On The Reading Shelf

On Reading Vogue

A subscription to Vogue Magazine is a requirement for the Build a Line Challenge sponsored by B’Sue Boutiques. I haven’t read Vogue since my salad days. When the first issue arrived, I couldn’t wait to dig in. I sat in the comfortable Lazy Boy covered with a warm blanket armed with red pen, highlighter and a myriad of little arrow Post-It notes. The first thing I did was rip out all the perfume ads. Love those.

I wasn’t quite sure what the objective was in requiring the subscription, but I was ready to begin. I took my time exploring and examined each page carefully, highlighting jewelry, writing comments on the photos, dog-earring pages. What was I seeing? What did I like? What was speaking to me?

I was inspired. No… I was fired up. I went into my bedroom closet and took a good look around. I saw imitation Uggs, baggy yoga pants that have never come in contact with a yoga mat, heavy wool sweaters, bulky socks, and not a Jimmy Choo in sight.

And then, I got into the car and headed to the local upscale lifestyle center. Jimmy Choo was calling and I answered. The blue suede Vixen with its perfect little bow at the back longed to be on my feet as did the Hitch in that oh-so-lovely orchid shade. A pair of black stilettos were added, and I was done.

And then, I headed to Dolce and Gabbana. That green striped cardigan with the jeweled pineapple embellishment was just the spot of brightness I needed. Those black cuissard boots and the cordonetto lace sheath dress in black begged to come home with me; and not being one to resist, I let them.

And then, I headed to makeup. It was time to get new. So I went with everything Chanel. Just the sound of Poudre Universelle Libre made me feel beautiful. Of course, I also bought some perfume.

And then, with no butler in sight to carry my purchases and bring the car around, I searched the massive parking lot for my car. And searched. And searched. And searched.

And then I woke up.

And put on my imitation Uggs and the baggy yoga pants. Pulled on a coat over my two warm shirts and stuffed my fingers into a pair of gloves followed by a pair of mittens. I opened the side of one the perfume ads and rubbed it all over my jacket.

And then, I went outside and shoveled four inches of snow out of the driveway.

Exploration · Raw Materials

Raw Materials

Sometimes I wonder if making things is just an excuse to gather things. This is what is on my jewelry work table right now.  Pretty cool, huh?


I can’t stop running my fingers over these glass pieces. Their satin surfaces invite touch, and I hold them up to the light to peer through them with squinted eyes. How can I use these? Will I wire wrap them? What color wire will I use? Will I use them as a focal or as something else?  That skinny cobalt blue piece looks more like a closure for a book.  I’ll move it to the book work table.


And then there are these brass stampings. Out comes the magnifying glass to examine them. How will these surfaces catch and hold colors applied to them? What parts should I emphasize? How will I make these uniquely mine?

Do I need to keep that beetle for me? I think so.


And what about these papers – a minuscule part of what I’ve collected. Will these be useful in my project or should I put them aside for others? Do the textures play to what I want to create?


I like these tags; some have been filled with resin. Can I use them for this project? How?

When you buy something handmade, it’s easy to see the raw materials that were used but impossible to know all the decisions that went into making the piece.  And the most difficult decision of any project is saying “This is where I’ll start.”

For today, I’ll choose one of those spotted blue pieces of glass in the top photo.  It’s going to get two holes drilled into it.  Maybe it will be a bracelet; maybe a pendant.  This is where I’ll start.


For the New Year

“I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes. Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You’re doing things you’ve never done before, and more importantly, you’re doing something.”   Neil Gaiman’s Journal

Happy New Year.  May it be filled with fabulous mistakes.