Category Archives: Techniques & Tips

Fall Leaf Pendants in Polymer Clay

Pile of fall leaf pendantsI spent part of a rainy weekend making fall leaf pendants from polymer clay and a “secret” ingredient.

Fall is one of my favorite times of year for many reasons, not the least of which is it means the end of my least favorite season – summer.

It’s also a great time of year for color inspiration if you’re as big a fan of earth tones as I am. What’s not to love about the blends of green, amber, orange, and red in tree leaves in the fall? Continue reading

Jewelry Design Challenge: Copper Etching

Etched copper earringsMy newest jewelry-making technique involves a bit of chemistry and physics. I gave metal etching a try this month. Etching and electroforming are the techniques featured for the Self-Representing Artists in Jewelry Design challenge in August.

I began researching etching weeks ago, and decided on salt-water as my etchant almost immediately. My studio, which is sometimes otherwise known as my kitchen counter and dining table, is not equipped for harsher chemical techniques that generate more toxic fumes. Continue reading

Creating Collections in Your Etsy Shop

Find More in My Etsy Store comment balloonThis is a quick-tip post about how to use backlinks to create collections inside your Etsy shop. There’s no coding involved on your part, and you don’t have to know the first or second thing about html.

If you have an Etsy shop, you know you can assign your jewelry to shop sections. You also know there is a pesky 1:1 limit, meaning you cannot put the same item into more than one section. Continue reading

Using Iced Enamels with Polymer Clay

Polymer clay and Iced Enamels

Supplies for my experiment: Premo polymer clay and Iced Enamels liquid medium and powders.

What happens when you mix Iced Enamels Relique Powders with polymer clay? I was curious so I did a little experiment.

Last month I needed to make some “resin and enamel” jewelry for a design challenge. I don’t own a torch, so I sort of cheated on the enamel part and used Iced Enamels. Iced Enamels are powders that you combine with a proprietary medium and cure with a heat gun. Then you seal them under a layer of resin (Ice Resin, by the same manufacturer, of course). Continue reading

Anatomy of a Blog: Part 3

Anatomy of a Blog part 3Here we are for the third and final installment of my Anatomy of a Blog Series.

The series began with Part 1 which covered the general skeleton and skin of a blog, a.k.a. the platform, theme, etc. And Part 2 discussed the basic elements of a blog post, from title to comments.

This part, Part 3, is dedicated to the bits and pieces of a blog’s sidebar, with my suggestions for some basic widgets to include. There’s also some bonus material at the end: a note about footers. Continue reading

Anatomy of a Blog: Part 2

Anatomy of a Blog Part 2Welcome back to my Anatomy of a Blog series. This is an overview guide to the basic parts and functions of a blog. In Part 1 of the series, I covered blogging platforms, themes, the banner, and navigation menu. Part 3 will describe the bits and pieces of a sidebar, with recommendations on some essential widgets. Here in Part 2 of the series I’m describing the components of a blog post itself.

To be clear, this series does not tell you how to write a blog or what to write about. Or how to customize your theme, or which platform to choose. It’s a compendium of things that make a blog tick and some tips on how to make the most of yours. Continue reading

Anatomy of a Blog: Part 1

Anatomy of a blog part 1If you’re new to blogging – writing one or reading them – here’s a little breakdown on the anatomy of a blog page. It’s your guide to what’s inside, where to look for it, and what its function is. There are some common elements among blogs, which is what this series of posts is about. There are also endless variations across them.

Part 1 of this Anatomy of a Blog series covers blogging platforms, blog themes, banners, and navigation menus. Part 2 will cover the essential elements of a blog post, from images to discussion. Finally, Part 3 covers the bits and pieces of a blog sidebar, including recommendations for what to put there. Continue reading

Copper Patina Effect with Polymer Clay

Copper sealife boxI’ve been experimenting with some mixed media recipes to create a faux copper patina effect on polymer clay. I love copper. And I especially love copper with a patina. Those splotches of cool turquoise blues and greens on the warm reddish metal. Yum.

Shiny copper, like the color of a new penny, is pretty. But some things just get better with age, and copper is one of them. I love rustic crusty grungy looking things. Things that look lived in, weathered, old. Continue reading

Five Things to Expect From a Blog Hop

US First Class stamp-jukebox dancersIf you’ve been around the blogoverse for a while, you’ve likely at least heard of, if not participated in or hosted, a blog hop. A blog hop, in case you aren’t familiar, is a virtual social event where blog authors share links to other blogs, so they and their readers can “hop” from one blog to the next and sample the offerings. Think “pub crawl” but without the public drunkenness or hangover.

At it’s most basic, a blog hop is a way to generate more traffic to your blog. But it can be so much more than that. It can be a community of like-minded people who gather in the blogosphere to share ideas, art, friendship, and more.  Continue reading

Selling on Indie Made vs Etsy: a Control Freak’s Guide

Etsy or IndieMade logos
I decided to add my two cents to the comparison of selling handmade jewelry on Etsy versus Indie Made. I’ve had a shop on Etsy since December 2008. I set up a shop on Indie Made in July 2014. I’ve had 74 sales on Etsy and none on Indie Made. You may be thinking those stats would stack the deck in favor of Etsy for this review. Not so fast. Continue reading