29 July 2010

gonna set the night on fire

I overcame my trepidation of torch firing enamels and I am ever so happy I did.

Here is the first layer on a poppy.

I chose flame orange because it seemed appropriate. 

For some reason I had thought I would need a different set up for using my torch to fire enamels but my kiln trivets worked just fine. {shown is a little stand I made to hold pieces with a hole drilled into it.}

This was an experiment and I soon came to realize that the enamel will have more oxides in it if you put the flame directly on the glass powders. When I read about this method I assumed the oxides were due to using copper, but I learned otherwise. Sometimes the oxides produce lovely colors and this is a great technique to use. It wasn't a big deal to remove the thin coat of brown with some pumice sticks so this worked just fine for me.

Here is my poppy cooling. It is great fun to see the colors change as the piece cools. The whole process is fun. You feel more involved than just putting a piece in the kiln and shutting the door. You get to see all of the transformations taking place. And you control the heat and where the flame hits. Did I mention this is far cooler than sitting in front of a 1500 degree kiln?

I sure love the results. Everything seems more immediate with torch fired enamels. I moved along with these little poppies. Craftland has been waiting a long time for their order and this process will speed things up. And, I don't have to put firing enamels off for a cooler day. Good thing, since I don't see cooler days in the near future.

i want cherries

that's all.

28 July 2010

midnight madness on etsy

Monday night, or shall I say early Tuesday morning, I received a lovely email from etsy telling me that I had a sale. Well, two sales really. It seems that a lady in New York City loves her enamels, and has an eye for blue.

These were a fairly new addition to my shop. I think they will be happy with their new home.

These morning glory earrings have been around for quite a while now. I know they were growing tired of being schlepped around from market to market. New York City will be a welcome destination.

Before the departure I made sure the enamel gleamed and the ear wires were shaped to perfection. 

All tied up with a bow {blue of course} along with a hand-written thank you card. The package is complete and antsy to be on it's way.

Sometimes it is sad to not have work around that I was use to seeing. But it makes me happier to have someone love my work enough to make it theirs forever.


23 July 2010

production line

For the past few weeks I was working away on far too many earrings. I get antsy when I have repetitive work to do so I try and change things up a little with different textures and finishes.

Even through all of my complaining, I knew I would feel accomplished when I packed up my finished pieces. When the piles of work start to grow you remember why you started this big project after all. I have a decent inventory of the basics for Indie Arts Fest and Picnic. Now it is time to focus on enameling and creating new designs. 

Now I am off to take photos of new work, pleased with all of the hard work behind me.
xo, Kim

21 July 2010

welcome summer! stroll through the neighborhood.

There are so many pretty gardens in my neighborhood. Front yards are filled with lovely, bright blooms. It is always a great adventure when I take Miss Callie for a walk.  Luckily, I always have my phone to take some photos.
I don't know what these white stalks of flowers are called. They look like foxglove but are different from any other plant I have seen. Any ideas? Drop me a comment.

I love the texture the ShakeItPhoto app captured in the birdhouse.  Aren't the honeysuckle in the background pretty?

These are always a favorite. Cheery and all clustered together. 

The oxalis is sitting in my windowsill, not on the streets of the neighborhood. Isn't the sun shining through the purple leaves so pretty?

I am happily enjoying summer. Are you?
xo, Kim

19 July 2010

SoWa Sundays and my happy return to Providence

This weekend I made my way to Boston for SoWa.  It was terribly hot and I didn't last under the tent. In the end, it just wasn't worth the trip. Not enough in sales and a sick me just doesn't make it worth packing up my tent and goods. It isn't how I like to visit Boston. Generally, I don't like to leave because I never feel like I got to see it all. Only seeing signs of home made me feel better yesterday.

Sightings of Narragansett Electric Company's stacks always means home is near. 
The silhouette is a great contrast to the sky. The clouds look like they are rushing by.

The lights weren't on yet at the electric company, at night it lights up in a golden yellow. It is a great sight but I will take the blue sky too.

This picture is just like my memory of the stacks, blurred and whizzing by as I get even closer to home.

What makes you think of home? Do you stop and capture it on film (or your phone)?

welcome summer! Neighborhood stroll edition

On a short walk with my lady I came across these lovely hibiscus in a neighbor's front yard. Callie was nice enough to wait patiently while I took some pictures of these huge blooms. 

It is hard to get an idea of their size but I promise they are the largest hibiscus I have seen. And they are ever so bright and cheery.

I find these to be the most festive flowers in a garden. They seem so exotic and too tropical for Providence. I promise I am not complaining, I am lucky to come across them as I stroll the neighborhood. 

thank your neighbors for their lovely gardens!
xo, Kim

15 July 2010

welcome summer! more blooms

The gardens here are full of surprises as I haven't witnessed them in bloom yet. When I saw this stem I knew what was coming. After waiting patiently the oriental lilies finally burst open this morning.
Maybe they were waiting for some rain? I know I was happy to cooled down. 

Hibiscus have been in  bloom for a few weeks now. I just love seeing pink, purple and white as I drive around town. 

I wonder what the neighbors think of me. I am always sticking my phone into their flowers to take pictures. Then to process them I shake my phone like a polaroid. Must look a little silly. That's just fine, I love being able to look back after the flowers aren't blooming. I can recall how the sun felt on my shoulders and how happy I was to discover these blooms.

enjoy the rain!
xo, Kim

brewing coffee european style

I have been on the prowl for the perfect method of brewing coffee. My sister-in-law suggested I try a Moka Pot. I gave in this week {after being tired of drinking sludge produced from my french press} and took a trip to the Coffee Exchange to get me one. Of course I went with the snazzy, Made In Italy one, because the pots are just so sexy in stainless steel {says the metalsmith in me}.

It takes more time to brew this way. Enough time to allow me to play with my hipstamatic app on my iPhone to capture my sexy new pot. I just love the retro appeal of this photo. 

Back to the coffee, I am finding this method to be quite strong. Maybe it is the new bean I tried too. I will master it though. It is a method which stood the test of time and I will get the knack for it. Promise.

How do you like your coffee? Do you ever change it up, just a smidgen? I do, it keeps things fun.

Keep Sweet!
xo, Kim

14 July 2010

fresh from the side of the road

While walking home from the gym the other night I decided it was time for some new flowers for my end table. So, I picked some Queen Anne's Lace from the side of the road.
Last night I captured it on my iPhone. Doesn't the Shake It Photo app make it look like an oil painting? 

Queen Anne's Lace has long been an inspiration for me. When I get some time I will fashion some jewelry after one of my favorite flowers. It is ever so complicated, yet simple in color. Stunning!

enjoy the summer flowers!
xo, Kim

10 July 2010

welcome summer! flowers are in bloom!

This week has brought some dreadfully hot weather to us. I feel like I am in Vegas running from one air conditioned place to the next. Seems like I won't ever want to turn my kiln on to enamel again. Even through all of this complaining I did get outside to capture some flowers on my iPhone and it was worth it.

This plant has really blossomed in the front yard. I can't tell what it is, maybe lavender? The brick steps behind it provide a nice contrast.

Brown eyed susans are starting to come to life. I love seeing blankets of these. Quite cheerful!

There are more on their way. See the little buds?

This is one lucky shot. Not sure how I managed it will walking my furry lady, but I will take it. I think bellflowers are so cute. They are short with lots of personality.

Keep cool and water your flowers!
xo, Kim

03 July 2010

welcome summer: shake it photo style

On my urban summer stroll I photographed some purple coneflowers with my iPhone. The ShakeItPhoto app is quite amazing. Don't you think?

The colors produced are just lovely. 

Snap up some of your favorite summer flowers before it is time for fall flowers to bloom. June went by ever so quickly. Capture July while you can. 

happy fourth to you. 
xo, Kim

thanks for reading!