Thursday, February 28, 2013

Thursday Random Post

Good Morning,

The Blog Ring is on hiatus for a couple of weeks and I have no one to feature today.

Instead, I have done the unthinkable and signed up for a twitter account.  It may not last long signing up was extremely annoying, and the site itself is awful.  Not intuitive and frustrating at best.

If you would like to follow, add to a list, or grow your own list of followers (I will follow you in return) you can now connect with the Alchemists Vessel via twitter.

Tweet to@AlixAlchemy

Follow us: @AlixAlchemy 

Don't forget to check out the side bar menus for links!

Thank you for stopping by and having a look.

The Alchemists Vessel would like to wish you a pleasant day.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Studio News - Two New Rings

Good Morning,

Today I would like to share two new items available from the Blackbird Metalworks division of the Studio.

"Princess Bride" - Pink Zircon and 10K Fine White Gold Ring.

"As you wish."  The farm boy said.

Simple, elegant, feminine and very pretty.  US Size 6.5 fits most ring fingers and would make a fabulous alternative for an October Birthday or that special question one might like to ask.

Zircon is a natural mineral, it is usually found in a crystalline form and comes in a variety of colors, the most common being hyacinth (yellow), but ranges from yellows to reds.  Not to be confused with Cubic Zirconia (CZ) a synthetic material

The vintage 10K Fine White Gold band has a pretty little spiral pattern along the shank and carries up to the prongs for an attractive accent and a lovely setting.

White Gold is an alloy, it consists of yellow gold and a white metal such as palladium, zinc or nickle.  The Karat weight refers to the purity of the yellow gold.  Fine Gold can range from 900 Fine to almost pure gold, which is much too soft to make jewelry with.

Love Honor Cherish Mans Wedding Band

Strong, sturdy, individual and one of a kind.  This solid Sterling Silver ring is made with the Ceremonial Vows in mind.  The three stacked rings characterize the phrase to "Love, Honor, and Cherish" each other, and reminds the wearer to do so every day.

Cut from a single piece of Sterling Silver half-round stock, each ring is individually hand forged, crafted and shaped on a steel mandrel, soldered and polished before being stacked and connected.

Appropriate for men or women the ring stands about 1/2" tall, but is lightweight enough to wear comfortably.

The center ring is stamped Sterling. Some surface tool marks are visible in the photos but not to the naked eye, these are not imperfections, but are the sign of a quality hand-crafted item.

Thank you for stopping by and having a look.  We hope we have inspired you to take a look at what else we have in the shop.

The Alchemists Vessel would like to wish you a pleasant day.

Find us on Facebook - Blackbird Metalworks

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Five Great Gifts List 7

Good Morning,

Today we feature Five fabulous gift ideas from Tanuki Jewelry

Geometric Broken Heart Pendant Necklace
Geometric Broken Heart Pendant Necklace Geometric Broken Heart Pendant Necklace Geometric Broken Heart Pendant Necklace Geometric Broken Heart Pendant Necklace Geometric Broken Heart Pendant Necklace
A hand carved and handmade solid brass broken heart pendant on a brass plated stainless steel necklace. It has a lovely rustic and geometric shape that gives the heart a little edge. Great for every day and so fantastic as a layering necklace! - (See last photo).

The brass heart pendant measures approximately 1.6cm at its widest, and 1.5cm at the tallest point. The thickness of the pendant is approximately 0.6cm thick. The pendant overall circumference is slightly smaller than a nickel.The necklace has a clasp to easily put on and take off. The necklace measures 24 inches. If you need advice on the length of the necklace, please do not hesitate to contact me!

Please note that the secondary spike necklace is not included in the purchase, however is available for separate purchase in my store.

I got inspiration from all the Valentine's Day items I was seeing all over the place. I figure this item definitely has a statement, and wanted to create a broken heart pendant that wasn't sickly sweet. I wanted to create a geometric, rough and ready type of pendant to give it some edge. As I carved the item out of wax, I then manipulated the wax to give it more character, and a more geometric shape to it. I then had the wax piece cast into brass and polished it by hand to a high shine. 

Sterling Silver Bow Ring
Sterling Silver Bow Ring Sterling Silver Bow Ring Sterling Silver Bow Ring Sterling Silver Bow Ring Sterling Silver Bow Ring
Need the perfect gift to show your love and commitment? What about an adorable Sterling Silver Bow Ring!

Small sterling silver bow ring ready for everyday wear. This is handmade especially for you. The bow measures approximately 1/2'' wide, and 1/4'' tall. This ring size is a size 5. An excellent gift for someone you love or a friend. Do send me a message if you are hoping to receive a larger size. I should be able to grant this, but please message me first prior to ordering.

This bow ring also looks great as a stacking ring (please note the stacking rings shown in the photo are not included).

This bow ring was made through a found bow object, and then soldered the shape onto a ring. I then made a mold and had it cast in sterling silver. Once this process is complete, I then carefully polish the ring by hand to a high shine. 

Pyramid Stud Sterling Silver Ring
Pyramid Stud Sterling Silver Ring Pyramid Stud Sterling Silver Ring Pyramid Stud Sterling Silver Ring Pyramid Stud Sterling Silver Ring Pyramid Stud Sterling Silver Ring
An edgy yet simple handmade sterling silver ring. Consists of a row of six pyramidal studs. Great or stacking or for wearing it on its own. Definitely a great statement ring, but with a simple and classic finish.

This was a difficult ring for me to make as I really wanted to give it symmetry. I had seen several stud rings around, but always something a little more dainty and feminine. This ring was hand carved out of wax... I did a lot of measuring to get the proportions correct! I had it cast in sterling silver, and then polished it to a high shine. I love the weight of this ring and it is as tough as it looks!

Organically hand carved in Brooklyn, New York.

Size 7.5

Hand made with love!

Abstract Geometric Ring
Abstract Geometric Ring Abstract Geometric Ring Abstract Geometric Ring Abstract Geometric Ring Abstract Geometric Ring
Handmade geometric and modern structural ring made of high quality sterling silver. Excellent for every day wear, or even for stacking. A nice modern and abstract ring that is definitely a statement piece, yet simple enough to wear every day.

Size 6.5

Hand carved and made in Brooklyn, New York.

For delivery times, please read my shop announcement. Contact me if you have questions regarding delivery times by a specific date.

Reversible 2 in 1 Sterling Silver Ring
Reversible 2 in 1 Sterling Silver Ring Reversible 2 in 1 Sterling Silver Ring Reversible 2 in 1 Sterling Silver Ring Reversible 2 in 1 Sterling Silver Ring Reversible 2 in 1 Sterling Silver Ring
A versatile ring that gives you the ability to wear two different styles in one ring. Organically handmade with love with sterling silver in Brooklyn New York.

One side of the ring is a simpler and softer rounded side, and the other side is a more geometric triangular shape for a bit of an edgier look. Comfortable to wear and simple enough to wear every day. This ring can also be worn as a stacking ring.

I wanted to create a ring that is convertible and reversible. This would give the wearer the opportunity to wear two styles in one. If you need a quick change in style, just flip this ring around! I made the ring shapes comfortable enough to wear in any way. This item was created and carved with wax, and then cast into sterling silver, and then polished to a high shine. If you need versatility, this is what you are looking for.

For delivery times, please read my shop announcement. Contact me if you have questions regarding delivery times by a specific date.

Size 7.5.

Monday, February 25, 2013

How To Make a Badge and Button For Your Site

Good Morning.

Today because I do not have pictures of new items ready to post, I thought a tutorial of another kind might be useful and entertaining.

As you may have noticed the side menus have changed, and there are several new buttons and a "Grab Our Badge" Box.  Want to make one of your own?

If you own a shop, have a blog or a site, badges are a simple and quick visual recognition of your shop or brand.

There are four (4) steps to creating the code for your picture / badge and the code box that allows others to "grab your badge" for their own site, blog or what have you.

For this tutorial I will be using the images for Blackbird Metalworks Badge.  I also copied and pasted the code using Text Edit for iMac, although any writing or note program should do.

Step One:

Choose a photo that you like.

Using your preferred photo editing program crop or re-size image to 125 x 125.  This seems the standard size.

Upload your picture to photobucket, iPiccy, or Picasa.  I prefer photobucket.  *Suggestion - Make a Folder titled Buttons or Badges or something, and keep your badge images there, forever.  If you move them you will break the link to the image and then your button or badge will not work.

Edit and add text if you like.

This is what my badge looks like.

Step Two:

Write the code for your image.  Here it gets tricky and I will try to explain as best I can.  This is the code you will use, replacing the RED text with your own address.

<a href="http://YOUR" target="_blank"><img src="YOUR IMAGE HTML CODE" border="0" alt=" NAME"/></a>

Copy the text above.  Insert your web address, site URL, or Blogger address where YOUR URL is, this will direct people to your site of choice when they click the buttonMy address would look like this:

(I can't type the whole code or another image will show up.)

Now return to your Image file (photobucket, what have you) and copy the HTML Code, third item in the menu list.

Paste the code between the quotation marks where YOUR IMAGE CODE goes.

target="_blank"><img src="YOUR IMAGE HTML CODE"border="0" alt=" name"/></a>

Now you can type a short NAME for your button here, like mysitesbutton. I used bbmbutton.

Your URL will direct people to your site of choice when they click your button.  The IMAGE CODE is just that, the URL Address of the picture, it doesn't do anything else except tell the computer where the picture is located.  If you move it from its folder you will break the link / code and the button will no longer work.

Copy and Paste your code into the appropriate place on your site.  For blogger go to
Choose the HTML Code Box form the Add Gadget
Paste your code in the box.
You have a button / badge / clicky thingy!

All done. If you would like people to be able to post your badge on their site you can create the following code.

Step Three: - Make a "Grab Our Badge" Text Box.

<textarea name="texture" cols="20" rows="4"
wrap="VIRTUAL"><a href="http://YOUR" target="_blank"><img src="http://YOUR IMAGE CODE" border="0" alt=" NAME"/></a></textarea>

Copy the text above. Using the same information you used for your picture, insert your URLS into the appropriate spot.

Your site Address - YOUR URL (
Your Image Code - YOUR IMAGE HTML CODE (copied from photobucket) and should look something like this
a123/your account/foldername/picturefilename.jpg
Name - The NAME you gave your button (bbmbutton)

When you have completed your code it should look something like this:

<a href="http://YOUR" target="_blank"><img src="http://YOUR IMAGE CODE" border="0" alt=" NAME"/></a>
<textarea name="texture" cols="20" rows="4"
wrap="VIRTUAL"><a href="http://YOUR" target="_blank"><img src="http:/YOUR IMAGE CODE" border="0" alt=" NAME"/></a></textarea> 

Step Four: 

OK, Now that you have both codes, return to where you would like to use it.  Paste BOTH codes into the HTML Box in blogger or other appropriate place on your site that lets you add buttons or code.
When you are finished your box should look something like this. 


The text in the box is what others will copy and paste to use your badge / button on their site.

NOTE:  WordPress Users, the GRAB BOX code will not work, it will simply create another picture. I don't know why this is, but the first part of the code will work for the badge.

Thank you for stopping by, we hope we have not confused you and that this information will be helpful.

The Alchemists Vessel would like to wish you a pleasant day.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Handmade Artists, A Site For Sore Artists

Happy Friday,

This morning I would like to share some of the wonderful things that has to offer.

Many of you claim you love etsy, Ok that's fair.  However the big orange E has turned away from its original goal, and become the Walmart of the internet.  Such a  shame.  Many artists, artisans, and makers of beautiful things have jumped etsy's ship, or been forcibly removed from the site or other sites due to one perceived infraction or another.  I would like to show you how simple it is for you as a buyer or seller to use Handmade Artists.  Buyer accounts are always free!

This is the Home Page or the top of it.  From here you can access all of the neat stuff on the site.  The Categories menu takes you to all the fabulous and must have items that vendors have for sale.

Let me first say that their service is absolutely impeccable!  Seller or buyer account holders will always receive the highest level of quality customer service and care that I have ever had the pleasure to experience.  They have also upgraded and expanded their servers, this has allowed for a faster site along with room to grow.

Buyers and others you will not be disappointed.  Structured very much like etsy, they have many amenities, like the Forum, Seller Shops, Highlights, and a Blog right there on the home page so you can keep up with the latest trends and advice or just reading about a topic that interests you.

You do have to sign up, which is easy, simple and super quick.

For the artists, if you are unsatisfied with etsy or other sites, art fire or what have you, take a look at what handmade artists has to offer:
Your Shop account is just $5.00 a month or $50.00  a year.  That is cheaper than listing 20 items on etsy and re-listing them every four months for a year.  A real value for the money, and you can list a lot of items, I won't say unlimited, there is a cap, but I don't think any one is going to list 10,000 or more items so it might as well be unlimited.  Best part is, your listing never expires, as long as your monthly shop fee is paid, your item is there forever!  Bonus!

The forum, talk about friendly, happy people.  Got a question, you will get an answer, have a problem, there is support, just want to hang out and chat, yup, they have that too.  There is even a scheduled forum chat every Thursday night.

Sign Up is easy, and although there is not a "transfer" files button, this gives you an opportunity to list your items fresh.  The item page is quick, easy and intuitive! Plus there are all kinds of categories in which to list your item, choose the one that is right for your item.  Get in now while it is still small.  578 shops and growing everyday!  Also a roll by or marquis is included, and your shop will appear in the list below on the home page!

  Sellers and Buyers, worried about security and your information?   The site is safe, secure, and uses Pay Pal.  I myself have made several sales and have found it to be a simple and hassle free process.  I know, I know, some of you have had issues with pay pal.  Don't forget that many of the artists are willing to make other arrangements to make sure the item you desire gets to you!

Highlights.  What is a highlight?  If you have used Etsy or looked at a friends "Treasury" you know what a Highlight is.  Created by Sellers and Buyers alike,  20 items are chosen from around the site and compile a list of favorites, give it a theme, or use it to enter one of the many contests the site hosts.

Selected items from the winner of Highlight Contest #29, the prize was a $25.00 Gift Certificate to any of the shops on Handmade Artists.

 Let's talk about Promotion.  You know the squeaky wheel gets the grease, and are there some squeaky wheels over there.  You can only promote yourself so much; but at Handmade Artists, they do it for you as well.  Your items are shared by the powers that be and forum members as well.  They post / share things on Facebook, Pinterest, have a Google Community page, and you can feature yourself on their blog (just fill out the questionnaire and watch Kimberly turn in to a wonderful article all about YOU and YOUR SHOP!)  The perks are almost endless, and the site is just a lot of fun too.

Participate in the Blog Ring, sign up to contribute to the site's blog.  Get connected with other artists in your area, post a photo of your newest item and watch the shares roll out.

Frankly there is no better place to sell or be a seller on the internet.  Buyers, all this is available to you as well, you don't have to make things to play on the site.  Join the Forum, see what those clever and crafty people are up to, throw out suggestions, talk about your favorite pet.  Whatever, the forum is there to cultivate communication and community.

I would also like to mention that this year Handmade Artists was nominated for a Shorty Award.  An award given by Twitter for the use of its site to promote small business on Social Platforms. Handmade Artists came in 8th.  Not too shabby.

Want to check out more?

Pinterest Page
Facebook Page
Google Community Page
Linked In
It's Better Handmade
It's Better Handmade!

On Fire For Handmade 
On Fire for Handmade!