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Salt Mine Candelabra

Published October 5, 2013 by kurolace

Salt Mine Cathedral Candelabra

How-To: Make Satin Cord Necklaces for Pendants

Published April 27, 2013 by kurolace

Today I am going to show you why you don’t ever need to buy premade cord necklaces for you pendants! Seriously people, premade ones are a rip off, and if you are selling your item, they cut into your profit margin significantly! Making satin cord necklaces (or cotton cord or leather cord ones, for that matter), is really very easy and only takes a few ingredients!

From top to bottom: Rattail (nylon), Mousetail (Rayon), Bugtail (Rayon).

From top to bottom: Rattail (nylon), Mousetail (Rayon), Bugtail (Rayon).

Before getting into the tutorial, lets talk satin cord for a minute. This is my cord of choice. I typically prefer it over cotton and leather because it is much more flexible and therefore drapes better. Its even better than chain or ball chain in many cases, but of course this depends on the overall look you are going for.

There are two types of satin cord: Rayon and Nylon/Polyester. Rayon is a bit softer and the type that I prefer. You cannot heat seal rayon, because its mostly natural fiber, but you can use clear nail polish on the ends to keep it from fraying (Or glue, or that “no fray” stuff).  Nylon/Polyester cord has a slightly stiffer body, can be heat sealed, and is the type you’ll find at Hobby Lobby in the ribbon section.  Both Rayon and Nylon/Polyester Satin cord comes in a variety of colors, and in 3 sizes: Bugtail (1-1.4mm, also called “Petite #0”), Mousetail (1.5 -1.9mm, also called “Lightweight #1”), and Rattail (2mm also called “Heavyweight #2).

Check out The Satin Cord Store to buy either rayon or nylon satin cord by the yard, in 10 yard coils, or 70-yard rolls. You can also get it from Firemountain Gems – I believe theirs is nylon – in all three sized & many colors. Hobby Lobby only carries the heavyweight nylon satin cord, but its only $1.99 (or less if you go when its on sale), for 24ft (8 yards), and they have a decent variety of colors.

The rest of the supplies for this tutorial can be bought from your favorite jewelry supply store – In my case, Beadaholique, but Hobby Lobby or Michaels may also have what you need.

Okay… lets gather our materials, to make a satin cord necklace you will need:

I apologize... the lighting only gets worse from here.

I apologize… the lighting only gets worse from here.

 

  • Petite #0 / Bugtail Satin Cord (you can choose any length, of course – 18″ is usually the shortest length for this type of necklace)
  • Glue, nail polish or other sealing method
  • 2 Coil cord ends to fit cord (for Bugtail, you need 1.5mm)
  • 2 jump rings
  • 2″ Extender chain
  • Lobster clasp
  • Chain Nose Pliers
  • E6000 or similar permanent glue with some working time (not superglue)

To start, cut the Bugtail cord to the length you desire. Remember 18″ is usually the shortest length for these pendant necklaces. I actually prefer 21″… Obviously you can choose the length you prefer. We will be adding a 2″ extended chain, so remember to add that in when calculating the total possible length of the finished necklace.

When putting the glue on the cord, and inserting into coil, try to avoid the end of the coil on the left side of this picture.

When putting the glue on the cord, and inserting into coil, try to avoid the end of the coil on the left side of this picture.

Seal the ends of the cord. Use glue or nail polish or “no fray” if you are using Rayon cord. Use a lighter, candle, or heat tool if you are using nylon cord. A light touch is best for this step, especially with the glue or nail polish – too much and it’ll wick into the cord and discolor it.

Apply a small amount of E6000 to one of the ends of the cord. The slip the cord into the coil end. Push it all the way in. Clean up any excess glue on the cord.

Do the same with the other end of the cord. Allow the ends to complete dry… I usually leave them for about an hour or so just for good measure.

See where the coil wire end has been clamped down?

See where the coil wire end has been clamped down?

Take your pliers and clamp down the end of the coil onto the cord. I try to avoid splitting

the cord, and I try to keep the cord centered in the coil…. but it doesn’t always come out perfectly. Don’t worry too much about that. Its only crazy nit picky people like me who notice!

Add jump rings, then extender chain and lobster clasp

Add jump rings, then extender chain and lobster clasp

Put a jump ring on each end. The add a lobster clasp to one end, and the extender chain to the other end.

Voila! You have a nice satin cord necklace for your pendant!  Make a whole bunch at one time, in a few colors, so that you have them on hand to add finished pendants to later!

In case your wondering, this cord is actually "lavender" you just can see it due to the glare.

In case your wondering, this cord is actually “lavender” you just can’t see it due to the glare.

 

Etsy Finds: Wall Decals – From Cute to Goth

Published April 10, 2013 by kurolace

For a while I’ve been thinking of doing some easy redecorating in my room – I say easy, because its not worth doing a total re-haul. (I am still living in my childhood bedroom in my parents’ house) One way to do this would be with wall decals, which are removable. Etsy has a lot of vinyl decal stores. And if you start searching for “wall decals” you’ll notice a few trends… cherry blossoming trees… birds, branches, kiddie stuff, words… A lot of the designs are very similar store-to-store…so it takes a while to find the best. I found a selection of decals I think are nice, which I’m sharing here with you. Some are more “normal” trendy designs, some would be good for lolita decor, and some are a bit darker 😉

Under the Sea decals from Simple Shape. $148

Simple Shape. $148

To start, here is a large, cute set from SimpleShapes. This Under the Sea set cost about $148, but has a lot of stickers in it, in multiple colors. I know it is presented as being for kids… but I would totally get it if I had a room I wanted to decorate in an aquatic theme… maybe like a hallway even.

 

 

birchtreesbirdsdeer

innovativestencils. $139.99

I found tons of tree themed decals. I like the cherry blossom types, but I also like the birch tree types. You can find just plain trees, trees with birds, and trees with birds and deer, etc. Here is a Birch Trees with Snow Birds and Deer decal set from innovativestencils for $139.99.

 

Stars in 2 colors from looksugar. $28

looksugar. $28

 

Back to cute-sy…. Here are some star decals which would work for any room…. You could get them in pastel colors if you want a girl, gothic lolita or pastel goth look! Or deeper colors are great too… This is a 97 star set (in two colors) from  looksugar for just $28. The nice thing about this kind of set is that you could split the decals up to use in different rooms or on accessories, mirrors, etc.

 

Human Skeleton decal from VinylWallAdornments. $59

VinylWallAdornments. $59

On to something a bit more quirky. Whether your into darker stuff, or maybe a med student, or maybe both!… Here’s a human skeleton decal from VinylWallAdornments for $59. I suppose the more tame of you could use it for Halloween decor.

Burtonesque tree from VinylWallAdornments. $85

VinylWallAdornments. $85

Also from VinylWallAdornments, this Burtonesque tree caught my eye. Its $85. ( This store has decals which are slightly more “artistic” in nature in my opinion.)

 

 

seanhexed $25

seanhexed $25

Next I came across this Spirit Bottles decal from seanhexed. It costs $25 and looks like it’d be great across the back of a mantel or wall shelf… This store has some other goth & alternative themed designs

 

 

pillboxdesigns $29.99

pillboxdesigns $29.99

Finally, the coolest for last! There are several bat themed decals available on Etsy. Normal, flying bat silhouettes, cutesy cartoon bats hanging on a line… But I love this one best… Its sort of a play on those bird cage decals you can get (yes I do like those too…) but way better… this Bat Cage decal is from pillboxdesigns and costs $29.99. You can choose to get it in 2 colors: one color for the cage and chains and one for the bats. 12 feet of chain and 11 bats lets you customize the layout a little bit… plus you could save a bat or two to decorate in another area.

You Always Have Friends Around You

Published March 10, 2013 by kurolace

I often have extremely strange dreams when I nap in the afternoon. Even for naps that only last 5, 10, 20 minutes… Today was no exception. I struggled with how to present this to you, and in the end decided to transcribe it, just as it happened / sounded/ seemed to me when it occurred. Of course, this means its in a strange and choppy style, somewhere between bad poetry and prose. But perhaps this helps capture the meandering nature of the entity featured… Also, unfortunately i can’t provide you with the images that should accompany it. If anything, I would have liked to find a silhouette shadow of a man, sitting in the window sill’s light, smoking.

Like many of my dreams, this straddled the line of creepy and comforting.

 

I dozed on my bed, in the afternoon sun.

And it wasn’t long before it began.

I saw on the wall, the shadow of a man,

through my half closed eyes.

Not quite right, the shape wavered, and dragged.

 

It has become my practice,

at such times,

to feign sleep.

 

I was on my side, and soon turned over a bit more,

only to find myself suddenly ice cold, and aware,

of the ragged breathing, which was not my own.

And then, a calloused grey finger, dragging slowly, but gently, on my forehead…

T…i…g…h…t

 

“I can’t breathe. Could you move over, please?

I like to lay here next to you, you know.

Oh, and I know you can see me

sometimes,

particularly in the shower…

in the evening, when its a bit later, and a bit darker,

there, in the bathroom above the garage.

I like to watch you wash your hair,

its such lovely hair, I do like it.

So I watch you wash your hair,

 

And sometimes, I feel, a bit like a man again.

 

At night, you say your lonely, but you know,

You always have friends around you.

Oh no, don’t be afraid, you’ve got nothing to fear

from the ones who gather here.

These Dead, you see, are neither bad, nor good.

we simply don’t know what to do with ourselves.

 

But we found you, and now we follow you.

 

Oh, and once or twice,

when something, not so nice

has come to haunt you,

we’ve always helped, to keep you safe,

because we wouldn’t know what to do

if we couldn’t always be around you.

 

Oh, we’re Clarence, and Jim, and Lily,

and then there’s him,

and a relative of the late John Addams.

In your room, in your kitchen, in your car,

At the gym.

Through all the various things that you do,

You always have friends around you.”