Friday, November 20, 2009

Just Fell in Love with CZ's...

Cubic Zirconia
"A synthetic gemstone, optically flawless, with a close visual to a diamond"


I recently had an opportunity to browse www.ArtBeads.Com and viewed their wonderful selection of cubic zirconia beads. I must admit, I have never owned a CZ, nor even knew that they were available in such beautiful colors, let alone in bead form.

What a pleasant surprise! Wonderful colors, wonderful shapes; rounds, square cushions, teardrops, coins, rectangles, all with beautiful sparkle!!

My selection of colors moved into the fall color spectrum and some of my very favorite colors. I believe that the orange faceted teardrops might just be my favorite of all the color shapes.

Design note:
I'm currently recovering from cataract surgery, and I can't wait to have the opportunity to make some beautiful creations from these beautiful gemstone beads. Check back soon and see how I have used these lovelies in my designs.




Tuesday, April 14, 2009

My Friend Wilma keeps me on my toes…


I have a very dear friend Wilma Travis, the very talented artisan

behind Wilma’s Whimsey.




Wilma and I both participate in a very successful Etsy Social Marketing Arts Guild. The eSMArts Guild, is a global collaborative of mixed media artisans intent on further understanding and applying eCommerce advertising and promotion techniques.


I doubt that Wilma even knows that she seems to always keep me on my toes when it comes to the eSMArts team, she seems to always remind me of the social marketing aspects that I’m often neglecting.



Wilma is a self taught, passionate lampwork bead artist, and oh do I wish I lived close to her, she could then teach me the wonderful art of lampwork. I too, dream of learning to melt glass and become a lampwork artist.




Her work is currently evolving in new directions, as she starts dabbling in making jewelry, Wire Wrapping, Chain Maille, and Viking Knit, and the use of Gemstones in her creations.




Please stop by Wilma’s blog, etsy shop and website and see her beautiful lampwork creations, and her progress into new jewelry endeavors.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Experiments with My Tumbler

My Egyptian Necklace really needed some sparkle so today I decided that I would tumble the necklace, and try a new technique. Again used the stainless steel shot, water and a squirt of Dawn, but put the necklace into an organza bag as suggested, and tumbled away for 3 hours. I was disappointed with the results, just didn’t improve the shine like my Springs and Coils Necklace.


So back to square one...


This time I’ll go back to the original technique, stainless steel shot, water, and a squirt of dawn. This necklace will need a lot of tumbling, 14 gauge Gold Parawire, looking to really improve the look of this design. Just had to check to see how the tumbling was going, after two hours really looks great, but have put the necklace back to see if I could see if I could achieve more shine. Just completed another two hours of tumbling, really like the shine…


Rice: Another option...


Another suggestion was to tumble with Uncle Bens Long Grain Converted Rice. So I couldn't wait to try the rice tumbling. If you try this method, do not add water, this is a dry tumbling technique. I decided to tumble two of my Fabula Brooches, one in dry rice, the other in an organza bag.Tumbling for three hours, neither brooch was as shiny as I expected, and


Yet the brooch in the organza bag had even a little less shine. really wasn't happy with the tumbling results, maybe next time I'll tumble longer.

So off to try the popcorn option

Popcorn: Another option


Again another way to tumble your jewelry is with un-popped popcorn, no water, or you’ll have a big mess. I tumbled one of the Fabula Brooches into the tumbler with the popcorn, and deciding this time not to try the organza bag. I again tumbled for a three hours, and compared the rice tumbled brooch with the popcorn tumbled brooch. The brooch tumbled in the popcorn appears to have more shine, but popcorn dust remained on the brooch, so next step was to rinse and dry.


Walnut Shells…


The last tumbling technique will be using ground walnut shells and no water.Two different brooches for this technique, one copper and the other gold Parawire, and again tumbling for three hours. I was pleasantly surprised that the walnut shells created a beautiful shine. I was very impressed with the final results. Yes, I would use this technique again, far superior to the rice and popcorn techniques.



One final tumble…


As I completed my tumbling experience, I decided that I would continue the experiment and tumble four brooches in the stainless steel shot technique. I knew that this technique would improve the appearance of the brooches tumbled in the rice and popcorn, but would it also improve the look of the brooches that were tumbled in the walnut shells. Yes, both dangling drop brooches also improved in.this technique, but the greatest improvement was with the two Fabula brooches. All now have the beautiful shine I desire.


Organza Bag…


The original concept of using the organza bag to tumble your jewelry is to keep your jewelry chains from tangling. My chain was 14 gauge, so I really wouldn’t experience the tangling with this gauge wire as you would with finer gauge wires. I will try this technique again when I have constructed a necklace in a finer gauge wire. But at this point I believe that a chain tumbled in an organza bag would require a longer tumbling time frame.


Final thoughts…


My decision for the future would be not use the organza bag when tumbling with rice, popcorn or walnut shells. Not worth the trouble and time involved. I would use the organza bag for the finer chains with the stainless steel shot, water and squirt of Dawn technique.

I will use the walnut shell tumbling technique in the future to tumble jewelry designs that have more fragile components.


I believe all the different tumbling techniques I’ve tried, have there place in achieving shine and work hardening. But at this point I believe that I’ll stick to stainless steel shot, water and a squirt of Dawn. I like shine….


Friday, February 27, 2009

Amazing Experience...

Participating in the One World One Heart blog giveaway was an amazing experience and I wish to thank everyone for stopping by my blog and entering my “One World – One Heart” Giveaway.


What a wonderful event, 911 artisans entered this amazing event. I was the lucky winner of not one but four giveaways.


"Men Working” Pendant


Peggy Alborn is a Faux Finish Artist, and created this outstanding pendant with an actual photo of men taking a break from work around the WWI era. Visit Peggy’s These FauxWalls blogspot and have a glance into her life and art.



“Domino Pendant”


Jane Eileen, of See Jane Run and Jane Eileen Art Studio 23 created the beautiful Domino Pendant.



“Machine Appliqued Owl Mini Quilt”


Naomi of Bella Modiste is an accomplished seamstress and created this lovely mini quilt.



“The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society” Book


I love to read and was so pleased to win Susan’s giveaway, from Humor Memoranda. Just need to find sometime to read my new book.


My Two Winners


Pat Graham of Odd-Dolls won my Flowers and Leaves Bracelet. Pat is located in Bellingham, Washington and creates amazing Art Dolls… Hope you have time to check out her blog and see her OOAK.


Lesley Gozon, won my Beads Outa Beads Necklace and Earring Set. Lesley is my International winner, located in Manila, Philippines. Lesley doesn't have a blog! Maybe one day she'll get the blogging bug.




I Love Numbers....


I visited each of the 911 blogs

I received the Marie Antoinette Award from another blogger

435 comments were left on my blog

Over 1500 blog views during the OWOH event

15 new followers

35 different countries visited my blog

A successful event, a wonderful experience

Please Meet......

My Blogging Buddy – My Friend


I call her my friend, eSmarts teammate, and my blogging buddy. Who is she, but Teri Baskett of S & T Creations!


Teri and her partner, Saundra Brown-Gordon, began there jewelry business in 2005 when they opened S & T Creations in Jeffersonville, Indiana. Both ladies create larger pieces of jewelry, prominently featuring gemstones, glass and crystals in their jewelry designs.

Besides making beautiful bold jewelry designs, Teri handles most of the internet “tech-y” things for S & T Creations. But her heart is in creating beautifully unique jewelry designs. Each design features a bold style and flair, combined with quality components.


Here is how you can see more of Teri’s lovely work


http://www.sandtcreations.com

http://www.sandtcreations.com/wordpress

http://sandtcreations.etsy.com


Saturday, February 14, 2009

Marie Antoinette Award

Wow... I hadn't seen or heard about this award until Brenda of Brenda's Jewelry Box nominated me as a recipient...

The Marie Antoinette Award


It seems that no one really knows what this award is for, certainly a beautiful award, and I am happy to receive it!

I meet Brenda during the One World – One Heart giveaway, Brenda is a very talented Artisan and I sincerely appreciate our new friendship.
You can find Brenda’s designs on her blog, her Etsy Shop, and
1000Markets

Now for the rules of this award. The rules are as follows...

Please put the logo on your blog.

Place a link to the person from whom you received the award.

Nominate at least 7 or more blogs.

Put links of those blogs on your blog.

Leave a message on their blogs to tell them. And that's it!


I hope this award will make the following artists as happy as it made me!


Lisa

AnnaLee

Pat Graham

Karen Adams

Joani

Sherry

Mrs. Beadsley

The Lemonade Award

Danis Garcia of DG Designs has nominated me for the Lemonade Award.

Thank you very much, Danis. I really appreciate it. You are too kind. The Lemonade Award is awarded to sites that show a positive attitude and gratitude. And I am grateful to be considered a part of that group.

Here are the rules for the award:
1.Put the logo on your blog or post
2.Nominate at least 10 blogs that show great Gratitude and/or Attitude.
3.Be sure to list and link your nominees within your post.
4.Let them know they have received this award by leaving a comment on their blog.
5.Nominate your favorites and link to your post.

My Choices for the Award:
The World of Wezz
Art by Wanda
Bluebonnet Jewelry Designs
Glass0Beads
From the Bench
MeghanT Jewellrey Design
Studio618
Silver Rabbit Studio
Simplexities
Simply Willow

Thursday, February 12, 2009

And the Winners are...

The One World - One Heart giveaway has come to a close. I have used a random number generator to select my winners for this year's giveaway.

The lucky winner of my "Beads Outa Beads" Necklace and Earrings is Leslie621
The lucky winner of my "Flowers and Leaves" Bracelet is Patee from Odd-Dolls

These ladies have three days to contact me... and if I do not here from them within this time frame I'll randomly draw another winner...

Please check back, I'll be blogging about my winners, and my experiences with this wonderful giveaway.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

One World - One Heart

Make New Friends From Around the World.....


This year I decided to participate in one of the largest blogging events on the net One World – One Heart. Is the brainchild of Lisa Swifka, of A Whimsical Bohemian.


The original idea behind this event is to bring bloggers from around the world who may never ordinarily meet. Sharing their stories and creations, discovering new and wonderful people, and in the process possibly win a prize along the way.


Please visit the OWOH blog and visit all the other creative artisians….


Below are my two free gifts that I will ship anywhere in the world!



Beads Outa Beads Necklace

Swarovski Crystals, Fresh Water Pearls, Delica's, Self Clasp, and Sterling Silver Earwires


Flowers & Leaves
An unconventional color combination of blacks and purples create a stunning Flowers and Leaves Bracelet.

To have a chance to win, you only need to leave a comment on this blog post before midnight EST on February 11th! The two winners names will be announced on February 12th and I will contact each winner to let you know you've won.

Jill

P.S. Please feel free to join my blog!