Tag Archives: jewelry

INTERESTING CRYSTAL EXPERIENCE

cacoxonite ringThis is a cacoxenite/Super Seven/Melody stone ring I bought from Extreme Gems on ebay. Buying it was an accident: I placed a bid, and apparently no one else did, so I won it for dirt cheap unexpectedly.

When I received it, I was a bit disappointed. Although the amethyst showed a little, the rest of the ring was a muddy cloudy color, quite unlike the photo on ebay. I considered returning it.

When I tried it on, I got a most unpleasant feeling, which stopped as soon as I took it off. Now that was interesting. I decided to stick in a bag with a piece of kyanite, to see if I could clear it that effortlessly. I left it in the bag, along with a couple of other stones, for about a week.

When I took it out, the purple was very brilliant, the stone was very clear, and there were these lovely little golden “rays” which flashed as I moved the ring around. When I tried it on this time, it had a very comfortable feel. After I had worn it for a few days, I noticed that the stone seemed to be developing further. It became clearer, and other inclusions appeared.

This is the clearest example I’ve ever seen of how a stone can revive after a clearing.

Now, I’ve been reading up on cacoxenite. While there is quite a bit of information about it on the Internet, curiously, the only book in which I’ve seen it mentioned is Love is in the Earth. (I’ve seen some sites mention other books, but the copies of those books that I have do not mention it). Anyway…. I have this new ring.

I haven’t posted any new things lately because my jewelry-making was on hiatus while I was moving. Then, as I was bent on organizing my new place, I tried to keep away from the beads. It didn’t work so well, so there are 3 half-done projects, and I re-strung two bracelets and a pretty coral necklace which had been in my “Repair” box for 3 or 4 years.

I hope I’ll be able to get it together to post some photos soon.

Meanwhile, dumortierite is on my mind.

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MOVING SURPRISES

I haven’t made much in the past month because I was in the process of moving. Always a delight. I’m moved in now (whew!), but not yet well-organized. The only two areas that are really well-organized as of yet are my closet and, wait for it….. my jewelry-making stuff (what? You’re not surprised?)

Until this morning, I’ve been very good… not dragging out beads, not playing with wire…. but, then…. I decided I needed a new turquoise magnesite necklace. I thought I knew how it was going to be. Ha! When I opened the turquoise color box, I noticed some chunky robin’s egg blue magnesite with black veins. Then I had to play with all the magnesite in that color range. Then I had to play with all the other magnesite. Then I had to put everything back. Then I couldn’t find the right silver beads, so I had to look in all the boxes of miscellaneous. I opened a box from storage that I’d labeled “bead repairs”, and, to my astonishment, found a boatload of the first wire jewelry pieces I’d made, as well as my first turquoise necklace, and some other exciting stuff.

Then, I started trying to figure out what to do with that nice chunky blue magnesite. I went through a magnesite acquisition phase last year, and I have so many pretty strands….. I began to think of doing something that could be layered with other strands of magnesite.  Now what I need to do is get into my silver bead stash and find some silver beads that I have enough of and that will complement the chunky beads.

So, anyway, I have to be careful now. I do need to make my place look more like a home rather than a box storage facility, so I shouldn’t set up a bona fide jewelry work area yet. Okay, maybe just one tray….

Now, though, I want to take some pictures of these boxes full of stuff, and then I’ll try to post them.

Meanwhile, some things  you can use. I’ve tried buying beads on Amazon. It wasn’t too scary. I still don’t feel as certain about buying on Amazon as I do about other on-line vendors. I’ve cut back on working with silver since Metalliferous closed, and I’m becoming a Parawire.com fan. (Happily, I’ve discovered that fusionbeads.com is selling round colored parawire, so, if I want to qualify for free shipping and there is something I want to buy at fusionbeads.com, I can round off the spending requirement with parawire. )

CLIMB EVERY MOUNTAIN…you never know….

I’m always trying to figure out how to do whatever has popped into my mind, so I try to look at a lot of people’s work (hence, I get way too many emails, and have a lot of facebook and pinterest stuff to scroll through!).  

I do look at a lot of tutorials, but not necessarily because I want to make the item the tutorial is teaching about.  Sometimes, it’s just one little detail that I can’t figure out from the picture.  A case in point would be this free necklace tutorial from Facet Jewelry that showed up in my email today;
Jade twists
Not my style at all, but I was interested in the little loops that were strung somehow onto the necklace cord, so I read through the tutorial, and found the cutest, simplest little trick, that I will use somehow, some way, probably sometime soon.

I go through a lot of jewelry-making books that have step-by-step tutorials, too. My two latest favorites are Wirework Jewelry Workshop, by Sian Hamilton, and Wire Jewelry Master Class, by Abby Hook. I got both of these books mostly just to learn the techniques of several pieces they showed… I will probably not make anything that looks like anything in either book; I’ll just incorporate some ideas into a piece here and there. These are books I can go back to when I’m drawing blanks. 

I’m also revisiting old tutorials in my collection. Now that I’ve put them into labeled 3-ring binders, they are more organized, and easier to access. It’s like having more books to leaf through.

HAPPY TUTORIAL SEARCHES

Don’t mean to bore you, but I’ve just figured out that, in looking for my tutorial files on Google Drive (where, happily, I discovered most of the tutorials that I had accumulated over the years, as I’ve previously mentioned), there’s a way to search for a particular file or kind of file. Nifty! It’s especially helpful since, for some odd reason, my tutorial files are not where I would have expected to find them and I can’t seem to always remember where they are hiding.

So, off I went, again in search of my Eni Oken tutorials. There they are! As I have mentioned in the past, Eni was my first teacher, and I have since learned that a lot of my e-friends have learned from her tutorials, as well.  You can find Eni’s tutorials at https://enioken.com/ and https://www.etsy.com/shop/EniOken

After that, I went off to search again for Diane Karg Baron‘s tutorials. Found ’em! I got interested in reading about her, so I went to her website and found all sorts of goodies!  You can find Diane’s tutorials at https://thetaoofwire.mykajabi.com/ She has some free ones, and the for-pay ones are very reasonably priced.

Then, I checked out Remy Heath‘s tutorials again. They’re there waiting for me! You can find her tutorials at http://www.studioheath.com/tutorials.php .  While I was looking at the Remy files, I also discovered an assortment of ring tutorials from different artists that I will be exploring soon.

Meanwhile, I made a pile of  bracelets for Christmas presents, and a couple of commissioned ones. Silly me! I forgot to take pictures. I need to make some more, and I have a necklace idea in my mind.

Oh, and I discovered dumortierite!  It is so, so pretty! I was buying some lapis and moss agate beads, and, when the cashier put them in the bag with the dumortierite, it looked so much like the early morning ocean off the Outer Banks! I’ve been trying to capture that for so long…. maybe now I can figure out what to make now that I have the perfect colors.

 

 

More Recent Work and a Tip

I’m posting a couple more photos of recent pieces.

bracelet black lab lapis Success bodyguard

On the left (or it may be on the top in your viewer), that’s a black labradorite/lapis/quartz/silver elastic bracelet The one on the right (or on the bottom) is a Success Bodyguard with aventurine, moss agate, crystal quartz, citrine, tourmalinated quartz, and pyrite and silver plated spacers.

My tip: to learn how to make a good strong knot, even with very thick elastic cord (I use 1mm), consider watching fishermen’s videos on how to make a “surgeon’s knot”.  Yes, that’s right. 1)Apparently fishermen use this kind of knot to secure a line that is going to have an angry fish on one end. 2)The fishermen who make the how-to videos make it seem much more clear than most of the beaders’ how-to videos. They are to the point, don’t hem and haw or tell charming anecdotes, and they show and explain what is going on very clearly.

 

So, I have figured out one way to upload photos. It’s not the best, but, if I am neat about it, I should be able to get away with it. Anyway, here is a photo of my long-in-the-process “Bodyguard Playing in the Dark”. (As you can see, I am clearly not an accomplished photographer. Never mind! It’s a picture. )

Playing in the Dark

Bodyguard Playing in the Dark started as an idea to combine as many protection stones as I could in a dark-colored piece. It combines amethyst, aqua aura, black agate, black labradorite, black obsidian, black onyx, black tourmaline,  purple fluorite, green jade, lapis, golden sheen obsidian, hematite, kyanite, moss agate, and pyrite. This piece finally came together when I started experimenting with elastic/stretch cord for bracelets. It seemed like the perfect place to start.

Moms braceletMom’s Bracelet finally came together when I decided to see if the elastic/stretch cord would work with larger/heavier stones than the 8mm ones I’d been working with. I unstrung it from its original jewelry wire and had it together one-two-three.  Mom’s Bracelet is “purpose-built” to address some physical needs that she has.  It contains lapis, golden calcite, green fluorite, amethyst, aventurine, moss agate, crystal quartz, pyrite, and copper. (I liked it so well that I have made a similar one for myself).

See! I have been doing! These two bracelets are the end products of  my experimentation on 16 different elastic bracelets (all of which I am wearing right now, actually)

SNOW! Sitting at home looking at beads!

It’s snowing to beat the band! Not big pretty fluffy snow, just relentless little bitty snowflakes. My New York City street is covered. Just as well! I want to make something today.

Product DetailsI got Abby Hook’s book Wire Jewelry Master Class in the mail yesterday. Stayed up looking through it, reading the really clear instructions, thinking about what I’m willing to do, what I might do right away, and what I’ll probably never do, even though I wish I could bring myself to do it. Then, of course, thinking about how I could get away with not doing what she says to do and still get a similar look. Then thinking about what she shows, and what I probably will actually do. Woo! Tired myself out just looking! Then woke up this morning and started again.

I’m very happy with this book, excited to have it. The only thing that could have made it better would have been if the book included the two tutorials (KrissKross ring and Kriss Kross bracelet) I had bought from Abby back when jewelrylessons.com was in business and before my computer crashed and died, taking with it my precious hoard of tutorials. I bought several of Abby’s tutorials, but these are the ones I’d really like to have back. The book does have another tutorial that I had bought, which now looks like something I might like to do. Oh well. Never mind! There is so much information in this book! Then, there are all the pretty pictures. This may be the best jewelry-making book I’ve ever bought.

I actually saw my prehnite/amethyst/silver bracelet in bright sunlight yesterday. I hadn’t realized that the colors were actually so brilliant!  Now, I want to make a similar necklace with the prehnite and amethyst left over from the bracelet. I haven’t had a new necklace in quite some time. This will be simple. I think I’ll make some figure eight connectors, as I’m out of jump rings, and I’ll make a stab at making my own S-hook clasp, to jazz it up a little.