Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Celtic Knot Wire Bracelet

I thought I'd post some pictures of my attempts so far at the Celtic Knot Bracelet in the book Wire Wrapping.  You can find the link again here.  I was also experimenting with some different settings on my camera, and the different lighting conditions here, so bear with me!

Attempt #1

As you can see, the way I was trying to form the knots made them all irregular, which was especially noticeable with two different gauges and colors of wire.  I did this one during the hurricane when it didn't seem like there was anything else to do.  And I knew it would take me forever and a day to get it done.

Here's attempt #2:

I only posted one picture because I photographed in a hurry and not all of them turned out....but you can definitely see the difference.  It still took awhile to make (I was watching about a two hour movie if that's considered an accurate measure of time), but it looks much better.  I didn't have jump rings that were a thick enough gauge to support the knots, so I whipped some up using the same wire.  Definitely going to buy some already made, because these rings just look....well, like I did the myself and in this case that's not a good thing! 

I'm planning on getting some "nice" wire now so I can keep practicing and possibly put some in my shop.  I'm comparing prices right now, but if anyone knows a good supplier....?

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Aftermath and a Book

Well, everyone here is in one piece after Hurricane Irene blew through.... two trees down back home, but none on the house.  I whipped out some wire here finally and tried to make a bracelet like I'd seen in a book at Barnes and Noble but didn't buy.  It turned out okay, but I was way overthinking it.  Lost power twice, and cable was out until yesterday afternoon.  It went out again last night until this morning, hopefully for the last time.  Class was cancelled for yesterday and today, I guess so they can clean up the trees and the general mess without us underfoot. 

I finally opened up my shop again.  Made the announcement that I would last night and then the cable went out so I couldn't until today, but it's back up.  I bought that book at Barnes & Noble and the process was much simpler than I'd expected.  The book is called Wire Wrapping by Linda Chandler and Christine Ritchey.
I really like the step by step photos it has and it explains things very clearly.  I tried the Celtic Knot bracelet for starters because I'd seen that knot before and thought I could do it again on a smaller scale.  It's much easier to do how the book says to do it.  I'm planning on trying some more of the designs as soon as I can get my hands on some decent wire. 

I also discovered that the local A.C. Moore has a totally awesome bead section.  All sorts of pendants and charms....a little lacking in the gemstones for me, but there's a Michael's for that.  Dragonfly Beads is kind of the same way, but AWESOME charms there.  Haven't checked out the Jo-Ann Fabrics yet, it's been kind of hit and miss for me with those.  One in Piqua, Ohio had me practically drooling, and one in Virginia had me going, "meh."  So, plenty of locations to shop for beads!  Now I just need a job. :( Or to sell more jewelry. :)  Off to read some more Beowulf for my Lit. class!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Short Update

Just a short update so I don't fall into the habit of not blogging while my shop is on vacation...

I've officially had all my classes's going to be an interesting semester.  I've got two Linguistics classes with the same teacher.  He's pretty laid-back but definitely a bit set in his opinions, I think.  That was a contradictory statement.  Deal with it.  He's not rude about it or anything, but it makes me want to keep my mouth shut even though he says he welcomes different opinions.  They should prove to be interesting classes nonetheless.

Grammar makes me want to shoot something on the other hand.  My teacher did warn us that the first half of the semester was going to be tedious.  She was NOT exaggerating.  Whe gave us two chapters to read of about 4 pages each and then the practice sheets and exercises to do afterward.  The first lesson I was fine on.  I had to call my mom, who homeschools my brother and knows this stuff pretty well, for the second lesson.  The answers were in the back of the book, but I was getting so many of them wrong that I was frustrated and cranky and by that time it was like 7pm and I still hadn't had dinner.  So I walked away, made a Really Awesome Sandwich (I should patent that term), and then called my mom after some more floundering around.  I finally got the hang of it, with only two or three out of the forty that didn't have the answers in the back of the book.

British Lit class is kind of crazy.  Discovered that I can understand Dutch.  Well, English-speakers can because it's very similar.  At least she's energetic about her subject, which is good when you're reading Chaucer and Beowulf.  Blegh.  Kill me now.

French is, well, French.  The teacher's really cool for not operating computers (he says that's our generation).  If he rattles off a sentence in French he'll at least tell us what he said if he gets a lot of blank stares.  Probably because it's level 1.  I hope it's not too hard, but I hope it's not a really easy A because I had French 3 and barely passed it and that was about 2 years ago.  

I know I'm kind of rambling and I'm cutting this off abruptly because I can't think straight anymore.  I'm also turning off another episode of the Mentalist in the middle of it.  I need to go get stuff for the hurricane tomorrow....*whimper* <-- not the hurricane, just the shopping for it.

Monday, August 22, 2011

All Moved In

Sorry, no design boards today!  I think I missed last week too?  This past week has been crazy with the packing and moving and moving in....*sigh*  But I am all moved in now, and I HAVE INTERNET!  That was a pain.  Took them like forever to install it, but they finally did.  I was by myself Wednesday thru Saturday morning, when I drove back home for the weekend.  I'm not gonna lie, that was just a little but scary.  Friday night it rained a lot, so I didn't have to worry about potential partiers.  This is most definitely a college town.  Met one roommate last night when I came back, and one today, who I kind of already knew.  They're both really nice and everyone's so glad that we all know how to wash our own dishes and we're not all slobs.  :-)

Told them I make jewelry and proceeded to bring it all out and show them.  OH!  And I found the bead store here, Dragonfly Beads.  They have lots of cool charms and stuff.  They were having a bead show when I went and I bought two ceramic purple and gold beads to make into earrings--school colors!  Also found the Michael's in my day of driving around and generally getting lost.  There's an A.C. Moore, too, but I haven't been in yet because I was more interested in the Barnes & Noble.

I haven't re-opened my shop yet, mostly because I want to see how a job kind of fits in with the whole routine before I go adding more jewelry and stuff....

Well, my first day of classes is tomorrow, starting bright and early at 8am....blegh.  I really hope I'm ready for this.  Well, the classes are fine, but I'm really nervous about the whole transit bus system thing.  I hope and pray it all goes well tomorrow....

Think I'll go put off going to sleep a little bit longer now!

Friday, August 12, 2011


Today was my last day at work before I leave for college.  It was bittersweet.  On the one hand, I couldn't wait to get away from the whole retail experience with snotty customers asking stupid questions and, in turn, treating me like I was the stupid one.  On the other hand, I'll miss the people--some of them, anyway ;-).  I have literally worked there since I graduated high school, and part time through the two years I was attending the local community college, and then full time for a year after I finished my two year degree.  It's like closing another chapter of my life.  I mean, I know I'll be back in the summer, but it's just not the same.  The reality that I'm actually going away to college is finally, slowly sinking in.  I can't help but wonder how people will talk about me.  The ones that reminisce about the good ol' days with their favorite store managers, and favorite co-workers that aren't there anymore.  I know the people that will count me as a favorite.  It's kind of fun wondering who won't.  Well, fun in a rather twisted way.  I wonder what aspects will go to pieces that I usually took care of.  Like checking the expiration dates on the Lindt and Godiva chocolates, and putting the hangers up in an organized fashion.  I've seen how much of a mess they can be when I'm off for one day :-).  Ahhhhh, but I won't have to deal with that any more.  I saw a couple pallets of giftwares marked "Christmas" in the back yesterday and I just laughed.  And it felt good.  I'll be able to shop on Black Friday this year instead of working it--although how much money I'll actually spend is another matter entirely! 

I'm trying not to think about all the stuff I have to go through and pack.  Like my clothes.  That sound you hear is me whimpering.  And books, and movies....yes, I know I am going to college to learn, but I have to have something to keep me sane!  Oh, yeah, and beads....well, those are mostly always packed in their little organizers anyway, so it's a simple matter of getting them into another box. 


I'm having a sale in my Etsy Shop to help clear out some jewlery!  So with the coupon code PACKITUP25, you can get 25% off storewide!  Go for it!  You know you want to! ;-)

Monday, August 8, 2011

Design It Monday

Well, my life has become increasingly more busy as I get ready to move to college....but I did not forget my design board for this week!  This week I am featuring Maurice's again, one of my favorite stores!  Enjoy!

Bracelet available here, all clothing and accessories from Maurice's.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Design It Monday

Had a nice, relaxing weekend this weekend--didn't do ANY beading (gasp!).  But that may have been just what I needed.  Here's my second design board, this time from Anthropologie:

Jewlery available here, everything else from Anthropologie!