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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Earring Variations

My favorite way to relieve stress is to play with wire.  Getting ready to pack up and move 150 miles away is stressing me out.  Especially since no one knows when settlement will be scheduled.  I can only remain as calm as I possibly can and wait as patiently as I can, until the bank provides a settlement date.  Then and only then will I know when I'm to rent the truck and give a holler to my wonderful brother-in-law and my nephew to get ready to pack me up and drive me eastward.
In the meantime, I've been experimenting with a tear drop shape for earrings.  I've taken a 4" piece of 18 gauge wire, placed loops on the ends, wrapped it around a mandrel, hammered the wire to work harden and finally the experiment.

I've taken the same 3mm copper bead and wired them onto the base wire in different patterns.

I then oxidized the batch, but to my disappointment the beads did not oxidize.  The description doesn't say that there is any coating on them, but apparently there is a coating.

After I cleaned up the wire that did oxidize I think it would have been a real pain to clean each and every bead. 
I don't think I'll repeat the copper beads again, but I do like the designs, so I'll be adding some 3mm gemstones or perhaps colored glass beads.  As I write this and look at the design above, I am inspired to attach something from the top center loop, hmmm.

Above is the same design, only I have added some 24 gauge wire several times over the 18 gauge wire.  Also, this pair of earrings has a larger loop at the top.  I like the smaller loop that I made with the beaded earrings.

Now, I'm going to chill in front of the television, another way to de-stress.

I wish I knew how to take night pictures.  I just looked out the office window to a clear sky and a lovely crescent shaped moon.

Thank you for visiting.



Saturday, March 9, 2013

Lots and Lots of Change Happening

Today, I  had to do something awful!  I had to remove my jewelry from a local gallery.  It wasn't an easy decision or easy task, but it was needed.  I have been with Mountain Made in Thomas, WV for well over 2 years.  They were a giant stepping stone in my jewelry business.  The sales have always been spectacular and my two friends who work at the front counter are tremendous.  They will always have a special and loving place in my heart.  However, my commission checks have been late, missing and difficult to receive.  The general manager has stopped returning telephone calls and she has expressed that there is a cash flow problem.  I've been working with them and being patient for several months, but there comes a breaking point in everyones' life.  Mine was when yet another check didn't arrive and my e-mails and telephone calls were ignored.  It simply isn't professional or respectful to ignore the artists that keep you in business.  A cookie cutter answer to everyone would be so easy and professional.  A simple 'We're sorry for the delay and we appreciate your patience while we do our best to redesign our budget and get back on track.'  But, no!  She would rather ignore everyone.  It's not just me.  I've spoken with several of the artists.  Many have already withdrawn from the gallery.  Others are getting ready.  I kept holding on with the wish that a miracle would happen, but no such luck.

When I went into the gallery to pick up my inventory, I noticed that many of the shelves were scarce.  Yes, there was merchandise, but there was a lot of empty places.  I now have mixed emotions.  I'm disappointed that I had to pull out, but I'm relieved that I finally got this ugly situation off my plate.  I will be writing the Board of Directors later this week to express my gratitude for the opportunity that the gallery provided.  I will then express my desire to return when they have new management.  That's my way of letting them know they have to examine their business model and manager.  I will also express how the gallery is in a hot spot for making a huge success and profit, especially with the new interstate scheduled to open within the next few months. 

Now lets talk about something wonderful and happy.  As you have read in previous posts, I have a contract on my home and I'll be moving soon.  Here's a picture of how my studio looks today.  Frightened?  I am!  But, I'm also excited to move and begin a new chapter.

A good friend stopped by and gave me an unexpected gift.  A new fairy to add to my studio collection.  I have named her Tammy, after my friend.  She will fly around my new studio with my other little fairies.

During all of this change, I've also been thinking about spicing up my tent.  I've ordered a few new items, but this bright pink bird cage is by far my favorite.  I'll hang it from the tent ceiling supports and then hang some jewelry from it.  I'd really like to have a cluster of 3 bird cages, but honestly, it gets really tiring hauling and setting up a bunch of stuff.  So, I think one bird cage will do the trick.

Have a joy filled and creative day!  Thank you for stopping by my blog.


Sunday, March 3, 2013

A New Spot For Photos and a Bottle of Wine

Trying to juggle a full time job (seasonal during tax season), keeping up with a full time jewelry business and packing up my home and studio, for the up coming move, is causing me to rush about with a strong desire for one or two glasses of wine.  I'd pour a glass right now except it will relax me to the point that I won't do a thing.  So I have promised myself I will quit working and packing in about 2 hours and have that glass of wine.


Yesterday, I noticed the house was chilly.  After checking out the thermostat I discovered that my heater had decided to stop working. Noooooooooooooooo!  I just didn't need one more thing on my to do list.  I called Dave, my fixer dude and he said he'd be over in the morning.  In the meantime, I have two space heaters, a gas fireplace and a propane heater as back up.  (Always the Girl Sout). Living in the mountains has taught me so much.  I do have neighbors, but they are few and I am officially surrounded by the Monongahela Forest. 

Today Dave showed up and it turned out the problem was some sort of regulator to the gas meter on the outside of the house.  That meant the gas company had to come out.  They were here in less than an hour and now my little queendom is warm and toasty.

During all of this I've been making jewelry.  Since the weekend is the only time, I've been slammed.  I must keep making to keep my inventory ahead of the curve, especially since I'm moving.  That means I'll have even less studio time.  And yes, the good news is I have a contract on the house for it to be sold.  It could be as soon as 30 days or as much as 3 or 4 months.  We are all at the mercy of the bank and the paperwork that goes along with these matters.

I've been taking pictures of my jewelry out on the back deck.  Normally I enjoy this part of the process, but during winter there's usually snow in the air.  Most days there's snow and lots of it.  So today I experimented and setup my scrap book paper on the ottoman under the living room window.  I moved the reading lamp closer and aimed the reading portion of the lamp downward toward the jewelry.  I don't think the pictures are as good as the back deck, but all in all, not bad and a hole lot warmer and dryer.

Here's my new dry and warm photography spot

Through this post are pictures of some of the jewelry that I completed this weekend.  Most are listed in my on line shop.  I am hopeful to get the rest of the items listed before I crack open that bottle of wine, but I seriously doubt it.  Maybe tomorrow.

Have a great day!