Sunday, August 28, 2011

New Shop Goodies...

This is the homestretch for raising money for the opening of Allegory Gallery. We've raised approximately 46% of the original goal of the fundraiser. I think that's mighty impressive considering the outside factors, like hurricanes and earthquakes amongst other things. In an attempt to push up the dollar amount as much as possible (you know, for things like tables and chairs) I've listed lots of things in my Shop.

It is probably one of the last updates like this before the transition. In a few weeks, I will be eliminating almost all of the beads from my Shop and moving lots of stuff over to the forthcoming Allegory Gallery Online Store. When we make the move, I'll be discontinuing several of my personal designs and liquidating some of the stock into inventory for the physical location. So, for example, some of the pieces from the Skull Shop (which will also say goodbye shortly) will only be available in person. If there's something that you know you absolutely must have online, either snap it up before it's gone or let me know.

I've been meaning to add these to the Shop for awhile now! These two designs are from Bob Burkett and I just love them. The first is a BRONZE skull bead. It has a wonderful chocolaty brown patina and looks more like shibuichi than bronze. The other is a double scarab in sterling silver. The scarab is an ancient Egyptian symbol of creating something from nothing. Truly an artist's symbol! This bead is great for several reasons – they were bought before the skyrocket of silver and the price reflects those material prices and NOT the current market price, which is significantly higher AND there's two scarabs, for double the inspiration fun!

I was recently unpacking some boxes (and subsequently repacking them for Allegory Gallery) and came across these vintage fluted daisy bicones in BLUE and YELLOW! I had them up in my Shop in white and was just a smitten kitten with them; they make gorgeous earrings! To be perfectly honest, I'm smitten with a lot of vintage beads and components... many of which are made with a craftsmanship not seen today and in colors hard to come by. This is not to diminish the quality of ALL beads made today, but sometimes old school is just better. Needless to say, I hoard a lot of vintage components. It's a surprise that I'm even selling these! Finding them in a beautiful sky blue and a canary yellow was a pleasant surprise and I was highly tempted to keep them for myself!

Of all the components I've made, this is perhaps the one that gets the most compliments and requests for. Of course, it could be because I often refuse to make the skeleton keys and only made a handful when I did make them. They just take a lot of time and the success rate of them turning out is pretty low. All the conditions have to be just right and I have to use a gentle hand with the carving and with the work-hardening on the bench. One wrong move in the early stages and they're garbage. I have listed a few in COPPER and an even smaller amount in BRONZE! Only two people have them in bronze. My sister, Cynthia and my good friend, Kate Richbourg. I doubt that I will ever make any more of the hand-carved ones.

As you may or may not know, I LOVE owls! I loved them before Harry Potter came out and before the recent craze a few years ago when they became popular again. I've been collecting them for over twenty years and have quite an impressive collection of them, if I don't say so myself! Some of my friends would tease me about my "grandma collection" but I would just brush them off and go hunt for more owl friends to add to my collection. My love of owls spurred me on to create this new design I call, "The Night Owl". It's available both in copper and bronze in a limited edition. Each one is different and the expressions on their faces changes with how I hammer them on the bench block. I like that they're all individuals!

Another popular request I receive, but rarely fulfill are the pieces with added prong-set stones. While I love the look, they are that much more work and I scarcely have time to make the regular pieces, let alone ones that have to be carefully set. I added two of these Atomic Star pendants with champagne-colored cubic zirconia stones. I think they look magical!

And that love of owls reared its head again and I created two owl redux pendants with CZ eyes. While I like the effect and think it really spotlights the owl eyes, I think that if I make them again with the prong-settings, I might opt for smaller stones. So these are extremely limited editions!

One of the often-times sold out design I carved, the Scarlet Pimpernel, has less to do with the French Revolution Era character so many plays, musicals and books are written about and more to do with the actual flower itself. I did find a quote that I quite liked from the author, Baroness Emmuska Orczy, that read: "In the chain of my life, there were so many links, all of which tended towards bringing me to the fulfillment of my destiny." I've created three scarlet pimpernel pendants in copper with prong-setting that include CZs in clear, violet and champagne.

The last new thing in my Shop is a limited edition copper, crowned skull pendant with a synthetic ruby in the prong-setting. Oh, I love this little piece. It's tricky working with such tiny stones, but I think that the jewel in the crown goes well with this piece. I was sorely tempted to keep this one for myself, but decided to part with it for the sake of Allegory Gallery.


TesoriTrovati said...

Glad to hear it is going well!


(That is me cheering you on).


Enjoy the day!

Kate Richbourg said...

I love my skull key so much. I wear it at least once a week and it reminds me of my good friend!

Andrew gave me the key at Bead & Button on a fun night filled with Karaoke, good friends, cheap beer and a lot of hilarity.

It's one of my favorite things.