Learn how to make silk jewelry

This is your opportunity to learn how to make silk jewelry – that too in namma Chennai!

Silk Thread Jewelry
Silk Thread Jewelry

DakshinaChitra is conducting a workshop on silk thread jewelry making on Saturday, June 11. At this workshop, you will learn how to make bangles, anklets and earrings.

The cost of the workshop is Rs. 650 and includes supplies. Conveyance to and from Dakshinachitra will be provided.

Note: The registration is on first come first serve basis- so you better hurry if you want a spot!

The Hindu newspaper has the article on how to Get Creative.


Dakshinchitra Heritage Centre
East Coast Road
Workshop Fees:  

Rs 650/- per person

For more details call: 24462435

Seed Jewelry: Beejika by Shradhanjali

“To see things in the seed, that is genius.”
-Lao Tzu, Chinese Philosopher

The use of seeds in jewelry is nothing new I suppose.

Ancient Indians probably adorned themselves with neck pieces and earrings made with colorful seeds and I am sure most other ancient civilizations did too.

I’ve been making jewelry from 2008 but I came across modern seed jewelry only in 2009. My mother gave me a beautiful pair of seed earrings for my birthday that year. Here they are –three seeds have been used in place of beads– would you believe that the large brown one is a tamarind seed!


Seed Earrings by Beejika
Seed Earrings by Beejika

I wear these earrings quite often and on the last occasion, I suddenly remembered the name of the brand- Beejika- so I tracked them down on the internet and here’s all the info.

[Note: Except for the photo of my earrings, all other photos are from the Shradanjali website. I am not affiliated with them in any way and I haven’t taken those photos.]

About Beejika

Beejika – The Seed range-  is a line of jewelry handmade by the members of Shradhanjali. Shradhanjali is a 30-year old handicrafts unit (they also make handmade paper products) located in Auroville, an International Township located in Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu. What I like about this endeavor, is that they work with natural materials and employ and empower many village girls in India. Shradhanjali’s profits are routed back into its community and used for its maintenance and development.

What are Beejika’s products?

“With Beejika, Shradhanjali showcases the marvels and uniqueness of Nature, reflected in the seeds of Auroville’s trees, planted over the last 40 years. Profits from this range go towards supporting sustainable, indigenous forest plantations.” – Taken from the Auroville website.

Beejika (meaning seed) jewelry is handmade and eco-friendly because it’s made with Seeds that are varnished to make them water-resistant. Many different locally grown seeds are combined together in colorful, trendy jewelry pieces that are lightweight and beautiful.

Beejika -Jewels of Nature
Beejika Earrings

The products:

·         Earrings
·         Bracelets
·         Key holders
·         Necklaces
·         Hair pins

Beejika Earrings
Seed Earrings from the Beejika range
Curvy Seed Earrings from the Beejika range
Curvy Seed Earrings from the Beejika range
Gorgeous Brown Seed Earrings from Beejika
Gorgeous Brown Seed Earrings from Beejika

Seed Bracelet from the Beejika range

Seed Bracelet from the Beejika range

Seed Necklace from the Beejika range
Seed Necklace from the Beejika range

What Seeds do they use?

Some of the seeds that are used are:
·         Adenanthera pavonina (Red Sandalwood)
·         Polyalthia longifolia (Ashoka)
·         Delonix regia (Gulmohar)
·         Canna indica (Indian shot)
·         Canavalia (Jack-bean)
·         Albizia saman(Rain tree)
·         Leucaena leucocephala (White Leadtree)
·         Mimusops elengi (Spanish Wood)
·         Enterolobium cyclocarpum (Elephant Ear Tree)
·         Sterculia foetida (Wild Almond Tree or Tropical Chestnut).

Contact Details:




Auroville 605 101,
Tamil Nadu, India

P.S: My mum got me the earrings from Cane and Bamboo shop at 45, Ethiraj Road, Egmore, Chennai – 600 008. Their phone number is         +91-44-28211649.

I hope you were inspired and woo-ed by these beautiful little seeds. What do you think about these? Do you know anyone else who makes handmade jewelry using seeds?

Bead Table Wednesday 4 May 2011

Join the Bead Table Wednesday Group on Flickr!

Hello there! Happy Wednesday!
I’m really thrilled that I remembered to take pictures for my second Bead Table Wednesday
This week, on my bed (I do most of my jewelry making on my bed as I mentioned in my previous post)- there are some blades, some play-dough, grid paper, rollers and some completed pendants.

The paper with the grid is one of my newest finds. I got the idea from the Crafty Goat website- from this post on how to make perfect squares of polymer clay.Basically, you use a grid outlined with a Sharpie as a guide to cut your clay into perfect squares or rectangles for pendant projects. This way you can get many pendants of the exact same size! Isn’t that a lovely tip?

My work surface
My work surface- with a roller, play dough, a blade and grid paper

I started making swirly pendants from epoxy putty on Saturday. All my grand plans of buying more beads and supplies on the weekend flew out of the window as I managed to fall sick with the flu. Right now it looks like pendant week on Craftzy!

My favorite swirly pendant
My favorite swirly pendant

So let’s see – this one’s my favorite cos it’s probably the one with the most defined swirlies. I am not going to paint it as I feel it’s pretty as it is. I somehow like the grayish white look of the putty when it hardens. (I would love to imagine it as some kind of ceramic or marble!).

Epoxy pendant with an angled stripe design
Epoxy pendant with an angled stripe design
More epoxy pendants that I made
More epoxy pendants that I made

I made 3 other pendants and I am planning to paint these with Pebeo Acrylic paints and am considering giving them a gloss coat too sometime…

Practice pendant that I made from play dough
Practice pendant that I made from play dough

By the way, I had mentioned play-dough being on my work surface today (no, I didn’t flick it from my nephew!). I use it to practice my pendant designs and other ideas that I want to try without messing up my epoxy compound. The texture is smoother on the epoxy and the play dough is more squishy and delicate but I like to practice this way all the same.

How about you, what’s on your Bead Table?

Why I want a blog buddy

I’ve been blogging on Craftzy for about a month now and while I am not yet at a loss for blog topics – I’m at a loss for interaction! There have not been many comments on my blog and I feel as if I don’t have anyone to share my “crafting/jewelry” quirks with.

So here’s an open invitation- I’m looking for blogging buddies who:

  • blog about their handmade jewelry, paper craft, sewing or handmade craft business
  • can keep me accountable for blogging 🙂
  • want to guest post on Craftzy or have me to guest post on their handmade craft blog
  • share links to other craft blogs or sites that will help each other and readers too
  • suggest ideas for posts or work on projects together
  • want to motivate me and get motivated in turn
  • wants to learn more about blogging and networking
  • will offer comments and feedback on my posts.

You can live anywhere in the world – that is not a concern for me. I would just like to have a craft “pen-pal” 🙂

P.S: This post might sound creepy and desperate but I assure you that I am neither. I am a writer by day and jewelry designer +paper crafter by night. Please read my About Sarah page for more info and stop by my Gallery to see my work too!

Please leave a comment or email me at craftzy@gmail.com if you would like to be my blogging buddy 🙂 Thanks!

Bead Table Wednesday 27 April 2011

Join the Bead Table Wednesday Group on Flickr!

This is my first post since I joined the Bead Table Wednesday (BTW) Flickr group.

For those who haven’t heard about this group yet: Every Wednesday, we get to show off what is on our bead table – take a photo and share it with fellow bead addicts on Flickr. You can show a close-up of what you are working on or the full messy table – it’s up to you! Head over here to view the group in action.
Most jewelry designers, I am sure have a proper work table and storage set up. This is something I need to do as soon as possible. Why? Cos I prefer to make my jewelry on my bed! It’s a unique combination of laziness, comfort and creativity that makes me function like that.I don’t actually have a table to show on Bead Table Wednesday 🙁
My current working space involves a cookie box. Here’s the lid in all its mini-worktable glory and here’s a peek into my bead box (the ex-cookie box).

My current working surface- a cookie box lid! You can also see a button bracelet that I was working on and 2 pairs of earrings.
BTW- 27 April 2011-My current working surface- a cookie box lid! You can also see a button bracelet that I was working on and 2 pairs of earrings.
Bead Box BTW- 27 April 2011
Bead Box BTW- 27 April 2011
Tanirika - bracelet made with flat rose buttons and jump ring roses
Tanirika - bracelet made with flat rose buttons and jump ring roses



And please do check out the finished bracelet(I have some tweaks to make before I list it) And, by the way- Tanirika means flower in Sanskrit!

By Hand, From The Heart- Exhibition in Chennai


I wanted to let you all know about a great event that’s coming up- no not the IPL (it’s great enough but not what I’m referring to!)
Fabulous Folks of Chennai- get ready to empty your pockets and still have a good time! By Hand, From The Heart: An Exhibition of Art, Design and Lifestyle Products is happening in namma Chennai on the 8th and 9th of April. This exhibition aims to promote artisans and individual entrepreneurs who create unique handmade products.
I am just SO happy that Chennai is warming up to such events for products that are handmade but unlike the usual handicrafts created by traditional craftspeople.
I’ve tried to collect links for each of the designers/product lines that are going to be featured in this exhibition. I am familiar with the work of some of the participating designers like Deepa of 10Fingers! and Vandana of Vandanas Paper Bags but most of the other names are new to me.

10 Fingers! Paper Jewellery
10 Fingers! is a line of exquisite paper jewelry made by Deepa. This line consists of handmade paper earrings and pendants that are water resistant and sturdy.

Vandana’s Paper Bags
Started in 2009,by sisters Vandana and Priyanka,Vandana’s Paper Bags specialize in Handmade paper bags, Decorative Envelopes and Gift packaging for special occasions like weddings, birthday parties and so on. Eco friendly and available in various hues, these paper bags are sure to catch your eye!

Chennai Gaga
Crazy about Chennai? Want to give Chennai themed souvenirs to your friends from outside India? Then Chennai Gaga is a must see! Tees, bookmarks, mugs, coasters and more will be presented at this event.

The Vartikaa Team of artists use unique media and give different twists to traditional art. Coffee art, warli paintings are their forte.

Linen Box
Linen Box, a Chennai based company designs premium cotton sheeting & duvet sets in white. The line includes Duvet Covers, Fitted and Flat Sheets, Pillow cases, cushion covers, Bath linen, Table Linen, and Baby cot sets.

SUDHAS presents gorgeous hand painted saris, salwars and accessories that are refreshingly elegant.

Eco Craft and Weaves

Designer clutches, mobile covers and pouches made using traditional fabric from Gujarat, ceramics, stylish mugs, jugs and glasses that fuse traditional materials with modern aesthetics.

Cannanore – a Lore From a Loom
Cannanore showcases hand woven home furnishings with beautiful natural fabric. This line merges traditional weaves with contemporary and stylish design.

Desi Popsicles
If you get tired with all the shopping, Desi Popsicles are sure to quench your thirst and put the spring back in your step! Try their traditional ice golas in a rainbow of flavors.

Chaat Le
Prefer something more solid? Are your taste buds pining for something tangy or spicy? Enjoy with tasty chaats from Chaat Le!

Corner Stone,
Besant Avenue Road,

8th and 9th of April, Friday & Saturday, 10am to 8 pm.

Contact Details:
Mobile: 9176567018
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/pages/By-Hand-From-The-Heart/180960371950780

Romantic Nostalgia – Etsy finds

No. I haven’t fallen prey to Valentines Day hype… yet. What I have fallen in love with is the whole concept of romanticism and nostalgic whimsy in design and handmade goods.

I have never been a “girly” girl ever but the past few days I have gotten so hooked to romantic, Victorian and vintage style finds on Etsy. Some of the creations are so gorgeous it just hurts my brain to even think about them.

Like these earrings on Etsy by missficklemedia

Filigree wreath and lime green chalcedony earrings
Filigree wreath and lime green chalcedony earrings

and these earrings by serendipity2twenty2

Isle of Capri.. gorgeous Amazonite earrings
Isle of Capri.. gorgeous Amazonite earrings

Suddenly I find that I LIKE flowers! A whole lot of them! Blooms all over the place.

These just drive me nuts:

Sweet Indecision earrings by bombalurina

Sweet Indecision earrings - with roses and bows
Sweet Indecision earrings - with roses and bows

And guess what else? I am into lockets now!! I have ordered from these great sellers :

Vintage Silver Waffle locket from PeppermintSoda

Vintage silver waffle locket
Vintage silver waffle locket

and Antique Brass filigree round lockets (Nickel Free) from Beadsupplies

Antique brass filigree lockets
Antique brass filigree lockets

Hang around for some more time and I’ll put up pics of the lockets after they arrive and after I can get to working on them. Till then visit these shops to see how they will inspire you!

I love these dainty ballet shoes- locket by seaunicorn

French Blue ballet shoes and locket necklace
French Blue ballet shoes and locket necklace

For Valentines Day gifts I think the Amour locket by MiaBeads is perfect!

Amour. Locket Necklace
Amour. Locket Necklace

Isn’t this Thumbelina Locket Necklace by KristinFriesen simply beautiful?

Thumbelina Locket Necklace
Thumbelina Locket Necklace

Oh! I almost forgot! I like Steam-punk too these days. Some awesome steam-punk jewelery for you to feast your eyes on and sigh hopelessly that they are yours.

Clockwork Sparrow locket by TheGoldBug

Clockwork Sparrow Copper Locket- Steampunk
Clockwork Sparrow Copper Locket- Steam-punk

Mother of Gear earrings by Wenchie

Mother of Gear Earrings - Steamteam
Mother of Gear Earrings - Steamteam

Am I the only one who likes vintage chic? Do any of you share my current addiction?? Can Steam-punk and Vintage Chic be the next big thing Indian Jewelery needs?

Which is your favorite piece from this list?

My First Handmade Earrings

After 2 months of hard work, I am in a rut again…jobless and “benching”. As a result I have developed a new hobby – making what is referred to as “junk” jewelry. I made around 22 pairs of earrings in two nights simply because the wire wrapping bug bit me late at night..All thanks to S who so sweetly took me to Raja Thread Stores(RTS) in crowded Ranganathan Street and took care to see that I wasn’t trampled….

I was inspired to start making earrings by two people-

  • My friend Methodless Madness returned from the US bringing chocolates and even yummier Beads!!!She got me 3 packets, each one more awesome than the other, costing almost 10 $ (approx 441.391 Rs) worth of beads from San Jose. The deep brown hexagonal beads were so gorgeous I can’t tell you…I gifted one pair of earrings made from them to my friend, I am keeping one and am going to give the last one away to another friend. She got me some lovely irregular shaped beads that she calls “pomegranate” and some Moroccan-blue ceramic beads with lime green Chinese dragons on them. I have used 3/4ths of the pomegranate ones and they have been a huge hit so far. I haven’t used the blue ceramic beads cos I couldn’t get headpins/eye pins long enough to go through them with ample space to knot up.
  • The other person who inspired me does not know me and I do not know her personally…I stumbled on this post by Iaminchennai when I googled…She has a beautiful blog showcasing her many talents that include knitting and making ceramic beads. Thank you Iaminchennai- without your directions I would never have found the beads when I did.

Coming back to my earrings, I gave away about 5 pairs to my friends including S..

I took the rest of the earrings to my office on 1st September and my boss saw them..The next 5 minutes went by in a whirl as ALL of my earrings except the ones already booked for my friends were bought..Such an amazing feeling to have SOLD your designs however juvenile and amateurish they may be!And to think that the sale happened only because of your boss’ curiosity!
Here are some of the earrings I made.

My first Earrings

Just a Note: I haven’t had any professional training in Jewelry design. I watched some videos on You Tube and decided to try my hand at making wire jewelry..Of course it helped that I always had a thing for beads.

P.S: I went to Parry’s Corner this weekend to pick up more beads cos I used almost all the beads I bought from RTS. will post the shop details soon. Any idea about the best shops in Parry’s Corner for bead buying??

Comments on my work and directions to places where I can buy more beads are very welcome.