Monthly Archives: August 2014

To twit, or not to twit, that is the question – Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer The discomfiture of outrageous promotion Or to remain anonymous even though you want to sell every last piece of jewelry you have ever made.

Admittedly I might not be as much of a twit as I could be.

I don’t think anyone would actually be interested in my 140 character rants.

But seriously

Could you let me back in!

It’s cold out here.

I first twittered back when I didn’t even know that you could, under the name, wallywalnut.

Before I knew that was a handle.

I tweeted that I was having a cup of tea.

Nothing earth-shattering you understand, just a toe in the water.

Also I cannot lie

I was having a cup of tea at that exact time.


But when I joined Etsy I decided to explore how I could promote myself by unabashedly tweeting about my jewelry, and so I opened another account under the handle, coldfeetstudio.

But wallywalnut just wouldn’t die and, to be honest, he was getting a bit boring having done nothing at all since that last cuppa.

So the other day I eliminated him from the face of the tweeting world.

It felt good.

But for my sins now I can’t even for the life of me log into coldfeetstudio.

Have they thrown me out with the bath water?

I’ve tried everything. I’ve used their handy, have you forgotten your password? feature, even though, No, I have not forgotten my password thank you very much.

I have a different account for coldfeetstudio, but do they care?

No luck whatsoever.

I’m trying hard not to let it bother me. Who needs to twit anyway. But I have to say I do feel a little uninvited to the party :(

My quest will continue.

I will find out where, in that seemingly bottomless realm called cyberspace, coldfeetstudio has been banished to if it’s the last thing I do.

Then I will probably still not tweet as much as I could because it embarrasses me to unabashedly promote my jewelry.


So, here are some unabashed pieces I’ve just finished.


You’ve seen this one before, but I’ve now put a chain on it, and sold it!




Labradorite and Green Opals.


Oh, and here is that wonderful soliloquy.

To be, or not to be, that is the question—
Whether ’tis Nobler in the mind to suffer
The Slings and Arrows of outrageous Fortune,
Or to take Arms against a Sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die, to sleep—
No more; and by a sleep, to say we end
The Heart-ache, and the thousand Natural shocks
That Flesh is heir to? ‘Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. To die, to sleep,
To sleep, perchance to Dream; Aye, there’s the rub,
For in that sleep of death, what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause. There’s the respect
That makes Calamity of so long life:
For who would bear the Whips and Scorns of time,
The Oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s Contumely,
The pangs of despised Love, the Law’s delay,
The insolence of Office, and the Spurns
That patient merit of the unworthy takes,
When he himself might his Quietus make
With a bare Bodkin? Who would these Fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscovered Country, from whose bourn
No Traveler returns, Puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear those ills we have,
Than fly to others that we know not of.
Thus Conscience does make Cowards of us all,
And thus the Native hue of Resolution
Is sicklied o’er, with the pale cast of Thought,
And enterprises of great pitch and moment,
With this regard their Currents turn awry,
And lose the name of Action. Soft you now,
The fair Ophelia. Nymph, in all thy Orisons
Be thou all my sins remembered.

William Shakespeare – Hamlet.

I’m going to have to get Kenneth Branagh out of the draw now.

Here’s to a new week.

I start at the assisted ministry today. I’ve been put down for answering the phones which kind of worries me a bit. I have to keep reminding myself that of course I don’t know what happens there and won’t be able to help anyone at all that’s unfortunate enough to get my line.

But that’s o.k.

I didn’t want to work in the shop as I don’t want to have to look at all of the stuff I’ve donated. I might have withdrawal and need to grab it all and bring it home again, and that would be disastrous.

I’ll let you know how it goes.

Thanks to Vicki I settled on Heifer International. You can see my progress HERE

I’m getting excited. Only $1300 to go until I can set my new goal.

I know I can set it now, but I can’t overwhelm myself all at once.

And finally a new experiment.


Look at that copper.



Which is funny as it sounds like it should have smoke and explosions.

Oh well.

I’m liking the copper and brass. The silver is a tad boring. I also worry about the weight of my necklaces. I like them to have a good feel, not thin and flimsy.

Still not sure if I like them enough to bother with them.

I’ve been working on my website. I waver continually with whether to bother with it as I have Etsy, but I so want to feel like a real boy.


Not going to think about it now. I’m going to answer those phones, get some groceries, and then think about the meaning of it all.

My dog is deaf, and other stories.


It’s sad.

Willow is finally hearless, which is decidedly better than headless as the autocorrect preferred.


Here she is ignoring Wally because Wally can still hear. And Wally is covering his face with the boredom of it all.

Wally can be a bit dismissive that way.

Poor Willow.

I think she’s depressed.

In other news.

There’s a new mug in town.


I love it.


The tea tastes good in it, although the cup is a bit too chunky for a truly exceptional drinking experience.

Tea should occupy a more refined vessel, in my opinion. Not necessarily bone china and roses you understand, but a little less of a heavy handle would have done wonders. And the black interior is a little,

well, black.

But it is a really nice cup and I like looking at it, and the added bonus here is that it likes looking back at me.

Albeit a tad critically.

I shall call it my, Oh, so you think that’s going to work do you!, mug.

See more of Steve Hansen’s work – HERE.

I’ve only been in the studio twice since my family left.

Bit down in the dumps.


I have been sorting through a life time of stuff which has been lurking in the dark places.

Good night Louise! You turn your back for twenty five years and what happens.

Stuff everywhere!

Actually not just in the dark places. In plain sight also.

Very daring.

Well now it’s gone. A lot of it anyway. I’ve still got the upstairs to do, but I have been ruthless and it feels good.

In fact I had to catch myself sometimes and remember that I didn’t have to give it all away. I could keep some things back for myself and not get so carried away.

I sort of went into a trance like, lets get rid of it all, mwahahaha, state, which was getting a little despotic.

I managed to catch myself in time before the silver went out with the old clothes however.


Actually, I haven’t got any silver, except for some cutlery, and that’s only plated. Still what would we have done at Christmas.

Good save I say.

The assisted ministry place spurred me into action. Almost a third of my house now resides in their resale shop.

O.K. maybe a third of a third of a third, but anyway, a lot.

And this morning I go for orientation to begin volunteering there, but I think it wouldn’t be too much of an exaggeration to say that before I actually start the world would have most likely killed itself and turned half its cities into rubble.

So maybe I should just stay home and drink some more tea.


Yesterday’s offerings.

Actually I made these on Monday because I was having trouble getting into the swing of things again.


Just some simple little lovelies to get me going.


Then of course there was the riveting.

But when it came down to it I just wasn’t up for another bash at it so soon.

So I finished this instead.


After that I went over to the painting area and worked a bit more on this.


But quite frankly I think I’ve lost my umph.

Robin Williams has made me sad.

I told P he should retire before we get to be old which will be tomorrow if things keep going the way they are.

But he said no, which kind of put me out a bit.

He said he’d be bored.

I told him that was a shame as there were loads of fish waiting for him to not catch.

He still said no.

I think he might be trapped in the wrong cycle of life.

Shake it off girl there’s the world to save today and you can’t be moping.

I’ve made another thousand and am in the process of deciding where it should go, but I’m thinking that I should just start sending it to happier places.

Heifer International is a happier place. Oxfam, Care, etc. are getting to be too overwhelming for me, and I don’t really know how it will all stop.

I talked to P about it, and we thought that maybe we should let the governments get on with giving aid to these war-torn places, and perhaps just concentrate on helping people out through giving them the resources such as Heifer has to offer.

I don’t know, how do yo choose between horrible and horrible.

What with that and Robin Williams I might just have to stay in bed today.



Somebody’s got to get a handle on the riveting dilemma.

A little Monday riveting.

Yesterday I decided to practice my riveting

I’ve only ever done it once before so I thought it was high time to give it another go.

I call this.

The Lots and Lots of Rivets Bracelet.


And just in case you’d like to practice your own riveting

Here’s the How To.

First up you will need to make the jump rings.

I used 14 gauge sterling silver wire and made my rings on the #9 mandrel. You can use any jump ring mandrel around 9 ish mm, or whatever size really. Just adjust the gauge of the metal if you use smaller links otherwise working the metal won’t be as manageable.



Wrap the rings in tape to hold them together as you use your jewelry saw to separate them.

Although you can use your wire cutters, sawing gives the rings a nice flat cut. If you choose to use your wires cutters turning the flat side of the cutters for each cut ensures that the inside of the rings have flush ends.


Pull the rings apart.


And hammer the ends flat.


But don’t do this.


Because it really hurts.

Now reshape the rings around a pair of round nose pliers.


Making sure that the ends overlap enough to drill a hole through both ends.


After using your center punch to place a guide dimple in the flattened end, use a ring holder or pair of old pliers to hold the ring in place while you drill the hole.

The metal can get very hot when you are drilling it and can easily be whipped away from your hand. Holding small pieces of metal this way is much safer and you’ll be less likely to lose an eye.


Now clean up the ends.


You will need to make around 21 of these for a 7 1/2 ” bracelet.

Next take some 19 gauge sterling silver wire and make a small ball at one end with your torch.


Thread the wire through the drilled hole and through this nifty rivet making thingy which you can find – HERE. and gently tap the top of the ball with your hammer to flatten.


Cut the wire about a quarter inch proud.


And ball this end up also.


This is a bad photograph, but if you gently heat the wire from below it will eventually ball up.



Cut half of the ball off and then hammer this side to flatten the rivet.


Note: This is not how I was taught to make rivets so really I’m cheating a bit here.

To make a ‘proper’ rivet, or at least the way I was taught, is to thread a piece of wire through a hole which has been made using a drill bit that matches the gauge of the wire you are using. Cut the wire a millimeter or so proud either side of the piece of metal to be riveted, and use your riveting hammer to alternate hammering the ends flat.

If done correctly this spreads the metal out and over the edges of the drill hole thereby securing the two pieces of metal you want to join.

It should produce a clean, round ended rivet.

Here’s a nice little you tube tutorial just on riveting – HERE.

This is what I wanted to practice so don’t ask me why I didn’t.

So back to my way.

Now make it some friends.




And find it a clasp.


And voilà.


Your lots and lots of rivets bracelet.


And with some left overs.


A handy pair of earrings.


I wasn’t particularly happy with my rivets as I thought they were a bit clumsy. I’m also disappointed that I hadn’t made the rivets the way I was taught although I had specifically wanted to do this, so, I shall be out there again today to practice some more.

Maybe not on a whole bracelet as I immediately made another one trying a different approach as soon as I decided that I didn’t like the rivets on the first one.


I still didn’t do it the way I had first intended.

I know.

Don’t question me.

This time I used a thinner gauge wire (16 gauge) on the #8 mandrel, and instead of hammering the balled ends I just left them as part of the design.

I cut and bent half-inch lengths of 20 gauge wire which I then thread through the holes and balled up at the same time.


It needs a little more cleaning, but now I’m not sure about this one either.




All in all a hard day at the office I’d say, but only one injury so it can’t be all bad.

Today I leave you as I venture once more into the fray. If you don’t hear from me again I will have most likely hammered myself into oblivion.

It was nice knowing you all.

The decluttering of a lifetime.

I’ve not been in the studio much this week.

Instead, I have touched everything in my bathroom and closet.

It was long overdue

If you remember I went to the assisted ministries to offer to volunteer – which led to a little melt down on my part.

Well after a couple of nights of lost of sleep, and an hour and half of therapy, you’ll be pleased to hear that I’m over it now.


I went on their tour and was really quite impressed with what they have to offer.

First up is the food bank, then the donation area and the resale shop. After that is the counseling room where people are assessed for the help they need and given vouchers for the food bank and the resale shop. Next is the job center, and finally the place where people can go to get help with taking their G.E.D., and help with their english.

The first stop on the tour was the donation area, and I have to say that I was immediately put off. Like, eww, put off. Enough to say that I almost had another melt down but thankfully managed to put it on hold while we continued on the tour.

The resale shop really surprised me however.

Everything was clean, and orderly, and very, very inexpensive, and what I liked most was that the clients that were issued with the vouchers, got the things that they needed free of charge. I always wondered about that at places like Goodwill, etc..

I’d already seen the area where the clients went for help when I accidentally went through the wrong door to sign up to volunteer, but I was surprised to find a job center in the next room. I asked about their success rate and was told that every person that went through their system ended up with a job. Maybe they would have said that anyway, but …

Anyway, I was quite impressed with how they were helping a person get on their feet in all aspects of their life, not just by giving out food etc, and you’ll be relieved to know that the potential melt down was almost gone by the time I got home, and instead I was galvanized into taking action.

Decluttering action.

I prefer to refer to myself as a collector of things rather than a hoarder, but whichever way you look at it I’ve always found the prospect of sorting out all of my stuff quite overwhelming.

But now, my new mission is to touch everything I own.


So I started with my closet and the bathroom.

I threw away anything with a hole or a stain (however small) because I decided if I wouldn’t wear it myself why should I expect others to wear it. I was pretty ruthless about keeping only those things that I knew I would wear, and I washed and folded all the other items and took them to the ministry.

After seeing the junk in the donating room I promised myself that I wouldn’t use the ministry, or Goodwill, ever again as a dump for anything I didn’t want. It had to be a good, solid item. The people in the ministry go through everything they get. They throw away every item that is not suitable and this is all picked up by a recycling unit which pays them for it. Probably not much, but hey.

They count every jigsaw piece, make sure all the toys are clean, and games complete. Check out that every electronic item works, every piece of furniture is clean, and everything else goes to recycling. So I wasn’t going to burden them with having to work that hard on my donations.

And it feels good.

My closet has never looked so organized and free of stuff that I know I’ll never use, even if it did still have the tag on it. Every toiletry item that I haven’t used, and won’t use, has now gone to a better place.

And man, it only took 3 bags of good clothing, 1 bag of shoes, 1/2 bag of handbags. 1 box of toiletries, 1 box of lightly used gift bags and wrapping paper, 3 suitcases we can’t use now because they’re not T.S.A. approved anymore, and 2 boxes of books which have been stored in my closet for over a year now because I didn’t know what to do with them.

Yes, we have a huge closet.

(I’m not going to tell you about the three bags of trash that also went out of the door as that would be a bit embarrassing.)

Now, I’m onto the bedroom and 4 boxes of books have already gone out the back door.

Now, although I prefer the assisted ministries shop I did have to give Goodwill two of the boxes as I didn’t think the ministry would want all of my, does god really exist, and psych books.

Better safe than sorry.

Wouldn’t want them to think I was one of those nasty atheist now would we ;)

Don’t look now, but …

I have a secret.

All you good grammar people out there may well be shaking your heads in despair right now, but I have to tell you that I love writing.

I love words. I love putting them together. I love playing around with them. I especially love just sitting down and letting the words go wherever they want to.

In other words, making it all up as I go along.

It’s amazing what comes out when you’re not looking.

Now that can get a bit awkward. You happily start off in one direction, and then, before you know what’s happening, you write a sentence and end up in a right pickle.

Love it!

I have two writing projects on at the moment, well, three if you include the one that’s been lingering by the edge of the cliff for twenty years now waiting to put everyone out of its misery. And then, of course, there are the poems, and attempted short stories, and journal entries, etc, but we won’t go into those here.

I know you’re disappointed, but I have to maintain some form of dignity.

The first project is called.

Twigfern. Her life and all that went wrong with it. By One who Knows.

Only I’ve just changed her name to Leafmold because Twigfern was too nice.

The second is called.

The Ledgers Legend of Cornelius Audenberry III

Intrepid Explorer and Botanist to HRH Significanta Regina, Queen of Spry.

He’s quite new, and is inspired by my, Day of the Triffids, paintings.


All incredibly incredulous flower paintings need a botanist to explain why, don’t you think?


Every so often the bug hits, and I start thinking about my little stories, and what’s happening to all my peeps in writing limbo land.

Are they frozen in time, waiting for me to pick up my pen again, or have they been getting on with all their getting ons while I’ve been out here playing around with smelly wax, gooey pastels, and sheets of metal?

Do they even miss me?

Last night I decided to go upstairs to my clean space, and get out my writing books. Not an easy feat considering that my notes and ponderings are all over the place, in so many different hiding places and note books that they may never see the light of day again.

Man! One day I am going to organize myself.

No, no, you can’t stop me. It has to be done.

Unfortunately, as I entered the clean space, I came upon this.


Yep, it’s still there, just hanging out waiting for me to get back in there and finish it.

So now I’m torn.


Between the poor, forlorn, patient quilt, and this.


Just can’t seem to catch a break …

My brain on art.

So again, I throw all the wax I have at the board and am like.

Wow, this is the best. I think I’ve finally found my medium.


Then I’m like.

Darn I’m no good at this, I’ll never find my medium.

So I go back to the pastels and I’m like.

Wow, how could I have ever left you. This is the best!


And I just know that I’ve found my medium.


Then I’m like,

Dam’ I’ll never be any good at this, how could I have ever thought it could be my medium.

So I go back to the encaustic table and I’m like


Wow! This is the stuff for me.

Then I finish up for the day and walk into the house and say to P as I pass him in the kitchen.

I’m giving up art.

And he just laughs, and I’m like


And go off to sulk in the other room …

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