Archive | Fashion RSS feed for this section

Handmade amethyst earrings with silver wire

8 Dec

Karboojeh Handmade Amathyst Earrings with Silver karboojeh-handmade-amathyst-earrings-with-silver-full

Hello all… it’s been a long time since I posted anything on this blog. It’s been a busy month, really! So I am here today to share a few handmade jewelry items I made a while back with silver wire and gemstones.

This amethyst earring pair is one of my favorites.

karboojeh-handmade-amathyst-earrings-with-silver-full

I made this earring as part of a silver wire collection, here’s a group photo:

karboojeh handmade silver gemstone antique silver jewelryI love amethyst, its purple/lavender color is surprisingly a neutral that goes with so many other color combinations.

There is something quite majestic about amethyst; you feel it’s very much suited to sit on Royal Crowns, due to the way it reflects wisdom, nobility, royalty, and leadership. The fact that amethyst shades are usually darkish and subtle, I feel people who love this gemstone are usually the wise, deep type. They’re not flashy, since amethyst is a mediator between earth and sky, with colors that can very much be found at dawn, or on the surface of the ocean – in a degree or two of amethyst.

I leave you with amethyst today; more gemstones to come in the future hopefully,

take care…

Handmade Packaging: DIY Laundry Instruction Tags for Hand-painted Textile Products

20 Oct

I have a little project to share with you, it basically brings together two of the things I love: Illustration and packaging. If you are making hand-painted fabric totes, scarves, tablecloths, etc, using fabric paints, then I hope you will like this idea.

A while back  I started painting on fabric, using permanent fabric paints and colors. If you have experience with fabric paint, then you must know that to fix the colors you mostly need to iron your finished product on”cotton setting” to make the artwork permanent. But there are products that only need to be air-dried for at least 72 hours before going to the washing machine on a gentle-cycle, and on a certain, usually low, temperature.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

As I mixed brands and worked with more than one “instructions booklet,” I felt the need to merge the instructions from the different fabric-paint brands in a way to make all the products I worked with laundry-friendly. I decided to choose the instructions that recommended the lowest heat-setting, the lowest washing-machine temperature, and I decided maybe it was best if I recommended all pieces be ironed on reverse, since that was the safest method for some fabric-paint labels, and no tumble dry.

This is the basic illustration I came up with for most of my products. There are items though, that required to be washed by hand. This meant the washing-machine illustration had to go, and another symbol was sketched instead. I did play with this photo (above) a bit and added the colors with Photoshop, but one can achieve a clean colorful illustration by applying acrylic paint with a thin brush.

This is the colorless illustration. I basically used cards that are about the size of a regular business card. The paper has a lot of grain and the color is off-white and very nice to work with.

Here’s a label using old markers. I embellished the tag’s borders a bit, but I decided later on that this wasn’t necessary. You can punch a hole at the side of the tag, insert a nice thread or twine, and use a pin or tape to attach it to the product itself, or to the packaging.

An envelope can also be used if you wanna further spruce up your packaging.

———————

Related Articles

Handmade Wire Rings: My first attempt at silver & gemstone jewelry

30 Apr

I have finally arrived to my Silver Stage. When I started making jewelry a little bit more than a year ago, I was mostly training to arrive to the real thing. Here are my first attempts.

All my life I have never been a patient person. My first craft attempts were all so ugly because I did them in haste. I have always dreamt of designing/making silver & antique jewelry rings, necklaces & bracelets, but I knew I wasn’t ready. I was basically waiting to reach a stage where I was patient enough to sit & work.

Early last year I bought these amethyst beads, but I knew I wasn’t ready to put them into use. I was still uncertain about the steps I was taking and my style wasn’t mature enough yet. So, I basically opted to learn so many handmade techniques -  including decoupaging, glittering, stationary-making, and packaging – to basically nurture a good artisan in me.

I nagged my mom to give me a few beads from her collection of all the scattered antique silver beads & gemstones she has collected over the years. I nagged and nagged to no avail (I guess she was worried I would create childish stuff with them – like the rest of my past creations). But then a few months ago when I wasn’t nagging at all, she gave me everything!

But I still didn’t feel I was ready. I felt heavy and confused sitting in front of those beads; hoping to come up with something spectacular but unable to quite imagine it. I lacked the self-confidence, and I’m thankful for that: it was a good hunch, because I knew that I lacked the skill & the vision for undertaking authentic jewelry-making.

Yesterday without thinking, and after finishing a few craft projects that had nothing to do with immediate jewelry-making, I grabbed the silver wire mom gave me, my treasured amethyst beads, a few of her antiqued silver beads, turquoise & coral, and I started working on these rings. I followed a strong urge to start making rings.

One of them gave me a hard time since I was totally unclear about the design. I kept twisting and twisting until I snapped the wire. But then I relaxed, stepped back a bit,  thought about what I wanted to do and created a nice ring. It’s the one in the middle (up).

Sweet Living Magazine: E-mag with a cup of tea

27 Apr

I love online e-mags. They provide lots of inspiration that you can’t find easily on the net. Sweet Living Magazine happens to be a very inspiring virtual publication that promises to give you lots of cool ideas. It’s new & it’s free!

Issue 3 of Sweet Living is out. And it’s full of inspiration & ideas.  Click here to read the issuu version. I particularly loved the homemade ice-cream recipes  provided by the readers at the beginning of the mag. And I love the heart sachet (In the pic above – L).

And to view issue 2 of Sweet Living, click here.

On  their blog, SL offer nice crafty ideas. Here’s one I really loved: A doll garland. Sweet, right?

I just can’t get over this Little chick tutorial! For full tutorial,  go to Petite Purls. SO CUTE!

I leave you with these lovely color palettes & inspirations, wishing you all a very lovely Friday.

With Color,

Karboojeh

 

 

Handmade bohemian bracelets: Hippie Karboojeh

20 Apr

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Hippies, the nature-loving ones (not the self destructive ones), think of themselves as trees, or flower plants. They wear bracelets and accessories that connect them to wood, color and earth. These bracelets are dedicated to all the hippies of the world.

Handmade by Karboojeh, these bracelets are made to celebrate the bohemian spirit. Bohemian is far more expressive than classical trends, although the latter has its beauty spots.

I fluctuate between trends and tastes. I’m sometimes quite boho, but it doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate other styles, like French Romantic, or Shabby Chic. But my starting point, my original love is always boho.

And here’s more color…

With beautiful Italian beads…

Two blue hippie bracelets…

And more navy blue beads…

That’s the hippie post for today,

Have a great day,

Karboojeh

Craft Show Wisdom: Life can be Full of Surprises!

8 Mar

Karboojeh Handmade Jewelry - Display stand at craft show/fair

I met wonderful people yesterday at the Souk Shighl Ead – Handmade Craft Show. And I learned a good lesson: Never generalize when it comes to purchasing power trends and attitudes. People can always surprise you!

This all goes back to the fact that life is a huge big mystery.

I don’t want to over-philosophize this. But, yesterday, I sold three rings that I didn’t think fit into the general fashion taste over here. I actually sold two very bohemian rings that were not at all bling-y, not sparkly, and totally not the kind of stuff I see people wearing.

Karboojeh Wood & Blue Boho Rings

So… What did I learn exactly? I learned to stop making judgements, expectations, and theories based on “perception.” What we perceive is not the Truth; it’s our way of making sense of the world around us – based on our hidden insecurities, prejudices, short-sightedness, and self-centered-ness. Perceptions make us who we are, that’s why we need to be very careful before taking them for granted. Perceptions help shape our destiny.

I learned being open to the experience was more rewarding than being in “control” mode. I actually went to the craft fair yesterday with a freer mind-set, less expectations than usual, less worries about what will happen.

I also sold another ring, which I didn’t even bother take a picture of before going to the bazaar, because I was so positive it will come back with me. Well, it didn’t! I was a bit surprised when a group of women actually started debating which ring looked better on their friend’s finger. The ring stash they were selecting from was on my not-their-kinda-taste list, until I experienced this!

Anyhow, I had a wonderful time. My table this time was a bit minimalist. I put on display a few handmade jewelry items, a few rings, a couple handmade jewelry trees, & a few hand-painted tableware ceramics – since I wasn’t in the mood at all for an elaborate display stand.

DIY Monologue: Jewelry with a story

12 Feb

Karboojeh handmade leather boho hoop bracelet

I believe that when you make handmade jewelry (or anything handmade, including food), you put a little bit of you in each piece (recipe, dish, artwork, creation, etc). Making beaded or leather jewelry is more than just fitting colors and shapes together; it is a little journal where we write our life’s untold story – using jewelry components instead of words and ink!

I very recently noticed that when I am making a piece of jewelry or accessory, I am mostly reminiscing over a particular time in my life.

The boho leather bracelet above (sold) is just an example of this. Although the design is quite basic, it did take me quite a while to garner enough courage to make this one: It meant I had to re-live part of my adolescence, since such a bracelet would have been a hit in my teenage years.

After gazing at the ingredients (metallic hoop, leather cord, caps, clasp, jump-rings, beads, eye-pin/findings) I had arranged neatly in a box for almost two months, I decided I was ready to make jewelry that appealed to me back when I was a kido-turning-into–woman.

Adolescence is emotionally painful. Up until mid-twenties, one is virtually walking into all kinds of walls, hurting over so much as we grow up, especially if we have the artist streak, making us more vulnerable to life than most of our peers.

I sold this bracelet to a 40-something lady at a local craft fair who was looking for something to buy for her daughter. She impersonated her kid every time she looked at a jewelry item, and vocalized out-loud what she imagined her kid would criticize about it.

“Oh, no, this one has shells on it… my kid would say: ‘Mom, why did you bring me shells, don’t you know I hate them? I look like a board game of Barjees!*”

The mother sighed and continued…

“She’ll stop talking with me for a week!”

Obviously, that’s a difficult child. Like many of us.

The mother’s features relaxed when she saw this boho bracelet:

“Ah, she’ll love this one!”

Her kid is a 13-year-old girl. When I made this bracelet, I was thinking of my jewelry-taste (and life) back when I was 13.

Moral of the story: Any work of art, or artisanal work, that is made with a story behind it, will find a place to continue telling that story!

Cheers,

Karboojeh

DIY Tip: I used E600 to glue the caps on the leather-cord ends.
* Barjees is a board-game known in the Levant, specifically in Syria & Turkey. Instead of dice, cowrie shells are traditionally used so contenders would move their metallic pegs a certain number of blocks towards their target, the final house of win. The numbers are pronounced in old Turkish, and that’s how every one plays them.

Featured: Interview with Karboojeh at UK’s Hmade

1 Feb

Follow your heart, that’s what I keep telling myself. And I did, when a few months ago I stumbled upon this fantastic blog called Hmade and instantly fell in love. I was searching the net for display ideas from real-life craft shows. And I found a wealth of ideas and inspiration at this lovely blog. And yesterday, I was featured in an interview over there! How beautiful is that?!

I’m kind of really smitten by the gesture Kellie, co-creator of Hmade, made almost two weeks ago, suggesting we go for an interview. You have no idea what it means when one of your most favorite blogs – that also happens to be British (I love UK) – shows interest in your work. Wow…! Thanks, Kellie!

To read interview click  here.

Hmade: People who bake, make & create

The pictures in the Hmade interview are published for the first time. Here is a re-run of a few of them.

This pair of Karboojeh Handmade Boho Earrings is no longer with me, it belongs to an Italian young lady now, who is somewhere in the world. The smallest beads at the bottom are from Italy, the top ones are from Syria and Jordan.

And here’s a collage I made especially for Hmade comprising different pictures I took from around Damascus. Kellie wanted a picture that told her readers a little something about the city, and so I thought one pic won’t do justice to this fantastic old place. So… I thought I would give viewers a feel of what I see every day on the streets, something that is not too tourist-y, not too promotional, but just plain real. I hope this collage captures what I was looking for.

What a fantastic morning! I wish you all the same!

Love,

Karboojeh Handmade Jewelry

2011 Roundup: Starting a handmade life

29 Dec

As the year 2011 comes to a close, I can’t help but think about lessons learnt, especially after switching my life’s career into the beautiful terrain of crafts.

I learned so much from spending hours researching, learning, and applying techniques to make everything from jewelry to a number of other crafts. I can spend hours writing a media plan, or putting together a PR campaign to launch an international brand in the region, but spending the same amount of hours holding a pair of pliers and making jewelry isn’t quite the same.

My crafts and handmade jewelry journey, which transformed my life inside-out, taught me:

Patience

When you make a mistake with the PR plan, you can simply adjust, re-think, delete, and copy-and-paste. But it’s a completely different story when you are twisting wire the wrong way, beads getting scattered all over the place, or pliers refusing to cooperate with you. Going handmade teaches you patience…. a lot of it.

Handmade Integrity

When I started making jewelry, I wanted to please other people’s taste (which is quite tacky – I’m sorry to say! – especially around here!). But now I make pieces I would personally wear, regardless of what the predominating taste is… and I do not use plastic in my jewelry, although around here plastic reigns supreme!

Skeptical Trust

Trust is a good thing, but one should give it away with people who are worthy of it. Yes, I thought craft world was a beautiful, honest, shimmering world of honesty and “greatness.” Until I met a woman who made me realize otherwise. I learned that opportunists are everywhere. And this world of crafts is no exception. But this doesn’t mean one shouldn’t go on… all kinds of experiences are there to teach us something and to make us stronger.

Happy 2012!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 129 other followers

%d bloggers like this: