The Joy of Metal Clay: A word about firing & my current project

Firing the project that I am currently working on reminded me of some important firing tips. If you remember from last week I am making a pendant made up of two domed squares. I fired this piece (in haste, it was a long day so I wasn’t thinking as clearly as I usually). I placed it in the kiln not really thinking about the best way to support it. I just placed it on a bed of vermiculite and turned on my kiln. This is the result: The domed pieces collapsed together! I forgot one of the key instructions I …

The Business Chat – Wearing your customer hat

Last week I did a really long craft show. The hours were long, it was stinking hot, it felt like eternity. At the end of the third day people started packing out early, some as many as 2 hours. Knowing that the highway wasn’t going to be fun I stayed until the end. And at the last minute I made a $600 sale. She probably wouldn’t have spent quite as much however 2 people she’d come to see had already left, and one woman refused to sell because she was packing. The customer was looking to spend money and no …

Inspiration Friday

Happy Friday all! I’m grudgingly winding up what I hope proved to be a relaxing and much needed vacation. (I write this on the eve of my departure) I’ve been paying more attention to texture and patterns recently. Here are a few of my favourites: Source: no-aesthetic.tumblr.com via Meta on Pinterest Source: flickr.com via jessica on Pinterest

Free Projects from Lark Books

Brought to you by the publishers of the 500 series books. I’ve just discovered that they have a wonderful selection of free projects from their books. I particularly love this one by Laura McCabe:  Get a copy of your instructions here Here’s the link to the full list!

New This Week!

Lucite in the Sky with Diamonds Has the extreme heat got you feeling so hot and sticky that you are seriously considering not wearing jewelry? (The horror!) “I just want something light,” you say, “Something nice and light that won’t make me feel hot.” Well – this week we have, just for you, a fabulous selection of light and airy lucite flowers and leaves. You can stay inside in the air conditioning and build yourself a glorious garden to wear. And when I say fabulous selection – I mean – this is our biggest update EVER – with 300 new …

Pretty Pen

The pen is mightier than the sword – especially if you are using it to write cheques. 😉 Looking for a thoughtful gift idea for someone that is not so big on jewelry? Those big hole “Pandora”-style beads fit on bead pens! Or, just make one for yourself. From left to right, a spiral spacer, a girly-pink Swarovski crystal, another spiral spacer, and a dazzling diamond clear Swarovski spacer – cuz they are pretty. A Lion for courage; a rooster for Courage, Flamboyance and, er, “Cockiness”; a rabbit for fertility, and a teddy bear for love and family. It makes …

The Joy Metal Clay: What I am working on….

My favorite floating, reversible pendant! Above is one of my oldest and favorite pieces. I have gone on to make many for friends and family to keep pictures of their loved ones. My boys, pictured above, have inspired me (read forced) to make a new piece. They have been begging that I change the photo in this piece. Because it is resin (removable yes, but will ruin the pictures) and because I don’t want to change to pictures, I am in the process of designing a new photo pendant: It is a two sided square, which I made by cutting …

The Business Chat – Hats!

Oh boy, today we’re doing something fun, we’re putting on hats! When you are one person running your own company you wear SO many hats it’s hard o keep track. There are however 3 primary hats you wear. For every business step you take you need to put on one of these hats. First and most important is your BOSS hat. Call it whatever you like, Boss, Employer, Head Honcho, Big Cheese or Grand Poobah, this hat means that you are running the show. It is your company therefore you make the decisions. When faced with a choice it is …