Monday, May 30, 2016

The Zone, part 2

Last Monday I told you a bit about that very special space of time, when designs create themselves and the rest of the world doesn’t exist: The Zone.

Currently I’m reworking designs, which were not made in that special happy space. 
Here is the design before the redesign.  Lovely, but it was missing something.

And this is what I turned the Picasso jasper into. I think the colours grey, purple, silver and blue work very beautiful together. The ear wires are handmade by my wonderful friend Lucy Haslam of Faerystones. Now available in my shop.

Thank you for stopping by. I wish you a wonderful day.

Esfera Jewelry

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Good Fortune - Vintage Meets Fiber

Nothin like a few new components that come into your possession to inspire a new design.
Oh, I have hoards of beads but these are some of my newest.
I was at the Alaska Bead & Gem Show as a vendor down in Anchorage at the beginning of the month. They had brought in a vendor all the way from Texas. Not an unfamiliar name as I had seen Sandy Schor's booth at the Tucson Gem and Mineral show. They had a plethora of vintage beads. These little textured "fortune cookies' fairly  jumped out at me.
Actually I had hallmarked  them for another one of our designers that posts here and immediately posted off a picture to a certain amazing designer Claire Lockwood as  I could see her doing something amazing with them as well. I find it kind of funny now that when I'm bead shopping I  kind of end up spotting things for others!
I must say that feeding the wire thru the corner of the fortune cookie was a bit of a challenge but I persevered  and was delighted to see my wire emerge so I could continue with my idea.

Also Anna Pierson of SagaHus has been making some really cool fiber connectors and has been posting new ones weekly in her facebook group.
I have to admit that I made these at the last minute as I'm flying out to New England tomorrow and will be taking a polymer clay workshop with Christine Damm of which I'm really looking forward to.

Enjoy your summer days and see you when I get back.
Kimberly Rogers ~ NuminosityBeads

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Having fun with Enamels

I have been hitting it hard with all the enamels out there!

What incredible talent we have in our little beading community, every time I turn around, someone is coming up with something new that I just can't say no to.  They are so much fun to work with and I never have a problem coming up with a way to use them....well, most of the time that is.

One of my favorite artists is Cathleen Zaring, she has this process down.... every pair just stunning with vibrant colors.  When they arrive I just stare at them for a while in amazement.
The two pairs below, spiky flowers and rugged hoops are charms by Cathleen.

A new artist I just discovered is Carolyn Conley, I love the soft pastel, almost folklore look of her enamels in the two pair below.  The very bottom pair with the hoops in the back ground are currently available in my ETSY shop.

You can find both Cathleen and Carolyn on ETSY, links provided below.

Thank you again for stopping by and taking a peek,  Enjoy you Memorial Weekend!!  
See you again in two weeks friends, Lynn

My Etsy Shop►Yucca Bloom on ETSY
Cathleen's Etsy Shop►Blue Hare Art Wear
Carolyn's Etsy Shop►Beads By CC Design

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Basic Black Earrings Beach Stone Jewelry

What is the main color that fills your closet? Mine has a lot of black. I don't want to be that "emo" girl who always wears black but I am drawn to it. (no offense emo girls!) I love wearing black and it's easy to fit any other color with it, so it's a good go-to accessory & clothing color. 
These earrings are another take on my beach glass/stone earrings. The only two stones I found that were so beautifully smooth and really *black. All the other stones I collected on this day were some sort of gray. I really love the look and feel of these smooth stones. 
photo by Cindy Pack free for personal use
They pair well with the silver and add a nice contrast to the metal, even in it's rustic patina'd state. 
My original idea was to have the asymmetrical rings hanging side by side. But I was inspired by some of the many asymmetrical earrings I've seen here on the EE blog and I mixed it up a bit. I'm really pleased with how they came out. 

Part of my "Peace, Love & Rocks" Collection

Found black stones, handmade fine silver rings, 
and black stone beads from Alexanders Bead Bazaar (Seattle, WA). 

What's your go-to color?

(original post date Oct 2014)

Monday, May 23, 2016

In the zone

Last Tuesday Norbel was talking about creating something and not really remembering the time spent doing it. That little space of time where the rest of the world doesn’t exist. I think of that space as “the zone”. Creating while being in the zone is wonderful. It seems the designs create themselves. These pieces are generally my best designs. I can always tell which pieces aren’t. And after a while, when these "not in the zone" pieces aren't sold I take them apart and re-use the components.

As with these pair of earrings. Something was missing. These earrings didn’t have a voice, they didn’t sing. They were not made in the zone.

So I took them apart and created something else with the beautiful ceramic leaf charms made by Bo Hulley Beads. Combined with Czech glass and some brass elements, these earrings practically designed themselves.  

Can you tell I was in the zone, while making these? These are available in my shop.

Thank you for stopping by. I wish you a wonderful day.

Esfera Jewelry

Thursday, May 19, 2016

We're All Ears :: May Reveal

When I was little I was given Cambric tea by my mother: essentially hot water mixed with milk, sugar and a little bit of tea. This is likely why I like my creamer with a side of coffee! I still drink my tea this way and it always makes me think of simpler times. I learned that Cambric tea is often just water and milk and sugar, with the tea (or sometimes coffee) being introduced little by little. This is usually given to children. Makes them feel grown up, I suppose, or I read that it was done to introduce a stimulant to youngsters! (As if they need more stimulation! ;-)

So I settled in with an assortment of teas to get inspired. My favorites are Yogi teas. I really like the flavors. But by far the best part is the little tag. 

Wow. How DOES my tea know that is what I needed to hear tonight?

I can remember when I first found one of those little tags. It felt like a wonderful little secret message from the Universe just for me. Sort of like a fortune cookie. Except that it actually made grammatical sense. I started pulling all those little tags off and adding them to a small glass mason jar. It is stuffed full of these tiny words of wisdom. If you have ever ordered anything from me you know that I like to include them in my hand written note to you. I actually just reach into the little jar and pull one out as it is truly what I like to call a RAW, or Random Act of Wisdom. 

So when I thought about what I loved about tea, I kept coming back to those little tags. Yogi Tea has sort of spoiled me for others, like Tazo or good ol' Lipton. Not that they aren't great teas. I just feel sort of cheated when I open a tea bag and there is not a little message of positivity and hope. In fact, I think that each one I open is the perfect message for me in that moment. 

So that is what I set out to replicate. I took some little square blanks and stamped a two part message on each. Then I scruboodled them a bit (only a real term - in my mind!) with a coarse scrubbing block. I dribbled three different colors of alcohol inks on them for that tea-stained look, sealed with a fixative. A wee bit of stray chain attached - et voila! Tea-Stained Wisdom earrings are born!

Good Things Happen Over Tea
A Cup of Tea Makes Life Better
Where There's Tea, There's Hope
Enjoy Life Sip by Sip

 Enjoy with your favorite flavor of Cambric tea. ;-)


Okay. I just have to share this artist that I found. Her name is Ruby Silvious and she has an Instagram project that is being released as a book later in 2016 called 365 Days of Tea. This artist paints on used tea bags as her canvas. Brilliant! These images are perfect in their simplicity and charming in their subject matter. Isn't that incredible? If anyone is looking for a perfect gift for me, this would be it! ;-) 

Your turn! Let's see what you made inspired by our May Tea Party!

Get the InLinkz code for your blog! 

Little Cubes Of Happiness

As I was thinking about how happy the little ceramic cubes look in today's earrings, I all of a sudden remembered another type of cube from my childhood.  Sugar cubes! "Back in the day" there used to be sugar cubes, in bowls, at restaurants.  The sugar cubes were all wrapped up in paper, like tiny, little Christmas gifts!

Waiting for your food in a restaurant was boring, so as kids we'd use these tiny cubes of happiness like blocks; building towers and fortresses made of sugar.  Of course these days kids keep themselves entertained with electronics, but when I was a kid, little cubes of sugar could become castles or rodeo rings, with a bit of imagination.
Nowadays little cubes of ceramic can become earrings, with a bit of imagination on my part.  I've had these ceramic cubes for nearly 15 years!  I guess I've just been hoarding them. I put matching green "dog bone" shaped beads at the bottom of the cubes and topped them with brass, glass and tiny orange rubber O-rings.  Now I can wear tiny cubes of happiness from my ears!

These earrings are available in my shop, here: Linda Landig Jewelry - Earrings

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

(Please) Forget to Wash Your Hands

I'm sure we all heard this at least once during our childhood: "don't forget to wash your hands". As a tomboy and serial creek-hopper, I probably heard that at least once a day. My grubby little paws were always busy and exploring---catching crawdads for the boys who were afraid of getting pinched (come on, guys!), playing on the swingset, picking bouquets of flowers for mom, netting butterflies in the garden, romping through the woods behind our house. 

We assume that dirt and the accumulation of "stuff" is a bad thing. Now, to be fair, in many cases, it is. Germs are not fun. Smelly stuff is not fun. Grody stuff is not fun. However, when it comes to dirty beads with a history, I'm all for it. 

When I'm at a show or am trolling Etsy for new components and I see a strand of beads that have grime, I usually pounce. And once I get them on my bench, the thought of WASHING the beads to remove that beautiful patina of time...well, it never even enters my mind. Some people prefer their beads and jewelry to be new, pristine, shiny, and spotless. That's fine, no problem with that. But there's also something very sterile about it to me.  

Take, for example, the collections of old antique beads found in my earrings for today. Just look at the macro shot on those babies! Pitted, caked with decades and centuries of grime---people rolling the beads around in their hands, wearing them, treasuring them, trading them for goods. Different cultures, different continents, different purposes. In other words, these beads have LIVED. They've outlived generations of humans. And they live on today in their current incarnation as earrings. If that doesn't get your juices flowing as an artist, then I don't know what will.

These earrings feature lime green ancient glass beads, clear "dogon" glass beads, and pale robin's egg blue amazonite stone beads---all from Africa. I added in small vintage wood beads and little bead caps to complete each quintet. The wirework is all hand-wrapped steel, because you know how much I love organic gnarled vining forms. Hooped, lightweight, and fluid.

Happy Wednesday...and have fun getting dirty!

LoveRoot on Etsy

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

With a Cherry on Top :)

Happy Tuesday! I hope your week is off to a roaring start. 

The earrings I made for today slowly morphed from the original idea I had in mind to what you see here, and the two images -- one is only in my mind -- bear very little resemblance to each other. And THAT is one of the things I love most about creating elements. For me, that would be limited to wire, sheet metal, as you see here, and maybe a little bit of altered tin. I can only imagine the fun and excitement involved in creating elements from glass and fire, or clay and a kiln. The thing is, other than dealing with the properties of the medium, there are NO RULES! That's just as true in jewelry and one of the things I love most about designing and creating, and also something I remind myself anytime I catch myself thinking too much while I'm creating, rather than feeling. If you've ever had the experience of making something and not really remembering much of the time you spent doing it, that is the ultimate for me. It generally turns out to be one of my best designs, and it's just such a cool feeling to get into that space for a short time where the rest of the world doesn't exist. 

Well, let me get back to it. 
"With a Cherry on Top"
The vague idea I started with was kind of a figure 8 design. That didn't happen; this shape did instead. I used a dremel to do the majority of the shaping, with a bit of fine tuning with hand files. They were textured with a hammer, oxidized with liver of sulfur, and then I spent a couple of sessions with three different colors of Gilders Paste: Damson, which is a very deep black cherry like color; Verdigris, which is a dark green; and Patina, which is a rather bright aqua I guess I'd call it. 

I paired them with rustic, natural Turquoise stone disks, handmade copper accent beads, handcrafted Lampwork glass beads by Terry Turner of Silver Fish Designs, and the pieces I love so much, the tiny, deep cherry red faceted glass beads. They are just so cool! And they pull out the bits of red in the Lampwork glass. It's all wrapped with 22 gauge oxidized copper wire. I generally prefer 20 gauge wire. It just feels more sturdy to me, but the Turquoise stones wouldn't take it. I made a couple of ball-tipped headpins and hung the gorgeous cherry red beads in the empty space that was created by the unusual shape. :)  It was also necessary to balance the weight. Without hanging a bead there, it tilted to the opposite side.
Listed in my Etsy Shop, She Flies Again

Thank you so much for taking the time to stop in. The ever awesome Ms. Nikki Zehler, creator of all things Love Root, will be here with you tomorrow. Hope you'll stop in again on the 7th of June. Til then, I do hope your days are filled with sunshine, peace of mind, and joy! 

Norbel Marolla

Monday, May 16, 2016

Going to the Art Gallery

I was looking for a statement quality in these earrings. Large and bold, not to be missed when being worn. Kind of the opposite of discrete. They are long, with a cluster of beads and components in different materials. Still surprisingly lightweight (due to the materials used). I personally would wear them when going to an opening night at an art exhibition :-).

Art beads:
Orange-red flower patterned porcelain charms - RoundRabbit
 Leaf shaped hammered and soldered copper dangles - MissFickleMedia

Other ingredients:
African brass beads with swirl pattern
Yellow facetted cat eye beads
Green seed beads
Green vinyl beads
Dark transparent blue with golden coating long facetted drops 
Oxidized brass findings
Handmade brass earring hooks

All my best,
Malin de Koning

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Light As A Leather

I first started using leather in my earrings when I found some really cool salmon skin leather in Chile a few years back.
My local bead mall in Tucson recently had tables full of scraps for $5 a pound so I nabbed some especially decorative pieces in metallics and cowboy boot style to combine with my torch fired enamels

They are so lightweight and a breeze to design with by simply cutting the leather to your desired shapes with scissors.

Just a few added embellishments and there you have it!

Thanks for looking and hope you are sailing into summer like a feather in the breeze!

Kimberly Rogers of NuminosityBeads

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Asian Romance

I had to share my latest and greatest design that I call ♥ Asian Romance ♥.  They just have that aura about them with the fan shaped peacocks, don't you agree?  

Searching around on ETSY, I stumbled onto these little copper cups.  OMG!! I have found a million and one uses for them.  Do they ever add to a design.  I bought every last one I could get my hands on, I think I have about 60, but hey when you see a good thing, ya gotta jump on it.

I chose to add some dainty copper curb chain that I darkened a bit with some seed pearls in burgundy,  I think they flow with the fans perfectly as they swing freely from the cups.  

They are currently available in my ETSY shop

Thanks again for stopping and taking a peek.  Bye for now and see you again in two weeks friends!!  Lynn

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Crystal Obsession _ Aquamarine Chandelier Earrings

In love with the sparkle of Swarovski crystals lately. I just can't get enough of the color and shine. It's been my main focus this past week or two. Paired with rustic brushed silver, I think they are the perfect complement to each other. I don't know why my crystals have been sitting in draws un-admired for years and suddenly they've got my attention. Feeling very inspired, as I said by the array of colors. And the sparkle of Swarovski is unmatched, IMHO. 

I am looking to expand this design into a few other sets of color combinations. However, my supply of these "cosmic" Swarovski crystals is very limited. Very.

For now, this set is available and ready to ship, in the store today.

 These earrings are handcrafted with pure silver. Hoops are torch fused and hand forged with a hammered texture. 

Drilled holes hold charms of Pacific blue Swarovski crystals, tiny, faceted, 3mm.

"Cosmic" beads are added in the shade of Crystal Golden Shadow. A lovely light sand color that reflects light like no other. Wrapped in 20 gauge thick pure silver wire with a rustic brushed, matte finish. 

And finally at the top are natural, pale blue Aquamarine gemstones. 

Look for more in this style, coming soon! 
and always #lovelife

Monday, May 9, 2016

Leafs and dolphins

Yesterday hubby and I went on an adventures hike (read no trail, very prickly bushes) on the coast near Vivari, a small village close to ours. Beautiful views, lovely weather, what more do you want.

While enjoying the view we saw a group of 10-15 dolphins swimming right in front of us. Sadly, too far away for good pictures. We enjoyed a wonderful, free, dolphin show where they showed off some beautiful synchronized jumps and diving. What an amazing sight. The local fishermen are not very happy with the dolphins, as they destroy their nets and steal the fish in it. But we had great fun watching them frolicking around. Now you might ask yourself, what does this story have to do with my earrings of today? Well…nothing. I just wanted to share this with you, as I so enjoyed watching them :)

So, back to the earrings. I got my hands on the much in demand polymer clay leafs made by Helen Backhouse. The colours in these are amazing: a deep blue-ish purple. To accent these colours I combined it with lovely lampwork glass beads in blue, purple and teal (Grace Ma), a tiny Swarovski crystal and of course my favourite handmade copper ear wires by Lucy Haslam.

Thank you so much for looking. Wishing you a wonderful week and I hope to see you in two weeks.
Begonia, artisan earrings

Esfera Jewelry

Friday, May 6, 2016

We're All Ears :: May Inspiration

Today, I will be going to visit my mother at her facility for the Mother's Day Tea Party. That got me thinking about tea parties and the fascination that little girls throughout history have had with them.

I can vividly recall setting up my own china tea set and all my dollies and stuffed animals drinking water and eating crackers and cookies. I never had a goose. But I did have a cat. She wasn't much interested in spending quality time with me.

When my daughter was just a wee one we had her 2nd birthday party as a tea party. Everyone came dressed in fancy hats, my dad wore his tux, and I made a cake that was round and looked like a tea pot.

My favorite book as a child, and later to read to my own daughter, was A Bargain for Frances by Russel Hoban. I love that little spunky little badger! In this story, Frances is duped into buying a plastic tea set from her slightly shifty friend Thelma who then uses the money to turn around and buy the china blue tea set with the little flowers, the exact one she knew that Frances wanted. In the end Frances does a brilliant twist in the story that shows her cleverness and also reminds us all that being friends is the most important thing of all. A great story of friends and forgiveness.

And of course, there is Alice's adventures with the Mad Hatter's tea party.

I am a coffee addict, to be sure, but lately I have been enjoying more and more tea. I find that it doesn't wreck havoc on my stomach the way that coffee does, and there are some really amazing flavor profiles! I even like to slip a fancy tea bag in with most orders going out for a little extra something for my clients to enjoy.

I love china teacups. They are quite romantic with their dainty little saucers and their fragility. I love the shape of the teapot, with the spout and the handle. It seems that it would be a much more genteel time to have a spot of tea every afternoon, complete with roses and tiny cakes!

When I discovered that some teas have little messages of wisdom on the teabag tags, I was hooked! It is like a little surprise every time I open a package. I actually keep all of them in a little glass jar, and pull them out as random messages to include in every order. I think that my clients like receiving them, and I can tell you they truly are random. I believe that the right message always is sent to the right person at the right time!

We have a new-ish business in our downtown that I pass almost everyday called Diversi-Tea. They sell assorted loose teas from around the world as well as oils for a very specialty niche. I haven't had the chance to go in there yet, but I think that all needs to change. I am ready to investigate tea and I think that is where I will start!

So this month, our theme will be Tea Party.

Be inspired by china patterns, the shape of teapots, the flavors of tea, the colors of tea stains, the messages of wisdom on the tags, a romantic table setting, petit fours, silver spoons and lace. Pick out what inspires you from these pictures, or find your own!

And then come back here with a cup of tea on Friday, May 20th for our tea party reveal!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Red Tulips

As you may know, we recently moved to a new house.  Its been fun to discover which plants lay below the surface in our new gardens.  Much to our delight, red tulips appeared in the early spring.  I've named today's earrings in their honor.
The ceramic discs and beads are from Suburban Girl Studio.  The discs are glazed around the rims and have a hole in the middle. I decided to fill the center hole with flower beads.

Because I was filling the hole with beads, I had to come up with an alternative method of hanging them from the ear wires. This required a little mechanical engineering. Several of my initial tries weren't strong enough and the discs flopped forward.  Here's a view from the back showing what I finally came up with.

I placed the flower on a headpin, and then added a 4mm red fire polish bead.  Although the bead doesn't show, it  fills up the hole and stabilizes the flower. After the fire polish bead, I made a wrapped loop.  Using a heavy gauge headpin, I added two size 8 seed beads, the wrapped loop and four more seed beads. Then I added a spacer and the red ceramic bead.  I wrapped the top loop snugly and wrapped down around the top of the bead, to strength to the construction.

I think the Red Tulips will be fun to wear all summer!