Colouring Clay

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A friend took a trip into Artisans in the Attic this week and she pleasantly took some pics for me, which showed me that my clay pendants were getting low. Which means it’s time to make some more. She mentioned she’d like to see more colourful ones so I obliged! Normally I am random with the colours but this time I worked more systematically AND took note of my colour combinations so I’d have recipes …

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Product, Photos, Design, Show!

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About a month ago I suddenly decided that with two shows this season, it was time to get some professional photography done on my jewellery. It came together extremely quickly, with my friend Jayme Burns agreeing to take the photos, which I’m lucky she had a slot open; and my husband’s lovely co-worker Sarah-jane agreeing to model for me – and despite never having done such a thing before, she was amazing. One of the …

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Hood Ornaments – no, wait, I meant Statement Necklaces!

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A while back I got myself some vintage leather belts, with some vague ideas of how I could use them as the base for some honkin’ big assemblage steampunk pieces. I didn’t really get a chance to start playing until a couple of weeks go. I cut up a couple of belts and started digging through my pile of vintage and new metals and bits and bobs, and began figuring out some placement. Here’s my …

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Wrapping Beach Glass in Clay!

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I live on an island. For the past six years, a significant chunk of my income has come from wire-wrapping beach glass and selling it to tourists, or folks from here who have family away and want to send them a piece of home. It’s been great, and my parents have been my largest supplier of beach glass, picking it up on their weekly beach walks. But recently, at least three other wrappers have popped …

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Think & Design #3: The Cluster

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Yep, I skipped #2 but that’s only because my sketches for those are upstairs – they were made while I was still doing the exercises physically, on paper with pen. But then I bought this tablet, mostly because touching it in the store gave me a completely visceral reaction, and I started doing my sketching there. It’s nearly as good as paper, sensually, and ten times better because I always have it with me (but …

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Idea Overload!

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Two weeks ago I had some vacation time, and my younger brother and I headed out across our wee island in search of rusty crap. It was a gorgeous summer day, warm but not so hot we needed the A/C so all the windows were down and everything smelled like heaven – pine and hot sand and salt air and just… fresh and wonderful. If I could bottle all of those summer smells for you, …

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Think and Design: #1 – The Flower

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As promised, I’ve begun the drawing exercises on my journey towards a new style. Above is the first exercise in the Think and Design Jewelry Series, which is to, essentially, draw a flower. I drew a bunch because it was so much fun to remember that hey, I used to know how to draw! Part of the exercise is to come up with a bunch of loose concepts for types of designs based on the …

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Self-Discovery

A couple of weeks ago, a friend and I leaned on each other … each of us were having a hard time and so we spent the day just nosing around town, getting errands done, distracting. I wanted to go to Value Village to look at metal bits, all the while wishing I could get into the piles of things people normally throw away to dig for delights like the old leather keychain I found …

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Adventures in Ring Design

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Back when I first started making jewellery, there were no tutorials online – no pinterest, no craftsy, no jewelrylessons.com. So when I wanted to make a ring, I had to sort of figure it out myself. And what I came up with was pretty neat – a base with beads “sewn” on top: I’ve sold hundreds, even thousands of these little suckers. But that tiny wire used to sew those beads on? Yeah, grabbing that …

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Concepts & Clay

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I purchased a small fistful of these tiny watch parts one time because I couldn’t help but think they’d make perfect bird heads. Today the muse hit to give it a go! I had a pretty good idea of where I wanted it to go, but first, I traced the watch part – doesn’t it look just like a head with a beak and an eye?! – and tried a couple of sizes and angles …

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Back to my roots… and they’re made of gemstones!

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Earlier in the week I was planning my studio time. All previous projects have been complete and are off the bench, and I was musing aloud about what I could work on next. My very clever husband suggested I “get back to my roots” and pull out some gemstones and silver wire. And oh boy was he right! First, I pulled out my silver wire, which I haven’t used in forever – partly because the …

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Chakra Resolution

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About a million years ago, when I was working out the gemstone combinations for my Focus line, I drew this Chakra necklace idea: Today I turned it into this! Top to bottom… Amethyst, Iolite, Aquamarine, Seraphinite, Amber, Carnelian, Garnet, and Onyx Fun so far!

Antiquing Copper!

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Today I’ve been having fun with copper and oxidation. First, I created some earrings out of non-non-tarnish wire (bare copper!). Next, I prepared a solution of Liver of Sulfur and dumped all my shiny pretty earrings into it. They instantly turned black! But that’s OK, that’s the point: Next, I gathered some supplies – my dremel with the flex shaft (invaluable), some earplugs, a  face mask to avoid getting little bits of black dust up …

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On Creativity & Collaboration

I was lucky enough to be in attendance at the first day of the first annual Growing a Creative Economy conference, hosted by the Cape Breton Centre for Craft and Design, earlier this week. The first day had several excellent speakers, and I came away with an actionable list of things I can do to help my customers really see my jewellery, and be able to visualize any one of them working within their existing …

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