26 September 2011

And Life Keeps Cruising Along!

Things seemed to go from busy to busier and busier this Summer, and many things (like writing in my blog) fell off the list as I tried to pack in as much as possible during my Summer break. The biggest shift was moving to a new house. I spent much of June packing up our things at our old house, and riding my bike over to the new place several times a week to get a garden planted. I then most of July unpacking and settling in to our new place.
This year ended up being a fantastically productive year for the local fruit trees, so I was canning like crazy to take advantage of the Summer's bounty, and have a pantry full of delicious jams and jellies to show for all my work.
I still managed to make some lovely jewelry pieces in my new studio, but didn't spend as much time working as I normally do.
School started in August, and my class load has kept me hopping! I am taking 16 credits, with two studio classes, so any free time I get goes to studying or working on class projects. Even though I am not making much jewelry, I am reveling in creating in my painting and ceramics classes! I have painted on and off for years, so this is an on time for me, and I have wanted to learn to make pottery since I was a little girl, and I LOVE it!
My next break from classes won't be until Thanksgiving, so I don't know how often I will post here, but I will try to share the fun things I am making with you, even if it is just a few words and some pictures. Hope you all are well and enjoying this life! all the best, ~Pippi

13 June 2011

1000 Facebook Fans!

It has been amazing to me to watch the number of fans grow on my Facebook jewelry page! Here I am again at a milestone - over 1000 fans! It makes me happy that so many people get to see my art and enjoy it. It brings me so much happiness to create my pieces, and the internet has allowed me to share my work with people all over the world!

All of your support means so much to me, so I decided to celebrate this milestone with a give-away. I made this paisley pendant for just this purpose,

and have posted an album on my Pippi Jewelry page on FB. Just leave a comment on the album to be entered in the drawing. That's it! I will be drawing the winning name next Sunday.

Thanks again! You all rock my world!
all the best,

06 June 2011

Swimming Along - A Dolphin's Tale

I spent about a week working on my latest piece. The design was inspired by a comment someone left on a picture I posted about my recent bird necklaces. I made the first bird using yellow tourmalines and orange fire opals to match the colors of the western tanagers that migrate through my area each Spring.

The second bird I made I colored after the western bluebird, a favorite of mine! I liked this one so much that I decided to keep it for myself.

This was the one that reminded someone of a dolphin, and I thought with a little tweaking I could make one. I did some sketches, but didn't actually start making it until the day the reporter from The Bannock Alternative paper came to my house to interview me for a feature in this month's issue.

I spent the next several days wrapping gemstones onto the sterling frame to color the dolphin.

I used tiny faceted iolite and aquamarine beads, along with some of the tiny faceted Thai silver beads from my stash, and a flashing blue labradorite briolette for the dolphin's nose.

The gemstone beads are only about 2mm in size, so it took quite a few beads, and numerous feet of hair-thin fine silver wire to fill the frame.

Then I constructed a gemstone chain for it to hang from. I used larger faceted aquamarines, with iolite, keishi pearls and labratorites for flourishes on the chain, and added a length of cable chain on the end so the length would be adjustable.

This necklace is one of the pieces I am making for the upcoming Ketchum Arts Festival. I will not be adding any new pieces to my Etsy shop until after the festival which runs July 8-10, however, you can take advantage of the Moving Sale going on in my shop the whole month of June, as I prepare to move to a new place. It is an especially exciting move as I will finally have a studio of my own! I will begin teaching classes in my new studio starting mid-July. I will post pictures and a class schedule in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!

And now back to packing. See you all again soon!
all the best,

03 June 2011

Catching Up... (Again)

Well, here it is, almost 3 months since I last posted. Life has been full of ups and downs, and a few things fell off along the way. After a brief 6 month struggle, my sister succumbed to the cancer, and is now watching over those of us left behind. I miss her more than I can say! I still had the rest of the school semester to get through after her death, so I just packed up my sorrow for another day, and forged through projects and finals. My outlet for my feelings for my sister came through in some of the most beautiful jewelry, and in making beautiful pies decorated with the cookie cutters she sent me. I think of Mary every time I make something, and try to make it extra beautiful, as if trying to make up to the world for losing such a bright, shining soul.

I also bought a floor loom, which prompted me to take the Summer off from school, so I could spend time working on my own art, instead of projects for school. I started an ambitious tapestry project which should keep me busy (as if I had a problem doing that!) through the Summer.

And a busy Summer I will have! We decided to look for a bigger house in a quieter neighborhood, and found the perfect place the first day we started looking. The house sits on 1/3 acre, with plenty of garden space,

and a separate studio in the back for my jewelry studio. I will be teaching classes in my studio starting in mid-July!

There is the quick recap. Now that I am back on track, I will post details of my recent projects.
See you again soon!

15 March 2011

Pi Day 2011

Happy Pi Day! Here is my contribution to Pi Day 2011. Lovingly made from scratch using organic ingredients, and decorated with crust cutouts made with cookie cutters from my oldest sister on the birthday of my older twin sisters. Happy birthday, Margie and Julie! Love you, Mary!

Pi Day Pie - Plenty of Pi to go around
14 March 2011

06 March 2011

YOJ11 Week 9 - A ring and a flowery earring design...

This week I finished a ring and started another one in my metals class, came up with two new earring designs, and made one of the designs already.

I am still perfecting my bezels in my metals class, so I have been making rings. This week's ring features a beautiful and unusual Australian boulder opal. I bought a number of boulder opal cabochons a few years ago, but have only used a few of them so far. This one is one of my favorites! The sparkling vein of opal looks like an aerial view of a river. I wanted the setting to accentuate but not overpower the stone. I sketched out several possibilities before settling on this design.

I melted bits of fine silver wire from my scrap container to make the balls on either side of the bezel, and I used a letter "v" stamp inverted to make the design around the edge. The band was cut from 18 gauge sterling sheet, and hammered for texture. I have not oxidized it yet, and am not sure if I will, or if I let it patina naturally. We shall see.

My other project this week started as the flash of an idea, which I sketched into my jewelry journal. I had an idea for a pair of hoops and a new paisley design, and a yummy new string of tourmalines with quite a few in gorgeous shades of dark blue, so I jumped in and started making the hoops. I tipped each spiraled petal with a blue tourmaline, with a green one between each petal.

The blue hoops turned out beautifully, and I loved the design even more in real life. I decided to try one with pink tourmalines instead of the blue, and took advantage of my work (and the perfect light for photography), by snapping pictures of the whole process while making them, so I can write a tutorial for the design.

I am just starting Week 10 today, so I will share the second pair of the lotus earrings and more in my next post.

Glad you stopped by! Thanks!

28 February 2011

Alphabet Pie

"The present is always improved with pie. The sweet breath of pie." ~Brad Severtson

I love making pie in the Winter! The heat from the oven warms the house, while the delicious smell wafts through every room. The only thing better is eating it when it is done. I make my own crust using a simple recipe, and I double it to make a top crust.

Over the years, my crusts have become more and more decorative. I started using my cookie cutters to make different designs for the tops of my pies.

I have collected quite a few cutter shapes over the years, and I was delighted to receive some from my sister in New York. She sent me a set of fancy leaf cutters and an alpha-numeric set! So now, in addition to pictures, my pies can have messages, too. It is great fun! It is like a hug from my sister every time I use them. :D

Pie is love!