A swell gift for a friend


I don’t know if you’re like me, but I’m always making a mad rush before birthdays! Luckily, I have a pretty large stash of colorful jewelry that I already have made up to give away as gifts. It was actually kinda hard for me to part with these two pieces for my super swell friend Allee (she’s turning 20)! I love the chunky orange and yellow iridescent beads I used for them and that button ring is one of my faves too (it was actually in Jewelry Creations magazine by CK Media a few months back). I made the little cards out of black cardstock and wrote on there with a silver gel pen and it made an instant display card. So easy! That’s what I’m talking about. Oh, and I would have blown up the pic, but it was a total iphone pic that was really crappy, but I think you get the idea!

And in awesome Swell news, my wall project was featured on Dollar Store Crafts (an amazing site, btw) a couple of weeks ago, and Threadbanger has a special feature in conjunction with Dollar Store Crafts and they selected mine as one of the best projects of the week! Cool, eh?

My brain is really random at the moment as you can tell by the paragraphs above cause I’ve gotta run. I have an art hop to go tonight here in the Tower District of Fresno! I hope to share some cool pics tomorrow!

Until next time Swellions!


Earrings, Earrings, Earrings!

Earrings, earrings, earrings! Edited by Barb Switzer

I’m so excited. I found out today from my online friend Melissa J. Lee that a book I submitted earrings to last year was now out. It’s called Earrings, earrings, earrings! and is edited by Barb Switzer. I hurriedly went in for the kill on Google to discover the beautiful cover with a pair of my earrings on front! Yippee!

Mine are the ones on the orange/peach background on the top right…the sequin ones. I know I gave it a much more clever title in the book, but if you know me in person and have actually seen my work, you know these are a pair that I make quite frequently from sequin trim. See?

sequin earrings

They are a good pair of earrings, cause they aren’t too big, but their not too dainty either. Young and old alike have worn them. Last year, I volunteered at a halfway house of sorts and the girls there made them for a craft night. They were super excited about their finished creation and surprised at how cute and easy they were to make.

I’ll give a much more in depth review once I get my actual copy in the mail. I’m assuming it went to my old address, so I’m hoping it gets forwarded here any day now. I can’t wait to see my other designs as well as the designs of my multi-talented jewelry-making online friends!

Until next time Swellions!


P.S. Please cross your fingers for me tonight as I have had a nagging minor sore throat all day. I took Zicam a couple hours after it started and have been taking each 3 hours after that. I’m hoping I can nip it in the bud this evening…going to even go to bed early (for me that’s a major “GASP”). Everyone has been sick at the office and I was hoping I wouldn’t become a casualty.

A quick project + hopefully making new friends!

snakeskin shell earrings

So, I made the above project for a co-worker. I hope she likes them! I think she makes jewelry too, so I don’t know what she’ll think!

I searched for the past couple of hours online for ways to make new friends. I know that to make friends you have to put yourself out there, but I think it’s a lot easier said than done. I’m looking into avenues like taking a bead class, joining a yoga group, and going to artsy functions hosted by the local arts group, but right now I’m a little strapped for cash for the next month or so. The bills are kinda cutting me close, so I can’t lay down a lot for extra stuff. So, I’ve turned to the net!

It’s hard to even find friends on the internet. I would like to find crafty types like myself that would like to get together, craft, go get coffee, catch a movie, go to crafty places, etc. I was feeling kinda down until I had a lightbulb pop in my head! Why not try to find local Etsy sellers?

Well, there are a lot of Etsy sellers in the area and I wrote them and I’ve already gotten back a couple of responses! I’m really hope this is a good sign of things to come. I’m going to go stir crazy if I don’t make some friends outside of work pretty soon!

Well, off to bed. Oh, I wanted to share a little peek at my apartment complex (a more artsy shot than a straight-forward one). This is what the buildings in my complex look like.

My apartment complex

I will take more photos when I’m a bit more inspired. I went out today with my camera and I got very few shops…I just wasn’t feeling it and the subject matter was pretty blah.

Until next time Swellions!


Jewelrymaking and other random stuff

mini ornament pinup jewelry

Tonight I worked on a LOT of projects for my friend Jessica. I was helping her out with some Christmas presents for her fam. I have a big box of earrings that I made a year and a half or so back that are made with lots of pretty beads, but the metal on the headpins and earring backs are tarnished. They had been in a local shop for a year or so and I guess people touching and time tarnished them away. Oh well… I whipped out my trusty pliers and wire cutters and went to work! I also restrung and fixed some of her broken jewelry. Somewhere along the way during this night I found the time (along with her help) to make a couple of illusion necklaces for my friend Tasha’s wedding along with some super cute earrings made with mini pinup ornaments dressed in Santa/candy cane attire (obviously shown above). Aren’t they cute? I need to touch them up a bit (too bad I don’t know a model car maker – these are so small and intricate!) They really aren’t that heavy!

Here’s the illusion necklace that I made:
just an illusion

So in other news, so very random things going on in my world:

1) I only just yesterday bought my first holiday gift. Like many, I’m going to try to downsize this year and do more sentimental stuff like jewelry, personal graphic design projects, and ornaments. I plan on sharing an idea this week that is an affordable/sentimental gift if you are looking to shoot two birds with one stone. Maybe tomorrow that will be my featured project…hmmmmm. Stay tuned!

2. OK, this is a very random thought, but I just saw part of the show, A Real Chance at Love on VH1. I really don’t understand what it takes to be famous these days. This show is a reality spinoff of a reality spinoff of a reality spinoff of a reality spinnoff. Sad.

3. Jennifer Perkin’s did a super cool post and made wall art out of jewelry. Check it out here. It was super clever and inspiring. I noticed in the comment links that Kathy Cano-Murillo, The Crafty Chica left a comment referring to artist Jason Mecier. His work is so inspiring as well and super kitschy. It truly makes me giddy! Oh, and I also love the Brady Bunch floorplan on his home page. I once saw a book that had a wide variety of floorplans from TV shows in it…Hmm…let me google that one…oh look…here it is: TV Sets Fantasy Blueprints book! Truly, what did we do before the internet? I saw this book about 7 years ago in the clearance bin and should have picked it up then and there at the Owensboro Waldenbooks store, but I decided against it! What was I thinking?

4. Obviously, if you haven’t noticed, I changed my banner to reflect the holidays. I’m a Swellette!

Until next time Swellions!


Recap and the week ahead

finished earrings

The weekend is over, sorry to say. I need just one more day. Oh, man, I rhyme. Anyway, I got my sunglass earring project up on www.venuszine.com. I think it turned out pretty cool. It’s a good way to recycle some old shades into something totally cool…check out the link here

I went on the search for shoes this weekend for CHA. I wanted to get a pair of black flats that could be dressed up or down (ones of the everyday wear variety). I went with my friend Jessica yesterday and picked out a pair with a little peep toe, but after I purchased them and really thought about it, I was disapppointed with them and decided I wanted something else. So, I went on the hunt again today at this place called G.B.’s Shoe Warehouse. They had so many shoes! I didn’t find the perfect pair I had envisioned in my head, but I did walk away with some cute ones that are going to be very comfortable. The insole has contoured padding and little bubbles, so they are very cushy.

I also went today to this 1/2 price books place. It bought and sold new and used books. It was a really cool store and I found several craft titles that they don’t carry anywhere else in Lexington. I was impressed by that. I also picked up the Amy Sedaris craft book for a steal and a book to read on the plane to LA.

I completed all my projects and articles for Creative Techniques and I’m glad to have that off my shoulders. I personally find the step by steps to be very tedious, cause you have to tell them exactly how to use the program (I was teaching them how to do techniques in Photoshop Elements 4). Anyway, it is so easy for me to whip through it and do it, but telling it is so time consuming. One set of detailed instructions takes me 2-3 hours. I work hard for the money.

Gotta finalize some stuff this week…finish up some jewelry, pack, clean my place, take care of financial stuff, etc. before I go. I know I’ll get it together. I’m not too stressed like I was last week. Work, friend stuff, and getting stuff in by deadline was kicking my butt. I seriously think I was suffering from exhaustion. Hopefully this week will be better smooth sailing.

Feelin’ Earthy

bracelet and earring set
Originally uploaded by swelldesigner

I just typed a long blog only to have my program lock up on me. Boo…

This is my creation for the night. I’m happy with it. The natural/earthy look came through (based on the assignment I was given by a friend). It’s nice to feel a sense of accomplishment on a project well done. I don’t know how painters do it. I like being able to whip something up in an hour, photograph it, and upload it and throw it out to the universe. Something very satisfying about that, if you ask me.

Something also very tiring about it…speaking of, I’m outtie.