Archive of ‘New pieces’ category

Finished pieces

| New pieces

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Hello friends, I finished a number of pieces and I must say, I’m quite happy with how they turned out.  Remember the sky blue piece from last Monday? Here it is!  I decided to make the silver foil bead into a pendant for this necklace and it hangs perfectly on the decolleté.

I’m fortunate enough to work next to a big window and where I sit, I can see these trees with their gorgeous green colors. They range from deep dark green to a more summery hue.  I was looking through my bead box one day and I came across these vintage Czech glass beads from the 40s and they are the exact color as some of the trees I see outside. I just had to make something with them. And here is what I came up with.

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And in keeping with the green theme, I also came up with a bracelet, which is not exactly the same, but to my mind, compliments nicely the necklace.

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And while we are on bracelets, I also made a simple bracelet in a vibrant blue shade but the focal bead on this one is really interesting. Its full of little sparkles and looks almost like ice when you hold it up against the light.20140610-182408-66248228.jpg

 

Finally, since it is summer and as such the time for showing off tanned legs, I thought I’d add another anklet to the current collection.  These little rondelle beads are from the late 30s and are harder to come by than the bigger rondelles. I’m quite happy to have a few of them around. 20140610-182409-66249172.jpgEh voila, hope you’ve enjoyed all these new pieces.  As always, if interested in any of them, don’t hesitate to drop me a line!

 

 

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The beginnings of a new piece

| New pieces

Ta20140609-101248-36768220.jpgHello friends, I hope you’re all having a great start to your week! Despite a few gray and rainy days here and there, we’ve been largely blessed with sunny blue skies and summer like temperatures. It has certainly inspired my current palette of colors.

Take for example, this new piece I’m working on.  This beautiful silver foil glass bead will act as the focal bead.  It’s a fairly large bead and is in great condition for something that was made in the 40s.  I love its summer colors of white and blue.  And I have to say its the exact color of the sky as I look out my window!

I can’t wait to show you the finished piece!

 

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Inspired by spring

| New pieces

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Despite today’s gray and leaden skies, nature is marching inexorably in springs path. The garden is carpeted with dandelions and all the trees have tender little leaves. I’m inspired by all this burgeoning greenery. From my beadbox comes some spring colored glass beads. These are Czech glass beads from the 50s. I’m thinking I’ll make a pretty bracelet with these.

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Learning a new skill

| Jewelry, New pieces, Uncategorized

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Hello friends, I hope you all had a wonderful and serene Easter break. Its back to work chez nous as well so I thought I’d share with you something new I’m working on. Despite working with beads for quite some time now, I haven’t actually had time to learn the stitches that are so important to beadwork.  Peyote stitch, right angle weave, herringbone stitch are just some of the stitches that serious beaders learn to create beautiful and intricate works that incorporate hundreds of beads.  I’ve always used the bigger beads and so never saw the need to do these stitches.

But I finally decided to take the plunge when a class in bead work came up with a focus on the peyote stitch.  Let me tell you that it is quite a challenge. First, as with any other skill, you are trying to learn, it takes a long time to get the technique down pat. Secondly, it will take hours and hours of work (much more than what I am accustomed to) before I can have the final (beautiful) finished product. You can see my fledging efforts here.

Learning this new weave requires patience, dexterity and precision, miss a step and the whole pattern is shot.  You can’t imagine the number of times I’ve had to redo this part (which is only just the beginning) in order to finish it. And its not quite perfect yet either! 20140423-093806.jpg

 

There is no easy gratification to be had with this kind of work. It’ll take a long time before I can get it to look like one of the the cuffs pictured here below.  And I’m impatient to get to it and start doing more projects. But, as my teacher is so fond of telling us, there is no short cut to get there just the old fashioned way of working away till it gets done.  20140423-094041.jpgI think the results will be well worth it though.

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A series of new necklaces

| New pieces

Friends, it’s a stormy start to the week. A change from the wonderful weather we had last week. When it’s nice out, it’s hard to sit inside and work but I did get some new pieces finished.

This first piece is a sautoir style necklace composed of lovely French glass beads from the 60s. I love this shade. There’s something very Mediterranean about it. And because it’s a sautoir, this can be worn long or looped twice around the neck. It’s quite a versatile piece.

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The second necklace features bright red orange glass beads decorated with gold bead caps. The beads are also from France in the 60s.20140414-093915.jpgI really like the look of rosary style necklaces and this is my not completely asymmetrical take on that.  These beads are a lovely lavender shade and its hard to see through the photo but they are a bit like crackle beads.   These are vintage French glass beads from the 50s,20140414-094203.jpgStill keeping with the lavender color scheme, this necklace features some vintage opaque glass beads with decorative silver tone bead caps.  I have a hard time working with the silver color, whenever I start a piece, my immediate instinct is to use gold (as you can see from the three preceding necklaces!).  There’s something immediately accessible with gold though I’ve had a number of people ask me for pieces in silver. This necklace is one of my few attempts. Its simple but I like how it turned out. This encourages me to try to incorporate more silver colors in my work. Last point,  I love that lavender goes well with silver and gold. 20140414-114606.jpg

Here’s to a good week ahead of us!

 

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Pretty new things for Monday

| New pieces

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Hello friends, I hope you all had a wonderful weekend! Are you all excited about the new week’s possibilities? I finished some of the pieces I started last week and I’m excited to show you all what’s new this week.I love working with filigree elements. There’s something timelessly pretty about them.  I’m fortunate enough to have filigree elements from the 40s/50s and this week’s jewelry features them.

First up is this long green themed necklace.  The two focal beads are what I like to call crackle glass, they look almost like they have ice in them and they are a lovely mint green shade. I love dangles on a necklace and I think it goes really well with the filigree in the middle.  The beads are all vintage from the 50s.

My collection is not complete without earrings and this week features twin pairs.  The first pair features Italian red wedding cake beads from the beginning of the 20th century.  Don’t you just love the trailings on these beads?

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And I also have a blue pair of wedding cake beads, also from the beginning of the 20th century.  I love the filigree dangle on this one, its from the early 50s.

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I also made some bracelets and wouldn’t you know it, I stuck to the pink palette with the exception of one. I know, I know, I promise to start making bracelets in other colors the next time!

This first bracelet is a simple one featuring a lovely filigree element and two red crystal shaped beads.  I had a few of these filigree links that I had used on a necklace but for some reason, I found a last one at the bottom of one of my bead boxes. I couldn’t figure out how to use it since it was all by itself, till I realized that it was perfect as a focal piece!

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And here come the pink bracelets.  In my defense, they’re all various shades of pink.

There’s this one in frosted matt shades and shapes.  The long rectangular beads are Bohemian beads from the 50s while the others are French glass beads.20140407-095619.jpg

There’s a super simple one for those days when you just want to put something pretty on your wrist and be on your way.

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And finally here is one in all shades of delicate blush. I love the color blush, there’s something really fresh and delicate about it.

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Eh voila! Now tell me, which one is your favorite?

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Sneak peek

| Beads, New pieces

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I’m definitely into the pink palette as I continue to work on the new collection. Here’s a sneak peek of what’s on my work table today.  These are pretty pink French pate de verre beads from the 50s.

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Pretty in pink

| Beads, Jewelry, New pieces

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This morning we are blessed with sunny blue skies! Hooray for spring! I looked over my new selection of jewelry and it seems that my palette is dominated by pretty pinks and lavender. I suppose its my way of thinking myself into spring?

This morning’s selection is mostly earrings and two bracelets.  The first bracelet (pictured above) features vintage French beads from the 50s decorated with gold tone caps. I love this combination of pink and gold, its rich without being brassy.  I especially love the two carved beads, they’re a lovely shade of pink that recalls rose quartz.

I had a hard time capturing the lavender pink shade of these earrings.  Its almost opaque and because it is quite simple in style, goes with a lot of things.  These are Czech glass beads from the 50s as well.

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I think it goes quite beautifully with this next bracelet.  This one features vintage violet Czech beads but what makes it stand out are the little crown beads interspersed between each bead. These are French beads from the late 30s and were used to decorate women’s clothes.  They’re quite rare now and I was pleased to have found some.

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If I were forced to choose my favorite piece of jewelry, I’d have to pick earrings. I almost never leave home without a pair. Whenever I’m not feeling particularly creative, I find that making a pair of earrings will bring me back on track.

This pair of silver pink earrings are vintage foil glass beads from France and they date back to the 50s.  These beads are interesting because one can see through the base of the bead itself.  This makes me wonder about the person who made this bead.  Was this deliberate or was it accidentally made like this and left as is?

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And finally the last but not the least, a fun pair of pink crystal drop earrings.  You put this one on and you are good to go!20140331-113536.jpg

 

 

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A selection of new jewelry

| Jewelry, New pieces

Hello friends, it may not look it (as I write, its snowing yet again!) but spring is upon us! What better time than now to refresh our jewelry wardrobe?  With that in mind, I’d like to share some new pieces that’s sure to brighten up your spring wardrobe!

This first one is in a cool palette of sky blue and pale pink.  The focal bead is very special. It’s a big Murano bead with hand painted gold, pink and white trailings. It dates back to the 60s.  This necklace is a long sautoir style one and comes with a matching pair of earrings.

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This second necklace features two beautiful elbow shaped  Venetian trade beads from the late 1800s.  Elbow shaped beads are difficult to find in good condition and these two are in near mint condition.  It features a red and yellow checkerboard pattern and to break it up a little, I decided to put a big vintage red and gold French pate de verre focal bead.  This necklace sits higher up on the neck so its perfect for those button down shirts.

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If you prefer to add a bit of whimsy to your wardrobe , then this next one is just the thing to wear. It features a delightful vintage dragonfly charm from the 40s and vintage green and brown glass beads from the 50s.

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And for all those upcoming weddings and parties, here is my version of the festoon style necklace.  It features a gorgeous filigree charm from the 40s and the little dangling glass pearls are from the late 40s as well.    DSCN4257

Did you notice that two of these necklaces have matching earrings? I quite like making matched sets when I can!

 

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At work

| New pieces

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I’ve had this vintage charm for a few years now. I remember finding it at a small brocante in Paris and thinking to myself how pretty it was amongst the table full of charms. It’s on the older side of vintage, probably dates back to the late 30s and it must have formed part of a festoon style necklace. Alas, when I chanced upon it, the rest of the whatever necklace it was part of, was long gone.
So it’s been sitting in my charm box, never forgotten because I love it, but I didn’t quite know what to do with it. It seems like such a singular piece and not easy to match with other beads.
Today, I decided to take it out of the box and it occurred to me that I might make my own festoon style necklace. I’ve already put the chains in but it’s missing something more. It’s back to the bead box I go!

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What’s in a name?

| New pieces

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One of the great things about trade beads is that they’ve acquired all sort of names over the years. They can be wonderfully descriptive. Take the beads on this necklace — they’re called the fried egg trade beads because of its distinctive yellow on white pattern. To be honest they also somewhat look like paint splatters to me but perhaps the person who coined that name was dreaming of fried eggs at that time and the name stuck. I guess I’ll never know. But I do know that these fried egg beads were made between the middle of the 19th century and the early years of the 20th century.
I thought that since the beads themselves are very distinctive, I would keep the rest of the necklace simple. I like the juxtaposition of the soft braided cord and glass beads. This pairing is a bit of a departure for me and I like its final effect of being feminine without being sugary sweet.

Here are the beads up close :

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Starting the year on the right foot

| New pieces

Hello friends, I hope your first of the year is a beautiful one! I recently acquired some gorgeous and rare beads and I thought what better way to start the year than to create something beautiful with them.
These beads are called pineapple beads after their distinctive pattern and they were made between the mid to late 1800s for the African trade. They are quite difficult to come by and I am very fortunate to add these to my collection.

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One more for the show

| New pieces

Before I pack everything away in preparation for tomorrow’s early start, I wanted to share one more piece that I just finished. I’m always a little anxious before a show hence the rush to finish new pieces. I’m quite happy with how this turned out. The clover is a vintage charm from the 50s and the little glass rosettes come from France from the 50s as well.

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Un avant gout

| Jewelry, New pieces

Hello friends, today I thought I’d give you a sneak peek of some new pieces that will be at the show.

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I just love these vintage Swarovski rosettes. Here they are from a slightly different angle.

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For the little ones

| New pieces

At my last show, a little girl came up to my stand and started looking at the bracelets. She really wanted to have a bracelet but none of them fit her. She left looking so disappointed. It got me thinking about this big lot of vintage plastic beads that I have managed to accumulate despite not using them in my jewelry. They’re a riot
of fun colors and I thought I’d try my hand at making a few things for kids.
Here are some of my first ones..

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Pastel pink

| New pieces

Maybe because it rained so much yesterday, I found myself going through some soft colored beads. And while I love my glass beads and work primarily with them, I have a soft spot for gemstones. I especially love those in the pink and violet spectrum— rose quartz, pink sapphires, amethysts and kunzites. So I was really happy to find a strand of pink chalcedony hiding in my drawer. Chalcedony is believed to have many healing powers and the native American Indians revered this stone. I love this color and if the fashion mags are to be believed, pink is the color of autumn/winter 2013. All good reasons to wear pink chalcedony!
To finish it off I decided to match the pink chalcedony with some vintage yellow Venetian beads.

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This set is definitely off to the Ann Arbor craft fair tomorrow!!

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Putting a piece together

| New pieces

Friends, remember the yellow pendant that was part of my loot from Greece? The yellow bead is glass, most likely from the Czech Republic, and dates back from the 50s.

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I love it’s punchy color but it’s not the easiest thing to match with other beads. Last weekend, I looked through my bead boxes and found two beads I’d bought in France and realized that they were the same color! I added some pretty gold caps to decorate the beads and voila, I had the perfect match for the pendant.

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It’s ready to make its public debut this weekend at my first big fair for the fall! More details on that to follow !

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At work

| New pieces

Hello friends, it’s a late post today but I couldn’t resist sharing what I was working on today. And I’m really happy because for once I’m working with a full strand of beads.
This is a strand of gorgeous early 20th century wedding cake beads from Venice. I have a particular weakness for wedding cake beads. I think they’re just beautiful with their decorative trailings and flowers.

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I thought I’d start with a pair of earrings. These are almost finished. Oh and I’ve decided that from now on, all my earrings will have gold filled posts. Gold filled findings contain a thick and solid wash of actual gold so it’s much more durable and long lasting. It’s the perfect complement to my beautiful beads!

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Getting ready for fall

| Jewelry, New pieces

Hello friends, hope your week is off to a good start. Today I wanted to feature one of my new pieces for fall. While it still feels like summer, the kiddies are getting ready to hit the books which means fall isn’t too far off now.
This piece is a necklace composed of three Italian trade beads from the late 19th century on a beautiful vintage gold chain (new old stock from Paris) from the 50s. Just look at the focal bead… you can clearly see the different glass canes used in this bead. I love its fall colors of dark red, mustard yellow and brown too!

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Red for Monday

| Jewelry, New pieces

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Hello friends, hope you had a wonderful weekend!
Since its the first day of the week, I always like to have something red around, be it a piece of clothing or jewelry. I think it just gives me that extra boost of energy that’s so necessary for Mondays.
Today’s piece started with the little red glass elements that I bought at a little antique store selling all sorts of odds and ends. They were from an old haberdashery store that used to sell supplies for theater costumes. They’re little glass beads with crystal rondelle a from the 30s.

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Back to work Monday

| New pieces

IMG_0586Hello friends, hope you all had a good weekend. Its been a gray rainy Monday so far in this part of the world.  To cheer myself up, I took out some pretty peach colored beads and started working on them. The big bead is opaque and is an irregular round shape. The smaller beads are a more transparent peach color and they have a pinched round shape. I like the contrast between them with the big bead serving as the focal bead. These beads are from the early 50s and were made in France.  To add a bit of sparkle I added some crystal rondelles. I know this piece is going to be a necklace but I haven’t quite decided whether its going to be a ras de cou or a sautoir style.  I’ll keep you posted with the results!IMG_0587

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Jewelry Post Day 2

| Etsy, New pieces

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Hello friends, you might have noticed from the title that this is a jewelry post. I was just thinking after I wrote my post yesterday that I’ve never done a complete week of posting just on the jewelry. I thought it might be interesting to do that so this week is De Petites Merveilles jewelry week on the blog!

I think all my beads are special but these ones have a little extra oomph to them. They were made in France in the late 20s/early 30s by an old jewelry house that just happened to make their own beads.  At that time, semi-precious stones were very expensive and hard to come by. So a lot of glass makers (including those in Italy and Bohemia) took to making glass versions.  These ones right here were made to resemble carnelians.  What makes them really pretty is the ring of little white glass pearls that run all along the middle of the bead.  As you can see from the photos, the white beads are not all completely regular which indicates that they were probably put their by hand by the glass makers.  In time the glass versions of stones became even more popular than the actual stones themselves!!

I’m extremely happy to have found enough beads to make two pieces.  And they are now available in the Etsy shop!!

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Violet pretty things

| New pieces

2 purple bracelets

Hello friends, how is your Monday coming along?  I hope your week is off to a good start!  A big shop update is in the works but I  wanted to share two new pieces with you today. The theme of these bracelets is violet and they were inspired by the pretty violet flowers growing abundantly in the garden. Funny how inspiration will strike us huh?

This first bracelet has a vintage violet matte focal bead decorated with crown like bead caps. I matched them with some light violet beads and my favorite crystal rondelles.

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The second bracelet has a violet crystal cut focal bead. This time I decided to go with some violet colored freshwater pearls. I thought the pearls made a nice contrast to the crystal cut bead and its nice to mix up the vintage beads with another kind of bead.

Purple with freshwater pearls1I really like how they turned out. Similar but with their own distinctive personality.  Both focal beads are from the 50s while the light violet round beads are from the early 60s. I’m very tempted to keep one for my own collection. Question is, which one?

 

 

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Selection of bracelets

| New pieces, Uncategorized

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Hello friends, remember those pieces I was working on last week? (You can read the post here).  I did manage to finish them and wanted to show you some pictures.  For some reason, they all turned out to be bracelets.  And the nice brown one made of beads from Germany managed to find a lovely new owner!

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Getting things done

| New pieces, Uncategorized

Works in progressHello friends, I’m getting ready for the Warren Art Fair so I thought I’d share some photos of pieces I’m currently working on. I have to confess that I’m having a bit of a hard time concentrating on work. It’s because its summer and all this sunshine and heat make me want to go to the park. Or eat ice cream. Both even. That said, I have some really pretty beads that help keep my mind on work.

There is this gorgeous vintage Venetian bead that would make the perfect focal bead.venetian focal

Then there are these pretty vintage pink and green French pate de verre beadspink and green beads

And finally some vintage brown pressed beads from Germany.

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So back to work I go! How about you, what do you do to motivate yourself when all you want to do is play?

 

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Tiger earrings

| Jewelry, New pieces

DSC_0103Hello friends, when I made these earrings I had no idea that blue and orange were actually the Tigers colors. That’s the Detroit Tigers, my friends.  I’m happy that they’re significant colors for some baseball loving fans here.

As to the earrings themselves, they are composed of two vintage glass beads with some pretty decorative goldtone caps mounted on a dangling chain. I love these bead caps, they add such a whimsical element to the earrings.  Sometimes I’ll find beads that aren’t particularly pretty (yes, it happens), but when I dress them up with some pretty bead caps, they become pretty neat. I like to think of them as the accessories you use to jazz up an otherwise basic dress. It just proves that accessories are indispensable!

Here’s another look at them. And they are now available in the shop!

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A Moretti bead bracelet

| All things Antique, Jewelry, New pieces

Red Black Moretti braceletHello friends, as promised, here is the bracelet I was working on yesterday. I am especially happy with this one as it incorporates several elements I love– antique beads, semi-precious stones and a newly learned technique!

The red and black beads were a bit of an unusual find for me because I actually found them in a bead shop rather than in an antique shop.  I normally never find anything in bead stores, except for findings and such but this time, Zahia, a really cool bead store in Antwerp, had some stock of old Moretti beads.  Not a lot but enough for me to be really happy that day!

Ercole Moretti et F.lli is one of the oldest bead making companies in Italy. It was started in Venice, Italy in 1911 by a family of glass makers.  They created an enormous amount of beads that eventually made their way to the African continent thanks to the bead trade.  Their most famous work is probably the Rosetta bead (otherwise known was the Chevron bead) though this bead was originally invented in 1480. They are one of the few bead companies that still exist today in Venice.

These particular red and black beads that I did buy from Zahia date back from their 1930 stock.  It belongs to this family of beads pictured below and they are opaque ground beads. Despite their great age, they hardly look worn and the red and black color scheme looks as good now as it did back in those days. Moretti beads 2To mix it up a bit, I decided to use these faceted black spinels rather than more glass beads.  I love gemstones and this is a good way to incorporate them to my usual work.   To top it all off, I used my newly acquired wire-wrapping skill!

 

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Work in progress

| New pieces

Hello friends, today’s post is going to be short and sweet. I wanted to share with you a work in progress. I’m pretty excited about this piece which I hope to finish by today and share with you tomorrow.  Its going to feature antique Moretti beads, faceted black spinel and wire-wrapping! Hope you are all having a nice day!

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Glass from Gablonz

| Jewelry, New pieces

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Hello friends, I hope your week is off to a good start! As promised in yesterday’s post, a lot of lovely new pieces are going to make their way to the Etsy shop but I wanted to tell you more about two bracelets in particular.

When I set out to make jewelry, I started with the basic round beads. They were easy to use  and using them successfully encouraged me to continue with more ambitious projects.   Now, I love the unusually shaped beads because it forces me to think of creative ways to use them. But I’d never actually worked with rectangular shaped ones till I found the beads pictured here in a small brocante. I arrived close to the end of the afternoon and vendors were starting to pack up. Almost at the end of one row of stalls, was a man with boxes and boxes of buttons and tassels.  I didn’t really expect to find any beads because he explained that most of his stock came from an  old mercerie (haberdashery shop).  Sewing is not my strong suit, so I passed up on the  buttons but  before leaving I decided to open one   last box and to my great surprise I found these square shaped beads.

I have to tell you that they are just so beautifully faceted.    I don’t think these pictures do it justice but these beads are faceted almost like  gemstones. And while I try not to have particular favorites with my pieces, the way the all black  bracelet catches the light is just spectacular.   DSCN3493

Of course, I was immediately obsessed with finding out more about them. And it wasn’t  easy to determine their origins.   Black square bracelet 1

After reading a number of books and comparing other similarly faceted beads, I think that they are most likely from Gablonz, a village in Northern Bohemia, in what is now Czech Republic and they date back to the late 20s early 30s. Gablonz was a renowned center for glass making. There have been glass workers there since at least the 18th century.   They were matched only by the Venetians in skill and output and glass production was at its height in the 19th century.  Unfortunately, times have since greatly changed and the industry is sadly diminished.  There just isn’t the same demand for glass beads, production costs have soared and there are cheaper (though lesser quality) alternatives.

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I’m afraid that one day the glass makers of Gablonz will close their doors permanently. I count myself lucky to have at least found some pieces with which to make new jewelry. Hopefully these lovely bracelets will find lovely new owners. At least then, this beautiful glass work won’t be totally lost for good.

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Nice pieces coming in the week

| New pieces

Hello friends, did you have a good weekend? I hope it was filled with good moments with family and friends.

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I spent some time preparing some beautiful pieces for the week and I wanted to give you a sneak peek!

 

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Trade bead collection-all in red

| Etsy, New pieces

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Hello friends, I hope the weekend has been grand and you are all ready for another week! Do you ever wear red on Mondays?  I don’t know where I picked it up from but I always try to wear something red on Monday in the belief that its gives me a powerful boost of energy.  So what better way to wear red than with these new pieces from the Trade Bead Collection.

Trade bead is the name given to beads that were produced mostly in Venice but also in Czechoslovakia and Germany and  were subsequently used for trade in the African continent.  Venetian bead production started as early as the 17th (with some historians saying that it is possible it may have started in the 16th) but the exportation of beads was at its height in the 19th century. These beads were used as currency with different countries favoring one kind of bead design over the other.

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These beads were first packed in Europe in barrels or crates for the long journey by sea then subsequently  carried in camel caravans across the dusty deserts till they reached their final destination in the various African kingdoms.  Some beads even made their way even further, traveling across the Pacific before landing in Asia.DSCN3695

 

I love working with these beads.  They’ve travelled so far before coming into my hands. I  imagine what stories they would tell if they could just talk.  And I feel that its but another stop with me before they make their way once more into another person’s life.red with rondelles1

 

 

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These pieces are now available in the shop!

 

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Anklets anyone?

| New pieces

blue anklet

Hello friends, I hope you all had a wonderful weekend.  It feels very much like a monday today since its the first day back to work, for those of us who had Monday off!  I am especially happy about this post because I have some lovely new things to share with you.

I’ve just created my first anklets!  I don’t know why it took so long for me to start making them since I do love wearing them myself. They’re often overlooked or have a hippyish image but I find them to be quite wearable. They can be discreet pieces, hidden under your pants or a good way to show off your summer finery! As always these are one of a kind pieces made exclusively from vintage glass beads.

I hope you enjoy them.  They are now available in the shop.

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P.S. While you’re browsing the store, don’t forget to check out our new bag…

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Netted collar necklace

| New pieces

Netted collar2Hello friends, I hope your week is off to a great start!

I am feeling pretty happy with mine because I just finished a new necklace in a completely different style.  You may be quite familiar already with the sautoirs and the simple dog collar ones I’ve made in the past so this new one is a bit of a departure for me.

It started out when I found this great stash of orange melon shaped beads with dramatic gold stripes.  It was made in Czechoslovakia in the 40s and I was lucky enough to be able to buy the strand. Now, I normally don’t have a lot of beads to work with, so I have to be creative with what I do have.  But this time, I had a great number of beads to work with. What to do with such a fortune?

I looked around for a different style till I saw the Netted Collar style necklace. And I realized that this style is perfect for my stash of beads.  Its dramatic and bold and has the amazing ability to dress up anything you put on!  I love the fact that I was able to do a totally different style (there it is again, the theme of my life which is to step out of my comfort zone) and at the same time incorporate a bit of beadwork in my work.

Beadwork you say? Despite working with beads for sometime now, I’ve just discovered the wonderful world of beadwork with all the different patterns and stitches.  This my friends, is simple compared to some other stitches I’ve seen, but I’m  pretty happy to have started with this.  Who knows what other patterns I’ll learn next.  The possibilities are endless!

Here’s to a great week!!

 

 

 

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Blue’s beads

| New pieces

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I meant to be productive today and make lots of pretty things but somehow or another got distracted.  And now, as you can see from my tweets,  I’m totally distracted by the Met Gala.   I have to say, I never went through a punk phase, blame it on the all girls Catholic school so its interesting to see how all the glamorous folks out at the Ball are interpreting punk!  And I wonder why they choose punk as the theme for this year’s MET exhibit. But that my friends is another topic altogether.

I do want to show you the bunch of blue beads I’ve been working on (or at least was supposed to be working on).  Half the fun of creating is putting different beads together and seeing what goes with what.  I could’ve been more productive but look at this demi-parure I came up with.

This is a two strand necklace composed of sky blue french pate de verre beads from the 50s and it comes with a matching pair of earrings!! Love this combination of blue and gold, its so sunny and puts me in a summery frame of mind!

Have a good week everyone!

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Klimt inspired

| Jewelry, New pieces, Uncategorized

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Hello friends, today I wanted to share with you one of my more serendipitously paired pieces.  I found this magnificent bead (its the big focal bead of the necklace) during one of my bead trips and was just immediately taken with it. It is a Murano bead from the 60s and I found it so dramatic with its black and gold color scheme. More importantly  it reminds me so much Klimt and a field of flowers.  It is a little on the big side so I thought it would be perfect as a focal bead.  And since I found it so pretty, I wanted another one like it.  Well the seller didn’t have anymore…exactly like it… DSCN3633

 

But as he rummaged around his box of beads, he fished out the little brother or sister of the first bead!! I hurriedly bought them and hurried home, anxious to get started on a piece.

Since I wanted the beads to be the main focus of the pieces, I kept the necklace and matching bracelet really simple. I added a few vintage black faceted Czech beads  and voila it came together without hardly any effort.

 

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Baby steps

| New pieces

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Friends, this line right here represents my fledging efforts to master a jeweler’s saw.  As with all skills, there’s a certain technique to be learned and a certain way of doing it.  What I realized though, while sitting there and sawing was that there’s also a certain frame of mind to be in.  I can’t force the saw or the metal. There’s no fighting with the saw, in fact, I’m told that a death’s grip on it is not the way to go.  It seems that I almost have to be zen yet certain of what I want the piece to be for it to work. For a few moments here and there, I could see what they mean, moments when my saw cut smoothly through the metal with me holding lightly to it.  Its a start. Can’t wait to see where I go next with it.

 

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Matching stuff

| Jewelry, New pieces

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I don’t often have enough beads to make matching things. I make from what I find.  And that’s sometimes frustrating because I like to have the earrings that go with the necklace or a bracelet and necklace. Even more so when the beads are as distinctive as these round glass ones! I lucked out though with these as I had just enough to be able to make a pretty set!

I feel in a more playful mood now that we’ve left (fingers crossed) the cold weather behind and I think this set is the perfect thing to wear.

I love how the circles have edges and how the little dangle in the middle makes this piece so much fun!  The red glass circles are french made from the 40s while the little pearls and glass beads in the middle are from the 50s.

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Here’s a close up look at the necklace!

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If you’re interested in this piece, don’t hesitate to drop me a line!

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