smiled, and in that moment, I accepted that this is my path.

The big mission …
Others judge us, we judge ourselves. If I can offer people a space to feel love and support for who they truly —solely from a place of love—and leave them with a reminder of how beautiful they are on the inside as well as the outside, my heart will be happy.

The Moon Club inspiration …
Moon Club is one of the reasons I feel so comfortable sharing my Embrace the Light project with the world. Knowing that like-minded souls are here to cheer me on and support me allows me to step outside my comfort zone with confidence. It’s invaluable to me as a creative, but also as a human. I am so grateful to know that I am not alone in my experience on this Earth!

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Tania Alexis is currently booking Embrace the Light sessions in Los Angeles, and building wait lists for sessions in NYC, London and everywhere. You can email here here and follow her on Instagram here and here. Sign up for Moon Club and join our tribe of cosmic change makers at Moonclub.co

STYLIST ANNA TREVELYAN THINKS TRUMP CAN BRING US TOGETHER

Ruby Warrington talks to stylist Anna Trevelyan about alien abduction, Trump as a catalyst for change, and being vegan in the fashion industry …

I first encountered stylist of the moment Anna Trevelyan at our mutual friend Sah D’Simone’s Happiness Equation workshop. She was the girl with the green hair and the quick, curious mind (a Gemini, of course), dressed in a kind of Manga-meets-Atlantis mash-up that would be more at home in the streets of Tokyo than Brooklyn’s Maha Rose Center for The Healing Arts.

But then as she puts it in her IG profile, Anna is: “A bit fashion. A bit cosmic.”

Having come up through the fashion ranks assisting Gaga’s former creative director Nicola Formichetti, Anna followed her childhood love of fantasy into the industry. In her own words, “I’m just not into reality stuff. I have a crazy and borderline confusing imagination!” Growing up in the heart in England, this meant: “I always died my hair and made my own clothes. But I had no concept that something like fashion even existed.”

Fast-forward to 2017, and fashion totally knows Anna exists, and her work is all over the top mags and ad campaigns. Like this one for Cara Delevingne’s Do You collection for Puma.

But what I love most about Anna (as well as the mermaid hair), is that she’s one of few voices in the mainstream fashion arena to be super vocal about being vegan, and the environmental impact of animal agriculture. She’s also majorly pro-diversity, casting models of every color, shape, size and gender in her long-standing catwalk collaborations with Brit designer Ashish.

Then there’s her lifelong fascination with alien abduction, and the crystals she keeps like pets in her Brooklyn apartment. Curiouser, and curiouser …

Ruby Warrington: So Anna, how long have you been into the more spiritual, numinous side of life?
Anna Trevelyan: Since birth, I guess. When I was little, I was into aliens, UFO sightings, crop circles. I was such a nerd. I had all these UFO sighting maps on my wall and stuff. I was kind of obsessed with alien abduction, the history of the Earth and evolution. Like, what else is out there and where do we come from?

RW: All the deep questions! But then you pursued a career in fashion, which can be very superficial. What are your practices to bridge the gap or how do you find meaning within the fashion industry?
AT: Well firstly, a lot of people in fashion genuinely have a love for art and creativity and inclusion. It’s not all about consumerism. Personally, I don’t want to do anything that doesn’t have meaning to me—especially this last year, with so much crazy stuff going on. So I always try to spread a message of positivity and what I believe in. For example, I work with this designer called Ashish and this season we did all these slogans like, Love Sees No Colour, and Be More Tender.

But then there is the consumerist part of the industry and the environmental part, that I personally have a really difficult time with. And the issues about racial inclusion on catwalks an in ad campaigns. There’s a lot of work that needs to be done.

RW: You’re also very vocal on your social media about veganism. Why is that so important to you?
AT: I’ve been vegetarian for 20 years, and vegan on and off—unfortunately I love cheese! But this is super important to me, as the beef industry is one of the most damaging things to the environment at the moment. It also really hurts me to see people eating meat. You’re essentially killing, and then eating that trauma. I just don’t understand why you would do that. And before, I never really expressed my feelings about it, but now I’m just like, “You know what? Fuck it … “ I don’t want animals to be traumatized just so they can be slaughtered. And I don’t want people to be consuming trauma.

RW: The fashion industry also loves fur. Do you feel as passionately about that?
AT: I never wear fur, and I never shoot fur anymore. I have done it in the past and I felt horrible about it. But I love shoes, I collect shoes like crazy, and so I do still wear leather. That’s something I need to look into, you know? I think of fur as this evil thing, so why do I think leather is okay? So I need to check myself and do a bit more research on that for sure. I would love to make a vegan shoe line, something super sexy!

Ashish FW17

RW: I think it’s amazing that you’re actually putting yourself out there and saying these things, because so many people are like, “These are my beliefs … until the next big money job comes in.” But having that integrity, I think, is part of leading a spiritual life. Like if your actions are aligning with your beliefs, you’re living your spiritual truth.
AT: Exactly. One massive publication asked me to do a fur shoot for them. It would have been great for my career, but I couldn’t do it. I was like, “let me do a faux fur story instead?” They didn’t reply. But then faux fur is actually the 8th worst fabric for the environment. So I need to start thinking about all these things.

RW: Don’t you think that eventually, if public opinions start to change significantly, then brands are going to have to follow suit? In the same way it’s happening with with organic food …
AT: Yes. It has to start somewhere. It’s the same with mass produced clothing—like yeah, it’s great that you can get a bunch of stuff for cheap, but what conditions are people working in? I don’t even really know how to begin with that.

RW: How about taking more direct action?
AT: Well after Trump’s immigration ban, I did this meditation, and I was imagining all of the souls of the world together, happy and warm, and just free to move wherever they want to move and experience what they want to experience. It was such an intense meditation and afterwards I saw light coming out my hands. Crazy! So I got all my influential girlfriends together and hosted a Girl’s Fight Club to raise money for the UNHCR, which is the UN refugee support.

It was also a statement about how I hate females being convinced we have to compete, when we are so much stronger together. That amazing goddess energy! That raised, not loads, but like 500, 600 dollars. I have a sort of theory that Trump is this kind of higher power, doing all this crazy shit to bring us all together. Either that or he’s reptilian.

RW: I swing between the two myself! So you meditate, how about any other spiritual practices? Your work means you have this crazy travel schedule and you’re very out there. How do you take care of your inner world?
AT: Last year I started doing yoga, which I never did before because I’m not like a super athletic person or anything. And you know those people that do yoga, and all they talk about is doing yoga? Now all I talk about is yoga! That has really helped me to settle down and focus and be strong and feel good. I love Bikram yoga, Kundalini yoga, Vinyasa. They’re all great.

My house is also full of crystals and plants, and the energy I get from them is amazing. I feel more grounded just looking at them, and I even kiss them and speak to them. I take my crystals around with me too. Like I choose a few and just take them when I travel and stuff. I also use them in my yoga and meditation.

RW: Spoken like a true Material Girl, balancing it out in the Mystical World. Finally, what’s the most otherworldly experience you’ve encountered in your life?
AT: The first time I did past life regression, when I was like 15 or 16. In it, I walked down a tunnel and there was a doorway, which was the door to the past life. I was shaking, physically shaking, and I as walked through the door it shut behind me. I immediately felt so calm. And then in my past life I experienced my own death, and it was amazing. I died, and my soul felt so light, as if being human, having this body, was the heaviest burden. From then on, I’ve had no fear of death. I’m actually excited for it, now that I know how it feels.

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:: MATERIAL GIRL ::

My label: My favorite brands at the moment are Ashish (always a glitter protest), Hyein Seo (‘Final Boss’ collection for bad girls), and Gucci (of course).

Ashish S17

My shoes: Pretty much always sky high stilettos and platforms—Marc Jacobs is killing me at the moment—and then Nike’s for when it’s sadly necessary to be practical.

Sneakers, $169, Nike

My fragrance: I wear something different all the time! At the moment I have Marc Jacobs’ Daisy. I like young summery perfume …

Daisy Eau de Toilette, $100, Marc Jacobs

My jewels: $1 big silver hoops, every day.

Hoops, $3.90, Forever 21

My pampering: My hair, nails and eyelashes are super regular and necessary upkeep takes a lot of time tbh.

My food: Vegan deliciousness—I wish they had Cafe Gratitude everywhere!

My home: Lots of windows and sunshine, plants, and I collect robots.

Robot inspo

:: MYSTICAL WORLD ::

My awakening: Say thank you each day to the Universe and be grateful.

My sign: Gemini through and through. But I have Cancer rising and my Moon in Taurus. I think the Cancer brings me back and the Taurus grounds me and helps me feel more balanced.

My mantra: I don’t have a mantra.

My healer: I have practiced with several energy healers, and I have one psychic in London and one in California. And they’re both good at different things. But the greatest healer is your self, and self realization.

My mission: Bring light, be genuine, be kind, speak from the heart, be unafraid, show love, make people aware of the importance of vegetarianism for themselves and for the world, work for humanity and Mother Earth, take no shit.

 

At the Women’s March on Washington