11/30/2014

Quote of the week

If you plan a robbery, especially one like the "Great Lochdubh Salt Robbery", you have to be prepared.

Lachie Jr. (whispering): Dad. Hey. There's a light on. We can't do it with a light on.
Lachlan McCrae: Right. This ... this requires a bit more nerve, all right? All right? Right.
Lachie Jr.: Yeah.
Lachlan McCrae: Stockings.
Lachie Jr. (holding up a pair of long knit stockings): Stockings.
Lachlan McCrae: No! Stockings. Women's stockings! Tights, for God's sake!
Lachie Jr.: I'm not going into a shop asking for women's tights. What would people think? What sick images would flash through their brains?
Lachlan McCrae: Gimme them here! You take that one. Is there holes in them?
Lachie Jr.: Yeah.

I wonder if it would have been a smart move to take off the jackets that have "Mc Crae & Son" on the back, too ... what do you think?



Hamish Macbeth, UK, 1995 - 1997

11/26/2014

Oldies but Goodies - Yellow

The Northern Hemisphere is facing winter, in fact winter has already hit pretty badly in some places. What better to brighten the day a little with the sun color yellow?
Yellow seems to be quite rare in jewelry, at least some of us were somewhat baffled by the idea of having to find something yellow for the Oldies but Goodies Challenge at the Jewelry Artisans Community. What they found, you can see in this thread, but like always here is a sneak peek of what awaits you.




11/25/2014

Decades

This month's JAC blog carnival is about decades. Pick a favorite decade and tell us about it, make something in the style of your favorite decade or even in a favorite style of a not so favorite decade.
The task wasn't as easy at it may sound.

I was born in the 60s and still remember the mod style vividly. So much color! Or how about the classic elegance of the 50s or the rock'n'roll style? Let's be honest, though, I am totally in love with the style of the 20s and 30s. Art Nouveau and Art Deco are fascinating to me, design, architecture and fashion.

After thinking for a while I remembered Charles Rennie Mackintosh, a Scottish architect, designer, water colorist and artist. I had made a little wall hanging for a friend before that had been inspired by his work and featured a font that he developed, part of a chair design of his and the well known Mackintosh rose, and always had wanted to make more in this style.

This is my take on a Mackintosh design, a bead loomed pendant featuring the rose and the buds on a cream background, adorned with a fringe of beads and crystals. I put the pendant on a bronze tone chain for now, but I am thinking about getting a silk cord in a matching purple tone for it.
What do you think?

Mackintosh rose inspired pendant in my Zibbet shop

Please check out the other members' posts, too. I'll add the links as they come in.

The Crafty Chimp
Jewelry Art by Dawn 

P.S. If you want to know more about Mackintosh, visit the page of the Charles Rennie Mackintosh Society.

11/24/2014

11/23/2014

Quote of the week

Today is Clone Day. I know you have never heard of it, but it's a special day for the alien in my life.
Dear alien, this post is for you. Happy Clone Day!

George Fox: Do you seriously expect me to tell the President that an alien has landed, assumed the identity of a dead housepainter from Madison, Wisconsin, and is presently out tolling around the countryside in a hopped-up orange and black 1977 Mustang?


Believe me, stranger things have happened. I know.

Starman, USA, 1984

11/21/2014

Once upon a time ...

... there was a necklace. It was finished, but then the artist saw that the pendant wasn't sitting perfectly, and the necklace got put away for the time being. From time to time it was taken out, but always put back until a better moment would come. The moment didn't come and the necklace lay in a drawer for a long time.

The waiting is over now which kind of makes my other WIPs hope that they have a chance to resurface again, too ;-)


This necklace with the sapphire pendant is crocheted and spool knitted from fine silver wire.
It is available in my Zibbet shop now.

11/19/2014

Oldies but Goodies - Blue

Last Sunday I told you about the importance of color. It's pure coincidence that the last JAC Oldies but Goodies Challenge was all about Sir Lancelot's favorite color blue or is it?
Anyway, I put together some lovely blue items for you and as always there were many more which you can browse here.
What is your favorite color? Who knows, maybe there will be a challenge for you soon?



1 The Crafty Chimp
2 MC Stoneworks
3 RioRita
4 2 Fab Fristers
5 Jewelry Art by Dawn
6 Violetmoon's Corner
7 Cat's Wire

11/17/2014

Interview with the artist - Jay and Linda from Gallery at Kingston

This interview is a little different from all the others. This time we don't have just one artist, but two! Say hello to Jay and Linda. Linda was so nice to answer some of my questions about her and her husband's Gallery at Kingston.

Wood sculpture dachshund

Tell us a little about who you are and where you come from.

We are Jay and Linda Cargill.
We retired to Lake Texoma in Oklahoma in 2009 and thought we would fish our life away. We Love the outdoors and everything there is to nature.
We love to travel and have a 5th wheel we take off in and enjoy all that God has to offer.

What's your craft and how did you get to do it in the first place?

I have always loved to craft and sew, and when we retired, I wanted a separate building just for all my crafting supplies. I have 3 sewing machines and can spend hours out there just being one busy beaver!!
I love to make banners which are quilts with applique pictures put on them. I have made many for Churches to hang on the walls with biblical scenes on them.
My husband discovered that one can only fish so much and became a little bored, and I realized he needed a hobby. I came up with the idea that he try creating some things with wood and created a monster. The first thing he made was a Black Panther, and he did a wonderful job on it, but he does not like to do the finish work! That has become my job, I do all the staining, painting and in most cases make the original patterns.
Needless to say I have very little time to do many of the crafts I used to do!!

Blue crochet scarf

Many of your wood pieces are animals, do you have pets yourself?

We have 3 dogs and we Love animals! Our life rotates around them. They go everywhere with us and are included in just about all of our activities.
Animals are all beautiful creatures and we both enjoy just watching all of them.
We were just drawn to making all the animals we make because they are so beautiful. The tiger is magnificent, the color, the movement and the wonder of that animal.

I think this is one of the most asked questions - what inspires you?

What inspires me, it would have to be all the beauty around me. I did not mention above that I also paint in acrylic and watercolor and I have an eye for colors and shapes. I see things many times that others around me don't observe and appreciate, and it makes me smile.

Tell us a fun thing about yourself.

I never ever look at life as a glass half full!! I am always laughing and enjoying everything I am doing. There is no greater joy than seeing someone smile or laugh out loud.
Jay is just a natural comedian and he always keeps things hopping around at home.

Abstract wood art

Do you do other crafts, if yes, what?

I love to sew, paint, crochet and yes, make jewelry!! I have many other things I want to try on my bucket list!!

Which one of your pieces is your absolute favorite? Which one was the hardest to make and why?

The Lion head is my favorite, there are 179 separate pieces to that project. Each piece was cut out and sanded and put back together again. This process gives each piece we make a lot of depth and texture. It took about 3 weeks to finish this project.

Wood sculpture lion head

The flying eagle was the hardest to make, there were 250 little pieces to that project.

Wood sculpture flying eagle

Is there someone whom you admire and who inspires you?

There are so many truly talented artists out there and they all inspire me. Each and every piece they make is unique in some way. I just love it when something just jumps out at me and really makes me take notice.

If you had free choice of just one supply you can use for your crafts, what would you be dreaming of, no matter how expensive?

This would have to be a Fabric's!! What girl would not like to have an endless supply of materials to create whatever comes to mind? I am dreaming now!!

Burnt orange handbag

Do you sell online, if yes, where can we find you?

You can find us on our website, at our Zibbet shop and at our Etsy shop. We are also on Pinterest.

Famous last words ;-) Is there anything else you want to tell the world out there?

For all artists - believe in yourself and great things will happen!!

Thank you for being here, Linda, and please give our regards to Jay. Keep up the great work!

11/16/2014

Quote of the week

Color is important, we all know that. No matter if it's our walls, our clothing, our jewelry or even our hair color. Did you know, however, that color can be a matter of life or death?

Everyone who wants to cross the Bridge of Death has to answer five questions - three questions! - erm, three questions (I can tell some of you already know where this is going).
First is Lancelot. The bridgekeeper asks him his name, his quest and his favorite color (blue, by the way). No problem. Sir Robin makes a mistake when he thinks he is going to get the same questions, but he fails at the third question and there he goes, right into the Gorge of Eternal Peril. Seriously, would YOU have know the capital of Assyria? Would you?
Next is Sir Galahad.

Bridgekeeper: Stop! What is your name?
Sir Galahad: Sir Galahad of Camelot.
Bridgekeeper: What is your quest?
Sir Galahad: To seek the Grail.
Bridgekeeper: What is your favorite color?
Sir Galahad: Blue! No, yel........... aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!

Ouch.
You better start thinking about your own favorite color. Who knows when you will get to the Bridge of Death? ;-)


Monty Python and The Holy Grail, UK, 1975

11/13/2014

Wire calling

With all the bead looming I have done recently my wire started to feel neglected and I heard it calling to me.

It will never stop being fascinating to me how different the feeling is if I pick up the bead loom or the crochet hook.
Once I get to the bead loom, I usually have a pattern ready that I have to follow and there are not many changes I make during the process.
The hook, however, lets me change paths in the middle of a piece. Although you don't see much of the wire here from the front, the back is built up from several randomly knitted layers which make the pendant sturdy and helps the crystals to sit right.


The pendant is now available in my DaWanda shop.

11/12/2014

Oldies but Goodies - Insects

Insects are not for everyone, but there's no doubt that some of them often turn up in jewelry. Some are creepy, some are gracious, some are downright beautiful - and they are this week's topic for the Oldies but Goodies Challenge over at the Jewelry Artisan Community. This is but a small selection of the items shared.

1 The Crafty Chimp
2 Cat's Wire
3 Violetmoon's Corner
4 MC Stoneworks
5 RioRita
6 Jewelry Art by Dawn
7 Robin's Jewelry, Antiques, & Collectibles

P.S. Yes, we know that spiders are no insects, but we are generous in our rules, if we weren't, there wouldn't be a little mutant in this picture, either! ;-)

11/10/2014

Interview with the artist - Pamela from Willow Walker Designs

I have always been fascinated by glass and admire artists who work with it. One of them is Pamela from Willow Walker Designs who will tell us about what she does today. Be prepared for some serious beauty.

Starfire, teal and purple wire wrapped dichroic glass pendant
 
Tell us a little about who you are and where you come from.

I am an Oregon girl, born and raised. I have spent my life in the central part of Oregon, west of the Cascade Mountain range where it is mainly ranches, forest, desert and open land.  We are fairly dry here and boast of “260 days of sunshine a year”.  I have been here in Bend since 1983.

What's your craft and how did you get to do it in the first place?

I love glass and I love jewelry. 
Wire wrapped jewelry is my passion. My involvement in stained glass led me to glass fusing with dichroic glass which led me to wire wrapping as a way to set my glass cabochons without a torch.  Although I have learned to do that too since then and enjoy combining with wire wrapping.

Silver stars etched dichroic fused glass earrings

I created my first stained glass sun catcher at the ripe old age of eight and have been involved with glass ever since. When I was 14, my parents moved back to their home town and opened a retail-custom stained glass business. One of the things we tried was glass fusing.  After graduating high school I left the nest and didn’t get to play with fusing until my mother became ill and passed away. At this time my father’s favorite glass manufacturer was launching their own line of fusing glass. I fell in love with dichroic fused glass jewelry that was in the shop. I scrounged through mom’s glass, found a few pieces of fusible and dichroic glass. I made a few pendants and showed my dad. The next thing I knew he bought me an early Christmas gift in 2006 of a pound of dichroic scrap glass. About three days later it was gone and I had a beautiful collection of pendants, earrings and bracelets. I loved creating it and have never stopped.

Is there a story behind your business name? 

I used to do black powder re-enactments or as we call them “Rondezvous”. Everyone gets a nickname sooner or later. Mine is Willow Walker and I love it and chose to use it for my business name.

Blue, gold and pink dichroic art glass wire wrapped pendant

I think this is one of the most asked questions – what inspires you? 
 
Sometimes it is the beauty that surrounds us, other times the glass itself, a color combination, a new technique and of course the beautiful pieces made by my fellow wire wrappers.

Tell us a fun thing about yourself.
 
I was born on April first, so I am a “fool”!

Do you do other crafts, if yes, what? 

I am a stained glass professional. I also enjoy flower gardening and sewing. I try not to let myself go much further for the sake of my sanity and my wallet.

Art Deco etched dichroic fused glass pendant

Which one of your pieces is your absolute favorite? Which one was the hardest to make and why?
 
I have no absolute favorites. I love each and every piece, some more than others, but I am unable to pick just one. I did a woven frame necklace that I fought getting the base wires to weave as tight as I wanted. I was working with rose 14k gold filled wire and needed to be using a finer gauge of wire that I still don’t have. One of these days I will, though.
 
Is there someone whom you admire and who inspires you? 

Many, many talented wire wrappers! I admire and am inspired by Dale “Cougar” Armstrong, Iza Malzyck, Debbie Fang, Magdalena Borjenko, Bobbi Maw, Perri Jackson, Lisa Lynn Barth and many, many more.
 
If you had free choice of just one supply you can use for your craft/art, what would you be dreaming of, no matter how expensive?
 
Hard question, but I believe I would have to answer Dichroic Glass.

Pewter grey dichroic glass post earrings

Do you sell online, if yes, where can we find you?

 
Famous last words ;-) Is there anything else you want to tell the world out there?

Over the years I have tried a variety of dichroic fused glass jewelry styles, from simple wire wrapped cabochons, different effects created during the fusing process and more. It has only been the last four years that I knew where I wanted to go with it. The variety one will find in my Etsy store definitely reflects that. I am working my way through adding all the older items I still have before I get the newer, fancier stuff listed, so please keep on checking back!

I consider this necklace to be the fanciest, prettiest piece I have created so far, that and its matching earrings. I sold the set to a local jewelry store and they sold it within a week!



I am not surprised, it's a beautiful set! Thank you for sharing a little more about the artist behind your lovely pieces, Pam!

11/09/2014

Quote of the week

After never living alone for the bigger part of my life I found myself alone in my flat - alone as in the only human - from one day to the other. While it felt very strange at first, I soon learned how nice it can be to go to bed whenever I want, leave the light on and read, or watch TV until the wee hours of the morning, have an early dinner or a late breakfast, and doing things the way I like.
I wonder what it would be like now to live together with someone again, just like Frasier who takes in his father ... and his chair ... and ...

Niles (Frasier's brother): Dad, have you mentioned Eddie yet?
Frasier (shocked): Eddie??
Niles (leaving the flat and closing the door): Ta-ta.
Frasier: No, Dad, no, no, not Eddie!
Martin: But he's my best friend! Get me my beer, will you?
Frasier: But he's weird! He gives me the creeps! All he does is stare at me!
Martin: Ah, it's just your imagination.
Frasier: Look, Dad, no. No, I'm sorry, but I am putting my foot down. Eddie is not moving in here.

Meet Eddie ;-)


Frasier, USA, 1993 - 2004

11/05/2014

Oldies but Goodies - Black and White

Normally I would tell you to not just see things black or white, but today I got nothing but black and white for you!
If you want see everything from this week's Oldies but Goodies Challenge at the Jewelry Artisans Community, you find it here. You are more than welcome to join us to play!



1 Robin's Jewelry, Antiques, & Collectibles
2 RioRita
3 Cat's Wire
4 MC Stoneworks
5 Violetmoon's Corner
6 Jewelry Art by Dawn

11/03/2014

Interview with the artist - Christina from Little CLUUs

Today I'd like you to welcome Christina whom I met on deviantART and who will tell us about dragons and "Little CLUUs" ;-)
 
Tiger dragon with marble

Tell us a little about who you are and where you come from.

My name is Christina and I was born and raised in Reno, NV. I've been into arts since I was very small. I got my masters in the violin when I was in high school and performed professionally for many years. And then in my later years of high school and into college I made video games for a living. After I realized I didn't want to sit in front of a computer for my career I started airbrushing and doing custom paint jobs on motorcycles and cars etc. And then after having my son almost 3 years ago I began sculpting and doing chainmaille for work :)

What's your craft and how did you get to do it in the first place?

Currently I'm doing chainmaille and polymer clay sculpting. I got into chainmaille from a friend that did it and thought it was a really unique jewelry that you don't see often. And with sculpting I've dabbled with it since middle school and I have a love of dragons so I started practicing sculpting then and here they are!
Baby Nightfury dragon

What's the story behind your business name?

Well, it was a bit of a secret, but I guess I'll let y'all know ;) My creations are all very special to me because I do spend quite a bit of time on them and I care about every little detail so in a sense they are little pieces of me. So that's why Little (for part of myself I put into the sculptures/jewelry) and then CLUUs, ... My initials are CLW and when you say it phonetically it sounds like 'clue' and if you say the letter 'W' it's a double u, so my initials spelled out are CLUU and together it is little pieces of me :3

I think this is one of the most asked questions – where does your inspiration come from?

My inspiration comes from all over the place! If I'm even out doing errands and I see a pattern or maybe a flower I like, I take those colors or the way something's shaped to make what I do. Or if it's something like the holidays it's always fun to have 'themed' pieces.
Fire gecko

Tell us a fun thing about yourself.

Let's see, a random fun thing lol. I am an owner and lover of exotic birds. I have a few that are pets and I also accept birds that are rescues that need a home.

Do you do other crafts, if yes, what?

Oh yes. I dabble in many things lol. I've been make art dolls lately which has been a ton of fun. I also do some plushies. I still do airbrushing and make art panels with it. I make resin pieces for jewelry of display. I do glass etching and make ornaments. I paint traditionally and I do digital art. I think if there's something out there, I've tried it once lol. I love art :3
Rainbow of butterflies bracelet

Which one of your pieces is your absolute favorite? Which one was the hardest to make and why?

My favorite piece...that's a tough one. I think my all time favorite would have to be my Tropical Rainbow Dragon. I had the concept for that piece in my head for a long time and I knew it would take me forever to make, but once I got going on it I loved it. Over 60 hours later, and that one was finished. And I think that one would also qualify for hardest to make because there is no paintwork involved so the color blending and the gradient was all done scale by scale to give a nice flow to the colors.
Tropical rainbow dragon
Is there someone whom you admire and who inspires you?

I think I would have to give a lot of my inspiration to Peña who makes some very beautiful dragons. And also to nature lol. There is nothing more beautiful than what Mother Nature makes, so it's always nice to just go out in the world and see some amazing things.

If you had free choice of just one supply you can use for your craft, what would you be dreaming of, no matter how expensive?

Ooooo.....well if I had only one item I would have to pick my clay. But if I could have a dream item, it would actually be a limited set of Iwata airbrushes lol.
Wrestling twin baby dragons

Do you sell online, if yes, where can we find you?

Yes I do. You can find creations I make here at my etsy store Little CLUUs.
Or for custom orders you can get ahold of me on etsy or here on DA :3

Famous last words ;-) Is there anything else you want to tell the world out there?

Never give up! Seriously! I get asked all the time how to improve on ANY craft and it's just patience and practice. I'm always here to help, you just need to ask. One of my favorite things as an artist is seeing something I've made and it inspires another to make something of their own!
Thank you for being here, Christina, I'm looking forward to seeing more of your dragons and I'm sure I'm not the only one!

11/02/2014

Quote of the week

I wish I could be as cool as Sméagol. His friend Déagol finds a ring in the water and Sméagol decides he wants to have it. It can be that easy, huh? Give it to me, I want it, period. The birthday thing is not important because Déagol knows it's not true, I'm sure.

Sméagol: Give us that, Déagol, my love.
Déagol: Why?
Sméagol: Because ... it's my birthday, and I wants it. 


Of course we all know things did not end quite so well for Déagol as he obviously underestimated how much his friend really wanted that ring. I mean, I've seen jewelry I like, but I certainly never tried to strangle someone for it.
Maybe my friends are lucky that their jewelry might be beautiful, but pretty powerless.
Maybe that means I am lucky, too. After all we also know what happened to Sméagol afterwards ... gollum! Gollum!

The Lord of the Rings - The Return of the King, USA/NZ, 2003