·:*¨Etsy Shoppe¨*:·

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Holiday Sparkles and More

I love the holiday season. The snow, the music, the decorations. There isn't anything prettier, to me, than houses decorated with lights.

Now, not the over-the-top Lampoon style... But classic. The white candles in a window, a green wreath with a great big red bow on the front door. Icicle lights under the eaves, or surrounding the porch. The softness it shows.

Even better, though, is inside. The smell of sugar cookies, pine pitch from the Christmas Tree, gingerbread just out of the oven. Dare I say Fruitcake! My Dad makes a mouthwatering confection of said dessert- which, normally, I would plug my nose at and run away as fast as I could in the opposite direction! It's delicious.

And inspired by the holidays, are the items below to adorn you or your family and friends. There's something so sexy about beautiful little treasures that are worn!

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So a flashy pendant in red or black diamond, eye catching and definitely festive. Delicate earrings that match perfectly, wear as a set or separate. I love creating jewelry- and especially using Holiday colors- reds, greens, crystal, and black diamond. Because no matter what- a little sparkle always puts a smile on your face.

It's like buying red lipstick and a great pair of shoes- it perks your mood up and makes you feel good almost instantly! So... If you like, visit my shop by clicking here in order to view all my items! Or you can use the list on the right side of my screen to see what's currently listed in my shop.

What are your plans for the holidays?

Friday, December 4, 2009

Check out the Holiday Gift Sale!

That's right!

Click on the button:

To head on over to the Handmade Gift Guide's Blog.

What can you find there you ask?

OOohhh.... Gifts for him, gifts for her... For little boys, and pretty girls, and everything in between!
The best part about it is that she's hosting a holiday "Bazaar" of sorts.... Different shops and items will be featured on her blog- and you are the lucky ones that get to check out these shops as a result!

It starts on Sunday, December 6th and runs through Saturday, December 12th.
Throughout the week, check in for special giveaways, amazing featured shops, exclusive deals, and even a treasure hunt! The lucky winner scores a beautiful gift basket stuffed with many delightful goodies that's sure to put a grin on even Scrooge's scowling mug!

So what are you waiting for?! Get on over there!

Follow the blog for beautiful posts and gift suggestions- what's hot, trendy, innovative and best of all- handmade!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Lots of crafting...

And so little time!

I've had a nervous energy lately... And it's been good for me inspiration wise. It's like, I've just found myself so restless... Up late, up early- I can't seem to find enough hours in the day to get done what I'd like!

But. The exception was Monday night.
I made THIS:

Now, I've always been the sparkly girl. Facets throwing light, and polished gleaming silver. Not the case here. I've discovered oxidization. And I think I love it.

So not wanting to have the necklace all by itself, I made matching earrings.
Dark, enticing, seductive... Dress up or down, I think it'll go with just about anything! The black diamond Swarovski Crystals are AMAZING! I doubted that I was going to like them- but then again, these crystals sparkle like no other. SO... My fears were totally unfounded. It's most likely going to be one of my favorite colors to work with!

So I think this oxidization thing is a winner..... And I expect to have more and more items like it in my store added around the New Year!

I also can't wait to go home for Christmas through New Years!
My boyfriend!
My family!
Awesome food!
And hopefully a new digital camera!!!

I'll be able to bring my jewelry things with me... But limited availability to ship items out... I will try my best though!

What are you doing for the holiday?

Monday, November 16, 2009

O Cris-Ris Tree!

The Christmas Season.

It's my favorite time of the year- hands down.
(Favorite holiday is Halloween though!)

Anyways... I've been looking around for about the past 2 weeks for these earrings.... I finally found them. Not in my truck, where I could have sworn I had seen them a week ago. Nope.
Not in the craft box I know I have other things in- and where they should have been. Nope.

Instead, they were found tucked inside a box that had miscellaneous odds and ends that I've managed to collect and keep contained into a single, small box. Trust me- that's a huge feat!!!

I like working with semi-precious stones from time to time- I'm not a huge fan of them. However, as you very well know that wandering through somewhere items sometimes catch your eye- this was the case here. However, so that I don't take credit for having such a moment in this case- I would like to thank my wonderful Mom for finding these! Moss Agate, and had I seen them... I'm certain I would have picked them up too!

If you ever wonder where I get a lot of my creative influences... It's definitely from my Mom. She crafted these little beauties two years ago and sold quite a few pairs at a local craft show. Similarly, at the same time I had just discovered Etsy and was eager to try and sell some items. These made it on initially, but I have to admit... Horrible camera = awful pictures.

So, this time around... I apologize- my really good camera I purchased was stolen back in September, and while I'm quite upset about it... I have another one that my brother is letting me borrow until I can get mine replaced. It's all good. I do have to say though, the camera really isn't formatted to take high quality detailed pictures (as in jewelry), but it's done an ok job so far. Better than nothing, right?!

I freshened these little Christmas Trees up, made them into the Changeling
charms that I've been making... And Voila! A fresh start!

Oh, the name of my blog tonight? Yes, it's a version of "Christmas Tree"... However, silly story behind it. When I was little, Mom and Dad had the bright idea of getting a video camera when I was about 2 years old. Couple this with Christmas Morning, and my Nonnie Pep (Grandmother, Dad's side) being there... I was the typical excited toddler waiting to open presents. I don't think I really cared what I was getting- tearing open the pretty paper packages was what I was aiming for. Aside from... Singing.

Yes, that's right. The majority of the video is me going "O Chris-rissss treee! O Chris-rissss tree!"

After about 5 minutes of recording this... My parents laughing in the background... This ensues:

Nonnie Pep: "Amanda!"

Me: "Yes Nonnie?"

Nonnie Pep: "Be QUIET!"


There you have it. My funny Christmas Story from when I was a baby, and the title of the blog.
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Sunday, November 15, 2009

Travels: Occoquan, Virginia

Out and about wandering... There are days I'm restless, and I just want to go to a familiar place and walk. So... That's exactly what I did yesterday.

I thought I'd share a little photo-collage with everyone..... Considering this is one of my favorite places to escape to down here in my "adoptive" home of Virginia. Yes, yes, yes... I'm a New England girl through and through- and I have to admit, 70 degree days in Virginia is NOT normal.

Not for me at least.

But, I've been quite sick lately, and just had a string of bad luck from end of August until now.

I needed to just get out and bumble, as I like to call it.

You'll see in the collage, there's a few photos of "Gingerbread" houses. I call them by the name since they all are different, yet the same... The colors are whimsical, the brickwork amazing, the entire look... Enchanting. These ones, however, you cannot eat!

Sitting atop the banks of the Occoquan river, once Gaslight Landing is complete there will be four units with houses available in each. These homes are absolutely gorgeous. The front units face Main Street in Occoquan- so parking is available right in front of them. Of course, the homeowners have their own garages under their houses- but that's private parking! The back units sit right on the banks of the Occoquan River, and the wharves are right there as well. Overlooking the water- I can't think of a more perfect place to be. Someone wanna lend me a million so I can get one? hahaha... Big dreams, for a little person... But we'll see.

Continuing on through the town, there are so many shops it'll make your head spin! There are a few really nice antique shops- set up and ready for Christmas already... What happened to Thanksgiving?! It's ok- the setup is so whimsical I can't help but walk by and admire. There are jewelry shops, and one such is comprised of local artists. I haven't yet brought in any of my things- I'm watching how much sells there, and who it is before I "take the plunge".

There's a lovely little Christmas Ornament shop, with lights and miniature town set-ups, stained glass boutique, acupuncture therapy, spa treatments, general stores... And one of the best Apple Pie's I've had since I've been down here which is incorporated right in to the General Store. They're located at the top of the hill when you drive in! Clothing stores- some consignments, some bridal and special occasion, and many specialty stores for women to find the perfect accessory to any outfit. A little Irish store packed with traditional and authentic items from Ireland, painting pottery, a bookstore you can quickly become engrossed within, and plenty of little café style eateries that you can stop in for a bite once walking the circuit around town.

There's a wine tasting shop, and a girlie sparkly one with all sorts of cutsey and fun things to pick up for that quirky girl you know! The gelato one is my absolute favorite in the summer... Grab one of those to go, and walk around the streets! My local bead shop is here too- the woman remembers me every time I come in, because my roommate will sit outside in the rocking chair and wait for me... Rather than poke his nose into a shop where all the ladies are "ooohh-ing" and "ahhhh-ing" to all the beads! Typically, I do order online... But I get some great finds in there too!

My favorite place to admire, even though I've never been into it, is Rockledge Mansion.

It's a big, old, stone mansion that was built a very long time ago at the end of the walkway through town. You can't go any further, since the water reservoir is up there, and it's fenced off. But once you walk up and see this building- it's hard to keep curiosity for what's over the hill, instead of the hulking stone structure you gaze at now.

The mansion itself is nestled right into the hill, an what I wouldn't give to get in there!
Occasionally, you'll see a car or two up there... But as far as I can tell it's unoccupied by residents. I did find, however, that the mansion and hall are for rent for events... Yay! The pricing isn't bad... But I'd need to find a way to host something worthwhile in order to do so... I think a masquerade ball would be so much fun!

Occoquan was once a bustling little town- and I was amazed at reading some of the history when I first moved down here. There are quite a few haunts, since most of the buildings are original, and their past owners and caretakers are still doing just that... Watching over their shops.

So this was my little outing... Perhaps if you're looking for an interesting place to go, this will strike your interest!
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Monday, November 2, 2009

Halloween's Over Already?!

I can't help it... Halloween has to be my absolute favorite holiday of the year.
Even better than my birthday!


It's the cool, crisp fall days that begin to have a hint of frost in the morning hours.
The clear nights, with a sharp cold wind that if it catches you right,
will send a chill up your spine.
The smell of drying leaves, falling from once vivid trees to make a carpet of red, orange and yellow hues on the once green grass. The way the dirt even smells cold.


It's the little kids dressed up in all sorts of costumes... Trick-or-treating with little pumpkin baskets or pillowcases. Mom and Dad taking them from door to door, depending on the weather they may or may not have a coat. Candy fangs, and princess tiaras, a little hummingbird set alight on Dad's arm. A little Frankenstein, and a Barbie Doll....


Glowsticks and flashlights, to light the way in the dark... Door to door collecting the sweets, and sometimes other treats, that are passed out during the evening.


Pumpkins carved out- silly faces, scary smirks and ghoulish specters flickering with soft candlelight. (Yes, I'm fan of those- as long as they're monitored so there's no fire hazard!)
They especially are delicious when you sprinkle a little cinnamon and nutmeg on the top of the pumpkin- so as the candle burns, it lets off a smell that just beckons people to sit and stay a moment to chit chat about how to best decorate.


Yards decorated with white sheet ghosts, and hanging bats... Fake spiderwebs set upon corners of porches with equally fake spiders nestled within them. Garages transformed to house coffins and vampires instead of the family Volvo- unless, of course you're a Cullen!


Ah.... Halloween.
I must wait for my friend again next year.


Friday, October 2, 2009

Life gets in the way

I know it's been quite some time since I was last active on here.
While things have turned around a bit, it still is a bit crazy! However- I am making it a point to get active online again.

I can't believe it's already October. Where has this past year gone?! I swear..... In a blink of an eye, a year has passed. And yet so much has happened within the past 6 weeks- that time period had felt like forever trying to get up to real time movement.

My roommate and I are all settled into the new place... It's top floor. Nice neighbors. QUIET all the time! I mean look- it's quarter to eleven on a Friday night, I'm about ready to tuck myself in to bed (it's been a stressful week) and there's nothing but the sound of the wind and a few errant crickets outside. Scouts honor!

Tomorrow we'll finish unpacking what we can of the boxes still stacked up. My room is set- I just need to purchase a few things, and it'll be my own little haven. Apparently we're drastically altering the living room from what it currently is- and I'm not looking forward to that. I don't think, space wise, it'll work. But... I'll take a deep breath, and see how it turns out. Might have a pleasant surprise in store!

I've got a camera that I'm using in the interim- my brother's letting me borrow it. Better than nothing, I suppose, but it SO doesn't take pictures like the one I had that was stolen. Makes me bitter. But- counting the blessings I wasn't home and didn't walk in on them when they were stealing our stuff. And some pictures (even if not as high quality) are better than none.

Try to find the positives. I'm working on it.
Or as my very wise Dad would say- Worry about the things you have control over.

I'll be working on more changelings once we're a bit more unpacked... I love the fall. Perhaps I'll even make an apple crisp this weekend.... Or something... Gotta get more into the Autumn spirit!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Break In and New Move

Trying to turn over a new leaf... Trying to see positive, be optimistic.
It's hard.

So a run down of the past few weeks.
We moved in to the new apartment the first week of August. Got settled in for the most part, but there were still a few things to unpack and such. It wasn't a mess, by any means, just disorganized. A few boxes here and there, but mostly the new place was set up.

Last Tuesday my roommate and I were robbed.
They broke in through my bedroom window, using a screwdriver to pop the "Security Bar" installed on it. (The property manager tried to say I deliberately left my window unlocked so they're not taking the blame- but the police say it's clearly a break-in) Secure, indeed. In they went. Shoes all over my bed, trampled. Sand. Dirt. Flipped up my sheets. Trashed my room. I mean, every possible box- including little jewelry boxes I kept things tucked in- dumped on my bedroom floor. They took my laptop and digital cameras- one brand new. Tossed the clothes in my closet, looking for hidden things that weren't there. Went through literally ALL my things. Some stranger had their hands all over my stuff.
My roommate lost a lot more valuable things, but they didn't trash his room. Not at all. Almost nothing was disturbed in his room. Going through the rest though, I was surprised to find only certain things missing.
For instance- of course they stole electronics, x-box, games so on and so forth. And jewelry from my roommate.

But all my jewelry was left behind. Mostly sterling, but still nice things. Necklaces, rings, bracelets, pendants. I haven't found anything missing (yet). However- I went to sit down and make some jewelry the other night- and grabbed my supplies box. Sat down, and opened the lid. Now mind you, this container houses about $600 worth of crystals and sterling silver wire. Yes, they left it behind! Nothing missing... Except my TOOLS!!!!!!!!!!

Yes, they stole my jewelry pliers. Needle nose. Round nose. Flat. Snippers/cutters.
I am SO mad. Well, glad they didn't steal the expensive stuff... But angry that they took the necessary tools to create my jewelry. UGH. Infuriating. Took a look at my stained glass box too- they stole 4 soldering irons, 5 pairs of stained glass tool pliers. *mad face* But... They left the $500 worth of glass. I mean, really?! Obviously not professional thieves, and obviously not the brightest crayons in the box.

Boy I'm lucky they left all that stuff behind.

I just have to replace tools...

So yesterday was the 7 day mark from having the break in. The past week has been chaotic. Had to cancel bank accounts, change information, we're even moving to an entirely different apartment complex- yes, breaking the lease at the current place. They wanted to transfer us next to the place where the people we think did this live. Absolutely not. We're not staying there. It's unsafe, and they won't let us alter the apartment in any way to secure it. So imagine the surprise last night upon driving in to our parking lot there (where we're stuck until next weekend) and seeing two of the suspects walking out from behind our building shocked me. I couldn't speak. Scared, all over again. However- as soon as they saw my roommate and I pull up, they booked it over the hill and ran away. Called the cops, said there's nothing they can do since they went away- but they're noting it on our break-in report. Also called the apartment complex and left a message.
But the apartment complex doesn't think there's anything strange about that.
Nor the fact that they were part of the same group of people we called the cops on about loitering, after they had cased us out all day the day we moved from the old apartment and saw exactly what we had packed in to the moving van.
No, no coincidence. None at all.

Needless to say- I'm back to being paranoid and scared to be alone. Panic attacks suck. And I miss making my jewelry. And no more pictures until I can replace my camera... ARGH.

Friday, August 21, 2009


Well... More like... I'm so happy it's time to kick back and relax! It's been a long week- but I've made it through!

I'm waiting patiently for dinner to be made- roomie is cookin up some teriyaki and chicken concoction that will most likely prove to be divine.... I just got home a little while ago. I'm stahhhhving!


So I actually noticed the date today. 8/21/09.
I can't believe it's already almost the end of August.
Where did the time go?! It seems like yesterday I was waiting for the warm(er) weather to get here so I could kick off my shoes and run around barefoot- which I do all year anyways- and lounge at the beach.

Well.... I've successfully done the kicking off the shoes part. Haven't made it to the beach. Yet.

It's making me think... Tiki Torches. Sand. Mai Tai's. Sarongs.
Siesta! Let's have a party!


Bright and vibrant! Colors speak so much as to what kind of a mood you're in, and I while I love muted colors... Sometimes bright and bold is what you need. You have to admit that if you catch a glimpse of yourself wearing something so intense it puts a smile on your face. Admit it. There you go!


As a celebration, I had to create these earrings. I originally didn't plan to put them together like this- I was going to have complimentary muted colors that were similar to each. Until I felt I needed the bright factor. Enter Indian Pink. Thank you for the eye popping color!

I'm also totally psyched because today I was featured on a blog! A special post, all about me! Sorry to be so excited here for a second, but WOW! It's awesome! I've been really active on Facebook lately- trying to promote my shop. And then I got the magic "100" needed for a URL.

And I took a look at all the people that were becoming fans of my jewelry... And it made me realize, hey. Those are the people supporting me... So why not return the favor?
I had the idea and began implementing it... A quick status update, and there you go! Items! Referrals! Fans! Marketing! Links to shops, new people, new friends... Why not!?
So I'm madly posting like no other has done before....
Well, I think so at least!
My fans are just as important as I am, so why not share the success!?
So thank you Comfuzzled for featuring me on your blog!!

And for those of you that want to keep up to date on the "Sales Fairy" visits... Find her on facebook and fan her too for special updates!!! Her page is here!

So Afternoon Siesta is on!!!

Who's bringing the pitcher of Margaritas?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Facebook Fans/Cross Promotion

So I decided to post an Etsy Thread.

First time for everything, I hope it doesn't look TOO bad!

I've been intrigued by how easy it is to advertise on Facebook, and of course there's no shortage of awesome artists on Etsy.

So why not combine both?


Fan Pages and Etsy Artists!
There's no reason you can't have your cake and eat it too!!!

The idea is to get as many shops/fans as possible. I don't know how realistic this is, all things considered... Because I do realize that people have different tastes with items and shops. But that's ok- just as long as we help each other out!

So take a look, and fan away!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Sushi Night

I made sushi for the first time in a long time last night... And I just wanted to share a few pictures!
Off to take some of the jewelry!


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Friday, August 14, 2009

3 Weeks!

Without Internet!

I can't believe I made it!

I apologize for being MIA, but between the nightmare moving was, and getting everything all over here to the new apartment... Let's just say I'm very glad it's all done and over with. Now it's just a matter of getting unpacked, settled and organized.

So tonight is the first Friday I'm in the new place.
I have to say, I'm quite impressed with myself. I've managed to get most of my room set up the way I want- I just need to purchase bed/nightstand/dresser in the next month. And all my things are put away and stored... In the closets! I love the storage I now have! It's awesome!

I'm thinking I may actually remove a door from one of the closets, that way I can build a little workstation on to the wall and use it as a craft area. However, I don't know if I want all the closet contents to be "seen"- but the good news is that there's enough of a gap between the door and the wall where it opens I could conceivably tuck a small table and keep a chair off to the side.

Heck. What's wrong with the bed!? LOL

I have to say... I love my bathroom the most. I'm hardly finished decorating with it- but oh... So pretty! I ended up purchasing a sheer purple shower curtain with sparkles all over it, and I wasn't so sure I'd like it. I'm not a purple person, but I was going for "Spa" feel. I'm impressed. It's delicate, and I decorated with cream colored accents. Bamboo and candles on the counter, and we're starting to get a look going here! Next up is a space saver above the commode, and a towel cabinet for next to the bath in Espresso wood. So there's the color scheme- lavender, cream, greens, rich wood.

I could get used to decorating! Maybe it'll become a new hobby... I have so many....

I'm excited about my jewelry though. I think I'm going to take more pictures this weekend, just to change up how I have some of them listed and shown. More textures, better light, different backgrounds and backdrops. We'll see how much time I have- since tomorrow night is an Impromptu Sushi Night and Birthday Celebration!

Mmmm... Sushi... I haven't made it for over a month... *drooling*

Friday, July 24, 2009

Moving Day has Inspired Me... Terrariums!

Oh, so here it goes... Moving day indeed!
Bigger place with my roomie, and I couldn't be happier! It's sure going to be a busy weekend- but we'll manage.

I think the fact that I'm moving from the big parking-lot area part of the complex to the top of the hill, overlooking the other side of town, and deck now faces woods instead of neighbors- has inspired me to "Get Green". I like to garden- used to do it at home, where my Mother has a beautiful garden landscaped around the house. I had a little section of my own that I tended- with Bleeding Hearts, Pansies, Hostas and other flowers that caught my fancy. My favorite was the Bleeding Heart- pink. They were my Grandmother's plants, and it's been "killed" many times over by the lawn-mower. It kept growing back- and when we moved from CT to NH, I took it with me. It's literally over 50 years old- nice strong roots!

Anyways, I digress!
Moving to this new place has inspired me to bring a little bit of "garden" inside. (since i obviously can't plant a garden in the forest- i know some jerk will ruin it...) I've always loved terrariums, and perhaps I'll make my own. But searching for inspiration on Etsy, I came across some lovely specimens that make me just want to whip out the debit card and purchase away. I'd totally hang the bulbs from wrought iron hangers I have, and place artfully on shelves I plan to purchase. Have to remember- fiesty kitten joins my household on Monday! Cats do love to get in to things they're not supposed to...

So, here's what I'll share thusfar from my finds on Etsy- I hope you enjoy!

Here's a weakness of mine- Teapots- and this design is from WeeGreenSpot's Shop. I simply can't get enough of them. I'd collect them, but I buy too many crystals to support another obsession... Unless business picks up, of course! I love the shape, the almost country look, and of course- who wouldn't want a cup of green tea and moss?

Next up is another possibilty- since I have a fondness for glass, and Apothecary Jars are just so pleasant to look at.

This beautiful Terrarium is from Greenbriar. The little toadstools are the cutest things I've seen yet- imagine a fairy sitting atop her little perch! I also love how everything is layered in this one- it just brings so much green inside- it's almost like having a garden. Almost...

Speaking of absolutely whimsical, this adorable "Gnome's Laundry Day" is from doodlebirdie. Precious!
I've never seen such tiny-scale and adorable "clothes" for Gnomes! This one definitely makes me go "AWWWWW!"... This one is definitely a one of a kind idea, and a wonderful one at that! I vote more Gnome Laundry Day Terrariums!

Sometimes, simplicity is key. And such is truthful by taking a look at this teensy, tiny moss garden. It's offered by starcrazy8.
I'm in *love*. I like simple, tasteful, elegant... Tiny... I'm a small person, so small things intrigue me. It makes me feel "normal" I suppose, though there's nothing wrong with being short! The look and feel of these- I can picture about 5 of them lined up in a row- and of how absolutely gorgeous they'd be on a shelf!

Last, but not least... The typical Etsian (i think) DIY mentality. I mean, we're ALL crafters, right? That means handmade... Which means we like creating and crafting... And I'll cut to the chase... !
Visit WarmCountryMeadow for an awesome little kit that comes with everything you need to create one of your own Terrariums!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Colorful and Creative

This isn't a jewelry post today.

It's a mask post.

I've had quite a few compliments, and inquiries, as to where I dug these two beauties up- but then again, they may not quite be your thing. To each their own I suppose!

Anyways... I like dressing up and going to Ren Faires. We had a very small one that we organized a few years ago back home in NH, but it was mostly local vendors. The only downfall to the entire thing was that it really wasn't advertised well at all- which had it been me, there would have been all sorts of marketing going on.

However- all in all, we had a really good turnout.
Skip to last year, when I moved down to Virginia, and didn't know what a REAL one was... And I was amazed. An entire little town to walk around in... Who would have thought?!

Checking out all the different shops, there were literally hundreds of things I wanted to buy... From little handblown glass ornaments, to flower headbands, to dresses and corsets and handmade chalices- I'm sure I looked like a drooling Pirate. Yes- purple and black lace corset, pirate hat with big feather, red and black skirts.. It was great. Though- I imagine to everyone passing by I looked more like a fish with it's mouth gaping wide, drooling all over the wares... But not literally. LOL.

I found the Mask Shoppe quite by accident, as I was wandering around and found two girls selling adorable "horns" made of fimo clay and attached by tying the string behind your neck. I'll show pictures later of that, it's funny. They had three locations across the fairgrounds selling them, and two of the three sold out the weekend we were there! Many, many people- from little 5 and 6 year olds to a stately old woman in a wheelchair were seen sporting around in them... So cute!!! So the girls that were helping me get a pair of horns for my sister said "Go peek in the shop- you seem like you'd find something in there that you'd like."

I did. In every sense of the word- I found the Goblin Mask! While there were various gorgeous hand made, handformed, and handpainted masks available... It was something about this little grumpy one that just screamed at me. I had to have it.

So I bought it.
Now the interesting thing is that I liked it. I had no intention of wearing it for Halloween- as it was fast approaching, and I had an idea for a costume already. So I hit up another mask shop on the way out that evening- and bought the one seen below. I'm a total sucker for anything that has glitter. And this has feathers, and rhinestones to boot. Yep. Cha-ching. Got this one too.

So as you can tell, I bought the two masks the same day... And yes, I knew they were both green. But I didn't think to combine them both together until I was literally walking out of the Ren-Faire with them in my hand. I didn't get a gift bag or anything with their purchase (which kinda irked me) but meh... It worked. I slipped one on top of the other....

And Voila! The Goblin Queen emerged!

And to finish the ensemble off, of course you need some sparkles. And what better than a hot-pink rhinestoned star?! This is, of course, one of my own pieces not for sale... But I love the rainbows it throws off anytime I move! Here you have it... Components of the costume I created last year.

I think, depending on more jewelry that I craft, that the masks both will have to be "models" for me.

For The Mouthwatering Recipes...

I've decided to move them to another blog.

This one here is, after all, for my jewelry.

So, if you'd like to see what I create for dinner, or just in general when I decide to cook on a whim, you can find me at http://italian-girl-recipes.blogspot.com

That's where the food will be hanging out :)

Monday, July 20, 2009


So I've been madly crafting some more jewelry. Ok... I'll be honest... I made it a while ago, but never posted the pictures or offered them online.


I didn't like the way the images came out- and since I'm a nitpicker, perfectionist... Bah! I just like really good pictures. Great pictures. High quality, catch your eye ones.

When I have images that I feel are sub-par, I tend to not do anything with them. They don't convey the detail of my jewelry, so I figure why would people actually want to stop and look if they're less than average quality. I may be wrong, but that's my take. Many of the pix I've snapped just didn't cut it- they were too close, too blurry, too far away, not quite catching the "essence" of my jewelry. None of the pictures gave it the wow factor. I was not impressed, since the detail some of my pieces have need to be captured in order to convey the feeling of the piece itself. It's not just about a pretty sparkle. I know details need to be seen. And none of the pictures conveyed that.

Until now.
New pictures were taken.
These make me happy.

I never in a thousand years thought that I could possibly get this much detail, this much color, this much... WOW. What do you think?

I've always loved dangly earrings- since I can remember. And anything that's ever sparkled- well, impossible to keep me away from. I'm serious! Glitter, crystals, diamonds, faceted stones... If it's got any possibility of reflecting light in an enticing manner.... This girl has to stop and inspect it.

I'm not really one to wear many pastel colors, but I do have to admit that in selecting my crystals lately- they've definitely been geared to soft and delicate colors. Like the Jonquil and Antique rose "Changeling" earrings pictured- there's something soft and romantic about the colors- and just totally irresistible. The inspiration for these came from the fact that I have a ton of earrings. But when you buy them just out and about, they all have the same, exact earwire. Ho-hum, boring. I like my jewelry to stand out from the crowd. I want someone to go "OH, where did you find those?!"

So yes, it's become my habit to fashion my own earwires and slip on the dangle part (unless they're the kind you can't) and slip the dangle on a custom pair. I usually get stopped and have inquries as to where I've found the earwires. To which I simply say- I make them myself

It didn't dawn on me until later that I should actually make the components and offer them for sale- both the earwires in a selection of shapes- like the leaf pair I pictured above- and the dangles- which can be done in hundreds of combinations, with crystals, stones, silver beads... You name it. The possibilities are endless. The customizations are yours. You essentially pick out and create the type of earring you want.

Voila! A one of a kind creation.

Now the ones below... They're threaded themselves on the earwire- so it's all one solid piece. I like these, since they're sturdy and free-formed. Imspired by leaves, and accented with different crystal colors- I chose Tanzanite to make my first pair. I had done these years ago, with different beads- and lets just say that the final result wasn't impressive at all. However, after discovering that Swarovski now makes top-drilled bicones... I couldn't be happier.

The beads themselves remind me of little diamonds- without the huge price tag. Tanzanite is quickly becoming one of my favorite colors- the tone of the purple changes from an almost lavender, to a deep amethyst.

I think being on this type of an earwire, it really shows off the different facets that the beads have, as well as being simple as well. Understated is sometimes the best statement a girl can make.

And as for this little one... This is a pendant I made, without knowing what it was going to turn out to be.

Yep... That's right. I grabbed a few containers of crystals and pearls, dumped some into my bead board... And let it design itself.

Again- I'm not terribly in to pastel shades for myself... But the tones of this necklace reminds me of Easter for some reason. The little bicone crystals were bought in "color packs" in Maine- and I haven't been able to find the colors again. I think they were a special limited time offering. The only ones I've used in it that are available are the Peridot (green) and Jonquil (yellow). The pinks I haven't been able to match to any current colors- so they're unique indeed! And if you look at the pearls, you can see me and the camera in the reflection... Talk about detail!!!

I'm holding on to her for a little while.... A friend has expressed some interest, so this little beauty is staying stashed for a little while.

So if anyone out there cares to let me know what they think of my pictures so far- I'd love to know. I haven't had any feedback- and while I think they look pretty good... I'd like some outside opinions too. More of them are in my Etsy shop too... So if you swing by there and take a look, you should be able to see all the ones I've taken so far. Actually, now that I remember... You can just gaze to the right to see what's currently listed... Wow, I have moments!


Thursday, July 16, 2009


I've been upset that my camera is not catching the details of these lovely little Swarovski Crystals the way they should. Or any of my jewelry, for that matter.

I hunt around often on Etsy, and online in general, and find plenty of other jewelry makers with gorgeous items and the pictures to match. I've been getting discouraged because while my items are pretty and detailed, my camera has failed to capture the details that matter. The ones that make you go "OH, wow, need to check that out." Heck- I even see things online that I just plain don't like, aren't my thing, and I'd never be interested anyways... But a great photo makes me pause and take a look.

And since I can't just "scan" pictures in... I've been left no other option.

also enter panic mode right now because etsy is "down for maintenance" and they want to show STUPID videos. i don't want to watch them... i want to edit my listings dang it....

But... I'm guilty. I made an impulse buy, of course after verifying I do indeed have the finances available, and I have to say I'm quite happy with my decision. The pictures I've been snapping are incredible... My old Samsung camera- that's being used as an SD card reader to the computer to upload the photos at this point. Why? I'm on an older comp, and it irritates me. The new snapper is so fast, it doesn't have a high-speed USB port to plug in to. Plus this baby is HD. And the computer doesn't recognize it and allow me to upload pix right from it to online- which I think is convenient, and I like very much. Especially to Facebook!

I use my camera for everything. I'm like a photojournalist. I take pictures often.
And I have to say, I'm a sucker for Canon.

I've pretty much always used them as a camera company- my "old" one now is 7 years and Samsung. It's served its purpose, and now I have a better one. The beater I'm sure will accompany me for outings that don't require high resolution images... But who knows!

*sigh* etsy is back online, and available! YAY!

So here those are a few of the "Constellation" pieces I've made- sweet, simple, and full of sparkles. And the details in the pictures... Well, it's making me happy!


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