Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Love these earrings!

My muse was strong last night as I looked through my beads.  I had to come up with a design for the FACE Foundation Bags and Baubles Fundraiser event.  My original thought was to make a pearl cascade using some chocolate pearls and mocha Swarovski crystals.  But, with our 90 degree weather heating things up, I decided I needed a spring/summer design.  As I dug through my white pearls I saw these keishis and and an idea popped into my head and here it is!

Aren't these earrings just luscious?  Once I return from my next round of traveling I'll make more of this style - some with amethyst, aquamarine and sapphires and a matching necklace too!  Here are some new earrings that are for sale in my studio:

Golden Tassels

Green Pinchies

Viva Italia!
I'm heading off on a vacation shortly and will close my online studios while I'm gone so if you're interested in any of these designs - buy them soon!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Tucson Gem Show Day 5

I had a lot of fun on my 5th day in Tucson!  I started out the day shopping with Toyo of Feng's Trading and a bunch of his special, new stock had just arrived!  I actually did quite a bit of shopping the night before since we arrived at his show after closing time so I could help him close up and then we followed him to Sachiko restaurant for dinner. He was still unpacking boxes that morning so I did a bit more shopping.  Here are the strands I picked up.

Fossil coral

Fossil coral
Red jasper and mosaic creek jasper
Paua shell (untreated and heat treated)

Nephrite (BC Jade, angelite, rhodonite, Sleeping Beauty turquoise
Sodalite, alligator jasper, ocean jasper, cape (chevron) amethyst

Golden (blue and brown) tiger eye and blue tiger eye
 And a picture of Toyo and I and his loooonnnngggg table of beds.  That's my mom way down at the end!
Toyo and I
Toyo's beads ... see my mom way down at the end?

 Once I finished up with Toyo we headed over to the Kino show (formerly TEP).  I found another one of my favorite bead vendors - Royal Quality gems.  Here the 2 owners are with my mom and some of the beads I got there.

Royal Quality gems

 Natural mother of pearl, turquoise

Then we wandered around the Kino show and saw many interesting rocks.  Here are a few...

Petrified wood

Then we had some lunch and headed over to JOGS to close out the day.  I got some sterling silver from SII (the least expensiver per gram that I've seen).  Here's a picture to let you envision the way things look when we're wandering the halls.
Gemstones (precious and semi-precious) by the trayful!

I'm tired so this is it for tonight.  We head home tomorrow but I still have several other days to share with you so you'll get more updates even after I'm home!

Tucson Gem Show Day 4, part 2

Our Monday morning adventures continued as we met up with Bob of Really Old Rocks and his friend Gary Johnson.  I got some turquoise (of unknown origin - old from the estate of a bead shop owner) and apache tears from Gary.  Here's Gary and the pretties I got from him.

Gary Johnson
Apache tears and turquoise
I always have fun checking out Bob's things because he has different rocks every year.  This year he had a lot of Yellowstone Ash Agates.  He had these tested and they are 630,000 year old amygdules most likely from the Lava Creek explosion.  They're pretty cool looking and a bit different.  I got some banded iron (aka genesis stone) and some ash agates and my mom got a piece of dinosaur bone!  Here's Bob and his rocks!

Bob of Really Old Rocks

Dinosaur bone (top left), ash agates (under dino bone) and banded iron (everything else)
Ash agates

Banded iron
After we finished up at the Miner's Co-op show we did a quick stop at JGM so I could put aside some amber chips for a friend of mine and then we headed back to the Pueblo Show to get some half drilled drops at Yau Shing Gems.  On our way in I took pictures of some of the cool and BIG minerals and gemstones you'll see at all the hotels along the freeway.  I have no idea what either of these is - but they look cool!.
It took a while to sort through the various packs of half drilled drops to make sure I can match up pairs and here is the pile I ended up with and a picture of the two people who helped me - brother and sister!

As we were leaving the Pueblo show I saw one of my gemmie friends, Robyn Hawk and not far behind was another friend!  What a coincidence!  Here's a picture of us gals with one of the many crystal skulls you'll see at the freeway shows.

Our next stop was the 22nd Street show.  I was in search of an ammolite pendant for a friend of mine. As I looked and looked for what I thought I saw 2 days ago I found a man, DavidOtteson,  selling ribbon turquoise cabs. I can't believe I missed him 2 days ago since I love ribbon turquoise!  It's hard to find since it has to be just a thin ribbon of turquoise in some hard rock like quartz or jasper.   I did forget to take a picture of David, but here are the gorgeous cabs I got.
Aren't they purty!  Then I did a final check for the ammolite pendant and found it in a booth I didn't even look in before.  I have no idea what I remembered seeing on Saturday.  Well it took a bit of back/forth messaging on facebook, sending pictures of various pendants, waiting for an answer, ... but in the end here is the pendant she'll be getting and the fun folks at Morning Sun Jewelry from Grass Valley, California!  I just keep running into Californians all over the place.
Susan, Peter and Mom
The booth gang at Morning Sun Jewelry
The next stop was dinner with Toyo Feng of Feng's Trading.  I've been buying for him for as long as he's been selling on his own - amazing!  This is the first time our schedules meshed so we could have dinner together.  Here we are at Sachiko's enjoying sushi, sashi, tempura and teriyaki beef.

Mom, me and Toyo!
Now I'm 2 days behind in posting - but Mr. Sandman is telling me it's bedtime - so good night for now!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Tucson Gem Show Day 4 (posted a day late!)

My mom and I started off the day at the Miners Co-op Rock Show We went there looking for Bob of Really Old Rocks. However as we started wandering through the show my eye was drawn to the cool cabs that Wayne Holland of Dirt Diver Exploration had on his tables. He cuts them himself. He has access to Ghost Jade, Nevada Rose Dumortierite and LOTS of copper in various stones. Here's a picture of Wayne and the cabs I bought.

Wayne Holland of Dirt Diver Ezploration
Copper in slate, Nevada Rose Dumortiertite, Ghost Jade
We continued our wander and next saw some cool stones at Agate West.  David Furcean is the owner and cutter and tumbler.  I wanted to get more stones for my sandwich jewelry (as I call it) so I dug through his bins and picked out some pretty ones in blue chalcedony and blue aztec agate....  Here is David and some of the pretties we got.

David Furcean of Agate West

Morganite, Blue Aztec agate, blue chalcedony and Sierra Madre Agate

And now I'm just too tired to finish up so you'll have to wait until tomorrow to see the rest of the pretties I got at several different locations :)

Monday, February 3, 2014

Tucson Gem Show Day 3 (posted a day late!)

Let's see now I have to think back almost 2 days as to what we did yesterday ...  Ah yes I had to start out the day with Toyo (again) due to some request from friends for amber beads.  I got those and found another strand of pretty muscovite for me :)

Then my mom and I went to a new show for us - the Arizona Fossil and Mineral show.  This is a great show if you want to see gem/mineral specimen pieces, meteorite parts, and crystals of all sorts.  I just went there to see what they have.  I wasn't in the mood to go cab shopping and didn't see any beads that called to me. I did see some tiger eye rough which I have never seen before - it is pretty even when it isn't polished!  This type of show is a good way to see what the rough of a stone looks like so you can get a better idea when it is fake ... 

Here are just a few of the cool stones we saw ...

Amethyst geode - so cool and purple!

Petrified wood

Black tourmaline
Green tourmaline

Then we found a great pizza place for lunch - Grimaldi's.  We just had salad and the luscious oreo cheesecake - but the pizza is thin crust and looked yummy!  Of course I forgot to take a picture of our fun waitress!

Next we went back to Gem Mall.  My first mission was to find some sterling at a decent price.  I did find some at a much better price than I saw yesterday in the other gem mall building.  So I got sterling stuff, then checked out the Czech glass bead colors at Starman and then just started wandering the floor ...  I was really tempted by some African beads - thin glass rings about 10mm, some old trade beads (supposedly quite old - I just liked the pinch shape and lovely pastel color) and several types of bone beads.  But the rings are a HUGE strand and it is pretty price and only one color per strand.  I can envision uses for thin glass rings, but not for as many as there are on probably a 3' strand (they are 2-3mm in width - you do the math!)...  Ah well - I'll let my designer brain think over what I saw to decide if I should go back and see what kind of price I can negotiate for.  Another booth did have beautiful, opaque turquoise glass rings ..... for the same price ... but I just don't know what I would do with so many! Further wandering brought me to another booth with inlaid conch shell beads and inlay bone beads. I remember seeing those last year - or something similar and I was tempted but didn't bite.  This year I did get some of those since they just looked cool. Once again I forgot to take pictures!  Hopefully I'll be back at gem mall - but I got behind on things today because I found some new wonderful vendors!  Here are the cool beads I got.

And mother nature gave us a treat as we left with this absolutely gorgeous sunset.

Sunset at gem mall - absolutely stunning!

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