Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Happiness is Handmade

Instead of dwelling on the negative happenings of the week... ie: ramming the back of my new car into the side of my old car and denting both (sorry Elizabeth!), my leaking roof and broken dishwasher.....I am finding much happiness in small things.

Maybe I'm confusing a small joy with an obsession but I'm really enjoying getting my new Etsy business off the ground. But, nobody warned me about marketing fever! I didn't know artists could catch it. I can't stop myself from browsing every website I can find with helpful hints for successful sales. It's a fun challenge!

Here are some great ones:

And last but not least, amoung all my browsing and googling... I have found so many incredible artists and crafters. Some are amoung the names in my newly updated blogroll..... check them out! If you notice the color theme, I am thinking about creating an Etsy Treasury.....

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Who Knew??

Who knew, as I carved a linoleum block in a printmaking class in college, that I would be using the design to make silver jewelry twenty years later! Of course, one could skip step 2, 3 and 4 and press the metal clay directly into the linoleum block. But, in my case, I wanted the design much smaller than the original for a pendant. Also, the rubber stamp matrix creates unique depths, different than the carved linoleum block. Below you can see the process...

Carved linoluem block.

Final piece, ink on paper.

Photocopy of reduced image.

Rubber stamp matrix.

Finished silver metal clay pendant.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Etsy A Go Go

Well, I did it ...... Finally! I have listed my first item for sale on Etsy! My banner is not up yet and I only have one item up so far but I'm so excited. I have been procrastinating for a year now because I didn't have EVERYTHING ready. I have decided that it doesn't matter. It's a process, right? The rest will come in time. I do have my mailing envelopes, mailing labels, gift boxes, mailing scale, business cards.....and jewelry, of course. Maybe this is the paradigm shift I've been waiting for!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Beads Glorious Beads

Before my passion for PMC began, I had (and STILL have) a passion for beads. While browsing the Chatuchak Weekend Market in Bangkok, Thailand over 20 years ago, I discovered incredible antique and vintage silver and semi-precious beads that I purchased and coveted in little boxes on my dresser. Not until 12 years later, after purchasing more beads (some supposedly over 1000 years old!) on a back side street in Peshawar, Pakistan, did I realized I really wanted to create something to wear out of my unusual finds. (This was the same trip I found the antique bronze jewelry dies too!) When I returned home, I went into our local bead store (The Peruvian Bead Company) and asked for help. Thus began a new hobby..... beading!

Since then, I have created beaded necklaces for friends, family and an occassional wedding commission. But once I took my first PMC class and knew I had found my calling, I started imagining all sorts of new creations with beads and PMC silver pendants etc. Consequently I headed straight for the next local gem show ( and lost my mind....spending 10 times more money than I came with. Now, I'm drowning in beads!

Now, the famous Tuscon Gem and Mineral Show is calling my name. Maybe next year......

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

To Die For ......

Here are the amazing vintage bronze jewelry dies I found in Pakistan. As I am so very fortunate to have these creations in my possession, I feel obliged to help the Afghan people who created these incredible works of art who were forced to sell to traders so they could eat. I plan to send a percentage of all pieces made from these dies to the Central Asia Institute who build schools for boys and girls in poor rural areas of Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Below is a finished piece next to the die that was used to create it. Notice that the finished pendant is quite a bit smaller as the PMC shrinks when fired.

Greg Mortenson, co-founder and Executive Director of Central Asia Institute (and author of Three Cups of Tea) will be on PBS this Friday night with Bill Moyers to discuss his new book"Stones into Schools". Don't miss it!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Pure Congratulations!!!

Pure Life and Home is celebrating their 6 month anniversary. Congratulations Jayme!

Here are more PK Studios goodies to check out at Pure. I created these silver pieces from antique central Asian bronze jewelry dies my mother and I purchased at the weekend bazaar in Islamabad Pakistan.....12 years ago!

Happy New Year everyone!