Friday, April 29, 2011

Of Rustic Stones...

I love rough-cut stones, surface texture and mottled color. These are Purple Spiny Oyster earrings with unusual oval oyster shell stones. Spiny oyster is usually found near Mexico.

The rectangular dangles at the bottom of this pair are of reticulated silver -- a special formulation of silver that ripples and textures under the heat of my torch. I've left a smoky patina on them as a perfect complement to the wine red of the spiny oyster.

I've been listing quite a few new pieces with rustic stones on my Etsy shop. Please follow this link to see more!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Imagined Botanicals

This Flower Garden Pendant is a fun little piece with lots of texture and interest. Made of copper, sterling and brass. See more details on my Etsy shop:

Monday, April 25, 2011

New on my Etsy shop!

This Garden Pendant was made by several methods. Hand-stamping, soldering hand-cut elements, applique. It depicts a cultivated flower and a dandelion weed coexisting in the same patch.

Made of copper and sterling silver, it hangs from a 20" sterling chain with sterling clasp. Available in my Etsy shop:

Sunday, April 24, 2011

I thought I'd show you another view of this interesting necklace. It's very 'hardware-y,' with lots of methods combined into a whole.

You can view the whole necklace on my Etsy shop. The center blossom is of fold-formed copper. 

The stones are faceted and smooth lemon quartz. Textured metal (copper and sterling) and wirewrapping pull it all together.

This Daisy Chain Pendant is made of copper, brass and sterling silver.

The top blossom is copper with a sterling center. The other two blossoms are of brass, but their patina makes them look more like copper. They also have sterling centers.

The newest in my Imagined Botanical series and available on my Etsy shop.

Friday, April 22, 2011

This is my abstract Jellyfish Pendant, a new view of it. At its center is a stack of metal disks, copper and sterling, riveted together by its fastener/bail.

Completely cold-connected, its dangles are bits of stamped and wire-bent copper dangling from bold sterling jumprings.

Its neckwire is copperplate and 15" long, so that the Jellyfish hangs from the notch of your neck. The pendant itself is approx. 3.25" long.

I like movement in my work, and this pieces swings easily when you move.

It is available on my Etsy shop.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Link to my Etsy shop

Follow this link to my online shop!

This tabular pendant is made with brass and copper and hangs on a sterling chain. I cut, stamped and formed the brass flower and leaf and soldered them to a curved coppery tab.

This has been drilled and polished. Its patina comes from the heat of my torch. I've attached the chain with sterling jumprings and it features a small sterling toggle clasp.

It is about 1.5" x 1.5" and the whole necklace is approx. 18" long. Available on my Etsy shop.

Feeling more familiar with my camera...

For some reason, learning how to take photos of my work and upload them to my Etsy shop was very intimidating to me. But I'm happy to report that I'm getting more comfortable and familiar with it and look forward to it each day.

At last, I am getting many of the things I've already made uploaded onto Etsy. Soon I will finish this phase and then turn to my studio to create new things for my shop.

As of today, I have 20 items listed! More will soon follow.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Sterling Silver Cluster Earrings composed of squiggles and rings.

A really fun, movable pair, they shape-shift constantly. About 2.5" from top of the handmade sterling earwires to the bottom of the lowest dangle.

Whimsy for your ears, easy to wear every day. And available on my Etsy shop!

Geezer Chicks in Cyberspace

Sometimes my 'youngish' husband doesn't like it when I refer to myself as a 'geezer chick,' but I am amused by this moniker. To me, it connotes women of a certain age who are still around and kicking, still reinventing themselves and learning new things, and who still understand that even at this 'late' stage, many of us are starting new businesses and new lives.

It's been noted recently that the new online platforms are encouraging a whole new community of entrepreneurs who may be reaching the early edges of 'retirement,' but who definitely have enough life left in them to act on a dream, flesh out some ideas that have been churning, or to just take a chance and see what else life has to offer.

I'm proud and awed by the young set, who actually invented these platforms -- and of all the young entrepreneurs who inhabit them. But, seven years into the existence of  Facebook, we have seen it morph from a 'facemash' meetup system to an unlimited platform for every sort of endeavor. And the old set has signed on and also made it theirs.

Websites, Etsy, PayPal, LinkedIn, Twitter, Myspace, and, of course, Facebook network us together. Who would have suspected that an advanced platform like Etsy would be the very way to sell cottage-craft goods made by hand?

It is the 'Boomers' who have had to play catch-up, to get back into the game. Many of my friends have balked, but many more have plunged ahead. It's been a fun, if not nerve-wracking, process.

And so, begin to catch-up we have. Amazingly accomplished middle-aged artists are now in cyberspace. They excel in every craft category. They have had enough time to ply their craft, to develop their point of view, to master their materials, and now to market these creations in new ways undreamed-of by them when they were young adults.

I like to say that I was always waiting for 3 modern things to show up: the inexpensive calculator, the cell phone and Facebook. I am so glad I've lived to see them arrive! It is as much fun playing with them and developing my new business around them as it is to hunker down in my studio to create the art jewelry I sell.

And I am not alone. And I believe my ranks will swell as more and more 'geezer chicks' find their way to cyberspace to market their art. 'Geezer dudes' will, too. It is the way of today and the future.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

This delightful little copper pendant is my Thistle Pinwheel pendant. It's about the size of a quarter and boasts a rosy heat patina from my torch. It's also been through my tumbler to soften its edges and the patina.

I hand-stamped the center design from texture tools I've made.

It dangles from a sterling chain which features a small sterling toggle clasp. The chain is approx. 18" long.

It's available on my Etsy shop!

Learning my way around my camera...

I think I promised you this blog and my Etsy shop would be a journey. And so I'll be reporting on the new things I'm learning to do as I go. 

Not being a 'digital native,' and having been born long before there were even phone answer machines (much less voicemail, personal computers, cell phones and everything else we all use now), I've been busy playing catch-up on technology for the past decade.

This week I began to conquer my first digital camera and to upload my first images. I'd played around on another digital camera a little bit and had barely learned how to upload things from my hard drive. But now I'm happy to report that I've mostly figured out my new camera and have banged my way through the computer part. I don't score a perfect pic every time, but I intend to keep working at it and to replace early pics with better ones as they come.

I added several new pics to my Etsy shop today and will be posting one of those shots on this blog. Very pleased, and not nearly so nervous now!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Sunflower Pendant... the blossom reminds me of a pinwheel.  It and one leaf are brass. The other leaf is copper. The center of the blossom and the stem are sterling silver.

I make my own texturing tools, which I use with a hammer to impress patterns into the metal.

Both the yellow brass and copper bear heat patinas from my torch. The sterling is bright.

Imagined Botanicals in Metal

I have an upcoming series of metal botanicals currently uploading to my Etsy shop:

My Sunflower Pendant is the first of the new blossoms and leaves I am rushing to photograph.

It is fabricated from brass, sterling silver and copper. I cut each element from sheet metal and then textured, formed and soldered it. The pendant hangs from an 18" sterling chain which features a small sterling toggle clasp. 

The pendant itself is approximately 2.5" long and 1.5" wide. 

Don't you love its patina and whimsical nature?

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Handmade copper Dogwood Blossom pendant...

I cut the metal by sawing it into a dogwood blossom shape. After polishing the edges, I textured it with a small dot punch I've made. I soldered a convex textured sterling dome in the middle. Then I formed the petals on a half-pipe dapping tool and drilled holes for the sterling chain's attachment. The copper's patina comes from brushing my torch lightly over the copper. It spent time in my tumbler to soften the patina and shine the sterling.

Telling stories in metal

I love to work in many media: paint, beads, crochet, graphics...  But my passion is for making metal jewelry. After running Humidity Gallery in Tallahassee, FL, for the past four years, I have just returned to my own studio to pursue my passsion.

The work I love best are the pieces that evoke a story. Not literally. But that lean in that direction and encourage the viewer/wearer to embue the piece with ideas from her/his own life.

I live in a leafy, mulchy region that inspires me, and have been interested in producing pieces that seem like they were scuffed up from the mulch with your toe. Artifacts... something from nature. 

Copper is my favorite metal. I use it with sterling in mixed-metal work. It supplies color, patina, texture and contrast. I own more than 30 hammers, with which I torture and shape metals.  I solder and apply color with an acetylene torch. And I assemble the metal pieces into larger works, creating my own findings along the way.

The beginning of my current collection is seen in my Etsy shop: CityRusticJewelry.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

My Etsy shop launched today

After a rather breathless afternoon of uploading pics and copy to my Etsy shop, it was launched! A whole lot of learning curve later, I was finally to that point. It was such a thrill to see 10 pieces of my work uploaded and ready for purchase.

In the near future, I'll be shooting and uploading more work. Off to buy a new digital camera tomorrow... and then, another learning curve!

Meanwhile, on Day One on Etsy, a fellow Etsy artist selected this copper Dogwood Blossom Pendant to include in her Etsy treasury, 'Trees Blossom.' Thank you, Herina! You made my day.

Please share all of my online sites with your friends so my work can be 'found' in cyberspace! Thanks.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

My new Etsy shop avatar...

I am actively developing my new Etsy shop: CityRustic Jewelry. Working on its infrastructure. Tomorrow I will complete its payment set-up and shipping system, and then I will finally start to upload my artwork for sale.

Its web address is:

Below is the new avatar for the shop. Sharri Moroshok took the photo.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Thanks for coming on the journey!

In these early days of City/Rustic Jewelry, everything is in startup and there's always something to be working on. Today, I met with a friend who's doing my photography for my blog and upcoming Etsy shop. I've spent the evening trying to upload some apps to my Facebook page. And figured out a way to get a Twitter button onto the blog. 

It's an exciting time, designing online entities and studio jewelry that works in this way.

I've loved returning to hammering metal. But, wanting to grow old with my craft, I'm making some decisions about how and what to hammer! Instead of forging heavy-gauge metal, I'm instead constructing lighter pieces with hammered textures.

I've been working in copper, because I love its warmth and how easily it colors with heat. But I took a poll on my Facebook page and sterling silver was the clear choice for my fans. And so, I will be turning to designs in silver-only next, to coordinate with the copper already in my collection.

Stay tuned for photos of new works very soon!

City/Rustic News: Follow me on Twitter and Facebook!

City/Rustic News: Follow me on Twitter and Facebook!

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Sunday, April 3, 2011

Green Kyanite necklace... This necklace is composed of rustic green kyanite spears hand-knotted with synthetic silk. It features a handcrafted sterling silver 'spiral clasp.'

I love to hand-knot rough-cut semi-precious gemstones and make my own silver findings. Don't you just love the luscious greens in these kyanite spears? There's a heft to this particular kyanite necklace, but I have others which are lighter. My upcoming Etsy shop is currently in development, and necklaces like these will be featured for sale there.   --tana

Introducing my new website/landing page!

Every single part of my new art business is in start-up mode right now, competing for space in my brain. Today, I'm so happy to announce that my new landing page is 'live.' Web designer Julie Walker has done a gorgeous job on its design and Sharri Moroshok's photos enliven it.

Its address: 

You'll find several more examples of my work on this new site.

And more is to come. Next, I turn my attention to my developing Etsy shop. This will likely take about a week to 10 days to launch. Busy week ahead!

And, I've updated my artist profile on my blog.