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Monday, July 28, 2008

Layers Necklace-Project 4

"Etched No.1"
I had decided to etch the metal for my next project in Deryn's Summer Jewelry Challenge , where we are using Mary Hettmansperger's book, Wrap, Stitch, Fold & Rivet. My first attempt with etching about a month ago, was not successful. I tried once more today, and I am so satisfied with how the metal pieces turned out. I etched on copper, nickel and brass, using some of my favorite stamps.
The brass piece on the bottom is the one I like most. I didn't want to cover up too much of it, as the patina I applied (by torch) turned out very nice. I lightly sanded it with steel wool to emphasize the beautiful pattern of the etching.
The next piece is nickel. The etching is slightly lighter, but just as nice. I used the same technique as on the brass.
The hammered swirl charm was one I had done a couple of weeks ago, and has been sitting on my desk. I had also added patina with my torch, after it was hammered. The fun thing about the swirl in this piece, is that it can swing freely. I like the slight movement. On page 29 of Mary's book, she gave a detailed explaination on how to make a wrapped loop swirl charm. This one, though not wrapped, had been done for practice, just waiting for the right project.
I took 24 gauge sterling silver wire, drew a ball on the end with my torch; then wrapped it as Mary had done in her example piece. I strung a short piece of oxidized sterling silver chain thru the fold. Added a couple of twisted copper jump rings, a hand forged hammered sterling silver s-clasp, and an oxidized brass chain to finish the piece.
I cut out two additional pieces of the etched and patined brass. I must make a pair of matching earrings, but they will have to wait till tomorrow.

Odd Shots on Monday~Princess Pig

Who gave her my crown?
She sits at the entrance of our H.E.B. Isn't she just the cutest?
(psssttt.....i want the crown)
Go see Katney for more odd shots. And, join us if you'd like. It is loads of fun!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Nothing Ordinary Antiques & Oddities

Just after returning from Art & Soul last May, my dd & I met my mother & step-father for a Mother's Day luncheon in Bellville. (I graduated from Bellville HS, and have always loved the town). Just next door to the resturant, is a great antique store called Nothing Ordinary. It is 7,700 sq.ft. loaded with antiques & oddities. The owner, Nancy Lawrence, was not there that day, but another lively soul, Carol, was. She overheard our discussion about the jewelry classes I had taken in Hampton. Long story short, the next week Nancy called to discuss having some of my charms and/or jewelry in her shop. So, earlier today, we were finally able to meet and discuss a plan. I believe we agreed upon a good one. I used one of my beautiful vintage suitcases, and created a small vignette to hold just a few pieces to "test the location". I am excited about the possabilities here. I believe I will use this venue & my San Antonio location, as a starting point to launch my Mexican Calender Girls line of jewelry.
If you have the opportunity to visit Bellville, be sure and stop in this beautiful shop. You will love all the antiques & oddities!
Located at 123 East Main Street in Bellville, Texas. Hours are Mon-Sat: 10-5, Sun: 12-5.
And, thanks Nancy. I am so happy we finally got together.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

72 Years Young

My mother's birthday is today. She is 72, and now lives in New Ulm with my step-father! Life has brought her full circle. This past year she was diagnosed with breast cancer. With the help of a wonderful surgeon at MD Anderson, and a mininum of radiation, she lives clear of cancer today. I thank God for His everlasting mercy, and for another year with my mother.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Odd Shots on Monday~Duct Tape Rules

I bought this vintage leather briefcase during the Katy Citywide Garage Sale this past Spring. I liked it because it was made of beautiful old leather, in very good shape inside & out; and I could use it as a jewelry display at shows. Originally, I thought the handle had one of those extra pieces of leather added, but just this weekend while using it, I discovered it was duct tape (hmmm...wear your glasses please). Wrapped perfectly straight & tight; and looking as if it had just been added. This is no anomaly, I know, as duct tape is used everywhere and anywhere. But, I just had to acknowledge the perfection of this wrap job~one only a fellow perfectionist can truly appreciate.
To see more Odd Shots, go see Katney~that is where it all started!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

More Angels

Angels come in many different shapes & sizes. The one on the left is the grandaughter of a teacher, in from the valley, who bought several of my soldered charms yesterday. She was in Katy visiting her beautiful daughter and grandaughter.
See the new little girly skirt her grandmother bought her from another vendor at the show. She is a little dancing angel in her grandmother's eyes.

The angel on the right is my little ceramic worshop angel. She sits on top of one of my rolling bins in our office/my worshop. She is very patient. Something I am not. She didn't know she'd get to come along to the show today. But she did.
She sat in the perfect spot on one of my tables.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Set-Up Snaps

The Sami Show set-up turned out just as I had envisioned. Smooth. I had quite a few compliments on my jewelry display, which made me quite happy.
Business was good. The sale tomorrow is from 11-4:30.
The best part of shows is always meeting new customers & other vendors. But mostly, being with my husband all day. He is a great business partner, helper and receipt-writer. I am so blessed to have him.
The vendor on my right, Nona, is selling hand-made purses, pillows, place mats and runners. They are made out of the most beautiful fabrics. The one I picked out is made of silk. The trim is devine. I had bought a smaller one from her almost two years ago. I immediately added it to my wire dress form.
Two women wanted to buy my jacket! If I had not been there, my husband probably would have sold it. He says everything is for sale! Well, dh, not exactly......

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

It's the small things that bring me back

A few more pics I took while roaming thru Gruene Antique Company last Sunday. My dd took me there upon request. There is so much packed into this old building. The ceiling must be at least 15 feet high. It reminded me of the old grocery store we had in New Ulm. The high ceiling and well-worn, creeky wooden floor. I loved going into the very back and looking thru all the old buttons. I can still smell that old building in my mind~

Last night I went out into the garage to hammer a few pieces of metal. It is definately one of my newest passions, especially since I started Deryn's Summer Jewelry Challenge (which I will jump back into after my sale this weekend). These little spinners are made out of sterling silver. I added a simple brass washer in front. They have a nice swing to them~

Monday, July 14, 2008

New Braunfels and Jewelry for Sami

Vacation time was wonderful. The peace and quiet of the river brought much needed rest.

This afternoon I finished a necklace (and earrings), using one of the beautiful chandelier prisms I found at Gruene Antique Company. With it I added 8mm faceted crystal quartz and 6mm faceted vitrial czech crystal beads.
These pieces will be at the Sami Show, in the Merrell Center in Katy. I will be in booth #40.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Stay Strong

A song by The Newsboys keeps running thru my mind this evening after finishing a project~
Stay strong
You are not lost
Come on and fix your eyes ahead
There's a new dawn to light our day, our day
We've gotta stay strong
You and I run
For the prize that lies ahead
We've come too far to lose our way, our way
May your evening be blessed, and this next week as well~

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Bead Shelf Necklace

Project #3 in Wrap, Stitch, Fold & Rivet, by Mary Hettmansperger, has proved to be alot of fun, just as I thought. Moving thru this book, with Deryn Mentock, has been both challenging and stimulating. I have tried techniques I might not or would not have tried; as I go thru this summer challenge with several other jewelry artists. Other participants who have submitted their projects are listed on the left margin of Deryn's blog. Just look under Deryn's Summer Jewelry Challenge.

I love the side view of the shelf, as you can see the different colors and sizes of Czech crystals that I used. The part I enjoyed most was the patina I applied with my propane torch and Novocan Super Brite Copper Patina-on both the shelf and twisted metal beeds. I torched, then dipped the pieces in ice water. Next I applied the Novocan in different places, then re-torched and back into the ice water. I did this several times, until I was satisfied with the colors. The copper turned into brilliant shades of gold, blue, green, turquoise, brown and burgandy.
Project #4 probably won't come as soon as I'd like; as projects, jewelry shows and a much needed vacation trip are quickly approaching.
I can hardly wait, as the Layers Necklace is what's next.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

I've moved into Dovetail Antiques

Today I moved into a small space in an antique shop in Katy. I will have some of my newest pieces there. Some you might like~and~
the shop has about 18 different vendors. There is something for everybody. And now~some of my jewelry!