Oldies but Goodies - Sunshine

It's mid-December and so far we didn't have any of that **** in my neighborhood. You know what I mean. That stuff in winter that I don't like. I'm not going to name it because I don't want to jinx it.
Instead we have rain and we have sunshine.
Now I know those beautiful photos of **** glistening in the sunshine, and I'm the first one to say that they look gorgeous. As photos. Not if I have to walk around in that stuff, not even with sunshine.

Of course this was just supposed to be a very smart (this is irony in case you didn't notice) introduction to this week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge whose items are inspired by sunshine.
They may not warm you, but maybe they'll make you smile a little :-)

1 Cat's Wire
2 and 6 RioRita
3 and 4 Jewelry Art by Dawn
5 Bijou Bead Boutique


Oldies but Goodies - Green

This week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge didn't ask for Christmas green specifically, but I thought I'd pick the ones that fit the season best colorwise - and the frog. Because I love the frog. The one in the bottom row, that is.
As a bonus I added some Christmas frogs. No, don't ask me why Victorians felt a frog killing another over a bag of money is a good image for the season, but they came up with many more hilarious ones, believe you me (or if you don't, go ahead and google for some Victorian Christmas fun ;-)).

1 RioRita
2 Cat's Wire
3 Bijou Bead Boutique
4 Jewelry Art by Dawn
5 MC Stoneworks


Oldies but Goodies - Topaz again

At the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge we have been showing you topaz as the birthstone for November before.
I still can't get over the fact that there are topaz crystals that weigh kilos. Why exactly don't I have some of those?
They would make nice pendants ... ;-)

The entries for this week don't weigh kilos. Again. And again I don't have topaz for you, but topaz colors. I hope you'll love my little selection, anyway.

1 Cat's Wire
2 Jewelry Art by Dawn
3 RioRita
4 MC Stoneworks


Art Elements Design Challenge and Blog Hop - Fossils

The first thought when Niky announced "fossils" for the new Art Elements design challenge in November was obviously to look into the mirror.
I have been calling myself a fossil for a long time as I sometimes have the feeling I don't fit into this modern world very well ;-) Now that I'm sitting here I think I should have tried to do something with the idea, just for the heck of it, but the days have been slipping through my fingers in a most unproductive way, so it was much too late for it.
In fact I was late, anyway. Somehow I thought the month was much longer and that the reveal wouldn't be before the end of the month. When I was reminded of the actual reveal date, I almost panicked. It meant I HAD to make something on the weekend before because there was no chance for a last night action this time.

I did have several ideas, but a problem with the execution. Do you know those days when you feel time is running out and you just keep messing things up? Believe it or not, I started three pendants and cut all of them up again because I didn't like the asymmetry here and the setting there and why didn't that ammonite want to stay in there the way I wanted it to? I think I was just pushing it too hard, so I put both wires and the fossils away - ammonites in different sizes and a beautiful fossilized coral cab.

When the reveal date started hanging over me like a Damocles sword, I gave up on the wire.
Instead I took out a bottle and my Delicas. I have been making quite a few of those little beaded bottles lately, but the pattern I had in mind needed a bottle that was a little bigger.
I have been fascinated by dinosaurs forever. Which kid hasn't been? One of my favorite books was "Mamal" by Niels Meyn, a Swedish children's book from the 40s about one of the first mammals on Earth. I can't say how often I checked this book out and I was devastated when the library took it out of their stock. Thanks to the internet I own it myself now and can take a look at my favorite illustration, the fight between the T. Rex and the Triceratops. Sorry, Triceratops, children can be cruel and I know I didn't show enough grief for you having your belly ripped out by the T. Rex in the end.
Then there was Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World from 1912. I read it back and forth and all over again.
I don't remember the title of the book with the girl and the German Shepherd that I think I got for Christmas. I do remember that the dog was supposed to be taken away, but wasn't in the end because he helped the girl finding some kind of fossil, not the crocodile she had hoped for, though.
You see, dinos and fossils everywhere!

I live only 10 miles from the Urweltmuseum Hauff, and my area has a lot of fossils to offer. One of the most amazing exhibits at the museum is the world's largest colony of sea lilies, but of course there is more. Even a crocodile! ;-)

So instead of using a fossil for a design, I decided to bead a fossil, inspired by my dino fascination and by the Jurassic Park logo showing a T. Rex skeleton.
Unfortunately I didn't stand a chance to finish it in time, so all I have to show today is a WIP. I'm still happy I got that far considering that I only had Sunday evening and a little time after work on Monday and Tuesday.

I chose a black background for the contrast as I used a mix of two slightly different beige colors for the fossil itself. I liked the look better than the idea of bleached white bones.
With more time on my hands I might even have tried a Triceratops fossil on the back to honor the fight from Mamal! ;-)

This is a blog hop, so please hop with me to all the other participants' blogs, so we can check out their posts and "fossil creations" together.


Beth and Evie - Cat (that's me ;-)) - Dawn - Divya - Kathy - Michelle - Sarajo - Tammy  

AE team members

Jennifer - Jenny - Lesley - Niky - Susan


Tackle that stash - The Leopard

Usually I make a pendant first and then put a bail on it. In this case it was the other way round.
When I took some shorter wires out of my leftovers baggie the other day to turn them into a pair of earrings - in the end they became sparkly butterflies - I found a wire woven bail, so now I had to find something to put on there. I don't even remember putting it in there. Had I cut it off a different piece or was it one of those leftover wire projects I did in the hope of finding the right piece for it eventually? No idea.

I went to my stash drawers and tried a lampwork tree bead first, but it was too long. Then I thought a bigger mookaite bead would be nice, but the bead holes were too small on all of them.
Then I found the leopard. The leopard was another of those beads that I thought would never make their way out for lack of a good idea. I got it from Babs Beads & Design many years ago. I remember falling in love a whole group of "animal print" beads. I used one of them in a wire knit pendant in combination with some jasper, but the others patiently waited for their turn.

Sometimes things can suddenly be real easy. The wires on the bail had the perfect length, so why not let this little beauty shine on its own?
The funny part is that I had thought the exact same thing a few years ago. I used the bead in a ring with a wire woven band then which I had completely forgotten about. When I happened to see the picture in one of my folders just now, I remembered that I hadn't been all around happy in the end with the way the ring sat on my finger.
I like the bead much better in a pendant and think this could even be unisex, maybe on a leather cord. Now I just have to decide if I'll oxidize the copper to an even darker color although it is not as light as it comes out in this picture.
What do you think?


Oldies but Goodies - Timeless

This week the topic for the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge was "timeless".
What kind of jewelry is timeless to you? Are there any stones, metals or other materials that never seem to go out of style? Designs, patterns, combinations?

My first thought are always pearls - a single knotted strand of beautiful pearls. Such a classic design, and even if some may think such necklaces to be the style of grandmothers, you will always see them. They go well with a more conversative look like a costume, they spruce up the famous little black dress, but they will look just as beautiful with a shirt and jeans, maybe in a smaller size.

Another possibility are diamonds. I'm not going to start the discussion about how diamonds were only pushed by the industry with the notion that an engagement ring should cost three months salary, I find that just as ridiculous. I also often hear friends of mine say that they don't like diamonds at all. So I'm outing myself here now. I do like them, but I like the look of a classic ruby, aquamarine or amethyst solitaire as well, too. I have chosen very different - also in price - stones on purpose, and that is not the complete list, either.

There is so much more, though. Eternity rings are timeless, many chain designs are timeless, hoop earrings are timeless, necklaces from round stone beads - graduated or not - of all kinds are timeless, and I could go on and on.
Beading, wire or metalsmithing techniques have been around forever (almost ;-)), and many designs are so old, it's incredible.

Here are some challenge pieces now that we JAC members think are timeless.

1 Jewelry Art by Dawn
2 Bijou Bead Boutique
3 RioRita
4 Cat's Wire


Tackle that stash - First Christmas ornaments 2019

Among the glass beads a friend from Prague had sent me a while ago (for me a while can be anything between two days and two years) were two twisted glass ornaments, a short green one and a long purple one.
It would have been easy to put a hook on them to hang them on my Christmas tree or turn them into little pendants, but I'm not always going for easy, so I waited and waited and waited some more for my muse to turn on her brain and come up with something.
The only thing I knew from the start was that they wouldn't become jewelry which probably had to do with childhood memories.
My best friend's grandfather always had two trees. There was one in the big room and there was a smaller one in the playroom. It had a stand that had a music box and rotated - I don't remember what melody it was, I'll have to ask my friend - and it was decorated with beautiful vintage twisted glass icicles.
At least that's how I remember it, and ever since twisted glass, even if it's not clear, makes me think of that Christmas tree.

I know, some of you will think it's too early, but firstly we don't celebrate Thanksgiving here, so that's not a reason for me to wait, and secondly, it would be really hard to get everything done if I don't start before December!
The idea for these ornaments finally came from the peyote rings I had been making.
All of the components are stash, even some of the thread has been in my drawer unused for several years, not to mention the bubble lampwork beads that have been with me for even longer. Compared to those, the Delicas are rather new.
Unfortunately it proved quite hard to take a good picture because it's November grey here today and because the size and colors are so different. In case you can't see it well, the green ornament has got a little white peyote tube and an almost clear bubble bead, the purple one has metallic fuchsia beads and a pink bubble bead.

Maybe I'll give these two away as gifts, Ponder had already that glint in his eye saying how much he is looking forward to play with them. The twisted glass is attached to the wire that runs through the lampie and the peyote tube in a way that allows it to dangle, absolutely irresistible for my old man who likes to think he's still a kitten! ;-)
Another reason is that my little tree is running out of space. "You're gonna need a bigger tree!" my mind keeps telling me, but the spot on the stairs is so perfect for the little one.
First world problems!


Oldies but Goodies - Earrings, earrings, earrings!

Guess what our topic for the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge was this week ;-) You got it, earrings!
I know, it's not the first time that I've shown you earrings from the Oldies but Goodies, but earrings have always been a big favorite with humans and that hasn't changed one bit. I said humans because earrings have never been just for women even if there were times when men were looked at somewhat suspiciously by some people if they wore earrings.
Who thought of taking something sharp and run it through an earlobe to hang something on it? No idea, but at least that method has changed a little. Maybe I am just a wimp, though. The thought of a needle and a potato doesn't make me happy, I probably still wouldn't have pierced ears if that had been the only option!

And here's my collage for this challenge now, beautiful earrings crafted by my fellow JAC members.

1 Bijou Bead Boutique
2 Ganison Atelier
3 MC Stoneworks
4 Cat's Wire
5 The Crafty Chimp
6 RioRita
7 Jewelry Art by Dawn


Art Elements Design Challenge and Blog Hop - Eyes

When Laney announced the topic for the October design challenge at Art Elements - Eyes - I didn't even think about not entering although I had no idea what to make (as usual ;-)).

I have always been fascinated by eyes. If I were a better photographer, I would annoy my cats day and night taking pictures of their eyes. Ever since I was a child, I have been drawing eyes, I still do sometimes if I'm in a meeting, but I don't think they are any good, so none of those doodles has survived.
I have created eyes in wire and beads.
Eyes are important in many of my HeatherCat pieces and I can't begin to tell you how often I ripped out the eyes in my fan wall portraits, even after the whole portrait had been loomed, sometimes just to change out one bead for a better look. It is amazing how a tiny "light reflex" can brighten up an eye or make it incredibly creepy.

This pair of earrings started out as a basket that became too big because I miscounted my stitches. Sometimes I just stare at a piece of shaped wire, no matter if it's crocheted, knitted or woven, and manipulate it to become something else. In this case it became an eye shape.
Do you remember Gozer from Ghostbusters? Gozer had those glowing red eyes that let you hardly see the white. They inspired these earrings. I wanted them dark and creepy and staring, adding white would have made them too human. I wish I had had red lampwork beads that big, but these blue and green ones work nicely, too. The lashes are supposed to add to the out of this world look.

My second idea was very different.
Cat eyes. I could get lost in them. Not that I don't love other animals' eyes in all their varieties, but cat eyes are the best, and I wanted to bead some. Not elaborate ones with a lot of shades because I simply didn't have the time to design a pattern for those with the bead colors I had on hand. Instead I took my inspiration from some Studio Ghibli anime movies I had watched recently. I wanted the eyes to be big and impressive.
This was my first attempt.

That ring was quite wide and I thought that the top rows weren't really necessary. What if I lost two of them and added something else instead that said "cat" more than just the eyes?
My first prototype was a little wonky. I had tried to add a nose as well as ears, and the nose didn't work at all. Unfortunately I had already woven in all the threads and had a hard time to find them again at first!
Now I had to try different color combinations of course, and the eyes are not all completely the same, either. This could become quite obsessive ......

That's it from me for today, but this is a blog hop, and I'd like to ask you to have a look at all the other entries, too. Have fun!


Beth and Evie - Cat (that's me ;-)) - Dawn - Elaine - Hope - KathyMichelle - Tammy 
AE team members

Claire - Cathy - Jennifer - Jenny - Laney - Marsha - Niky - Susan


Oldies but Goodies - Harvest

What do you connect with harvest?
One of the things that comes to my mind comes from church when I was still a child. Around the altar there was this huge display of fruit, vegetables and grains, beautifully arranged, in beautiful colors and so rich looking.
I see long ladders leaning against apple trees and tractors on fields of wheat (don't ask me why it's always wheat to me). I am feeling the first chill in the air. I see people picking the grapes on the small vineyards along my train route.

Today I have quite a small selection from the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge for you, but if it doesn't put you in a harvest mood, I don't know what does! :-D

1 RioRita
2 MC Stoneworks
3 Jewelry Art by Dawn
4 Cat's Wire


Oldies but Goodies - Non-white pearls

When did you last have a dinner Cleopatra style? I'm not talking about nightingale tongues or whatever extravagant meals we think were served there. I'm talking big money.
You remember the story? According to Pliny the Elder Cleopatra bets Mark Antony she could serve the most expensive single meal - 10,000,000 sesterces worth. Mark Antony can't imagine that that is possible, but Cleopatra just drops one of her enormous pearls in a glass of vinegar and drinks it.
Do pearls dissolve in vinegar? Obviously they do, scientists, pearl dealers and ordinary people have tried it out in various combinations. They don't do it quickly, though. I'll leave it to you if you want to believe the story of the Queen's extravagancy, look up articles or videos about it or even try it yourself.
The first time I read about this was in a Scrooge McDuck story. Scrooge put 1,000 pearls into 1,000 cans of pickles for a giveaway to raise interest in his pickles, those cans never made into the stores, though. When he opened them up to get his pearls back out, they had all gone, a just punishment for trying such a dirty trick.

That's not the only story about Scrooge and pearls. I remember his search for rare black pearls, for example. This is a nice bridge to this week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge which is all about pearls that are not white.
Although there are natural pearls that aren't white, most of the colored pearls are dyed or glass pearls in the first place, and there are huge differences in luster and quality.

Here's a selection of jewelry with pearls from our JAC artisans. Be prepared for color!

1 Ganison Atelier
2 RioRita
3 Bijou Bead Boutique
4 CymberRain
5 MC Stoneworks
6 Cat's Wire
7 Jewelry Art by Dawn
8 The Crafty Chimp


Oldies but Goodies - Downton Abbey

I don't go to the cinema a lot anymore. One reason is that I like to watch my movies in small groups or even alone, in the comfort of my home where I can put up my feet like I want to, where I don't have to deal with the tall people always sitting right in front of me, where no one shines the light from their cell phone onto the screen thinking it's funny. Okay, I am exaggerating, but even if that doesn't always happen, it does from time to time.
Of course seeing a movie at the cinema is different, there's the big screen, and depending on the audience and its reactions there can be the perfect mood.
A little over a week ago I spontaneously went to the cinema right after work. There was just one little problem. It was the early afternoon showing and I was by myself, but was told they have a two person minimum. Why didn't I wait, maybe someone else would turn up. Somehow the parent and kids groups that did turn up didn't want to see Downton Abbey. What a surprise. I finally went to the guy behind the counter, not to complain, but to ask what the difference between one and two persons was for a movie showing, and he pointed at his boss who happened to sit there. I'll cut it short, in the end I was so lucky to sit in this big room all by myself (and it had been a polite conversation, I assure you, I'm not a fan of pushy people myself), and it was a very special experience.

Today's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge asked for pieces that were inspired by the era of Downton Abbey.
Please keep in mind that our rules are quite stretchy. For example I don't remember having seen a Flapper dancing the Charleston at Downton Abbey, but both of them belong in the era. No one entered a diamond tiara inspired by those Maggie Smith wore (I wonder why ;-)). Nevertheless I can't imagine you won't like what you see.

1 Cat's Wire
2 CymberRain
3 The Crafty Chimp
4 Ganison Atelier
5 Jewelry Art by Dawn
6 RioRita
7 Bijou Bead Boutique


Wanna go for a swim?

I have been annoyed by a head cold for almost a week now. I'll spare you the details, let me just say that I have been quite knackered. I didn't feel like getting up much, so mostly I slept, watched TV, and played with wire or Delica beads every, now and then.

The little bottle was a spontaneous idea. I have several of them that I got from my sister. They used to hold beads, so it somehow made sense to bead around them. My first plan was to make something for one, possibly two challenges, but that got put on hold when my muse decided to give me a new idea.

I have been a shark fan since I was a child, thanks to my oldest brother's fascination with sharks. He showed me pictures and told me about them, and in 7th grade when we had to make a kind of magazine for German class, he wrote a whole article for me about sharks (it was a magazine about animals, what else). Keep in mind that these were the 70s, we didn't have internet and it wasn't that easy to find suitable pictures - which is why I think that the shark pictures in the local library's "Grzimeks Tierleben", volume 4 from 1970, were probably missing because someone else did a report about sharks. I didn't get to see those pictures before I started my training at the University Library in 1983!

In an article I read that no one can forget when they saw Jaws for the first time. I guess I'm "no one" because I have no idea. I know it wasn't at the cinema, I was too young, but I remember my brother coming home and being all excited about it. He didn't see it just once. I also remember reading about people's reactions to it, for example the father who wrote that his daughter first refused showers because of Psycho and now swimming in the ocean or the lady that saw it 20 times and threw up each time.
At any rate, half my family are still fans, we often just call it "the fish film".

Enough talking, here's a picture now. Not perfect, but the best I could do in such a small space (the beaded part is not even 1 1/2 inch) and with such a fried brain ;-)

The idea for the sea foam - I don't like the decreases and thought about covering them with small pearls, not a peyote expert here, people - came from my friend Caroline, thank you for that!!

Bruce, this is for you :-D


Oldies but Goodies - Summer is over

Summer is over in the Northern Hemisphere, and to honor it a last time for this year, it was the topic in this week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge.
This is a selection of what participants chose to enter. You'll see water, summer colors and flowers - a worthy homage to summer, I think.

1 and 8 Ganison Atelier
2 and 6 Jewelry Art by Dawn
3 and 7 Cat's Wire
4 and 10 RioRita
5 and 9 Bijou Bead Boutique


Art Elements Design Challenge and Blog Hop - Foliage

"Foliage? I can do that!"
When I read the September topic for the Art Elements Design Challenge that Caroline gave us, I was completely confident that I would rock this. I have made leaves and leaf patterns both in wire and beads before, and I even thought that this time I would be able to make more than one piece.

BAM! Unfortunately this is not a "I did it" BAM, but a "life gets in the way" one.
So this is the part where I'm getting to the cheap excuses, in this case work and health or rather a combination of both which tends to kill off not my creativity, but the ability to transfer my ideas into actual pieces. For example I saw some wire crochet leaves in fall colors before my eyes, but after ripping one up twice I didn't feel like another attempt.

I even forgot that I had started making something that I put on my manikin head to decide about a clasp and embellishments.
Just a few days ago I happened to see it again (and I walk by that head all the time!) and had planned to work on it some more yesterday after coming home from work, but due to a stranded train it took me three hours to get home, and all I wanted there was something to eat and sleep.
This morning now I wasn't even sure if I liked it at all anymore without some major changes. Now I'm afraid it's going to move to the Drawer of Eternal WIPs which is not a good place to be, I've heard ;-)

I'm glad that I'm not standing - well, actually sitting - here without having anything to show.
I love making these kind of leaves, they are great to use in earrings, pendants or necklaces, and it's always fun embellishing them with what I can find at the moment.
Here I used chocolate brown freshwater pearls and matte carnelian beads for that perfect fall feeling. After all fall is my favorite season!

Now here's the good stuff, a list of all the other participants in the challenge, and I'm sure they'll be showing a lot more. I'm already looking forward to going through all the posts and pictures!
Please have a look, I know you won't be disappointed!


Alison - Alysen - Anita - Beth and Evie - Cat (that's me ;-)) - Dawn - Divya - Hope - Jill - Karen - Kathy - LaurieMary - Michelle - Sarah - Sarajo - Tammy 

AE team members

Claire - Cathy - Caroline - Jenny - Lesley - Marsha - Niky - Susan


Oldies but Goodies - More Copper

Copper is not new to the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge, in fact it's the third time for it to make its appearance which is no wonder.
After all copper is no new material in jewelry design. Often jewelry artisans start out using copper because it is more affordable than silver and fall in love with its warm look that is so beautiful with a lot of colors. A red or green combined with copper for example will have a completely different look than combined with silver.

To be frank, I have always considered myself to be a silver or white gold girl. Actually I started out making jewelry with coated copper wire if I wanted a bit of color, but also sterling and then fine silver. At some point that turned around, I felt the beauty of copper creeping up on me. Maybe I felt it worked better for what I did than silver, maybe I was inspired by the beautiful copper pieces I kept seeing from others, at any case my feelings from when I kept getting a dark wrist from the only copper bangle I ever owned as a teenager had changed completely.

Today's selection shows I'm not alone with this feeling about copper. Enjoy.

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


Oldies but Goodies - Black and blue

This week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge was easy peasy. Or was it?
The topic was Black AND Blue, not Black OR Blue, but we were lucky, it didn't mean that other colors in the piece were not allowed.
Black and blue is actually a pretty cool color combination as you can see looking at the entries, and maybe I should use this as an inspiration. I'm thinking of bead looming here ....
For now, however, I have this collage of fabulous pieces for you. Once again it was very hard to choose!

1 Jewelry Art by Dawn
2 CymberRain
3 Bijou Bead Boutique
4 MC Stoneworks
5 RioRita
6 Cat's Wire
7 The Crafty Chimp


Oldies but Goodies - Festive colors

What is there to say about this week's Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge? I think the title speaks for itself ... festive colors.
Although I like to say that black is my favorite color - yes, I know it's not really a color - we all need some color in our lives, maybe even more these days.
I hope you'll enjoy today's selection (and please click the picture for more detail)!

1 Bijou Bead Boutique
2 RioRita
3 Ganison Atelier
4 MC Stoneworks
5 Cat's Wire
6 Jewelry Art by Dawn


Nostalgia - 50s figurines

Some years ago when I still did the "Finds of the week" posts, I had some called "I'm a collector" in which I shared vintage items. Over time my collections have mostly stopped growing due to different reasons, but they are still there and still loved. I also have vintage items, some inherited, some gifts, some from fleamarkets, some more interesting than others. So I thought it could be fun to share some of them every, now and then and tell their story.

This time I want to show you two very old friends of mine.
The brass horse and baby elephant belonged to my grandmother. I remember playing with them as a child. In my imagination the little elephant was an orphan that had been adopted by the horse. I would let them walk all over my grandmother's place - which wasn't that big, mind you - and when they took a break, the baby would drink milk from the horse. Don't ask me why, I was the kid that used the little playing cards at my other grandparents' house like dolls, making them have conversations and go out (I loved the way the pictures looked). I had a lot of imagination and was able to play like that for hours sometimes.

Unfortunately they are not marked. I know they are not Walter Bosse because the style is more realistic. It just surprises me that so far I haven't been able to find them elsewhere or at least something in the same style because I'm convinced these figurines were just as popular in the 50s as the wonderfully whimsical Bosse pieces. Here's a cat that has to work hard in my kitchen holding towels and potholders, I think he's still surprised about that job ;-)

At a fleamarket about ten years ago I did find this cat. I suspect she is younger than my old friends because its surface looks rougher, but I fell in love with her elegant posture and the price was very sensible.
As you can see she is much bigger than horse and elephant, too, so I don't display them together. She usually has the job of holding my two wonderful memory necklaces of Merlin and Meffi, painted by my friend Dawn, while horse and elephant protect part of my personal library, safely behind glass.

Some time before my grandmother passed, she gave me the little elephant. A while later I saw the horse standing on my younger brother's book shelf. I couldn't bear to see them apart and practically begged him to give it to me. Luckily he not only had no sentimental connection to it at all, unlike myself, he also wasn't at an age to be interested in a figure like that. No worries, he still hasn't regretted giving it up ;-)
Whenever I see those two together now, I'm immediately taken back in time to my grandmother's flat. I see her TV chair, her record player, the table cloth with the tassels (something else I loved to play with), and the cupboard where they used to wait for me to take them down and play with them.


Tackle that stash - Lampwork, silver, and crystals

Lately I have been working on making more earrings. You know I sometimes struggle making the same thing twice, so this is not always easy for me.
When going through my lampwork stash in search of inspiration again, however,  I found these beautiful drop headpins on sterling silver by Iced Moments.
The easiest way to use them is just bending the silver into earwires, I "made" a pair of earrings for myself that way. For these I wanted a little more, though not too much to keep the drops the main attraction.

In my crystal stash I still have some 2 mm crystals, and these three colors - a sapphire blue and a grey and light blue in kind of an opalite shimmer - seemed to be perfect for the earrings, so I wrapped them on using a fine sterling silver wire.
Just a pair of my handmade earwires and there you go. It doesn't always need much.


Oldies but Goodies - Patterns

Do you have a favorite pattern? I remember a great pair of capri pants with wide blue and wide stripes back in the 80s. I loved that one so much! Or the finely striped jeans in grey and black, one pair in the 80s, the other one in the 90s, I miss both of them!
Or that plaid skirt - not missing that one so much. I never was into flowers for myself that much either, but that early 80s wide dress in a light plaid was very pretty. I never wore "punk plaid", though, or the then fashionable "carrot pants" in a tartan pattern.

Of course there is much more out there than only flowers, stripes or plaid, though, they were just the first ones that came to my mind. You want proof? Just check out this collage from the latest Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge where we did patterns this time. As always I'd like to encourage you to visit the original thread as well because one collage simply isn't enough to show it all!

1 Togan
2 The Crafty Chimp
3 Jewelry Art by Dawn
4 Cat's Wire
5 MC Stoneworks
6 RioRita
7 Bijou Bead Boutique