Sunday, May 22, 2016

Dried Flower Jackpot

We are experiencing our first spring in the heritage home we purchased nine months ago from a lovely couple who were avid gardeners.  We are really enjoying reviewing what is already established and what I can add to make the gardens my own.

Last weekend, in preparation for this long weekend of gardening and planting, we cleaned out the shed.  I discovered this flower press on a shelf and could not wait to see if it had been filled.

Happily, it was absolutely crammed with dried flowers!

Can not wait to incorporate this find into summer projects.

Friday, May 13, 2016

The Rhinestone Button Blank Challenge

It always starts as a simple idea.
I have some sort of a blank component that needs to be filled.
What I think is fabulous changes completely
after I send the component out to my crafty and creative friends.

This rhinestone button blank was the starting point with an invitation to just play.  
The results are nothing short of inspired.

"Magically open doors with this Dove of the East Paris Vintage Fallen Roses wrist cuff. The soft cotton brocade feels good on your wrist with a swirl of tiny pearls embedded in diamonds and a half moon pearl center to guide your way!"

"I made this necklace thinking about my daughter Karol.  
We go to high tea every month or so."

"I used an old button to make a silicone mold and poured resin mixed with Jacquard Pearl Ex powder in Interference Violet and added a bit of silver oil to the cured piece.  Then this was glued into 'your' button.  I used a metallic leather cord, some iridescent glass seed beads and round hematite beads for the wrap."

"To create this piece, which I call Tidepool, I used the bezel button blank and filled it with Magic-Glos then arranged the pearls and let it dry under a UV lamp. I glued a Swarovski star to float on top of the pearls then attached the button to this crackly metallic green leather with leather cording and finished the piece as a bracelet."

Monika wrote "It was so much fun deciding what to do with the "button" you sent."
I was so amazed when I opened this picture file.  It is a stunning keepsake.

"I used Gel Press™ print, Orange Glitter Glue, Diamond Glaze, Connie Crystal, Crystal Katana for crystal placement  The wreath is from Smoothfoam.  I made the flower then used it on a wreath!"

Here are some pictures of my bookmark that I was inspired to make with the component you sent.  It was a pleasure to participate in this challenge.  

"The white beads I used in my necklace are vintage German glass beads."
I can see a gorgeous button in the button.  This necklace is perfect for the summer!

"I painted the background black, added an O sticker in the background, then some beads and Mod Podge Dimensional Magic glaze."

"I have to admit that it was a real chore trying to decide what to do with the component. You were right! I could have gone 10 different ways! In the end I decided on something my mom would love!"

"I'm calling this a French Confection with button.  The pattern paper at the top is dollhouse wall paper *laugh*. The flower petal is coffee filter die cut and then tinted with Distress Ink (my fingers are still blue this morning) and Perfect Pearls in a water mist.   The button has a resin dome with a piece of resin which I had cast on a Texture Tile from Cool Tools that I had brushed with Alumillite silver powder (powdered aluminum) and rubbed with dark blue Gilders paste.

"In the center..white 2 part epoxy, silver leaf, swarovski chatons and blue and green mica."

"Mine is a pendant made of the button, a resin flower, white plaster pin frame, a bee and a skeleton key. I used Inka Gold in graphite to dust up the white pin and flower and Pearl-ex in violet over the jewelry clay that's holding it all together. It kind of makes me think of Blanche Dubois."

"So my button was sparkly and I decided to make it more sparkly with epoxy clay, Swarovski crystals and some Pearl-ex for color. Then I ran out of time and made it into a ring!"

"I had lots of ideas, but ended up doing something fairly simple. Intuitive bead embroidery in silver and black, because I thought that it would make an elegant presentation. I used micro beads (glued on....ooops) and four different Miyuki, size 15 seed beads. Three black and one silver. After the piece was beaded, I glued it to the cab with E6000, and attached a pendant converter at the back (again using the same glue). For now, I'll hang it from a simple silver chain. In the future, it may become a focal in one of my intuitive bead embroidery pieces. I hope you like it as much as I do!"

"As the challenge instigator, I had the luxury of two back up buttons.  I wanted to feature a miniature painting in my rhinestone button blank, but found a gorgeous postcard over the weekend.  I punched out several circles of art from the vintage card and settled on these three.  I covered the image with resin."

"I used a prayer card with an image of the Blessed Virgin which I encased in resin. It is hanging on a piece of a vintage rosary which belonged to my husband's grandmother. Hanging from the button bezel is the religious medal that was given to my late mother when she received her First Holy Communion in 1928."

"Made a ring using 2 part epoxy clay, blue rhinestones, silver Bali beads, copper bead caps, 20 gauge wire & jubilee blue perfect pearls mica powder."


There are a few creative projects still to post.
Bookmark this page to come back and see some of the buttons which are a little late.

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.