Monday, November 9, 2015
Thursday, October 29, 2015
Saturday, October 3, 2015
Friday, October 2, 2015
Monday, September 21, 2015
Once again summer is beginning to fade away and winter is not too far over the horizon. It is about this time of year that I end my summer activities and retreat to my little studio to create beaded jewelry and other adornments.
Last week I experimented with making some beaded leather bracelets. I have quite a stash of Miyuki 4 mm cube glass beads and also a lot of gemstone 4 mm cube beads. So, I thought to start creating using those beads.
My technique was to weave a design into a strip using either a square stitch or a peyote stitch and then sew the strip to a leather wrist band. The square beads always fit together nicely. I like to use Fire Line for this sort of beading as it is very strong and is not affected much by skin oils etc. I use snaps to facilitate easy on and off.
I have made these bracelets before and have sold a few. But I added a new twist to these bracelets. I edge beaded the wrist band with #8 Czech glass beads. The edge beads really make the bracelet pop and give it a very festive look.
The two bracelets shown here are about one inch wide and fit an eight inch man’s wrist but the bracelets can be made to fit any size wrist. They are, of course, unisex.
You can find my bracelets for sale in my etsy store, Sirocco’s Trading Post. I invite you in to take a look.
Thursday, June 25, 2015
It all started when I decided to tidy up the clutter of junk that had accumulated behind my garage. One piece that I came across was an old 18 inch Weber grilling kettle. The legs were gone and the receptacles that hold the legs on had rusted off. The grates were gone and the metal clips that hold the grates were bent or broken. Clearly, the kettle would never be used for a grill again. Then an idea invaded my thoughts. I could use it as a planter. All I would need would be some wooden legs. The vent holes in the bottom would help with drainage.
To hold the kettle I collected up some short pieces of 2X6 all about 7 inches long and cut a 22.5 degree angle on each end. When 8 of these are fitted together in a circle they make an octagon with a center that is a perfect size to drop in the kettle. It was then just a matter of making some short legs with 2X4s. A little paint and some casters on the legs completed the project.
For planting, I put a piece of garden fabric over the vent holes in the bottom to keep the dirt from falling out. Then I added several handfuls of wood chips to help with drainage. Along the sides of the planter I added some Styrofoam insulation pieces to help keep the plant roots from getting too hot. A metal container generally does not work well as a planter without some sort of insulation. After that it was just a matter of filling the container with potting soil and putting in some plants.
I only had a few plants on hand to put in the planter. I will want to add a few more to fill out the space. You can see my finished product at the top of this page. It is sitting next to the matching chair that I made a while back.
I invite you to visit my curios store where you will find a number of unique items for sale.
Wednesday, February 4, 2015
I always enjoy making these trade bead memory wire bracelets and you will find this one for sale at Sirocco’s Trading Post. I have made many of them over the years. Memory wire bracelets are easy to make and it gives me an opportunity to use up some left over beads from other projects. And, I always give them an attractive price. In this bracelet you will find some old goombas, green colored white hearts, yellow melon beads and red fusilli beads. It has turquoise nuggets, bone hair pipes and even some African Batik beads.
The bracelet is unisex and will fit most any wrist size. When I make up these bracelets I use the ankle bracelet size memory wire instead of the wrist size memory wire. The larger size fits more comfortably on the wrist (even a small wrist) especially when using the somewhat larger beads and nuggets.
Sunday, February 1, 2015
You will find these fine old vintage teak cutting boards in the Sirocco’s Curios on-line store. Shortly after the Second World War my uncle opened a small diner serving hamburgers and other comfort food of the period. These 12 X 12 X 2.5 inch heavy cutting boards were in use in his restaurant. While the boards show some scuffs and dings, they are perfectly usable and will look good in any kitchen. Teakwood is the ultimate wood for cutting boards.