Thursday, February 25, 2010

Michaels...It's like the arts and crafts version of Walmart

Out here in cyberspace I think there may be one or two people who may like to start learning how to make jewelry AND the first place u will instinctively think to start shopping for supplies and how to books is Michaels, the Arts and Crafts version of Walmart... well, don't. There, blog done for the day...

Just kidding. Let me give you an example of why doing a little research online is worth your time. Swarovski crystal beads(which are beautiful brilliant little beads which shimmer like diamonds in a pond)cost about 6.99 for about 6-12 beads in Michaels. Now an average necklace requires atleast 60-100 beads. That's ALOT of moolah to make a necklace. I did a little hunting online and found on e-bay 12 beads for $1.50 or 80 beads for 7 bucks!

Since I am by a computer all day I have lots of opportunity to fiddle around and find deals on supplies, free tutorials and such so...guess what? I'll give u a little insight on where to start and shop ;-)

Free Tutorials:

check out Eni Okens website jewelrylessons.comShe has many tutorials that are free for beginners on how to make simple bracelets, necklaces and earrings. As you move up the jewelry makers food chain you can purchase tutorials from intermediate to advanced that are not expensive and will challenge your skills.
Believe it or not Youtube also has many free videos on jewelry making. Just go to their site and type in for example, "how to make a wire wrapped pendant". Try auntie's beads videos. I found her wire wrapped ring video especially helpful and now I am a wire wrapping fool!

Finally, google, google, google.. It is my answer to life's questions AND free jewelry info. just type in anything you want to learn, for example, "how to make a lariat" and tons of sites will pop up, some you may have to pay for but MANY are free.

check out next time where I will show you wonderful websites for jewelry supplies and tools.( after all what good are tutorials and lessons if ya don't know where to get supplies?)and stay away from Michaels!!!!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Courage of your convictions

I think it's safe to say I'm not the first one to be "slightly" inspired to blog by the movie Julie and Julia. It took me forever to see the movie because I never really had an interest in Julia Childs. After I watched the movie I was so pleasantly surprised at the lessons I learned. I was inspired by both Julie and Julia ;-)

Lesson 1 : Passion has no age limit

You are never, ever too old to find your passion in life. Julia Childs was already "middle aged" when she found her love for cooking.

Lesson 2 : Ignore haters!!!!

Don't pay attention to people who may snub you, your dreams or your abilities; they are threatened by your presence. In the movie, Julia was faced by opposition of that wicked Madame Drasar (I'm sure I spelled this wrong) and her other classmates who were all male, young, and professional. She did'nt even flinch when she walked into the classroom for the first time. I probably would have been racing to the bathroom to pop a valium just to calm myself down from anxiety!!

Lesson 3: Don't be threatened by other people's success.

Just because everyone else around you is supposedly successful, rolling in the dough, or whatever, does'nt mean that your purpose in life is'nt brewing waiting to boil over at it's proper time. Julie was considered a failure by her peers for not being succesful in her chosen profession which was writing. However, her desire to look within herself, use her creativity and take the first step in writing that blog lead her to all the opportunities which manifested into a major Hollywood movie. How do you like them apples?

Lesson 4: Be courageous.

This is the last one....Keep your courage of convictions. Like Julia would say when ever she was flipping over something in her pan you have to have "the courage of your convictions".

What does this have to do with jewelry making Cindy????

This has everything to do with jewelry making, and life for that matter ;-))))))

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Featured favorite jewelry designer: AENIGMASOUL....serious wire wrapping skills

Her name is Asta Remeikaite, designer of Aenigmasoul. She has been wire wrapping since 2007 and as she states on her website she is inpired by "colors of nature, senses and objects that are everywhere around us". Her work is intricately hand made. Take a look at the detail, her choice of colors and crystals...LOVE IT. I posted on her FB page that I just wanted to dive in and melt into one of her jewelry pieces. This is what wire wrapping is all about; taking your love for wire and design and making each piece you create into a self expression of who you are as an artist. You can find her designs for sale at:

Monday, February 22, 2010

"Getting Hammered" early in the morning

I woke up this morning around 6 am trying to beat the sunrise. I do this often. For some strange reason I feel the need to beat the sun at it's own game and rise to meet it's pre-dawn glow before it wakes me up. So fidgeting around so early today I felt the need to grab a small piece of wire, spiral it around a highlighter marker and then take it outside with my ball peen hammer and steel block. I hammered away at both ends of the ring until I made spiral coils. All I had on was my PJ's, my open coat and bare feet. The sky was bluish pink and the snow was still clinging to the ends of trees. I was hammering away, watching every breath come out of me as I twisted and turned the small piece of silver.

I remember reading a blog at by Izzy Gumbo where she shared her similar experience of feeling the need to hammer away at copper wire in order to gain some peace, insight, and let out some pent up frustration. Since I just began working with wire at this time I wondered how someone could find hammering silver or copper so therapeutic. Her blog inspired me to go out and buy some 16g copper wire of my own and begin hammering away....thus...six months later, here I am frozen fingers, cold bare feet and loving every early morning moment hammering away at silver.
However, I don't think my neighbors love this as much ;-))))))

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Time to let it go

I feel sick to my were my first, my favorite, so comfortable and flexible. I showed u off to everyone. I was proud to have you around with me everywhere. But like all good love affairs, the time has come for us to part... Good bye my wrap around ring......

Most artists have that one painting, photograph, piece of art that they just can't part with. Perhaps it was their first creation, a reminder of a special time, event, or place. the one piece that they say they will never let go. Well maybe it was the Jay Z music playing in the background that made me think like a hustler or hussalah ;-) but in that moment my favorite silver wire wrap around ring was sold to a good friend. She loved the ring, asked me how much and my ears just heard the sound of..Kaching....Now I have sellers regret.

Is there such a thing as sellers regret?

Monday, February 15, 2010

My valentines day project...and how I failed miserably

It was around 7 am on Valentines Day when I decided to break out some 18g dead soft silver wire and make my boyfriend a ring I had promised a while ago. I was going to use a huge pewter skull bead as the focal and TRY to do an intricate wire wrap around it. Needless to say about 2 hours later, hair all frizzed and fingers numb; the ring was about 4 sizes too big and the wire had hardened to the point of no return. I was aggravated! Looking back, there were a few things I did not do. For one, I did not measure exactly the amount of wire that would be needed for the project, two, I had no ring mandrel and used the neck of a conditioner bottle (here's to innovation!)and finally, because I wanted to have it done by 12:00pm, I felt rushed to produce a masterpiece. Well, I'm no professional so perhaps creating a masterpiece was out of the question BUT I wanted to give him something I thought he would love. Later that day I brought the ring anyway to his home, still with wires sticking out and I insisted that I could finish the ring at his house. As any good man he acknowledged my effort and said he knew once I finished, it would be great. In my mind I knew I had just wasted about $25 worth of silver on a ring that would need to be trashed and started over ;-( I think about that episode of Friends when Chandler and Monica are supposed to give each other home made gifts and Chandler tries to make a gift out of a bent up wire hanger. That's what my man got, a deformed wire hanger looking thingeee....Bendito

Saturday, February 13, 2010

What to Wear?????

So I have this Fashion Journal Event on Tuesday and I don't have a clue what to wear. I am not a small girl....nope; so being in a sea of size 0 fashion divas ( and that's just the men) I am wondering if I can just wrap myself in a black blanket and cover myself with handmade jewelry??? What do you think? I'm thinking black calf length high heel boots, black jeans, black shirt,,,black, black, black. Blah!! is this the only option a large girl has these days...Hide behind a black wall of fabric? Whatever I decide, I'm breaking out some ridiculously large hand made chandelier earrings and rocking a serious attitude! I will represent for the large gal...Jill Scott you are my Shero!!!!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Fashion Journal Charity Launch Fundraiser

There are times when I go to work eager to jump on the computer and check my Facebook page. I know, I Know,,, shhhh but don't tell. Anyhow one day I'm on FB and I decide to become a fan of Foxy Fusions. Awesome glass art jewelry by Kerri Lawnsby, check out her page

She needed someone from NYC to go on her behalf to the Fashion Journal Magazine fundraiser in NYC on 2/16/10...Kerri's home-base is in Austin TX so she could not make it. I volunteered to go and within minutes received an e-mail from her giving me details. So here I am ready to RSVP to this event. Local jewelry buzz and talent should abound there. I am excited. This comes to show, you never know what new adventures await for you when you walk out your front door...or log on to your computer.

What inspires you?

It was 2007, recently seperated, broke, welcoming my new life as a single parent in this cold concrete jungle; I often found peace, commraderie and joyous drunken fellowship with Claudia and Lisa my two best friends. Anyhow, when the last of these two friends moved back to Florida, I was stuck. What the hell do I do with all this time now? Two things encouraged me to start making jewelry. At this time I was working on the Upper West side around the block from a small jewelry boutique called Sade Design. Inside the store were lovely swarovski lariats and outrageous chandellier earrings. Anybody who knows me will know the first thing I ever think about when I see something I love is "how can I make that?". Also, one day I passed by a woman selling wire wrapped jewelry on the corner of Columbus and 67th. I loved her work and bought an aquamarine wire wrapped ring from her. She told me once she started wire wrapping that she knew it was her calling, (I thought she was full of it at the time) however, when I got home I kept studying the ring and wondering how it was made. So with the encouragement of my loving boyfriend who is a great photographer and artist in his own right I decided " I'm going to make jewelry!" One day on my way home from work, I stumbled upon an awesome store called Beadworld on 1384 Broadway in NYC and fell in love....... Oh my, crystals, beads, every color, every size, semi precious stones, swarovski crystals, silver wire; everything I could think of under the sun. I went to the sales lady and asked her what tools I needed to start making jewelry. $200 later( who knows whether I spent too much?) a new hobbie was born...I was going to make jewelry. I started out my early days in this hobbie learning how to do simple wire loops on head pins and made simple earrings out of czech glass crystals and I also made lariats. My passion with wire began when I bought a bunch of fun wire (plastic) from Michaels and started wire wrapping stones to make rings. LOVED the wire. So anyhow, here I am just a simple blogger posting some of my work as well as giving shout outs to some jewelry artists who have inspired me. It is never to late to find your passion. I am 38 years old and finally found something I love to do.