Saturday, March 24, 2012

Hearts are Bleeding

My hearts are bleeding and I am glad!  This is why.....

Like so many parts of the country, Spring has come early this year.  Never have my bleeding hearts bloomed in March!  I must admit, this is a tad bit un-nerving to me.  Why? You ask.  Because I'm from Denver.  So?  You ask.  ( you are quite the conversationalist!)  Here, Lemme me explain it to you.  I was born and raised in Denver.  ( Which means I experienced many winters and springs there)
The land of beautiful sunny weather.  Doesn't matter if it's winter, spring, summer or fall, the sun will be shining in Denver.  Seemed completely normal to me.  How was I supposed to know that I would eventually end up in a place where the sun shines for 4 hours in the winter?  Yup, the midwest!  Just to add insult to injury, I landed here via another sunny spot, Florida.  Ok that wasn't even remotely relevant to this story other than to emphasise.....hmmm, I don't know what I was trying to emphasise.  My point being, in beautiful sunny Colorado where the snow melts the day after it falls (usually), in early spring, the bulbs start blooming, the trees bud out and everyone heads outdoors to soak it in.  It's gorgeous, colorful and irresistable. happens.  Almost every single year..... the big wet, heavy spring snowflakes that break the tree branches and crush the delicate blossoms.  So you see, I have good reason to be skeptical of this amazing, wonderful weather.  We'll pay for it, I fear, with June snowstorms or something equally weird as blooming hearts in March.  So enjoy it while you can. 

   I just can't help it.... I MUST BE WORDY! 

I tried out the cute little Ken Bova hammers that I showed you last time.  They work perfectly......

Lookit those teeny tiny, not-smashed-flat rivets!  Yes, folks, I can heartily recommend the chopstick hammers.  Here's the full picture. 

You might notice the lovely Kuchi charms that Tracy from pipnmolly sent me there on the bottom.  I'm easing myself into her incredible stash, making plans.  Lots of plans.  These earrings have 4 types of vintage metal.  Let's play my version of  Hidden Pictures?  Can you spot all 4?  Extra points if you can!

Yummy, huh?  Guess who planted these for me?  You know you want to see it........

I'm trying not to objectify my husband but I can't help myself when he looks like that.  While you admire that picture,  remember that he's also like the guy in this picture.......

 This guy here is apparently the most interesting guy in the world, which makes my husband the second most interesting . Can't vouch for the other guy myself, but that's the rumor.  I know, I know you want to see pictures of jewelry, and you will.  But as I plan on throwing a few more pics of pretty flowers in here, I want you to think about who gets credit for them.  And eye candy begets eye candy.  Seems right, now doesn't it?

These got listed today

Textural verdigris patina shield earrings with sterling earwires.  A nice mix of ancient modern.

And these will be listed shortly

I made these little amphoras out of resin.   They have old text on the backside.  Here's another view.....

I wanted to make the amphoras look all ancient and mysterious.  What really does the trick, tho, are these fabulous rusty crusty lampworked beads from the uber talented Kim of numinositybeads.  I just LOVE them!  And did you notice that these are red?  What's the significance of that?  That I resisted buying the ones she made that were Venetian blue and opted for these.  When I went back for a second look at those Venetian blue ones, they were gone.  Not surprised.  I am not so secretly hoping she'll make more of those sometime. 

This looks like a nice springtime necklace, eh?


 I do believe I need to take a picture of this on my mannequin.
A big blister pearl, mother of pearl,  freshwater pearls, seashells, smoky quartz, faceted smoked glass and clear quartz chips on  rosary-style chain.

This also should get listed pretty soon

Yes, I'm loving how things look on the mannequin all textured up.  Hey bond girl, I explained how I did this treatment in my response to your comment from the last post.  I answered it in my not usual wordy way, so if you have any other questions, please just let me know.

This necklace is chock full of turquoise beads and a big old slab of it there front and center.  There's also 4 varieties of amber.  Let's see if I can remember all 4...Baltic, horn, Thai or was it Tibetan?  I'll check on that.  And that big slice of amber above the turquoise slab, in between the turquoise bead and the Baltic amber chips.  Ack, Can't remember what the name of it was.  Anyway that's the 4! 

I got another surprise in the mail yesterday.  No, not more generous gifts, I worked for this one.

First time that I've been featured in Jewelry Affaire.

Thanks so much, Beth!  Another great issue! I'm honored to be included.

These are some blossoms that I brought inside.

If only my black tulips bloomed at the same time as these, wouldn't that be a beautiful bouquet?

Now if the snow comes along and wipes these out, at least you'll get to savor them at your leisure.

There are also tons of hyacinths blooming, wish I could make this thing smell a vision for you.  But not for me, as I've sadly become allergic to them. 

Can't remember if I already showed this necklace to you.  I do know that you haven't seen it on the mannequin, so here you go

Foldformed pod with verdigris patina and amber and turquoise embellishments.

You like how it looks on the mannequin?  Well then here's another view....

Which makes me realize I should probably come up with a fabulous name for the mannequin, eh?  Because how many times did I type out "the mannequin" in this post?!  I'm open to suggestions here.  With this clever and colorful bunch there should be some good ones.  Or are you holding out for a "Name the Mannequin" giveaway?  What have I done to even type such a thing?!  I DID NOT just announce a giveaway.  But maybe, I said maybe, if somebody thinks of the perfect one, maybe just maybe, I'll send a little something your way.  Of course, maybe not.  You all know how that last giveaway went.   hahahaha.  Hmmm, now we'll see who actually reads the text in this blog. 

Here's our little pet.  A rescue animal.  Available for adoption.  Now don't be fighting over him guys.

(update-didn't mean to be confusing.  Sorry about that.  I guess I should clarify a few facts about this scary little guy.  He isn't actually our pet  , as in my husband's and mine literally.  I was speaking collectively when I said "our", as in you the blog readers and me.  Our little pet.  Kind of like the previous animal pictures I have shared with you, both adorable and frightening that some of you have taken to heart.  Didn't want you all fighting over who gets to take care of this little guy figuratively. I know how protective you all are about these animal photos.  re: the gator photos.) 

ack, that's even creeping me out.

Have a great week!

Hejda  (Swedish)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Chopstix Hammers- Oh yeah!

Hi all,

Catchy title to this post, eh?  Grabbed your attention, right?  And I didn't even make it up.  Chopstix hammers are a real thing.  Don't believe me?  Then what's this?

and this

Are these the coolest little hammers you ever saw?  I think so.  Can you believe how small they are?  The head is made from a nail.  A regular nail. What's the point, you ask?  Well, for those of us who tend to be a bit heavy handed when riveting, these are the perfect solution!  Next time, I'll try to have a sample of how well they work to share with you.  Translation, no more smashed flat rivets.  Anyway, that's the plan.  Where did I get such great little hammers?  Well from Ken Bova of course, cuz that's who makes them.  He teaches a class in making them for yourself, which I would love to take if I was ever in the right place at the right time.

So I'm just getting right down to business today.  Not wasting your time at all.  Ok not wasting much of your time.   Yet.

For those of you who are familiar with the supply exchange going on over at fanciful devices forum, this is what I received when I joined the first round.  There's another one going on right now if you would like to swap out some of your stash.  These yummy goodies are what Janet of Willowstudio sent me.

You can't tell from the photo but that is a HUGE key next to that cool metal scrolly piece.  Beautiful stones, beads, a feather, bracelet and button. But the crown jewel in this grouping is that amazing bird!  Thank you Janet!  I think you exceeded the suggested value of the swap a bit, didn't you?  I have some nice plans for these things that you so kindly shared.

As if that wasn't wonderful enough.  I got what fanci likes to call mail love.  In fact she sent it, so she can call it whatever she wants to.  Lookit

Awesome stuff, eh?  There's more...

What's that other word she uses? ....squeeeee!  Yes, you're seeing little teeth and big leaves and that awesome bezel set bone (?) and tons of great beads and a cool french beaded flower, which I am extremely partial to as I used to make them long ago, and little metal minis, and too much coolness to try and name it all.  Thank you so much Marina!  What a lovely unexpected surprise!

A little something to cleanse your palate before we continue.

OK so now I don't even know what to say cuz this has never happened to me before in my life. People that I know have found and shared wonderful things with me.  People who know me and the unusual, quirky things I'm fond of.  I love that they take the time to hunt things down for me just cuz they know I'll like it.  My life is full of beautiful people. 
I had no idea that some of them are people I don't even know.
In my mailbox was a package from a mystery someone, whom I don't really know but have long admired.  I have drooled over her incredible creations.  Each and every one a completely unique wearable work of art.  Would you like to see for yourself?  pipnmolly is where you'll want to go for a long leisurely visit. Be prepared to be amazed.  When you see the engraved pieces that she uses in her jewelry and artwork, be aware that she has engraved those herself.  In addition to be being extremely talented, she is also extremely generous. These are the fantastic supplies she sent my way. 


A gorgeous lampworked bead, vintage afgan kuchi charms and brass stampings!

Is that stingray skin?  And snakeskin?  And is that heavy brass thing a year calendar? And I don't know why you did such a lovely thing for me, but I want to say
Thank you very much Tracy, for sharing your treasure trove of awesome things with me.  I am quite overwhelmed by your generosity (as you surely already know from my excited rambling "thank you" convo that, I think must have made absolutely no sense).

 I'm always wondering where you guys find all the great stuff you use in your work.  Now I know.  Unbelievably, the source of cool stuff is the mailbox.  Who knew?!  I sure didn't. 

I have one more bit of wonderful to share with you.   I knew that Petra was working on amphoras because it was my suggestion for her giveaway.  What I didn't know was that she was making one for me just because that's the dear lovely lady she is.  She even tricked me into saying which one I thought was the best one.  Duh.  That should have been a giveaway.  You would think so.  But no.  I'm easy to surprise.   She finished it up and then told me that she was sending it to me.  From across the pond.   For no other reason than because I have an amphora thing as most of you are much too well aware. Did she stop there?  No, of course not.  This is what was in her package

Not just an amphora, but a ring and more nails as well!   I love it all.  I love that she put so much thought into making these particular things because she knows they are my favorite things she makes. Thank you Petra!   Here's closeups

seaglass embedded in a bronze and ceramic ring!  It looks like the glass is swirling around in an incoming tide.

That's Petra's makers mark!  It looks like it was just dug up after spending hundreds of years underground, waiting to be found, doesn't it?  Petra has listed some of her other amphoras in her shop.  One has a beautiful verdigris finish, another is a deep brooding red with a gecko crawling across the face of it and the last is a stunning steel with turquoise and good grief!  I just checked her shop to make sure I was getting the description right and the steel one is already snapped up.  Gotta act fast to get her new work.  It's flying out of her store as quickly as she lists it! 

Thank you ladies for your kindness and thoughtfulness and generosity.  It's much appreciated!

It appears I'm getting all wordy on you again- I'll rein it in.  Here's what I've been working on

I bought this mannequin about 5 years ago to use as a mold for making necklace displays.  But currently, I need it more for taking pictures of my necklaces on it.  So out comes the tub-o-gesso and away I go.  Why do I have a tub-o-gesso?  Well, friends, that's a whole other post.


What do you think?
Now, my pictures of these should look much better.  Ok ok, the background of my pictures of these should look much better.

mottled patina medallion on a twisted neckpiece

More of that dendritic shale from the trip out west.  You know, the trip I'm always rattling on about.  And my lapidary machine that I shape the dendritic shale on. and on and on and on..........Sparing you the details.  This time.

I've titled this one simply "She".  That's Mona Lisa peeking out at you.

A sweet little charm necklace with a forged and flame painted leaf, a stamped charm and a cool black and white geode.

Sterling silver "orbit" necklace with a faceted "venetian blue" stone of an unknown type.  Meaning I don't remember what type of stone it is.

Sterling silver that has been fused and soldered onto copper.  With a flame and verdigris patina and  stamped textural designs.  A very rustic rendition of vining leaves.  This is an example of things photographing better on the new, improved mannequin.  I made this necklace a couple of years ago and was never happy with the photographs of it.  So there you go!

Fine silver with freshwater pearls and a faceted ruby. 

For a magazine submission-
A partial fossil trilobite, a fossil ammonite and a brand new locket with some aging treatments.

This one too.  Another fossil ammonite, magnesite and a wheel of turquoise.

Remember this one?  It was listed for a bit in my etsy store, but now it along with the other two will be sent for an article submission.  Three versions of the same basic technique.

Are you sick of looking at necklaces?  Sure can't blame you there.  Did the mannequin make it a little bit easier on your eyes? 

C'mon you guys.  You know you stop by here to see pretty pictures, not to read my entertaining chatter.  How about we look at some more pictures then, of earrings for a nice change of pace?

Australian Boulder Opal with raw gray diamonds and faceted Tanzanite.

I reworked these yet again.  Finally, I think they're done.  You saw them in my last blog without the hammered sterling disc.  Much better now, don't you think?

Leaves with multi layers of patina, double wire wrapped hoops, and wood beads.

Yes, I know they don't match, unlike all the matchy matchy ones from last time.  These aren't supposed to match.  It's your fault anyway.  All your snickering from the last post about matching earring and necklace sets got under my skin.

Green raku ceramic beads with hammered copper strips and hoops embellished with wood beads.  The bottom of these looks like this

These beautiful bead caps and glass headpins are by NadinArtGlass.  Paired with matte black beads and hammer textured copper drops.

More yummy leaves with twisty twigs.  The yellow stones are from fancifuldevices mail love.

are you ready for some vibrant color?  Ok, here it comes......brace yourself!

yes there's two of them.  But just showing you one gets you up close and personal.

How's that?

Those scrumptious filigree bars are from Tracy's lovely shared stash. 

What's that?  You're tired of earrings you say?  Naw c'mon...... but there was so much variety.  Ok, here's a bracelet for you.  But only one, you'll have to wait for next time for lots more pictures.  I wouldn't want to overload you or anything.

I figured you might want a better look at that clasp. So here you go....

Well that's all I've got for you tonight.  We've taken the scenic route from raw diamonds and Australian Boulder Opals to a funky hammered copper clasp.  Just keeping it interesting for you.

Hoping you all have a great week till next time!

Here's one more thing for you to feast your eyes on

The worlds smallest giraffe.  Finally something cute and cuddly for you!

Here's a mini update for you guys, Kim of  Numinosity beads is having a giveaway on her blog.  If you're unfamilar with her work, you'll be glad that you've gone to have a look.  Plus, she's offering some fab papers or a rusty crusty nail that she has done some lampwork on making it a very cool  non-bead.  And her beautiful work made it to Etsy"s front page!  Congrats Kim!
Sige la  (Pangasian)