Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Contest winner!

Elaine has won this bracelet in my "pick the one you like" contest. A sincere thanks to all who entered. I'll do this again in a few weeks so stop back if you'd like to enter again. Or if you'd like to check out the offerings or my musings. 

I laid out 12 new button-clay bracelets last weekend but haven't had time to glue them. It's kind of a zen thing. I don't like to be rushed when I doing my gluing (funny that way) and being tired and rushed leads to really sloppy work. So I'll probably do it this weekend. They turned out fabulous and I'm looking forward to getting them listed on Etsy.

I received an order of buttons (about $15 worth) and they are so pretty. I've got a problem though. They have a smell to them that is kind of horsey, kind of old and smokey and it has not gone away in the one soak in soapy water I've given them. Too bad because I really like them. But I can't use smelly buttons in my bracelets, now can I? FWIW, they are NOT from the site I got the picture from in my last post. Those didn't smell like anything (just the way I like my buttons, really). I've never had to return anything I bought from Etsy. Hopefully the seller will be easy to work with if I need to return them.

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Saw these on Pinterest this morning. I love the iridescent effect. The images are copyright protected, so to look at the loveliness, you'll have to click on the link and look at the artist's photo stream. Worth a click, I say!

I will post another button picture, though.

These are darn near perfect for what I'm doing with the bracelets. Most of them are flat, and not too big. the big order I got off of Ebay ended up having a lot of too-large buttons. That's OK, I imagine a use for them will be delivered at some point. I bought a similar lot of green ones and of pink ones, too. 

Kid>>Candy Store>>LindaCO.

Oh, one more thing. The super-wonderful Jaquelineand at Blether gave me an idea for a giveaway that I'm going to post on FB and all my outlets today. It'll end next Wednesday, 9 pm Mountain Time. Here it is:

Go to my Etsy shop, pick out a bracelet you would like to win, copy the URL, and paste it as a comment here on the Physaria Designs blog, or as a comment to the giveaway post on the PD Facebook page. I'll pick a random entry and that person will win that bracelet. Wh0oOp!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Easy Teals

Sometimes, the pieces sort of come together seemingly on their own. This was such a piece. I seemed to have a lot of teal (aqua, aquamarine - what would you call these colors?) colored buttons and clay tiles, so it went together easily. I really like this one, but I'm like a mother with multiple kids - I love them all. :-)

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Mixed media bracelet

So this is the sort of design that got me into making jewelry in the first place. I saw something similar (more metal hardware on it and no clay tiles) at a consignment store when I was waiting in line to purchase some clothes. It's got upcycled watch parts on it, face, mainspring barrel and gears. It also has new things, like a funky charm, and the clay tiles, which I make myself. The clay tiles are kind of meditative for me and I love to make new colors. I'm starting to get the color thing down such that I'll make several shades of a particular color when I work, so I'm guaranteed to have 3-4 shades that go together (even if I don't put them together on every piece). 

For some reason, I haven't sold a lot of these. It's funny, when you think you've got a unique something that people would want to buy, yet I've got about 30 of these on my Etsy site. The people who do see them think they are swell, and I fully get it that it's not a style for everyone. I suppose it's a matter of setting the right price and getting the word out, and that's an evolving thing.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Tail end of vacation

My family has been out to visit this week. We've had all sorts of fun, but I haven't crafted much. Here's a set of decorative buttons I made a couple of weeks ago. I love making these fine stripes out of the clay. I never know quite how it's going to turn out, and I like that part of it. 

Friday, August 10, 2012


This isn't entirely a crafty post, but you might be able to empathize here. I have family in town. Yea! My brothers and their families. It's a great thing. They just got in yesterday, and we had some pizza and beer at my little house before driving over to the condo we rented for them. 

I have two nieces. One's 10 and the other is 6. The 10 year old just sat with us while we talked, but the 6 year old was up and down, here and there. I had a flash of an idea, and said, "K, would you like to sort buttons for me?" Her eyes light up, "Yes!" The perfect job for this sweet girl. There is something satisfying with doing a task like this. Once you know what you're doing, there's one right answer, and you can easily see your progress.

I bought this bunch of small buttons off of Ebay and they have sat all mixed up in the bag. I got K a bunch of clean yogurt cups and she's gone to town. She asked once if I I thought one button was more tan than brown, and I said, "Whatever sorting you choose, just stay with that and it will be great." I wanted to make it her project :-) And she went back to her job. This is something she can work on right with us there as we are gabbing (which we do a lot). Yea! Maybe I'll have them mix some clay colors, too...

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Mixing it up

I haven't gotten my 600 buttons from the Ebay purchase yet, but I had a few laying around, so I went to work on a new bracelet style. I really like it. It's easy to assemble, which is always a plus, but also has the very engaging and interesting (to me) part of picking colors, shapes, and locations for the various components. 

I knew I wanted to combine my hand-stamped clay tiles with buttons, and also really like the look of layers of buttons. So the first incarnation of this had layers of buttons, and just the larger clay tiles. I was eating my morning cereal, looking at the bracelets, and the muse, that little creative something came along and I thought, "add another layer of tiles". I'm very happy with the result

Monday, August 6, 2012

New necklace style

I like the look of having the bracelet links I use made into a necklace. I especially like being able to have a little spot to put an element of the necklace, and then switch them around until I like what it looks like. For some reason, that's really appealing to me. 


The above picture is the first design. Well, actually the first design was just the four links across, but it suffered from floppiness and would turn over while I was wearing it, so this is the first design offered for sale. A friend fiddled with things and found that hanging something from the middle helped. Brilliant! 

Not sure why Blogger isn't letting me center the picture, but you get the idea...

So my latest necklaces then have three tiers of elements. I'm still using the vintage watch faces and mainspring barrels, and added a couple of vintage buttons. It's interesting and shimmery. 

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Oh boy Oh boy Oh boy

On the 1-10 button fanatic scale, I am about a 5.5. I really like using them in mixed media pieces, and am fascinated by the seemingly endless variety of size, color, and the other fun stuff that's done to them to make them pretty. But I won't collect them to have a collection of them; I see them as supplies. 

Do you bid on things on Ebay? I'm pretty particular about what I want from their listings. For buttons, I was looking for larger ones this time around. I bought several hundred little ones (from a clothing factor that closed in the 70's - vintage enough for me) and have recently wanted to goof around with layering buttons for larger pieces. 

The photography for some listings is junk, and I won't bid on something that I can't see every piece of. I'm pretty sure this means I end up bidding on more expensive items, but at least I know what I'm getting and don't have to put half of it in bags hoping I might have a use for it some day. 

I also don't want to wait too long, usually try to bid on things in auctions that are over within24 hours, and I don't like to add my bid when there's already 10 bids on the thing. Hmm, I guess I am pretty specific about what I want from Ebay. Anyway, these came up this morning and they totally fit the bill. There's nothing there for scale (which I also like :-)) but I can tell there's smaller ones in there, so the majority of ones are the size I'm looking for. The other photos showed that about 20% of the lot is to the right of what's in this picture and there's a few interesting ones in there (squee!). 


I made some buttons with this sheet of clay and had enough left to make circular tiles for a bracelet. I like the smooth look to the tiles and it's a light bracelet, even though it's kind of chunky. I'd like to fool around more with color combinations to see what looks nice together.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Texture Tile Bracelet

One of my favorite parts of all this is to mix different colors of clay to make the clay tiles. I have a bunch of bracelets that use the tiles plus upcycled vintage watch parts, and wanted to make some with just the tiles, too.

So, Texture Tile Bracelets were born. Does one always need a catchy title? It helps, I think. But here's a recent one. I love purple and green.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Finished color mix tiles

Here is my first set of color mixture tiles. I etched a number in each one that corresponds to my notes in my notebook. The plan is to string these on something and have them as a reference. I'd also like to branch out a bit to perhaps do some of these with different amounts of the metallic clay I like so much. I'm smiling while I write this, because that level of organization is elusive to me yet. Part of me is pretty certain that these would have sat as uncut samples for longer if I had the space to leave them lying around.