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Sunday Studio Visit – Bonfires and Jewellery Design

Evening all, it is freezing here tonight with possible snow expected, so I am keeping warm by reminiscing on the bonfire firing I did a couple of weeks ago.

Every year around this time we do a clean up for the summer to reduce fire hazards during the bushfire season, and in the lead up to that I make beads and pendants which I pack into an old milo or coffee tin with sawdust, seaweed, cow dung – pretty much anything I would put into a pit firing. The tin is snuggled in amongst the branches and leaves and set alight. The tin is usually ready to pull from the ashes the following afternoon – depending on how big the bonfire was!

I have published previous posts about bonfire firing which you can read HERE.

So tonight I am experimenting with some jewellery designs with the beads that emerged from the bonfire. I have already listed one pair of earrings in my ETSY shop from this firing and there will more to come, and some necklaces.

My other exciting news is that I have had an article published in the latest edition of The Journal of Australian Ceramics. This latest edition was focused on fire, so I wrote an article about pit firing. Visit their website to find out more about getting a copy of the journal.

Dawn Whitehand Pit firing article

And now for some pics from the bonfire and finished jewellery pieces – thanks for stopping by and see you next time 🙂

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Sunday Studio Visit – exploring new jewellery making techniques

Readers may know I have been a bit absent from this blog lately, as per my last BLOG POST, so I haven’t offered a Sunday studio visit for a while.

Readers may also know that I love sustainability, recycling and upcycling, as illustrated by lots of past jewellery POSTS, and of course the PRESERVING frenzy I go into during the growing season! So with the recent giant iceberg break away from the ice shelf in Antarctica, and all the other crazy occurrences in the world at the moment, my mind has been drawn toward new ways of using synthetic products our society has created and can’t be recycled – such as CDs which are now largely obsolete!

I don’t know about you but I have hundreds of CDs…. from kids games, to movies to data storage, and I have never thrown them out because i just couldn’t bring myself to adding to the city dump!!

So, after a bit of research and refinement I have made a few jewellery pieces using cut up CDs with the addition – in some – of acrylic paints.

I will be making more of these pendants soon as I have heaps of CDs and enjoy the process, so the next time I do some making I will take some process shots for a tutorial.

In the meantime I have actually listed my first piece in my ETSY shop! Happy weekend and see you next time 🙂

DeeDeeDeesigns white handmade necklace

Happy Earth Day 2017 🌏🌲🌱

Today, April 22nd is Earth Day – are you doing anything special? Planting a tree, turning your lights, tv and computer off for a few hours?

I am not planning on doing anything special per se – my television never goes on until about 9pm at night for the news anyway! … and I do, on a daily basis, try to live sustainably, so will do more of that today with a little more mindfulness during the day.

I find it important to recycle and reuse as much as possible, especially in the current political state of climate change scepticism.

I also consider it important because as a ceramic artist I do use alot of gas, water and electricity. My clay and glaze ingredients have a large carbon footprint also, in terms of miles travelled and mining.

I try as much as possible to offset this footprint by growing as much food as possible, composting waste, not using chemicals when cleaning, being a vegetarian, and of cause recycling as much as possible.

Here in Dunnstown,, where I live, we are approaching the end of the Summer/Autumn growing season and I have been doing lots of preserving, bottling and preserving – I will be doing more of that today. I still have lots of apples left which I will be using to make more apple chutney and apple paste (which is great with strong blue cheeses). I have made bottled apples in the past, which were great, so I might make more of them too. I have also recently delved into raw apple cider vinegar!

As followers of my ETSY shop may know – and if not you will now – as well as making ceramic homewares and jewellery, I also make a range of jewellery made from upcycled materials such as guitar strings, plastic bottles, buttons and beads. Love jewellery, or know someone who does? Today, being Earth Day is the ideal day to purchase an upcycled gift for yourself or a friend…. and remember Mothers Day is coming up on May 14th.


Happy Earth Day and Happy Sustainable Living and Shopping 🙂

New Jewellery Designs

I have been a bit preoccupied lately with all the preserving and fermenting from the summer/autumn garden so have not been doing a great deal of making… but recently I had a custom order from my ETSY shop for twelve ceramic buttons so took the opportunity to also make some extra buttons and some pendants at the same time.

The buttons turned out beautifully. The customer wanted them to add a unique and jazzed up element to a denim jacket which she wants to take on holiday with her at the end of April! I love these kinds of stories that accompany custom orders and hope she will be happy with them! I think she will…

The pendants, which I will list as necklaces and earrings in my ETSY shop, are just in time for Mothers Day – May 14th. I have assembled some of them and will be listing them over the coming week. If your mum/sister/girlfriend/wife/aunt/nana/partner or female friends anywhere love both handmade and jewellery these are the perfect gifts!

Keep an eye on the ETSY shop over the next week or check out my INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK or TWITTER feeds 🙂

See you soon!

 

Happy St Patricks Day :-)

Happy St Patricks Day – and what better way to celebrate than with a 10% discount in both of my ETSY shops for the remainder of March!

Use coupon code StPats2017 in either shop for some great green finds or anything else for that matter!

In case you don’t know I have SHOP that sells handcrafted ceramic tableware and jewellery, and a SHOP that sells craft and jewellery supplies – so go wild!!

Here’s a little teaser:

and from my supplies shop

Happy St Patricks Day and happy savings!!

Sunday Studio Visit – outside the studio!

Happy Sunday!! Since making, firing and installing my exhibition in ContainArt last week I have not been in the studio much. We finally have some consistent nice weather here in Ballarat, after a miserable Winter, so the plan is to finally finish the deck – a year later!! The delay has been a combination of aforementioned weather and also some ongoing health problems I have been having over the Winter and into Spring…. I am finally starting to come good, but have the occasional relapse for a couple of days. So annoying!

Anyway, I have spent the weekend oiling slats for the deck railing and hubby has been putting them up (under supervision – lol). So, it looks like we will have our deck finished this summer – yay!!

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Apart from that i will take this opportunity to remind you that Valentines Day is only one month away – February 14th. And, of course, I have lots of gift ideas in my ETSY shop for both him and her – jewellery, homewares, and of course custom orders are always welcome 🙂

I’ll leave you with some gift inspiration – have a great week 🙂

 

 

Merry Christmas Everyone 🎄🎉

Merry Christmas everyone and thanks for visiting my blog throughout the year even though I have been scattered in my posts and in visiting others due to ill health. My New Years Resolution is good health and, therefore by default, more regular posting and visiting!!

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AND be sure to visit my ETSY tomorrow for a Boxing Day Sale – use ‘boxingday2016’ for 20% off storewide … avoid the chaos of shopping malls and shop online! 🎁🎁

Have a great Christmas and New Year everyone and see you in 2017 🎉

 

Have a great Christmas everyone 🎄

I said in my last post I was going to start posting more frequently after ill health – but getting so far behind in my teaching and firing schedule and other business stuff – plus a bit of a health relapse – meant it just hasn’t happened. So I am going to call it quits for 2016 and make my New Years Resolution to have GOOD HEALTH!! I have never experienced six months of ill health before and it has done my head in!! So here’s to 2017.

I will leave you with a couple of pics of works in my ETSY store though because I am having a boxing day sale – perfect: no need to visit the chaos of the malls, just buy online!! At the checkout use ‘boxingday2016’ and receive 20% off your entire purchase – what better way to end the year?

Have a great Christmas and New Year everyone and see you – hopefully – more regularly in 2017 🎄🎉☺

Launch Day of the Plan Australia MakeForGood Campaign

Today was the official lunch of the Plan Australia #becauseiamagirl campaign, which aims to raise awareness and funds for women and girls held back by poverty and gender inequality.

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The project is powered by Etsy sellers from Australia and New Zealand in support of Plan International’s Because I Am A Girl campaign. All funds raised will go towards supporting projects that help make a difference in the lives of girls held back by poverty and gender inequality. Last year the funds were directed to Cambodia, and this year it is focused on Sri Lanka.

To learn more about this project go to etsy.me/makeforgood.

This years theme is a Brighter Future, so I have designed a range of bright colourful jewellery and will be donating  25% of my sales from my StripeDelight range to the cause. For the range of handmade bespoke items available across all shops search #makeforgood on Etsy.

And remember you can use the coupon code YAY200 in my shop for a 20% discount till the end of September. To find out why visit my previous POST!

If you would like to donate to the cause and would like a custom order made, for example if you would prefer some guitar string hoop earrings made with brightly coloured beads just let me know and we can arrange it easily.

And so here is the range of jewellery I have designed especially for this cause. Please support the campaign, it is a great initiative to involved in 🙂

Sunday Studio Visit – a milestone in my Etsy shop!

Today in the studio I am firing the kiln – a bisque firing, with a combination of my work and students works.

I have also finally met my milestone goal in my ETSY shop – listing 200+ items in my shop, and to celebrate I am holding a 20% discount till the end of the month – so that my 200 goal will be gone and I will have to start again!!

Use coupon YAY200 at checkout to receive your discount 🙂

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Two hundred items may not sound like much, but it is when you consider the making, the photography, the photo editing, the uploading and creating product descriptions – it is actually very time consuming! Then the marketing – phew!

My Etsy shop stocks ceramic tableware and jewellery I make, and also jewellery I make from upcycled materials such as guitar strings, marbles, buttons and repurposed beads. Each piece is unique, and make great gifts to others or yourself!!

Here are some of the products I have recently listed to achieve my 200+ inventory – enjoy and happy shopping 🙂

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This work by Dawn Whitehand is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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