Monthly Archives: March 2011

Ready for the British Craft Trade Fair

Jewellery and its packaging

 

New collection: made and photographed.
Customised boxes hand made to fit each piece: finally finished.
Brochures: printed.
Display: sorted, I think.
Suitcase: nearly packed.

British Craft Trade Fair in North Yorkshire this weekend: Go.

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Brand New Collection: Double Sided Pendants!

I’ve been toying with this idea for ages, but the Spring 2011 trend of clashing patterns spurred me on to design this series of pendants that can be worn on either side! The handmade silver bales can be easily taken off the chain and turned the other way, making it extremely easy to change the look of your jewellery whenever you feel like it.

Double sided necklaceMaking double sided pendants ended up being way more complicated than I thought it would be: with all of the image transfers, there’s a certain margin of error I have to build in, because for reasons I still haven’t managed to figure out, the image transferring process doesn’t always work. So when you take the normal margin of error for a single side and double it, it takes several tries to get a plaster pendant with good transfers on both sides. Once I’ve managed to get both sides to transfer well, I then have to undertake the risky task of drilling a hole into this hard material: if the piece overheats while it’s drilled, it can flake off large sections or even shatter! If the piece manages to have good images on it AND make it through the drilling process, it then has to survive being lasered: I use the laser welder to weld a silver bar through the plaster piece for added strength and security.

Because these pieces are so complicated and have so many things that can go wrong during their production, I have decided to make a limited number of these, with each one being one-of-a-kind.

I’m taking these as part of a new collection of pieces that I am exhibiting at the British Craft Trade Fair in Harrogate next weekend (April 3-5)

Once the British Craft Trade Fair is finished, I’ll be making a few more double-sided pieces to add to this series, but I think I’ll stop at ten pieces. It’s a bit crazy to think that right now there are only three double-sided plaster pendants in the WORLD (at least as far as I know! I’ve done really extensive market research and can’t find anyone else who does image transfers on plaster).

Double sided necklaceOnce I’m back from the BCTF I have another new collection to present that I’m really, really excited about (hint: I’ve gone back to my metalworking roots for this one!)

I’ll also do a blog about the British Craft Trade Fair, as I’ve never done a trade fair before. I’m really looking forward to seeing what it’s like, as I would never have done a trade fair if it weren’t for Design Space (<- guest article I wrote about the studio collective I’m a part of)

It’s a busy time for Miriam Rowe Jewellery, but I’m really excited about all the new things that I’ve made and I would love to hear what you think of these double sided pendants!

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Curating an Online Exhibition

I’m curating an online exhibition on Crafthaus: please pass this on to any artists you know who may be interested! http://ow.ly/4f7u0

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Spring Trend Watch

Clashing patterns are turning into a huge style trend this spring: from Dolce &Gabbana’s Milan Fashion Week show to Irregular Choice shoes, this fun “mix ‘n’ match” style with a vintage feel sets a perfect tone for the season.

Irregular Choice Shoes

This is a great style to play around with, because you probably don’t have to buy any new clothing to make it work! Most of us have patterned scarves, blouses, and handbags sitting around, not being used because the color or pattern doesn’t go with our current wardrobe. It’s time to get them back out! If you’re one of those lucky ones who don’t have a bunch of unused patterned accessories lying around the house, charity shops/thrift stores are full of good finds.

I’ve put together a few suggestions for ways you could make this trend work for you, because, let’s face it, we probably don’t want to look like we just stepped off the catwalk!

1. Mix clashed patterns with a classic piece of clothing to give an edge without being crazy.

[Dress: JC Penneys, All accessories: Liberty of London]

 

2. Be subtle. Very few people can pull off an entire outfit of clashed patterns (and very few people would WANT to pull that off!)

 

3. Try clashing the patterns of your accessories, while keeping your main outfit in a solid color. If you can manage to have the main colour in your outfit match all of your accessories, it will give you a polished overall look that won’t hurt anyone’s eyes.

[Dress: Cath Kidston, Bag: Accessorize, Shoes: Irregular Choice, Umbrella: Cath Kidston, Scarf: House of Fraser]

 

 

4. Buy an outfit with the clashing patterns built in. If you don’t feel confident mixing your own patterns, let the clothing designer do all the work for you- that's their job!

[Dress and scarf: Dolce & Gabbana]

D&G Scarf at House of Fraser

5. To build your look around a patterned piece of clothing, remember to let the patterns clash and the colors mesh. This dress from Macy’s has a lot of possibilities: the pattern is subtle and the colors are present but not too bold, making it perfect for tying the accessories together without making you look like you’re in costume.

I had so much fun “shopping” for these outfits! I absolutely love this style trend and am currently working on making a collection of jewellery based on it- more on that in my next post :)
What do you think of wearing clashing patterns?
Do you have any more suggestions for making this trend work all of us who will never set foot on a catwalk? I’d love to know what you think.

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And The Winner Is…..

#188: Anna Olson!

Anna lives in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, in the United States. She has chosen the Vintage Peacock Necklace as her prize, saying, “I really like peacocks, they are so beautiful! I am really drawn to deep colors like that, that flow together nicely. Also, I think it’s a neat design that I would wear a lot!”

The Vintage Peacock Necklace will be making its way across the pond to Sioux Falls on Monday.

I would like to thank everyone who participated, making this giveaway such a success. When I first thought about giving a piece away, I wasn’t really sure how it would actually work, but I’m so pleased with the way it has turned out.

Congratulations to Anna, and again, my thanks to everyone who participated and made this giveaway work so well: you’re the best!

Keep a look out for another giveaway: I’m sure it won’t be too horribly long coming. In the meantime, I’m working on a new collection of pieces that I’ll be launching soon, so I’ll post about that next.

Happy Friday!

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