Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Hip To Be Square

I am always on the lookout to incorporate unique materials in my work not only to expand my skill level but also to give an updated look to chainmaille as people know it. One of the newer trends among chainmaillers is to use rings that are made of square wire. These are a little bit tougher to work with sometimes, because even when they are the same size as round wire rings they don't always work for the same patterns that "normal" rings can be used for.

As an example - One of my favorite patterns to make is a dodecahedron ball ( I call them my "Porcupine Balls"). It looks like this -

 When I tried to create the same thing with the square wire rings I was using, even though the size was similar, the pattern was not coming together properly. I almost got discouraged that I'd have to take it all apart and start over, but then something about the shape got my brain moving. The rings were stiff enough to keep the pearl inside captive, so I thought it would work out well as a ring design. I attached it to a simple mesh band and here's what it turned out like:

It's not scratchy like you might think from the edges. The mesh has loosened up a little bit, but that is normal for most rings. I wore it a few days in a row and it was quite a conversation piece! It makes me think of a geodesic dome, like at epcot or an observation center. It's very sci-fi in my opinion.

The reason I bought the square rings in the first place was actually for a custom order - The request was for a stainless steel byzantine bracelet in a heavy gauge. It was going to be a Christmas gift for a man. I am not a fan of working with heavy gauge stainless steel. Rather than turn the customer away, I made the suggestion for the square rings and it was accepted. Here it is:

I'm happy with how my experimenting has turned out lately. I'm working on some modifications of the ring design, and I have some smaller sized square rings that I'll be using for other projects as well. The square rings may be a new favorite of mine - they give the pieces more of a modern edge, which is what I gear my style towards. Stay tuned and I'll be sharing even more fun developments with you.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Valley Health Services Holiday Bazaar 2011

Since the first big hurdle of my holiday season is over I thought I'd share a little recap of my last events. I didn't get any photos from the house party I did, but it was a big success. I am a tactile shopper myself, so I love being able to actually show my items to people so they can see and touch it for themselves. I also tend to tease that the more they hold onto something the more they must want it. Sometimes it even works! I hope to be able to do more private shows in the coming year and plan to develop that more too.

The monday after that was the Holiday Bazaar that My moms workplace holds every year to support their Residents council, and this was my second year in attendance.

(I didn't think you'd want to watch Days of Our Lives)

My new banner I ordered from Vistaprint showed up the week before, I could not be happier with it! I am so happy that now people will be able to come around and actually "know" who I am. Especially next month since the Indie Garage Sale is supposed to have around 100 vendors, it will help people find me.

My table is always a work in progress - I am planning to get some new things this week to help give my displays an even more organized and chic look. It is slowly coming together, though.

My ornaments and wine charms have turned into popular items - I plan on making a lot more, but I'm trying to brainstorm how to effectively display those, too. I can't exactly have a christmas tree crowding my table, as pretty as it would look.

I've already sold out most of my sets, so I think its a good idea for me to get a move on finding more charms to make more. I should probably specify that individuals can be mixed and matched for sets if people so desire.

The Bazaar was a lot of fun. I was glad my boyfriend was able to be there to help me carry things, and since my mom works there she is my best advertising. I wish I could have won a few of the raffles I entered, but then again my luck is not always the best. It's a good thing I rely more on my skill :).

In Two Weeks I will be vending at the Indie Garage Sale! I am excited and a little nervous. I did well at the show last year. I wish I had this weekend to work on items for it but I am going on my yearly NYC trip, so I will have to squeeze in Shop time after work and as I can manage. It might get a little rough, especially with "normal" holiday planning and shopping. At least I managed to grab some good Cyber Monday deals to fill peoples stockings with. Hope your holiday season is going well too!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Just for YOU, my readers here, 25% OFF in My Etsy Shop with coupon THANKSFANS25

Etsy is free to join and shop - I use Paypal for checkout which is a secure method and you can use your credit or debit card without having to open an account there. Or you can simply email me with a purchase request and I can send you a Paypal invoice.

Happy Shopping!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Chainmaille Wine Swag

The other night I got around to photographing and listing some new items I've been working on lately - Wine Glass Charms and Bottle Necklaces.

As we head into holiday season for many that means an upswing in the festivities. Wine glass charms are a great for hostess gifts or a housewarming parties, and especially fun for your favorite wine-lover. Also, they're one size fits all! How can you go wront with that? I made a few different sets of four, and theyll also be available in larger quantities here and there, too (like sets of 6, 8 and 12)

I also made some single pieces that can be mixed and matched

Citrine is a big trend stone for november since it resembles Topaz - Novembers birthstone

The bottle necklaces are a personal favorite, though - even if you aren't a drinker, they'd look great draped over a vase, or a bottle lantern. I have a gorgeous cobalt blue bottle light that I'll be hanging one on that I bet it'll look fantastic with the candle light shining through at holiday dinners.

Kingsmaille Bottle Jewelry

I made them with and without crystals - I like items that can be color coordinated to your decor. The first offering has some chic black sparkles but they'll be available in other combinations, too.

Bottle Jewelry with Glass Crystals

I'm so excited about this line of items - I've been wanting to do more than jewelry for a while now, and I love that I'm getting to branch out a little bit. I'll have more new items soon, but in the mean time you can check these items and more out in my Shop.

Happy Weekend!