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, May 26, 2013

Always Match Your Earrings to Your Blog Template

El Caribe
These two pair of earrings are variations on the pair I made my Mom for Mother's Day. I liked the design so much I repeated it, with slightly different beads. I just got a whole slug of little oval gemstones from Lima Beads (for earrings), and so far these Chinese Turquoise are my favorite. I would like to fill an entire tub with them and take a bath. THAT'S how much I love them. I would have tiny oval bruises all over my body ('cause I'd probably be in there a long time), but it would be worth it.

I used four of them in this pair, all slightly different:
Jade Isles
I should do some bead porn with my Lima haul. And my other many large recent hauls.
Stay tuned.

(The Fred Flintstone looking donut beads in green and blue are from Happy Mango Beads.)

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Recycled Glass and Samurai

China Sea
I was meditating on my bin of recycled glass beads (I do this) from Happy Mango, and thought, "What about a square beadcap on a disc bead?" It was an intriguing question, so I made some. I tested out sizes with cardboard and then cut them from copper with my snips and etched them. This is the upshot. This pair is made with some large disc beads--they're about 18mm across and about 8mm thick. I LOVE this color. It's like the Caribbean, or a high glacial lake.
They feel vaguely Asian to me, although that was not my intention (this happens frequently.) I think I was a Samurai in a former life. Which explains a lot.
Blueberries and Plums in Asia
I made the pair above with some medium-sized recycled glass buttons, also from Happy Mango. I'm not usually a fan of blue, but I love this color in the glass. So icy. Like me. I decided to be bold and combine it with some purple--the other beads are Czech glass.
I made four sets of these rectangular caps. Another pair will go with some sea green buttons (same color as the first pair) and I think the other set will go with a couple pendants using large buttons.

And on that note, I bid you good night.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Arabian Nights

A Lantern in the Desert
I've been thinking about this design for a few weeks now. I'm loving the idea of folded, "3D" shapes, especially for earrings, where the back of the earring is often visible--I like the idea that it would be beautiful from the back, too (they look virtually identical from the back). I sketched out these shapes and cut them from raw sheet using my snips, jewelry saw and disc cutter:

Then I etched them, antiqued them, and when I folded them into their final shape, I added hanging loops and closed them at the top with tube rivets. I spent all day trying to decide on the colors for these earrings!
Here is the back of these earrings--as you can see, they look just like the front:

All the beads are Czech glass, in mossy green and "alexandrite." I've been enjoying looking for inspiration lately in Moorish architecture, and in particular the tile work in traditional Iranian buildings (oh the colors! you must check out this page), and was excited when these turned out looking exotically Middle-Eastern. Jewels for Scheherazade! Or Jeannie in her bottle.

This second pair is more of an onion dome shape, and I created the central holes with my disc cutter. I again etched and antiqued them, and then added the hanging loops when I folded it up and riveted it closed at the top.
Taj Mahal
The little roundels on the earwires are Czech glass in a wonderful Grand Marnier color; the rounds inside the windows are red agate; and the drops at the bottom are garnet.

I like how they are softly pillowed. The sheet is 26 gauge, and etched aggressively, so these are quite light. Like the first pair, they are virtually identical from the back. As with the earrings in my last post, I used digital patterns from Aesthetic Addiction on Etsy, applied with Press n Peel blue sheets using a household clothes iron, and then etched with ferric chloride.

Stay tuned for more shapes from the East!