Saturday, October 16, 2010

You know you are a bad, bad blogger when...

... it has been so long since your last post that you no longer remember your password. Geez.

But anyway....

I have been busy, busy; I have been on a real creative spurt since my last, and jumping from medium to medium, occasionally combining media, and have started a number of different projects, and actually finished all but 2 of them! So here's a run down of what's been going on:

I have been playing around with different color combinations, as well as different metals, in this variation of the Byzantine chainmaille weave:

This pattern is fun, easy, and so versatile, and was attracting a lot of attention in the shop, so I actually put it on the class schedule, and taught it for the first time today. I spent almost all day coiling, cutting, and tumbling rings on Thursday - I figure I cut over 2000 rings! We had a good turn out for the class, and the students chose some beautiful color combos, and everyone had a great time.

Beadweaving is one of my first loves, and it had been over a year since I did any beadweaving (other than teaching, so I was so excited to get this project started. I had all the beads picked out, and all last weekend to play with them, so I started by sketching out a crude road map, and began by stitching the clasp: I added a row of picot to the Vintaj brass ring, and stitched the bar in peyote.

I was basically designing the whole necklace around those juicy 8mm top-drilled topaz Swarovski crystals - I turned them into a ripe cluster at the front of the necklace, and then used the spiral stitch and some Vintaj chain to finish the piece. Lots of fun! Nice earthy Fall colors, too. And it's available in my Etsy shop!

But I wasn't done yet - I still had time last weekend to make this chainmaille necklace and bracelet, in navy blue and sterling silver. I love this particular weave!

I was able to snatch up this gorgeous cabochon from MAKUstudio, and while there are a lot of ways to turn a cabochon into jewelry, I really wanted to make a chainmaille bezel for this one, so I pulled the copper, burgundy, and blues from the cab with the rings,
but decided the end result was too "hard" looking, so I decided to soften it by weaving seafoam green eyelash yarn into the chainmaille, and I just love the organic look that resulted. I finished the necklace with a small, tricolored Jen's Pind Linkage chain, again pulling the colors from the cab.

Check out MAKUstudio's shop - you won't be sorry! She is a tremendously talented lady!

I had enough rings left over from the chain to make this pair of shoulder-dusting dangle earrings - and the necklace and earrings are available (separately) in my Etsy shop, too!

I was determined to teach myself the dragonscale chainmaille weave, and found several free tutorials online, and also had a pattern from an old magazine - Step-by-Step Wire, maybe - not sure. But between the 3 sets of instructions I had, I figured I was good to go.

The instructions recommended making the bracelet in 2 colors, one for the small rings, and one for the large rings, so that you could more easily see what goes where - but I didn't WANT a 2-color dragonscale bracelet; I wanted a multicolor one in blues, greens, pinks, and purple, so I spent hours figuring out how many rings of each size and color I would need, spent half a day coiling and cutting them, and got down to business.

It took several hours to get the hang of the pattern, but I finally got going, and then it just took several days to weave it up - there are a LOT of rings in this bracelet!

Love the result, and it is definitely a keeper!

And while all this was going on, I received a custom order: the lady wanted 10 pink bracelets for her coworkers, and she wanted all of them to be different, and while they were for breast cancer awareness, she didn't want any pink ribbon stuff -

So these were the 10 complete bracelets, and she was delighted, and wants to get more.

I also started 2 other projects - a  beadwoven lariat, and a purple kumihimo lariat (I am on a real lariat kick lately). These are both more than halfway done, and my plan is to finish them this weekend (MY weekend is Sunday and Monday) and then get started on a bracelet pattern I purchased from SandFibers. I want to be able to get the pattern stitched up, and then start teaching it at my shop as soon as possible. So I see a busy 2 days in my future!

But tonight is "sit with your feet kicked up" night, which is actually pretty hard for me - I like to be doing something with my hands, but this week has kicked my butt! But as you can see, I am not doing a very good job of not doing anything, because here I sit blogging - so I am done now, and am going to watch a little TV.

PS - Gumball and I popped into the vet's office to check on his weight, and he has gained 1.5 pounds! He now weighs 12 lbs, and only has to gain 2 more pounds to no longer be considered underweight. But 2 lbs is a lot, when you only weight 12 lbs - that's almost 20% of his current bodyweight, right?
This is my little sweetie right now - lying on Bailey's big bed, which he has claimed as his own, snoring after snarfing down his dinner!


PussDaddy said...

I can't imagine opening and closing all those rings.

I am so glad Gumball is doing better.


Kristina said...

sweetie welcome back to the bloggy-world what a gorgeous jewellery you did i just loved the "Byzantine chainmaille" bracelets

hugs to furbabies


Jan said...

Holy Carp , Crabby ! You HAve been busy ! I'm exhausted in 'sympathy'. Some gorgeous creations !
Love the chainmaille stuff a lot !!!
Sweet lil Gumball, is Bailey getting used to him now ?
Congrats on all that creating ~ awesome !