Art Elements Design Challenge and Blog Hop - Sunflowers

I admit it. When I saw Susan's post for the June Design Challenge on Art Elements with the theme "Sunflowers", I thought I got this, but alas, I have been living together with myself for 53 years now and still know so little *sigh* Yes, of course there were some things that got in the way, life tends to be like that, but I really should have known that I would harbor ideas, tucked away neatly in my brain until shortly before the reveal - but I made it.

A few weeks ago I mentioned the sunflowers here that I used to have as a teenager. Since we didn't have a real garden, I only had a little spot. As I am also blessed with what I like to call ten black thumbs, all of them left with me being right-handed, plants don't really stand a chance around me. These few sunflowers, however, did their very best in a probably not so perfect spot. The highest one was around 30 inch, I'd guess, but the others were much smaller. The end of it was a last tiny flower, more like 5 inch. When a friend of my little brother's pulled it out, I became, well, let's say, a little harsh (just words, no violence). He was a natural at crying, though (that's putting it nicely), not so small anymore, and I had warned him before. When I met him decades later, he didn't seem to be too traumatized to talk with me at all, so I would say we both got over it ;-)

So that was one inspiration, the other one was obviously the first picture in the challenge post, Van Gogh's sunflower painting or should I say one of them?
"“The public is hardly aware that Van Gogh created a series of paintings of sunflowers,” says Leo Jansen, a curator at the Van Gogh Museum and editor of the artist’s letters. “For nine out of 10 people I tell, it’s news.”" This is from a BBC article about the "unknown history" behind the sunflower paintings. Yup, another thing to admit, I would have been one of those nine people. In fact I never really thought about it because - and please remember now that the perception of art is different for each person - I'm not that much of a fan. I have seen one of Van Gogh's sunflower paintings at the National Gallery in London and it didn't become a favorite of mine.
How did it become an inspiration for my piece anyway then?

What I knew first was that I wanted to bead the flowers. I had made a beaded sunflower for another challenge once using a mahogany obsidian cab in the center, but hadn't been completely happy with the petals, so I finally ripped it up again. I had also crocheted a large sunflower from wire and beads before.
This time I wanted something different, more delicate which was a good decision considering I started so late. I looked around for chessboard crystals as centers, but didn't find any brown ones, so went for rivolis instead. I beaded two blossoms and two leaves - not as easy for me as it sounds because I hardly ever bead off loom - but now what?
Put them on a bracelet? Or make them into a pair of earrings which I had actually been one of my very first plans? At least add another leaf because I blatantly ignored the rule of the uneven number (just like Van Gogh did in some of his paintings, by the way!) and turn it into a pin?
None of those because I suddenly had a different idea which was probably really triggered by me looking at the Van Gogh paintings, even if I hadn't been aware of it. A vase. A beaded vase, though? No, I didn't have an idea how to do that best, and time was running out for experimenting.
Wire. Of course. Woven wire. With some texture to it. A tad of three-dimensional feeling.
Here you go. I did it. One day before the reveal. And I like it. Something to keep in mind for future playing. Different flowers? Bigger? Oxidized copper or a different wire? Time will tell!

Hopefully Art Elements is going to let me participate again next time, and this time I'll start earli.... forget it, I know I won't. Maybe I need that pressure, who knows? ;-) I can dream, though, right?

Now to all the other participants of this challenge. I'm already looking forward to going through their posts with oohs and aahs, why don't you, too? :-D


Alysen - Anita - Cat (c'est moi) - Divya - Jill - Kathy - Linda - Linda - Mischelle - Norma - Raven - Sarajo - Tammy

AE Team Members

Caroline - Cathy - Claire - Jenny - Laney - Lesley - Sue


Oldies but Goodies - Frogs

Not far from here there's a small lake in the woods. I used to go there rather often, first as a child with my family, later also with friends. It was quiet and very nice in the summer. You could watch the fish, see dragonflies, there was a little playground with a wooden train etc. and we also walked around the lake.
From the small parking lot you walked a path downhill to get to the lake.
One time the upper part of that path was full of tiny frogs. Honestly, I have never before and never again seen so many frogs in one place. We had to walk very carefully, so we wouldn't step on one. Actually I wasn't interested in the lake that much anymore. I would have just wanted to stay there and look at the frogs making their way from one side of the path to the other. I have no idea where exactly they wanted to go because they were not headed for the lake, but I hoped it wouldn't be the road that went through the forest to the next village.
It must have been 40 years ago or even longer because I was a child, but to this day I'm hoping as many as possible made it to their destination to live happily ever after or possibly get kissed by a princess ;-)

Frogs were the topic for our new Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge, but only two of our members stepped up and had something to share this time. I love each single piece just as much as I love little froggies!

1 2 Fab Fristers
2/3/4 Jewelry Art by Dawn


Oldies but Goodies - Monochromatic

This week's topic for the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge is monochromatic.
Let me head over to Wikipedia very quickly, just a moment .... here we go.
Monochrome describes paintings, drawings, design, or photographs in one color or values of one color. A monochromatic object or image reflects colors in shades of limited colors or hues. Images using only shades of grey (with or without black or white) are called grayscale or black-and-white.

The entries tried to come as close as possible, but you obviously have to allow for findings, bezels etc.
It would be fun to design a completely monochromatic beaded piece for example, though ....

1/5/9 Cat's Wire
2 and 4 MC Stoneworks
3 and 7 Jewelry Art by Dawn
6 and 8 RioRita


Oldies but Goodies - Tiger's eye

Sorry, I'm a bit preoccupied at the moment, totally non jewelry-related, so I'm going to keep today's post for the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge of this week short.
Our topic was tiger's eye (and no, not all of these pieces do have tiger's eye, but you know that we are generous with the rules ... can you find out which are different stones?).
Hope you'll like the collage!

1/5/8 MC Stoneworks
2/3/7 Cat's Wire
4/6 Jewelry Art by Dawn


Art Elements Design Challenge and Blog Hop - Tide Pools

This challenge is not to be confused with the Oldies but Goodies one which usually turns up here on Thursdays. When my friend Laney posted about the May challenge on the Art Elements site, I spontaneously decided to jump in as a guest, to inspire me and to give my blog a little kick, too.
The theme was Tidepools, and Lesley from the Art Elements team showed some beautiful inspirations to us in this post.

Now for the first surprise - I'm not really a beach girl. I don't live anywhere near the sea and I am not the sort of person that goes ooh and aah when they see a sandy beach with palms.
It's not as if I have never been on a beach, though. An absolutely obligatory part of each trip to the Bay Area for example was one day on a particular beach. We are not talking beautiful sand and deep blue ocean here. We are talking the kind that overwhelmed me because all you could see was water and all I could think about all the fascinating and terrible creatures that may be out there. I can always blame "Jaws" for that feeling (even though it's an old favorite of mine, "Jaws", not the feeling). While I wouldn't have readily jumped into the ocean for that very reason, I really enjoyed the rest - looking for nice shells, walking in the shallow water, trying to defend our picknick from the seagulls.
Of course there were other beaches, too.
And there was the beach in Wales we never found. I still think they put that sign up to lure us into that field with the big herd of cows to get trampled. No, seriously, we just didn't find the way after trying this path and that road and finally we headed back and ended up in a tea room instead. Not the worst alternative if you ask me. It was so hot that day, I couldn't have walked another step, not for the most beautiful beach in the world!

I can't even say if I have ever seen a tide pool with my own eyes although I had a very clear idea of it. I immediately knew I wanted to put something on a bead loomed bracelet base in one of my favorite colors, gunmetal AB. Of course there's only so much space on a bracelet and I had to decide what to put on it.
This is the result.
The green seaglass comes from a Danish beach. A friend brought it home for me. The little snail shells and the sea shell are from Italian and Greek beaches and were a gift from a co-worker. And of course there had to be pearls to kind of tie all of those elements together and a mix of grey lined and metallic ice blue seed beads to hold them down.

There are so many talented people who are a part of this blog hop, I hope you'll take the chance to see what they created. I'll do my best to catch up this weekend.
And a big thank you to Art Elements for letting me participate as a guest!


Raven - Kelly - Kathy - Tammy - Alyson - Elaine - Mischelle - Deborah - Anita - Jill - Shirlee - Sarajo - Melissa - Jenny

AE Team Members

Caroline - Cathy - Claire - Jen - Laney - Lesley - Marsha - Niky - Sue  - Lindsay - Jenny


Oldies but Goodies - Garden

It's May and people are talking about their gardens, how they are planting things, how those plants are coming along, about garden design, about new garden spaces, about relaxing in the garden.
We never had a garden when I was a kid. First it used to be a big yard which then became small when they built another house (that was a looong time ago), then they built the garages and put stones down which were very nice for my roller skates. If I wanted garden feeling, I went to my best friend where they had flowers, some herbs and beautiful old cherry trees - oh those yellow cherries!
What we had was a strip of soil along the driveway with bushes, and there I had a little spot with daisies and later some sunflowers that started out rather large and then came back smaller and smaller.

I guess what I'm trying to say - once again - is that I am completely clueless. I know hardly any plant names, I have no idea how much water they need or sun or love, but I do recognize a flower when I see one ;-)
Some of my fellow JAC members, however, are great gardeners, and while I'm showing just jewelry from our latest Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge, I'm sure I could show you beauties from their gardens too if I had thought of asking early enough!
Do you have a garden?

1/8/12 Jewelry Art by Dawn
2/5/9/10 Cat's Wire
3/6/11 MC Stoneworks
4/7/13 RioRita


More tentacles

I love making tentacles, and this animal has been on my to-do list for some time, even before I started wire weaving. I had thought about crocheting one, knitting one, I started a pattern for a bead loomed one once, but no matter how much I made my brain cells work, nothing convincing came to mind, and the project got pushed back again and again.
It has been quite a while that I have been to the Wilhelma, but when I had visited, the common jellyfish in the aquarium have always been one of my favorite stops. I often wished I had a high chair to sit down and relax just by watching them floating in the water. It's almost hypnotizing, and I know others feel that way, too.

After working on my different octopuses, I finally decided now I'd just start by making the tentacles and maybe a good idea would come to me then. And it did!

Of course I knew that you can't recreate that special, almost ethereal look with wire. Wire and a cab are so much more solid ;-) Instead the shape was more important here. Not that all jellyfish look the same, but I think if you asked people to draw one, they would have pretty much the same features - a body like a turned over bowl and tentacles.
While I would usually oxidize the copper, however, I left it shiny this time to at least make the jellyfish not so dark.

I found just the right shape in my cabochon stash (yes, actually this is a stash tackler, but I didn't want to wait until Friday).
And the biggest fun about making tentacles is that they can all look different. Long or short, curved this way or that way, individual patterns (although there's not that much you can do with only two wires), and of course the loops that I love which you have already noticed, no doubt. I could hardly stop myself, but there was only so much space on the cab.

The chain that I added has irregularly sized links because I used the wire pieces that were left over from other projects and had different lengths, a nice way to use them at last.

I would like to say this won't be my last jellyfish because I loved working on it so much, but I know myself too well and my infamous list that changes all the time. On the other hand - tentacles!! :-D


Oldies but Goodies - Lapis

Lapis lazuli, often just called lapis, has been the topic for our challenge before, but that's okay. We are not the only ones who love that dark blue after all.
Last time I mentioned how the Egyptians ground lapis to make cosmetics from it. There are old legends and fairy tales as well in which the stone is playing its part.

And of course we can't forget lapis in art, both the stone itself and the pigment called ultramarine that was made from it. Ultramarine which can still be bought today, but has lost its significance in art after synthetic pigments took over, was more precious than gold at times because of the time consuming process to make it. The powder from the ground stone is cleaned and then washed out in clear water until you finally get the pigment itself, a mere fraction of the original lapis.
Here's an interesting article that also shows examples of how ultramarine was used, in the Sistine Chapel for example.

Back to our Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge for this week, though - I hope you'll like today's selection. Not all of it is lapis, but the beautiful dark blue you will find in each piece.

1 and 5 MC Stoneworks
2 and 4 Jewelry Art by Dawn
3 and 7 Cat's Wire
6 and 8 The Crafty Chimp
9 and 10 RioRita


Random Saturday - A doll for Marie

It would be saying too much if I claimed to collect children's or young adult books. I have a whole cabinet full which are a few hundred books, but that's mostly because there are my own books from when I was young, books I got as gift, from my godmother and her brothers for example, books that used to be theirs, and of course books I bought myself because they were favorites from the library.

I could read at an early age and was very proud to have my own library card (with the number 5542 ;-)), and there were books I borrowed over and over and over again, so I just had to own them as a grown up - and yes, before you ask, sometimes I read one and if it brings up memories and the magic for a little while ... perfect!

Of course the internet was a great help with my search. Just one example. There was that series of books about Davy Crockett that my brothers introduced me to. 16 volumes from which I could quote at that time, so often did I read them. Well, not all of them. I struggled with volume 16 because of Crockett's death and only read that one as an adult, and volume 8 was missing from the library.
This is one of my favorite library stories (bear with me, people, who have heard it a thousand times). I reserved the book when it was not marked missing yet. These were the 70s. I filled out a postcard that was attached to whatever they used at the time to keep track of their books. Then I waited patiently. Until I got an overdue reminder for a book I never even had! I guess this is what kept me being open minded to the fact that even librarians do make mistakes ;-)
Many years later, I put a request on the ISO page of a sales website for used books - and got the chance to buy the whole series from one person which was really a stroke of luck, and the price was okay, too!

My collection grew, but one book was still missing. The problem was that I didn't remember the title or the author. It was a picture book and I had been very small at the time. All I knew was that it was about a doll in a shop, that this doll wore a beautiful dress and that her long lace knickers were peeking out at the bottom. Every, now and then I would try to google the words doll, shop, window, dress, picture book and more, always hoping for a hint among the found pictures.
I had been searching for literally decades when I stumbled upon an article about an archive of 6,000 historical children's books, digitized and free to read online, from the Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature. Now the book I was looking for was not from the 19th century, but being reminded of children's books I decided to google once again. I have no idea what I did different this time or if was just lucky or if Google had become tired of my searches, but there it was!
A problem was, however, that I didn't want a new edition and of course I wanted the book in German although the original was in English.
I was lucky again. I found it on a used book site, but there was no picture listed with it and by now I had found that in German there was an edition with a grey cover instead of a picture, and I didn't want that. Next stop - eBay. And there it was. Not cheap, but still affordable, and they even accepted my offer.

And here it is - A Doll For Marie.
It felt almost strange that the search was over - now what will I be looking for next? :-D


Tackle that stash - Agate and labradorite

Last month I really struggled with getting anything done. That doesn't mean I didn't try, but things didn't work out so well. Of course I was quite preoccupied with Ponder, his vet visits, and trying out one diet food after the other because the gang refused to eat. I'm the only one in this flat who hasn't lost weight!
Things have calmed down a little *knocking on wood* and Mabel (my invisible muse) has dared to come back.
So today while diving into the world of Pride and Prejudice on DVD once again I decided to have a look through my stash.

I found some rather short copper wires, leftovers from other projects, and a small agate cab that looked as if it might work nicely with the lengths of wire. The hardest part is always to decide on a weave. Sometimes I start, then pull the working wire off again and try something else, and of course the first idea might get changed completely during work, anyway.
This time I surprised myself again, I didn't know that the pendant would come out like this!
I even got to use one of my faceted labradorite onions which I have hoarded for years now because it fits the slightly subdued look and gives it that bit of shine and sparkle when the light is right.

P.S. Of course I thought of adding a dangle as well at first, I always do, but when I chose the labradorite instead of a tiny bead at the top, the dangle was out, it would have been too much, at least for my taste.


Oldies but Goodies - Earthy

This week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge was in honor of Earth Day on April 22.
What comes to your mind first when you hear "Earth"? The Blue Planet as seen from outer space? Nature the way you experience it every day? The soil in your garden or simply the ground under your feet? Or maybe the whole package with oceans, mountains, grass, people, stones, fruit, animals etc.?
See what earthy means to the JAC members who contributed to this challenge.

1 and 3 MC Stoneworks
2 and 5 and 7 RioRita
4 and 6 and 8 Cat's Wire


Oldies but Goodies - Vintage Style

One style will never be completely out of fashion - that's the vintage style. It's easy to see why. Vintage style can be about anything, and you can always pick your favorite. Many if not most of us are dreaming of better times, and memories of when we were more careless are not difficult to evoke. If everything was indeed so careless and so much better, that's a whole different question.
I can be hopelessly nostalgic myself while readily admitting that the old times were not necessarily times I would have wanted to live in. I appreciate my washing machine, thank you very much, and that's not the only thing. Other modern things I can very well do without, though.

An easy way to pick from the past just what you want are accessories of a time period you like. They don't even have to be real vintage which is not always easy to come by or may simply be too expensive, there are beautiful items out there created in a vintage style.
Here are some of them from our latest Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge. I hope you'll enjoy them.

1 and 6 The Crafty Chimp
2 and 3 Cat's Wire
4 and 5 RioRita


Random Saturday - Hidden object games and jewelry making

I do like playing hidden object games. Puzzles, a nice adventure story, that's just what I need sometimes (nomograms are another one of my passions) to shut out the world. 
What do those games have to do with jewelry making, however, you may wonder now.

The stories of the games I like playing best usually take place in some kind of medieval, fairy, wizard, magic, or maybe period drama (20/30s are fun) etc. setting. One of those, you know, that look great, but that you probably wouldn't like to live in although that may be open to discussion. The backgrounds are very detailed, especially in the puzzles in which details are important to make the hidden objects more difficult to pick out.

I wish I had paid more attention from the start when jewelry was shown in those puzzles. Now there's no way to say how many pieces there actually were over the years. Because you know, this was obviously handmade artisan jewelry that was shown there, wire woven or beaded, and that was what made it so interesting to me.

After a while it made me wonder if the persons who designed those scenes were always the same and if they drew the inspiration from pieces they had made themselves or had seen elsewhere. Latter would mean they had to study them closely.
Not that I see how I could ever get an answer to that.
Now I'm a little mad at myself for not making screenshots every time. Once I got aware of these pieces, I intended to do so each time, but then I forgot and didn't bother to go back to the scene or couldn't even find it anymore. Okay, so it's not a matter of life or death, but doesn't a little collection sound like fun?

For now I just have this one picture of a peyote piece for you, and unfortunately I forgot which game it belonged to (I will write it down in future). Depending on how many more I'll find, I may either keep this post up-to-date or I'll set up a new page for it on this blog.
And how knows - maybe others will help growing the list.

And it starts ...
From "Nevertales: Smoke and Mirrors" (photo instead of screenshot which makes for the blurry look)


Tackle that stash - Tiny sheep

This year one of the old jewelry stores in my hometown shut its door for good after about 100 years. While it hadn't been a store I used to frequent myself - in fact I can only remember one time I asked about something in there - I often walked by it on my way to or from the train station, and I often had a look at the windows because they didn't just offer modern jewelry, but also had displays of vintage jewelry and even loose stones or pearls.
Before they closed, they had a sale, and my sister and I went in a last time to have a look.

Next to the counter they had a big glass bowl with small cabs and faceted stones, some real, some synthetic. The lady said they kept those for children coming in with customers which I thought was a sweet idea.
Even though I am not a child anymore, I took two small jasper cabs as a memory with the intention on making something from them eventually.

When I was asked about a sheep a while ago, I remembered these two cabs that had finally made it from my purse to my stash drawer and thought that one of them would make a cute little sheep prototype in copper. When will I learn that tiny doesn't mean easier to make? ;-) The whole pendant including the bail is just 1 inch high and 1 1/3 inch wide!
At least I learned a few things from it for the next sheep. As I said, this is a prototype that I will keep, so yes, there are tool marks, the ear is a bit too small and the head maybe a bit too large. I still think it's kind of cute :-D


Oldies but Goodies - Amazonite

After skipping last week due to technical problems we are back with some amazonite and more for this Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge.
Since the rules are not too strict, not all of those stones are amazonite - all of them have the aqua blue color, though. Can you find out what is what? Not that it really matters, important is how soothing and lovely that aqua is to the eyes. What comes to your mind when you see today's entries?

1 and 6 Cat's Wire
2 and 4 RioRita
3 and 5 MC Stoneworks


Oldies but Goodies - Hip to be Square

This week's topic was of course inspired by the Huey Lewis And The News song "Hip to be Square". I don't know how square you consider yourself to be ;-) but my selection of jewelry pieces from the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge today definitely is!
I hope you'll like them.

1 and 4 and 7 Cat's Wire
2 and 5 and 6 RioRita
3 MC Stoneworks


Oldies but Goodies - Spring break

Spring break is something we don't have like this here in Germany. To me it is only familiar as a stereotype through movies that celebrate that "partying and going crazy in the sun" feeling.
This week it's our Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge's topic and we are giving you sun, colors and fun with these pieces!

1 and 8 Jewelry Art by Dawn
2 and 4 Cat's Wire
3 and 6 MC Stoneworks
5 and 7 RioRita


Oldies but Goodies - Sapphire blue

While sapphires come in all kinds of colors, white, green, pink, yellow, orange, most people will probably think of blue first.
Sapphires are our Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge's topic today - the color, not necessarily the stone, though. Have fun with my selection!

1 and 8 The Crafty Chimp
2 and 7 Cat's Wire
3 and 5 RioRita
4 and 6 MC Stoneworks


Oldies but Goodies - Triangles

I was busy with vet and my own appointments, so I completely forgot this week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge! How embarrassing.
In short - beauties, triangles, enjoy ;-)

1 and 6 and 7 RioRita
2 and 11 Cat's Wire
3 and 9 Jewelry Art by Dawn
4 and 5 MC Stoneworks
8 and 10 The Crafty Chimp


Oldies but Goodies - Mardi Gras

When our challenge mistress announced Mardi Gras as the topic for the latest Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge, I was somewhat at a loss what to enter.
Here in Germany we celebrate what is called Fasching, Fasnet, Fastnacht, Fassenacht, Karneval - and I figured it would not be quite the same as Mardi Gras as it's not even the same in all of Germany. So I asked what kind of vibe they were asking for and got the reply "Mardi Gras is just colorful, especially green, purple, and gold - masks, beads, French influence".
Colorful, now that I could do.

Today's selection is a very small one, but I hope you will love it nonetheless :-)

1 and 5 Cat's Wire
2 and 3 MC Stoneworks
4 RioRita


Oldies but Goodies - Minty fresh

Like many other people I love the taste and scent of mint. Isn't it amazing how you see something mint colored and your brain automatically connects it with this fresh feeling?
Today I'm bringing you some items from the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge and hope they'll make you feel good! :-)

1 Cat's Wire
2 MC Stoneworks
3 The Crafty Chimp
4 RioRita
5 Jewelry Art by Dawn


Tackle that stash or Creating new (old) stash

Years ago the "Pfingstmarkt" in Wäschenbeuren was a regular date in our annual calendar. This market takes place on Pentecost (Monday which is also a holiday here) each year, in a village about six miles from my hometown.
One part of it is a flea and antique market, the other is a typical market with anything from local honey, hand knitted socks, herbal teas, aprons, t-shirts, ingenious vegetable graters, and of course there are also food stalls to keep people going. I haven't been there for years, mainly for lack of transportation because it's a bit of a hassle with buses on holidays.

When I was younger, I wasn't a fan of jasper. I usually saw it in the form of tumbled rocks that I didn't have any use for, and on top of that jasper doesn't sparkle. I loved gemstones and still do today.
I grew older and (hopefully ;-)) a little wiser, though, and learned to appreciate the beauty of other stones, no matter if they were translucent or opaque. And eventually I got myself a tumbled leopard jasper rock from a jewelry stand at the Pfingstmarkt, one of those that also had one of those big boxes with a variety of rocks in it. I still didn't have any real use for it, and afterwards I wouldn't have been able to say why I wanted to have it except that it had jumped out at me, but I always felt that this was the rock that started to make me change my view of jasper.

After I started making jewelry, I made a few attempts to use the rock. Nothing really convinced me, though. This was not a small stone, it needed some big design, and I was better at incorporating tiny beads in my pieces. I crocheted oder knitted more than one bezel for the jasper, but nothing worked.

This brings me to my topic of creating new/old stash.
Lately I have been ripping up some old pieces. A few had never even been listed anywhere because I was not completely sure about them myself, and I felt kind of a relief when I ripped them up and put the cabs or beads back into my stash. One of them was the jasper.
You have no idea how often this particular rock had come back to haunt me. Some pieces sleep in a drawer and some of those I even forget I ever had. The jasper, however, always ended up somewhere where I found it again.
And now I think I finally found its destination after, oh, probably about 20 years - and I'm happy with it. Miracles do happen.


Oldies but Goodies - Berry colors

I'll spare you the stories today ... let's just go pick some "berries".
Berry colors were the topic for this week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge, and berry colors we got! Obviously my subconscious mind was so influenced that I actually got myself some frozen (after all it's winter here) berries with the next grocery shopping ;-)
Hopefully you'll find today's selection just as yummy as I did.

1 and 7 MC Stoneworks
2 and 8 The Crafty Chimp
3 and 5 RioRita
4 and 6 Cat's Wire


Oldies but Goodies - Farm living

When I was a child, the time spent on the farm of my godmother's parents was always special.
I didn't deal well with some things like being expected to eat the chicken that had still run around the same morning (but no, I never had to witness myself how it went from running around to making its way to the stove), but most of the memories are vivid and good - with half of them probably being a little misty-eyed.
I had "my own" cow. At least I had first dibs on buying her if I ever made enough money which I was sure would happen eventually. She was white and light brown and her name was Diana.
I loved all the cats, first of all O'Henry, the big tabby, and although already being a cat person back then, I also loved Hera, the big German shepherd. Actually I don't know how big she really was, but I was pretty small back then. When my godmother's brother asked me to open the gate for her, I was always a little afraid because she would stand against it and just let herself drop - and crush me inadvertently, no doubt. Sometimes I managed alone, sometimes someone came out of the stable, saw me standing there and opened the gate with just the tiniest eyeroll.
I helped picking berries in the garden, rode along on the tractor and played a vital role (from a safe distance ;-)) in putting the cows out to pasture. I snuggled bunnies, collected eggs, read my godmother's and her brothers' old children books, watched her mother cook and was probably generally in the way of everyone.

This week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge is about what you can find on a farm ... animals, plants, and more. I hope you'll like my selection!

1 and 9 Jewelry Art by Dawn
2 and 8 Cat's Wire
3 and 5 MC Stoneworks
4 RioRita
6 and 7 The Crafty Chimp