Friday, March 22, 2019

Wonder and Whimsy Monthly Challenge - March Edition

This is super overdue, but I am happy to finally introduce this month's Wonder and Whimsy Monthly Challenge. Yay!

So, first, some background. In the past, I have briefly mentioned Scrap It Up. I believe I called them my local craft thrift store. More accurately, they are a nonprofit creative reuse center located here in Cincinnati... and they are a wonderful place both to donate and buy craft supplies. 

This is my new favorite place.

Want to learn knitting, but don't want to spend a lot of money on yarn and knitting needles? Or, conversely, decide that you are done with knitting and need to get rid of some yarn to make room for another craft? Either way, this is your place. 

They have yarn, fabric, scrapbooking paper, buttons, mosaic tiles... pretty much everything. I have already donated four bags of supplies that I no longer use--and I am absolutely delighted to know that those supplies will get the love they deserve. 

...They also carry beads. 

Not only do they carry beads, but those beads are sold for $0.25 per baggie.

I may or may not have giggled manically and started hyperventilating when I learned that. Heh.

With such an amazing price tag, that means that f0r under $20, I picked up everything in the following pictures:

So, what does that have to do with my Monthly Challenge? 

Well, you have probably guessed it: I want to make jewelry using these supplies. Not all of these supplies, mind you--but at least some of them. (Including the papers that I showed on Wednesday--I got those at Scrap It Up on my last visit as well.) With such a wonderful array of possibilities, I'm bound to come up with something awesome! 

Come back next week, on Friday March 29th, to see what I end up making. I'm pretty excited to get started on this challenge (as you can probably tell by the hasty, not-the-best pictures in this entry--hah!).

Thanks so much for stopping by today to see what I'm up to... I appreciate being able to share my creative endeavors with you.

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Wednesday's Worktable

On my worktable this week: paper beads!

...And I'm pretty sure that these beads are going to be a part of March's Monthly Challenge. 

Oh! And speaking on March's Monthly Challenge, I'm actually going to introduce it on Friday. My apologies for the delay... starting this month with really bad tendinitis really put a wrench in things. 

But! Things are definitely better now, and I'm able to work on my (many) projects. Hurray for healing wrists! (Now, to just make sure that I go slowly and don't overdo it again... that's the hard part.)

Oh, and one more thing... I have a pretty big project that I'm working on for next month. I'm super excited about it, and can't wait to talk about that, too. I just have to wait until April. Which, at this rate, really isn't that far away. :)

Thanks for stopping by today... There's a lot going on over here (like I blogged about last entry: I got published again!), and hopefully I'll soon get this blog up to date. 

Until then, have a wonderful week, everyone!

Monday, March 18, 2019

Exciting News!

I have been sitting on this announcement for a few months, and I'm very excited that I can now share it.

Two of my pieces are in the current issue of Belle Armoire Jewelry!

One of the necklaces even has a full page article to go with it (yes, that I wrote):

And, since I know that I'm going to be asked, here is the other piece:

I'm so incredibly excited and humbled and pleased... I work very, very hard on my jewelry, and it's always a thrill to see it in print. :)

Thank you, everyone, for giving me a chance to share this happy news... I hope you all have wonderful days!

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Wednesday's Worktable

On my worktable today: headpins!

...Well, and other things. But mostly headpins! :)

As far as those "other things" are concerned: I am currently in the planning stages of several projects (including my Monthly Challenge, which I have yet to introduce here... oops). However, I'm also healing up from a rather bad bout of tendinitis, and I'm trying really really hard not to overdo it. 

Gaaaaah. It's hard to be patient--I want to make all the things!

So, while I'm taking it slow and planning, I'm doing little things here and there. Like headpins. Hopefully by this time next week, I'll have more to show... In the meantime, though, thanks for stopping by!

Have a wonderful week, everyone!

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Hello, March!

...and hello, return to winter weather! Bah.

It's definitely back to being cold here in Cincinnati. I admit, I was starting to really enjoy having the temperature above 20 degrees. Ah well... It just gives me more of an excuse to stay inside and create!

Speaking of creating, here is what's on my worktable today: patinas!

...Specifically, I've been trying out Vintaj Patinas on some buttons I picked up at my local crafty thrift store. (Side note: I really do need to blog about that store one of these days... it's called Scrap It Up, and it's amazing. *grin*) 

The buttons in question are plastic--and, when I bought them, I realized that some of them have been melted a little. Perfect, I figured, for some experimentation! Above, you can see some of the results of my efforts. (I even thought to include a button for Before and After.) What I'm going to do with the finished buttons, I'm not sure... but it certainly is fun to play! :)

So, there you go... That's what I'm up to: playing around, as well as plotting out all my projects for this month. 

Thanks so much for stopping by today... Have a wonderful week, everyone!

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Pretty Palettes - February Reveal

It's Pretty Palette Time!

Looking back, I realize that I haven't really posted a lot of in-process photos this month... Truth be told, I haven't had a large number of actual projects that I've been working on. I've been doing a lot of technique-learning... which, while awesome, isn't exactly photogenic.

However! One of the things that I do have to show for myself is what I made for this month's Pretty Palette... and today I get to share it with you!

Here is the palette that was chosen for this month:

...And here is what I made!

Yep! I went Full Tassel.


You know, two large tassels in one month... no wonder I haven't really had the time to work on anything else!

About the construction: 
This necklace actually includes a vast array of materials. From the top of the tassel down, we have vintage acrylic, coral, imperial jasper, crackle agate, glass, Czech glass, wood, shell, dyed howlite, and synthetic malachite. Since all of those materials are pretty heavy together, I chose to use a lightweight acrylic focal bead--and I love the fact that the black detailing echoes the dark striping on the malachite.

I really like the way that these colors look together... They are bright and summery--a lovely contrast to the lingering winter weather we've been having. :)

Oh! And for fun, I made a bonus pair of earrings:

...And I even managed to include tassels in them as well. :)

So, there you go! Those are the pieces that I made for this month's Pretty Palettes challenge. Thanks so much for stopping by today to see what I've been up to!

Have a lovely day, everyone!

Friday, February 22, 2019

Wonder and Whimsy Monthly Challenge - February Reveal

It's a little late, but here it is: my reveal for this month's Wonder and Whimsy Monthly Challenge! Hurray!

As a little reminder, for this challenge I decided that I wanted to make jewelry based on the newly renovated and reopened rotunda of the Cincinnati Museum Center.

All in all, I made two necklaces for this theme. I had actually meant to make more, but I'm still quite happy with what I was able to make.

...And, without further ado, here are the finished necklaces! 

Necklace #1

This first necklace was inspired by the above picture that I took of the rotunda. Specifically, I was inspired by the combination of gold and silver, as well as the layers of rings. After playing around a little with those ideas, this is what I came up with:

The focal was made using layers: a gold wavy disc, a golden orange shell circle, and a silvertone rondelle... I chose to construct it the way that I did to best resemble the circular layers of the rotunda.

The necklace itself is knotted on waxed linen, and features a combination of glass and metal. Color-wise, I used a mix of gold and silver, with touches of topaz and orange--again, layered, to resemble the concentric circles of the inspiration. 

The overall necklace is a rather abstract interpretation of the inspiration picture... and, honestly, I'm exceedingly happy with how it turned out. Pictures don't quite capture how luxurious this necklace looks in the light... It is an interesting combination of modern simplicity and ancient decadence, and looks like something that you could buy at a Museum Store... which, I think, is very fitting for this challenge! :)

Necklace #2

For this second necklace, I decided to use this picture as my inspiration. It's similar to the previous one, but adds a bit of the mural as well... and, by that, I mean that it adds blue. :)

Oh, and I couldn't help myself... for this necklace, I decided to go Full Tassel.

You see, when I was planning for this challenge, I really wanted to represent the layers of the rotunda with the different layers of a giant tassel: the orange and yellow and gold mixed with lines of silver, eventually leading down to a shock of blue. And so, that's just what I did.

About the materials: 
The focal bead is an artisan made lampwork bead (sadly, artist is unknown). The large blue rounds are lapis lazuli and the blue bicones are vintage paper beads (not made by me).  The other beads are a combination of shell and glass, and the metal beads are all silver plated. I chose the materials to be as close to the picture as possible--I truly wanted to capture what it's like to enter the Cincinnati Museum Center and look up.

When making tassel necklaces, I usually like having the colors blend into each other... It was fun having them be so strongly separated by the silver beads--just like the concentric rings of the rotunda.

All in all, I'm extremely happy with how this necklace turned out. It's always fun taking colors that I usually don't pair together and still getting them to work. Getting the hues just right so that they work and still match the inspiration... well, all I can say is: hurray for color theory! :)

...And, what can I say? I like having an excuse to make a giant tassel necklace. 

Here is one more comparison for you:

So, there you go! Those are the necklaces that I made for this month's challenge. I really enjoyed working with this challenge... I hope you enjoyed seeing what I made!

Thanks so much for stopping by today... Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Wednesday's Worktable... ish


Hi, everyone!

I don't have any pictures to share today, sadly. Still, I promise I am working madly behind the scenes--working on Friday's reveal, working on learning more wire techniques, working on a reveal for next week. It's just that the lack of time and lack of good light (there has been sooooo much rain) has made it difficult for me to get any good pictures of the process. Sorry!

Thanks so much for stopping by today... I should have an actual entry, with actual substance, posted soon.

Until then, have a wonderful day, everyone!