Friday, November 30, 2012

Missionary Mom Necklaces

I ran into my friend, Susie, at the school the other day and she asked about making a special necklace for her sister-in-law who has a son that is serving an LDS Mission in Seoul Korea.  What a fun idea!  So, I thought about my own sister, Kim, who has 2 missionary sons.  One is serving in Trujillo, Peru and the other is flying out to Angola next week.  He will be serving in the Maputo, Mozambique mission.  Well, it was such a good idea I couldn't help but make a Missionary Mom necklace for my sister too!  I added 2 more discs for her sons who are still at home.  They'll get their call someday and I'll add their missions to her necklace.  I wore it around for 2 days straight because I love it so much!  Hey!  They're my nephews!  Here's a peek:

And here is the one for Susie's sister-in-law . . . I think it's my new favorite!

I've been making a lot of jewelry for people to give away as gifts this year, and it is always so joyous when someone orders something for themselves!  Here is Susie's circle pendant that she ordered for herself.  I know it won't make it all the way to Christmas, but I hope she re-wraps it and sticks it under the tree for herself on Christmas morning!

Custom Christmas Mommy Necklaces

These three sweet necklaces are Christmas gifts for Valerie's girls.  Each is inscribed with her daughter's name(s).  What a sweet surprise for Christmas!

Custom Christmas Jewelry Orders

Loved making these custom pieces for the folks at TLES.  I got them all finished up and delivered right after Thanksgiving Break.  It seems that the circle pendants are a popular Christmas gift this year!  I snapped these quick shots - watch out for the giant looming black dot!  It's really just a reflection of my camera - haven't yet figured out how to get around that!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

New Custom Handcrafted Heirloom Pieces!

I've been working hard on some new pieces for a show that I've been invited to do at our elementary school in Temecula.  I haven't done a show for quite some time and have really enjoyed every aspect of getting ready for it: brainstorming, construction, photography, display, pricing, even business cards!  It's kept my creative juices over-flowing the past few weeks.  I can't wait to see it all come together!  My goal is to take some orders for lovely Christmas gifts.  I love to be hard at work filling orders - it's one of the best kinds of creative therapy that I know!  So, here are some of the pieces I've made for the show.  Above is a fun pendant for Sandy's sister.  It's the usual silver name disc necklace but with a twist!  The circle names are her children, and the heart is a grandchild.  The loop can open and close to add or change charms.

"LOVE YOU MADLY" is my new favorite piece!  I love to make these hearts with quotes or children's or grandchildren's names, but this one is just for fun!  I saw a hand-painted sign on the internet that said "LOVE YOU MADLY" and knew it was perfect for this necklace. It is a whopping 2" by 2" square and is topped off with a hand-crafted rivited bail and a bit of silk ribbon from my adventure in Tucson.  You can see other brass heart pendants here, here, and here.

Below is another fun pendant - this one is quite large, measuring 3" x 1 1/2".  It shows off one of my favorite quotes by Robert Southey: "No distance of place or lapse of time can lessen the friendship of those who are thoroughly persuaded of each other's worth." This piece also has a hand-crafted rivited bail and is hung on a long sterling silver chain.

Here is a new twist on my usual silver initial charms.  These are hand-cut in copper and heavily oxidized.  I love working with copper because it changes color so much with heat and chemicals in the air.  Give it a little shine if it is looking dull and it pops right back to life. It ages and patinas so well, I just love the warmth of it!

And here is another "Copper Quote."  This is one of my favorite mantras: "find JOY in the JOURNEY."  This is a medium sized piece of hand-cut copper for an organic and aged feel.

And another!  Hugs and kisses are paired with a tiny silver heart.

 "The FUTURE is as BRIGHT as your FAITH" is a pendant that I've made several variations of (you can see them here, here, here, and here).  This one is done in a large domed hand-cut silver piece.

Here are my classic 5/8" domed name discs with a simple pearl.

Simple silver hammered hearts.  These are so dainty and beautiful!  Perfect for two of Zalea's friends with birthdays this month!

A copper hammered heart, soldered to a silver hammered rectangle.  The back reads: "You have my whole HEART for my whole life" and it hangs from a long faceted silver chain.

Of course, all of these pieces can be customized with different fonts and finishes and whatever sweet little nothing you want to say.  My objective with these pieces is to spark some ideas and hopefully show how easily they can be made into meaningful, personal, heirloom gifts.

Two more pieces, just for fun.  Above, a silver soldered star "SHINE" pendant.  And below, "sing, dream, hope, pray" from the quote: "Sing your song, dream your dream, hope your hope, pray your prayer."

Here's a look at my display with my samples all ready to go!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Rainbow Beauties

This past August I went to the Costa Mesa Gem Faire.  I was on a mission to re-stock some sorely needed supplies, and I ended up with this amazing eclectic mish-mashed collection of semi-precious goodies.  They are, from left to right:  Umba Sapphire, pink pearl, Blue Florite, Sun Stone, Peruvian Opal, Genuine Ruby, Labradorite, Tanzanite Quartz, Diamond Labradorite (2 strands), Ruby and Sapphire.  These beauties will make their way into all sorts of projects.  I can't wait to use them!  Look at all of this color!

Below is that strand of Umba Sapphire from the far left.  This is my most favorite stone right now.  I have transformed the beautiful strand into a bracelet and earring set and I wear them nearly every day.  Did you know that sapphire could be so beautiful?  It is so earthy, warm, and unexpected to me.  I LOVE the faceted cut of this stone.

And below are several pairs of earrings made from the different beads.  Beautiful dangley baubles!  My favorite!!


Teachers are the Best!

These past few weeks I've had the pleasure of making some meaningful jewelry for a special group of ladies at our elementary school in Temecula.  It all started with this wonderful third grade teacher right here:

This picture was taken last November when Zalea was given the "Student of the Month" award.  You know how a little bit of positive reinforcement goes a long way?  Well,  it worked for my little Z.  Her whole third grade experience was transformed because of Mrs. Souza's positive energy (and a little bit of yoga!)  Below is a photo of the mother's necklace I made as a gift for Mrs. Souza at the end of the year.

Well, this necklace started a chain reaction as other teachers and staff members have placed their orders with me.  I have never had so much fun making jewelry!  I've decided it is so fulfilling to make jewelry for people you know and love.  Here's a look at some of the fun projects we've put together:

What do you get for the baby who has everything?  A keepsake necklace for his mommy!  Paula had a few baby showers to attend and wanted to do something special for the mommies.  Here's one for Olivia and Jake's wonderful grandma:

 For Ada, we chose December's birthstone crystal:

Michele wanted a mother's necklace for a special friend. This is a layered name pendant topped with a silver heart:

And one for Michele with her mantra "believe - hope - dream"

Below is a birthday present for Sandy's sister who practices Kundalini Yoga.  "Sat Nam" is a mantra frequently repeated three times at the end of a yoga session.  It means, loosely translated, "truth is my identity."  The stone is olive jade.

Here is an initial pendant necklace for Valerie's mom.  The nine initials represent each of her children and grand-children.  The pink crystal represents October's birth stone crystal, tourmaline.

This is a special necklace for Karen.  The front of the circle pendant has each of her children's names, and two dangling discs that read "together forever."

 The back says: "FAMILY - our love is not bound by time."

And here is the finished necklace with Karen's drawing.  I LOVE collaborating on a project to get exactly what someone wants in a special gift.  This is an heirloom piece and I hope it is treasured for years to come!