Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Fini Friday!

Just a quick entry for Fini Friday as I pack and prepare for the Saint Paul Art Crawl !

I've had the idea for this necklace creation for more than a few years... In fact, the idea (and subsequent title) popped into my head as soon as the focal stone found it's way to me at a trade sho
w! The rest was bringing the materials together and the development as an idea grows into life.

Here it is...
Title: No One Told Her She Was Beautiful
Ingredients: Agate, Opal, marcasite, hand-dyed fiber (USA),sterling silver, recycled chain, hand-finished brass filigree, lead-free pewter (USA), thread, permanently-coated copper wire (USA), m

The clasp (marcasite & sterling silver):

And the focal that started it all:

This and other wonderful creations will be with me this weekend as we perch on the 5th Floor Atrium of the Lowertown Lofts building at The Crawl!
Stop by, in you're in town
and have the time! There is so much wonderful art to share.
On Saturday, Todd Madson of Aliensporebomb will be soundscaping from noon to about 3pm! (Click the photos on the page for samples of his music!

See you sooooon!!!

Whimsy Wednesday!

Welcome to this week's Whimsy Wednesday!

I have a little snippet of studio life to show you today, as I prepare for the Saint Paul Art Crawl this weekend!

About a week or two back, on the same trip that rewarded us with wooden shutters, we happened upon a military surplus store and found this!

It is a military field desk!
Where is the whimsy in that?
I anticipate it will become part of my show set-up as well as opening possibilities for a mobile studio!
Some may say it's just plain crazy, but I say it is whimsy when a company named Sprite Creations has, as an integral part of it's show set-up, a military field-desk! Just the juxtaposition alone greatly amuses me!
Also, I get points for "being green" (HA!) as I am 'recycling' a very useful thing!
Also, also, I score yet more points on it being practical, pragmatic and just plain awesome!

In the photo, you see the cover of the entire set-up is hinged onto supports, with the table leg folded down. The table leg folds into the table top or cover, both little seats fold into themselves and strap inside the foldable table leg and the whole works secures as a cover onto the little cube of a desk!
The space for the drawers on the bottom right are perfect for jewelry display trays and the various file drawers and etc. are perfect for mobile studio stuff, paperwork, bags, and etc. that are useful at shows.

The desk even came with a lock and two keys!...Unfortunately not in working order.
So, here we are then, at the end of another Whimsy Wednesday!
Stop by and see me sometime!
I am constantly updating my list of events, so check here for details!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Fini Friday!

Hello Everyone!!! It is raining today and so I feel the chill in the air a bit!
Soon enough we'll be in the swelter of August heat and then we'll all think of days like this, yes?

If you recall, last week's Fini Friday included a Steampunk Popcap Pendant created by Moi! I have the design finished!!

I included a few extra little bits and pieces here and there and I think it's intriguing!

Title: Moving Parts
Ingredients: Popcap Resin Pendant(recycled cider cap, recycled paper, Earthenwood ceramic gear cabachon, old watch parts, ICE resin), Swarovski crystals, vintage beads, Czech glass, metal, copper.

I love the old bicycle charm, the variety of keys, the saturated colors of the Czech-pressed glass beads (some of which are vintage!), the sparkle of the vintage components and all the little details!

You'll be able to see this and other creations in my Popcap Pendant collection at the Saint Paul Art Crawl!

Woohoo!! I've been invited to in the Lowertown Lofts, 5th Floor Atrium!

Come on out and see me next Friday, Saturday and Sunday!!!

Have an excellent weekend everyone!!!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Whimsy Wednesday!

Hello Again!
I have a little peek into my studio processes for you-all today!
Specifically, my show set-up!
I've had set-up and display changes in mind for some time and with a visit to the Reuse Center last week I found one (actually two!) pieces that I'd been on the look-out for!!

Here they are!

And I actually like the possibilities that the two different colors/finishes give me!

These are going to be my new earring rack.
The idea is to use hinges that will connect these two in the middle, hang the earrings (on the new folding cards), fold some sort of insulator inbetween the earrings hung on both sides of shutters as we close the shutters together, then wrap it with some sort of something around the "outside" and Voila! self-contained earring rack that is pre-loaded!

The shutters will settle on an adjustable artist easel so that they are at a good height for browsing and both artist easel and shutters pack down to just over 3 feet high by 2 feet wide or less! Exxcellent for packing & travel.
Since all is wood or aluminum, all should be quite sturdy and durable while still looking fabulous!

I do have plans to do some decorative painting on the shutters so....
You'll have to stop back by later to see what I've been up to!!

See you soon!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Fini Friday!

And here we are, at Friday!
This week has been particularly busy for me, with yesterday being quite full. Lest you think I am complaining, let me hasten to add that it has been a good busy-ness and that yesterday was full of good things!
I've changed out and replenished the Sprite Creations at BellaLuna Boutique & SaraCura and have future plans and projects up my sleeve regarding those two lovely Creation Locations, so check back in the coming weeks for more info!

Today's Fini Friday project is a work-in-progress that moved further along to completion but isn't quite there yet! Part of my learning and creative process is to know when and how much progress will be made on a project and when to switch gears to other tasks. Since today is a day full of many tasks to do, once it became clear that no further progress would be made on this creation, I now move on to complete others!

This necklace features a Popcap Pendant created by me using a recycled popcap, resin, recycled paper, old watch parts and a ceramic gear cabochon from Earthenwood Studio! A key charm and Swarovski crystal dangle from the jumpring embedded in the resin of the popcap and all of this is suspended from brass chain. Around all of this are the ideas of individual materials and components that I'm pondering as options for this creations.

What else is along the sidelines, you ask?
Vintage rhinestones, Swarovski crystals and a four-leaf clover, a vintage-style bicycle charm, and Czech-pressed glass beads, Oh My!

This will be fun to finish so stop back by for a visit and to see what it has grown into!

Have an excellent weekend!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Whimsy Wednesday!

I've had a busy, happily productive week so far and I hope the same can be said for you-all!!
This Whimsy Wednesday post will be a bit different as it will be more of a peek into my studio processes.
I've had a recent influx of tools and ideas to help me streamline some of my studio work and I'm so pleased with all of it so far! Like many of you, there are some things that just weren't working very well for me or needed refining and I've been slowly tackling them in little bits at a time.
This is especially important to me because I'm branching out into other media and other creations in addition to the jewelry and so need to recapture some time and energy from places that don't need it.

That's what today's post is all about...showing you a little tidbits of this refining process.
How is that whimsical, you ask? Well, part of it is because of my perspective of a "new" tool that I just acquired and part of it is the whimsy that I strive to mingle into every part of Sprite Creations and my studio life!

So! First the "new" tool!
I needed a different paper cutter; one with the ability to cut multiple sheets at once and with as little fuss as possible on my part. I looked at new paper cutters with the "guillotine" style and then mentioned to part of my family that I was going to procure a paper cutter in the next few days. This led to a flurry of investigation as to where an old paper cutter had been placed in storage and voila!! Here it is!

This is easily an antique and is probably well over 4 decades old! I love that the metal is steel and cast iron and the board is actual lovely honey-colored scarred wood! The paint spatters, scratches and discolourations all speak to me of stories and! it still cuts quite well!!
Where is the whimsy in this? It fits into my over-all perspective of how I like things in my studio... rich, full of stories and built like tanks (some would say "over-engineered")... Items such as this paper cutter encourage me giggle secretly to my self every time I pass it by!

Speaking of cutting so well...that subject brings me to the next and final part of the blog!
I tested the cutter right away on the new tags that I just redesigned and printed!
For the earring cards, I found that I wanted to phase out some of the plastic and go with a more earring-card style..which prompted the tag redesign at first... but then I found that I spent a great deal of time writing on the tags, which was fine, but I was really starting to resent writing the repetitive but necessary information such as my website and company name... also, my hand hurt! So, I think these new tags have the proper mix of lovely pre-printing and hand-writing and I've the photos to show you!
Whimsical parts of these tags include the star, the parchment-style paper, and the space for the stories which accompany nearly every creation...
I've photographed the tags on the lovely wood of that fabulous paper cutter...

And here are the earrings cards.. with a few different views...

So!! That's all for now! See you on Friday!!!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Fini Friday!

It feels tropical to me today because it has been sooo warm this week! YAY!!!
I hope it is a similar story in your neck of the woods!

I had 3 necklaces laid out with the Popcap Pendants that I created on this Whimsy Wednesday and anticipated finishing them this week. However, best laid plans and etc. have gone awry, but mostly in good ways and so I have one necklace to show you today!

First, a close-up of that Popcap Pendant, so you can see the beautiful sparklies that in that colored resin!

The Popcap is filled with coloured resin swirling around vintage glass pearls and faceted Czech glass beads. You can see another of the vintage glass pearls, along with a matching faceted Czech glass bead and Czech pressed glass shell dangling from a series of jumprings that also serve as part of the toggle for the dragonfly toggle clasp. And the final beautiful finishing touch is that fabulous spiral chain! I just love it!!!

So, here you have it! This Popcap Pendant creation once again, with a little bigger perspective and it's title:
Water Signs
Ingredients: Recycled natural cola pop cap, vintage glass pearls, Czech faceted and pressed-glass beads, sterling silver, metal, lead-free pewter.

I hope this weekend takes you on the wings of Adventure!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Whimsy Wednesday!

What a beautiful day this is in my neck of the woods!!!!! I hope the same for you-all!
Today is Whimsy Wednesday and I have lots of fun things to share with you!

I've two pairs of earring creations to show off, fun bits of brushed copper beads to play with and links to some lucky folks who've won March goodie bags from Rings & Things!
How's that for a preface?!
Now, let's dive into the good stuff!

Here is the first of the two earring creations I mentioned earlier.
Title: Easter and the Old Ways
Ingredients: Czech-pressed glass, Bali and Sterling Silver, lead-free pewter bunnies.

Based on myth and legend, Easter is a Springtime celebration that began long before Christianity. Though there is little literary evidence, this holiday is connected with Ostara or Eostere. A goddess of Springtime, Dawn and the East, she is often associated with bunnies and fertility, for obvious reasons! You can find more information here.
These purple Moon and Star beads remind me of ancient symbols carve into fanciful stone and illuminated by moonlight...pairing these with a delightful bunny charm and finishing with little details like the star-shaped Bali Silver spacers... I imagined that these earrings could represent an ancient prayer for the return of Spring!
Where is the whimsy in such a serious inspiration? The bunnies, of course!!! How could anyone resist that one charming ear that flops enchantingly askew?

Onward to the next creation!
These have really nothing to do with spring except beautiful pastel pink colors and perhaps a rebirth by retail therapy..? You decide!
Title: Modern Woman
Ingredients: Faceted glass rondelles, Czech glass, metal charms, sterling silver.

Seriously, though I don't usually work with pastels, I was delighted to match the high-heel shoe with the whimsical, feminine purse and beautifully coordinated both with the delightfully-faceted, strong yet gentle pink colours you see above.

And now for a peek into some of what I'll be playing with in the month of April!

Rings and Things has graciously sent me loot(!), a portion of which you see above, as part of their Brushed Copper Beads Design Challenge!
I have ideas for these beads.. including some playing in the studio with coloured resin, dapping, perhaps firing up a torch.. who knows!!!
I have design ideas already.. so look up that blog link often to see what myself and the other fabulous artists create!!!

As we draw this edition of Whimsy Wednesday to a close, I want to take a moment to Congratulate! and link to the winners of another Rings and Things Contest!
The lucky folks you see below have won a bag of goodies for the month of March! I'm excited to see what they create with their loot! Inspiring, being inspired by others and spreading the inspiration-love is very important to me so I'm pleased to participate in this!
Congratulations to......
1. Debbie St George
2. Julia Benson-Slaughter
3. Jan Baxter
4. Jenny Stark
5. Penny Illemszky
6. Wella Cornelis
7. Jeannie Dukic
8. Dee Gordon
9. Chris Jackman
10. Kassie Inman

Legalese: I have received the following products free of charge from rings-things.com and I am honestly reviewing them. I have not been paid for my endorsement as it pertains to the products received: all brushed copper beads pictured above.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Fini Friday!

Iiiittt's FRIDAY!!!!
And it is April Fool's Day!
I don't really participate in April Fool's Day jokes and such because I find that most of them to be a bit mean, even if the intention is not.
So, no April Fool's Day jokes here!

Just a really fabulous necklace I am excited to show you-all!
You may remember a previous
Fini Friday post where I presented the beginnings of the Wild Woman necklace.
After playing around with several choices of large and small linked chain, I decided simplicity is the best!
One of the key factors in this decision was in playing with the different chains and having them become entangled in themselves. I don't generally like creations that are too fussy in terms of maintenance and needing to be endlessly untangled and I believe you-all probably feel the same way... so when just the chains themselves became easily entertwined, I became concerned not only about that sort of fussiness, but also about the Swarovski yarn!
Though the yarn is sturdy for what it is, it is still a multi-strand cable of fiber and so must needs be more delicate than metal chain. As visions of chains and yarn hopelessly tangled danced in my head, I changed directions!

Here she is, the finished creation!

Title: Wild Woman Ingredients: Hand-stamped lucite, Swarovski crystal, lucite, Swarovski crystal yarn, glass, metal.

See how I wrapped the crystal yarn around that awesome chain?
Yup! Simple but stunning, I think!

And here is a close-up of that fabulous focal and the lady herself!

I love the overall feel of this necklace. Certainly it is neo-Victorian... but it seems to blend a bit of Mae West and the Wild, Wild West... and could *just* be pulled over into Steampunk or Goth with a few other well chosen accessories or bits of a costume.
Wild is as wild does and I love that this lady and the creation she inspired has a certain "civilized-edge" to her wildness.

What a great sentiment to start the weekend, yes?

So! Be off with you!

See you next week!!!