The other day I finished an order of 26g fine silver headpins for a valued customer and while I was in the burning mode/mood I tried my hand at the copper headpins just for fun. Above is a picture of the result.
My friend Jamie of http://creationsbyJAE.etsy.com and I have been discussing these wonderful rosy ball ends on copper headpins. We've been trying to figure out how to achieve this. I found quelching in cold water works and apparently other approaches to achieving this effect exist.
Today I picked up some Oatey solder paste flux that makes melting larger gauge copper wire much easier. Warm vinegar and salt helps remove some firescale and burn residue (from coated craft type copper wire) but down the road I'll prepare the Prips flux recipe and try that too.
I'll continue experimenting with other quelching baths, and treatments, but for my own personal use, the results obtained thusfar will suffice!
until next time,
Jan 19, 2009
Jan 8, 2009
I've come to know many artisan entrepreneurs who, like me, push themselves to the outer limits of their physical and emotional endurance in order to see their businesses succeed. Some of them may read this post. Well today is national Bubble Bath Day! What better excuse to pamper your weary body and mind than by taking a few minutes to soak in a great bath?
Why not rejuvenate today with a soothing soak using your favorite aromatics or make your own? There are hundreds of recipes online for everything from handmade body scrubs to personalized bath oils using your own mix of essential oils.
Fresh out of college, I was blessed to represent one of the world's finest cosmetics and perfume manufacturers and that early training spoiled me. By the way, I wanted to be a scientist, so don't even ask why I was sent to Cosmetology School in the first place :)
But long story short, to this day I remain addicted to the sheer decadence & joy of indulging in great cosmetics, skin care, perfumes and body products.
It's fabulous sampling world class toiletries when they're being provided free of charge. But now that I'm back in the real world and have to buy my own, I make wise investment choices concerning these luxury items. Especially given that over the intervening thirty years retail prices of luxury toiletries have skyrocketed. So these days I tend to hoard them more than I should.
Take for instance these great bath bombs. They soothe the skin and bubble away for up to ten minutes in a warm tub giving off a delightful essence and contributing to an absolutely wonderful & relaxing tub experience. I found them online at $12 for a set of 6. But I paid $5 each at a resort spa. So I've hoarded them. Well guess what? Today I plan to use them just to celebrate National Bubble Bath Day!
If you can't afford a full fledged spa experience, what about lighting a few cheap candles and just soaking in epsom salts? To be honest, nothing soothes my aching fibromyalgia muscles better than plain old epsom salts, available in bulk at the drug store for just a few dollars per gallon :)
To maximize your feeling of wellbeing, don't forget to round out your bubble bath ritual by slipping into your favorite chenille socks, fluffy slippers, comfy robe etc. You'll be glad you did!
And I'll just bet you have a refreshing facial mask hidden somewhere in your vanity too. Well? Make time to pamper your complexion too!
Or better still, why not share a relaxing few moments with your significant other, a glass of your favorite libations and an hors d'oevre tray for even more enjoyment and rejuvenation?
Get crackin' and go splash in the tub!
It won't take long and the rewards will be many! I promise...
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Jan 6, 2009
One side of my jewelry business that has always been rewarding is creating mens and unisex styles. Maybe these items move well because I know so many guys! But their clean lines coupled with my fascination for rare mineral specimens & crystals, unusual artifacts and uniquely rugged pendants make them very popular with men, youths and women alike.
Clockwise from top left in the above collage, there's a Tibetan carved horn pendant that is truly wonderful in appearance, size and weight. The pendant is embellished with handformed Tibetan silver and is ornately hand engraved. This item is currently for sale at SassyDLite (http://www.sassydlite.etsy.com/).
Another material that I'm just mad about for unisex and mens styles is ancient desert glass fragments from Afghanistan. I've wrapped this wonderful artifact with black leather embellished with Thai sterling silver nuggets and findings. The desert glass fragment has been immaculately polished and naturally "sand blasted" on its profile so there are no sharp edges! Truly a wonderful designer look for your significant other.
Middle shot is an oxidized (dark patina) sterling silver lariat with blue kyanite and lapis gemstones for only $25! http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=19384330. The Deep Waters lariat is perfect for youths as it closes between 14 and 16 inches, but I can create this item or something similar using different gems in larger sizes upon request.
Black onyx has always been a favorite gemstone of mine and most of my black onyx inventory sells out fast. This traditional Y-style black onyx necklace features Thai sterling silver, blue peruvian opals and sterling silver closure.
There's also a new Australian Boulder Opal slab on black leather just listed!
Next, the dark green kyanite rough crystal I encrusted with fine silver and suspended from a black leather cord for a very clean designer look with youthful and masculine appeal.
The ammonite (snail shell fossil) pendant is sterling silver encased and quite durable. It's suspended on a thick black leather cord. http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=18560864 Ammonite fossils are timeless and rather expensive keepsakes that easily coordinate with practically any wardrobe.
Finally, the light green kyanite rough crystal on black leather cord is an item I donated to our eSMArts team shop and at only $20 this item won't be around long. All proceeds from our team shop sales support worthy causes, so please check out the many items donated by my talented teammate artisans. Please consider making a purchase from the eSMArts team shop! We really need your support!