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At Land of Odds / Be Dazzled Beads – Beads, Jewelry Findings, and More

Archive for March, 2009

Worldwide Tour of Jewelry Exhibits

Posted by learntobead on March 31, 2009

Jewelry Exhibits Around The World:
Let’s Web Surf

I don’t have the money nor the time to go visit every museum with ongoing or special exhibits on jewelry.   So thank God for the internet.   I can get my cultural fix.

WIRE KNOTTING WITH LOREN DAMEWOOD
New York City 92nd st Y
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http://www.golden-knots.com/

Loren describes himself as “I’m a middle aged guy with a red face and not much hair, at least for now. I was born in the early fifties, observed the hippie generation mostly from the sidelines, and managed to survive the Viet Nam war by dint of becoming a technician instead of a killing machine. The former might not pay as well, but it’s a more marketable skill. That’s what I’ve been doing ever since, anyway, up until the end of 2006, when I retired from the aerospace industry.”

Many of his pieces are based on what he calls the Turk Head Knot.   See the ring above.

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GIA MUSEUM
Carlsbad, California
http://www.gia.edu/research-resources/museum/index.html

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The GIA Museum’s current focus is building the Historical Collection, a sophisticated collection of jewelry, objets d’art and gemstones of known provenance from earlier cultures and periods.

 

 

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Barbara Paganin and Patricia Lemaire

Galerie Orfeo

Luxembourg, Luxembourg

http://www.galerie-orfeo.com/ausstellung.html

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Founded in April 1992 by Susy Ciacchini, the Orfèo Gallery is the meeting point of the Art of contemporary jewellery in Luxembourg.
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Link to other jewelry artists which the gallery represents:

http://www.galerie-orfeo.com/kuenstler_e.html

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LUCCA PREZIOSA
Contemporary Jewelry
Toscany, Italy
Group Jewelry Artist Showing

http://www.luccapreziosa.it/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=205&Itemid=62&lang=en

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surf101

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Huib Petersen Workshops Scheduled

Posted by learntobead on March 31, 2009

Huib Petersen – Bead Weaving Artist

Huib Petersen visited the shop yesterday, and we had a very nice visit.  He brought with him many of his wonderful pieces.   

petersenbutterfly

He has one series of work that is very nature-inspired.   I love the way he can manipulate his peyote stitch work to get the natural curves and twirls in the butterfly wings.    And his use of color placement is superb.    With these techniques, he gets very realistic-looking pieces, with a strong sense of dimensionality, with beauty and wearability.    Unfortunately, computer images can’t show the detail and the dimensionality.

petersenbigflower

Another series of pieces he’s begun working on involves tubular right angle weave in cubic forms.    In one piece, he layered one tubular right angle rope/chain (line of open square donuts done as a continuous rope) over another rope/chain.     In appearance, it looked like he had used basket-weaving techniques to intertwine the rope/chains, but in reality, it was just how they were layed one on top of the other.

petersensummerserenade2 

Huib will be with us May 20-22, 2011.
His website:
www.petersenarts.com

petersenoceanbottom1

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Selling Your Jewelry In Recessionary Times

Posted by learntobead on March 30, 2009

Selling Your Jewelry
In Recessionary Times

With a financial crisis in full swing, it has become more difficult to sell your jewelry. Fewer stores, fewer customers, fewer craft shows. At the same time, the costs of all the supplies – beads, stringing materials, jewelry findings – have been increasing at much faster rates than inflation. This adds to the problem.

At the same time, it is getting more difficult to get your “message” to your “customer.” With things like blogs, facebook, my space, twitter, other interactive sites and social networks, people are organizing into ever-smaller market niches.   It’s too expensive and too time-consuming to get enough people to be aware of your business, that you can continue to make a living.

They are no longer reading the mainstream magazines and newspapers to get their primary sources of information, to the extent that they have in the past. They are not going to local craft shows or local stores as much, because they have an online world of Etsy and Ebay and 26 million jewelry sites listed on Google.

Perhaps these times and prospects can be reinterpreted as an opportunity to rethink how you approach your jewelry selling business. At the least, perhaps you can better secure your base during these times, in preparation for more growth and expansion as the financial crisis bottoms out, and then gradually improves.

It’s time to take a hard look at your “business model.” You have probably been operating as a one or two person operation. You, or both of you, do everything. You create the designs. You make the jewelry. You market and sell your jewelry. You wear many hats.

“Unbundling” is a strategy where you give up control of some business functions, and rely on the expertise of other companies or organized groups. One obvious thing is to rely on UPS or FedEX for your shipping needs.

I suggest you think about no-cost and low-cost ways to unbundle some of your marketing and promotion. One inexpensive and effective way is to get a regular group together of others who sell hand-crafted jewelry or other hand-crafted items.

As a group,

– develop and share mailing and emailing lists

– try to brand the group with an identify of having quality, affordable hand crafted items for sale

– have a major presence, even a controlling presence, at a local craft show

– generate a logo that everyone includes on their websites and their packaging

– set up your own blog and try to attract potential customers to your blog

– interlink your websites into a web-ring

– have regular discussions about business strategies

– approach suppliers as a group to bargain for group discounts

On one level, you give up some control in managing these aspects of your business. On another, however, you get to leverage the talents and time and resources of these other businesses. This might be the smartest way to continue to reach your customers, and continue surviving and thriving when things are tough, and the business environment keeps changing and evolving.

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What Is Craft?

Posted by learntobead on March 27, 2009

This question comes up often:
What is Craft?

Is Craft Art?

Can Craft be Art?

In many circles “jewelry” is considered a craft.  In others, “jewelry” is art.

At the Victoria and Albert Museum in England, they have opened up their art collections to include those of craft.  Yet they continue to make a distinction between the two, as seems to be common across Europe.    Craft is what you do with your hands, and Art is what you do with your mind.

To celebrate a new partnership between the V&A and the Crafts Council, we asked leading figures in the craft world to tell us what the term craft means to them. We hope these comments will inspire you send us your views too, resulting in some healthy debate.”

[While you are visiting the V&A museum online, check out their jewellery collections — don’t you love the way the British spell jewelry!.]

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I think in America, any distinctions between craft and art are starting to get very murky.    I guess we tend to be much more democratic about things.

I recently finished reading a book called SHARDS by Garth Clark on ceramic art.   Clark’s is a major voice for understanding craft as art.  But he decries the lack of leadership in the ceramics field in how ceramics are taught, and how ceramics are promoted.    He feels that ceramics relies too much on an industrial model — making the best toilets, and not enough on an art model — making objects that resonate from an artist’s personality, sensibilities, and social/cultural perspectives.

I wonder sometimes if there are not parallels in jewelry and beading to Clark’s assessments of ceramics.

Another book I’ve just begun is THINKING THROUGH CRAFT by Glenn Adamson.    He asks provocative questions about the marginalization of craft within modern art.   He advocates for visual artists to take a renewed look at craft to better understand the “working in media” craft techniques and theories which also underly the visual arts, but are too often ignored.

 And just in time for our blog discussion on craft vs. art, I received this announcement from the Museum of Contemporary Craft in Portland, OR.

Community Conversations
Museum of Contemporary Craft, Pacific Northwest College of Art and panelists from Oregon’s creative community invite you to engage in a series of conversations about the anticipated integration of these two institutions. Explore the broader concepts relevant to creating a more vibrant and expanded organization that will strengthen its contribution to the cultural voice and economic vitality of the region. Conversations are moderated by Tim DuRoche, community program manager at Portland Center Stage.
 

Thursday, April 9, 6:30 pm
The Changing Dynamics of Craft and Design

Pacific Northwest College of Art, 1241 NW Johnson, Portland

Panelists
:
Andrew Wagner
, editor-in-chief, American Craft magazine
Namita Gupta Wiggers, curator, Museum of Contemporary Craft
JP Reuer, chair, MFA in applied craft and design, Oregon College of Art and Craft (OCAC) and PNCA

Karl Burkheimer
, head, OCAC wood department

What Does Craft Mean To You?   What Do You Think It Means To Others?
How Does This Affect Jewely Making, Beadwork and Jewelry Design?  
PLEASE POST YOUR VIEWS AND FEELINGS:

Posted in Art or Craft? | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

HOT LINKS by CONNIE WELCH

Posted by learntobead on March 24, 2009

3/24/09

Those of you who have missed BEADS on Wednesday are really missing a good Bead Study. The whole discussion and working of the Shapes is so interesting. Everyone who comes is involved.
 
Look at this – they copied Diane’s necklace
…Bead StudyII  Great job Warren
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
That should keep you buys for a while. – C

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BEADING APHORISMS

Posted by learntobead on March 22, 2009

Beading Aphorisms

Like the lines in a good country music song, some clever sayings about beads and beaders can bring a smile to your face.    You might see these on T-shirts or mugs or canvas bags and bumper stickers.   

 

Over the years, we’ve accumulated these “bead aphorisms” and “bead sayings” in the list below.   Call us crazy.    Call us prepared to stencil the next Leading Bead Saying on the next bag, tee-shirt, whatever.


So many beads, so little time.

Bead me up, Scotty.

The person with the most beads when she dies, wins

Let there be BEADS on EARTH, and let them begin with ME!
There’s nothing wrong with me that a few beads won’t cure.

Will work for beads

I bead…Therefor I am

I only stop for beads

This is my brain on beads

Bead Broad

Bead Slut

Bead Queen

Bead-a-holic

Bead Babe

Bead Smart

Bead Goddess

Gold Digger

Craft Chick

Bead Whore

Eat. Sleep. Bead

Certified Bead Crazy

Above and Bead On

Beadiful Dreams

Beading is my Calamine

I didn’t buy my beads.. .I earned them the old fashioned way.

If Momma ain’t beading, Momma ain’t happy…If Momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy

The need to bead

Beadmused
The Itch to Stitch

Bead Ware

Better w/ beads

Bead all you can bead

To bead or not to bead

Bead happy

Bead different

Don’t Worry, Bead Happy!

She’s One Bead Shy Of A Necklace
Beadin’ My Brains Out
You toucha my beads, I breaka yu face.
So many beads, so little time.

Bead Ho

Bead Soup

If you find a bead on a fence post, it didn’t get there by accident.

I never met a bead I didn’t like

Bead envy.

I’m Beadalicious!
Life is Beads!
I’m Bead-a-rific!
My Kingdom for a Bead

Tis better to have beaded and failed, than never to have beaded at all

Bead until it hurts

Beading is its own reward

Don’t bead everything you see

If all else fails, bead

It’s not easy being a bead goddess

Dare to bead great!

Got beads!

Time and beads wait for no one

God could not be everywhere, and therefore He made beaders

A beader cannot fail; it is a success to be one

Beading washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life

Beading holds the universe together

Some of my best friends are beaders

I find I can write much better with beads

Arguments with beads are rarely productive

Beaders of a kind flock together

To thine own beads be true

You never lose by beading

Super-cala-bead-a-licious-expi-alla-docious

Why can’t we all just bead along?

Just let me bead

Bead Nutz

50 Ways To Bead Your Lover

 

 

Can you think of any other clever turns of bead-phrases?  If so let us know…. 

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Masriera Gold Enamel Jewelry

Posted by learntobead on March 19, 2009

Masriera Gold Enamel Jewelry

masriera1

A couple of years ago, I visited Barcelona, Spain.    I was lucky enough to stumble upon a jewelry gallery displaying the original gold enamel work of Masriera.    The Art Nouveau and Art Deco pieces from the late 1800’s, early 1900s were unbelievable.    I’ve wanted to duplicate some of them in bead-woven pieces, but haven’t figured out exactly how to go about that.

http://www.masriera.es/

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The company still exists and presents new and reproduced pieces each year.

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Masriera pioneered the idea that each piece of jewelry should be a miniature piece of art.    Prior to that, the primary focus of jewelry was on particular stones, cut or otherwise.     Everything else within the piece of jewelry was “frame” or “outline”.     In Masriera’s pieces, the stone became part of the artistic story or presentation of the whole piece.

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Years ago, there was a fabulous coffee table book published about the Masriera collection.   I reviewed the book at the gallery in Barcelona, but it’s been long out of print.    Every year I search the used art book websites to try to secure a copy.  No luck so far.

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Other links with images:

http://www.geoffreyrothgallery.com/masriera_gallery.html

http://www.jacksonsquare.com/sc-jewelry/sc-masriera/masriera.html

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masriera7

Posted in jewelry design | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

The Legacy of Maharaja of Baroda

Posted by learntobead on March 13, 2009

You need to check out the beadwork and jewelry at this link:

http://www.luxuryculture.com/home.html?gotourl=LN/features/0000385/luxury-now/simply_sophisticated

 

CLICK on the link for THE LEGACY OF MAHARAJA OF BARODA.

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The Maharaja was one of the most important jewelry collectors of the 19th century.  

Check out the details on the legendary Pearl Carpet of Baroda.   

The Moon of Baroda was the diamond worn by Marilyn Monroe in Diamonds are a Girls Best Friend.

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Hot Links – by Connie Welch

Posted by learntobead on March 7, 2009

This weeks must-see hot links:

 

…BEAD STUDY « Learn To Bead Great write up of Wed. Bead studies
 
 
Etsy :: SusiMakesStuff :: Susi Makes Stuff  Susi has a space on Etsy LOOKS GOOD
 
 
Regifting Robin  If you can figure this out – let me know

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Mandy Greer: Dare alla Luce

Posted by learntobead on March 5, 2009

Mandy Greer: Dare alla Luce

January 22-May 31
Museum of Contemporary Craft
Portland, Oregon

Northwest artist Mandy Greer creates her largest and most intricate artwork, extending her sculpture to a room-sized scale. Greer employs humble handicraft processes and materials, executing her work through crochet, braiding, sewing and beading processes that use yarn, beads, shells, feathers and more. Merging the mythical and the mundane, the resulting work intertwines objects and space in an exuberant, sensual and visceral installation.

See the installation on video

http://vimeo.com/2905630?pg=transcoded_embed&sec=2905630

  Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Art or Craft?, beads, Workshops, Classes, Exhibits | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Meet Kathleen Lynam, Bead Weaving Instructor

Posted by learntobead on March 5, 2009

lynam-headshot

Kathleen Lynam is our bead weaving instructor at The Center for Beadwork and Jewelry Arts in Nashville.     She teaches our Stitch of the Month program, as well as intermediate and advanced classes in bead weaving.

Kathleen’s Website

Poke Berry Rope

Poke Berry Rope

Kathleen, by profession, is a puppeteer.    She teaches Head Start teachers and Elementary School teachers how to use puppets to teach concepts, history, health care, among other things.   

The Germ

The Germ

As a teaching artist I am affiliated with several institutions:  The Tennessee Performing Arts Center oversees the regional Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning through the Arts and ArtSmart programs. I have been a Wolf Trap artist since 1992, working extensively in the preschool classroom providing one week or seven week residencies.  By partnering closely with the classroom teacher, each residency provides original songs, stories, and activities that are developmentally appropriate, educationally sound, and awaken the student’s curiosity for learning. 

Matisse

Matisse

A Master Artist with Wolf Trap since 2001, my workshop, Let Your Voices Be Heard:  Using Puppets to Bring Stories to Life, has been presented to teachers throughout the United States. I became a teaching artist with the ArtSmart program in 2006. This meaningful program prepares students to understand/appreciate a particular performing or visual work of art. A unique partnership with teaching artists, educators, and students creates intense explorations of the work of art.

Beaded Bead

Beaded Bead

Value Plus is a program sponsored by the Tennessee Arts Commission. This five year reform model provides residencies that integrate learning through the arts into non-arts subjects such as math, science and language arts.

Teaching Through Puppetry

Teaching Through Puppetry

As an artist, I am particularly drawn to color, texture, and sculptural design.  I have been commissioned to make puppets by universities, historic homes, and private individuals.  I have designed, sculpted, painted, and dressed all of the puppets used in my shows. I have made hundreds of colorful puppets from simple finger to complex foam puppets that are used in the classroom.  Over 700 hand sculpted finger puppets were sold nationwide by Crizmac Arts Catalog.  In 1999, the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts purchased my Master Artist series of puppets featuring Van Gogh, Gauguin, Picasso, Kandinsky, Monet, and Chagall.

Bead Embroidered Cuff

Bead Embroidered Cuff

Combing a love of bead art and puppetry resulted in a well-reviewed show at the Appalachian Center for Crafts in Smithville, TN in 2002.  As a bead artist and teacher, my original patterns and designs have been published in Beadwork Magazine and Netted Beadwork by Diane Fitzgerald.  My beadwork is currently on display at the Open Window Gallery in Nashville.

Punch Pop-Up - Netted Beadwork

Punch Pop-Up - Netted Beadwork

I love teaching classes on bead weaving at Be Dazzled Bead Store in Nashville, Tn. My students have proven time and time again that they are brilliant, innovative, and a whole lot of fun! These classes are designated “Stitch of the Month” and are designed to teach 12 major bead weaving stitches/techniques. Each class provides a history of the stitch, how to basics, variations applicable to the stitch such as decreasing/increasing, flat/ tubular, and most appropriate beads. Students will work on mastery of the stitch by creating a bracelet.

 

Posted in bead weaving, beads, beadwork, Workshops, Classes, Exhibits | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

TIPS AND TRICKS

Posted by learntobead on March 2, 2009

rightprofileseated3TIPS AND TRICKS

Occasional insights into beading, jewelry making, and business…

 


Turning Silver Black (Oxidizing)
There are many ways to oxidize or blacken silver.   You can buy some products that do this for you.   

 

One is called Liver of Sulphur.    With Liver of Sulphur, this turns silver into a dull black.     When using Liver of Sulphur, either the solution needs to be hot, or the metal needs to be hot.    To heat the solution, you can put it in the microwave for 90 seconds.

Another product is called Black Max.    Black max turns silver into a dark black.   The product does not have to be hot.    It has a shorter shelf-life, however.

With both of these products, you can darken your silver, and then take a soft cloth, like a piece of denim, and buff the surfaces, so that the top surfaces gleem, and the crevices are dark.

Another thing you can do is to buy an antiquing solution, or use a dark color varnish.   You paint this on, and then rub it off with a soft cloth.   Let it dry for about 20 minutes, and repeat, if you need the antiquing to be darker.    This leaves a glossy black finish.    Here, again, you usually want to leave some gradations of color on the metal, so that the top surfaces are shinier than the crevices.

You can also use a hard boiled egg.   Put your silver in a plastic bag along with a hard boiled egg.  The sulphur from the egg will blacken your silver.

If you want to speed up the tarnishing process, but do not want to turn your product black, spray your metal with Windex with Ammonia.   The ammonia will turn the silver black, and the low amount of ammonia in this product will make the process more gradual.



 

 

 

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