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Sunday, April 27, 2014

Jewelry Making Supplies Destash

So as you know, i've been collecting old jewelry parts and vintage necklaces and earrings and buttons to make jewelry.

 I have been buying so much lately that I really need to do a destash of some of it.

My husband said that I have gone crazy so this will calm him down somewhat.  He actually went into my space and started pulling out stuff and saying "look at all this crap, you have gone bananas". (lol)   So to make him feel better i'm going to put some of it in my Etsy store.

I'll be putting some of my stash in the supplies section so if you are interested please check it out.  You might just find something that inspires you!  You can get to my store here.  I will be listing some of it tomorrow (4/28/14) hopefully in the morning.

Now I had better get designing or he'll be back making comments!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Bought Myself a Flex Shaft And Found Objects

So I went ahead and bought a flex shaft to drill found objects.  In my rush to finally buy it I forgot to buy the hanger for it so I can't use it until that comes.

I'm so excited to now have a professional tool to use.  I've been buying stuff like crazy.  Have to remind myself to stop!!!  I'm so excited to begin my new jewelry journey of making jewelry using found objects.  So far i've bought quite a few things.  Thought i'd share them in pics here.

My brain is churning with ideas.  Here's a look at some of the new things i've bought or as the instructor would say, found objects:

This is a long post but i'm so thrilled with what I've found in the way of found objects lately.

Some MOP buttons, some with rhinestones:

A beautiful rhinestone button:

And this beautiful brooch (if you like things like this).  I am obsessed with rhinestones as you know if you've read my blog at all.  It's got some yellowing which I love but it needs to be cleaned up a bit.

And then I bought this creepy little sterling silver crab.  I hate things with legs (like spiders).  But this little monster was too good a price to leave there.

And then I found this gorgeous rhinestone brooch.

Various rhinestones crowns:  (my sister said it's because I think i'm royalty in my pitiful brain).  Love, love rhinestone crowns.

And then this vintage brooch. It's worn looking but has all it's "pearls".

This fantastic little colorful pill box.  Needs to be cleaned up but it's cute.

I found this 1980's looking gold toned locket with chain attached.  The necklace is in perfect condition.

Then there's this gorgeous locket that looks to be enameled.  I love the decoration.  It's missing a pearl but I like it anyway.

I found this steel-cut starfish in a thrift store and had to have it.  It needs to be cleaned up too. I think it will make a really pretty and unique necklace.  Can't wait to try.

Another pill box. Brass with some black and gold etchings on top.  Hoping my flex shaft can help me make a really interesting necklace.

Another brooch with beautiful detailing.

This very pretty mirror with beautiful detailing work on one side and the other side is a mirror

I found this coin and it made me sad and happy because I love New orleans but of course hate what happened there as does the rest of America.  It's gold and on it is written "The city That Care Forgot".  So sad.

This cool thing below is fascinating.  It's a lipstick called Scarlet Lily.

The case is highly decorated.  The tube is brass and has some lipstick smudges on the outside which can be cleaned up.  Don't you love it?!!!  I figure I can use the top to make a necklace.  We'll see.

I finally found a tiny little leather coin purse.  I can't wait to try this new technique I learned in class on it.

I also found this steel cut peacock.  It looks almost like marcasite and the brooch says Germany on the back.  It's not sterling but it's some type of metal.  Love it!

This little pendant is marcasite and sterling.  I think that's onyx.

This is an earring.  The large stone in the middle is loose so will have to glue it back.  But you can't tell but it's all rhinestones at the bottom.  I have the pair.

That's all.  I am having a blast searching for things to make jewelry.  Now the task is to begin making.
Thanks for stopping by!  I hope you enjoyed seeing these things.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Happy Easter Everyone!

Tomorrow is the last day of our jewelry design class and i'm really sad.  But have to move on I guess and put what I learned into practice.  I've been busy making Easter jewelry for some folks(I know there's no such thing as Easter jewelry).  Anyway here they are:

I made this one for my bestie.  Got the pre-made chain from Michael's last year.  The copper cross is a vintage piece I picked up at an antique mall and I had the red briollettes for awhile.

Here's the back:    

I got the reproduction medal from a seller on ebay.

Then there's this one I made for my mother.  It's made of faceted garnets(her birthstone), a vintage rhinestone button and a silver toned cross that I darkened with Novocan Black to give it some contrast to the blingy button.

Here's the back :

I fancied it up with a rhinestone clasp i've had since 2000 and of course another religious medal (I am now obsessed with these things).

Then I made these earrings for myself.  I found these really old mother of pearl connectors and some eighties looking earrings with some beautiful marcasite-looking crosses hanging from them.  I took them apart and decided to put the MOP and the crosses together with red crystals.  They turned out really pretty if I must say so myself.

So there you have it.  I'm really excited to see what other creations I come up with due to the stuff i've learned.  I love learning new things.  It gets my mind going and thinking.  Well, i'm off to Facebook with my other classmates for the last time.  It's been fun!!

As always comments are appreciated.

Happy Easter!!!!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Jewelry Design Class Almost Over!

I really do hate that the Alchemy of Objects class is almost at it's end.  I have so enjoyed getting opinions from the instructor and ll the other students in the class.  Since I started late I won't be able to complete all the making challenges before April 20th.  That is a real bummer.

But I have to say it this is the first online jewelry making class i've taken and it was really a blast.  The format with technique videos, design process videos and the Facebook chat portion have been great learning tools.  I have gone over and over the videos to make sure that I have the techniques down pat to continue to build my skill level.

I have finished another piece that I will be posting to the class Facebook site for critique.  The challenge is for texture and I only have one big piece that is very textured.  I didn't have anything else to add so I let that big rock speak for itself:

It's a huge amethyst rock almost druzy like.  There are blue and grey and white striations surrounding the rock which I love.  Since I don't have any beads that are textured I just wire wrapped it together using polished amethyst nuggets and clear glass coin beads.  It's assymetrical in that both sides are a bit different.  I hung a coin bead at the bottom to tie it in with the ones in the body of the necklace.

One thing I learned in this class that I have taken to heart is that you should always try and make the back of a necklace as pretty as the front.  So the clasp I used for this necklace is a vintage rhinestone clasp with some purple crystals to connect it.

This is really difficult to see but it's the best I could do with no light anywhere today.  It's basically just 2 coin beads with a polished amethys nugget.  Also if you can see I connected the necklace to the clasp using the purple crystal beads.  Now to get that jump ring on the right to lay down!!

Here's a closeup of the amethyst pendant:

I know these pictures aren't that great but I think you get the idea of how beautiful this rock is.

The instructor Deryn Mentock is offering a two week extension of this course for those of us who wish to have a little more time and i'm really considering doing the extension.  It's a nominal cost and i believe it would be worth it.  We will see.

I you would like to check out Ms Mentock's blog you can do so here.  The next class she's offering is how to construct a jewelry journal.   This lady is a fantastic teacher and very thorough in what she offers to students.  I can't wait for her class on bezel making which may not be offered for a while since she taught it last in September 2013 (sad face).

Anyway hope you enjoy looking at my attempts to improve my skills and as always comments are welcomed.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

One Jewelry Project Completed

I am truly loving The Alchemy of Objects online class I have been taking.  I started really late but I was so desparate to take it I went ahead and registered.

I am so glad that I did because some of the techniques I am learning are well worth the money (not that it was that much money).

In part of the class the challenge was to make a focal for a necklace using a fabric piece.  Since I didn't want to go out and buy something I used a little piece that I already had.  It's similar to a military patch and the stripes are a mauvy pink.

I had some pink crystals and some really pretty matte pink crystal beads.  The beads are really pretty and have a sparkle to them.  We are also tasked with making a symmetrical piece.  So this combines both a fabric focal and symmetry.

I also added a religious medal cause I couldn't resist.  The instructor, Deryn Mentock, uses all sorts of religious pieces because that is part of who she is.  I am now fascinated with using them whenever I can because my religious belief is also a part of who I am.  I love the idea.

Now, please don't think that this is a requirement because it's not. You use whatever inspires you.   And believe me after recently scouring some of the antique malls in this area there's plenty out there to use as inspiration.

I just used a jump ring and lobster claw clasp.  I felt that since the necklace is really simple that is all that was needed.

This class has a Facebook page for the students and instructor to chat and ask questions.  It is very helpful to have input from the other students as well as from Deryn.  I am enjoying this so much and the ideas are just flowing.  This lady is a fabulous teacher and it's obvious that she loves teaching and mentoring others.

So that's the first thing i've finished and i'm kind of proud of it because it sprang from my noggin (head).  My 11 year old niece is just begging for it and it will probably be hers.  She loves, loves, loves anything pink!!  So I knew I would have this issue with her.

 Is this too old for an 11 year old?  I'll let her mother decide.

You can check out Deryn Mentock's blog here.  It's full of beautiful creations and class information!

As always thanks for stopping by and comments are welcome and appreciated.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Beginnings and Progress So Far

So, as I stated in a previous blog post I am getting some incredible lessons in the jewelry design online class i'm taking and I thought i'd show a little bit of what i've learned so far.  (you can check out the class in the button on the left) Using a found object I began a necklace for my sister.  She is like me when it comes to blingy and flashy and trashy even.

I have used one of the objects I found at an antique mall.  I thought it would make an interesting focal for a necklace.   It had some beads attached which I took off.  It has kind of a southwest flair but that's not how I am using it.  As you can see below it has some type of white stone thingy embedded in it.

I'm using it with glass crystal beads in black and clear.  And, I decided that instead of a Dremel tool that I would buy myself a flex shaft.  It wasn't necessarily suggested by the instructor but if I want to continue in this endeavor I decided to go ahead and buy it.  For those who don't know, when you use found objects in your pieces they don't always have a hole to attach them.  So you need a drill. I went to shop for a Dremel at Lowe's and it just seemed too big to drill small objects to me.

I looked at the flex shafts and the hand piece fits right into your hand.  It's smaller.  You can buy a hand piece for your Dremel but you still have to buy the Dremel tool first.  That's just my own rationale along with my hubby's.

I looked on the Fordeham site (a brand of flex shaft) and the one my instructor did say she used and I was not about to fork over more than $300.00!!  So as I always do I checked the Amazon site.  And they had the model I was interested in for about $100.00 less.   So that is where I  bought it.  It does have a 2 year manufacturer's warranty so I feel a bit better about the purchase.  I can't wait to get it.

I also ordered the mini drill bits for metal and I ordered some diamond bits that are used to drill stone, pearls and shell.  Apparently it's very bad for your health to breath in the dust from those materials.

So now, I removed the beads from my object and plan on drilling holes for my crystal chains to attach.

Here's a little lay-out of how I plan to put this necklace together:

I know this is a bad photo but it's been so cloudy!  This is what I have so far.  The large black focal bead is just a black faceted glass stone.

But I think you can kind of tell where I need to drill the holes.  I think that metal focal piece is a tin material.  I will drill the holes soon when my flex shaft arrives this week.  I can't wait to get started and hope it turns out okay.  That's all I have so far.

As always comments are welcomed.  Thanks for visiting and wish me luck.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Jewelry Designing Class

So I am so glad that I decided to take this class.  As I said in a previous post the class is called the Alchemy of Objects and is being taught by a wonderful designer named Deryn Mentock.  Her style is awesome!  Check out her blog

I have learned so much in such a short time.  A lot of theory about symmetry, asymetry, color, balance and a lot of her techniques.  What i'm really happy about is learning to use found objects in jewelry making.  I'm looking at a lot of things in a new way now and am obsessed with scouring antique malls and thrift shops and ebay and all sorts of other places.

I have several projects in the works but I don't really want to show them until they are completed or almost completed.  This class has changed my whole outlook on jewelry making.

We'll see what happens with my style.  I'm so excited that I have completely put my job search on hold.  I eat, drink and sleep this class and ideas are just flowing.  It's a whole new feeling for me.  And it's great!

I'm now in the process of getting a flex shaft for drilling and a number of other tools that I need.  I've learned a lot about different wire and how to put things together to make them very sturdy.  One thing that has changed my outlook is to also pay attention to the back of your piece.  It just gives it a finished look.  Deryn talks about all of this in the class.

Deryn gave us lists of suppliers that she uses, as well as where to get certain supplies.

Drilling and altering objects is worth the price of admission alone.

Needless to say I would definitely recommend anyone interested in found object jewelry making should be on the lookout for this class being given again.

Another fantastic thing about this class is that all of the students have access to a facebook page where we get to ask Deryn and other students questions.  We can also upload our finished projects to this page and get great advice and even some praise form the others in class.  It's just fantastic.

So now I will stop but again, do take a look at Deryn's blog  It just might inspire you too.  Also I have her book: The Alchemy of Objects where she talks a lot about technique and altering objects.  It's a great book and even if you don't like her style of jewelry you can learn some really great techniques to put into your own arsenal for your own type of jewelry.

Well, back to obsessing for me!!

Thanks for stopping by.