Friday Etsy Finds!

I found avalove designs today on Etsy. After spending a gazillion dollars yesterday at H&M, clothes that I am sure all my students will be wearing as well, (yay! twins with a 14 year old- oiy) I kinda wish I'd found avalove first! I luv, luv, luv this purple cowl dress with peacock flowers. I also like this white tunic shirt with the pressed flower silk screen. Her clothing is hand printed and in limited edition, so it's like wearing a piece of her artwork. And you can be sure nobody is going to be wearing the same dress as you at a party- oh the style drama. I appreciate her motto which I snatched from her profile on etsy:
"the motto: to inspire and be inspired! and to create positive products for people to wear, and feel positive IN! "

And I know of some beautiful handmade jewelry that would go great
with her designs....

Have a great weekend!


Something Blue

These are some earrings I just finished for my friend's wedding in Brazil! Lucky her! They are freshwater pearl and blue swarvoski crystal. She wanted something simple, but with a nod to the tropics. I am always honored when I am asked to create something special for such a big day. And it's much better to be on this side of the wedding chaos.... Considering my previous life as a wedding and event photographer, (and I now consider myself in recovery) this is much, MUCH, less stressful. The bride doesn't like it? I re-work them. No nasty emails about how I missed getting a picture of Great Auntie (like I know who all these people are), or getting blamed for "ruining their day," because the limo never showed up, everything ran late, or my favorite- it rains. The best part about it- I don't have to be there!!!! Yay! After 100+ weddings,
I've seen it all! Including a very drunk bride who spilled red wine down the front of her dress and and screamed "photographer girl take my piccctttuuuurree," within an hour of the reception starting. That show "Bridezilla's" can't even compete with me......

And for the record- the bride these are for is sooooo not a zilla, she's one of the most laid back sweetest people I know- congrats to her and I know it will be beautiful in that tropical paradise!


New Enamels!

New enameled pendants! My kiln hasn't arrived yet, but the enamels I ordered did, so I couldn't help myself and had to go to the studio and try them out. I love the little dandelion pendant- it might just be my "signature" piece. They are all enamel on copper, counter enameled, and have a high fire glossy finish. To see details of each pendant go to my flickr page.
I want to make some more before adding them to my etsy shop, but check it out soon!


Featured Artist

Check out my mini interview on The Art of Craft! Also featured on qbranchltd's my space page!
Check out their etsy shop as well. Cheers!


And the winner is......

Mamac-ta! And I swear it was not rigged! There were 7 comments left, I put 7 numbers in a hat and drew number 4- Mamac-ta! So, Mamac-ta email me with your address and you'll get the Sea Breezes in the mail!
I plan on doing more give aways, on a random basis, so you'll HAVE to keep checking back!
Have a great weekend!

Addendum!!- Kelli Belly- I'm sorry! I think you were commenting right when I was picking the winner. I apologize your number didn't get in the "drawing!" I'll be doing more in the future so I hope to hear from you again!

Friday Give Away!

Win a pair of my Sea Breeze earrings, just by leaving me a comment (nice comments that is)! One lucky commenter will be randomly chosen at the end of the day, I'll post the winning name, so check back to see who you are!
Oh, and can you sign my guest book over there??? It's looking kind of lonely....

Good luck, there is a description of the Sea Breeze earrings here. Happy Friday!


Guest Book!

I found this great photo/video guest book on Block Party Press blog. Please sign it and upload a photo and your website or etsy shop for some promo. Keep it clean though- my granny checks this blog out! You can make one too, by clicking on the "make your own" link below the book.
Thanks in advance and have fun!!


Formed bracelets
Originally uploaded by dandelionblu

So I am finally taking a proper forming class. And it's intensive. It's taught by a silversmith who has been perfecting his craft for 45+ years now. He is a stickler for finishing, which is good for me, because you really can't half ass finishing on fine jewelry. Here are my first two pieces. Both are cuff bracelets. We are studying synclastic and anticlastic curves and forms. Me being a highly competitive, slightly brown nosing, anal retentive, type A kinda gal, am determined to try all the techniques demonstrated- I'll be in the studio hammering away for weeks. I love hammers and metal, and had no idea the precision and technique involved. I am happy with my results so far- they kinda remind of Wonder Woman's magic bracelets!


New jewelry in the shop

Some new earrings and a lariat style necklace. I got these great vintage turquoise glass rectangle beads with black "tiger" stripes that have been fun to work with. These new items will be up in my etsy shop tomorrow morning!

Pssst! There will be a surprise for a lucky viewer on Friday- so check back!

what's in the bag?

It's no secret that women luuuvvvv bags. And I, being a woman, and having the need to cart my entire life around with me, am no exception.
I even went through a strange phase where I bought purses compulsively during, ahem, a certain time of the month. My friend and artist Cara Ober was so intrigued by this quirk, that she made some paintings and talked about my "affliction" during our end of the semester critiques in grad school- thanks Cara. I did get a pretty cool painting out of her for my wedding though.... I have since moved on from small girlish purses to large "everything including the kitchen sink" totes and messenger bags. I just recently purchased this ginko messenger bag from Queen Bee Creations. It's heavy duty, spacious, has just the right amount of pockets (too many and you can't find your stuff, too few and well, you still can't find your stuff!) and has great stitched details. I wonder if it's big enough for new mom's? I am also eyeing their wallets...
I also just got this jelly fish bag from The Outfit by artist Josh Cochran. It's silkscreened on the outside and has contrasting patterned fabric on the inside. I got mine at Double Dutch boutique in Baltimore, but also found it at this online boutique, Mod Cloth, as well. Apparently the bags were in limited edition, so they maybe hard to find! pssst- I heard that certain Urban Outfitters were carrying them as well. While perusing The Squidfire Art Mart last month, I discovered De Nada Designs, and snatched up this great purple vinyl bag with stitched skulls and awesome beaded handles. Just today I stumbled on this cute tote by MaryInk on etsy- perfect for the beach!


How I spent my weekend...

2 days of work, 1 tank of fuel for the weed wacker, 15 loads of mulch, 10 new plants, lot's of sweat= 1 less jungle in the front of the house. I'm so sore I can barely type this....
Have to pat myself on the back here, I did it all by myself! And now I fear I am getting sick- so off to the couch I go, I promise to write something much more interesting tomorrow!


It's ALMOST over- teaching that is! I've sat through my last faculty meeting, cleaned the darkroom up, updated curriculum, and done all those wonderful things that we educators are expected to do before heading out into the wilds of SUMMER VACATION!!!! As a gift to myself after getting paid for writing a grueling 15 pages of AP curriculum for the AP Audit (you don't want to know, really) I bought a kiln for enameling!!! Yay! It should be arriving any day now! I love enameling- because I love color, metal and fire, and this technique offers all three! I learned cloisonne first (the center green and pink piece), which was arguably the hardest and most tedious technique- I slaved over this first piece which was based on a microscopic image of the Avian flu virus. I would like to make more, more viruses pieces that is. I am thinking of doing a series on beautiful things that frighten me- Avian flu, cancer cells, Paris out on parole- the last one could be hard to replicate in glass...

While cloisonne and champleve are both very beautiful and definitely a mastered craft, I tend to like to be a bit more experimental. I loved using a silk screening-ish technique and making stencils. The pictures posted are of a few pieces where I sifted through stencils, or screens. I can't wait to get back to firing, so look for new pieces in my shop in a couple of weeks! For now you can see more of my enamels and other jewelry on my flickr page. Only a couple more hours till freedom!!


Something old, something new.....

I was inspired to write about plastic grocery bags today after making an appearance on the evening news yesterday- anybody catch me, anybody? I was walking out of the grocery store after getting my lunch, when approached by a t.v. crew and asked which I preferred, "paper or plastic," and what I did with them "after there intial use?" I replied , "I take both, when I get paper, I use it to hold recycle cardboard with, and are you sure you want to know about the plastic?" The reporter with her 3 inches of makeup and hot pink jacket nodded ever so enthusiastically. "ummm, I use the plastic to pick up my dogs poop with." Anybody catch it on the 6 o'clock news? Maybe they edited it out......
Anyhow, I found this artist who makes jewelry and cool light fixtures from plastic grocery bags. Much nicer use then mine! There is a brief article about her work on Treehugger.com.
Searching some more, I found these cool bags by Conserve, they are made from recycled plastic bags and actually look like leather. You can order one through Hip & Zen, a website that promotes green shopping, sustainability, and fair trade. These earrings from Tomate D'epingles aren't made from plastic bags, but they are made from old fabric and I love them all the same! Her work can be found on Mintd and Etsy.


For the lovers of all things canine....

Since I got started on pets yesterday I thought I'd continue with one of my most favorite purchases. Amelia Makes Art made these felted wool portraits of my Boxers, Coco and Mason. I sent her a couple of pictures and got back these adorable likenesses. She has such an eye for detail that she got all their markings right, and even gave Coco a tail! Check out my flickr page to see pics of the real Coco and Mason- it's pretty amazing! I recently commissioned Amelia to make a portrait of my parents little Jack Russell Terrier, who sadly passed away recently. It's nice way to remember the little guy.
I also found these really nice "eco friendly fleece" dog beds by Annie's Sweat Shop, that are made from recycled plastic and you fill the bed with your old pillow. They snap together so you can mix and match. I think they might be a bit small for Mason though! And I just love this collar by Lucky Fiona, I want a skirt or headband to match- awesome fabric! For the kitties I found these great zombie cat toys by Prairie Bird designs. And of course I luvvv this button, I'll be ordering one once I'm done posting!


Meet Miss Dandelion!

Meet Dandelion! She is a young dog I am sponsoring through the ASPCA
sponsor a pet program. I am a huge animal lover and have several rescued pets of my own. I also volunteer with Adopt A Boxer Rescue, rehabilitating and re-homing Boxers. I couldn't pass up sponsoring Dandelion, because of her name of course, and her heart wrenching story. I like to donate part of the proceeds I make from Dandelionblu jewelry, so for the next year a monthly portion will go to her! Check out the ASPCA's page for needy animals to sponsor if you would like to help too!

Babies, babies, everywhere!

There has been a rash of baby having within my circle of family and friends. Being "artsy," and without children of my own, I always feel the need to find something different. Something not so Disney-winnie-the-pooh-seasame-street-ish. My first stop was Urban Baby Runway, the best shop for fashion conscious moms and kids. I got these awesome baby legs there, and this cute onesie. URB is owned by the fabulous Mamac-ta, a stay at home Mom and small business owner extraordinaire- and she has a kick-ass sense of fashion! My next stop was to Fort Cloudy,
where I got the above hot pink guitar bib and a blue one for my new nephew. She hand embroiders the bibs, and carries other awesome baby gear. From there I clicked on over to Red Prairie Press, for some more handmade action. I am big a fan of pirates so I fell in love with these "eat yar peas" onesies. I am also a fan of the Red Prairie Press adult t-shirts as I realize I have 3 in my closet! These kids are going to have better wardrobes then me....!


I don't do malls....

by Circular Accessories

I was all set to write about my new forming class (which I will go into great detail about later!) when a friend asked me today where I did most of my clothing shopping, and if I wanted to go to the mall. I recoiled in horror at the mere mention of the "m" word, (alright not really, since I do enjoy me a little Target, Anthropologie, H&M thrown in the mix)and said "hell no, THEY are there." THEY meaning the darlings that I teach. THEY are always so shocked and amazed that WE actually leave the school, that WE don't spend all our free time plotting ways to ruin THEIR
lives with exams, and gasp, homework.

Now, for any of those who know me, it's obvious that I treat my friend's store Double Dutch in Hampden, as my closet. She has at times said that I am their best costumer,
and my husband would certainly agree. Double Dutch carries a lot of consignment items and local designers, so you can actually buy something and we won't be "twins" (how many of you did that in middle school? come on I know you are out there!)

But where else? So I looked down and realized that today I am wearing one of my most favorite t-shirts, hand silk screened by Circular Accessories. I have several of her designs, including the above goldfish shirt and the scissors. Another online store I buy from frequently is The Red Dress Shoppe. I go there for fun dresses and special occasions. I really love this Avalon Dress.

So where do you shop? come on give it up!


She Breaks Plates!

The Broken Plate Pendant
Originally uploaded by dandelionblu

Several years ago I inherited my Grandmother's China. My Grandfather worked for the State Dept. and so they lived all over the world. Being the wife of a Statesmen (sp?) my Grandmother was expected to host elaborate dinner parties for other important government types. When she died I inherited china settings for 20. Unfortunately, due to some careless and lazy movers 75% of the china was broken before it reached me. Unable to throw it out, but not sure what to do with it, the china has now been boxed up for years, moved to three different houses, and pondered over wondering what should be done with it. Enter The Broken Plate Pendant Co.!
I handed over broken shards of china and got back these two beautiful pendants! Juliet carefully composes which areas to break, finishes, and then sets each piece to be worn as a pendant or brooch. There is careful consideration given to how each piece will hang. She gives new life to broken plates! Check out her work at her etsy shop as well. Now, what to do with those 18 other broken plates.....


Almost ready!!!

Hi! I am almost done here and hope to be up and running smoothly by the end of the week. Big thanks to my friend mamac-ta for all her help and guidance!


Welcome to dandelionblu

We're just getting started! Here you will find store updates and some of our favorite products. For now, hop on over to the dandelionblu store to begin shopping for beautiful handmade jewelry and accessories.
Check back soon and add us to your blogrolls and bloglines to be notified of the latest dandelionblu has to offer.
For the Baltimore locals, you can see our goods in person at Double Dutch located in Hampden, Baltimore.