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!

Rings and Things…

•March 24, 2021 • Leave a Comment

This past week has been spent in my metals studio creating these stacking rings and bangles. I’m finally making use of the many gemstones I’ve collected over the years as well as new additions of fossil walrus teeth slices (my husband commented that it’s good to have something older in the house than he!) and various rose cut gemstones. Set in hammer-textured sterling silver round, strip and twisted wire are stones of carnelian, milky aqua marine, chrysoprase, lemon chrysoprase, tourmaline, citrine, and red and pink coral. I’m enjoying making these and plan to make many more bangles. I especially like the “Tangle Bangle” featured at the center in the photo . It is composed of three intertwined 16 gauge sterling silver wire bangles and adorned with one dangling orange carnelian stone. I’ve always felt that one can’t have too many earrings and I’m starting to feel the same about rings and bangles!

Oooohhhh…

•March 16, 2021 • Leave a Comment


I’ve had my eyes on this collection for a while and I finally nabbed these stones during Susan Lenart Kazmer’s recent gemstone sale! I love Chrysoprase and the size of this stone will be perfect in a pendant. I have plans for the long teardrop-shaped Amethyst to be used in an earring. I find that I’m doing more asymmetrical earrings these days…I love to mix thing up! The small Rainbow Tourmaline can be used along with other stones and bronze domed components in a ring or on a bangle or perhaps another earring (I think one can never have too many earrings!). I’m finding spending time in my metals studio is very rewarding. Like getting back on a bicycle after a long hiatus, I’m regaining my “balance” and learning to “pedal” faster as my jewelry-making skills resurface. I’m making lots of bezels this week using both fine silver bezel wire and sterling silver gallery wire.  I’ll have several finished pieces to show you soon!

When Life Hands You a Lemon, Make Lemonade…

•March 12, 2021 • 4 Comments


When the going gets tough, the tough get creative! This bangle was supposed to have six set stones. The bangle, made from 18 gauge sterling silver strip wire, had been hammer textured, six bezels had been soldered onto the band, it had been darkened using Liver of Sufur, and I’d already set two freeform rose cut Aqua Marine and Citrine gemstones. Everything was going so smoothly until the tourmaline gemstone I was setting into the third bezel cracked. I looked through my stash for another stone that might fit and found one that was close enough in size, but extremely delicate and thin. To accommodate the stone, I filed the bezel to a very shallow depth. So far, so good I thought. I picked up the tiny stone and “Butterfingers” me…it literally flew from my hand. I looked high and low, but like a needle in a haystack, I have no idea where it landed and I gave up after searching for an hour. Since I’d already set the other two stones, I couldn’t solder a new bezel onto the bangle.Back to the drawing board! Fortunately the shape of the the filed down bezel would 
accommodate something fairly round. After contemplating several ideas, my solution was to cut out a small circular disc from 24 gauge bronze sheet and then hammer it into a domed shape. With some filing and sanding along the edge of the bronze, it fit into the shallow bezel perfectly! Fortunately, setting the remaining 3mm round stones went without any glitches and I’m really pleased with the results. In fact, I think I like the bronze dome better than the original stone I had intended to use!

So Much Going On And…

•March 8, 2021 • Leave a Comment


Ideas for new beading designs are dancing in my brain, but I’m saving them for warmer weather when I can take my beads outdoors and work in the sunshine! I’m making the best of these early Spring days (YES, we finally are getting temperatures above freezing and the snow is melting!!!) to do some jewelry pieces in my metals studio. It’s been so long since I’ve worked in metal and I’m having the best time! This past week I’ve worked on a collection of stacking rings. Made of oxidized sterling silver, the stones used in these rings are tourmaline, carnelian, lemon chrysoprase, and milky aqua marine. I haven’t set stones in so long, but I’m getting my metal jewelry-making mojo back and it feels good to be working with my hammers and other tools! I intend to be bedecked in a slew of colorful jewelry pieces every day come summer. Rings, earrings, bangles, and necklaces galore! Why? Because it makes me happy! You only go round once in life…make it as good as possible!

Sunday…

•February 28, 2021 • Leave a Comment


Supposedly a day of rest, but not for me! As Dowager Lady Grantham said, “What’s a weekend?” Frankly, I usually work seven days a week wether it be beading or the task of assembling beading kits, which is what I am doing today. I’m busy pulling beads for my “Fantasy Flora” Cuff beading kit and it’s taking forever just to put three kits together. That’s because each kit contains twenty-eight 
packets of beads in an array of colors. Included are Swarovski bi-cone crystals, Delica, seed, and Magatama beads. I designed this cuff seven years ago and although the tutorial will be available, I’ll be retiring the kit. I have just two of these kits in my Etsy shop, so if you’ve been wanting this kit, now’s the time to grab one before they are gone for good!

How About Some Color!

•February 22, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The Bronze and Copper polymer clay components that I listed in my Etsy shop the other day have been very well received. Several of you have inquired as to whether I’d be making these components in other colors and the answer is a resounding YES! I found a bit of time yesterday during which I created several collections of Ice Blue and Satin Mauve Faux Ammonites. You’ll find them on the same page as the Bronze and Copper Components. If you’re wondering how you might use these, here is a bead-embroidered cuff I made a while back using colored polymer clay sea-themed components combined with pearls, dagger and seed beads.

Incidentally, if you are looking for cabochons to add to your work, you will find my handmade resin “Cosmic” Cabochons in my shop as well!

 

 

I’ve Been a Bit Remiss…

•February 19, 2021 • Leave a Comment

It’s been quite a while since I’ve worked with polymer clay and I’ve needed to replenish these components to use in my work and to have in my Etsy shop. It took a bit of gentle nudging from artists that have wanted to use these little treasures in their work, but I now have replenished my supply with some to spare…I’ve just listed these metallic polymer clay components (Faux Ammonites, Sea Shells and Flower Disks). Each collection is composed of ten individually handmade metallic polymer clay components, ten Czech Magic Mini-Spike beads that change color depending on lighting conditions (they measure 5mm x 8mm), and size 15/0 Toho Charlotte beads. The polymer clay components can be used either as beads or buttons and range in size from 10mm to 14mm. Individually created in molds from actual ammonites and seashells, each unique component varies in size and shape…truly one-of-a-kind! Here are just a few examples of how I’ve used these seashell and ammonite components in my work. I really love them!


All Done, and…

•February 15, 2021 • Leave a Comment

How sweet is this! I’ve just finished this petite bead-embroidered Amulet Pouch made with cutouts that are pre-scored with exact fold lines…these fold lines make the pouch fold exactly as it should! The finished pouch measures 3″x1.75″ and is the perfect size to wear on a chain or beaded rope and large enough to house a mini lipstick, tissue, reminder notes, or small treasures to hold close to your heart! The cutouts and magnetic clasp are listed in my Etsy shop…just waiting for you to add your favorite beads and bead-embroidery techniques!

 
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