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

Monday, January 07, 2013

Garnets for January!

Ah, garnets, a favorite of so many people for so many years! This wonderful red gemstone was named after the pomegranate, most likely because of the color, although garnets come in many different colors including gold, brown, and green.  And I have seen red garnets so dark that they look almost black!
   I am a garnet lover.  I have a garnet ring, an oval that I wear almost everyday. I also have a garnet bracelet (with gold, of course) made of flat, faceted nuggets, made by me, that I wear almost everyday. Garnets are wonderfully versatile and can be worn with most colors.  
  Garnets are the birthstone for January, and we have quite a few garnet bracelets at Cluny Grey for you to peruse.  One of the new ones you can see here, above and below, is a double stranded bracelet with a variety of different garnets including faceted nuggets and my favorite little faceted cushion-cut rectangles.  This garnet bracelet is enhance with borosilicate lampwork beads that pick up the color of the garnets and adds just a touch more. Pretty sterling silver gives the bracelet a feminine touch, but I especially love the toggle clasp that has an bezel-set faceted garnet in it.

Of course, if you know me, you know that I love to mix gemstones, and the more I like a gemstone, the more that I want to mix it! I love aquamarines and thought these pretty deep blue faceted aquamarines would make a great foil for the garnets.  I was right! The sterling toggle clasp is in the shape of a butterfly. All of these gemstones are very fine.

I told you garnets came in other colors! I adore green garnets especially when they are translucent as these are.  Green garnets are rarer than red garnets and really pretty. The faceted nuggets and square here are mixed with plenty of sterling silver. The second strand of the bracelet features one of my favorite twisted rope sterling chains with three Thai Karen Hill Tribes charms hanging at intervals.
One strand simple garnet bracelets, below, for the purist who wants her garnets unadulterated. Accented only by sterling silver, these garnets show off their shapes, first in sterling silver, then in a gold version.

Next post, garnet earrings and garnet necklaces!


Saturday, October 27, 2012

Gold Bangles and Abalone

Fall is truly here although we still have most days in the 70's and it did hit 80 degrees this week. Never mind. I'm wearing my Fall clothes and busily finishing transferring all my warm weather clothing to another closet. Along with seeing what clothes I have that are still going to "work" for me this year, I also have all my jewelry, including costume jewelry, out to see what necklaces and bracelets are going to look good with what new outfits.  Does anyone else do this every year?
     I'm a bangle lover. Bangle bracelets have been a favorite of mine since I was in junior high and longed for a simple real gold bracelet. The bangle bracelet is one jewelry trend that has never really gone out of style. These gold bangles, however, combine gemstones with my gold for a look that is both colorful and classic.  Gold bangle bracelets look fantastic with your work clothes, then go out to happy hour and dress up well, too.
   Above is pink tourmaline (difficult to find) in the form of dainty little hearts; below is a lapis bracelet made with smooth lapis rounds. Lapis bangle bracelets look great with jeans!

Above and below, abalone is scrumptious for bangle bracelets.  Because the actual pieces of abalone are so beautiful, bangle bracelets are a wonderful venue to show off the gorgeous colors. (All the gold here is 14 karat goldfill).

Above is a beautiful aquamarine bangle bracelet. This gold bangle bracelet has pretty blue aquamarine flat nuggets in the center, and twisted bangles on the side. A twisted toggle clasp adds to the texture of the bracelet as do the sharply faceted aquamarine rondelles and fluted caps on either side.
The abalone bracelet, above, features two strands of abalone and sterling silver.  This bracelet really, really gleams.  I've kept the sea theme going on with a pretty seashell charm and a starfish charm. Little stick beads are from the Thai Karen Hill Tribes and are so pretty with the different look they give the bracelet.
  Be sure to get your Christmas orders in early.  For once, I will not be going out of the country this Christmas, but it's still good to start working on custom orders as soon as possible!


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Unique Bracelets

I've been doing a lot of catch-up work since returning from Paris, but have made 4 rather different bracelets in the last week.  Each unique bracelet has something about it that I love.  
  In the top bracelet, I love the combination of the warm sparkly sunstone with the cool aquamarine and sterling silver.  The little Thai Karen Hill Tribe beads in the second strand are an accent I am especially fond of because of their sparkle.
  Below, the drusy bracelet that you see here has one large sparkling focal drusy with a bluish tint to it.  The agate beads (which are smooth in contrast to the rough drusy) are a wonderful mixture of black, bluish grey and grey with some translucence.  The sterling silver charm here is a faceted blue topaz bezel-set in sterling silver. I love this bracelet because of its versatility; with jeans, it has an organic, semi-hippy look; with a little black dress or a suit, it's very sophisticated.

The third bracelet, above, is one of my favorite mixtures: turquoise, lapis, and carnelian.  The turquoise here is especially beautiful, a deep blue, and the large lapis nugget has sparkling gold pyrite in just the right amount! The accents are all 14 karat gold-filled with the exception of the clasp which is vermeil.
The fourth bracelet is made of cherry quartz (this is glass, not a real gemstone) with cloisonne and vermeil accents. Cherry quartz is such a cheerful material to work with that I don't mind that it isn't really a gemstone; when it works (as it does here with the cloisonne), it just works!
  Going back to school?  Don't forget your jewelry! FREE SHIPPING with any jewelry purchase over $50.00! (USA only)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Back from Paris: French Jewelry!

 I've returned from a trip to Paris - a wonderful time! Unusually cool weather made walking in Paris even more fun than usual.  Of course, I had to check out the jewelry, not always easy to do when I'm with my DH, son, daughter-in-law, and three-year-old grand-daughter.  I was especially careful to notice what French women were wearing, both young and old.
  Some eye candy first:  above is a wild creation I fell in love with (the matching earrings are below the necklace.  It's made of rhinestones and crystals and is certainly not what you'd call an everyday piece!  Crystals shoot out from long strands of silver in a way that reminds me of 4th of July fireworks!
   Below, another statement necklace from our Pantheon of French jewelry.  I think of this as a peacock necklace and believe that it would actually be very wearable with the right dress. It does not look cheap and is very beautiful in person!
 Below, more rhinestones and crystals.
 The French are known for their whimsey and their jewelry is often no exception. Below is a pretty necklace and earring set that is made from mother-of-pearl buttons.  It's really quite striking.
 Another statement necklace: I found quite a bit of what I would call the "tribal influence" in the jewelry in stores.  I didn't see many people wearing these however. The one on the bottom is made with lucite.
 Another necklace made from natural materials, such as bamboo, mixed with lucite.
 The skull trend is still on spot in Paris as you can see here.  The little turtle in the middle is made of colored rhinestones and I did see younger Parisian girls wearing them - on jean jackets!
 Below, I saw quite a few people wearing chandelier earrings, some quite elaborate. 

I also saw more frequently obviously Parisian women wearing something like this simple cross (but a very expensive antique) with a shorter chain.  And I saw that most women, especially those over 30, were wearing gold.  Almost all the gold here is 18 karat which is a richer, more yellow gold than the 14 karat that we are accustomed to.
  French women seem to wear pearls for everyday often.  Below is a Cluny Grey necklace, but it is very typical of what I saw French women wearing oddly enough.  Pearls mixed with softly colored natural stones were fairly common, as were pearls in white, cream, grey, pale pink, beige, and gold.
Many women also wore something similar to the Cluny Grey chalcedony necklace above when they were a necklace other than a simple pendant on a gold chain or pearls.  The gemstones were almost always in soft colors or pastels. But when they wore these gemstone necklaces, their earrings were very simple, a stone or pearl stud, and the only other jewelry they wore was a ring or a gold bangle or chain bracelet.

Above, dangling earrings that would look right at home in Paris.
  For all the glitz I saw in the shops, I seldom actually saw them on Parisian women, daytime or nighttime.
  What did I wear? Smallish plain gold hoops, a small mixed gemstone necklace and a bracelet that my grand-daughter would choose for me daily.  The bracelet wasn't always a perfect match, but she certainly enjoyed choosing it.  What did 3 year old grand-daughter wear? One of my good gemstone necklaces - yes, she really did!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Our Favorite Jewelry Pieces Under $70

I am busily making jewelry and trying to enjoy the summer, too! While the prices for my supplies, especially sterling silver, continue to rise, we do have some great deals on our Cluny Grey website. All the bracelets here are on our website and are under $70.00!!! Naturally they are well made with genuine stones (unless otherwise specified) and sterling silver, vermiel or 14 karat goldfill. The earrings that you see here are mostly under $30.00! So if you are looking for a bargain, a gift, or just something special to spice up last year's summer outfit, check these out! They are the tips of the iceberg in our lower-priced jewelry!
  Above, on our Nugget Bracelets page, we have a blue opal and amethyst bracelet with sterling silver. The soft blues of the opaque blue opals complement the wonderful purple translucence of the amethyst.  At $53.99, it's a real steal!
  Below, one of the few glass stones we have ever used is strawberry quartz.  We just had to have these because the flat, faceted stones are so pretty and chunky.  The horseshoe-shaped clasp and charm hanging beside it are both sterling silver.  And it's under $50.00!

My favorite thing about this chalcedony bracelet (found on our Chalcedony Jewelry page) is the chalcedony gemstones.  They are a wonderful yellow that seems to glow!  How perfect for summer! The sterling silver toggle clasp is large enough to carry these pretty faceted nuggets. We also have yellow chalcedony earrings found on the same page (there are more yellow chalcedony earrings, too). These earrings are special because of the pretty earwires which have intricate roses on the front.

Some of our best bargains in bracelets can be found on our Freshwater Pearl Bracelets page. About 5 years ago I was fortunate enough to buy a huge quantity of freshwater pearls in different shapes, sizes, and colors. I bought so many that I received them at a wonderfully low price and I still have some stockpiled!  Below, this freshwater pearl bracelet is made with creamy marquise freshwater pearls and rainbow moonstone rondelles with pretty flashes of blue! The flower charm and curved lobster clasp are sterling silver. At 51.99, this bracelet with its quality rainbow moonstone is a bargain!

The bracelet below is composed of larger yellow freshwater pearls and Swarovski crystals.  The sterling silver really adds to the feminine look of this bracelet.
   The brown freshwater pearl bracelet below boasts 14 karat goldfilled accents and a gorgeous faceted olive bead of smoky quartz.  It will be on our website shortly.

The earrings you see above can be found on our Coin Pearl Earrings page.These bronze-brown earrings have Swarovski crystals and sterling silver. These are gorgeous and they are only $19.99!
   The earrings below are from our Coral Earrings page and mix peachy-pink coral rounds with vermeil and pretty black onyx faceted teardrops.  They have a wonderful Deco look to them and would be perfect for your summer wardrobe.

Above and below are ruby earrings, yes, genuine rubies! Above, the rubies are mixed with 14 karat goldfilled accents, and below they are mixed with gold vermeil. Can you imagine owning ruby jewelry for under $70.00 - and these are not microscopic ruby chips, either.

Here is a pair of my favorite earrings, found on our Unusual Jewelry page.  These gorgeous earrings are made with 14 karat goldfill, gem-quality Swiss blue topazes and rectangular citrines, and amethysts carved into the shape of flowers.  I love these! Unique and beautiful!

Another good source of bargains on the Cluny Grey website is our Bangle Bracelets page.  Here are two sterling silver bangles, the top with citrines, the bottom with Swarovski crystals. The bottom bracelet is made with older sterling silver stock bought when it was much cheaper. The result: this silver bangle bracelet is only 56.99!  With today's materials, it would be close to twice that much since it not only has Thai Karen Hill Tribes sterling curved, hand-decorated sides, but intricately made accents of Turkish sterling silver.
Also, to keep costs down, don't forget that we ship first class FREE in the USA with every purchase over $50.00 and a low $1.95 for purchases under $50.00! Enjoy shopping!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Bracelets for Spring: Part I

It is now officially Spring, and I am loving it! Thank goodness I live in a place with four seasons, since the change into each one seems to rejuvenate me.  Spring here in Washington is beautiful; the cherry blossoms are everywhere and they are truly beautiful (I'll have some cherry blossom bracelets up soon).  Our daffodils started blooming about three weeks ago.  I don't know about you, but I'm sleeping with the windows cracked so the cool night air can come in (forget the pollen count!) and I've been cleaning everything in the house. I have found some time to make some new jewelry, including the bracelets that you see on the page today.
   Above, a handmade bracelet that is truly unique combines emeralds, sapphires, rubies, and amethysts for a different looks.  Tiny little flower charms from the Thai Karen Hill Tribes are at intervals around the bracelet.
I recently found these gorgeous blue lace agate faceted nuggets at a favorite source; they have a high polish and beige and brown "skin" at one end.  The artist's lampwork glass beads are some of my favorites. Karen Hill Tribes sterling swirl and arrow charms are at three places on the bracelet.
The rest of the bracelets today are made of moonstones.When many people think of moonstones, they only think of the rainbow moonstone with its "flash", but moonstone comes in many colours.  The first bracelet, below, is made entirely of moonstones with sterling silver and artist's lampwork beads.  The dark greenish-grey faceted nuggets are moonstones as are the white faceted nuggets.  I love the dragonfly toggle clasp.
The next three moonstone bracelets are made from dusky peachy-pink faceted moonstones of different sizes. First, large faceted nuggets are complemented by a single special moonstone artist's lampwork bead.
If you look carefully at the pictures,you can see that these moonstones have a gleam to them, so while they may not exhibit the "flash" of rainbow moonstone, they have a pretty sheen to them and a flash that is the same colour as the stones themselves. 
Below, this moonstone bracelet has gorgeous silver studded artist's lampwork beads with a frostiness that goes perfectly with the moonstones. 
 The last moonstone bracelet features smaller faceted rectangles with a gorgeous sheen and plenty of sterling silver.

I hope you are enjoying these Spring days as much as I am!