May 282008

Guess what?! It’s time for Ornament Thursday again!

I wasn’t so sure about this month’s topic….according to my mother, my first full sentence was “Get this &%*$(# bug off me!” but I decided to give it a go anyway. 🙂

Anklets are perfect for warmer weather, bare legs, capris, shorts or skirts. I’ve been making quite a few anklets lately, and this design using dragonfly beads from Michael’s is quick, easy and fun!

Dragon Fly Anklet

Dragon Fly Anklet

DragonFly Anklet

Gold and silver beads make this a “go with anything” ankle bracelet! Materials listed are for 9 1/2″ anklet. Be sure to measure to get a good fit.

Level: Easy

4mm gold-plated round beads (24)
6mm silver-plated round beads (12)
Sterling or pewter dragonfly beads (11)
5mm Bali daisy spacers (24)6mm Bali drum bead (1)
Crimp beads (2)
Tiny toggle clasp
Beading wire

Cut wire 10 1/2″ for 9 1/2″ anklet. Attach ring end of toggle to wire using one crimp bead.

String one gold-plated round bead, one daisy spacer, one silver-plated round bead, one daisy spacer, one gold-plated round bead, dragonfly bead. Repeat pattern 10 times.

After final dragonfly bead, string one gold-plated round bead, the drum bead, and the last gold-plated round bead. Attach bar end of toggle using crimp bead, and run wire back through 2-3 beads on the anklet. Tighten slightly, but not so much that the dragonfly beads don’t lie flat!

Clip excess wire.

Enjoy your DragonFly Anklet, and check out the other Ornament Thursday projects, all on the topic of “Insectica”!

Art Bead Scene Dragonflies are all the rage, art beads & brass combine in a 1920’s inspired necklace.
Humblebeads Flying to a fashionable ear near you, a free project from Humblebeads.
Katie’s Beading Blog Make a fun little winged thing from a handful of wire and beads.
Savvy Crafter- See some cute as a bug pins over on Candie’s blog….
Swelldesigner You’ll get butterflies when you see this summer-inspired necklace with butterfly pendant
The Insects are out Insects are crawling out and about at http design this month as Helen and Michelle get clay happy with some cool designs.
Hali Chambers

May 272008
A few weeks ago, my daughter and her boyfriend were in town for a visit. During some down time, Bree and I were making jewelry (what else?!) and she asked me to show her how to weave Euro 4 in 1. She caught on quickly, and made her own little patch using some annodized aluminum rings.
Next thing I know, she’s emailing me asking about the best sources for rings, and I sent her to Blue Buddha, The Ring Lord, and Precious Maille. She ended up picking up some from Blue Buddha, but because she’s her mother’s daughter (and stalking the mailman really doesn’t bring you your purchase any quicker ;-)), she went to Hobby Lobby and picked up one of their chain maille kits.
She made her first Japanese 12 in 2, and wore it to a graduation party. Her rings from BB arrived, and she used color in the weave with some pretty cool results! I’m really proud of what she did. Those JPN weaves are not easy – and I think she did a great job!
Another child converted. 😀 Her boyfriend says she’ll end up just like me, LOL. I guess there could be worse things. 😉
May 232008

Putting jewelry aside for the day.

For anyone who has been following the recent Dingo Drama…Rex has undergone surgery this morning and is going to be fine. 🙂 He had a minor blockage in his intestine, but Doc Kelly thinks he will bounce back quickly and be 100% soon.
I’m pretty relieved…this has been wearing on me for nearly two weeks (he started getting sick on Mother’s Day) and it’s good to know he’s going to be on the mend now.
Back to jewelry. 😉
May 192008

Ever want to challenge yourself? Commit to making something and then try doing it. Oh wait, forgot to add…make sure you have to use techniques you’ve never tried before. And give yourself an aggressive deadline while you’re at it.

Last Thursday, I received a call from the Eastern Nebraska Office on Aging (ENOA) asking if I would donate an item for a silent auction. The auction is held during the annual Share the Table fundraising event for Meals on Wheels…an organization I actively support by delivering meals to older and disabled folks. (I love Meals on Wheels deliveries…my friend Linda and I have had the same route for about 4 years, and we’ve gotten to know many of the clients over that time. It’s very rewarding!!!)

I started thinking about what I had on hand to donate, and came up with the brilliant idea of making a pendant using the ENOA logo. My idea was to fashion the logo out of silver wire, solder it to a copper backing and be done with it…easy peasy! ENOA wanted the donation to be dropped off by Monday – no problem!!

Not so much. The logo wasn’t as easy to fashion out of wire as I’d imagined. Back to the drawing board…all I had to do was make a copper and silver pendant with the ENOA logo, as I’d cleverly described.

I’d never pierced and sawed out any kind of design, nor had I riveted before, but I decided those were the best methods of making my pendant. Off to do some research….

I shrunk down a picture of the ENOA logo, and using techniques from Step By Step Jewelry Workshop, I pierced and sawed it out of a piece of 24g copper sheet. I then cut a piece of sterling silver sheet (28g) that would fit across the back of the copper, stamped my business name and the year on the back, and riveted the two pieces together. My good friend Nancy’s tutorial on riveting was, well, riveting and served as my guide for learning that technique.

After completing the riveting and some additional filing, I soldered a bail on the back…I’ve done plenty of soldering, but nothing quite like that…another new technique learned!

I was very pleased with the end result – there are a couple of boo-boos on the piece, but hopefully they are apparent only to my eye. 😉 I’m dropping it off at the ENOA office this afternoon, and I hope they like it as well.

Piercing and riveting was fun…I think I’ll try it again, but not with the pressure of a deadline!

May 052008

Been a couple of crazy busy weeks here!

At the end of April, my son was confirmed and we had a number of out-of-town guests. It was great to visit with all the relatives, and have everyone’s support for Jeremy’s big event.

Hematite and Pearl Mother's Bracelet

Hematite and Pearl Mother’s Bracelet

Last weekend, I participated in an art show in Lincoln, NE with the ARTitudes gang. Over the course of a few hours, we transformed an unused warehouse (formerly a hair salon!) into a fantastic looking art gallery. We had many compliments on the set up – and like magic, by 7:00 Sunday evening, the gallery disappeared and the warehouse returned. Each ARTitudes show benefits a local charity, this spring’s show donated 20% of all proceeds to Lighthouse in Lincoln. I had the opportunity to chat with Executive Director Bill Michener…what a fantastic guy, and a great program for youth in Lincoln.

In a few weeks, I’ll be heading out to Grand Forks, ND for the Grand Cities Art Festival…lots to get ready for that show as well!

I haven’t forgotten about Mother’s Day, however…some of the terrific projects you still have time to make for Mom before Sunday include Beading Help Web’s Mother’s Bracelet with Charm, a Multi-Strand Mother’s Bracelet, and of course, my Hematite and Pearl’s Mother’s Bracelet crafted with beads from Generation Gems. If you haven’t ordered your personalized beads from Generation Gems yet, why not give Mom a “gift certificate” on Mother’s Day for the bracelet and let her help design it!