Saturday, December 24

Whew! It was a busy holiday season, with lots of custom charm orders created from people's favorite photos. I saw lots of pictures of pets and kids this year, with vintage family photos running a close third in terms of popularity. The very last holiday order was fulfilled yesterday so today I'm relaxing- sipping coffee, venturing to the dog park, baking and listening to holiday music.

Thanks to everyone who helped make this the busiest Moonwater Designs holiday season yet! Here's to a wonderful 2006.

Cheers,
Nicole

Thursday, November 10

Sunday, November 6

Art desk




new border-free glass necklaces

I worked on some new necklace charms this weekend, created from vintage paper fragments and pieces of clear glass.




Sunday, October 30

The latest Moonwater Designs art mess! Included are some vintage greeting card charms, vintage ticket charms and there's a stack of old playing cards just waiting in line to become charms.

Monday, October 17

new necklace designs


Sunday, October 16

An Evening of Sweet Indulgence

Those of you living in the lovely Fort Collins area can bid on any of 3 Moonwater Designs necklaces donated to the November 4 NCAP silent art auction. The Evening of Sweet Indulgence, a fund raiser for the Northern Colorado Aids Project, will feature great local artwork and business services offered through a silent auction, in addition to music, champagne and desserts!

Visit the Northern Colorado Aids Project website for more details and to find out how to purchase tickets for this event.
"You have to find something that you love enough to be able to take risks, jump over the hurdles and break through the brick walls that are always going to be placed in front of you. If you don’t have that kind of feeling for what it is you’re doing, you’ll stop at the first giant hurdle."

George Lucas, Director

Sunday, September 11

Every once in awhile I work on special request projects. The following are some picture frames I am creating for a dear friend in Arizona.









Saturday, September 10

It's been too long since I've updated! I'm tired (but happy) from spending today outside at Denver's Ballpark Market, so instead of words will update with a few photos from today's event.

The lovely cityscape behind the back of the Moonwater Designs booth:



Necklace display made using vintage books.


The handsome man hiding behind the jewelry trunk is my boyfriend. He keeps me company throughout the day, and is fabulous at creatively fitting way more into a Ford Escort than any normal person would think possible. He also gives me leads on great flea market finds. What a guy.

Wednesday, July 20

Charms galore!

Saturday, July 16

Some more trunk show sneak peeks for you- vintage stamps, iridescent stained glass, trees and art behind clear textured stained glass, and lovely French words.


Sunday, July 10

Here are some of my latest charm designs. I've been very busy getting ready for the upcoming trunk shows! I went to my favorite stained glass shop yesterday, and found this fabulous pale green stained glass and a great iridescent stained glass, in addition to a bunch of other fabulous glass treasures.


Monday, July 4

It's been such a busy month! I've been working on a number of custom orders and getting ready for two upcoming trunk shows. If you're in the Denver, CO or Sioux Falls, SD areas, you will not want to miss these exclusive trunk show events! I'm planning on bringing the best of my charm creations, and I promise that you will not be disappointed.

I'm going to try to take some photos of my progress in preparing for trunk shows, because I'm really excited about some of the new images from my collection that will be made into necklace charms. I've got a bag of vintage stamps- they're such a lovely rainbow of bright colors, and I especially like the ones that have been postmarked. I've always been obsessed with text and numbers and snail mail is the greatest- so the black ink with the postmarked text and numbers adding a layer on top of the text and numbers on the stamp itself is just word and number perfection in my eyes.

I recently found a few GREAT vintage French textbooks and dictionaries that I've also been incorporating into necklace charms. I also have some copies of charming vintage labels and old black and white photos that I've collected over the past few years. I'll try to get some pictures up soon! And I hope to have some new designs for sale on my website soon.


It's been a whole (busy!) month since my last update. So true that time flies when you're having fun.

Saturday, June 11

Thanks to everyone who stopped by my booth at this Saturday's Denver Ballpark Market. It was a perfect sunny day... check out the color of the sky in the second photo- beautiful!



The following is a view from behind our display tables.

Thursday, June 2

I just updated the necklaces on my site. I was busy getting ready for my first trunk show last month, and have been making things like crazy for the upcoming Denver Ballpark Market this past week, so finally had time this evening to add some of my latest designs to my website!

I created a charm using sheet copper tonight, and hope to create more within the next week. So much fun using my letter stamps to add my favorite words to the charms! If anyone has any favorite words or short sayings, leave a comment- I'd love to hear from you.

My ever-sweet boyfriend took me to the large chain home improvement store last night- admittedly probably only to get me to stop answering every other question with "sheet copper." Sometimes when an idea hits or something inspires me, I pretty much am unable to sleep well until I take a moment to listen to whatever that voice is trying to tell me. Not always an easy task to pay attention when balancing a full-time job, spending 10-20 hours per week preparing for shows, and living on a starving artist budget... but I'm learning more and more these days that I must thrive on the challenge. I've been thinking a lot about this lately, and I'm not sure when I ever turned into this person!! Maybe it's in my blood- seems that art and various forms of entrepreneurialism are both strong themes that run throughout my family.



Sunday, May 15

trunk show sneak peeks

Just some of the things I've been working on lately...










Tuesday, May 10

MOONWATER DESIGNS
Springtime Open House & Trunk Show
Friday, may 20, 2005 from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m.
at 522 S. College Avenue # 1 Fort Collins, CO 80524

Please join us for the Moonwater Designs Springtime Open House & Trunk Show!

View the latest Moonwater Designs creations such as new stained glass necklace and earring designs, colorful sun catchers and copper-stained glass items while enjoying music, snacks and beverages in a casual atmosphere.

** Sign up for a drawing to win one of two Moonwater Designs gift certificates! **

** Check out the clearance items- low-priced necklace charms & stained glass treasures! **

This casual open house event is taking place between 4:00 and 7:00 p.m., so please stop by anytime throughout the evening. Your friends, family members, or co-workers are welcome, too!


If you are unable to attend the very first Moonwater Designs Springtime Open House Trunk Show, and would still like to view the latest designs, please contact Nicole to arrange for an individual showing. Moonwater Designs is also available if you are interested in hosting your own trunk show- either in my studio or at your place. A minimum of 5 guests is required- and the hostess receives great perks, including discounts and a free gift!

Sunday, May 8

Sometimes Mother Nature comes up with the best color combinations. Yesterday, on the way home from a day trip to Estes Park with my boyfriend, I snapped these two photos out of the car window.



Saturday, May 7

This past year, I've created a few copper, silver and glass necklace hangers to use as display pieces at shops and art fairs. Recently I had a few people inquire about them, so I made some this week. The following are on their way to Sweet Rosie's, Too in Loveland, Colorado.

And check out the tags- I am so happy that I have a printer now! I went for a year+ without one.








Tuesday, May 3

News: Colorado Trunk Show Announced

I am planning on having an open house/trunk show in Colorado toward the end of May. If you live anywhere near Fort Collins, CO, and are interested in attending, please either comment here or email, and I will be sure to send you an invite!

I am tentatively planning on the open house from 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday, March 20, but will update here with the confirmed date very soon.

Sunday, May 1

I spent the majority of today getting a bunch of new charms added to the Shop. My boyfriend stopped by mid-day and suprised me with a much-needed cafe mocha. That caffeine boost is just what I needed! What a sweet guy. I actually have more charms to either add to the shop or put on eBay this week, but alas, it is nearly midnight and I have to be up early for work tomorrow. I should have some more things up within the next day or two.

Saturday, April 30

My computer crashed last weekend, so I am thrilled that my new computer has arrived and I finally have regular internet access once again. Unfortunately, I lost the photos that I had taken of a bunch of new necklace charms last weekend, so I hope to spend some time this weekend re-shooting the photos. I will have some new necklaces posted on my website either this weekend or early next week.

I'm also thrilled to finally have a printer. My old printer died quite some time ago, and I missed it so!

Monday, April 11

New necklace charms for sale on eBay!

That exclamation point feels a bit out of place tonight. Even though I am always excited when I put a new batch of necklaces out there, I've been feeling very quiet and contemplative these days. I think this range of moods is just all part of the creative process and I guess just a part of being human in general.

Sometimes I feel like sitting back, being introspective, and just spending time thinking and observing and being. Other times, I'm full of energy and new ideas are swirling about and I just can't seem to write them down fast enough. I am most definitely going through an introspective phase right now.

Sunday, April 3

The little purple flowers that are growing outside my apartment door.



Another photo of the purple flowers.



My neighbor kitty likes to hang out in the windowsill.



Here's my door- if you look closely, you can see the kitty.

Thursday, March 31

more stained glass pendants!

I just received a nice comment from fellow stained glass jewelry-maker Chu Ling. She currently has some amazing charms on eBay. They are so detailed and intricate, and I admire her style very much! You have to check them out.

We both share an obsession for buckets of stained glass scraps, and you just don't find someone like that every day, right? She mentioned seeing my things on eBay, which is funny because I have long admired her pieces she has on eBay- so it's great to finally cross paths.

Thanks again, Chu Ling, for stopping by my website!
I've been making lots of silver charms with decorative silver solder these days. The raindrop-shaped charms are my new favorites- they're tall and shiny and so fun to wear with scoop-neck shirts.

Here is a peek at some of the charms I currently have for sale on eBay. If you're interested in viewing the auctions, please click any of the photos below.


Saturday, March 26

I started making jewelry in 2001. On a quest to somehow turn these magical and colorful round glass pieces into necklaces, I asked everyone I knew to please spill anything they knew about jewelry-making.

At some point within my impassioned quest, which included asking my parents, friends, siblings and co-workers a million questions, I bought a soldering iron. Then my dad mentioned that his boss worked with stained glass, and he arranged for us to visit his stained glass studio one day. After a brief tutorial, I found myself leaving with the answer I'd been searching for and a big bucket of colorful stained glass scraps. At the time, I was working a full-time job at a newspaper and working a part-time job at an after school daycare. Some days I'd work from 8:00 am-5:00 pm at the newspaper, head straight to my other job, where I'd work from 5:00 pm-10:30 pm, then would rush home to practice what I'd learned- often staying up until 1:00 am or later practicing.

I had experimented with lots of art forms, having taken quite a few art classes in college, but never found my niche. I kind of enjoyed photography, had fun playing around with paints, and experimented with drawing. When I started working with stained glass, it was felt kind of like you feel when you're first falling head-over-heels in love. If I wasn't actually making something out of glass, I was thinking about my next creation.

Have you ever started something that seems promising, hit a snag, then find yourself taking the easy road rather than persisting? I was thinking today about all the people who have helped me persist throughout my mini journey. Although I have far to go, it doesn't mean I don't appreciate every little step. If not for my dad introducing me to his boss, I may have grown too frustrated trying to learn on my own. If not for the gift of tools that first Christmas, I may never have been had the money to buy the tools that make cutting glass more easy and therefore more enjoyable to work with. After my bucket o' glass scraps grew smaller, my dad bought me scraps from a stained glass shop. He has also used his magical woodworking skills to make me display pieces, and my favorite belonging in the entire world- my tall red art cabinet. If my place was burning down, and I could bring one thing with me, the red cabinet would be it.

I did my first art fair in the summer of 2002. I can't imagine what I would have done if not for my mom, who loaned me $100 for my "cash register" during a time when I was lucky to have $10 in my checking account. She also hung out with me the majority of the day (not only that day, but during subsequent art fairs in the past few years), in spite of me usually insisting that I would be okay spending a few hours by myself. Secretly, I was so happy for the company during my first art fair experience, and during any art fair for that matter. You just can't imagine what it's going to be like being on the other side of the table until you've gone through it, and although my first event was rather uneventful due to small crowds, it was an awesome learning experience and I'm glad for having gone through it.

My sweet sisters have also spent hours out in the sun and wind, helping me with the busier art fairs in the following years. Outdoor events can be challenging, and I appreciate that they take time out of their busy schedules to help, and still love me in spite of the fact that I get really nervous as I'm generally running on 3 hours sleep and am all out of sorts on those days. They were my walking billboards, my encouragement, and my creative advisors.

And speaking of those who have been here throughout my mini journey, my boyfriend has experienced everything from the complete elation after my first big sale, where I was literally doing the happy dance in the living room, to the moments where I'm frustrated, super exhausted, or in the messy midst of art fair season where my things are covering literally every table and surface in our apartment. You know you've got a keeper with a capital K when your twenty-something boyfriend visits you at an art fair, and tells you and your sister to take a break and wander the art fair while he mans the booth full of stained glass jewelry. When my sister and I came back to the booth, he was standing right in the middle of the booth happily chatting with several customers.

Many other friends and family members have been so supportive! I still have a very long way to travel on my journey, of course, but still appreciate the great people I am surrounded with.
Check out the lovely Earthenwood Studio, which features handmade porcelain beads and charms. I stumbled upon this site by accident today- such great stuff! I especially love the ice cream cone, and the vegetable charms are great.

Off to grab a cup of afternoon coffee. I woke up especially early for a Saturday morning, and reached a point today where I decided that I needed either a good cup of coffee or a good power nap.

I choose coffee. And Easter candy. And Jack Johnson.

Monday, March 21

sunshine through the trees

This was the view outside my apartment door right before tonight's sunset. I was taking advantage of the last minutes of today's natural sunlight, snapping some photos of some necklaces outside, and saw the sunlight streaming through the trees and fence in front of my apartment building.

I am obsessed these days with the tree silhouette- I love tree branches and tree branches that are just starting to bloom- so sweet!

Sunday, March 20

I finished some wine bottle glass necklace pendants! I didn't get done with them until after the sun had gone down, so didn't get an opportunity to photograph them today. Will try to get some photos taken sometime this week, though, and hope to put some in the shop sometime within the upcoming week.

I went out for breakfast with my sweet boyfriend this morning. I had a coffee and a breakfast burrito, and I think this is my new favorite breakfast. I wanted to take photos of our view from our table, and was carefully planning on waiting until after our server took our order to sneak a photo of the lovely ornate cream-colored ceiling tiles and exposed brick walls, but they ended up seating a party at the table across from us.

I did manage to snap this photo. There's a train that runs through the middle of downtown Fort Collins. My boyfriend and I were driving in the lane right next to the train, so I snapped this picture from his car.
I live on a street about a block away from the train tracks, so have grown used to hearing the train whistles blowing as the train comes through town many times per day.




Saturday, March 19

Coming Soon: Wine Bottle Pendants

I'm working on some wine bottle glass charms today, hoping to have some finished and up on my website sometime this week.



Saturday, March 12

love for my old, worn Levi's

About 8 years ago, I bought a pair of old worn Levi's at a thrift store. I really did like them at the time, even though they were dark and sans holes and didn't quite have that truly worn look and feel you sometimes find in an old pair of Levi's. Anyway, after 8 years of washing and wearing, they are finally getting that faded look. A few months ago I actually spilled a few drops of white paint on the left knee, so they have transitioned from pants I can get away with wearing to work to my art pants. I love grabbing my old Levi's every Saturday morning, and the little bit of paint makes them suddenly feel like they were just waiting all these years to become my art-making jeans. I love thee, old worn paint-splotched Levi's.

I went shopping today, and got some fruit and veggies and coffee and lipgloss, and for some reason all this makes me happy.

I am off to make some art now. Happy Saturday to you all!

Thursday, March 10

great quote

I'm heading to the store to pick up some art supplies shortly, but just wanted to post this great quote my sister sent me:

"If your success is not on your own terms, if it looks good to the world but does not feel good in your heart, it is not success at all." Ann Quindlen

Love it! Thanks for passing along the inspiring words, sis.

Tuesday, March 8

To Infinity and Solder Sculpting and Beyond

Oh, Kay Weiner. How I love thee.

Kay is the author of a fabulous book called
Solder Sculpting and Beyond. As I do not have room in my starving artist budget for another stained glass book, but do have lots of stained glass supplies on hand, I will make a custom photo necklace charm in exchange for this book.

Kind of a strange thing to put out in the universe, indeed, but I am in love with this book. If anyone is interested in a trade, please leave a comment and we'll chat via email.

Monday, March 7

skipping stone box

I made this skipping stone box yesterday. It reminds me of when I was a little girl. In the summertime, my family would take weekend trips to the river quite often. Sometimes we would go camping, and sometimes we'd just go for the day. Some of my favorite childhood memories include swimming, sitting around a campfire making s'mores, fishing with my dad and brothers, and skipping river stones.

The box has a clear bottom, front, and sides. I am currently obsessed with this clear chartreuse-colored stained glass with a slight texture that makes up the back wall of the box!


I had lots of fun making this, and am trying to determine if these items translate well in photographs and if I should try making more to sell at art fairs and on my webpage. Any feedback is appreciated.

Ooh, and speaking of art fairs- I just got my application for the Sioux Falls Sidewalk Arts Festival today. Receiving that envelope in the mail every year makes my day. It's become such a lovely tradition for me- road-tripping back to my home town every Fall to participate in the Sidewalk Arts Fest.