Friday, April 19, 2013

Insert Clever Title Here

Here's a photo of the fantastic grain on the floor boards in the new place...reminds me of salmon steaks. I do like to be reminded of food though, so a floor which looks like baked fish is alright by me!

Here's some earrings:

Dusty - vintage button earrings - mismatched Victorian assemblage - primitive rustic romantic - eco friendly jewelry

Dusty -  I quite like these ones- the mismatchy style and the colours.

Here's some more:

southwstern boho hoops - antique glass - turquoise howlite - rustic romantic

These don't actually have a name as I'm trying some experiments with SEO - I need to be found by more people. As well as that, giving them a name infers I had some sort of intention when I made them, when really the only intention I had was 'make some earrings'. I just realised one of the beads on these looks like it has a bit chip in it. I don't think it does, they're just made wonky because they're old beads. I would look and see but the inventory tin is like, at least 3 feet away. 

This is boring- let's go back to the house!  Here's a shot I took of the kitchen, hours after getting the keys. Or was this inspection? Either way it's 'estate fresh' (no the last person didn't die).

Note if you haven't the impressive 'tile' linoleum from the 1970s in sage green. Not so bad in real life, actually I barely notice it now and soon there will be a massive sea grass mat over the top anyway. The first thing I did was take down those horrible cafe curtains and the icky clock- they will not be appearing in further adventures of this kitchen.

 Here's the built-in glass cabinet which sits on the wall opposite the mantel. It's a 1940s job, but the 70s 'poo brown' trim wasn't doing it any favours, so...

 I has painted! Dad just happened to have this colour lurking in the shed, it matches the opposite cabinets perfectly and will look even better when I can get some perdy handles (the black ones will not be appearing in future episodes).

Here's some more shots of the floor- this time wider views so you can see the scope of the place- narrow but still roomy. 

 This is a shot standing where my desk will be, looking down the hall into the lounge room. Gotta think of something to do with those boring box lights...

Here's another shot of that delicious loungeroom floor and not-so appetising panelled dado. the heater will be reinstalled in there so that big hole and metal strapping will be covered up. Note please the orginal pelmet casing on top of the windows. That's classy, people. 

Hopefully the next photos I have will be of some actual bloody furniture in these rooms. I've been renting this place for nearly a month now and I have yet to reach the day when I can shout 'to the storage unit!!' Hopefully this weekend. Oh wait it is the weekend...well. fuckn hell.
 See it's not even ready yet- there are some serious gaps in the skirting boards so we have to cap them, which will be done this weekend. THEN next week I can start with the shag rugs and the furnitures. 

The fence on the left side of the backyard is one of my fave things- they banked it either side of a massive holly tree, rather than cutting it down. Judging by the dirt along the edges there's been a garden bed along the fence line at some stage which -despite my coal black thumbs- I shall endevour to restore.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

what up, beaches

Let's have some new jewelry! 

Tunisia - mother of pearl earrings - eco friendly - reclaimed tin - salvaged beads - floral embossed.
Tunisia - last bit of some floral brass from a bangle, and some mother of pearl tulips

Paladin - vintage tin earrings - eco friendly - reclaimed metal - salvaged beads - rustic romantic

Paladin - hand cut vintage tin, painted, sealed, bone beads. More exampling of 'complex simplicity'- the act of making simple jewelry but with exquisite details.

Galactica - long chain earrings - eco friendly - reclaimed vintage - salvaged beads - hand cut tin

Galactica -  eeny teeny vintage tin bits, some square beads from India.

Paladean - eco friendly jewelry - vintage tin earrings -  reclaimed metal - salvaged beads - rustic romantic

Paladean - Slightly different to the ones above- not as pink. I love this hanging set up I mocked up today with the dried coriander plant. So much so I might have to re-shoot all my earrings against it, just to give myself more work.

Okay enough of that. Now because I live in country Australia, a mundane task as driving to the hardware shop is fraught with beautiful landscape. You've seen the hills outside my new lounge room window, well that's the sort of constant up-n-down faded green velvet lumps you see all around this place.

Here we are on the way to the hardware shop to buy sealant for the floor boards. Pretty boring huh?

Oh no, not trees.
 Oh- don't look, they're being all romantic.

Hang on- that's the ocean! How did we get there? Well all this roly-poly dairy land is but 25 minutes from the sandy wet bit, so I figured since it was such a nice evening and we didn't have to hurry (because we'd missed the junk shop) we might as well buy some deep fried snacks at the local chip shop and then get sand all over the car. 

 Wild scrubby bits. Plenty of these around the edge of the ocean here. Not many stairs down to it though...


Nice bits of driftwood - Dad spoiled everything by telling me you're not allowed to take any home. What's the point of going somewhere if you can't come out of it with material possessions? 

 Some interesting seaweed. I'd hoped for some seashells to use in my work but there was almost nothing going on. It's school holidays though so most likely the beach had already been plundered.

That lumpy rock over there in the distance is Eagle's Nest. What do you mean 'what rock'...

That's actually where all the good bit is, with rock pools to rummage around in. I'll go there sometime soon, if you're lucky.
This was a rare thing for me actually - it wasn't hot and there was only a handful of people, so I enjoyed it. As a rule I don't like the beach, but that's because I grew up in Australia where the water's edge is hot, scratchy, filled with poisonous things and covered in people who ought to be wearing more clothes. When I'm in England I adore the seaside. A bit chilly, nice buildings, ice cream vans... there is a huge difference between the beach and the seaside.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

carpet capers


I'm trying really hard to challenge myself to 'go simple'. One of the weirdest things about what I do is I hardly ever wear what I make. Practically every time someone asks me what I do and I say 'I'm a jewelry maker' and then no, I'm not actually wearing anything I made today. Because I almost never do!
Lucy - vintage button earrings - Victorian assemblage - salvage primitive eco friendly jewelry
  I do have jewelry that I've made that I wear, but thing is- it's not the sort of thing you find in my shop. It's simple, small, pretty rustic with not much going on. Like the stuff here.
Venus - vintage button earrings - Victorian assemblage - salvage primitive eco friendly jewelry
So I've done these. Many's the time I've been looking through Etsy's jewelry categories and seen earrings that are literally just a bead and a hook. Or a necklace that's a bead and a chain. And I think 'that's cheating!' Because there's no skill involved- I'm not trying to offend anyone there, I think you'd have to have a bit missing to suggest there's a lot of hard thinking involved in that sort of design. You don't have to think of a design at all, you just shop around for some interesting beads (if you're one of the better ones who makes an effort) and job's done. The ones who do it properly utilize pure metals, quality findings, interesting gemstones. And despite that my muse looks at it and scoffs, it's perfectly good jewelry. Why do I have this atttitude that all jewelry should involve hard thinking, more than 10 minutes of work and complex design? Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication, says Leonardo DaVinci. (Apparently he was some kind of expert.)

So I took Leo's advice but I ramped it up a bit to keep the muse happy and put as much effort in as I could, making each and every bead and charm a unique, interesting and characterful element. Above is the most simple I could manage- 1970s banded orange agate (from one of those carved stone Inca necklaces) and hammered mauve tone wire. I haven't listed them yet because frankly, they make me uneasy. It is just a bead on a hook.

But I'd happily wear them, so what's my problem? It's like I think everything worth doing is complicated, unique and lengthy. And that's no way to run a railroad.

On a completely different note, the boards I shot those earrings on are actually what lay sleeping underneath the god-awful carpet in my new house.

Here's a shot  of the master bedroom which shows the carpet that was throughout- lounge, hall, master and second bedroom. Nice. Please do click the picture so you can enjoy it on a large scale. The house was built in 52 (or 55, depending on who tells the story) and was given 'updates' in the 1970s, so there's also a rather smashing kitchen and bathroom treatment which I'm okay with because it's clean and neutral. This carpet was neither of those.

Initially I planned to just lay new carpet, but the cost of that was a little shocking (and I didn't see the point in blowing the budget only to get the cheapest stuff we could find). When I saw the floorboards, it occurred to me we'd be mad to cover them up. Oregon timber with the most beautiful grain, like salmon. They're nice and thin too, so the visual line pulls your eye from the lounge through the hall and into the second bedroom, making the place feel longer.

Removing that carpet not only instantly raised the value of the property, it also made the whole house feel bigger and brighter. And because I'm an artist and we're used to having this kind of vision, I wasn't surprised at all, I knew this potential lay on the other side of that carpet. Before, I had 'accepted' the space as the closest thing I'd found that would suit my needs, now I love being there, I'm looking forward to moving in just for the pure pleasure of being in such a light bright space.

 Here's a shot standing in the master doorway looking toward the lounge. See there's some classic 1970s wall panelling, thank goodness they went for the classy option of stopping at dado height. It's real wood too, not the laminate stuff, so it looks all Scandi cool rather than trailer park kitsch. Taking that off would be a fuss and bother beyond the worth, and it will blend with my neutral decor later.

 Don't let that clean-looking underlay fool you, that shit was nass-tee.

 Lounge room free of carpet, ready to be sanded and sealed. What floor you say, all I see is a million dollar view!

Well quite. I washed the window after I took that shot- all that dirt is on the inside! I have to wait till the weekend for some fine weather, then I can wash the outside of the house. With a broom and hose, because I'm mad. Mad for housework!!