Monday, January 15, 2018

And the Pile grows smaller, not that you can tell yet.....

 earrings earrings and more earrings!! I really like the lower right pair... it's the top of old keys, then embellished with rivets and I dangled little key charms for them.  More is coming!!



Wednesday, January 10, 2018

first batch 2018

 Remember that big pile of stuff to start my year out with?


yeah, that one.

Here's the first batch from it, a whole bunch of rings, including watch movements, watch faces, vintage buttons, compasses and even a typewriter key or 2...





and here's a bracelet and a necklace. 
I think it's a solid start... more to come!

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Let's check in at the Gallery!

 The Gallery went fantastic in December!!



So Dina at Five Monkeys, Inc  moved stuff around and took out the empties and condensed my display to just 1 side of the table... but don't worry that still leaves wonderful options if you are looking for my jewelry!!

Under the Sea (more details in this blog post) and King of the world!
 here are the empty displays -
 and here is my chainmaile, still going strong...

But you know the gallery just isn't my stuff, it's 50 + Iowa only artists... so it's worth stopping by... across the street from Roosevelt High School located at 4211 Chamberlain Dr Des Moines, IA 50312.  Not only is there beyond cool art, but Dina keeps the place lively by having classes and special events all the time.. you can check out the schedule here  .  Five Monkeys is not just a gallery but a local resource. 


Sunday, December 31, 2017

Starting pile for 2018 -- HAPPY NEW YEAR!

This is my starting pile for making jewelry in 2018.  Oh I probably won't use all of it ( though wouldn't that be nifty!) and I'll probably add to it as I get interested in new projects.. but I spent Friday night in the studio going through all my little trays of stuff to play with, and most of the unsorted piles that accumulate from new buys or stuff I just didn't have the heart to put away... and anything that caught my eye, that made me go "hmmm" or just got my fingers to tingle, they went into this pile.

Note, Jerry got the Sax taken apart and a bunch of sax pieces are in this pile, as well as sewing machines, adding machines vintage jewelry  bits, and all kinds of brass stampings.

Don't forget watch and clock parts... it's all in there, and I really can't wait to get started on it!  Actually I didn't.. Saturday I picked out stuff for rings, and added more ring stuff, and I'm working on probably 25 rings.  By Monday I plan to have them all done, and I'll dive in my 2018 starter pile again -- I have Both Monday (Happy New Year everyone!) and Tuesday off, so I plan to make decent inroads on my pile.

Enjoy the weekend everyone, and may 2018 be better for all of us - and kinder! than 2017.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

next up, 2018!

So Christmas is done, and it was a good one.  I got some fantastic things and I hope I gave some stuff people really wanted. 

Hubby and I passed out some acts of kindness gifts ( just little things to hard working folks during this season, like wait-staff, the pizza delivery gal, etc)

I'm starting to think about my goals for next year... not exactly resolutions cause resolutions just seem to be statements of wish-fulfillment without any actual meat behind it, at least for me.  So I go for goals and break it down into step by steps with actual deadlines.. a much more proactive process than wishing.  Not that wishes aren't important too, but wishing and doing are two very different things.

The other part that's important is to make the goals attainable, and limited in number.  When you try to do too much at once you are setting yourself up for failure.

I've already got 3 ideas for goals for 2018 : start fusing glass again, get back to etching, and play with my new torch.

These are business or artistic goals.  I know I should probably think about personal goals, but I'm so much better meeting business goals than personal goals.   And last few years have been tough... I've taken a beating on emotional and health spectrums,  and lately I just feel tired.  Almost numb sometimes.

So I think I'll just stick to trying to make myself happy.  That means getting enough sleep is more important than washing dishes.  That means putting myself first at least some of the times, instead of everyone else.  That means if I want to read a couple of books each week for down time, that I have that right and it's not a pleasure marred by a self guilt trip.  That means being happy even if some of the people around me are not.  (like most women, I internalize responsibility for everyone's happiness -- a hopeless battle if ever there is one) 

On the home front, it looks like (finger's crossed) this summer might be the summer to redo the kitchen.  I might have my very own real live full size oven again for the first time in maybe 10 years?  I'm almost afraid to hope -- but with 2 incomes again, it's a strong possibility. 

So that's it for me.   Happy new years! 





Thursday, December 21, 2017

My studio has new stairs!!!


I just had to share this amazing transformation!!! My studio is in my attic at home, and the attic stairs are almost 100 years old -- and they have seen better days.  It was getting to the point I didn't feel safe going up anymore... and coming down?? I had to be soooo careful. 

Now that we are a 2 paycheck family again, it was time to finally get them fixed... so I have a all new stairway! wheee!!!!! It feels so stable and rock-like... here I was starting to think all stairs are suppose to dip and shift and move!!

It's like the best Christmas prezzie to myself!!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Getting Ready for Christmas yet?

You know, this weekend I was reallllly hoping to get a good long crack at making jewelry.  Instead I've played taxi for everyone in the house, wash dishes, Christmas shopped, wrapped and planned most of my Christmas giving, baking, etc.  I did make a few pieces of jewelry, but as Christmas gifts.

I have maybe 3 presents left to wrap, and 2 of them haven't been delivered yet.  So I'm feeling pretty good about Christmas.

I've even decorated the house --- sorry but that means I've hung up stockings.  We stopped doing a tree and regular decorations a few years ago because of the cats, and our general laziness.  They just can't keep the tree alone! and with the Kid - basically, really an adult - no one really wants to decorate much.  So I hang up my stockings, put a few Christmas themed nick knacks out and and envy other folks' efforts.

That is until they have to take it down after Christmas, then I feel ever so slightly smug cause it takes me 5 minutes to undo the decorations, instead of 5 hours.

Because Christmas is really about what's going on inside the heart, not what's on your hearth.  Right?

Then again, if I ever win the lottery, I'll go full out Christmas decorations -- and hire people to help take it down.

So maybe next weekend I'll finally get some jewelry made up, before I need to gear up for cookies and candy making.


Wednesday, December 6, 2017

I want to get back to glass..... and!

Here is a recent necklace I made using a fused glass piece I made a couple of years ago.  I added sort of a fairy garden motif... bees, butterfly, flowers and a fairy of course... and I I believe this is already gone as well ( yeah, I know, when will Kat get new pics up???? )

When I made this piece I thought about how small my pile of fused glass is, and how I say every winter I'm gonna get back to that!!   I had so much fun making all the cabs that I'm almost out of now!!

So I am making this a resolution.. who says you have to wait til new years right?

Course we are almost up to Christmas and I hurt my hand so right now I can't really make stuff ( seriously don't ask.. I just want to know how I managed to hurt myself and all the strange ways that I do)  So it will probably be in January before I can get to making glass again. 

But it's on my list!!   I have a small list of stuff I want to explore on this winter break, and once I get past the holiday season I'm gonna do it. 

So expect glass in the future........ again!  I also want to get back to etching, which I 've not done in a year at least.  And I  got a new torch this Summer.  It's smaller, lighter weight and not as smelly, so I want to play with it.  I'm hoping less smoke/stink and it won't effect my asthma as much.  Not sure I'll get back to silversmithing or anything, I just want the torch as an option again when it's warranted  - and you can do such cool patina effects with a proper torch! 

I have a couple of other things I want to play with, but 3 goals is probably a good start. 

Monday, December 4, 2017

it's time for a fish story.....

 First let me say this piece is already sold.. I'm still trying to catch up on my pictures from the summer and I'm almost there.

But I wanted to share this piece cause I loved making it, and I'm sure the person who "caught" this fish loves it too!

I called it "swimming with the fishes" .  The back plate ( see below) is from a old pocket watch. Some pocket watches come with an extra inner cover, to protect the watch movement.  This inner cover came in a big mix lot of stuff, and only the this piece from this watch.... I love it anytime you get such detail and words on a piece! I basically used this as a bezel to build off of.  I was playing around with the round brass stamping, and put the fish over it.. and it made me think of a porthole on a ship.
 I dug around and found a cookie tin with nautical scenes on it.  One of the ships from the tin fit perfectly in the porthole.  I even put glass in it, to create the underwater porthole effect that much more.  I love that it looks like the fish is looking in on the ship, and I imagine the passengers are looking out at the fish .  fun fun fun! 

Saturday, December 2, 2017

I'm sad today

Vintage jewelry pieces reused into a new bracelet and matching earrings 
It's a Saturday Morning sliding into noon, so I'm working on breakfast and while I wait for a few minutes before it needs attention again, I figure I'll start on the weekly bills.   I'm already feeling pissed listening to CNN and that they passed the tax bill, also known as the betrayal of the poor, though why we should be surprised?   Considering who our Prez is, why should anyone who has less than a million think we will get a fair shake right now?

In the bills is the the annual License for the cats.  In Des Moines you have to pay to have pets.. and of course on the form is Jupiter. 

All my anger is now just a knot of sad.  I really miss Jup.  I miss him politely waiting his share of my dinner.  I miss his good morning pets while I try to clean up and brush my teeth.  I miss his bone shaking purr.  I miss his good cheer and calm.  He was such a calm kitty. 

I wrote on the form that he's passed away.

I burned my biscuits writing this blog.

I hope everyone else is in a better mood today.