Happy New Etsy Listings

So, er, happy new year. That it is the end of January and I am only just getting around to posting here is pretty representative of how things have been with me thus far this year. I haven’t been idle. I had planned to spend xmas making myself the rings I’ve never had chance to make for myself, which is a job that ended up running into the start of January instead. That done (mostly), I’ve been focused on making beads. There are a lot. It may end up being the biggest bead shop update I’ve ever done. I’m pretty much on to glazing now. I can see it taking some time… I’m hoping to get the update done in the first half of February, but it’s likely it will end up being mid February. Also, I’ve made a batch of beads for sawdust firing. I just need to establish if that’s really possible at this time of year. If it is, I’ll be adding them in the update too – assuming they come out okay.

Really, I’m still in a pretty hibernatery mode; just hunkered down making and avoiding the outside. Oh, and I’ve had bad anaemia, which has been surprisingly debilitating. It took me all my resolve to get my act together and photograph all the jewellery I made over Christmas. All of the following have been listed on Etsy, although some has sold or been reserved. Here’s a link to the shop.

Placida 1

A Calm Passage Across Many A Night 1

A Modest Need 2

Abeyance 1

An Elusive And Demanding Country 1

An Excess Of Mercy 1

And This Is Why The Empress Waits 1

Central Lines 2

Ghosts 1

Gladly 1

Her Pale Sister 1

Her Plague, Her Redemption 1

How Quickly They Changed Their Tune 1

Night Flight 1

Omissions 1

One Constant 1

That Faint Half-Flush 1

The Barest Places 1

The First Colours 1

The Watery Light 1

The Wild Places 1

They Answer One's Questions 1

This Is All 1

Which Having Been, Must Ever Be 1

Until next time, ta-ra!

Christmas come early… come late

Hello all. I hope you’ve had an at least tolerable Christmas…

xmas tree…and that your festive season has been full of good things,

photo-5 copy 3like fluffy pink elephants and stuff.

Last time I posted, some days before Christmas, I mentioned that I has amassed a pile of parcels full of good things like beads and glazes.

photo-5 copy 2

I also mentioned that I’d be back in a day or so to share this early xmas bounty. Well, I never got around to it so that’s what I’m doing today, some days after xmas.  I meant to take the pictures of the contents outside, on a white background, but it was cold and I was lazy – it may even have been raining – so I ended up taking them on my scruffy, stained work surface. Sorry about that. Anyway, on with the good things. I’m sure a fair number of you will recognise the red wrapping on that top package. A Petra parcel is always very welcome and this one contained those dinky Christmas trees at the top of this post.

PetraI’m loving those spiky ring things. Not entirely sure what I’ll do with them yet but you know how it is when you have to have something? Course you do!

A number of the parcels were things I ordered in Black Friday sales, like this little bundle from Earthbutter Beads.

earthbutter

The colours in those raku rounds are so subtle and beautiful; I had to order another two more sets just to ensure I had enough to bring myself to use some.  I did a similar thing with the earring pairs I got from Slate Studio.

slate studio

I knew I’d need to keep a pair of each for myself.  I love Sarah’s beads so I stocked up when she had her Black Friday sale. Ditto Tree Wings Studio.

tree wings

I can’t get over how teeny those little birds are!  More Black Friday purchases here, from Happy Fish Things.

happy fish

I got a few beads to keep this necklace company on its way over the Czech Republic.

happy fish necklace

I’d had my eye on it for ages and it had already been reduced quite a bit. I did try taking a pic of me wearing it. I won’t bother sharing that!

What else? I’d also stocked up on more Madeline Bunyan polar bears. I didn’t get around to using them this year but they’ll be ready for next Christmas!

m bunyan

I wish I’d got a better picture of these Numinosity goodies.

numinosity

Also wish I’d managed to bag a few more of them whilst I was shopping. Finally, beads-wise, some lovely new designs from Blueberribeads.

blueberribeadsJust lovely!

Edit: I forgot to include these:

moogin

How??! The wonderful Moogin Mindy, of course.

Now for some really fascinating pictures.

glazes cromartie

Proper eye candy, hey? Wanna see more?

bath potters

I just can’t stop buying glazes…

photo-5 copy 4

In fact, I think I might just have to have a little browse to see if any online suppliers are  running end-of-year sales.  Speaking of the end of the year, let me leave you with the best of wishes for 2015.

New-ish year – new jewellery

Oh dear, oh dear – So much for my New Year post.  I had intended to share a few resolutions but I haven’t actually really made any this year – apart from really dull things like doing a better jobs of keeping accounts and suchlike.  I’ve also got a hideous cold (I’m sat here in a really ridiculous outfit, cobbling together all manner of tatty but warming clothing, including some stupidly baggy leg-warmers and a short, tightly knotted neck scarf, which makes me feel kinda Old Man Steptoe), so I really don’t feel equal to committing to anything much.  So, instead, I’ll just share a few new pieces of jewellery that I’ve recently added to the shop.  First up, here’s a clutch of earrings.  I love these big bone fang beads from the fabulous Yuki:

sabre 1

fringed flowers 2

(enamel flowers – Nicola Matthews)

These are a bit crazy-daft but a bit of crazy-daft can’t hurt, I reckon.

ladies in waiting

(ceramic connectors – Scorched Earth)

Then there’s a couple of bracelets that featured in Beads and Beyond.  The light here (as most places, I imagine) has been rubbish recently, as you’ll be able to see in these pics.

dune

(ceramic bowl dropper – Scorched Earth, ceramic round – Happy Fallout)

hearts and flowers

(ceramic heart – Gaea)

More hearts here, fewer flowers…

fixed 1

(ceramic heart – Scorched Earth, word charm – Amanda Davie, polymer stitched beads – Something to do Beads)

Those stitched beads are some that I made.  I’ve got a load of new beads to add to the bead shop but I think I feel too ill today to stand outside taking photographs.  Maybe I’ll rally later and get them done…. Here’s another bracelet.

bo peep 1st

(ceramic connector – Slate Studios)

I don’t really like the term ‘tribal’ but sometimes it’s just serviceable.  Here’s three kinda tribal necklaces.

wild things

plume 1

(ceramic disc and wheel – Scorched Earth, air dry clay pendant – Like Beads)

fire bird

(unglazed ceramic feather – Scorched Earth … patinated by me)

I’m rather fond of this wee bird necklace – it might end up being mine if it doesn’t sell this quarter!  It’s got a really long extension chain so it can be worn at bust length and belly button length.  Here’s more birds:

flock together 1

(ceramic birds and bird house – Blueberribeads, polymer word pebble – Something to do Beads)

Finally, here’s a couple of pairs of earrings that I haven’t listed.  Partly because I can’t decide whether to part with them…

beach finds copy

clipper copy

That’s the lot for now.  I’ll be back in a day or so with those new beads.

Starting late…

So, at last, a blog. And a new year seems a fit time to start out on one. I could have said this much a week ago, when I first settled down to write this opening post. Since then I’ve been quietly turning a blind eye to an increasingly pressing virtual blank page. At least my procrastination led me to make some new pieces, which I’ll dot throughout here. I love the chunky vintage copper curb chain in this bracelet. I had planned to add more details to it, but struggled to find something that suited the proportions of the chain. Having left it for a few days, I decided I liked it as is, raw and slightly spare.

Rich vtg chain bracelet- edited

At least the new year gives me one (slightly inevitable) subject to go at, and making jewellery offers some chance of making resolutions that are manageable – enjoyable, even – rather than the usual denials of pleasure or emotional disciplining (‘I’m not going to worry about X, I will no longer care about Y). And, as this is my first post, it will give a bit of an idea of what is to come on my blog. This year I will try lampwork and have a go at making ceramic beads. I did ceramics for several years when I was younger and I wish I had the room here to take it up again properly (this year I will continue to dream of owning a shed), but I’ll have to make do with a workshop for now. One of the main reasons I use polymer clay is that it can be used in confined, domestic spaces. I’m planning to try some new claying skills this year, and experiment with making moulds, stamps and texture sheets. I’ve also got plans for some text pieces that I’m hoping to get working on shortly.

rutile earrings

Of course, selling jewellery offers its own set of more challenging but predictable resolutions – spread the word, do more markets, promote, promote, promote…  I must at least resolve to get a bit better at this side of things.

One other thing I’ve told myself I must start to do more, is use the art beads that I’ve been hoarding for ages.   I only really discovered the mass of beautiful handmade beads that are available from all over the world in the last twelve months.  (I always wish I could have two of everything I get so I can keep one for myself.)   I’ve already made a start to this end while I’ve been busy not writing my blog.  I used Lesley Watt’s gorgeous bronze button in this bracelet, along with a lovely pale rose dahlia bead from Ciel Creations (all contact details are given below.).  I’m quite tempted to keep this one for myself.

rose tones w dahlia

There’s a Blueberribeads urchin nestled in there too.  I have quite a clutch of Caroline’s pieces, including this gorgeous pendant that has finally been freed from the hoard.

mellowing necklace_edited-1

I’ve also got a fair few NKP Designs beads stashed away.  One found its way into this bracelet.

penny button bracelet - edit

I had the idea for this piece in my head for some time and when I came to make it, it was a bit of a fiddle to realise.  I came close to abandoning it, but I’m glad I pressed on.

It is, I think, a pretty poor time of year to be subjecting yourself to additional deprivations and punishing strictures.  I find winters quite difficult, and the coming tranche is the worst.  There’s none of the warmth of autumn and its attendant celebrations (i.e. pumpkins and bonfires), and the anticipation of Christmas has passed.   Despite having resolved to abandon all hope of there being anything like a summer this year, I am allowing myself to look forward just a little.

crisp white bracelet

vintage spring floral necklaceThose stunning lampwork roses in the bracelet are made by Cecelia Lawrence of Midgetgembeads.  I think that’s all my jewellery-related resolutions dealt with.  I’ll save the more harrowing ones for another day.  After all, I don’t want to exhaust all my potential subject matter in one sitting.   I realise I’m writing this as if you might have the first clue who I am and what I do.  You’ll find an ‘About’ link at the top of the page, which gives some idea of what’s what with something to do with your hands.  It also gives links to my Etsy and Folksy shops (where I sell my jewellery and handmade beads).  Whoever you are, I hope you’ll be back soon.  Foolishly, I picked a blog host that is fiendishly difficult to use – you practically need to be a computer programmer.  I’ve been relying very heavily on my friend, David [Thank you, David!].  I’m hoping to set up some method of subscription shortly.  Perhaps I can tempt you back by telling you that next time there’ll be a giveaway!!  Ta-ra for now.

rose taupe long earrings