Archive for the ‘Jewelry’ Category

Accessorize

After all the jewelry I made earlier this year, I thought I had most all the colors covered. But then spring arrived and as I pulled out my warm weather clothing, I realized I still had more work to do. Jewelry to accessorize my pink and purple outfits was sorely lacking.

I made a trip to my local hobby store to scour the clearance aisle.  There are always some good finds there and bargain prices are always a bonus.

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Hot pink is such a great summer color.  I even have shoes this color!

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Purple has quickly become one of my go to colors.  I still need to find some purple shoes!

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This set is my favorite of the three I put together during this crafting session.  I love the crystal beads.  The photo doesn’t do justice as to how sparkly they are.

Now that I’ve got these colors covered, guess what?  I think I need some red and navy!

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Jewelry Joy

With my husband working second shift and my college age son up late on the weekends gaming, I’m usually awake much earlier than they are on Saturdays and Sundays. Such was the case last weekend.

I had been wanting to make some new pieces of jewelry for a while but hadn’t realy found the time to do so. My bead collection was calling to me. So in the quiet of the mornings, before the boys woke up, I got busy doing something just for me.

My collection comes from a variety of sources. Some are beads I have had forever. Others are leftovers from other projects. There are some that were salvaged from broken jewelry. And then there is a group of my favorites. My husband’s Mom was big into garage saling and selling on eBay. When she moved a couple years prior to her leaving this world, she sent me a big box of her jewelry foder. I love making jewelry from these pieces because I know how tickled she would be that I had given them new life. Wearing them always reminds me of her and makes me feel as though she is still with me.

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These earrings were made from a necklace that I had worn quite a few times. It had broken and was unrepairable. I’d also been needed some red earrings so this worked to my advantage. Because of my metal allergies, I only use hypoallergenic findings.

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This bracelet was made of glass beads from when my son was making earrings to sell. I actually made two of these. One for me and one for my daughter. The rainbow goes with practically every outfit and has such special meaning.

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I have always loved these large metal beads. I wasn’t sure if I would be able to wear them, but I took a chance on them. I love the look of the bracelet, but as I suspected, the first time I wore it, it broke out my wrist. But it wasn’t all for naught. My daughter was thrilled when I offered her this set.

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These three feature beads from Mom. Although they have metal beads, the other beads are larger so they will keep them away from my skin so no worries with breakouts there.

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These five are what I’m calling my “Mom and Me” collection. Crystal, glass, and other beads put together to make some sparkly creations.

It has been so much fun this past week to wear my new jewelry to accessorize my outfits. I love color and I love how I can stack the different bracelets together. I’ve also discovered that I need a few more colors. Back to my craft room! Stay tuned!

Repurposed Vintage Watches

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Among the things I am collecting, are vintage watches.  I am always keeping my eye open for them and usually they can be found for $1 or $2 a piece at a number of places at thrift shops, flea markets, and garage sales.  Look for bargains because it really doesn’t matter that the watch no longer works.

As much as I’d love to claim this idea as my own, I believe it was originally a Pinterest post where I found this clever idea to turn the old watches into mini photo frames to be worn as jewelry.

I carefully take the watches apart and clean and measure the crystals.

Using the measurements, I reduce the size of some of my favorite vintage family photos and print them out in using my color printer and matte photo paper.  While the photos are actually black and white, I’ve found I like the results better if I print them as color photos.  There is just a better depth and richness that can be achieved.

Once the photos are printed and trimmed, I place them between the crystal and the old watch face and carefully reassemble the watch.

These have become some of my favorite jewelry pieces and are always great conversation starters when someone notices them.  They make wonderful personalized gifts as well.  My Mom was thrilled with the small gold one which I made especially for her for Mother’s Day.

 

Earrings, Earrings, Earrings

Since I was a teenager, I have had a metal allergy and have been pretty limited to what jewelry I could wear.  It basically came down to gold and stainless steel.  For several years, I purchased my earrings from Simply Whispers, a mail order company that specializes in hypoallergenic, nickel free jewelry.  They are a great company with an outstanding guarantee.  If you are interested, they can be found at http://www.simplywhispers.com.  I highly recommend them.

They were the first company I found that had hypoallergenic findings so that I could make or convert cheaper earrings to something I could wear without breaking out.  Unfortunately, it was still a somewhat expensive endeavor, so I ordered one set of wires and French hooks in gold and silver and would change out the bottoms of the earrings.  After a while, I got lazy and tired of always having to make changes.  I tended to go back to the same pairs of earrings and ignored my collection of bottoms.

A couple months ago, while reorganizing my dresser drawers, I rediscovered my stash.  Since the days of using the same hooks and wires, a lot has changed in the craft world.  Jewelry findings, including hypoallergenic versions are readily available and are also very inexpensive.  I set to work providing each of my sets with their own dedicated permanent French hooks.

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I also discovered that the clearance aisle at Hobby Lobby offers some inexpensive options for making new fun earrings.

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These four new pairs of earrings cost me less than it would to purchase a single pair anywhere else!

I now make it a point to check the jewelry offerings in the clearance aisle whenever I shop at Hobby Lobby.

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My latest pair of earrings cost me less than $3.00!

My Personal Jewelry Designer

In my post yesterday, I mentioned that my son had developed his own line of jewelry to sell at craft shows.  It all started with a 4H class when he was 8 or 9 years old.  He had been waiting for years to be old enough to participate after seeing all the amazing things his older sister created when she attended 4H classes.

I was a bit surprised when he selected the jewelry class, but he was excited about it and had a great time.  I was amazed at the earrings he had made.  They looked so professional.  In the next few weeks we made several trips to Hobby Lobby and Michaels to purchase tools and supplies.  At first he was making earrings for his sister and me.  This was a huge bonus for me.  I am allergic to most metals so it was fantastic to have a nice supply of pretty and fun hypoallergenic earrings.

As his sister and I received compliments on our earrings, we all began to see the potential for him to sell his creations.  A friend of mine gave him his first opportunity by displaying his earrings for sale in her small shop.  And then, of course, there were the craft shows.

His first creations were beaded earrings, similar to that very first pair he made at 4H.

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He was always on the look out for unique beads and his designs became more sophisticated.  We even came up with a clever logo.

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A display by another jewelry vendor at a fair reminded me of a craft I had learned when I was in Girl Scouts. I showed him how to make paper beads and he then turned them into unique earrings. They were super light in weight and people loved them.

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When I discovered some wine corks with designs, I gave him a challenge. He did not disappoint. I get compliments on my wine cork earrings whenever I wear them and he has sold several pairs. They have also made wonderful gifts for my friends who, like me, are wine lovers.

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Krazy for Kandi

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It all started with these two bracelets.  Actually, they are called cuffs.  Kandi cuffs.   The first one was a gift.  The second one was a contest prize.

They are made from pony beads and stretch cord.  They are traded and given as gifts.  A simple google search on “kandi cuffs” leads to an abundance of how tos and patterns.

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My college age daughter and her friend came to visit for a week.  They were thrilled when they found out I had a stash of pony beads left over from my days as a Girl Scout leader and other craft activities that I no longer needed.  It did not take them long to get busy.

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Well I could not have all this crafting going on around me without me wanting to try my hand at it.

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Even my son found it hard to resist.

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It is a lot of fun.  There are plenty of patterns out there but you are only limited by your imagination.  The girls would be working on their current projects and already be talking about their ideas for the next ones.

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It was not long before my daughter decided she needed a better way to store her beads.  We shopped and brain stormed and she finally decided on repurposing a photo storage system.

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It was perfect.  The individual storage boxes on the inside kept the colors separated.

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When she is working on a particular project, she can pull out the colors she needs.

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Her kandi has become a cherished part of her wardrobe accessories.  She and her friends are always crafting new ones to coordinate with their outfits, interests, and personalities.

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Not just for girls, the boys wear them too!

To You From ME Designs

I have to say I love these earrings!  They were handcrafted by a local artist.  They are blingy, fun, light weight and hypo-allergenic.

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Did I happen to mention that the local artist is my 10 year old son?  And yes, he IS taking orders! 

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