Sunday, 3 November 2013

Handmade Monday: Jewellery for the coming season

I love that it's November, so I can start showing some Christmas makes. Only a couple, then I promise to shut up about it!

The snowman charm is quite big and looks so cool with the white beads and crystals. 

And this charm is double sided with the tree on one side...

...and the deer on the other side. Bag charms were popular in the shop last Christmas and I think they are good presents for people who love jewellery but just have too much!

Apart from that, I've been in an amber and brown mood

This is a memory wire bracelet and here's a lariat

And some simple glass bead earrings

So which do you like best?

Here's a link to what other crafty folk have been up to this week.  

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Recent makes

Some recent makes from me. Let me know what your favourites are. 
Flower cuff links

Melting heart bag charm 

Glass bead earrings

Stranded chain bracelet

Affirmation bag charm with glass flowers

Memory wire bracelet in vintage style

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Handmade Monday: What a holiday!

Hi all, I've been on a break from blogging but back now and ready to show you all what I've been doing in the meantime.

One thing that happened was the most amazing holiday - we caught the start of the heatwave in the UK, with the result that it felt like being in the Mediteranean even though it was the north east of England.

The sea and the sky were mostly these wonderful shades of blue.  Of course that meant that a certain brown labrador spent a lot of time either in the blue sea or digging in the sand near it!

What a perfect holiday.  And of course, such a fantastic time was really inspiring so lots of jewellery was created in the sunny garden.  Here's a selection.

Starting with the blues, a goddess bracelet and some earrings:

Some flower pieces - the bracelet sold to a fellow jewellery maker - what a compliment that was!

More bracelets:

And so on...

And that's just a few of them - I won't bore you with the rest.  Always good to know which are your favourites though, so please do leave a comment.

Hoping to be back soon with more tutorials. 

Here's the link to see what others have been up to on Handmade Monday.

Alison x

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Handmade Monday: Tree of life

This week I've mostly been experimenting with tree of life pendants.  I've not tried them before, but I know they are popular, so thought I'd have a go.

My first attempt with lapis lazuli chips and bronze wire.

Hubby pointed out, after admiring it, that there aren't many bright blue-leafed trees around.  I think that is now it's unique selling point!  I just like blue and brown myself...

Then this one is a little more experimental

I wanted to set the glass beads in a sort of bezel of wire, which kind of half-worked.  The finished piece is very delicate, and I had to add lots of scaffolding at the back to reinforce it.  I need to work on the idea, so watch this space for more mutant trees in weird and wonderful colours!

Just as a PS: A few crafty folk and blog readers have bought this bag charm in the past, and it sold again last night.  I have more of the beads on order, so it will be back, but is just available for pre-order at the moment, with an estimated mid-May delivery. 

Here's a link to see what others have been doing this week for Handmade Monday. 

Alison x

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Handmade Monday: Kumihimo again

So, I've been playing with the Kumihimo disc again.  This time I thought I would have a go at seed beads, as I've never tried that before.  Some hours later, with my eyesight probably deteriorated considerably, and the air blue with my swearing at the cord and the beads, and after I'd managed to unstick the underside of my finger nail from the skin underneath, here's the result.

I now have 'total respect' for the seed beaders, as the young folk say!  It will be a long while, if not never, until I try this technique again.  The bracelet has some gaps where the little beads weren't placed properly, even though I really really tried my best!  Oh well, I always like a new experience.
 Decided to stick to the cords instead and made a couple on the drive up to see relatives over Easter weekend.  Hubby was at the wheel so there was no risk of accident.  The intention is to turn all these into tassel necklaces like this one...
 I love a long necklace, but often find that a chain irritates the back of my neck.  The cord is perfect as it's so soft and smooth, and I luuurve the cobalt blue with the antique bronze findings, it's my favourite colour combination (today!)  Front fastening toggles are easy to do when you're in a rush too.
The little glass flower beads are new.  Pretty, aren't they?

Here's a link to see what others have been doing this week for Handmade Monday. 

Alison x

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Handmade Monday: Fame for my little blog and dog pictures

This week I'm excited to report that this little blog was reviewed in the April edition of Making Jewellery and Handmade Monday was mentioned!  Just pardon me a moment while I quote the whole review in full, and my head swells to the size of a football!

"Alison is a self-confessed jewellery addict, and she shares this with us at her blog.  This down-to-earth, funny and creative blog is all about making jewellery, dogs, literature, travel and other interesting stuff.  With the regular feature Handmade Monday, Alison shares with us what she's been making, and her thoughts on these.  The blog is full of inspiration and interesting titbits, such as Wordless Wednesday, which often involves photos of dogs!"

How cool is that?  And I have to add I didn't pay for it, or submit the blog to anything or bribe the editor or anything like that. 

Anyway, better show some makes otherwise I won't be fulfilling my remit.  I haven't made much, and you'll see why in a minute.

Here's a little bag charm covering dogs, jewellery and my new attempts at stamping.  I do love these little doggie charms - I think they are supposed to be spaniels but it could be a Labrador with short legs if you squint a bit in a low light.

My own real life dog had an exciting day last week.  The poor boy has been limping for a while and our vet has been trying 'conservative' methods of managing what he diagnosed as elbow dysplasia.  Nothing seemed to be working, and although Lucca was still as keen as mustard to go out walking, we felt we couldn't go on like that with him in pain, and us worrying ourselves silly about him.  The vet referred us to a specialist orthopaedic hospital, and to cut a long story short, Lucca had a consultation, scan and operation there all in the same day. 

He is recovering well, and fingers crossed, hasn't limped since the op.  The short walks he needs for the next month are quite frustrating for him, so he's having lots of extra stimulation to tire him out, including drives in the car, frozen kongs and lots of training - all of which is exhausting the humans! 

Here he is falling out of his bed with exhaustion at the end of a busy day.  Check out that shaved patch - it looks like a baboon's backside.  I hope it grows back soon.

 Hope everyone in the UK is wrapping up warm against the cold and snow and reading lovely blogs.  Here's a link to see what others have been doing this week for Handmade Monday. 

Alison x

Sunday, 24 February 2013

Handmade Monday: Thank you blog readers!

I wanted to thank everyone for the feedback you gave me the other week on the bag charms 'with or without beads' issue.

Most people said they liked the non-beaded flower version best so I've been busy putting together some non-beaded examples and should be able to show you some more soon.  Just to add to the consensus, I had a custom request on Etsy for five bag charms without the beads.  So there we go.  The jury has spoken. 

I guess that the colours and combinations of the beads won't always appeal to everyone, and just having the charms it will be easier to appeal to more people.  So I'll list, sit back and wait for the rush!  (Well, I can live in hope ;-)

In the meantime, here are some new beaded bag charms and a couple of other pieces listed this week - see what you think.

Two little owls with hematite stars and crystals
Deco style dragonfly with glass beads
Filigree peacock with crystals
Steam punk style bi plane earrings
Sari silk and heart charm bracelet
Bird cage charm necklace with pearl
Hope everyone in the UK is wrapping up warm against the cold and reading lovely blogs.  Here's a link to see what others have been doing this week for Handmade Monday. 

Alison x

Sunday, 10 February 2013

Handmade Monday: February?

Well, I'm not quite sure what happened to January - it must have passed in a blur of being busy, but here we are early at Valentine's Day so I'm saying an early 'I love you' to my blog as apology for neglecting it for a month!

One lovely bit of news is that Pearl from The Beading Gem's Journal contacted me to ask if it was OK to feature one of the beading tutorials on the site.  As I keep a permanent bookmark on that site and worship at the feet of its bloggers, this made me a happy bunny!  In March I'll be shouting even more about it.

I was lucky that my sales continued into January and folks again voted with their pockets for cord bracelets and bag charms.  These will be the focus of all my shops in the coming months, so naturally I've made more, and found some beautiful charms on the way.  I've also been improving my stamping skills, so expect more personalised and hand stamped items on the way.

Here are some new additions.

These two have already been popular, with a couple of sales on each from Folksy and Etsy

I love the love birds on this bag charm - they are a nice antique gold colour too.
This one's an experiment with no beads, just charms.  What do you think?

And a bit of wire work, not yet listed, with bronzite and white and yellow howlite.

Here's a link to see what others have been doing this week for Handmade Monday. 

Alison x

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