Sunday, 29 January 2012

In the interest of ...

It's been stifling hot here over the last few days.  Whilst the bright bright sun may have been replaced by dark rain clouds accompanied by distant rolling thunder (which I love) the mugginess is yet to clear.  It's been so hot in the house that I haven't dared to leave the computer on for more than a few minutes and have reserved my online activity to late night iPad sessions when its cooler.

I was in Melbourne last week and managed to pick up this fabulous book. 

This is not a new-agey book but rather a proper look at the use and meaning of talismans across cultures and time. I highly recommend it - not least because of the fabulous photographs.  In the interest of honesty and putting my cards on the proverbial table I think I should advise (and I know that this wont be popular with some) that I am not a believer in the supernatural or in the mystical power of certain objects (basically I am a skeptic).  I do however believe that one of the things that makes us human is our ability to tell stories, to weave a narrative around an event or an object. This capacity to ascribe meaning can turn an ordinary object into something quite extraordinary and powerful - a cultural transmitter. Does this make any sense?  I hope I haven't alienated anyone.

I also managed to pick up some great destash from our local town market this weekend:

Given the heat I haven't really felt like creating.  I do have a couple of things half finished.  I'm also planning to rework this necklace:

Sorry about the photo - its so dark in the house I had to use a flash.  I was thinking it might make a nice bracelet.  I can remove the bead necklace and replace with some hand forged links.  I'll give it a go.

'til next time.

Friday, 20 January 2012

Lazy Day ...

I'm planning on a lazy day where where nothing will be planned for or achieved.  I went to bed with a headache last night and woke up with one this morning. I've always suffered from migraines and have tried varying treatments to no avail. The latest, immigran nasal spray, is probably the closest I've come to a solution but I only use it as a last ditch response. I'm hoping that today's will clear-off of its own accord.  

I'm not the only one lounging around.  My daughter is on the computer (facebooking):

My son is on his PlayStation  (if my headache clears up later I'll play too - don't judge me):

In fact the only one being productive is my husband - he's chuffing around the garden on the ride-on, mowing the grass being chased by our dog (would make a great picture but I'm too lazy to get up and take it).

Stuff is piled up on my work table.  I've got a few ideas floating around in my head that I might try to enact later.  I'm partially pleased with the necklace hanging on the bust.  It's a grey macrame chord with ceramic beads and a red coral and bead cluster focal. The only thing is I used a commercial clasp which, now I look at it, I really dislike as it distracts from the earthy, primitive vibe.  There's no way to remove so I may have to try and make a similar piece with a hand made closure. 

I'm also eagerly awaiting a package from the US which wont get here for a few weeks.  A fellow etsian and I are doing a materials swap.  We are both sending each other some bits and pieces from our respective stashes and will then share pics of what we come up with.  It's lovely to interact with other artists.   It's both inspiring and validating.  

'til next time.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

And the band played on ....

Blimey, it's hard getting back into a routine after Christmas and New Year.   As I work from home, it's not like I have to go back to an office or anything - but still.     I have had a little creative spurt though and listed a bunch of new items in the shop.  

I've really enjoyed putting these necklaces together, combining the various textures and colours.  I'm particularly pleased with the coral pendant, I love the grey and red together. I've vowed to find an alternative to the stainless steel wire which I used on these necklaces though- it's really tough, which makes for strong jewelry but tired hands.  Generally, I'm happy with copper, particularly after it's had a dip in LOS,  but  sometimes you need silver. I would love to use sterling but the price is prohibitive.  I've got some aluminium.  It's a good colour and incredibly easy to work (can't solder it though) but I'm not sure how robust it will be.  I'm always terrified of my jewelry breaking (I refuse to use beading wire or thread and prefer to wire wrap instead for this reason) and want it to last for years years.  

I haven't' listed this next piece yet.  I found the wooden scoop at a great local market,  It's in  a teeny tiny village about an hour away from us.  They have great vintage stalls, a lady who does the best curry, live music and, relatively unusually for these parts, decent coffee.  We discovered it a few years ago when hardly anyone knew about it and now it's hugely popular.  The woman who runs it, Jane, has the best memory for names I've ever known.  She remembers me, my daughter, the whole family ... amazing.

Oh, by the way - Stregata if you read this post, thanks so much for your comment.  I follow your work on etsy and just joined your blogs.  Really lovely pieces - they have a beautiful atmosphere about them.   I know atmosphere is a weird word to use in this context (not sure if it's grammatically correct) but it just seems right somehow.

'til next time.