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Wednesday, 7 August 2013

Jewelled Pre-Loved Clothing and Accessories, and Some Cat Fun!

Recently I had the pleasure of connecting with Jill of Shop Your Wardrobe, and after some chatting back and forth about pre-loved, or thrift, shopping, she kindly asked me to contribute to a post she was writing on that topic.  Use this link to not only check out the post, but her wonderful site as well!

In looking at what I wanted to contribute to this post, I decided to pull out a denim jacket (bought in a thrift store) that I had remade somewhat, and embellished for myself.  Besides making jewellery, I also love to embellish clothing, and I've done this for years.  It's basically putting the jewellery right on the clothing.

I took off the top part of the collar, shortened the sleeves to 3/4 length, then embellished the jacket with all kinds of lace, jewels and goodies.  I paired it with an also pre-loved long tiered skirt in shades of coral/orange.  This boho-feminine look is really my personal style.

I also chose to send Jill pictures of a beautiful oriental jacket and purse I had bought secondhand.  I draped a necklace (made from pre-loved lace, and embellished with lots of crystals) I have recently made over the purse to show how that can really had interest to a bag.  I included the earrings just to show them with the necklace.

When I was photographing this set, my big Maine Coon cat, Fluffy, decided she really couldn't wait any longer for some attention and brushing, so she hopped up onto the bed and moved right in!

Then she started batting at the chord hanging from my fish-eye lens, and basically the photo shoot was done until she got everything she wanted from me! :)

Finally, resting after her big play!

I'll get back to photographing later...

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Urban Contemporary? ... Animal Print Botanicals!

I've been showing a lot of wedding designs recently, but that hasn't been all I've been doing.  It's just that I haven't gotten to sharing some of the other things.  Time for a little catch-up!

I've also been continuing to pursue having an online store.  I had finally decided to set up an etsy store as my first venue, and did all the preparation for that, and then ran into a problem uploading photos to their site (my computer's problem, not theirs), so had to put that on hold until I could get some help in coming up with a solution.  I do have a solution now, so my intention is to get some stock into my store there within the next week.  Finally!

Also, I recently decided to contact a store in my area regarding selling my jewellery there.  Their style is defined as "urban contemporary", and I wasn't sure I had just the right inventory to show them, so I decided to see what I could come up with, while still staying within my particular style.  I found some lace that I had been holding onto for a while, waiting for just the right time and occasion to design with, and felt that it might fit the bill.  It's a combination of animal print and botanicals (flowers and leaves), and along with the usual brown and black associated with animal prints, there are beautiful tones of bright turquoise, green and yellow.  I made up four pieces to start with.  I'll definitely be adding more to the collection in the near future. I haven't heard back from the store at this point, but I'm happy to have these pieces made up now.

The lace is mounted on a large 3" diameter wooden ring for this piece, and the next one, and I used a memory wire necklace here for a more urban look.  The green flower embellishment was made from a vintage pin but I think it has a contemporary look on this design, yes?

I decided to highlight the turquoise in this piece by placing the pendant on four strands of small stone beads. All four of these are large-size statement pieces.

I love yellow, and I am really fond of this piece!  The curved pendant with the zebra stripes and sparkles created an easy base for the yellow, turquoise and green lace section I added on one side of it.  And the chain with the yellow discs was just the right contemporary finish for it.

I didn't want to do all necklaces so the last piece is a cuff bracelet.  I covered a vintage acrylic cuff that had animal stripes on it to start with, with my lace.  For an attention-grabbing focal I adhered what were vintage wooden earrings in bright turquoise and green tones.  Again, I think they have a contemporary look on this design.

I really enjoyed doing these pieces, and look forward to doing more for my Animal Print Botanical Collection.  I'd love to know what you think of them!

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Blue and Purple Petal Necklaces, and Shoe Clip-Ons from Vintage Earrings

I've been doing some more playing with flower petals the last couple days, as the Floral Designer part of me is inclined to do :).

I was asked to make another blue hydrangea flower petal necklace for Urban Bride.  This time, instead of using the deeper blue petals and grey glass pearls, I used a lighter blue tone with natural freshwater pearls, more suitable for weddings.  I also included glass petals coming from the middle of little lace flowers.

I photographed this set with a round silk vintage-style wedding flower bouquet I made a while ago that has the same hydrangeas in it, and matches this jewellery beautifully.  It would be beautiful used together, with a white or ivory dress!

As you can see, I put a few blue crystals here and there in the bouquet for a bit of sparkle.  The jewellery artist in me comes out in my floral design too, so it goes both ways! :)  I wrapped the stems in ivory lace, completing the vintage look.

While I was at it, I wanted to make a purple petal necklace too, with layered mauve and pale yellow hydrangea petals, freshwater pearls, and purple glass petals.  Both of these are sets, with matching earrings.

Another neat jewellery item to share today - a pair of large vintage clip earrings that can also be used as beautiful clip-on shoe decorations, or shoe jewellery, for a bride who wants to dress up a pair of shoes for her wedding. They're made of pearls, seed and bugle beads, sequins, and a large sparkly crystal focal.  They're comfortable to wear, and the decoration covers the clip, so it's not seen.  Then, after the wedding, they can pop them off those shoes if they want, and use them on another pair of shoes or as earrings for a party, or pass them on to another bride.


I got and fixed these up when I was doing ballroom dance, thinking I might use them for that purpose, either for my shoes, or as earrings for performance, but I never needed them.  So now they're coming out to find another home.  Ballroom dance and bridal accessories, and sometimes dresses, can sometimes be quite similar.  They both need to be spectacular!

It's always neat, too, when pieces can do double-duty - it makes them more versatile for the owner.  These earrings/shoe clips, as well as both necklace sets above, are going out to Urban Bride next week.  They specialize in beautiful bridal shoes, so these may be a good fit there.

Thursday, 18 July 2013

New Multi-Toned Lace and Flower-Petal Wedding Jewellery

I created some more wedding jewellery last week, for display at Urban Bride Boutique.  We're working with my stock there, listening to what bride's are asking for in terms of style and colour.  White wedding dresses are still popular, of course, but tones of  ivory, cream, soft yellow, champagne, cafe au lait, and blush pink are being added as well, or used instead of white.  Lace is still very popular, which makes me very happy!

I made another hydrangea petal necklace, this one in neutral tones, although I will be making another blue one as well.

The photography of this piece doesn't actually depict how it is worn, an oversight on my part.  The pendant comes down from the left side of the necklace, curving slightly into the centre.

These hydrangeas are off-white with a soft pale yellow centre and I made the petals frilly by adding off-white lace to them.  The memory wire necklace is made from white pearls and crystal beads, with the same white pearls in the centre of the flowers.

This is another necklace and earring set I made, incorporating different shades:


I inset pieces of white and silver lace into a pretty silver chain, then embellished the lace with cream polymer clay roses and leaves, and cafe au lait flat-back pearls.  This would match pretty much any colour of dress, and it would be interesting to hold it up to different colours, to see how it makes the different shades in the necklace pop out.

Just to play with the cafe au lait colour a little more, I made a silky bracelet with matching lace embellishment. In the picture, it actually looks more taupe, but it isn't. 

Then, I moved into blush pink, which I love to use.  The first piece is definitely a "statement" necklace, although I find this overused word a little errant because I think whatever style or size of jewellery you choose to wear, you make a statement about your style.  This definitely has presence, however, with the large chiffon flowers and three strands of glass pearls.

The pearls are soft yellow, pale blush pink and white.  The chiffon flowers are blush pink with a centre focal on one side which is actually a slightly pinker shade.  The aurora borealis crystals pick up all of the shades.

I made earrings with the same embellished lace flower as is in the centre, because I wasn't sure if the pearl earrings or the lace ones would look best, and of course it gives the bride options.  Then decided to make one into a pendant as well, putting it on a sparkly twisted chain.  This set may be a simpler design, but it looks really pretty on.  It's a very lightweight set, too.

What shade do you like, or do you like them combined?

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Pink Bridal Headpiece and Jewelry

I'm still in wedding mode in my creating.  I really enjoy doing bridal jewelry and accessories!  A few days ago I got the idea "pink wedding veils and headpieces" stuck in my brain, and it wouldn't go away.  So I did the only thing possible - made one!

I had some pink netting in stock from a previous unrelated project, and I think that's where the inspiration came from.  I wanted to see if I could do something pretty with it.  I wanted to mix it with white tones though, so that it could still be worn with a white wedding dress.  Combined with a bit of pink in a floral bouquet, or with a pink sash, it would look beautiful I think.

 The pretty heart you see here is a vintage pendant that I thought was perfect for here, to add a little pop of brighter color and a little sparkle to the back of the headpiece.  It really picks up the romantic nature of the piece too.
The headband part is a mix of pearls and sequin trim.
 I had some other vintage jewelry elements with the same color of pink, so I decided to make a jewelry set as well, that could be worn to coordinate with the headpiece if the bride chose to.

I definitely feel that Pink Pearls by Tamara is going to carry a more extensive line of pink bridal headpieces, hair jewels, jewelry sets and accessories.  It resonated with me as something that should be a signature part of my collection.  There's still the softness and romance, but with a little color, a little uniqueness.  I can't wait to do more!

What do you think - would you wear a pink (or other colored) bridal hairpiece?


Monday, 10 June 2013

1920s-Inspired Wedding Headpiece

Last week I connected with the lovely owner of Urban Bride in Cambridge, Ontario.  I was able to leave seven of my jewelry sets for her to display in her store, including some of the ones in my last post about my wedding jewelry, and my gold and white body necklace.

At that time, she asked if I could make a 20s-inspired bridal headpiece.  She had had an earlier request for one of those, and was able to show me a picture of a beautiful one to use as my inspiration. 

I had never made anything in that style, but was up for the challenge, and knew it would be a fun project.  And it did turn out to be!  This is what I came up with:

For the headband, I used some sequin and seed bead trim that I embellished with crystals.  I wanted it to be a little wider though, with a touch of silver, and ended up finding some silver lace leaves left over from last Christmas when I had made a collection of silver lace jewelry.
The focal area was a combination of pretty elements, starting with an ivory lace flower, to which I added tiny flowers in the center.  White feathers and dangling silver chains were also brought in.  The piece ended up being a vintage-looking combination of white, ivory and silver.  I love to combine these types of neutral shades, and find that they work very well together.  And the look can be less stark than pure white, which is difficult for some brides to wear. 
I love it when I can look through my supplies and bring together different bits to make something that I think is pretty!  I find that fulfilling.
While I had the beautiful white feathers out, I decided to see if there was anything I had that I could add them to.  I was in the mood to play with them a bit!  I found ivory ceramic calla lilies that have been waiting for quite some time to be incorporated into a piece of jewelry.  I decided to have the feathers come out of the flower, and added some other pretty bits as well.
I really wanted to make this into hair jewelry as well.  I tried stitching it onto trim to make a headband style piece, but it was to heavy.  Same when I stitched it onto a hair comb.  I ended up attaching a pin back onto it.  If I find the right base for a hairpiece, I may still attach it onto that, or sell it as a pin to be added wherever the bride wants it.