Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Transformation of an Earring Card

I have been using my vertical business cards for my earring cards for a couple of years. I absolutely adore my business cards, but it was finally brought to my attention that earrings get lost with the busy background of the card. Duh! I can't believe I didn't see that, I was so gaga over the cards. So I set out on an endeavor to re-invent my earring cards. This, I found out, was no easy feat.

I wanted to make the card simple enough to let the earrings be seen, yet still keep the look of my business cards. I contacted the person that designed my logo and found out that the font she used was no longer available, so that squashed the idea of starting from scratch. I knew I was going to have to somehow use existing cards. When I had my cards printed at, I also had several of the mini-moo cards printed to use as a hang tag for necklaces, bracelets, etc. I determined that if I could find a way to use the mini-moo card in the design, I'd have the best of both worlds.

This is my mini-moo. It looks like a small business card only longer.

Here's what I did:

I purchased a jumbo 3.5" craft punch at Hobby Lobby. I printed out "Sterling Silver" on white cover stock paper and then cut out the shape with the jumbo craft punch.

I inserted two of the white punched out pieces into am embossing folder and ran it through my Vintaj BigKick machine, embossing the punch with a pretty embossed design to give it some texture without adding color. I also printed my contact information on brown card stock for the back of the earring card.

I turned the white punch over and attached ultra-thin glue dots on the back (two on each of the bottom corners and one top center), then attached the back of the white punch to the front of the brown card stock, lining up the bottom and sides.

I applied two more glue dots to the top left and top right corners of the front of the earring card, attached one to the back of the mini-moo at the bottom edge of the mini-moo card, and placed it on the earring card, lining up the top and sides.

The mini-moo is longer than the earring card is wide, so I turned the earring card over and trimmed the part sticking out.

I attached an adhesive back earring adapter and Voila!! It has the look of my business cards, yet it's not too fussy so the earrings really pop.

Thanks go out to my fellow SRAJD (Self-Representing Artists in Jewelry Design) for throwing around ideas, and especially to Shelly Owen and Jen Smith Fletcher for really giving me a push!

Monday, September 2, 2013

All in a Day's Work

No day off for me on Labor Day :<[ I had a long list of things to accomplish in the studio, but I seemed to have forgotten about one thing - my inventory reconciliation for the art gallery was due yesterday, and I hadn't even started, so of course that was first on my checklist. Sad thing is I found several discrepancies. Hopefully they'll still honor it and pay me for the missing items, even though I was technically one day late with my response.

My Lortone tumbler that I've had all of one week is going bye-bye. The seller on eBay said it was "gently used" - HA! I plugged it in and 4 minutes into the cycle and belt came off. My very handy husband took the cover off, put the belt back in place, tightened things up, yada yada... you get it. It ran for an hour with no problem. The next day I went to use it, and 3 minutes into it the same thing. Cover off, belt back on..... enough said. He said it could be that it's just worn out. How can a "gently used" item be worn out. It's going back to the eBay seller for a refund. Now to find a replacement as cheap!

I've been trying several new techniques, trying to narrow down my niche. However, this is not a very good place to be when you have a show in just under 4 weeks and you feel like you're scattered hither and yon with nothing much to show for it.

One of the things I'm experimenting with is different patinas on copper. Saturday I tried a technique using cedar ped bedding and vinegar that took FOREVER, so possibly I didn't prepare the metal correctly for it to adhere. More than 48 hours later, some of the items have very little patina. However, the focal part did turn out fairly decent.

Another design I'm playing around with is cigar band rings. I cut out an oblong shape of copper using my jeweler's saw, and after sanding, sanding, and just a little more sanding, I then embossed the metal with a cool design. I shape it into a ring, antiqued it in liver of sulphur and then ran it through my "now history" Lortone tumbler to work-harden the metal. The picture on the left is straight out of the tumbler, before polishing. The picture on the right has been somewhat polished (my arms got tired, will try more later).