Strength in Numbers: A 4th of July Collaboration with Mollie Ann from Rough Magic Creations

Eureka!  This week has the important distinction of being the week I finished a collaboration with another talented crafter, Mollie Ann, of Rough Magic Creations.  It all began when the Etsy Maine Team came up with a 4th of July Team Challenge, to create (by yourself or with a partner) a holiday-themed piece for Independence Day.  Being the enormous fan of red, white and blue that I am (my photo background has been only that, lately!) I was super psyched.

I got in touch with Mollie, knowing that she was way more talented with metal than me.  I’ve been thinking for a long time about branching out of the bottle cap bezel world, and this was a great first opportunity.  Mollie and I put our heads together to make a star-shaped earring and pendant with a circular bezel hammered right in the center.  Here is our initial sketch:

And by 'sketch,' I mean image of a star I copied and drew elements on!

From there, we agreed that sheet aluminum would have the right color we were looking for (Mollie usually uses copper, but the silver color and price point of aluminum worked well with our design) so she ordered it and I waited with much anticipation to receive my new bezels in the mail!

Empty Bezels, Waiting for their stars + stripes

Finally (okay, I say ‘finally’ but it was so fast, like a day later!  I was just like an excited kid on Christmas morning) I received the lovely pieces (pictured above) in the mail, ripe for the epoxy-ing!  After cutting some custom size circles, gluing and mixing epoxy Mollie and I were the proud parents of the pieces you see below:

Stars and Stripes Earrings, $26 on Etsy

Stars and Stripes Pendant (You pick stars or stripes) $24 on Etsy

Stars and Stripes Earrings and Pendant Set, $48 on Etsy

Mollie and I are so pleased at how these turned out!  The photo prototypes are our ‘rough drafts’ so we’ve made some changes, including making the bezels deeper so that the epoxy doesn’t bleed around the edges of the circle … which you can kind of see in the picture but won’t be an issue on any further runs of the sets.  If you’re interested in ordering a pair of earrings, a necklace, or a set of earrings and a necklace please know you can specify what combination of stars and stripes you’d like!  Order from either Mollie or I in our Etsy shops (you can click on the images to link to the listings) and let us know what you’d like!  We can also do the stars with totally different images, not just stars and stripes.  🙂  The stars and stripe sets are made of lightweight charms with a nickel ball chain for the necklaces and sterling silver ear wires for those of us with sensitive ears!

All orders received by June 22nd should be shipped to you in time for the 4th of July.

Advertisements

Progress

Here’s me making a bunch of signs for The BIG THAW:

Step 1: Paint fumes

Step 2: Mess up the living room

Here’s my cat, Cash, snuggling with my friend, Kate.  Awwww!:

Kate has a great jacket

The Silliest Paws

Here are some bottlecaps that Kelley gave me.  Thank you, Kelley!

Future Little Eye Designs

 

Cameraman Hair Clips by Little Eye Designs, not yet listed.

I don’t have much time here. Why?  “What have you been up to?” you think — well here it is, in a nutshell.

Friday was nice friend time.  When you end up at Amigo’s at any point past midnight you know you’ve ‘still got it.’  However — whether I ‘have it’ or not I was definitely going home with it shortly after.  Lady’s gotta sleep!

Saturday I took advantage of some more-than-excellent sales at Michael’s and A.C. Moore and, yet again, ended up with an inappropriate amount of ribbon.  Why do I keep doing that?  I think I’m going to start wrapping my shipped items in it just to justify my weird impulse.  I also watched “Hoarders” for the first time and am glad to know that although I’m cluttery I’m not pathological and I don’t eat food that’s been expired for two years.  Did you know I’m also organizing a craft fair?  Some work was done for The BIG THAW today, too.

Sunday started with our new crafty morning tradition with Kate and Kristina although ‘crafty’ also translates to ‘eating pancakes,’ ‘eating chocolate croissants,’ ‘talking about lifetime movies,’ ‘painting our nails,’ or whatever one really sees fit to do.  I started working on Kate’s birthday present, which matches her hair, even though she was right there.  Whatever!  Kristina had to go and Kate and I totally did the following:  went to Michael’s to buy paper for business cards and chain for my new creations, went to CVS to buy printer ink for business cards, shot a bunch of Etsy photos, modeled for each other (see above picture) and printed business cards.  Whoa!  Oh yeah — I also assembled an entire wedding album.  Go me!

My new project involves those bezels I was telling you about a week ago.  They are awesome.  Here’s a little non-descript picture of the scene on my coffee table this weekend:

 

Cloudy Sky paper is a classy backdrop for epoxy pouring...

I’m very excited – these are super classy.  On the right are EARRINGS which I’ve never really been able to successfully do.  I’m making SETS and they’re going to be prettyyyyy.

Lastly, now that I have paper and ink it’s going to be fun to be merchandising Little Eye again.  It’s always way more official when you’ve got matching fonts and clip art.  G’night kittens!

 

Bam!

I’m Going in to the Woods…

 

"Little Elf" figure $6.50 from monkeyjunction on Etsy

…namely, the woods in and around the Green Mountains of Northern Vermont.  I’ve worked hard for a year taking minimal time for myself and now relaxation at Grammie’s house in the woods for SIX DAYS is my reward!  And, all of them paid for.  Score.

Before I load up the school bus (my dad drives a big, yellow Pontiac Aztek) and jump in with father, brother and niece, I thought I’d poke around on Etsy to check out what the folks in the farm-friendly, rustic and rural state of Vermont are up to.

 

Monkey Finger Puppet $6.00 from monkeyjunction on Etsy

The first of my finds comes from a woman named Meredith out of Burlington.  Her Etsy store, monkeyjunction, features creations that are self-proclaimed ‘super-wonky’ which I automatically like.  Preschool-friendly finger puppets, mini dolls and bean bags are on the menu and Aunt Audrey likes.  Likes a lot.  They’re very reasonably priced and with puppet duos like bird and worm or trios of three blind mice, they are great educational tools for wee ones!  Marked as favorite for when K. gets a little older…  Check out a nice site from Meredith at The Sharing Preschool Blog.

 

Bobby Pin Trio – Retro Chic $16.00 from SweetAvenueJewelry

Just down the road, Martha in Colchester from SweetAvenueJewelry creates colorful, vintage inspired jewelry and hair pieces.  I like the selection above because it reminds me of July 4th…which is about as far away on the thermostat as you can get from what we’ve got right now (not that I don’t love that, too).  Martha is a Renaissance woman, in that she creates jewelry and crafts while simultaneously holding down a 9-5 and playing in a band.  Although my pastimes are a bit different, I can totally relate.  Clear vision and sweet execution – I hope I end up in a local shop that carries her work!  And if none do, yet, then they better start lining up.  🙂

Vermont wouldn’t be Vermont if it weren’t for all the farms we pass on the way to Underhill.  From slanted and decaying photo ops to bustling and vibrant active farms the countryside is carved based on an agrarian way of life.  This is slowly changing, which breaks my heart, but for the time being let’s enjoy.

 

Buy 3 and Save Trio of Rustic Farm Fresh Soaps $8 from oldgatesfarm on Etsy

Old Gates Farm sells on Etsy a wide selection of soaps, knitted work, dyed bags, note cards, fabric-covered buttons and more.  Of all the items in her shop, though, these rustic soaps caught my eye.  I might be a sucker for a beautiful photograph, or maybe it’s because I’ve been itching to learn to make soaps.  OR it could be just that I need to shower more!  Whatever the reason, these beautiful soaps are made with homegrown herbs and that’s a-okay with me.

 

Fine Silver Earrings $50 by courtneyreckord on Etsy

Finally, all things can’t be cute or squeaky clean: these silver, industrial-style earrings from courtneyreckord are huge and amazing.  The rough-hewn shapes are just screaming to be worn by someone with amazing, long, curly hair.  My VT cousin has amazing curly hair – maybe I should get them for her!

In addition to some much needed rest and relaxation I plan on scooting around Chittenden county to find some shops and artists from the Great North.  Blog entries may be sporadic over the next few days, but I’ll be sure to fill you all in when I get back!

I Spy With My Little Eye: Ardent1 (Etsy)

Apple Seed Ring, $80

Doesn’t this ring just grab you?  It’s a remarkable piece from Anne Arden McDonald whose Etsy shop, ardent1, is hands down my favorite find of the week.  She creates jewelry from organic matter which is then cast in metal.  The process is fascinating.  A relationship develops from the pieces origins and its current, metal state that makes me stop, look a little longer.

Green Onion Earrings, $100

Although I am a soup and spaghetti budget type of girl in her middle late 20s, I’m totally digging McDonald’s prices because they’re confidently saying “Hey, this isn’t easy, but the final product is really gorgeous so you should save up for this if you really love it,” which I probably will, because I do.

Graphic Fern Ring, $80

Plus, I’m a sucker for anything remotely fiddlehead-y.  Now I’m off to spend some time at McDonald’s website to get impressed and inspired while anxiously watching election results.

Goodnight, my little voters!

Holds Water

There are some things in this world that are iconic and undeniable – usually perched high above the world and offer some function of survival.  Windmills might be an example of this, the pretty kind in Holland (although the new ones on the coastline are pretty remarkable, too).  Power lines connect most every one of us and energize our homes.  But today I’m talkin’ about water towers.

This lovely lady from BK put together a water tower treasury featuring my Water Tower Bottle Cap Necklace which is on sale in my shop for $10.  Click on the image of my necklace to be taken to the treasury!

Click me for watery goodness!