Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Spotlight on Vigilante Laboratories

Vigilante Laboratories is one of the first shops that I made a purchase from when I started shopping etsy last year. Vigilante designs and makes custom clothing and accessories with a unique perspective. Their clothing is original yet comfortable and practical to wear.

Lianna K and A J Machete are designers that describe themselves as restless and relentless. Their energy and vision created Vigilante Labs. They have struck out on their own leaving the Department stores in the dust.

They describe themselves as:
Part comic book and part deconstruction.
Handmade meets vinyl.
Neon cashmere flashy.
Vintage meets future chic.
They say they want to design clothing for superheroes.

I think they are all that and more.

I own and wear their Kingyo top. It is a beautiful teal blue wool jersey top with appliques of goldfish in lime green. Kingyo has a beautiful cowl neckline and wide kimono sleeves. The attention to detail is wonderful. The top stitching in the Kingyo top is all rickrack design and in the same lime green color of the fish applique. The design is flattering and the fit perfect because Vigilante Labs guarantees the fit. They are plus size and petite friendly and made the top to fit my plus sized form!

Check out their shop policies for details of their guarantee.

I purchased their Satin Comic Book Hoodie for my daughter. She is a beautiful size 10 who is 6 feet tall in stocking feet. She is a super hero in her hoodie and it fits her long arms and torso perfectly due to the custom tailoring of Vigilante Labs.

Shop Vigilante Labs and their new menswear store A J Machete and Sons fine tailoring for custom clothing that is as individual as you are.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Holiday Bracelet Giveaway

The SATeam Wrist Candy Holiday Giveaway has begun!

The talented members of the Starving Artists team on etsy have collaborated to make a beautiful Holiday charm bracelet. Our instructions were to create a Holiday charm using sterling silver and the colors of red and green. The charms have all been added to a sterling silver charm bracelet and are ready and waiting to be won. The FamiLee Jewels are proud to have one of their charms on this stunning creation.

Shop early and Shop often.
Between October 26, 2009 and December 6, 2009 any time you purchase an item from The FamiLee Jewels or any of the participating etsy stores your name will be entered into the drawing to win this beautiful holiday-themed bracelet, bursting with with charms hand-made by members of SATeam.

Wire Wrapping

Working with wire is a fascinating organic experience. Malleable and multi-shaped wire offers the jewelry artist an opportunity for unlimited creativity.
Wire wrapped designs appear simple and classic, sometimes deceptively so, but once the basic techniques are mastered your design possibilities are almost endless.

In the coming weeks, each Tuesday I will be posting instructions for wire wrapping techniques beginning Tuesday November 3rd with simple
loops. Until then let me show you some pieces made by The FamiLee jewels that incorporate wire in their design.

This copper and gold wrapped bracelet uses layers of wire in 2 colors and 3 sizes to create a dramatic and fashionable statement.

A Day at Sea was created in a flowing style learned from the techniques of talented wire artist Eni Oken.

Even irregular forms such as this piece of frosted white sea glass can be wrapped securely and beautifully.

Fossils make fascinating jewely with a few basic techniques.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Manhattan Bead Shopping Expedition

Mom and I had a wonderful shopping trip in the city this week. We spent most of the day Wednesday shopping in the garment district until we couldn't carry any more.
We left Albany on the 7 am Megabus which dropped us just past Madison Square Garden at 27Th by 10:15.
Our first stop was Metalliferrous on West 46Th Street. Metalliferous is my kind of shopping. It is a second floor store filled floor to ceiling with metal racks and plastic bins. Each bin contains a stamping, finding, filigree or turning in brass, copper, aluminum or silver. It is like a treasure hunt to find exactly what you want, to find things things that you didn't know existed and to find your imagination running amok! I had a grand time and filled many lovely plastic baggies for Becky and myself. Mom was less than enthused. It had been a long walk, the shop was overly warm and it was difficult for her to decipher the pricing structure on the boxes as she didn't have reading glasses with her. We went to Starbucks for coffee and a sit down then hailed a cab back to 32ND Street to meet Melissa at her office.
Good food for lunch and great company restored us. We were ready to walk again so we headed over to sixth Avenue where a cluster of bead shops waited for us.
I try to stop at Toho Shoji whenever we are in the area. The staff there is friendly and knowledgeable. They stock a wide variety of seed beads, rhinestones, charms, and findings. Here you can find wire mesh ribbon in a variety of sizes and colors as well as Lucite, plastic and rhinestone trims for embellishing cellphones, glasses, shoes and hair clips. I was intrigued by what people were putting together and found several new wheel charms fr use in Steam punk designs as well as some beads with an unusual finish that makes them resemble gum drops.
Turning the corner onto West 37Th Street found us in Suma Beads Gems and Pearls taking to the proprietor Banu who was talkative, charming and took a liking to Mom. Her bead quality is great and her prices are good. She is interested in building up a client base of Upstate New Yorkers. We took several of her cards and promised to pass them on. Banu gave me a spectacular price on a string of labradorite briolettes that has the most beautiful flash in their coloring that I have ever seen.
We wandered along 37Th street stopping into several other shops for a strand of turquoise, some matte onyx and lovely smoky quartz. We met Melissa back in her office by 5 with tired feet, light wallets and heavy shopping bags (rocks and metal weigh a lot)! She joined us for the trip back home to work out of the Loudenville office for a couple of days.
I recommend bead shopping in NYC to anyone who has the stamina for it, and you won't find a better, less expensive and more comfortable ride than the Megabus. The buses are new with Wi-Fi access and the trip only takes 2 hours and 45 minutes. Our round trip tickets cost us 15 dollars each and all day parking in the Amtrack lot is only 5 dollars.
I can't wait til the next time!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I picked up these Greek ceramic washers at an Innovative bead expo last Spring. I loved the colors and had to have them. It was hard to choose there were so many options....even a bright red and orange mottled group called Doritos!

They have been sitting on a shelf since May. I grabbed them Friday night and decided to work them up. They have large holes and threaded with only a little difficulty over doubled silk cord. I must try this again with fine leather. The blues are called Aegean Sea. They are paired with pewter. The browns are called Tobacco and Coffee. They are strung with copper washers from the hardware store.

Fun to work with, fun to wear and appropriate for men and women.