Sunday, March 8, 2009


I finally finished a wedding gift today. It's for my friend / coworker Jen. She and her glass-blower fiance are getting married in April.

I made a few custom-blended art batts, and then I am regifting a cute little book Randy passed on to me called "Knitticisms" that I think she will enjoy, and I also made these:

A set of stitch markers. Apologies for the picture quality; I was playing with the camera settings. Apparently I have a setting called "Auction" where it takes three pictures in quick succession, using different levels of flash. This was the clearest picture, but doesn't show the true colors. The beads and crystals are all shades of olivey-green, and there are two sterling silver charms: the heart says "True Love", and there is also a Celtic knot charm (it reminds me of a Celtic knot pattern she used in a sweater recently).

I asked Kris and Jeanelle to accompany me to Fusion Beads in Seattle, after our usual pilates + breakfast routine today. I haven't been to a bead store in years, and I forgot how much fun it is!

Jeanelle was intrigued by all the different materials available, and I am thinking of making her a pair of bird-related earrings or something equally fun (ok, maybe not birds - she commented once on how people only give her bird-related things. But I know she loves the outdoors, maybe that is a better venue). Kris was actually on the hunt for some findings so she could make a bead necklace. She has several loose strands of beads, and wanted to just make simple knotted strands. I should really go ask if she wants better instruction than my vague words this morning. :) I also have some technique books that might help her, and some tools to lend.

But I was on my own mission this morning. I went into the store specifically seeking soldered jump rings. Jump rings are basically a metal connecting ring you use to connect two elements of a jewelry piece together, if you want them to have some freedom of movement. Usually a jump ring is a loop of metal, with the ends touching. However, you can buy closed, or soldered, jump rings which are just that - solid rings. I wanted these for my stitch markers; there is less of a chance of snagging, etc. from a solid ring than from an open loop. I also picked up a variety pack of green-toned beads for $1, some open jump rings in a much smaller size for connecting elements, and some head pins to hold the drops of beads I was envisioning for my stitch markers.

I also made myself a set of 4 markers, using a small honeybee charm and a wishbone charm. I used the same color scheme and basic findings (jump rings & head pins, etc.)

The charms are what cost the most, because they were all sterling silver. Sometimes you can find nickel-plated charms that are a lot cheaper, if cost is a concern. All in all, I probably spent about $10 on each set of stitch markers, half of the price originates from the sterling silver jump rings, though.

As I was sifting quickly through the store, all sorts of projects came to mind. I may have to go back when I have a lot more time to peacefully look through the various areas of the store.

Kris came away with a mighty haul, though! :) There were some cultivated pearl strands on sale... I daresay I've created a monster! :)

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