Thursday, June 27, 2013

Close Call at the Fun House

You would think after 3 busy weeks that I would have many hair raising adventures to share with you.  Not so.  In fact I have NO adventures.  But a wonderful 3 weeks nonetheless.

Accomplished a bit in the jewelry part of my life.  I got a few new things made.  Reworked a few old things.  And listed a bunch of things, which always feels like a major accomplishment! 
I'm itching to do some old fashioned metal smithing after all of the romantic, delicate things I've been working on these last couple of months.  Look out I come!

A Letter To My Child

These eco friendly, recycled tin earrings tug at my heart strings. A mother gazes lovingly at her child. Below her hangs a bit of text, barely visable. What motherly words of wisdom does she wish to impart to her child? What treasures has she put into the tiny heart locket hanging below her child? Is the glistening button from one of her favorite blouses of long ago? Were the hand dyed silk ribbons carefully removed from an outgrown baby bonnet? We don't know. You'll need to furnish your own details to round out the story. Further embellished with a wee brass rose, an ivory colored glass teardrop and a bumpy ivory glass bead. I've added texture to the tin for visual interest. 

I just copied the description from my listing.
I'm feeling so drained today.   
Must be that the weatherman just said it's 103 out!
Up one degree from a couple hours ago.
What, will it be boiling by midnight? 

These are keepers.  Headpins by Kim. 
 She's just listed some very similar to these in her numinosity beads shop 
The tin is some that my imaginary friend Kathy gave me eons ago.
Which is why I couldn't part with these. 
 We found this tin while out on a treasure hunt together.
Great summer earrings.

Turkoman Goes Modern,
Roses For My Beloved
Already sold

Gypsy Rose Garden
These eco-friendly, recycled tin, rustic boho assemblage earrings look like a fabulous party on your ears! The playful combination of colors paired with the beautiful embossed, vintage tin create a romantic gypsy vibe. The carved red roses provide the perfect compliment to the vintage glass turquoise teardrops. Czech glass, stone beads and black chain add a dramatic flair, keeping the floral printed tin from being too sweet.
Yup, going with the cut and paste descriptions today.
I used up all my creative writing brain cells on listings this week.
The other brain cells have melted.
Yes, really.  

These rustic, assemblage, wire wrapped, hoop earrings
 will be a great addition to your casual earring collection.
 The combination of lime green, jade, deep red and oxidized metals lend a boho gypsy vibe.

Turkoman Goes Modern
Canyon Of The Disappeared Peoples

Soaring Birds
These are reserved.

These assemblage earrings combine beautiful vintage micro mosaics, carved bone flowers, vintage teardrops and soaring birds that I have hand colored with metal enamels, into rustically romantic earrings. Framed by lacy wire wrapping and accented with dashes of deep red, these medium weight earrings are a perfect blend of vintage and modern romance.

This feels so weird to be putting my listing descriptions in here.

These earrings were inspired by a custom order I had a few months ago
working with a wonderful collection of exquisite micro mosaics.
When I work with micro mosaics now, I think of them as"Willow's Wonders"


Spoken for
Roller printed text on aluminum.  Oxidized and buffed.
Embellished with Petra's gorgeous Platinum droplets.
You have to see them in person to appreciate the amazing luster of this glaze.
Absolutely fabulous!
You can find them here in her shop  Scorched Earth .

This statement necklace features a harmonious combination of polished bronzite stone slabs, sterling silver and smoky quartz. The butterscotch and brown-black of the bronzite stones is enhanced by the cool reflectivity of the sterling beads and leaf clasp as well as the clear, richness of the smoky quartz.

These elegant sterling silver earrings are simple, yet sophisticated with an edge. I can't remember if the smoky teardrop beads I've used in these earrings are smoky quartz or glass. The color and clarity are beautiful, whichever they are.

Stormy Night

These striking assemblage earrings feature a harmonious combination of sparkling rhinestones, frosty lampwork criffles by Numinosity beads, textural lampwork headpins by Havana Beads, black "vinyl record" beads, matte black stone teardrop beads and matte black and white stone beads. The effect is both delicate and ethereal, yet rustic and earthy. Reminiscent of a stormy night. The soft blues of the enamel and lampwork soften the effect of the black components. 

Ok, now I get why you guys list first.
This is too easy.
I usually type it all out here and then type it again in my listing.
Just cuz I like to do things the hard way.
Whoda thunk it?!

These eco-friendly, recycled tin earrings will be the perfect go to accessory for a dinner out, the office or a fun filled Saturday afternoon. I've highly textured the black and white tin, exposing the silver color of the metal. Combined with the embossed vintage Kuchi medallions, these earrings are modern, relaxed and striking.

For those of you who haven't ever read any of my listings,
you are probably rolling on the floor,
laughing your everything off.

Tribal Shields
You might have seen these before.
I'm listing the earrings that were featured in a Belle Armoire Jewelry article
of the same name.  Will list more as they sell.

 These were reworked a bit and re-listed.
I added the soldered wire frame around the mother of pearl
and Kuchi top portion.  Just what they needed!
Lovers Eye

These rustic Lover's Eye earrings speak of romance. The vintage French text and Lovers eye encased in jewelers grade resin, framed within a soldered wire frame evoke a sense of longing. Hammered heart shapes along with fancy twist rings and drops adorn the simple shape, adding an additional bit of visual texture.

Tribal Shields
Similar to those pictured above, only larger
and the verdigris patina is more pronounced in this pair.

Soaring Birds 2

Also reserved.
Do these look familiar? Very similar to the previous pair.
Had a request for another pair when the first set was reserved. 

So that's the sum total of my jewelry accomplishments. 
 I have been working on something else.
Which should provide the much needed comic relief of this post.  I've been working on a second Etsy store.  Well, ok, I haven't been working on it much till just recently.  Even though the shop opening date lists November 2012, we all know that's ludicrous as it still isn't open.  Here's my lame attempt at getting the banner "just right".  Yes, I meant it to look like that!

Isn't that how banners are supposed to look?  Like a fun-house mirror?
Sure, it is!  Works for me.
So then, what sort of things does one list in a fun-house-mirror-type-of-shop?
Stuff like this......

Vintage itty bitty Japanese figures complete with a gorilla.
Everyone needs an itty bitty gorilla, don't they?

Or how about a.....

kitschy flamingo vase!
Surely we all need this!

or a vintage cocktail shaker complete with recipes.

I absolutely adore these crocheted hotpads.
I have two for sale.  This one and an aqua one.

A vintage Singer sewing accessories box. 

If none of that makes sense to you for a fun house, the next thing surely will.....

A mini village! 
For hours of playtime fun!

There might also be one or two tasteful things pop up from time to time

Audubon bird prints

owls flirting by moonlight 

I bought these beautiful prints for props to photograph my jewelry on.
I'm keeping the ones that look best with the colors I most often use in my jewelry
 and sharing the rest.

How about something a bit less demure...

I have a few of these "bodice rippers".
I buy them to cut them apart.
The juicy and colorful dialogue always seems to add that certain something
when I need to add a saying to a piece.
But these are too fun-I couldn't bring myself to destroy them.
So I will offer them for sale.
When I get around to listing things.
What I have already learned is that photograghing larger items of
all materials, sizes and shapes, makes taking pictures of jewelry
look like a walk in the park.
I've taken a slew of pictures and think I'll have to redo most of them.

I'm hoping that trying to run two shops doesn't eat me alive!  hahahaha
I always thought it would be easier to have a shop
where you don't have to make the items before you sell them.
Now I can see that figuring out pricing, shipping, etc is a challenge.
Surely, there will be many more moments of comic relief ahead!
Yes, I am more fully appreciating the amount of work
those of you with two or more shops juggle on an on-going basis.
Kudos to one and all!

So while the above picture expresses how I'm feeling at the moment....

this is how I usually feel.
Our art comunity is so helpful and encouraging to one another,
I'm honored to be a part of it. 
You've all been absolutely great since I opened my first shop and began writing this blog.
Can't imagine how I would have done it without all of your kindnesses, helpfulness
and many many answers to my tech-challenged questions.

Sincere thanks to all!

That about wraps it up except for
a triple-header with the animal pictures this time...

as I was trimming the roses last evening,  just before dark,
this thing was mere inches from my hand
(thank you Mr. Wonderful for alerting me to it's proximity.  Phew!  Close call!)
then the Mr. proceeds to tell me about the wolf spider he saw in the front yard.
The one that was the size of a crab or a small bird.

At which point it took all my self control not to go screaming like a girl.
Did I mention I HATE spiders?
and snakes.

I hate spiders and snakes.
Except for snakeskin.
I like that.
Recently one of our friends offered me the rattlesnake that bit their dog. 
All they want is the rattle.
Which means that hopefully I can have the skin and the vertebrae.
I've located two, count em, two taxidermists in the area.
Not to worry, the dog survived.  The snake didn't.

So that is the sum total for our adventures since last time.

Enjoy till next time!

Sawatdi (goodbye in Thai)

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Grill Wrestling....Mosquitos on Parade....Sky Bubbles....

Hello all,

Best intentions to get back to my blog in a timely manner have gone by the wayside this month.  When you see all that I have to share with you this time, I think you'll understand. 

Thanks to all of you that took the time to leave your charming comments on my last post.  Much appreciated!

It goes without saying that my heart goes out to all who are suffering through this wicked weather and the aftermath.

It's been a busy three weeks, even more so than normal. You know when you don't hear much from me, that a, how is it you guys put it..."an epic post" is in store.  Hold on, here we go.......

Ever heard of Grill Wrestling?  Hmmm?  Not your usual Olympic sport?  Mr. Wonderful thought he'd give it a try.   

Yes, indeedy...
there he is trying to wrangle that grill out of the pool.
Why, you ask?
Because it jumped in there.
Or I should say, blew in there.
Hard to complain about that when just a few miles away,
 a tornado was devastating the town of Granbury.
Mr. Wonderful was complaining about the current (no joke)
as he tried to hold the grill.
Yes, I was laughing hysterically because
well, it was hysterical.
So there we are, late at night trying to lift the filled-with-water-
weighs-a-ton grill out of the still-too-cold-to-swim-pool in a raging current.
See, still funny!
Too bad the Mr.continues to insist on remaining faceless and nameless on my blog, eh?
Trust me, the look on his face was priceless.
and yes, he appreciated me grabbing the camera before jumping in to help.
So now that I've answered that question for you,
 what about mosquitoes on parade?  Eh? Eh?
Only in Texas....
another view of ick
Downtown Fort Worth.
We assume this was after being sprayed to try
and keep West Nile at bay.
or alien mosquitos.
not sure which.
Sky Bubbles? 
What are Sky Bubbles?
these are sky bubbles.....
And so it began.
This was our sky the day that the first of the Oklahoma City tornados hit.
Just 5 hours north, they were experiencing such a horrible nightmare.
It's amazing to me, what a difference a few hours can make.
I took these shots as the day progressed.
Yes, I am only showing you the highlights...
I have lots of very cool pictures of this sky..
This one looks as if it's echoing the rooftops and treetops below.
Lightened up so you can see the texture
It's hard to see it in the photo here, but the clouds at the top of the picture,
were a glorious shade of Venetian Blue.
It was amazing.
And finally...
Mr. Wonderful said you guys wouldn't appreciate me showing
you all 379 pictures of the clouds,
but I think he's wrong.
We also had company.
If any of you have ever wondered who Melissa's Happy feet board is for
on my's your answer....
Does this explain the unusual, er I mean wildly entertaining pins on there?
You bet it does!

And this picture explains all of the other pins on her board. 
You know the tasteful ones that aren't rat slippers.
Yup, she's a wonderful friend, so much fun and we had a blast!
So glad she came for a too-short-visit!
we saw these...
inspired by these beauties, we went to our (now almost completely underwater)
 favorite fossil-hunting spot, where Melissa found a perfect little ammonite,
that just had to become a memento necklace for her...
Some goodies from a previous road trip together in the mix too.
I got my garage work area mostly set up.
My fold forming vise and rolling mill
on the fantastic steel table Mr. Wonderful got for me.
Where I'll be soldering until the Mr. gets my ventilation system figured out
and installed.  Hahahaha as if that's going to happen!
as if soldering is going to happen out there in that Texas heat.
ok, so the lapidary area still needs some tweaking.
Lots of tweaking.
Notice the bags of fossils on the left just waiting to be prettified.
found the casting machine...
and promptly put it on a shelf.
Also found our dino egg.
we like to think so anyway.
It's not a concretion.  Not a geode.
So must be a dino egg.
Right guys?
and found my funky birch bark.
and Mr. Wonderful's very favorite thing
that I haul around and don't know what to do with...
The skeleton from our "skeleton tour" out west.
Surely I've mentioned this in a previous post....
Anyway, it grosses him out.
Maybe I should send it to Pipn who can carve amazement out of anything.
Even though it's hard to believe, I did manage to get a few things made too!
These are spoken for
Upcycled tin, torch fired enamel headpins, again on the simple drops.
a present for Melissa
Shocking as it is, the following things are already listed.
I KNOW!  What????
Gypsy Dreams
with Numinosity Kim's wonderful criffles,
stones and beads.
(a custom order)
this was an alternate choice for her
Assymetrical Assemblage earrings
How's that for a catchy name?
Treasures of the Ancient Earth and Sea
Filled to the brim with Petra's Scorched Earth goodies
and fossils from one of our excursions, cleaned up and drilled.
Petra's wonderful crackled droplets on simple swirls
My Hand My Heart My Treasure, I Offer To You
Wee little hands holding some of our wee little fossils,
 hand dyed silk ribbon in delicious shades of Venetian blue and warm tan,
lustrous white keishi pearls in a hammered wire frame.
They remind me of a romantic adventure.
I love them. 
Told myself, well, they're a bit delicate, I should just keep them.
So if the warning about careful handling scares people off,
I will keep them.
After all, I tried to sell them. 
Rather delicate, so should be handled gently.....
These are not the earrings you want.....
(kind of)
As if I actually need another pair of earrings.
I don't.
 And therein, as the saying goes, lies the rub.
Turkoman Goes Modern series
These are a custom order.
Which then became these
so the loving couple part of the first pair will resurface again when I've made a mate for it.
Another custom order.
Corals and light aquas with Petra's turquoise drops.
Turkoman Goes Modern Gypsy Moon Dance
I love the burst of colors on these
Rustic Gypsy Assemblage bracelet
A bezel set Kuchi coin, an iridescent light blue crystal
and a drilled copper teardrop that I ran through the rolling mill for texture
on an overwrapped hammered frame.
oh no no no,
I didn't forget...
here you go...
gorgeous perfection!
These are in a hypertufa pot I made back in Illinois with some friends.
The glass blobs are some of the things that fell off of the hypertufa pot I made.
I am not a master of hypertufa.
and a concrete fail from that same day that I have yet to fix...
This needs all sort of moss growing on it, don't you think?
and this folks is what you've been wondering about....
hoping for,
hanging on until....
since the length of this post was scary enough,
I'll leave you with a sweet animal picture 
 (from our own back yard!)

oh what am I thinking?
Couldn't resist!
I'll pick grill wrestling any day!

Be well, be happy till next time

 mahalo and aloha
(thanks and goodbye- Hawaiian)