Thursday, November 26, 2009


Everything has been marked down at AmyNicoles on Etsy. At least 15% off everything. You can access my shop right from my blog! Just look for my shop on the right hand side of this message.

Larger quantities of ear wires at RubyMtnBeads on Etsy has free shipping in the US from now until Monday. You can access RubyMtnBeads from this blog on the right hand side!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Picture painted by my daughter Isabella. She is 7 years old and wants to be an artist when she grows up!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


I really didn't want to do holiday themed jewelry per se, but these have a distinct winter/holiday feel to them. I am so pleased with how they turned out. I fired the silver in my torch until I could see it just starting to melt, and then stamped on the floral motif. After oxidizing and polishing, the texture left on the silver is beautiful. Very antiqued. And the garnets, don't they look just like cranberries?
Matching necklace coming soon!

Monday, November 23, 2009

My new rock collection

I went to a bead show yesterday in Ft. Worth. I bought some supplies like lobster clasps, and the itty bitty sterling round beads that I love so much, a couple of new metal stamps.

But what I really went for was to begin my rock collection. There was only one seller there from Missouri with cabochons. I spent an hour and a half at their table trying to make up my mind. I've never seen so many gorgeous stones in one place before.

I'm going to be sharing my rock collection with you a snippet at a time. I'm supposed to be cleaning house right now, but I just have to share this beauty with you. The picture doesn't really do it justice. I have a couple of ideas already of what I want to do with it.

Meet Orange Chalcedony. I am so in love with this stone. I always used to roll my eyes when I heard someone say that an inanimate object "spoke" to them. I can't explain it. All of the stones I picked "spoke" to me in a way. There is something about each of them that drew me in and I got lost in their beauty. I am head over heels for this stone. I'm not sure I will be able to let it go. I think I may make myself a glorious pendant out of this beauty.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Playing with acid and copper

Well, not really playing but having fun. Working with acid is really not quite as scary as it sounds, you just need to be really careful and aware of what you are doing while using it.

I played around with acid etching copper using two different techniques. The little owl was made by first applying an acid resistant substance to the metal then scratching the design into it, and the dotted flowers were made by applying the resist straight onto the copper. I then oxidized and hand polished the copper. The ear wires are sterling.

I plan on doing more etching, I want to play around more with technique and design. I am really anxious to etch some sterling silver, but am reluctant to until I have the techniques down.

So, these are my first two etched pieces. The little owl is for my owl loving daughter, and the earrings may or may not end up in the shop. We'll see.

OH! I almost forgot. The little owl is also the first thing I have sawed out of metal. I have had my jewelers saw for months now, and haven't used it yet, mainly because it intimidated me a little. But, it turns out that I really enjoy sawing metal. I'm trying to gather up the guts to saw something larger out of sterling sheet. We'll see.

ArtFire anyone?

I've just been wondering something, and was hoping to get a few comments on the subject. Does anyone reading this blog have an ArtFire account?

I opened one maybe a couple of months ago. Two actually. One for my ear wires, and one for my jewelry. I just did the basic free account. I have had zero action over there. I don't know if it's because I don't promote those shops as much as my Etsy shops, or what. I also wonder if you get better exposure if you have the upgraded account. (From what I understand, listings and front page items come up randomly)

I am not prepared to put much more effort into those shops before the end of the year, but I wonder about getting more involved over there. They are just beginning their 2nd year, and I know I wish I had known about Etsy when they first got started. I wonder of the potential that ArtFire may have in the next few years.

Is there another handmade market I should seriously be considering? Let me know what you think!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I just want to brag a little

Will you look at this baby? Isn't it gorgeous? I just love the way it turned out. Thanks to my most loyal customer for the opportunity to make this.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Some news, and a sneak peak

If you follow me on Facebook, you know how excited I am to finally have my own work space. Up until yesterday, I had been working in the living room.

I have been unhappy with this arrangement for a long time, and finally asked my husband to help me solve the problem. It really isn't a small problem. The deeper I get into this jewelry making thing, the more tools I need. The more space I need. So far I have only been working with a small hand held torch. It is serving my purposes for now, but I really need a better set up. That includes a jewelers torch, and an acetlyne and oxygen tank set up. I'll also need a proper ventilation system. It really isn't wise to be breathing in all of those fumes you know!

Over the past couple of weeks, I had become increasingly cranky. I just felt stuck in the spot that I was in. There really wasn't any room to grow, and seriously, who wants to have a work shop in their living room? Besides that, it was a real pain in the rear to have to move everything every time someone came over! I began to feel that maybe it just wasn't in the cards for me to kick this whole thing up a notch.

After mentioning several times nicely that I wasn't happy working in the living room, I had to get slightly more emphatic about stressing just HOW unhappy I was. (there may or may not have been a few tears involved, mainly out of frustration) Hmmm *clearing throat* ANYWAY, I have to say that when Arturo realized I was serious, he and I set about thinking exactly where this new work space I needed would be.

We contemplated most of the day on Thursday, and on Thursday evening an epiphany hit us both literally simultaneously about the perfect spot.

So, where is it you ask? Well, I'm going to keep you guessing. Just for a little bit. The above picture is a sneak peak at part of my new area (along with me, hard at work filling an order). Here comes the fun part. At least I hope you guys will think it's fun, and I hope you want to play along with me!

The first person to guess where in my house my new work station is located, will receive a little surprise. It probably won't be that big of a surprise to find out that it will be a pair of earrings! Anyway, let the guessing begin!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Bead Market-Ft. Worth. TEXAS y'all!

I just had to do a quick post to cover up my wordless Wednesday! Nobody wants to know what in the heck I was doing in that picture anyway? Well, the answer is; getting ready to take my own picture (yes, AGAIN). While listening to the radio in one ear, modeling an earring in the other, all while in the process of shifting a big Atomic Fireball from one side of my mouth to the other. Let's just say I wasn't ready.

Hmmmm (clearing throat) anyway, there is a bead show coming up on November the 21st and 22nd at the Amon Carter Will Rogers Center in Ft. Worth. You can find more information here.

I am SO there. This time I'm getting smart though. I have a game plan. First, go without the kids. Yep, by my self! Second, only buy what I need. That's the tough part. When I see beads, I think I need them all. This trip I'm shopping for cabochons though. I'm hoping to try bezel setting. Just as soon as I get a big girl torch and a few other things. Who knew what a pricey adventure this was going to turn into? :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

For sure my neighbors think I'm crazy...

That is if they didn't already. When my neighbor came home this afternoon after picking her boys up at school, I was right outside my front door sitting in a chair and taking pictures of myself.

These are some new earrings I just made. Sterling circles stamped with a circle pattern, convex in shape. Oxidized and polished by hand to bring out the pattern and texture.

These are just born as well. Same circle texture, this time on elongated sterling rectangles. Wire wrapped with red coral beads. For some reason, these make me think of Frida Kahlo.

These self portraits were something of an experiment. I've been trying to think from a buyer's point of view. It is really hard sometimes to get an idea of how big a piece is when you see photos of it without anything to relate it to size wise. So, I tried my hand at self portraits. I just figured out the other day how to use the self timer. Yay for me!

Next "photo shoot", I'll have to spruce my model up a little. :)

My photo shoot was cut short, so I'll hopefully get more pics of the newbies and get them listed in the shop.


Monday, November 9, 2009

Preparing for the Holidays, and a Special Sale!

I'm putting away the Halloween decorations and pulling out all of my Fall themed items for Thanksgiving. My husband has already pulled the Christmas lights out of the attic and is threatening to put them up this week.

We are usually a little early on getting these things done. I have to admit that I am behind this year. I start to get anxious if I don't have all my Christmas gifts purchased. Right now I am about 30% done. My Mom is coming to visit from Nevada for Thanksgiving and we plan to shop til we drop for a week starting on Black Friday.

And, speaking of shopping, I am rearranging some things in my Etsy shop. This will be my first Holiday season on Etsy, and I am excited to see what it will bring. I am of course ill prepared. I don't have nearly the stock I would like to. Having two kids with various activities, and a husband who usually travels four days out of the week leaves me with not a lot of time to create. I deactivated several items that were made to order in my shops. I want to spend my precious remaining time making new designs, and working on orders.

So, that brings me to my special sale. If you have been thinking about personalized sterling silver and gemstone jewelry for Holiday gifts this year, now is the time to order! I'm offering a 15% discount to my wonderful followers, friends, and family. I also want to make sure I have plenty of time to get your order completed before Christmas, so my cut off time on hand stamped jewelry will be December 10.

Here is a link to my blog post about the different styles I offer

I don't have all styles listed in the Etsy shop. If you see something you like, you can e-mail me at If you purchase on Etsy, be sure to put Friends & Family in notes to seller at checkout so I can refund your discount!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Ruby Valley Ring

A 10mm AAA faceted Ruby, wire wrapped in sterling and fine silver. US size 9 1/4. Available at AmyNicoles on Etsy.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Nine little Garnets, all in a line....

Nine little Garnets, all in a line.

Standing tall....

Sparkling in the sunshine.......

And gracing my finger.

A sterling silver double band ring has been wire wrapped with faceted Garnets, oxidized and selectively polished for an antique finish. US size 5, available in my Etsy shop!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Fused Glass

Will you take a look at these beauties? My sister in law who is the owner and executive chef of not one, but two restaurants in Hot Springs, AR manages to find the time to make fused glass art. I am so excited to get these gorgeous pieces to play with. Can you believe it? I am so excited! I plan on doing a couple of different things with these that I have never done before. Wire wrapping fused glass, and.....bezel setting!

I have been itching to try my hand at bezel setting for awhile, and this is the creative nudge I needed to give it a try. Look at those little beauties on the bottom right hand side. They are just screaming to be made into earrings! And the pendants I am picturing in my mind are unreal!

Now all I have to do is find the time to do it!!!!!!! Thank you Diana!!!