Thursday, December 10, 2015

Taking a break for the holidays

Hey Guys I'm taking a break on the blog -  be back in January .  I wish everyone a happy Christmas and a merry new year!  

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Friday, November 20, 2015

Aunt Betty

I've been listing to swing and 1930-40's big band the last few days.

I've always enjoyed this music... it's so energetic and full of vitality-- enjoyment for enjoyment's sake.  The best years were during WWII ( at least from this 60's baby's worldview)   But my Aunt Betty died this week, my Dad's last remaining sibling and I can't thing of her without thinking swing.

She was a nurse during WWII, and married a fly-boy ( well, she married 2, but her first husband died during the war).  That connection has set Aunt Betty firmly in swing mode in my brain.  I honestly don't know if she even liked swing, but living in the times she did I'm sure she did.

She was born in Waterloo Ia, but lived most of her adult life elsewhere.  For most of my life she's been in California or Arizona.  So I've only met her in person a handful of times.  Still I feel she had quite the zest of life, and boy, that's swing music.

I do have a bracelet she gave me some years ago.  She mailed it to me, and I was so ticked and frankly blown away. it's a Indian woven bracelet backed in leather.  She got it when she was a kid visiting a reservation, so it's probably 75+ year old now.   But it really must have meant something to her to hold on to it so many years.  She said her Dad bought it for her.  And she gave it to me.  That means something to me, and it's in the same treasure box I keep other mementos that are dear to me.  

Aunt Betty had a temper, and her nature could be, well prickly.  I remember me and my Dad beating her and her partner at trivia pursuit.  She got hot.. but then I was being a teenager in all my glory and probably gloated just little 2 much.  Dad and Larry (Betty's hubby, who was a great guy) laughed their heads off, which probably didn't help either.

I remember her Graciousness.  Jerry and I visited her and Larry in California on our honeymoon at their house.  They were tremendously accommodating, entertaining us for the day and treating us to a very fancy Mexican restaurant.  Their house was a showplace, though strange to our Iowan eyes-- due to water rationing concerns, their garden was mostly very artistically placed rocks, hearty shrubs and tiny trees. Oh, and a few palm type trees.

I'm afraid in later years I've not had much contact with Aunt Betty... she had Alzheimer's and after Larry's death, she seems to have had more "bad" days than good.  She was in a nursing home in Arizona when she died.

Rest in Swing Aunt Betty.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Last show of the Year.... Beaverdale Holiday Boutique!

Seriously, if you are gonna do a church "craft" sale, then Beaverdale Holiday Boutique is the one to do.  This is the 38th year!   Over 100 amazing vendors spread throughout the Trinity school, and best of all, the library becomes a huge bake shop.  I have to admit I adore a good bake sale... cookies and bar cookies and all kinds of treats!!

it runs Fri night 6-9pm, and Sat 8-2pm

This is my last official show of the year  - and probably the last Trinity show we will do.   With Jerry a full time school teacher, it's hard for him to get time off to do a show on a weekday, and disruptive to his students.  So going forward I won't be scheduling something like this.  Heck, it's not easy for me to get the time off either!

With the huge variety of vendors, I often start my Christmas shopping at this show.  Grab some buddies, come out and shop, eat and say hi.

There is a charge to get in, $4.00, and there are drawings throughout the weekend.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Happy Birthday to Ramona !

I had special guest last evening in my studio!   Turns out a very special customer's birthday was Nov 4th,  and what she wanted most was more of my jewelry in her collection.  Wow!  That's such a compliment -- how could I disappoint her?  So here are a few pics -- studio is as clean and neat

I should have gotten photos of her and her hubby, but I never think of that when people are here.... Anyway, I hope your Birthday Treat was everything you hoped for Romona!  Thanks so much for coming over.

Monday, November 2, 2015

yep, more file pictures

yep, I know, I need to get new pics taken.. but isn't this cute?  Old clock gear, and dragonflies and a crystals.  I even used this really cute paperclip style vintage chain on it.  I think I still have this piece actually  as it was made just before the last couple of shows in September.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

optometrist lenses hoop earrings

OK, this is from this summer, I'm cleaning out my old pic files and I haven't gotten around to taking pics of what I made this week so old is it.  They are long gone, but they are in the category of CLEVER.  If I'm allowed to think myself clever.  (It's been a rough week actually, so please allow me to be clever at least in my art - I need the emotional pick me up!!)

I bought earlier this year a small stash of Optometrist lenses.. you know the lenses used to check out what your eyeglass prescription should be?   These are really old ones, probably 1920's or before.  Anyway, I bought this lot of them, and a few didn't have the glass still in them, so they are just the frames.  Well I took one look at them and realized they make the kewlest instant hoop earrings ever, and what gal cannot get by without at least 1 great pair of hoops earrings?   They sold the very first show I had them at.    I made a great necklace with one and it's also long gone.  I have a few left, and I've left them in my huge play stash on my back table.. so more to come.  Just probably not hoop earrings, as I only had these without the glass.  Seriously, if I ever find more of them, with or without the lenses, I am buying them.  Then maybe I'll make me a pair of hoops!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Friday, October 23, 2015

flying like an eagle

I got these eagle pewter pendants a long long time ago.. like 15 years? Maybe longer.  I got them to make my Dad a key chain, but I had to buy them in bulk.. 20 pieces.  Dad's CB handle was the Bald Eagle, so that's why I wanted an eagle.

I've made stuff out of these pendants here and there throughout the years, and I believe I destashed some of them. I thought they were long gone, but I found one in the stash a couple of months ago, so I made this a necklace with just a touch of steampunk added.  Due to the material of the pendant, had to be urber careful drilling the holes.

I wanted the gear to be like the sun streaming down on the eagle, on some bright sunrise morning.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

5,789 emails

hoooo boy.

We got new cells phones.  I reset up my various emails on my phone ( there are 4 - don't ask.  I guess 5 if you count the iCloud one...)

And I funny funny thing happened.. my mail cell phone account decided to download every email I've ever gotten on it from the server.  turns out in the last 3 years or so I've gotten 5,789 emails to that email.

Because of the settings it's downloading them in batches of 150.  I have to "read" them and then I delete them.  what fun, especially since so many of them are spam that I've already deleted.

Not really having the patience for this sort of thing, I went to the website where the email lives, and discovered all the emails where still in the box... and that's probably why it's downloading them.  Here I thought I was forwarding all of that to my cell phone, but I guess it's saved a copy on the web client instead.

so I'm trying to delete them in hopes it stops downloading them to my cell phone. 

It worked but that's a a couple of hours I won't ever get back.

Then I had to do the same thing for 2 of my other emails and Jerry's cell phone email.

Still the fun and games aside, love love love having my new cell phones!

I really like how simple and elegant the wing bracelets are

Saturday, October 10, 2015

New phones!!! wooooo

I'm currently downloading and updating new phones for me, Jerry and Jesscera.  whee!   All of us have new iPhone 6s.  This is the first new phones we have had in almost 5 years.  Hopefully the transfer of service will be completed in a few hours ( they tell me it could take up to 1 full business day, which is weird when it's a Saturday and not a normal business day.. so does that mean Monday??? )

I'm getting my old iPhone ( a iPhone 4 BTW, who uses such a old phone anymore? ) settings transferred to my new one, and setting up programs and such for Jess & Jerry.  I figure this will take the chunk out of the day, but I'm so happy... new phones!! bigger, but still fits in my pocket!!   Then it's back to trying to clean the studio.

Life is good.

Vintage tag from a vending machine.  No idea of the age, as we bought this at an antique store.  I cleaned it up and buffed the front, it's really cool looking... and long gone.  Bracelet sold at the first show we had it at.  It's really neat that the buyers were from Muncie, and had family that worked at the plant back in the day.  I love when my jewelry is wearable history!!

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Happy Birthday to ME!

Since Tomorrow (10/7/15) is my 47th birthday, I'm taking the day off blogging... by posting this tonight instead!

Merry Un-Birthday all, and Happy BD to me!
Love how this turned out, it's elegant with a real clock gear....

Monday, October 5, 2015

Happy Monday!

I'm starting to feel better, yeah!   My official show season is done for the year, I have only 1 more scheduled show ( Holy Trinity)  and Jerry and I are kicking around doing another flea market or 2 this winter to destash the piles around our house, but that's it.

So honestly my thoughts are turning to - CLEANING, ORGANIZING, AND GETTING RID OF STUFF.

Just thinking about it makes me feel tired.  I feel a large donation to good will coming in the future.

Right now I just have to move, well slow.  I still have almost no energy from this vicious cold I have.  My goal right now is to get one of my back tables cleaned off and organized in the studio... so far I've barely made a dent, but I thought I would try something new this time: no pressure.

Whenever I get it done, I get it done.   If it takes me all week, that's what it takes.  The whole thing this week is surviving and getting better and sleeping as much as possible and not freaking myself out because I'm pretty ineffective.  I just want to feel better and not get sick again!!!

Maybe next week I can move up to real progress.

Anyway, Happy Monday!!

Saturday, October 3, 2015

I'm Having an Etsy Sale!!

It's October and it's my Birthday Month, and I usually do some sort of sale on my Etsy sites this month, sort of a un-birthday present to others I guess.

so on the Jewelry side, I have the following deal:

Past customer can get 10% off just by using code GOODCUST10 with any purchase.

However, if your order is $35.00 or more, use GOODCUST25 for a whopping 25% off your order!

Only 1 code per order, and these are good throughout October.

The codes are the same on my destash site, and you only need to purchase $20.00 to use GOODCUST25 there.

so enjoy these savings all October and have a very merry un-birthday!
Momma and baby having fun with a very old pocket watch....

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

I haven't done a damn thing this week.....

I hate being sick but I do it so well..... At least I get a pun out of my cold.  This first picture is what I wish my desk looks like--  productive!!!!

This cold is sucking all my energy - by the time I get home from work, I can hardly move.  If this follows the normal pattern I'll finally feel start to feel better tomorrow.  By Saturday I should feel pretty human again (I hope!) just in time for Downtown farmers market.  This is the last FM for the year-- we will be located near the Science Center on 4th street.  The other pics show u how some of these projects turned out.  I stil have most of these-- these pics are from 3-4 weeks ago.   

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Craftsman Bracelet

Since I'm on a roll with tag bracelets, here is a craftsman drill tag.  cute!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Western Electronics bracelet

I'm having a blast on girls weekend.. so here is a quickie picture of one of my favorite tag bracelets... from a Weston Electric voltmeter.  There was a huge hole in the middle where a dial lived, so I took that opportunity to add a clock gear.  This bracelet is still available.

Monday, September 21, 2015

next up: Girls Weekend! wheeeee!

This will be brief.. in fact all blog entries this week will probably be brief, cause it's Girl's Weekend this week! woot!  So everyone, have a good weekend, and I'll think of you when I'm having that mango Margaretta with the gals!
Singer sewing machine bracelets, these are the last until I can find more old singer sewing machines, and only the top left colored one is left.....

Friday, September 18, 2015

Friday night in the hotel.....

Tomorrow is Riverssance, which will be awesome! The weather will be perfect, and so I'm sure will the crowds.. if you are in the Davenport Area, you should stop by for sure!

Last post I showed a pic of my worktable, and I got a question on what the cash register cog was for.  Why this lovely necklace! This is the last of the cash register cogs I have, though we have a couple of cash registers laying around ready to be salvaged whenever Jerry has time again to do so.  The crystal is a vintage chandelier crystal, and the chain ( I adore the chain!! ) is vintage copper... it's shaped like mini- clasps I just love it!        

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Done in time for Riverssance!

You can see this piece in person this weekend at Riverssance in Davenport Iowa this Saturday and Sunday.

I started this a couple of weeks ago, as you can see on my project tray.  Note the stickie on the dragonfly-- that's me planning out the holes to be drilled.  I'll be honest, I originally thought to make the dragonfly a bracelet, but messed up on drilling the hole too close to the edge-- making it unsafe to use that way.  With this design I turned those holes into decorative effects instead.  Once I laid out my design I thought the color of the dragonfly was too close with the vintage gears.  Normally I add color to the critter but this time I decided to add it to the gears.  I love how it turned out!  I think I'll add color to the gears more in the future.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Earring roundup

Just trying to catch up on my picture files--  here's a bunch of earrings made in the last couple of months.

Dragonfly necklace

Good morning everyone!   Has anyone else noticed in the new Campbell Soup campaign one of the commercials features gay dads with a kid?   I think this is so awesome and really shows how far American thinking has turned on the issue of gay rights, marriage and all that jazz.  I mean a freakin' Campbell soup commercial !!!  Like is good.    This necklace is a old 1930's or earlier pocket watch with brass and crystal embellishments.

Leather cuffs

In the catagory of "Gee, I should make more of these" I would put leather cuffs.  Both of these are already sold.

Bottom pic gives you an idea of what the leather part looks like.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Artapalooza is this weekend!

 This is what my desk looks like right this moment.  I've got several items in different phases of construction--
I'm not sure I've actually just come out and said this.. but my hubby is now a fully employed teacher.  This means that after 3 years, we are back to being a 2 - income family.  And this time around he's got a career instead of just a paycheck, a career where he can make a positive difference in other's lives.  I think his soul is happier now than it's been in years.


I'm so proud of him.. going back to school after more than 20 years!!   He sometimes has doubts on how well he's done / doing,  but his standards are - sometimes - well,  inappropriately high.  ( is that diplomatic enough?)


So Honey, I’m proud of you.  


Meanwhile , I'm in my normal pre-show frenzy.  This weekend we have Artapalooza, in Cedar Falls, IA and it's one of my favorite shows every year.  It's well run, well patronized, right by 2nd hand shops and has 2 decent bakeries within  walking.   Everyone, from the show organizers to all the customers, are just so darn excited and friendly and genuinely happy to see us!


I don't want to disappoint these people!   So I'm working hard on getting as many new pieces done -- good pieces!! -- as I can in the limited time I have.   The only bad thing about this show is it's so late in my season, so I feel like I don't have any "good" stuff left to share with them.


hm.  maybe high standards runs in the family?


Sunday, September 6, 2015

I'm sooo glad to have project runway back!!

For those joining this blog in progress, here is the recap:

I'm a huge fan of Project Runway.  Huge.

I've not watched it for about 3 years, because we dropped Direct TV to cut household costs down.  So for the last 3ish years, we have had DVDs , 1 tv with an digital rabbit ears and Netflix, when the wifi worked well enough in the house to use it. (Don't get me started on the wifi)

For the most part not having cable/satellite hasn't been all that bad.  I miss just turning the TV on and catching odd and kewl stuff more or less randomly.  I really just use it  for back ground noise while I do chores or work on jewelry design.  I just like having something on, I just think better that way.

And I missed 4 specific shows - Walking Dead, Colbert, Jon Stewart and Project Runway. 

Now almost 3 years later, we are getting satellite back!  Due to needing a new dish, it got bumped from this weekend to next weekend.

I just couldn't wait -- so I've been watching Season 14 of Runway to catch up, and I bought seasons 1-5 of Walking Dead so I'm all ready to go when it starts up again.

Colbert and Stewart are sadly no more.  I'm going to try out the new host for the Daily news, and Maybe I'll catch Colbert in his new gig.... but I'm gonna enjoy the hell out of catching up Dead and Runway!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Earring roundup

Clock hands and gears from an adding machine
These are my "upscale" earrings... top hats and vintage watch faces make classy out on the town earrings
vintage check writing machine .  I carefully shaped these number strips into nice round rings, and wire wrapped them into hoop earrings.  This was my last pair, unless  I find another adding machine or check writing machine that has the numbers like this.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

real vs. fake

I got asked the question recently about if I used reproduction stuff or real stuff, like my singer tag bracelets.  

While I use some reproduction stuff, I usually incorporate it in with vintage materials.  

Since I'm usually going for a certain look, I can't always find what I need in real materials.  Also some of the vintage stuff needs backing or support.  Or I"m afraid it's too fragile to use.  

A good example is my time in a bottle series.. real vintage bottles can be pretty thin.  Also hard to find them -- so I use new bottles.

But I stuff them full of vintage clock and time parts.  

The singer tags are real... off old sewing machines we get at flea markets and such.  They are not working, grungy and dirty... we buy them, strip them and then I clean up the parts I want to use.

I love using vintage parts as much as possible, especially the clock and watch parts.  I love faces and gears!  

I don't think using real and fake mixed together is a bad thing, as long as when I sell them people understand what they are buying.  I try to make sure the vintage stuff is marked on my price tags.  Still I'm human and if you are looking at my jewelry just ask when you are not sure.

Friday, August 28, 2015

close up on Gear earrings

Not feeling chatty today so enjoy some pictures!
Recently tripped over these really cute bails, so I tried them on gears a couple of different ways..

Wednesday, August 26, 2015


A couple of weeks ago on our grand Hwy 141 garage sale, Jerry found this wrench.  Its old and grungy, which is perfect.. and it was only half there.

Only Jerry and I would buy a broken wrench.

But doesn't it look great on a handmade riveted bail?

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Jewelry Re-do

Farmer's Market this morning couldn't have gone better -- the crowds, the weather and well, everything conspired to make it an inspiring morning!

I can't believe how fast the year is going again .. we only have 2 farmer's market's left, one in September and 1 in October.  I only have 6 shows left for the year (well that I know of )

I'll try to be a busy busy busy beaver because we have 3 shows in September and our inventory is getting pretty slim.... so many great pieces sold today, including Time Medusa and Never Grow up.   I need to get my creative thinking cap on, and come up with more great pieces.  Sometimes when I'm stuck creatively, I take apart other jewelry, either my own pieces or something vintage or .. someone Else's .   

I got these earrings that used a bottle cap as the base.  Now they were fun and funky, but really large and not really me.

Love what the bottle cap says though! It's so interesting to see what drinks are available in other parts of the country.

So I made one of them into a pendant.  To add my own flair.. I added "oui" on the back and the drop crystal. So a person could wear it either way,  Oui at work and then flip it over when you go out with the girls after work!  This is fun necklace to go bar hopping in!

I got the earrings from B'Sue in one of her Muse packages.  Love those things!   I might have to beg for another one, I deserve a treat and they are a creative shot in the arm... lots' of lovely stuff to play with and things I might not buy on my own, but spark my brain when I have them in my hot little hands.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Earrings Earrings everywhere!

 During the last three weeks I've been making earrings like a mad woman, to the point I have earrings coming out of my , well, ears!!!               

Here are a couple of group shots.

I'll be at Downtown Farmer's Market This Saturday 7-12pm .   I'm on 3rd street north, should be just 1 or 2 booths off from the corner (3rd & court by the parking ramp) .