Monday, 13 October 2008

New commission

So this is my latest commission. Made from pressed amber nuggets, stunning citrine quartz disco balls and big white mustang rounds. This commission was some what easier than the last one, probably because it was commissioned by a woman...who said women don't know what they want?

The necklace and bracelet combo have both been finished with solid copper chain and clasps to tie in nicely with the amber accents. The lady is a red head so this set should light her fire.

Saturday, 4 October 2008

It's winter

Well this is what we woke up to this morning the 4th of October OCTOBER I say! Yes all the trees were all bent over with the extra weight and it made me want to go and dig out my Christmas compilation CD.

It's too early for winter, I'm not ready for chopping wood in the snow, frozen fingers and not a minute to myself. I'm having to pinch my neighbour's wood as ours won't get delivered for another two weeks!

The snow this morning however did give me the ideal excuse to sit inside and make necklaces all morning. I've got a date for my jewellery show in London in november, which I am glad about that means I can start planning the one I will be having in Chamonix. I'm still not sure I will have enough stock, I suppose it's only a good thing if I sell out.

Oh well off to buy rat poison...sorry.

Friday, 3 October 2008

Here she is...

So as promised following my glowing last Etsy sale, of which I hope there will be many more, here is the new love of my life. I hope you will agree that she's pretty. I've used a lovely carved jade flower, citrine and smokey quartz among other lovely beads.

Now I ve go a panic on about Christmas, it's just around the corner and I am hoping for some big sales. I'm really hoping Etsy will shine. But I can't seem to stop myself buying more beads in fear that I won't have enough stock. This will be the first year that I do a Christmas bead party here at home in France and in the Uk and have my Etsy shop online too...EEEEKKKK!!! I am sure everything will work out, deep breaths, deeeep breaths.

So anyone reading this care to comment on your last Etsy Christmas experience go ahead I would love to hear about it.

Sunday, 28 September 2008

Etsy sale!

So yeah I was on my holidays minding my own business, yet another kitesurfing holiday cursed with crap wind so i thought I have a look on tinterweb. What do you know bam 5 sales on one day! And of the 5, 3 pieces of jewellery too. How happy was I finally someone has bought some jewellery, I was beginning to wonder if I was rubbish. The piece I was most happy to sell though a little sad to see her go, was my love from my last post, someone clearly fell in love with her shiny autumnal colours. But since then no more sales yet, but I am hopeful and any way I have found a new love, I 'll post her photo later.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Etsy Love

Whhoooo whoooo I got my 100th heart today!!! Granted I think more than half are bead shops promoting themselves and I can't wrong them for that. I ve actually hearted some of those shops selling interesting beads. Its only taken me 3 months to make it to the hundred(sarcasm) I think its a little slow but i can't expect the world, being stuck in my little mountain town getting bus cards out is a bit tricky. Doh! That reminds me I forgot to put one in with my electricity bill. Ah well there will be another one...unfortunately.

I'm off on my jollies tomorrow (holidays) so I have to go and pack my beading supplies because if my hubbie, bless him, thinks I'm going to be learnng how to kite surf for the whole week he's got to be kidding. So here's a little photo of my latest creation, I'm in love with this one, she's so photogenic and I've used the oxidized clasp that I spoke about last time.

See you again with more of a tan.

Thursday, 4 September 2008

latest commission

So my buddy from work gave me carte blanche to make his girlfriend a necklace and earrings for her birthday. "I'll leave it entirely up to you" he says. "excellent" I think as the ideas come pouring in. His Girlfriend is a very stylish and trendy thang that wears a lot of bold colours, so I thought red. I ran the red idea past my buddy and he was happy with the choice.

I ordered a selection of beads really cool frosted glass and some chain I wanted to make her something a little more edgy. I had a month to get it together. So after a few weeks I thought I'd better show him some samples. At which point he decides that what he wants is a pendant that will encourage his girlfriend to show off her cleavage a little more." Ok" I thought and promptly went home to find all that i could. Then he decides that he would quite like turquoise...But on seeing the turquoise things I had wasn't too keen.

So I returned to the red idea and made a dangly pendant type thing in red, sure that he would love it. Three days before her birthday he reveals "she doensn't wear earrings" Not a problem. I showed him the final piece. I was waiting for the look of "Oh yeah baby thats it" What i got was " Didn't we decide to go for turquoise?"

So I ran home at lunch and brought him everything I had in turquoise or blue. You know what he pointed at the one I was wearing and said "I like that one can I have that one?"

As you can se from the photos, no red, no pendant, no dangly things. I didn't of course give him the one I was swearing coz that would have been cheating. But the next time a man tells you how women can never make up their minds you tell him to go wash his mouth out with soap.

Monday, 1 September 2008

oxidizing copper

So This is what happens when you oxidize copper using two hard boiled eggs and a zip lock bag. I did these at the weekend and i thought you might like to see the actual results. So simple.

Friday, 22 August 2008

oxidizing sterling silver

So it's been a while since i left school but I felt like I was doing a science experiment the other day when I oxidized some silver myself. I was getting rather frustrated not being able to find all the supplies I need in the dark grey oxidized silver finish so I googled "oxidizing silver" and low and behold there was an article about how to do it. I thought that the silver needed to be heated to a high temperature but how wrong was I? (in fact i still don't know if heating to a hight temp works or not) All you need is a zip lock plastic bag and a couple of eggs.

Here's what I did.

1/ boiled two eggs for 15mins

2/ put silver in plastic bag making sure no metal is touching ( not sure why)

3/ put eggs in with the silver and closed the bag leaving a small space for the air to escape when you smash the eggs

4\ smash the eggs and close the bag

5/ leave for 30mins or till your silver has turned black, flipping the bag from time to time to get an even patina

Try it it's cool.

Though it's great i can't do it too often because i feel guilty about using and throwing away perfectly good food.

So the Olympics finishes this weekend and I'll be able to get back to a bit of normality. I have been obsessed and boy has it been a good games.

Friday, 15 August 2008

A break for the Olympics and visitors

If i had my choice i would be in front of the telly for 16 days non stop with match sticks keeping my eyelids open to grasp every minute of the Olympic games. ( except for the football and beach volley ball) But work and sleep has been getting in the way some what. The first ever visit from two of my bestest friends collided with the first few days of the games too but i forgave them quite quickly.

Lucy unfortunately for her has vertigo but did really well going up the highest cable car in europe to look over the wonderful Mer de Glace glacier (sea of ice) She even almost got to the barrier to look over the edge but I could ask too much. So even though i ve been neglecting my blog and etsy a bit this past week I still managed to fit in a bit of twiddling making birthday presents for my girlies while they were asleep on the sofa after tiring altitude walks( wimps).

We were very lucky with the weather and i had lots of time off from work to be with them and we managed to eat a fair amount of cake and we fit in a couple of nice alpine strolls.

I am absolutely most certainly the olympics biggest fan I get very excited, i love watching sport and i love to see my countrymen winning medals. So I have had a little break from crafting for a week or so but it seems like an eternity. I also had two of my bestest friends in the world come visit me for the first time in 9 years!!! I moved to Chamonix in the French alps when i was 23 so it was nice to have them on my turf for a change.

Monday, 28 July 2008

Etsy statistics

I was thinking today whilst riding to work about how nice it would be to have some really serious meaty etsy statistics. I know there is and but neither of these (as far as i'm aware ) come directly from the all seeing eye that is etsy. I do use both of these quite a lot mind when i'm obsessing about how i can generate more traffic to my shop, blog, flickr etc.

I had a look at some past forums and i found out about something called "etsy" tools which apparently doesn't exist anymore, which is a shame.

But would it have been enough for me my thirst for knowledge and my obsessiveness? I think not. So I thought about writing in the forums and asking etsy for some stats but i often get ignored in the forums and i sometimes feel like I'm invisible (paranoia again) More to the point I think the post would have been to long and everyone would fall asleep before the punch line.

So here's my theoretical proposal you never know who might read this or who i might send it to when 'm drunk. In my perfect world of etsy I would love to have:

1/ A monthly, 3 monthly or 6 monthly report (which etsy could charge for say 1$) which would include...

2/number of etsy members total, number of shops, number of members registered to buy at the beginning of the month.

3/ Number of new members since the last report, how many shops how many buyers.

4/ A breakdown of catagories, how many shops in each catagory and how many new shops in each catagory.

5/ Sales figures for that period broken down into catagories, maybe listing the top 5 shops in each.

6/ If sales are up or down broken down into catagories.

7/ What day of the week gets more traffic and what time of day.

Then i started getting really into this idea and my ride to work takes at least 15 mins. I started to think about what i would like to know at any given moment whilst on etsy. You know like how if you are looking at treasuries you can see how many people are looking at them too.I would love to know how many people are logged in, how many non shop owners are logged in, I would love a hit counter on my shop to see how many people swing by because some people might look at pages but not particular items. You know i think this coulld create a full time job for a couple of people.

Well it's my dinner time but i would love to know what you think. Hell lets push the boat out, leave comments with your ideas and let's see how silly we can get our etsy stat report.

Saturday, 26 July 2008

Trunkt rejection

Yeah it's true. But funnily enough i truly am not bitter and this from me is an achievment i mean no one likes being rejecte from anything right?

I wasn't even sure i was going to submit to trunkt after having a look around the site and after reading some old etsy forum posts about it. At least i have the comfort of knowing i'm not alone out there. I think a lot of people think it to be a little pretentious. I'm inclined to sit on the fence on this one. I totally understand why I was rejected, i believe it was for the very same reason i was hesitating to submit in the fist place. They require artists to have a tight focused collection with impeccable photography. Now i had already been critisized about my photography earlier in the week so what was i thinking? So then I got to thinking and this is something that has been on my mind for ages and i would love to hear your thoughts on the matter.


After my last jewellery party a lot of my customers commented that there was almost too much choice therefore in fear of making the wrong choice they made no choice at all and didn't buy anything. I vowed then to try and focus my self and limit what i put on display which i will do for my next party.

But my question is does a focused collection mean that everything looks the same just with slightly different colours or dangly bits?

I love exploring and experimenting and seeing what new stuff my suppliers have got. I'm afriad that focusing too much will lead to stagnation and boredom and variety is the spice of life after all. I don't really like making lots of the same thing. I guess the plain truth is i can't help myself when I'm buying beads and then once i've got them i can't seem to stop myself from making something and before you know it it's in my etsy shop. So for the Trunkt people i understand, I'll not send out the hit men just yet.

But what do you think?? Please comment i really would like some input

Thursday, 24 July 2008

recent commission

Etsy may be slow at the moment but at least I have my faithful local customers. I had a really nice chat in the Etsy forums though this moring that cheered me up then I got a trasury too check it out if you like at...
I was feeling neglectted and a bit crap so a big thanks to the etsy forums for pulling me out of my depths of creative despair.

So back to the subject in hand this is a photo of my most recent commission. Its a style I don't do terribly often but when I do make these little hippy boho numbers they work quite well. Hmmm should maybe make one for esty then...da! ( i didn't say I was a rocket scientist) So there we go I ve mixed it up a bit using chain with cord and lots of dangly treats my favs at the mo being the hollow hand blown glass beads that I have placed at the focal point.

Let me know what you think.

Monday, 21 July 2008

some more about where i live

So as promised here are a few more pictures of where i live. It is a stunning place but it does have its + and - i can assure you. Like for instance not being able to pop into town the the local bead shop is a pain if i ve run out of crimps and had forgotten to put them in my last online order. Not much creative stuff going on that isn't generated by self and friends. No craft fairs no second hand thrift stores to rummage in ... oh Im getting carried away look at the sunrise look at the sunrise. But then this is a picture of 5:30 am from my velux window ( what was i doing up at such a time??? It was by accident i needed a pee)

Wednesday, 16 July 2008

some skiing near where we live

This is some skiing near where we live in Chamonix, France. Though i don't ski, i'm afraid im a boarder. The winters are always really hectic in Cham so i use the spring and summer to really get creative. I tend to turn into a bit of a hibernating creature once the snow comes and it gets dark by 4pm.

Sunday, 13 July 2008

never work a day in your life!

One of my favorite quotes, actually my only favorite quote is " If you find a job that you love you never work a day in you life"
Oh how true! on a bum note i'm still looking, well not really i ve found many of them, it's just they unfortunately at the moment don't put food on the table or light in the bulbs. But I think about this quote often and it drives me not to give up though at the same time puts an ache in my heart too. Im sure im not alone in wanting to be creative for a living and not just a hobby.

Well very sociable weekend. The rainy day bbq went down a treat, though not too sure if the neighbours liked the green tarpaulin draped outside the house.

never work a day in your life

Monday, 7 July 2008

Rain starts play!!!

Don't usually post during the week but as its raining i get a day off!!! Yeah for rain. As i can't quite give up any of my day jobs i still have to go to work but i was scheduled to paint a wall and a fence today... never mind. So you know what that means> I get to play with my beads all day long till i go cross eyed.

Now I'm going to have to get organized for Christmas. I want to have enough stock but not too much. I'm hoping ETSY will be fun and fruitful but I'm struggling to decide what to put on ETSY and what to keep aside for my fairs and parties. I get too excited when i make something new that i love i put it straight on Etsy. But I'm going to have to control myself or I'm going to end up with 100 items before i know it. I feel sorry for all those pieces on page 4 that barely see the light of day anymore, so if anyone reads this far without nodding off go say hi to page 4 of my etsy shop they'll love you for it.

Sunday, 6 July 2008

boney m

Well well well yet another fun packed weekend for me! I went ot he first rose club of the summer season for me. The Rose Club for those of you who are unfamiliar with the term it's a bunch of women sitting round on a friday night after work getting sloshed. I got caught at a different bar last week and news soon go back to rose club chairperson and i got a black mark next to my name. The lead up for the weekend was good as i got a few sales though unfortunately not for my jewellery but for the really pretty beads im now selling too...Check the out! Click on the ICH LIBE ETSY icon to the right.

My hubbie fitted a sky light in our roof so now we have light! I keep thinkning I ve left a light on. Its a bit like someones taken the roof off and forgotten to put it back. But whats the best is that I can now make stuff in front of the Tv with out going blind.

It was the 100 years of the mont blanc railway yesterday so the town put on a free concert and in true free concert tradition the bands were crap. The lead singer from imagination ( who was at school with my brother so I know how old he was) Two random bands singing 70s covers with lots of overactive gesticulation and yes I thought they were all dead too... Boney M. Who were the crappist of the lot. They came on three women and one skinny 70 year old who then stormed off after a bit of a sound problem leaving the women to do a five munute medly of rubbish. How dissapointing but everyone was already far beyond merry to really care by that point.

So for those counting that yet again is two nights out and about talking tand being sociable. How proud am I!

Sunday, 29 June 2008

Damn it i just lost my new post and it was really funny, hmm may be not really funny perhaps mildly amusing. Well it's the weekend again and I have to say due to new delivery of beads I did not beat my being sociable record. The highlight of my week other than getting my new beads was the pucca pie i had for tea on thursday and staring at some dry soil willing my grass seed to grow. How exciting my life is.

So the pretty blue beads you see there in the new photo are soon going to be offered for sale in my ETSY shop. They are 12mm hand blown hollow glass beads. Each one is ever so slightly different as with most things truly handmade. They are light as a feather and wonderfully delicate. The Other new photo is an example of a necklace made with the very same hollow beads sterling silver and swarovki crystals.

So i have managed to drag myself away from checking my Etsy shop and playing with beads to watch America's got talent and Top Gear. Trash Tv is the only thing that works. I'm lucky that Gossip Girl is only on once a week otherwise i'd never get anything done.


Thursday, 26 June 2008

import tax rant

Well i'd jut like to start my rant by saying isn't it enough that we get taxed enough over here in france! You'd think that they'd let us off if we found a bargain on the internet but noooooo. I am about to pay almost the same again for the shipment of beads because the customs want to take thier chunk out of me. I don't understand how something that costs 70$ can be liable for 34 euros worth of import duty. RAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!

Any way i hope everyone had a nice weekend, I was unusually sociable which was fun but tiring all the same, i actually dragged myself out from under my little jewellery making rock and went out to not one but two bbqs. The elation after my first sale has well and truly worn off, now i m back to being paranoid and self questioning about my work. I know things take time to get up and running but i do still feel llike stamping my feet and shouting to the heavens.

I have to say im a little dissapointed that no one has offered any potato printing requests, was it really that bad? But I have figured out how you can leave comments and please do. All you need to do is click on the envelope thingy at the end of each post and a little box will appear where you write your comments.

COMING SOON TO MY ETSY SHOP will be some supplies, im hoping to lure in some buyers that way and get my stock of beads down to a reasonable amount and you never know someone might be tempted into buying a piece of my reasonably priced very original jewellery.

Right im off.

Sunday, 22 June 2008


Still after 33 years i'm never sure if potato has an e on the end or if tomorrow has or has not a w. So the new picture is a fine example ( in my sheltered little world) of my last sundays potato printing extravaganza. I thought nicely bordered and framed they might look quite nice. ( there's no accounting for taste) some people actually like textured wall paper. If you would like to see more of my marvelous potato printing or would like to suggests some potato print shape you would like to see please send me a message, though i still don't know if i can do that with this blog thingy, have a go though click on everything it might lead to some kind of messaging link.


Friday, 20 June 2008

GnT and talkin crap

This post is dedicated to Alan and David for talkin crap and keeping the game alive! The game being laughing that is. That is what its all about at the end of the day, shootin the shit and laughing. If you can't laugh there really is noooo point. We were brainstorming and in between tallking about farting and burping and watching Turkey take a place in the next round of euro 2008 from right under the noses of the croations, we decided that the idea of a personal jewllery shopper/ creator was the way forward. IE blokes that want to buy something unique for their loved ones but haven't really got a clue could come to me with some ideas about what their other halves might like and i make it. This however is in now way a new concept i do alot of custom work already, even for some TV personlaities but that is by the by. But to try and promote myself and services to men buying for women. How to reach these men is the question??? Answers on a postcard please...

But all in all the subject always returns to burping and farting whilst sipping GnT. I love the summer

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

first sale

Yeah i got my first sale last night! I dreamt a few days ago that i had sold something on my etsy site only to wake up and be disapointed. But then this morning i checked just because it's become a bit of a habit. Turns out the dream was just a few days early. I wanted to post the picture of the piece in question but i still cant seem to upload pictures onto this site. Nem mind.

When i m not fiddling with my findings and pawing over my new beads Im sitting bored as you like waiting for customers to come into the sports shop I waste most of my time in or elbow deep in paint. Unfortunately not liquitex or daler and rowney but more like dulux or b&q. One day i'll be able to pay a few bills from my creative endeavors. Id like to get my art up on this site some time soon once i figure out what to do about the damned photos.

My husband caught me potato printing last sunday... luckily he has a sense of humor but when he found that id hidden the potato shapes at the back of the fridge they found thier way into the bin quite quickly.

I'm hoping that my etsy luck will continue and i wish all the luck on the web to all the newer newbies than me.

Monday, 16 June 2008


Wow welcome to my blog, im not really sure what i m doing at the moment so please check back again from time to time to see how my blog has improved. I ve recently opened an etsy shop and since reading lots of forums and chatting i did notice how everyone and thier wives had a blog. So not being one to like feeling left out i thought i d better get me one of them blogs. And here I am.

A little bit about my self to bore you to tears then... My name is Samantha Tenn I live in Chamonix in the french alpes and I am what i suppose you could call an artist. I draw, paint, write and i make jewellery. I'm a snowboarder, a daughter, a sister, a friend, but not yet a mother.

What floats my boat? Anything creative ( a curse i know) I almost wish sometimes i had been born with an analytical brain ( see i dont even think I spelled that right) I would really love to love numbers but the truth is I just don't bores me senseless.
At the momment it's ETSY. For all those out there who dont know what it is, its the coolest place to shop, if you want something different, handcrafted, not mass produced by robots ETSY is the place for you ( and all your mates) Check out my shop I'd love to know what you think.

Right then I m sure I 'll think of some other interesting stuff to write about me ,life the universe and everything but for the minute Thats all folks.