Thursday, May 24, 2012

Parade of Faces

Not to be confused with the oh so popular Parade of Homes.  Well, to be precise, it is a parade of home.  My home to be exact.  And why am I taking you on a parade of my home?  Cuz I didn't think I would have any time to make new jewelry to share with you, so I had to show you something, right?  But lo and behold, I am in the eye of the storm.  A few unexpected quiet delays and I had a bit of jewelry making time  after all.  But since I already took these pictures, you're just going to have to humor me.  Or not.  You can scroll right on through to the new jewelry pictures if you want to.  But why would you want to when you can see exactly how face-filled my abode is.  And after all, I did not take pics of my rear end tables.  Or leg lamp.  Or finger hooks.  Or......

Ok, so I know I like hands.  I know I like faces.  What I didn't realize and how did I not know that my home is literally, a parade of faces.  So here we go.......  

When you walk in the front door, you'll be greeted by this...

So you kind of know what you're in for already, eh?

let's walk around the house with a camera and
see what we see......

David in nothing but his peek-a-boo tie.

Our very functional mortar and pestle.
He's so happy because of all the goodies he's ground up with the back of his head.
Wouldn't that make you happy?

kitchen monitor.
I still burn stuff, tho

the little man is only slightly intimidated by the giant face.

Quite illuminating.
Yes, it's a lamp!
What else would it be?
A useless statue?  As if!
and it's a pair, but I wouldn't
want you to get bored,
looking at similar faces. 
Or faces that are too similar.
Even tho the other one is female.

A gift from a dear friend.
Isn't it beautiful?
Actually he gave me two.
Again, the similar face
You're welcome.

James our Butler.
Very sloooow with the morning coffee delivery.

A lady always wears a hat, right?
How about a cold hearted hunk of plaster?
What is she supposed to wear if not a hat?

cutie pie or creepy guy?

I only have eyes for you.
And I only have an eye for you!
by the very talented Shirley Kramer.

If faces creep you out, don't come visit me.

Man, these things are popping out all over!

we call this condition "monotone lichen syndrome"
rather than fungi face. 
No known cure.
Well, I suppose I could repaint the thing.

There's a few splashes of color here and there.
Mostly in my "clean" workroom.

Breaking up the monotony for you.

a rusty crusty hand

Another face kitchen.
This one is very tiny.

Um, hey wicked queen, can I please
use one of those paintbrushes?
not like those are real paintbrushes anyway.
Those are my oxidizing brushes in case
you wanted to know.
Are you fascinated yet?

another earring picture taking prop
otherwise known as a

a wonderful gift from a really wonderful friend
for a really wonderful event.

a container is always more useful with a face jutting out of the front of it.
you might think those are really really big ears there on the side, but you would be wrong.
they are elbows.

Profile of a head in a jar, sort of. with a pet peacock not in a jar.
it's the second face from that dear friend.

As promised.....more of
in the willows beautiful work.
Love what she does with
 paint and stuff.
Too cool, huh?
I wish the picture captured
all the nuances of her shading.



a plant stand. 
there's people everywhere-
on everything!
doing well,
pretty much nothing.

another prop for my picture taking, as they all are, actually.

looks like a balloon head on a string trying to float away, doesn't it?

and this is how we get to the back yard.......

Where there are guessed it!
the head mania isn't confined to the house. 
oh no, it's breakin out to the great big, wild outdoors. 

"granny" a week ago.......
and granny now.........

What a difference a week makes, eh?

Remember that bud from last time?
The one that looked like those cool pods from stillpointworks?
well, here it is a week later with a few gazillion of it's closest friends.

and here are the jewels I actually got to make!
pretend there's a picture of fireworks exploding in celebration here.

Amber Rose-or as I should have called them "Edgy Romance"-
carved bone roses, vintage twisty pearls with a gorgeous lustre,
raw baltic amber,  multi-hued agate beads
and papered filigree (technique courtesy of

Owl of the Crescent moon-
roller printed aluminum which you've seen here before,
 well you've actually seen it being roller printed here before,
with some pewter from pipnmolly's amazing mail love,
apatite, and raspberry quartz which is a very pretty faceted glass with a fancy name.

Dance of the Blue Gypsy- reserved,
 upcycled vintage tin adorned with lots of sparkly pretties, both vintage and new.

The Handmaiden's Treasure-
 recycled vintage tin and mixed metals with opalite. 
 I love the heavy pattern and texture of the metals against the smooth translucency of the opalite.

as of yet un-named earrings with
"Opera House"
lampwork beads by Debbie Sanders,
recycled vintage tin,
 filigree, rhinestone chain and rondels,
and glass beads. 

Party at the Beach-
Lookit those yummy red criffles
from numinosity beads paired with
 paper and glass beads and sterling earwires.
 I actually test drove this pair for about an hour to make sure they hung right
and I'm very tempted to keep them.
So if they don't get listed, you'll know what happened to em.

Behind door #1-
an option for a customer's special order

and behind door #2- another option for her.

The Illuminated Shadow-
Opalite, watch hands and vintage crimped hoops.
 Seems I've been in an opalite mood.
Must be summer. 

That's about it.
A little jewelry.
A lot of faces.
A flower or two.
The usual.
Except for this....
nothing usual about this........

I couldn't resist-
One last face for you....
a fish with a transparent head.
Now that's way weirder than any of the other faces, right?
And it's real. 
 Though it does look like a photoshopped seal face on there,
with two kiwis for a brain.

Have a great week everyone!

Chao  (Serbian/Bulgarian)

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Octopus, Octopi, but not Octomom

Hello all,

It's been awhile and man o man, do I have lots of things saved up to show you!  A few people have asked me what I use to make my molds, so I thought I'd show you.

I can get it at both Michaels and Hobby Lobby.  It's good stuff.  Easy to work with,

And today class, we're going to be molding these and this

I guess that could be representative of Octomom and her octobabies.  naw, her babies are way cuter.....anyway
This big one was a gift.
  You know you have the most amazing friends when they spend part of their weekend hunting down (and by hunting down I mean shopping.  Settle down Peta members.  It's not even possible to hunt wild octopus in the midwest.) an entire giant (relatively large, that is) octopus for you, then deliver it to your door!  Or maybe they were just sick of me asking if I could purchase a whole octopus everytime we went to any restaurant that served sushi or calamari.  Whichever, I'm giving them credit for being the wonderful friends they are!

And away we go......

Yes, sometimes my kitchen looks like a science lab.  But hey...

I'm thinking I shouldn't have thawed out the octopi before molding them.
I also make molds of things like this.....

Random things that will look cool made of resin.

 Sometimes the mold putty pulls the delicious vintage patina off of some items.  Sad when that happens but we know how to re-patinate, eh?

Doesn't look like much now.

Want to see what a mold of those cool suckers look like?  Huh wanna? Okey dokey....
Yes, I had too much caffiene, what can I say?

That's the big one.  This one won't work for resin but it'll be perfect for putting octopi texture on all sorts of other materials.

The resin would run right out of this one too.  But I love it!

This is the terntacle that I used for that mold.  I love how the suckers graduate in size with those really big ones in the middle.  Most of them didn't look like that. 

These will be perfect for resin!

But not this one.  Ok, you get the idea. 
Moving on....

I added an additional picture to the Patina Recipes post, which I also put in as an update to my last post.  Because I located the picture I told you about-finally.  It's the Prismacolor technique on reticulated copper.  Here it is in case you missed the update.  Which of course you did, cuz why you read my blog twice?

It's an old picture taken with a scanner, so it's not the best quality, but you can see the depth of color that can be built up with colored pencils.  I think it looks really nice with the jasper that's framed in verdigris.

The robins decided the wisteria would be a good place to raise their young.  Hope that I'll get some good baby robin pics to share. 

I actually got a few things listed amongst all the hubbub that is my life right now....

The Clouds Roll By

Why is it that simple earrings don't show up well in photographs?  Cuz in person, these are really pretty.  They have a kind of Grecian ancient vibe.  But in the picture, they have a "meh" vibe. 
Things that make you go hmmmmmm

Rocker Chick Meets Girl Next Door-
Sterling, copper, brass and all fun.

So what have I been up to in my blogging absence?
Tidying up my workspaces which the second most interesting man in the world says are taking over the house!  I beg to differ.  What do you think?

This is what I refer to as my "dirty workroom".
Because this is where the "dirty" things happen.
Not that kind of dirty.
This kind of dirty-
soldering, patinating, sealing, glass cutting, glass grinding, etc.  All quite innocent, I assure you

Notice the very clean table.

my dirty room soldering station for this type of soldering

Didn't plan on putting that picture in so you get the unedited version.
That necklace will eventually be offered as a kit in my etsy shop.

back to the tour....

Small pieces of glass

I know, why do you care?  Oh, you don't?  :( 

Lampworking stuff.

Did you notice how not dirty the "dirty workroom" was?  Now on to the garage workspace........

Up a flight of stairs.... which hopefully makes up for all the time I spend sitting in front of this computer and/or my worktables....
but we all know it doesn't.

My soldering station for the other type of soldering

The kiln-oraptor.  It's very ooooo-l-d.

and behind door #3....

That big vice on the left is my foldforming vice.  That however, is not my foldforming hammer.

The mill who is king of the hill out there.

My little lapidary unit.  Yes, I want a big one with 6 or 7 wheels.  You bet I do!  Am I going to get one?  Highly doubtful.  Although, we do have an anniversary coming up.  Hint hint. 
 Yes, my husband loves it that I always want tools for gifts.

Rocks!  Some of the rocks, that is.

so pretty.......
OK, done with the garage.

Now up another flight of stairs to my "clean workroom" which when working feverishly, seldom is.  You all know how that goes, right?

Because this has always been my business name until I opened Anvil Artifacts
Which is officially "Anvil Artifacts by JL3 Jewelry Design".
Guess I should make a new sign. 

That fabulous assemblage piece with the hand and the face is by
I absolutely adore Wendy's work.  You'll see another piece of it in my next post.

hammers, more hammers....

Those two wooden tools are for making wax flowers.  That, sadly is a lost art.
And no, I don't know how to make them......yet.  But I'm all set when I have time to experiment.  Probably similar to making silk flowers, not ribbon ones, but silk, which I do know how to do.  You know where you laboriously cut out each petal, then stabilize it with liquid starchy stuff and let that dry, then you heat each petal with a little iron thingy on these special little tools made specifically for forming the fabric into petals.  What?  You can go buy those flowers at any and every craft store and everywhere else on earth?  Really?!  Who knew!!  Why don't you guys tell me these things?
 Well, I could explain it away due to my semi-obsession with pretty blooming things......

Numinosity, Nadin and vintage headpins.
Yup, a sea urchin hair doo-dad.  Should I list it?

A stuff-stasher

Even those ugly plastic storage things with a gazillion drawers don't look too bad with pretty paper in the front of the drawers.

Look....actual colors that are not Venetian blue, Tiffany blue or light aqua!

A seashell embedded in concrete from that whole batch I did last summer
and a forged Ginko leaf
on a display shelf.

Another view so you can see the bird that my brother carved for me years ago.

Lite reading fare from my imaginary friend, Kathy.

This will eventually become a bracelet. 
I'm picturing it embellished with all sorts of grungy things.

And we're back to where we started!

So then, does it appear to you that my workrooms have taken over the house?  The entire house?

I must say that having all of my work areas all neat and tidy, organized and pretty,
 makes me feel like this

Makes me feel like dancing!

which, btw, have some of you noticed how many times I use the term "dancing" in the titles
of my jewelry pieces? 
Ever wondered why? 
 Let me tell you.... cuz this is Mr. Wonderful's (as Petra likes to call him) life motto

I dance vicariously through my jewelry, cuz I know some of them get to go out dancing!

so, switching gears,  here's what I have ready to list

Baby blue with rhinestones, other assorted pretties on hammered and oxidized sterling.

Tourmalinated quartz with lots of pretty black and white stones, pearls, etc., all wound up with yet more sterling. 

These earrings would look very nice with this

but notice, I am not calling it a set out of respect for those of you who are set-sensitive.

There's also these which I made about a year ago.  
Riveted bangles with free floating glass and metal beads. 

The bangles fit a larger than average wrist.

Also this....but for an average wrist.....

Hope Always

And another bracelet.....

What If

And now...

what does this look like?

Yes, that's what I thought too!
A pod from stillpointworks 

like this one

well, not exactly like this one.  But a beautiful little piece, isn't it?  Which reminds me of those buds.
Do you all see it or am I imagining things?

how about this one?  see it now?

or now?

This is what I see when I look at that bud-laden climbing vine, .... lots of little polymer pods.

Well that's it for now. 
And yes, I already have the next post all lined out because I have 673 pictures ready to go.  But this post, as usual, was getting way too long.
Next time I'll take you on the Grand Tour. 
The Grand Tour of what you ask?
Well of faces, of course!
Of course it will be every bit as exciting as seeing me make molds. 
Try not to get too impatient waiting for it, ok?  That's a hard one, I know. 
In the meantime you can contemplate just how incredible it will be. 
Like this guy......

Oh wait, I think he's contemplating how yummy that insect he just ate was.  Oh he's a vegan?  Then I don't know what he's contemplating.  You maybe from that wizened stare!

Valete (Latin)
Till next time....