Friday, August 29, 2008

The Kessler Craftsman Gets Fired Up

Here is an article originally published in a newsletter for glass artists. I'm reproducing it here to show some love to my long-time crafty pal, Larry a.k.a. The Kessler Craftsman. Enjoy! As an artist with a long-time fascination around Japanese culture and art, I recently developed a line of fused glass pendants that feature painted Japanese kanji. This article will describe the process step-by-step. The kanji symbol I’m painting in the pictures is the symbol for “the present” or “here and now.” I start by using a template to cut my pieces of fusible glass in a square. The pendant pieces pictured have a background of black Spectrum 96 glass with a foreground of various Spectrum fusible colors. I have applied the same techniques to opaque, cathedral, clear, and dichroic glass as well. Depending on the style of bail or snap-ring used to attach the piece to the necklace cord, I may also drill a 2 mm hole for the snap ring before ever attaching the foreground piece and before firing. Once my pieces are cut to a uniform size, I use a tool called an Air Pen to apply my kanji characters. The Air Pen is air-operated and was originally developed for silk painting. It forces any kind of liquid through a very fine needle-shaped tip. The tool comes with various sized tips for liquids of varying viscosity and for thinner/thicker lines. I tend to use the finer tips to apply dark Glassline glass enamels. Once the kanji characters are applied and have fully dried (just a few minutes), I use gel-glue to glue the foreground piece to the background. I keep the glue off of dichroic glass because it tends to discolor the dichroic upon firing. I then assemble the pendants on the kiln shelf of my Paragon Fusion-10 or my Paragon Caldera and tack-fuse the pendants, insuring that the square pendants don’t excessively round while firing. Once the pieces have cooled in the kiln, I attach the bail or snap ring and then ready the pendant for final sale. I hope you enjoy this technique and adapt to your own work!

Instant Karma

Things have been silent on the Tefi blog front as of late. Cannot believe how busy I've been with pregnancy, family crisis-y type stuff, Etsy Dallas Jingle Bash planning, and work - you'd think raising money for homeless kids would be easy, but in this economic climate? Eesh. Fuggedaboudit.

So my crafty endeavors have suffered a bit, become secondary. Short of a few chunky beaded necklaces for myself, I haven't done much at all lately! Shame too, since I have so many completed pieces yet to be photographed and shared with the world (and in my Etsy shop). But I continue to get a sale here and there, and it always makes me smile - instant karma! I feel lucky to be able to outfit and adorn women around the world with my jewelry.

That said, here are a few of my favorite pieces for sale at my Etsy shop. Purchase a Tefi original today!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Let's Get Ready to Jingle!

Mark your calendars, folks. It's nearly time to kick off the holiday season!

Etsy Dallas, who first brought you the famous Beer-B-Q trunk show, is doing it again - even bigger and better this time. The First Annual Etsy Dallas Jingle Bash will be held at the historic Sons of Hermann Hall at 3414 Elm St. in Dallas on November 22nd from 3pm-10pm.

The show will feature over 40 local artists and crafters, live music, karaoke, great food, and a full bar. There is no cost to the public for admission or entertainment. While this show will be family-friendly, the vibe will be a fun, night-time holiday bash full of handmade love and good times. Think of it as a party - not your typical craft show!

Stay tuned to the Etsy Dallas blog for updates on this one-of-a-kind local shopping experience.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Show Pony Show

Stop by this Sunday and visit my booth at the Show Pony Show! This will be the last show I do this season until the big huge mega-super-duper 1st Annual Etsy Dallas Jingle Bash. Don't miss it! If you're on my mailing list, you're in for a special coupon to redeem at the show this Sunday. Splendid!

Psst - Sign up for my mailing list by clicking on the link to the left of this blog post.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Splurge

Now that I'm really starting to protrude (no hiding it now), clothes shopping is pretty much out of the question unless there's a drawstring involved. Shoe shopping is also near non-existent since those cute Coach heels are both out of my price range and about a million inches too high.

So I decided to shirk Friday rush hour traffic and spend a couple hours toddling around NorthPark in search of some great accessories. I was prepared to splurge a bit, and splurge I did. I bought my first designer handbag - a black hobo number from Guess - and the new Burberry fragrance The Beat. (I had already worn out the paper sample from the latest Lucky edition, so it was time to graduate to the real deal.)

Moral of the Story: Splurge on yourself once in a while! If you live a fairly financially conservative life, the Splurge is that much sweeter.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Show Pony Flyer

Check it out - Tefi Designs is listed as a Featured Vendor. Can't wait to see you there!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Pamelita's Flyer

Too often I forget to mention the super-awesome craft collective I belong to - Etsy Dallas - and founded, um, by the way!

The leadership team (LT) is revving up for the coolest, most awesomest, most fantastic holiday show Dallas has ever seen (Can you tell I'm excited?), and I have to give my girl Pam of Pamela Michelle some major props for leading this particular show and taking care of our team graphics, to boot!

As you all now know, I'm going to be late into my third trimester by the time we hold our show on November 22nd, so Pam has bravely agreed to be the leader of this here crafty bash. The rest of us on the LT are also working our tails off to make this show rock. More details to come...

And while I'm bragging on Pammers, check out her latest design for a general team flyer (up top). Awesome work, Pam Pants

Friday, August 1, 2008

Craft Guild Fundraiser

About a year ago I took metalsmithing at the Craft Guild of Dallas, the city's oldest non-profit art instruction organization. Located near Spring Valley and Midway, the Guild offers classes in metalsmithing, bookbinding, pottery, glass, fiber arts, painting, and kid's crafts. Become a member and drop in for some studio time on your own! On Sunday, August 10th, the Guild is holding a large art sale to raise funds to help pay for day-to-day expenses as well as repair of studio space and equipment. I donated two necklaces that you can purchase to help out the Guild! One is a felted balls design made with 100% needlefelted wool in swirls of blue, green, and magenta, accented by silver chain and wood beads. The other necklace is Phoenix Rising (pictured below), a beaded piece with a carved bone pendant. (I am discounting and/or giving away any jewelry I have made with animal by-products, which I won't be using anymore in my design pieces. Get in on the deal!) THE CRAFT GUILD OF DALLAS: 1ST ANNUAL FUNDRAISER Sunday, August 10th, 11am-6pm 14325 Proton Road, Dallas (972) 490-0303 FREE ADMISSION ALL ONE-OF-A-KIND ORIGINAL WORKS OF ART FOR SALE ~ from $5 to $200 ~ Handmade pottery ~ Lampwork glass beads ~ Handmade jewelry ~ Original paintings ~ handmade books and papers Visit the “Cup o' Joe” table and purchase a handmade mug to fill with fresh coffee, relax, sip, and keep on shopping!