Friday, 29 December 2017

The Last Hurrah...

Happy New Year sign set among pine leaves and red berries

It's very close to the end of the year now. It's so easy to add Christmas and New Year together but I think it's a little more interesting to separate them out and keep them apart, and to make the most of those days that nestle between those two celebrations.

It's often a time for family and friends and also for reflection - where has the year gone and what mistakes have I made, that kind of negative talk that we all tend to do. This year I'm trying to be aware of that and to look back and find the good things the year contained, the days that were special and the people that contributed to them. And that way I can see with more clarity just what made those special times and work out how I can try and get more of them in my life; and I can also focus on the people who were part of them too, the people in my life who mean a lot and whom I'd like to spend time with in the coming year.

However this post isn't about unpicking my last year, or my hopes for the coming one. It's really about thanking you if you've read and enjoyed my blog this year and wishing you all good things for the coming twelve months (and beyond).

Friday, 22 December 2017

A Simple Wish

Candles, pine cones, chestnuts and a tiny wooden house as a wintery scene

Wishing everyone a peaceful and beautiful Christmas. Here's hoping you have a very special time, however you chose to spend these short, winter days.

Friday, 15 December 2017


It's all so quiet, the frost is deep and the shortest day of the year is close at hand...

frosty leaves

Friday, 8 December 2017

Jewellery Book Wish List - Christmas 2017

It's December, it's nearly Christmas, and, so far, I've not asked for any new jewellery books this year... having said that, just because I've not actually said I want a copy of one of those potential gems, doesn't mean I wouldn't mind finding one in my stocking/pillowcase come Christmas day morning...

As in last year's post, the books are in no special order (of any kind)...

Mixed Metals by Danielle Fox book cover Metal Clay for Jewelry Makers by Sue Heaser book cover Weave Wrap Coil by Jodi Bombardier book cover 

Mixed Metals by Danielle Fox
It may be obvious but I love working with silver, and I've dabbled a little with gold and copper over the years. Integrating different metals together fascinates me and a book that covers those metals and more, and how to use them together, looks to be an interesting read.

Metal Clay for Jewelry Makers by Sue Heaser
I was very impressed with the book by Sue Heaser I received for Christmas last year and this is a way of working with silver that I still haven't explored anywhere near fully enough.

Weave, Wrap, Coil: Creating Artisan Wire Jewelry by Jodi Bombardier
Wire wrapping is a skill I'm increasingly eager to learn more about and this book looks to be a great guide to starting, and progressing, in this kind of jewellery making.

Metalsmithing Made Easy by Kate Ferrant Richbourg book cover Christie's by Vincent Meylan book cover The Art of Polymer Clay by Donna Kato book cover

Metalsmithing Made Easy by Kate Ferrant Richbourg
Many jewellery making books deal more with the 'softer' side of the art, involving threads and beads. This one, however, seems focused not just on metals, but how to connect them, covering both soldering and cold connections, topics you can never know enough about if you work with silver.

Christie's: The Jewellery Archives Revealed by Vincent Meylan
This book isn't about making jewellery, but it is about appreciating the skill and work and inspiration that has gone into some of the most beautiful pieces and collections that have passed through one of the most famous auction houses in the world. No doubt also an ideal way to convince yourself that you're not good enough to even pick up a piercing saw ever again...

The Art of Polymer Clay Millefiori Techniques by Donna Kato
Every year I spend a little time working with polymer clay and every year I vow I'll do more, which is no doubt why I'm always attracted back to books on this subject. Plus, I know the author of this one is so good that she even has her own brand of clay...


If you've read any of these books then do let me know what you think about them, and if they're worth adding to my already heaving jewellery book shelves? And do let me know of any recommendations you have for books I many have missed. I'd love to add to my wishlist!

PS. To see my jewellery book wishlists from Christmases past, then do take a look at my posts from 2016, 2013 and 2012.

(this post includes affiliate links - please check details here for more info.)

Friday, 1 December 2017

Jewelled Web - December 2017 - Link Love

Sunlight on frosty and cobwebbed teasel heads - Jewelled Web December 2017 by SilverMoss Jewellery

Oh, but it's suddenly come in very cold in the UK, the last few leaves are only barely clinging to the cold trees, it's even been crisp underfoot a few times and today I was surprised by waking to snowfall and seeing a brief but distinctly blizzardy sky.

My Christmas shopping still isn't done.

No tree or decorations are up.

I've not even bought any Christmas cards yet.

But, despite that, I'm still looking for and even finding some of that wonderful Christmas atmosphere, the glow from lights that is all the brighter when the days are so short at this time of year.

Like last month's Jewelled Web, this December edition is also devoted to links from fellow jewellers, who've also been interviewed on my blog, as well as a few more Folksy finds that leave me wondering if I want to buy them as gifts or to keep for myself...

Have a happy December and enjoy the links.

~jewellery links~

I interviewed Tracy from Cinnamon Jewellery on my blog a while back and it's well worth a read if you've not done so already - she works with silver, copper, and bronze, as well as enamel and these pink and green enamel earrings from her shop really showcase her skills in both metal and colour.

This beautiful ring has been made by Emma from Little Cherry Hill Artisan Jewellery, who creates wonderful jewellery down in Australia (where the weather is probably much warmer than it is in the UK right now...)

I love the inspiration behind Leisa Howes jewellery and the pieces she makes are just beautiful, like this Meadow Hare brooch.

Nanuk Jewellery is designed and made by Louise who is exceptionally versatile in her materials and skills. I love this sea dragon necklace, full of colour and clever ideas.

If you've not heard of fordite then do check out my interview with Sasha Garrett
and this necklace is a perfect example of her work.

My most recent interview is with Gemma Atwell of The Silver Shed - her moon gazing hare pendant feels just right for this chilly time of year.

~non-jewellery links~

This pinecone-covered dress by Molly Coddle Childrenswear makes me wish I was young/small enough to fit into it...

I adore this picture, full of snow and yet with a warmth all of its own, by Illustrator Kate.

Another snow scene, this time of the Dales, by Little Ram Studio.

On a foxy theme, these bookends made by Kittiwake Design are delightful.

This wolf brooch, made in wood by Martin Tomsky, is very evocative of the winter months.

A tea towel that will cover all seasons with its woodland theme is created by Lydia Meiying.

~latest reads~

Philip Pullman's latest His Dark Materials book has recently been released, but before reading it I've been re-reading Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass all over again, and enjoying them so much that I can't wait to dive into La Belle Sauvage very, very soon...

To breakup the above up a little I've also started ready The Lady of the Rivers by Philippa Gregory, which is officially Book 3 in the Cousins War series but seems chronologically to be Book 1 so that's where I've started...


Wishing you a beautiful December and a wonderful Christmas - thank you for reading my blog :)


If you're looking for a few more wintery links then do take a look at my Jewelled Web for December 2016.

(this post includes a few affiliate links (in the 'latest reads' section)  - please check details here for more info.)