Hi! I am getting so excited about the fall weather coming! For Florida that is the end of October, November and December! Winter isn’t usually until January! I can’t wait for that first cool breeze. I took a hiatus from beadmaking this summer and polished my metalsmithing skills up but I am ready for glass! It’s the color that I love and miss. I am excited about finally having a shop on Etsy, (I know I am way behind the ball here), but taking the time this summer was worth it. I have customers at shows and the people you meet on errands, ( that remark about that beautiful necklace you’re wearing), always asking where they can buy. At the shows they would wonder when your next show was, but sometimes you don’t know because of the policy of having to get juried in. You just never know for sure even though you were accepted for the last 5 years! It will be great to offer another outlet to see my work. Here are 2 necklaces I just listed on Etsy. Check back often because the great thing of Etsy you can list anytime and it’s relatively inexpensive.
This necklace is called Safari and made with 5 different animal patterns. A great classic design that never goes out of style and can be passed on to future generations. The 2nd necklace is 3 tiered with handmade sterling silver rings and my favorite glass Triton.

I am excited to announce that I am opening a Etsy store! The name of the store is CharmaineParker, (that’s with no space). I have been working this summer in sterling silver. It has been a while since I’ve worked with just metal, but with this brutal Florida heat taking a break from glass torch work seemed like a good idea! I actually started jewelry making 15 years ago learning metalsmithing. It has been a joy taking saw to metal and I have some wonderful Fretz jeweler hammers that I just love to use. As some of you know I have struggled with a torn rotator cuff from a previous art show and even though its better, ( I am grateful to be able to work with no problem),  I am excited to be able to sell my jewelry online without having to deal with the heavy booth set up. Most of the jewelry I am posting now is sterling silver metal but more glass with jewelry is to come. I will be uploading new jewelry all the time so please take a look! Here is a sample of the earrings I have in the store for now. This oak leaf is sawn from 18 gauge sterling silver sheet, the earrings are polished then textured with hammers. The gems are gorgeous AAA deep sky blue Topaz faceted tear drop briolettes and parrot green Peridot micro faceted tear drops. Address for shop: etsy.com/shop/CharmaineParker    When my web tech, (darling daughter) comes home I will have her link to website. Thanks!

I am busy working on metal pieces to go with the lampworked beads. It’s great doing metalsmithing again after concentrating  on lampworked beads for 2 years. This is the creative process I enjoy the most, bringing together different mediums, different techniques. It keeps me from getting bored! I have been concentrating on sawing and piercing to create designs, specifically nature themed, (flowers, leaves). It is amazing what you can do with just sawing metal and I think it’s good for your creativity to concentrate on one particular technique. I also have been doing Keum Boo with 23kt. gold foil and riveting those parts to the metal

It’s getting miserably hot in Florida now! This is the time of year when we are all praying for those summer showers. That is another good reason for me to work in sawing metal, that part of my studio is in the air conditioned  house!

Sorry it’s been awhile since posting, I have been busy working on new pieces. Making glass beads has been my focus for a couple of years, but lately I was missing the metalsmithing part. I actually started my jewelry making career learning metalsmithing at a local art center. Silver prices sure have gone up considerably since then!! Silver was the metal of choice for beginners it was so cheap, you could melt it, solder, hammer and if it didn’t work out oh well, more where that came from! I wonder what metal they must be using in the beginning class now? Of course all jewelers are wishing we bought lot more gold and tons of the silver back then!  Here is one of my new pieces. I used nature as inspiration. I have in the past  purposely stayed away from the topic because so many artists use it, but decided that was silly because I enjoy the beauty of nature so much. The silver leaves are cut out of 14 gauge sheet to give weight to the design. The photo isn’t  the greatest, but the leaves where given different textures. I also made the circles using 12 gauge square wire and giving them different textures also. The glass beads are made with that fabulous silver glass Triton. You can see this piece in person at Elizabeth Stevens Gallery in Towles Court, Sarasota, Fla.


Cranberry necklace for Ashley’s wedding
My daughters wedding

My host site dropped my WordPress blog service, but they were suppose to save my content when I transferred to the new WordPress blog.  That didn’t happen! All my content in the last couple of years disappeared! Oh well, it’s time to start anew. The update is I am finally starting back to work after two surgeries on my shoulder, (torn rotator cuff), sidetracked me for a year. I have been steadily working a few hours each day for about a month now. Is my shoulder better? Well, let’s just say I am disappointed in the results so far. I went into the surgery hoping to get a torn rotator cuff fixed and relieve the pain. The doctor tried a new procedure, (without consulting  in me!),which the therapist tore out on the third visit!  It will be a year since I had the second surgery on September 18th. I  plan on getting a second opinion with another doctor.

I do feel a lot better emotionally since I started working. Nothing like melting glass and making jewelry to raise your spirits! I love looking at fashion magazines, (Vogue, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar), I feel you can see some of the most innovative jewelry designs in them. You can’t miss the trend of animal prints in the fall magazines. This is a classic design in clothes and jewelry that will continue. My Safari1 and Safari2 are based on that classic design. The Turquoise & Green are inspired by summer and the Jewelled is designed in response to a beautiful necklace of rubies, emeralds, and sapphires by Bulgari. Thanks for looking!

My darling daughter is studying French in Paris this semester and I was fortunate enough to spend a week in March! This is a life long dream for me. I was suppose to go to Paris with a group from art school when I graduated, but my father was sick and I cancelled. I certainly never regretted that decision, but I know my Dad would be smiling, knowing I finally made it 25 yrs. later. This was a great vacation after the shoulder surgery. This first picture is the Musee du Louvre. I left on March 4, at 3:45 pm, arrived in Paris March 5 at 10:05 am. France is 6 hours ahead. You try to sleep on the plane because you are arriving in the morning and of course you don’t sleep on your first day in France! I had a week and a lot to see! My hotel, Hotel Montpensier was in a wonderful location, (reasonable too, 91 euro a night), walking distance to the Louvre. I was tired in this picture, but thrilled to be there. The famed Pyramid is the main entrance to the museum. You take an elevator down under the Pyramid to Napoleon Hall where information and access to collections are. I will have to admit, I didn’t see all of the Louvre it is so huge, but I saw the Mona Lisa. The famous picture is smaller than I imagined. You couldn’t get close to it, but it was exciting to see that smile. We saw the Winged Victory of Samothrace and Aphrodite (Venus de Milo) sculptures, and a sumptuous exhibit of Crown jewels in the Apollo Gallery. I never get tired of seeing jewelry. There was the coronation Crown of Louis XV, amazing pearls, emeralds, extremely large gems, etc. jewelry. If you go to the Louvre you definitely want to spend a whole day. 

Welcome! This is my first blog. I will have to admit I am totally new at this! My darling daughter built my website and we agreed it would be a good ideal to put a journal in. It’s fascinating to read artists blogs, to view how they live their lives and what inspires them. But I told my daughter, who is now off to college, that I am afraid of the blog! These kids are so adept at this, and what are all these buttons post status, post timestamp? Oh well, I am off to buy yet another Dummy book, and yes they have them on blogs. Well here goes. I actually think this might be good therapy for me. I am recuperating from shoulder surgery, (torn rotary cuff), and there is nothing more depressing for an artist than not being able to work. The problem with shoulders is it takes a looong time to heal. Unlike other parts of our body, there is not good blood flow to the tendons, so it takes a lot longer to heal. Artists take care of your shoulders! I tore mine by lifting a too heavy display at an art show. I had just changed to a really rocking new display, a Abstracta frame with real glass, but unfortunately the glass in the box weighed a wee bit more than the plexiglass. A year later, multiple therapy sessions, surgery January 12th, and it’s still hurting like crazy! Oh well they say 6 months, give it 6 months. Well one thing for sure I am catching up on my reading. I am on the my 3rd Dummy for Photoshop. Laugh, I am not ashamed those books are good! Well must run, hubby is getting hungry.