Saturday, December 31, 2011

Art Bead Scene Challenge - Dec 2011 - Chrysler Building

Like most things I've tried to accomplish this month, I've run late with my entry into the December Art Bead Scene Challenge--too late to get included in the "December Monthly Blog Tour" for people who submitted their jewelry for the challenge.   My, there were some wonderful entries though, and I'm going to link you to the ABS tour page so you can take a look at the wonderful creations made by those who entered!  I thought this was a very difficult challenge (which is why it took me so long to even decide I was going to try it!)   However,  people came up with wonderful ideas despite the complexity!  

I'm going to go ahead and include my piece here even though it will only be up a short while, just because I did it, and once I finally came up with a concept, I had fun implementing it.   

First, here is the image that was our inspiration. This is the image for December:

William Van Alen

History about the architect and history of the building are included on the ABS Challenge Page, so I'll link rather than explain here.  

Below are photos of my necklace and the theory behind my design.

The necklace's focal point is on this large clear, ribbed glass bead.
It is surrounded by silver beadcaps
and has silver and crystal dangles extending from it.
Just above that is a spacer bead with wires
that continue the ribbed edge theme found on the building exterior.

The spiral bead has small silver beads on either side of it.
Then the necklace branches off into 2 sides.

The next part step up the necklace represents the square and rectangular windows.

One is hidden behind the other here, but there is one on each side.
The next bead section contains round silver beads with  triangular metal overlays, which also represent the layered, sections of the outer construction.

This next section is very important for two reasons.   1) It's where the Art Beads are included, beautiful lampwork beads by Sue Beads.  They are clear with tiny specs of pink, purple, and light blue.  In this case, the blue predominates.   They have silver around the middle of the bead.   In order to keep with my theme,  I capped these lovely beads (though it was a shame to cover any part) with beadcaps that are somewhat pointed.   2)  This section of the necklace is also important thematically because it is the pivotal point where the building meets the sky and the color transition begins.

And from this point on, we reach for bluer and bluer sky.   In the photograph, the sky appears to be all one solid color, but for the necklace, I decided to would look better to have the color be graduated.

The ribbon which reaches around the upper
and back part of the necklace
 again represents the air.
It looks turquoise here,
but it's really a darker blue-- the shade of the cobalt beads,
and more closely matches the photograph.  

We'll see what next month brings!   
The January challenge should be posted soon!  
Keep your eye out on the ABS Blog.   
If you haven't participated before, 
you may want to next time!

Hope you've enjoyed!  --Sharyl
Photo Credits: 

Chrysler Building photo:

Jewelry photos by Sharyl, 12/31/11.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

End of year 2011 specials!

Seems lots of folks are offering special savings as the end of the year comes around.  Here are a few I'm aware of:

Pine Ridge Treasures --  (Handmade Jewelry) 
20% off everything in shop until midnight bringing in the New Year 2012!   Use code REDWOOD20.  (Thanks for giving me the idea of this list.  Because of that, you get listed first!)  :-)

Sue Beads -- (Artisan/Handmade Lampworked Beads)
Use coupon code endofyearsale for 25% your order until the New Year!

Lori Anderson Designs -- (Artisan/Handmade Jewelry)   Price savings in all categories.  Original and marked down price appear on the page. 

Beth Nadler Art -- (Artist/Artisan/Pendants made from her original works of art)
20% off your entire purchase now through January 8th. Use coupon code JUST4U when it's time to check-out and the 20% discount will be applied at that time.

Blue Seraphim Artisan Glass -- (Artisan/ Handmade Lampwork Glass Beads) 35% off all orders of $50.00 or more.  At checkout, use coupon code ...coupon35.  For all orders to USA of $50.00 or more, Jennifer will add insurance to your package for free!

BeadBead -- (Bead Supplier) One of my favorite suppliers of Czech glass beads is also having a sale!   Items have different discounts and are already marked down, showing discounts, so no coupon code is necessary.   Sab has great prices, very nice quality beads, and superb customer service!

Sharyl's Jewelry -- (Handmade Jewelry) You didn't think I'd leave off my own sale, did you?  Well, out of politeness, I did list it last.   My 10% off all jewelry sale continues through 1/2/12.  No coupon needed.   
25% OFF CLEARANCE ITEMS.  To receive savings on Clearance items, please enter this coupon code: CLEAR25.   Clearance sale extends through 1/16/12.

If I missed a sale of YOURS, or another shop you like, please feel free to add details in the comment section!   I never intend to leave anyone out!

If you have a penny left, now is a great time to stock up on gifts and supplies!  Happy Shopping and Happy New Year! -- Sharyl


Graphic Credit:


Dollar sign:

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

My Holiday Investment

This may surprise you, but I came into a sum of money over the holidays, ... and not one to let things like that sit in my pocket, I immediately invested it.   You might guess I bought beads, but not this time.  No, think bigger and taller.

This time I purchased a high-rise!   I know it seems a bit  out of character for me and you may be shocked by this purchase, but I've really been thinking about it for some time--I just wasn't finding quite what I wanted at quite the right price.   

Now, admittedly, this does appear to have been built in the architectural style of the 1960s--flat roof, everything grey, all divisions pretty much looking alike.   (In honesty, I've checked out those windows, and I don't even think they are real glass!   Feels more like plastic, but probably just as well.  Less breakage.)

But hey, my last name isn't Trump or Hilton or even Holiday Inn, you know what I mean?

So, I made my purchase (actually had to place an order and wait for things to happen--think escrow--but things went very smoothly.)   Once the property was in my hands, I immediately went to work on organizing things, updating, fixing the place up so it's livable.   

Now some people call writing on the wall "graffiti," but librarians call it classification, good sense, and providing direction.   So as you see below, here, the first thing I did was to set out "classifying" the real estate.  Every space was  then labelled.   Signage was applied.

(It really is "scary high," isn't it?!)     I'll give you a more close-up view now, and I think you'll begin to appreciate my purchase.

Horizontal Labels across top:
6 frequently used colors of wire & findings

10 Vertical Labels down left side:
Types of items such as lampwork,
& metal beadcaps, earwires, metal beads, chain,  jumprings, etc.

Already I'm having great fun!   Need brass bead caps?   That would be 3 down-4 across.   How about metal focals in antique silver?   Piece of cake!   5 down-5 across.    At least I haven't applied an alpa-numeric classification system for the items yet!  There's still time though!

Now, lest you think I managed to get all my beads in these 60 apartments, (I mean compartments), I'm using this mostly for metals, and a few of my more precious beads, lampwork, and focals I've recently purchased.   There is still a stacking cart behind my  chair full of divided containers holding glass, gemstone, wood, and other beads of many sizes and colors, and still more supplies on the book shelves next to me.   Another container keeps my rolls of wire in control (and organized by color), while yet another container holds my many, many rolls of ribbon I use on pendants.   (And if any of you still remember this blog entry about "'Making Do'" while you build your jewelry tool collection," I'm still using the utensil carrier for my pliers, wire cutters, and other small hand tools I reach for regularly.)

But my "high rise" has helped me sort, store, and be able to retrieve many items that were getting scattered because they didn't have a home.   Now they do.  What a happy ending!  

I think I would like a card catalog some day.
Not one from the 1960s-70s with the blah-color finish,
 but an older one, stained and varnished, with beautiful wood grain.
It would be nice if the drawers had glass fronts though,
like post office boxes.
I've never seen one like that.
 (And we'd need to remove the metal rod too.)
Then it would be perfect for jewelry supply storage!

So,...  how do you store all your many jewelry-related items?    (I'm sure there are "classier" ways than my hardware store-find, but I would like to thank the good people at my local Ace Hardware in  Shawnee, especially the employee who took time to help me place a special order so I could get one with "lots and lots of tiny drawers" in place of the ones they had on display.  This is just what I needed to get the job done right now!)   

It's good to be back after a brief blogging break last week!  Hope to hear from you soon!   Continued Holiday and New Year wishes!   --Sharyl

P.S.  We've had more people join our blog in the last week!  Our warmest welcome to all!  

Graphic Credits:

Hardware divider:   photos by Sharyl

Sunday, December 25, 2011

i heart macro: Christmas Special with Santa

Happy Holidays! 

Actually, I'm not sure the "i heart macro" event is going on today, but because I have my photos ready, and it's Christmas, I'll put them up!

For years I've had a Santa collection.   Every year I would either buy or be given a Santa or two.  I finally had to call an end to it, but I still get an occasional one and always love it!    Most of them are carved wood or made of resin.   Most, but not all, are tall, slender Father Christmas types.    They are each unique though, so for your viewing pleasure...(drum roll, please)... I photographed a few for you.    I started out trying to get the whole body in, but decided, "Hey, this is MACRO!   Go for the faces!"  So here you are!

A very different looking one from most of my collection.   
Can't decide what his ancestry would be.
He's a thick, rounded fellow.

Like several of my stick Father Christmas figures, 
this one is very tall and slender, 
fairly jovial, 
and has a lot of stuff on top of his head.
Not sure what that's about. 
Never heard of a backpack, I suppose!
This one is dressed in white from head to toe, 
but others are in red or dark green.

Tired, serious, old Father Christmas.

Happier, but very, very old.
Even his clothes look old.
Very stylish beard though!

Now what a happy-go-lucky guy this is!
I bet everyone gets gifts on this Santa's list!
He thinks everybody is good!

Wooden, cut-out Santa.  
Previous job as a Poker Player.
His face isn't telling a thing!

Big cheeks.   May have been a relative of mine.

My husband got me this one a year or 2 ago.
He's a Librarian Santa.
My husband and I are both librarians!
Book in one hand, computer in the other, just like in "real life!

Hope you enjoyed this little collection of Santa's photos!

Happy Holidays!  


P.S.  For my jewelry friends, I got some good news this morning, I just have to share!  I received this message:   "Congrats! One or more of your items has been featured in a new collection titled: "Amazing Earrings Collection", curated by Jewelry-Findings-Supplies; Great job!.....Thanks for being a member of the ArtFire community. Obviously your work is getting noticed!"

Okay, so this may be like getting a letter from the President of the U.S. on your birthday, most likely a form letter, but still, hey, it's my first one, so I can be in blissful ignorance for just a little while!   

Here is the link to the curated collection:

One more reason to go have myself a happy day!   You do the same!   

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

The Worst Holiday Poem You'll Ever Read...or, why I'm taking a few days off.

A few Nights Before Christmas and all through the house....
No creature was stirring, but Sharyl. (There was no Mouse.)

While everyone else was snug in their beds,
Sharyl just dreamed of naps in her head.

The jewelry was bagged and boxed and hung with care,

In hopes that customers soon would be there.

She had emailed and blogged, and relaunched her website,
She had tried to learn Facebook and updated ArtFire.
But still falling behind and watching things  spin, 
She stopped for a moment to take it all in.

The rest of the house was lacking some show.
It seemed like the holidays might be a "no go!"

No holiday stockings.  Here's the holiday tree.

Maybe it's time to consider these festivities!

So she made up her mind, right then and there, 
to take a break and some time to prepare.

She'll check in every now and again, 
But if there's no comment, please accept with a grin.

Know she's out there and sends wishes to you, 
"Happy Holidays to all and Great New Year too!" 


You know how it is.  Need a few days to catch up at home too.   

And I did finally get my old website relaunched.  You can take a look at:   It will now be just one more place to find me on the web.  

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate it!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

i heart macro: A snowflake wonder!

Happy "i heart macro" Sunday!   

Last week I was photographing  (and rephotographing) a few of my wintery-snowflake jewelry items for my Studio and for a blog entry.  I'll just include a couple of the photos here, but you can go to the blog page or studio if you would like to see more.   

"Green Ornament Earrings with Silver Plated Snowflake Charm"
(Regular $18, Sale price $16.20 USD)

"Snowflake and Cracked Glass Earrings"
(Normally $12-- Now $10.80 USD)

There were several necklaces too, but for those who regularly follow my blog, I don't want to do a complete repeat!   What I really want to show you, is the one that I DIDN'T include in my blog!   

It didn't really end up showing a piece of jewelry very well, even though it certainly IS a piece of jewelry.   It wasn't in the least bit staged.   While I was photographing something else, I caught this out of the corner of my eye and just had to snap a shot!    I call it "A Snowflake Wonder!"

#20: "A Snowflake Wonder"
It looks like the snowflake is standing there all on its own in a drift of snow, but the snow is really a sheer white curtain in my front window I often use in various ways in photographing my jewelry.   I think it was "standing" because it's really attached to a piece of jewelry which was supporting it.   But I prefer not to think about that, and instead like the notion that it just rather "magically" appeared in the "snowscape" of my front window!   What a wonder!   

Happy "i heart macro" Sunday and Have a great Holiday!   

P.S.  I try not to use this forum as an advertisement, but have shown jewelry from my studio the last 2 weeks.  That's because that's that's all I've had time to photograph!   For putting up with that, I'd like to make you a special offer.  If you are interested in making a purchase, please use the "Contact Seller" link on "Sharyl's Jewelry" studio page, mention code: MACRO11, and let me know which item you want, and in addition to the sale price, I'll give you free shipping.   I know many of you are not from the U.S.  No worries.  I ship to Canada, Australia and the UK too, and just this once, I'll offer free shipping to any of these countries.  Just let me know before you place the order so I can adjust the shipping charges for you.    (Offer good through 12/23/11)

Thanks for visiting!  Please connect back to view all the other participants' photos at "i heart macro!"   The link is below!

"i heart macro" at Studio Waterstone

Give-away Announcement!

And the winner is.... Lynda!   

I've just sent Lynda an email reminding her she gets to choose 1 item from the 6 sets of earrings or 2 pendants in the $12 and under sales group.   

More news  Monday.  Sunday is "i Heart macro!"

Sorry, time's up to put in your entry for this give-away.

I'll go through the comments for the last couple of days since we started this promotion, put the names in a "hat," and have my son draw one out.   

Winner to be announced shortly!   Thanks to all who played along and helped to spread the word!  --Sharyl   

Saturday, December 17, 2011

The Big 5-0!

Wa-hoo!  Made it to 50!   (Not talking about my age,...that's a whole other matter!)

What I mean is that I just hit the 50 mark for number of items listed at "Sharyl's Jewelry!"  And while I have no plans to stop here, it's a nice milestone to hit!  

Just in case you are interested, these are the last two pieces added to the collection:

#49--Lava Rock and Polished Stone Earrings
(Sale price $18 USD)

#50--Cairo Candy Hieroglyphic Beads and Brass Earrings
(Sale Price $16.20 USD)

I know I need to add an extra pair or two for the give-away now, but I've posted a challenge (more like a "dare") on my studio for anyone to knock me back under 50 by making a purchase! (Remember as a kid those blow-up punching toys you could hit?  They would tip over then come right back up again?    I'm hoping for something like that!)   Someone will buy a piece of jewelry, and my total will drop to 49.  I'll replace it so I'm back up to 50, someone will buy another piece.  My current life's dream!  (Ah pathetic yes!  But we all start somewhere!)

In the meantime, there's still a free pair of earrings  up for grabs to the 3rd customer!  Pairs 1 and 2 were claimed.    And there's 10% off all current purchases through 12/23/11!   (Why let anyone beat you to that?!) 

I'm also issuing a reminder, straight from yesterday's post, about how you can try to win your own free item from the studio.

4) giveaway:   

I said that when I hit 50 items in my studio, I'd have a give-away from my own collection.   I expect to do that this evening.   So, from now until Saturday night (12/17/11) at midnight, Central Standard time, anyone who leaves a comment on this blog will be entered in the give-away drawing.  (If you prefer not to be entered in the drawing  but wish to leave a comment, just leave me a note.)  Anyone who blogs about it, includes a Facebook post, or Twitter post, gets their name in the hat again for each posting.  Just leave a comment for me here that you've done so.   

The prize will be anything from Sharyl's Jewelry with a sales price of  $12 or less.  That's currently showing 8 items to choose from.    

If I see more than 10 entries for the drawing, I'll even have a 2nd drawing and give away another item!   So please comment and help me spread the word!   

Thanks much and best wishes to all on the give-aways!  Tis the season!


P.S.  I have an update on a give-away I mentioned in yesterday's post of some wonderfully cool-looking lampwork  earrings being given away by Pine Ridge Treasures.  It turns out, the winner is... ME!   

I always say that I never win anything, but I've won two give-aways in the last couple of weeks!  I also won a lovely necklace from  Spirited Earth!   I'll post more photos of both when they arrive!   Oh, lucky me!  

To these events, I again say "Wa-hoo!"

So you see, it does pay to toss your name in the hat after all!  Please make sure you do so today!   

And one more thing... If you have recently won a give-away, have or are hosting a give-away, and would like it mentioned here, please put it in the comments or email me.   I warn you that the comments route is likely to be faster, but I'm happy to accept the news either way.   I enjoy posting these, but may miss one you've been involved in, so please just let us all know!   Thanks!   --Sharyl


Graphics Credits:

Excited girl:

Classic Bozo The Clown 46 inch Bop Bag,

Jewelry and Photos by Sharyl, 12/11

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Snowflakes & Giveaway Updates

More on snowflakes later!
Still working on this one!

This posting today is a mish-mash of things I wanted to let you know about -- snowflakes,  give-aways won, give-aways underway, and new give-aways!  

 (And, since it's a "mish-mash," I'll be breaking all the rules and not even following the order!)

1)  Give-away won!
I noticed just a moment ago, that our own friend from Pine Ridge Treasures was one of several winners of Destash and Bead Soup from Lori Anderson!  Congrats to you and the others!    And thanks to Lori for offering the give-away!

2) Give-away underway--Deadline Thur night!
When I clicked on the Pine Ridge Treasures blog  to leave my congratulations, I found a give-away offer there for some really cool lampwork earrings!    Click on the blog link in this section, leave a comment, and you are in the drawing to win!  (Today, Thursday, is the last day to enter, so hurry!  Winner will be announced Friday morning!)   There is also a 10% off sale going on in the online shop so stop in for a visit there too!

3) My own studio is looking like a blizzard!   Just slipping this newsflash in, but... Snowflakes are everywhere!   Snowflakes are my favorite symbol of winter and the holidays, so did I make snowflakes!  

If you are looking for snowflakes, snowpeople, or winter holiday jewelry, please stop by.  All jewelry is 10% off through 12/23/11.    Here are just a few samples:

Snowflakes and Cracked Glass Earrings 
(Sale price  $10.80 USD)

Green Ornament Earrings with Silver-Plated Snowflake Charm
(Sale Price $16.20 USD)

Silver Snowflake Necklace in Lime and Cherry
(Sale Price $22.50 USD)

White Snowflake Necklace with GreenBlue Dangles
(Sale Price $18 USD)

4) Finally, a new giveaway:   
I said that when I hit 50 items in my studio, I'd have a give-away from my own collection.   I expect to do that this evening.   So, from now until Saturday night (12/17/11) at midnight, Central Standard time, anyone who leaves a comment on this blog will be entered in the give-away drawing.  (If you prefer not to be entered in the drawing  but wish to leave a comment, just leave me a note.)  Anyone who blogs about it, includes a Facebook post, or Twitter post, gets their name in the hat again for each posting.  Just leave a comment for me here that you've done so.   

The prize will be anything from Sharyl's Jewelry with a sales price of  $12 or less.  That's currently showing 8 items to choose from.    

If I see more than 10 entries, I'll even have a 2nd drawing and give away another item!   So please comment and help me spread the word!   

Thanks much and best wishes to all on the give-aways!  Tis the season!


Graphic Credits:

Photo of Lampwork Earrings from Pine Ridge Treasures from that shop blog:

All other jewelry and photos by Sharyl, 2011