Sunday, 11 May 2014

New Venture... A Jade & Dzi Necklace in Progress... & What's For Dinner?

A little bit of back story -- a year and a half ago I met my new pal Nancy when she showed up at my table at the market looking for crystals, knowledge (hah), jewellery-making lessons... and in return she turned me on to estate sales. A lawn and garage sale veteran of umpteen years, I move to town, hit up garage sales and Goodwill, furnish a place; then get rid of most of the stuff the same way. Move on down the highway, lather and repeat.

But estate sales... ooooh. What a novel concept. Picker entered my vocabulary. Along with the jewellery showcase at the One of a Kind Antique Mall, I now have half a booth (#800) to sell my finds.

After getting up at 6:30 on a beautiful, sunny and finally warm Sunday morning (rain and thunderstorms predicted all this coming week) and driving a few miles down a deserted concession road, lined with more flip, flap, flop and flying red-winged blackbirds than I've ever seen at one time, these were acquired, brought home, washed, priced and went into my booth #800, today:

Of particular note is this score: Camp Life and the Tricks of Trapping by Gibson, 1881, 1st ed. Looks like this is the Canadian edition as the publishing info on the title page is a titch different and it's missing one illustration that I see in the online edition of the book. Tucked inside this particular book was a pamphlet on hunting regulations covering every province in Canada and state in the US for 1903. There are beautifully clear line drawings in the book: how to set traps, how to build a canoe and make camp, etc. I'd keep it, but I think my days in the bush are long gone.

I pulled the hand-carved stopper out of that "whisky" jug, and holy moley, the owner had brewed something fruity in there!

I also got this small table on wheels... thought maybe I could paint the top white... or black... it would make a chic-ish little coffee table...

Tonight for dinner... boned chicken thighs cut up and sauteed in butter and Szechuan sauce on a bed of basmati, green grapes for dessert, with leftovers for three days. Yummers.

I'm in a bit of a bind here. It's been feeling like this has been a year devoid of sales at all the venues, but imperceptibly things have been selling. I look at my table and it seems like all of a sudden there's nothing left to sell, particularly noticeable when people ask for specific items. Oopsies. Better get making new stuff, especially since I'm being moved out of my spot at the market by the coffee pot where I've been since time immemorial. Next Saturday I'll be across the room where Oliver's Farm usually is (half the market moves outside that day) and I'll have tons more display room. Guess I need something to display.

To that end, I started putting this necklace together yesterday. It was sold to me as jade, but... mmmmm, I dunno. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn't. Maybe the bead factory was pushing the envelope a little because, "Hey, this stuff's green; let's call it jade". It's purty though, and since green is one of those colours that for some reason has never done much for me (other than browny-greeny turquoise and Granny Smith apples... and, okay, green grapes), I rarely buy it, let alone use it. So, in the interest of being inclusive to all the lovers of green, because not everyone loveloveloves blue the way I do, here goes.

Green with scattered brown jade beads, handmade Ethiopian copper beads, a rectangular "Dzi" bead -- dunno if this shape would properly be called a Dzi -- but with 2 eyes, etched agate.

Note to new jewellery-makers: tiny jump rings are your friend. They can be placed unobtrusively to subtly spark and set off a long line of beads, the way I've done to "outline" the brown beads, and are also very handy at filling in the gaps that will occur between large beads and large and small beads when the necklace is being worn. It also cushions the wire so over time it doesn't develop an unsightly goink when it comes out of a large focal bead weighting down the bottom of the necklace.

The other thing I'm sure we've all noticed is that bead strings are getting shorter. In this case, I bought two strings, so there are enough beads remaining to make a bracelet and earrings. I'll post more pictures when everything is completed.

To all the mothers out there, Happy Mother's Day, and thanks for looking!


Sondra said...

I like your finds! I sell on Ebay, its hard to find just the right piece sometimes that will sell fast, but eventually it does sell. The table looks like the legs may have come off an old washing machine? Very cool!

Barbara said...

Hi, Sondra, Thanks! I've just started at the Antique Mall, it's over 70,000 square feet, they keep opening up sections of the second and third floors as they renovate. Draws a huge crowd from everywhere. Saw a car from Minnesota there yesterday.

Just checked out a bit of your blog. Love those baby squirrel pictures. You're probably a month ahead of us, we're doing zero to 60 in the heat and humidity though. It was freezing overnight here last week. I had the heat on this morning, and now I have the French doors open.

It's quite possible -- definitely homemade and purpose-built, no tip-over factor at all so it will move a lot of weight. I got it at a village estate sale yesterday -- and "village" is being generous. The house is located at a crossroads and everyone's backyard bleeds into corn fields and cow pastures.

Pix of my booth and showcase will be up later today. When my friends get here over the next two or three weeks with their stuff we'll bump up to a full booth.