Archives for February 2017

Stacking Rings

stacking rings

I love the look of stacking rings.  They also help you make the statement you want to make.  One day wear one and another day three. They offer great flexibility to express your style the way you want to.  I made these anticlastic rings awhile back.  I recently have been working on another stackable set.  Do you like stackable rings?  Leave me a comment.

creating the desert in glass and metal

 

Lampwork Bead Bangle Bracelet

bangle bracelet

Bangle Bracelets

A bangle bracelet is a rigid bracelet.  Most of the time the bracelet does not have a clasp and just slips over the hand.

The bracelet pictured above is an oldy but goody design of mine.  Lampworked beads and cast silver beads are strung on a wire and finished with a swan clasp.  The bracelet is rigid but the clasp helps when putting it on.

These particular glass beads I made for this bracelet are very organic in shape.  I call them my desert Venetian beads because I usually make them with gold or silver foil which has been covered with transparent glass like the picture of Venetian beads below.

Venetian beads

My beads definitely have a more earthy feel.

But I just had a client that wanted a splash of dichroic glass in that shape instead of foil so I made the beads in the bracelet above.  I think you can see the splashes of pink and purple tucked underneath a transparent brown glass.  I’m very happy with how they turned out.  So the bracelet is off to a new home tomorrow.

creating the desert in glass and metal

 

Handmade Chain with Beads

handmade chain

I am putting together a new collection.

It will use my glass beads, but also more metal in the designs.

– sterling silver and copper and bronze, and a little gold.  

So I am making prototypes now which helps me visualize the pieces and see where adjustments need to happen.  This necklace has stations of glass beads between lengths of chain.  

The jump rings are twisted wire and soldered.  (lots of work)

I really like the look, but and also going to bezel set a bead in silver for the station instead of the wrapping.  

So much fun….

creating the desert in glass and metal

Prototype

prototype

Sometimes I create a piece in brass or copper before I make it in silver.  

Valentine’s Day

Will you celebrate Valentine’s Day with flowers, chocolates, and cards? 

Do you have any special jewelry that you like to wear for Valentine’s Day?

February 14th is Valentine’s day and has become known as the holiday of romantic love.  Do you know why?

History

The history of Valentine’s day is rooted in the ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia, a fertility celebration commemorated annually on February 15. Later it was believed that Valentine’s Day was a day to honor the priest – St. Valentine – who secretly married young couples and fell out of favor with the Roman Emperor Claudius II who believed that young men made better soldiers if they were not married.
It was not until the 14th century that this Christian feast day became definitively associated with love. According to UCLA medieval scholar Henry Ansgar Kelly, author of Chaucer and the Cult of Saint Valentine, it was Chaucer who first linked St. Valentine’s Day with romance.

In 1381, Chaucer composed a poem in honor of the engagement between England’s Richard II and Anne of Bohemia. As was the poetic tradition, Chaucer associated the occasion with a feast day. In “The Parliament of Fowls,” the royal engagement, the mating season of birds, and St. Valentine’s Day are linked:

Geoffrey Chaucer (ca. 1343-1400)
from The Parliament of Fowls
A garden saw I, full of blossomy boughs
Upon a river, in a green mead,
There as sweetness evermore enough is,
With flowers white, blue, yellow, and red,
And cold well-streams, nothing dead,
That swimming full of small fishes light,
With fins red and scales silver bright.
On every bough the birds heard I sing,
With voice of angels in their harmony;
Some busied themselves birds forth to bring;
The little coneys to here play did hie.
And further all about I could see
The dread filled roe, the buck, the hart and hind,
Squirrels, and beasts small of gentle kind.
Of instruments of strings in accord
Heard I so play a ravishing sweetness,
That God, that maker is of all and lord,
Had heard never better, as I guess.
Therewith a wind, scarcely it might be less,
Made in the leaves green a noise soft
Accordant to the fowls’ song aloft.
Th’air of that place so a-temperate was
That never was grievance of hot nor cold.
There wax also every wholesome spice and grass;
No man may there wax sick nor old;
Yet was there joy more a thousandfold
Than man can tell; never would it be night,
But always clear day to any man’s sight.

My Valentine’s Day

So what do I have planned for Valentine’s Day?

Valentine's Day

I think I will start the day by making these waffles.

 I will adorn myself with these great earrings  (made several years ago)

Valentine's Day

And then wait for the arrival of Logan  (Grandbaby #1)

creating the desert in glass and metal

Earrings – what kind do you like to wear?

sterling silver earrings

A new style of earrings I’m working on

Earrings as Adornment

Did you know that the original purpose for an earring was probably protection? But ears are also perfect to hold an ornament. Ears can be pierced – sometimes in many places. Ears are all shapes and sizes and can be adorned with a variety of shapes and materials. It is very seductive to wear an earring.
Of all the different kinds of jewelry worn by men and women, none has as much controversy and variety of symbolism as earrings. At times, only men wore them. At other times, they were only acceptable to be worn by women. In some cultures, they are a sign of wealth, and in others a sign of slavery, prostitution or thievery.

Regardless of who wears them, earrings are an excellent way to express oneself, and a fashionable pair that is well-designed can truly make a statement.

So what kind of earring do you like to wear?  
I prefer a small dangle earring.  
But I have been wearing my hair a little longer so I have gotten bold and my earrings are getting longer.

The photo on the top is a new design and I like them because they are formed with a cold connection.  The next photo shows a pair of earrings I made in a class at the Bead and Button Show.

sterling silver earrings

creating the desert in glass and metal

Do you remember the circle pin?

circle pin

The Circle Pin

Are you old enough to remember them?

I was recently asked what was my first memory of a special piece of jewelry.  And that question brought back memories of the circle pin I wore when I was 15.

The circle pin is a classic piece of jewelry that was particularly popular in the 1950’s and 60’s and often worn on a cardigan or blouse. There are lots of different stories about the pins and their significance. It is said that they had different meanings depending on the pin style and where it was worn. 

“Circle Pins meant you were a virgin.” And you wore them on the left.

“Circle Pins also symbolize undying love.”  
The story is that this kind of pin was given by a guy to a girl in the 50’s to show that they were dating. The round shape symbolizes eternity. 

“For friendship.”
Girls would exchange matching pins to show friendship. Sometimes if they were all in the same sorority, club or school group, girls would all wear matching pins to show membership and belonging.

I was in a sorority in high school we wore our circle pins on our blazers.

(I’m in the top row third from the left)

circle pins on blazers

I also received a circle pin from a boyfriend.  

So yes…  fond memories of my first piece of memorable jewelry

Broth – for what ails you

A Cleansing Broth 

(compliments of Martha Stewart)

I recently made this broth and sipped on it all day long.  Very good for the soul and the body

Ingredients

  • 6 chopped carrots
  • 1/2 head chopped celery
  • 1 halved head garlic
  • 2 chopped large sweet potatoes
  • 12 cups water
  • 4 cups spinach
  • 1 bunch fresh parsley
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. In a large pot, cover onion, carrots, celery, garlic, and sweet potatoes with water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes. Add spinach and parsley and simmer 5 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper. Strain liquid; discard vegetables.