Showing posts with label accessories. Show all posts
Showing posts with label accessories. Show all posts

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Gemstone Bracelets & Freshwater Pearl Necklaces for Spring

iolite bracelet
Iolite Bracelet
  I've finally had my fill of snow. I'm ready for Spring, for the cherry blossoms, for kayaks, and for walks in the neighborhood.  I'm also ready for more jewelry, as I am always! 
   Above, the first bracelet is a favorite of mine for 2 reasons: it features iolites, the "water sapphires" that are a pretty dark blue, and the tiny Karen Hill Tribes sterling silver beads that make such great strands with gemstones. Lots of little sterling charms dangle at intervals along the bracelet.
   Below, a labradorite bracelet that is a simple one strand bracelet with every single labradorite gemstone having flash. Some flash is that beautiful, desirable dark blue, some flash is dark green, some light green, and some even has what looks like a bit of pink in it.  A single loveletter charm hangs at one side of the bracelet, and the sterling clasp is a hand-decorated rectangle I import myself directly from Bali.
labradorite bracelet
Labradorite Bracelet

aquamarine bracelet
White rainbow moonstone and genuine aquamarine
   Above, this is an aquamarine bracelet that has been accented by very pretty almost translucent white faceted rainbow moonstone. It would be perfect for a gift for someone with a March birthday who may not wear a lot of aqua or blue - and it will look great with a summer tan!

coin pearl necklace
Creamy Marquise Freshwater Pearl Necklace with Swarovski Silk Crystals
I've been going through my freshwater pearl stash lately and playing with the differently colored pearls and the result is what you see here.  I love the freshwater pearl necklace above with the creamy marquise pearls separated by silk colored Swarovski crystals. The necklace has a sterling silver toggle clasp. This necklace is very rich looking; the pearls have a marvelous lustre.
   Below, yes, those are fuschia pearls, both potato and rectangular. The perfect necklace for jazzing up that plain navy blue business suit!
coin pearl necklace
Fuschia Freshwater Pearl Necklace

Below, oval coin pearls (freshwater) are in a dark blue. This simple necklace looks great with everything from blue jeans to a cocktail dress.
coin pearl necklace
Freshwater Pearl Necklace in Dark Blue

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Sunday, August 03, 2014

Cleopatra and the "Gem of the Sun"

peridot bracelet
 Peridot, the August birthstone, is a pretty gemstone with a clear green color. It is fairly easy usually for us to find translucent peridot that are especially pretty for the jewelry that I make. I do like working with it; the only drawback to peridot is that it is usually difficult to find very large stones.
three strand peridot bracelet
    Peridot has a rich history, full of legends and lore that makes it an especially interesting gemstone.
The Egyptians called peridot the "gem of the sun" and believed that it was best mined at night when it shone brightly; during the day, it shone so brightly that it couldn't even be seen!
    Most of the peridot mined in the ancient world came from St. John's, an island about 50 miles off the coast of Egypt.  It was so overrun by snakes that the miners had a difficult time until the Pharaoh had all the snakes killed.  Much easier for the miners, not so good for the snakes. As a result, however, peridot is still believed by many to be a guard against snakebite!
   The first three photos are of Minuet Verde, a three strand peridot bracelet with a two-sided sterling bead in the middle of the middle strand.  The bead has two cabochon peridots bezel-set into it.  The bracelet also has a double sided toggle clasp with a faceted square peridot set diagonally in each side of the toggle.
peridot bracelet with 3 strands of peridots and sterling
    Many historians believe that the emeralds that Cleopatra wore were not emeralds at all, but actually peridots which would have been readily accessible to her and can easily be confused with emeralds. 
   For many centuries, people thought the 200 carat gems in the shrine of the Three Holy Kings in Cologne Cathedral in Germany were emerald. They are really peridots (
   Above and below, another three strand peridot bracelet. The gemstones are small and sparkling and accented by 5 sterling silver flower charms and a pretty heart-shaped sterling lobster clasp.
peridot bracelet with sterling charms

peridot bracelet with quartz crystal
    Peridot is thought to help one achieve harmony in marriage. The ancients believed that it would give one eloquence and also protect one from evil spirits. It is often used today by proponents of crystal healing for asthma and a slew of other ailments.
   Above and below, this peridot bracelet has 5 strands of peridots on one side of the bracelet and faceted peridot rondelles set between large faceted nuggets of quartz crystal on the other.  In the center, sterling silver and peridot charms are clustered next to a faceted rose quartz square.
peridot bracelet with rose quartz
 Today, most peridots come from Burma since St. John's island has not been mined since the 1950's.  The largest peridot is approximately 310 carats and resides here in Washington, D.C.'s Smithsonian museum.
peridot bracelet with lampwork beads
    Above, a double-stranded bracelet of peridots with the main strand featuring quite large faceted peridots while the second strand has small peridots. The peridots are accented by square artist's lampwork beads shot with silver handmade by Robin Weber. Below, a bracelet made of peridot rondelles and sterling silver butterflies from the Thai Karen Hill Tribes.
peridot bracelet
    Below, another peridot bracelet featuring lampwork beads and large faceted peridot nuggets.  The second strand is a large oval-lined chain dangling Thai Karen Hill Tribes flower charms.
peridot bracelet with peridot nuggets and sterling silver

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  • Sunday, June 15, 2014

    Ankle Bracelets, Aquamarines, and Earrings That Dangle!

    It's almost official SUMMER, and summer is the time for ankle bracelets.  Nothing shows off summer skin like a gemstone ankle bracelet; nothing looks sexier on your legs except bare skin! Very feminine, but slightly edgy, ankle bracelets have long been the summer jewelry of choice.
       Above, a sterling silver ankle bracelet made with amazonite and genuine abalone; perfect for your beach vacation! The shell abalone hangs next to the tiny sterling toggle clasp.
       Below, a red-hot carnelian ankle bracelet cooled off with just a touch of aqua apatite and a single sterling silver Bali bead. The closure is a sterling lobster clasp.
    carnelian and apatite ankle bracelet
    Wonderful tourmalines in this mix will go with almost anything. This ankle bracelet is a mix of tourmaline chips and gem-quality tourmalines with a touch of sterling silver.  The wonderful sterling silver shell charm makes this perfect to wear with a sundress after a day frolicking in the sand.
    tourmaline and sterling silver ankle bracelet
    Gem-quality amethysts and carved amethysts have a touch of sterling silver and an exotic starfish charm in sterling hanging from one side.  The clasp is a sterling lobster.
    amethyst ankle bracelet with sterling silver starfish

    gemstone bracelet with aquamarines and carnelian
    I've been working with aquamarines; I love them because they mix so well with so many different gemstones.  Case in point: the aquamarine and orange carnelian bracelet above.  The special flowered sterling silver toggle clasp is a real looker, but these faceted aquamarine rondelles really sparkle! Of course, so do the wonderful faceted carnelians, especially the cross-drilled squares on the second strand.
       Below, more of those sparkly aquamarine rondelles, this time with genuine abalone and 14 karat gold-filled accents. This abalone shell is gorgeous on both sides. This aquamarine bracelet is a real stunner!
    aquamarine bracelet with gold and abalone

    Aquamarine Bracelet with Abalone
       Below, dangle earrings are created from different sizes, shapes, and textures of sterling silver chain and feature small gemstones such as apatite, carnelian, green aventurine, and gem-quality citrine rectangles hanging from the bottom.  The simple sterling earwires have a textured ball for their only decoration. These are wonderful, colorful, flirty earrings!

    dangle earrings with gemstones and sterling silver
    Dangle Earrings

    dangle earrings with gemstones and sterling silver
    olsen twin wearing ankle bracelet
    Ashley Olsen wearing two anklets.
    Above, one of the Olsen twins wears ankle bracelets on both ankles.
    Below, more celebrities wearing ankle bracelets.

    Rashida Jones wearing an ankle bracelet
    Rashida Jones
    Above, Rashida Jones sporting an ankle bracelet with green heels, and below, Jennifer Aniston stepping out in an ankle bracelet on her left ankle.
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    Saturday, February 01, 2014

    Agates, Pearls, and Cluny the Cat

     I've longed for these days of snow, but they find me a bit under the weather! If you've ever had back and neck problems, you know the pain that can be involved, especially when trying to work at a desk. But Valentine's Day is fast upon us, so work I  must!  
    Above, an agate bracelet with some of my favorite blue agate faceted ovals. They are as blue as can be, shiny, and chunky. All accents, including the toggle clasp, are sterling silver.
    Below, another agate bracelet, this time featuring faceted blue agate rounds with areas of translucence and a "crackled" effect that provides texture and interest.  The bracelet has three strands: one strand is wire-wrapped agates strung together with sterling silver wire, one strand of tiny Thai Karen Hill Tribes beads, and one strand of oval links of sterling chain dangling little coin charms (all sterling, of course).
     Below is an agate necklace which I liked so much that I made one for myself.  These faceted ovals are huge! They are a wonderful silvery grey color with translucent areas and wispy black inclusions. 14 karat gold-filled beads are between each of the ovals and a 14 karat gold-filled toggle.
     Below, 14 karat gold-filled earstuds dangle coppery golden freshwater pearls.

    My Cluny cat, resting on the studio sofa where he spends a good bit of his time. 

    Thursday, January 23, 2014

    Back from Bulgaria and New Jewelry

    Happy New Year!  I am looking forward to 2014 being a wonderful, creative and productive year; I hope you are as well. I spent the Christmas holidays with my son and his family in Sofia, Bulgaria, the first time I had traveled to that country.  I've already fallen in love with Bulgaria despite not having it snow while we were there. Luckily, my son lives almost in the side of Mt. Vitosha and a quick drive did provide some white magic.  I fell in love with the food (ummmm, shopska salad and eggs panagyurishte ), the wonderful churches and monasteries, the people, the art. I saw fantastic early Thracian jewelry (Southeastern Bulgaria was part of Thrace at one time), wonderful icons, and ancient sites of worship.  I can't wait to go back. Of course, the main attraction was family, but Bulgaria with family is much better than Bulgaria on my own!

    Above, the Rila monastery a couple of hours outside Sofia.

    The jewelry today includes (above) a ruffled looking necklace made up of tightly strung dark blue chalcedony faceted briolettes; the color is fantastic!  Then a chalcedony bracelet that is a so rich looking with faceted rectangles of chartreuse chalcedony and 14 karat gold-filled beads and toggle clasp.
    Below, vermeil earrings are graceful and reminiscent of some of the Byzantine jewelry I saw in Bulgaria where the gold is so pure that it shines a deep gold. The dangling tips are sunstones.

    Below are bezel-set cabochon emeralds with sterling silver. The earwires are decorated with shiny hearts; below the oval emeralds are round hammered circles. Below the emerald earrings are dangle earrings with faceted bezel-set gemstones of pink chalcedony and garnets, also in sterling silver.

    Oh, and I am enjoying tremendously the SNOW that we got on Tuesday. It was a rare delight to witness snow falling from morning until into the night and I was happy all day long! The snow energized me, and I was working hard on fulfilling those New Year's resolutions that I make every year. Meanwhile, work still continues on the new site.

    Saturday, November 09, 2013

    Losing Weight, Kitties, and What About Jewelry?!

     I am the proud loser of 33 pounds!  I have been eating healfully since January of this year, eliminated all sodas, and even most artificial sweeteners, and I have learned to adore iced green tea - plain.  I've gone from wearing a size 12, sometimes 10, pant to a size 4! (Note: sizes have changed; even when I weighed 10 pounds less than I do now in the 'eighties, I still wore an 8, sometimes a 6 on rare occasions). 
    Sorry, but I have to brag just a little.  The main motivator was my son who told me that he wanted me to be around for a long time for my 4 year old grand-daughter. I want to be here too!
     What are the cat pictures?  The upper picture is of Cluny, my namesake, and the lower of Cuervo Sebastian; both are boys.  They like to hang out up here on the fourth floor with me to, ahem, help me make jewelry.  You haven't lived until you've spilled an entire container of small beads and watched 2 cats go crazy.  I like it when they help me as they are in the pictures here.
     Don't forget that it will soon be Christmas before you know it and you are going to want some jewelry!  If it's custom jewelry that you want, please let me know in plenty of time, so you can choose designs and beads and gemstones at your leisure.  
    Cluny and Cuervo will be here to help me!

    Sunday, February 10, 2013

    Versatile Citrine; The Romance of Labradorite

    citrine bracelet photo citrine-bracelet-e3_zpsbc5704ba.jpg

    Citrines are a favorite gemstone of mine; yes, it seems as though I say this about so many gemstones, but citrine is one of the gemstones I wear 2 or 3 times every week.  It is a versatile gemstone that can look dressy or casual and despite its being yellow, it works well with a lot of different clothing.  The citrine bracelet here has a touch of garnet (another very versatile stone) that grounds it. The three strands of the bracelet feature faceted nuggets of citrine in different sizes, faceted citrine rondelles, smooth rondelles, an artist's lampwork bead as a focal point and tiny little sterling silver Thai Karen Hill Tribes beads.  The final touch is a sterling toggle clasp that has cabochon citrines set into the ends of the toggle bar. Citrine really looks great with beige and khaki, pops with black, and lends a sparkle to white.
    citrine-bracelet photo citrine-bracelet-e4_zps7c0f0d53.jpg

    labradorite jewelry photo labradorite-jewelry-h4_zpse0b1a9b9.jpg

    I have been working with labradorite quite a bit lately. I find labradorite a romantic gemstone that works greatly on my imagination.  My mind dwells on northern climes, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Canada, and I think of the fairy tales I read as a child about Hans and Gerda, the Snow Queen, and the reindeer of Lapland. I have a romantic image of these Northern countries to this day and cannot wait to visit Scandanavia (alas, it's not high on the list of friends and family who prefer tropical locations). Labradorite will forever remind me of the Aurora Borealis with its flash of blue and other cool colors. The labradorite bracelet, above and below, is made of two strands of labradorite and sterling silver. Every gemstone has been chosen for flash, and the crowning glory of this bracelet is a flashy toggle clasp of sterling silver with a bezel-set labradorite gemstone in the toggle ring.
    labradorite jewelry photo labradorite-jewelry-h3_zps633ed912.jpg

    chalcedony jewelry photo chalcedony-jewelry-g8_zpsf477ed1e.jpg

    When I first got this lavender tinted faceted rectangles, I thought to myself, whatever will I do with these? They are an odd color and seem to change color a bit with the light. But I still loved them nonetheless and kept them where I could see them because I found them pleasurable to look at. Then I saw these artist's lampwork beads and realized that they were perfect for the chalcedony. With a minimum of sterling silver so as to let the chalcedony be the star, the necklace is mainly the lampwork, three focals, and the faceted rectangles. It is an odd piece of jewelry, unusual in its color, but one that I find compelling in its difference.
    chalcedony jewelry photo chalcedony-jewelry-g9_zpsd17d37e5.jpg


    Sunday, February 03, 2013

    Jewelry To Blog About!

    Who has time to blog when she is busy making jewelry? Certainly not I! And that explains my absence from this blog for a while. I have been busy making beauty as I hope that you will attest. Of course, I have been busy with some amethysts since they are the birthstone for February - and also since I love to work with amethysts anyway. The top bracelet is a beautiful, gem-quality amethyst bracelet made with cushion-cut amethysts and sterling silver.  It almost hurt me to make it because I love these amethysts so much that I want to make them into jewelry but keep them at the same time!  Once they are made into a bracelet such as this, it's as if those the amethysts no longer belong to me, and of course, I hope that they will go out in the world and be worn on someone's wrist with pride - but I will miss them.
      Below, this amethyst bracelet has some more of my favorite amethysts, but these couldn't be more different.  The three large, flat, flaceted slabs of amethyst that you see here have inclusions and are far from perfect. But they are translucent if a trifle cloudy in places, and I love them. And yes, I bought a lot of them so that the first thing that I did was to use a few to make a bracelet (with gold) for myself. The amethyst bracelet below is for sale though, and features not just 14 karat gold-filled accents, but also some of Robin Weber's fantastic lampwork beads with silver leaf.  They are so gorgeous.

    I've been working quite a bit with abalone as well and I thought I would try the two together: abalone and amethyst, it seemed like a good mix, especially when I saw the abalone embedded in this pendant with its pretty purple iridescence, and with the purple cabochon bezel-set in sterling silver at the bottom of the pendant. I was so taken with the pendant that I decided to use just the elements in the pendant for the abalone necklace. Sterling silver, abalone and freshwater pearl sticks. It really is a looker!
     photo abalone-jewelry-d8_zps84f82966.jpg

    And as usual with me, one thing leads to another. I kept looking at the abalone and freshwater pearls together and decided that I would like to put together something with their wonderful contrast of light and dark iridescence, so the necklace below was born. It's a classic, so much better than just a plain pearl necklace!
     photo abalone-jewelry-d7_zps653a498b.jpg

    To end on colorful note, here is a piece of chalcedony jewelry I am wild about! This bracelet is all chalcedony and sterling silver and just as colorful as it can be.  I especially love the focal faceted nugget of aqua chalcedony. To make it even more special, I added a colorful gemstone toggle clasp in sterling silver.
     photo chalcedony-jewelry-g7_zps9a5fc0f9.jpg
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