Zig-zag bracelet - chainmail  

Thursday, February 28, 2008

I had some leftover rings from the Aurelia set, so as they were perfect AR for a japanese pattern, I made this bracelet. I call it zig-zag, as the outer rings around on both sides, lol.
Pretty easy to make actually, just make a strip of 2-2 and then add the outer large rings attached with the small ones. One of the easiest stuff I've done so far, next to the shaggy loops maybe. However it was quite fiddly and time consuming.
All sterling silver.

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page at Flickr  

I'm setting up a page with my jewelry at Flickr, please feel free to visit me at http://www.flickr.com/photos/marikajewelry/

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Chainmail bracelet featured at Yahoo chainmail group  

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

One of my chainmail bracelets was added today as the homepage picture at the Chainmail Ring Yahoo group. I'm a bit overwhelmed as there are real chainmail gurus lurking in there and I'm such a chainmail newbie...But it does feel good,so yes, I'm boasting about it :)

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Aurelia necklace and bracelet  

Sunday, February 24, 2008

This is what I've been working the whole weekend. Yesterday I was busy cutting the rings with my jeweler's saw, and today I made the necklace and bracelet in sterling silver and larvikite beads, based on the aura weave.
Once I figured out the weave, it was very easy. It's just like a part of byzantine with the rings flipping back. I used 1mm wire 6 and 3 mm ID.

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Cloisonne silver pendant  

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

I bought recently this gorgeous cloissonne heart from Etsy and I was dying to do something with it.So I've wrapped it lightly in sterling silver and added two little Bali style cloissone beads hanging from it.
The colors are really strong and vibrating, I really love this one. Simple but beautiful.
If interested, you can find it in my shop.

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My Dawanda vs my Esy shop - jewelry vs supplies and books  

Sunday, February 17, 2008

I've been playing with the idea for a while now, and I think I will implement it afteral. I've noticed that on my Etsy shop mostly my beading and jewelry supplies are bought, while on Dawanda, the jewelry flies off 'the shelves' so to speak. So I will split my shops into a jewelry supplies on Etsy and handmade finished pieces on Dawanda.

I received a lot of brand new (not only new as in not used, but also new as in brand new on the market) Russian beading books. I will start listing them on Etsy. For all the beaders out there, you know how sought after are the Russian books :) Well, now is your chance to grab some. I am combining shipping on multiple books.
I have created a new section in my Etsy shop, Craft books, keep checking it, as I am adding books quite often until I sold off all the batch I received in February directly from Russia. I might then order more if I see that they are really wanted :)

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Two new silver pendants  

Here is the pendant matching the set below. Took me quite a while to finish all the set, filing away all the burs and sharp edges, then oxidizing all the pieces, taking off the excess with the very fine steel wool and finally tumble polising them all for over 2 hours. But I'm quite pleased as how it all came together.
Here is also the whole set in one pic. Not so easy to photograph, specially when it's all about sterling silver...

Also another pendant I started last night and finished working on it today. I call it Spring Leaf. All sterling silver and 4mm Swarovski crystals.
I wanted to make something in honour of winter (finally) leaving us behind and to welcome spring. Thus the colour progression on the leaf of the swaros. The shape came nicely together as well.

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A few more jewelry things  

Saturday, February 16, 2008

I've been busy yesterday and today. Love it when my creative 'juices' are flowing. Sadly only during the weekend when I'm rested and I have the whole day ahead of me...
Pendant uses a lampwork bead made by an Etsy artist, and it is wrapped in sterling silver. Really small one, hubby liked it (he prefers the smaller ones usually).

Second is a herringbone weave set I made today in sterling silver. I wanted too much to oxidize it but I was afraid. Nevertheless I said if it won't come out nicely, then I won't sell it and just keep it for myself. But I think the result is quite nice. LOS'ed it, then polished the heck out of it with the steel wool, and then put it (actually them) in the tumbler. I've also made a pendant but I still have to take a picture of it. Will do it tomorrow.

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Vita pendant  

Thursday, February 14, 2008

I was in a rut the whole week, doing nothing in terms of jewelry, so tonight while I was browsing a Show & Tell jewelry forum, I saw a pendant which brought back my creative spark. Thus the Vita pendant was born, based on the name of the person who made that particular pendant.
Sterling silver and a funky yellow-green agate barrel.
Available on my Dawanda shop.

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Featured at Beading Gem  

I woke up this morning at a message on Metalchasers from Beading Gem that she has featured one of my 'how to' articles. This is my second feature on her famous blog, I have already been featured before with one of my chainmail earrings.

Thank you so much Pearl, I love reading your blog, your writing style flows so nicely and your featured artists and jewelry are just superb!

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Bad experience with so-called "Stainless" steel shot  

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Ok so right now I'm pissed off!
I bought a few weeks ago stainless steel shot from a UK company to go with my tumbler and after tumble polishing my silver jewelry, I did as mentioned on the website, i.e. washed the shot with water to get rid of the dishwashing liquid, and then spread it out on paper towels to dry nicely. To my horror the next morning most of the shot pieces were rusted!! I didn't know what to do, maybe I did something wrong, however the always knowledgeable folks and friends over at the Starving Artists forum told me that I did nothing wrong, but the 'stainless' is actually not stainless, but I got myself the cheaper sort, 'carbon', which rusts very easily. This one needs some special packaging and taking care of to not rust, while the stainless steel should NOT rust at all.

I've been just contacted by the company in question after sending my second email to them, and I've been told that they will send me a second pack stainless free. Apparently they were not aware either that the supplier in India included also carbon steel with the stainless steel shot, which they have rectified now. I will keep you updated on the progress on this one!

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I just love making jewelry!  

Last night I was thinking what outfit to wear at work, and decided on a brown blouse that my parents bought me in Hungary while I was with them on holidays two weeks ago. But then I realised that I don't really have any earrings in brown, as the two pairs I had before, I left them with relatives as presents. So I thought to myself, hey I am making jewelry, so why can't I make a simple pair for myself to wear tomorrow? It doesn't need to be anything special or funky or expensive, just something for everyday that goes well with your regular brown outfit. And this simple pair of earrings was born :)
While musing on these things a warm feeling spread over me when I was thinking that other people have to buy jewelry for different outfits and occasions, but I can actually make them whenever I want, from the simplest to the most sophisticated ones!

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Cute little silver chainmail earrings  

Sunday, February 10, 2008

I have some rings from my previous cut, which are not enough to make a bracelet, so I used the two size rings to make two pairs of earrings. One is a moebius flower attached to sterling silver earstuds, and the second pair is a 2 in 2 chain with some interesting ear wires that I made yesterday. I have added them to my Dawanda shop very reasonably priced for chainmail.

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Learning to border wrap a pendant  

I am learning wire sculpture and in all the pieces at least the main stone needs to be wrapped secured around. I've played around already with Remy's style of setting, and now I decided to try the 'other' border wrap, where the wires have a nice slits in the middle, I like this style so much better. Plus it used much less square (of half-square) wire, of which I hardly have, as I have to order this type of wire from the internet. Expensive!
Stone is turquoise jasper, a very soft stone as I've sadly noticed today. Wire is all sterling silver. I've found that setting the stone this way is so much more secure and it gets shaped somehow easier too. I will do more like this and then attempt again the wire sculpture pendants.

If interested, you can find it in my shop. Looks like it's one of the most viewed, pinned and added as fan items in my shop :)

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My first chainmail necklace  

Thursday, February 7, 2008

I've worked on this sterling silver with rhodonite necklace during the weekend and only today I had a chance to take a picture with me modeling it. I like it quite a lot.
I've put the necklace last night in the tumbler and it shines now so nicely :)
Before putting it in the tumbler, I checked first about the hardness of rhodonite, as some stones (like turquoise, or pearls) do not fare well in the tumbler for a long time (say longer than 15 minutes, others nothing at all). But rhodonite has a hardness of 5.5 to 6, so I though 'all is well', as they say it's safe to tumble any stone with a hardness of at least 5.5. And safe it was, indeed :)
Here is a good place to check for the Moh's hardness of your semiprecious (or precious) stones if you're not sure you can tumble polish them or not.

And here is the matching pair of earrings. Handmade square earwires as well.

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Silver Shaggy Loops set - SOLD  

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Today I sold unexpectedly this bracelet and pair of earrings to a former colleague of mine. She came over this afternoon to return some books to me, and while I was showing her some jewelry I made recently, she chose these as a birthday gift for tomorrow for a friend of hers. I'm quite pleased as just yesterday I brought these through the tumbler, so now they were shining really beautifully, no wonder she liked them, as so did I.

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Saturday, February 2, 2008

My muse seems to be back - this time with a European 4 in 1. Completely handmade, except the gorgeous lampwork bead (which is also handmade but not by me). Amazing what one can do with a simple piece of wire. Coiled the wire, then cut the rings with my new Koil Kutter, then tumbled them, made the bracelet and gave it another tumble again. It shines now like nevermore!!
Just love my new toys!

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More hearts for Valentines Day  

Here are two more pieces I've added today to my Etsy and Dawanda shops.
The heart pendant is completely handmade of sterlings silver wire, beads and a cute little tiger eye bead. And now that I got my Lorton tumbler (it came while I was away on holidays, poor hubby had to pay additional 20 Euros in taxes to pick it up from the post office - it turned out to be quite an expensive piece of equipment, lol), I tumble polished the pendant. It really shines now like never before. I didn't realise until now how much really a tumbler makes in terms of bringing out the shine and sparkle in silver. Wow! I've also cut some silver rings and tumblepolished them as well along with some of my older chainmail pieces. Even hubby was totally buffled by how nice these all look now! But I digress...lol

Second piece is a purple-lavender necklace I made last night. The heart pendant is made by an Etsy artist, kittyd. I used cats eye and white onyx beads to complement the beautiful pendant. All metal is sterling silver. The necklace can be found here and here.

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