Tuesday, 31 July 2012

A whole year.... really??

I knew it had been a long time since I blogged but a whole year!!! How time flies... I must admit it has been a busy year, the beginning of this year I launched my new website and have since been building my inventory with lots of lovely findings, beads and tools. If I'm not packing orders I'm trying to pre-pack all the items ready for packing = lots of packing!

The last month I have been trying to push my business forward, have started advertising in Beads & Beyond magazine and from October you'll see me popping up in Make Jewellery magazine. Then I thought what better way to get out there is to start my blog up again and let everyone know about all the goodies I find each month.

I have lots of ideas swimming around my head and once my eldest starts school this September I'm hoping I'll have more time to start them. I've always wanted to make and supply kits, I'm really hoping I can do this myself but if not I'm going to search for a designer out there to help me, anyone interested in becoming my designer please let me know!

My business has really grown over the last year and I'm extremely proud as it's run by me alone, at home, with two kiddies, I quite often wish there were more hours in the day but I love what I'm doing and hope all my customers out there continue to be please with my service.

Many Thanks!

Lois :)

Saturday, 23 July 2011

New for July Part 2

Have been adding and re-stocking lots of items this month!

These lockets sold out very fast so I have got more and added two more to the collection, from £1.50!

Another popular item is the ball headpins, so I have lots more silver plated and bronze 50mm back in stock. I have them in copper and gunmetal too.

New to the beads and beadcap sections are some cute flower and heart shaped spacer beads and some larger bead caps.

I have added a couple of filigree wrap connectors to the bronze and copper sections, only 50p each!

And a few handy hardware pieces; calottes, earring backs and a brooch pin.

Everything available on website and eBay shop

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

New for July Part 1

This month I have been adding to the tool section, I thought I'd include tools to help with creating filigree settings and bale making as I have found the right tools make the task a whole lot easier!

I have two different Beadsmith bale making pliers available, the above green handled ones have 7 and 9mm cylinder sizes and the black handled ones have 6 and 8.5mm cylinders.

These bale making pliers are a must have and Vintaj describe it as the ultimate creative setting tool. You can use them to wrap filigree, connectors and sheet metal.

I also have some Beadsmith rosary pliers and chain nose pliers.

Both in polish steel with comfortable and secure handgrips. 

Chain nose pliers are the ultimate tool for crimping, clasping, clamping and closing jumprings. They are also really helpful in creating filigree, they have a nice smooth edge and when used to clamp down edges of filigree they give a nice clean finish.

The rosary pliers are a great linking tool for headpins and eyepins, every jewellery maker needs one!

A customer asked me to source them some Beadsmith wire so I have made that available on my website also, it's specially made for Vintaj Natural Brass components so it matches perfectly.

I only ordered a small supply to see how it would sell and I have nearly sold out already! 

I am out of stock of the 0.6mm/22 gauge but still have some 0.4mm/26 gauge and 0.8mm/20 gauge left. I will be ordering some more soon!

Monday, 4 July 2011

Clearance Sale

I've been contemplating a while now whether to just sell the findings on my website, I love beads but always buy too many for myself but for a business I've discovered that sourcing and buying findings to sell is much more fun and by just buying the findings I'll have more money to spend on them, hooray! I'm still going to buy and sell the Swarovski crystal though as they are my favourite and I need a bit of sparkle on the website.

So as part of the my 1st Business Birthday coming up this month I have put ALL of my beads on sale and put them in a large clearance section where there is also lots of plated findings, pandora beads and metal beads, great prices while stocks last!

Come and grab a bargain!

Saturday, 2 July 2011

Fashion Extra - Summer Festival

I thought I'd start a monthly feature on what's hot and trending in fashion and jewellery! When I was making jewellery full-time I'd make things to match what was hot at the time and loved having something unique and trendy. Now I supply everything to make jewellery; I'm in my own element and love looking for findings that will suit what's in fashion, so in this monthly fashion extra I will share!

Over the next couple of months it's all about the Festivals. I went to Kings of Leon in Hyde Park last week and it was like a mini-festival for the day, had the best day ever and it really got me in the mood for V Festival this August, I'm camping for the whole weekend so need to pack lots of festival essentials and get the festival look just right.

When I think of V and what to take with me I'm thinking cut-off denim shorts, floppy straw hat, over-sized sunglasses, chunky necklace and hobnail boots - open toed shoes or sandals are just not practical and if it rains your feet will get very wet and muddy!

Whatever style you have, you can have an impact with your jewellery, especially by making your own - having something unique that no one else will have at the festival will be sure to get people looking and asking where you got it from so make sure you take some business cards!

How about these for earrings? Just add a pair of antiqued brass earwires and you have a quick, simple pair of festival earrings!

These wings are 80p each, available here

A long length of chain with this pendant would look simple and trendy

Vintaj Natural Brass Tree of Life pendant, £2.40, available here

Gunmetal is really in at the mo, suits the mods 'n' rockers trend down to a T! I'm think a mix bracelet of chunky gunmetal chain and chainmaille.

Here are some other pieces that I think would look great with your festival jewellery, don't forget I have a huge selection of headpins, eyepins, jumprings, chain, craft wire and everything else you need in different colour metals to make your piece complete.

For a great selection and prices visit my website

Thursday, 30 June 2011

Versatile Blogger Award

I have been given a Versatile Blogger Award by Aviya Glass - Thank you Terry!

The idea is to follow a few requests and then pass the award on.

1. Make a post linking back to the person who gave you the reward
2. Share seven random things about yourself..... 7 why not 2!
3. Award seven recently discovered bloggers with this award and contact them to let them know they have won.

7 Random things about me...

1. I'm tongue tied.. literally
2. Favourite food is pasta
3. I love the KINGS OF LEON!!
4. I can write forwards with my right hand and backwards with my left hand (mirrored) at the same time... cool party trick although people just think I'm a freak.
4. I'm a registered nurse but only work 1 day a week.
5. My first love is my husband who I've been with since I was 19...ahhhh
6. I often crave pickled onion monster munch!
7. I loving reading (ran out of interesting things to say!)

I would like to nominate the following..

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Metal Reliefing Block

I'd like to share a fabulous tool Vintaj have created, they came out a couple of months ago and I snapped up a few to sell straight away and although I have sold a few I still don't think they are getting the attention they should!

Vintaj Metal Reliefing Block
As quoted by Vintaj "How did we live without this? The Vintaj Metal Reliefing Block has quickly become a Vintaj essential"

If you like experimenting with metal pieces that have raised areas then you will love this block. It's fits perfectly in the palm of your hand and has three different sides that help create design relief to all of your projects. It was created to especially for sanding the raised areas on Vintaj metal products to show off their fine detail, (as Vintaj truely have some stunning pieces to show off!) but don't limit it's use.
You can create handcrafted pendants and mixed-media art with the Vintaj altered blanks, emboss, impress, imprint, paint and ink, THEN sand-relief the surface with the block to bring your designs to life!

I love this bracelet called 'Along the Riverbed' by Jess Italia Lincoln, she embossed an altered blank then used the block to relief the design to stand out.
So the block has three sides and here it what they do:

Dark gray sides (heaviest grit): Removes paint and patina from raised areas.
White side (medium grit): Lightly reliefs embossed and raised areas.
Light gray side (finest grit): Buffs and polishes.

You can get yourself one of these blocks for only £4 in my shop