Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Featured Artist. Jeanne van Etten of The Nantucket Mermaid, on Nantucket and Etsy

Tell me, who can resist a shop with the name "The Nantucket Mermaid"?  As the last days of summer wind down, I'm not at all sure I've had enough of the season, so I'm doing what I can to hold onto sunshine and warm weather and beaches for a bit longer. 
 It is with pleasure I go 30 miles out to sea to Nantucket to share with you the work of
Jeanne van Etten, The Nantucket Mermaid in Nantucket and also on Etsy.

I regularly lurk on Jeanne's blog.  I love to see the photos of her shop, which looks like it is absolutely crammed with things I'd love to have :)  I am so inspired by Jeanne - she does everything! She makes jewelry from vintage components, which is how she ended up at Bumbershoot Supplies, and how I came to know of her work.

Look carefully, there are lots of pieces in this cabinet using our vintage Japanese hand painted flower cabochons.

And a bracelet around the stone mermaid's neck using more of the same vintage handpainted flower cabs.

Jeanne also makes dolls....

Beautiful candles and other tempting trinkets for her shop....

And also she paints...

...and paints...

...and paints...

I am in awe of Jeanne's diverse creativity and the hard work I know she must put out in order to stock her shop with her own hand crafted items. It's really inspiring for those of us who like to try different media, and who like to make all kinds of things.

If you are looking for a bit of summer any time, I recommend a visit to Jeanne's blog and Etsy shop. Also, if you contact Jeanne, I'm betting she can get you fixed up with your own bit of Nantucket summer to hold onto.

Friday, August 27, 2010

New at Bumbershoot Designs. Vintage Rhinestone Cocktail Rings

Big, juicy, rich, splashes of saturated, sparkling vintage color.

For jeans, for weddings, even for cocktails...

More colors en route, like montana sapphire and emerald green, stay tuned...

Wishing you a great big, sparkling, color filled weekend!

New at Bumbershoot Supplies. Vintage Glass Beads, Cabochons, Flowers, Ribbon and More

In the last week another 12 items have made their way onto the virtual shelves of Bumbershoot Supplies.
Here's just a few of them:

Along with the simply stunning vintage Japanese roses shown at the top, we also have these really lovely vintage Japanese acrylic pearl cabochons in a great color for fall. Both are in the vintage plastic cabochons section of Bumbershoot Supplies...

There are new vintage glass beads, like these vintage Czech rosaline rhondelle beads...

And these wonderful smoky topaz hearts, most unusual...

These lovely vintage Japanese glass cabocohons are new...

And so is this gorgeous 1940's navy grosgrain ribbon.

You'll find more updates in our September 1 newsletter, in which we will showcase new items and also pull together some of our items that provide autumnal inspiration. Sign up for our newsletter here.  It's the best way to learn about new products at Bumbershoot Supplies and to receive all the great special offers we provide only to our newsletter subscribers.  Want to look at some issues before you sign up?  Our past issues are archived on our web site here.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bumbershoot Supplies' Boot Buttons Featured in Fall Stringing Magazine

I'm delighted to share that Bumbershoot Supplies' vintage mother of pearl boot buttons are featured in a design by Lorelei Eurto in the Fall 2010 issue of Stringing Magazine!

Quoting from the caption (page 40): "A vintage boot button attached near the pendant lends a charming touch to this front-clasping jasper necklace."

Here's a close up of the pendant with the button adornment. These particular mother of pearl buttons were made in the US between the 1920's and 1940's and this lot was dyed a warm burnt orange color. 

You may or may not find boot buttons if you visit Bumbershoot Supplies.  They regularly come in, and then go out of the shop just about as quickly as they come in.  However, you will always find lots of unique vintage supplies that can add just the right special touch to your designs, be they jewelry, fiber, paper, mixed media.  Hope to see you soon!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Featured Artist. Joanne Depape of Jaded Seas Designs on Etsy

I'm very happy to share with you the work of Joanne Depape of Jaded Seas Designs on Etsy

OK, wrap your mind around that shop name, Jaded Seas...  Doesn't that evoke images of deep green water, tropical flowers, hot sun and cool drinks....  If you are not there yet, head on over to Jo's shop and check out her splendid banner, it will get you there. 

Jo is in New Zealand.  One of the gifts of Bumbershoot Supplies is that it connects us, however briefly, to people all over the world, and also to diverse locales within our own country.  We all intersect at our love of art and craft and in our desire to work with beautiful materials to make fine and beautiful things.  I'm grateful to all my customers for showing me this connection on a daily basis, and for transporting me to exotic and varied locales, as least in my imagination :)

Jo's work will transport you to exotic locales through the components and images she uses. Jo uses sterling silver, beautiful Japanese paper, clear glass domes, and vintage glass cabochons, some also Japanese in origin, like the ones from Bumbershoot Supplies featured in this post. With these components, she creates unique rings, pendants, earrings and necklaces, including her innovative cluster style pendants.

I hope you will enjoy a trip to Jaded Seas Designs.  You will find the experience customer friendly and accomodating. Jo can make rings adjustable, or with a solid band in your ring size. She can set rings in your preference of portrait or landscape orientation. Necklace chain lengths can be adjusted.
Plus I'm sure you will be inspired. 
And don't forget to check out the banner :)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Monday in Seattle. Picture and Quote for the Week, Daisies and Driftwood at Discovery Park, Seattle

daisies and driftwood, Discovery Park, Seattle

Over the shoulders and slopes of the dune I saw the white daisies go down to the sea,
A host in the sunshine, an army in June, The people God sends us to set our heart free.
~William Bliss Carman

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Tutorial: How to Seal Vintage Glass Pearls

We carry many vintage glass pearls at Bumbershoot Supplies and I love to use vintage glass pearls in my designs for Bumbershoot Designs. Our glass pearls encompass a large age range, from 1930's to 1940's all the way up to the 1970's.  Some of the older glass pearls are in remarkable condition for their age.

Others are beginning to show signs of wear in their pearly coating.  However for many designs, this natural aging may be exactly the look and feel that is desired. 

Vintage glass pearls can be expected to continue to age with time, and will continue to wear as they rub against the skin and fabric, jangle against other beads, and so on.

To protect vintage glass pearls, and to slow the aging process, I recommend sealing them. This is a simple process involving spraying the glass pearls with an acrylic sealant and allowing them to dry. 

Here's how I do it: 

I ensure my glass pearls are clean and dry. (I'll be posting soon on tips for cleaning vintage glass pearls and beads...)

Then, I go outside with my spray sealer, and some parchment paper. Waxed paper would work just as well. You definitely want a paper with a non stick surface.  Lay the glass pearls on the paper and give them a spray with your sealer until they are covered.  Let them dry completely.

Which sealant you use depends on what is available to you and the look you are interested in. I have tried 2 types: matte and glossy.  The glossy gives a glass-like finish, and is a thicker and stickier product. I've cut some squares from the parchment paper the pearls were on when I sprayed them, and you can see the resin-like effect of the glossy sealant on the parchment paper. 

I prefer to use matte sealant.  Matte does not dull the finish of the glass pearls, it dries more quickly than the glossy, and to my eyes and fingers, the sealed pearl is just a touch closer in appearance to the original finish compared to the glossy. But it's just personal preference, I have used both effectively.

This photo shows, from left to right, unsealed, matte sealed, glossy sealed. 
There's not an obvious difference, as you can see.

A Few Tips:
  • I always do this outside. Always. Even here in the often rainy and damp Pacific Northwest, I wait for a dry day, not too windy.  I stand downwind. I don't wear a respirator, but you certainly could. When I used to live in an apartment, I'd do this sort of work in the parking lot away from any vehicles, and then carefully carry my items back into my apartment, letting them dry near an open window so the fumes could disperse.  I have some old cookie sheets I use for these kinds of purposes: parchment or waxed paper fits well on them and sheets with a rim are great for carrying round items that can roll.
  • If it is a bit windy, use some rocks or stones to hold down the edges of your parchment paper so it doesn't blow into your pearls.
  • Use a nonstick paper, like waxed paper or parchment paper. If you put your pearls onto regular paper or newspaper, your pearls might end up sticking to the paper.
  • I wait for the pearls to dry completely then turn them over for a spray on the other side. The matte sealer does not take long to dry. The glossy sealer takes longer.
  • Once dry, I let my pearls sit overnight or at least for several hours to allow the last whiffs of the sealant to completely disappear.
  • Finally, use your sealed pearls to make something beautiful!
  • Caveat: I only use this process with loose vintage glass pearls that I intend to use in my designs. I would never use this process with a strand of vintage glass pearls, or with real pearls, or with jewelry of any kind or age.  

I hope this is helpful. Feel free to let me know how it works for you.
If you have any questions, just ask.

Friday, August 20, 2010

New at Bumbershoot Designs. Reduced Shipping, New Categories, New Items

I've been busy with some behind-the-scenes administrative tasks at Bumbershoot Designs for a few weeks now.  These activities have kept the listing of new jewelry designs to a minimum, but hopefully they will provide you with an improved shopping experience.

First bit of good news: shipping fees have been reduced for ALL customers, both US and international.  And you will still receive the same quick shipping.  If items are purchased by 10 am Pacific time, Monday through Saturday, they ship the same day. Otherwise, it is the next business day.

Second: I've revised and updated every one of the jewelry titles and URLs to make it easier to find the type of item in which you may be interested.

Third: I've streamlined the categories of designs so you can view multiple types of the same design, for example, earrings, in one place.

Fourth: I've placed additional designs that I am retiring on Sale, you can find them in the Sale category.

Between long hours spent in these various adminstrative activities, I've rewarded myself with a bit of time to design and list a few new items, pictured throughout this post.  You will find these items in Bumbershoot Designs now, with more designs just waiting for photography to be completed. 

I invite you to visit Bumbershoot Designs and see the changes.  Stay tuned, as I begin to load up new designs over the coming week.

Wishing you a great weekend!

New at Bumbershoot Supplies. 30 Gorgeous Additions to Bumbershoot Supplies in August

Since August 2, we have added 30 new products to Bumbershoot Supplies and restocked 8 favorites! 
A few highlights below...

We have many new vintage glass cabochons in all kinds of shapes, sizes and colors. Here's just a few...
Vintage Glass Cabochon. Sapphire Blue Fan, Frosted, Preciosa Czech, 29x21mm gcb0241 (1)
Vintage Glass Cabochon. Gold Deco Sun, Mirror, Czech, 18x14mm gcb0264 (2)
Vintage Glass Cabochon Coral Flower Carved Floral, Japan 25x18mm gcb0261 (2)
We've also located some really lovely vintage lucite beads and vintage celluloid beads. The lovely, flirty 1960's lucite pendants shown in aqua are also available in a peachy pink. Both of these would make great dangles for decorations, as well as their jewelry applications. Vintage lucite rings also have multiple uses and we stock them in 2 sizes of pink plus a pearly white...
Vintage Lucite Rose Pink Pearl Rings, 1960s West Germany, 30mm vpb0016 (6)
Vintage Celluloid Beads. Carved Flower, Pink White Plastic Floral, 12x9mm vpb0043 (8)
Vintage Lucite Beads. Aqua Pendant, Faceted and Flirty Blue, 35x18mm vpb0041 (2)
I just love the wee tiny vintage bits, and I am always impressed by how the smallest bit can add such a special and unique touch to all kinds of mixed media, paper, fiber and jewelry designs. Here are a few of our tiniest treasures...
Vintage Guilloche Flower Cabochons. Pink Green Roses, Tiny Floral, 5x3mm vfd0124 (10)
Vintage Swarovski Rose Montees. Sapphire Blue, Tiny 3mm swa0069 (12)
Vintage Finding. Tiny White Metal Flowers, Enamel and Brass, 6mm vfd0123 (18)
In addition to restocking 4 of our vintage glass beads, plus one of our vintage glass pearls, we've also added the following vintage glass beads. All of our additions, including these shown below, are vintage Japanese from the 1950's to 1960's...
Vintage Glass Bead Drop. Matte Yellow, Butter Soft, Embedded Wire Loop, 7mm vgb0210 (10)
Vintage Glass Bead Drops. Turquoise Wire Looped Headpins, Patina 8mm vgb0214 (10)
Vintage Glass Beads. Peridot Green Strand, Original Tagged Wire, Japan, 2mm vgb0215 (240)
Finally we continue to enjoy finding vintage plastic cabochons. We have added wee celluloid cats from 1950's Japan, tiny blue butterflies from Japan and pearly lucite roses from West Germany. I invite you to visit the vintage plastic cabochons section of Bumbershoot Supplies to check those out. Plus, we have been able to locate some lovely wedgewood green lucite cameos and some resin cameos in pink and tortoiseshell. All of these lovelies are from West Germany (and we have black and white glass ones too)...
Vintage Cameo Cabochons, Green and Ivory, Lucite, Carved Round , 1960's West German, 18mm pcb0071 (4)
Vintage Resin Cameo. Pink White Lady Cab, Plastic Cabochon 18x13mm pcb0143 (6)
Vintage Resin Cameo. Ivory Tortoiseshell Lady Cab, Plastic Cabochon 25x18mm pcb0144 (4)
I invite you to come on over to Bumbershoot Supplies and have a look at all these new vintage treasures
Until next time, wishing you a great weekend!