Friday, January 2, 2009

Garnet January Birthstone Tree of Life necklace

Well, here goes my first attempt to blog about the actual creation of a piece of jewelry... I guess this possibly may not be so much of a chore as I originally envisioned, as I found myself thinking about what I would write and looking forward to doing so while in the process!

The piece of jewelry I made was a Garnet Tree of Life pendant. I was originally thinking I would make an Amethyst one because Amethyst is popular and sells well, but then i considered the fact that it is January and maybe I should make a Tree of Life for the birthstone each month, and the birthstone for January is Garnet. At the Denver Gem and Mineral show a couple months back, I bought a really nice strand of Garnet nugget beads, so I decided to use that. My Tree of Life pendants are well-liked ... I sold a few of them over the holidays, online, and people commented on them quite a bit at a Holiday craft fair that I did recently, although only one sold there. The Tree of Life is a universal symbol across cultures, a central figure in sacred geometry holding truths about the inate organization of the universe, the interconnectedness of beings, and so on. Beyond its status as January''s birthstone, it is associated with Romance, and Valentines Day is coming up. Metaphysically, it is associated the Root Chakra, which means it is a good grounding stone, and it is said to be beneficial for self confidence, career success, Romantic love / Sensuality, and focusing to get things done. This seems to be pertinent to some things I am going through personally, goalwise.

This particular pendant came out nicely. Although I made a 3D Amethyst gem tree, the other Tree of Life pendants that I have made have been"realistic" colors. But I think this one looks pretty convincing. I guess come to think of it, though, there are definately trees with leaves this color. At least in the fall. ALthough i think maybe i have seen a tree with red leaves, not in the autumn, before ? I think i will make another Garnet Tree of Life pendant too, except a circle instead of a rectangle.

One thing I found myself thinking about while I worked on this is the fact that my 4 month old baby never really sees me working on making jewelry. Instead, I wait until he is napping to create. I think it would be good for him even at this age to watch the creative process. He is such an observant little fellow. I am started to be disturbed by the fact that, since he was born at the beginning of winter so we can't do much outside, his father and i are spending a lot of time on the computer. We are being careful that the baby doesn't get to watch tv , so at least that is not a problem. However, sometimes I am playing with him on the bed, and he almost seems to want to look at the laptop instead of me, like he has seen that his father and i spend more time looking at the computers than each other, and therefore this is his model for behavior. I think too much sometimes. He probably is just looking at the light , since he seems to want to stare at any light source. But i have this underlying feeling of guilt. I do need to spend time trying to sell things on the computer, because i am trying to make at least part of my living making jewelry (my other job is housecleaning, and then I have to spend time away from the baby.... plus, i seem to catch whatever sicknesses are going around, and as a result the baby has had a cold for 2 months, and i am terrified he'll get sick again... so i'm trying to cut down on that type of work). I spend most of the day paying attention to him, but when he is contentedly playing on his own, or when his dad (stay at home dad ) takes him for a while, i am in a rush to check my various accounts and emails to see if i have any sales or inquiries. I do pay undivided attention to the baby when i'm with him, but if i have a free hand, i do check periodically. I truly hope he isn't getting the wrong idea!

Lately I have been trying to balance him seeing me work on the computer with doing other things together. I've been wearing him in the Baby Bjorn carrier and letting him watch me run around the house straightening things out, watering the plants, feeding the Geckos and the Tarantula, putting away the laundary, making food etc. Today, he watched me make Veggie Burgers, reheated homemade chicken soup, and an Apple pie for dinner. But I think now, I will make a concerted effort to let him watch me work making jewelry. He has seen the finished products, which I refer to , to him, as "Sparklies". I even started making the Tree of Life pendants while in labor with him. (See how i brought that full circle? Nice!)

Sometimes I do overthink what the baby can comprehend. I do have a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology so I realize that a lot of his patterns for relationships and whatnot are already being formed, and this is a very important time in his brain development. I appreciate the leeway that making and selling some of my jewelry over the holiday season bought me in my budget, allowing me to spend more time with him. I hope to keep this momentum going.

Interestingly i have found that I can try and try to make a sale through my various means, but it is when i am away from the computer - out working, making a piece of jewelry, or asleep, that something actually sells. I was thinking about this when I finished the tree pendant, got a drink of water, and went back to the computer to take photos. I figured since i was thinking about it, there was no way it was going to happen. But, sure enough, someone is interested in buying a piece I made on New Years Eve ... one I called "Transformations". It is a Crystal Gem and Mineral wire wrapped pendant with all Sterling Silver , containing Aquamarine, Moldavite, Kyanite, Black Tourmaline, and Green Indicolite Tourmaline. She says she wants to make payments (never heard that one before) but that I don't have to send the piece until she is done paying. Guess I don't have a problem with that, as long as it isn't going to take a year or anything. She said she does wire wrap too but that she really likes this piece and wants it for her collection. That's a pretty nice compliment, i think! I wrote back to her to see how she would want to work that, but she hasn't replied yet. We shall see, i suppose..

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