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Showing posts from 2011

An important note about Christmas shopping

Please note - the last post for standard parcels is this Friday. This is why it was a bad idea for me to suddenly decide to start packaging items in my very own specially-made pillow boxes this week, wasn't it? So any items bought after Friday will be sent first class large letter, and will include a flat packed gift box for you to assemble yourselves (it's very easy, and only requires a bit of Pritt or double sided sticky tape). So go! Do some Christmas shopping!

More commissions...

I've been working on more commissions, and this is one of my favourite so far. Don't forget - if you have old jewellery that you want to be reworked into something new just drop me an email!

Meet... Maram

There are so many talented people on Folksy it can sometimes seem like you don't know where to start looking. In the first of a series of blog posts, I'll introduce you to a few - and with Christmas fast approaching, don't forget to shop handmade for the holidays as our American pals would have it!
Today, meet Maram, a trained silversmith who creates gorgeously elegant jewellery.
Name? Mairi Armes aka maramjewellery
Where are you from? Originally Glasgow, now living just outside Edinburgh, in the shadow of The Forth Bridge.

Purple bows necklace
When did you start crafting? Umm, always! Can always remember being arty, trying to knit,sew and so on. Discovered jewellery making at school for a fashion show, never stopped since then!
What made you open your Folksy shop? Everyone asking when I was going to start selling my work combined with a touch of free time when my youngest went to school.
What materials do you work with? Silver mainly, and a lot of beads

Shell blue dropper e…

Photo frolics

I feel like my photos need to take a big step forward. Or is that backward? I’m just not really happy with the pictures on my Folksy site at the moment, particularly after I stumbled across this pic, which I love:

I intend to redo quite a lot of them, and I’ve been gathering inspiration via Pinterest - you can see my board by clicking here. Incidentally, I’m becoming a little bit obsessed with Pinterest - there’s so much gorgeous stuff on there it’s nigh on impossible not to spend hours drooling covetously/seething jealously. I’ve also been experimenting with montages. This is something my fellow Boltonians Jamball do brilliantly, but I suspect their shoots must take hours. Still, nothing ventured, nothing gained. This is my first, very amateurish attempt, done just with some pics of my Ruffled necklace which I was quite happy with:

Like this? You can buy it by clicking here.
Anyway, I’m off to think about props. I have access to quite a lot of vintage jugs, lanterns, crystal glasses, ol…

Press release: Winter Wedding Wonderland

Still looking for your something old?
Jewellery designer Kat Dibbits has just launched her winter collection, and as each one-of-a-kind piece uses reworked vintage jewellery it could be the perfect finishing touch to your bridal outfit.
Made With Love jewellery features vintage finds lovingly teamed with semi-precious stones, Swarovski crystals, freshwater pearls, ribbon and beautiful chains. each piece is unique and connot be recreated.
The label is the brainchild of Lancashire-based arts journalist Kat Dibbits who draws much of her inspiration from the theatre productions and gallery exhibitions she covers.
“All day I see such pretty images sent to my desk - from ballet dancers at The Lowry to the elegant glamour of the Halle orchestra, and it is impossible not to want to create something that is inspired by that,” she said.
Made With Love jewellery can be bought from Stock is continually being updated so keep checking the website - and if you see…

Bang bang, kiss kiss

I love fireworks. I don't know if I've ever mentioned this to you guys, I probably have, I mention it to everyone. I love them so much I cry if I don't get to see some around Bonfire Night. Luckily this year I did, in the glamorous surroundings of Radcliffe Cricket Club. They were great, though, see:

That was actually my second firework experience of the weekend. The first was a bit of a damp squib thanks to the weather, but at least I spent it with the lovely boy eating hog butties and drinking mulled wine. Anyhow, watching the video back made me think about how I want to make some firework-inspired jewellery. Not just in the colours, although that's a no brainer - they're gorgeous - but also in the shapes I use. Where to start? have any of you seen any lovely firework-inspired jewellery? Share it below if you have, I'll make a blog post about the best ones.

Just for you

I get asked to make commissions a lot. Often it's by people who have some jewellery that has been passed down in the family that they don't wear but that they don't want to give away - so they bring it to me to see if I can make something new for them.
Recently, a friend of mine brought me a whole lot of stuff that she wants transforming. I'm slowly working my way through it - I'm going to post some before and after shots in the next few days, but for now here are the two pieces that I've completed.

The "leaves" on these earrings are actually made from the petals on a flower-shaped brooch. The central flower is still in one piece - I'm not sure what I'm going to make with it yet. I turned the metal stems of each of these petals over using needle-nose pliers to form a loop through which I could wrap the wire, then I carefully attached them to 14ct gold-filled chain. The stone at the top is a garnet.
I must admit, when I first saw this chunky silve…

We're in style - as if you didn't know that

According to this week's Sunday Times Style magazine, "vintage costume jewellery is hot this party season", and who am I to argue?

Everyone loves a bit of vintage as it means you're less likely to see someone else wearing the same thing - and with one of my one-of-a-kind creations I can make that a guarantee.
That's why I think it's a bit of a shame that there are so many high street shops now offering the sort of jewellery I and my fellow Folksy folk make. But remember - for every shop-bought "vintage inspired" bracelet or "fabric corsage" necklace bought for three quid from P*****k there are ten thousand more round the necks and wrists of other people. By buying handmade you are guaranteeing that you are wearing something which has had real love, thought and creativity poured into it. Each piece is unique - and personally that's the way I like it.
Today, by the way, I am wearing this:

Social media, spooky finds and pony clubs

I'm back! Yes, I've made a new season resolution (if there is such a thing) to give some more love not just to this blog but to my jewellery line as a whole. The last 12 months have been so hectic I've let thing slide but enough is enough! Time to dust off the cobwebs and get myself sorted (plus, y'know, Christmas is on the way...)
I've not been sitting with my feet up, mind. One of the things I've been particularly busy with is taking care of the PR and marketing for my local horse show, Leigh and District. I've built them a blog and set them up a Twitter feed. In the meantime, I've also learned a lot about social marketing, which I will try to share here as and when I can.
For now, though, here's a quick post with my pick of the best Halloween finds on our faithful friend, Folksy.

For a cheap and cheerful way to add some spooky style to your Halloween outfit, these cute Kawaii badges by Asking For Trouble feature the artist's illustrations of som…

Win a necklace!

Easter time is drawing ever-nearer and I'm feeling extra generous. I've been making a gorgeous new newsletter, and to launch it, I'm offering people who sign up the chance to win this necklace:

It's made from a vintage scarf clip teamed with a cute pink Swarovski crystal and an amazing slab of faceted lemon quartz. All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is to sign up to the newsletter by clicking this link:

Sign up for the newsletter

For Email Newsletters you can trust

Everyone who receives the newsletter will also get a 10% discount and free P&P throughout April, even if they don't win the draw.
This is with a new mailing company, so even if you signed up for my old newsletter you need to resubscribe in order to get the discount and be in with a chance of winning!

Sneak preview

I've spent the evening doing lots and lots of photography so I can list some lovely new items later. But as it takes me so long to list stuff, I thought I would put a sneaky peek on here first. All items are, of course, available to be reserved if you just have to have it now!

Vintage cloisonne beads with 14ct gold chain, hoops and garnet, hanging from freshwater pearl and kyanite

Asymmetric 14ct gold chain, vintage bead, brass swallow, amazonite and coral earrings

Asymmetric vintage marcasite, freshwater pearl and faceted rock crystal earrings

Vintage earrings with amazonite drops and fine 14ct gold chain

Vintage earrings with amethyst, labradorite and rock crystal

Folksy Friday

I think Folksy Friday is a wonderful idea - unfortunately I'm a bit shabby at remembering to do them. I was feeling very summery yesterday though, and the sunshine was making me think of funfairs - so here are my carousel-themed picks.

What a wonderful selection - my April resolution is to make much more of an effort to do one of these every week. I wonder how long it will last..."

Folksy Forums

Oh I'm suddenly feeling very motivated about this whole blogging lark. Perhaps it's the turning weather, perhaps it's because I've started making more items again - who knows?
One thing I have leaned over the last couple of years is that a great place to find new shops and see gorgeous items is through the Folksy forums. Sadly as they are mostly ppulated by sellers, the general public don't get a chance to see some of the treats that are shown off there. This evening I decided I would right that wrong - so here are my favourite items that have been featured and discussed today. Click on each picture to be taken to the shop. If this turns out to be popular I may turn it into a regular feature - so if you like it, make sure you comment below!

Chain Bracelet by Willow Wire Creations

Tax Disc Holder by Lilly's Night Garden

Personalised picture by Clarkie Designs

Flowers brooch and card by Daisy Florence Design

Owl Cushion by Handmade by Emily

...Or maybe not

Ohhhhhhhhhhh it's too difficult a choice to make. I like the mobile functionality of WordPress, but when it comes to blogging on an actual computer I far prefer Blogger. What's a girl to do? Any advice would be very gratefully received.
In the meantime, as I may have mentioned once or twice, I have been working on lots of new items. Some of them are in my Folksy shop now, and I'll be taking more photographs tonight so there'll be lots more over the next few days. Just to whet your appetite, here's a wee collage I made of some things that have been inspiring me...

Clockwise from bottom left: Image by Heather James from her recent exhibition at Cornerhouse Manchester, an image from the ballet exhibition at The Lowry, Salford Quays, which finished last week, The King's Speech, Black Swan
And here's a sneak peek of one of my new items which isn't on the website yet - I will be listing it tonight:

A little move

So, I've decided to have an experimental move to Wordpress as it seems to work better with my phone, particularly when it comes to posting pictures - as demonstrated by the weird reflection on the picture of this rather suggestive invite to an art exhibition I received yesterday.
So from now on you can read my ramblings at I'd love it if you updated your bookmarks and followed me over there x

Plans are afoot...

...for a huge relaunch event March 9th. All very exciting - more details to follow.On a similar note, I got the pliers out and got making for the first time in months last night. And it felt gooooood

Bedtime reading

I watched Faulks on Fiction last night with a very lovely boy. Left me with an overwhelming desire to read this...