May 28, 2011

Girls and Pearls

Summer is upon us and with it comes all those summer weddings. Were you a June bride or groom? Mine was a late May wedding as we squeezed it in between college semesters. Tomorrow, I will have had the same roommate for 43 years.

When a bride to be asks me to design something for her weddings, I reach for pearls. These seem to be a standard for perfect wedding necklaces for bride and bride's maids. I remember struggling one year to find enough pearls just alike to make 8 necklace and earring sets for the wedding party. I wish I'd had Magpie Gemstones to call on back then. Have you taken the time to look at the pearls we offer now? If you haven't looked lately, you're in for a pleasant surprise.

Please check out the great variety of pearls that Szarka handpicked for us. Last week, Michelle, a jewelry designer who loves pearls and has a Graduate Pearls Diploma from the Gemology Institute of American (GIA), reviewed a strand of Magpie Gemstone pearls. I think you would appreciate her comments, provided on her blog at  She definitely approved of the Magpie Gemstones pearls.

If you aren't creating wedding jewelry or needing pearls at the moment, you might like the new turquoise hearts that are available. This beauty is 50 mm in size. Wow!

Now that I think about it, I guess that hearts and girls go pretty well together also. Actually, I think a girl or a guy could go for most any of the pearls or gemstones in the Magpie Gemstones store. I'll be visiting online tonight to pick out those perfect beads for the graduation presents that I'm making.

Why don't you do the same and make yourself a present. Go ahead . . . just say that Karen made you do it!

. . . working for you, we are Magpie Gemstones.

May 22, 2011

A Few of My Favorite Things

Although many new beads have recently gone into the store, I particularly wanted to share two of my favorites with you. Magpie Gemstones previously had something similar to these and I have used them repeatedly. The first is orange spiney oyster. I think I've used spiney oyster chips in this color, but these buttons look even more yummy. These are wonderful as a single strand or in a mixed strand with various gemstones. I particularly like this spiney oyster with turquoise, lapis, amethyst or some combination of these. I've also used this mixed with some of the small fetishes available in the store.

I also wanted you to see the yellow jade rounds that are in the store. It's hard to believe the great price on these 8 mm rounds ($2.69), but this allows us to rather inexpensively create something nice with multiple strands. I think you'll find this color works well with a plethora of other gemstones.

One of my favorite design techniques is also featured in a tutorial I just finished that Szarka put online this week. This one takes you on a pictorial journey through riveting. I hope you will find it helpful since it's a technique with which I previously struggled. We hope the tutorial makes the process simpler for you if you haven't already mastered it. Let Rosie provide encouragement. She wouldn't steer you wrong and we won't either!

Finally, here's my MOST favorite thing of the week. FREE BEADS! On May 31, we will have a drawing and give away a $200 shopping spree for Magpie Gemstones. What a deal!!! Look on the website homepage to learn about FREE.

. . . finding things that can become YOUR favorites, we are Magpie Gemstones.

May 15, 2011

What's a Picture Worth?

Answering the title question, you may be thinking a picture is worth "a thousand words". I could spend many words telling you about the beautiful new beads that went into the store this week, but how about a couple of pictures?

These are topaz Swiss blue cabachons and I think the color is outstanding. They make me want to burst into song about blue. Let's see; isn't there one about being blue because somebody left?

Enough of that . . . I guess the next question for today's blog entry should be "what's worth more than a picture?" Think about it . . .

The informative articles we add to the website from time to time are usually predominantly words and provide as many pictures as possible. This week, however, Szarka answered the above question regarding what might be worth even more than a picture by saying "a video!" We hope you enjoy watching and learning how to make your own earwires in the video she made.

Now I'm wondering if we need another question. "What's worth more than a video?" Regrettably, I think the answer to this one would require a personal visit to your home from Magpie Gemstones. Some of you live so far away that a visit would take weeks and then who would fill the orders for our other customers? Alas, we're doing the best we can with words, pictures and the occasional video.

. . . doing all we can for you, we are Magpie Gemstones.

May 7, 2011

Happy Day

If you happen to be reading this on Mother's Day, we wish you a happy one. We've not only been celebrating Mother's Day, but also a birthday this week. Gibby added another year to his counting. We gals are glad to have him around to help keep us on track. Thanks Gibby!

Can I make your day a little happier by showing you just a couple of pictures of new beads that went in the store last week? One of my favorites in the mookaite shown below.

I grabbed a strand of these as fast as I could and made the necklace to the right. Perhaps it will help you visualize what you might do with them. By the way, we'd love to see what you do with any of the Magpie beads. Why not send us a photo?

I just realized there are also some mookaite cabs in the store. Hmm . . . my happy day will be when I get some of those!

You might also like the Titanium Druzy Cabs that are new this week.

Wouldn't the one on the right look fantastic wrapped in silver wire?

We appreciated the many comments you sent us about the patina article last week. This writer, in particular, likes to know what you think and whether or not you like a particular article. Although Szarka has given me a substantial list based on your comments and questions, I'd enjoy knowing if you have suggestions for others? Please send them our way.

. . . wishing you a Happy Day, we are Magpie Gemstones.

May 1, 2011

Moving Along

We've certainly moved along into the dry, warm season here in central Texas. The garden behind Magpie Gemstones would be happier if it would rain, but the store dog, Sandy, is having a great time keeping the opossums out of the yard. I think she's on a real mission! The score is Sandy = 3, oppossums = ?

I caught up with Kateri at the Magpie Gemstones booth at the San Antonio show yesterday. My feet were already hurting from walking around, yet she was full of energy and spunk, working with one customer after the next. It was fun to watch her help one in particular match a pair of earrings to stones for making a necklace. Kateri really knows her stuff! I think this woman smiles all the time!

I'm smiling too this week because I finally finished the patina article that I've worked on for some time. I hope you will grab some time to look it over and add your comments.

Do you watch for emails and Facebook updates from Szarka as new things go into the store? Last week, some new cabs went in and before I could even get my order finished, the ones I wanted had been sold. Take a peek at a couple of the new things that went in recently and see what you need. The photo on the right shows a sample of the new iolite beads. The color on these is quite stunning. The second photo shows the titanian infused drusy cabs. I'm wrapping one of these in silver. There are plenty of other goodies; why not move along and take a look at the other new beads in the store?

For now, I'm moving along to finish wrapping that cab and

. . . Magpie Gemstones is moving along to serve your design needs.