Saturday, July 24, 2010

Antique Jewelry

Fritz watching tv. I have a small tv in my office, it sits on a little foot stool that is about 8" off the floor. It's the perfect height for Fritz to watch his favorite shows.  He likes animal shows, Big Cat Diary is his favorite and anything with domestic cats or dogs. Does your cat watch tv? My other cat, Corny, could care less, she'd rather go outside and hunt little critters, she killed another bunny. 
Click on the photos for a closer look.

 Here is some of the antique jewelry I found while clearing out the basement.  This first photo is single cufflinks that I've acquired over the years. Most were in old button boxes or tins. I've always thought I would find a use for them. Maybe I can figure out a way to use them with polymer clay. Any suggestions?
 Antique pins. The cameo can be worn as a pin or pendant.
 Mostly pins/brooches and a couple lockets.
 A couple tortoise shell brooches, tie clasps, hairwork watch chain & fob, bars pins and rings.
 Another watch chain and fob, slide chain, brooches, stick pins, earrings, and cuff links
 Cuff links,watch fobs, cameo pendant, cameo bracelet and a couple brooches.
 Lots of odds and ends. Mostly small bar pins, some mother of pearls pin, a heart locket and another watch fob.  I still have to sort the sterling and crystal pieces and take photos. I knew there was jewelry down there.... just not that much.
Yesterday I found more buttons. They need to be sorted and then listed on Etsy. I have a gazillon old books, I've been sorting them too. Most will go to the auction but I'm keeping some to list on Etsy.  And I have lots of advertising cook booklets. They have such fun illustrations and the recipes are good too... does anyone cook from scratch anymore? I do, but I'm old and have lots of time on my hands.

Now I am going to go take photos of buttons and books so I can list them in my antique shop on Etsy. My antique shop on Etsy is Swan Song Antiques . I'll let you know what else I find.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Mixed Media PC & Wire Necklaces & A Prize

My muse has been on vacation the last couple weeks, I'm blaming it on the heat.  It's  to hot to go outside. I force myself out for short periods of time to water and pull a few weeds... but  most of the time has been used on my basement clearing project. Daughter Heather is helping me and we are making real progress... I can actually see the floor in a couple areas.  I should have taken "before" photos but I was afraid someone would turn me in to the "Hoarders" tv show.  It's time consuming because I have to go through all the boxes and drawers. Most things will go to auction or in the trash but we've also found lots of cool stuff to use in "altered art" and some interesting items for steampunk,  I was pleasantly surprised to find a treasure trove of antique jewelry... I took photos and will show them to you tomorrow.

Click on the photos for a closer look.

In the mean time I did manage to finish a couple pieces that I started a while back. The first is a polymer clay pendant to which I added laced wire and tinted fresh water pearls. The back of the pendant has cutout stars  The chain is links of black and bronze wire in two sizes.

The second pendant is a vintage glass button embedded in layered copper clay.  The top layer has a stamped design with gold highlights and then embellished with amber wire swirls. All the rhinestone had fallen out of the black glass button so  I filled the holes with Kato liquid clay to which I added copper PearlEx and a little glitter. I used fine amber wireto crochet a tube that I secured to the side with liquid clay. The bail is made from copper wire and black glass beads. I finished the necklace with black rubber cord.  For some reason this pendant didn't photograph well, I tried several backgrounds, this was the best... oh well,.... it's more attractive in person. 

This delightful pendant is the prize I won for voting in this months PCAGOE's challenge. It was made by Lynda of Diva Designs on Etsy . You can visit her shop at 

Sunday, July 11, 2010

More Polymer Clay Steampunk

I am a creature of habit, I don't like change. The town fathers in our little hamlet have hired a new "Refuse Service Company" which has thrown everything into turmoil.  All the years we have lived here our trash  and recycle pickup day has been monday. Now trash is picked up on wednesday,  yard waste on tuesday and recyclables  on friday. I find this mind boggling, it has totally messed up my routine.  I might be able to adjust to one change... but three, this is just not right.

Sunday evening was the time I use to bag up all the trash and clean out the frig... get rid of all those baggies containing left over pizza, half a tomato, small hunks of meat, an ear of corn...all stuff I knew no one would eat but I couldn't bring myself to throw out until it sit in the frig for a week and grew fuzz. It also made room for the food I purchased on monday for the coming week.  Now I'm suppose to clean the frig on tuesday and grocery shop on wednesday, this is not going to be easy. 

The new schedule went into effect July 1st... I did manage to get the trash out for pickup on wednesday but missed the recycle pickup on friday which means I have a full recycle bin sitting on the back porch. This is sunday, I should be bagging trash, tossing baggies of fuzzy food and neatly organizing the recycle bin, you can get more in if its organized, but no, I'm sitting here twiddling my thumbs.  Like I said, I don't like change.

 Okay, done with the rant.... so here is the Steampunk I made this week.

Click on the photos for a closer look.

I used interference PearlEx to give it a little shine and then sealed with Kato liquid clay. It's embellished with watch parts, gold filled chain, glass beads and a little rickshaw pin.  I still need to made a chain to hang it on.

The colors on this one are a little strange but I kinda like it. Heather says it has a "sea life" look. 

 I used blue steel watch hands and a couple blue steel watch gears on this one. I couldn't get the watch hands to stay flat on the clay, the pointed ends kept popping up so I glued faceted crystal beads to cover them.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Polymer Clay Steampunkery

My version of Steampunk. 

Click on the photos for a closer look.

I made a Skinner blend sheet in soft pearly colors, stamped with one of my favorite texture sheets, added a little PearlEx and then decorated with watch parts and wire. I'm not to fond of the coiled wire on the second one, I may take it off and try something else. 

 This one is my favorite, I haven't decided if its a bug or an alien.
 And this of course is an mirror image elephant.  his trunk was inspired by creatures in CF's book. I added some vintage chain, watch gears and Swarovski rhinestones.  He is quite a handsome fellow.

 I liked doing these. I have ideas for more. 

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Garden Woes & a New Polymer Clay Cane

As you can see my cane muse is on vacation. Not sure what I had in mind when I put this together.
 Here's some canes I made from it. I'll make tiles tomorrow.

You have to be a glutton for punishment to try and garden in this lousy part of the country. It's a constant battle against heat, humidity, storms, mosquitos and weeds. The hot weather arrived early this year, temp's in the upper 90's and high humidity so when the last couple days we had cooler weather, low 80's and fairly nice humidity, it was almost nice to sit outside and enjoy the flowers.  So what happens?.... the annual invasion of the Japanese beetle.  They are like locust they devour all the pretty blossoms.

This is one of my favorite garden pots. The purple and white flowers are called "Cup and Saucer". They are a double bell shape that kinda looks like a cup and saucer. What  fascinates me is both colors are growing on the same plant.  The beetles haven't attacked them yet, but I'm sure they will.
I can't remember the name of these, they are perennials and have been growing in this spot for several years.  This is what they looked like a couple days ago.

This is what they look like now.  Well not really, there are a few blooms and leaves left in this photo, by now they are completely striped to the stem.

This is one of my cone flowers... see the happy bumble bee? I haven't seen any honey bees this year but quite a few bumble bees. They just wander around on the flower and take a little pollen. 

Not beetles, they are chomping away on the petals and will soon be devouring the lilies.  The trumpet flowers on the gazebo are covered with them and I even found some on the petunias... which they usually leave alone. Needless to say I am not a happy camper.  Time for a Bloody Mary.