Friday, September 26, 2014

What's New from Purple Fish Studio: New Denim & Lace Designs

The designs I have been working on recently are a blend of upcycled and recycled, vintage and contemporary.  They have the look of lace but are beautifully detailed filigree painted in a soft cream with subtle hints of worn metal and layers of color and texture.  The pieces have an almost floral look to them  - they are artful and beautiful with just a touch of sparkle.

The three necklaces below are designed as bib style with layers of color, filigree, texture and metals.  I have riveted the layers to distressed recycled denim giving them a vintage/boho look.  I added a simple antiqued brass hook as a closure.  I chose not to add a ring, but to let the hook connect to the chain instead.     

This necklace is designed with layers of brass medallions, filigree, and embellishments.  There are two faceted metallic blue Czech beads wrapped in filigree that connect the piece to the chain.   I painted the brass medallions cream and then layered a natural state, warm coppery colored star piece.  I think the coppery look brings out the patina in the next layer vintage filigree piece.  I added a few rivetables accented with Swarovski crystals. 

I am not certain I am finished with this piece, as I think the flower embellishments need something and I have not quite determined what it is.   

This necklace is designed with layers of filigree and an unusual vintage Czech pearl focal.  There are two faceted vintage Swarovski crystal beads connecting the piece and the chain.  I painted the bottom filigree a cream color, then added filigree rounds with a rich patina.  Next, a raw brass petaled filigree piece and finished it off with the vintage pearl focal.  I added rivetables with Swarovski crystals accents.   

This necklace is designed with layers of filigree and Swarovski crystal focals.  I painted the first layer cream, then added gold painted filigree and petaled filigree with patina.  The Swarovski rivolis are nested in the filigree petals.  I added rivetables accented with Swarovski crystals.  This piece has a simple ring connection to the chain. 

I will be posting these at sometime next week, however, if you are interested in purchasing them or having me design something similar, just drop me a note.

I hope you are inspired to create something beautiful!

Talk to you soon,


PS - The flowers in the background are a birthday present from my daughter and I thought they added a beautiful simple splash of color to the pictures.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!   

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Two More Fun Pair of Earrings in Copper

I just finished with these two pair of earrings so I thought I would post them before I close up shop.

The feather pair have Swarovski Antique Pink AB ovals set in ornate floral copper settings with Nunn Design feather drops.  I think the mix of floral and feather give them a Victorian look. 

The Oval drop pair have Swarovski crystal pearls with hammered cone caps linked to hammered ovals, and then I added ornate TierraCast links for contrast.  I like the blue of the crystal against the copper.

What do you think of the old rusty bed frame as a prop/display?

I hope you are inspired to create something beautiful!

Talk to you soon,


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

New Earrings for the Mid-Week from Purple Fish Studio

These earrings are designed with Art Nouveau and Victorian floral, blended with Swarovski Antique Gold pearls, Swarovski flatbacks, and vintage West Germany glass cabochons.  

This pair of earrings are designed with beautifully detailed filigree and the new Swarovski Gold Patina rivolis, Swarovski Antique Gold pearls and Swarovski flatbacks.

This pair of earrings are designed around re-purposed vintage/antique Czech stampings.  I added Swarovski crystals and vintage Japan glass pearl drops.  The ear wires are Nunn Designs.

Last, but not least are a pair of beautiful drop earrings.  The rhinestone settings are vintage Swarovski that I riveted to beautifully detailed contemporary filigree.  The turquoise cabochons are vintage West Germany glass.  

I hope you are inspired to create something beautiful!

Talk to you soon,


Saturday, August 9, 2014

Mixed Metals, Vintage and Contemporary Pieces

How does a designer decide when to use mixed metals or when to mix and match vintage pieces with contemporary?  I am not certain there is an easy answer for that.  I only know how to do it by looking at the piece and knowing that it goes together.  I think it helps if the added pieces are balanced with equal amounts of mixed metals and/or equal vintage and contemporary components.  I also think it is easier if the design patterns are similarly related.

The two pair of earrings below are mixed metals as well as a combination of vintage and contemporary. 

In the first pair, I used a vintage style silver drop (contemporary).  To the drops I riveted vintage goldtone Swarovski settings with vintage Swarovski Topaz rhinestones.  The drops have a triangular shape to them which are similarly related to the focal. 

The next pair are designed with vintage/antique Czech filigree with a blue rhinestone center.  I added tiny antiqued silver chain with a contemporary blue glass bead.  At the bottom I added a Nunn Design star drop.  The chain and the star have a similar pattern and the blue glass bead draws from the vintage/antique blue center of the filigree.

The next picture has four pair of earrings that I put together - something fun for summer!  They have a bit of all my favorites.  The bee charms are from Nunn Designs.  The daisy charms and beads are Vintaj blended with Swarovski crystal pearls.  The sparrow charms are Tierra Cast with Czech glass and the Garnet red glass is also Czech.  Each are designed with mixed metals and contemporary components.  

I hope you are inspired to create something beautiful!

Talk to you soon,


Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Dreamtime Creations and the Grand Swarovski Competition

I cannot wait any longer!  LOL 

I have been holding off posting my competition piece until the finalist or winners had been selected, but I am so excited for you to see this piece, I cannot wait any longer.  If any of you have not been to the Dreamtime Creations website, you must go.  Their selection of Swarovski crystals is amazing.  They also have settings that have long prongs on the backs of them so they can easily be attached to a leather bracelet, or a purse, etc.; I have not found them anyplace else but there.

In June 2014 they were hosting a Swarovski Crystal competition where you simply took a picture of your design and submit it to their Facebook page for a chance to win an awesome life-changing prize - and you could bring a friend!

I designed a vintage inspired bracelet for the competition - but now I am waiting on pins and needles to see if I won.  There were over 500 entries!  Can you imaging that?  You can go to their Facebook page to see all the entries - and if you happen to see mine, be sure to like it.... 

I designed the bracelet in the spirit of vintage Swarovski, inspired by a time of glitz and glamour, of elegance and sophistication.  I wanted my piece to have the look of "old-time" Swarovski.  Looking back on my piece, I think I would have changed the clasp on it - but it is too late now - and perhaps I will change it out at a later date.  I used vintage Swarovski cabs 2190/4 in Bermuda Blue, set in vintage brass ovals that I riveted to vintage brass filigree.  I then surrounded the cab in Swarovski crystal cup chain and wrapped the focal in a leaf spray and added a bee.  In between I used large vintage Swarovski crystals wrapped in filigree bead caps.  The chain is made by linking jump rings together, and I finished it off by adding a smaller version vintage Swarovski crystal. 

"Two Bees are Better Than One"
The pair of earrings below was my backup plan.  They are designed with Swarovski checkerboard cabs in vintage Swarovski settings which I then riveted to vintage filigree drops. 

AND now the anxious waiting.  I have nearly gone crazy checking my e-mail and Facebook to see if I have been notified of winning!  I hope I do not have a nervous breakdown before then...LOL....

......... I cannot imagine reviewing over 500 submissions; the judges have quite the task at hand. 

Be sure to stop by their Facebook page at

I hope you are inspired to create something beautiful!

Talk to you soon.


Saturday, August 2, 2014

Designing with the new 2014 Spring Collection from Nunn Designs

Earlier in July I was fortunate enough to win the Nunn Design 2014 Spring Collection from Beadaholique's blog "Strung Out".  The collection is awesome and full of beautiful pieces.  Since that time, I have been busy putting together a few designs. 

In these designs I used mixed metals, as well as, vintage and contemporary elements, with the exception of the earrings.

The bracelet is designed with the owl and feather focals.  I added vintage West Germany Ruby and Gray glass pieces, vintage Swarovski crystals, along with contemporary rosary bead strands.  I then made the hook and clasp by hammering and painting recycled aluminum wire.

The necklace clasp is designed using the twig ring and shaping the oak leaf to make the hook.  I really like the look of the pieces together and the use of the mixed metals.  I added a mix of vintage glass beads and vintage Swarovski crystals to draw your eye to the focal.  I riveted the butterfly to the feather and added a Swarovski flatback to the top of the rivet, which complimented the beads and added just the right amount of sparkle.

I hope you are inspired to create something beautiful!

Talk to you soon.


Thursday, July 31, 2014

What's New at Purple Fish Studio

I cannot believe how fast this summer has gone.  Here it is August tomorrow, the local county fairs have come and gone, my garden is producing vegetables, and I do not feel like I have gotten anything accomplished - perhaps because I have had my head buried in my studio.....

I have been designing a lot more with mixed media lately; using leather, mixed metals and vintage and contemporary.   I have quite a few new pieces to show off with this posting, I hope you are inspired.  Looking through my design books and paging through the months on my Swarovski calender I have come across some really great inspirational pieces which motivated me to look back at some of my older work.  I decided I would incorporate some of those ideas, with a few changes, into my new pieces.  It's funny how easily I forget about my older work - always pushing forward.....

I have also been working on what I call catalog pages for my designs.  I think I am going to make them into postcards to hand out or, I might also design another online catalog like the ones to the right of my home page......or, maybe I will just do both....  :-)

Of Note:  In the pictures below, the bracelet to the right, with the upcycled vintage brooch, shows two colors of purple.   The true color of the purple glass is in the top picture.  I think a shadow makes the elongated bracelet look much darker than it is.    

I hope you are inspired to create something beautiful.

Talk to you soon!