Friday, June 26, 2009

Ta-Da!! Wedding jewelry with a garden theme!

bridal jewelry lilac stone wedding set at custom orders welcome
I'm so excited to finish this beautiful Bridal set with a Thai Silver dragonfly, Lilac Stone, Amethyst, Czech glass, florite, and fine silver. It funny to think about how a set comes together on the worktable, and where all the materials come from. Almost like a symphony, every element works together to create a finished piece. They're a fusion of different materials, techniques, and color combinations. Plain, pale lilac stone takes on a new look when paired with amethyst and grape-colored czech glass .

custom wedding jewelry bridal set with lilac stone and Thai silver dragonfly and amethyst at custom orders welcome
In this set, the lilac stone pendant came from an etsy seller in North Carolina, and the 8mm lilac stone beads came from Glen Allen, California. The 10mm lilac stone beads came from Oakland, California, and the Dragonfly cam from Thailand via my favorite bead store here in Jacksonville! The czech glass flowers on the pendant are from a cute little bead store I found in Tallahassee, Florida, last summer when we went to my husband's family reunion. The fine silver wire came from an Etsy seller Texas, was torched by a great find at Lowe's, and hammered by an antique hammer passed down from my husband's grandfather, who is also my son's namesake, Emanuel. The Precious Metal Clay used for the leaf tag, inscribed with her wedding date and hanging on the pendant, is only made in Japan. My rawhide mallet, used in the hand-forged ear wires, belonged to my grandfather, who was a jeweler.
custom wedding jewelry and earrings all custom orders welcome
And the set goes to a lovely lady in Tennessee, getting married outside in a Japanese garden. She'll be wearing a hemp silk dress, and silver flip-flops. She's a beautiful lady who teaches music lessons, and was so great to work with I'd like to consider her as my friend. On July 5th, we'll toast her wedding day from Jacksonville, and pray for a long life of love and laughter for her and her husband.

Sometimes it's fun to stop for a minute and think about the design process from concept to design to finish. So much goes into the creation of a One-of-a-kind set that it's hard to take credit for any of it. I'm pleased to have had one page in the story.

Monday, June 15, 2009

My Magnum date

wedding jewelry tulle with pearls and rhinestones at custom orderIt's finished! I finished my first wedding set and the mailman whisked it away over the weekend. I never would have put these materials together myself, but I must say they turned out very nice.

They're constructed on a base of lightest grey tulle, with a hint of a metallic sheen. The wedding colors are grey and canary, and the bride wanted rhinestones, and a vintage look. Each necklace has a set of vintage earrings as anchors to each side of the front swag, and on the fronts of each are strung rows of glass and freshwater pearls, mother of pearl beads, crystal, rhinestone, Swarovski wheel rondelles, silver spacers, and sparkly glass beads. The junior bridesmaid's necklace, the lowest on the right, has a central vintage brooch instead of the earring anchors. The people at my local antique mall (2 miles from my house!) were extremely accommodating to me as I combed all of the displays for materials that would work for my project. I get so many ideas when I look at vintage jewelry that I just have to write them down! You can also find wonderful materials to recycle, especially beads and pearls to re-string. I found a Mother of pearl necklace, hand knotted, with beads shaped like twedding jewelry tulle with rhinestones and pearls and earrings to match custom orders always welcomehe Eclipse mints you get in the grocery store. They're barrel shaped rounded end cylinders, and they're not made any more. They wanted only $45 for about a 22" double strand necklace! I might have to go back and get that one!

The earrings were also a challenge, but I ran across the hardware online after I saw another pair like it in an antique mall, and it clicked. I'll have to do more of those. Even my 17 year old daughter likes them! They are constructed on perforated steel disks that snap into pads that are premade with posts. You can also get them with clips. Basically you wire your beads onto the disks, then attach the disks to the backs. A seamless, flawless finish makes these earrings a super finish for these necklaces, and complements the vintage look perfectly. I'm so happy I found them. The hardware is inexpensive, and though the earrings are time consuming to assemble, the look is well worth it.

Also worth it was the bride for whom I completed the project. She was incredibly easy to work with, and it was a joy bringing these necklace sets to life. Blessings and wishes for a happy wedding day, and a long life of love together!!

wedding jewelry custom made bridesmaid necklace and earrings laurastaley.etsy.comcustom wedding jewelry tulle and rhinestones and vintage elements with earringscustom wedding jewelry for bridesmaids and brides

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Monday, June 8, 2009

Busy Busy Busy!!

red picture jasper and lava rocks at I must say, I've been pretty slack about posting on my blog. I've been haunting Etsy's Custom request forum for a while, bidding on and picking up custom work, and I've had little time for anything else! I did pick up some beautiful beads just for fun, recently, and here's the new creation I just listed. This is Red picture Jasper, bottom drilled briolettes drilled so that they overlap the adjacent stones. I found some lava rock lentils that have the same overlapping quality, and they're devastatingly beautiful. Take a look! I have another batch in a different color that came at the same time as these, so I'm working on putting something together with those.

On my beading table this week:

I found some AWESOME magnesite chips (well, they're bigger than chips, more like heishi-type nuggets, with soft edges; they look like toasted marshmellows all squished together on a skewer) at my favorite bead store, River City Beads here in Jacksonville, FL. I've been taking classes there to learn new skills and brush up on old ones, and while I'm there I get whiplash from looking at all of the lovely things hanging there for me to buy! This time was no exception. I also picked up a Hot Pot for firing PMC, solder pickle, thongs, and a bunch of pairs of beads to make some cute earrings. These magnesite yummies will be paired with copper, a large carnelian donut, maybe some fire agate, and I'm going to try some spiny oyster heishi...the colors are out of this WORLD! I might make one long one, about 24-30" and one shorter one, about 18". We'll see what happens.

I have some gorgeous blue faceted agate from and I'm going to pair it with some golden tumbled agate nuggets. Maybe I'll throw in some gold spacers, and maybe a large glass pearl, maybe not. I also bought some leopardskin jasper hexagon brios from her that will be absolutely gorgeous with black onyx and maybe some coral or carnelian.

I have abouty 4 pieces already gathered and waiting to be strung -- a fossilized cocustom beaded pearl and crystal wedding jewelry, bridesmaid/matron of honor necklace on tulleral pendant with attending carnelian, and smaller coral beads; Paintbrush Jasper with beauty the likes that I've NEVER seen, paired with Raspberry Rhodelite Garnet Faceted Rondelles; some chinese unakite donuts and red picture jasper that I'll pair with some other stones I haven't found yet, and I think I'll take some cute little millifiori and make a simple but sweet wire-segmented necklace, the kind my daughter loves.

But those are just my playdates with beads...I have four other custom orders on my table that have to be done before I can start to play. TWO Precious Metal Clay projects, and TWO wedding ensembles that have to be shipped out by the end of the week. The photo to the right is a dreamy pearl and crystal and vintage element trio, the first of six bridesmaids' sets for this week, and the other will be a lilac stone pendant combo with a Thai silver dragonfly as an accent/focal. Can't wait to post that one! I have another that is due in September. I absolutely LOVE to do custom work!!
So stay tuned. More to come! "I've been making custom or-ders, ALL the live-long day!...I've been making perty jewl-ry, just to pass the time a-way....Can't you hear the mailman comin', box 'em up and get 'em out the door! ....Can't you hear the people shoutin', please come make some more!! (to the tune of "I've been working on the railroad")
LOVE IT, Love it, LOVE IT!!