Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A New Material

The road trip has inspired me. I'm thinking of adding feathers to some of my pieces. Perhaps pheasant feathers...

Me with said pheasant somewhere on the back roads of Kansas.

We did not hit the pheasant. It was road kill. Now that's an incentive to make a purchase.


The Wares

I'm running out of hangers; somebody buy something.

The dog is not for sale.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Defining a Moment

I took a couple of pieces in to work today. I'd asked Brandon if I could shoot him wearing them. Brandon is not only cute, he's an absolutely wonderful person. Enough good things cannot happen to Brandon fast enough. Here's Brandon wearing Sundry Dangles and Far Pavilions. That has a nice ring to it, huh? Or does it sound like a cologne? Hey, have you seen that cologne commercial with the guy on a boat, then on a white horse? He says at the end, "I'm on a horse." It kills me. Normally, I never see commercials because of TiVo, but we're transitioning to high-def; we have the TV now, but not the recorder, so we watch things live sometimes to experience the def. My photos of Brandon could definitely use more def. But isn't he swell?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Drinking the Stars - necklace - antique vintage assemblage

This unusual pendant, suspended from several vintage brass chains, is an antique belt buckle with the buckle teeth and bar removed. In place of the bar, I engineered a wire holding a fabulous antique black glass star and brass button. The necklace went through several false starts until I felt it was balanced, comfortable and pleasing to the eye.

The chain is 15.5 inches (31-inch circumference). The buckle and button are 3.5 inches. The chain and  button dangle at the back of the neck are 4.25 inches.

I scour garage sales, auctions, stores and my life for antique and vintage components that I use in creating one-of-a-kind pieces.

  • fancy antique cut steel and gold vermeil (?) belt buckle
  • 4 superb antique metal buttons
  • Art Nouveau square chain from Hayward tie clip
  • 3 other kinds of brass chain


"Invention"  —Barbara Hamby

I am personally indebted to antiquity because if it were left
to me nothing would have been invented. We would still be chasing

boars and clubbing them to death. No, that's too refined.
We'd still be eating grass and grubbing for worms.

How did they think up all that stuff? I'm not talking
about painting or literature. That's easy.

What could be more natural than sitting around a campfire
telling stories and then rhyming to make them easier to remember

or having two or three people take different parts?
Voila, poetry and theatre. I'm talking about bread.

Who thought of grinding wheat and mixing it with mold?
Forget bread. I can't get past wheat. Wheat must have been a weed

once. Who walked up to wheat and thought about growing
a whole field of it, picking it, smashing it together,

adding water, throwing it on a fire? Who were these
proto-chemists, these Neanderthal Marie and Pierre Curies

who harvested the grain?  To leap from throwing rocks at birds
and grilling them on a spit to Safeway is too great for me,

which leads to another subject if one picks up reading material
in supermarkets. Recently I discovered that alien civilizations

do not vacation on Earth anymore because we are too bellicose
and vulgar. Well, whose fault is it anyway? Anyone who thinks

that buffoons such as we could have thought up wheat,
not to mention architecture, axels, armor, artillery

is not taking his Lithium. There would still be about 250 of us
in caves somewhere in France if someone with big silver eyes

hadn't been buzzing around the universe, bored, sentimental,
and decided to stop and help us along. Next thing you know

there's agriculture, horticulture, apiculture. It's the only
logical explanation and if it weren't for the CIA,

everyone would agree with me. However, scientists in Russia,
Argentina, and the north of England (top-notch men,

every one of them) theorize that not only did the Andromedans
show us a few tricks, they also mated with the indigenous

species. Yuck, you might say, if they think we're creepy now,
just imagine what our manners were like ten or twenty thousand

years ago, though come to think of it, I doubt the alien haute
bourgeoisie was patrolling the outer reaches of the universe.

According to a test devised by these scientists, you can tell
if you are descended from extraterrestrials by certain physical

characteristics, such as blond hair, slender fingers,
musical ability (especially singing), big eyes, blue eyes,

which all point to a racially pure colony in Sweden
or Schleswig-Holstein for a few thousand years

and are somewhat reminiscent of our recent troubles in Europe
and Japan. I, for one, would like to toast an inventor:

Tchin, tchin, Dom Perignon, who said when he discovered
champagne, "My God, I am drinking the stars."


Coin of the Realm - in honor of tax day

Gunmetal coin lockets, or sovereign holders, like these were popular in the early 20th century and may have been used as watch fobs or hung from chatelaines.

  • antique (early 1900s) gunmetal sovereign/coin-holder locket
  • 1907 Indian-head penny
  • antique (early 1900s) steel and brass watch key
  • antique (late 1800s) cut-steel button
  • new and vintage chains: antiqued copper circle-links chain (lead safe and nickel safe); 100-percent oxidized brass rollo chain made in U.S., small vintage brass chain
  • brass connecting rings, which I used to embellish the circle-links chain
The necklace chain is 33 inches. The coin locket is 1.25 inches. There is a small bit of surface rust on the locket, but it's solid: The catch works and the hinge is sound. The necklace slides over the head; there is no clasp on the main chain.


Coin of the realm: The currency that, for any culture, holds value.

Sam Spade: Ten thousand? We were talking about a lot more money than this.
Kasper Gutman: Yes, sir, we were, but this is genuine coin of the realm. With a dollar of this, you can buy ten dollars of talk. The Maltese Falcon