Saturday, June 24, 2017

The maker hands

From time to time we must listen to our body and see what it has to say .
We tend to take things for granted but nothing is immutable, nor acquired!
It is already so difficult and frustrating to be in constant pain and living in slow motion, but at least, I was able to do what needed to be done!  Having pain in my hands, wasn't something, I had thought about.
My little hands hurt!
Have you ever thought how important and indispensable our hands are ?
No, I have not.
Our hands are our survival tools and when they are in pain, our soul also is in pain.
My survival tools are giving up !
I am not in a complaining mood, neither do I want to victimize myself. I am kind of private person, but just for today's post, I needed to share why I have been so slow recently.
The hands of the maker are the intermediary between his thought and his creations.
Isn't it said that the hands are the reflection of the soul?
Aren't they the tools that realize or better reflect and transform our imagination into the finished piece?
For nearly two months now, my hands hurt so bad !
In a moment of  introspection, I listened to them.
In order not to sink into depression and stay in my  corner, I decided to paint.  While waiting for my hands to feel better, I painted some metal finding which I will use in my jewelry creations.
Vintage Waziri Tribal Buttons and antique brass leaf pendant painted with swellegant paint.
Beautiful flowers from my "jungle" backyard. :)
Crystal quartz point beads, rare Moroccan fossilised Bryozoan coral pendant and our sour cherries. Birds being great lovers of cherries, it is rare that we can pick them before they eat them all. 🍒🐦 😊
On my journey to seek and connect with others and because of my admiration for the beautiful tribal cultures around the globe, I recently acquired this gorgeous Turkmen pendant.  I will deconstruct it  and use the individual pieces in my creations. This is my way to pay tribute to those who owned it before me and who have worn it gracefully. Now, it is my turn to continue with it and write another kind of story.
I love the wild flowers in our "jungle" garden. :)
Cascades of old bells, beads, and dangles in this beautiful very-long Turkmen Bell-Tassel Head Jewelry with a sturdy Turkmen beaded triangle with a bird perched on top.  
The bells sway with every movement, making a wonderful sound and scaring away demons. Warm age patina. Tassels like this one, was traditionally worn attached to the tops of head dresses, at the sides of head to frame the face, or along the Turkmen woman's single hair braid.
Sour cherry aka Morello cherry
 This  collectible, wearable old Turkmen Tribal Jewelry handcrafted in the mid to early 1900's.
My shop will be closed from mid July through  August. To make room for my new designs, which still need to be photographed, I am offering 15 % off the entire shop, until I close in mid July.  I hope that my hands will feel better by the end of summer !
Coupon code: ETE2017
I wish you all happy summer vacations.
As always, thank you so much for stopping by.  
Merci beaucoup. :)

Sunday, May 28, 2017

The sense of simplicity

I am working on another series of earrings.  However, I paused working on them for a moment to make these necklaces. Each of  necklaces has an African mask within the design.
I love masks and I even collected them.  In many culture masks express illusion, but also  symbolize power, and strength, embody beauty and dread.
The African mask acts as a bridge between nature and culture.
Masks are used in ceremonial events.  But beyond that, it has an aesthetic appeal. It seems strange that it can be so beautiful and graceful and yet powerful. It has an extraordinary presence.
Each is made with beads I got from my Grandmother.  


In a meditative state, I made these necklaces that resonate with history and African rich culture. Stay tuned for more about the story behind masks!
Lovely summery blue green vintage glass beads are combined with chrysocolla gemstones with repurposed  vintage Tibetan beads for an organic look.
This necklace has an eye-catching bold and beautiful color. The design is simplistic yet bold and has an extraordinary presence about it. The bronze mask is handmade using the technic of the lost wax.
Simple and warm eartth tones make this red necklace stand out! Featuring red agate and African vintage glass beads for that rustic and organic feel of African soil.
Elegant and beautiful colors juxtaposed with simple and soft design. I just love the blend of colors, materials and textures here. The rustic bauxite is prefectly paired with soft blue vintage glass beads that you can wear anytime. They blend together so well!

PS: Don't forget to check out my shop for the free shipping offer.


As always, thank you so much for stopping by.  
Merci beaucoup. :)


Sunday, April 30, 2017

La planète bleue

This mini series was created in homage to our planet earth, also known as the blue planet. For two-thirds of the surface of the earth is covered with water.
It is blue like the oceans.
I love blue and all the shades that go with it. Even though blue is considered a cold color, this color gives me a lot of joy and happiness. Blue is so refreshing !
Color of communication and serenity. Intuitive color, harmony and meditative . Blue is associated with the throat chakra.
I wanted to publish this for the International Earth Day, but the elements did not see it that way. 😊
After all, we have to celebrate this beauty that is our earth every day.

I couldn't have found a better component to complement these fabulous handmade ceramic dangles than these handmade intricate mosaic patterned Tibetan bead.  It is inlaid with coral and turquoise beads in white brass.  This outstanding pair of earrings is sure to be worn again and again !
They are just waiting for you to whisper the story behind them ! Submerge yourself into the rich Tibetan and African culture.


These completely unique components turquoise aged brass have been heat treated with chestnut brown patina, given a wash of dark blue and speckled with verdigris!
This pair of earrings makes me think of a river or an Island with islets. The blue and green colours are reminiscent of looking upon the earth surface from space. :)


Awesome combination on these earrings that take the wearer from Asia to Africa. All topped with gorgeous tiny round sea breeze ocean chalcedony.

Those look like they have been at the bottom of the ocean for years.

As always, thank you so much for stopping by.  
Merci beaucoup. :)

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The ocean is calling!

This Sunday, I pretended that I was somewhere, where the sea and mountain meet. Where the sea waves crash over the rocks.
I am often bored by simply going to a "normal beach" and sitting there watching the ocean or people gathering around to soak up the sun.  Nope, that's not me or my family.  We like to walk around to see what we can find or explore to see what kind of flore or fauna is there!
So this past Sunday, I let my mind wander to some of the beautiful beaches that I have visited.  Beaches such as those in Scotland.  Brittany in France, and Mendocino in California.
I love the beaches, especially those where the cliffs and the ocean meet.
Where rocks and waves combine, to sing a hymn in unison, a beauty of which only nature has the secret!
Where when the sea recedes for a pause, the opportunity is given to us to collect shells and driftwood.
That's how I love my beach!
That's how I communicate better with her!
These flowers are from my backyard. The purple and yellow are pansies which we call "Pensée" in french. (Pensée means thought) and dandelion. I made a simple bouquet with them and of course, since it is spring, the cherry trees are all in bloom so I couldn't help but to add a little of its beauty to my bouquet creation!
I hope you enjoy it! :)

As always, thank you so much for stopping by.  
Merci beaucoup. :)

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Life of memories!

I took a little break from making earrings.
I made quite a few necklaces that I will share with you soon.
This post is a tribute to the woman in my life who inspired me so much in my jewelry journey and who has taught me the basic things of life.
Thanks to her, I grew up surrounded by nature and she taught me how to live in harmony with  nature.
Thanks to her,  I ate organic and fresh foods everyday while growing up. I spent some of my most fabulous summer vacations with her in her plantation.
She was the most wonderful story teller and comedian I ever knew. She was so funny and always made us laugh.
I remember how after a hard day, working on the plantation and cooking dinner, she used to thread beads for our waist.
I liked to help her, because I knew  that  she would tell another one of her fabulous stories.
She explained the meaning of the beads and of course, the name for them.  Unfortunately, I don't remember anything of what she told me.
She passed away, but my grandma is still with us.  We are very lucky because even at 92 years old, she still has her brain which works very well !
Thanks to her, I never felt like an orphan.
This important and inspiring woman of my life was my great grand aunt, my grandma's little sister.  She was more country, while my grandma was more urban.
Today, while making these necklaces, I was thinking of her.
How beautiful she looked with all the strands she wore on her waist and how colorful the beads were.
Women mostly used red cotton fabric to wear with the beads, and this was their underwear.
Someone once told me that "thong underwear or panties" is the modern style of our grand parents underwear.  I am in love with these simply beaded red necklaces, which also take me back to this period and time of year, when you got plenty of ripe delicious fruits and when we would climb the trees to collect these fruits.  Sometimes we would eat so many that we would get sick ! 😊

Odiche
Odiche means the one who is special.
The pendant is made with an extinct fossilized squid specimen called "straight horn" found in Morocco in grayish and black tones and handmade lampwork beads which I wrapped with recycled silk fabric.
I strung with red jasper, vintage black and white terracotta beads from Mali, 10 mm round red agate surround the pendant and the other beads are mixed vintage beads that were  from my Grandma's, and then some are reused from a broken Tibetan necklace that I had.

Obioma
Obiama means kindness.
Beautifully strung with red jasper, red agate, vintage African beads, Ashanti brass and vintage Tibetan beads along with handmade ceramic beads.

It always takes sometime, between the moment I share my new work here, and listing them on etsy.
So, if you see something you like, please let me know and I will be happy to list them for you.
My pain always increases when I work on computer. So, I need to go to my physiotherapist and acupuncturist in order to be able to use the computer again.
My pain is hindering me from running a good business !
Well, slowly I will try to use my phone or tablet, which is a little better for my back and my shoulder. But old folk like me, we prefer the computer. Lol.

As always, thank you so much for stopping by.  
Merci beaucoup. :)

Monday, March 27, 2017

La discrète!

Here are another series of earrings, more in earth tone colors.
I know it is spring and everyone wants color in their life especially during this period of the year.
Personally, I don't wear a lot of colors!
I like to be discret, so I will wear more brown, Ivory and pastels.
Plus, colorful items looks uggly on me! :)
The other day, I felt the urge to buy a new trench coat because it was so warm and I almost passed out on the street from the heat in my winter jacket.
The only trench coats I like were in two different colors. But in effort to change from my style habit, I tried the colorful one and I scared myserlf to death. Lol
Even the sales woman agreed with me.
She was nice and politely said "we are not used to see you in such color"
However, I really like red and I look great with.
Even if these beauties are made with earth tone colors, you can't go wrong with them. Because they can be matched with most colors.


Ilozumba
 Ilozumba means distant from home is forgotten  
I like the earthy feel of this combination of materials.
A pair of slim rustic hoops in buff stoneware and fired with bronze and river rock glaze were the start of this design. I then added rustic handmade lampwork, handmade ashanti brass and I adorned it all with faceted black obsidian. I then wire wrapped them with my own oxidized pure copper wire.
Even with such neutral colors, you are sure to be noticed and the center of attention with this amazing pair of earrings!! :)

 
I love these ceramic droppers so much!
It was hard to capture the beauty of these drops in picture.
A pair of wing droppers,  hand formed in earthstone glacier porcelain, embedded with leaf skeletons, and fired. Coated with black slip to fill in the skeleton of the leaf, sanded down, and fired again. Coated with turquoise crackle glaze and fired. And finally a layer of mother of pearl lustre glaze which captures and becomes the center of attention on this pair of earrings. I simply stacked a small carnelian stones with the most beautiful color, nuggets of turquoise and sandwiched with very unusual handmade lampwork beads.
They will be surely be a part of your everyday life story and you will never grow tired of them!

 Imbiana
Imbiana means unity in song
It is always so wonderful to find lampwork beads that have a tribal feel!
I no longer buy lampwork beads. I think I have enough lampwork beads in my current collection to last me for the rest of my life! Lol
These beautiful handmade pair of tube shaped porcelain beads are fired with a coil of nichrome wire wrapped around and down each for a dramatic and beautiful effect then dipped in lovely glazes. Then I added a tribal flair lampwork bead adorned with a dots in a lovely shade of purple with a squiggle line in shades of ivory.  I added black silver spacers and round tibetan agate with a cream band.  
At the top of the earring I added a large loop of copper to finish the piece.  I really liked making this large loop to finish the pieces. I felt that it added some elegance while at the same time was eye-catching, which gave each a  nice finish.

As always, thank you so much for stopping by.  
Merci beaucoup. :)


Sunday, March 19, 2017

Colors And Harmony!

"Colours are the smiles of nature"
Leigh hunt

I really like to blend colors together.  I try to blend them in an aesthetically pleasing way; as colors are pleasing for the eyes and for the soul.
If they are blended well, in harmonious way, it brings balance and makes the whole design look fantastic.
Colors are intimately linked in our daily lives.  Each one of those colors are associated with a state of mind and emotion.
Most of us don't realize it, but colors have an influence on our behaviour and sense of humor.
Unfortunately I don't have much to say today but I hope to be able to post here more often in the future!
There are so many details and items to take care of after I make a piece of jewelry, such as: photographing, creating an etsy listing and posting an article on my blog or on Instagram, etc... These details are not the most favorite part of my job as a jewelry designer.  But unfortunately these things must be done.  
I am currently working on a very special collection and I hope to be able to share it with you very soon.

I like the way, and the circumstances, in which the design came to me!
When it comes to buying my supplies, sometimes I know exactly what I want, and exactly what I will make with the beads I am purchasing at that moment.  Yet at other times, I have no idea what I want to make, but I KNOW that I must have and must hold the beads in my hands.

I bought these particular gemstones and lampwork beads that I used in this project at different time periods.  I didn't even remember that I had these lampwork beads But they just happen to match perfectly with the fossilized dinosaur bones.
The color of each, drew me to them; I knew that I must have them !

                Ifede

These earrings have fascinating fossilized dinosaur bone nuggets with a beautiful spectrum of colors which include: purples, blues, greens, oranges, and last but not least, red tones.  The nuggets are the focus of attention and dangle upon a loop of several Czech farfalle glass beads and then upon vintage swirled solid brass rounds that have a nice coppery finish.  Equally at the center of attention, are these beautiful sparkling handmade lampwork beads that are saturated with varying shades of purple, plum, blue, deep pink, and even some citrine.  The colors of the lampwork beads and along with those of the dinosaur bones...blend in such poetic harmony !


"Gem Dinosaur Bone refers to fossilized dinosaur bones that have been petrified with silica or quartz crystals which gives them their colourful, glassy appearance.
Petrified or Fossilized Dinosaur Bone increases energy and memory"


Amadia

A playful use of color here with these chrysocolla beads in their calming and soothing color.
It looks like the stones and lampwork were made to match each other, but that is a pure coincidence that Mother Nature's stones and the artisan's handmade lampwork are so perfectly matched.


"Chrysocolla, the king of carbonate copper gemstones.
The name chrysocolla was first used to describe the stone by Theophrastus, a Greek philosopher and botanist, in 315 B.C. The word was derived from the Greek words chrysos, meaning gold, and kola, meaning glue, referencing the fact that chrysocolla was employed from the earliest times by goldsmiths as an ingredient for solder, called santerna by the Romans, to weld gold pieces together.
Chyrsocolla is first and foremost a Stone of Communication. Its very essence is devoted to expression, empowerment and teaching.It is the stone of forgiveness, peace, and the strengthening of emotional bonds".
Source: Crystal Vaults
Ijeoma

What makes you think of springtime more than flowers?  So let's celebrate Springtime with this gorgeous pair of flowery earrings!  Don't you just love the combination of red and turquoise?


These earrings are a stunning mingling of: beautiful red tulip beads, unique red lampwork beads by the Canadian lampwork artist Kerri Fuhr, along with an African turquoise gemstone nugget, and vintage flowery bead caps.  Kerri's beads were my first purchase on Etsy back when I first started to browse online for pictures of beads and gemstones.  That's how my history with Etsy began, and it was back in 2010.
I love each and every single one of Kerri's pieces and I was so fortunate to be able to own some of her art.  Unfortunately, I can no longer afford them.

As always, thank you so much for stopping by.  
Merci beaucoup. :)







Sunday, February 5, 2017

Gemstone calling!

This week, I was litterally drawn by these gemstones while I was working on something else.
At first, I tried not to hear them but I was so obsessed that I even dreamed of them at night and kept thinking of them night and day. I felt this calling was a sign to return to my soldering adventures. I wanted to test if my skills had progressed since my first attempt.
I don't know how much time I spent making them, but for sure, I put my heart and soul on each of them !
I would like to sell some of them as headpins, for someone to relate their spirit and journey on their own creative way.
I already turned some of them into a pair of earrings. I will share them with you here and later list them on etsy. Just in case, you see something here you want, please let me know.


I know you all are asking yourselves. What is the weird thing in the middle? :)
Well, It's an old bone I collected in the river Thames in London amongst ceramic pipes and beach glass.

An assortment of beautiful earring gemstones.  From left upper row to lower right: Multi-color picasso jasper, butter honey ocean jasper, blue fossil coral, serpentine and another jasper. I don't remember exactly which one of jasper it is!  (Sorry) 
 Ready to wear as they are or I am thinking to embellish them with something else.
On the other hand, I really think of those of you who don't like long earrings.
I am doing my best to make my earring shorter. The truth is that I enjoy to add a lot of small details on each of the design and I always end up with long earrings. :)

Phantom quartz point gemstones

Raw citrine crystals with lovely white to amber colour with specs of eggplant color sprays on some of them.

Wild and rough-cut rustic blue Kyanite gemstones to use in your unchecked designs. 

Handmade yellow ceramic dangles, small drops poppy jasper and bone I collected in the river Thames in London.

 Mystic titanium AB quartz crystal point rocks.

I have protected each of the items that I made with renaissance wax so that it will be more durable and protected from the elements.

Like always, thank you so much for stopping by.  
Merci beaucoup. :)

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Solange,Stop buying beads!!!

On this beautiful sunny cold day, I couldn't help but to walk a little further than usual.

I don't often go to this side of the city.  I don't know why because it is on the same street as the bakery in which I buy my daily baguette.  The name of this side of  the sreet is different though ^^.

For some reason,  I decided to change my habit and I went further than the covered market which is also in the same street  "Rue des quatres églises". I always ask myself , why is there no church in a street called "Rue des quatres églises" (Four Churches street )?

So I googled it and this what it said: "The street owes its denomination to the presence of four places of prayers on its course in 1728, they changed this name to "Rue de la revolution" in 1791 and in 1814, they changed it again to its actuel name".

Well, after the small historical interruption concerning "La rue des Quatre-Eglises, let us return to what brought us here!
Last summer, I came across a Tibetan shop and I was kind of reluctant  to go inside but I entered it anyway.. And I am glad I did because the owner is a nice and sympathetic man.

So, since I had some spare time before the next thing on my busy "to do list" (I am always have  a million thing to do, I know I should slow down a little bit)  I decided to  take a moment to go inside this shop  to see everything it had to offer .  I couldn't help myself  not to hoard all the marvelous treasures it had. The truth is that, the prices were very appealing because it is winter sales time here! :)
I really enjoyed the store. Going out of my usual area was a good thing.
However,  I have discovered another place to buy beads. I must stop buying beads.

Solange, stop buying beads! Lol.

I am already working with these treasures and I can't wait to share it with you! 



Aren't these Tibetan beads gorgeous and worth the visit?


Tibetan Repoussee Pendant Prayer Box, Brass Repoussee Pendant and  Dorje Brass hollow pendant

"Repoussee is a method of embossing a metal sheet (silver, copper, brass) by punching and hammering a design from the back, then polishing it up in front with a chasing hammer, producing a three-dimensional bas-relief surface."

"The dorje or thunderbolt is a symbol of divine power and the wisdom of the Buddha".


Red. Red is amongst my favorite colours. Seriously, look at these!
Aren't they the prettiest with the murrini!


They are definitely worth the detour!


Naga conch shell beads inlaid with crushed coral and turquoise
They are so smooth beads!!!
I have always wanted these naga conch beads but they are so expensive so I could never afford it until today. They are still expensive but this was my only chance to have them for my own. :)


When I visited Ghana, I was on a mission to find a variety of Krobo beads that I had invisioned in my head.  We searched and searched but I could not find the variety that I wanted.  I was told we could find what I wanted but we would need to travel to another city which meant we would have to drive 9 to 10 hours to get them.  Unfortunately, I wasn't in the mood and I needed to go back to Côte D'ivoire to catch my return flight, so instead I ordered these online.  So while it was worth the visit and definitely worth the detour, it was so much easier to order these Krobo beads online.  
Fish Vertebrae Bone Beads made in Senegal and recycled Krobo beads made in Ghana.


The reverse side of the repousse pendant is Ohm symbol.


I like to use handmade beads, recycled, upcycled and unique materials from around the globe to make my jewelry!

As always, thank you so much for stopping by!







Friday, January 6, 2017

Happy New year 2017 !!!

Here we go with another year and all new resolutions.
I myself do not have any resolutions for this year other than to be in a good health again, or at least be able to work properly and do basic things in life - without pain. I want to hike in the mountains, run, dance, go to the beach to collect shells, beach glass, and driftwood. I want to sleep. I want to be able to walk around the city without getting tired so easily just like I used to.  I want to be able to eat like everyone else.  I want to be able to eat rice again.  Etc...etc...etc... Because, if we have a good heatlh, everything else goes easily and smoothly in the perfect world!
Well, I still have my beautiful smile and for that, I am thankful! Lol
I wish you and your family a very happy New Year. Good Health, Peace, Prosperity in everything you do!



A variety of earrings made with handmade ceramic, lampwork beads and vintage flower headpins.


I am in  love with these simple but magnific pair of earrings. A lovely combinaison of Tibetan agate which are artfully accented with a beautiful ruby red hammered coin brass chain.


As always, thank you so much for stopping by!