Tuesday, 29 December 2009

Gifts for family and friends

This necklace was made for my dear fine boned friend Alex.  It combines jade, a Round Rabbit pendant, and a Vintaj Etruscan charm folded to become a bail and to mimic the heart pendant


My friend Eva's gift of earrings - she likes simplicity.


This one is a more classic style for my mother.

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Beady tree

A beady tree - just couldn't help myself. - what a beady tragic I am!
Two more sleeps.

Wishing you and your families a joyous and safe Christmas.

Sunday, 20 December 2009

Holidays are here

The necklace shown here was made with some of the beautiful beads I received from Anne of Gardanne.  It was a good week for earrings sales this week, which means I have more bead money to play with over the break - excellent!

The day job finished for the year last Friday, so it is time to rest, play and get ready for a feast at our place on Christmas Day - it is summer here but we still have the big meal. I really love hosting Christmas lunch - this is year is a smaller group than usual with some family off celebrating in Denmark, others in New Zealand - it is wonderful to have family  together and for everyone just to relax.
Some planning and shopping for the feast is yet to be done, so I'm off to peruse the recipe book stash for some ideas for what to have with Aussie chef / cookbook guru  Bill Granger's baked ham, and mango salsa.

Not sure how your year has been ? Judging by the wishes over at Lorelei's blog it seems like a mixed bag for us all -  I wish for everyone to have a happier, healthier 2010.

Saturday, 12 December 2009

Some days

A Saturday morning wading through the crazy Christmas shoppers in the Sydney heat and an afternoon of beading with my observers, cat buddies Sasha and Max.  The beading started well, made these 2 pairs of earrings, but it went downhill from there - sometimes you make a piece and it can look good in the "flesh" but if it just doesn't photograph well, it aint going to sell....so apart it comes!  This was the case with a bracelet.  What is great about beading, unlike sewing, is that you can start again without (too...) much pain and wastage.

I will head back to more adventurous creations soon. The earrings were my beady fix for the day.
I keep making very simple earrings with Jenn of blueseraraphim's wonderful beads  - the latest to arrive  in the mail  look like clouds or clots of cream with minty dots  - they are really unusual and so sweet - all they needed was to be paired with some tiny Swarovski pearls. The second pair have a wild safari look pattern encased bead.

Friday, 11 December 2009

Summer In Sydney

No jewelery today. We went to lunch today down by the harbour - an amazing restaurant called Bathers Pavilion at Balmoral Beach, which is housed in what used to be beach changerooms - it was completely refurbished into a cafe and fine dining venue about 10 years ago by my old design colleagues, architects McConnell Rayner. This photo was taken from inside the restaurant. It was a perfect Sydney blue sky day, and 25C, which made us feel very happy after a big year of hard work. I am really looking forward to the holiday break.

Saturday, 5 December 2009

So much for a bead diet ...

So do stringing supplies count ? (shh my etsy friends from whom I have ordered beads during a supposed bead diet .. our little secret ... - it is hard enough giving up nice food, chocolate etc during the festive party season, let alone stay on a bead diet too.... at least beads aren't fattening!)

I found a source of affordable Japanese chirimen cord in Japan called Fabric Tales and went (a wee bit) crazy - I have a thing for Japanese prints, have a decent stash of Japanese fabrics, and now will put these gorgeous cords to use in some creations over the holidays. Max, ever the curious cat, seems to have taken a shine to them too as you can see in the photo.

Made sale no.2 on my 3 month old Etsy shop  - my Oriental Dreaming necklace which used the Chirimen cord (from another source) and was personal favorite. Sales have been slow but I guess don't mind (not too much.anyway...) as I keep reminding myself that this is my creative time, and that things take time to build.

Happy weekend!

Saturday, 28 November 2009

Sometimes the Simple Things

New pieces in very minimal designs - sometimes you just need the simple things in the season of visual overload that is Christmas.
Yes I know my style is all over the place, but hey,  that's the fun of it all when you're the shop owner - no rules!

Orange Ice Earrings ...Encased beads from Blue Seraphim don't need much more than a touch of sterling silver to finish them off..Listed in my Etsy store

Industry necklace.... Chunky steel chain combined with beautiful teal ceramic connector from Round Rabbit that I have been hoarding for ages,  ebony colored wooden circle, stainless steel wire. Listed in my Etsy store.

Hammered jet earrings....  Sculptural sterling silver hooks combined with hammered sterling silver concave circles, and Czech glass free form black  beads. Listed in my Made it store

Saturday, 21 November 2009

70's Party Retro Jewelry and Maxi Dress

Next Saturday we are off to a 70's party at our friends' very 70's house  - we are to dress as our favorite 70"s character - after thinking about the Brady bunch, Charlies Angels and some Love boat types,  I  have chosen my Mum (and she seems rather happy about it!)  - she had some very stylish outfits in this era.
Bought a 70's  gold mesh necklace from Etsy seller Enamel Owl who sells vintage and reincarnated jewelry - she has some amazing pieces - highly recommend a look.

Found the perfect maxi dress on sale that I will no doubt wear again from a wonderful Australian designer, Leona Edmiston - (Leona has a very affordable diffusion line, and besides my bad bead habit, I have a bad Leona habit!).Christmas in Sydney is hot and casual, so the dress will join me for the festive season.

Have some Camper Wedge Shoes in lieu of platforms, husband has the kung fu suit,  so I think we're ready to do the Hustle!

(photos by Enamel Owl and Leona Edmiston)

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Chinook and Chainstyle

My copy of the book published by Interweave, Chainstyle arrived. It has fabulous  projects by inspirational artisans such  Melanie Brooks, Lorelei Eurto and Jane Dickerson - it is one of the best books I have bought for along while- also received Enchanted Adornments (but am saving that one up for reading next week - too much of a good thing!!)

-  this weekends bracelets ideas owe a major acknowledgment to the above artists. Beads are by Blueseraphim, Humblebeads, Everyheart, Lindenavenue and Chinook.

My delivery of ceramic beads from Chinook arrived,  so I made some earrings as well.  The ivory and jade pair will be listed in my Made it store. The azure leaves pair was for me to wear to this week's Melbourne Cup lunch. Australia stops for this horse race and it is a great reason to frock up and have a leisurely lunch too - everyone dresses up in their best, and it is a lot of fun.
Happy and safe weekend...!

Friday, 6 November 2009

I won !!

Anne at Gardanne beads had a giveaway and  I won a beautiful set of beads !!! I  can't wait to get my beading hands on them!!  Thank you so much Anne. Check out Anne's blog  and Etsy store for some gorgeous new beads like this stunning focal.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Lazy Sunday afternoon

I love Sunday - who doesn't!. Lunch outdoors, walks, bead time.....

Been playing with a lighter style today -  bought a Sea Urchin pendant from Erin at Everyheart  a while ago - it is nearly summer in Australia,  holidays are coming up, and a beach theme with amazonite and jade works well at this time of year.

Not sure if I will list this one or keep it in the family as a holiday present. I initially started beading so that I could  make individual gifts for the girls in our family, but after a few years I think they might want something else maybe... that means shopping..... aagh..

Friday, 30 October 2009

New Brights

The sun is finally shining after what seems like weeks of rain, and a sunny weekend is promised. The light is wonderful, a true Sydney spring blue sky, hopefully inspiring some beady adventures.
My wooden bead obsession continues- I love the way the wood off sets bright colours. Jennifer of blueseraphim made some custom coloured stunning encased  beads for me that are so lovely that I thought it might be good to frame then to show them off.... think this may be the start of a geometric day.

Meanwhile Sasha + Max the main coon cats try to get into as much mischief as possible with bead stuff and bags, and then collapse exhausted by it all.... here are some gratuitous pictures of the guys.

Friday, 23 October 2009

Bohemia vs miminal

I love playing with proportion and texture. Sometimes the more decorative jeweller in me wrestles with the minimal interior designer. What happens then is that within a couple of days I make 2 pieces that are very contrary in style.

The turquoise and brass necklace is a complete nod to bohemian days - unashamed to be bold, strong, but a bit retrospective.

The white wood and quartz necklace reminds me of Australian summers and beach house picket fences- a very casual simple look. Who knows what will come next.......Hmmm.. have some nice beads on the way from Blue Seraphim, Chinook and Earthwood.....

Friday, 16 October 2009

Sydney gets overrrun by crazed knitters!

The knitters have struck Sydney adding wonderful colour to the inner city - it is all part of a annual festival, Art about Sydney, where artists provide installations around the heart of the city to get us all talking . The knitting installation is called IHEARTKINGSX and has been done by a local collective called reefbyknot www.byreefknot.net. (Photo courtesy of City of Sydney)

Another installation is bird cages suspended between buildings in a laneway, Angel Place - no birds, just bird sounds - can't wait to see that one - Sasha and Max would like it (they are very indoor cats.. the only birds they see are on the other side of a window, a highlight of their day...). Think I'll go for a walk through the city for creative inspiration for this weekend's beading..
Happy Friday..!

Sunday, 11 October 2009

Having a beady kinda weekend

Have created some fun new bracelets this weekend, and will be stocking both shops. I am a bit obsessed with wood beads at the moment so you may sense a theme. I finished a necklace that I have been brooding over for a while - blueseraphim beads in raku patterns with some great brass rounds from patina queen. Originally the beaded portion was lime suede, but it just did not quite hang together - I'm happier with the new version with black Czech beads.

Sunday, 4 October 2009

Setting up shop

I set up my Etsy store a while back - no bites as yet. Have spent the day improving some photos and tweaking it, but my Australian colleagues are scared of US dollars (although the exchange rate is great at the moment, which means my bead buying habit has gone a bit wild, ....uh oh..!)
So here goes with shop number two, Madeit, which is for Australian sellers only - a smaller pool of artisans but a smaller potential audience as well I guess.
Just finished my silver smithing course and am in 2 minds as to whether to take it any further - the flame torches are scary, and made me appreciate even more what those lampwork artisans out there work with everyday.