Thursday, March 30, 2017

And now for Something Completely Different......

OK for most of you that are following me, I make jewelry that's steampunk inspired, which I call Mechanical Romance.  I used real pieces of history in this jewelry, because my hubby and I cut up old mechanical like typewriters and clocks and use the bits in the actual jewelry pieces.  If you are new to my jewelry, feel free to look around my blog entries and you will quickly see what I am famous for.

I started making this kind of jewelry in 2012 or there about, but I've been making jewelry for almost 20 years now, and I've gone through several styles and types in those years.

I started out with seed beads and bead weaving, then quickly added stringing, using crystals, gemstones and pearls, gradually moved on to silver smithing, lampworking ( making glass beads myself) glass fusing, wire-wrapping etc.  I've "majored" and "minored" in multitude of jewelry making techniques, and overall my absolutely favorite kind is cold connections... rivets and wire --- which is how I construct most of my mechanical romance pieces.

But every once in a while I get a hankering to revisit older passions, and I guess that explains this necklace as much as anything will.

 I originally started this probably 4 years ago.. I pulled together 50+ different types of pearls, crystals, and findings, Then I got into my Mechanical Romance phase, and this whole project got bagged up and more or less forgotten.  Last year I decided to really get through the huge pile of UFO's (Unfinished art Objects) and of course ran into what had to be 3 lbs of beads and things shoved in a gallon sized zip and almost bursting at the seams.

I loved the copper toned themed I had going on, and I've never lost my fondness for pearls, even though they don't come up much in my current work.

I found this glorious vintage hand cut chandelier crystal, which I wire-wrapped into a filigree type finding.  I loved how it looked! I even blogged about it... then promptly lost my way again on it.

The problem seemed to boil down to - since it doesn't fit my current jewelry line, I didn't want to commit the time and effort to make it.  I only have handfuls of hours before my season starts, I cannot "waste" it making something that won't fit into my MR (Mechanical Romance) line and therefore won't probably sell.  The only thing I really wanted to do was a large multi-stand pearl necklace, which isn't MR in any way.  It just didn't give me a MR feel - I just couldn't put it in a MR round hole when it wanted to be a parallelogram pearl peg!

I took the heavy zip with me on my annual Girls Weekend, and showed my buddies this poor, never gonna get finished piece, and said I really wanted it off my back table,  Since the crystal is vintage, I reasoned I could just slap chain on it and it wouldn't be too far outside my line.

My Buddy Cathie had a flying fit!  She's like it needs the whole pearl and crystal treatment, it's crying for it... just do it!!!

How can I ignore my bestie?

Honestly how could I ignore what the pendant had been telling me?

so I made a large, 3 strand pearl, crystal, and copper beads necklace.  And it looks fantastic!  I'm very glad I made it the way it needed to be made.  I still have a necklace that I'm going to have a hard time even putting out on the table because it doesn't go with most of my stock.  I've worked really hard the last few years to make my table offerings cohesive, so it feels like a step back on some level.

But sometimes I just need to make something that I don't have to file down, sand and possible seal before I use it.  Sometimes I just need to feel the silky smooth fresh water pearls between my fingers.  Nothing is as lux as a really nice pearl necklace.  Sometimes I just want to string in pretty patterns, and finish a piece the same evening I started it.

So it's in the back of my mind again.. I want to play with pearls!  I have boxes and boxes of them.. while I've destashed some of my beads, strangely enough the pearls never seem to make it to the sale pile.

So while I'm working on inventory, I'm thinking about pearls incorporated with gears.  it has to look right.. classy and elegant, yet fit into the MR brand.  I have made a few pieces that fit this idea, but I haven't put serious thought into it.  I think I have a few designs lurking in the brain box that would work... maybe a classy, steampunk wedding line, for those who want to be girlie-girl in a white wedding dress but still have a nod to their favorite normal styles.  The whole reason I call my line Mechanical Romance and not just call it steampunk is I didn't want to be limited to just the "steampunk" style, and I didn't want to make jewelry that just has a watch cog slapped on it.  I still want to create art.  I still want to make pieces that make my heart sing and maybe someone else's heart as well.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Time in a Bottle on Etsy!

You can buy it here!
Before my computer had it's issue, I'll started to list some of my current line.  My thought was to get it up on Etsy and then blog about the new stuff.  And then my hard drive took a dive.. so I'm trying again.

One of my favorite designs is "Time in a Bottle".  All kinds of vintage watch goodness in little glass bottles with corks.  The best part is I came up with the name before my husband did, and it really bugs him cause he thinks he has all the good puns.

I love love them because of the name, and they look kewl.. and they sooth my heart that wants to use up all the little itty bitty watch parts I've been hoarding, wasting none.  Some of these are not practical in my other designs, but putting them in itty bitty bottles? Fab-U-lous !
and the matching earrings!
So wear some history... run to Etsy and buy them now!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Elegant Fairy Necklace and Sat Morning Musings

This is my version of the Fairy Queen.. the back butterfly is old french stock, and the detail is fantastic on the filigree.  I added extra patina, and then riveted the fairy and cogs.  I love how the butterfly antenna became her fancy crown!
So it's 1030 am on a Saturday morning... a dreary Saturday morning - and I'm in a pretty chipper mood.

I've already bought some supplies for future jewelry on Etsy at some decent pricing.  (if you are curious, a vintage 40's adding machine, old souvenir spoon lot and some kewl brass stampings)  My kitchen is about as clean as it gets short of mopping, I have a movie date later this evening with my Mom (HAPPY BIRTHDAY MA!!!! ) to see La La Land  and breakfast is left over Chinese.

I get bonus points because last night I laid out about 10 projects for inventory, and I think I can get about half done before I need to clean up for my date with Ma (HAPPY BIRTHDAY AGAIN  MOMMA!!!) After all the hard part is done... chasing down my "ingredients" (aka jewelry components, watch parts, and stuff to make the pieces)

I have 6 weekends left before my first show, so it's really time to get crackin'.

I've been thinking hard about display changes for the year.  I'm hoping next weekend I'll get to spread it out and do a mock up of this year's display.  I like doing it at least a month before so if I need to replace busts and such I have time to research and buy them.  We are retiring the singer box display and the cash register drawer displays, so I have almost a table size footprint to play with.  One of the recent flea market finds is a old radio, and it's probably gonna be apart of the new display.  We have bought a few other odds and ends at flea markets specifically for displays, so this gives me a chance to pull it together and see if it looks good.

Tomorrow will be more inventory making, and more house cleaning (blah) Maybe go to Mom's (HAPPY BIRTHDAY Mommy! ) for a few hours, which I do most Sundays.

So what's your plans for the weekend?  Whatever they are, enjoy!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Catching up on my photos

I made these pieces in late Jan, early Feb, right when I started to have all the computer problems, so I didn't get much chance to blog about them then.

The necklace on the left, if you look closely, has a little girl peeking out of the keyhole.  That little girl is... I have no idea.  A couple of years ago I bought a jewelry lot, in a actual jewelry box, and this beautiful little girl was in it.  The picture was actually cut up, only have this girl in it, about 2/3rd of the picture was missing.. it looked like 2-3 people were missing.  In my head I make up stories about this, Why was the photo cut up? Who's missing? Why did it get left in a jewelry box with a bunch of costume jewelry?  What was her name? Was the jewelry hers or her mom's or what?

I think this sliver of  a photograph was as intriguing to me as all the jewelry in the lot!

I always knew it would end up in one of my pieces -- so when I was making this necklace I knew I needed someone to peek out of it.. and I remember this girl.

The bracelet in the middle are all wheat pennies, carefully wire wrapped into a charm bracelet.  (Penny for your thoughts!  Hey, maybe the girls name is Penny?? ) I bought the pennies at a flea market in AZ during our trip last summer.

The last is a clock gear with a Egyptian scarab on it.  I used new old stock vintage chain on this one, love that chain!

Monday, March 20, 2017

I'm back!! with pictures...... recent watch buy

 Computer issues suck.  I've been suffering problems for probably close to 2 months, but the last month has been impossible... the computer would work for maybe 20 minutes at a time, and then die on me.  It would take an hour to reboot and get it going again.  I finally found a local place and got it fixed... by buying a new hard-drive.

They recovered most of my data, and loaded a slightly newer version of windows for me, so I've been working hard the last few days reloading software, checking my back ups and getting things going again.

This is part of the reason my blogging has been so very spotty.  Sure I had my Ipad but honestly the blogger app doesn't work that well on it either... so it just seemed better to wait.  Besides it's my winter break ...  my time to recharge and refresh.

However, I'm gearing up (hehehehehehehe) for the summer shows, so well, I'll try to be more faithful about my blog.  I actually enjoy sharing pics and process and just random thoughts, so I'm actually really glad I can get back into the swing of things.
Kas is trying to help me, I think... 

To celebrate my computer is back, here are pictures showing a recent flea market buy, of over 100 watches to make into jewelry.

 So here is Jerry working hard, taking apart the watch cases, carefully prying off the faces.  Since the best of these will become watch movement rings, I don't want to take apart the actual movements yet.
While the watches above are not being broken down, here's me sorting pocket watch gears after they are taken completely apart.  I make tons of watch part earrings, so I spend a chunk of time each winter sorting like a mad woman, so I have pairs.
Can you spot the pairs? 

Can you spot them here? 
Seriously , it take some major time to find matches , or close enough matches.  But only the best for my customers!!

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Key necklaces and semi-random thoughts.

basic old key all dressed up to go to an Egyptian Party!
It's been a long long long couple of weeks... yet another cold, this one got bad, with a side of sinus infection and Asthma complications.  It's just seems the last 2 years I'm getting sick again and again, every 2 to 3 months, and I'm dead tired of it.  It's such a waste of time, and it sucks all my energy.. and I'm whining.  OK done with that.

Next week is my mostly Annual Girls Weekend Trip! this one has a kicker.. the hubby is coming with.  He's planning to Hang with the guys mostly, so I guess we will see how it goes.  he says he needs a vacation too, hard to argue that one.
Vintage key, some paperwork, old token and pearl.  This has a different vibe that most of my work, but I like it 

I'm having a hard time dealing with having that guy as prez.  I seriously want our Country to be OK, but every time I hear his voice I just cringe, and I doubt.  I seriously think anti-depressants are gonna be at a all time high in 4 years time.  Good investment maybe?

I haven't been making much jewelry the last few weeks ( see the sick part) but I have been dreaming!  I only remember fragments, but just maybe I can get one or 2 to pan out.  I keep thinking about a gal running through the woods, only the trees are not trees but giant, half melted/battered fiber conduits.  I keep having dreams with this recurring image.  I think it's art... I think I can make it art?  It's probably all the free form anxiety I have right now about life in general, and work and everything.   The gal running is all in white of course.  couldn't be a proper techno-Gothic dream otherwise.

It's also possible I'm overtaking my cold meds.

The wild Tiger population is recovering according to my Hubby.  He wanted to get in the random thoughts .

My blogging will probably be spotting for a few weeks -- I'll promise to be more faithful after my trip!

Love hugs and peace y'all .