Friday, 31 October 2014

Pyrite: of Ice and Fire.

Pyrite is known for all the wrong reasons. Possibly, it hasn't had a good PR in centuries.

For instance, when I was a child, my father introduced it to me as "fool's gold". Then, when I moved to Dublin, I found out that in Ireland it is mostly associated with construction risks, because of pyrite heave.
It doesn't even have a nice name. "Pyrite"...I can't be sure in English, but in Italian sounds kind of lame! Instead, it is Greek for "of fire" - quite a powerful word - because it can spark, and ignite fires.

This summer I bought some pyrite beads - out of curiosity -, because I had never seen them before. I thought I'd give it a try as jewellery components.

I couldn't be be more happy. Once cut and polished, pyrite looks like silver, but preserves the warm glow of gold. It has black veins, and cracks that make the beads look antique, and unique.

Being a mineral, it has a metallic texture, but it is not heavy. Basically, it is perfect for jewellery making. I made the necklace above, and the two pairs of chain earrings. I think it's nice also mixed with other gemstones, like the tiger's eye below:

My conclusion about pyrite is that as a stone, it has been mistreated! It is great to work with, and inspiring. Moreover, it looks like silver, and glows like gold: it has both fire and ice inside!

Have a nice Halloween, 
and week end!


Friday, 24 October 2014

Bags! Bags! Bags!

...yes, I'm renewing the bag section of my shop. I'm still working on it, so there's not much to see. I want to show you some of the new items though, before you start thinking my volcanic mind is entering the power-save mode. Because it's not.

I literally love shopping bags, but ours is not a easy relation. I use them a lot, and find them quite fancy as fashion accessory.
I use them because I don't have a car - well, I used to, but I chose not to have one -, and so I go from shop to shop, from market to market for my grocery shopping. 
If I gave up the comfort of a car, it's only because we decided to live in city centre, where everything is at hand. Well, it is and it is not. I mean, things tends to ignore my preposterous life choices, and weigh on my poor back!

So I generally do my shopping a bit at a time...on lunch breaks, on my way home, and of course, on weekends. It's not the most practical way of getting things done, but it is what it is.

So, it's all very European and trendy, but now, seriously, let's talk about outfits. I've been enslaved to a ugly backpack for years! It was time to get rid of it, and buy a nice, feminine bag! But how to manage bulky items?!

Eventually, I went for the combo bag/shopping bag: inside the brand new elegant bag I keep, folded, my canvas shopping bag(s). 
But here it comes the unpleasant counterpart. Shopping bags are used to promote brands, or as souvenirs. I don't like wearing someone else's advertisement.
I don't even like alternative trends of sorts: moustaches, font compositions, or deer's heads - those are the worst! I feel sorry to say so, as they're doing so well on Etsy, but I need to be honest here: there's a limit beyond which trendy becomes...creepy.
I know. I am picky. And to be fair, I think the only solution, for people like me, is to switch to DIY. So I did it. I made my own. Again. And since I was already sewing, I also made some minor alterations to the basic model, to make my bags truly good for me.

I'll add a tutorial as soon as possible so that you can Do It Yourself! Meanwhile, find them in my shop, and fell free to use the coupon code NOVELTYBAGS for purchasing one, or more! The coupon expires November 30, 2014.

Have a nice week end


Thursday, 16 October 2014

Etsy Giveaway, Please Enter your Comment!

The problem with autumn is that it falls (ah ah) between summer holidays and Christmas holidays. What a boring period can be! No emotions in sight! So, to cheer you up, I'm hosting a giveaway on Facebook. You may win this bracelet, so ....why not giving it a try?!

  •  go here, on Facebook (also by clicking the image above), 
  •  leave a comment under the image.
  • wait until monday!
The lottery starts now, and ends on Sunday, October 19, at midnight, so

. . . H u r r y   u p ! ! !

PS. If you want to enter the game but don't have a FB account, just let me know with a comment here, and I'll add you to the game!!!

Friday, 10 October 2014

Rome Maker Faire, European Edition!

I wanted to be there, but it was logistically impossibile. Anyway, even without me, the Rome Maker Faire 2014 was a true success! I waited a week to talk about it as I was expecting more stories, sassy comments, and photos which of course I didn't get.

So, I'll just write a brief report of this huge event because it impressed me so much! First, the actual fair and the exhibition market was preceded by Innovation Week, a most entertaining conference with plenty of talks, seminars, and workshops. Just to give you some examples, among the many speakers there were Abbey Liebman, who's introduced a solar dress; Ellen Jorgensen, co-founder of the first community-based biotech lab in NYC; and Anjan Contractor, who's obtained a NASA funding for a 3D food printer - yes, it seems the idea's got potential in space, at least as much as in a Italy!

About the events, probably the most impressive has been the wearable technology fashion show by London based CuteCircuit. They totally hit the mark.

There's no need to say Robotics also had its deserved spotlight! I especially appreciate the pic below, but there was much more, like...truly amazing, functioning robotic exoskeletons!

The Faire's protagonist was the magical 3D printers, along with the fabulous fabrication labs (or FabLabs) - which are now spreading quickly with the machines becoming more and more accessible.

The Etsy Italia Team was there, with nine Italian etsy sellers, among which some web-acquittances of mine...Isabella from Bologna, Francesca from Terni, Giusy from Foggia...just to name a few! Go girls!!!

...Right, because at the Maker Faire there were tons of women. It's great to acknowledge that the maker community is one of the few tech-communities where the gender gap is not embarrassing! I loved that! 

So, I just hope next year I'll be able to attend!

Have a nice week end,


Friday, 3 October 2014

Just Keep Trying.

So, this week I was sewing some obi belts. The teal and the black ones were sold immediately, and I needed to refill the shop section. I got a half yard more, so to add to the color options the silver-gray below:

...Tres chic, right?! This is when I think I've got talent, and laugh at laud (alone). In the meantime, since I had a few pins left over, I was about to cut as many felt flowers. I really wanted to make a nice thing, the one you fall in love with at first sight. Instead, I ended up making this:

Now, this when I think I can't do it, and turn on the TV! Anyway, after a couple of episodes of a comfort-show, I went back to work. I came up with this:

....well, you know, at least is a flower!!! I guess I should keep my epic fails for myself. In fact, I'll profit on the embarrassing situation to send a educational message, and write down a very meaningful note to self: Just keep trying!

Have a nice week end,