Tuesday 28 January 2014

Internet access from home coming soooooooooooooon...

Yes, finally. I cannot begin to detail the headaches I have gotten dealing with the current crop of customer disservice people. Internet providers everywhere: take note. Your staff are driving potential customers AWAY with their lunatic misunderstanding of what services you offer.

On a happier note, I was just at the Antique Mall adding new beads to my display and thought, hmm... it's looking a little vacant on the right hand side, and there's definitely a gap on the black necklace display. I dug out the showcase picture from another post and realised I'd sold the crystal and skull necklace:

...and also a pewter wolf's head pendant (3rd from the top on the black display board).

I'm currently envying my friends who will be soon departing for the Tucson bead shows. One of these years! But closer to home, don't forget The Gem Expo coming up in Toronto, March 14-15-16. I'll be there with lots of new goodies.

Thanks for looking!

Friday 17 January 2014

Chain Maille Earrings, Semi-Precious Pendants & Earrings, Lynn's Birthday... & A New Venture at the OOAK Antique Mall

I'm still in the country with no Internet and still coming infrequently into the library to use the computers here. But working hard -- a ton of typing showed up all of a sudden earlier this week and I'm pounding away on hours and hours of yakkety-yak. Plus making lots of jewellery:

I'd seen these chain maille earrings on Pinterest quite a while ago -- apologies to the original designer -- but I had to try making them. As with all chain maille designs, these are endlessly fascinating. It always amazes me how a tiny difference in the size of the jump rings, not to mention different metals and combinations, changes the whole feel of the earrings.

These look fabulous on just about anyone. A great and simple go-to style and very easy to make. I liked how they're all floppy when you make them because of course I started at the bottom, but once dangling, the rings all fall into place perfectly. Hint for making these: start from the top working down from the earwires --  the earwires act as a "handle" -- or am I the only one who automatically dives into the "business end" and starts with the bottom rings???

First iteration where I pretty much copied the original designer's earrings, except I didn't like that the two top jump rings were the same size as the other jump rings, so...

The second iteration, I reduced the size of the two top jump rings. Still didn't like it, so...

...I used small, medium and then large jump rings in a two-tone variation. Still didn't like it, the top part somehow looked too weak and wishy-washy and unbalanced when I tried them on, so in this final third iteration I doubled the second ring and bingo. Fixed all the earrings...

Then got a call from my pal Lynn (who does my displays) and found out that it had been her birthday the day before, on Tuesday. We had already planned to go Wednesday evening to see the new Tom Thomson biopic at the Woodstock Art Gallery (go see it, it's fascinating, not only image after image of great art and scenic beauty, but it's also a murder mystery with forensic anthropology in action -- the title? West Wind: The Vision of Tom Thomson) so I invited her out to dinner afterwards. I picked up a slab of cheesecake from Let's Eat Cake and packed up the all-copper earrings for her. When we met up at the art gallery I was wearing the mixed copper and silver earrings. Lynn greatly admired them, and I said, "Good thing you like 'em, 'cause that's what you're getting for your birthday."

I'd never been to the Charles Dickens Pub in Woodstock, but it came highly recommended, all homemade-from-scratch pub grub. It was really good. I ended up taking half mine home for lunch the next day.

I sent a large order of earrings and pendants off to Toronto with my sister on Monday to take around to her co-workers, so really schmancy packaging wasn't the priority, just keeping them visible, clean and still easy to access to examine more closely.

Sleeping Beauty & pewter drop earrings with sterling earwires; an all-pewter drop version; and two chandelier variations, on the left, matte crackle agate chandelier earrings, on the right, pearl chandelier earrings, both with Swarovski crystals.

Closeup of the matte crackle agate & Swarovski crystal chandelier earrings.

All the pendants that went off to Toronto (on black Greek leather adjustable cords): top row, five raw lapis lazuli pendants, two Nacozari turquoise slab pendants; raw black tourmaline along the right side; five Mexican fire opal pendants; one polished faceted lapis lazuli pendant; one Nacozari turquoise slab pendant; one pearl & quartz crystal pendant. I actually kinda liked the punky/bikerish look of the lumpy bead caps with the pearl, so I'll be making earring variations on that theme and will post the results later.

Aaaand, I started putting items into my booth at the One-of-a-Kind Antique Mall. It's looking a little sparse at the moment, but every couple of days I manage to get another two or three items in there. Forgot to take a picture today after I added a cast brass and copper seahorse bridge lamp and some other odds and ends, but this is what it looked like on Wednesday. When May comes and Nancy returns, it will be chock full of stuff... I tend to attract stuff, packrat that I am. Hooks for the peg boards are on the list, and I'll be putting up a lot of frames that I have for sale.

Hope everyone is staying warm. Can you believe the weather we've all been having across North America? Seems like no one has emerged unscathed, although it's finally a mild and melty day today.

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday 8 January 2014

Still working out the no Internet-so-go-to-the-library merry-go-round...

...getting there being more than a little difficult when it's -43C with the windchill, as it was yesterday.

This is what -43C looks like around 8 a.m.

Yikes. Luckily, the wind was consistently from the west all day and basically scoured my lane clean the rest of the way to the highway, except here where it drifted around the truck... maybe I should've moved the truck... to the east end of the pullout, which means the drifts would have formed to the east of the truck and kept the pullout clean... d'ya think?

Today, after glaring at the snow with my laser vision -- which doesn't work on snow at all, btw -- I shovelled through 18 inches of nasty hard-packed, finely-drifted snow to get out. Still no room to turn around later though, when I drive back in. This is all gonna be even more fun because... it's supposed to go up to PLUS-10C by Saturday AND rain... and rain... and rain. And then get cold again and the world will become a giant skating rink.

In the meantime, I've been working on filling and arranging my showcase at the One-of-a-Kind Antique Mall. It's looking kinda pretty these days.

These pictures were taken January 5th...

January 6th, I decided to create some interest by getting the Roman glass bead strings off the floor of the case. This enabled me to be able to put more examples in:

Thanks for looking!