Tag Archives: wild prairie silver jewelry

One Week To Go….

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One week to go before it gets too late to be shipping anything for Christmas… (If I don’t make any sense, sorry. I am a little tired. I will rest in a week.) I have been shipping all over the world and it gets a little scary because someone’s gift usually arrives 8 weeks late…. really, that has happened (but only one time and it was far far away.) As soon as we decided to give up on it ~ it arrived. Christmas time is so busy my shop looks like a war zone. I have an extra table set up just for each project and it’s current stage… with lots and lots of notes. I usually make people write me some kinda note with all of their info on it and that somehow gives me a visual of them and what they want.

This ring was one of the Christmas projects. It was a 5mm diamond ring that was a customers great grandmothers. I used the 18k gold from the ring and diamond to create this ring…. I did not have a single piece of scrap left from the original ring…it’s all in here. I melted the gold down, milled it out and cut out the sun shape. The rest of the gold is the stars… Ring band and moon are sterling silver. Sterling band is oxidized. This is probably the prettiest ring I have ever made and it went to a great lady.

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This is just beginning… no done yet and probably won’t get done in time for Christmas but maybe?

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This stone is a favorite of mine. It is Vista Jasper. It has really pretty light blue, green and burnt orange colors all watercolored together. Accent stones are trillion cut london blue topaz and tourmaline. 18K Gold and Sterling Silver. With the exception of wedding rings this will probably be most expensive piece in materials I have ever made.

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What the heck is this? A black tourmaline trapped in a crystal… It’s great. I have another similar stone shown in the next picture but it is just not as refined as this stone. You cannot go surfing in this necklace though…it’s a needs a careful owner. Maggie ~ I know you are out there  and No, You Cannot Go Surfing In Your Jewelry.. I will find you at the beach and repair your jewelry for you.

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Another captured crystal necklace. I put an amethyst setting on top of it with the PUK welder… all stones in place. It’s amazing to be doing that from my stand point.

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Kyanite Necklaces… Made for Stocking Stuffers….a great little gift… Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/214949951/kyanite-stone-necklace-sterling-silver?ref=shop_home_active_6

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Last but not least a Rhodocrosite Ring… I did not list this on Etsy yet but will in a bit. It has a hammered adjustable band able to fit size 7-10

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Thank you to everyone for your continued business. I really appreciate it and love it. I will post a Merry Christmas post, but for now, off to bed. Gotta rest up.

If you would like to visit my online shop please visit: https://www.etsy.com/shop/joykruse?ref=listing-shop-header-item-count

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Happy Thanksgiving!!!!!!!

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Happy Thanksgiving everyone!!!! I am grateful for so many things that my list could go on and on…… I will start here: thank you ArtBeet for helping me get this machine!!!!!! It’s amazing!

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I have attached some pics of my new PUK welder. I traveled to Chicago to get some training on it and here it is set up in my humble little workshop. It makes some very difficult tasks very easy. In the first few moments of use we have realized what a great tool this will be!!! We welded a pile of jump rings in  a few minutes with no solder, no flux, no pickle, no solder seam. We hammered the jump rings… no visible sign of the join at all, amazing. Tomorrow (yes, on Thanksgiving) I am going to try some antique repairs. That is what started my interest in this unit in the first place.

I will have to have my Artist Guild, ‘ArtBeet’, over for a trial and error on the unit ~ show and tell. Because of them it was possible for me to get the machine. I could not have done it without them. I hope to show this machine to other artists and have them see first hand what it can do and open their eyes to the possibilities of how they can create with it.

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This is a picture of the view through the microscope. I took this with my phone…. go iPhone… great pic.

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This is my dragonfly I have been making for years. Why I never made it like this I can’t say? I love it this way best and it never crossed my mind to do this? An old friend in a new form… love it. Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/212894427/sterling-silver-dragonfly-necklace-wild?ref=shop_home_active_2

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Rhodocrosite Necklace also new today….Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/212892239/rhodocrosite-stone-sterling-silver?ref=shop_home_active_6

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Feather Cuff Bracelet… new today… It wraps perfectly around half of your wrist and looks beautiful. Link:https://www.etsy.com/listing/212887728/sterling-silver-feather-bracelet-wild?ref=shop_home_active_4

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These are all photos from the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. We were tourists a few days after I picked up my welder. These amazing creatures, jellyfish, wild looking little fellows… again photos taken with my iPhone ~ I can’t believe the quality in the photos from a phone. If you have never visited the museums in Chicago they are worth the trip. I could spend an entire weekend at the Field Museum.

Last Show This Saturday 9-3 at East Depere High School ~ 500 Swan Rd

See you there? Happy Thanksgiving everyone and I hope you stay home tomorrow instead of going shopping. Tell those stores they can wait a day.

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Stars Aligning…

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I think the stars are aligning for me to finally get this TIG welder. It has taken since spring… I will be traveling to Chicago mid-November to spend a day with Richard Sep learning how to use it. I’m excited to say the least and I have a pile of experimental stuff here to take with me. It’s like buying car for my business so it’s a big investment. I will keep you posted on this adventure. It is really going to be amazing to see metal being joined near and around precious stones with the stones in place…and no heat… The heat is so powerful, intense and localized you can hold the metal with your fingertips while you work ~ I kinda can’t believe it.

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On a business note ~ Thank You ETSY!!!!!!!!!!!!! ETSY came out with a card reader. Why do I care? Why is it any different than using Square? or any other card reader? Well, it’s the same transaction fee (ETSY does not charge their 3% sales fee when you sell in person but a credit card transaction fee is charged of 2.75%, just like everyone else) and every time I sell something in person it is listed in my sold part of my shop and the person can leave feedback, see their receipt, and new shoppers can look up my sold items and see all the things I have sold at art shows that did not before get to be viewed on ETSY. It’s great. I can truly have my ‘Shop’ open to the public face to face and to the internet consumer. Another plus…. all the transactions automatically load into the accounting software that links to ETSY. This software is called OUTRIGHT.com. I highly recommend it. All of your fees, sales, shipping automatically loads and is perfectly kept track off via ETSY or Paypal. In the past when I sold face to face at an art show I had to enter all of that manually into OUTRIGHT.com when I got home. Well, not anymore…tons of tedious data entry done in real time with each transaction. Thank You again ETSY. This has greatly improve the way I work with just a simple thing.

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I have to make a sterling butterfly… I’ve been working on it for a few weeks. I am still not happy with what I have. I am trying to blend these three pics into one interesting bug, hmmmm….. I will keep trying.

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I made this Ocean Jasper about a week ago. Since I made this necklace I have been working on about a dozen or so custom orders. They always all come in at the same time which is Murphy’s Law. I am sure after Christmas I will be sitting here with nothing to do but shovel snow and stoke the fire so I will make hay while the sun is shining.

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Look of strange bewilderment which is what my husband looks like every single time he gets his picture taken. He hates his picture being taken. He usually has his finger in the up position.

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My husband would die if he knew I was putting these pics in here. Well, why am I doing it then? Cuz he’s the best! I have to give him some credit where credit is due. He is cutting a door in this concrete tank that is on our land to make fort for our kids. When your kids ‘fort’ takes a saw like this one in the photo and the use of a backhoe you really have to wonder what will happen next???? Never a dull moment. (My daughter took these pics. Thanks kiddo.)


Artstreet Location….

ArtStreet… I will be in the same spot as last year… #143. I love it when they do that because I am easy to find. I am on the corner of Adams and Cherry right at the Art Raffle Tent. See ArtStreet Event link: http://www.mosaicartsinc.org/artstreet/index.php

Artstreet Artist Map 2014

I am cross eyed already from making, making, making but it will all be worth it after the weekend is over (unless it rains like crazy…) I am looking forward to seeing good friends, neighbors, other artists. Katie is helping me pull everything together today and we will probably call it an early day as if you make things in a rush it just does not work out.

Classes at Peninsula School of Art are a go! So I will be teaching “How To Launch An Etsy Shop” and “Telling A Story In Stone’ which is a traditional metalsmithing class. They are both the week of Sept 15th Monday-Friday. If you can go — go! Taking a workshop is always inspiring. Let me know if you need class info or check with PeninsulaSchoolofArt.org.

Earlier this week my family and I traveled to my Dads home in Florida where his wife Terry still lives. (My Dad passed away this spring.) She is moving soon and we went to help her pack and just visit before she moves. It was good to see her and my Dad’s Chocolate Lab, Hank… He eats everything he shouldn’t — like, shoes, toilet paper, boxes, belts, phones… He is only one year old so he is then energizer bunny and weighs 100 lbs. His tail is his smile and could almost knock you down-great to see them both. During our time there we went to Blue Springs State Park in Deland Florida. We had been there before and you can swim/snorkle in a natural spring that flows out into the ocean. It is a manatee refuge. It is like snorkeling in an aquarium. We were told that we would not see any manatees because it’s the wrong time of year. The last time we went we swam with a family of manatees and it was surreal to swim with adults and their babies in the wild.

Well…. my daughter and I were just snorkeling along and a huge shadow cruised beneath us! It was a single manatee and he/she was just gorgeous and huge… about the size of a cow. We slowly swam with he or she for several minutes and even carassed him – he feels like a prickly leather couch–like a wild boar with course hair, tough exterior… Great experience again to be completely in the wild and have a chance encounter with an endangered species – or protected species, not sure which. I chuckled at all the little kids getting on the airplane with their Micky Mouse hats from Disney World… I bet they did not have the amazing time we had — for almost free.

Below picture is 10 feet deep water: half fresh water and half salt… crystal clear to the bottom.

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People in floats, swimming and snorkeling the spring down to the mouth. My son sat on the bottom and saw a 6 foot Gar fish swim over him.

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We also visited the tallest light house in Florida built in late 1800’s. Great history behind this light house still in use, on the end of the strip in Daytona Beach Florida which is called Ponce Inlet. 1.5 million bricks, 8 feet thick walls at the bottom, 208 steps that men carried up gallons of kerosene by hand daily… has with stood a few hurricanes… The light in the lighthouse is now computerized and has an electric light but it use to be a kerosene lamp with a wick (imagine the wick-huge???) with a zillion magnifying lens surrounding it make the light bigger and brighter… That lamp is shown in the second photo. It was huge, made from brass and massive amounts of one inch or more  thick pieces of glass — I’m a museum junky — neat stuff. (I am such a geek, sorry about that.) Three men and their families maned the light house 24/7 for years on end. It took constant maintenance and care.

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This is the lens/lamp — it’s about 2 stories tall.

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Could not walk far enough out into the ocean to get a picture of the entire lighthouse – ocean is behind me and in front of me too  🙂

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New necklaces just finished today…. Both with hand made chains…both agates,  my favorites… The last necklace with amethysts as accents.

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If you are interested in either one of these necklace please send me an email at joykruse@yahoo.com

I won’t have time to post them online before the show starts tomorrow at 4pm. I hope to see you there and hope it doesn’t rain a lot this weekend. Heck of a way to make a living in the rain, outside, with beautiful hand made things… amen to all artists out there doing outdoor shows. It’s an adventure every time. See you soon. Maybe tomorrow? and wish me luck.

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Leland Blue and Sapphire

Leland Blue Sapphire Necklace

Fresh today…. Leland Blue Stone and Sapphire Gemstone Necklace…. Leland Blue material is no longer available so it’s getting harder and harder to find. I love it’s rugged look and to put a sapphire with it seemed a little crazy so why not? 3mm Sapphire is set with in a natural hole in the Leland Blue stone. Sterling silver hand made chain as well.

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Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/194217921/leland-blue-sapphire-gemstone-sterling?

Hope you have time to stop in a see me Saturday at The Flying Pig Gallery. Should be fun! I will take some pics and post them. Been a busy busy summer so far I have to remember to take my camera and get some great shots of summer before it’s gone…..


Maggie Roschyk

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Maggie Roschyk… is an amazing woman. She has become my friend over the last couple years and I have gotten to know her through Tammy Rae and hanging out with her at the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee. She is often on my mind a mentor, friend, artist…..creative, funny, loving….. The book above is hers and it is great! It is not just full of pretty pictures but good and sound directions, very well done.

Link To Her Book: http://www.amazon.com/Artistic-Seed-Bead-Jewelry-Techniques/dp/0871164299

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While I was at Bead and Button I got to see Maggie for just a short time. She gave me a little barrette that had been on her workbench for years and years…She got it from an indian reservation and had it in her small bowl of inspiration and token memories on her bench. She passed it along to me and I have some great ideas for it…… because I think I want to incorporate it into a necklace by bezel setting the barrette possibly with the stones shown. Hee Hee 🙂 Next time you see it Maggie it will be around my neck 🙂

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This necklace is already spoken for but was a lot of fun to make! Prongs were a great way to make this stone secure as it was rough around several edges the prongs nestled into the crevices perfectly.

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Crazy Lace Agate and Garnet Earrings… So colorful they look like candy…

Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/193087206/crazy-lace-agate-garnet-gemstone?

Hope everyone is having a great summer. It is settling down here around my house which was much needed. Kids are off of school and into all kinds of things. Wild Prairie sponsored a soccer team for the second year in a row and I am the assistant coach (I don’t even know the rules. I am a terrible coach. Thank goodness for the real coach.) …our jerseys are bright pink, ha! How appropriate! I will send some pics of the team and blur out the kids faces so I don’t get anyone mad at me. It is really fun. Our team is under 12 years old and they are just a fun age. You go to practice and it’s instant laughs.

Next event: See below flier… Will be a great time as the place is great, band is great, food is great! See you there if you can come!

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Is Your Box of Swarovski Crystals This Big????

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Got to head out to the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee Wisconsin for just 35 hours of buying. The Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee is the largest bead show in the world. The offer over 900 jewelry related classes over a 10 day stretch. It’s a great show. I do not use that many beads any more but there are a couple great stone cutters there and it’s my only chance to pick the stones out in person for the entire year. Above is picture of the truck I parked next too. I think you have a serious problem if this is your box of Swarovski Crystals!!!!!!!!! Wow!!!!!!!! Yes, I am sure they are vendors but can you imagine? It must weigh a ton. (Thank you Tammy Rae for the place to sleep: Lissa and Tammy and Chrissy and Jessica: thanks for the friendship! Hi Chelle! Good to see you too!)

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This is Tatiana she is from the Ukraine… I have been joking around with a good customer of mine that we are both moving to the Ukraine for a break in our lives…. I just had to take this woman’s photo for that reason. Here is our ticket outta here with this lady!   🙂

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Made these riveted earrings just before I left. They were a pleasure to make and wear at the show! Link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/191983849/crazy-lace-agate-riveted-post-earrings?

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This is just one box of stones I purchased from Gary Wilson. I helped out in his booth for a while as well and it was a fun learning experience to work at someone else’s show. Great guys, himself, and his son in law, Spencer. Thanks guys for the great stones and good times. I don’t have a picture of all of us and Lissa… what the heck! That would have been really nice to have. Gary got any pics?

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Tourmaline in Quartz.. I purchased a few very similar to this one piece…. Yes, I will make a necklace out of it and I can’t wait to do it I already have it planned out in my head.

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I cannot remember what this stone even is… hee hee….this will be a necklace too.

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Rhodocrosite is one of my favorites because it’s pink. I have not found it in a while in nice thick beautiful pieces. These are just perfect for me!

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Malachite Drusy and Azurite

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Bought a lot of Crazy Lace Agate, again a favorite with Laguna, Dryhead Agate and Rhodocrosite

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Dryhead Agate

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Crazy Lace Agate

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Labradorite…drool… I will not be able to keep these as a set. It’s just too expensive. I will split them up and make separate pieces from them.

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Petrified Wood… This one I am going to keep for myself.

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My Grandmother is doing better. She had a heart attack last week Saturday and is recovering her strength in a nursing home. She is 90 years old and will be 91 this summer. She pushed her call light because she wanted the nurses to see the jewelry I was wearing!!!!!!!!!! I was laughing my butt off at that. We look alike in this photo: same lips, same eyes… When she sees a picture of herself she always says, ‘Who is that old woman?’ She just cannot believe her own age and image. It’s funny how we just want to stay the same. Human nature I guess. This is my Grandmother years ago at about 22 years old. She had just graduated from nursing school.

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Home… Sweet… Home….

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