Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Christmas is coming!

So Christmas is just around the corner.  A week from tomorrow?  Already?  Yikes!!  All my decorations are finally in place, I wrapped all the presents today, and thinking about what baking I need to do this weekend.  I really want to be in the studio, however.  I have all these ideas that I want to play with but I told myself that I can't get back to work until I get everything ready for Christmas AND I get everything posted to my etsy store.  I'm one step closer, the earring photos are edited and will be going up tomorrow morning.  Yay!!

 The pink earrings are pretty little lucite flower beads, Swarovski crystals, and metal filigree.  They've been really popular at my craft shows.  They are bright and lightweight.  Check out the etsy store tomorrow afternoon to see all the different colors and designs.  I had alot of fun making these.

This is a super close up detail shot of one of the patina earrings.  This one is copper with a verdigris finish.  The earrings started out bright silver, then I coated them with a metal infused paint and brushed on an antiquing solution.  You get this gorgeous blue green color that makes the earrings look really old.  I love finding inexpensive earrings I can upcycle into something pretty!  The product I use is from Triangle Crafts called Sophisticated Finishes.  I picked up mine from Michael's but the last time I looked, they had them in the clearance section.  I bought all my store had.  You can get it online at several different stores. 

This is a close up of an earring made from Friendly Plastic.  No, it's not metal, it's plastic!  You start out with black Friendly Plastic, warm it up and use a texture stamp to give it a nice design.  The rest is a secret...  Nah, the technique is in one of the bead magazines and maybe on the Friendly Plastic blog as well.  It's pretty simple - I swirl on a mixture of Krylon gold leaf pen and copper leaf pen and, before that dries, paint on some antiquing solution.  I use a solution from Triangle Crafts called Sophisticated Finishes. 

There are other products out there that do the same thing but this is the only manufacturer that I have tried - yet.  If anyone wants to send me product to try out *hint hint* I would be more than happy to do so!  The Sophisticated Finishes metal paints that I mentioned above can be used on Friendly Plastic, but it has an irritating habit of flaking off, so I'm working on a fix for that.  It works pretty well on flat pieces like earrings, but I want to use it on bracelets and it would not be good for the finish to flake off easily.  But I have to get into the studio in order to work on that process, and well, you know, I have other things I have to do first, like getring these earrings posted into my Etsy shop...

There is still time to order for Christmas delivery, but you better order soon!  I was at the post office this morning, sending out an order, and it was not fun.  And it's only going to get worse.  And more expensive.  So check out the earrings tomorrow and let me know if you need any last minute gifts and I'll ship out as soon as possible.  And remember, use promo code FBFRIENDS15 to get 15% off your order!

Monday, December 9, 2013

The joys of living in Teas

I have to admit, I am not a native Texan.  I grew up in southern California, Santa Barbara to be exact, and I miss those mild winter days and warm summer nights.  The weather extremes in Texas make me crazy.  I will never get used to 100+ degree sweltering summer days and bone chilling winter blasts and icy streets.  I would move back to California in a heart beat - if I could afford to live there, which I can't.

In a couple of years we're going to build a house in East Texas, where it still gets hot and cold, but at least I'll have my dream house nestled amid the tall pines to deflect some of the worst weather.  And I get to build my dream studio.  Imagine having all the room you need, plenty of storage, natural light...and electrical outlets where you actually need them.  I cannot wait!  I've been building this house in my mind over the last six months, planning out my studio and making mental lists of everything I'll need.  Too bad I have to wait a couple of years.  In the meantime, though, I'll make good use of my little improvised studio in my current house.  It may be small, but I have alot of stuff crammed in there.  It's pretty well organized, I'm about to re-label all my bins and drawers see if anything needs to be purged.  Sound like fun?  I didn't think so, but I love to organize so it's fun for me.

I added more pendants to the etsy store over the last couple of days and added some narrow cuff bracelets this morning.  Here's a peek...

This is the super bling bracelet.  The centerpiece is actually an earring from a bargain store but you can't tell, it really sparkles.  A couple tiny Swarovski crystals highlight the brass filigree beneath.

This bracelet features copper filigree and a crystal slider from a craft store.  I had to cut the slider rings from the bottom, not easy, but had to in order to get it lay somewhat flat on top of the bracelet.  This one has tiny crystals on it too for a little bling. 

I wasn't able to do very many craft shows this fall so I have alot of inventory to sell right now.  And not just the leftovers, this is my good stuff.  It's priced to sell  - and still time to order for Christmas delivery.  I'm waiting for the sun to come back out, here in icy Texas, so I can finish photographing my jewelry.  I still have the earrings, a few more pendants, and some necklaces to shoot - so keep an eye out for more new pieces coming in the next week or so. 

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Greetings from frozen Texas!

Brr!!  The roads are icy and the temps down below freezing.  We are not used to this is Dallas!  Lost power for six hours yesterday but we are one of the lucky houses, some won't get their power restored until Monday.  Goodness, I hope those people have a fireplace or someplace to go.  Oh, and I discovered this morning that the hot water heater went out sometime in the last two days - and the guy can't order the part until Monday!  I can go without a shower , but washing my hair?  Guess it will be with cold water.

Thankfully I was able to get some more photos done while I had sunshine earlier this week.  I am posting some new pieces on Etsy.com right now.  I've added some oozed pendants.  I love making those, you never know what's going to happen!  Here's a sneak peek..

This is a close up of a heart pendant.  The photo really doesn't do it justice, the ribbon I used to ooze through is very sparkly, and the resulting pendant looks like it has black glitter in the cracks, but it's really just the ribbon.  I've used Cloud Clay to fill in the back, gave it a nice texture, painted it with nail polish and sealed it. 

I'm working on making oozed bracelets.  It isn't easy because you don't have the shape cutter to hold everything together while you press from the back side.  I've made several so far but am not ready to post the results yet, I'm such a perfectionist.  I'll post the technique here when I get it perfected, how about that?

Here is a photo of the nail polish pendants.  I just love these pendants, the colors are so bright.  This photo doesn't do it justice either.  There is some super sparkly nail polish in there which looks so pretty out in the bright sunlight.

I started out a year ago with just a couple bottles of nail polish I found on clearance at Wal Mart for $1 each.  Want to guess how many I have now?  Let's put it this way - I got a nail polish display rack from a beauty supply store that was going out of business, and the rack holds 90 bottles.  I filled the rack and still have some left over.  I think I need to stop buying nail polish.  I never spend more than $3 a bottle though, so it hasn't emptied the bank account.   

Hope all of you are staying warm and dry.  I'm off to post some more pendants in my etsy shop.  Hope you'll stop by and check them out.  Oh, and if you find something you'd like to have, use the coupon code FBFRIENDS15 and you'll get a 15% discount through the end of January 2014.