Monday, 31 December 2007

Goodbye 2007...Hello 2008!!

Goddess In Green
Rock Crystal & Green Aventurine

The Odd Couple
Lampwork by Laura Sparling & Sterling Silver

I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and is getting ready for the merriments this evening!! Tonight I have my parents, sister and niece coming over for nibbles and games. We do it all again tomorrow when my husbands family come over! We have bought enough food to feed the whole street but it is better to over do than have people wanting more but there is nothing left!!!
Strawberry Smoothie
Lampwork by Caroline Hannon & Sterling Silver

In between shopping, cleaning and cooking today, I managed to make a necklace (Goddess In Green) and some earrings (not pictured). The necklace is a bit different for me as it is not a uniformed pattern and I always struggle with this!

Calla Lily
Lampwork by Beck Fairclough & Sterling Silver

HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone!!!

Monday, 24 December 2007

Merry Christmas everyone!!!

Castor Bracelet
Carnelian & Karen Hill Tribe Silver
Well, the big day is almost upon us and as much as I am a HUGE Christmas fan, I don't want it to come as it will be gone so quickly and then that's it for another year.

Zest Earrings
Carnelian & Karen Hill Tribe Silver

I thought I would post a few more piccies of what I have been working on lately.

Arabian Nights
Smoky Quartz & Bali Silver

Heart & Soul Necklace
Fresh Water Pearls & Sterling Silver

I love the colours of the Carnelian in the bracelet and earrings at the top of the post. The word 'Castor' shine, to greek.

Finally, MERRY CHRISTMAS everyone. I hope Santa brings you everything you wished for!!


Saturday, 22 December 2007

Sorry for being a stranger!

Fossil Bracelet
Black Sardonyx & Karen Hill Tribe Silver
I just looked at the date of my last post and can not believe where the time has gone!!!

Organic Ocean Bottle Stopper
Lampwork by Julie Fountain

I have been so busy at work (my other job that pays the bills!!) and then I had a stall at the National Trust Ham House for the first 3 weekends of December so this is really the first opportunity I have had to sit down and do whatever I like!!!!

Spotty Dotty Bottle Stopper
Lampwork by Caroline Hannon

Not sure what to say about the fairs at Ham was in a marquee which was meant to be heated but a small heater at either end of the marquee didn't do much in terms of heat and so everyone was freezing!!! On the first two weekends the rain was awful and the ground outside could not handle it and so decided to come up inside the marquee and a few stalls got flooded!! Luckily mine was about a foot away from being in water!!! Despite all the this, I actually enjoyed myself as it is the best opportunity to hear what people think about my jewellery and I also got to meet some amazing stall holders selling gorgeous wares!!!

Anyway, I thought I would post just a few pictures of what I have been up to lately!!!

I am not going to wish anyone a Merry Christmas in this post cos I want to make sure I post on here again before the big day!!! Here's hoping I do!!

Sunday, 28 October 2007

It can't be Sunday already!!!!!!!!

Why oh why does the working week go soooooo slowly and then as soon as the weekend comes, bam, it is over in a flash!!!!! I hate Sunday's, almost as much as I hate Monday's...I get that dreaded feeling in the pit of my stomach thinking about the week I have ahead of me!!!!!!

Any way, enough doom and gloom, it is still the weekend and best thing is, the clocks went back this morning so we have an extra hour...yippee!!!!!

Yesterday I met a very good friend of mine in Kingston and we did a bit of shopping. It was great to catch up and I even got to visit the new bead shop!!!!

I couldn't sleep this morning and was up at 6 a.m. which is weird cos during the week I struggle to get out of bed at 7.30 but when the weekends come, I am up bright and early...I guess it is best to be up early than waste the day in bed!!!

I have managed to make a few bits today. The bracelet in the top picture is a commission and I love it. The deep purple against the silver is stunning. The customer wanted a design very similar to one I have done before. In the picture, it looks almost the same but in the flesh, they are very different and I am really pleased with it.

The earrings below are made with Sterling Silver and Rock Quartz...I never know whether to call it Rock Quartz, Clear Quartz or Rock Crystal!!!!!

This bracelet is made with Amazonite and Sterling Silver. The little round silver circle is by the very talented Hannah (Kutuu) Solomon.
I am really excited...I have commissioned a designer to create a new logo for me. They have so far come up with some great designs and I am very confused at the moment cos I love pink however they have done some with Aqua and I am really drawn to it!!!!!

Sunday, 21 October 2007

It's a miracle...2 posts in one weekend!!!!!

Ok, so I managed to retake some of the photos...I am still not happy with them but I can't take up anymore time trying!!!

Went for a coffee with a very good friend of mine this afternoon. We went to Wimbledon Village where all of the beautiful people live!!!!! It is too chic for words!! The shops are amazing from big names like Cath Kidston, Joseph, LK Bennett etc to small independent boutiques and they all have 2 things in common...1, they only sell mega expensive stuff and 2, the stuff they sell is Divine with a capital D!!!

Anyway, back to the jewellery...the first two pieces are made from Amazonite and Bali silver. I LOVE these pieces and might just keep them for myself!!! I think I might have found me a new favourite gemstone!!!!

This necklace (and the earrings below) is made with a gorgeous lampwork bead by Becky of Chameleon Designs.

Back in June, I had a 1:1 chain maille lesson with Jean Power and since then, I have not really done much in the way of chain maille so today I flicked back through the lesson and started with one of my favourite weaves...Shaggy Loop. The reason I love it so much is it is quite easy to do and it is so tactile...I love running my fingers down the loops!!

Have I bored you enough yet!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, 20 October 2007

Count down is on!!!

Wow, I can't believe it has been over a month since my last post!!!!! I have been so busy that I haven't had much time to update my website or blog!!! Hubby is watching the football so I thought I would take this opportunity to catch up!!

Well, it is only 66 days till Christmas (my favourite time of the year!!!) and I have 7 days worth of fairs coming up, 1 on 10th November and then the first 3 weekends in December!!! I have been trying to get designing but time is something I seem to be short of at the moment!!!

I made a couple of bits today however they have not photographed well so will have to try again tomorrow...maybe I should sign up for a photography night class in January?!?!?!?!

The piece above is made from Carnelian and Sterling Silver. It hangs really lovely and I adore the large puffed coin. I have named this necklace 'Moon on Fire' as I think it looks like a planet on fire!!!! I know what I mean even if no one else does...Hubby looked at me funny when I named it so maybe it is just me!!!!!

Hope everyone is having a lovely weekend and it is not going too fast!!!

Saturday, 15 September 2007

Yippee, it's Saturday!!!

I love Saturday's, it is my favourite day of the week!! Normally I have a lovely lie in however not this morning, the house across the road is having some building work done to it and they decided to put the scaffolding up at 8 a.m.!!!!!!!!!! Oh well, at least it makes the day seem a little bit longer...but believe me, I was not saying that this morning!!

Here are some pieces that I did last week but only managed to photograph them today. Photographing and getting them on the website is the worst job!!! I also seem to be getting worse at photography instead of better. I thought I would try some pieces on a slate background again to see if I could get them to look any better than my attempts on white but alas, it is not to be!!!! Answers on the back of a postcard!!!!
The first necklace is made with David Christensen hand-blown furnace glass, the second one is with Rock Crystal and the third is Rock Crystal, Lampwork beads by Becky Fairclough and Swarovski Crystals.

Sunday, 9 September 2007

Suddenly Sunday :o(

Ok, so I think I must have blinked on Friday night and by the time my eyes opened, it was Sunday evening...why God must you punish us with 2 days off a week, surely with all the talk of work life balance, we should have half the week off and half the week at work?!?!?!?!?
Anyway, was promised I have posted some of my new pieces...this is what I have been up to over the last month!! WARNING, IMAGE HEAVY!!!!!!!!!

Think I am all charm bracelet outed now!!!!!

This is made with a beautiful hollow lampwork bead by Becky of Chameleon Designs, the picture really doesn't do the beads justice. The other beads are faceted rock crystal and frosted rock crystal (and are not grey like they look in the picture!!!)

I love this necklace, it is on a 24" chain so it hangs just right...I really want to keep it but have to be strong...the bead is by Becky of Chameleon Designs.

I think this is a great colour combo, ready for the festive season which is only 100 and something days away!!!! Spoke to my Mum yesterday who informed me that she went and bought some Christmas presents...hmmm, think she has too much time on her hands!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have never really been very good at wire wrapping beads with holes at the top but I am quite happy how these turned out!!

Sunday, 2 September 2007

I'm back...and I have been tagged!!!

Wow, I can't believe it has been nearly a month since I posted on here!!!! The time has flown by...soon it will be Christmas, yippee!!!!

Well, what has been happening in the last month...well, I started a new job, exhibited at 'Arts in the Garden' at Ham House (bank holiday Sunday and Monday), made some new pieces (will post pics later) and have a new nephew, Oscar who is just too cute for words!!!!

I have also been tagged by Caroline - Crafted Gems and Butterfly Beadwear. I have to think of six weird things about me and then tag another 6 people!!!

Ok, here we go:-

1. I love running silk through my fingers. It all stemmed from have a blanket with silk edging when I was a baby and would scream whenever it was taken away from me!!! This progressed through the years and I have been through several silk robes....I love the belt the best!!! The last one was thrown out only last year by my hubby cos I kept complaining of pains in my thumbs from doing it!! I miss it dearly, esp when drinking a cup of tea and can't walk through M&S without having a feel of the silk robes...yes, I know I am pretty sad!!!!!

2. Probably quite a common thing but I am so scared of dying!! The thought of it makes me cry and feel really low!! I think it is even worse that I have never had someone close to me die *am touching wood as I type*!!!

3. I have this weird thing about making sure I have closed the windows, turned off the iron and shut the front door when I go out!!!! I don't think it is OCD but it really gets to me. At night, if my hubby says he has closed all the windows, I still have to go around and check them!!!

4. I absolutely hate clutter and mess with a passion however I am very lazy when it comes to cleaning and putting things away!!!!

5. I never know what to say when someone is upset or has just received some bad news. I try to say comforting words but they never come out!!!! Once a friend told me her dog died and I sick is that...I am hoping it was just nervous laughter and I am not a deeply horrid person!!!

6. I am mega shy and not very confident of myself. Not really weird but something I hate about myself!

Right, now I just need to find 6 people who have not been tagged already...proving quite hard!!!

Wednesday, 8 August 2007

Happy Wednesday!

This morning I decided to make a keyring / charm... it is one of those things that I have been putting off for weeks as I find it difficult to do random designs!! It is made using Swarovski Crystals and glass and I love the way it sounds when you shake it!!!!
I have never been the world's best photographer but lately, my pictures have come out quite dodgy!!!!

I decided to treat myself this afternoon and went for a vitamin C facial. It was so relaxing that I think I fell asleep for a couple of minutes!! When I woke up, I didn't want to open my eyes to see if the beautician was still in the room...luckily she wasn't so if I was snoring, she couldn't hear!!!!!!

Sunday, 5 August 2007

Diamonds & Pearls!!

I decided to do something different today so have created some simple bridal headpins in Swarovski Crystals and pearls. I am really pleased with how they have come out.

For some reason I am finding them really difficult to photo so apologies for the picture!

I am still on a high today after seeing Prince in concert last night. He played at the 02 Arena (Millennium Dome) and to say he was amazing is an understatement!!! We had fantastic seats and were only about 15 rows from the stage. I wasn't sure what to expect as I have not been to a concert since I was about 14 when I went to see Salt & Pepper at the Hammersmith Apollo...don't laugh, I was very young and had awful taste in music!!! He played for 2 hours and sang most of my favourite songs except Diamonds & Pearls :o( The atmosphere was electric and I would highly recommend it to anyone who likes Prince...and let's face it, who doesn't like a bit of Prince!!!

Thursday, 2 August 2007

But what shall I call it?

OK so my day of jewellery making didn't quite go as planned today and I had zero time to do anything creative, however I do have something new because at midnight last night, I decided I wasn't tired and wanted to create something!!!!

This bracelet is made using one of my favourite gemstones, (faceted) Botswana Agate and Sterling Silver wire balls, which are a nightmare to thread as they don't have proper holes!! I finished it with a gorgeous stamped toggle.

I really love this piece and am glad it is a tiny bit too small on me (I have large wrists) as it would have ended up in my personal stash!!!

I have a problem with this piece, I can not for the life of me think of a name for it!!! As you have probably seen by now, I give all of my pieces names...yes, most of them are completely cheesy but I think it is better to have a mega cheese name then to call it item 12345!!! So if you can think of anything, names on a postcard!!!!!!

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

Fired Earth Necklace & Stick of Rock Earrings

Have been a bit busy these last few days and haven't had any time to make anything new until this afternoon. I have been able to finish the necklace I started last week but could not finish until I received the chain and I have also made a pair of earrings that look great with the 'Oh So Charming' bracelet.
Fired Earth Necklace
I love the Fire Agate beads on this necklace, they are quite chunky and the colours are stunning. Certain parts of the beads look like they have honey chambers in them!
Stick of Rock Earrings

I also received some of the other goodies I ordered at the weekend and can't wait to get designing with them so fingers crossed, tomorrow I can spend the whole afternoon at the jewellery table making lots more!!

Friday, 27 July 2007

Why is it???

Today I was working on a new necklace design with some amazing Fire Agate beads (the same ones pictured in the 'Farnham Bead & Gem Show' post). I completed the main body of the necklace and then all it needed to finish it, was some chain.

My question is this...WHY IS IT that:-

a) the thing I need (in this case, chain) is always the thing I have run out of and forgot to restock?!?!


b) when I go on-line to order said item, I can not just purchase the item I originally set out to buy but I somehow manage to find another 20 or so other things that I think I need and spend over triple what I intended to?!?!?!?

Who knows why we do what we do sometimes?!?!?!?

Wednesday, 25 July 2007

Nice bracelet, shame about my back!!!

Well I awoke this morning at 6 a.m. and could not get back to sleep!! Not sure if it is because I feel light and breezy due to no longer having the stresses of looking for a job or because I had lots of new jewellery designs in my head!!!
By 6.30 a.m. I was at my jewellery table raring to go!! After 2 hours of twisting wire and such like, I have finally finished my first ever charm bracelet...and my back hurts like hell from bending over it!!!

I have used some gorgeous purple, blue and green striped David Christensen hand-blown furnace glass, Sterling Silver, Karen Hill Tribe Silver (97% pure silver) and Swarovski Crystals. I love the colour combination and the feel of this bracelet!

What do you think?

I also made this pendant using a stunning and realistic looking lampwork Strawberry bead!! I wanted to keep this very simple because the focus is on the Strawberry. Doesn't it remind you of summer time and Wimbledon...all we need is some cream!!

Tuesday, 24 July 2007

Good news!!

I have received two lots of good news today, the first is that I have been offered a job and start on 13th August which is exactly 2 months from when I was made redundant and the second piece of good news is that I have got a space on the Silversmithing course I wanted and start in September for 16 weeks (every Monday evening). Am very excited about both!!
Started to make a bracelet today using some of my David Christensen glass beads however I somehow incorrectly calculated how many I needed and do not have enough!!! I have therefore decided to try my hand at my first charm bracelet...hopefully it will be finished tomorrow and I will post a pic here!!

Sunday, 22 July 2007

Farnham Bead & Gem Show

Got up nice and early today and went to the Bead & Gem show in Farnham, Surrey with Becky from Chameleon Designs. It wasn't the biggest bead show I have been to but we had a great time and spent lots of pennies on lots of gorgeous beadies!!!

My shopping list included:-

Top left - lovely sterling silver wire balls, discs and a silk necklace
Top right - gorgeous fire agate and banded agate
Bottom left - some amazing lampwork from Becky including some strawberries I commissioned, a set with a hallow focal.
Bottom right - stunning hand-blown furnace glass from world renowned artist David Christensen

After the show, Becky was also kind enough to show me how to make a lampwork bead. I was so scared in case I broke something or worse, burnt her studio down!!! It is so much harder than she makes it look! I was concentrating so hard because you are working with a flame and molten glass (is that the right phrase?!?!?) AND have to use 2 hands which are doing different things...after just 15 minutes my arms felt like I had been lifting weights for an hour!!!!

What do you think of my first ever bead...not bad but think I need more practice!!!!!

Friday, 20 July 2007

And God said 'Let there be rain'

Wow, did the heavens open today or what? I was supposed to be meeting some friends for lunch however every way I turned, there was a flood and I could not get through!!! I have 3 railway arches near me and each one was flooded...1 had a grounded van and a car and another had an MG convertible being washed against the posts. The water almost covered the whole car but luckily no one was hurt...except for their poor cars!!

I was inspired by the weather and made 2 new pieces of jewellery, Purple Rain (also because I am going to see Prince in a couple of weeks and I am soooo excited!) and waves!!!

Purple Rain
This piece is made using a main focal by the fantastic UK Artist Caroline Hannon, Rock Quartz, Swarovski Crystals and Sterling Silver.

This piece is with Blue Chalcedony, Clear Quartz and a gorgeous sweet little Sterling Silver seashell charm

My first ever blog

I am a bit behind with the times...I am sure blogs are so 2006 but hey, at least I have one now...hmm, I wonder who will ever look at this thing?!?!?

So, who am I? My name is Kelly Boulter (was Kelly Sweetman before I got married!) and I love designing and creating jewellery. My favourite materials to use are Sterling Silver, Karen Hill Tribe Silver (am in love with the designs), semi-precious gemstones and finally lampwork beads.

I am 30 (just!) and live in Sunny Sutton in Surrey but I am originally from Putney, London.

I am a little unsure what to exactly put on this so if I start rambling on, sorry!!!