Friday, September 19, 2008

Web Site Lost..... :-(

For all of you looking for my web site and are just receiving an error message, we lost our server from the host this week. We are looking for a new host and will get it back up and running but because all the data was stored and backed up on that server, we will be starting from scratch. More work for me, but you will get to see a new and improved web site.

Until then, please feel free to contact me at for any jewelry or gem tree requests or you can visit my Etsy site for a list of items for sale. As I am adding items daily to this site until my web site is back up and running, please check it often. I'll keep you updated on how it is going.

I do have a gem and mineral show in Castle Rock, WA this weekend (9/20-9/21), so if you are reading this and live in the area, please drop by and see me. We will be at the Fairgrounds.

Thanks, Dana

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

At Summer's End

As the Summer is ending, and all the things I wanted to get completed weren't, I realize that I'm probably not the only one in this predicament. We have adopted a very cute dog, had our grandson and his mom out for a week vacation, set up jewelry and gem tree demonstrations at two shows and made it to the beach almost twice a month for a weekend. I really wanted to finish writing my book, garden a little more, remember birthday's better, walk the dogs each night, create new jewelry designs, update my web site and generally be more relaxed. Everything just got away from me this year, although I do plan on finishing the book this Labor Day's still Summer, so maybe I can still do some of these things. Alright who am I kidding, we really didn't have a Summer here in the Pacific NW.

Now is the time to plan for Fall and Winter. So, I put on my list: update web site, create new jewelry designs, walk the dogs each night, remember birthday's better and relax more. Yes, I know those sound like my plans for the Summer, but since I really didn't complete them I have to add them back in plus add more. What that more is, I don't know yet, but I'm sure that it will be more than I can accomplish.

Here is a new picture of both dogs playing. I'm not sure where they get all their energy, but I wish I had some of it.

Friday, July 18, 2008

One Busy Summer

I haven’t had a whole lot of time to blog lately with the vacations, shows, getting the house ready for guests and searching for a new dog to adopt. Yes, we are adopting a new dog. We get him tomorrow. He is a Shitsu and 2 years old, just neutered yesterday and we are hoping he will get along fine with our other male dog, Buddy, who is also 2. Here is a picture of Leo. He really needs a hair cut, but that will have to wait for a week or so until he can get a bath when the stitches heal.

Other than that I have had a lot of interest in my opals, the carved flowers by Kathy Stanley and my wire wrapped pendants. At the Federation show I purchased several opals that I need to polish and wrap. Since that won't take me long, I'll probably do those next. Another club member asked if I could wrap another one for her, so I still have that to do in the next couple of weeks. Since we have the Tenino show the weekend of the 26th, I’ll try to get a lot of my special orders completed then as I will have two full days to be creative. Which reminds me, I need to get an order of wire off since I am running low.

My grandson and his mom are coming to visit the week of the 28th so we have been planning activities that he would enjoy. In doing all this kid research we have some up with so many things that we think he will enjoy, so it should be a fun week. I’ll post some pictures of the big vacation the first week of August.

In my gem tree blog, I’ve indicated that my book on how to make gem trees will be out later this year. I’m hoping that by the first of November the books will be available, so stay tuned if you want to get one of the books. If you buy the books directly from me vs. the book publisher or Amazon, etc., I will autograph it. I’m also researching video cameras as I want to make a companion video (purchase separately) to make on the Standard Gem Tree. If anyone has any recommendations on a good cheap camcorder to purchase, please let me know.

Have a great weekend and I’ll post more pictures later of the dogs.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Wordless Wednesday?

I don’t know about you, but we could all do for a little less talking sometimes. So this Wednesday, I’ll keep it short and post a few pics of our dog. He seems to gather a lot of attention where ever we are. The last picture is my favorite .... a tired dog.

Friday, May 23, 2008

The Days to Come

I can’t believe it is the end of May and Memorial Day is just a few days away. Okay, I should leave a plug here for my gem tree giveaway. Check out my gem tree blog (see links) and leave a comment prior to Monday. Here I am at work and I feel like I haven’t accomplished much at all today even though it is now lunch time and I plan to leave in a couple of hours. I feel like this often the last working day prior to a holiday. Most of the time I just take the day off, but knew that I had several deadlines coming up next week and should get a few things finished.

The weekend is piling up nicely with a large number of to do’s. Paul is off today so he is getting a few things accomplished that he doesn’t need me for. Tonight is a club night and the last meeting prior to our club gem show. Should be interesting as we still have a lot of volunteer spots open…..oh well, not something I can worry about as I’m not in charge.

Tomorrow we will be cleaning out the rest of stuff from our storage locker. After 6 years of renting the darn thing we will finally be letting it go. Have you ever renting one of those things thinking that it will be just for a little while and years and money go by. Well, this will save us over $100 per month. I’m all for saving money right now. Then off to the antique mall to dust, clean and re-stock some shelves. Then tomorrow night off to friends for dinner. That will be a nice change.

Sunday, not sure yet, but may be a day of rest and relaxation. Okay, maybe just maybe if it isn’t raining I’ll get out and pull some weeds out of the yard.

Monday, this will be family day. Take Paul’s mom to the cemetery and then off to the other cemetery to put flowers on my dad’s grave. This is never a fun chore, but makes us feel better afterwards. Then off to my mom’s for a cookout with the family to round out the weekend.

Sounds like a busy weekend except for Sunday. Um, maybe just sleeping all day and staying in PJ’s is a good option too.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Hot Jewelry for Spring 2008

I've been trying to wear some of my newer designs here at work, out to various functions and even on vacation and have found that fused fine silver link chain mixed with gemstones is getting quite the attention. Both my chain and chain with gemstones have received lots of compliments, so I am in the process of designing several for my web site and the salon consignment. Round and oval links have been and are still popular with everyone, so stay the course if you are into making this type of chain. I guess the only problem I see is using up all your very expensive silver in making chains that may not sell down the road, so try posting signs that you will do special orders.

Colors in clothing is all over the board, but the most exciting is all the blue, fushia and yellow. There are so many gemstones that will compliment these colors of clothing including several blue stones, which haven't been as popular in the most recent past years such as blue sapphire, aquamarine, and lapis. Bring those pieces back out to wear with this years fashions or create something new with beads you have in your stash.

Other hot jewelry pieces will be bracelets. Bright colors are dominating the scene in layers of large bangles or beads. Don't try to match up a necklace to these bracelets as they are meant to be worn in place of other jewelry pieces and steal the show. If you are a designer and are wondering what this means to you, try purchasing some large resin or lightweight colorful wood beads to create a large bracelet design.

Earrings have been and still will be the one item that customers want to match up to a necklace. I always create a pair of earrings to match any necklace especially if that necklace has some exotic gems or shapes that could not be found anywhere else.

I'm still not sure how the jewelry industry will be doing as a whole this year due to the slowdown in the market, but my year started out better than last year so I'm optimistic.

Happy Designs, Dana

Thursday, January 24, 2008

At a Stand Still

What do you do when you have so many ideas for things that you can't seem to get to them all? I think this is where I am at now.

I entered a jury competition for RAGS this year and was turned down because my jewelry looked the same as everyone elses. Hmm, I guess when you think about it everyone's jewelry that is being designed today looks like everyone elses. I'm not put off by this, but will definately look at what I'm designing and what is selling. During the holidays, I sold a lot of wire wrapped pendants and gemstone wire trees. I tried selling them about 3 years ago and no one wanted them, go figure that I'm a few years ahead of everyone else. In doing some research on the web, I found that there really isn't a lot of tutorials about how to wire wrap a pendant. There are some simple designs, and that seems to be what everyone is making. I may have to give this some thought, but I could put a couple of designs out here for reference that I have developed. Since I have so much going on right now, this will have to be a goal for later in the year.

If you have read my blog on gem trees, you will now know that I am writing a book on how to make a gem tree. This is taking up a huge amount of my at home time reserved for relaxing. If I'm not writing then I'm making a tree or trying out a new design or material. I found some freshwater pearls at a local large bead shop that are flat and leaf like that I'm working with now. It should prove to be a wonderful looking little tree and one that I hope I have picture for the book as another option to gemstones.

On another note, anyone that knows me knows that I have jewelry on consignment at a salon. In 2006, the Salon did about a 1/3 of my overall jewelry sales and again in 2007 they did about 1/3. I did revamp the jewelry available at the salon this year to items under $50.00. Earrings are always $10.00, bracelets run up to $35.00 and necklaces to $50.00. This does create a challange for me as I have to find affordable gemstones that are still good quality. International Gem and Jewelry shows are my favorite place to look for affordable stones. Unfortunately to get them cheap, you have to buy in bulk. I may have to take a couple of friends along this year and share the wealth so that I don't end up with 6 or more strands of the same type and style of stone.

Well, I'll keep plugging along, but if you find you are stuck or have too much to do, be aware you are not alone.

Thanks for reading, Dana


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