Tag Archives: making jewelry

Happy, Creative 2013!

A heartfelt Happy New Year to you! I hope you manifest your wildest dreams this year. I hear the planets are willing! My astrological friend, Lisa Zimmerman, says it’s a time for great beginnings, creativity, starting something new.  How about taking a little chance on your own intuition, and create something from inspiration, rather than what you think you should do? Feel it, rather than think it?
Just last night, I taught a mother-daugther duo how to make their own silver rings, in their own styles. How inspiring was this pair? Let me count the ways! No fear, no worries, no competition, no regrets. They just did it, and left with lovely new rings. Rings that adapted to the situations they were in, and came out perfect!

I forgot to take pictures, and so I was pleasantly surprised with I received a text from Janet, the mom-student, that contained a picture of her ring. It’s pretty! It fits! It came out perfect!
I’m reminded that I love to teach a willing student whatever they wish to learn. And, at the same time, I am still a student of the world. I love the give and take, the offering and receiving, that this sets up in me. A pretty sweet existence, and a great kickoff to 2013.
While it’s great to reflect on accomplishments of 2012 – and I will – I’m much more passionate about possibilities. And I feel it’s going to be a great year to create them. In order to grease those skids, I’m getting my intentions and plans in line with that. All with a generous amount of wiggle room thrown in so I can take advantage of unexpected opportunities, happy accidents, and windfalls of good along the way. That’s where creativity comes into play.
Creativity happens when we take the ability to prepare for many eventualities, get ready, get set, then let go! I hope that appeals to you in 2013, and that you’re able to take advantage of some creative opportunities in your life. And let me know about them – I’d love to hear from you!

“The Club” and Nancy Lee’s Rules of 5-0

My friend Pilar Lopez, owner of  The Pastry Station, came to my studio on Friday and bought herself a pair of earrings (pictured below). She asked me what I was doing over the weekend. “It’s my birthday, and I’m gonna be 50!” I said. She rested her hand on my arm and looked at me with her twinkling brown eyes and said, in her lovely Colombian accent, “welcome to the club!” We laughed, and Pilar talked about how liberating this fifth decade had been for her, how she and her friends had embraced and celebrated it. My plan exactly!
This evening, my significant other asked me what I’d learned in the past five decades. Had to laugh at that one, recalling that I’d asked my dad that same question 26 years ago when he turned 50. He said, “I learned that I don’t know anything.” Some things just stick with you.
Over the past five decades, I’ve learned slightly more than I used to know, but way less than is necessary. Since it’s my birthday, and because my S.I. asked, I came up with a few key ideas anyway, and decided that they are my new “Club Rules.” Nice part is no one has to follow these “rules” but me.

  1. Trust yourself
  2. Trust others – due to number 1, one can spot the difference between the angels and the devils better
  3. Calmness is a choice
  4. Stand on the skinny branches of life (or, take a chance, already! dream big! start that master work!)
  5. Love, love, love like there is no tomorrow

And, when all else fails, repeat number 5, because all we have is today, and love is all that really matters. Live in it, revel in it, have fun with it, do what you love, be what you dream. Today, you are wished all that you want to have in your life, and the means to make it yours.

"Dawn Waves," by Nancy Lee
“Dawn Waves,” by Nancy Lee

Art Jewelry on YouTube!

Art Jewelry Magazine – watch a beginner attempt to saw metal for the first time

Art Jewelry Magazine sent me a newsletter today, and it contains a video with a young lady using a jeweler’s saw – for the first time! She is an editor at Art Jewelry Magazine, and was testing out a new product from Thomas Mann and being a good sport about it, too. This is particularly relevant to me and my students at the Indianapolis Art Center, as we have been working on jeweler’s saw techniques the past couple of “Jewelry Smorgasbord” classes – listening for the “ping” of success! Watch, learn, and enjoy!
P.S. I don’t especially like the body positioning shown in the video – I think the body should be squared to the saw frame, and the left wrist should not be at such an acute angle. Also, the strokes are on the short side. I always remind my students that they paid for the whole saw blade and to feel free to USE  the whole saw blade! However, this is a beginner after all – she’s still learning AND my techniques are not the same as every instructor’s technique…
Note: Mann teaches “no lubricant on the blade” in his classroom!