Monday, September 29, 2008

What I Made Today, 9/29/2008

Sea glass! I've got so many pieces, in an array of beautiful colors. I made about a dozen mini sculpted pendants today...these are just a few of them. And I'm going to make a few pairs of earrings before the day is done.

Even though I live in Florida, almost all my sea glass comes from Michigan. There's some great sea glass in the Great Lakes! My first batch I got off of eBay, several years ago. My latest batch came earlier this year. I had a lovely older gentleman in my store who bought one of my sea glass pendants for his wife. He commented that he had a whole bucketful of sea glass that he'd picked up over the years along the lake, and that he'd like to see something beautiful done with it, so he was going to send it to me. I thanked him, of course, but didn't really expect any follow-up. Well, lo and behold, about two weeks later a big, heavy box shows up. A layer of foam, a layer of sea glass, another layer of foam, another layer of sea glass, and so on... All told it was about 7 or 8 pounds worth! So I've got plenty to work with for many years to come!
Do you have some sea glass in a drawer or a bowl somewhere? Some lovely pieces you've found while on vacation maybe? I'd be delighted to set them for you! Little pendants like this are only $19-$20, depending on the size of the piece of glass.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

What I Made Today, 9/27/2008

Two-tone jewelry is always popular. This anklet is silver wire with gold beads. I also have one with gold wire and silver beads. And a whole bunch more--see them here. And the best part is that I can make them any size you need! Especially for those of us who are no longer 16 years old with 9" ankles (you know who you are!) 10 inches? 11 inches? Even 12 inches? No problem! A sweet treat for all those upcoming holiday parties--dress up your ankles in style!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Do You Know What an Ear Sweep Is?

An Ear Sweep is a bobby-pin style earring that goes in your regular piercing and then sweeps UP your ear! Get the multiple-pierced look without the extra pain! I have more than a dozen styles, in gold or silver and your choice of gemstone or crystal beads. I've been making them for more than 15 years, and I can guarantee they make a great gift. Interesting, unique, and probably not something the person already has! My mom wears them all the time, and says that people are constantly stopping her in the grocery store or at church, asking about the Ear Sweeps. And that's what cool jewelry is all about, right? Getting noticed? (I wear Ear Sweeps myself most of the time, but the only place I go is to my store, so the only people that see me are customers. But I sell a lot of them because I wear them!) You can see all the available styles on my web site.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Manly Shark's Tooth

This mammoth shark's tooth is the second I've set for this particular customer. The first one was drilled front-to-back at the dip in the center, and all I had to do was make a heavy-duty bail. This one was not drilled, so I had to make the setting more ornate, yet sturdy enough for a man. Not bad, huh?

Friday, September 19, 2008

My Gorgeous Wine Glasses

I love shopping on Etsy. Tons of great handmade stuff by incredibly talented artists. I'd actually need to win the lottery in order to get everything I have my eye on! But sometimes an opportunity comes up where actual cash outlay isn't necessary. COOL! About 6 months ago, I did a fabulous trade with a fellow artisan on Etsy. From me, Vickie got a gold bead ear cuff and a charoite mini-sculpted pendant. From Vickie, I got the most gorgeous set of wine glasses and a matching candle holder. She hand-paints these exquisite floral/leaf/vine designs on glass, no two exactly alike obviously since each is an original work of art! For me she used purple and green, my favorite color combination, and I love, love, LOVE them! (They are similar to the ones in the picture.) She can customize for you, too! You simply MUST check out her Etsy shop now!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

What I Made Today, 9/18/08

As usual for this time of year, I'm filling in inventory in my store. Today I made a dozen pairs of this style of earring in sterling silver...all different colors of beads. I'm working on some chandelier earrings, too. Maybe I'll post them later.

Yellow Roses

Every four or five weeks, there's a gentleman that comes through Cocoa Village selling roses. He always stops by to see me, with a dozen yellow roses in hand (my favorite). He KNOWS I'm going to buy them. Business has been pretty bad this month--September is traditionally my slowest month--so I don't really have any extra money, but I decided that the psychological and emotional pick-me-up was just what I needed. They're only $5 a dozen! And I'm WORTH it!

Monday, September 15, 2008

What I Made Today, 9/15/08

Today I'm restocking my eBay auctions. I list a variety of little gemstone pendants, some with matching earrings, and I had sold a lot of the more popular colors. Hence the "restocking". These four little guys went up today, all with matching drop earrings. Starting to think about holiday gifts? Want a good deal? Check here.


Sunday, September 14, 2008

What I Made Today, 9/14/08

I spent most of the day uploading pictures and descriptions to some of my various selling sites (Etsy, Ruby Lane), but I did manage to throw together a terrific pattern-wire bracelet. This one is the "Mountains" pattern in gold. I've got a lot of different pattern-wire bracelets on my website.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Leftover Heaven :D lack-of-leftovers-distress was wiped out big time last night! When I got home from work, my darling hubby had been to the grocery store and brought home FILET MIGNON to cook out on the grill! And even after he had worked all day and then spent a couple hours in the garage working on his airboat trailer, he still whipped up a most excellent dinner. Yes...filet mignon, plus baby peas and seasoned rice. Not only was there more than enough to eat, we didn't get to it until nearly 9:00 p.m. It was hard to put down the fork--everything was so delicious--but I certainly didn't want to stuff myself.

By the time I got to work this morning, I could hardly wait for lunch time and my luscious, luscious leftovers!


Friday, September 12, 2008

I Had No Leftovers Today :(

My husband used to be a chef. For like, 12 or 13 years. He's an amazing cook, and consequently does about 90% of the meals at our house. Not fair, you think? Well, it's partly his own fault, because when we first got married, he TOTALLY intimidated me in the kitchen. He'd hover in the background while I was cutting vegetables or selecting spices, making these vague fluttering motions with his hands, like he wanted to snatch away whatever I was doing and do it himself. Well, after awhile, I just LET him!

We've been married 10 years now, and I've gotten comfortable enough so that when I do feel like cooking something and he starts hovering, I just tell him to get the heck out of the kitchen! Most of my cooking, I do have to admit, consists of opening a bag, box, or can and following the directions. Hey, I'm no fool...I may be able to cook something "fancier", but Rick can do it so much better! Why would I cut off my nose to spite my face? LOL Plus he always makes more than we can eat at one meal (the last remnants of restaurant mentality?), and so I have lovely leftovers to take for lunch the next day.

Rick quit "chef-ing" when I got pregnant with our son, a little over 9 years ago. He decided that he'd rather be a father than work every night, weekend, and holiday that the restaurant business requires. He now owns and operates a lawn service. But we live in Florida. It's HOT here in the summer. My poor hubby comes home filty and exhausted, and the LAST thing he wants to do is stand over a hot stove. So I do more of the cooking. Or at least more of the bag- or box-opening! Last night my son wanted his leftovers from the previous night--biscuits and gravy. I had a hot dog. Rick was working in the garage until very late, and I think he threw some spaghetti in a pot and covered it with sauce out of a jar (he calls that his bachelor dinner). So I had no lovely leftovers for lunch today. Boo hoo.

Maybe I can entice him to cook some time this weekend...?


Custom Order Dichroic Earrings

I have a long time customer named Joan who came in to see me the other day. It seems Joan has embarked on a new hobby...creating and firing dichroic glass! She had with her two pieces of fantastic hot pink/purple glass with lots of overlaying dichroics that she wanted me to set into earrings. Here's the result! I was pleased, she was thrilled, and I decided to share them with the world! She is more than a little excited about her new undertaking, and eager to get right to making some more creations. Will she need some of them set? Well, let's just say I have a feeling I'll be seeing lots more of Joan!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

What I Made Today, 9/11/08

Pink! Freshwater pearls (yes, they're dyed) combined with large mother-of-pearl discs (also dyed) for a flirty, girly look. Strung on Accu-Flex beading wire and finished with a magnetic clasp--easy to get on an off all by yourself! It's 16" long and the matching earrings are included. Gotta have it? Grab it at my Etsy shop!
It's still early, so I might get something else done today. Or I might upload pictures to Flickr. Or I might get around to writing the fall newsletter for my store. Or...

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Learning Curve

I feel vaguely ridiculous and more than a little intimidated as I flounder on with this new venture. You'll see a post below the What I Made Today, 9/08, called Incredible Handmade Soap. I actually just finished that about 20 minutes ago, but it's date-stamped on Monday. I checked all of my internal settings (not being entirely sure of what I was looking for), before I realized that the date-stamp-thingy must pick up the date and time that the post was started! See, I actually started that post about wonderful handmade soap on Monday, but decided I'd like to get permission from the people I feature before just plugging them into my blog. So I saved my "start" as a draft, and continued it today. Now I feel slightly "out of order"!

Also, I checked my Comments on my previous blog posts, and one was from my most excellent webmaster Eve. For those of you who don't know her, it probably sounds perfectly legitimate. To my trained "ear", however, I could tell she was laughing. We've been friends for more than 35 years, so I just know. She's an amazingly talented artist and graphic designer, and works wonders with my main website, and in that respect she intimidates the hell out of me! She writes pages and pages of impressive html code, and here I am hunting and pecking at my little pre-fab blog and still not getting it quite right! Fortunately, I enjoy learning, and am determined to eventually figure this all out! If you want to see some real quality, though, you need to look at what Eve can do!


Monday, September 8, 2008

What I Made Today, 9/8/08

One of my frequent "boasts" is that I make new things practically every day. To prove it, I'm going to try to post each day's new creation. This is a 1-Bead Spread Bracelet in sterling silver, featuring a black onyx bead. It is currently available at my Etsy shop at or always available on my website at
I do have to admit that since I have spent the entire day getting this blog started, I didn't actually make this bracelet today. I made it 3 days ago. I hope you'll forgive me this one little "fudge"!


Incredible Handmade Soap!

I don't know anything about making soap. I don't know cold processing from hot processing, I don't know how to add scents or mix ingredients or even cut the stuff up when it's done. I only know that I LOVE handmade soap!

I don't think I realized that people still made soap until I opened my shop on Etsy. I hung around in the forums and read posts from soapers and checked out their shops, and I thought, " might be cool to try some of that!"

Then the problem became WHICH ONE to try! There are so many soap makers with so many lovely, yummy-sounding soaps that it took me about 3 weeks to decide. And then I didn't really decide--I bought soaps from three different artisans! After they all arrived in the mail, I had to spend another two days just "sniffing" them to try to figure out which one I wanted to use first. Honestly, I had no idea it was going to be such an ordeal just to experiment with a new way of getting clean!

I finally chose one I had received from ABreathofFrenchair. She calls it Cucumber Salad now, but at the time I bought it, it was Cucumber Wasabi. I actually discovered it in a forum discussion she had started about whether or not "wasabi" would scare anyone off. At the time, I didn't even know what wasabi was, but it sure sounded exotic and I knew I liked cucumber-smelling stuff. I HAD to have it. As I recall, the forum discussion wasn't even completed before I had clicked into her shop and snatched it up!

ABreathofFrenchair uses a variety of essential oils and shea butter, and her soap is moisturizing, clean-rinsing, and great-smelling! You can probably imagine a handmade soap called Lemongrass Lavender, but how about Kumquat, Fresh Cut Grass, Tangerine Twist, or Grab a Beer? I'm dying to try them all! But of course, one can only get so clean, right? So I have to be patient (and take lots of showers!)

A New Venture

Blogging. I've been thinking about doing it for awhile. I have a lot of interests, and some measure of writing ability, but layouts and html code and tags and all that "official" computer stuff is terrifying! So I hope you will bear with me while I embark on this learning experience, and stick with me as this new endeavor grows!

I plan to write about my jewelry, my family, life in general, and other tidbits that I find interesting. If I do this right, then my hope is that you'll find them interesting, too. For right now I'm going to keep this short, so I can post it and see how it looks on the page. But I would like to try to add a picture. My son, Ricky, started the 3rd grade a few weeks ago, and was patient enough to pose for a few pictures before we headed out: