Thursday, September 27, 2012

I'm a tease

~embrace change~ earrings

New work in the shop tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Today I'm thankful that so far my sinuses haven't started raging.  Hopefully they are finally done laying me low.  It happens every year around this time.  The weather starts changing then will turn hot again, and so on and so forth.  Such is Texas weather.  But that means 3-5 days of raging sinus headaches for me.  The only good thing about them is that it makes me appreciate feeling well so much more.

Today the girls have early release from school and they both have plans to be occupied with friends for the next two days. 

Today I'll need to clean up around the house so it's decent when the friends come over. 

Today I will be finishing up the pieces I have been working on.  I'm a little disappointed that I must stop, but I have other work I must do.  So, I had plans for more work in this vein.  And yesterday the charm necklaces sprouted an earring design.  That I *love* but I will only have time to finish one pair of what might be many more.  Or maybe not.  I get distracted easily.

Today, a little teaser.  The first necklace completed.  "Embrace Change"  Sterling silver feather and star seed pod with Variscite.  The chain is long.  :)

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Summer 2012 Anthems...

Another favorite from this summer.  It has a very ethereal sound to me.  Also, I am noticing that almost all songs that connect with me are by artists from the UK.  I do consider myself a bit of an Anglophile.  They have produced some of the best musical artists in history.  At least IMHO.

Happy Saturday all.  House cleaning and more charm necklaces are in order for the day!  

Friday, September 21, 2012

Somebody stop me!

Ok, I said I'd get myself out at least once a week.  But seriously, I must be stopped!  Yesterday I went antiquing.  Well, I say I went antiquing.  Really my oldest and I just walked around an antique mall that is across the street from the little one's gymnastics.  Still.  It was somewhere I'd never been.  And will probably not go back. 

I mean, I do like antiques.  And I see people finding super cool stuff all the time, but it is something I'm able to pass on when it comes to parting with my money. 

I even took pics as evidence...

 I was a band geek.  I played the clarinet from 6th grade through 10th grade.  

And these caught my attention because they are so familiar. 

So, that's two new things in less than a week.  I hope I remember next week that I'm supposed to be doing something out and about.  Old habits are hard to break.  

In other news, I have been a busy bee in the shop.  I guess in my mind Fall is also synonymous with charm necklaces, because I am on a roll! I made charm necklaces around this same time last year too.  Hmmmm curious.  Anyway, I'm finding myself making charms that are Fall inspired.  And putting them together with an aspiring thought in mind.  So far I have "embrace change" and "fall gathering".  If you Instagram and follow me, you'll have seen some WIP shots.  Terrible lighting and grainy from my phone.  But you'll get the idea.  If you want to follow me I'm amy___nicole .  That's with 3 underscores.  

Have I told you how much I love Instagram?  I do.  I follow some pretty cool peeps.  It's an awesome way to get to know artists and patrons of the arts through pictures.  And speaking of patrons of the arts.  I follow the ultimate patroness of the arts, who everyday gives us a picture of not only what she is wearing but "who" she is wearing.  The best of the best on this woman.  It is the coolest thing to see.  This woman must look like a million bucks everyday!  So inspiring to see jewelry art worn so well.  

Anywho, I better go clean something.  Have a great weekend all!  I hope to have new work to share some time next week.  :)

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Out and about...

Upon doing a little bit of self reflection, I have noticed that I just don't get out enough.  I think I must be reclusive by nature, and I have been giving into the desire to stay home too much.  It's too easy to do with my work here, work that I love maybe a little too much sometimes.  It's all about seeking balance.

So I told myself that I would make a point to get out and about at least once a week and do something I hadn't done before or wouldn't ordinarily do.  Or just go out and do something. 

So, not last night, but the night before (24 robbers came knocking on my door...) ;)
I took myself out on a little nature walk.  Or as much nature you can get in the suburbs between two major cities.  The girls were at their piano lessons and I had about 40 minutes to kill.  There happens to be a very nice park near the teacher's house that my husband runs through on a regular basis.   (I only run outdoors when it's cool outside.  I'm very pampered that way.)

I followed the crowd along the walking/biking trail that runs through the park.  And was pleasantly surprised to find a woodland haven!  The trees form a perfect canopy over a good portion of the trail, lots of undergrowth.  A stream running through.  It was glorious...

                                           This time of year there were acorns everywhere:

And the color of these berries were amazing.

I found this in the grass.  

 Bright yellow!  Some sort of wild sunflower I suspect.

 It was really nice out, and I really did get lost in the woods.  Just for a minute.  Lost in the sense that I completely forgot this park is flanked on it's perimeters by two major freeways, and just felt the strength and beauty of the woods.  

So nice, that I went and ran the trail yesterday morning.  And took the girls there for a walk last night.  The oldest was pouting because I didn't let her bring her scooter.  But cheered up and started collecting acorns and shells by the little stream.  The little one talked non stop about this and that, so there went the quiet of being in the woods.  :)

It did get me to thinking about visiting other walking/biking trails in the area.  So that will be another adventure after I've thoroughly checked this trail out.  

 Picture taken so she can remember to put it on her Christmas wish list. :)

  Love how she was in silhouette here.  Wish I'd had my real camera with me!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Summer 2012 Anthems...

This song hit me when we were in Lake Tahoe and my daughter asked to buy the song for her Kindle.  We let her get it, and soon lived to regret it.  To prove that what goes around comes around, she then proceeded to crank the song up and put it on repeat.   We heard this song over, and over, and over again.  So much we finally had to ask her to please turn it off!  (anyone else remember doing this as a kid to their parents?  I do.  *ahem* Milli Vanilli)

However, I do like the song.  It has a good beat, and I have a very strong image when I hear this song which has sorta been ruined for me by seeing this video. 

The words Chasing the Sun have really stuck in the wheels of my mind, and I find myself with a perfect image of a lone mustang running across a desert landscape.  He appears to be "chasing the sun" as he runs toward the horizon and the sun in all of it's colorful glory is setting behind a mountain in the distance. 

I'm going to have to work at it to get those boy banders out of my head and get my mustang back! ;-)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Sale section....

Hi all!  I just added several pieces to a sale section in my shop on Etsy.  Mainly they are designs from Spring and Summer and even a couple from Fall and Winter of 2011! 

This is a last chance section.  I've been asked by a couple of different organizations to make donations and whatever doesn't sell will be donated, re-purposed or I'll be adding to my own personal collection!

I'm pretty sure I have a few more pairs of simple beaded earrings that I had made as fillers for the show I had planned to do this Fall.  Unfortunately, the show has been cancelled.  I won't be doing any other shows this Fall.  Really, I'm totally ok with this.  I really enjoy selling online, but shows not so much. 

I'm going to try getting everything I have together and add them to the sale section, so please check back over the next week or so!  Perfectly priced to stock up on gifts for co-workers, in laws, stocking stuffers etc..

Have a fabulous Tuesday!  :)

Monday, September 17, 2012

Autumn inspirations...

 Agua Nueva Agate and a faceted Garnet beaded chain.  Love this stone! 

 Bertrandite and Sterling Silver custom sized ring

That gorgeous stone didn't need much embellishment, so all the detail is on the back!

I have so many gorgeous stones, the Bertrandite I've been hoarding for a year or more.  The Agua I just got a couple of weeks ago but wanted to work with it right away.  Both stones are reminiscent of the changing colors of Autumn.  

Just listed in my Etsy Shop!!!

Anna Karenina

It just goes to show how much I pay attention to movies...I just found this trailer this morning.  Anna Karenina!!  Keira Knightly as Anna and just as a reminder to how we are all getting older, Jude Law as her aging husband.  What the heck?  I remember when he would always play the role of the young lover.  Instead there is some young whipper snapper playing the role of the officer who get Anna's engine revved up. 

I'm almost always disappointed in movies modeled after books, but this film does look beautiful.  I'll be the first one in line on opening day!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Summer 2012 Anthems...

It occurred to me while doing housework and listening to the radio that there are several songs that are for me the songs of summer.  Mainly from 10 days spent in a car driving around Northern California with my family. 

This song "Let's Go!" is one that has really grown on me.  I love the beat, when it comes on I dance and sing along.  And not only is the beat great, the lyrics speak to me.  But I think they speak to all of us....

When this song comes on I think of the feel good vacation feelings, crystal blue and deep blue waters, the sound of seal lions barking, trees, and lots of cool fresh air.  Good times.

Let's go!
Make no excuses now
I'm talking here and now
I'm talking here and now
Let's go!
Your time is running out
Let's go!
I'm talking here and now
I'm talking here and now

It's not about what you've done
It's about what you doing
It's all about where you going
No matter where you've been
Let's go!

Let's go!

[Instrumental break]

Let's go!, Let's go!, Let's go!...

There ain't no better time
I'm talking here and now
I'm talking here and now
Let's go!

Right now is where you shine
I'm talking here and now
I'm talking here and now

It's not about what you've done
It's about what you doing
It's all about where you going
No matter where you've been
Let's go!

Let's go!

[ Lyrics from: ]

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Letters that will never be sent..

Dear Duchess of Cambridge,

I know you were born a commoner and all, but the Royal Family has a bit of a history with the paparazzi.  They like to stalk them and take pictures of them doing all sorts of things.  When you are on vacation, you may think you are alone but you are never really alone.  When you become an HRH you might want to consider not tanning topless on your balcony with your handsome new husband.  Just saying....

Dear lady who took a master step class for the very first time and decided to set up in the first row,

I can tell you think that you are some sort of super athlete or something the way you were bouncing all around your bench this morning.  In case you weren't aware, Master Step has a lot of complex choreography.  We move quickly from one side of the bench to the other, and I've personally witnessed two ladies break their legs in this class.  When you decide to set up in the front row in your neon pink top, and you are going one direction while the rest of the class is going in the other direction you are a big distraction.  When we are all following the instructor's routine and you are following your own routine to a totally different beat you are very distracting.  Please set up in the back row next time.  Just saying.....

Dear Sunny,

You mentioned awhile back about wanting to write a blog post about how everyone farts in their studios.  I really hope you write it, because if I have to look at one more pretty blog with one more pretty girl living the seemingly perfect life I'm going to do more than just roll my eyes into the back of my head.  Thanks for keeping it real sister!  Just saying.... ;)

Friday, September 14, 2012


Yes indeedy I am working!  The above is a work in progress shot.  It looks huge right?  It's the backside of a ring I'm working on.  I haven't had the urge to sit down and really work on some masterpieces until yesterday. 

I call them masterpieces, but really they are just the pieces that have more work involved in building them.  More pieces, more stamping, more sawing, hammering and forming.  Bigger stones. 

I have a stone hoard like I just can't believe.  So many beautiful stones.  I am making a concentrated effort to build them homes and present them to the world. 

I find that I can really only work on two pieces at a time.  I work on one, usually until it needs to go to the pickle pot.  And then start in on the other.  Back and forth until they are both complete.  I am always in awe of artists who can kick out multiple gorgeous designs in a weeks time. 

Anywho, I am working with a gorgeous Tiffany Stone which will become a ring, and another gorgeous stone Agua Nueva Agate that will be a necklace with a beaded Garnet chain.   The colors in each call to mind Fall. 

I'll be back soon!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

All new...

Well, look at that !  I actually got some new listings in the shop today!  These are all listed in my Etsy shop if you'd like to see more.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Sort of random...

Hi all!  It's been awhile since I last blogged.  As it tends to do, life has thrown me for a little loop.  I've been dealing with a bit of a health issue, which seems to be under control for the time being.  That being said, it has definitely thrown me for a loop mentally.  As a result, I have been quiet online and haven't been working as much.

I did finish this for a custom order.  Solid sterling silver beaded chain.  LOVE this chain.  It is pricey to make and time consuming, but the result is so worth it.  I go through periods of wanting to wire wrap things, and I am in one of those moods now.   If any of my current projects ever get completed, you'll see that I am hooked!

I sometimes see this type of chain called a rosary chain.  As a cradle Catholic, albeit a practically non practicing one I do find it a little sacrilegious to call something a rosary that isn't.  I feel the same way when I see people wearing what I consider a rosary as a necklace.  I guess I'm just old fashioned that way.  I do think that an all sterling rosary with an antique Crucifix would be stunning, and maybe one day I'll make one. 

I saw this the other day while walking the girls to school.  Nature's design.  There was something about it that just drew me in.  The concentric circles, and the way the leaves fell into the grooves.  There is also something reminiscent of my favorite wagon wheel designs. 

I used to think that maybe circles were too plain and sort of a cop out as a favorite shape, but circles are for sure my favorite shape.  I'm just not going to fight it anymore.

This is a picture of a variety of pumpkin called Porcelain Pumpkins.  I'd never seen them before.  Some of them had a purpley blue hue to them.  Just beautiful!  And seeing pumpkins at Central Market means that Fall is here!!!  Well, almost anyway.  If we could just get out of temps in the 90's it would seem more like Fall.

The girls are doing really well in school.  I'm so lucky that they both love school.  Although we got the dreaded lice letter yesterday.  They each have a kid in their grade with lice.  Ugh. 

I am enjoying sort of a quiet lull work wise.  I have a feeling that it isn't going to last long though.  I need to get it in gear.   My Ruby Mountain Metal shop needs some attention.  I'd like to get some more items in there before the Stringing magazine comes out in December.  I don't know how many of my earwire designs will be featured in the article, but it would be nice to get some traffic in my shop from the publication.  I really need to get some ball end head pins in there,  and maybe some more clasp designs,  some jump rings.

I have quite a few designs on my bench right now.  I did some cleaning in my shop the other day and put all my half finished designs, and individual components I had made and never done anything with all together and just started piecing things together.   I had a fairly productive day yesterday and hope to keep the momentum going today.   Perhaps new items will start trickling into the shop tomorrow. 
I like to break up listing new stuff.   I get too bored sitting and taking pictures, editing and listing all day long. 

So, hopefully I'll see you tomorrow!  :)