A Mother’s Day Bangle

When I was in grad school I would drive off to Sedona to get away from the books and learned about vortexes and crystal healing.

EveryDayIsMothersDay

I don’t think I actually experienced a Vortex, but I did obtain a copy of Melody’s Love is in the Earth and started looking into crystal healing. I’ve enjoyed enhancing my life with beautiful and helpful energy infusing stones, and love carrying on the spirit of healing into my creations.

BirthstoneBanglesbyMaikesMarvels

For Mother’s Day, I made my mom a birthstone bangle representing our family, along with her favorite stone, the Malachite. I’d picked up the strand of Malachites at last year’s Bead & Button show, which is coming up in June.

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I went to my favorite place, Dave’s Down to Earth Rock shop (which just moved across the street but is still on Main Street) to pick out the birthstone beads representing my family. I consulted Judy Hall’s Crystal Bible for alternate beads when the traditional selection wasn’t available.

RockShopVisit

The wire was coiled with my high-tech mandrel. 😉

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Then I designed the order of the beads.

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Adding the Malachites was fun. They’re such a positive and empowering stone, and have lovely patterns.

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It was fun to think about everyone and our memories as I strung the birthstones.

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I lucked out with my family.

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There’s a butterfly named after the Malachite, which I incorporated into a desktop mini. I’ve created a few Malachite Butterfly collages over the years.

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After completing the bangle I decided to add some earrings as well.

MalachiteearringsSetup

Circling wire around the beads is a challenge, but it worked.

MalachiteEarringsCreation

Then I reviewed all the energies of the stones I had incorporated and picked out the words that rung most true about the personalities I know and the energies my mom should carry with her on her adventures.

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Right now our family is pretty set, so I used a single wire to connect all the beads. If there is an addition I’ll probably add the stone with a new piece of wire, but I could also re-string everything. That’s a challenge for the future.

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I’ve got a few beaded bangles in my Etsy shop that are based on color schemes and chakras, but I always love taking custom orders to make something with meaning just for you.

BanglesOnEtsy

You can peruse these in person on May 30 during my pop-up at Creative Coworking’s Art & Wine night from 5:30 to 7:30 pm.

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I cannot wait to see my mom wear this set!

A River Rock Commission

After a recent pop-up event a friend asked me if I could wrap her river rock into a pendant.

RiverRock

When she brought it to me, I instantly thought of a heart shape. She agreed, and the wrapping began, while putting on appropriate music for this dancer.

Music

I used a prior heart pendant as a template, except I had to work this one in reverse. Usually I start with the pendant loop that attaches to the necklace cord, but in order to secure the rock I had to start by wrapping it first.

Inspiration

I gently wrapped the steel wire around the rock, and needed to make a few attempts to get it to be snug with each twist, as the wire would re-align itself.

wrappingRock

When I was happy with securing the rock, I created the heart shape.

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Then I criss-crossed the remainder of the shape, et voila!

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It did ruin the fresh manicure, but such is the life of a wire bender.

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The customer is happy, and I am inspired to pick up some arrowheads to repeat the process.

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I also created a custom collar recently. Making Waves is intended for a tall woman, so I created a smaller version for my customer.

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We measured using a spiral collar and then I got to work replicating the look and feel.

Sizing

I prepped the wire by sandpapering off the grime, hammering it straight and filing off the edges.

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Then I bent it into shape.

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This collar is being worn around town on a regular basis, and I love that it brings such joy to its new owner.

Modeling

As tough as steel wire is, the end result is a light and flowy piece you can pair with any look.

MakingWavesCollar

I take much pleasure shaping the forms and seeing where the wire leads me, as it sometimes won’t  come out as my intended vision. In the same way Amy Lee Segami collaborates with water, the wire tells me which direction it wants to bend into, creating surprising results that appeal to variety of people.

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Browse my Etsy shop to see what I have in stock, and let me know if you want to customize a piece that appeals to you. Earrings, seashells, ribbons, beads, charms, crystals are all fair game to be wrapped into a unique jewelry piece of your own.

Artists Challenge

Last month a Facebook Artists’ Challenge made its rounds and it was an interesting way to narrow down my art into categories. I posted hearts on day one since Valentine’s Day was nigh. For that day I nominated Lisa Wilson of Being Breath, an artist and life-balancer I met during Shawna Moore’s encaustic workshop.

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With the challenge you had to post three pieces of art each day for 5 days, and nominate a new artist with each of those posts. Rory Coyne and Lauren Levato Coyne were hosting a gathering at their new Sidetracked Studio so I linked back to their pages the next day. Since Lauren and I met through butterfly obsession, posting encaustic collages of my favorite creatures made sense. Their next show “What did she say?” opens on March 7.

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Day three was dedicated to Crystal Neubauer, who introduced me to wax and wire. She operates Healing House Artists Studio where I look forward to taking art workshops this summer. Since her color palette is in earth tones, I posted my musical pieces that day.

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As the newly elected co-President of FUSEDChicago I had to give a shout-out to our midwest encaustic artists group, which I did on Day 4 with my jewelry for mothers, including custom birthstone pendants and bangles and newborn customized pendants.

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The last day was dedicated to Brenda Schweder, who helped me wrangle bangles before regular wire-working was even on my radar. I am looking forward to using her Now That’s A Jig for more pieces.

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I’m working on some branding exercises to narrow down my style and how to describe it. This challenge was a good exercise to pick out my favorites jewelry pieces.

Holiday Shop at the EXPO

Last week I browsed the Evanston Art Center’s 12th Annual Winter Arts & Crafts EXPO at the Evanston Art Center.

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It is a vibrant exhibit of local artists who have hand-crafted holiday gifts for you and your family.

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Numerous fiber arts promise to keep you and your loved ones warm, while cheering the spirit with fun colors.

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Those in love with ceramics can peruse a roomful of creations.

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Jewelry is abundant, and so varied.

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I am inspired by all I see.

EXPOwares

And look, I have a cute little tree showcasing my ornaments (and keychains).

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There is also plenty of wall art ranging from cigar band collages to encaustics.

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The EXPO is open to the public Monday through Saturday 10 am to 4 pm and Sundays 12 pm to 4 pm until December 22.

JewelryRoomEXPO

Encaustic artist Robin Samiljan is back, like a few other familiar names from last year.

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I’ll be gallery sitting on December 19 for a few hours.

MaikesMaraviglia

Mens’ Shopping Day is Saturday, December 20th from 10 am to 4 pm.

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The last shopping day will be December 22nd.

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All proceeds from the EXPO sale will benefit EAC’s ongoing exhibition, scholarship, and outreach programs, which is where I got my start exhibiting.

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Pendants of the Summer

I haven’t been taking many jewelry selfies lately, though I always get compliments on the Maraviglia I am wearing.

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Earlier this summer I wore Blessed are you among Women out paired with my favorite twinsy spirals.

Blessed

At NEW’s anniversary party I wore my bangles, which pretty much go with all my outfits and can be custom-ordered.

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The Make by Megan K. dress was combined with my Amazonite collar and swirly pearls at my trunk show.

Amazonitecollar

Aurora Rose has a set for sale, which you can view here:

At other NEW events I wore Orange You Dancing with Smashed Earrings and a brown version of this green wax and wire triangle along with another set of abstract earrings.

NEWpendants

On a sunny day I adorned my lace sundress with a wax and wire butterfly and the smashed earrings.

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The other day I opted for just earrings and no necklace with this purple wire-wrapped pair that hasn’t been listed yet.

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Message me if you are interested.

Pinks

I felt the need for some inner peace one day and paired blue scribble ball earrings with this wax and wire peace symbol pendant. In the background is the jellyfish lamp from Peaceful Parlour.

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I wore the lace dress to Evanston’s Lakeshore Art Fest with a caged feather butterfly similar to this one and added the pink scribble ball earrings.

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Check out my Etsy store and see which piece would make a great adornment for you or someone you love.

NEWPieces

I also make custom pieces year-round for any occasion.

Summer Jewelry on Etsy

Before my 3-day escape last week I did a photoshoot for Etsy. This week I loaded more inventory onto the shop, as I explore other venues to display and sell my work.

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Draw was inspired by the fabulous pencil handler Lauren Levato-Coyne. She taught me how to draw, and her friendship has drawn me into Chicago’s artistic community.

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This Green Triangle is a modification from a different color.

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My birthstone pieces found their start with this Turquoise set. Turquoise has lovely healing properties.

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Years ago I made a watch from cubed beads, and the remaining beads became part of this ‘cubist’ pendant. It reminds me of Alicia Forestall-Boehm’s work.

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The Sunshine sparkle beaded bangle with matching earrings cheers me up. I want to wear it but designed it for someone taller than me. Is it you?

YellowSparkleBangleEarringSet

This is blue wax and wire rectangle is one of my favorites, with a vintage glass bead from a chandelier that I only find in plastic these days.

SquigglePendantAquawCrystal

I’ve had these pink tulip beads for some time as well, and hope they find their way to a new home soon.

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Earrings abound as well, with these heart-shaped cages being the most recent internet debutantes.

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Wouldn’t the pink scribble ball earrings go well with this Pretty in Pink oval pendant?

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Remember that you can order custom pieces at any time. Birthstone bangles or pendants celebrate family and loved ones.

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Custom verses, quotes, colors, shapes and sizes also apply to the waxed pieces, such as this Rose of Sharon Heart

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quoting Song of Solomon.

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Write is on its way up next week.

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The musically inclined can wear their favorite song close to their hearts.

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Poke around my shop and tell me what you like. I’ve also had fun with treasuries, which you can peruse here.

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Exploring Beads & Buttons

This year I attended the Bead & Button show for the first time, and it was a blast.

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I laughed at Milwaukee’s interpretation of compact cars.

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My intent was to systematically go down each isle, but there were too many sparklies and bargain tables distracting me.

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So I meandered and enjoyed the colors, the inspiration, the plethora of tools.

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I was told I would be overwhelmed and it was true.

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Fortified by beer and a burger I carried on (smart to have a mini-bar in a confined environment full of glitter!).

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But for the first time I was glad I made just a day of it, a quick drive up, though I will ponder whether to stay overnight next time.

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You can see how a multi-day trip looks here, here 2, here 3, here 4.

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Brenda Schweder’s collaborative exhibit was mesmerizing.

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I am trying to track down the book to go with it (a case of “should have bought it there”–update, got it for my birthday!).

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Just the display is inspiring.

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I am intrigued by her Jig too, but need to compare it to wubbers to see which works best for me.

Collaborate1

Next year I may sign up for some classes and demos.

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So much to learn!

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For now, my loot will keep me busy and inspired.

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It complements my inventory nicely-which I will make better mental notes of next time since I wasn’t sure what I had in stock.

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Maraviglia of the Month

I teased my Facebook Fans with pieces last week that haven’t made their way onto Etsy, but are being uploaded now.

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I wore the pencil pendant out to NEW’s Women’s History Month event, along with Swirly earrings.

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Green-ish pieces were featured on two occasions. I wore the turquoise-wrapped spiral earrings and the Knitter’s Delight scarf pendant to a St. Patrick’s Day Party (coat from Hello Holiday).

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The Green Scribble Ball set enjoyed a pint during NEW’s Beer Women and Wellness (Bridgette Guerzon Mills’ Encaustic Art is in the background).

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Maike’s Marvels’ Circulation collar helped inspire creativity on a studio day.

TwistCollarPOD

Coiled Earrings and the Flutterby wax and wire pendant perused the Encaustic Nature in Art show opening.

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My Flower Cloud Pendant and Dancing earrings got complimented during Ayla’s Originals’ Annual Bead Show (headband created with a Princess Lasertron kit).

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Mixing and matching pieces is fun, and I’d love to see some of these fly off to complement your wardrobe.

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Maraviglia of the month

It is always fun to come up with new combinations as I take my Maraviglia out and about.

LemontLockKeey

Under Lock and Key wax and wire Pendant

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Spiral collar necklace, double spiral earrings not yet listed.

At one recent fair I couldn’t resist a long beaded necklace and I am working on creating a ‘hook’ for it so my pendants can be attached to the decorative necklaces I am sure you have at home.

PODThyselfcomboKnow Thyself Wax and Wire Pendant

In turtleneck and sweaterdress season longer is better.

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White Butterfly cage pendant

You can see more scarf pendants at Aurora Rose Boutique.

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Knitter’s Delight Scarf Pendant

What is your favorite holiday adornment?

Draw

Draw Pendant currently at the Evanston Art Center EXPO

EAC collar

Blue Scribble Ball earrings, Double collar has sold.

Creativity burst

Why we play as children
is not because it is our work or
because it is how we learn, though both statements are true;
we play because we are wired for joy,
it is imperative as human beings.
John Thorn

I’ve got a lovely outing to report, but yesterday inspiration struck, so here’s what took priority while flowers were frosting on the window.

frost flowers photo by Maike's Marvels

I made an angel pin for a precious young girl.

angel pin by Maike's Marvels

Earlier I created some fun girly pendants for another young girl. Rainbow commissions are such fun.

I heart little girls

One of these pieces is a gift, but the rest will be on Etsy soon.

studio time

It’s always fun to see where the wire takes you. I had a mission with some of these shapes, but the wire is just as stubborn as I am.

Wire wrapping at Maike's Marvels

Thinking of meaningful words and quotes is a way of making a talisman of each of these pieces.

cutting out quotes and words

Let the collaging begin!

Mother's Heart by Maike's Marvels

Ready for Valentine’s Day, anyone?

Love pendant by Maike's Marvels

I’d say my favorite creature turned out alright for a first wire attempt.

butterfly maraviglia by Maike's Marvels

Spring came through in the midst of snow flurries.

Flower pendant by Maike's Marvels, Maike's Maraviglia

It’s only layer 1, more to be added over the weekend.

Layer 1 of new Maraviglia

I also tried a photo shoot with my Painted Ladies pets (a blog post for another time), but that failed.

Painted Lady NOT posing

Have a lovely weekend.

Don’t think. Thinking is the enemy of creativity.
It’s self-conscious, and anything self-conscious is lousy.
You can’t try to do things. You simply must do things.
Ray Bradbury