Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Birds Movie Inspired Jewelry Photoshoot

By on Sunday, October 31, 2010 4 Comments

What could be more appropriate on Halloween than a little horror inspired photoshoot? This one is based on an old Alfred Hitchcock movie, The Birds. The story is about birds viciously attacking people in a small US coastal town. The film subject is so far removed from jewelry I would never have thought it could be the inspiration behind this unusual bling photo shoot. Ingenious, I say.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Make This Awesome Spirograph Inspired String Art Necklace

By on Saturday, October 30, 2010 4 Comments

Some of you may not remember the feature designer post I did quite a while ago about Childhood Toy and Game inspired jewelry.

If you check it out, you will see a featured designer whose creations are based on spirographs. Remember those?  I had one as a child.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Herkimer Diamond Filtered Crystal Head Vodka

By on Friday, October 29, 2010 4 Comments

Remember Dan Aykroyd of the Ghostbusters? The Canadian comic, actor, musician, UFO believer and screenwriter is also a winemaker using "snob-free grapes" (Dan Aykroyd Wines).

He is part owner of Diamond Estates Wines in Canada which produces the Crystal Head Vodka. The amazing skull bottle alone is worth keeping, never mind the vodka! It's made by Bruni Glass in Italy.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Multi-Gemstone Necklace - Chiastolite, Dream Agate, Turquoise Jasper and Turquoise

By on Thursday, October 28, 2010 1 Comments

We sometimes find women at the same party or workshop choose the same gemstones or beads. It's because they all inspire each other. Yvonne picked turquoise and oval dream agate like her friend Sue. But unlike Sue's design,Yvonne added the round chiastolite known as the cross stone (see my past post link below) and oval turquoise jasper.

Safety Pin Jewelry and Body Art

By on Thursday, October 28, 2010 2 Comments

Safety Pin Bling
Part 2 of 2

Safety pin jewelry for men
Safety pins in jewelry designs are not a new idea. Think Tom Binns and you'll know what I mean. But safety pins by themselves and geared for just men turned up in a spectacular photo shoot recently. The punk style spread entitled ‘Flex Your Head appeared in the Japanese magazine, SENSE's July 2010 issue.

The photographer Junji Hata and the fashion director Tomiki Sukezane tried to create a tough look with the black and white pictures and black clothes. But somehow I found the pompadour hairstyles to be a distraction from the macho image. Perhaps had I grown up in the 1950's, my view might be different!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Safety Pin Jewelry Tutorials

By on Wednesday, October 27, 2010 1 Comments

The humble safety pin is indispensable. I don't know about you but I carry one in my purse in case I lose a button or a hem comes undone. Fibulae (singular : fibula) and penannular ancient brooches are the original versions of the safety pin. They were worn for hundreds of years as a clothing fastener and for cloaks. They, like the modern safety pin, were far more secure than just a straight pin.

The modern safety pin was invented and patented in 1849 by the prolific American inventor, Walter Hunt. I'll bet he never once thought the safety pin could be turned into jewelry!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Awesome Found Objects Jewelry Designs by Penelope Weinstein

By on Tuesday, October 26, 2010 1 Comments

Designing with found objects  takes a certain kind of artisan. It`s not just the technical ability to put the jewelry piece together but the vision to see the potential in a whole bunch of eclectic material.

Such an artisan is Penelope Weinstein whose work you can see on Gallery 5`s Wearable Art site. Needless to say, all her pieces are one of a kind. This wonderful necklace on the right is her mixed fiber, beads and antique wooden jig saw puzzle necklace.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Creative Paper Jewelry Book Giveaway - New Winner!

By on Monday, October 25, 2010 0 Comments

I have redrawn a new winner for the Creative Paper Jewelry Book I wrote about a couple of weeks ago! While it was one reader's loss, it is another's gain.

So this time picked Carol W!! Congratulations and happy creating!

For more tutorials check out my Jewelry Making Tips

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Book Review and Giveaway - Creative Crochet Jewelry

By on Monday, October 25, 2010 48 Comments

I'm a big fan of wire crochet jewelry but one can also do the same with yarn. One of the finest yarn and metallic thread jewelry crochet artisans has to be Esther Zadock. The editors at Sixth Spring Books just sent me her new book, Creative Crochet Jewelry for review with a spare copy up for grabs!

Israeli based Esther learned to crochet from when she was a young girl. She grew up to be a beadaholic whose work has been sold worldwide and exhibited in museums.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Out Of This World Jewelry

By on Sunday, October 24, 2010 3 Comments

Galactic Inspirations
A nebula is an interstellar cloud of dust and gases. Nebulae are often places where such matter cluster together to form large masses which in turn become stars.

The Nebula Collection by Drown is sure to leave you starry eyed. These digital print designs are handmade using acrylic, resin, onyx and black metal. The designer behind the collection is Alicia Hannah Naomi who is located in Melbourne, Australia.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

How to Make Halloween Jewelry

By on Saturday, October 23, 2010 0 Comments

Spooky Inspirations
Part 2 of 2
It`s always fun to at least put on a pair of Halloween earrings. The cool Friendly Ghost earrings tutorial from Beadaholique aren`t really that spooky but they sure will be noticed at the office! A really quick project.Thanks to reader Beryl for the tip!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Churchyard Human Bone Jewelry Collection

By on Friday, October 22, 2010 8 Comments

Spooky Inspirations
Part 1 of 2

Well, Halloween is almost upon us. So it's time for a very creepy post. This one is guaranteed to send shivers down your spine.

The Churchyard Human Bone Collection is jewelry made from real human bones - teeth, wrist, feet and finger bones. They are all one of a kind designs because no two bones are exactly alike. The collection is by Sunspot Designs.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

How to Make Bead Woven Necklace Tutorials

By on Thursday, October 21, 2010 3 Comments

 All Info about Jewelry Making site is a good starting places for newbies looking for tutorials.  There are also tons of books and magazines you can either borrow from your local lending library or buy. But thanks to some talented artisans on the internet, there are more tutorials to discover. Here are a few of the latest ones.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

How to Make Bird's Nest Jewelry

By on Wednesday, October 20, 2010 13 Comments

Tweet! Tweet!
Part 3 of 3
Many wire artisans make fun and funky bird's nest earrings and pendants. They are easy to make and very forgiving if you aren't a strong wire worker.

There are different ways to wrap and weave the wire so be sure to check out these tutorials and follow the suggestions by the instructors.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Noemiah's Feather Jewelry

By on Tuesday, October 19, 2010 4 Comments

Tweet! Tweet!
Part 2 of 3
Some designers are inspired by a single bead. But fellow Canadian, Noémie starts with a single feather. From there she creates the jewelry you see in her Etsy store called Noémiah. 

She says, "I am inspired by color, texture, shape, length etc.. I then played with asymmetry, line and color contrasts." She clearly does well with her designs as they are sold in several Canadian boutiques and have been featured in magazines and other blogs.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Creative Paper Jewelry Giveaway Book Winner

By on Monday, October 18, 2010 1 Comments

There were actually more entrants for the Creative Paper Jewelry Book Giveaway than I anticipated. Some were already experienced with paper. Others were pleased with the eco aspect of using paper pulp. And yet others were charmed by the alternative approach to paper jewelry.

Two commentators were most altruistic for they wished to win for others. Leslie wanted it for her step-daughter. Jackie for her friend Mary who spends half a year every year for the past 4 years helping Ugandan women with their paper jewelry business. Mary also entered!!

How to Make Feather Jewelry Tutorials

By on Monday, October 18, 2010 1 Comments

Tweet! Tweet!
Part 1 of 3
I've made feather earrings before but haven't really done any more for some years. Feathers are tricky to attach - there are many ways to do so. So here are my handpicked free tutorials from the web to help you integrate feathers into your designs!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

10 Tips to Find Time to Bead

By on Sunday, October 17, 2010 5 Comments

Do you struggle to find time to bead? I often do. So here are my top 10 tips on finding time to do what you enjoy.

Mobilize your home workforce. If you have children, assign them chores. Start them young so they get used to it by the time they become teenagers. Tell them chores build character and they will thank you for it .... much, much later! There is no such thing as a superwoman or superman. You can't do it all so everyone in the family should chip in.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Dream Agate, Turquoise and Mother of Pearl Necklace

By on Saturday, October 16, 2010 1 Comments

Making your own jewelry is the only way you can get exactly what you want and in the combination you like. Just ask Sue who attended a beading party not too long ago. She was able to put together three different gemstones - deep reddish brown dream agate flat ovals, turquoise chips and small brown mother of pearl shell discs.

How to Make a Gem Tote Bag

By on Saturday, October 16, 2010 0 Comments

Sometimes it pays to advertise your wares by wearing your own jewelry designs. How about making a gem tote bag too?  Even if you don't make jewelry to sell, this is a cool gift for a jewelry artisan friend who already knows how to make jewelry!

The gem tote bag tutorial is by Blumenthall Lansing.  It makes use of single hole embellishments called Ka-Jinker Jems which are applied using a special tool. It's a very quick attachment system which doesn't use glue or sewing.

Friday, October 15, 2010

String Yourself a Gold-Plated Pasta Necklace!

By on Friday, October 15, 2010 2 Comments

Kids sometimes string dry pasta jewelry as craft projects. Now grown ups can do it too with the gold-plated Pasta Necklace from ATYPYK! It takes all of 10 minutes to string the necklace together using the supplies which come with the pasta pieces. What a fun idea!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Hammers and Steel Blocks for Jewelry Making

By on Thursday, October 14, 2010 7 Comments

A reader, Kathy in Wisconsin emailed me some time ago to ask a few very good questions. So I thought I would share with you the answers. First some pictures of different types of hammers.

From left to right : household hammer, chasing hammer and a plastic hammer.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Sharply Rising Silver Prices and What to Do About It

By on Wednesday, October 13, 2010 11 Comments

Silver bullion bar 1000oz bottom view / view f... Picture Source AAARRRGGGHH!!! Was that you screaming when you reordered and found out what silver costs now? If it wasn't you, it might well soon be according to the silver price graph below.

It's a huge jump of nearly 30% in the last month or so and it's still going up. The price of silver is now increasing at a rate faster than that of gold!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Urban Don's Evil Eye Jewelry

By on Tuesday, October 12, 2010 8 Comments

One of my recent blog followers is Urban Don on Etsy.  He is a "scavenger" jewelry artisan from Australia who makes his one of a kind steampunk designs from junk metal and obscure findings. His jewelry is so distinctive and eclectic, he proudly says, "Yes, this is mine and yes, it is weird".

What drew my attention was his latest collection which he calls "Masons on Acid" jewelry. It's his take on evil eye, a kind of protection jewelry.  As far as I know, it's a steampunk first.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Book Review and Giveaway - Creative Paper Jewelry

By on Monday, October 11, 2010 35 Comments

Sixth and Spring Books, a division of Soho Publishing, produces some really delightful craft books. They recently sent me this new publication Creative Paper Jewelry: Earrings, Pendants, Beads and Pins for review. There is also an extra copy for one lucky winner!

I know many of you are interested in paper jewelry. But this form of paper jewelry is not like the popular kind of paper beads made by rolling triangular strips of paper or origami.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Art Beads' Colors of Fall Design Partner Challenge

By on Sunday, October 10, 2010 8 Comments

It's been a long break over summer but Art Beads' Design Partner fun is back. I should explain for the benefit of new readers.  I am part of Art Bead's pool of blogging design partners. We are given a theme and a choice of materials to create unique designs for their gallery. The first part of the Colors of Falls Gallery is already up.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Lovely Batik Crochet Necklace Inspiration

By on Saturday, October 09, 2010 7 Comments

I wrote about a batik fabric necklace and jewelry box tutorial quite a while ago. Among the commentators was Allison who hails from North Carolina. She said she loves batik and wondered if she could use the scraps left over from a sewing project. She asked if 1 inch strips could be used and if the edges had to be finished I thought leaving the edges raw would add character.

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Amazing Pearl River Necklace Bridge

By on Friday, October 08, 2010 5 Comments

Designers get their inspiration from many places. Purses masquerade as jewelry. Jewelry fabric prints on fashion runway designs. But this jewelry inspired structure is an engineering first.  The picture shows a proposed Pearl River Necklace bridge to join Hong Kong and Macau. The concept design is an ingenious solution to the problem of how to direct traffic when cars from one place drive on the left and the other place, on the right.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

How to Make Eye Glass Jewelry Tutorials

By on Thursday, October 07, 2010 6 Comments

Clear Views
Part 2 of 2

Not long ago, a reader wrote and asked me if I knew of a way to make a keepsake out of eye glasses as a way of remembering someone dear who had passed away. She said she vaguely remembered a suggestion on the Oprah Winfrey show about grinding down the plastic lenses to reform into beads.

However, artisans do take the whole lens to paint or decorate for jewelry (check out my past post on Extreme creativity - unusual brooches and yesterday's post) which strikes me as an easier idea.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Colorful Eyeglass Lens Pendant Eco Necklaces

By on Wednesday, October 06, 2010 9 Comments

I usually donate my old glasses for reuse through my optometrist. But other artisans have other upcycling ideas. Take Mzz Thang of Fo-Shizzle Design Studios on Artfire (no longer available) for example. Her "Specs Appeal" collection  is delightfully quirky. (She also does other jewelry designs).

She uses all sorts of decorative fabrics. As the eyeglass lenses are plastic, the pendants are lightweight which will appeal to those who don't like anything heavy around their necks.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Bezelform's Wire Wrap Mandrel Giveaway Winner

By on Tuesday, October 05, 2010 4 Comments

A few of you had heard of Bezelform's wire wrapping mandrels before, but many of you haven't. All though were very interested in winning the mini-kit and entered last week's wildly popular giveaway. As Cindy said, "You can't have too many tools, love my tools!"

By far, the largest group were beginner wire work enthusiasts or total newbies. Remember that the templates make the task of wire wrapping cabochons easier! They will not create master wire workers overnight. So practice, practice, practice. If you didn't win this giveaway, and are still gung ho about owning a kit, I recommend the mini-kit first to see if you are going to like wire work. You can always upgrade if you find you love it.

Monday, October 4, 2010

More Awesome Necklace Tutorials from Michaels

By on Monday, October 04, 2010 3 Comments

I wrote the previous post a while a go. Alas, in the intervening time, Michaels completely revamped their site including their jewelry projects so not a single link worked! Thanks Denise for emailing me to let me know. I have updated all the links in that post. (If you are an email subscriber, the links in the original emailed post won't work. Click on the post title to return to the blog.

I should have checked, so in apology and to atone for my error, I went hunting again. Here are some new ones from their updated and trimmed list. The above Black and Ruby Bling Necklace is stunning isn't it?

Awesome Statement Necklace Tutorials from Michaels

By on Monday, October 04, 2010 4 Comments

Did you know Michaels the craft store has hundreds of jewelry projects? Plenty of inspiration and instructions there if you care to go through them. If you are wondering, I did look at them all! Shown here are some of my favorite statement style ones.  (Update : links are no longer available)

The Crystazzi Channel Cascade necklace shown on the right should appeal to those of you who love sparkly crystals!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Chip Fork Necklace Tutorial and the British Chippy

By on Sunday, October 03, 2010 1 Comments

I must admit I chuckled when I saw the chip fork necklace tutorial on Cut Out and Keep! It's DIY and it could be eco if you collect them from British fish and chip takeouts! It's designed by Tatty Devine for Eithne Farry's  new book Lovely Things to Make for Girls of Slender Means.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Book Review - Absolute Beginner's Guide to Stitching Beaded Jewelry

By on Saturday, October 02, 2010 7 Comments

Why, oh why wasn't The Absolute Beginners Guide: Stitching Beaded Jewelry: Everything You Need to Know to Get Started around when I first started beading years ago?

This new release which I just received from Kalmbach Publishing would have saved me endless hours on the internet looking for basic instructions - the books then were too specialized and the projects too involved for a newbie.

It's the perfect "textbook" for learning how to do bead work. Just one handy book to get you started with simpler yet satisfying projects - 27 in all - while tackling 11 basic stitches.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Carlashes - Crystal Eyeliner and Eyelashes for your Car!

By on Friday, October 01, 2010 10 Comments

I first featured Carlashes on my Facebook page much to the amusement of some readers who caught it. One said her sons were appalled. This prompted me to suggest she installed them on her car if she wanted it to remain hers only to drive!

What I didn't know then was the flexible car add-on included crystal eyeliners! Carlashes attach above the headlights of any car with 3M automative trim tape. The cute factor really rises when the eyelashes are applied to cars such as the Volkswagen Beetle, Mini Cooper and Porsche.