Monday, January 31, 2011

Vintage Design Inspiration Board #13 with Creativity Quote

At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet.

Inspiration Board #13 features:

vintage millinery stamens (West Germany)
vintage glass mirror heart button (occupied Germany)
vintage pink flower rhinestone buttons (Austria)
vintage paper tag (Japan)
vintage tea stained cluny lace (USA)
vintage rose flower cabochon (Japan)
vintage pink ribbon (USA)
vintage glass rhinestones (Czech)
vintage mother of pearl leaves
vintage shabby quilt hearts
antique embroidery floss
vintage linen tea towel

mounted on 4x4 inch gallery wrapped canvas base

Monday in Seattle. Picture and Quote for the Week, First Signs of Spring at Discovery Park

very first blossoms appearing at Discovery Park, Seattle, Jan 31, 2011

Spring hangs her infant blossoms on the trees,
Rock'd in the cradle of the western breeze.
~William Cowper

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Featured Artist. Janice Swain of Strands on Etsy

These amazing wearable art pieces are by Janice Swain of Strands on Etsy.

Janice left feedback after a purchase at Bumbershoot Supplies and she also attached some photos to her feedback. I was delighted to see what she had done with the vintage cabochons and vintage rhinestones she had purchased, and beyond that, I was amazed.

Janice uses vintage cabochons and rhinestones, as well as gemstones, as focal pieces around which she beads fabulous swirls of color and sparkle, each piece unique, each piece a story.

For example, this bulldog cuff…

And this glacier cuff…

And this one inspired by Van Gogh’s sunflower paintings…

If you love beads and sparkly things, you are probably someone who is captivated by light and color and the special magic of how they both come together in glass. I love how Janice has used the characteristics of the vintage glass cabochons and vintage rhinestones so effectively in her designs. I am truly in awe of the vision and skill required to take diverse bits of glass and turns them into gorgeous wearable art. Not to mention the amount of time I imagine must be involved in bringing the vision to tangible form...

It is for these reasons I am delighted to have found Janice and Strands. Plus, she is from Bumbershoot Supplies’ home town of Seattle, and it’s always nice to meet a neighbor.

Janice’s shop is a recent addition to Etsy – Strands opened at the end of 2010. I’m featuring the cuff bracelets here because they are so spectacular, but there are many other lovely jewelry designs available at Strands, so I hope you will head on over for a visit and a dose of inspiration and color, especially if you are in a part of the world that is still awaiting spring :)

Friday, January 28, 2011

New at Bumbershoot Supplies. Oodles of Vintage Glass Pearls

In Seattle, not every day is a good day for photographing items for Bumbershoot Supplies. However, earlier this week, a rare (for January) sunny spell of a few hours coincided with a delivery of vintage glass pearls. Dropping everything and grabbing the camera, here is what resulted and is now available at Bumbershoot Supplies....

I have more. I simply have no self control around vintage glass pearls
But the sun went behind the clouds, so I will have to try again another day...

Until next time, wishing you a great weekend!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Monday in Seattle. Picture and Quote for the Week, Magical Unwrapping

newly unwrapped, first time seen since the 1950's, vintage glass pearls from Japan, on wire strands too...

I must go seek some dew-drops here,
And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear.

Friday, January 21, 2011

New at Bumbershoot Supplies. More New Vintage Glass: Vintage Cabochons, Vintage Beads, Vintage Buttons

Where oh where does the time go? 
Friday again, and here's a peek at what arrived at Bumbershoot Supplies this week...

We have been able to restock a small number of the gorgeous vintage 1930's Japanese glass pearl buttons shown above.

We've also expanded our 10x6mm teardrop rhinestones with several new colors....

And we have some new vintage glass cabochons in the smallest 8x6 size, perfect for our bezel glue in settings...

Coming in the near future, assuming the Seattle weather will permit natural light photography: rose heart cabochons just in time for your Valentine, more luscious vintage glass beads and oodles of gorgeous vintage glass pearls.

Until then, wishing you a great weekend!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Featured Artist. Susan Evans of Hydrangea Afternoon

When you find yourself counting and packaging up hundreds of tiny rhinestones for a customer, sometimes you’ve just got to know what she’s doing with them :) That is the case for me, at least, and I’m glad I asked, because that is how I learned about Susan Evans of Hydrangea Afternoon.

I'll be honest, the reason I stock tiny vintage flat back rhinestones and smaller cabochons at Bumbershoot Supplies is because I like to use them in my own paper, fiber, mixed media projects. So it is with recognition and delight I share with you Susan’s cards and mixed media pieces.

Susan makes one-of-a-kind, handcrafted cards, journals, sketch books, note cards, bookmarks, mixed media collages and assemblages, and she has been exploring the use of tiny 4mm vintage Czech and West German glass rhinestones, as well as other types of vintage glass cabochons.

I’m including some holiday pieces in this overview of Susan’s work because I am in awe of the time involved in adhering all these tiny stones in these designs, and so you can see how Susan’s vintage approach in these pieces has provided a wonderful showcase for these old glass jewels.

But as you can see, Susan works in a variety of styles and the rhinestones do too. Notice the vintage Japanese opaline heart cabochon in the piece below. You may not be able to see it, but the visual texture of the heart complements the pattern of the dress.

It's hard to decide, but I think the one below might be my favorite. I love the creative use of the glass teardrop cabochon as the bird’s wing and I love how it magnifies the sheet music underneath. Plus, after a week or more of very grey Seattle days, these colors vibrate :)

As you move into a new year of art making, I hope you will consider a trip to Hydrangea Afternoon for a splash of inspiration. Plus, Susan is such a friendly and positive soul, you will find her a true pleasure to chat with. Enjoy your visit!

Vintage Design Inspiration Board #12 with Creativity Quote

Which can say more than this rich praise that you alone are you?

Inspiration Board #12 features:

vintage millinery leaves (France)
vintage silver metal sequins (France)
vintage transparent sapphire glass cabochons (Czech)
vintage rhinestone flower button (Austria)
vintage light sapphire flower cabochon (Czech)
vintage angel wing paillette sequin (France)
vintage crystal deco cabochons (occupied Germany)
vintage cabochon paper wrapper (France)
vintage dusty teal ribbon (England)
vintage cobalt ribbon (France)
vintage fleur de lis stampings (USA)
vintage plastic cameo cabochons
vintage plastic rose cabochons
vintage cobalt crescent glass cabochons
antique embroidery floss
vintage linen tea towel
mounted on 6x6 inch gallery wrapped canvas base

Friday, January 14, 2011

New at Bumbershoot Supplies. Vintage Beads

Happy Friday!
It's late here in Seattle, I've been tidying up my studio and lost track of time :)

Lots and lots of new items at Bumbershoot Supplies in the last week, but for today, I'll focus in on some of the new vintage beads we have received and stocked. 
All glass, all gorgeous. Take a look...

That's just a few to tempt you to come on over and check 'em out!
Best wishes for a great weekend!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Look What I Found. Wired Flower Necklace from 1940's Occupied Germany

Aren't these lovely?

I recently purchased 2 unfinished vintage beaded and wired necklaces made in the 1940's in Germany.

They consist of flower motifs, made from flower and leaf beads and brass wire, joined with melon shaped beads linked rosary chain style...everything in that chalk white that was so classic at that time.

The challenge in using this necklace, or in using parts of it, like the flower clusters, is the uneven patina of the wire. So I've been doing a bit of experimenting in both directions - cleaning the wire to restore it to the original golden brass, and also going the other way and deepening the patina of the wire to make it uniformly dark.  I took apart one of the 2 necklaces in order to do these experiments.  I'll talk about what I did in an upcoming blog post, but you can see the results in the first photo, restored on the left, original in the middle, and patina'd on the right.

I can locate and date these necklaces with some precision due to the tags that were attached. Germany was occupied by the Allies from 1945 until 1949, and these necklaces were made in the US Zone of Allied-occupied Germany during that time.

Vintage with a clear provenance - it doesn't get any better.