Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Working On Photography

First of all, thank you all for your kind words about my dog. I have always seemed to draw stray and abandoned dogs to me. Maybe that's my job, to give them some love and kindness that they never had before. The old dog was terrified of us when he first came here, I think he had been badly abused, but I just fed him and talked to him until he decided I was okay. I guess the last 2 years probably were his best, and I'm glad I had him.

On to lighter things. I've been working on my photography lately, because I really suck at that part of selling jewelry. I really need a tripod, and that's what I'm buying next.

These are all new or reworked pieces I've been doing the last few days. I like the rock background and the bumblebee cypress board. Bumblebee Cypress is a cypress tree that has been bored into by the big, black and yellow woodcutting bumblebees. When the tree is sliced into boards, there are these really cool holes and grooves in it. I think it makes a pretty background. I don't like just plain white backgrounds. They probably show off the jewelry more, but to me, it's just boring.

The first ring is one I've been wanting to try, and I finally did. I had a textured sterling silver band that I did a while back. it didn't sell so I reworked it! I layed it on my anvil, and used a big punch from my dapping set to flare the edge. Luckily I remembered to add the spinner ring before I did both sides. That's the type of thing I will do! I have a lot of DUH! moments in jewelry making! LOL I love it and it wears wonderfully.

The second pic is a set of stacking rings that I made from 14g sterling wire. I hammered them slightly on my ring mandrel to give them some flat edges to reflect light better. I added a brass and a copper ring for color contrast. These wear great, too.

The next pic is the night and day sterling earrings I did a while back. I took off the sodalite stones and added these to textured and domed copper discs. The texture is made by hammering the disc on an old file . It makes a cool, subtle, cross hatch pattern. I like these better since the rework.

The fourth photo is a teeny, tiny pair or sterling and copper earrings. The largest disc is only 7/16" wide. I used a couple of nail set punches to make the little circles, and the back end of a removeable screwdriver bit to stamp the silver.

The last pair are brass, copper, and sterling pendulums. The discs are riveted to the 14g sterling wire with a brass rivet.

Whew!! That's a lot!

I have some new things going this morning so I better get to work.

Have a great week~

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Guardian Angel

This is some more of the brass stampings I bought. It's a pair of angel wings, and a halo I made from brass wire. I hammered the halo to flatten it, then soldered it onto each wing. I added sterling silver chain and a handmade clasp.

Last night one of our dogs was hit by a car and killed. It's so sad. The person didn't stop, but I don't even expect them to anymore. It was the old black dog that just showed up here about 2 years ago. He was a stray, but we had grown to love him. I was really glad that it killed him instantly, and he didn't suffer. I can't stand that. I guess he's the reason angels were on my mind. Man, loving sure does hurt sometimes.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Simple Rings

Here are a couple of simple sterling silver and copper rings that I made.
The first is a 1/4" wide band that overlaps, and is held with a copper rivet.
The secong is a 1/4" band with a small copper washer on top. I lined the copper with silver so it won't turn the wearer green. I used a ball pein to texture the bands, and the copper was hammered on my old hunk of rust-pitted iron.
i'm not sure why I'm bothering actually. It seems that sales for me have dried up right now on Etsy. I was selling a lot, but now, nothing. Oh well, I guess that's how it goes!
I got new thick 16g copper sheet from Monsterslayer today, but I didn't work. I worked all day yesterday, but today I just didn't feel like it. That's unusual for me. I usually work some everyday.
I'm getting very frustrated with the people I bought my building from. It was supposed to be here around the 14th, then it was the first part of this week. I haven't heard from them, so I guess I'll call again tomorrow. If they don't come on, I'll get my money back, and get one somewhere else. I'm not picky about which business gets the dough! I just want my studio!
I'm thinking seriously about quitting smoking. I've tried before (several times), but it only lasted about 6 weeks. They are a horrible addiction, and I have a love-hate relationship with them! I really need to quit. My husband doesn't smoke, and he thinks you just lay them down and stop! It works for a few people, but not me! The patch really helps, so I guess that's what I'll get. I'm not a nice person when I really want a smoke, so it will probably not be fun around here! I'll keep you all updated, but don't expect miracles! LOL
Have a great Friday~

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


I love butterflies for a specific reason. Monday was the 5th anniversary of the death of my step-father. He was hit by a train while riding a 4-wheeler on the tracks. It was a stupid thing to do, but he paid for it with his life.

A few days after the funeral, my mom found a butterfly chrysalis on one of the flower arrangement on his grave. One day, later on, it was open and the butterfly was gone.

At Christmas, I was looking for gifts in an antique shop downtown. I had never been there before, but something told me to go in. I found a little sterling silver bell necklace with a butterfly on the bell. It was okay, but the card that came with it made me buy it for my Mom. This is basically what it said: The caterpillar's non-stop eating and excremating reminds us of normal earthly life where people are often preoccupied with taking care of their physical needs. The chrysalis or cocoon resembles the tomb and the butterfly represents the resurrection into a new and glorious life free of material concerns and restrictions.

My mom said that it was her present from John, that he just made me buy it. I agree. It was his way of letting her know that he was okay.

That is why I adore the butterfly.

The photos are a ring I made with one of my brass charms and sterling silver wire, and the necklace is a larger butterfly on copper, with tiny brass flowers for the bail.

Have a good week~

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A Good Day

I've had a pretty busy day. I made several pairs of earrings, 2 new rings, and a butterfly pendant. I haven't gotten pics of everything yet, so I'll show what I have.

The small earrings are just copper washers that I textured and antiqued. I added turquoise to these. They hang about 1 1/4". These I will wear!

I made 7 pairs of these with different stones, in different sizes. I just didn't get them all listed on Etsy today. I used Barrie Edwards earwire design, and I love it! They are so simple to do, and they don't roll out of your ears.

The HUGE earrings are textured brass with a copper ring on top. They are 2 1/4" wide, but I like them. They are just not for me.

The dragonfly necklace is one I did several days ago. It's 1 1/4" wide, so it's a bit bigger than the sterling one. I used one of my new larger dragonflies. It's called Dragonfly Sunset, because the coppery sheen reminds me of sunset light. Man, I love these little brass stampings!

In other news, my hubby has gone back offshore, so I'll be able to get some things made for my store. I have a showcase tomorrow and I really need to get the new stuff listed as early as possible.

Have a good Wednesday!~

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

More Dragonflies

These little dragonflies are so much FUN! And so addictive!

I made a couple of pendants to go with my ring. They are both sterling silver. The first one has a tiny red jasper cab in the corner, and man, that was a pain to do! My fingers felt like they were GIANT, and they were in the way, but I finally got it! The bail is one I saw in Art Jewelry Magazine, and I thought it would look good on this. I made the tiny leaf and soldered it to the 20g wire. The other end, that is on the back, is coiled in a circle and soldered on. It's not very big, because the dragonfly is little. It's 1 3/8"x3/4", including the bail.

The second one is a 1" circle. I made the bail on this one with 24g silver sheet that I cut and soldered into a tube.

I really like them both. I adore dragonflies and butterflies. I just got more this morning, so I'll be making more later.

Happy Hump Day!~

Monday, July 14, 2008

My New Favorite Ring

Cheryl, over at J.A.N. made a wide band ring with a brass dragonfly on it, and I loved it so much I had to make one!

Wide bands tend to get stuck on my fat fingers, so I just sweat soldered the tiny brass dragonfly to a piece of 24g sterling, then made a splint shank for it. It is extra comfortable, and I adore it!

These little dragonflies are addictive! I'm almost finished with a matching pendant, and I love it, too! I see earrings, bracelets, pendants, and rings all done with small brass stampings! I have butterflies on their way to me now. I can't wait to get them.

I hope you all had a fabulous weekend! "See" you later~

Saturday, July 12, 2008

It's Getting Easier...

I set another stone, and it went a little better this time! YAY! I used Lisa's advice and instead of cutting the bezel wire to fit the stone, I added a few bits of scrap metal under the stone to bring it up to the right height. I also drilled a couple of small holes in the back of the bezel so I could test fit the stone and still remove it. I'm still experimenting, but it's getting easier everytime. Thank goodness!

This is another necklace in my Geometry series. It's the first time I've done a series, too! I don't normally think in series. I love trying new things all the time, and that's not always good for business. I really need to be replacing the things I've sold, because they sold! I do keep my men's bracelets done all the time. I sell a LOT of those! I also sell quite a few of the heart necklaces, and I now make them in sterling silver. That's what I'm doing now, so I guess I better get busy!

Have a great weekend!~

Sunday, July 6, 2008

A Learning Experience

I made this ring yesterday. I like it, but it was a pain in the butt! I made the bezel to deep so it was really hard to smooth out. I have dividers, and I should have used them, but the stone was pretty thick, so I didn't. Big mistake! I won't do that again. It still looks good, but it took a lot of filing.

I would pay good money for a teacher! It would be nice to have someone here showing me what to do. But that's not likely to happen, so I'll just keep experimenting.

I need new tools! I don't have any stone setting tools, so I have to invent them from things around the house. I used the hex end of a long, removable screwdriver bit to push the bezel over. It's what I had. I found a good sized nail today, and I'm going to modify it to be a pusher! But I'll be tool shopping, too! YAY! I love to buy new tools.

I had a crappy day yesterday. I've had problems with the truck, and I thought I had it fixed. NOT! I went to town yesterday, and it wouldn't start. It's still sitting downtown, and I don't much care. If I can get it back home, that's where it will stay. Once I get stranded a few times, I'm pretty much through with the vehicle! I'll drive the Ford my Dad gave me. I'm going to the salvage yard tomorrow and get a knock sensor plug, because that's what broke, and I can't get that at the parts place. I like the wrecking yard though. I always find cool stuff!

I hope everybody else had a good weekend! Later~

Friday, July 4, 2008

I can't stop!!

I'm still making earrings, and I can't seem to stop! It's something I didn't always make because I just never liked them. I have even started wearing them! LOL

These are made from copper washers that I got at Harbor Freight. I got a box full of different sizes and they are so cool! You don't have to cut them out and try to match them up. It's done for you! YAY!!! I just add my own texture, drill a hole or two, and make earrings!

The first pair is Black Gold Amazonite, and the second it Mahogany Obsidian. I have also developed a new love for beads. Great! Something else to spend money on! LOL I seem to use all my profit from jewelry making for more supplies for jewelry making. There's always something I want!

Speaking of...I just ordered a square ring mandrel and a ring clamp. It took me 3 days to find one cheap enough! I always hunt for the cheapest websites for my tools. I don't buy the expensive brand names, unless I find them cheap! LOL I got Lindstrom flush cutters for half price on Ebay, and I dearly love them. They would have been worth the full price. Anyway, I found this:. They have some design stamps, too, and they are super cheap, BUT they don't have pictures of what the stamps are! I'm waiting on a reply from them about how to see the designs. It's kind of hard to buy a stamp when you don't know what it is! If I find out how to see them, I'll let you all know.

Well, I've rambled on enough. You all enjoy the 4th!~

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Amazon Warrior Earrings

These are small compared to some of my earrings! The biggest disc is 5/8", because I used the disc cutter, and that's the biggest hole! I got tired of cutting circles by hand. Not fun!

They are textured copper, brass, and nickle silver on handmade sterling earwires. I added a little vintage copper bead to the earwires. They match my Copper Cuff Rings and I really like them. I hope you do, too!

I haven't been making a lot of new stuff, because I've been making a lot of old stuff! LOL I don't mind, though. I'm just replacing sold items. Yippeeee!!!!

You all have a wonderful 4th, and a fantastic weekend~