Saturday, 31 January 2009

My goodness it's been HOT!

This week we've experienced at unprecedented heatwave here in South Australia - it has been 40C (104F) plus all week with 3 days in a row reaching 45C(113F). Needless to say, my brain has been completely fried, so I've not as been as industrious as I normally am.

Tonight, the family visited the beach, where we actually felt cold for the first time in 9 days! In the far right of the photos, you can see my gorgeous boys in the water.

Tomorrow, I promise to show the new designs for the previous weeks, also get to work on those custom orders, and get creating some fabulous challenge themes - Kandinsky, Tasty, Mask, Bronze Age, and Stardust are themes that are - even as you read - being worked on...or at least considered!

Saturday, 24 January 2009

Seekers Who Are Lovers

Brush by gracefully
A love as big as a risk
Fills you up
And you can't look on.

Named for the otherworldly Cocteau Twins song - I listen to them often when creating. Evocative of the romance and wistfulness of the song, they also feature a darker - almost gothic - edge.

Stunning AAA grade rose quartz discs - faceted to a point on both sides for extraordinary sparkle - are the beautiful focals in this design. Carefully secured to shaped, hammered and wirewrapped frames, these have been enhanced with delicate marquis cut AAA grade white topaz briolettes - these shimmer so temptingly! Tiny A grade blue sapphires finish the design. Modern ear wires were added to the chandelier style earrings. To take an edge off the frou frou, an oxidised patina was applied and then rubbed back - this reveals the detailed wire work to perfection.

You can see more photos of these earrings here.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009


Just a quick post, but back with new designs soon. I was featured today in the Quit Your Day Job series on Etsy. You can see my article here.

Sunday, 18 January 2009

From Little Things, Big Things Grow

Musing upon the everyday miracles we take for granted, I thought of the mighty oak that originates from the humble acorn. The poignant song which provided the title of this piece literally came to me the minute these stunning AAA gem quality andalusite leaves arrived in the mail, and I couldn't wait to start work on this design.

Andalusite is a gorgeous gemstone, rich and subtle in colouration - here I have given this "oak leaf" its very own stylised "acorn". A hammered and painstakingly wirewrapped frame holds the leaf in place, while 2 strands of rectangular link chain are punctuated by one section of assymetrical handcrafted chain. An unusual lobster clasp - generously sized, and with provision for double strands - finishes the elegant design. I oxidised this quite heavily - in an organic fashion - and polished it back to reveal the wonderful textures in the detailed wire work.

This design was based on the song of the same name:

20% of the proceeds of the sale of this listing will be donated to Make Poverty History - a worldwide organisation dedicated to halving global poverty 2015, and you can see more pictures of this lovely design in ny Etsy store.

Saturday, 17 January 2009

Year of Jewelry - Week 3 - Claude Monet

For the Year of Jewelry challenge, this week's theme was "Claude Monet". I was delighted with this theme, as the Impressionists are a love of mine. My mind gravitated towards one of the recurring themes in his later work - the water lilies floating in the pond situated in the grounds of Monet's house.

I used luscious hydro quartz as the main focal in this design, and accented it with lashings of gemstone and pearls. Included are amethyst, sapphire, peridot, prehnite, freshwater pearls - buttons in a peacock blue, a lustrous tan, and a teensy peach seed pearl. These elements are carefully wired on individual sterling silver headpins. Highlighted with ornate Balinese silver trimmings, this is finished with a generous Thai silver clasp, which echoes the water lily shape - it is stamped on one side with a naive flower pattern. "Monet's Pond" is a lovely weight, fluid in design, and eminently tactile.

You can see more pictures of this bracelet in my Etsy shop.

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Catching up on January designs

Before I get too behind with new designs, here's my pieces for the week so far. They are all available (apart from the Belle earrings, which are sold) in my Etsy store.

Hope you are having a wonderful week!

Tuesday, 13 January 2009

Our noisy visitor

We have been hearing him most nights, and spotting him from afar, but we were all delighted when KK (as the kids have nicknamed him) decided to grant us a closer visit yesterday. He was rather bemused at the attention - 2 adults, 2 kidlets, a dog and a cat all paid homage to the furry one. Isn't he just adorable?

Monday, 12 January 2009

Year of Jewelry - Week 2 - Stone Age

This week's theme for the Year of Jewelry was "Stone Age". I did quite a bit of research in this theme, and decided to create an urn or pot shaped pendant, like those that were made in the Dimini era in Thessaly, but as I started creating, I couldn't resist adding a beautifully gemmy prehnite "spear head" which just begged to be included. Hence - "Hunter Gatherer" was born.

The frame of the pendant has been shaped like an urn, then hammered and wirewrapped carefully with thin wire. To that was added a delicious prehnite focal - the "spearhead" - which was attached using yards of wire and sparkling AAA amethyst rondelles. Three plump freshwater pearls - in a wonderful lavender with green and gold lustre - adorn the pendant. A handmade chain of painstakingly linked prehnite and freshwater pearls is finished with a handforged clasp and an extension chain. The entire design was then oxidised and selectively rubbed back, to reveal the textures in the ornate wirework.

You can see more photos in my listing in my Etsy store.

Sunday, 11 January 2009

A week's worth of new designs...

Another week sped past without me updating my blog. Very naughty! All of the following can be found in my Etsy shop - but - some are already sold. Please ask if you are after an item that is similar to my sold pieces - I might be able to help. :)

And last of all, a little pair of sweeties: Push th' Little Daisies

These were inspired by the quite annoying - but very catchy - song called "Push th' Little Daisies" (by Dean and Jean Ween). My kids were quite honestly speechless when they saw this clip:

If you like these earrings, the above ones are sold, but I have made a slightly different pair, which are here.

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Year of Jewelry - Week 1 - Gone With the Wind

This year I have decided to participate in the Year of Jewelry weekly challenge. This week's theme was "Gone With the Wind", and knowing little about the book or the movie, I did a some research first, including watching the movie while I created this design. I enjoyed the film thoroughly - except for the weak ending - and was really drawn to the town's "bad woman" Belle Watling - a true gem with a kind heart. I made this with her in mind.

An elaborate design, the centrepiece is definitely a large - luscious and shocking! - A grade fuschia chalcedony focal. This has been enhanced with teensy freshwater pearls and labradorite, and finished with large faceted rock crystal quartz, with a special "mystic" coating that gives it tremendous sparkle. The handcrafted chain was made up of coordinating crystal quartz and freshwater pearls linked together carefully, and completed with an extension chain and a handforged spiral clasp. Oxidised in an organic fashion, this was deliberately left a little darker than usual - to both highlight the delicious components and to enhance the textures of the painstaking wire work.

You can see some more pictures here in my Etsy store. Now to get to work on this weeks' theme - Stone Age.

Monday, 5 January 2009

Theme Challenge - Art Nouveau

Inspired by the "Art Nouveau" theme set this month for the Wire Artisans Guild (please see my profile for more details), I created "Fin de Siècle", or "turn of the century".

I used exquisite blue topaz briolettes and petite - yet oh-so-rich - briolettes of kyanite to create floral motifs, from which springs an ornamentation of moonstone, garnet and tiny peachy freshwater pearls. These flowers are securely wirewrapped to a sweeping frame - hammered and wirewrapped sterling silver wire. This decadent creation is designed to sit on an angle at the neckline - one side of the dainty, textured chain has been further enhanced by a section of coordinating pearls. To finish the necklace, one side features a section of handmade extension chain, while the other side displays a beautiful handforged and wrapped "s" style clasp. The entire design has been oxidised and then selectively rubbed back, to show the wonderful details within this luxe piece.

All gems are extremely high grade - from A (garnet briolettes), AA (blue topaz, and kyanite) through to AAA (the stunning carved moonstone leaves).

More pictures can be seen here in my Etsy shop.

Saturday, 3 January 2009

Front Page x 2!

Happy New Year everyone!

I had the opportunity of creating a treasury to thank my fellow DUST'ers for their wonderful support on NYE, and was delighted to see my curation appear on the Etsy front page on New Years Day. (DUST = Down Under Street Team).

This Treasury features:

I also woke this morning to realise I had made an appearance on the front page myself, courtesy of the lovely fleurfatale - you can see her lovely shop here, and her blog here - thank you!

This treasury featured my Voile necklace.

I am also featured in the Storque in this article, promoting a sale for this weekend - free international shipping and 15% off for 2 or more items.

Will be back with more designs soon!