Lately my blog posts have been about anything but jewelry, as my creative urges in that area have kind of gone through a lull. I used to get stressed out about that, but now I realize that channeling my creativity in other ways – like taking pictures of cows or the moon! – helps me to get a fresh perspective that really helps when I sit down at my little workbench again.
I’ve kind of been obsessed with these angel wing stampings lately – I just love the exqusite detail of the feathers, and the way they look in different finishes or with an added patina. That got my spark lit again, at least enough to make a few things!
By the way, the fabulous brass wings are from B’ Sue Boutiques – if you make jewelry and haven’t visited her store yet you really should! www.bsueboutiques.com
Lisa O’Dell, of Blue Raven
A great little boutique called Blue Raven just opened in the area (on Highway 14 in Nixa, if you’re in the Springfield area) and I’m honored to have been invited to sell my jewelry there. The owner, Lisa O’Dell, has done a great job of filling this charming little cottage with all kinds of home accessories, artwork and just fun things!
Here’s a little tour –
Whoo loves owls – I do!
An inviting corner – love that bench!
Lots of great gift ideas for dog lovers!
Cute kitchen accessories for the holidays
Lots of fabulous jewelry – including lilruby of course! 🙂
There’s so much more to see at Blue Raven – if you’re in the area please do stop by!
I’ve always loved the moon – I even remember standing in the back yard on July 20,1969 hoping to catch a glimpse of the astronauts walking around up there. ( hey, I was just a kid, ok?)
But lately it’s become an obsession. It started a month ago when my son called me outside to see a sight I’d never seen before – a perfect ring around the full moon!
I don’t know how to take photos at night so I was excited when I managed to get this shot. (I’m sure my neighbors were also amused if they happened to spot me laying in the middle of the driveway to shoot it!)
So, a couple nights later when my son’s girlfriend called to say the moon was coming up big and orange I hurried out to capture it. I had to drive a little ways to an open field but I did it!
So here we are, a month later and another full moon tempting me to try to catch it.
Last night I had mixed results – this picture of the moon shining through the woods behind our house isn’t as clear as I’d like but it does have kind of a spooky Halloween look to it, don’t you think?
I had another chance this morning though, when I spied it setting over an old barn. I especially liked the soft lighting from the sun that was just coming up.
Uh oh, it’s getting dark now – time to grab my camera!
Yeah, I know the name of my blog is “lilruby jewelry”, not “lilruby everything except jewelry” but to be honest, my jewelry mojo is in a lull right now and is on a short hiatus.
In the meantime, I’ve been enjoying the incredible beauty of these fall mornings. After the nasty drought we had this summer I wasn’t expecting a pretty fall, but it really has been! When I came upon this idyllic scene of the sun coming up over a pasture of Holstein cows this morning I just had to hit the brakes and pull over.
I expected these young cows to be skittish, but as soon as I walked up to the fence and started jabbering at them they came to see what I was up to.
Before long I had several wet noses sniffing at my camera while gorgeous chocolate brown eyes gazed at me from under long, girlish lashes!
She’s even wearing earrings!
After a few minutes I had to get back on my way to work, but I really enjoyed my visit with these bovine beauties!
I so enjoyed this blog hop challenge! We were instructed to choose a part of the world other than where we live and then create something inspired by it. I chose Africa, because for years I’ve been fascinated by tribal jewelry and love to collect African trade beads. Here’s a picture of part of my collection-
Those beads in the center of the tray are kiffa beads, and they’re the reason why I specifically chose Mauritania as the African country I felt inspired by.
Mauritania is an interesting land of contrasts on the Western coast of Africa, and is bordered by both the Atlantic Ocean and the Sahara Desert. The northern part of the country is inhabited by nomadic Arab and Berber tribes, and by black African people in the southern portion.
Making kiffa beads
African women make the colorful kiffa beads by hand, using traditional methods and very simple ingredients – ground glass, gum arabic – sometimes even saliva! The beads are made in pans over an open fire. Modern kiffa beads look much the same as ones made long ago. I think they’re so beautiful!
I have a handful of kiffa beads that I’ve been hanging onto for a number of years, and I used them in three separate jewelry pieces for this challenge. First is this pair of earrings made with hammered brass hoops, batiked bone beads and a couple of small kiffas-
Next is a bracelet with beads that remind me of Morrocan silver, a large copal amber bead and small kiffas.
The final piece is a necklace made with antiqued brass, czech glass and more kiffa beads, including my favorite – a triangular focal.
Thanks so much for joining me on my little tour of Mauritania – I hope you enjoyed it!
Be sure to visit all the other countries and artists on this wonderful trip around the world!
The Bead Soup Blog Party’s second reveal is underway today! I’m not in this one, but be sure to check out everyone’s amazing creations here – http://lorianderson-beadsoupblogparty.blogspot.com/2012/06/participants-of-6th-bead-soup-blog.html
The second reveal begins halfway down the list – enjoy!
One of the things on my “must learn to do” list has been metal etching. I finally tried it recently and now I’m hooked! It’s a little unpredictable how each piece will turn out, but that’s part of the fun.
This is my very first attempt! I love how the design came out, but I left it in the solution a little too long and it ate away the hanging hole at the top.
Not sure what I’m going to do with this Mona Lisa yet…
This is the reverse side of the Mona Lisa piece.
“Fly Free” pendant.
“Faith is the Key” bracelet. This is my favorite piece so far, but I plan to do lots more!
Once again, I found myself mesmerized by some farmer’s fields as I drove by – this time it appears to be hay that’s been cut but not yet baled. I loved the striped patterns throughout the fields and that prompted me to get out with my trusty little camera and explore a little.
While you’re looking at these photos, imagine the warm sun, the smell of the new mown hay, the soft breeze that kept the wildflowers swaying and the twittering of the birds as they flew across the fields – all the simple things that make a country morning so special!
Tomorrow morning we head for Kansas City for the Strawberry Swing Indie Craft Festival. Since I usually do fall craft shows I had to change up my displays a little! Instead of my usual dark browns and warm fall colors I used tea dyed muslin layered with some of my vintage crocheted doilies and tablecloths, mostly made by family members ranging from my mom and aunt to my grandmother and great grandmother. Since I wasn’t sure how it would all look, I set up my tables in the dining room for a test run-
My two mannequins, Bev and Lucy, are sporting a couple of the tablecloths as skirts! The dining room table is loaded with stuff to be priced and packed.
I have two of these little drawers with dividers in them that I love to use as earring displays – wish I had a bunch more!
This little ceramic dresser tray was my Mom’s, and adds a girlie touch in soft pink.
Some necklaces packed and ready to go. Sorry for the poor picture quality – my camera doesn’t do well in low lighting (probably because I don’t have a clue how to use it!)
Guess I’d better get back to work – lots left to price and pack up!