Saturday, May 29, 2010

Make Something Beautiful - Day 57

One of my favorite places to get fossils and stones is Dave's Rock Shop. It's worth a visit for the museum in the basement alone, but their selection of stone carvings, fossils, and beads is unbelievable.

On one of my many visits to the store, I came across a dendrite that I fell in love with. I finally turned it into a necklace:

I used enameled copper wire to make a prong setting for the piece. I really love the bronze color.

Aluminum chainmaille jewelry

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Einstein Biker Ring?

During one of my early-morning eBay searches for one of my various esoteric interests, I stumbled upon a biker ring featuring the face of Albert Einstein. No lie. Look!

I'm not sure how many bikers are fans of relativity or the EPR paradox so much that they would get an Einstein ring, but science nerds everywhere should rejoice.

Of course, if science isn't your bag, you can always get a ring of the Flying Spaghetti Monster...

Make Something Beautiful - Day 56

Years ago, I purchased some beautiful handcarved aragonite flowers from Fire Mountain Gems. Of course, I had no idea what to do with them. Since I love large, sculptural rings, I thought I'd make one. It was a pretty simply project--just wrapped some green wire around a ring mandrel and voila! Of course, wearing it does make typing semi-difficult.

Vanessa Walilko
Aluminum chainmaille jewelry

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Make Something Beautiful - Day 55

I had made a bracelet a few days ago using lapis lazuli flowers and butterflies, and I thought that today I would make a matching pendant.

Vanessa Walilko
Unique aluminum chainmaille jewelry

Monday, May 24, 2010

Make Something Beautiful - Day 54

I was looking for something repetitive to do since all of my epic projects are currently in the mentally exhausting "design as you work" stage. I decided to pick up knitting again, and made perhaps one of the most seasonally inappropriate things I've ever made. It was 90 degrees yesterday, and I wanted to make fuzzy armwarmers. Clearly the heat has already effected my brain functions. Oh well.

Unique aluminum chainmaille jewelry

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Make Something Beautiful - Day 53

Some time around 2002, I picked up a couple of fluorite skulls in Arizona. I always had the intention of making a ring out of them, but this project finally gave me a reason to do it.

I created a simple band because I wanted the focus to be on the stone itself, with its teal and dark purple coloring. I'm excited that a really simple prong setting holds the skull in place.

Unique Aluminum Chainmaille Jewelry

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Make Something Beautiful - Day 52

I woke up this morning to fog as thick as soup. Visibility was about 30 feet, maybe? Fog is really the spring/summer version of snow: everything is white, and you don't really want to go outside because you can't see too far in front of your face. The fog has started to lift, which means that the errands must get done. Tragic.

However, I did manage to get something done for the Make Something Beautiful project. I've been a slacker lately, making something every week or so, which was not what I intended. I have a ton of supplies that I've picked up over the years, and it's about time that I made something with them. In fact, several years ago I bought a piece of meteor glass that just rocks my world. With some simple wire wrapping, I made it into a pendant. It's amazing how easy it is to turn something that's just taking up space into something that has a use.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Make Something Beautiful - Day 51

I'm currently watching the setting sun cast the evening clouds in a magenta glow. It was a grey day, and it's nice to see some color in the sky.

Here's a new bracelet. I've had this idea for a while, and it's nice to finally see it realized:

Unique aluminum chainmaille jewelry

Friday, May 14, 2010

Make Something Beautiful - Day 50

I've been staring at a computer screen all day, so this will be a short post. I finished another aluminum and rubber ring bracelet for the speedweaving dragonscale tutorial I'm cooking up for Bead&Button. I can't believe that in a mere four weeks I'll be teaching my first class at the show. I'm very excited.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Epic beadwork

When I finished my scale mail cropped jacket, I was thrilled that it was done, but a little sad, too. What was I going to work on now? Well, I've decided to make a return to a few things that I haven't done a lot of in a while: sewing and beading.

My latest piece is a giant soft sculpture dragon with bead and stone embellishments. It's still in the preliminary stages, but I love the way the head is coming out with the carved stone horns and the lampwork eyes. Oh, and I was lucky enough to just have some orange fabric just sitting around that looks like scales. Hooray!

Also, I started work on Tiamat again. I just put on some This American Life of MST3K and bead away. I'm in the final third now, I just have to fill in the space around the cuneiform characters. There's a certain amount of meditative repetition that occurs with chainmaille. Not so with bead embroidery. I have to think so much about where the next splash of color is going to go that I can only work on it for a couple hours before getting frustrated and/or exhausted... but the payoff is worth it.

Vanessa Walilko

Make Something Beautiful - Day 49

I'll be honest, I needed a little break from making things after finishing the jacket. I just takes so much creative energy to finally put the last pieces on a project that has taken you--literally--months to finish.

That being said, here are some earrings: