Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Pretty Pearls

These are so dainty. Perfect to dress up a casual outfit or to go with that little black dress. 

Pearls symbolize purity, love, success and happiness. They are the birthstone for Gemini, May 21 to June 21. Pearls are also the suggested gift for the first, twelfth and thirtieth anniversaries of marriage.

Pearls are less durable than other gems. They are sensitive to acids, dryness and humidity. Put on any makeup, perfume or hairspray prior to putting on your pearls. If needed clean pearls with warm soapy water being very careful not to get water into the drill hole as this may discolor the pearls.

For healing abilities, pearls are thought to eliminate emotional imbalances. They hlep one master the heart chakra, as well as aid in stomach, spleen, intestinal and ucler problems. 

Mystically pearls are thought to help one see themselves and to improve self worth. They help to attune all 7 chakras and bring a soft, healing energy during meditation.

(This information is provide for curiosity only and is in no way intended to be medical advice. )

Thursday, June 19, 2014

All About Ears - Making Hammered Daggers

My "how-to" posts are popular so here is another. In these pics I am making earrings that combine glass and metal beads with hammered copper or sterling daggers. Because I need things in quantity I use an assembly line method, doing the same step on several pairs of earrings at the same time.

 I start by laying out all the components. Headpins, wire cut to length, glass and metal beads, metal rings and ear wires. Then I add beads to headpins.
 Next step is to bend the tops of the beaded headpins at a 90 degree angle.
 Then I make loops at the top of all the headpins and the cut wires as well as form the circular dangles.
 Next step is to hammer the daggers. I use a tiny anvil and small hammer.
 Then comes assembly. I make each earring  a mirror image of its mate.
 The last step in the creation process is earring cards. They get small holes punched for the earrings, folded, labeled and priced. Since I do shows outside in all kinds of weather, I put plastic backs on to insure the earrings stay on the cards.

The earrings on the top left and bottom center have been SOLD.
Then I take photos. I take photos of everything I make for my records and to list in my online store or include in a blog post. Items get placed in my light box - currently a cardboard box with 2 very bright lights and a tripod and digital camera.

 Now I start the process over for the sterling silver ones.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

More Outback Wood Jasper

A continuation of this series. I have a limited quantity of these stones and at this point I am not able to obtain more. If you see one that you like, send me an email, as I do not expect these to hang around very long. These outback wood stones have a beautiful matte finish. Each of the 30x30mm pendants looks like a mini landscape painting. Some with an Asian flair, some remind me of the desert, and others Wyoming.

 The seed beads on this one are a very dark brown.
 This one is dark brown also. SOLD.
And just to be different, here are two matte outback wood jasper chokers.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Project - Tent Weights

To weight the corners of my 10x10 tent I have been using white cat litter tubs filled with sand. They were an easy and inexpensive solution. But this spring I have noticed that they have seen better days. The plastic is starting to deteriorate and at least one bucket has a crack that I have sealed with white duct tape.

My neighbor in this photo is using a common type of weight - pvc pipe filled with sand or concrete. I decided it was time to replace my tubs. I perused the internet to see how others are making these tubes. I opted for cement. One addition I liked was to add handles, both for ease of carrying and to keep them from rolling around in transit. I also decided on white bottoms and tops. I used one 10 ft length of 4 inch pvc cut into 4 pieces.

My new tubes ready for cement. 

Cement mixed and filler (old laundry detergent bottle) ready.

We decided to add a twist for more weight - we filled them halfway and tapped them on the ground to settle the filling.
Now the twist - we added 1/4 bag of lead shot #8, which is 12.5 lbs. 

Then we continued filling, tapped some more to settle, brought the cement to the top
 and then added the cap fitted with the eye hook. 

Last step was to glue on the caps and wipe off any excess glue or cement. 

We checked the weight - all are around 40lbs. That gives me 160 lbs, which is close to what I had in my old tubs. I also still have my first iteration of weights - small pvc/cement tubes that are 12lbs each. If I need extra weight I can always add these.

Ta da! Once they set and the weather is drier we will pop up my tent and add the right length ropes.

What to do with the left over cement? Why make a leaf casting birdbath of course! 
I will know in a few days if it worked.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Recent Work - Drop Necklces

Somehow I missed posting these when I made them. This is a drop style necklace. It joins just below the neck and drops down to a chalcedony or glass teardrop. The silver findings are pewter and silver plate.The center one has been sold.

The center one has been SOLD.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

View from my Tent - Salish Sea Designs

With my annual show season these fun series of posts return where I feature artists I meet at shows. At Shrimpfest one of my neighbors was Gerry and Barb Guertin of Salish Sea Designs. Gerry handcrafts rustic art for your garden and patio. My favorite were the beach chimes. Each piece is handcut from heavy steel plate, then suspended to create a visually intriguing work that emits a rich soothing sound in the wind.

 Another popular item that weekend were the Dungeness crabs. Can't you just picture a few of these crawling through your garden?

There is also a selection of wall art and staked garden art, as well as large bells.

Take a look at their website to see all the options.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

All About Ears - Pink, Coral and Orange

Often when I need to make a number of earrings I lay them out all at once, rather than make one at a time. For me this is a much faster way to work. I have small hash marks taped to my work table that I use to line up the headpins as I make loops and wraps so that every pair is equal in length and my loops are the same size. It also helps that my round nose pliers have been used so many times that there is a small dent right where I position the headpin! 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Todays Work - Outback Wood Jasper

After an extensive search on the internet, I finally found a precious few of these beautiful stones. Twenty to be exact, at a place in Toronto! If anyone ever sees these anywhere please let me know. They are 30mm x 30mm squares of outback wood jasper with a gorgeous matte finish. So far every necklace I have made with these has sold the day it was out on display.

Today I was working with black and brown seed beads. I was able to locate the smaller square, coin and oval shaped stones so am making bracelets and earrings with those.

All are SOLD.
 This stone has an incredible pattern to it.
This one sold within an hour of going on display!
Earrings and bracelet have also been SOLD.

All have SOLD.