Wednesday, September 28, 2011

And now, Treasuries!

It's time for another Wednesday Treasury round-up! Above is my FAETeam Treasury Tuesday collection, featuring an assortment of green items perfect for Halloween costumes. The funny thing is that I keep making all of these Halloween treasuries, but I haven't planned what I'm going to BE for Halloween. I'll probably just cobble something together from my closet as usual!

My fantasy jewelry was included in two FAETeam treasuries yesterday. First, you can find my tribal skull necklace in Creepy and Kooky, and you can find a filigree steampunk necklace in Victorian Fae. Two themes I love!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

It's a moth!

 Well, my jewelry photos haven't been great lately, but I did get a couple of good pictures of this dead moth that my friend Amanda brought to me! Yes, that's the sort of friendship we have -- she brings me dead moths and I photograph them and we both geek out because we both love insects.
Look at his face! How cool is it? He is, or was, some sort of Sphinx moth... very large and beautiful. I love moths and have actually considered a Sphinx moth tattoo, but I have a feeling that all of my tattoos will be beetles because I love them even more.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Changeling Baby

Please forgive the horrible photo, I cheated and didn't use my light tent and that was a horrible mistake!

This is the custom necklace that I recently made for one of my dance classmates. She asked me when I was going to make a purple and silver faerie necklace, which lead to us working together to come up with the right necklace for her... She picked this baby faerie on a leaf from my huge selection of Green Girl pewter faeries. She also wanted moonstone, which I didn't have on hand, so she provided some stone chips from a broken necklace that belonged to her mother. Czech glass and Swarovski crystals provide two tones of purple, and the repeating motif makes it simple but beautiful. We're both happy with the results!

If you'd like a faerie necklace of your own, check out my selection of Faerie Jewelry by Erthe Fae Designs, or contact me for a custom order.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

My Dance Life

Since I know that not all of you read my other blog, Confessions of a Dance Pants Addict, I thought I would take a few minutes and update you on my belly dance life -- after all, things get kind of boring around here when I post nothing but Treasuries!

The above photo is from the Healing Through Dance benefit this past weekend. I'm pleased to say that we raised over $600 for the Sessoms family, and Plaza de Anaya allowed us to leave the rack of donated costumes in the store, so that number will probably go up!

Things are going very well in my dance life. I was recently invited to join The Anaya Tribe, Anaya Tribal's new student troupe. It means lots of extra drives up to Tempe and very little free weekend time (because Autumn is the busy season for dancers here, due to the lovely weather), but it also means lots of fun, lots of time with my dance friends, and lots of performance experience! We're performing at a charity thing this Sunday, but our first open-to-the-public performance will be at the Desert Shakedown on October 8th.

And don't forget that I will also be vending my jewelry at the Shakedown! I will have everything that is in my Etsy shop, plus things that I haven't listed yet. I am hoping to have Square set up on my phone so that I can finally accept credit cards, too! But if you can't wait that long for a jewelry fix, please visit Handmade Jewelry by Erthe Fae Designs and do a little shopping. You'll be supporting my costume and workshop addictions!

Oh, and lest you think that Phoenix gets all the belly dance love, I also have a student performance coming up here in Tucson next month! For most of my classmates it will be their first time performing. I'm so excited for them! I wonder if they'll get hooked like I did?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Bring on the Treasuries!

A little moody black and red as I look forward to Halloween! I was inspired by The Scarlet Dancer, a treasury I was included in earlier in the week.

I was also included in Oh Glorious Darkness and FAEntastic Treasures. It's so nice to see more FAETeam members get into the Treasury Tuesday spirit!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

As requested...

So apparently when you show the internet a photo of several bags full of vintage costume jewelry, people want to know what's inside! Here's the first of what will probably be many photos.

There's a large abalone shell set into a custom-made silver ring. I suspect I will wear this one for a lot of dance gigs! Tribal girls love big rings and this one fits me and doesn't have any protrusions to snag my costumes!

There's a cameo set. The setting and the flip down pendant bail are very similar to the unusual cameo that my mother-in-law gave me, so I suspect they have similar origins as well! I love that I'll be able to wear the earrings with either pendant/brooch.

And there's also a pair of dolphin and flower earrings! These look like vermeil set with onyx. I'm offering them to my Mom because she and my Dad are SCUBA divers and they love dolphins. I suspect she'd wear these beautiful earrings more often than I will.

Friday, September 16, 2011


I was wondering what to blog about today, and it's a good thing I waited instead of posting something boring, because look what the nice UPS man just brought for me! My husband's godmother cleaned out her jewelry box and sent everything she didn't want anymore to me! There's glass, crystals, metal, plastic, and even a set of cameos! And that's just what I noticed from digging around a little bit. Sorting through these treasures is going to take a while, and it's going to be fun :)

This is one of the awesome things about being a jewelry designer... My house is where old jewelry goes to be reborn! Will I leave the pieces as-is? Dismantle them and make them into new jewelry? Use them to decorate tribal bras, belts, and headgear? Only time will tell.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Please come to this event!

If you'll be in the Phoenix area this Saturday, come to the Healing Through Dance Benefit Show and Sale! I will be among the numerous dancers performing, and I'm also donating a pair of chandelier earrings and a goddess necklace to the raffle. Other prizes include private belly dance lessons, gift certificates for brow waxing, and more! There will also be a rummage sale for gently used belly dance costume items. Lastly, after all of the performers have danced, we'll put on some music for open dancing.

All proceeds go to help the Sessoms family pay for PJ's cancer treatment. PJ is the mother of my very awesome classmate Jacque, who will also be performing a solo! It's going to be an awesome night for a good cause, so please attend and donate if you can!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

So pretty!

My theme for this week's FAETeam treasury is "Stuff I think is pretty." Sometimes it's nice to keep it simple and not have to worry whether something really fits the theme and goes nicely with everything else I've already included. And yesterday was a good day to take the easy route, since I was gone all afternoon!

Now for the Treasuries I was featured in! Phoenix Feathers continues its reign of popularity, having been included in Fire and Water and Autumn Sunrise. My handmade necklaces also made it into Falling Leaves and Stark Fantasy. Every one of these collections is beautiful! Thank you to the artists who included me.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Fun times are busy times!

Wow, I have just been all over the place lately. Friday I went shopping at the September Best Bead Show, then on Sunday I spent 4 hours working at the MZ Glass booth. So I have some pretty new glass beads!

Today I got to hang out with Kate McKinnon and Dustin Wedekind, which was fun. We had lunch at Copper Country Antiques -- yeah, it's an antique store with a cafe in the middle, who would have thought? I drooled over ridiculous 1980s boots and cute vintage earrings that I might have to go back for because they were only $8 and did I mention that I'm currently obsessed with earrings? Then we went to SAS, which is a weird fabric store, by which I mean it is a store with weird fabric. I got some pretty scraps of duiponi to use for belly dance costuming.

I haven't been beading or blogging enough but I intend to do something about that, starting by writing this post tonight. I'm taking back my Tuesdays! Whatever that means.

Oh yes, and it has been raining like mad lately! It's as if the weather finally remembered what a proper monsoon is. So if you're wondering why this post seems a little hyper, it's because the rain makes me happy :)

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Told you I liked earrings!

 For the longest time, I couldn't really wear earrings, but my ears have gotten better. However, I never got into the habit of making earrings for myself, so even though I can wear them I only have one or two pairs that I've made for myself, and everything else was purchased. Well, it's time for that to change! Today I made myself this awesome pair of shoulder-dusters, with jewel beetle elytra and fern green Swarovski crystals.
What say you, customers... Is this a product that you'd like to see me offer at Handmade Jewelry by Erthe Fae Designs? Is it worthwhile for me to order more elytra? I would of course make sure to buy ones from a supplier that harvests them after the beetles have lived out a natural lifespan. I love insects too much to have them wantonly killed for my jewelry supplies!

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Treasure Your Ears

Earrings! I just love them. Always have. So this week's treasury showcases the dizzying variety of earrings available from FAETeam.

Only one feature for me this week, but it's a really nice one... Swimming South by the ever-lovely Mermaiden. Thank you Julie!

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

About my name

My business name, that is to say. It happened again this weekend -- someone sent out an official e-mail with my business spelled Earth Fae. This sort of thing happens to me all the time. I fail to get e-mails because people spell my address wrong. Or I hand someone my business card and they frown at the name and try to figure out how to say it. I've also gotten Erth Fae, Earthe Fae, and probably other spellings that I've forgotten. Why did I do this to myself?

Well, the problem is that I was a 16 year old geek when I named my business. I rightfully wanted a name that would be uniquely mine, to avoid confusion and make it easy to get the same user name for my eBay handle, my e-mail, and whatever else I needed an account for. I had this brilliant idea that I would name my business after a world I had made up for my writing and gaming hobbies, Erthe. Of course, at the wise age of 16 I thought that Erthe was a wonderful name for an imaginary planet. It was just like Earth but spelled differently! How awesome was that? Fae was for the human-sized faeries who lived there, and for the fact that I made fantasy jewelry. Designs because by unspoken rule, almost all handmade businesses use Design or Creations in their name.

Thirteen years later, I occasionally regret my decision. People misspell and mispronounce my name all the time. And while the name and faerie logo still work well for my Etsy shop, it doesn't necessarily fit with my line of tribal jewelry and the fact that I do most of my vending at belly dance events. It's a good thing for me that a lot of dancers are also into fantasy. In fact, one of the things that I need to do this week is make a faerie necklace for one of my troupemates.

For better or for worse, I am more or less stuck with this name. I could change it, but then I'd have to create a new Etsy shop, blog, Facebook page, e-mail address, website and more. I'd lose 13 years of name recognition, a couple years of Etsy feedback (which admittedly, is mostly from purchases, HA) and knowing my luck, I'd probably pick a name that someone else would want to use.

So that's my story. I hope you'll join me in having a little chuckle as I look back at 16 year old me, who thought she was so cool, so smart, and would probably really only do this for a few months until she got a real job anyway.

Friday, September 02, 2011

The most wonderful cameo ever

 One night while I was visiting my in-laws in New York last month, my mother-in-law said to me "You like cameos, right?" and she gave me this beautiful convertible brooch pendant. There are a few things that are very special about this piece of jewelry -- the most important is that it belonged to her mother, who sadly passed away when my husband Chris was very young. The other is that it's actually carved from shell, not molded from glass. The last is that unlike most cameos, it has a very raised, straight-on view of the woman's face instead of the usual slightly raised profile image. It's so unusual!
 (Don't mind the bit of red, I used a handy six-sided die to prop it up). Look how much the image is raised from the background. And how pretty it is!
 My mother-in-law had no idea how old it was or where her mother got it. I'm tempted to take it to an antique or jewelry store for an appraisal, not so much for the value (because the sentimental value is all that matters to me), but just to get an idea of its origins. The geek in me hates unanswered questions.
Oh, I forgot to mention the other cool part... the hanging loop is a tiny hinge that folds under to stay out of the way when it's worn as a brooch. How clever is that? The little flat part says "14K" and is the only mark I could find.

I probably won't work this into a piece of beaded jewelry, although I might make something to coordinate with it... maybe a choker, and I could wear the cameo on a chain below it or pinned on my blouse. In fact, with Autumn just around the corner, it seems like the perfect time to go out shopping for an outfit that begs for a vintage cameo accent.

PS: Thank you Marlyn, for the cameo, for the wonderful man I married, and for everything you do for the both of us and all of your family. You're the best! <3