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Better Late than Never... Summer Elements Blog Hop

Written By bombomtox on Jun 20, 2013 | 10:00 PM

Even though this is five days late, I think it's appropriate that this be posted on the first day of summer! Summer is all about easy for me. A more relaxed schedule, soaking in the sun,beach trips, colorful and cool outfits for our steamy hot Florida summers, and cute little earrings. One of my favorite toys to play with is my Vintaj machine and when I thought about the Summer Elements Blog Hop,hosted by Toltec Jewels, the combination seemed like a winner.  Thank you, Rita, for being such a gracious hostess. The guidelines for the hop were to focus on an element of summer that we loved and how the jewelry reflected that.

I indulged in my Vintaj Big Kick machine at Christmas time, and love it. It was on clearance at Michael's but I've seen it at Hobby Lobby ( and yes, you can use their wonderful weekly 40% off coupon). It's a great machine to emboss designs on metal blanks. You buy the dies separately and then go to town. I've used both the Vintaj blanks as well as blanks from both Hobby Lobby and other suppliers. The main thing to remember is not to use anything thicker than a 24 gauge metal. Knowing my love for Pinterest, I'm sure you won't be surprised to know that yes, there's a board for that! Can't wait to put it to use for Christmas ornaments this year- but that's another season.

This was my inspiration picture ( courtesy of Photobucket)
summer beach photo: Beach summer-beach_zps6c8a08e8.jpg
The colors are amazing- the beach is gorgeous and there's nothing I'm ready for more than soaking in the sun!
So, without further ado, here are some summer inspired earrings using the Vintaj Big Kick:
These are the antiqued brass round blanks by Vintaj embossed with the Wildflower Vines pattern. I used a royal blue crystal and then buffed them so the raised part would stand out.
These lovelies were done on copper and then combined with lucite flower caps and orange crystals with the Wildflower Vines die but on another section. Because the copper was shiny, there was no need to buff it- in fact, I should have antiqued them but it's summer!
I've had these flower beads for ages. A friend who's an airline stewardess, picked up an assortment of beads in Turkey for me and they've been waiting for the perfect partner!  The embossing on the hearts is actually the top part of the butterfly from the Butterfly Swirls pattern. When you use the dies, there's so much versatility depending on where you place the blanks.
And last, but not least, are these little guys. I used an etching die for these- it doesn't make quite as deep of an impression and while I like the pattern, I prefer the embossing dies to the etching ones. These were little strips of butterflies done on small antiqued brass strips.

Here are a couple of other things I've previously made:
 This illustrates one of the major drawbacks of the Big Kick. I cut out the star from copper sheeting but because the dies are only about 2x2 I wasn't able to get the middle of the star covered completely.It does do a great job of showing you the entire Butterfly Swirls plate though. This is a project that still needs some work, but I'm intrigued by the possibilities- especially for Christmas ornaments.

Consider the Lilies

This is a set I made using the Wildflower Vines once again. Paired with antique brass and green crystals, it's my favorite project using the Big Kick to date. Vintaj keeps adding wonderful new designs- Beadaholique is a great place to see all the wonderful choices.

So, here's to summer and all the wonderful memories and things that await. Here's hoping your summer is filled with many splashes of grace and dashes of joy~


P.S. Before you go, stop on by the other bloggers to see their creations:

Summer Elements Blog Hop Participants: 
Toltec Jewels (Hostess)     http://www.jewelschoolfriends.com/
Marlene Cupo                   http://amazingdesigns-marlene.blogspot.com/
Cheri Reed                        http://creativedesignsbycheri.blogspot.com/
Ailsa Cordner                    http://www.bramalfiebeadsetc.co.uk/
Nan Smith                         http://www.wirednan.blogspot.com/
Sherri Stokey                     http://www.knotjustmacrame.com/
Christie (Charis Designs)    http://charisdesignsjewelry.blogspot.com/
Carolyn Lawson                 http://carolynscreationswa.blogspot.com/
Susie Harris                        http://jewelleryjunkie.blogspot.com/
Andrea Glick-Zenith           http://zenithjade.blogspot.com/
Nelly May                          http://smellynelly.blogspot.com/
Melissa Trudinger               http://beadrecipes.wordpress.com/
Dini Bruinsma                     http://angazabychanges.blogspot.com/
Kathy Lindemer                 http://bay-moon-design.blogspot.com/
Cory Tompkins                  http://tealwaterdesigns.blogspot.com/
Robin Reed                       http://willowdragon.blogspot.com/
Gina Hockett                     http://freestyleelements.blogspot.com/
Karen Martinez                 http://www.fairiesmarket.blogspot.com/
Liz                                    http://beadcontagion.blogspot.com/
Jasvanti Patel                     http://jewelrybyjasvanti.blogspot.com/
Solange Collin                    http://www.blog.ahowinjewelry.com/
Gerda                                http://gerdascraftsblog.blogspot.com/
Karla Morgan                    http://texaspepperjams.blogspot.com/
Anindita Basu                     http://alankarshilpa.blogspot.com/
Alicia Marinache                http://www.allprettythings.ca/
Andrea Trank                    http://heavenlanecreations.com/
Mischelle Fanucchi             http://micheladasmusings.blogspot.com/
Tanty Sri Hartanti               http://tjewellicious.blogspot.com/
Shaiha Williams                  http://shaihasramblings.blogspot.com/
Mary Govaars                    http://mlhjewelrydesigns.com/
Becca Sirevaag                  http://godsartistinresidence.blogspot.com/
Lennis Carrier                    http://windbent.wordpress.com/
Regina Wood                     http://www.gina-design.blogspot.com/
Sue Kennedy                     http://suebeads.blogspot.com/
Kathleen Breeding             https://www.facebook.com/99BOBOTW


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