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1  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Discussion and Questions / Sheet Metal Jewelry- Please Help! on: August 21, 2011 05:44:00 PM
I've been a jewelry designer for a while but worked mainly with vintage jewelry. Now, I'm slowly getting hooked onto making pieces out of sheet metal and have made a few already. However, I feel like I may be doing it wrong, here's why:

I use a tin snip (shears) to cut my pieces out. This ends up giving me raggedy lines that take way too long for me to file down. I use a round needle file, and a flat file, then I finish it off with a fine grit sandpaper. The edges still look wonky and amateurish to me. Plus, my hands are usually in agony when I'm done cutting.

I use a dremel drill to make my holes. The whole process is very nerve-wracking. The metal gets extremely hot, and then since it gets so hot, I use a piece of fabric to hold it without burning my hand, the piece ends up flying and spinning around once I get the drill through. The hole itself looks a bit rough and when I file, I end up scratching the surface around it a lot.

I love the look of the hammered metal, so I use a ball-peen hammer to give my pieces the texture. However, I keep finding all these nicks, dings, and scratches on the front surface (I hammer it on the back with the piece atop an anvil.) I finish all my pieces with a polishing tip on my dremel and a polish compound. It doesn't make the scratches go away.

What could I be doing wrong? It's nearly impossible for me to find any tutorials online. Most are for soda pop can aluminum and that's something I don't want to do, I'm pretty sure that my metal is just a little bit thicker than that since plain old scissors were recommended to cut soda pop cans. I can't remember exactly what gauge my metal is, it is either a 20 or 22.

Please help, I'm overwhelmed and very under-informed but oh-so-eager to try this new method!
2  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing in General: Discussion and Questions / Thread Dye Question, Please Help! on: July 03, 2011 07:43:39 AM
Excuse me if I placed this in the wrong forum, let me know where I can go if that's the case.

I really need some help. I've spent two days searching for answers on the internet and for once, my savvy search engine talent has failed me. I'm planning on dying a linen dress I have in a tea bath, but first, I need to make changes which means I need to sew it. To make a long story short, considering the construction of the dress and such and such, I simply have to sew it before I can dye it in a tea bath.

I know polyester thread doesn't take on dyes very well, so I searched around and found this thread that was marked 100% glaced cotton. Some research into this taught me that glaced cotton thread is cotton that's been treated with a wax. That's all I know though.

My big, important, burning question is will this glaced cotton thread take on the tea bath dye along with the fabric?

Please help me, discuss, educate me. I'm dying (pun intended) to get this dress done and I will send you all happy wishes and thoughts if I can get an answer!
3  Ohio / Ohio: Northeast / Artists Needed for Awesome Shows! on: July 25, 2009 10:33:54 AM
So, as a jewelry artist depending on shows and fairs, I've grown to be frustrated with the general crowd a usual "craft show"draws. You know, the typical grandmothers looking for crochet potholders and embroidered button-up tees. It has been a bit difficult to find shows and events that fit my market (that I can afford for now,) so instead, I will be running shows full of great art and unique objects. Vintage items are welcome too.

This is where you come in. If you feel the same way and have been looking for a venue that attracts a different, younger, or just more art-appreciative market, please contact me. The show dates are still yet to be decided, but in the meantime, I'm putting artist information on file so I have a contact once everything falls into place. It will be at least a month and a half or two months into the future, so there's no rush. You'll have plenty of time to prepare if needed.

Please let me know if you're interested, and include your name, a website you may have or pictures of your work, and an e-mail address and phone number I can use to contact you. You can leave information but don't feel like you are obligated to say yes if I contact you down the line and you find you can't do the show. However, there will be more shows in the future and I would love to stay in touch.

Shows will be in Solon, Hudson, Twinsburg, Chagrin Falls, and other outlying areas.

PM me or e-mail me at Beatrice@BirdcageBohemia.com. Hope to hear from you!

Edit: There are tentative dates for mid-September. To learn more, please visit my blog at: http://anisaexperience.wordpress.com/
4  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Re-Vintaged Jewelry! Kind of pic heavy! on: April 14, 2009 04:45:30 PM
I made all of these using parts of vintage jewelry and found objects. I hope you guys like them! I think they're cute but have always wondered if I'm blinded to their actual ugliness.

A note: I did this in my bedroom with poor lighting and I was kind of in a hurry. Result? Blurry pictures and hard to see details, I'm sorry.  Sad

This is one of my favorites. I found these heavy green stones at an antique store in Arizona along with the gold balls. I call them dimpled gold balls. I'm pretty proud of the results!

I made this using an old metal heart pendant, silver teardrop hoop, and a small silver feather charm. It's so pretty and delicate.

For the hippie I have hidden inside of me, I constructed this awesome bracelet. It's hard to envision how it would look around your wrist but I'll try my best to explain. It's supposed to wrap around your wrist about three times. One of the "layers" would be that gold chain you see kind of stretching out in front of the leather. Does that make sense?

I am in love with the two doves and heart link. I found the gold chain and charms and wooden beads off a huge and ugly necklace from a vintage store in D.C.

It looks kind of boring and bland here but when you put them on, they actually look really cute. The red wooden beads came from a necklace I got in Poland and the brown wooden beads were something I had lying around. The seed beads are gold and clear and came off another vintage necklace.

Thank you for looking! Please comment, criticize, say hi, or rhapsodize about the meaning of life. I really want to hear from you.
5  Ohio / Ohio: Northeast / Craft Shows/Festivals/Flea Markets around Cleveland and Akron! on: March 03, 2009 07:28:56 PM
Am I the only one who thinks this or is it really hard to find craft shows and festivals for a certain area online? I get the most confusing results when I do a search, and then I have to go find more information on a show I read about. Argh. To make my (and other Clevelanders and Akronites') life easier, I would love if we could start a thread where we can post craft shows, festivals, and flea markets we know about. I would appreciate it so much and I'm sure other people will too.

To start us off, I'll list a couple things I heard about:

Streetsboro Flea Market - http://www.streetsborofleamarket.net/index.htm

Hartville Flea Market - http://www.hartvillefleamarket.com/outdoor_vending.php

Crocker Park Fine Arts Fair - http://www.crockerpark.com/events.php?id=253

If anyone knows any other shows, please, please, please post them here!
6  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Discussion and Questions / Questions about Quality of Findings on: January 29, 2009 07:17:18 PM
I have a few questions about what type of findings I should use. The findings go towards pieces I make to sell. However, I'm relatively new to the world of jewelry making and am not quite sure on what to use.

1. What is the difference between silver and gold-plated wires (and earrings,) and sterling silver and gold-filled wires (and earrings.) I was working with some gold headpins and tried to make a loop when I scraped all the gold off it. Would that have been a gold-plated headpin?

2. What does the coil and ball do in an ear wire hook. I was looking at a few flat ear wires with just a ball and think they look much cuter than the conventional coil and ball one but didn't know if it meant "lower quality." Any explanations?

3. What are the differences between half-hard wires and dead-soft wire? I know dead-soft wire is extremely malleable and easy to bend and half-hard would probably be less so. However, how would you use each in a project?

I would appreciate any answer for any one of these questions. As a someone just starting out, I need all the help I can get. I'm looking for better quality but price is also in play, as most of you can probably emphasize. Thank you so much for reading and answering!
7  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Stitch And BOTCH / Curse of the Two Fabric Pieces on: May 02, 2008 08:30:56 PM
Is it just me...?

Whenever I go to sew two piece of fabric together of exactly equal length that's meant to be hemmed at the bottom or whatever, I always, always, always end up with one fabric end being about an inch or two longer than the other fabric.

I've tried everything! Lowering the feed dog, trying not to pull at the fabric, or pulling at both fabric pieces at the same time, everything!

*Sigh* I think I'm cursed.

And I need some help: after selling my soul and selling out making ugly-assed clothes for my first year in fashion design, I have officially lost all desire to even pick up a piece of fabric and imagine something pretty in it. This has led me to leaving that major. I have to say, I'm extremely disappointed in my lack of motivation to sew now...
8  Ohio / Ohio: Northeast / Twinsburg, Solon, Hudson, Aurora, Macedonia?? on: May 01, 2008 08:51:41 PM
Anyone from these areas or close to it? I'm thinking that we should set up some meetings for crafting, knitting, swapping, griping about projects that aren't working, etc. It's a great idea and a wonderful way to network if we ever needed to!
9  COOKING / Dessert / baking tricks and substitutions on: April 19, 2008 06:04:08 AM
Hey everyone!

I've been working on chocolate chip cookies that would be significantly lower in fat and healthier than regular chocolate chip cookies. So far, all I can think of in terms of subbing ingredients are:

1/2 the amount of butter subbed by avocado
whole grain flour instead of regular white flour

Er. That's it so far. I heard of using apple sauce and pureed fruit but those are good substitutes if you are using oil in the batter, not butter. Avocado and pumpkin puree are better for butter substitutes. I don't like using margarine or low fat butter because they tend to be more watery and the batter becomes thin.

If anyone has any suggestions for substitutions. Please, please, please, let me know. It will not go unappreciated!
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