Monday, January 31, 2011

Feathery Lusciousness

After stumbling upon this artist, I decided that I want to wear feathers in my hair when I get married :)  The creations by bridalcouture are beautiful.  Simple, elegant and soft, they would be perfect for that special day.  Any day, in fact - I wouldn't mind wearing one of the Rivas or Gias on an ordinary day.  And it seems there's one to match every outfit. 

The Gia would be perfect for a beach wedding!  The peacock colors (and feather) are gorgeous, and if you wore it with white would really pop.

I love this because it looks so grand and regal.  If I wear a corset gown for my wedding, I'll be sure to pick an accessory like this. 

The purple Lyla is so soft and feminine, I love it!  The gems in the middle are a great touch, and I love the fly-away feel of all the tiny feather tips.  Very whimsical. 

In other news, I'm moving into my new apartment tomorrow!  I'm super excited, I just hope it doesn't snow so much that the furniture people can't get my mattress out there...And I'm going to get my new studio set up soon in the second bedroom!  Finally, my own space for my jewelry!  And I ordered my business cards, which is a big step.  Just deciding on a name was a big step  :)

So everyone about to get hit with some serious snow, get bundled up and warm yourself with a hot cup of cocoa!  

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Shoes of Sweetness

I found this amazing artist while randomly searching the other day, and I can't get her shoes out of my head!  I had to share them with you all.  I had never even thought of painting my own shoes, but this has got me in the mood!

Kezbirdie paints all of her own shows (among many other things; check out her handmade skirts!), and these are my favorite:  the Koi.
Her Koi shoes are so cute!  The colors are beautiful, and you really imagine yourself standing in a pond.

These are on my wishlist for New Year's.  How sweet would these be with a little black dress?  They would spice up the whole ensemble, make it pop!

I'm a fan of anything with dragons, so I love these shoes.  I'm not usually a fan of the really pointy-toed look, but the dragon pics make these totally worth it. 

You rock, Kezbirdie!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

New Earrings

Just posted some new earrings on etsy:

Lapis "Spaceship" earrings, all in Sterling Silver with Swarovski crystals.

The same as above, but with Transparent Amethyst and a different Sterling link.

Made with silver leaf, these green barrel beads are a kaleidoscope beneath the sea.  A Swarovski crystal sits atop each.

These Sky Blue and Lemon Yellow dot beads are discounted because of a slight impurity in the clear glass.  It gives it an underwater look, more organic.  Two Swarovski crystals dangle above them. 

I had a great deal of fun making all of these!  The Green beads in particular have a special place in my heart.  I enjoyed working with Sterling Silver on the two purple ones, and that gives them a more distinguished look.  They'll brighten up anyone's day :)

**And a big thank you to all the nice comments from the first Etspiration day, I really appreciate it!***

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Etspiration Thursday

Here it is, the first Etspiration post! (Etsy-inspiration, in case you were wondering :)
One rule of Etspiration:  the artist must have a shop on Etsy. 
One rule of Glass Etspiration: the artist must have a glass (of some kind) shop on Etsy. 

The artists are picked based not only on their work, but also on their appearance (photography, etc.), their artist statement, and the overall feel of their shop.  It has nothing to do with views, popularity, or sales. 

To kick off our first Glass Etspiration Thursday (GET), I’ve chosen someone who has truly put her soul into her work.  There are artists who make items for money and artists who do it because their spirit demands it, because without creation they would wilt inside.  And consumers can tell the difference. 

lilianabead is one of the most inspirational glass artists I've seen.  Her shapes, colors, incredible photography, and her artist statement all combine to create a mouthwatering feast of artistic delight.  (All images are copyrighted to the artist!)

Just breathe it in.  The photography alone makes it a work of art.  I love the color of this piece (I’m a fan of the cool colors!), and the raised dots make it pop.  They give it life, make it dynamic. 

She has mastery over design as well.  The simplicity makes her pieces clean, sharp, and elegant.  She doesn’t waste time with superfluous additions or adding more for the sake of more.  I don’t know about you, but I didn’t come pre-made with that talent.  I'm always trying to reign in my natural urge to overwork my art.  I always end up putting too much on one bead; I try to combine dots, stripes, and swirls, and the end product is a mish-mash of gunk.  Less is more, as the old saying goes, and I couldn't agree more.  I look to artists like this to remind me of that. 
I'm biased because of my archaeology degree, but I love her vessels.  The colors are always lovely, and the curves are smooth and sensual.  The variety of beads is great; there's something for everyone.

I was also incredibly impressed with her profile statement.  To be honest, I had to reread a few sentences so that I could let them sink in.  Very few people can use the word “Transcendental” to describe their work and have it make sense.  It was eloquent and added another layer of attraction to her pieces.  I never realized it, but what you write in the profile will have a profound effect on people's view of your work.  lilianabead's profile adds an esoteric value to her work, a sense of mythology, the organic, space between dimensions.  For me, that made me value her pieces even more because I knew she had put so much thought and effort into their creation.  Additionally, all of her pieces are molded with her statement in mind.  They all fit into the narrative that she weaves; nothing looks out of place or disconnected.  Her shop exudes harmony, and that provides the perfect atmosphere for her clients. 

The overall professionalism of her sit is extremely persuasive as well.  It makes the client feel comfortable and confident with her abilities, and to me that is the most important aspect of selling.  She is consistent in her descriptions and her pieces, and does as much as possible to reassure her clients.  The quality of all her pieces is top of the line, and she has plenty of options from which to choose - click on over there now and check her out!

Thank you lilianabead, for sharing your talent with us!

**Come back next week for a new Glass Etspiration!**

New Beginnings...or old?


I always wonder if we know what we want to do with our future when we're a child, and then life interferes and sidetracks us.  My grandfather said I would be a jewelry designer when I was seven.  I spent the next fifteen years trying desperately to disprove him, because I am so stubborn that I don't want anyone telling me what to do.  It's that sort of thing, where if someone tells you something you'll go and do the opposite just so you don't give him the satisfaction of being right.  I did that, and still do, all the time.  But in this particular case I simply gave up the goat and said "alright, fine, I'll do what I love". 

Then came the next problem: feeling like a total waste of space.  In this society artists are not highly valued.  they make little money (on the most part) compared to their time and effort, and most have to have second jobs to support themselves.  People think of them as "lazy" or not pulling their weight like a, for example, accountant or lawyer is (and I mean no disrespect to them!).  This stereotype was REALLY hard for to get over, and I'm still working on it.  When I roll out of bed at 10 AM I have to remember I'll be working until 7, possibly even midnight.  So while I don't have a 9-5 job, I'll actually be working more than that. 

And that turned out to be more than true.  I sort of waltzed into this whole small business thing unaware, figuring I could work things out as I went. 

Not so much. 

Most of my time has been spent planning and entering data in excel instead of melting glass.  But part of me enjoys the little gritty details of expenses, of entering in that one dollar and forty cents I spent on findings today.  And then taxes...that was a whole other experience.   Promotion takes up the rest of the time.  Should I go wholesale or just retail? (Any ideas on that, please comment!)  Exactly who is my customer?  How do I create a brand?  So much to think about! 

I opened my etsy shop this week:

 So far etsy is a fabulous place to work with, and the people are extremely friendly.  there are so many opportunities of which to take advantage, and the number of people you can reach is amazing.  There does seem to be the danger of being lost in the crowd, but I think there are ways around that, tricks of the trade.  Now I just have to learn them. 

So get ready to hear about the process of running a small business, and anything else that I decide to throw into this blog.  I'm really excited to have a forum to discuss my ideas and thoughts, and I hope you all respond with comments!  Sharing our experiences is what opens our minds.