Monday, 14 September 2015

MIA- PhD life

So I have been busy becoming a Dr and have neglected my blog. My supervisor actually suggested that I create as it helps to do something achievable. I have been learning micro-macrame with some help from youtube and Macrame School which has been a good fit with my studies as it is fairly quick and I can wear the products of my success and remind myself that I can teach myself anything if given enough time and space to do it. I also made a seed bead piece a few months ago for my friend using the same technique I developed for another bracelet I made for her a year or so ago.

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Draping in Freeform Designs

I know I have touched on the importance of fit in freeform before. Freeform is not unlike working with fabric, it needs to sit in a way that best highlights the work. When I get to certain point in my design. Generally as I am starting to think about length and fit, I use draping techniques to ensure it sits correctly. The good thing about starting with a minimal base of peyote or no base at all is that you can go and zip up or add to sections that take away from the drape. I often hold my work up in front of a mirror but if you are lucky enough to have a bust or sewing form this is a great way too. If I am making a piece for myself I use a small bust with pins but this is not substantial enough for every body type.

As can be seen by this beautiful Zac Posen design, the way something sits can make or break a piece. Take my own current work in progress. You can see by simply pulling it together or pulling it out the drape changes.

Sunday, 15 June 2014

The Importance of Being Original

I recalled an interview with Heidi Klum, discussing a necklace she loved and wondered if this was her own brand. During a google search, I came across this story: Heidi Klum Law Suit. Although most handmade jewellery artists are truly small fry, every business has the potential to take off, imagine if your design took off then you had to end it all. Design is a funny thing, not unlike academic writing, ideas are merely a conversion of a collection of inspirations and experiences. However, most designers have experienced the customer's request for a knock off. Some design concepts are so popular or generic that this doesn't matter. Although, most of us will take a style of popular jewellery and change it to suit our own signature. Isn't it more meaningful and special to own an original or one of a kind than something everyone else is wearing.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Long and Lean

Like clothes, different necklace lengths, shapes, and sizes suit different body types. However, there is one style that I think looks nice on small and large frames alike. Rope length which is 40 inches in the imperial system. This style lengthens a shorter body as it draws your eye up and down the body. It also draws the eye in and detracts from larger frames. The only body type that may struggle with this length is those ladies with a larger bust as they tend to catch on a breast. This can be solved though by cinching it in the middle. As a shorter woman I wear this style a lot and without fail get a lot of compliments. For the designer this style can be a fun way to use up beads and does not require a clasp.

Today I created two rope length necklaces both using saved up bead soups. All beads were too special not to use but there wasn't enough for a design featuring just a single style of bead. 

The first one is Pink Lemonade. A pretty array of pink toned beads, freshwater pearls, glass beads, shell beads and crystal. 

The second is Green Berry, a yummy pallete of purples, blues, blacks, and green. 

Both are available in my Etsy store. 

Sunday, 8 June 2014

My first Etsy item has been listed

Just a quick note to share an exciting milestone. I finally bit the bullet and listed an item on Etsy. I was going to wait until I built stock but that probably result in me never having the confidence to just do it. I might not sell anything but I made the first step.

These covered cabochons are up for sale

They are so sweet and so much fun to make. 
The listing can be found here:
The Cedar Beader on Etsy

Saturday, 31 May 2014

Moving forward


The BSBP (see my reveal post here) has provided me with a lot of confidence to move forward with my jewellery making. I received some wonderful encouragement from all the participants and the compliments on my wirework really spurred me on to experiment more with wire. I also received some good advice froma friend who told me that she loves my large art pieces by that there was nothing wrong with scaling things back and exploring the possibilities of popular and saleable items. I will always do one of a kind but I did a bit of a search of "popular" to see what would appeal to me. As an avid fan of Revenge I see that the infinity symbol trend is still going strong. I wanted to incorporate this into something but didn't want it to be really obvious. I decided to do a copper wire prototype and this is what I came up with. I really enjoy working with wire. It's complex enough to stop me from getting bored but simple enough to do in a day. I wore this yesterday and I feel I've come a long way since I first tried wire. It fits, there are no sharp edges, it sits well and I like it. I might make a similar one in silver but of course it will look different. I am in between working on a really large freeform design. If I can manage to stock up on a few designs of bracelets and necklaces I may take the next step of booking a stall at the school markets. I will see where my crazy life takes me. 

Saturday, 10 May 2014


The day has come to reveal my BSBP pieces. This is a first for me and I was very fortunate to be paired with Agata who has similar colour tastes to me. Although I chose seeds I wanted to challenge myself so I decided to use wire and chain. I still designed freeform pieces because I like to show a bit of me in every piece I do. I do think my pieces look fairly beginner and did somewhat deviate from my original plans but I love them none the less. 

My main piece is a freeform beaded pendant incorporating many of the beads that Agata sent. I had originally had a very spherical concept true to my inspiration (Davinci's Demons) designed but it was all too bulky and the star was much more suited to a flowing design. The wire wrapping was a huge challenge and I had to try to make the colours gel with the clasp. This is very true to Clarice Orsini's style in the show, she wears a layered necklace with lots of different elements so I have named it Clarice.

The next challenge I set myself was a wire bracelet. I kept adding and twisting and adding until I was happy with the end result. I love this and have worn it every day. This reminded me of a hair piece full of beautiful flowers, something that Vanessa Moschella, a free spirited character would wear. Hence this piece is called Vanessa.

Last but not least are the earrings I designed. My one issue with these earrings are the wires are a different colour. I want to be able to wear them as I love them but I cannot tolerate base metals in my ears so sterling it is. They are something that Lucrezia would wear. So they are to be named Lucrezia I hope I have done my beautiful soup from Agata justice as she has done with mine.

There is just one thing left to say and that is a HUGE thank you to my swap partner Agata and the wonderful Ms Lori who despite challenges was able to put together this wonderful party. Also to everyone who has supported me behind the scenes.

Please don't just stop by my blog, check out the host Blog: Pretty Things and all the wonderful links. Please don't forget to see what Agata did with her soup at Inaurem.