Enjoy 20% off on any purchases made today through cyber Monday!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Remember to take some time to give thanks to the Lord for all He has done, is doing and will do in our lives. Hope you all have a wonderful day.
Don’t forget, the whole etsy store will be on SALE tomorrow… and Saturday… and Sunday… and Monday!! Get your Christmas shopping done in one place!
If you are like me, you are a perfectionist on a budget. A limited, tight budget. You want the best, because lets face it -you have great taste- but you are starting out and money is tight. My competitors (I hate that word), or should I say, my colleges have been at this thing called selling at craft shows for a long time. Their booths are spectacular! They look like mini jewelry stores! Most of those beautiful booths are custom designed and very expensive, trust me, I googled it.
I wanted a fighting chance at getting in these awesome craft shows so I needed to step up my game whether my wallet liked it or not. I ended up spending a huge chunk of a months earnings at my husband’s second home: The Home Depot. My husband has a ton of hobbies which require building and constructing amazing stuff and didn’t hesitate when I asked him for help. Since he basically didn’t have a choice, he built me an amazing set up out of very inexpensive materials like pvc, wood, linoleum, and fish tank cases. Seriously.
I don’t know exactly how he did it but I took pictures.
First he created my weights. These he made for my very first show in 2013 at a church parking lot. These are pvc tubes painted pink with white flowers and butterflies, and filled 3/4 of the way with cement. He left some space so that I could decorate it with flowers. They screw in to the tent legs very easily.
I purchased 5, 15-gallon fish tank cases at our local aquarium store, which saved me $835 (happy dance) and designed the tables around them.
My husband built tall display tables using pvc, wood, and linoleum flooring. The long table is “L” shaped and comes apart for easy loading.
We added the black table cloth with heavy duty velcro and done! A new, taller, professional looking display for 1/16th the price.
Let me know what you think!
This is one of my most intricate pieces to date. I made it in January 2014 (#latepost) but for some reason I never uploaded it to my blog!
I call this statement piece Eternal Midnight. It is made of natural black onyx cabochons and fossilized orthoceras, set on sterling silver. Every link of the chain, every bezel, every texture, and design is made by yours truly. It took me a few days to make (which felt like forever to me) and I have to say that I love the end result. Once it was done, I took it to my trusted photographer Rodolfo of Pixeltoaster Studios and he took this magnificent shot of my necklace. He makes all my jewelry look amazing!
Anyways, here it is and I hope you like it!
Big kiss, little hug, small kiss, big hug,
Welcome back! This is a video I shot with my iPhone as I created a custom ring for a client. It shows me working the metal and creating the piece from scratch. I thought it would be nice to show you guys the fabrication process in action and the final product.
Feel free to like, share, comment or repost!
Sterling silver necklace made entirely by hand. The leaves have been individually hand-cut from silver sheet I rolled. The five bezels are shaped and soldered true to the stones size, each jump ring is individually made from 18 gauge wire I drew, and the chain consists of different links made from 16 gauge sterling silver wire I cut, bent, shaped and hammered. Very proud of this piece.
Always With Love,
Join me next weekend at Carnaval on the Mile! Visit me at booth #108 to find your Always With Love favorites and for the unveiling of my new designs! This is a juried show (my first) and I’m very excited I was picked to participate.
Carnaval on the Mile is located on Miracle Mile in Coral Gables, Florida and the mile is closed (for cars) on March 1 and 2 and made into a mile long art festival.
Saturday March 1st from 11am to Midnight
Sunday March 2 from 10am to 9pm
See you there!
Custom requests are when I have the most fun. In this particular case, it was extra fun because I was making my husband’s anniversary gift!
He already owned a Hei Matau pendant made out of bone and wanted it in silver. Since bone is very fragile, I couldn’t make a mold “the regular way”. Normally I would use silicone rubber and make a mold using a vulcanizer. However, in this case, the vulcanizer’s heat would have pulverized the bone and ruined the mold. For this reason I had to use a special two-part resin mold that cures at room temperature.
Here is how I did it:
1. I applied Super Glue to the bottom of the bone pendant (hei matau) and attached it on a brass sprue.
2. Took two aluminum plates and covered the frame. Placed two small clasps on each side to hold the frames tightly.
3. Mixed the resin and the catalyst according to the manufacturer’s instructions. After mixing I placed the compound in the vacuum and removed as many bubbles as I could. Even after vacuuming, the sucker had TONS of bubbles I couldn’t remove!
4. Poured mixture in the frame until it covered the piece. You can see the bubbles I couldn’t get rid of! Urgh!! I set it aside and waited 16 hours for the mold to cure at room temperature.
5. Removed mold from the aluminum frame and cut it open with an exxacto knife. Took the pendant out and examined the mold. You can see all the bubbles that didn’t come out at the top of the mold. Here’s when I started freaking out. By some miracle from above, none of the bubbles touched my mold! wohoo! Thank you Jesus!
6. Injected the mold with wax 5 times. Hubby gave me the green light to produce more than just his gift. So 4 of these babies will be up for sale soon! Woot!
7. Then I made a wax tree out of the wax models that I was casting in silver. Notice the green anchor? That’s another custom order!
8. Filled the flask with investment, placed it in the steam dewaxer for 1 hour. Once the timer was done I put it in the hot kiln and waited patiently for the 5hr burnout process to be completed.
9. After a loooong burnout process the wax melts and the investment hardens leaving and empty cavity in the shape of the wax models. This cavity is then ready to be filled with melted silver using a centrifugal casting machine. I put the flask in the spincaster and melt the silver. Then when the silver is liquid, I let the casting machine spin and the centrifugal force shoots the melted silver in the flask filling out the cavities. So awesome.
10. After submerging the scolding hot flask in water, the investment dissolves and the cast silver pieces come out with ease. They are black from oxidation and, to remove it, I put them in an environmentally safe pickling solution until they turn white. Cut out each piece with the jeweler’s saw and keep the scrap silver for future pieces. Nothing is wasted.
11. File, sand and polish the piece. Here I am polishing the pendant.
12. Clean in the piece in the ultrasonic and done! Phew! Casi que no! Happy anniversary!
always with love,