Posts Tagged ‘sea glass’

If we have had a workshop of some sort at our Embroiderers’ Guild group, then at the next meeting there is a space available for people to bring their workshop pieces, whether finished or just continued, to show. It was fantastic to see what had happened to the stitch play pieces from my workshop in December.









Many thanks to everyone who brought along their work – glad you enjoyed it!

I’ve also been doing some more upcycling. First, I turned a single 1980s enamelled earring which looked like orange sherbet into a beaded brooch. I removed the post and then beaded it onto some hand dyed vintage cotton fabric with some matching pearlised opaque orange seed beads using peyote stitch.


Then I gathered the spare fabric over the back and ladder stitched it to the covered vilene circle onto which I’d already stitched the brooch back.


Then I could add the edging in a mixture of clear orange, opaque pale yellow and very pale lilac beads, to echo the colours in the swirl.


It’s not a terribly quick thing to stitch, but a lot of fun to do!

Among the oddments I scored from my Dad’s workshop last year were some bits of veneer that he had hand cut. This little piece is apple wood.


I wondered what would happen if I doodled on it in black pen…


…and then cut it into sections to fit in this vintage bracelet.


Measure twice, cut once…


Hold your breath and hope…


…and be pleasantly surprised at the result.



I’ve also added nuggets of sea glass and sea washed china to a selection of vintage pendants, brooches and rings.









They are all sitting in my Etsy shop now, waiting for loving homes!

Read Full Post »

I’ve been restocking and updating my Etsy shop with that December thing coming up fast on the horizon and although a lot of my pieces have involved sea glass, sea washed china and found objects, I did get inspired by another vintage brooch without a central stone.


So I gathered some supplies and started to stitch a ribbon rose on some scraps of hand dyed silk.


With a woven rose in the middle, split stitch curling stems either side and some french knot buds, it stitched up quite quickly.


Then I layered three pieces of pelmet vilene, each slightly smaller than the other to create a domed shape, gathered the silk around the dome and pulled it up tight. A piece of the rust coloured background silk covered the gathering at the back and then I set it in the brooch.


You can find it here.

I also created this flotsam assemblage pendant



…from a piece of wave worn aluminium…


…which I beachcombed ages ago and just love; a piece of tactile driftwood and a long nugget of sea glass which sat in the groove of that grain perfectly.


A treasured oval piece of multicoloured Seaham sea glass went into a vintage pendant.


And rich green oval nugget of sea glass went into another vintage pendant.


In fact I managed to find and nearly match so many lovely green pieces that I was able to add a pair of upcycled vintage clip on earrings


..and a bracelet.


It’s lovely to be able to reuse some of these gorgeous pieces and bring broken jewellery back to life again.

Read Full Post »

The holiday journal is finished and just waiting for me to add some extra papers, pockets etc. to the inside.


Doing blanket stitch so close together took longer than I bargained but I like the effect.

Then I moved onto another one of my samples for my upcoming Embroiderers’ Guild workshop later in the year. Grey on grey felt embroidered in pale blues.


Fly stitched edge, straight stitches in a radiating pattern and french knots:


Feather stitch edging with a chain stitch spiral:


And I’ve turned what I think might have been a vintage money clip into an upcycled sea glass pendant. First of all I sawed off the long bit of the clip following the lines of the design at the bottom.


Then I pierced and cut out the middle section with a very fine saw, again following the edges of the design, and leaving three tabs to attach the sea glass to.


A lot of fiddly filing happened next, to really shape the central section and tidy up the tabs before I could set it with a lovely piece of deep turquoise sea glass.


I love using the piercing saw and the fiddlier the design, the better. I really need to get back to making some more of my original jewellery…

Read Full Post »

I’ve been upcycling jewellery recently and having a lot of fun putting bits and pieces together to make something from nothing. I had a small lot of vintage 1970s silver tone ring blanks which were crying out for some nuggets of sea glass.

DSCN4075  DSCN4088.JPG



Then I used freshwater pearls and seed and bugle beads in a variety of shades of green to create a set of sea-themed dangles for my Mermaid’s Garden dangle ring. The centre is finished with a piece of ‘coral’ I beach-combed from Claigan Coral Beach on the Isle of Skye as a child in the 1970s. I always thought it was actually coral, but according to the internet it’s ‘desiccated and sun-bleached algae’ which is much less attractive sounding!


Then an assemblage piece – Ship’s Wheel Locket. The original vintage goldtone locket had a slight depression in the front so I shaped a piece of polished broken abalone to fit into it and then added a lovely ship’s wheel charm on top of that so the sea green swirls of the abalone can be glimpsed through the spokes of the wheel.


Lastly I reverted to embroidery for the Cottage Garden pendant. This gold tone pendant had a pierced pattern around the edge which was just begging to have some sort of thread added. I chose a heavy Caron cotton thread in lovely muted cottage garden shades and added a simple row of slanted stitches, following the pattern of the holes.


Then it occurred to me that I could do a sort of back-stitched spider’s web around the champagne coloured diamantes and turn them into flowers, which worked very well.


Always good when a plan comes together.

Read Full Post »

It is high time I started to practise my metal-working skills again so I decided to start small, cutting out a rose leaf shape from sheet brass and piercing it with holes before I textured it with the hammer.


Then I used some green perle and using the holes, put in the foundation stitches for a woven spider’s web which I worked in a gorgeous variegated pink and green silk ribbon.


It worked out perfectly so I had a green centre shading out to the deep pink edge. I neatened it up with a piece of pink kid leather over the back and added a jump ring to turn it into a sweet little mixed media pendant.


One of my Christmas presents was a Dremel engraver so I had a bit of a play with that, first using one of the included stencils to add a rustic star shape to a piece of sea glass which I then turned into a pendant.


Then I moved on to a piece of reticulated brass which I created on the silversmithing course I took in Sheffield a few years ago. I had deliberately worked the reticulation from either end of the piece of brass in order to leave a smooth bridge between them for some text. Finally, I had the tool to add the lettering!

I used uncial script and the H of ‘haven’ looks a bit like an R, unfortunately, but I really like the way the engraver worked on the brass.


I turned this into yet another pendant and gave it a lovely vintage sari silk strip ribbon to hang from in crimson and gold.


My other Christmas present thanks to some vouchers was a doming set and I was dying to have a go at doming some old coins that I’d accumulated. Tiny bronze British decimal half pennies seemed to work best and I combined one that I’d hammered into a hemisphere with a ‘cornflake’ of reticulated brass that I’d also domed. I drilled them both through the middle and chose an odd stud earring with purple diamantes like stamens of a flower to connect them together.



I’ve got a piece of fantastically patterned gilding metal to which I hope to attach the ‘flower’ which I can then turn into a brooch. It’s been good to play with metal again!

Read Full Post »

I put the final french knot into my huge piece for the Victorian Box Project  two days ago and after nearly 15 months, it was a fabulous feeling!


I stabilised the back before I sent to bed so it could dry overnight and the next morning got the box out ready to attach the stitching. So excited! I laid it over the top of the box and stretched it over the sides and that was then I discovered that it had shrunk somewhere and wasn’t going to fit. Fortunately I have some leeway around the edges, but it’s back to the drawing board for the moment.

So to cheer myself up I picked up the brown and gold sea glass watch case pendant I showed a couple of posts ago.


I love those tiny nuggets of very rare yellow sea glass I picked up at Seaham and the colours work perfectly with the watch case.


I’ve also started a real upcycled piece, creating something from nothing. I started with an offcut of some hand made felt I was cutting up for another project and a piece of bent gold coloured wire that came out of a job lot of broken jewellery. Trimming the felt slightly I evened up the shape and attached the wire with straight stitches in fine silk thread. The longer stitches were topped with french knots – what else! – in a heavier mercerised cotton and I used the same thread for running stitch around the edge.



I attached a pelmet vilene backing with beaded blanket stitch…



…and an odd link I took off a vintage rolled gold watch strap yesterday will make the perfect bale to turn it into a pendant.

Read Full Post »

Back in May we had a goldwork initial workshop with Brenda Scarman and I started to work a letter ‘O’ for a birthday card for my mother. As it was her birthday a couple of weeks ago I can finally reveal something I’ve finished!

At the end of the workshop I had got this far:


I simplified the scrolls in the middle due to the thickness of the double couching thread and added more chips of silver purl, silver seed beads, turquoise bugle beads and french knots to the border.


Not happy with the squashed spiral on the lower left, so I restitched that.


Carried on beading and french knotting…


…until it was finally finished.

And then I decided I preferred it up the other way!




Simply framed with grey card to become a special birthday card. And a finish!!


I’ve also upcycled an odd clip on earring front to make a beaded brooch


…and turned some of my huge collection of sea glass and china into rings.

DSCN2584.JPG dscn2573dscn2591 dscn2609

Loads more projects still to get stuck into though!


Read Full Post »

Older Posts »