Thursday, April 30, 2009

Signs of Spring! this is just a small painting job I did but the subject matter is a symbol of my last few weeks...

Spring has come!
(At least here in Southern New England.)

The weeks are flying...I can't even believe it's May 1st tomorrow.

So, I guess the message today is that I have not forgotten about my fact I have been busy taking new pictures for upcoming posts and planning some "special series" stay tuned...they are coming!

As for the next few days...I hope you are able to get outside and enjoy this beautiful time of year...

take care

Friday, April 24, 2009

Lace Butterfly - with a Syringe?

I have written before about how much fun I think PMC (Precious Metal Clay) is...

Well, using it in this way is even more fun!

They sell PMC in a more liquid form stored in a plastic syringe. You just squirt it out using a template or freehand, let it dry, sand, fire, finish...and intricate, detailed work of art!

It is a little tricky but once you get the hang of it - it is kind of addicting.

On this piece I embedded some clear cubic zirconias and highlighted areas with the 14K gold PMC.

Below is the simple black and white sketch that was my inspiration for this design...I find with this product...keeping it simple is a great idea. Let your line work be the stand-out.

Suspend your artwork from some thin black, silk cord and you are all set!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Earth Day!

Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth
are never alone or weary of life.

- Rachel Carson

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Useful Prop for Jewelry Shows - Photo Holders

Nowadays you can find little photo holders like these everywhere!

Sometimes they have a clip like these do and sometimes they have a little wire spiral that you would slip a photo in to display it.
Well I picked these up at a wonderful stationery store that I sometimes do trunk shows at and I have gotten so much use out of them.
I have used them for price signs, to hold a small bio card about me, to hold sale signs, to display a business card, to hold an information sign about a particular product...etc...
They are small and light...which is a MUST for packing and transport.
Next time you are out and about...keep your eyes open. I have even seen cute themed ones at the dollar store!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Unexpected Art

What a little treat this find was...

On one of our cruise port stops last year in Cozumel, we went to this National Park type place that was so beautiful! I snorkeled for the first time which was a lot of fun.

After we swam we walked the grounds and stumbled on these stone flowers strewn throughout the dirt and gravel walkways. Of course I HAD to take a picture.

They looked like they were set in concrete and they were each one-of-a-kind.

How simple...but effective. A design that could be translated into many mediums and projects...from incorporating into your own patio at home to creating a one of a kind pendant. (with smaller stones of course!) ...or maybe with beads?

Just wanted to share this little gem... it made me smile.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Find Your Inner Stillness...

All true artists, whether they know it or not, create from a place of no-mind, from inner stillness.

- Eckhart Tolle

Monday, April 13, 2009

Travel and Inspiration...

I recently traveled to the west coast to spend my son's spring break with my parents in Palm Desert, California.

I find so much inspiration in the desert!

Above are a sampling of photos I took that I will be blogging about in the future...sort of a sneak peek! There are so many ideas I had flowing from the beauty of the landscape, the warmth of being with my family and from the ultimate artist...Mother Nature.

Ideas are everywhere...grab a camera and get outside...especially since the weather seems to be shifting. (At least here in Southern New England.)

You don't have to have fancy equipment or be a trained photographer...I certainly am not. Just snap what you like and then see if you can pull inspiration from some portion of it.

Have fun!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Office Supplies as Jewelry Tools?

When I was doing some heavy braiding of leather lacing I needed some way to hold the thick ends together while I straightened everything out.

I looked in front of me and saw these pretty clips I purchased at an office supply store that were clipped to my tool box…waiting for a purpose!

This was the right fit.

The clips are wide and provide even pressure so that all of the loose ends stay together. They also can open wide enough to accommodate a thick piece.I am able to slide the end of my glue bottle in the triangle opening and leave the piece as is while the glue dries. You could even buy the clips that have openings on the flaps so they could be hung up waiting to be finished!

Thankfully they come in lots of pretty colors and patterns now!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A Vintage “Must Have”

I stumbled on these beautiful, rhinestone medallions at a second hand jewelry sale last year.

They have so much sparkle and I loved the bullseye/flower shape.

They have some kind of clip on the back which I originally thought was so that they could be shoe decorations…but I tried that and the clip hurt!

I am not sure what I am going to do with them yet…the are too heavy for earrings and a pin would be obvious. Maybe a ring…don’t know…for now I just like looking at them! They make me happy.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Taking Time to Smell the Roses

I have so much fun taking pictures and writing for my blog.

It has really become a wonderful creative outlet and a place where I can share my experience and thoughts about my business, creativity and art.

With Spring coming and a busy schedule I am feeling like I need a little self-care.

So, for a little while, I am going to change the frequency of my posts from every day to 2-3 times a week. It is a gift of time I am giving to myself without having to give up something I really enjoy.

So I will still be here, but just not as least for now.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Vintage Crackle

I love old jewelry and beads.

This vintage, plastic, crackle bead was rescued from an out-dated piece of jewelry found at a second hand shop. A full necklace filled with these beads was a little much but using one as a focal piece made it special.

Sometimes when you remove beads or components from a mass of like items it can give them new life and can show off interesting detail. All together they were just some old, plastic beads in bright colors…but now it is a focal piece full of fire and life.

Surrounded by iridescent, vintage glass beads it has new importance.

See what you have that can be taken apart or separated and maybe you can pass on surplus beads to a fellow jewelry maker.It might be fun to get a group of friends that create to design a project using some of the same components divided from old jewelry…then compare how different each person’s interpretation is.

Could be a fun way to make some jewelry to donate to charity while using up some extra supplies!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

An Interesting Perspective

I’ve written before about how I can get too caught up in the details of jewelry photography and forget about the overall design of the photo.

This piece is a good example of that.

The vintage butterfly is beautiful…with lots of detail. So, naturally I wanted to make sure everyone could see all of that beautiful detail in my photographs.

While detail is important especially when it is for an online shop…sometimes the over all feel of the piece can be more compelling.

So, for this piece, I did do close up, more mechanical shots but then I took this one.I think there is something romantic about it that evokes the romance in the piece. Sort of like it is being worn by a woman sitting down…the angle looks kind of demure. I also think the use of simple props, like the flowers, highlight the femininity.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Surprisingly Copper!

I often purchase materials online.

This can be fun…like an unexpected treat when you open the package
or a surprise that you are not sure what to do with.

The later was the case with these copper headpins.
Ordered from a site I frequent, I am not sure how I did’t know they were copper with a silver ball end and not all silver.

Anyway, they were pretty but I don’t really use much copper. Needless to say they sat in my drawer for a while. Then I purchased a small assortment of glass beads at a local show and …bingo!

Using plain sterling silver with these interesting beads didn’t do it for me…but I had this bag of copper and sterling silver that did the trick.I really liked how the warm tone of the copper picked up the rich natural flecks and swirls in the beads. I also, think that the more organic nature of the copper complemented the handmade feel.

Something I probably would’t have chosen to buy…but a surprise that worked out well.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Big but Light

When making earrings it is really important to be aware of the materials you use.

What might look really cool might be too heavy to wear comfortably or might not be safe.

I found these charms and really liked the size and scale of them. The bonus is that they are very light for their size making them perfect for earrings.

I always test my materials for weight…to make sure they don’t pull my ear hole. An elongated or stretched out ear hole can be medically problematic.

So, when designing or purchasing earrings be sure to go for comfort and safety first…no matter how cute or “in style” the earrings might be!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Bittersweet Press

It was so exciting to get my fingerprint charms in a national magazine!

When my jewelry Rep. called to give me the heads-up I couldn’t believe it. Then once the issue came out and I saw who the article referenced as being “fans” I was even more excited…Now I know that just because this magazine mentioned these two particular people doesn’t really mean they have even heard of my product let alone purchased it…but…it was still exciting.

First, I think Seal is ultra cool. I remember seeing him perform before he became famous. I was living in Arizona at the time and he worked in a small outdoor stadium type place…I think it was at one of the Universities. He was wonderful and I remember thinking…wow…he is going to be big.

Heath Ledger I also think was so cool and interesting…very bittersweet if it is true. It is a nice thought that maybe he had his fingerprint done and that his daughter could have it now as a memento…or if he could have hers with him….a tragic end to a short life.