Thursday, August 26, 2010
Friday, August 20, 2010
Thursday, August 19, 2010
For the last two days we have been without cable, internet and phone service. Finally the cable company arrived today and restored the power. Seems someone knocked loose my connection on the outside of our building.
Being without these has been a bit**h for both Ken and I. We're both kids of the 1950's when you only had four tv stations, transistor radios abounded and celluar service was unheard of . Seems our society becomes more and more dependent of these amnetites as the days pass. Growing up in the 50's and 60's was sooo different from today. See if you recognize any of these from your youth. I apologize in advance as I searched for these I couldn't resist This list is long and feel free to add your own.
bubble gum cigars
bell bottom pants
I Love Lucy
Purple People Eater
Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys
white sidewall tires
stuffing a phone booth
stuffing a VW
riding ing the car w/o seatbelts
laying in the back window of the car
Sherri Lewis and Lambchop
fins and chrome on cars
The Lone Ranger
go go boots
dressing up to go to church
drinking from the garden hose
petticoats that scratch
Being gone all day playing somewhere on your street
White Castle Hamburgers
Evening in Paris cologne
beers that required an opener
putting a ballon on your bike tires to sound like a motorcycleWhew! What a list. Please add your own memories to this list in the comment section and keep the list going!
Thursday, August 12, 2010
If you love looking at unusal jewelry, you may have found a material called Fordite and wondered what the heck this stuff is. Multcolored in various colors it is strikingly beautiful. Lately I have been both fascinated and been looking for and buying Fordite. Some of this material can be pricey because of its limited availability. Since I grew up in Detroit, memories of the automobile plants will always be a part of my memories. Several relatives spent a large part of their lives working for Ford Motor Company. I still live in a suburb of Detroit and have witnessed first hand the effects of the decline the loss of our auto factories have had on our state.
Fordite, aka Motor Agate, aka Detroit Agate is not a mineral or a stone. It is the material formed by over spray in the paint booths where they used to paint cars. An electrostatic method is now used in painting cars in which the paint is electosatically magnetized to the car body. This over spray accumulated in thin layers of various colors as they changed colors on the assembly line. The enamel was then baked over and over the create a very hard and light material.
Some very clever people discovered that this material called slag could be harvested from the paint booths then cut into smaller pieces and worked on a lapidary like a rock or gem.
The material comes from the British Daggenheim factory, in the Detroit plants, and the Ohio plants . I haven't been lucky enough to grab some from Detroit. All of mine come from England., but I'm still looking.
Light weight, colorful resembling wood grain patterns of multi colors this stuff is truly beautiful!Here are some pics of my personal stash of Fordite which will be jewelry pieces soon.
A fordite necklace I completed for the Ann Arbor Art Fair that will be for sale on my Etsy store this fall.
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Just finished the custom order of the two rings I posted in my previous post. Here are the completed rings. I'm really happy how they turned out. One is for a 40th birthday present.
I am really pleased how they came out. Just wish my friend had another cabochon I could get for myself.
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Custom Jewelry Orders
I enjoy doing custom jewelry orders. When my internet and face to face sales are low, many times a custom order comes my way. I'm very fortunate to say that all of my custom work has be a positive experience for me and my buyers.
Here are some tips to prevent misunderstanding between the artist and the customer.
Beginning the Custom Order
When someone requests a piece have as much conversation as posible regarding what they expect. Don't be afraid to make suggestions as improvements to their idea.
Once the design has been decided, don't give a price quote immediately. Take time to research the materials cost and availibility. Figure approximately how much time you spend making the piece. Final prices higher than orignal quotes do not make happy customers. Wait, research and get back to them.
Be sure to include price of shipping any supplies to you that you don't already have on hand.
Rush jobs cost more. Make sure you relay any additonal costs to the buyer.
Once the price is developed get back quickly to the customer.
Write a Work Agreement
This can come in the form of an email or a single written plan. Do one and prevent problems and headaches later!
The agreement should include:
Your name and contact info.
The customers name and contact info.
A description of the work the customer expects. A sketch of the finished piece may be included.
Your price quote.
The date you expect to deliver the finished piece.
Your terms. As a protection for yourself, your terms should state that a non-refundable 50% of the total payment must be received before any supplies are ordered and any work begins and the balance is due when the piece is finished-at the time you deliver.
Your guarante policyDeliver the Custom Jewerly
When the piece is complete contact the customer and arrange to delivery. Be sure to remind them the final payment is due upon delivery. Mail a photo of the finished piece to online shoppers.For online orders, have the customer pay in full before shipping. I can't stress this enough. I've seen many online sellers complain about sending an order before final payment and not receiving it. Email the customer once the piece has shipped and the expected arrival date if possible. A handwritten thank you note with the package is always appreciated. Finally take photos of the piece to show other potential customers what you can do!
Ok, back to me. I'm currently doing a custom order of two rings for an artist friend who is mainly a beader. Two large rings with vintage glass cabochons. Here are pics of the rings in progress.
After I complete them this weekend I will post pics of the completed rings.
Don't forget, I have a 30% off sale on most items in my Etsy shop. Check them out at
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Huge 30% off sale in my Etsy shop.
For the next 3-4 weeks I will be have a 30% off sale of my jewelry in my Etsy store.
As my skill sets have been improving by taking classes, experimenting and networking with many other metalsmiths and jewelry people, I will be posting more detailed, larger and more complex pieces as I retool my shop. Yes, in order to do this I need to move some inventory and of course make some money. In the meantime while I work in my studio take advantage of some great jewelry at 30% off.
As a tease to what's coming I would like to show anew pieces that will be for sale.
Sonoran Sunrise beauty
30% of at http://Facetsbykathryn.etsy.com
Friday, July 30, 2010
Friday, April 2, 2010
Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Thursday, March 25, 2010
When I do shows I am often asked, "How can I keep copper or brass shiny?" or "How can I clean copper or brass. There are many commercial products on the market to do this, but many kitchens already contain foodsafe, non toxic methods to clean these metals. Here are some of my favorites.
Remove item from solution and wash in warm soapy water.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Brass and Copper Storage
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