Saturday, September 3, 2011

Post No. 11- Piano Keys

I play the piano!  Yes, I do.  (To hear my latest recorded examples, click here.)  In fact, I've been playing the piano since I was three, which has now been the great majority of my life.  Growing up, the piano was really my way of life, and I had (have) no patience for what usually passes as piano paraphernalia.  Like this:
(No that is NOT me)
or this:
or this:

Hahahaha.  Hmm.   Anyway, given that this seems to be the norm, I decided that there was at least a shortage of tasteful, current, music-themed items which could be used to not only subtly display an interest in music, but might also be something one would actually like; even like to wear.  In my case, I make jewelry, so with this realization a new line was born: my Musical Scale Jewelry.  A subset of it is based specifically on the piano keyboard in all its colorful glory.  So far we have

This necklace

The Piano Keys Necklace 

and this very cool bracelet which I made as a gift.

See what I mean?  Piano...  but cool.  Music...  but attractive.  At least I think so!  

My eyes are beginning to seriously droop over here, so I'd better quick share with you something I was slobbering over on etsy today.  The shop "Giliforshmit"  Love!  

                     Obsession.                                       Need...


Might kill for...

Those of you with money, get this and tell me about it so I can live vicariously through you.  :-)

Good night then!

Sunday, August 28, 2011


Over two months since my last post, and we're finally getting settled here in New York.  Now mind you, everything is NOT quite in its place yet, but we're getting there!  It's just kind of normal-messy now, or at least there's a mess that just gets shifted from room to room depending on if we have company or not!  I like to think every time it moves it gets a little smaller, though...  :-)  Anyway my husband's and son's birthdays went by without a hitch, I've gotten myself enrolled for school this year (Master's degree from Columbia Teacher's College), the KIDS' schools are nearly settled, and it's time to get back to the jewelry!

I've actually made a few things since I got here.  The most memorable one is this:

I call it The Goddess Necklace for obvious reasons.  lol  (Are they obvious?)  One thing is for sure, it took me a freakin' long time to make!

First I drew it, then I cut out and shaped each piece of silver wire, chose my beads, and laid it all out on the drawing:
and then I wrapped the wires and beads together with thinner sterling silver wire.

I must say I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out!  

I listed it on etsy here.

Speaking of etsy, here are some pendants I was admiring today:

captured pearls

Garnet Door Pendant

I am CRAZY for this artist's work!  SO creative, so organic, so... exactly what I want!  :-)  Visit the shop here.

More pics of NYC life coming soon...  Here's one in way of farewell.  The boys playing video games in our bright, comfy living room...  Lates!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Post No. 9- Moving Makes Me Crazy

Hey!  It's crazy around here as we prepare to move to New York City over the next month or so.  Soooo much to think about, from selling apartments, cars, instruments and furniture, painting, packing, renting a trailer, arranging a monster trip across the country, finding work, getting the kids into school, seeing as much of Utah as possible... the list goes on!

In the middle of all this I've still found the time to make some new jewelry!  Here are some of my newer pieces:

First I got some awesome new garnet beads and made these:

Garnet Rose Necklace

Garnet Rose Earrings

and Garnet Rose Anklet!

If you like that anklet (or me!) please visit the Jewelry on Etsy Team blog and vote for it to win our "Anklet Challenge!"  I think you can even enter to win prizes yourselves!

Anyway then I went to the Gem Faire when it came into town, got a whole bunch of incredible, ancient Roman glass, buried for thousands of years in the sands of Afghanistan, and made these:

Long Strand of Ancient Roman Glass and Jade on Grey Waxed Linen

Long Strand of Ancient Roman Glass and Jade on Natural Waxed Linen

and my Ancient Roman Gladiator Necklace!

I've actually also made a couple of pairs of earrings from this beautiful glass that I haven't had a chance to list yet.  It's so inspiring to work with!  I'm in LOVE...

Speaking of inspiration, let me share with you another etsy artist I find inspiration from.  This is Sunsan, out of Santorini, Greece.  I love so many of their pieces...

Visit their wonderful shop here:

OK!  Off to more moving things again!  Visit my new "other" blog at
 for more of what's up with me!


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Post No. 8- Life Goes On

Hello peeps!  It's a busy time, what with all the endings and beginnings of late.  Tomorrow is the kids' last day of school.  I love when they're out of school because I get to sleep in a little!  Also, for some reason life is just easier for me when there's no school to push everything into separate corners of the day.  I know I'm supposed to feel the opposite; maybe I'm just too lazy!

I've made quite a few pieces of jewelry in the last few days.  After a year of only wire wrapping, I've suddenly begun experimenting with new (to me) ways of stringing beads- with special beading wire, and just today I wove beads on waxed thread and tried my hand at memory wire for the first time.  Pics soon!

Speaking of pics, here are a few more of the Swarovski crystal necklaces I made recently.  Finally got around to listing them on etsy!

And now, before I sink into blissful oblivion, let me share with you the work of another artist on the Jewelry on Etsy Team, DebrasDivineDesigns:

Don't you love how she sets those gorgeous butterfly wings?  You can visit her shop here:  I am pleased to announce I won one of her butterfly pendants just yesterday by writing the following hilariousness:

A Beader’s Hands

Twisting, turning, bending, swirling,
Wire up, down, and around.
Hands are cleaning, mind is dreaming
Jewels and crystals yet unfound.

Fingers over keyboard dancing,
Wishing they were somewhere else,
Where colors dance in sunlight, sparkling,
Gem and glass and stone and felt.

Now these hands must help with homework,
Now a dinner to prepare.
Almost time now, to the table-
Resin, silver, beads, beware!

In the throes of beading rapture,
To the JET’s discussion thread.
Admiration, inspiration; 
Now to bed, hands, now to bed.
And I obey!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Post No. 7- Musical Scales, etc.

It's the middle of the night.  I'm lying in bed- brown striped sheets illuminated faintly by the light from the computer screen, hubby breathing quietly next to me.  Next to the blog window on said screen is my current guilty obsession, Jersey Shore.  Why do I watch it?  I have no clue.  Most of the time I'm laughing at it.  Occasionally I actually like it...

My studio recital is today.  I have mostly piano students right now, one vocal student.  I've been hard at work making musical scale bracelets to display after the recital.  Musical scale bracelets are similar to the Piano Keyboard bracelet from last post.  The most obvious difference is color; musical scale bracelets can be any color combination.

Despite what the keyboard looks like, the white and black keys are equal.  White keys with a black key between them are actually farther apart than white keys without.  Two notes of any color which are right next to each other are called a half step.  When there is one key in between them, it's called a whole step.  This string of half and whole steps, in the exact order illustrated by the white keys on the piano, is the musical scale.  I prefer the non-keyboard scale bracelets because it isolates the pattern from the keyboard.  After all, the pattern is what it's all about; white and black keys are just a distraction.  You can start anywhere and just as long as you keep to the pattern, you get the scale.  You can also start anywhere on the pattern, and although you will still get a 7 note pattern, each one will be different.  Here's what it looks like (twice) when you're getting a Major scale:

*             *             **             *             *             **             *             **             *             *             *

On my musical scale bracelets, each of the larger beads is a note in the scale.  The pattern only has 7 notes in it, and then it repeats indefinitely.  Each set of 7 is called an "octave."  Some of my bracelets have only 1 octave around your wrist, others have 2 or 3.  On some of them, the distances are exaggerated, with the whole steps very far apart.

Why do I make jewelry based on this pattern?  That's for another post!  I've been waiting to write about this until I have an efficient, effective way of explaining it, and that moment is still not here!  Until then, we'll just have to make do with my 4 am babblings above, and a few pictures...

Eyes are closing...  Just a little peek into my etsy favorites before I'm gone.

You gotta check out this amazing shop:  Incredible, original, unique jewelry based on the science of nature.  Love it!  Want it...

Good night!


Thursday, June 2, 2011

Post No. 6- What Happened Today?

Hiya folks.  It's been a couple days, hasn't it?  As usual, I can't remember what happened in those two missing days at all, (which is why I probably should have blogged!) but that's probably because my brain is all filled up with today.

Not that it was a particularly exciting day, but it was not my run-of-the-mill day either!  My 8 year old son went under general anesthesia this morning for dental work.  He had a few cavities filled- it only took 45 minutes- and then several hours were spent dealing with his loopy recovery.  At 71 pounds, he's not the easiest to deal with when he's flopping and flailing around like a crazy person (he said he felt like a clown and a bobblehead, both of which I could agree with,) but we made it through.

I did get a chance to make a few bracelets while I helped the kids practice the piano, though.  Ironically, they were a version of my Piano Keys Bracelet.

I made a few of them because it seems to be everybody's favorite.  I have a whole series of "musical scale" bracelets which I'll explain at some point, but this is one that has the coloring of the actual piano keyboard.  Which is kind of appropriate coming from me, as I am a pianist.  I'm actually usually against piano-themed products, but this one is understated enough that I like it, a lot.

Now for my latest etsy fave.  Here are some fabulous cocktail rings from onegarnetgirl.  Love!  Want!

You can visit onegarnetgirl's shop on etsy here:

Alright then, peoples, until tomorrow!


Monday, May 30, 2011

Post No. 6- It's Memorial Day

I spent the morning (and last night until 3 am, naughty me) pricing out some of the pieces I've made, calculating the exact-ish price of beads I've bought, surmising the amount of time it takes to make a bracelet with seed beads as opposed to hex beads as opposed to cubes...  Many creative or artistic people hate this sort of thing.  Not me!  I love tedious busy work.  I used to teach Ear Training at Juilliard, and I remember being the only one of my colleagues who actually enjoyed the ends of semesters, when it was time to calculate grades, painstakingly adding up hundreds of handwritten numbers.  Yes, I love the peace, and the balance, and knowing exactly what is to come from what I'm doing.  Perhaps this was due to the trauma of my first identity, as a classical pianist, and the helplessness of knowing that no matter how much I practiced, I might ruin it all in performance with just a few missed notes...

I always envied visual artists the chance to make something just right and have it stay that way!  No nerves getting in the way or sudden, unexpected destruction.  I was never any good at drawing; so glad to have found a way to gain some sort of continuous control over my art, as happens when I design and make jewelry.  This, and writing/arranging music; I can just sit there as long as I want, perfecting, perfecting...  Love it!

Speaking of making jewelry, here is my Sky Cluster Necklace No. 1, finished yesterday:
Two large and completely different chalcedonies, one long and smooth, one chunky and raw, share a sterling silver ring with Czech glass beads sitting across a smooth jade round, and an interesting concoction I cooked up by combining a beautiful lampwork bead by etsy's radiantmind with some blue lentil beads.   I like!

You know what else I like?  Nodeform's rings on etsy...  mmm...

Nodeform, why do you torture me so?  Why do I not have thousands of dollars to spend on your lovely creations?  If I did they would all be mine...  Nodeform...

In parting, I've been included in a couple of cool treasuries in the past bit.  Check them out!