Friday, December 23, 2011

It's Christmas, alright!

Because I just got an early gift!

I was featured in Susan Lenart Kazmer's blog, the Ice Queen!

Susan is a famous and successful artist, jewelry designer and metalsmith whose work has been exhibited in the Smithsonian Museum of Art, the Ohio Craft Musem and the American Craft Council Shows.

So when I got an email last month asking if they could featured my necklace on the site, I nearly fell off my chair. See hubby? My pieces aren't as crazy as you think! (Or everyone else is too!)

I feel so coool.. (and ice-queenish...)

Merry Christmas all!

It started with a kiss

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I'm no matchmaker

I've been making earrings lately.
Which is very unlike me... I'm a necklace person. And I have not been able, after two years of doing this, of getting it into my head, that people like matching earrings! It's because I never wear them, I always wear either/or!

But why don't I immediately make the earrings after I finish the necklace, when I know they'll probably sell? Can you tell I'm really good at the business part? My friend Elizabeth excells at that! I love having her by my side when someone is looking at my stuff. She'll go "have you noticed this or that bead?", "do you know this part is also handmade?", "what? you're not getting your sisters a gift too?" She will be my marketing manager when I become a famous artist (but she has clear instructions not to alienate her daytime job boss just yet...)

Urban safari
Beach waves

While I just stand there in silence, hoping the genius of my work will be enough to mesmerize the customer into parting with their hard earned money... I just find any inkling that I'm pushing someone into buying a piece highly uncomfortable. Plus I'm shy. Very shy.  When I was a child, if I wanted ice-cream, in an effort to make me more outgoing, my mom gave me the money and told me I could have it if I purchased it myself. I would go without just so I didn't have to go up to the counter. Pathetic, I know. Of course her strategy paid off in the long run, given that I'm now a shopaholic...


Which brings me to blogging. It's always been easier for me to write than to speak. And I'm enjoying putting my thoughts into words, but also the fact that I can basically say whatever I want, because the only people reading this are the few friends I've sent the link to. And my hubby who told me he reads it from time to time. So sweet... So blah, blah, blah, blah...

You see, I have not done all the internety things you need to do to atract traffic to your blog. I believe they call those techniques SEO - don't ask me what it stands for, I just thought someone misspelled CEO (as in Chief Executive Officer...)

Ammonite swirls
Coral drops
I don't tweet (or chirp, or coo, or hoot...), I don't have a FB page (well, I have a personal one which I haven't checked in a month..), hell, I can't even make the damn text in my blog entries wrap around the pics... arrrrghhhh... I really need to get into this stuff, otherwise what's the point of having a blog no-one reads? Well, maybe just because like my banner says "it suits my fancy"!

Fiquem bem.

P.S. Of course, now I did it the other way around - these earrings have no matching necklace...oh boy...
African earring tree

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Pets are a MUST!

Having visited many blogs both for leisurely pleasure and research purposes before starting my own (although the results of said research on the final product are subject to discussion...) I noticed that showing pictures of your pets is a MUST!
It was obvious that cats were the more often chosen pets of the artistically inclined, and running the risk of having you judge my creations harshly, I shall tell you that, yes, I own a cat, but he's outnumbered by that other staple pet of the western home: the dog (there are 3 of them).

There's Max, the old Labrador with a playful mood who doesn't know he's no longer a puppy and who's as sweet as can be. He loves his best friend, Basil:

The cheeky Dachshund on full alert at all times - he doesn't even stop long enough for me to take his picture! He is named after Basil Fawlty, the main character in the British sitcom Fawlty Towers, a hyper-nervous wreck who is always getting into trouble.

Then there's the lady in the family, Lola.

Doesn't she look ladylike? I picked her up from the street, with her bones sticking out, and she cried in pain when I picked her up. She was covered in slime and parasites. She's been in love with me ever since. It's mutual.

And last but not least, the CAT! Who is, of course, according to jewelry blog folklore, the source of many artistic endeavors!

Toffee follows me everywhere. I sometimes get up from my studio chair just for a minute to walk into another room so he'll leave his chair and follow me - and then I go right back! Yes, I'm mean like that!
But I think he has a secret agenda. He is quietly observing me, and I bet he can already wirewrap, rivet, stamp... Toffee Designs, anyone?

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Back and forth

Yeah, yeah, I know I left all my imaginary followers with a dramatic cliffhanger in my last post, all wondering what I would do with the materials in my "lime plan" photo, and expecting the unveiling of the finished product in this post. Alas, it was not meant to be. Sometimes I start a project, then my mind wanders to other possibilities and other stones and materials that call my name, and it could be several months before I finish something. So a long time from now, I may have to write a post referring back to my last post, so you can see the "before" and "after" of a project I'm still playing with in my head. Oh, I'm giving myself a headache...

I know you're heartbroken. I'm suffering too - I found that my favorite character in one of my favorite TV series will die in the next episode and won't come back for the fourth season (and I love his....huhh...acting skills...). So, yeah, life's tough...
I did finish something else instead, my "Blossom" necklace, another copper and sari mix piece, with riveting, stamping, wirewrapping...

And you guessed, I had started it before, left it aside, and Fiona, a dear customer, came by and decided it had to be hers right there and then, regardless of how I finished it! That's my king of gal! So here it is, Fiona, for your first peek of your latest acquisition. Enjoy it. Here's another photo.

Then today, I kept busy pouring Ice Resin into bezels for future projects - you know, the ones I'll probably abandon to start on something else before coming back to them... It's not easy being me :)

Fiquem bem,

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Shall I eat them?

The only donuts I ever know what to do with are the edible ones (and don't my thighs know it...). For some reason, it's a shape that eludes me and doesn't usually inspire me. I've seen some really nice designs using them, but they usually also cover a lot of the stone - and the beauty of the stone is what atracts me to it in the first place.
I had purchased this jasper donut a long time ago, but when I looked at it I never felt the divine inspiration to do anything with it - and just lamented it wasn't one of the edible ones...

I finally picked it up a few days ago, and decided I definitely wanted to use copper wire and brown leather to bring out the browns in the stone.

I picked up a hemimorphite nugget whose bluish color did not clash with the blue in the jasper, which I encased in wire loops (learnt from Mary Hettmansperger book, Wrap, Stitch, Fold and Rivet), and some crysocholla rondelles, and made some wire components with rivets and spirals. Initially, the donut was supposed to be part of a pendant, hanging from the necklace piece, but I decided it was too big for that, so after cutting and throwing away some copper wire (so glad didn't try it in silver...) I made it a part of the necklace, like so:

I'm pretty happy with it and the colors look beautiful. And this donut is definitely so much easier on my thighs!... Here's another photo:

Anyone for donuts?

Next: my lime plan! Wouldn't this lime green look beautiful with copper too?

I want to add some resin work to this one, I'm loving working with Ice Resin. Finished piece (hopefully) coming soon.

Fiquem bem!