Monday, May 20, 2013

Patina, Alcohol Inks, Dye Oxides, Vintaj Ranger, Swellegant

I am beginning to get into colorizing metals and stuff and the plethora of alcohol inks, patinas, dye oxides, metal coatings, etc. is throwing me into a spin.  So I have been gathering information on them and trying to discover their differences and applications.

My focus is not to go into indepth technical but to learn enough so that I know what to get for what purpose.  My narrowish focus at the moment is coloring metal as in jump rings and chains.  And I am only going to write about the different products as I get them.  (It would be impossible to write about all of them unless I had a century of nothing else to do and they stop producing such delectable products at such a rapid clip!)

This page contains general information with links to more specific notes on each product line (as and when I get either the products or the information).

Notes on Gilders Paste

Some very quick notes on Gilders Paste.

Gilders Paste - silver and gold

Notes on Ranger Patina, Inks & Mixatives

Sometimes you will see Vintaj Ranger and other times Adirondack Ranger.  It really doesn't matter.  It is more a branding thing (as to whom Ranger has partnered with for a range of products).  I will mainly just refer to them as Ranger.  These are just basic notes on how to quickly use Range inks, patinas, mixatives, and blending solution.

ranger inks, patina, mixatives

Notes on Swellegant

Swellegant is similar to the Ranger Patina and Inks but with some differences in application.  I am still too new to both ranges to make any determined recommendation of one over the other but I will point out some differences - especially in how to use them.

Prepare -  clean / degrease/ sand surfaces as normal

Swellegant sample

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Swarovski Color Carousel

I am testing this Swarovski Color Carousel. Hopefully this is be a useful online tool for anyone color matching or aiming for harmonious colours in jewelry making and crafts.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

How to Determine Right Size of Crochet Hook

This is just a short note (which I may or may not add to later) about a rule of thumb in determining the right crochet hook size for your thread.
crochet hooks

Because I never get exactly the same materials as recommended in a pattern and more often than not, I am often creating crochet stuff with whatever yarns and threads (and beads) I have on hand, I have found that not listening to my rule of thumb has always been to my detriment and to my project at hand.

So the rule of thumb is (given whatever size yarn and/or beads you are using):

  • If the hook constantly catches (and often splits your yarn) - then your hook is too small.
  • If you find difficulty in pushing into a previous row's stitch (to make your current stitch) - then your hook is too large.
That's it.  Short and simple.  Now, if only I would be consistent in listening to myself, that would be great! 

Friday, May 17, 2013

Hoola Hoop Earrings in Circular Peyote Stitch

Some days ago, I wrote the tutorial on how to make hoola hoop with Peyote Stitch.  Since then, I have stolen snatches of time to play around with possibilities and variations.  Here are but some of the results.
Hoola Hoop Earrings in Circular Peyote Stitch
Hoola Hoop Earrings in Circular Peyote Stitch

Monday, May 13, 2013

How to make Hoola Hoop with Peyote Stitch

This is a hoola-hoop shape made with Peyote Stitch.  It is 3-D and solid.  Among other ideas, this 3D peyote hoola hoop shape is ideal for earrings and/or pendant.

how to make hoola hoop circles in peyote stitch

Beaded Squares of Deco Handmade Necklace and Earrings

Yesterday I was writing about how to make a solid (rigid) double layered square with beaded RAW stitch.  Then I decided to play around with it some more.  And then my eyes fell on some Deco stripes, and this was the result 24 hours later.

Squares of Deco handmade jewelry in RAW stitch
"Squares of Deco" handmade jewelry in RAW stitch

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Beading Stitch: Solid Double Layer Square with RAW Stitch

How to make a solid (rigid) double layered Square in RAW (right angle weave) stitch?  The first photo shows some samples.  They are just for reference and as you can see, I have not tidied up all the threads yet.

This actually is a very delightful shape - it is crisp and solid and can be used in a ring, as a pendant, or any anyway your creativity takes you.  I did make some of these some years ago but for the life of me, I could not remember how it was done.  I had found some illustrated instructions in a Japanese beading book, and I followed along.  At that stage, I had never even heard of the term "RAW" or "right angled weave".  Without the book, there was no way I could reproduce these little delights.

However in a moment I will let you know a little secret and how I now have the (probable) ability to reproduce this at will without the initial instructions book ...

How to make Solid Beaded Square - double layered - in RAW
Solid Beaded Square - double layered - in RAW

Right Angle Weave Stitch: How to make a Square Ball

This is one of the simplest balls to make with RAW (Right Angle Weave) Stitch.  Sorry the image is not very clear but hopefully the illustrated steps will illustrate the steps in making this RAW St ball.
How to make a Ball with RAW Stitch
How to make a Ball with RAW Stitch

Friday, May 10, 2013

Bloglovin - How to Add your blog to get some Loving!

Follow my blog with Bloglovin -  I was told by a wonderful friend Ren, via Facebook to sign up for Bloglovin so she can follow me.  Was I chuffed?  Yup!

So I have signed up.

If you too have a blog and you would like members of Bloglovin to give you some loving - How to Keep Your Blog Readers and Followers with Bloglovin (by A Little Unhinged)  is a very useful article detailing how to add your blog to Bloglovin.  (You need to do this before you can get any Bloglovin followers).  And don't be like me - read the entire article before you get started.  Makes your life easier - I assure you!

Happy Bloglovin!

How to Bead Stitch: St Petersburg Stitch

Basic St Petersburg Stitch

Note: this article has been updated with new information and to be found at:
Beading: St Petersburg Stitch (recommended)

St Petersburg stitch is something that I learnt before and then promptly forgot, much to my chargrin.  So this time, I have drawn up a simple pictorial.

St Petersburg Stitch how to
Basic St Petersburg Stitch - How To

Once you get the basic St Petersburg stitch, then the variations you can ply on them will be pretty endless.

Back to Basics: Beading & Jewelry Making

Starting today, I am going back to basics from beading weaves to wires to anything that comes across my path.  I will tamper down my eagerness to plunge headlong into my next project and put the bubbling cauldron of ideas on slow simmer.

Once upon a time, seemingly long ago, I asked what I now know to be one of the most basic questions on Australia's Beading Forum: "What is the best beading stitch to learn?", followed by "How many should we know?"

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Glass Pebbles Jewelry Instead of Glass Dome Cabs

I have always been a tat fascinated with those ubiquitous glass dome cabs but was never inspired enough to figure out what I could do with them that was going to be a tat different from the norm of placing them in a pre-made metal frame and hanging them off a chain.  So I had no glass cab domes in my studio when I finally decided to do some experiments.

Luckily I had some of those flat based glass pebbles that the economy stores sell.  They are usually used to fill bottom of vases or something. So armed with a few pieces of scrap paper and a cutting from a newspaper, some ModPodge and beads (of course) .. these 2 little pendants emerged.

Quirky Handmade Pendants: "Lonely Girl" & "Tilting Winnie"

CH0310 & CH0311