ArtFire

New Tutorial Release – Crystal Hoop Earrings aka "Honey I Shrunk the Bracelets

These wonderful hoop earrings evolved from my Swarovski Crystal Bracelet design. They can be made as big or as tiny as you like – I’ve “shrunk” them down small enough for a nose ring and of course they started as a bracelet :). This is a high-level beginner to intermediate project. The project is not complicated, but does assume you are familiar with; basic wire handling skills, such as cleaning, straightening wire, turning a basic loop, and completing a basic binding wrap.
The tutorial is available in both my Etsy Shop and on Craftsy. I hope you get a chance to check it out – while you’re there check out other fun designs you may have missed like the Knot a Ring, and Cuffs and Vines Earrings.
♥Wrap Happy,
Bobbi

 

 

Post One Promote One…..

Hey Fans Of My Wired Imagination – Join me in Post – Promote – Share
Just one little catch 😀
Promote fellow handmade artists/friends. Show off your work and the work of your friends and fellow artists.
You can post as many different items as you like, but you must be a fan, and for every item you post, you have to promote a different artist/item in return……
Promote HandMade – Post – Promote – Share
You can post to discussions or to the wall with the title “Post One – Promote One”
http://Facebook.com/MyWiredImagination

thank you for visiting…..

~Bobbi
http://facebook.com/BobbiMaw
http://facebook.com/MyWiredImagination

“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.” ~Bhuddha

2 Hinged cages and a Locket – Tutorial

After 2 computer crashes, countless re-writes, and a heavy teaching schedule, I finally finished my newest tutorial – 2 Hinged Cages and a Locket. It grew much larger than I originally planned, with 3 FULLY ILLUSTRATED variations. I seriously considered separating out the Locket variation as a stand alone tutorial, but the “leave it in” part of my brain won the toss.

This tutorial teaches you step by step how to create a basic hinged cage, with or without beaded embellishments. This is a wonderfully versatile design to hold a favorite stone, maybe a love note, or a treasured trinket. Once it is on a chain, it is virtually impossible to come open by accident.
As a bonus this tutorial also includes 2 COMPLETE step by step variations including a crossed wire and locket style cage.
The owner of a local bead shop showed me the mechanics of the hinge close to 15 years ago. A very dear friend of mine, Master Wire Worker Ed Sinclair, created a published one in 1994. He has generously given me permission to share my versions of the basic cage and a crossed wire technique that he developed years ago.

This is an advanced level tutorial – it assumes you are familiar with basic wire techniques and improvising when needed. It is 28 pages with 67 steps and over 100 crisp, clear photographs. The file size is 2.3MB.

Don’t be intimidated by the length and number of steps – This tutorial covers 3 FULLY illustrated pieces. While this is an advanced level tutorial, intermediate wire workers with a solid foundation of basic wire wrapping skills can, with patience, complete this design.

Thank you for visiting……. Bobbi

“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.” ~Bhuddha

Getting Your Work Noticed On-Line Be Seen, Be Seen, Be Seen ~~PART 3~~

Okay – class?, class?, class? – oops sorry, had a Sister Mary Elephant flashback.

Before I move on, I’d like to share a small experiment I did recently using elements from the first 2 Be Seen articles. You did read them didn’t you?
I recently put 4 photos up in my Flickr account – 2 of the Mens’ Diamond Ring, and 2 of the Double Swinging Topaz pendant (both are in the gallery here). One each (ring and pendant) photos, I just added to my jewelry groups I belong to. The other set I added to my groups AND added them to Diigo, Mr Wong, Delicious, and Stumbleupon. The view differences were staggering. For the ring photo 1 (heavily bookmarked) the views were 134 for one day, while the un-bookmarked photo 2 received only 43 views. The same for the pendant photo 1 – bookmarked, the views were 271, and photo 2 received only 15 views. Social bookmarking DOES work.

Google Tools

Now that you’ve added your work in every social bookmark you can, (http://mywiredimagination.blogspot.com/2009/10/getting-your-work-noticed-on-line-be.html ) and started a blog (http://mywiredimagination.blogspot.com/2009/09/getting-your-work-noticed-on-line-be.html ), now it’s time to for more tools to get you into searches, and see how well things are working, AND see what needs to be changed to be more effective.

First you’ll need to get a Google account if you don’t already have one. Now before you start groaning about having another e-mail account (I can hear you), aside from being about the best e-mail service on the planet (no I don’t work for them), it is loaded with simple, but very useful tools. Gmail is free, and though it may take a little getting used its well worth it.

1) You have the ability to enable POP3 settings (without having to pay extra like Yahoo), so that you can still use Outlook, and Outlook Express mail.
2) You can have all your other mail accounts forwarded to Gmail, and access them all from one location, and set up filters and folders to easily keep track.
3) You have labels and filters, you set up so your mail is automatically sorted and labeled, and be color coded. Corra helped to put this one to the best use, as I have it set up to sort my sales, and PayPal receipts.
4) There is built in chat with other Gmail contacts, with one click…
5) A one click vacation responder with personal message…
There is a search mail function that actually works well, and tons of other features.
2 of the most useful features (I bet you thought I wasn’t going to get to it) are Google Alerts and Google Base

Google Alerts “http://www.google.com/alerts”
I have igoogle as my homepage, so to get to alerts, I just click on the “my account” link at the top right. Underneath your profile and personal settings are the tabs to access all sorts of useful goodies besides Alerts and Base.
Adsense — Blogger — igoogle — Talk — Docs — Orkut — YouTube — Gmail — Picassa Web Albums — Adwords — Groups — Web History
If you click on “more under try something new”, you have a full page of tools worth checking out.

Once you are on your account page, click on alerts. For the most part you will want to choose “comprehensive” to get the most information from your alert, but you can set the alert for specifics, such as news.

Now you enter your search terms – You’ll want to create a new alert for each term. Set up alerts for your name; your user ID – all of them if you have more than one; your shop name, again all of them if you have more than one; your products, especially if they are very specific, such as the name of a tutorial or a very unique design to YOU (try not to use just the term ‘tutorial’, you’ll be flooded with all kinds of miss-information); the title of your blog(s), the address of your blog(s); your username at every site you’re registered at, or have an account with such as http://www.facebook.com/people/Bobbi-Maw

There are no limits to how many alerts you can create, so ‘cover all your bases’. Set up a folder for “Google alerts”, and color code it so it doesn’t get lost in your mail.

Not all returns will pertain to you, but those sometimes provide useful info too, in helping to refine your alerts, and see what people are searching for. I set my alerts to once a day – that’s once a day for EACH alert, which depending on how many alerts you have, will determine how much info is returned. Most alerts will show what folks were searching for, and where they finally landed in their search.

Google Base
“http://www.google.com/base”
Now to help move you along, there is Google Base, a free service for submitting all kinds of content for Google to host. You manually put your products and info into Google search engines. You can post items one at a time; use a data feed by uploading a spreadsheet or XML file which allows you to uploaded multiple items at one time; or for the techno-savvy there is API.

All 3 options have wonderful, very detailed instructions.

If you already have an Etsy shop – http://letsets.com has a free Google Base formatter. You just enter your user name or ID number and click “fetch my items”. It returns a complete list of all your shop items. At the bottom of the list, is the link to save the XML file to your computer, and even a link right there to take you back to Google Base to input your whole shop into Google.You can set it to renew on a monthly basis, or delete and re-create it, it if you have a lot of changes in your shop.

Now if you’ve stuck with me through all this go have a beer, cup of hot tea, or play at recess – you earned it.
Thanks for listening….SEE ya soon………..
~Bobbi
http://MyWiredImagination.etsy.com
http://www.KarmaWired.blogspot.com

Getting Your Work Noticed On-Line Be Seen Be Seen Be Seen ~~PART 2~~

There’s lots of tips and tricks I’ve tried, too much for just one or two articles, so here’s is another ‘installment’ – Hope you find it useful.

Did you finish all the suggestions from the first article? No??? What ever have you been doing? snicker – sorry – ahem – There’s a little more to Blogs and Flickr, I wanted to mention….

For those of you just starting out, if you don’t already have a blog – Get One? Blogspot.com makes it incredibly easy to create one – there is a nice selection of standard templates, and tons of help and how-to guides for creating one. They are easily updated when you get brave enough to mess with the html code…And before you start groaning (I can hear you), if I can do it, anyone can! Now there was a time I swore I would never have one, and couldn’t for the life of me see the point – Now I have 2. Aside from showing off what I’m up to jewelry wise, they’re fun and a great “release” of sorts.

When you start getting your work “out there”, people want to know what you’re working on, how you made it (what inspired you). When people start to find your blog more and more, they become more interested. You can even attract followers – folks that like what you’re writing about, and want to keep up to date. Talk about your shop you have, Etsy, Artfire, or whatever – do a post about the latest craft fair you went to and/or were in – a great new piece you just struggled to make and now your tickled pink with. Every now and then, throw a personal post in there – not the new sexy nitey you got to wear for hubby, you won’t like the followers you get with that – but say – What you got or made yourself for your birthday – A great holiday to Australia you went on – Your roommates hilarious attempt to bring a motorcycle home in the car. Something that adds a feel for who you are, what you’re like – a more personal touch to the jewelry they are going to go buy in your shop. And yes people become interested in your work, and want to buy it – or ask do you have a tutorial for it. That’s exactly how I got started selling tutorials on-line BTW. I have taught in person for years, but it wasn’t until my blog that interest in tutorials came about – Well that and the encouragement of a very dear friend.

When you write your posts, make sure you add photos (blogspot does most of the work on this one too), but try not to over load it, remember some of your readers might be on dial-up. I try to keep the number somewhere around 3 or 5. The odd number comes from my art and photography classes, many years ago – It helps keep the piece balanced and pleasing to look at. If you write just a short post, use just one photo, place it to one side, and wrap the text around it.

One of the biggest things to remember about adding photos, is to make sure, they are crisp, clear, and well focused. You don’t know who’s going to look at them, and while they may look okay on a small screen, you have to think about if someone is going to look at them from a bigger screen computer, or if they are going to blow it up to get a better look.

Once you have a blog and Flickr started – tie the 2 together. Blogspot makes it so easy to add a slide show from Flickr. All you have to do is go into your ‘dashboard’, click ‘layout’, select ‘add a gadget’, enter your Flickr user name, click ‘save’ – poof you’re done. That wasn’t so painful, was it? If you already have an Etsy shop, you can add your ‘Etsy Mini’ in a similar fashion. Artfire has some great promo buttons, that unlike Etsy, actually link back to YOUR shop.

Both Flickr and Blogspot have wonderful widgets to add to your Flickr and Blog to provide more information, or to be entertaining, just try not to get TOO carried away – (I’m still working on that one BTW)……

see ya soon…..I’ll Be Back with more 🙂

~Bobbi

NEW Tutorial Release ~~~ Ornate Double-Terminated Focal-Clasp

Hi All – Just finished my newest tutorial, and am really excited about it! The primary project in this tutorial is a progression of my Swarovski Crystal Bracelet. It assumes you either have that tutorial, or are familiar with that style of bracelet. Only the modifications to the ends of the bracelets to fasten to the Cab Top Clasp are covered, not the entire Swarovski Crystal Bracelet tutorial.
When finished the Cab Top creates a nearly INVISIBLE clasp.

This tutorial teaches you step by step the techniques needed to create the Cab-Top Invisible Clasp, along with variations that include the Multi-Strand Bracelet, the Watch-Top Invisible Clasp, and the Ornate Focal Clasp for necklaces. This is an advanced tutorial, though if you’re comfortable in the basic skills set, the steps are detailed enough a patient intermediate level wire worker can accomplish these projects.
I hope you get a chance to check it out! Also available in my Shops – a Bracelet Tutorial Package for both the Swarovski Crystal Bracelet and the Ornate Double-Terminated Focal/Clasp. Purchasing them together saves you 25%!

Many, many thanks to Perri J ShaktipajDesigns for her continued support, friendship, and wisdom.

Background art in the cover photo, courtesy of Sabrina.


Thank you for stopping by…………………Bobbi
“Art is not a handicraft, it is the transmission of feeling the artist has experienced.” ~Tolstoy

New Tutorial – Lesson in Patience Ring and the Atom Pendant

Hi all –
I’ve just published a new tutorial – Its actually 2 designs in one – A solitaire style prong ring, and a prong pendant…..

I hope you enjoy the designs, and they delight and inspire you…

Tutorial available in both my Etsy and Artfire shops.

thanks for visiting…………………..
Bobbi

“If at first you don’t succeed, do it like your mother told you to.” ~Unknown

 

 

 

YIPPEE – Its Finally Finished – Tutorial – Prong Pendant – Slider Style

This one was a real struggle – My camera died part way through –

Sooooo I had to bite the bullet, and get a new camera OUCH 🙁 and then re-do the images (and the tutorial pendant) several times to complete the tutorial.

I’m very happy with the way it turned out.

 

This tutorial teaches the techniques to wire wrap a slider style pendant, with a prong setting. It can be altered to set either a cab, or faceted stone. Modifying the gauge of wire and number of prongs, it can be used to set almost any size and shape of stone.

You can find this and my other tutorials in my Etsy shop and on Craftsy.

Thanks for taking a peek….

~Bobbi

“It is better to fail at originality, than to succeed at imitation.” Herman Melville