Just Sayin’…

•June 15, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Sometimes the most simple of designs offers the most fashion mileage. I made this beaded neck ring last summer, but I have worn it with so many different pendants! Because it is multi-colored in red, ivory, black, and various shades of blue it goes really well with bluejeans, which I have lived in for the past “stay at home” year. I’ve always loved the Laughing Buddha “Triple Happiness” pendant shown in the top photo and I’ve just finished the sterling silver hollow-formed “Prayer Box” pendant shown in the lower photo. It is adorned with a Lapis Lazuli focal stone and rose cut Garnet and Kyanite accent gemstones that blend so well with the Japanese seed beads that were used in the neck ring. Now, if you are wondering what a prayer box is, I’ll explain…the idea behind a prayer box is that it becomes a talisman imbued with power by placing a special message or written word (i.e. courage, strength, love, etc.,) inside the piece, thereby imparting that attribute to the person wearing the prayer box. The message can be etched or drawn on the interior of the metal before the box is soldered closed. The word can also just be written on paper, which of course will burn when the box is soldered closed, but…it’s the thought that counts, isn’t it?

After Several Months Hiatus…

•June 6, 2021 • Leave a Comment

I finally feel like beading again! The gorgeous weather we’re having today definitely contributes to wanting to take my beading paraphernalia out on the screened porch and start designing a new project! I love my little brocade pouches and mini-tubes that hold just the perfect amount of beads for this purpose. I’m definitely in a turquoise phase, both in working with gemstones and bead colors. It truly is one of my favorite colors ranging from the most subdued shades of aqua to bright Caribbean blues. The stones I’ve recently been using in my metal work are turquoise from the Bisbee mines in Arizona (see my May 31, 2021 post) and here, I’m using Delicas in various shades of turquoise. My plan is to make geometric beaded beads and string them on a leather cord, which I’ll be able to use as a necklace upon which I can hang a sterling silver pendant featuring a Bisbee turquoise stone. Or I can wear it as a doubled bracelet or maybe a really cool hatband! I love wearables and it’s fun to have one piece that functions as several!

Brrrrrrr…

•May 31, 2021 • Leave a Comment

A week ago, it felt as if summer had arrived. With temperatures reaching close to the high 70’s I was actually able to gather my beads and head out to the screened porch with the cats and I began designing a new earring project! Then days in a row of heavy rain arrived bringing dreary and very cold days with temperatures diving into the 50’s during the day with night time temperatures dropping to the 30’s. I’ve been dragging my potted plants and tender herbs indoors at night and back outdoors during the day. Believe me, that scenario grows old pretty fast! I’ve retreated back to the warmth of the metals studio to work on more bangles and other baubles. I’m once again hammering, setting stones, and soldering and I plan to continue playing in this arena until sunshine and warmth once again deem to grace us…hopefully soon!

An Oldie, but Goodie!

•May 21, 2021 • Leave a Comment

My “Forbidden Fruit” Drop Earrings were designed seven years ago, but I’ve always loved this project! This is a Geometric beaded design, but the Delica, drop, and Rizo beads change the look! The shape and colors of the beads create so much texture. I’ve been drawn once again to getting out my beads and I want to explore more possibilities with this design…perhaps stopping the shape at the point shown above and suspending the earring from three beaded strands as one would hang a chandelier or basket. Now all I have to do is find time! Spring has sprung with summer fast approaching and with it all the chores one has to do after having hunkered indoors all winter. Granted during the past few months I have spent more time in my metals studio, but even that time has been infringed upon with trips to the greenhouse buying herbs and flowers to plant, scrubbing decks and the screened porch to make ready ready for outdoor living, etc. Eventually, I’ll be taking my beads outdoors and creating new designs. In the meantime you can find the tutorial and kits for my “Forbidden Fruits” Drop Earrings in my Etsy shop!

During the Last Week…

•May 13, 2021 • Leave a Comment

I’ve been making asymmetrical earrings using stones, fossil walrus teeth, and mastodon bone and I have to say, I just love working with these materials. The center earring is my absolute favorite of the five earrings! It’s almost 4″ long, but the mastodon bone is so light in weight that I hardly know I’m wearing it. The bone, having been buried for eons, is rather dull in appearance and needs a bit of “elbow grease” to obtain the soft patina you see here. As the bones I have on hand are larger I must first saw them to size and shape, sand, and buff them to a soft luster. The stones used in these earrings are set in sterling silver and are from left to right: turquoise and Botswana agate, fossil walrus tooth and turquoise, peach moonstone and mastodon bone, fossil walrus tooth and cherry quartz, and cherry quartz. I hope in the coming months to amass a good sized collection of finished pieces that I’ll be willing to part with (I’m not at present!) and when that happens I’ll list some of my metal work in my Etsy shop. Stay tuned!

Yay!

•May 7, 2021 • Leave a Comment

It’s that time of year when our weather is finally warm enough to take my beading projects outdoors where I can listen to the birds sing and feel warmth of the sun and gentle breezes! It’s so good to be out after being cooped up during our long, cold winter!

I’m don’t know about you, but I’m always looking for ways to better transport my beading paraphilia when I travel or weather permitting, taking my projects outdoors and/or to workshops. I came across these wonderful colorful satin pouches and then found a source for tiny containers that fit beautifully inside with room to spare for scissors, thread, and other beading necessities. The pouch and containers are my new companion!

Each 4 3/8″ square pouch is adorned with a matching tassel that includes ten empty tube containers, each measuring 1.5″ x .50″ with tight- fitting friction tops (each tube holds 5+ grams of beads) and there is ample room to include other items (as shown in the last photo). Of course, you can use these pouches and containers for a lot more than beadwork…use them to store tiny treasures, jewelry, makeup minis, pills, etc., or sew a length of satin cord to a pouch and you have a great little evening bag that can hold lipstick, cash and credit card!

Available in twelve colors, each pouch is made individually from brocade satin and therefore, no two designs are exactly alike. The containers are made of translucent flexible plastic with secure fitting friction caps allowing you to see what’s inside without opening. Note: Props shown in the last photo (beads, scissors, and needles) are not included. You can find these in my Etsy Shop!

Matching…

•April 26, 2021 • 1 Comment

While I truly prefer mismatched earrings (they are so much more fun to wear, I think!), I’ve decided to make several matched pair. I’m loving using gemstones in my work! From left to right are ripple-formed sterling silver hoops from which 8x10mm rose cut garnets dangle. The pair in the center sport rose cut peridot with matte carnelian drops. The pair shown at right features 10mm cut lavender chalcedony cabochons and drops of rose cut peridot. I love all these and frankly, I think I can wear as mismatched sets with other earrings I’ve made recently.

Better Late Than Never!

•April 15, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The beautiful gemstones, fossil walrus teeth, and mammoth bones I ordered during Susan Lenart Kazmer’s sale on April 3 have finally arrived after sitting at a USPS processing center for five days! I’m thrilled with them and can’t wait to add them to my work! They are shown amongst hollow forms and earring components that I’m presently working on. I’ll have several new pairs of earrings to show and wear very soon! We all know one can never have too many earrings, don’t we!

More Goodies On The Way

•April 7, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Jewels of the Nomads (Susan Lenart Kazmer’s site) reopened last Saturday featuring newly added items. I ordered a collection of Carnelian gemstones and another collection composed of Cherry and Lemon Quartz and Citrine in free form and teardrop shapes, but also I simply couldn’t resist ordering Fossil Walrus Teeth slices and Mastedon Bone pieces! These components hold particular interest for me not just because they are ancient, but because they were once components of living beings. I wonder how life was for them so long ago. I’m not at all religious, but I believe that every living being is embued with a personality and spirit. I think that such components impart another dimension, a spiritual vibe so to speak when used in my jewelry pieces. “Pretty” is no longer enough for me…I want my jewelry to have depth and meaning, a feeling of being one with nature. I pour my energy into my work and I like to think that these creatures that roamed our earth thousands of years ago add energy to the pieces as well. Life goes on.

Embracing Asymmetry…

•March 31, 2021 • Leave a Comment

I’m on a bit of an earring kick now. Because my wardrobe these days consists of so many beautifully embroidered Johnny Was tops and kimonos, earrings have become one of the few jewelry choices that won’t catch on and snag my clothing. So, I’ve been going wild in the earring arena! You’ve heard the phrase “a match made in heaven”…well, I consider these asymmetrical earrings a “mismatch” made in heaven! I am loving creating single one-of-a-kind earrings. Although each earring shown here is different, they all blend or contrast well with each other. By summer I will have a good-sized collection of earrings that I’ve created using rose cut and smooth polished gemstones set in interesting shapes, secured with bezels of filigree wire, and adorned with chain or other embellishment. Gemstone featured in these earrings are carnelian, citrine, rutile quartz, amethyst, cherry quartz, garnet, aquamarine, bamboo coral, and fossil walrus tooth slices. I love each and every earring!

 
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