Tuesday, 17 November 2015

I just got published in Jewelry Making Journal!!!

I just got the email now notifying me that my submission was published in Rena Klingenberg's Jewelry Making Journal. Please go check it out and sign up to subscribe. There's a ton of good information, tutorials and links to tutorials there.

Sharilyn Miller on Craftsy...

I just won this contest!!! for 50% off a video course from Craftsy presented by Sharilyn Miller via Pearl Blay's blog, the Beading Gem Journal. 
Bonus for me is that Craftsy has discounted all their courses over the American Thanksgiving, so my prize now means that the course is free for me. I highly recommend the two that I've been/will soon be learning from (and, no, I don't get any kickback from Craftsy, however, if you go here and click through to Craftsy, Pearl will get a commission on any sales).
As soon as I get back from The Gem Expo this weekend, I will be diving into Sharilyn's course and playing with my long-neglected torch. This means new stuff will be showing up on my table at the Woodstock Farmers Market in the run-up to Christmas, as well. 
While we're on the subject of the farmer's market, Jim and Jan Post of Caravan Candles will be occupying my spot this Saturday, November 21st, while I'm in Toronto, and we'll be sharing my tables up until Christmas, too. 
I'm also taking part in a Christmas fundraiser on Sunday, December 6th at the animal rescue office next door to the market at the Fairgrounds, deets to follow. 
See you there!

Saturday, 7 November 2015

2 Quartz Pendants from Arkansas...

My pal Nancy, with whom I share the One of a Kind Antique Mall booth, lived in Tupelo, Mississippi, for a couple of years and would go digging for quartz crystals in red mud pits and hills in Arkansas -- and when the owners advise you to wear OLD boots, they mean it! I have to find the name of the place.

I've been meaning to wrap them for a while. They resurfaced in my own personal pit yesterday so I gave it a go (unfortunately, again with the pointless twiddles). I'm experimenting with different weave patterns and wire gauges.

Quartz Pendant 1 front and back:

Quartz Pendant 2 front & back:

Both are available for sale today at the Woodstock Farmers Market. I'll be there by 5:00 a.m. if anyone is up and interested in taking a look. Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, 31 October 2015

Nnnnnnot going well...

I bought these three random pewter "worry stones/beads" to wrap as pendants to see how it goes when there are no drilled holes. After a whole morning at the market? Not. Well. At. All.

Here is the first one I did. After that, I started over, and started over, and started over... until the morning was over. On the one hand I feel like I wasted a lot of wire -- too much overthinking was/is my problem -- but now I have all these inch to inch-and-a-half woven bits I can rescue and trim and stitch into other pendants.

I forgot to get the name of the company that makes these -- out in Nova Scotia, I think. I will remember for next Saturday.

Hope you're having better results! Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, 29 October 2015

Two More Pendants...

Another mystery stone leaf pendant and what I think is lepidolite. Sure is pretty, though. Like storm clouds on the one side. Getting to the point where there is no discernible back or front to the pendants, so BOGO in other words. I'm finding also that starting out with too much wire is also not a good thing -- I tend not to stop until the wire is finished. I think the lepidolite pendant got to be a little too much.

You can see in the photos that my fingers are getting rougher and rougher. Certainly they're very sore, and it's getting more difficult to compress the wires. In several of the videos I watched yesterday people were wrapping their fingers with fabric bandaging.

For now, I'm back to Midsomer Murders and another pendant. Hope you have a great evening. Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Copper Woven Leaf Pendant...

I spent most of today watching Russian wire-weaving tutorials -- in Russian, no less (and no, I absolutely do not speak Russian!) but the guy draws little pictures so you can clearly see the weave patterns -- on YouTube. I cannot believe the magical work that is being done there. I learned a ton today and got really inspired: here is my new leaf pendant with copper wire weaving. Nope, no idea what this stone is. It's green, sometimes see-through, definitely dyed... and very pretty.

If you'd like to watch some great instructional videos from Russia and see lots of inspirational pictures, they're pretty much all towards the top of my Pinterest board here. These are videos I still have to watch.

Yet again the back ended up becoming the good side. And I ran out of wire, even though I cut it extra long. Gaaaaah.



Side view:

You can come and see this and any new pendants (and earrings) I get done in the next two days at the Woodstock Farmers Market at the Fairgrounds on Nellis Street this and most Saturday mornings, 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Or you can email me for availability/cost/shipping rates or to wrap a special stone just for you or perhaps someone on your Christmas gift list.

Don't forget, The Gem Expo is coming up fast: just three weeks away. See you in Toronto!

Okay, now to go back and make another one. Thanks for looking!

Saturday, 24 October 2015

Copper Wire-Woven Lapis Heart Pendant...

The market was fairly quiet this morning to begin with so I started making a random wire-woven thick and thin "ribbon" just to see what it would look like. I continued weaving the wires pretty much to the end (the ribbon is about 6 or 7 inches in total).

Earlier this week I went digging through a bag of mystery stones and discovered a handful of undrilled chubby semi-precious hearts that I hadn't yet done anything with, so I picked one of the lapis ones to play with.

The heart front, well and truly trapped:

Showing the back and bottom and just how chubby these hearts are:

For some weird reason, I'm obsessed with using only one continuous piece of wire, rather than working with multiple pieces in layers, and I'm still working with too short wires and/or cutting them off too soon.

The other thing I've noticed -- and so many people have commented on this, as well -- the backs, which are the truly randomly made parts, are often far more interesting than the fronts.

Thanks for looking!

New Copper Wire-Woven Pendant...

What started out like this last Saturday...

...morphed into this late yesterday afternoon. After a week of staring at it and playing with curves, I decided that square stone just wasn't working.

Front of finished pendant...

But I think I prefer the back. Having a blast with those curly doodles!

Come and see this -- or choose from a nice selection of pendants to be wrapped -- this or any Saturday morning at the Woodstock Farmers Market, Nellis Street at the Fairgrounds, 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon. Alternatively, email me or leave a message below if you have a favourite rock you'd like wrapped (it doesn't need to be drilled).

I can make your Christmas and birthday present shopping very, very easy. Want to learn to do this yourself? Please contact me about one-on-one or small group lessons. Lessons tailored to age and experience will make a great Christmas or birthday gift.

Thanks for looking!

Sunday, 18 October 2015

Minimal Skull Pendant Wrap & A New Beginning...

This skull cab pendant had no drilled hole and since my customer is male, he wouldn't like any scrolly, lacy trapping that I might otherwise have done -- and I rarely glue bails to anything. Once the copper darkens it will melt into the skull colours and be virtually invisible.

It doesn't show here, but once I was finished, I used my round-nosed pliers and goinked the back wires into zig-zags to tighten them up a bit.

Interestingly -- from a learning perspective -- this is the first time I've wrapped and trapped a pendant like this with dead soft copper wire. So MUCH much easier than using half-hard. Wowie zowie.

Then I started on my next project. I've been looking at this shape and the swirly storm cloud purple colours for a couple of days now. I have no idea what the stone is. It kinda sorta reminds me of lepidolite, but I got it off one of those budget strings of mixed pendants so it could be anything. A little free word association, along a desire also to do something incorporating tiny beads into the wire-woven edge and I ended up with this... 

Some notes: I started out with one idea, to have the pearls go all the way around, and gave up on that pretty quickly. I also didn't have the garnets with me that I was also thinking to incorporate. This will be another curvy freeform effort. 

I began by bending three wires at a 90 degree angle, nesting them and taping together what ended up becoming the plain woven edge you see in the photo. Note that the bend came before I changed my mind about the overall square wrap design. 

I cut off about 4 or 5 feet of 28 gauge wire and wrapped half of it on that plastic bobbin/mooshy spool thingy. THEY ARE FABULOUSLY USEFUL!!! You can buy them anywhere that sells kumihomo supplies. I got mine from Iguana Beads (King St., Cambridge, Ontario). Irene and Ken were next to me at the GRBS Show & Sale a few weeks ago. 

The "pearls" are Miyuki "Antique Ivory Pearl Ceylon" 6/0 round seed beads.

Stay tuned to see what it looks like finished... if I finish it. As I'm sitting here writing and looking again at the pictures, I'm getting different ideas... 

Saturday Morning Woodstock Farmers Market Setup...

Sometimes there'll be no teardown at the end of the market, the food vendors leave their shelves and coolers in situ and the rest of us non-food vendors leave our tables as is with cloths draped over everything.

I found out the hard way that I am located in front of double storage room doors and came back one Saturday morning to find at least two of my tables moved all over the place, the cloths and surfaces every which way, which means I now have to consolidate all my stuff onto the one table that is rarely moved.

What hides under the tablecloth. Any empty bins have to be stacked on top of the table, as well, for when the floors are washed.

Everything back in place. Takes me about half an hour to do this.

Ready to go. Yes, all that was hiding under the sheet! I'm off now to get coffee, visit and buy the week's groceries, and it's barely 6 a.m.

Unfortunately, this Saturday it was a full teardown. Next week I'll show you how I pack my bins.

Thanks for stopping by!