Monday, September 13, 2010

Fall/Winter 2010-2011 Color and Fashion Trends Forecast

Modest opulence takes the stage for fall and winter

In recent seasons, most of us have chosen to make smaller and fewer purchases when it comes to fashion. Along the way, we’ve discovered that we really don’t need to buy a whole new wardrobe each season to maintain a fresh look. A few well-chosen pieces that work with clothing we already own are all that is needed to update the collection in the closet.

One of the easiest ways to spice up your look while taking advantage of the season’s fresh colors and styles is with accessories – especially jewelry! It’s a fun, affordable way to enjoy something new without a complete wardrobe overhaul. And whether you’re looking to purchase something trendy or timeless, you can find it here.

But before you shop, check out the latest scoop on this season’s hottest colors and styles…

Read the rest of my latest seasonal trends article on my website!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Introducing... The Stardust Collection

Inspired by the deep bond we humans form with our furry family members, I have spent the past year creating a very special new jewelry collection.
My husband and I have lost both our beloved golden retrievers since last summer. In searching for a unique and beautiful way to memorialize our dogs, I discovered and learned a technique or two that I’d like to share with others who have lived with and loved animals.

To read all about it and see pictures, too, please visit the announcement page on my website.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Pendant and earring set featured in Urban Maille ad

One of my necklace and earring sets was recently used in an advertisement on Facebook by one of my favorite businesses, Urban Maille, a wonderful online company that makes the very best precious metal rings for making chain maille jewelry. They also offer excellent tutorials and kits. If you want to try your hand at weaving chain, Urban Maille is the place to start!

The pendant and earrings in the photo are currently for sale in my 1000 Markets shop. Please visit the item listing for more photos and information about this elegant set.

Thanks, friends at Urban Maille!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Findings by Limelight Designs featured in jewelry magazine

My new line of findings (clasps, ear wires and other little treasures) was featured in the July 2010 issue of BeadStyle Magazine! Here's what they wrote:

"We love the variety of handmade findings on; here are a few of our favorites...

"Ellen Chappelle crafts Argentium and copper wire into woven pendants for charms ($10-17, dangles not included). We also like the silver flower links ($4-6.50). Visit"

Thanks, BeadStyle!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Seattle area art and craft lovers -- please come shop!

Here's the press release I wrote for the show:

SEATTLE, April 22, 2010 – EtsyRAIN announced today that it will host its second annual Spring Craft Show from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 8, 2010.

The EtsyRAIN Spring Craft Show will be held in the lobby and the fountain courtyard at the beautiful Intiman Theatre, located at 201 Mercer Street in Seattle.

Arrive early for swag bags:

The first 50 customers through the door will receive free swag bags full of handcrafted items by Seattle-area artists.

Support local artisans and crafters:

Choosing to support our area’s small businesses helps in so many ways! Buying local is more than just the hottest trend. From reducing your carbon footprint to keeping your hard-earned dollars right here in Seattle, purchasing locally produced items benefits our city and our planet!

Spring Craft Show benefits local charity:

In the spirit of keeping it local, EtsyRAIN has chosen a Seattle-based charitable organization to support at its spring craft show.

Lifelong AIDS Alliance is a group that strives to create “a world without HIV or AIDS, where every person living with illness is treated with dignity and respect.”

Representatives from Lifelong AIDS Alliance will be at the show, sharing information about their organization, selling raffle tickets for gift baskets filled with EtsyRAIN member merchandise, and collecting donations of canned food.

Admission to the event will be a suggested donation of $1 that will go directly to Lifelong AIDS Alliance or a canned food donation for their meal delivery program.

About EtsyRAIN:

EtsyRAIN is a local collective of over 700 artisans and craft makers from all over the Puget Sound region who operate online shops on the international handcrafted shopping site called Etsy ( EtsyRAIN's mission is to create a local creative community that nurtures, supports and educates artists who currently have or are interested in opening their own independent e-commerce shops on Etsy.

The group’s website at features an event calendar of local craft-related events that is quickly becoming the "go-to" place to find out about crafty happenings in the Seattle area. Check it out to learn about all things crafty going on locally, such as classes, shows, application deadlines, networking events and more. You can even create an account and post your own crafty events!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

New jewelry findings for sale on Etsy!

I added more little wire treasures to my findings shop yesterday. If you make jewelry and find yourself in need of such things, please visit my findings shop on Etsy! And if you need something you don't find there, please add a comment to this post letting me know what you're seeking. Perhaps I'll design something just for you!  :-)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring/Summer 2010 Color and Fashion Trends Forecast

I just finished and uploaded my latest article on color and fashion trends for spring and summer. And it features the season's hottest jewelry styles, of course!

Check it out:
Spring/Summer 2010 Color and Fashion Trends Forecast

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Year of Jewelry 2010, Week 4

The theme for this week: "What's My Story?"

As most people who know me are well aware, a big part of my story for the past 14 years has been our two golden retrievers. The only "kids" my husband and I ever had, they were our joy, our laughter and the center of our lives.

On January 12, at the very moment when that devastating earthquake hit the island nation of Haiti, we experienced our own personal earthquake; our sweet Kody passed away.The second of our two goldens to leave us in less than eight months, he was my "heart dog."

I made the pendants pictured here -- my first attempt at resin -- in honor of our sweet and happy golden furkid.

I've always wondered about resin, but was hesitant to use it because I try to avoid as many dangerous chemicals as possible in my jewelry making. I read about the non-toxic ICE Resin when it came out and was debating giving it a try, but still wondered if I'd like the mess of mixing the two parts. Then I heard about Magic-Glos, which is an easy-to-use, one-part resin. I decided to give it a try.

Magic-Glos cures with UV light -- just 5-15 minutes in the sun, according to the manufacturer. Since I live in Seattle, where we can go for many days at a time with little to no sunlight in the winter months, I purchased the accompanying UV light so that I can cure my pieces indoors, regardless of the weather.

Photos must be sealed before covering them with resin, but unlike other resins, you cannot seal them with a decoupage fluid. The instructions say to cover them on both sides with clear packing tape, which I did. Be sure to take your time with this step. I trapped a few small air bubbles between the tape and the photo on the larger piece. They're not bad, (and they're not visible in this photo) but you can still see them when you look closely at the piece in person.

You then need to adhere the tape-coated photo to the bottom of the pendant well. I used a Xyron sticker maker to coat the back of the photo with adhesive. I'm sure you can use glue, but I'm impatient -- I didn't want to have to wait for the glue to dry before being able to apply the resin!  :-)

You can see one bubble in this photo -- along the right edge of the pendant frame. This bubble is actually in the resin. Bubbles like this can be easily taken care of by waving a lit butane torch over the resin after pouring and before curing. I did this with several other small bubbles, but unfortunately, I didn't see this bubble till after curing.  :-P

(If I were making this piece to sell, of course, I'd do it over to avoid both the bubbles in the packing tape and the one in the resin.)

Lesson learned, I took more time with the second piece and it came out beautifully, with no bubbles at all. (Wasn't Kody just the cutest puppy?! To see more pictures and read a little about his life, visit his page on my website. Sorry, I just can't help myself!)

I looooove the Magic-Glos! It's so easy to use and it looks great when finished. A few tips learned on my first attempt... Since the resin likes to pull away from the sides, I "encouraged" it to fill the well by spreading it to the sides with a little length of SoftFlex. You can also use the tip of the SoftFlex to pop any bubbles if you don't have a torch. The larger pendant has a much deeper well and it took a full hour for it to cure under the UV light, so don't assume that the suggested 5-15 minutes is written in stone.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Year of Jewelry 2010, Week 3

I have more fused glass to share for the third week of YOJ. These pieces come from the second day of the workshop, where we learned to add inclusions of copper between the layers of glass. (Silver also works, but nothing plated. A solid metal must be used) It's important that the metal is veeeeery thin or the glass can bubble and crack.

See the bubbles around the stem and leaves of the flower below? I probably should have used a finer gauge of wire.

Always more to learn....

Year of Jewelry 2010, Week 2

Already late and it's only week two -- what a way to begin the year!

This week, I have something to show that's completely different and new for me -- glass fusing! I took a two-day workshop last weekend and have just begun to scratch the surface of the mysteries of molten glass. What fun!

On the first day, we played with captivating dichroic glass. Now this stuff really appeals to the lover of all things sparkly in me! Isn't it lovely?!

I love the sparkle, (of course) but also the way it shifts color in the kiln, giving you a surprise after firing. I also love the richness of the colors.

Most of these will become pendants or earrings for sale and gift giving. I'm sure a few of them will find their way into my jewelry box, too!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Year of Jewelry 2010, Week 1

For those who are new to the Year of Jewelry, allow me to introduce the concept. It's a project of the Creative Wire Jewelry forum where participants commit to creating a new piece of jewelry every week for an entire year. Each week offers a theme to provide artists with inspiration, which they may choose to follow... or not.

This week's theme is Starting Over, which is, of course, apropos at the beginning of a new year. It also pertains to my piece this week, which includes several techniques that are still relatively new to me. This is only the third piece of this style I've made.

I shaped the paw of 16 gauge Argentium sterling wire in two pieces and fused it together before soldering it onto the brass sheet that I'd already cut and textured. I sawed out the paw shape, then riveted the brass sheet onto a piece of copper sheet I'd cut and textured. I turned the bail and then antiqued the entire piece, polished and tumbled it.

It was difficult to create the toes with such thick wire, so I'll shape the paw differently next time. I've already got a new idea. Stay tuned!

It's about time...

Welcome to my blog!

It's time for me to start writing about jewelry, creativity and the intriguing process of making things! And perhaps from time to time I'll wax eloquent about dogs, art, faith and whatever else begs to be shared.

I hope you find my musings entertaining and my jewelry interesting and that you'll join me for the journey!