Tuesday 30 June 2009

Fantastic New Book

Yipee - at last my long awaited book by Barbara Becker Simon is here. I pre ordered this ages ago and am so delighted with it.

METAL CLAY BEADS is a really good book covering all types of beads and is a great read. Last few nights I have been reading in bed until I couldn't keep my eyes open. Great stuff. Just click on the picture of the book to go to Amazon's website to read all about it.

Graduated Spacers

GREAT NEWS - I now have the Graduated Spacers back in stock in my ebay shop ArtClayUK. This great set is designed by Pam East in the USA and they are an invaluable tool when using metal clay.

Art Clay Play Day

Last Saturday was the second special Art Clay workshop that I taught for Region 7 of the Guild of Enamellers. There were 9 people on this one and it was just mad from start to finish. I normally only teach between 1 to 5 people at once (see my website ) but as this was a Guild fun workshop we fitted more in. They made soooo much stuff I had a job to keep up with what everyone was up to! The photo above (sorry not very good) is just a selection of it as we were firing right up to the end and quite a bit went home fresh out of the kiln (cooled down first of course!) or had a quick brushing to be finished later. I think they made 3 or 4 times this amount with people using between 10g to 100g of clay!!! Well done all of you though - you produced some great things.

This weekend I am at the Smallholders Show at Ardingly on Saturday and Sunday. If you are in the area do come and say hello. This is my third year at this show and it is a great day out. From ducks and tortoises to dog shows, crafts and lovely food, you can get it all at this show! As well as selling my handmade jewellery I shall also be demonstrating on both days, showing how to use Art Clay Silver. Last year was a real hoot as my stand was in a howling gale!! It is surprising how difficult it is to find clear plastic texture sheets when they blow away onto a sandy floor and I had to get quite inventive making a little hearth to torch fire in hoping my torch would not blow out!! Made it all the more fun really though :)

Friday 19 June 2009

Back to Nature

Here are a couple of Art Clay Silver pendants from the batch I have just had hallmarked. They both have a hidden bail on the back of them and are quite small measuring just 3cm across. I was debating whether to enamel them or not. As I have a craft fair tomorrow I decided to patinate them for now but if I do not sell them then I might enamel them before my next fair in two weeks time.

I enamelled some bees once before but they were so tiny they are a real pain to do. I made them as a pair of earrings but someone loved them so much but she just wanted one as a pendant so I split them up and sold them both that way. Here is the photo.

Thursday 18 June 2009

Ear Ear!

Last weekend I taught an Art Clay workshop for our local Region 7 Of the the Guild of Enamellers for 10 people. It was quite a day and we all had good fun. Of course I forgot to take my camera. Hopefully I may have some photos soon of all the great pieces everyone made. Meanwhile this week I have been back in my workshop and here are some earrings I have made. I shall be posting more pieces soon as I have a batch of pendants that have been off for hallmarking.
This weekend I am at Alfriston doing a craft fair with Wealden Craftworkers. We are at The Memorial Hall on The Tye in Alfriston so do pop in if you are in the area.

Wednesday 10 June 2009

Double Cupcake Delight

I really wanted to do something different with my cupcake beads that I bought from Laura Sparling so I decided to make my own solid silver little cupcake box using Art Clay Silver and use the bead as the little handle on the lid. Cute eh? Perfect for keeping tiny treasures in. What do you think. Is it a bit too OTT on the cupcake side :)

Tuesday 9 June 2009

Silver Curls Bracelet

I have had these fabulous glass beads by Laura Sparling for quite a while now. They have lovely pale grey curling folds inside and are encased in clear with some nice tactile enamel on the surface. I made two heavy silver lentil beads using Art Clay Silver to go with them several months ago during a play day with my friend Bev - bet you wondered when I was ever going to use them eh Bev :)
My plan was to make a necklace out of them but every time I put them together in various ways it just did not work for me. Either I did not like the way they sat or something about it each time. In the back of my mind I kept thinking maybe I should make a bracelet instead but I already make a lot of those and people do seem to buy necklaces more so no, the plan was for a necklace and back on they shelf they kept going to be looked at another day.
Yesterday Laura wrote a really interesting piece on her blog about taking too much notice of the odd criticism and ending up making things you think people want rather than what makes you happy. When I was back up in my workshop later I took the box out again and thought that's it - it is gonna be a bracelet.
So here it is and I rather like it. It sits beautifully on the wrist and has a lovely weight.
If you want to read Laura's thought provoking post it is on her blog.

Friday 5 June 2009

Does the Hamster Go or Stay?

Ok, so I said I would update my gadget every few weeks. We had the goldfish - you liked them -the tree frog was not such a hit.

The hamster definitely seems to be the most popular yet judging by your comments. So - let me know if I should keep the hamster or not. If you say keep him then I will run a "name the hamster" competition with a nice prize.


Hailsham Country Fayre

This Sunday I am at the Hailsham Country Food and Game Fayre organised by the Hailsham Lions Club. It sounds good and is in aid of a great cause. Here is some info on it.

Sunday 7th June 11am - 5pm. Entrance £3 adults - children free. In aid of Sussex Air Ambulance. There will be over 100 stalls, showing various crafts, food and drink, and something for all the family.There will be a number of arena events, including Birds of Prey and Dance Groups. There will be a beer tent, hog roast, fish and chips and teas. This is the first year Hailsham Lions have organised this event and providing there is good support from the public it could become an annual event.

The only problem I have when I do fairs that have nice food stalls is stopping my husband spending more on the food than I am earning on the jewellery sales :)

Do come if you are in the area.
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