Indie Junction Featured Artists of the Week

I'm both pleased and proud to announce that I am one of three IndieJunction Artists to be featured the week of 5-30-10.
IndieJunction is a wonderful website filled with talented artisans whose motto is,  "Create, Love, Explore, Collaborate, Support, Learn, Grow."
The IndieJunction featured artists of the week articles are always very well researched and written and provide a wonderful and interesting glimpse into the lives and work of the artists of Indie Junction. If you have a moment, I hope you'll come by and read about my shop, The Joy of Color and Jenni 20 Designs, and we would love to hear your comments.
For more information about IndieJunction and how you can join, visit their website at http://indiejunction.ning.com/

Etsy HAF Team Beauties



Come see a beautiful Etsy Treasury West by Dream Again Jewelry.
http://www.etsy.com/treasury_list_west.php?room_id=99926

Kiss my Fish!

A beautiful and whimsical Etsy treasury east by 1022SeaShellAve http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4c025e5fc42b6d9180922d54/kiss-my-fish?show_panel=true

Vintage Style Peridot Pearl Earrings

Lovely 10mm peridot glass pearls and antiqued copper bead caps provide a romantic, Victorian feel for these handmade vintage style earrings. An antiqued copper ring holds the pearl and tiny pale green glass beads dangle below to complete the design. Earrings dangle just shy of 2 1/2 inches from the tops of no lead or nickel antiqued copper French hook ear wires.

Kazumi of K&K Crafts and Designs

Introducing Kazumi of K&K Crafts and Designs "Where East Meets West".  She is one of the newest members of the Handmade Artists Forum and our featured artist of the week. From sock monkeys to  handmade bags to greeting cards to custom wedding announcements, to baby clothes, Kazumi does it all. I'm going to simply step aside here and slip in her own Etsy profile, where she so completely and beautifully explains what she's about and where you can find her works: 


My name is Kazumi and live in Japan.
I'm Sock Monkey-lover!
I love to do crafts and the drawing.

My first Sock Monkey is Socky!
His website is: http://sockyworld.com
Please visit him sometimes.:)
Here is my blog: http://crafts-project-log.blogspot.com
* Twitter: http://twitter.com/KazumiB
* Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/KnkCraftsAndDesigns

If you like these designs, please check out other goods (t-shirt, baby clothes, mug, hat and bag..etc!) with the same characters on my cafepress or zazzle store!

1) http://www.cafepress.com/knkdesigns
2) http://www.zazzle.com/Princess_Monkey*


*******************************************************
Now enjoy the wondrous works of Kazumi ...
Amigurumi Sock Monkey Wedding

Stripe and Flower Mini Tote Bag
Sock Monkey Pop-up Card(Thank you)
SALE Mushroom - Brown Frame Purse(Small)

Look at the Skies! an Etsy Treasury by riorita

Thank you to riorita for including my earrings in this soft and lovely new treasury!

Slate Gray Shell Pendant Necklace

A beautiful slate gray disc shell pendant shimmers with a rainbow iridescent quality in this lovely handmade necklace. The 1 3/4 inch pendant is joined by deep, rich green glass beads, faceted black glass rondelles and star spacers hanging from fanciful squiggle connectors. The jet black genuine suede leather cord is a generous 29 inches long and ties in back, allowing you the versatility of wearing this necklace at any desired length. 

This piece could be just the hint of color that little black dress has been waiting for but would be equally beautiful at the office or with your favorite pair of jeans.

Just a Little Left of Center

Well, I was in a jovial mood this afternoon, so I put together a bunch of fun finds from some fabulous Etsy folks. Please stop by and give them your comments, and then click on the photos to see more works from these wonderful  artists ... ://www.etsy.com/treasury/4bfbd62197ef6d91f4679b93/just-a-little-left-of-center

Aqua Shell Pendant Necklace

A two inch shell pendant in swirled aqua and cream with silver pattern provides the main focus in this lovely handmade necklace. Faceted 6mm aqua AB Czech glass rounds and aqua and cream glass beads in various shapes add interest and sparkle to the oval and round linked chain. Two faceted 6mm aqua glass bicones and a faceted 6mm aqua AB Czech glass round drape down over the top of the pendant. The antiqued silver metal chain and bead spacers lend a bit of a vintage feel to the design. Necklace is 20 inches long and closes in back with a lobster claw clasp.

Featured HAF Artist: iKnitQuiltSew

Hailing from Cedar City, Utah, Sandi of iKnitQuiltSew learned how to sew and knit from her Grandmother. Her classic, old fashioned style stems from that and from the patterns she uses which originally belonged to her Great Grandmother and date as far back as the 1800's. She has been delighting friends and family for nearly forty years with her wonderful quilts, blankets, infant wear and handmade dolls and stuffed teddy bears. They finally convinced her that she should sell her beautiful creations, so she took the plunge and started her own business. 


Sandi's love for what she does shows in each and everything she creates. In her own words, "I truly love what I do... whether it's knitting that perfect pair of booties or hand-quilting my latest creation, it's a labor of love. Though I'm creating a commercial environment for my work, I don't want to lose that passion. For this reason, you won't find hundreds of items in my store. Each and every item will be made with care and great attention to the details." Those are the words of a true artist. And here is a small sampling of that artist's lovely work:


Hand Knit Pink Baby Hat 0-6 Months



Hand Knit Pink Baby Hat 0-6 Months


Cream Mohair Hand Knit Baby Booties Newborn to 3 Months


Cream Mohair Hand Knit Baby Booties Newborn to 3 Months


Baby Quilt or Wall-Hanging Machine Appliqued and Hand Quilted


Baby Quilt or Wall-Hanging Machine Appliqued and Hand Quilted


Handmade Teddy Bear - Ready to be Loved


Handmade Teddy Bear - Ready to be Loved


To view more of Sandi's lovingly handmade items, visit her at the following locations:

A Little Light Romance

... mostly nice with just a touch of naughty ... my new Etsy Treasury East.
http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4bf36b5f4d168eefb3733fea/a-little-light-romance

The Origin of Design

The copying of designs is always a controversial subject in the fashion industry, but validity of those claims is difficult to prove. The roots of jewelry design run deep, and through the years, the sources of inspiration for those designs has come from many places.

I'm sure as handmade jewelry designers today, we've all been influenced in one way or another by jewelry that has caught our eye in jewelry stores, magazines, movies, galleries, fashion runways, history museums, nature, from our own friends and family and a host of other places. This is how we've all developed our own individual senses of style. Every designer has drawn their own cup from this vast pool of resources, and it's a rare occasion when someone comes up with a design that hasn't been done before in some form or
similar fashion. I don't believe true artists steal designs. They're just students of the world around them, developing their own take on what is beautiful, and creating their art from that. It seems clear that "popular beauty" ebbs and flows through time, carrying artists along with it. We are products of the era in which we live, and we conform to it to some extent, but we're not limited by it. Imagination has no limits.

As I sit here at my computer, I can easily conjure up a myriad of images in my mind of jewelry designs that appeal to me. They're a culmination of my own thoughts, experiences, imagination and relationship to the world around me. They're my very own unique view of what is beautiful. And as these beautiful images dance through my head, I realize that I'm limited as to how many and what kinds of them I can actually create. Sometimes my pocketbook, which jewelry materials are considered to be "good sellers" at the moment by suppliers, and other little bits and pieces of life narrow my creative ability. I'm pretty sure it's that way for a lot of handmade jewelry designers. It's also what can tend to make some of our designs look similar to others.

But the desire to uniquely create remains alive and well in the artist's mind, even when it is influenced and driven by outside forces beyond the artist's control. So no matter where your inspiration comes from or how limited your resources may be, keep creating ... it's all good.

Amber Vintage Style Earrings

10mm golden amber Czech glass melon beads are paired with 4mm faceted honey AB Czech glass rounds in these vintage style handmade earrings. Antiqued brass leaf bead caps, melon beads and daisy spacers bring a lovely retro look to the design. Earrings dangle 1 1/2 inches from the tops of no lead or nickel lever back ear wires.

Antiqued Brass Locket Necklace

An intricate 35 x 26mm oval antiqued brass filigree locket is hung from dual antiqued brass chains in this handmade necklace. Antiqued brass swallow, 4mm faceted chartreuse bicones and 4mm faceted honey AB Czech glass rounds decorate the larger chain. Dangling aside the locket is an antiqued brass flower bead cap holding a translucent coffee Lucite flower, gold bugle bead and 4mm faceted honey AB Czech glass round. A 4mm chartreuse bicone, 4mm Czech glass round and 4mm antiqued brass melon bead hang gracefully alongside.

Romantic Vintage Style Pendant Necklace

Romantic vintage style handmade pendant necklace featuring a vintage titian orange Lucite briolette on double antiqued brass bead caps. Delicate antiqued brass swallows, flower beads and melon beads and 6mm faceted apricot Czech glass round and 4mm faceted pale peach glass rounds decorate dual antiqued brass chains.

Burnt Sienna Vintage Style Earrings

Glowing 10mm burnt sienna crackle glass globes are paired with antiqued brass leaf caps and melon beads in these romantic handmade vintage style earrings. Earrings hang approximately 1 1/2 inches from no lead or nickel lever back ear wires.

Gift of Friendship



Enjoy this lovely new Etsy Treasury East by Monique of Voleur De Bijoux entitled, Gift of Friendship. I know she would love to hear what you think, so click on the title above to visit the treasury and leave her your comments.

twiddletoes!!

Don't ya just love that name?? 
Stacy, owner and creator of twiddletoes, started her knitting business after years of cringing over people shoving their flipflops on over their regular socks (don't we all??). Two of the biggest offenders of this particular fashion faux pas in her own family were her father and husband, but she soon realized that others may very well be in need of and show interest in socks that could be worn with flipflops. Thus, hand knitting tabi socks became her new passion. She put her knitting needles to work, designed her own pattern for tabi socks, took them to craft shows and festivals, and the rest is history. All you have to do is read about how these socks are made and you know that extreme craftsmanship and quality go into every pair. Of course, tabi socks aren't the only kind she knits. You can find all kinds of warm, snuggy socks in her shops on Etsy and 1000 Markets. Here are a few examples of the knitting prowess of this amazing artist.
The famous tabi socks:

Black and Lime Tabi Socks. 85% wool, 15% mohair. Hand knit by twiddletoes.

... and here's a little beauty she lovingly refers to as My Grandma's Lace, made for her Grandmother for Mother's Day:

... and can't forget Mom. These were made for her Mother as a birthday present:

Stacy, would you please adopt me??  ;)

For more information on how to purchase your very own pair of twiddletoes tabi socks or any of the other wonderful knits in Stacy's shops, visit twiddletoes at these locations:
http://www.twiddletoes.com/index.html
http://www.etsy.com/shop/twiddletoes
http://www.1000markets.com/users/twiddletoes/

Think Pink, an Etsy Treasury by Katie Fenwick

Check out this Etsy Treasury by Katie Fenwick. It's her very first, so clicks and comments would be welcomed and appreciated! ;)

Victorian Style Antiqued Brass Earrings

Sparkling, 6mm faceted apricot AB Czech glass rounds wrapped in antiqued brass leaf bead caps take center stage in these handmade Victorian style dangle earrings. Above are antiqued brass beads and 4mm faceted copper AB Czech glass rounds separated with antiqued brass daisy spacers. Earring hang 1 1/2 inches from the tops of no nickel or lead antiqued brass kidney ear wires.

Caught My Eye...How About Yours?

A beautiful new Etsy Treasury East by Lapis Beach

A Dollop of Dark and Dreamy

I invite you to drop by and comment on my new Etsy Treasury East, A Dollop of Dark and Dreamy.
http://www.etsy.com/treasury/4bedb4fc15706d91e28b7cc7/a-dollop-of-dark-and-dreamy

jewelry by NaLa Interview by Handmade Jewelry Club


Interview with Jewelry Artist, NaLa



This Irish Eyes earrings made of green Swarovski and silver wire was recently featured on Etsy front page during the St. Patrick's Day. This is just one of those fantastic creations of the jewelry artist who likes to be called NaLa. The artist recently resides in Chicago.


NaLa specializes in making delicately elegant jewelry. The Apricot Calla Lily Antiqued Brass Flower earrings above is a representation of the artist's elegant jewelries.


Then we have here the Thrive Antiqued Brass Celtic Knot Pendant Necklace. According to her, wearing this would inspire everyone, both the wearer and those who see this to "Thrive". Life is hard but to see a positive message once in a while is really inspiring that we can make it through somehow, right?

I know you all want to know a little from NaLa and her creations, so better read on the interview and find some inspiration.

Jane: What are the teams that you belong to?

NaLa: I'm a proud member the of Etsy Street Teams: HAFteam (Handmade Artists' Forum Team) and Indiejteam (Indie Junction Team). Both are supportive, promotional forums filled with amazingly talented artisans.

Jane: What do you sell?

NaLa: I sell what I refer to as "delicately elegant jewelry." I believe mydesigns speak to women who want to make a beautifully subtle, feminine statement with their jewelry. My collection is 100% designed and handmade by me, and I try to keep duplication to a minimum so that when someone is wearing NaLa jewelry, they know they are not likely to find anyone else wearing the exact same piece.

Jane: How did you begin creating?

NaLa: I was never what anyone would consider remotely "crafty" or artistic growing up. I believe my artistic abilities began to emerge when I first got satellite TV in 1998 and began watching all the "how to" programs with people such as Lynette Jennings, Carol Duvall and Christopher Lowell. They absolutely hooked me on the notion that I could "do it myself." I began with small projects in decorative painting, drawing and decoupage. You name it, if it was DIY, I was gonna try it! A friend of mine refers to me as Martha Stewart, but I really don't think that label fits. I'm more intoaffordable DIY stuff, and I really enjoy the "hands on" part of creating. Nothing against Martha personally, I just see her as more of a TV personality, and she doesn't always create projects that most of us can afford to try. I'm also not a fan of using and wasting food, like huge vases full of lemons or large baskets full of bread, simply to create a nice aroma in your home. That's just not me.

Jane: Why do you enjoy creating?

NaLa: If I told you that creating gave me a rush, it would be an understatement. Nothing makes me happier than going down a new artistic path and finding out I have a talent for it--and nothing surprises me more either! If you would have told me when I was younger that I was capable of all these DIY and handmade types of things, I would have said, "Wow, you don't know me very well, do you?" Now it's a way of life for me, and I don't know what I would do if I couldn't create something beautiful.

Jane: How long does it take you to create a piece?

NaLa: When it comes to my jewelry, which is where most of my creative energy goes these days, the time it takes me to finish a piece varies widely depending on what type of piece it is. Learning a new technique takes the most time and patience for me. Some skills are easier than others to learn and perfect, but as with most everything, they get easier the more you play around and practice with them. You should see me in the shop as I wrestle with a new technique, practically breaking out into a cold sweat as I strive to get it just exactly right!

Jane: When do you do most of your creating?

NaLa: All my intentions are good. I always plan on getting up early in the morning and going to work like "normal" people do. That may be the plan, but I find that I'm the most creative late at night. I tend to flitter the day away more often than I'd like, wasting precious time. When evening comes, I turn into this mad woman, suddenly energized to get absolutely everything done. I guess if I had an outside job, I'd be more productive on the swing or midnight shifts.

Jane: What is the most popular item in your shop right now?

NaLa: I never really analyzed it, but I don't think there's a particular favorite or much of a pattern to the items I've sold. I use a wide variety of materials including sterling silver, brass, freshwater pearl, Czech glass, jasper, quartz, hematite, and Swarovski crystal, and I've sold a little of everything. Currently, the most popular item in my shop are my Irish Eyes Swarovski and Silver earrings. They've been featured in many places, including Etsy's front page and have been sold to locations as far away as Australia. It blows my mind to think that my jewelry is being worn and enjoyed on the other side of the world.

Jane: What advice can you give to other online sellers?

NaLa: I think doing your own thing is important. Don't try to adopt anyone else's style, because when it comes to creativity, it's really what's in your own heart and mind that's important. Sure, you can get ideas and inspiration from all sorts of different places, but then use that inspiration to create something that's unmistakably you.

The other key to success is marketing. Ummm, I haven't quite figured that one out yet! I'm trying to do the networking thing on places like Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, Stumble Upon, Handmade Artists Forum, Indie Junction, etc., and I'm constantly on the lookout for other quality sites that are supportive of the handmade community.

Jane: What is your favorite part of being a member of Etsy?

NaLa: I get a tremendous feeling of camaraderie from being a member of the Etsy community. There's this sort of "we're all in this together" feeling you get when you open an Etsyshop. The sellers there are so wonderful and supportive of one another and eager to help you in any way they can. I get a very real sense of pride from being part of that community. Suddenly you find yourself among this amazing group of talented artists and craftspeople, and you can't wait to tell everyone you know that you're there. Another extremely important factor for me is that the people who run Etsy seem to realize that the cost of "owning" an online store is a very important factor for online entrepreneurs. I previously tried other online selling sites, but they were too expensive for me to show the amount of things I wanted to show, and they didn't display them for four months likeEtsy does. Etsy takes some of the sting out of having an online store with multiple items. In that very important sense, they are a real friend to the handmade community.

Jane: How do you balance creating with your home life?

NaLa: Everything in life is a balancing act. I just develop a list of priorities and try to go from there.

Jane: How do you organize things?

NaLa: I used to be a world class organizer. Everything HAD a place and everything was IN its place. That facet of my personality seems to have diminished in direct correlation with my artistic growth ... hmmm, I wonder if there's something significant about that! Now I'd rather create than worry about what's where. Don't get me wrong, I do try to keep things neat and orderly, because I can get more done that way, it's just that shiny objects tend to distract me from time to time ...

Jane: What inspires you?

NaLa: I don't know. I just know that I am inspired. I'm inspired to create. Period. I wasn't born with it, it was somehow thrust upon me--and I love it.

Jane: Who are your other favorite online sellers?

NaLa: I have many. I won't mention any of my own personal favorites, because what interests me isn't necessarily what would catch someone else's eye, and I wouldn't want to distract them from finding their own personal favorite shops. Beauty truly is in the eye of the beholder, and I dare anyone to search the Internet and not come away with more than a few favorite shops of their own. No matter what one's own sense of taste or style is, there is definitely something for everyone.

Jane: What are your future goals?

NaLa: To continue to create while learning the secrets of Internet SEO. I want to be able to continue doing what I love doing, which is creating and making jewelry. I figure the only way I'll be able to do it is by coming up with designs that people love and want for their very own, being able to find my target audience, and enjoying a sufficient amount of financial success in the process. I'm not askin' for too much, am I?


If you think this interview is not enough for you to know the artist behind NaLa jewelries, please visit these sites:


Etsy's Front Page 5-13-10


My Floral Peach Sparkle Earrings made it to the front page tonight in this beautiful Etsy Treasury by SuzyQsFabric.

Amazing Artists I Adore

My new Etsy Treasury West, Amazing Artists I Adore, featuring, well, artists I adore! Please come see it and leave your comments ...
http://www.etsy.com/treasury_list_west.php?room_id=98542

"I recommend this Etsy seller because..."

 Thank you Voleur De Bijoux for mentioning my shop on I recommend this Etsy Seller because ... on Facebook. Coming from such a talented jeweler, this is a wonderful honor.


Voleur De Bijoux I recommend jewelryByNaLa for fabulous designs and because she is also a big sweetheart! :)
http://www.etsy.com/shop/jewelrybyNaLa
http://www.etsy.com/listing/41901497/silver-wire-wrapped-swarovski-earrings 

Easy on the Eyes by 1022SeaShellAve

Easy on the Eyes, a beautiful Etsy Treasury by 1022 Sea Shell Ave.
http://www.etsy.com/treasury_list.php?room_id=130333

Featured Handmade Artists Forum Member: Haffina Again


This week's featured Handmade Artists Forum Member is Haffina, a busy Aussie Mother of five and extraordinarily talented artist. Haffina's creative interests take her into numerous creative areas such as knitting, gemstone jewelry making, polymer clay and chainmaille. She hosts several stores online where you can browse through her amazing  collection of treasures. I totally lost myself in her shops, and had a terrible time deciding which of her fantastic items to showcase here, so I decided to go with a monochromatic color scheme ... and I love purple, so here are my purple picks from Haffina:
Magnet  - Polymer Clay  - Purple Spring Flower
Misty Mountains knitted Scarf
Polymer Clay Necklace in Fuchsia
Earrings Amethyst with Fluorite Dangles
See what I mean? Gorgeous all, and believe me, I've only scratched the surface of this artist's amazing portfolio. To see more of her awesome work, you can find her at these locations:
http://haffinacreations.blogspot.com/