Finding My Magick

It's something I yearn for, dream of, contemplate, desire.

It is Native American, Pagan, Druid, African and so many other religions, cultures and heritages that I do not know.

It is a sensing... intense, sad, powerful, energizing, invigorating, healing, loving, longing, warm, aching, creating, beautiful.

It is leather, bones, copper, silver, aged, wise, hammered, soft, hard, flowing.

It calls to me.

One day I will find and truly understand my Magick.

One day soon I hope.

More wire work

I hope you are all doing most wonderfully today!

I'm doing good and keeping busy as ever. I'm still working on photographing and listing (and cleaning and organizing and.... ). This is the second time I've set up an Etsy shop, though I've got more to list the second time around. I forgot how much work it takes to get it all going. I keep thinking that I can't imagine putting this many hours into the computer, with no creating time. Then I just have to remember that once it's all listed, I get to make things and list them as I finish them. I will get to make things again!

Here is one of my recent listings. I was going to show you more, but either blogger or my connection is getting in the way!

This is my first wrap with balled wire ends that I heated up with a torch. It was fun and I'll probably play with it more one of these days. I just adore that slice of watermelon tourmaline though. It's a bitty thing and so pretty! I have a good number of slices that I can't wait to make into a very rich and colorful necklace one of these days.

Sweet Dreams...

Muscovite Joy Ride

I've called this one Muscovite Joy Ride because I can't help but think of a roller coaster when I look at the wire weaving around and around. It makes me smile.
This is one that I've really enjoyed looking at and haven't wanted to sell, but I'm finally ready to let it move on.
Farewell sweet muscovite!

6 Things

I saw this on a a wonderful artists site: Lorelei's Blog: In side the Studio. I thought I'd pass it on to you:)

How it works: I will answer the below very random questions - then you can answer the questions as a comment. Feel free to post to your blog and carry it on.

1. Today I feel... Pretty good and focused on improving my jewelry photography!

2. This week... I'm going to get a step closer to organized, hang out with friends and get some work done.

3. Last night...I worked on jewelry photos and read a good book. Hmmmm... I'm sensing a jewelry theme here.

4. Lately the song stuck in my head is... Nothing in particular which is nice for a change.

5.My favorite pet memory is ...I'd have to say it's more of a combination of "Little Cat's" life all rolled up in to one warm and marvelous memory. It's sad and wonderful.

6. What is currently at the top of your Christmas wish list?...Okay, this sounds crazy, but when I read this question, I realized my answer was...nothing! That was a pretty cool thought. Guess it's because I'm in the process of trying to get rid of stuff?

Fairly recent jewelry pieces

Since I'm not being able to make jewelry, I'm slowly working on photographing some. Here are a couple of pieces I've made in the last 6 months or so. The first is a sweet piece of malachite wrapped in silver and the second is one of my goddess/angel/fairy beings that is part of a new series called "The Winged Ones" I was having lots of fun with those before I had to take a break!

It'll be interesting to see how much I can get done photo-wise. I can so easily get distracted by all the other FUN things that I could be doing! But, I do need to keep up the photos so that I have something to share with you:-) I could just ramble and ramble on without sharing photos, but what fun is that? Well, okay, that can be fun too.
Ooookaaaayyyyy... back to work for me!

Not helping! (but she thinks she is)

Need I say more?

Oh but I must. Isn't she just the cutest thing? I know you dog people may be rolling your eyes, but I can't help it!

If you don't know, this is a light tent for photographing jewelry. It's a place one likes to keep very clean and lint free. Hmmm....

Home, sweet home

Don't get me wrong, I love visiting my family though this last trip was under fairly stressful circumstances, which are significantly less stressful now. I jumped on a plane in quite a rush when I went out there, leaving things here in a bit of a chaotic mess. You know, I honestly don't know who I pray to - I'm still working on that part of my life - but I do have my own form of prayer, and I feel blessed and am so thankful that my mom is doing well. I am always aware of how blessed I am in my life, but right now, I'm a bit more thankful than usual:)

I sure am enjoying being back in the hills now. It's getting a bit chilly here, especially over in my computer corner where I'm typing away, but damn I missed the trees and mountains! Not to mention cats and partner:) While away, I came to appreciate and yearn for central heat, stores being a mere 5 minutes away, significantly more affordable housing, being in a "town". But as soon as I arrived home, I remembered why I live way out here in the middle of nowhere. It's me. It can be hard, it can be cold and frustrating, but it is so beautiful in so many ways. I love that we get most of our electricity from solar panels. As much as I hate lugging firewood around, I cherish the heat that a woodstove puts out. There's nothing like curling up in that glowing warmth and reading a good book.

So yes, I'm happy to be home:) The one thing I'm not happy about is that my carpal tunnel is kicking my butt again. I was really enjoying working on some custom orders on my travels home and then one day my hands screamed, "NO MORE!" So now, I walk around babying this sad little wrist -- at least it's only one wrist right now! Carrying firewood in with one hand isn't the most fun, but it will only last for so long. For now I await the doctor's visit where I will get a referral to either have the CT surgery or go with another cortizone type shot. I can't decide which way I want to go, but one or the other will be very welcome!

I can't even tell you how much I want to be making jewelry right now! GRRRRRRrrrrr!!

Instead I will try to focus on everything else jewelry related. I have so many pieces that I've never photographed and put online. Maybe now I'll get a chance to get it done! I'm so bad... a bit of a hoarder of finished pieces. It's not that I don't want to let them go, I'm just awful at making that happen. In my perfect world I would make my stuff then hand it to someone else to do all the marketing and selling. Problem with that (well aside from I can't afford it) is that I'd miss out on connecting with people. I love the people I meet online in the various jewelry communities I am a part of and I certainly love meeting people who are interested in my work.

I wouldn't trade a thing if it meant losing my online friends. It's funny how meeting folks online goes. I mean, I know that a lot of us wouldn't ever meet if we were out in the world. Whether it be how we look, where we live, what we believe in, what we do - there are so many things that sadly separate us. I appreciate this virtual place where we can just be who we are at heart. At least I hope that is who you are being - I believe I am. I appreciate this place that I can type away without worrying about anything but what comes from within. In my physical world, I'm not the prettiest, I'm shy, I'm depressed, I'm disabled. - I've got my issues. I'm also caring, loving, creative, a good friend and a pretty decent person. We are all so much! I guess all my rambling is coming to the sappy conclusion that I love you guys, I appreciate all that I have and that we have together. Okay now.. enough that crap!!

Happy being, creating, loving, sharing... (see, I just can't stop!)....

Business name change and life in general

Hey all,
Just a couple of things I wanted to let you know about. The first thing is that I've been away from home for awhile on family business, so I've not been very active online. I hope to be back at it soon though! I've been real busy here, but am still finding time to squeeze in a little jewelry work when I can. I KNOW you know how that is.

The other news is that I've changed business names. It's been a bit of a journey for me -- choosing the right name. About as hard for me as figuring out who I "am" or what the meaning of life is. LOL.. okay not quite that bad, but it's up there. On Etsy, I went from "Shay Stone" to "Heart & Stone" and finally now to "All-That-I-Am". It's been a search to try to convey what I feel like creating is all about for me; how what we make represents us and our histories and experiences; how a bit of "all of us" goes into everything that we do. And on the other side is the buyer and their connection with something they fall in love with. I want something I've made to both represent "all that I am" as well as for the buyer "all that they are". When we both feel that connection through this creation, life is good:)

So anyway.. Woo Hoo! I'm there. I haven't made it official on the license yet because I'm still stumped with the ending.

What do you think?

All-That-I-Am Handcrafted Jewelry
All-That-I-Am Jewelry
All-That-I-Am Jewelry Designs
All-That-I-Am Creations

All-That-I-Am...???? Anything else?

I'd love to hear your input. I am trying to show that it is jewelry that I make, though it does make for a long name!

I hope you are doing great and if you are not, that it comes to you soon:)

A long overdue rain

I've always been fascinated by drops of water on plants, or on anything for that matter. The way it balls up and stays in that wonderfully rounded shape. Or the way it joins together with another drop to become a larger beautiful bubble of water.

I took these photos in my garden yesterday after we had a very much needed rain.

The second round of glass beads

Here are the results of my second time playing with glass and fire. In this one above I used a reduction frit and silver foil. I have no idea if those are the correct terms, but thats what I remember! The dark dots in the center are where the little flecks of frit made contact with the hot bead and melted in. Pretty neat huh? I don't even understand exactly what chemical process is happening yet but I think it has something to do with bringing metals out of the colored glass. The wild thing is that you need to change the flame to make the process work. If I remember correctly the mixture of oxygen/propane is made more propane rich to become a reduction flame. I've got to do some reading on it to get my facts straight though.

I sure am enjoying whatever time I get to make these beads. Right now it's about 3 hours a week. I'm sure if I had my own studio it would be more like 3 hours a day!

Here are the rest of the beads:)

Custom Watch Band

This is a watch band I made for a woman that I met in my lampworking class. She saw a couple of pieces that I was wearing and really enjoyed the style of the spirals as they remind her of ferns which are her love and topic of lecture at local colleges. Forgive me Ruth, I can't remember what exactly you teach except that it is about ferns! lol..

The watch was an anniversary gift from her husband about 15 years ago and I feel honored that she asked me to create a band for it. Previously it had a reversable band of black and brown leather. This was particularly a fun piece to make because I've never done a watch band and it provided more than one challenge I had to work through.

After I got the silver on the band done, Ruth chose the array of tourmaline colors that you see here. Hopefully she's going to love it! I get to give it to her tomorrow. I think I'll appreciate it even more when the wire ages a bit and it gets a bit of a patina going to match the dark and light areas of the watch face.

Here are some more images:

The First Glass Beads (you asked for it!)

Now somebody who knows what they are doing would most likely cringe at the above close up of a bead, but I think it's awesome!

On Sunday I went to the glass studio for the second time. It was an open studio and I was the only one that showed up so I got to play at the torch for a few hours and chat with the instructor about making beads and cats (he has 5 very cute kitties).

Here are two of them:

It was a great day and I get to go do it again next Sunday (very excited). While there, I made seven more beads and I think I got a little closer to getting them round at least. I'm not playing with a real broad color selection so the colors aren't my favorites, but its all about learning the techniques right now. I did learn a new technique to kind of spin one color into another making a spiraly, wavy kinda thing. Can't wait to see them next week!

So... Here are some photos of the 2 beads that I made on the first day of class, thus my first glass beads:) They have their issues and they haven't had their holes cleaned out, but here they are in all their glory.

I'm still pounding away at the wire creating too. Right now I'm working on a custom watch band for a woman I met at the first lampworking class as well as some cute little angel/fairy/goddess kind of things. Photos and posts soon to come!

My First Lampworking Class

It was pretty darn cool watching glass melt into this colorless raging hot orange molten glob. Mesmerizing to say the least. Getting the hot glass onto the mandrel (metal rod that you make the bead on), was fun, but I'll tell ya, I am definitely round bead challenged!

I found this class through our county yahoo group. I was pretty thrilled to say the least and nervous because I hadn't done anything as a newbie in a long time. I've tended to stay away from things other than wire working because I have a history of going full force into each new medium that I try and then I have too much crap and not enough time to play with said crap.
I mean, I could do wirework alone for so many years and never hit a limit.

I've thought about getting into PMC and lampworking for years, but due to money and time constraint I haven't done it. This time I did it anyway. Yay! The class took place in Willits, CA with artist Matt Marchand. He has a sweet little studio that fits 6 people. It's in his garage with lots of open doors and windows for ventilation. Here's a photo of the studio and my classmates (I am hiding behind the camera as I so enjoy doing!)
I found the emotional process I went through before and after this class really interesting.

At the beginning I was utterly excited - and into the class as well. Of course I couldn't do much well being it was my first time, but I was okay with that. By the end of the day though, I think I was just plain tired and maybe a bit frustrated and went home thinking , 'I am so thrilled that I'm not in love with lampworking!' I was happy because I wouldn't have to worry about creating a suitable studio, spending money, taking time away from other things, etc. Then, as the evening wore on I could... not... stop... thinking about it! Obsessed is the only word that comes to mind. Day and night all I could think about was getting back to that flame. I wondered if it was just me romanticizing the process and my love of master glassworkers pieces, or if I really can't wait to do it again. I dare say I've driven my partner just a little bit crazy! lol.

In any case, there wasn't much I could do about it because I don't have facilities available to try it again until our teacher Matt has open studio hours which (yay!) are coming up next Sunday. I think I need to seriously play with the glass a few more times to see where my heart really is. Is it in love or in lust? Time will tell. In the mean time, here are 2 more photos from class. One is just a pile of glass scraps that I couldn't stop trying to figure out a way to use them! They are so pretty to look at. The second is my funny attempt at making stringers, which are essentially hot glass pulled apart so that it thins in the middle -kind of like pulling taffy apart I think? These ones were made with two colors so that we twisted them as we pulled them apart. Pretty neat huh? In the end they are used for decorating beads.

Unfortunately I have no finished beads to show because it was a one day class and we couldn't take our beads home until they were properly annealed, which takes some hours. We were also just working with a lot of practice glass and I don't even know if I'll be able to recognize any of what I made! I'll check it out when I go to the studio next week though - maybe I'll be able to recognize my own bit of off-round craziness!

A Finished Bracelet

First let me say... "WooHoo!! I finished something!" I've been having a teeny little problem in that area lately. LOL. And actually taking pictures of finished pieces? Well that's a whole 'nother story.

This is the maybe the 3rd or 4th bracelet I've made over the years. I usually make pendants, but I had so much fun with this that I'm sure I will have to make more.

It is made with Argentium sterling silver wire, sapphires and emeralds. I thought about adding in a third color, but for now, this is it, I kinda like just the blue and green. This is one of those pieces that challenges me in pricing for sale because it took me so long to weave. It's one of those moments where you realize that being someone who loves to make one of a kind pieces without pre-planning a design, doesn't much leave you able to cover the cost of labor because each step in creating is a little slower than if I were doing a similar thing each time.

I'm beginning to adjust to that fact in pricing jewelry. I'd rather get paid for my time at a reasonable rate, but I'd also rather see my pieces on someone else other than myself! lol.. But for now, this baby is mine:)

As an afterthought, now I'm wondering, would any of you like to through some prices around since you don't know any of the creating details?

Here are a couple of "in action" photos:

And here are a couple more of the finished piece. Thanks for looking:)

New bracelet in the works

Here's a bit of what I'm working on right now. Its a bracelet made up of Argentium sterling silver wire, Karen Hill Tribe silver beads, and emerald and sapphire beads. I'm doing little bits on it each day and really enjoying it. I may add another gemstone to it -- garnet perhaps? Your guess is as good as mine as to how it will turn out!

Full of Wildlife

We've been having all kinds of raccoon and snake activity around here lately. I've been trying to catch and relocate a snake, but this one has been eluding me -- the nerve! The raccoons are a pair who were first hanging around a couple of weeks ago. I've shot a number of photos of them while they've been checking everything out.

First they were under the deck and on the ground, then as you see the photos of them looking through the window, they are staring at me while I'm working on jewelry! I find their behavior so fascinating and think they are adorably cute, but not good to have around. I've seen them fighting with one another and they are downright vicious. We are being very careful about when we let the kitties out and are watching them especially after run ins with the rattlesnake.

To top it off, one of the raccoons was in our garden eating the strawberries this morning in daylight! We were shocked to say the least, as we were already outside with the cats and Jesse just happened to look up and see the raccoon. Fortunately we got the cats in before they saw the coon. I certianly hope to never have them encounter one another. I suspect the raccoon will just run away, but I also think the kids will chase after them. Oh.. the wildlife excitement around here! The raccoons are also taking shiny silver objects and moving them around on the property. They're so intriguing to me.

Here's a photo of the cats watching them. Too funny!

On another note, I have been in a rather long creative slump lately, thus not much posting here, but it is finally turning around and I'm in the studio working everyday so I hope to have some more jewelry to share with you. Woohoo! I'm currently working on a bracelet with sterling wire, and emerald and sapphire beads. I'm having lots of fun with it, and will definitely share a photo when I've got it done.

Hope you are all wonderful today:)

All-That-I-Am on Etsy:


Inspired by Iza Malczyk's tutorials

To see more of my work...

You can check out my gallery at JewelryGeeks..

About me...

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Simply put, I'm a wire and gem jewelry freak! I like to string, twist, weave, wrap, form, and decorate with gems, wire and other earthy beauties. If you want to know more please click on the "About" tab at the top of the page. To contact me, check my blogger profile (click below) ... Thanks!