Saturday, April 30, 2016

Iris Apfel Ribbon Necklace

This necklace is a simple homage to Iris.  
My heroine.

A few years ago Iris had a sale of some of her personal items on the One Kings Lane website.
I knew things would sell quickly and trust me, by the time I got onto the site everything was snapped up.  I wanted something small as a keepsake and these ribbons somehow ended up back on the site when the person who selected them did not check out.  Happily, they became mine.

The are exactly what I look for when I go to the Paris antique market.
It took me a while to figure out the best way to use them.
A simple metal ribbon edging component was my best option.

Iris's life quotes have become my own.

Her ribbons are now something I can wear.
And, I have so much left over for other projects.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Monday, April 04, 2016

Vintage 50’s Necklace With A Kumihimo Twist

Designed by Carmi Cimicata for John Bead Corp and Perles et Cetera Winter 2016 Issue. This is the English translation of the step by step that appeared in French in the current issue of the Magazine.  Reposted from John Bead Blog.
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This simple kumihimo disk has become the most loved tool in my studio. Made of foam, it is surprisingly sturdy. Kumihimo is an ancient braiding technique. Today, the classic 8-strand braid is easy to create with a variety of stringing materials. Most kumihimo disks come with instructions for this braid. Rattail is usually included because it the most common string used by kumihimo designers. It braids easily and is available in a wide selection of colours and several thicknesses.
I love the 8-strand braid and have tested it with virtually every stringing material I have in my stash.   Thick and thin lengths of cording combine to create the most elegant braids. They look complicated and unique. This really appeals to me as a designer.
To create the three tiered necklace I set up three completely different braids. My disk looked different each time. For one braid I used Neo Chain and classic kumihimo polyester rattail.
My second braid features several different thicknesses of cotton wax cord.
The third braid is especially unique with one extra thick piece of Nappa leather cord, soutache cord, cotton wax cord and rattail.
The color palette for these braids was influenced by the announcement of the 2016 Pantone Color of the year. This is the first time they have selected two colours; Rose Quartz and Serenity.
2016 Pantone Color(s) of the Year.
I glued my three braids into a special large kumihimo end cap. I made sure to let this cure overnight before adding my lobster clasp in order to ensure that the three braids were permanently in place.
I think the necklace looks lovely on it’s own. The chain I added to one of the braids adds a tiny bit of glitter.
However, what is life without a little extra embellishment? As a jewelry lover I also have quite a few of these vintage brooches in my collection.
I added this over the top rhinestone brooch and felt quite satisfied with the final necklace. The brooch is in place with just its pin back, so it is easy to remove, replace or switch out for a different color.
Here is how the necklace appears in the current issue of Perles Et Cetera.
Products Used from John Bead Corp.
Kumihimo Circle Disk
Dazzle-it Rattail
Dazzle-it Cotton Wax Cord
Metal Complex Napa Leather
Kumihimo End Cap #23820105-01
Lobster Claw
Quick Grip Glue
More Information
If you go to you will see over sixty posts I have written featuring kumihimo.
If you would like to see a video demonstrating the classic 8-strand technique go to this link.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Orthoceras Fossil Necklace

Ordinarily, I have not been attracted to items that are fossils.
That all changed when I found this pendant at my local haunt, Antiques on Queen in Port Hope.

It didn't look real....but it didn't look fake.
I was intrigued.

I discovered quite a few more of them searching online.

"Orthoceras ("straight horn") is a genus of extinct nautiloid cephalopod. This genus is sometimes called Orthoceratites.  Orthoceras fossils are common and have a global distribution, occurring in any marine rock, especially in limestone."

Wikipedia has this as the artist rendering of what the species would have looked like.
I am very pleased to have a fossil in my jewelry collection now.

I chose to string my necklace with two sizes of John Bead Fire and Ice Agate beads.
The howlite agate set off the fossil beautifully.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Retro Blooming Necklace

RETRO BLOOMING Necklace for CHA 2016
RETRO BLOOMING Necklace Workshop Created for CHA 2016
Reposted from the John Bead Blog
“Make a cutting edge leather necklace using components from the Tropical Punch line by John Bead Corp in association with Sizzix machines and brand new dies created by Jill MacKay.   Mixed media has never been this hip…until now!   A workshop literally to die for.”  Workshop by Carmi Cimicata
Soft Leather
This workshop was created to showcase our soft leather sheets and some of the unique components in the Tropical Punch jewelry making collection.  Since the workshop techniques were demonstrated in person, these pictures are a good summary of what you need to do in order to create something similiar.
cut1  RETRO BLOOMING Necklace for CHA 2016
The Retro Blooming Necklace stands out because of the layered leather blooms.  We were able to create and cut the flowers with special dies from the Jill Mackay collection. Thank you Sizzix for allowing us to use your new “Movers and Shapers” dies for workshop.
Tip – You will be able to die cut more flowers if you cut your leather into smaller shapes. There will be less waste. (see picture above)
RETRO BLOOMING Necklace for CHA 2016
You can cut as many flower shapes as you may want for your necklace. Some of my pieces are over the top with more than three layers. You may prefer far fewer flowers on your necklace.  Simply cut and build layers until you are satisfied with the groupings.
I used a tiny dab of glue between each flower layer to secure it in place.  For the layer on top I added the special circular bead.
RETRO BLOOMING Necklace for CHA 2016
The bead I used as the flower centre is a Preciosa Ripple™. I sewed mine with a tiny bead anchor to give my necklace more of a hand-finished appearance. RETRO BLOOMING Necklace
I only sewed through a single layer of leather.
One good stitch with a knot holds the bead in place. Then I glued the layers of leather together. The Ripple bead covers the tiny hole in each flower and any possible glue seepage. (Notice where I added glue.)
NOTE: If you do not enjoy sewing, you can glue the bead in place too.
I worked on a non-stick surface so I did not accidentally glue my leather flower to my table/work surface.
I always let glue dry overnight if I can.  In a classroom setting, we are on the clock, so it was great to be able to use a fast glue such as Quick Grip for this project.

To make the flowers wearable I used Tropical Punch polyester pipe for my necklace.
I created the tiered look by cutting my pipe to the length I liked and taping it in place to maintain its shape.

I added a pendant bail slider to my last polyester pipe cord before gluing on my end caps.
The bail slider allowed me to add this special lucite Tropical Punch flower to the necklace. Then I glued my leather blooms to the polyester pipe necklace so that the lucite flower was perfectly framed.
If you do not like working with frayed ends (1),  you can tape your polyester pipe before cutting it (2)  or use a flame to seal the edges (3).
The Tropical Punch endcap I picked has a deeper center, so I cut my cords into a triangular shape so that I could glue them properly into the cap.  This allowed the cords to sit side by side snuggly in the cap with glue.
If you are working on a beading board, place a little masking tape under any area where you apply glue.  This way your project won’t accidently stick to the board if glue seeps out.
Your last step is to add a clasp.
Retro Blooming Necklace
I used these products from John Bead Corp.
Soft leather sheets – Retro Pink and Black Suede   75103102-05 + 75103100-00
Tropical Punch Polyester Pipe   75001000-01 (available in many colors)
Tropical Punch Findings   26002001-03
Tropical Punch Lucite Flowers   28400684-04
Pendant Bail Sliders   26002053-01
Bead Design Board   74530132
Quick Grip Glue
Czech Preciosa Ripple Beads  27800957-01s5