Posts Tagged ‘earrings’

Are all you need to make jewellery! I bought a lovely vintage fruit spoon at a car boot sale recently. The heavily raised pattern of fruit and foliage in the bowl reminded me of some glass and polymer clay fruit beads I had been saving for just the right project.

First I removed the handle and smoothed and shaped the stub left.


Next, I drilled holes in the stub and the end of the bowl to take jump rings for the chain and the beads.


The beads were clustered with some fabulous little polymer clay leaves onto a head pin to echo the cluster of fruit in the centre of the spoon bowl.


Lastly I added a vintage silver tone chain. It’s available here in my Etsy shop.

The zip pulls came from a Studio Ghibli ‘My Neighbour Totoro’ backpack that my middle one had used to complete destruction but the heavy brass zip pulls, each embossed with Totoro were still in perfect condition. The rest of the bag was only fit for the bin, despite my best efforts, but with the addition of two picture jasper cushion beads and some vintage brass coloured findings, the pulls became these:


Also available here in my Etsy shop.

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I showed you this amazing book


in my last post. Without even opening it, it’s a thing of beauty, from those William Morris-esque willow leaves sprawling across the spine and cover to the black and gold DMC logo end papers. And so small, only 5 and a half inches high, 4 inches wide and an inch and a half thick so it sits snugly in the hand.

Rachel is right – I have so much I want to do that I don’t think I’ll get round to any of the projects any time soon, but it is just lovely to sit and browse through.


Although I am very tempted to try out this canvaswork Shell Stitch.


Knitting is covered…


…as is crochet…




…embroidery on netting…




…various types of lace…






…and so much more.

I’ve done some more finishing of small projects. Firstly the french knot encrusted blue velvet spiral brooch from the sample piece I started on the Lush, Plush and Crush workshop we did at the Guild with Josie Storey a few months back. From this:


to this:


I’ve also created a pair of silk strip wrapped and beaded hoop earrings using some lovely ombre dyed silk strips from Stef Francis and vintage seed beads and sequins over a pair of vintage plastic earrings.




Having fun!

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Some while ago I planned to upcycle a ring by creating a circular panel of encrusted french knots and eyelets in a variegated blue and rust coloured thread on vilene.

Desert Rose ring 2

When I came to set the panel into the ring, it was too big and I had to start again. However, I didn’t throw out the rejected blue piece – it sat in my tool box along with other assorted odds and ends and when I found a lovely pair of vintage silver plated clip-on earrings with their cabochons long gone, I knew where that encrusted blue circle was going! All I had to do was to stitch another one.

That done, I was able to finish the earrings yesterday. Little encrusted panels of embroidery at the top and dangles finished with hand made ceramic beads and in my Etsy shop here.


So satisfying to find a use for something that wasn’t quite right first time round!

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It really is time I started getting some of my lovely beachcombed finds out of boxes and into the light of day and with the discovery of some findings I spent a lovely day the other week sorting through all my sea glass and pottery and choosing pieces not only that would make pretty earrings and pendants but that I could bear to part with!

First the pendants:


I love blue and white pottery anyway, but even more so when it’s been faded by the sea.


And this piece is just fun!


Love the depth and richness of this blue glass.


This piece of old bottle has the letter K embossed on the tip.


And this is my biggest piece of Victorian Seaham glass.


Then earrings, all in frosted white glass:





The nuno felt made a very appropriate background!

I’ve made another section in my Etsy shop for this beachcombed jewellery. The big willow pattern pendant sold the same day as I listed it and is heading for Switzerland!

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I’m enjoying the challenge of upcycling jewellery at the moment and I found a couple of pairs of 80s earrings – biggish, with white plastic middles (just right to tone with those classy white stilettos and matching handbag to dance round to George Michael!) and gold-tone borders – which were in fairly good condition and crying out for something interesting to be done with the blank canvas of the middles.

Initially, I toyed with pieces of cotton print and silk kimono fabric, but although the fabrics were attractive, the effect was a little thin. Then I found some scraps of fine strip patchwork and the extra thickness given by the seams was perfect.

Square upcycled patchwork earrings 1

I like being able to tuck the edges under the rolled metal borders for extra neatness.

Square upcycled patchwork earrings 2

Then the tear-drop shaped pair.

Tear-drop upcycled patchwork earrings 1

The pointed end made these a bit more challenging to work with as the fabrics wanted to fray right away on such a narrow area.

Tear-drop upcycled patchwork earrings 2

From brash 80s costume jewellery to unique textile pieces. I’m so pleased with these and my Etsy shop doesn’t know what’s hit it – three new listings in a week! Check them out here and here.

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I’m home from holiday: a wonderful week in North Cornwall with a big group of friends in addition to our family…

Constantine Bay August 2013

…and after all the unpacking and sorting, finally managed to get down to my most important summer job: to open my own Etsy shop, Under A Topaz Sky, here.  All the jewellery I made during my 6 month course in Sheffield has been listed and is up for sale. 

I was quite surprised at how effective it all looked properly photographed and displayed together!

         Fire pendant          Moss pendant         Almost perfect earrings

Eregion pendantleaf pendantvolcano pendant

paisley brooch Spirals brooch beaded leaf brooch

turquoise book charm indigo book charm bubbles book charm

Unfortunately the Etsy widget doesn’t seem to work on WordPress blogs, at least not without a lot of going round the houses but I’ve added a link in my sidebar and will look into it further when the beginning of term and all the extra work that generates isn’t looming quite so awfully.

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Several weeks ago I was trying to get a piece of reticulated brass with a nice melted hole in it and instead, managed to produce the best bit of reticulation I’ve created to date.

Perfect earrings 1

Apart from two tiny holes it was text book stuff…except that I wanted a hole to embroider!

Perfect earrings 2

It’s too lovely to do anything fussy with so I decided to make it into a very simple pair of drop earrings. First the piece was cut in half…

Perfect earrings 3

…trimmed to take off sharp edges and a hole drilled centrally at the top of each drop. Both drops were then put in the barreller for a couple of hours to polish them.

Meanwhile, I sawed through a spiral of brass wire to make two jump rings. When the drops were polished I slipped the jump rings through the drops and then very carefully soldered the rings closed.

Perfect earrings 4

The drops with their jump rings now needed another session in the barreller to polish the rings, so it wasn’t until last week that I had the chance to finish the earrings off.

Perfect earrings 5

After looking through a lot of beads, I chose two vintage faux pearls from a broken necklace to give a bit of space and lightness between the earhooks and the reticulated drops. They have a lovely creamy golden colour which goes so well with the brass.

Perfect earrings 6

They’re threaded onto goldtone headpins which have been bent into a loop at each end to connect to the jump rings and the earhooks.

Perfect earrings 7

No textile work in these but I’m very pleased with them – great deep reticulated texture and the pearls work surprisingly well against the rich gold of the brass.

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