2014 Art Charm Swap tease 2

So I have already told you that I have joined the wonderful Jen Cameron's Art Charm Exchange and have shown you my first tease photo well here's another....

Don't forget to join us on November 14th for the big reveal and more importantly the Charity Auction!

Have a great day wonderful people x


Monthly Giveaway October

I have been busy of late working on a new project, a new desk. My current one is falling apart at the seems were the draws are stuffed to bursting and to be honest where it is a cheap MDF flat pack desk that has seen better days. My new desk is a much sturdier 1930's bureau with much bigger draws and locks to keep tiny fingers out! I have sanded and painted it but it is still not finished, any who back to the point. I have had a tidy out of some of the many boxes on top of my old desk (I have not braved the draws yet) and have discovered I have too many beads, WHAT is this madness I hear you fellow bead addicts say, too many beads never can there be such a thing!

Well to be more precise I have too many beads that I know I will not use, they are all beautiful but I just will not use them and I did not know what to do with them, so I have decided to have a monthly giveaway, after all who dose not love a give away! So here are the goodies....

So here we have 

I hope I have got all the makers right (most of these treasures were won in giveaways or were little extras thrown in with my orders) If not I will change them. So here's what ya got to do....

Leave a comment on this blog post

easy as that, of course if you would like more chances to win you could....

Please leave a separate comment for all of the things that you do 

This giveaway closes 31st October 12.00 UK time where I will use random number genarator to pick a winner!

and make sure you pop back on 31st October to see if you have won!

Have a great day lovely people x


The Big Bead Show

Saturday was the Bi-annual Big Bead Show in Sandown Race course, I love the Big Bead Show and what makes it even better is that it is walking distance from my home!
This year I was actually organised enough to enter into the British Bead Awards which is displayed during the show and incredibly surprised to receive an email telling me that I had got to the finals! This was my entry into the chainmaille and wire work section....

It's a simple 4 in 1 chainmaile design but what makes it a bit different is that I have used a painted sixpence coin clasp and Kyanite threepence coin connector from my Bits of NikNats shop. Here is the back of the piece....

I soldered the links onto the back of the three pence coin so that the chianmaille would sit flat and look seamless. Now unfortunately I did not place in the competition, but after seeing the entry's this year I was not in the least bit surprised, the work there was TOTALLY AMAZING! I was just truly honoured to have a piece of my work sitting upon the table amongst such stunning pieces of art work, most of which must have taken months of planing and just as long to actually make!!!!
I had such a lovely day and really wish I had taken photos but I was just in total awe of all the beautiful sparkles! I came away with a few treasures too....

My absolute favourite stall at the bead show is Designer Cabochons, I totally love every item on there stand and you can really see the quality and skill that go into each piece, this beauty is a Drusy Pyrite Ammonite, it sparkles! As dose my other piece.... 

So sparkly, Titanium Druzy and I also got these beautiful lampwork beads by Sarah Downton.

This colour glass has to be my all time favourite it is just so mystical/magical looking!

I hope you are having a fab Monday x


Blog of the month

At the end of September the Little's and I took a trip into Kingston, Yep this hermit went out by choice on a mission to buy a magazine, because look....

How cool is that!

My blog made Blog of the month in the Make and Sell Jewellery mag! There is even a pic of me, OK not a great pic but I hate having my photo taken and my photographer was my 14 year old 'selfie' expert with a camera phone who was trying to convince me to pull a 'duck face' which is not really the look I was going for, I was going for more of a quirky slightly eccentric look....

Tho I think I may have got more of a alarmed, mad, nut case look! So we decided to go with the more normal looking one so as not to scare the readers!
I was very impressed with said 14 year olds talent at multi tasking tho, When I loaded up the photos on the computer I was surprised to find that while taking photos of me she was able to use the back camera to also take more photos of herself with out me even realising, defiantly a trait of a true selfie master!!!


2014 Art Charm Swap tease

This year I am joining in with the fab Jen Cameron (of Glass Addictions) 2014 Art Charm Swap and Beads of Courage Benefit Auction. Last year I was so impressed with all the beautiful charms that everyone made and this year I thought I would give it a go myself. So here is a little tease of what I have made....

Beautiful tiny iolite and pink rhodolite garnet cabs, to see what I and the other participants have made join me on November 14th when we will be having the revel and actioning off some of the charms!!!!

Have a great day x


May the making recomence!

With the kids off during August I did not get much time to make much of anything so I have enjoyed every minute of making the following....

These pieces were just me having a bit of a play around, the owl is a silver version of the one I made for my last bead soup and the hearts were inspired by one of my all time favourite designers Keirsten Giles of Lune Designs (she has a serious talent for jewellery making and a fantastic eye for detail)  Keirsten uses coins to texture her metal and has an amazing blog The Cerebral Dilettante which is full of beautiful photos, great tips and wonderful tutorials!

Tiny chrysoprase ring (British birthstone for May) This was made for mess maker after I was informed that she had plenty of bracelets and necklaces but no rings!

How could I say no to this little face (this is her showing off her new reading glasses)?!

Here is another coin locket I made up this one was commissioned for a birthday gift.

This ones is another byzantine chainmaille charm bracelet, I got to practise my sawing and stamping on this one!

I have even managed to put a few new things in the Bits of NikNats shop.

and as soon as I get the time to make up a few more pieces I am going to be having a giveaway on my Bits of NikNats face book page, so keep checking!

Have a great day x


Ancient Jewellery, The British Museum, third and final part

So I saved the best till last (well in my opinion)! The third and final photo's of The British Museum are all about the Jewellery (again please excuse the poor quality photos once again I have broken my camera again and am having to use my iphone).

Starting with one of the most beautiful pieces of gold work ever, I can not even imagine the work that went into this one!

I have already shown this pic but I really do love it! 
'Gold ring with the name Thutmose III'

Selection of beautiful gold rings with seals on them (owning a beautiful old seal one day is on my to do list) Oh and you can even see my phone in this one (you would not belive how many photo I ruine with my own reflection!

Lion heads, More amazing gold.

I love the design of these rings! 

Stunning supper fine gold chain, I love the beautiful clasp  on this piece!

Such beautiful gold and gem necklaces

Such a fancy clasp on this one....

Lovely links on this green one....

Beautiful set stones

This one looks like an amazing amount of work....

I totally love these....

 Beautiful Egyptian Faience melon beads.

I do wish I had time to get all of the information about the pieces, the where and when they were made and found but any visit we have to a museum with a two year old has to be a fast moving one, while he likes to look at the lovely shiny things he dose not like to linger!!!!

While in London we were lucky enough to fine the sweetest little Antiquity shop just across the road from the British Museum and we picked up these little beauties. I wanted to leave with at least half of the stuff in there but settled for just these (this time but we will go back)! I think I might prong set them with an open back so you can see both sides of the coin and use them in a bracelet or two!

Have a great day you lovely lot!


The British Museum part two Ancient Artifacts

After our Ancient Egyptian day out and our trip to  The British Museum we decided to go back and have a look around at some of the other exhibits on display, There were quiet a few items that I fell in love with so I thought I would share some of the photos with you (please excuse the quality as these were taken with with phone)....

One of my all time favorite photos, I just love old books, beautiful handwritting and medals and of course coins!

Another thing I love Roman glass, and this one was such a beautiful color! The info read....
'Large glass cylindrical box(pyxis) with cover
Roman, probably made in Rome,
AD 1-50
From near Rome

When found this box contained ashed,
though its use for cremated remains was
probably secondary. No other boxes of 
this size are known.'

Some more beautiful Roman glass.

Some stunning Aztec carvings (this photo makes me think of Staci L Smith's beautiful black carved beads)!

Some more beautiful carvings and then....
This really caught my eye, you can't tell by the photo but the tiny turquoise mosaic pieces were supper sparkly so I was drawn to it (like a moth to a flame, oh pretty) and then repulsed! Yep its a human skull, with real teeth!!!

 'Turquoise mosaic mask of Tezcatlipoca
Mixtec-Aztec, AD 1400-1521
A human skull forms the base for this mask of Tezcatlipoca, 'Smoking Mirror', one of the four powerful creator gods in the Aztec pantheon. The Aztec belived that the defeat of Quetzalcoatl by Tezcatlipoca marked the begining of the current era of creation. The emblem of Tezcatlipoca, an obsidian mirror, symbolises his control over the hidden forces of creation and destruction.
The mask is decorated with a mosaic of turquoise, lignite and shell; the eyes have been made from polished iron pyrites. The skull was probably tied around the waist by the leather straps."

On to a much nicer and much smaller skull and....

A dragon, I do love netsuke but hey no suprises there they are after all beads, which brings me to these beauties....

Native American seed beads and just beautiful!

How cool would this look on a beaded cuff, such a beautiful design.

And as we were on the topic of beads how lovely are these!

'Faience melon beads
Melon beads in Egyptian faience 
were made and used in many parts 
of the empire.'

and of course some where to put all these lovely beads....

Such amazingly detailed carvings and I love the banding!

I hope you liked these photos because there are still afew more to come.
The Ancient jewellery ones, So watch this space!

Have a great day x


Ancient Egypt via London

During the summer holidays the children enjoyed learning about Ancient Egypt which included a day trip to London to see Cleopatra's Needle....

and then on to The British Museum which was utterly fantastic (and there website is amazing too)! They currently have 8 mummies on display each with there own fascinating stories!

They have a selection of both natural (shallow grave in the desert type) and man made mummies (organs removed and wrapped in bandages type), male and female, old and young (the youngest being a two year old boy and also a seven year old girl, both unusual because children were rarely mummified).

I did not get many photos as the rooms were very crowded, but they were truly stunning to behold. I did how ever manage to get a couple of jewellery shots of course....

I so need a ring like this!

There were a vast array of amulets in a multitude of diffrent materials 

Mess maker throughly enjoyed the day but insisted that she really should dress up as an Egyption to fully understand what it was like (all in the name of resurch, nothing to do with getting a lovely new dress)! So....

Thanks to the wonders of Ebay she got to be Cleopatra!

And insisted on wearing it every where for a whole week!

We also tried making some Ancient Egyptian food (thanks to a book from the library).

Home made pitta, Dukkah dip, chicken kebabs and date and cinnamon balls, and they seemed to enjoy it, well all bar the date balls! 

Have a wonderful day lovely people!

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