12 December 2009

Everything Old is New Again

"Don't throw the past away
You might need it some rainy day
Dreams can come true again
When ev'ry thing old is new again"
~lyrics from The Boy from Oz sung by Hugh Jackman
Need a little inspiration to transform your upcycled jewelry into new, fresh treasures? There is no place I would rather go than to my resources shelf.
I would never use any of my magazines or books as a step by step, but rather as a point of departure. I think that I like to see how different I can make it. Besides the fact that it would be nearly impossible to duplicate every component used, I believe it is a true testament to the innate creativity in us all to come up with our own spin on our inspirations. That is why these challenges are so cool...so supportive...so encouraging. I hope you will find the time to make yourself a little retro bling for the holiday repurposing those forgotten treasures.
Hurry! You only have until 11:59 pm CST on Sunday, December 13th to enter your photo at the Flickr group to be entered to win some great prizes.
Speaking of said prizes, the Humblebeads that I ordered to create with this week have not found their way to me. I am at so many different addresses these days, that I fear the post office may be more confused than usual. So I will have to concoct something other than planned...stay tuned!
In case you need a little inspiration, I picked up two of my favorites as inspiration for Week 2 Inspired by...Grandma's Jewelry Box. I love to see the fresh uses of materials in these two books and the great photography that really piques my interest and gets me excited about seeing everyday things in a new light. {Have I told you I have no filters when it comes to buying new books? Even if it is a technique that I would never be able to try on my own, or really don't even see myself doing, I cannot help but buy the book. I have all sorts of them. In 2010 I plan to try to limit myself to just one book a month. That will be tough.} Actually, I would actually encourage you to buy books that are outside of your normal creative comfort zone.....sometimes those books are the ones that have the best inspiration because I don't have that particular skill so I have to be inventive.
The first is Amy Hanna's Rejuvenated Jewels.

I fell in love with this book from the moment I saw the cover. Not only does Amy have the most amazing treasure trove, and has traveled all over to find it, but she has this amazing sense of style when it comes to combining them. There is a timelessness to her designs....vintage yet modern. The book is very well laid out, the directions are clear, the pictures are beautiful and I love hearing the story of where she found the precious bits that she uses. Amy Hanna also has a blog called Living the Artful Life where she tells the stories behind her creations, her passions, her life. She is a beautiful lady with a whole lot of style. Check her out if you have some time.

The second resource is Vintage Redux by Brenda Schweder.

I had the good fortune to meet Brenda at the Bead & Button show in Milwaukee last summer. She is a bold and bright and beautiful lady with a lot of fresh ideas. Her book Vintage Redux shows a much kitschier and playful style than Amy Hanna's. Both styles have their place in the whole repurposing jewels trick. What I liked best about this book is that it helped me to see the diamonds in the rough of the outdated 80s jewelry that I just couldn't part with. And breathing fresh life into those old oddities is a great way to kickstart your creativity.

If you don't already have these resources, they are great additions to your wish list.

When you get new resources (books, magazines, etc) do you sit down and read them cover to cover? Do you buy only resources for one particular style of jewelry making or do you try to branch out and pick out resources that run the gamut?
Do you ever follow the instructions exactly, or do you use it as a jumping off point for your own designs?
Do tell!

Enjoy the day!


Marie Cramp said...

I really hope you do more of these little challenges when I am not swamped with custom orders!! lol. The second Bead Trends issue I was published in they took, my first two re-furbished pieces ever! Perhaps I should make more :) {November Bead Trends} if you want to peak ;) I feel the same way, I don't use any of my books as step by step I simply use them to get inspiration. Sometimes the ideas that come to me have nothing to do at all with the pictures I am looking at. Thanks for the inspiration.


Rebecca said...

Wow! I just found your blog by searching out one of my blog followers! How wonderful.

I want to answer your question re: when you buy a book do you....?

I buy magazines, books, search the internet, browse stores, flea markets and craft/art shows for ideas. I am always pulling inspiration but NEVER totally copying and NEVER following the instructions.

Fun! I have now joined your blog followers, you are inspiring! Thanks!

lunedreams said...

thanks for the reading recommendations! i've been afraid to look at too much of other people's stuff, but your pinch of this pinch of that sounds like a great idea! i hit jeweler's block every now and again and feel like i'm making the same stuff over and over, that would be a great and handy way to discover a new direction.

stregata said...

Oh, Erin, don't even start me on books! Another passion!! I wouldn't think of making something exactly according to the book - where is the fun in that? It already exists. But I love to look for techniques that intrique me and learn how to do something, that I can implement with my own ideas. And sometimes, it means I have to develop my own technique, because the supplies or resources aren't available, so I have to improvise.

Anonymous said...

I love Amy Hanna's book too, it's so beautiful.
I love to read a new book or magazine all the way through. I love to have a nice hot cup of decaf while reading them or go to a restaurant by myself and read through them until I'm done. Our Borders is in a mall, so I can run off to Starbucks or a restaurant to enjoy my new read.

The Joy of Nesting said...

Hi Kiddo,

I agree with you both of those books are favorites that get used all the time.

I'm a cover to cover kinda girl :) It's a must for me to have tons of different genre resourses because I rearly find the exact materials a project calls for. I'm forced to improvise inorder to create. Therefore I can't (even if I wanted to) follow instructions exactly!!

Have you seen "Enchanted Adornments" yet??? Excellent!!! And it's really going to stretch my improvising abilities, since I don't have access to either polymer or metal clays!! :) The other book I'm excited to see is "Steampunk Style" by Jean Campbell

Pattie ;)
Mazatlan Mexico

rosebud101 said...

I love to use book, patterns, etc as a jumping off point! That's so much fun for me!

Sissy Sparrows said...

Hi Erin....I've really enjoyed this weeks challenge, and look forward to next week.

I have to say my favourite book of the moment is Amy Hanna's, I've read it from cover to cover.......and then again and again. She is amazing and provides loads of inspiration.

Leslie @ Bei Mondi said...

Rarely do I use instructions in a book exactly as they are written. I often just flip through the pages for inspiration. I seem to lean towards books on wire work and it seems like every time I try my hand at something someone else has created my own personality comes out anyway. I find it hard to manipulate the wire exactly the way someone else has. But this offers me a chance to get creative and maybe embrace my mistakes. Love your challenges! Very cool!


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