Friday, 7 October 2011

Oct Jewellery Maker Prize Challenge

So here is the second posting today. As I mentioned in the previous blog post, I set Inspiration challenges for the Jewellery Maker Forum. The October one has been set and as it is October it just had to be Halloween. And as usual I had great fun making up the mood board.

So with this challenge there will be a prize, I can't tell you what the prize will be as even I don't know myself yet. But I can guarantee it will be nice. So do you make Jewellery and want to have a go, well you need to go to the Jewellery Maker Forum (the link will take you straight to the October Challenge) and become a member and at least post 5 times, so come on over and join the fun. My entry has already been made I just need to take some photos.

ETSY and Inspiration challenges

I haven't blogged for over a month, so you'll get two posts today sorry.

So where to start, ah yes ETSY. If you are a crafter you will know what ETSY is, and if you don't well its and online marketplace. I'm on Folksy but to be honest the elves need a wider audience, so I thought its worth a try and ETSY is cheaper than Folksy.
You may have noticed the widget for the shop over there on the right with some of my new style elves and a few sets. I have a couple of halloween elves that I must get to photograph and list soon, plus some Yule elves. 

So now on to Inspiration Challenges, for September I set a challenge of ART on the Jewellery  Maker Forum. I made a inspiration / mood board, which to be honest I enjoy making as much as thinking up a piece of jewellery.

I narrowed down my art inspiration to Mackintosh, Erte and Klimt and the medium I was going to use was polymer clay. For some reason I changed my mind as I had some of my lampwork beads that just fitted with Klimt so out came some Rose Quartz, Copper wire and a lovely ribbon. So I was spiraling and wrapping with copper wire and made this necklace inspired by Gustav Klimt's "Tree of Life".

The necklace "Phoenix" is now on my website and I will tell you about the lampwork beads on  the Storm Glass Bead Blog.

Monday, 15 August 2011

The making of a ring

Well yesterday I made two silver rings, and as promised I have taken photos of the process, yes including something that went wrong.

The first thing to do was marking out  the shape on the silver sheet, which I then cut with the piercing saw.

Next I used one of my needle files to smooth the rough edges left by the saw. And as you can see from the picture I made a mark with my centre punch, this is where I want to drill the hole for the silver tube.

I then textured the silver on my block using a hammer.

Using my drill I made a small pilot hole before the next stage.

Time to shape the rings, first I used ring bending pliers, then it was on to the ring mandrel and hammering it a bit more to finish the shape.

Now its time to get the pilot hole made bigger so the tube would fit. I slowly increased the hole size by drilling with a slightly bigger drill bit each time, until I got to the right size.

While the tube was in the hole I added the bead and measured the amount of tube needed and cut it to length.

On the second ring I found it easier to flare the tube first add the bead add the ring and then measure and cut.

I flared out the tube on the back of the ring and threaded on the bead, and tried to flare the front. It was going okay and then ping, one of the points of the star cracked, all was not lost as I had another bead. 

Success with the second bead, this time I took care with flaring out the tube, I used my centre punch to help flare out. Now I had a spare ring base with no bead. I had a quick look in my orphan jar and found a nice bead to use. As I said above this time I flared the tube, added the bead, measured and cut, then added to the ring and flared the tube at the back.

So to the final stage polishing, I like polishing, even if it can be a bit messy at times.

The beads were still a bit wobbly at this stage so I added a Jump ring to the top rivet, which stopped the wobble.

So there we are all finished, I learnt a lot from the process and have some tips for the tube riveting. Make sure the tube is fully annealed, and use dapping / doming punches to flare out the tube.

The rings look lovely on my hand and the beads spin on the base too, I am very tempted to keep them. If I do decided to sell them I will get them Hallmarked first, but thats my next blog post.

Friday, 12 August 2011

The Start of Something New

Well this month has brought new things for my lamp working it has been some new buttons & beads. For the Cornish Dragon it has brought a new Forum, I do like my Jewellery forums with Craft Pimp being a favorite, but there's a newcomer on the block, populated by a lot of lovely people I know and some new ones as well. Its called Jewellery Maker and I will put the link on the side along with the Craft Pimp link.

So to the other thing, If you read my Storm Glass blog you will see I have made a star bead I want to make into a ring. Well I thought I would photograph and share with you all the stages that will go into making this ring, yes even the bad. So far I have the bead and yesterday the silver arrived, before I ordered the silver I drew a quick design (not in my usual design book) I cut out one on the design in paper to see if it would go round my finger and if the bead would look right on the top.

I made sure I ordered enough silver sheet and tube to turn the other star into a ring as well. Hopefully I will be able to get some time in the shed and make a start, I had better remember to take my camera with me.

Friday, 8 July 2011


The internet has really been a good thing for me, with easy access to buying my supplies for my jewellery and forums. It took me a while to join one now I'm on two, I joined Making Jewellery magazine forum a few years ago. It has been a good place to visit with the odd competition, general fun, asking / answering questions and opinions on jewellery making and of course posting pictures and drooling over the beautiful creations of the other members.

Well as much as I love that forum I have other craft interests as well and I can't remember how I found this other Forum, but I'm glad I did.

There is lots of different crafts on this lovely forum and of course the most important thing is they are a very friendly bunch. I still haven't been on all the different craft sections of the 
forum but I will do soon.
Well on this Forum a couple of the members started a swap and the theme was Stars and Ithought why not I'll join in. So what to make, I got out the wee folk and made an Elf called 
Star of course. She's been posted now off to her new home and I have some lovely polymer buttons coming.
If you've never been on the Craft Pimp Forum just click on the Boss link on the right hand 
side and have a look.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

June here already

June is probably one of my busier months not for jewellery and making more busy with the other things that get in the way. I have book club, a dog show, Patronal Festival, school trips and then at the start of July it will be my son's birthday. On top of all that I have a jewellery party between the dog show and Patronal festival. I have been trying to get some extra bags and jewellery made and I'm wanting to get back with playing with metal I have the urge to make a Owl.

The Patronal Festival the whole week there is something on and on Festival day the school is a big part of the whole day. The festival does have an Art exhibition and I'm tempted this year to put in a piece of jewellery, I had ideas of a lampwork necklace but I couldn't get the right shape. In the end I made a piece for an Inspiration challenge on a jewellery forum, The inspiration was "by the Seaside" and I came up with this necklace.

Now I was also thinking of putting this in the art exhibition, but then unfortunately it won't be available for the jewellery party. I was tempted to take a photo of the necklace to the jewellery party, but I'm now thinking it really needs to be at the party. so maybe I will make something for next year.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Busy Times

I seem to have been more busy with the office side of things at the moment. I set up two Folksy shops one for Cornish Dragon and the other for Storm Glass beads, I have also set up a new website for the beads at last. Today it has been a lovely warm day, and I have been stuck inside with housework and uploading photos, it all takes up crafting time. I'm also about on twitter more and I love twitter I think I actually prefer it to facebook. I have also found a lovely new Forum, I love it there is lots of different creative bits going on, some stunning jewellery, beads, ceramics, paper crafts, oh loads, if you are a crafter and haven't checked it out do so you'll see the link on the side column.
So what have I created not a huge amount admittedly, but I have made some of my Charm style bracelets. I had a sort out of the beads stash which made me determined to use up some of the old stock. Trouble is I'm now low on findings, can I buy the findings without getting any beads as well, What do you think?... maybe not. I also have some lovely material which I want to make some bags with oh and some coin purses, well I need to make myself a purse really, I had better get some zips.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Bags n Stuff

The month has seemed to have flown by.
So to my new make, well if you're following me via my facebook page, you will know about the Bags. so far I have only made a few but have sold one and kept one.                                                                                                    

The Skull pleat bag and the Rose Tote are both available in my Folksy Shop, I will put the link up to it soon but if you search for CornishDragon you should find them, along with a couple of pieces of jewellery and some of my punk elves. Talking of the Punk Elves, one got Folksy Friday'd  this week you will find it on this blog by Little Day Dreamers . 
I haven't made as much jewellery as I have been busy making beads, but I did make these using some of my beads of course.

Friday, 11 March 2011

What's in a Name?

apologies for not blogging for a bit I seemed to have been busy with other things, hopefully I'll keep things updated bit more regularly.

Sometimes you get asked how did you get or decided on your design / business name. Well lots of people decide to use their own name, initials or even places they live etc. 
So how did I come up with Cornish Dragon and Storm Glass Beads. Well when I was making cards I used the name of Cornish Fairies as I was mainly making faerie & fantasy cards so the name stuck for a little while and worked well with the elves etc. But it didn't seem to work right for when I really got started with the jewellery so Cornish Dragon came into being. Cornish well I live in cornwall and it is a good selling point. Dragon well now that was fun I have a love of dragons and of course a dragons hoard is made of precious gems, metals etc so it seemed fitting to use this. Storm Glass beads was a little more difficult as I wanted to keep the two parts separate as one is a sort of raw material and the other is a ready made product. I could have used Cornish Beads etc but it didn't feel right, Spy Glass beads nearly happened along, but I settled on Storm Glass beads. Naturally the "glass beads speaks" for itself but Storm, now that is inspired by where I live in North Cornwall. I live about a mile away from the cliffs, and sometimes you can here the waves crashing on the cliffs or at a local beach called Duckpool, this is louder when we have a storm. Atlantic storms can be fierce but exhilarating I love it when the wind blows and I can here the wave pounding in, so Storm was chosen.

I'm starting a new project soon that will be the start of a new product line, now I have thought about using a different name for that line, so far this sound fun "Not All Girls Love Pink" but I have decided it will be easier just to stick with Cornish Dragon a lot easier really.

A couple of Photos of jewellery I've been busy making, and I have been bitten by the Chain Maille bug and I will post about that at a latter date.

Monday, 31 January 2011

Too Cold

It really is a little bit too cold for me to go in my workshop / shed at the moment even though I have a little fan heater. But I did manages to get in there last weekend, well I did need to finish an order and I ended up making some necklaces and bracelets with some old beads and some of my Storm Glass beads.

I got some hand-dyed silk ribbons and strings which look lovely with the beads, I was going to use them for the copper jewellery but they look better with the beads. I've also sourced some sterling sliver findings that will go well with the beads, including some really nice earring hooks.

Hopefully I can get back into the shed when it warms up soon and then I'm going to start on my mens range, so far Bronze and leather is going to be the main materials I'm hoping to use, and I've been inspired by the film "300" so expect some Spartan inspired mens jewellery.

Monday, 17 January 2011

The New Year

is creeping by and I can't believe that half of this month has gone already. If you've read my bead blog you will know I've been busy over the holidays in the shed playing with glass and my Hot Head torch. I've made some really nice sets and have a few single beads that I want to make pendants out of. The mushrooms and an Urchin bead are two I will start with and a lovely set I made this weekend that will look fantastic made into one of my Charm style bracelets.

I have recently purchased some hand dyed silk ribbons from Sowerze Designs, they are the most lovely colours. I have bought from them before but haven't used them I always  felt that they were too nice to use, I am the same with some beads I buy. But the strings and ribbons will look lovely with my own Lampwork beads.  

I was going to make some Jewellery this weekend and have some ideas in mind like the above pendants but I haven't really felt motivated. This time of year isn't the best for me motivation wise so I do have a tendency not to make much jewellery this time of year. But I'm thinking of a Jewellery party in either Feb or March so I will need to start creating again. But with the weather as it is at the moment, Its either raining or Misty so most days are grey, Isn't exactly inspiring. So I'm contenting myself with reading books, playing Wii games with my kids. The Mojo will return and then they may have to drag me out of my shed.