Another favourite bead shop

Photo by stephane_p on Flickr

I wrote about the quest to find good sources of quality beads about 3 years ago. Back then I shared information about the shop I found, Magpie Gemstones.  I no longer buy gemstone beads so often as I once did, but when I do  – I often end up buying from Magpie. I also try to shop from another good source of quality beads, Nelson Beads.

As Magpie, Joanne at Nelson beads will give you all information you need to make a knowledgeable purchase.  She focuses on round gemstone beads, and has a variety of different gemstones. Some of the beads she carry are absolutely gorgeous. Just check out her golden obsidian for example. I have made myself a pair of earrings using these, and I just love them.  She also carried some remarkable rose quartz beads from Madagascar, that was of a much higher quality than the usual dyed Chinese stuff I had previously bought. She no longer have that available, but wrote she might get some more in the future.

I am not affiliated with Nelson Beads at all, nor Magpie. I just want both these shops to thrive and prosper, so I can continue to buy from them when the need arise. I stumbled upon both from blog posts such as this one. Here is hoping they both get more customers because of my blog post.

More in blue

 

Kyanite earrings

 

I do not know why, but I always come back to this colour. The blue . Light and dark . I try to make other things with other colours, and sometimes I succeed. Then I need to make something blue again. The name Kyanite comes from the Greek word “kyanos” – meaning blue. If you are into geology, there is plenty of information over at  mindat, an excellent source of information on all things mineral.  If you are into the metaphysical aspect of things, the stone is “unlimited in application” according to a website. Not so happy with the picture though, it is a constant work in progress.

Rose quartz

Genuine rose quartz  and sterling silver earrings 

After a few years as an aspiring artisan, I notice I am getting even more picky choosing what I want to work with. I am happy that I went into this thinking I needed to know where the gemstones originated.  I am also always looking for trustworthy sellers of gemstones, that can offer me variations my usual suppliers can not.

Fast forward to my newly bought strand of rose quartz from Madagascar.  These are oh so delicate and lovely. While the pink colour is not so saturated, it is natural after all, the quality of these are just stunning.

Rose quartz should always be stored in a dark place, as it can lose it’s colour very fast if  exposed to direct sunlight.

Custom order – Larvikite pendant

Larvikite pendant
Wrapping a larvikite pendant with copper

I find these difficult to do. Not technically, people are usually asking about something I already do. But timewise. Communication can be challenging, even more so online. The whole process can be time consuming. At this point in life, I am not always sure I have the free time needed to ensure that we are in agreement, so custom orders are not something I do often.

However , when a woman from south of Norway contacted me asking if I could make a larvikite pendant like this for her, I said yes at once. She had already seen the product, knew what to expect, had time to wait for me to finish weaving, and last but not least – was going to use them almost exactly as I had. Gifts for family and friends. We set a date, I got some extra supplies imported – and could start a bit before I had said I could. It was slow at first. I had to start over on the first one (she ordered several) seeing as I was a bit out of practice. I entered a certain flow, and worked on them when I had the time, finishing them all before my own deadline. Yay!

I had sent off some photos of the work in progress. The reaction was good, and she was happy. She had ordered a few more of these, but I had no stones left in stock. I was able to buy a few more from my supplier, and made a video for her to see so she could pick one she wanted. I sent off the pendants I already I had made, and the video of the new stones I had acquired.

I never heard back from her alas. Maybe life got busy, or her plans changed. That means however that I have a few pendants to wrap closing in on christmas. If you would like these specially made for you, I can do that. Check out the video linked and let me know which one you would want wrapped. The cost is 300NOK +shipping.

I will post these eventually on Etsy. This is just an opportunity to order beforehand.

Learning things

SKU#106 clasp
Back of bronze amethyst necklace, handmade clasp

After I learned how to use a torch, my clasps have another finish. I just love the look.

I just love learning new things. Trying out new things, doing stuff I have never done before. It can be small things, like changing the wheels on the car. Or bigger things – like learning how to dive. Summer is always the time of the year for me when I have time to do all that. I have a diving certificate by the way…

It`s my type of vacation. I could of course have packed my bags and travelled to someplace interesting abroad, and I will. Some day. Perhaps next year. But travelling away from home when I finally have the time to work on all the projects on my to do list? That feels like a waste. So I wave farewell to all travellers, or rather check them up on facebook and watch all the pictures – and then I walk outside feeling the grass under my foot, greeting the sun while I plan the day ahead.

The list of things to learn this summer is long. So long in fact that I don`t think I will make it through everything. Then I will probably have to wait until next summer. That is quite alright.

One of the things on my list is wire weaves. There are so many different techniques and ways to do it, my head is swimming. Not all are working as I want them to, and some are outright ugly. But I try.

One of the wire weaves I am destined to do, is the so called viking knit or the viking weave. I will post about why I use “so called” later. I have already made a round of items with the weave, but realized after the dip in the LoS that the wire I had bought was lackered. Ooof. So it did not react to the liver of sulphur at all. Adding the depth that a bath in LoS gives is a must in a weave such as this, so I had to re-order more wire. Fast forward to today, and my new wire is in house. Time to get busy. Thankfully it is raining today. Just a quick stop at the post office and I am ready to delve into the hows and whats of the weave. Have a great day.

SKU#106 detail 2
Front of amethyst necklace