Monday, April 26, 2010

The Power of Tools

I had a really nice day yesterday. Went to the swap meet at Santa Monica Airport and then to the Art Fair in Brentwood. Lots of walking. I think I met my goal for the entire week! Felt good, but so did the hot bath when I got home.

The Brentwood show used to be fabulous. Filled with unique artisan work and home made foodie goodies. But sadly it has gone commercial. There were blow up kiddie slides and finger painting on one end and people wanting to sell you things like insurance, solar heating systems and specialty dog food on the other (not sure about the dog food, but it totally would have fit in). In between there were two long city blocks of vendors. Unfortunately most of the stuff was commercial or imported. But there were some photographers, a furniture maker, clothiers, purse makers and jewelry makers. Lots and lots of beaded jewelry. But a jeweler acquaintance named Jivita Harris-Casey was there and I wanted to stop by her booth and see what's new. She had a full booth, so I only stopped to chat for a minute, but it was nice to see her.

The swap, on the other hand, was fabulous! Soo tempting. I developed a new mantra for it in fact. "Do I need it or do I want it?" which I shortened to "NeedWant". Anytime I was looking at a treasure and mumbled my mantra out loud I got funny looks that turned into slight grins.

I found lots of needs. Little interesting bits and pieces to insert into my reliquary pendants. That's a new name. They're based on the project I created for the Steampunk Master Muse challenge. I scooped up some chandelier drops (some crystal and some plastic), a cigar holder from the thirties (not sure about using that one - still thinking) and some Mother of Pearl knife handles.

And in the want department, I was torn to find that the blue ceramic Buddha head that I saw last month was still there. At $125.00. She said she'd take $100.00 and I decided to walk the entire swap and see if it was still there at the end. After all, this was the third time I saw it. But of course when I wound my way back to her booth - it was gone! Drat! I had seen a seated blue metal Buddha for only $45.oo so I went back there to see if I wanted it. And I did. And I got it. For only $30.00! Score. I'm happy. But the first vendor said that her sister owned the exact same ceramic head and wasn't sure if she still wanted it. So there's still a chance that it will find a way home with me. Maybe. How many blue Buddha's can one have in a 500 sq. ft. apartment?

Then I got home and was so excited about my bits that I put together three pendants then and there! The doll arm (from ebay) was the hardest to finish. It was the only part I got that didn't have a hole in it! So I had to drill one. And the arm was solid ceramic. I made a divot with a diamond ball bit, then switched to a diamond coated twist drill. Working from either side to meet in the middle ensured that the wire would enter and exit exactly where I wanted it to. Then I had to thin down the shoulder so it would fit inside the silver element. A mask, some water and a heatless grinding wheel later and it fit perfectly. So cute!

I haven't finished a bulbous plastic prism ball - not sure about the scale of the silver bit to the ball. What do you think? I might take a trip to the Rosebowl next month to see what there is to be had there. Anyone want to come with me? I haven't been there in years! It's huge and overwhelming, but oh so fun. My mantra will have to be stamped on my forehead though. I'm afraid of all the potential wants that I'll run across.


Vickie Hallmark said...

Love the reliquaries! Isn't it great when these Master Muse challenges (which are a lot of work) turn into fun new repeating themes? I'm really enjoying the whole process.

Angela said...

Lovely! You find the neatest things and then know what to do with them, which is cool. I really like the doll arm and the way it's set.
The blue Buddha is very nice.

Yeah, it is neat to think how the Master Muses is opening up doors in our own minds too.

Phoenix said...

AWESOME! Thanks for the tips and tricks. Love the pieces, especially the doll arm.


Anonymous said...

OMG - love the pendants, love buddha, and would LOVE to go junking with you out there!!!

Victoria Takahashi said...

is there another challenge happening! steampunk what!!!

i love your dolls arm, but i am very smitten w the bulby thing in back, what is ithis trinket?