Friday, August 26, 2011

Sea Creatures! Ahhh!

So, my future mother-in-law and her lady friends are throwing me a bridal shower (!!!) in October.  I wanted to do something nice for them in return, so I think I'm going to make them each a pair of earrings.  It's fun to experiment and do some stuff that is outside of my normal day to day job.  Of these two, only the first pair is for one of these lovely ladies, the second pair is a bit large and strange and I don't think they would really suit any of them.  But I have a few more things knocking around inside my head, so we will just have to see what comes out.


It is fun to be designing for a different audience.  I'm not sure if many women in their 60's are really shopping on Etsy (of course, I could be totally wrong).  They are probably not snapping up moustache decals, graphic tees, or mason jar up-cycled lamps.  So I don't really make many earrings with that age group in mind (ha!  I don't really make many earrings for the shop at all!).  Not that they all have the same tastes, but I don't think they would be too excited about giant silver hoops or super dangly earrings, so I have to keep things at a certain size.  That is really the only real restraint, I think.  Am I wrong?  Maybe some older ladies would like crazy earrings?  Maybe it's just that the women I have in mind share a more restrained style, maybe that is why I'm feeling like I need to keep things moderately small?

All right, I've started to ramble.  It's like my internal voice is eager to spill out all over the internet.  I went for a run this morning, and since then I've just been in the best mood.  Almost bubbly (which is unusal for me).  I had to keep myself from talking the head off of my chiropractor this morning and then I totally chatted up this kid outside a resale shop and bought the table that he was trying to put on consignment.  I always thought I was an introvert, but I think I'm becoming more extroverted as I age.  Anyhow, before I force any more boring details from my day onto you I'm going to sign off.

Have a nice Friday everyone! 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

I guess it is decided

I won't be changing my business name.  Yet.  Thanks for the feedback everyone!

So, there have been a few additions to the studio that were a long (too long) time in coming.  Seriously.  You would think I would be more concerned with my own health and safety.  And I am.  But for some reason these changes were always pushed to the end of the list of "Things To Do".

So, there they are:

I'll tell you what, if you are in the market for a new office/studio chair, I would recommend this very highly.  I got this a back pain speciality store.  I'm sure you've seen your doctor or dentist on one of these.  It is fabulous.

I am embarrassed to admit how long it took me to get a pair of these.  Especially considering how much hammering I do.  I will probably have hearing problems later in life.  Maybe.  But now I'm protected.  Thanks Amazon American Express points!

Perhaps you are under the impression that jewelry making is a glamorous job.  Well, maybe some jewelers are glam and style-ly, but I am generally wearing clothes that should be going to the Goodwill, and covered in the disgusting grit created by silicon polishing wheels.  It is the worst feeling ever to have this grit all over your face and neck.  So I finally snapped and bought this shield.  If I wear it with my apron (not pictured here) it blocks all the grit spray from adhering to my face and I can go home without grime all over.  It's a bit heavy, but if you are sitting you can sort of prop it on your chest.  I would recommend something like it if you HATE polishing dirt getting on your face. (Also an Amazon purchase.  It was pretty cheap.)

Hehehehehehehe.  This is for stone setting and carving wax (for me anyway).  It's a magnavisor.  I like it pretty well.  I think I might upgrade to those little glasses dentists have sometime in the future.  You have to get measured for those, so that has sort of deterred me.

And this is an air purifier with a HEPA filter.  It just makes the studio air seem fresher somehow.

And this is a picture of two exhausted pugs.  Sleeping on the couch and eating treats all day sure is rough.  They shed like you wouldn't believe.  Many a perfectly staged photograph has been ruined by a stray pug hair.  But I wouldn't give them up, being alone all day would drive me batty.

And the requisite picture of jewelry:


I like the tapering band.  I am going to add it to my shop, I just need to find more photos.  I recently purchased an external harddrive (another shop improvement!  I feel more and more like a real adult!) and moved most of my photographs onto it.  But the thought of sifting through all of those photos searching for this particular ring makes me tired.

So!  I have new earrings to share!  But I am not going to put them in this post.  It's already too long and I'm sure you have better things to do than waste any more time listening to my ramblings.  I will probably post on Friday, I hope to have a few more to add to the two designs I have now.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Possible name change?

When I first started my business in Feb. 2009,  I didn't really have a plan.  I was just flying by the seat of my pants really.  I began by hanging out my shingle (so to speak) and making a few things to sell.  It's hard to really describe how it went after that, it all went so fast.  But I hadn't really given my business name that much thought.  I actually had a website for my drawings and that is where the singleB came from (indirectly, it was singleB in the first place because of my nickname, Bean).  Now I am regretting it, a bit.  I want to change it something a little more, I don't know, evocative?  Grown up?  A name that makes more sense?

But I'm afraid that I can't!  I'm so heavily invested in my Etsy shop, with the name singleB (or singleBbeautiful....another accidental name.  I had previous etsy shop with the name singleB, and when I opened the jewelry shop, I couldn't use just singleB so I tacked on the beautiful.  It has caused some minor confusion.)  Argh.

Some people have lovely, dignified, romantic, memorable names.  And they just use their own name, or a version of their name.  But don't feel that I can do that.  Justine?  Ugh.  It sounds like it came out of a Harlequin romance novel (which, according to my mother, it did).  I can just see "Justine" as some aristocratic young woman (with self-esteem issues and/or who is strong willed and never thought she would find a man who thinks she's beautiful and/or who was confident enough to put up with her having her own opinions) who gets abducted and then falls in love with her pirate/barbarian/bandit/rake kidnapper, because he is so noble and gentlemanly underneath the gruff exterior.  (LOL!  LOL!)

Anyhoo, so Justine Collins Designs, or Justine Collins Jewelry is out.  I just don't like the way it sounds. It sounds hokey.  No?  Am I crazy?  It just seems sort of generic?

This is what is in my mind at the moment:

I don't really know why, the name just calls to me.  It means "bright" in Hebrew.  I love the way it sounds (at least the way I imagine it is pronounced: baa-here-ah?) and the way it looks printed out.  And I could keep my little lady head logo too.  But I have a built a little bit of name recognition with singleB, so I'm afraid to give that up.  I don't know.  This has been tormenting me for some time now.  I need outside opinions.  Have you ever changed your business name?  What do you think would be a good name for my business?  Do you like BEHIRA?  Or is it silly?  Hard to pronounce?  Hard to remember?  Weird?  Pretentious?

Well, I'm glad it is Friday.  I'm going to go home and have a glass of wine and not worry about this for a while.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Grass is Always Greener

Readers.  While I looooove my sunken treasure engagement ring,

sometimes, when I finish making a set of rings, I feel like this:

and I wish that reality was more like this:

rather than this:

Oh well.  I knew that I would have a hard time pleasing myself, no matter what I made.  If I had made that other one rather than the one that I did, I would be "waaah, I wish I had made this other one instead.  Or maybe that other one....or that one.  Maybe that one."  Darnit.

Happy Friday!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Friday, the goodness edition

And just because I love this pug insanely.  Have a happy Friday!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Big Sky Sapphire, Dual Tone Project, Rambling post

I love it when I get to make something a bit different from what I am usually doing.  There have been a few things things this summer that I was really pleased to work on.  The first was a lovely wedding set using a Montana sapphire.  The second was a dual tone wedding ring set with a big fat diamond and 18kt yellow gold.  

When you take photos only with natural light, the time of day can really change the feel of the photograph.  The first photo was probably taken in the early afternoon.  The second photo was taken in the evening, just as the sun was just starting to ease off.  I love the cool blue tones.  It doesn't work for everything, but I do love it.  I am going to take pictures of rings in the second photo again today, when the sun is really shining and see how different it looks.

I'm really happy with how the two tone turned out.  I think the color of the diamond, which is on the warmer side, looks really great with the 18kt yellow gold band.  It seems to help tie the two colors together.  I personally love mixing yellow and white metals together, but it definitely isn't everyones cup of tea.  Most people seem to prefer white metals.  I did a little survey a while back, and that was certainly how it played out.

White metal wins by a  mile!  But maybe I should have added a dual tone category?  My instincts tell me it wouldn't have won many votes, but maybe I'm wrong?

Unrelated:  I want to use one of these for something:

It's a "rough" diamond.  I just love the cloudy, silvery, foggy character.  Anyhoo.  I was supposed to be adding new stuff to my shop this morning, so I should probably get back to it.