I delayed my return to the fair circuit, spending time on personal stuff. But I'm back this Sunday at an event that is close to home: Founders' Day in Seymour, Connecticut. Last year, we were rudely interrupted by a sudden "red cell" thunderstorm. This week, the weather has been hot, in the 90s. I'm hoping we get a bit of relief on Sunday. Sunny and comfortable for people to walk around and be in a shopping mood. Is that too much to hope for?
Founders' Day 2012
I tried something new recently. A good friend of mine sells Tastefully Simple products and had an open house party in her home. She invited me to bring my jewelry and put it on display. This was a painless way to dip my toe in the home party market since our friends were the guests. It was a great experience and has me pondering how I might do home parties by myself. Any ideas on what would make good hostess gifts?
I had a dream last night that the cardinals now in the conclave to select a new pope were using rosaries that I'd made! That reminded me that I haven't worked much on new rosaries lately. Time to start chaining!
This rosary is one from my gemstone line. It's made with blue goldstone. The center medal features the face of His Holiness, Pope John Paul II, and the crucifix is an imitation of the cross he used to carry, with the bent tree limbs. This would make a great gift for any man, but especially for your favorite parish priest.
Fair season is a few months off, so I'm busily working to add to my inventory. Lately I've been making these cute little earrings. I'm using glass pearls in pastel colors, hung from silver- and gold-plated earring posts. I should have nearly 100 pair ready when I'm done. .
Last week, I went down to Will-O-Wisp Beads & Boutique to take part in a wire-work class with shop owner Kira Nelson. She taught how to make bracelets using 18 gauge and 24 gauge wire with 6 mm beads. The pattern is so versatile; using different colored wire and various type of beads, each bracelet is unique. I spent today making bracelets using Czech crystals, and I'm very pleased with the results. I hope to build up my inventory for when fair season resumes. Thanks, Kira!
I haven't been posting here much this year. My mother took ill at the beginning of January, and after several weeks of the roller coaster of "she's better today-she's worse today", she came home in hospice care and passed away a couple of days later.
Mom was a sweet woman who loved her children dearly. After my father passed away, I became aware that something wasn't quite right with my mother. It took a while to get a diagnosis, but eventually it became clear that she was in the grip of Alzheimer's Disease.
We were fortunate that my father had made investments that gave us the ability to bring a live-in caregiver to stay with her. Mom was able to live in her own home, and doctors have credited that for the reason that she never forgot where and when she was, and she never forgot her children's identities. I was with her nearly every day, and her face would always light up when I came into the room. We told each other many times a day that we loved each other.
A stroke severed our communication. She could no longer speak or smile, and showed little sign of understanding what was said to her, but I held her hand to let her know she wasn't alone. I'd like to think that she still knew it was me.
I miss her dreadfully.
RIP Mama. You are always in my heart.
One of my favorite places for learning new techniques and styles in wire work and jewelry making is JewelryLessons.com. Many talented people share tutorials for so many types of jewelry, usually for a very small fee.
The other day, I tried out a couple of ring patterns in wire and crystals. On the left, the style is the three stone Swarovski princess ring, designed by Diana Esposito Creastions. The two rings on the right are examples of the herringbone ring, designed by Delilah. My rendition of these rings is a little rough, but with practice, I hope to refine my skills and perhaps design a ring of my own.
I started very slowly with my jewelry business. A year just using Etsy, The next year or two overcoming my natural shyness and trying out selling at local church Christmas fairs. This past year, I threw myself into the outdoor fair world with my very own tent. I experimented with tables and displays, learning from web sites and other vendors about different elements to refine my process, looking for ways to create eye-catching displays that are easy to set up and put away. I've kept track of fairs that had good crowds and at which my wares were well received.
The best part of the whole process was meeting my fellow vendors, exchanging ideas with them, sympathizing when the weather was less than ideal (monsoon rains at a June fair! Heat and humidity in July! Winds in September!), and making new friends.
I'm going to enjoy the fair down-time for a bit, having the time to try out new jewelry patterns and techniques, and trying to become a better jewelry-maker. I have aspirations to artistry, to create pieces that really draw the eye and catch the breath. I have my wire and tools at the ready, and plan to spend the winter combing through books and tutorials to learn from people with higher skills. I can't wait to show off what I've learned!
I want to wish all the friends and fans of Posh and Playful Jewelry a very Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Year!
I'm relatively new to jewelry making, having created my first pieces in 2009. Putting together beads and wire to bring something new and pretty into the world feeds my soul. I hope you find something here that speaks to you.