Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Spring Break -The Doorway to Inspiration - Vintaj

My "Spring Break" started today! Usually I have to wake up early to get my children ready for school, but for the next ten days I can sleep in. My favorite time to design is at night, so "Spring Break" for me means late nights on the couch designing fabulous jewelry. I was beyond thrilled with the package that arrived in the mail yesterday from Jess and the girls at Vintaj Natural Brass Company. I believe that I am Vintaj's number one fan. I designed eight necklaces for "Bead Star" this year. Seven of the designs are made from Vintaj. It is my favorite medium to work with. Every finding can be used in unlimited ways. You can twist, turn, link, wrap - the possibilities are endless. The pictures posted today are the "goodies" which arrived in my package.

The new Vintaj Jewelry Technique Book is amazing! The contents of this book include a "How To" section on 1) filigree wrapping 2) Focals - texturing, wrapping, reliefing and Alcohol Inks 3) Altered Blanks - dapping, letter imprinting, texturing, riveting, brads, eyelets, rub-ons, embossing powder, Alcohol Inks, Cuttlebug embossing 4) Bezels - Magic-Glos Resin, Polymer clay, crackle accents, paint dabbers 5)Findings - basic linking, clustering beads & charms, creative toggle clasp, embellished hook clasp. The book has 28 projects with step by step pictures making learning the 24 unique techniques fun and easy.

Vintaj also has a brand new metal line called "Arte Metal". The finish on the decorivets, ribbon slides & hardware is a matte black. The "Arte Metal" line can be used for embellishing papercrafts, fabric, leather and much more. You can layer them onto metal, acrylic, chipboard, filigree and altered blank canvases. Hammer into wood boxes and decor. Use as fasteners for various art projects. I plan to use the "Arte Metal" as findings in my jewelry designs.

The Vintaj Fastenables can add dimension to any
project. You can fasten with brads onto paper crafts, rivet onto metal, acrylic, chipboard, altered blank canvases and blanks. Other ideas include sewing onto fabrics, stacking multiple pieces together or use them as dangles on jewelery projects.

Altered blanks can be decorated with rivets, texturing, painting, inking, imprinting, embossing, etching, glossing, dapping. I am currently designing jewelry for my meeting in mid May with Beth Livesay, editor of "Jewelry Affaire". One design I created is a beautiful necklace using altered blanks
and alcohol inks.

I love these over-sized charms and embellishments. As you can see, I have already been playing with them. My plan for tonight is to make bracelets after my son's baseball ball game.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Are You Trendy?

I like search through the pages of fashion magazines to see what the current trends are in the costume jewelry market. It is always interesting to see what materials, colors and designs are in style. When designing for a beading magazine you really need to stay up to date on fashion trends. This can be hard when you are designing 6 months to a year ahead for the jewelry magazine publications.

Currently there is a trend of Lucite & petal jewelry and chunky bold bracelets. Gold tones are also making a come back. The photos featured in my blog today are pieces that are fun and funky. Many of the designs are edgy with an 80's vibe. The gold petal bracelet and necklace are created by Citrine by the Stones. The lucite jewelry is made by Lydell NYC, Gemma Redux, and RJ Graziano. Lucite jewelry is great for spring and summer. You can also wear them during the winter months at holiday parties. The bracelets take me back to my "Heavy Metal" days. The cuffs are made by Fiona Paxton and CC Skye.

Jewelry Affaire - Call for Artwork

Jewelry Affaire has published a call for artwork for their next issue. The magazine is published two times a year. If you are interested please contact Beth Livesay at Stampington & Company. My necklace and earrings are featured on the call.

Where Do You Create?

Over the past couple of days Erin Strother and I have been chatting about where we design our jewelry. She has an office in her house where she creates. As for me, I design on the couch in my family room. I know this seems strange, but it enables me to be in the same room as my husband and kids. I dream of some day having a fabulous studio where I can keep all my beads, painting supplies and sewing materials. I recently purchased a copy of "Where Women Create" Spring 2010 published by Stampington & Company. I discovered that Gina Galvin has the studio of my dreams! It is a French conservatory that sits on the grounds of her 130 acre property in Grand Blanc, Michigan. This space is unbelievably beautiful and inspiring. It features ornate wrought iron, a domed roof and floor to ceiling windows everywhere. It over looks her lush landscaped property! Gina is the owner of Peacock Park Design a home decor company. She searches for fabulous antiques and has them reproduced. Her line has a little bit of everything from pillows to garden decor to bracelets. To learn more about Gina check out her blog.

The photos featured today show many other chic studios that grace the pages of "Where Women Create" Spring 2010. For more information about this magazine go to Stampington and Company or pick up your copy at a bookstore. I purchased mine at Borders.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Vintaj Brass Class Room Auction Project

Every year my children's school has their annual "Spring Gala". The gala consists of dinner, dancing and a silent auction. This years event will be held at the "Richard Nixon Library and Birthplace". This venue is absolutely beautiful. The ballroom is a replica of the White House's "East Room".

The children in each class room are required to make an art project to be auctioned off during this event. While attending CHA this year, I saw Vintaj Natural Brass Company's fabulous new line of altered blank canvases. I knew what 6B's class project would be.

The children used Vintaj's 3" by 3" blank canvases which were painted using Ranger Ink Adirondack Dabbers and Alcohol Inks. After they used a paint brush to lightly highlighted their creation with "Pearl Ex". Next they selected charms and embellishments that were riveted onto the piece. The result is absolutely beautiful. The children created 28 individual works of art. The colors are alive and vibrant, a perfect complement to Vintaj Brass. My next step is to take the 28 canvases to the framer. They will be mounted to create one work of art. When I have the final piece of art, I will post photos.
Attached are a few photos of the finished little works of art and the children creating them. The bottom photo is my handsome son "Garrett".

Monday, March 1, 2010

Peacock Pandemonium

I must have birds on the brain! First ducks and now Peacocks. I have been in search of peacock pendants for about two months now. I have not found anything that has blown me away yet. Maybe this is my excuse to start dabbling in Ice Resin and make my own pendants.

It seems the peacock is creating a fashion trend. When I received this months issue of Orange Coast Magazine I was pleasantly surprised to see this fabulous Peacock dress designed by Diane Von Furstenberg. The colors are vibrant and beautiful. Necklaces designed with gem tones are always in style.

I have a passion for purses (especially "Chanel"). This stunning alligator and peacock clutch is designed by Paige Gamble.

The cosmetic photographs are visually inspiring. I am inspired by the color and texture of these designs. Let me know if this fashion trend inspires you.

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