Friday, September 30, 2011

Contact Information!

I noticed today that my contact information wasn't public for this blog.  Apologies for's fixed now.  I'm also posting it here: my e-mail address is  If you see a piece you're interested in, would like something similar, in a different color with the same pattern, or custom work (I'm a little limited in time and technique, but I'll do my best; currently I would say "no" to a lot of wirework because I'm not satisfied with my quality in it yet) that's the way to get a hold of me.  If you want to buy a piece, put the name of the piece you want in the subject heading of your e-mail and we'll go from there.
I also discovered today BlogSpot doesn't let me post comments to my own site in response to people!  I knew that was an issue on my other blog (Elemental Storyteller, my writing one), and that I couldn't seem to post comments on other peoples' blogs, but now it's official.  Until I sort that mess out, I apologize that I can't reply to the comments posted.
Thanks and apologies again!

I should also note that the prices DO NOT include shipping.  Shipping will be an extra charge that varies per piece (I think the most is $4), which includes insurance, a bubble-envelope, and the piece is also wrapped in decorative tissue paper.

Tourmaline and Silver Bracelet

I managed to save little bits and pieces off the necklaces I made to have enough watermelon tourmaline for a nice bracelet as well.  As with the previous necklace, this bracelet is done with the small plain sterling silver rounds between the pieces of tourmaline to set them off and unite them.  The only thing not sterling silver is the clasp.  I really thought the base metal bamboo clasp was neat with the stones, so used it instead.


Name:  Tourmaline and Silver

Price:  $20 (because of cost of tourmaline and sterling silver)

Length:  8"

Tourmaline and Silver

Tourmaline and Silver is about as simple a necklace as I can make.  I used very small sterling silver rounds to set each watermelon tourmaline bead apart enough that they can shine in their own individuality, and yet compliment each other in the whole.  This is one of my all time favorite necklaces!  Again, sorry for the quality of the pictures.


Name:  Tourmaline and Silver

Price:  $45 (because of cost of tourmaline and sterling silver)

Length:  18"

Tourmaline and Stardust

I love watermelon tourmaline.  I've had a little difficulty finding it for sale, and with good quality, and with a price that doesn't make me choke.  I found some last winter on a site a frequent for supplies, and bought a strand to make Mom, longarm quilter Viki Kirby of, a necklace for Christmas since she likes the stone so much.  I wanted to keep it very basic, and let the colors of the tourmaline speak for themselves.  She loves it and wears it all the time.
With this necklace, I jazzed it up a little with some fancier sterling silver rounds called stardust.  They add just a little bit more sparkle to an otherwise very basic pattern.  Unfortunately, tourmaline + stardust sterling silver + normal sterling silver + sterling silver clasp = the most expensive necklace I've ever made despite its simplicity.  I also apologize--the pictures just can't do it justice.  Colors look relatively accurate, but you miss the glitter of the stardust and some of the shots my camera just doesn't like to focus on the beads.


Name:  Tourmaline and Stardust

Price:  $68  (this is because of the cost of tourmaline and sterling silver)

Length:  19.5"

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Water Elemental Memory Wire Bracelet

This is the other memory wire bracelet my boyfriend made me this past weekend, the other being Fire Elemental.  He's having a blast playing with memory wire.  And for the record: no, I didn't pester him into helping me or learning how to bead.  It was his own choice to learn so we could spend more time together.


Name:  Water Elemental

Price:  about $5 (personal collection)

Length:  3 loops

Fire Elemental Memory Wire Bracelet

A few weeks ago, my boyfriend Dan was over (we have the same day off during the week so we spend it together doing a range of stuff from hiking to reading to gaming).  This particular day, I was working on some pieces for my sister for her birthday, and he asked if he could help.  He discovered he liked working with memory wire, so I gave him run of my bead boxes and the remaining package of memory wire I had.  This was one of the two designs he came up with.  The picture doesn't do the color intensity justice; it's all washed out so you can't see the orange tones.


Name:  Fire Elemental

Price:  about $10 (due to Swarovski crystals; personal collection)

Length:  3.5 loops

Lavender Memory Wire Bracelet

Memory wire is a lot of fun.  I didn't like working with it the first time I tried several years ago, but since then I've given it another chance and had lots of fun.  I've done a variety of sizes and color variations, several of which have gone to my sister for her past birthday and one of which I made specifically for myself.  This one is one of the longest I've made.  I used twisted 9mm bugles and silver-lined dark purple seed beads for a very simple pattern.

Name:  none

Price:  $8 (sold to Eileen M. as a Christmas gift for her daughter, 2011)

Length: 7 loops

Autumn Fire Necklace

Since today is my day off from my main job, I decided to work on a piece inspired by Clara's Necklace--one of the Inspiration Projects on  The result?  Autumn Fire.  I used a Swarovski crystal leaf pendant and quickly discovered it changes color depending on what you put it against.  Against white, it has more blue and clear with some pink and yellow; against black or brown or green it looks more orange and gold.  It's simple and jazzy enough to wear to a formal event, and unique enough to be worn with just about any color or style.



Name:  Autumn Fire

Price:  $25 (reason: Swarovski pendants and sterling silver findings are not cheap)

Length: 18"; pendant 32mm x 20mm

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Kooky Hoot-y Necklace

My sister, who is a professional photographer and has, told me last year she doesn't want me to get her any Christmas or birthday present ever again--just make her new jewelry and repair old pieces she's worn out.  Margot has been my testing ground for jewelry durability for years since she rarely takes a piece off until it wears out.  Shortly before her bithday in September, my boyfriend and I found ourselves at Hobby Lobby, one of the two local places I visit (the other being Von's in West Lafayette) for supplies, browsing for ideas for the next bunch of sparklies.  This kooky owl caught Dan's attention, and inspired a very simple necklace, but it's one of my personal favorite pieces I've ever made her, simply because he's so silly.  I hunted down the antiqued brass clasp to match him with its feathered look.  She absolutely loved him.


Name: Kooky Hoot-y

Price:  $25 (custom project for my sister)

Length: 20" excluding pendant

Pretty Pink Illusion Necklace

This was the first "serious" illusion necklace I ever made, and one of my first attempts to jazz up my photos for sale appeal of my jewelry.  It's still a simple white layout, but I added one of my collected perfume bottles since it matched the necklace so well.  I had a lot of fun with this one.  The fancy glass had enough color variations for me to be able to pull an array of accent beads--from seed beads to tiny fuchsia-and-white-swirl bellflowers, to firepolished rounds.  I tried to keep the accents very simple and few, so the fancy glass stood out.  Pretty Pink is three strands to tease the eye when worn and is surprisingly weighty; the weight comes from the fancy glass.


Name:  Pretty Pink

Price:  $15 (sold to Kate G. at the First Baptist Craft Show November 19; thanks Grandma!)

Length:  18"

Viridian Sparkle Necklace

This is possibly my favorite "fancy" necklace I've made.  I love the pale, icy green, and wanted to make a higher-class-looking piece.  I had purchased the beads a while earlier, and they'd been sitting around in my bead box for almost a year when I finally figured out what I wanted to make with them.  I would up using both strands I'd bought, as well as silver-lined seed beads and silver seed beads.  I want to eventually redo this necklace or make another with sterling silver instead of the silver seed beads, to add just that little extra glam to a formal necklace.

Name:  Viridian Sparkle

Price:  $20 (reason: the green beads were expensive and I used two whole strands)

Length:  17"

Why you must watch your assistants at all times!

I have a cat.  As most cat owners know, most cats like to assist you in any activity that requires attention to detail, time, and effort.  My cat, Cassiopeia, aka Cassie, is no exception.  Whenever I bead, or take photos of my work, she has to "help."  Her "help" has led to more than one overturned bead box or broken piece of jewelry.  So I figured that in lieu of the cloudy, dark evening that makes it impossible for decent picture-taking around here, I'd share a photo of Cassie, the somewhat-sorted bead box, and bead board full of remains-to-be-sorted I had to deal with a while back--and she was trying to help me then, too.  Shaggy carpet was no help in cleaning up the mess, either.  Took me about three days to sort everything!

Twisted Sister Bracelet

This is one of the new techniques I learned this year.  I am a huge fan of, which is not only a beading supplier but provides how-tos, and a wide variety of inspirational projects.  They have good sales and plenty of contests, one of which I won this January: a $25 gift certificate.  I bought one of their bracelet kits, called Twisted Sister by Jill Wiseman of  It included all of the beads and materials needed to make the bracelet, as well as a how-to CD.  It was one of the funnest techniques I have learned to date.  Twisted Sister is actually a take on the Dutch Spiral technique.  I liked it so much I'm working on a second, with dark metallic eggplant twisted bugles and bright gold metal seed beads.  The bugles I bought are 11mm instead of 9mm, which makes the bracelet a lot stiffer and bigger, but it's neat all the same.


Name:  Twisted Sister, design by Jill Wiseman of Tapestry Beads; kit available through

Price: $25 for kit on FusionBeads (personal collection)

Length: 8"

Desert Sunset Necklace

The reverse of my Cheery Cherry Choker, Desert Sun is one I made for my Etsy shop two years ago and liked so much I made myself one with leftover materials.  I love the rich colors of the sun rock jasper pendant, copper potato pearls, hematite rice, and black seed beads.  It was this necklace that got me playing around with marketing photos for my jewelry--not just using a plain white or black background, but adding extra visual interest to show potential buyers what it looked like with fabric or more "artsy" displays.  Granted, the lighting wasn't all that good, but I think the point came across okay.  It's hard to keep light glare off the pendant because it's so shiny! Note: the teardrop down toward the bottom between the two copper pearls became the pendant for my own necklace, while the two little teardrops became a pair of earrings.  I believe the last larger pendant at the very bottom became the focus for a necklace for my sister.


Name:  Desert Sun

Price:  $12 (originally $15 to $17 on Etsy)

Length:  14.75"

Cheery Cherry Choker

This piece is actually a copy of one I made for myself.  I got so many compliments on it, I decided to make one for my Etsy shop two years ago.  I also made another for my "niece" Aubrey for her birthday that fall; Aubrey was so excited she wore it with everything according to her mom--including outfits that didn't even match it!  This Cheery Cherry Choker is longer than mine (a little over 14" as opposed to barely 13"), and utilized the materials I had sitting about in my bead box: cherry quartz, silver-lined clear and fuchsia-lined clear seed beads.


Name: Cheery Cherry Choker

Price: $10 (originally $12 or $15 on Etsy)   (sold customized to Britni A. fall 2011)

Length: 14"

Night Pearl Illusion Necklace

For my first jewelry post, I wanted to feature an older necklace.  Night Pearl had another name originally (when I first made it almost two years ago), and I've kept it around instead of cannibalizing it into something else because of its pure simplicity.  Unlike most illusion necklaces I've done, Night Pearl has just one strand.  I used 6mm dark purple pearls, silver-lined dark purple seed beads, and 4mm hematite rounds.  The necklace is only about 15.75" long, which makes it a nice choker for most people, while on me it hangs fairly loose.  It was one of the pieces I had listed on back when I had a store there.

Name: Night Pearl

Price:  $10 (originally priced on Etsy for $12 to $15, I think)

Length:  15.75"

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hey, Everyone!

  Welcome to my new site!  Simply Adorned will be a mix of business and pleasure.  I will be posting both finished, available jewelry work I have for sale, and blogging about experiences as I learn new techniques or have a particularly memorable adventure while working on something more old-hat.  I hope you see something you like and enjoy your visit!