A chronicle of the meanderings, false starts (which in retrospect, while sort of embarrassing turned out to be highly instructive), epiphanies, selective apathy (still evolving), wild mood swings, opinions (subject to frequent change), and life lessons of an inveterate dabbler (and her latest dabblings).

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Wonder Woman, the Lone Star state, and Aidan Quinn

What do Wonder Woman, the Lone Star state, and Aidan Quinn have in common?

I think of them when I look at these earrings!

I Fought the Law, and the Law Won
I love these chubby little Mykonos stars from Stinky Dog Beads, and was thinking for a long time about how to create a pair of earrings with them. I thought I would pop them into a ring, and do up a whole mixed metal thing. While I was working on them, I couldn't help thinking of Texas, Wonder Woman (which I watched religiously as a youngster), and badges (Grandma and I used to watch Marshal Dillon clean up Dodge City, and how many times have I watched Practical Magic now?)

via GIPHY


Have a splendid week, readers!

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Waste Not, Want Not

Fiesta
(sold)
I have been looking and looking for some plain, slim, tubular beadcaps/endcaps--could I find any anywhere? Of course not! Then I stumbled across these spent .22 caliber bullet casings for sale at Design From Dixie on Etsy and I thought "Eureka!" They gather these up--and other calibers--at shooting ranges, check to make sure the primer is spent, and make them available for purchase for craft projects in their Etsy shop. (The brass is lovely, especially after banging it up with my hammer!). I'm not into shooting guns, but I will happily use these babies to make jewelry! I got some in stainless steel too. They're really a snap to drill, and if you have any questions about that, the shop owners are great and super helpful. They also have a website about how to use bullet casings in craft projects. I used them above with moukaite ovals and roundels, and brass wire.

Industrial
For these I stuck with a two-tone pallette of silver and brass--golden pyrite ovals, fine and Argentium silver wires, brass shell casings and brass wire. (Can't decide what I love more--the brass casings or the pyrite....) These are currently available in my Etsy shop.

OK, that's all I got! (Can't wait to use a pair of the steel ones.)

Monday, February 13, 2017

Y's, Happy Fish and White Clover

Spring in the Rockies
(SOLD)
Hello there, adoring fans. In case you were wondering, I'm still working my way through my artisan ceramic stash, most recently using some fab stoneware tubes in sea green glazes by Jana Bližňáková of Happy Fish Things. I'm intrigued by Y necklaces (I think they're sexy and I'm all about that) so I thought I would do really elongated shapes with these. For the necklace above, I topped Jana's stoneware tube with an icy tablet of recycled glass from Happy Mango Beads (clear, with just the barest hint of a fluorite-type green), and dangled a few carved amethyst tulips underneath. It says SPRING to me!! I was playing with some dragonfly-wing shapes with copper wire, and initially thought it was going to form one side of the necklace, but then I liked it so much as part of the pendant section I left it there. I added some more clear glass nuggets to the necklace portion, and two long strands of gorgeous little seed beads in pearly lavender. (I'm really into stringing seed beads lately, I love the look).

Glacial Lakes
(SOLD)
For this one, I hit the turquoise hard. (I love these variegated nuggets I got from a local bead store several years ago--I will be beside myself when I run out.) I kept it simple, with leather and copper. Recycled glass tablet in azure from Happy Mango Beads.

Caribbean Adventure
I went all cool greens with this one, with recycled glass rounds and discs (the latter from Happy Mango Beads) in sea green, little rectangular nuggets of pale amazonite in iceberg hues, and a dollop of green dragon blood jasper (the rondelles at the end). I kept it earthy with leather and chubby seed beads in deep cocoa brown.

I'm Going to Sandals
For this one, I was inspired by some ombre-shaded seed beads I found at Michael's, so I decided to do three strands of them (when I love something, I REALLY love it), with a pair of my hand-formed tulip ends. I stacked up some recycled glass discs from Happy Mango Beads in sea green, "Capri blue" and powder blue under the stoneware tube, and then completed the pendant section with a large tablet of faux sea glass in a light azure from Stinky Dog Beads. The wrapped loop I made for the sea glass pendant seemed to need something, so I wrapped it in a bunch of waxed linen cording and more seed beads. Always remember, more is more.

Morning Alpenglow
(SOLD)
And lastly, having used up my set of four Happy Fish tubes, I grabbed a gorgeous little porcelain pendant by Mary Hubbard of White Clover Kiln from my stash--I'd been wanting to use this little gem forever but just didn't have any ideas that seemed worthy of it. It fit right inside this wrapped ring I had made a long time ago for I-don't-know-what. Just futzing, I guess. I didn't want it to get too frothy with the pink, so I used Botswana agate (LOVE that stone) to draw out the gray and slatey violet tones in the swirls of the pendant, and added dark cocoa leather to ground it. I added some 3mm round beads at the ends--I think most of these are also Botswana agate, but I mixed in some rhodochrosite for a little extra pink. A dash of silver seemed right too.

Well that's all I got. I have another set of three tubes from Jana, that are a more vivid green--they remind me of bamboo. I think I'm going to use those horizontally...stay tuned!