Saturday, December 29, 2012

Gold wire wrapped earring designs

A few months ago, I ordered some 20 gauge square wire in 12 K gold. It's beautiful; very delicate and lightweight. My original plan was to use the wire to make a bracelet, but I ended up making these four pairs of dangle earrings:

While none of these designs are particularly original -- I've made them all before -- they look and feel a lot different in gold than silver. I especially like the double teardrop earrings. It's such a classic shape, one that I think looks good on almost any type of ear. They elongate your profile, but aren't so large that they take attention away from your outfit.

I will get around to making that bracelet eventually, but these earrings make a beautiful addition to my collection!

To purchase my jewelry, head to Naomi's Designs. To purchase my children's jewellery, head to MayaGirl Creations.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Latest enamel jewelry designs

I feel like it's been a million years since I've been to my enameling class at the 92nd Street Y. The school is closed this week and next for the holidays, plus I missed class last week due to illness. Still, I've made many interesting pieces this semester. Here are my most recent creations:

The red rose pendant turned out to be quite the project. Initially, it seemed as if it would be a simple design, but I had so many problems with the cloisonne. The kiln was firing really hot so the wire pieces kept moving during the heating process -- and then one of the wire roses melted a bit. Then the white and black enamel kept mixing so I had specks of black throughout the white portion of the design. But eventually, after applying many coats of enamel and firing each cloisonne rose separately, I completed my pendant. It's not my best work as the largest rose looks a bit demented, but it's pretty. Someone even wrote to me on Etsy to compliment the design, so that was promising!

The abstract piece was actually quite interesting to make. I usually use 24 gauge sheet copper for my metal base, but in this case, I used a piece of 20 gauge fine silver sheet metal. Not only was the piece thicker, but the enamel colors show up differently on silver than they do on copper. So I experimented with blues, purple and white and found that the colors almost glow against the silver background. I especially like how the turquoise blue looks -- very shiny and sparkly.

Since I've made so many pendants, my teacher has suggested that I move on and make a pair of earrings. This way, I can practice making multiples of a similar design. I know how challenging this can be when I'm working with wire, so working with enamel multiples will be a learning experience for sure. I do have some ideas for designs, though, and am looking forward to trying them out.

Meantime, I definitely want to again work with silver because I really like the look of that metal with the glass.

To purchase my jewelry, head to Naomi's Designs. To purchase my children's jewelry, head to MayaGirl Creations. To purchase my novel, check out REVENGE OF A BAND GEEK GONE BAD.

Wire wrapped jewelry: daisy flower earrings

Hope everyone had a wonderful holiday! I expected business to slow down after Christmas and Chanukah, but I'm still getting orders. I guess people are now enjoying gift certificates and are buying for themselves. Nothing wrong with that -- I love to shop!

What's been really nice this holiday season is that my kids' shop, MayaGirl Creations, has picked up. Honestly, I don't advertise it as much as I do my main store -- I have only so many hours in the day -- but sales have been picking up on their own. While the infinity rings rule Naomi's Designs, my most popular girls' item seems to be my wire wrapped daisy flower earrings:

I think that girls like these because they're simple, but colorful and sweet. I loved floral jewelry when I was young; in fact, I still like it. And these daisy earrings are youthful, but not childish looking.

So far, I've sold these in every color that I offer. The red ones are brand new; I haven't even listed them yet on Etsy, so you're getting first view!

I enjoy making complicated jewellery pieces and am always trying to challenge myself. But I'm discovering that it can be just as rewarding to make simpler designs when you know that the person who's wearing your work is happy.

To purchase my wire wrapped jewelry, head to Naomi's Designs. To purchase my children's jewelry, head to MayaGirl Creations. To purchase my novel, check out REVENGE OF A BAND GEEK GONE BAD.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Tales of peeing Santas and more wire wrapped jewelry designs

Last Saturday, I sold my jewelry at Astoria Market's pop up shop, which was held at St. Paul's Church in Midtown Manhattan. The beautiful, old church is right near Columbus Circle and has a huge, cavernous hall, which is where all of the vendors were placed. The weather outside was definitely not frightful -- it was gorgeous, actually -- and New York City was full of tourists.

Unfortunately, this event which should've been very high traffic only attracted about 50 people. It seems like the organizers basically took our registration fees (which were pretty high) and ran, and didn't bother to do much advertising. I never even saw the organizers at the event. Usually there's someone there to check you in and say hello, but no one official seemed to be around. Most of the vendors were very angry and swore not to go with this company a second time. This WAS my second time with Astoria Market and my first fair with them was also a bust, so I agree: they don't seem to know how to get customers -- or just don't care.

As usual, though, plenty of interesting things happened throughout the day! It began at 8:51 a.m. when my husband and I took the LIRR in to Penn Station. Usually the morning trains are pretty quiet on weekends, but on this one, we found seats near a group of drunken, rowdy Santas. Jon didn't believe that they were drunk ("It's too early for that," was his argument), but all of the Santas were holding beers. One then had to well, go, and used his water bottle. Yep, he did his business right there on the train! Talk about being naughty...

Once at Penn Station, Jon and I saw hundreds of people dressed like Santa. Apparently, these people -- and the drunken train Santas -- were participating in the annual SantaCon. Still, seeing so many of them at once was surreal and kind of funny.

Once we made it to the church, I set up my booth and settled in to relax as someone turned on holiday music. Though I don't actually celebrate Christmas, I really like holiday songs and enjoy getting into the spirit of the season. Some jazzy versions of Christmas songs played for a while; the classic "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" then played. And played. And played. And played. And played. The song literally played over and over again for at least an hour. Finally, Jon decided to do something about it so he found the guy who was supposed to be in charge of the music. That guy explained that his booth partner had left for a while and he couldn't get up to change the CD. Aside from the fact that his booth would've been fine had he asked someone to man it for him for a few minutes, I don't understand why he didn't ask someone to change the CD for him. But whatever, this is what Jon offered to do. My husband then mercifully turned off "We Wish You A Merry Christmas" and the church hall erupted into grateful cheers. Jon was hailed a hero!

Since we didn't get too much traffic, I had a lot of time to work on projects so I made some new wire wrapped items. Here's my wire wrapped spiral bangle bracelet:

And this is my silver wire wrapped snowflake necklace:

While I unfortunately didn't get to see too many customers, I did get some great feedback from other vendors. Many of the other jewelry designers were impressed with my work and enjoyed watching me in action as I made my pieces. One woman asked if I teach classes! All of this was very encouraging.

I'm a little disappointed because the holiday fairs in which I participated didn't go as well as I'd hoped. I'm not sure why -- maybe I picked the wrong ones? Happily, I had many online sales so it was still a profitable time for me. I still plan to do fairs next Christmas, but I'm not spending a lot on registration fees. I'll stick with small, inexpensive events.

I'm glad that my online stores did well, though. It's nice to know that my work is appreciated!

To purchase my jewellery, head to Naomi's Designs. To purchase my children's jewelry, head to MayaGirl Creations. To purchase my novel, check out REVENGE OF A BAND GEEK GONE BAD.

Beautiful silver wire wrapped bangle bracelets

Whew, this holiday season has been crazy for my jewelry stores -- but that's a good thing! I've been going to the post office almost every day with orders; by now, the clerks even know me by name.

Now that Christmas is almost here, things have been calming down, but the recent surge in business has put me in a jewelry making mood. For the past couple of days, I've been working on some new silver wire wrapped bangle bracelets:

The top bracelet is made with a rose pink marble oval. I like the rich color and the way that it goes so perfectly with the silver. I wanted to make the stone the centerpiece of the bracelet so I "framed" it with silver wire spirals. For this bracelet, I first made the bangle portion and then attached the stone; after, I cut the other end so that I could make the clasps. I think that next time, I'll make two separate sides and then attach the stone; I just think that each end of the bracelet will be a little stronger.

The red and white spiral "bubble" bracelet was a lot of fun to make! After designing the silver wire wrapped bangle, I made all of the little spirals and then attached them in a funky design. I just got that red wire and love how it looks. I think I was inspired to use red and white since it's still the holiday season, but it works for Valentine's Day, too. I plan to make more of these with other colors.

I'm working on more stuff for my 2013 collection, so keep checking in!

To purchase my jewellery, head to Naomi's Designs. To purchase my children's jewelry, head to MayaGirl Creations. To purchase my novel, check out REVENGE OF A BAND GEEK GONE BAD.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Abstract geometric silver wire wrapped bracelet and earrings

I've written several times about how there seem to be little trends within my jewelry stores. For the past few weeks, it's been birthstone infinity rings, as several customers have purchased them as Christmas gifts. This week, though, it's all about abstract geometric silver wire wrapped jewelry -- specifically jewelry pieces made from 16 gauge silver wire.

I really like this gauge of wire because it's really thick and chunky looking, but it's still flexible enough that I can bend it into loops and swirls. 14 gauge wire is great for making large sculpture-like pieces, while 18 and 20 gauge wire is great for doing intricate jewelry work. But 16 gauge is somewhere in-between. Over the past few days, people have purchased my silver abstract earrings and silver and paua shell necklace -- both of which are made with 16 gauge wire:

I haven't actually purchased this size wire in a while because well, I haven't had a reason to. My best sellers are mainly made with 14, 18 and 20 gauge wire. So I wasn't even sure that I had the materials to make the items ... which would've been a problem since the customers wanted their pieces in time for Christmas.

Luckily, I remembered that I did, in fact, have some 16 gauge silver on hand. A few months ago I was working on a failed jewelry project for which I was using it and so I happened to have a bag full of the 16 gauge! I was then able to use that and put together those orders in time. Whew! Just call me the jewellery-making Santa Claus, LOL. My orders are now in the mail and hopefully on the way, but at this point, they're in the hands of the U.S. Mail Service. Still, I did everything within my power, at least, to get them out with plenty of time to spare.

I'm thinking that I should order some more of that silver wire since it seems to be popular for me again. I just never know which pieces of mine will catch my customers' eyes!

To purchase my jewelry, head to Naomi's Designs. Free shipping on Etsy for Naomi's Designs through Christmas! To purchase my children's jewelry, head to MayaGirl Creations. To purchase my novel, check out REVENGE OF A BAND GEEK GONE BAD.

Handmade Wire Wrapped Jewelry Christmas Style

Earlier today, I posted a photo gallery of blue and white wire wrapped jewelry pieces to honor my holiday, Hannukah. Though I don't celebrate Christmas personally, I still love the holiday and look forward to it every year. I enjoy walking around our neighborhood and looking at the Christmas lights. I also have a great time at others' Christmas celebrations! So in honor of Christmas, here are some of my favorite red and green jewelry pieces:

Happy holidays! Free shipping through Christmas at Naomi's Designs on Etsy! To purchase my jewellery, head to Naomi's Designs. To purchase my children's jewelry, head to MayaGirl Creations. To purchase my novel, check out REVENGE OF A BAND GEEK GONE BAD.

Handmade Wire Wrapped Jewelry Hannukah Style!

Happy holidays from Naomi's Designs and MayaGirl Creations! What have you been doing so far to celebrate the holidays? Have you been shopping or decorating your home? We celebrate Hannukah in my family so on Saturday, my husband and I threw a Chanukah bash -- and had a great time. Jon made latkes and homemade sangria, and we ended up with more food than we could handle!

Anyway, the traditional Chanukah colors are blue and white. So in honor of this festive Jewish holiday, here are some of my favorite blue and white wire wrapped jewellery pieces!

Right now, I'm busy selling my work at holiday fairs and am getting ready for some upcoming parties. But stay tuned for my 2013 collection! Meantime, free shipping through Christmas on all of my Naomi's Designs pieces on Etsy! To purchase my jewelry, head to Naomi's Designs. To purchase my children's jewelry, head to MayaGirl Creations. To purchase my novel, check out REVENGE OF A BAND GEEK GONE BAD.