Friday, August 31, 2012

Chum n' Luba's - exciting news!

Remember that exciting news I wanted to tell you about?  There has been a lot of chatter in town over the new store that opened up in Chase.  It is called CHUM N' LUBA'S Unique Boutique and sells mostly vintage women's clothing and accessories but is adding a new line of clothing as well.  Most everything in there is so fabulous and unique it is such a fun place to shop!  Darlene, the owner, has everything organized and arranged in such a wonderful way -- I love her front counter with the antique furnishings right down to the old cash register!

She also has such fun window displays and I like checking them out to see what is new on my daily morning walks.  This is one of the mannequins in the front window and you might recognize the necklace on it?  It is one of our double-sided bead necklaces in the jewel tone colors that goes beautifully with this vintage satin blouse.

And that is the exciting news.  A selection of our handcrafted jewelry is now for sale in this fun new store!  It  is really great to have a local venue to sell our work on a regular basis and it couldn't be a better place than this!

This is Darlene, the owner, wearing another one of our pieces.  The cable pendant necklace made with the CaBezel moulds.  She looks so beautiful wearing it, don't you think?

I asked Darlene what the name Chum n' Luba's meant.  She told me how Chum and Luba were the names of her husband's parents and a little about their history.  This store is in their memory which I found to be so special.

Now back to mixing up some more clay colors -- I will have some new Pantone Fall 2012 color recipes for you soon.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Ribbon Style Scarf Pendant

This is the third scarf pendant prototype.  It is sort of a ribbon-like design as it folds and crosses over.  The nice thing about this style as it can take a little heavier or chunkier scarf as it is easier to fit through the opening.  It also hangs nicely when it is worn either in the front or on the side of the neck.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Another Scarf Pendant Prototype

This is another prototype for a scarf pendant in a different design.  Instead of the clay piece "folded over" like the one I showed yesterday, this one is "rolled up".  Since I was still in the experimenting stage, I just used scrap "mud-colored" clay again and then just highlighted it with copper and gold mica powders.  This design seems to work rather well with the chunky knit scarves and one of the stores that sells our beads, buttons and shawl pins really liked this design and commissioned us to make some more in a variety of colors.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Working Out The Details

I've been in the middle of working on several projects and mixing up some Pantone fall 2012 colors in between having family visit from out of town.  So far not much of the clay work is getting finished but I should have some new color recipes ready for you soon.

In the meantime, I thought I would share one of the projects I have been working on.  I've had requests from several wholesale customers to create some sort of pin or pendant that would fit the type of scarves they make which are quite a bit bulkier than an average one.  When creating this new design I have to not only consider the thickness of the scarf but the size and shape of the pin so it will look balanced and hang properly.  It is like working on a puzzle and you feel really great when the pieces start to fall into place.

This is one prototype I created using scrap clay and mica powders.  The texture plate is Helen Breil's which is one of my absolute favorites.

Friday, August 24, 2012

New Jewelry Pieces

I have some exciting news to share but I need another photo or two to add before I post it.  In the meantime I thought I would share some new pieces we recently created.

Scarf Jewelry in Crimson and Black

Another Bohemian Style Necklace in Olive and Gold

I used a piece of mokume gane for the focal centre.  The beads, dangles and matching earrings were created in the same color combo using my "mini-mokume" technique I share in my Clay Color System Tutorial.  The color combination I used is the Ecru mix (#2-8), Olive (#7-8), Golden Glow (#6-6) and plain metallic gold.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Balancing work with pleasure

Someone commented earlier that they hoped we have been able to combine all our hard work with some pleasure and at least enjoy the  summer.  I guess I try to keep this blog more about our clay and what we are up to.  That sometimes can come across like we have no time for enjoyment so I thought I would share with you how we have been enjoying this very warm summer so far.

One thing about the area in which we live.  We have traveled extensively and this is the piece of paradise we chose to settle in and we don't have to go very far to enjoy its' pleasures.  Most of these are just a short walk away!

A walk to the local water fall ...

A walk out of town ...
(No we are not in Australia and yes that is an ostrich!)

A walk into town almost every morning...

A walk to the park ... to celebrate Canada Day!

Or for a swim to cool off ....

or kayak ...

And sometimes we don't even have to leave
our home or studio as these
mountain sheep come to visit us ...

And when we go to the other side of the lake ...
we enjoy these weekly classic rock concerts
in the evening by Sly Valley ...

But most of all, we enjoy our
beautiful garden at home ...

Sunday, August 19, 2012

New Shops Selling our Work

We are pleased to say that Linda's Quilt Shoppe in Kelowna, B.C. is now selling a selection of our most popular buttons and accessories.  We were really impressed with her large store and the wide selection of colorful fabrics.  The many quilted pieces hanging on the walls and even from the ceilings were fabulous!

They also have a huge classroom for quilting classes and weekend retreats.  Their classes look like a lot of fun and include everything from a "Kid's Sewing Camp" to "Quilt Therapy" and "Quilt til you wilt".

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Kelowna Yarn & Needlecrafts are now selling our shawl pins as well as our buttons.  The owners, Ann and Stephen, are a warm and friendly couple and Ann is well known for her knitting classes.  If you like to knit, crochet or felt, you can check out the unique patterns they have available on their website.

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The Dragonfly Quilt Studio is rather small but is well organized with a beautiful selection of fabrics and quilting accessories.  Our new scarf jewelry is now for sale in this beautiful shop.  I made this dragonfly design special for April, the owner.

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The 4th location we added to our list of stores that are now selling our work is the Oyama Lake Alpaca Farm in Lake Country which is just east of Kelowna.

Darlene is a fabulous fibre artist who dyes, spins, weaves, knits and felts with the yarn from the alpacas that are raised by her and her husband on their farm.  She sells a large variety of her work in their beautiful Gift Gallery.

We spent some fun time coordinating our shawl pins and scarf jewelry with her beautiful fibre pieces.   Here I am modelling one of our stick shawl pins on a beautiful felted alpaca stole she created. 

I am currently working on some new special pin designs just to go with her beautiful creations.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Spreading Out

I realize I haven't blogged in over a week but the whole summer has been extra busy for us.  We made several trips to the Central Okanagan area to visit the quilt and yarn stores.

We are happy to say that our buttons, shawl pins and other accessories are now available at these great stores:

We really enjoyed meeting the owners of each shop and will share a bit about them in future posts.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Necklace in Tangerine Tango and Pantone 2012 Fall Colors

Here is one of our latest floral bead necklaces in the Tangerine Tango.  I used one of my "sculpted flower beads" as the main focal combined with large round beads made with my floral petal cane slices and rondelle spacer beads in the matching Tangerine color.

I am finally getting around to listing some new jewelry pieces like this one in our Artfire studio and will be adding more pieces when I have some spare time in between working on orders.

I finally pulled out my Pantone swatches and the Pantone Fall fashion report so I can mix up some new clay colors for the coming season.  Tangerine Tango is Pantone's "color of the year" so is of course included in this fall's color palette.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Double-sided Textured Beads With Bling

Making the double-sided textured beads can be a lot of fun and I love making them in all the different jewel-tone colors.  I was experimenting with adding Swarovski crystals to my beads like in the "Fiesta Spiral" design shown here.

I made them a little larger than my regular beads to create more of a focal pendant just by adding extra clay to my mould .  I use the genuine Swarovski crystals that are flat back and the "hot fix" type.  The hot fix crystals have a glue on them that is activated when heated and gives a little extra hold.

When adding the crystals I embedded both sides at the same time so as not to interfere with the texture.

These beads are now for sale in our ArtFire Studio as well as our Etsy shop.

Friday, August 3, 2012

New Scarf Jewelry

We've managed to take a few days out this week to visit several quilt and yarn shops in the Kelowna area (central Okanagan part of BC) and are back in time to prepare for my clay bead demo at the Fireweed Art Studio in Scotch Creek tonight.

I thought I would finally show you one of our latest designs we've created.  This is our scarf jewelry where you can turn your scarf into a necklace.

The flowers were created using my Sculpted flowers technique and then added to a large metal bail.  Our handcrafted matching flower buds and leaves dangle from chain strands with Swarovski or Czech crystals.

These pieces were a popular item at the Shuswap Lake Festival of the Arts show and right now they are available at Bead Connections in Aberdeem Mall and Electrictree Yarns in downtown Kamloops.  We also have several more styles and colors at the Fireweed Art Studio in Scotch Creek.