Saturday, December 17, 2005
Still in the realm of the Canyon Aesthetic is the next bracelet featuring lampwork beads, breciated jasper carved ovals and vase beads and deep burgundy freshwater pearls.
Cluny Grey Cluny Grey Jewelry
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
Karen Hill Tribe
Thursday, December 01, 2005
You can't miss this Virtual Trunk Show brought to you by the members of the International Jewelry Designers' Guild. Yes, I am a member, but so are many others, and the work is fabulous! If you are a jewelry fan, you have got to look, even if you can't buy right now! Only on Sunday starting at noon Eastern Standard Time - December 4, 2005.
Cluny Grey Jewelry
Thursday, November 24, 2005
I have been so busy selling jewelry that I haven't had much time for actually creating it, but I did put this charm bracelet together out of vintage lucite gilia flower beads, some Preciosa crystal, Swarovski crystal for the flower centers, and some other lampwork and glass beads. There is nothing quite so soothing to me as putting together a charm bracelet. I go into one of those "flow" states that is better than meditation where I feel myself centered in one place while doing one thing and thinking of nothing else. Another charm bracelet features the borosilicate beads of James Derrick Reeves and genuine natural aquamarine. These boro beads have beautiful depth and are perfect with the aquamarine since they have mysterious swirls of blue and green. Currently the top charm bracelet is up for auction on Ebay; the aquamarine can be found on our webiste.
Cluny Grey Jewelry Studio G Jewelry The Jewelry Blog
Friday, November 18, 2005
As it (finally) starts getting colder here, my thoughts turn to jewelry that sparkles. The November-December-January holiday period is that time of the year when many of us go to more gatherings than we may in all the other months of the year put together! When I think of parties, I think of attention-getting jewelry; when I was in grad school, jewelry was always important since I didn't have the money to spend on party clothes, so the jewelry I wore "dressed" up the outfit (quite often a dressy white silk shirt and a long black skirt) and made it seem more festive even though it may have been something I'd worn many times. One type of jewelry that I never wore during the day was crystal so it was great for going out in. Earrings were especially important since they drew attention to the face and hair; a necklace filled in the neckline and announced that I was going to a party.
The necklace set made with Preciosa crystals hanging down is typical of something I might have worn: it's fairly simple, classic, and it would draw attention to v of the silk blouse which would probably be unbuttoned one button lower than it usually was. The earrings, at over 2 inches long add a nice glow and sparkle, and are certainly not gaudy so that they could go comfortably many different places. The bracelet set in the first picture is great, too, since it has attention-getting earrings and the crystal of the bracelet with its little butterfly charm makes it special also.
The Jewelry Blog Cluny Grey Jewelry Studio G Jewelry
Thursday, November 10, 2005
For those who are interested, kyanite is associated with the astrological signs Taurus, Libra, and Aries. It is supposed to balance the yin and yang, enhance tranquility and psychic awareness, and dispel anger and frustration. Perhaps more of us should wear it since it is also said to increase mental awareness and lessen confusion!
The kyanite bracelet and earring set shown here is extremely feminine largely because of the great Thai Karen Hill Tribe sterling silver lily beads that hold small kyanite gemstone drums. The bright silver complements the kyanite in a way that couldn't be matched by gold or antiqued silver. The other elements of the bracelet are Turkish beads and cones of filigree, Bali sterling silver accents, and Karen Hill Tribe little flower charms.
This bracelet set is currently up for auction on Ebay; check user id: chloemarie99 or do a search for Cluny Grey.
For those of you who are interested in jewelry, making jewelry, or the jewelry business, check out The Beadboard. K. keeps up with the jewelry business so well that he even found my blog! The Beadboard covers everything from general information about jewelry to buying beads to setting up displays at shows. It's for professionals, hobbyists, and those who just like to keep up with what's going on in the jewelry world.
Saturday, November 05, 2005
The matching earrings I am especially fond of because of the wonderful gem quality topaz squares that are faceted. I added a bronze freshwater pearl to each one then hung them from sterling silver Bali earwires.
They work wonderfully well with the bracelet.
The next charm bracelet, also at auction on Ebay this week is called Grapevine and features lampwork beads by Texas bead artist Lisa Sharik. Lots of amethysts in different forms give interest to this bracelet. There are carved amethyst ovals, carved lotus flower rounds, faceted ovals, smooth rounds as well as smooth rounds of lepidolite and interesting faceted rondelles of violet crazy lace that has patterns that echo the swirls of the lampwork beads. The matching earrings are in the middle of the bracelet in the picture.
Sometimes when I work with purple, especially amethyst or lepidolite, I just want to continue to work with it even though my current project may be finished. That's how my next project came into being. A large clear amethyst nugget got me started, then I found a lampwork bead I liked, and I had to go ahead with this bracelet! It makes use of most of the elements in the charm bracelet, the amethysts, the violet crazy lace, but I also add some sage violet opal or sage violet amethyst as I've seen it called also. Those are the little faceted briolettes that make one part of the bracelet looked scalloped. Even on this bracelet there are charms. The second strand is a chain with amethyst charms hanging from it at intervals. I haven't named this bracelet yet, so if you have any good ideas for a name leave me a comment!
jewelry The Jewelry Blog
You can find these and similar jewellery at Cluny Grey Jewelry and at Studio G Jewelry
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
It features tourmalinated quartz, unakite(a mottled peach and green stone that takes some getting used to), and labradorite, a stone with wonderful Schiller effect (flash).Since the stones are all smooth with the exception of a small carved labradorite flower bead, the texture comes from the wonderful Bali sterling silver, the accents, beads, and the clasp, which is really beautiful.
Lately, it's hard to think of doing one colour, one stone! The Jewelry Blog The first bracelet is on auction at Ebay, ending tomorrow night; search for Cluny Grey or user id: chloemarie99. The second bracelet can be found on the Cluny Grey Jewelry website or in our Ebay store. Free shipping in the USA on our website! Also check out the Studio G Jewelry website with designs by Leslie Turtle as well as by Cluny Grey
Friday, October 28, 2005
Mother of Pearl and Kyanite Bangle, currently up for auction on Ebay: look for user id: chloemarie99 or do a search for Cluny Grey.
Saturday, October 22, 2005
citrines that are opaque. Beautiful citrines range from the palest yellow to a dark orange colour. It is a member of the quartz family, like amethyst, because most citrines started life as amethysts that were exposed to extreme heat. I suppose this explains the existence of the gemstone ametrine, which is half purple, half yellow or half citrine, half amethyst: parts of the stone were exposed to temperatures that other parts were not. So it is a good idea to keep your citrine jewelry away from heat and strong light.
For those of you who are interested, citrine represents the astrological signs Gemini, Aries, Libra, and Leo. It has long been thought to be an antidote for snake venom, and it is considered to be a healing and protective stone. It also helps with intellectual powers, mental focus, positive outlook, creativity, will power, courage, dieting and self-confidence.
The bracelet above was created with citrine nuggets with a good strong yellow colour, tiny citrine rondelles, and citrine chips. Lampwork beads by Burt Gumeson and Alyson Straley add interest as does the Bali sterling silver. A sterling silver prayer box hangs beside the toggle clasp.
The second citrine bracelet features nuggets, large and small, citrine rondelles and tiny rounds, Bali sterling silver, lampwork beads by Burt Gumeson, a star shaped toggle clasp, and Karen Hill Tribe flower and leaf charms from Thailand.
Cluny Grey Jewelry cluny grey citrine jewelry lampwork The
Jewelry Blog bracelet
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
Cluny Grey Jewelry Studio G Jewelry cluny grey necklace jewelry pearls The
Saturday, October 08, 2005
The necklace above, "Love Note," is beautiful and once again demonstrates the ability to make various materials work together. Sterling silver, brass, and tin from a candy container lose all vestiges of their origins when she combines them into a pendant and strings it on faceted dark salmon pearls that are hand-knotted. This necklace is contemporary, yet is reminiscent of some of my favourite Victorian jewelry.
My favourite of the 3 necklaces here is the sophisticated "Midnight Deco." This piece is made from sterling silver, 14 karat gold and a faceted smokey topaz. Its sculptural quality is proof that Jennifer Eustis is a jewelry designer that really deserves to be called an artist. One has the feeling that she could have been successful working with any medium, any form. Oh, she also made the sterling silver chain that this pendant hangs from. I told you she was versatile! "Love Note" and "Midnight Deco" will be offered for sale in the IJDG trunk show in November.
To see more of Jennifer's jewelry, and to read her weblog discussing her current pieces, her shows, etc., click here Leftside Art.
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
More and more I appreciate lampwork beads and the artists who create these beautiful wonders. Yes, it is pink and blue (no surprises there) but the first necklace celebrates lampwork beads and how lovely they look when combined with other elements, in this case, crystal, silver and moonstones. The lampwork beads in this necklace come from some of my favorite lampworkers: Burt and Scott Gumeson of Gumeson Designs, Jim Reeves of Gonzie and V3 Lampworks, and Lynn of Laffingull. Even the small nearly perfect blue spacers that you see here are lampwork beads from Laffingull as are the exquisite flower beads on either side of the focal bead in the lower strand of the necklace. The "bumpy" beads are from Gonzie and the ;ink beads with zigzags and blue "bumps" are from Gumeson Designs "jewel " collection. This necklace will be first put up for auction on our eBay site under the username chloemarie99.
My next bracelet is a favorite of mine since it features green garnet (also known as grossular garnets). I especially love the large flat faceted green garnet nugget that is the focal gemstone. The rough stone and the smaller lighter green stone are both green garnets in just 2 examples of their endless variation. Oddly enough, with green garnets, it is their inclusions that make them really complex and beautiful. The second silver strand features sterling silver Karen Hill Tribe flower charms and Vesuvianite rectangles (akin to green garnets). The silver-laced lampwork beads are by Lisa Sharik, a glass artist from Texas.
The last 2-strand bracelet here that combines lampwork and gemstones has more beads by Lisa Sharik, showing a more delicate side of her work. The gemstone featured here is chrysoprase, and only chrysoprase, a gemstone that has been considered of great value since ancient times. It is mentioned many times in the Bible when describing the wealth and beautiful possessions of some individual. Here most of the sterling silver accents are from the Karen Hill Tribes of Thailand including the delicate bright silver green leaves that dangle from the chain strand of the bracelet.
All of these pieces may appear first for auction on eBay at a far lower bidding price than they will be on our websites. Check them out by searching for Cluny Grey or by username chloemarie99.
Monday, September 26, 2005
Monday, September 19, 2005
I have been finding a lot of beautiful lampwork beads lately, and it's very hard to resist buying them. The charm bracelet to the left is an example; these wonderful lampwork beads by Flameworks are deep transparent blue and have deep pink roses on them. For someone who is going through a pink and blue phase, I couldn't pass them up. The rhodonite you see here, especially the ovals, rondelles, and long tubes are a beautiful pink - not the mauve you so often see in rhodonite. They were made for these beads - and how better to show them off than in a charm bracelet with a lot of bright sterling silver, both Turkish and Karen Hill Tribe, and vintage lucite flowers in the same deep transparent blue. I doubled the sterling silver chain because this bracelet is heavy!
I kept with the pink and blue theme, only this time I used the more delicate end of the colour spectrum inspirted by the "Jewels" lampwork beads of Burt and Scott Gumeson of Gumeson Designs. Mixed with blue lace agate nugget and rounds, rainbow moonstone that flashes blue, and a blue chalcedony nugget and a sterling silver bead embedded with 2 blue chalcedony cabochons, this is a very feminine bracelet. The second strand has more wire-wrapped rainbow moonstone faceted rondelles, some dangling, and a link chain that has an engraved pattern on it. The little "S" clasp is sterling silver with a rainbow moonstone cabochon bezel set in its middle.
The necklace to the left features Peruvian pink opals, pale pink Biwa stick pearls and more lampwork beads ("Jewels") by the Gumesons and floral beads by Laffingull beads. All the metal components are sterling silver.
Finally, just to prove that I am not totally fixated on pink and blue, my 2 strand fluorite bracelet also makes use of an artist's lampwork beads. These are by Alyson Straley and are the perfect colours to mix with fluorite.
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
Her whole Silver Parrot site is not just peyote however; check out the David Christensen furnace glass bracelets that she does - and then everything else (very nice drippy chandelier earrings). Don't you just love beautiful jewelry?
**The elegance of the "Grey Flannel" tubular peyote earrings were the first thing that caught my eye (1st picture above). I love gold and the colours of this peyote bracelet really appealed to me. The peyote earrings and bracelet below illustrate one of KJ's sets done in this painstaking timeless artform.
While you're on the site, check out her Silver Parrot Designs Jewelry Blog also where she posts her newest work!
Sunday, September 11, 2005
Lapis Lazuli is an alternate September birthstone to sapphire.
I have loved lapis lazuli since 1977 when I received a ring with a lapis inlay set in sterling silver from a boyfriend whose sister had crafted it herself. A lovely deep rich blue stone with flashes of pyrite (also known as "fool's gold), it appealed to me instantly.
Lapis also has a rich history. It was used lavishly in ancient Mesopotamia and in Persia, and was favored by the Greeks and Romans as well. The Mesopotamian city of Ur traded in lapis as early as 4,000 B.C. The name comes from the Latin for stone, lapis, and from the Arabic for blue, azul.
The Romans believed that lapis was an aphrodisiac (didn't the Romans think everything was an aphrodisiac?)
In the Early Renaissance, ground lapis was used to colour ultramarine, the paint used by artists to portray seas and skies in paintings (and very often the robes of the Virgin Mary). It is still mined in Afghanistan at ancient sites as well as Chile; there are also a few deposits in Colorado.
The lapis bracelet above contains a large nugget of lapis lazuli, longish pillow beads of fine lapis lazuli with nice flecks of gold pyrite, long rice beads of fine lapis, very blue small lapis coins, lapis cubes, iolite rondelles, and a very liberal use of vermeil - beads, chain, toggle, accents. The wonderful lampwork beads are borosilicate by the talented James Reeves of Gonzie and V 3 Glassworks. This bracelet will be listed for sale on our website Cluny Grey Jewelry.
For those of you interested, here are some of the supposed benefits of lapis lazuli:
- Protects from physical danger and psychic attacks
- eliminates of stress
- helps overcome depression
- helps symptoms of vertigo and insomnia
- brings good luck
- increases love, wisdom, compassion, friendship, prosperity, fertility, spirtuality, mysticism, healing, creativity
Thursday, September 08, 2005
In the bracelet above and to the left, I've used a luscious faceted amethyst nugget, carved oval and faceted oval amethysts, little amethyst rondelles, and a Cape Amethyst (very light coloured) flat rectangle. To add to the mix, I put in 3 large faceted purple crazy lace agate rondelles separated by Bali-style vermeil and a largish carved flower of mingled purple and light green fluorite. I love the 14 karat gold and vermeil with this. It just wouldn't be as rich in silver!
The large teardrop earrings are lepidolite, a stone that is known for its flakes of mica that cause it to sparkle (and I love anything that sparkles) in the light. The opaque lepidolite does look good with the bright sterling silver. The large slab of lepidoloite in the bangle bracelet shows the sparkle of lepidolite to better advantage. The small lepidolite rounds seem tame by comparison. Once again I've use the very bright, or as some call it "white" sterling silver because it picks up the sparkle of the lepidolite so well.
The bangle bracelet below features 2 large sugilite barrels on either side of a lampwork bead made by Gumeson Designs (I highly recommend the work of Burt and Scott Gumeson). The sugilite, too, is usually opaque and is usually described as "violet" although I have seen creamy swirls in both sugilite and lepidolite.
By the way, all the jewelry here will be posted on theCluny Grey Jewelry website within the next week.
The rarest of the purple stones is probably charoite, found only in Russia. I'll save my example of charoite jewelry for the next blog since at present the stones are sitting by my workbench!The
Thursday, September 01, 2005
Maybe my analogy isn't very apt, but the basic nugget bracelet is what I sell the most of; I think of the nugget bracelet as the "meat and potatoes" jewelry although if you look at the pink rhodonite bracelet to the left with the smooth oval nuggets and Bali white sterling silver, meat and potatoes may not be what comes to mind. But it is a favorite - and even when it is plainer - no sterling silver other than a clasp perhaps. But most designers savour what I am calling the "French cuisine" of the bead jewelry world: the assymetrical piece that may mix colours, textures, types of stones, cuts of stones, and even stones of different quality so that the end result is a bracelet that really is "one of a kind."
First, the ruby and lampwork bead bracelet here mixes genuine natural ruby rounds in a loosely braided strand that curves around forming about 65 % of the bracelet; the artists' lampwork beads are by Burt and Scott Gumeson of Gumeson Designs.
The rubies are a darker purplish colour, so the lampwork with its glowing white bumps on an amethyst colour is perfect. Three Swarovski crystal rondelles in amethyst provide interest on one side of the lampwork (the 3 large lampwork beads are sandwiched between Turkish sterling silver filigree) and a smaller plain dark purple lampwork bead is on the other side. Bali beaded accents join with Turkish silver and Karen Hill Tribe (from Thailand) charms and beads and ruby dangles so that opposite the clasp there is a charm bracelet effect. The clasp, a round lobster clasp latches onto one of a number of links in a large link sterling silver chain, so that the bracelet is adjustable.
Finally, in answer to an "Orange Challenge" the International Jewelry Guild was holding (which I didn't get to enter because of family circumstances), I bought the small lampwork beads in cobalt and orange from Laffingull beads. I still made my bracelet though after the challenge ended. One strand of this bracelet features wirework and sterling silver chain. A couple of Laguna Botswana agates are thrown into the mix of carnelian heishi, rondelles, and little charms - all accented by sterling silver. The larger strand has the lampwork beads grouped together (the cobalt blue really pops!), more heishi, rondelles, a carved rectangular bead, a large unformed nugget, a translucent faceted rondelle, and a great carved round bead - all looking great with groups of sterling silver beads and rondelles around them.
I've been told that you wouldn't want to eat French cuisine everyday (I don't believe it though) and that people would yearn for meat and potatoes after such fine fare (maybe not us vegetarians), so while I love to experiment and mix, I still have a large inventory of nugget bracelets. The
Special Note to Jewelry Designers: The Jewelweaver, an online site selling jewelry supplies from precious and semi-precious stones and beads to all kinds of findings from sterling silver to vermeil, tools, wires, etc. is donating 5% of every order they receive to help the victims of Katrina, including our animal friends who are often left behind to fend for themselves as their families barely escape with their lives. You have to do nothing - only order - the donation is automatic and spread amongst the charities. Their quality is superb and I recommend their products anytime, but if you've never been to their site, please check them out. The Jewelweaver
Saturday, August 27, 2005
I call this one "A Thousand Points of Light" and it has just about everything around here that is shiny except the kitchen sink! (Which by the way is not exactly shiny right now, but has last night's pasta pan still sitting in it---I've been making jewelry all day). This bracelet is sterling silver and contains Swarovski crystals, Preciosa crystals, some Czech fire-polished beads, vintage lucite flower beads in frosted white and crystal clear, rock crystal gemstone points, Bali sterling silver beads, rock crystal nuggets, and lots of rainbow moonstone with its flashing blue fire. In fact, maybe I should have called this bracelet "Flash"; in the sunshine it does look as though someone had plugged it in! Click on the picture since you have to see the large version to appreciate this. I lost count of the number of charms. .The
Tuesday, August 23, 2005
Perfect for this Fall, back-to-school season: a briolette necklace in a wonderful Fall orange-red tone that enhances everything you wear it with. Great for basic black, looks fantastic with bright pink, camel and turquoise especially. Only the little rondelles are carnelian; all the other stones, including the glowing teardrop briolettes, are Laguna Botswana agate! These are a wonderful translucent stone so clearly beautiful that the whole necklace reminds me of hard candy!
Here is a small bracelet that can match the necklace. Once again, only the little rondelles are carnelian; all of the nuggets are Laguna Botswana agate. The stones in this bracelet show the wonderful translucence (what I call the "hard candy" effect) and the range of hot colours in this gorgeous stone. The stones are so beautiful that the only embellishment for the bracelet is its sterling silver toggle clasp.
Below is a bracelet with a pale carnelian oval as its centerpiece. Red carnelian rondelles and nuggets in deep orange join with different coloured carnelian heishi beads and a few sterling silver accents. While the carnelian is beautiful, look at the difference between it and the Laguna Botswana agates.
Finally, an example of breaking my own rule. I usually always put something, a tiny stone or even a tiny freshwater pearl if I want a nugget necklace with nothing detracting from the nuggets. I don't like even a hint of the wire underneath to show. However, here I wanted the effect of these Indian agate nuggets with their characteristic banding and beautiful tones and shadings of colour without the detraction of any other element, even silver, so I have broken my rule. Luckily, the nuggets have smooth ends and even drill holes so that when worn, the wire does not show at all. The "matching" bracelet however, has carnelian heishi beads between the same Indian agate nuggets. They work to make the bracelet more physically flexible which is important since we're dealing with a smaller circle of stones here. I finished this bracelet with a star-shaped toggle clasp that I love for its different look: feminine yet sturdy. I have also made nugget earrings to match this set which I will post later. The Indian agate is perfect to wear to work or school; its many colours mean that it looks great with khaki, camel, almost all the neutrals--even taupe--yet it uses the colours that we have come to associate with autumn. If you make a nugget necklace and do not want to add any other elements, you must be sure that the ends of those nuggets have consistent even drill holes and that the ends will fit together smoothly. the jewelry blog
NOTE: Most of my pictures are extremely large if you click on them so that you can see details up close. In most cases, they will fill your entire screen.The
Thursday, August 18, 2005
This is a charm bracelet made from exquisite floral beads from Jon at Bubblebeader. I don't know how he does it! The floral beads have white petals, green centers, and are a marvelous shade of yellow that has a blush of apricot in some places. They have a matte finish and are just beautiful. The cream beads with buttercream swirls are by Lisa Sharik. I added handmade charms of sterling silver Bali beads and genuine citrine nuggets, Turkish sterling silver, and little gemstone citrine rondelles. The earrings are really special and show off the floral beads. Thanks, Jon! This is on auction at Ebay this week, sold as a set. the jewelry blog.The
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
I love leopardskin jasper, and it's a perfect stone for this Fall. Its many patterns, the main one gives it its name, add variety and interest to a monochromatic outfit--my favorite! (I really do believe that dressing in one colour from head to toe makes you look slimmer). And leopardskin jasper is exceptionally versatile because of the interplay of colours in its striped, spotted, streaky and mottled patterns. This bracelet and earring set uses what some people refer to as red leopardskin jasper to distinguish it from its counterpart with a more brown or golden tone. The peach and pink are beautiful with brown, grey, charcoal, black and even what appears to be some dark olive green running through it. There is really no way to list the colours in leopardskin since just when you think you've finished, you realize you could identify another shade of peach or pink or red or grey. Of course, this set would jazz up basic black, but would look smashing with wine, and with olive green, and moss green, and ginger and spice....and well, you get the idea. The earrings are large enough to show up even on those with long hair.
This bracelet features roughly cut but highly polished tourmalines in varying shades, from the bright dark pink to a dark green. We don't need to go over those Fall colours again for you to realize how well this bracelet and earrings would match. What really makes this set special is that the little round beads between each of the tourmalines are genuine natural rubies. They are opaque and a rich, dark red. This is a weighty bracelet that will be able to carry those heavier Fall clothes.
All of the metal on the jewelry photographed here is sterling silver.the jewelry blog