Sunday, February 28, 2010

Seedling Necklace

I was recently given a handful of opal doublets. I tend to be drawn to boulder opals, Mexican fire opals in matrix, pink and blue peruvian general I'm not a huge fan of the flash and fire.

In general.

Originally I drew this as a ring, but as I was putting it together it seemed for fitting as a necklace. And I love wee little necklaces.

The opal is 8x10, to give you an idea for size. It's a luminous pool of watery blues and greens and looks like a drop of the Caribbean!

The chain is wire-wrapped with 4 moonstone beads up by the clasp.

I will be listing it in the shop later this evening.
Until then, I have custom orders to work on. And barn smell to wash off (barn smell is not equal to horse smell. Believe me, there is a huge difference when you've spent 3 hours in a dirty barn cleaning stalls vs. playing with ponies).

Friday, February 26, 2010

With hands that smell like gasoline

I'm getting restless
(these cubicle walls can only hold a girl for so long).


Saturday, February 20, 2010

Sonora Songs

I just sat down for the first time today and it immediately sunk in that I am exhausted. I suppose a 2 1/2 hour barn shift, riding 2 horses, cleaning, making lunch, and photographing stuff can do that to you.

So, let's just get right down to it. Here are my 3 finished pieces from the week - 2 items for the shop and a custom job. I have a handful of half-finished stuff that will hopefully debut soon!

Nevada Necklace:
(Nevada turquoise -- purchased on my trip to Tucson! + sterling silver. And a handmade toggle clasp.)


Wildhorse (magnesite + hematite),/sterling ring, size 6.25:


Those 2 pretties will make their way to the shop tomorrow at some point.

Custom job - She had this stone on another necklace but wanted it silver-fied and updated. Since it had a hole drilled into it, I wire wrapped the bail and did a prong setting for the stone for aesthetics. It's been aaaages since I've prong set something, so I'm glad it was successful!

This was last nights dinner:

Homemade hummus! Yes, that's about half of it missing. As you can see I've been eating it like it's going out of style.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Sisu installment #2

Let's start at the beginning.

Last year my art partner in crime/bfffff/gaugin to my van gogh/degas to my cassatt/boris to my natasha Joe asked me to make a ring for his mom. I pretty much had free reign on the project and had a lot of fun making it. This was the result:

His mom liked it so much that she contacted me a couple of months later about a commission of 3 wrist pieces stamped with the Finnish word "sisu." She is officially the most patient lady ever as this was in JULY and I didn't finish the first bracelet (for her niece) until right before Christmas:

The colors of the stones didn't come through, but the larger one is a garnet and the smaller one citrine.

Right before I left for AZ I finished up Joe's bracelet, the 2nd one in the series.
Here they are!

I am so proud of these pieces. They have been the most enjoyable commissions yet as she allowed me to do whatever I wanted (art kid moms are the BEST, yo). I LOVE bracelets. I love making them, I love wearing them. These both have turned out to be pieces that I really see myself in. This is what my work is about.

I'm currently working away on the 3rd and hope to have it to her by the end of the month!

(Joe and Jessi 2 winters ago)

Friday, February 12, 2010


I am drinking my tea just the way I like it: milky and a little sweet.

I ran into a slight problem last night.

The pickle is missing.

This is what happens when you go out of town for a week, apparently. Crockpots of chemicals just get up and walk away. (I'm completely serious. I have no idea where my pickle is.)

The photo up top shows my sweet little cubes of raw diamonds. I don't have a concrete plan for them, other than they will each likely be made into rings. Maybe one or two as pendant accents. I'm kind of itching for some high karat gold, but have you SEEN gold prices? Ridic.

Oh, I found the bird:

the current stone pile:
wild horse (magnesite + hematite)
Nevada turquoise
Nevada boulder turquoise
Peruvian pink opal
-- All from Tucson, yeah! The opal is last in the bunch, as I left all of my sketches for the new stones in Arizona and won't have them back for another week or so. I really need to learn to keep everything in one notebook instead of reaching for the closest piece of paper (in this case, a used envelope) to draw on. The disorganization makes my head spin. I have 4 notebooks I pick up at random that are filled with jewelry designs, and scraps of paper I frequently lose with more. OH DEAR.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Needle Felting

Tonight I'll finally get to settle down at my bench and start on the pieces inspired by my trip as well as the yummy stones I picked up in Tucson.

Nomnomnom. Cabby love.

But, for now let's take a moment to rewind to my trip (my skin's memory has already forgotten what it feels like to have sun warming it instead of wind burning it). While I was down in AZ, my hands were busy doing things other than jewelry.

I don't sit still well.

Since fire and chemicals aren't airport friendly, I brought along a bag of felt and a needle instead. I've been wanting to needle felt for sometime, but between the horses and jewelry, it's never the "right" time. But in Arizona it was. Just perfect, in fact.

These are the little guys I whipped up while I was there. I have visions of many more, maybe someday I can find a spot of time for it again.

The fishes, Lyle & Belinda:
Dino (Die-no):
The spotted pony:
Stego (probably my favorite):

It seems the bird escaped this edited bunch of photos. Hmph!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Hello from the desert

Tomorrow is my last full day here.

My desert vacation has been a treat, filled with mountain passes, lots of sun, lots of people, and lots of shiny things.
Not to mention good mead, good beer, good conversation, and happy reunions. These little southwest towns are filled with misfits -- the best people watching I've had in some time. Just a quick chat is an experience, to be sure.

On Monday I head back to the frozen north, where I hope it won't be quite so frozen as when I left (-2). I haven't had the courage to check it quite yet.

The gem show was crazy. I wish I could be more eloquent, but it was crazy. It left me exhausted and invigorated all at once.

I found some lovely stones to bring back and I'm pleased with my little stash. Maybe someday this operation will be large enough for me to justify greater purchases, but for now it's the experience. I met a lot of people, jewelers and dealers alike. Throw in some lapidaries for good measure. I saw opals for $85,000. I bought my first raw diamonds. I watched tool demos and played at the Rio show. I met some more people. I dreamed of having money to go to Tuscany for that chasing and repousse workshop...maybe someday.

Until then, I'm enjoying my last few moments in the desert. I smell a bonfire calling my name, so I leave you with these --