Sunday, March 21, 2010

The Beauty of Spring With!

Ooooh, spring is around the corner!  Can you feel it? has presented our most excellent creative blogging team with showcasing the Beauty of Spring with their fantastic array of products!  Spring is a beautiful season, full of rebirth, colour and sunlight, a wonderful and deserving muse for what we're about to produce!

So, it had me thinking - what is my favourite image of spring?  What's the one thing I look forward to when I know spring is about to arrive?  I walk to work almost every day, trying to stick to the scenic route (unless I'm running late, I've got a few shortcuts) along bikepaths and through parks.  Lately with the balmy weather, I've traded in the heavy winter jacket with a lighter cropped cordouroy jacket, perfect for warmer weather.  As I look about the park and through the bare trees, I see them - the small buds along the branches that will erupt into leafy greens and pink blossoms!  That perfect pale green shines much brighter on a sunny day, and it makes me so anxious for picnics and bikerides and long hours outside.  Green has always been a 'power colour' of mine, and I'm really excited to bring a 'green' collection!

The 'Green Awaits' collection focuses on these beautiful limited supply of Lemon Chrysophrase chips in a beautiful pale green.  Their jagged, unique shapes give a beautiful image of how each leaf on a tree is different from the next.   The premature buds, using Czech glass Bellflowers in Lemon Lime and fuschia glass rondelles add a little taste of what we'll expect to blossom and grow as we go deeper and deeper into the season and watch things grow!  Inspirations of vines, trees and blossoms are evokes with the sterling silver and resin Summer Oak pendant in lime green and the curving separator bars.  These pieces will be available for sale on my Etsy shop - well, maybe not everything quite yet.  I think I'll need to show these off first!

Green Awaits earrings

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Happy St. Patrick's Day, everybody!

Today, everybody's Irish, and a stranger's a friend you haven't met yet!  On this proud day, paraders march in cities proudly waving their green and orange, Guiness, Kilkenny and Harp are poured by the pint to happy pub patrons, and all of us feel a little lucky on this proud day we celebrate everything the Irish and Celtic traditions have to offer.

St. Patrick's Day was celebrated as far back as the 1600s, honouring the patron saint of Ireland.  Little is known of St. Patrick's history, although he is celebrated for his efforts in the teachings of Christianity, using the shamrock to explain the doctrine of the Holy Trinity.  Although more successful missions had passed after the days of St. Patrick, he is still held in esteem as the 'principal champion' of Irish Christianity.  The fantastic creatures we hear of - leprechauns, faeries, a pot o' gold at the end of the rainbow - are all derived from the Irish mythology and folklore of Tuatha De Danann.  There's a little history lesson for you!

So raise a glass of green beer to a man who helped define the culture of the Emerald Isle this evening at your favourite pub, and check out these fantastic finds on Etsy to keep a little 'luck o' the Irish!'

Green earrings, no. 2,

Claddagh Engraved Olive Wood Pen,

 Green Adventurine Wood Sprial necklace and earring set,

Four Leaf Clover Fingerless Glover,

Irish Celtic Knot Stained Glass,

Jade Chiffon shoe clips,

Kiss Me I'm Irish,

Lady Baltimore textured green travel bag,

Young Irish Dancer illustration,

Lucky Charms wristlet,

Rainbow Day bracelet,

Monday, March 8, 2010

What The Quirk!: Alphabet Soup Key Fob

Sometimes I make the oddest of things out of the weirdest stuff.  Take this little jumpin' bean for example - the green belt clip thingamajig is from this past Christmas' dinner cracker; you know, those paper things on the dinner plate you snap open by pulling at each end? They usually come with a coloured paper crown and a little toy of sorts.  I still had this thing laying around, along with some colourful rubber alphabet charms I had picked up at a dollar store, a pair of Treasure Troll earrings and a couple of chunky vintage lucite striped beads - suitably enough, matching colours to the alphabet charms especially.  Put 'em in the middle and you shake 'em all about ...

... and that's what it's all about!  One side has got the green clip and the other has a metal clip for more security.  The Treasure Troll is your new portable luck charm - it's on a lobster clasp to put where you please! 

Who could you see loving this?  It'll be posted in my Etsy shop very soon!

Photography credit: Cassandra Watsham

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Guitar Rings!

I love statement and cocktail rings.  I've been wearing more and more of them now, and was struck with a really interesting idea.  Armed with some antiqued brass adjustable ring settings I bought from and some felt appliques, I've got a pretty good idea going here.  Take a look!

Gibson Guitar ring, no. 1

Gibson Guitar ring, no. 2

Gibson Guitar ring, no. 3

Gibson Guitar ring, no. 4

I have a few different guitar catalogues from work and a bunch of different images that can be captured underneath these glass bubbles.  I'll have these up in my Etsy shop in time for International Guitar Month - April!

Photography credit: Cassandra Watsham

Cardboard Ninja!

There are a couple of kids on our apartment floor that like to act out role playing games: mobsters, soldiers, cowboys and aliens, cops and robbers, all that kind of kid nonsense.  I've had a few cellophane rolls lying around ready to be thrown out, but had decided on something else - ninja swords!

Simple enough to make: I had a sheet of stiff cardboard I had cut two circles, cut an X in the middle and pushed the cardboard tube through.  With the triangles from the X cuts flapped downward, I taped the pieces securely with coloured electrical tape - blue and black - and added a couple of toy ninjas to the handles for an awesome addition.

Of course, I couldn't hand these over to the kids without testing them out myself.

Well, they had passed my test!  Let's see what the kids think.

Seems they like 'em!  

My father has been complaining to me that kids nowadays have no imagination.  I beg to differ every Sunday afternoon when I hear these kids playing in the hallways.  I'm sure they're looking forward to warmer weather just as much as I am!

Everyday Diamonds Inspires Design by Cassandra!

I'd like you all to meet Jessica and her sister, Robin.  They have a little Etsy shop they like to call Everyday Diamonds, and revel in all their creative bliss on their blog, A Handmade Revolution.  I've had the pleasure and honour to get to know Jessica and be able to bounce ideas around with her about our respective shops and creative processes.  I'd have to say that if it wasn't for Twitter, I wouldn't be able to have met Jessica and many other talented Etsians whom I've been able to receive such valuable criticism, praise and inspiration from such a great community.

I've fallen in love with Jessica's fabric flowers, with their delicate layers, bold colours and beautiful patterns.  I had asked if she could make a small set of flower hair clips for a particular necklace, but found myself newly inspired when I had first received them.  I really wanted to take my time with this inspiration, to make sure I find the components that were 'just right'.  After a few Etsy bead purchases and a recycled necklace, I've come up with three pieces, and I can't decide which piece is most deserving to be listed with!

Maybe you folks can help me out?  Leave a comment below, let me know what you think would pair the best!

Necklace no. 1

600 Followers! Time For A Giveaway Contest! (CLOSED)

I've got the best followers in all of Twitterverse!  I say this calls for a giveaway!

Because you all are so special to me, I have a very special prize - the very first Bangle necklace I had made, and my very favourite - the Oiseau Bangle necklace! 

You may remember some fun designs I've made from repurposing these traditional Indian women's bangles into earrings and necklaces, and I have still some more ideas spinning around.  This was the first, using two metal cream-coloured bangles with turquoise glass and soldite chips.  I had also included a sparrow charm to dangle from the bangles, and a vintage charm from a Paris souvenier bracelet.  Part of my private collection for quite some time, I'm now offering a chance to win this gorgeous statement necklace!

Here's what you can do to enter:
And that's all you need to do!  The winner will be drawn on March 25!  Good luck to everyone! 

Update: Congrats to Cathy H, the winner!

Photography credit: Cassandra Watsham 

Friday, March 5, 2010

Late Night Friday Covets, Issue #9: Treasury Hunt

Welcome to another Late Night Friday Covets list, found in the little corners of Etsy!

I've been strolling the many Treasuries available on Etsy and found myself coveting these classy items. Not something to be taken for granted, you can find some new favourites, themes and colour inspirations for your own creations browsing these curated collections.  Take a look at a few favourite pieces I dig myself!

The Confabulation Of My Girlhood,

Roots leather journal,

Lemon Mist earrings (African yellow opal),

Because I Can Wooden Sign,

Green Patchwork Mosaic UnMusic Box,

Little Verdigris Butterfly earrings,

Knots tied with string,

Create Happiness pack of 6 pencils,

Obsidian Pendular,

Maple Leaf felt tree with birds of colour,

Recycled Vintage Tin Mini Dress earrings,

The Fern Collector bronze necklace,

Browse the Etsy Treasuries to find your new favourites - and don't forget to stop by to add to your list!
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