Friday, October 30, 2009

Working with Sterling

I have been working more and more with sterling silver, as per customer request, and I am having great success with it. So far it has been the basics, just beaded earrings with Sterling findings, but they are selling. I am going to get a little more adventurous, but one step at a time. Remember, I have not been doing this for a year yet. I used some of Sue's awesome lampwork beads, added some spacers and did a little wire wrapping and used a 5mm jump ring to attach it to the ear wire. I really like the look of the larger jump ring. I feel like it modernizes the whole look. I was lucky enough to win these gorgeous beads at almost the very beginning of my jewelry designing career on one Sue's giveaways. I imagine it was a very worthwhile giveaway since I have bought a ton of beads from her since then.

Sea Sediment Jasper. It is rich and has so much to it. I combined these rondelles with Sterling spacers and wire wrapped them. I also added an extra bead at the bottom for to give it more movement. I was trying to find a picture that was not fuzzy, unfortunately this was the best one. lol

Have a great weekend
and a great Halloween!!!


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

OMG!!! I am on the Bead Trends Blog!!

I was visiting the new Bead Trends Blog and I was looking at past posts and there was my bracelet!!! I had no idea it was even there. It was posted by Charlotte whom I assume is one of the photographers.
Thanks Charlotte!!

I hope you go check it out HERE and let me know what you think :)



Ocean Jasper

This is what you get when you have no natural light for days. Dark pictures with a strange "shine" on your beads because you have to use your flash. What can I say, at least I never claimed to be good at this photography thing.

I have had pretty much no sleep. I have been up most of the night because of my little Noah. We have this weird sore throat light fever thing going on and he is the next one to get it. I had him on the sofa all night and I was on the other one, and I have Never! Ever! heard anyone carry on so much for so long. He moaned alllll night. He would not let me do anything for him either!!We took him to the doctor yesterday afternoon and he said "no Tylenol". What??? Are you kidding me? I was not giving it to him for the fever, I was giving it to him for the pain!! How frustrating. That was the same as hearing "Don't Comfort your Child!!!" So I listened to the doctor and I had a long night with virtually no sleep. That is my life.

This picture is a little better!! I wire wrapped this three piece set with Bronze wire and Ocean Jasper stones. I added copper/bronze toggles and jump rings{earrings}. I could have used silver, but I wanted to go against the grain. It looks really nice on. Something you could wear on an evening out or with a pair of jeans. I am happy with the way it turned out, I enjoyed making it. I am pretty sure I made this set sitting watching a movie with my kids. My three favorite things!! My family, a movie and my art. Life could not be better :)

Thanks for stopping in, I hope you all stay healthy


Sunday, October 25, 2009

Aquamarine Dreams

This shield pendant is one by SummersStudio. Some of you may recognize her unique and fun style.
I am constantly getting stuff from her Etsy shop, because her pieces are highly addictive. lol.
I know I am not the only one out there who thinks so.

He is a close up of the pendant with all it's bits and pieces attached.
I used Vintaj Brass and real aquamarines. I also used some small green glass seed beads.
Of course I was almost sad to see this one go yesterday, I did not get to hold onto it for very long.
That is a good thing and a bad thing. Good part is that someone loved it as much as I do, bad part is, I am going to miss this one. I was still debating on making that one a keeper.
But hey! you can't keep them all right??

A slight close up of the dangle. Picture looks too yellow, but at least  this one is not too blurry ;)


Friday, October 23, 2009

Better Photos and New Pieces

A month or so ago, my son Adam wanted to help me make a charm bracelet. He had to pick the beads and he said I had to put them in a "pattern". He is 5 so I thought that was pretty cute. Well, this is the bracelet. Not something I would have thought of on my own, but I think it turned out pretty well! I did add a little to it with the antiqued brass spacers, but other than that he picked everything himself including the chain.

Brass chain and toggle, nut beads and some small glass beads. All in shades of Turquoise. Not bad kiddo!

I am happier with the first photo. I am trying some new techniques. A girlfriend of mine has a husband that is a professional photographer. I was over there on Monday for my monthly Scrapbooking club and he gave me some tips after looking at my photos on my website and blog. He mostly said to use lots of light from lamps etc and to turn off my flash. He said to take the photos from further away and to zoom in as close as I can. Well, I know I need more light, because everything looks a little yellow and I need to work on the focus, but all in all it did improve some.

After selling all my Picasso Jasper pieces at the last show I made a couple new ones for my next show on Saturday. Because of lack of time {and materials} I did not do as much wire wrapping as I might have done otherwise. I extended with a long piece of chain from Vintaj and added a toggle at the back. I love the large pendant, It is quite stunning. I wanted this one to be quite long because of the size of the pendant.

You can see all the wonderful colours and all the texture in the stone. Nothing quite compares.

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Colours of the Sea

From the first time I saw this stone I was mesmerized. The colours and the marbling were a combination I could not resist. I purchased a few different strands in a couple of different shades and tried out this long wire wrapped necklace.

There are a few different names for this stone, but I figured the easiest to remember was "Sea Sediment Jasper". I use quite a few different kinds of Jaspers, I love the variety you can find. I think this is most likely my favorite. I even found an orange version of this one on Etsy, so keep popping in to see what I end up making with them.

I wire wrapped with Vintaj 24 gauge wire, alternating different sizes, shapes and colours. It is one of my favorite necklaces and I have had wonderful comments on it when I have worn it.

Thanks for stopping by


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Stones with Character!

These red spot stones from Fire Mountain Gems never cease to amaze me. I thought when I first saw them that they looked interesting and different. I figured, Ok, get a couple of strands in different shapes and see what happens. I have loved everything that I have made with them. They just seem to work so well with Copper, which is one of my favorite metals to work with that I can not stop myself from putting the two together.

You can see here that I used 4 different sizes and shapes. They make a very elegant necklace that sites well on the skin because of the flatness of the stones.

I found this lovely clasp on Etsy {Olay} and thought it was the perfect finishing touch to this piece.

I have a multitude of things I am working on, including stuff for Publication, more pieces for my show this Saturday and more things to replenish my website and Etsy shop.

Keep coming back for more eye candy


Sunday, October 18, 2009

Hand Made Ear Wires and Pins

So I made the Long pins by hand and the ear wires and added on these fun Dragon's Vein Agate Beads.

They are free form and hammered.I also made these the same way but with the ear wire loops curling inwards instead of outwards. I like the effect, it certainly seems more original. I find hammering very soothing. I am sure those of you who have tried it agree that you can certainly take out some frustrations with a little hammering.

Short post again, Hubby said I could get away and go to the movies if I wanted. I think it is time for a couple of chick flicks!!

Have a good night


Friday, October 16, 2009

New Earrings

I have wanted to make something like this for awhile. Long dangling earrings with my own ear wires and some pretty little flowers at the ends. These are my two favorites.

I really enjoy making my own ear wires. They can be in so many different shapes and lengths. I want to try wrapping some wire on them next.

Short post tonight I am on my way out to do my show.


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Yummy Watches!!

Cool, that's new, I can set my pictures on Extra Large now too!! This is most likely one of my better pictures, it is not blurry or too bright or too dark :)

So the lovely ladies who bought the bracelets on my website a few days ago, just purchased a watch each! This makes me really happy {Big Grin} I feel like a kid, lol
I was wondering how my watches would sell. It seems that I need to make more.

That's more like it, a little blurriness ;)

This is the other watch that sold. She saw it and could not stop thinking about it all day and night, so I guess she decided she had to have it. I really hope she enjoys it.

Here it is again. I used heart harms, pink fresh water pearls, rose quartz and pink crazy lace jasper.
The top watch was made using the same charms, rings strung with beads and coral nuggets.

Thanks for stopping in


Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Sterling Silver Earrings...

Ok, Let's not enlarge the blurry picture too much. Kelly Morgan and I seem to have the same problem, lack of photography skills. Lucky for her she is not as bad as I am. lol
I have recently started investing in the basics in Sterling Silver. We are talking ear wires, pearl head pins, eye pins, a few different gauges of SS wire and soon to come {I hope} three sizes of jump rings. I want the quality of my jewelry to improve and go from basic metal to high quality silver and gold or even platinum.
So these are my first two pairs of earrings with the new sterling I just purchased.

I made these with Genuine emeralds {chips} I just wire wrapped them directly onto the ear wires. Very simple but elegant. {I hate indoor photography}

These are made with Aquamarines, SS ear wires, pearl head pins, Bali style SS beads from my LBS and eye pins. I love aquamarines and silver. I would like to make a few more of these before my show Friday night but I am not sure I will have enough time.

Another lovely picture...
I have really great props, I need a better camera and some classes. Maybe if my pictures were better I could get some sales in my Etsy shop. lol

Next on my list is some Sterling accent beads. If any of you are willing to share your sources for great pricing, I would be eternally grateful.


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Bracelets and Bead Goodies

For lack of anything better to post right now, I am posting some bracelets I made this summer. I have not had the time or the lighting to take pics of any of my new stuff, but I will have to this week, before my first show for the season on Friday. This is a Jasper oval bracelet. I love how this feels on, smooth and lightweight. I also love the Elegance of the stones and the richness of the deep colours.

This bracelet is a mix of blue crazy lace Agate, copper flower beads and Apatite chips. I love these colours. I always tend to gravitate to greens but on this occasion I fell in love with these teally blues.

I got some fun new pieces to work with this last week. These Filigree rings are from Olay on Etsy. I think they are so pretty, but I will have to experiment since at this moment I have no idea what to do with them. I know I will try a dangle or two, and I will also try some wire wrapping. I will post the results when I figure it out. Feel free to leave some ideas and suggestions.

These little toggles are my favorite to use with a fun lightweight or dainty bracelet. I tried to get copper and bronze but the copper sold right before I put through my cart on Etsy. {sound familiar Kelly??}

Like Lorelei I have just invested in some expensive sterling silver wire. I ordered it two weeks ago and got it on Friday. I am working on earrings and a few other things. We will see how it turns out :)


Thursday, October 8, 2009

My First Website Sales!!

After I was done blogging last night I went to quickly check my e-mail one last time and to my surprise I found I had a paypal payment. I have had my official website for a few months now and after all the work and all the web submissions and all the business cards that I have handed out, Finally!!! A really nice lady named Lisa bought two bracelets!! I was so happy I went and wrapped them up and put a little thank you note in the bag. I drove my kids to school and went right to her house to drop them off. I was really pleased that she just happened to be a neighbour. It turns out I had given my card to her son at the grocery store when he was helping me take my bags out to my car.

So after I get home, I went to check my e-mail again and another surprise! A co-worker of hers had also ordered a bracelet. I was thrilled! So I went and packed her little treasure up with a thank you note.  I went back to Lisa's and dropped it off so she could take it to her co-worker. {Thanks girls}

I feel really lucky right now. I knew it would take time to get myself out there, but it is finally starting to produce results! I Have always wanted to work for myself, I don't seem to do too well in the outside work environment. Some artistic minds wither when involved in something other than their craft, I must just be one of them. I am trying to prove to my husband that this is going to be lucrative enough that I don't need to go out and get a part-time job. Let's hope it works.


Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Earrings and More Earrings

I did my best to take pics of a coupe of pairs of my earrings I made. We have had no sun, so natural light has been pretty scarce. It has been dark and gloomy for about 3 days now. I figured oh well, just get it done. This first pair of earrings is more of an experiment that worked out well, than anything else. I started by hammering brass tags with a textured hammer. I used some of the Vintaj tags that I had on hand.

I then used alcohol inks from my scrapbooking collection to add a touch of colour. I made several pairs of these, but the "sapphire" blue was my favorite. I used 3 kinds of blue, a hint of purple and some pearl to create this effect.

This pair is kind of special to me. I used these cute glass butterflies and milky green swarovski crystals, and I attached them to my own handmade figure eight links and then attached those, to my own handmade earwires. I took my first class ever, and learned how to shape metal properly to create earwires and dangles and pins of sorts. I made a ton of cute ear wires and now I am turning them into earrings. I think this week I have made about two dozen pairs of earrings. I used lots of brass and swarovski crystals so keep an eye open in my etsy shop or on this blog for a new post. I may have to reserve a couple for Bead Trends ;)

This last picture is mostly to show you the detail of my ear wires.

I hope you enjoyed your little visit


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Craaaaazy Busy!!

First of all, I got my issue of the October Bead Trends and I got to see my very first piece published on page 20. Another nice surprise was that it is also on the table of contents page. My photography as always leaves something to be desired, but here is a preview of what you will see.

Of course this just does not do my piece justice, but that is why you need to go get the magazine, so you can see how wonderful they made my bracelet look.

On another note, one of my newer creations. I have a lot of new stuff I would like to show you, but with the weather changing so fast here, I am not sure where to take my pictures. I think I am going to set something up in my kitchen, since that is where I get the best natural light.

This necklace is made with Peridot Serpentine and Rough Tourmaline ovals and 4mm rounds. I also used Vintaj chain and a toggle from them as well.

Hope you enjoyed all the goodies
Come again soon :)


Saturday, October 3, 2009

Mine!! All Mine!!

This is the bracelet I created with MY beads. Only three of the green beads on the ends are not part of the stash I made. I put in a few brass spacers and there you have it. My beads may be rough and imperfect but the bracelet turned out really well and I have had a lot of compliments on it. I am quite pleased with it and now I am getting the "bug" to make more. I want to take another class because I want to re-fine my skills before I handle the torch again on my own. It will be years, I think, before I can even think of setting up a shop or something with my own stuff to make beads. The studio here in Calgary is really far too so it is hard to get there very often. I have to make plans for that. So don't worry Sue I will have to get a LOT more beads from you first ;)

So here is a close up of my focal bead. I want to try to "smash" it a little less hard next time and make it thicker. I love how the colours turned out though, the mix of greens, cream and brown. I can't wait to try again.

Become a fan on twitter and you can get free shipping in my Etsy shop today only!!


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Great Bead Finds!!

So in the tradition of Kelly Morgan at Silver Parrot, I thought I would give you my first bead "porn" post.  lol. I discovered CBeads on Etsy recently and fell in love with these colourful beads. She has a great selection of wonderful czech glass beads and lentil beads. I also had to have these...

Yummy! So many colours! You can find some great deals on some wholesale lots Here . That is where I found these beauties. I will have to visit her etsy shop again.

Here are some really nice red czech glass beads from Mountain Shadow Design's. I have been trying to branch out and get something other than green in my designs. I thought these and the next ones might help.

Similar to the first, but a tad different.

I also found another shop with some fun charms for my now quite popular charm bracelets. Olay, they have soooo many interesting pieces that I have not seen anywhere else yet. I can not wait to get them.

These are quite cute, I want to mix them with some of those red czech glass beads and ??? we will see.
Te next ones are leaves. I am really into leaves right now. I love to add them to my designs for a touch of nature. Some are fresh and fun and others have more of a fall texture.

I guess now you will have to keep checking in to see what I create with them.

Keep coming back!!