Wednesday, May 25, 2011

In which Mich gets overexcited at the hardware store.

This is silly, but I am particularly excited about this post.  I found something really fun at the hardware store today, and came up with what I think is a cool upcycle.

Check out this bracelet with its strange-looking "clasp."


What the?



It's a spring for holding window screens into their frames.  I saw one and suddenly thought, "What if I could make a springy connector to take the place of a clasp?"  By Jove, I could!


Want to see how?  I warn you, it's fiendishly simple.

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Mystery Thing Revealed! Someone Won an Octagon.

If you've been paying attention, for the past few days my readers and I have been playing one of my Mystery Thing guessing games.  I asked for guesses as to the identity of these interesting gray octagons:


I was laughing my tush off at the entries this week.  You guys are too much!

Mich's Honor Roll of Completely Brilliant (Totally Wrong) Guesses:
Emma:  a ring used in medieval times to exact disciplinary action upon uber angsty teenagers
Saraccino: an essential part of a T-fighter
JennRose: miniature, portable Stargates.
Chrysty: lug nut off a Cardassian space junker.
SuzieQ: a filter for monkey coconut oil.
Ashes: a part from my sister's uncle's cousin's next door neighbor's time machine.
Centi: a special item designed by men to confuse women who try to deal with electricity on their own!
PricefamilyX6: bowel movements of a small companion robot designed by a lonely, evil mad genius.
Meijo's Joy: something you got from the dentist to hold your fake teeth when you sleep at night.
Michele: a defibresisting cappitellic martelibator for use in electrical devices to stop the current from traveling through a resistor and entering a capacitor. Easy.
Joni S: the missing part from the TARDIS that forces it to continue looking like a 1960's police phone box. 
DM: a stolen device that links firemen's pipes together , and now there's a flood in your neighbourhood. 
MissKoolAid: a spinal disc from a time-traveling robot.
Sunny: You know the copper pipe people in the incontinence commercials? I think one of them lost these in a wardrobe malfunction. 
Terri: a shock collar for a tiny robotic poodle.
Purky: the winding core from a giant clockwork steampunk scarab discovered in the temple of Anubis in the late 1800's. Luckily you have dissembled it into component pieces else it could have been used as a terrible weapon and taken over the world.
Emilysnan: the iron age prototype for the wheel, of course.
I would just like to say to Meijo's Joy: I'll have you know I keep my false teeth in a mod-podged tuna can.   Chrysty, it's actually closer to a lug nut off a Kardashian space junker, which is fueled by coconut tanning oil.  And Purky, I hope you're writing the screenplay, because I'd pay to see that movie!



Ready to see the answer?  Okay.  But I suspect most of you will be just as mystified as before.  I sure was.  Look at these intimidating critters:


What the...?  Apparently, they're battling tops for a game called Beyblade.  They spin and kill each other in a little tabletop arena.  And if you find some at a yard sale and take them apart...


Whee!  Exciting jewelry components!  All shapes and colors and sizes.   I could spend a month making nothing but oddly fetching, sweetly sci-fi Beyblade baubles.

 

Winners.  Who woulda thunk - the very first guess was correct.  Natalia has boys who showed her the light.  And random.org chose my second winner, Ashes.  Congrats to you both, expect an email shortly.

Thanks for playing, you guys!  There'll be a new mystery coming along soon.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Guess the Mystery Thing: A Brooding, Industrial Pendant.

Yipee!  Time for another Guess the Mystery Thing challenge!  Guess correctly and you could win one of these jewels - if you like them, that is.  I do - although it's not my typical style of upcycled jewelry.

I am mostly known for giddy gewgaws, usually made from neon-pink plastic or some kind of candy colored  recyclable.  But I can be dark!  I can be tortured!  Check out this brooding pendant:



And this one:



What, oh what, are those industrial looking octagons?  I wonder if anyone knows?




Notice the use of depressing props, to indicate I am a tortured artiste, filled with angst, ennui and weltschmerz.  Perhaps I mean weltanschauung.  Anyway, I am full to the brim with those.

Or not.


Hee.


Leave your guess in the comments.  There will be two winners: first correct guess and one random guess.  If nobody gets it, there will be two random winners.  So even if you're stumped, guess anyway, you could still win.  (The crazier the guess, the better!)  This giveaway is open to anyone, anywhere.  (You don't even have to be a follower of the blog, although I would lurve it if you were!) 

The one and only rule: 

1.  If your email isn't available in one click from an online profile, be sure to include your email address with your guess.


Okay, here goes.  Ready?  Set!  Guess the Mystery Thing!

UPDATE: THIS CHALLENGE IS NOW CLOSED.  THANKS FOR PLAYING, EVERYBODY!  REVEAL COMING SOON.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Stars in my eyes! (Ow. Those things are pointy.)

How do you like this starry little ring?


I bet you know the secret ingredient, don't you?  If you are a child or child-adjacent, you probably have some of these somewhere in your house:


Let's get crafty with them!  Here comes my SUPER SIMPLE GLOW STAR RING TUTORIAL.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Pupsicle of the Month: Two Sweet Boys Named Rascal and Shy Boy.

Hi, all!  Once a month I take a mini-break from jewelry to highlight a wonderful rescue pup who wants to come home with YOU  and take you for walkies.  This time, it's brothers!

Meet Rascal and Shy Boy


They are darling baby lab/pit bull mixes, and have been loved and adored at our shelter ever since Shorty Rossi of the TV show Pit Boss rescued them - sick, starving and covered in motor oil - from an abusive owner.

 

Okay, okay, they don't look like babies.  They are about 7 months old - the perfect age to begin obedience classes.  They are the best puppies!  Happy, social and in love with everyone in the whole wide world.  If you can give one (or both) of these little dudes a permanent or foster home, or know someone who might, please contact me

Thanks for reading and sharing this, it means a lot to me!

Love, Mich

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Mystery Thing Revealed! Winners! And Rumpleflower Tutorial.

Drumroll, please - I'm about to reveal the answer to one of life's small mysteries!  You have all spent the last few days trying to guess the identity of this rumpled blue flower:


Let's call it a Rumpleflower.  Look, it has some friends:





What are they?  Well, I'll tell ya...

Ta-da!



Inside-out "cubes" from silicone ice cube trays.  From the dollar store.  Fun, eh?



Time to reveal the winners - plus my favorite wrong guesses, and a tutorial for making your own rubber Rumpleflower.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Guess the Mystery Thing: A Strange Rumpled Flower

Hi, kids!  Time for a new episode of that exciting guessing game challenge, Guess the Mystery Thing and Win Even If You Think It Looks Weird Because Weird Is The New Cute At Least That's My Story And I'm Sticking To It But Even If You're Not Buying That You Will Be Extremely Special If You Win Because Nobody Else Will Have One Like It That's Fer Dang Sure!

"Guess the Mystery Thing" for short.

I made this bracelet, featuring a mysterious blue flower:




Huh.  Jeesh.  What the heck?  You might recognize the filigree cuff part from a long-ago post using dollar store headbands.  (Click here for the tutorial.)  But what, oh what, is that rumply blue thing?








Leave your guess in the comments.  There will be two winners: first correct guess and one random guess.  If nobody gets it, there will be two random winners.  So even if you're stumped, guess anyway, you could still win.  (The crazier the guess, the better!)  This giveaway is open to anyone, anywhere.  (You don't even have to be a follower of the blog, although I would lurve it if you were!) 

The one and only rule:

1. If your email isn't available in one click from an online profile, be sure to include your email address with your guess.



Okay, you guys.  Here we go...Guess the Mystery Thing!


Thursday, May 5, 2011

For Those Hard-To-Craft-For People: Japa Mala bead strings.



Today's project isn't a repurpose, an upcycle or a restyle...it's a mini solution to a  problem I run into a lot.  I LOVE giving gifts.  I love giving HANDMADE gifts.  But personally, I find it difficult to give my particular brand of upcycled jewelry to many of the people in my life.  It takes a certain...er...esthetic sense...to appreciate what I do.  And not everyone wants jewelry even when it isn't weird.

Do you guys know what I mean?  Whichever craft you practice, chances are it is not going to be appreciated by everyone on your list.


Just this coming week, for example, my dad has a milestone birthday, and then there's Mother's Day for 4 lovely moms in my life - only two of whom wear my jewels.  Dad is not really going to like an aluminum duct tape necklace, or earrings made of  ziploc baggies.  My stepmom Kate, while she is amused by my strange baubles, doesn't wear much jewelry.  However, they both love yoga, meditation and Indian art.

So I thought I would show you a beaded gift that might please some of those impossible-to-craft-for people.  Not all of them.  But some.  Look:




They are Japa Mala beads - traditional Hindu or Buddhist meditation or prayer beads.  Big and exciting looking, they are more decor than jewelry, more objet d'art than necklace.  A cool gift for someone into ethnic art or Asian influenced decor.  And for anyone who does yoga or meditates, a lovely, unique treasure.

They are super simple to make and (bonus!) require no special tools or jewelry-making skills.  Here comes the easy tutorial for my version of Japa Mala beads.