Archives for January 2016

Another bracelet

Working on Lots of Projects

I am on a mission in the studio….  teaching myself new techniques and making new jewelry.(and buying the tools to make the projects!!!)  I must have 20 or 30 projects marked in journals that I want to try.  Plus I just finished an online class where I made an awesome “Boho Bracelet”.  But this week I found a step by step tutorial on my desk (while cleaning) for a bracelet called the wavy bracelet that I purchased from Robin Cornelius several months ago.  Robin teaches this project at the Bead and Button Show, but I couldn’t get into her class so I decided to try it from her tutorial.  Anyway, the print out has been sitting on my desk and now that I finished my online class I decided that this week I would work on the wavy bracelet.

the Wavy Bracelet

It’s supposed to be a bangle bracelet, but I mis-measured my silver when I was cutting out the bracelet; so it became a cuff.  And I love it.  I have enough silver for about 5 bracelets so I know what I will be doing over the next few days…  will probably make them bangles and will make them in several sizes.  I set a CZ in this bangle and I love the little glint of bling peaking out.  The patina in the inside of the bracelet is awesome…  what colors!!

wavy bracelet

There are several methods to use to create the fold in the silver.  But I have to say I have been enjoying my vertical vise by Bonnie Doon.

creating the desert in glass and metal

Winter Collection

I have been working on a few of my best selling designs and making them with lampworked beads from the Nevada Silver and Silvered Midnight series.  These beads are from a neutral palette and work well now into spring.  I have started to update my Esty shop with these designs.  Hope you enjoy ….

winter collection

It’s a rainy week in Tucson

Lot’s of rain predicted for Tucson this week.  I think this weather is a result of El Nino.  We get the rain after it leaves California.  We need the rain so I’m not complaining.  Plus it means more time in the studio.  And it’s good for the plants plus I shut my drip system off.

I’m busy “focusing”   – my word to guide me through 2016.   One of the things I am focusing on is health.  So I am easing into some exercising starting with stretching and a little yoga in the morning.  I suffer with sciatic nerve pain every now and then and I have found some great yoga stretches for that.  Feeling good!

I’m pushing myself to get my basic collection finished so I can stock my shops.  Need to focus….  But I am also enrolled in an online class to learn some new metalsmithing techniques.  Waiting on some supplies before I tackle that but the project is really awesome.

Lately I have been making some glass cabochons.  Glass without the hole!!!!  These cabochons are great to use in all sorts of projects.  You can bezel set them with beads for some really cool bead embroidery.  I like to bezel set them in silver.  That means the shape probably has to be perfected with some cold working.  Luckily my jool tool is perfect for this.

As you are shaping the glass you need to leave a small, vertical area on the sides before it begins to taper in. And I like to sand a very small bevel on the lower edge.  The bevel prevents the edge from chipping and it also leaves a small area for solder from the bezel.

Cabs are usually placed in a bezel setting. The bezel, a thin strip of metal, is soldered to the main piece. Hence, you need a little room for the solder. To hold the gem securely, the bezel needs to be bent inward, over the curvature of the stone. The vertical area on the side offers support, without having to bend the bezel too far in. When finished, you want to see mostly the stone. You do not want the bezel to come so far over the edges that it distracts from the gem.

Enough with the words…  picture please…

This is a piece I just finished.  The “stone” in the bezel is a glass cabochon from my silvered obsidian series.  I am calling this piece “Desert Bloom” because it reminds me of a prickly pear pad with bloom….  The camera didn’t capture it but there is some swirled goldstone in the glass…..  love it!


prickly pear

creating the desert in glass and metal

the Collection

I have been working on editing my designs and will soon launch a “Basic Collection” in my online shop.  For winter it will feature 10 pieces that have been best sellers over the years (online and in galleries) as well as 2 or 3 one of a kind pieces.  This “Winter” collection will feature my Nevada Silver lampworked beads as well as my Silvered Obsidian beads – a very neutral palette that can really be worn year round.

Collection Sneak Peak

Here is a pair of earrings from the collection.

14K gold coiled wire caps adorn Nevada Silver lampworked beads on a French wire.

collection 2016

I have been watching Madam Secretary on Netflix lately and I noticed the lovely simple but elegant earring that Tea Leone wears.

Tea Leone earrins

So I redesigned my basic lampwork bead earrings with a coiled wire cap.

They are petite.  Hang just 7/8 ths of an inch.  The bead is approximately 10 – 12mm.

So stay tuned for more…

creating the desert in glass and metal


It’s a New Year

the New Year – planning

I like to spend the last 2 weeks of December broadly mapping out my personal and business plans for the upcoming new year.  This year I accomplished that while nursing a cold; planning out the first 6 months.  And even though I have resolved to add some things to 2016 I usually don’t make resolutions, but instead choose a word to guide me.

the 2016 word is….  Drum-Roll-Please



the center of interest or activity.
“this generation has made the environment a focus of attention”
synonyms: center, focal point, central point, center of attention, hub, pivot, nucleus, heart, core, cornerstone, linchpin, cynosure
“schools are a focus of community life”
the state or quality of having or producing clear visual definition.
“his face is rather out of focus”
synonyms: focal point, point of convergence More
(of a person or their eyes) adapt to the prevailing level of light and become able to see clearly.
“try to focus on a stationary object”
pay particular attention to.
“the study will focus on a number of areas in Wales”


So for the new year I plan to focus on a few things….



January – I’m launching the collection (stay tuned); and will continue learning with a metals class
February – shop the gem and jewelry shows, of course
March – continue learning with a glass class
April and May – enjoy Tucson and focus on production
June – continue learning metals class

So that’s the first half of the year.  Got some great trips planned for the second half.

 I wish you the Happiest New Year ever!


creating the desert in glass and metal