Thoughts of Design Inspiration


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3 Big Jewelry Trends You Must Know for 2017

2017 jewelry trends - big necklaces

Statement Necklaces

There is a lot of big and bold going on in the jewelry arena! The first big one is Statement necklaces. Forget the small and simple pendants because it is time for those statement ones. Statement pendants are undoubtedly catchier than the tiny ones. You can try wearing those statement pendants and necklaces if you find that the small ones are boring and do not provide you with the catchy look you need. There are many impressive designs that can increase your beauty and make you catchier on different occasions especially the formal ones.  Instyle magazine forecasts that the big and bold long necklaces are going to replace the choker that  has been popular for a while.
InStyle Fashion Forecast Long Necklaces 2017

Brass Moon Necklace

Brass Moon Necklace – Handmade in the USA

Copper Bar Necklace with Sterling Silver

Copper and Sterling Silver Bar Necklace

big bracelets jewelry trend

Bracelets and Arm Cuffs

Second big one is Bracelets and arm cuffs. In 2017, modern solid cuffs take center stage. Solid cuffs add a modern artistic flair to any outfit. Many cuffs can be stacked for a more unique look.

Silver and Copper Torch Fired Cuff Bracelet

Sterling Silver and Copper Art Cuff

Art Earrings

Third must know – Art earrings with innovative materials, graphic shapes and arty inspiration. Single oversized earrings, earcuffs and single large earrings. Want to look different and attract more attention? Do you love earrings but do not like the idea of wearing them? You can try wearing single earrings to decorate just one ear. It is not the first time for this catchy jewelry trend to appear as it was seen before during the past years and continues to be a big jewelry trend in the next year. art earrings jewelry trend 2017art earrings and single earrings jewelry trend 2017
Enamel Art Mixed Color EarringsPainterly enamel earrings with bead dangleBlue Enameled Copper Ocean Wave Lines Earrings

blue poppy flower earrings artisan enamel

And if you are not so much for the big huge necklaces try Multilayered necklaces. If you still love those small pendants and do not like the idea of wearing statement necklaces and pendants because they do not suit your personality, then there is no problem. You can wear those necklaces with small pendants but in large number and multiple layers. This means that wearing only one necklace with small pendant is not trendy and multilayered necklaces are the jewelry trend you can opt for to enjoy your small pendants.

Multi layered Necklaces Trend 2017

Jewelry Looks New York Fashion Week 2017

Jewelry Trends from Bridal Week 2017

Hundreds of gorgeous dresses paraded down the runway at Bridal Fashion Week 2017. And the trends are more unique than ever this year. From rising necklines, 3D details, and steamer sleeves, the trends from this year were loud and unapologetic.

Statement earrings and drop earrings, as well as chokers were popular. Drop earrings come in may different options. You could go with a large dramatic pair or something more small and subtle that just adds a little pop.

Bridal Jewelry Trends 2017Bridal Week 2017 Trends

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Blue heart jewelry clothing trends 2016 -blue enamel hearts


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Making Hearts

Blue enameled copper heart jewelry

I had a big inspiration recently on creating hearts, I guess the concept of Valentine’s Day might have had something to do with it, since you start seeing hearts everywhere! Anyway, I wanted to try some new color combos in my enameling work. I use the torch method so you can’t really do as much detail with the enameling like you can in the kiln because I just dip and sprinkle, but with careful balancing act you can achieve interesting results. It all happens while dangling the piece of copper over the flame, adds to the excitement! And, you always get a unique result, so you won’t get bored with your artisan craft!
I wanted a tonal blue, so I did one with three shades of blue that I like to call “Blue Sky”. I cut the copper shapes from raw copper sheet, I like to use my own stylized heart shape. Made blue earrings to match the necklace, which is new this time, I have rarely done sets before. The other version I wanted to try was using some purple that I haven’t used in a while. I did purple with a blue center, tried to sprinkle an inside shape of a blue heart on the larger purple heart. I really like how it came out, put even some pink in there. Again, did matching earrings with the same purple and blue tones.

pippa middleton blue heart scarf

Pippa Middleton and the blue heart scarf

Purple and blue heart earrings - enameled copper handmade at Basketofblue.com

My purple and blue heart earrings

Thinking of the fashion trends this year, I did find some really nice heart prints in clothing. Even Pippa Middleton has been wearing a scarf with blue hearts on it! (It was for some good cause, and seems to be sold out.) I found a couple of nice blue heart sweaters also that I thought were really fun. Would go nicely with the blue heart jewelry! Some designers have also made heart handbags this spring. Kate Spade has a lovely clutch type bag that’s really cute. Hearts are red though, not blue. I may have to make myself a blue version!

Blue heart sweater

Fashion pictures from theoutfit.com, instyle.com and hearts handbag clutchcaliforniadreamsboutique.

enameled copper jewelry


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Enamel surfaces – what fun things can you melt with a torch

torch fired enamel jewelry with melted wire

Melting stuff is always fun – right? Not to talk about playing with fire. I’ve been experimenting with various substances you can melt on your enamel surface. So far I’ve tried wire, mashed up glass, enamel sticks, other bead chips. Not sure where the limits might go, but it sure creates some interesting effects!

torch fired enamel jewelry with melted wire

Wire sprinkles on this enameled piece with transparent green enamel

Of course it can be a bit tricky to get these things stick while you have a torch going and one hand is busy holding your steel rod (where your copper piece is dangling). The power from the torch is like a wind that makes your piece move constantly so getting something on top of it can be challenging. The mashed up glass you can sprinkle on, with copper tube you can roll the hot tube in it, which is great. I think the hardest to get the way you want them is shapes of wire, they go and blow away real easy in the “wind” of the torch. Also, your piece you are trying to adhere it to is often curved and the wire will just slide of. So, yes, it’s a balancing act, luckily no acrobatics involved!

enamelsurfaces4

Melted thin enamel stick

enamelsurfaces5

Smashed up glass beads, use that hammer!

enamelsurfaces2

Smashed up glass in very small bits with transparent enamel on top.

torch fired enamel jewelry

Sometimes you may get an eye…

 

I find that my favorites are the wire coils and smashed up glass (they call it frit if you go buy it in the enameling universe).  I imagine you can buy some really nice even shaped frit, but I find that I like my own smashed up stuff better. It gets more interesting and doesn’t always work (which is part of the fun). Some glass bead chips don’t melt, or you might have smashed something that is not exactly glass. Also, using transparent enamel can make it even more interesting because of the see through effect, and you can keep layering it on. The copper wire I use gives out a nice smoke when it gets torched and you can end up creating some nice flame patina on it, too. It is the hardest to make stick, your copper piece has to be hot enough and your arm very steady. Plus you want just enough enamel to adhere it properly but still keep the surface texture.

I will keep experimenting, no two pieces are never alike. That’s the best fun of using the torch!
You can find more items on my website: www.evadesigns.us

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Flame Painting Copper

flamed copper earrings by evadesigns, copper coloring method

Flamed copper earrings

I recently saw some videos on youtube on the copper flame painting method. I had seen some really cool wall art in a craft show that some experienced flame painter had done. I just had to try it myself.

I first cut, sanded, cleaned and textured my copper pieces. I used a new technique for texturing I saw somewhere – I wrapped a wire over the copper and then hammered it to produce texture of lines. It actually looks pretty cool! For the other pair, I used a texture hammer.

Then I dug out my small butane torch. I had actually only used it once, I got it a long time ago when I was supposed to venture into soldering. (I’m still intimidated and only tried it once.) Anyway, the small ones are real easy to use. I had a charcoal block but ended up holding the pieces with pliers.

I was amazed how easily you could get some color on the copper! Yes, getting a pair of earrings to share a similar color, not so easy. Not that they need to exactly match in my opinion, some artistic vision is fine.

flamed copper earrings, copper flaming

First textured with wire, then flamed

Then I experimented with coating the pieces to seal in the color. I found that t is true what they say – the clear coat will dull the blue tones. So, I ended up redoing one of my pairs all over because I didn’t like the dulled blue color. I ended up leaving them more warm orange and yellow.

 

The cuff I textured and then torched heavily only once. I sanded off the fire scale and it actually looked interesting just like that. It had this sort of dark reddish tone to black that was quite nice.

Now I wish I had tried this sooner. I’m going to be experimenting more soon!

flamed copper cuff by evadesigns

Flamed copper cuff

 

torch enameling evadesigns maine


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Three Stages of Copper

torch enameling evadesigns maine

Heating the copper with a torch using a trivet.

When I make enameled copper jewelry for some reason I always count three stages. (Well, there are really many more to the whole process.) You have a copper sheet that you cut your shapes from – file, shape, hammer, drill, sand, polish. I say you are now at stage one. Then you get all your enamels ready, your frit (I call frit any type of pieces of glass you  may add to your enamel pieces), you set up your torch and workspace (sifters to sift various amounts of enamel onto your pieces, holding agent, trivets, surfaces, tools.)

copper shapes ready for enameling to make jewelry evadesigns

Copper shapes formed and hammered.

Then if you are making large pieces (like my shells) you will be using the trivet method, not the “dangle it in the fire and dip” method. The first thing  is to counter enamel, after that’s done I think I’m at stage two.  (Counter enamel just means it’s the back side of the piece.)You get tons of firescale on the other side of the piece after counter enameling, you need to sand it off and clean the copper again. Often you actually get such wonderful looking colors that you don’t want to enamel the front side… There is such a thing as making art, even “paintings” with firing large pieces of copper. There are artists that make patterns and scenes with the fire alone.

copper jewelry evadesigns torch firing

Firescale cleaned off – aren’t the colors exciting!

So, anyway, to stage three. My stage three is the actual final enameling of the piece. It will be just the front if you are using the trivet method. Multiple layers, possibly using different colors. If you are doing your dipping method you are working on both sides together.  I do prefer the dipping, I use it whenever I can because by pointing the fire in different ways you get more variations of color just by heating the object more or less. Enamel colors have variations depending how much heat you apply to them. I find that the most interesting effects often happen with the dangly method and really playing with fire. Yes, it truly is playing with fire!

finished torch enameled copper pieces for jewelry evadesigns

Finished torch enameled pieces.

Hemp jewelry by evadesigns


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Hemp Jewelry Experiments – Bright and Fun

green hemp and seed bead necklace evadesignsmaineI did experiment with hemp before, but just this week I got new inspiration. First I wanted to incorporate some of my enameled copper pieces into a necklace somehow other than them being the sole item. Second since this it the “year of color” I happened to have hemp yarn in bright  green and light blue – how perfect since green is one of the big colors right now? I wanted to make it statement green (and blue), nothing lame. So I decided to incorporate bright green and blue seed beads into my hemp yarn and voila, with lots of crochet loops later it’s a necklace!

My other idea was to use some knotting and make a pendant. I used one of my round enameled copper pieces and one enameled iron bead in dark purple and blue tones. The hemp yarn is a light pink/salmon color, I went through my stashes of beads to find some individual beads that would fit the color scheme. My selection is a bit limited when it comes to the need for large hole in the bead, but I think it’s beginning to work pretty well. (still work on progress). So, now the hemp bug has really gotten a hold of me – I want to find more hemp colors, hoping to find some really bright ones for the next colorful creation!hemp and enameled copper pendant necklace evadesigns

Glass beads


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Bead Shows – Inspiration from Seeing and Touching

beads in a bead show trayFor an artist or a crafter just the gathering of materials can be a satisfying and inspirational experience. You go to a bead show to get beads, yes! But it is also a way to get ideas, see new gemstones, touch them and see combinations of stones together. You can suddenly get an idea, or see a stone that just calls you “make something with me”.

So, what is a bead show? It’s a collection of vendors selling beads, gemstones, materials for beaders, jewelry makers and other crafters. You can find them all over the country, I attended one last weekend in Massachusetts. This one is held at a hotel and every vendor has their own room. You wonder back and forth in the hallway and get dizzy by the quantity of rooms and beads! You will find gemstone beads and your standard glass and crystals. But, you can also find unusual ones, people making their own beads out of sawdust or some other unusual material. Some offer kits for hobbyists, who are not yet ready to design their own, or who just prefer to follow instructions.  Somehow I personally skipped this step, I went straight into my own experiments, for me replicating somebody else’s design is boring. But, there’s a way for everybody that fits.

gemstone beads - lapis, ruby at a bead show

All those gemstone beads – ovals, rounds, lentils, nuggets!

You can also learn a lot if you decide to ask questions. The bead vendors know a lot about the beads and gems that they sell and you can end up having a very inspirational conversation. You can talk to the other shoppers and also admire the jewelry they are wearing. (They often made the piece themselves and are very proud and willing to talk about it!) Once I met a person who makes bead jewelry to fundraise for pets and I still follow their journey online.

So, go bead seeking – you might find something new or come home with a renewed inspiration!

beads and gemstones at a bead show

So many rooms and so many beads! Priscilla Beads – sawdust and handrolled paper beads.

gemstone beads in a bead show

Searching for the ultimate gem