Vintage steampunk or steampunked vintage…

For some time now I’ve admired the look of the steampunk attitude towards jewellery. All cogs, and parts and odd bits and pieces. Although eclectic more or less means ‘A bit of all styles’ I feel that steampunk is attracted to the eclectic side of my beading. Popping through spotlight today just having a squiz – we all love spotlight for which ever reason we’re there – and steampunk is still huge in their beading section. I’m going to make a small collection of steampunk scarf bails and brooches as I think it will bring a little crazy to your outfit without going the whole hog as it were.

The vintage side of things has grabbed my attention also. The styles back then – 1920’s onwards – were so much more stylish and funky.  I’ve several books on making jewellery and bags and am definitely going to focus on that side of thing. As usual I have gone from lots of jewellery to wanting fewer styles to going back round again. Sometimes it takes a while to get into the space where you want to be. I’ve been down this vintage path before so I’m figuring it’s more the place I should be. Steampunk and vintage. Definitely an eclectic mix and perfect for those that know me.

As for the title. I’m steampunked vintage jewellery will be pretty funky for sure.

New Market

After replying to an email yesterday and saying No to a market this weekend, (for my own personal reasons) I have just received another email from a new market I applied for, knowing I would be going on their waiting list for this one (late application automatically goes onto a waiting list). I immediately rang a friend. She sells honey so is pretty well guaranteed a spot for any markets she applies for, and has said if I get in we can share the car. And because you have to take your own table, she has several foldable ones so I can borrow one of hers.
I know all markets are different, so am not expecting much. But it is in the city, and only runs quarterly so hopefully that aspect will mean more people. Which means more chances of sales. I’m not going to talk numbers but any market I attend all I hope for is my stall fee + $20 to cover petrol/food (ie: coffee). Which is not much to ask for, and anything over that is a bonus.

I was heading into my craft room this afternoon anyway to unpack from this weekend and sort my things. This gives me the incentive to actually get it done.
It’s a relatively new market and is in the city. Now I just have to wonder what I will take. I’m erring on the side of simply taking the same things I had at Woodbridge.

Let’s see, so some brooches and earrings in friendly plastic, earrings and bracelets, and which necklaces? Maybe it’s time to set up another mock stall? Tonight’s job. Take a bit of everything, but make it quick and easy at both ends.

Do I take a selection asymetrical necklaces, and have a tall display…..20131020-113249.jpg

baskets with bags in them…IMG_9686

or a smaller one with the ‘regular’ necklaces…IMG_7567

Looking at these pictures, I may work on a combination of all three. Maybe one tall lady, several small and a basket of bags. Although I have yet to hear back which particular stall size I have. Which means different fees, but maybe more space. A corner stall will give me the room to have more than a single stall size.

In the meantime I will unpack and sort my things, and wait to get my confirmation email.

Catch you later 🙂

Jewellery storage at home – what I did for mine.

Do you have lots of jewellery?
Is it all jumbled up in cups, and trays?
Are you missing earrings and a can’t find that special piece to dress up an outfit?

More importantly, do you have very little room, and or dislike the fancy storage items you find elsewhere?
Well it’s time to think outside the box.

My main issue is lack of space, especially for tall storage items. This is my space and my jewellery looks like this….
What a mess!

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So I have to try and find something that will accommodate all my pieces, look good, be functional (ie, not be awkward or a pain to use) and keep things clean and generally free from those pesky dust bunnies. I do have a dressing table, but it is in my foyer/entry hall and is always covered in other stuff, and not used by me at all for my things. The bedroom is not big enough to house it, otherwise it would be there. And the ensuite vanity is barely big enough for the basics we have in it as it is.

Back to storage solutions. I saw this great idea on necklace storage the other day and thought about doing it, but when I found felt covered coat hangers for trousers at $2 I decided it would be much quicker to buy those and utilise them. As I type, I am contemplating using them for the scarves and doing other things with my jewellery. We shall see.
I also bought a few other things. Small plastic containers, at $2 each. Designed for the kitchen, but perfect for what we want it for. I bought 11 of them, and the leftovers I can easily use to tidy my kitchen drawers, so nothing wasted.
Playing around with layouts of all the different pieces I had took some time. I wanted to use the wooden box for the compartments, and the clear trays as they were designed for jewellery. Not possible with what I decided on. I’ll still keep them as you never what might be available in the next house we have.
My top drawer which housed scarves and jammies and the shelf with jewellery have essentially been swapped. The jewellery tucked (further) away from the dust. To keep the scarves neat and not snagging on the timber, they went into the containers (when winter comes I’ll have to re work this slightly for bulkier items), and my Jammie’s are just on the shelf.

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In the drawer I arranged the new containers, for bracelets, some necklaces, and some earrings, two of the small baskets hold my bangles and rings, and one of my bead containers was used as compartments for smaller earrings (the lid was removed so it would fit, but can be sat on the top for protection).

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The bulk of the necklaces. I used those felt coat hangers. It works a treat. I found a way to hang them so they don’t get tangled but are still easy to get on and off. They are hung from the top rung and then alternated between each side (with a piece of material hanging from the second rung) to keep them separate and visible. I think it works. They have been hung between clothes that will not snag them, and the red hangers in the the sea of wooden ones can be easily seen. What do you think? You can see in the first the picture my testing of the idea.

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On an aside. This is the other side of my wardrobe. Hanging space for long items and room for shoes. My shoes all fit, but there is no room for the handbags I want kept handy. Another tier on there shoe rack will work perfectly.

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I bought another shoe rack expecting to just add one tier. I should have known better. It was wider than the first one. Ok, replace it and then adjust the shoes to fit. Now I have a two tier shoe rack… maybe one of the boys might want to use it their rooms for something. And the finished product.

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While I was doing this and deciding which things I’ve made that I don’t want and might clean up and sell or re fashion I did find a couple of necklaces that I will refashion for me. Just slight tweaks. I still love the colours but the style needs a little change to match the me I am here, as he compared to the me I was in Mt Isa.
So what do you do with your jewellery storage, do you have this sort of room, more or less?

Clay time with flower stamps

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged here, and believe me I’ve tried. So much has been happening in my personal life that I’ve barely had time to think crafty. That 3 weeks til market has shrunk ridiculously quickly and is down to less than one week. And I had all these great ideas to get some new items done. I have now got all the bits I wanted – from that cool book I bought – and can make any of the items when I am ready.
Today I am going to have a go at the clay. Its going to be easy. Well, simple projects. Pendants of clay, in bright colours with flower stamps (or indents) either left as pendants or simply strung on chain or ribbon.
That is the idea. I like my brights. That is my thing. Sure I could do muted tones, but while not ‘selling myself out’ I’d still rather not do them. I want to make things I like, and encourage the people that like the same things. Bright is beautiful, always reminiscent of summer and fun times.

Hmm, I’ve had a very little play and it seems that I really should be using ink with the stamps. The impression is alright but will better with ink. The to do some research.

~insert time lapse~

Alright, I’m back. Done some research, Made a few more purchases, and now waiting for the delivery.
I’ve baked the clay and they look ok. Bright colours are rarely classy and while I am not looking for that genre, I still want them to look good. I’ve decided a few can be made into a brooch with a cloth background. I think that might be ok. I also have to work hard at making things small. I need to make something, and then go, halve it. Then it might be the right size. But is that stepping away from who I am. I have to find a way to market my items towards those that like big bright jewellery.
These are the few pendants I made, I quite like them. The pink and green one was rounded and smoothed out before I baked them. I’m thinking of just stringing them on a simple chain or ribbon with the ink and white one being a vintage styled half beaded necklace.

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Sometimes trying new things is more than a gamble. It’s working out whether you want to keep doing it, or whether its something you can do. I visited a shop my mum was working in (as part of selling items there, the co op ask that you do some work as well) and saw lots of gorgeous pieces of jewellery that jolted me back to inspiration. And I think I know what I want. Making beads to be used in necklaces rather than the foal points. We’ll see how the next lot goes.

Jen

Finally packed and new items

It’s only taken me all week, but I am now finally sorted for the market this week.

Ready for market

Ready for market

I had wanted to take along some brand new items, so those felt balls I bought a while back came out and seven new simple necklaces were made.

Felt ball necklaces

Felt ball necklaces

The colours are predominately blue, pink and red, with some black, green and neutrals added in for good mesaure.  I don’t intend to make bulk of one – or several – colours, it’s just the way it goes sometimes.  And that is fine, next time it might be purple, orange and green.

Also made were 7 new bracelets to add some excitement.

Bracelets

Bracelets

I found some buttons, handmade by the lovely Nat from Peruzi, and finally used them in a couple of bracelets as a focal bead.

Beads from Peruzi

Beads from Peruzi

Have a great weekend, and hopefully on Monday my new pliers will arrive and I can share the wonder that is the looper pliers. Magical things they are.
Jennifer 🙂

More marvellous makes

Now that I have updated the website and added them to my facebook page, I will share my new makes with you.  I’m pretty happy with them. I’d like to hear what you think.

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All items for sale, with more detailed pictures, on my website: www.marcatodesigns.com.au

Jen 🙂

Ladies, ladies everywhere….

The day started out cold, windy and bitter. It didn’t get much better, except the wind went away and the sun came out to visit a few times. I had the car packed last night – for some reason one extra box put me right out and I then spent over half an hour trying to get everything to fit into the car before I said stuff it, folded all the seats down and laid it out flat. I was a little late getting up this morning, but made it out the door at ten past seven.
The roads weren’t too wet or icy, thankfully and I made it in perfect time to arrive right on eight at Huonville. (Market starts about 9, which is also when they close the car park to stall holder cars, and I allow an hour for set up)

After last fortnights fiasco with my display and stuffing it up I checked out the pictures on the phone and got it right. I love it!!! It felt brighter, fuller and more exciting.

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My three new ladies were accessorised and hung on the wall – it would be nice if the hooks were spaced differently but they looked alright – with my banner in the middle.

The table was easy to set up and I changed a few things by laying some bracelets on the higher level rather than all on the table, plus used my new ladies to show earrings that matched a necklace.

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My new point of sale worked so well. It was brilliant. I will work on incorporating this at Woodbridge come summer time.

My three new friends. They got lots of attention. Of the wrong sort. More than once did people think I was selling the clothes. I did think that might happen when I was finding clothes for them, but if they were hanging naked then it would be offensive* and just look tacky. I could have simply just given them a tee shirt, but I wanted to show a whole outfit and how it would look completed, not just how it looks being worn.

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Tell me, does this look like I was selling clothes, and is there a away to dress them otherwise, or is it fine? I will be making a sign to say clothes are not for sale anyway. People always want to by my props. And how, when they are the only clothes at my stall could you think I was selling them??

Looking at the whole stall, I think it works really well and will continue down this track for a bit. I do want to get a few more of the twine ladies as I make longer items, and have it all ‘same same’.

It was a quiet day but I got to talk to plenty of people and gave over my card to more.

Looking forward to crafty week 🙂
Jen

*while not offensive in the way that it looks like a real woman who’s nude, I, myself, would find it off putting to see that on the wall at a market or shop. I am selling jewellery, and giving it a ‘situation’ to be worn in.

New boobs and that “doh” monent

That doh moment. I have been wanting a small table to have my point of sale items on so 1) it’s easy to wrap items, 2) it’s stable, no fear of sliding off chairs or storage boxes, 3) it doesn’t get in the way, I can still move about my stall, and it’s not blocking the thoroughfare and 4) all my storage boxes can live under the table safely out of the way.
And here it is. I was moving the table and then it hit me. Move it back so the fronts are even, the display moves forward and I can use the back of the table. Totally obvious now, but considering I don’t always use or need the small table (it’s not needed at the Woodbridge market) I didn’t automatically think of it.

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And my lovely ladies. They’ll simply be called ‘the twins’ or ‘the triplets’ depending on how many I take to which market. Wanting to get a picture of them, I brought some of my necklaces to show you the size and how they will sit once on display.

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Ok, so sitting them in the boot and taking a picture makes me look weird, but whatever. This is them, and yes they will be clothed on the day.

Have a great crafty day 🙂
Jennifer

Market mix up time.

This weekend is the second Huonville market, and hoping it’s a little busier. Last fortnight wasn’t too bad, but more people is always good – stall holders aswell as customers.
I have redone my display as I’m able to have a tiny bit more space and on Wednesday I’ll be picking up some more props. Nude half bodies with no head that I can hang on the wall. These will be super handy for here as well as Woodbridge, well, pretty well anywhere I can have wall space and a few hooks.
My new display will allow height, different items, earrings!!! and look much more inviting.

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My banner will need a better string system for hanging, but I will sort that once my girls are hanging on the wall.

Have a great day, see you on Wednesday 🙂
Jennifer