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?
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.
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.
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?
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
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.
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)