Welcome to Moondog Treasures: yoga jewelry for women and men, mala bracelets, Sanskrit mantra necklaces, and wire-wrapped beaded crosses. I'm a yoga teacher, and these are my creations. On this blog you can read the story behind the jewelry. You'll also get to meet other talented Etsy artists whose work I admire. Contact me at moondogtreasures@live.com.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Moondog's Jewelry Article Gets Published

I'm so honored to have my article, All About Precious Silver Clay with Moondog Treasures, published in this month's issue of Jewelry Business Success News with Rena Klingenberg.  I have subscribed to this publication for several years.  It's actually the first place that I ever heard about Etsy.  Thank you, Rena!!

Bronze paua shell and sterling silver
wire pendant by Rena Klingenberg

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas from Moondog Treasures

Our family has a Charlie Brown tree.  It's a scrawny little Christmas tree, but we love it.  We treasure this tree because it's the one where we hang all of our hand-made, sticky-finger-kid-made ornaments from throughout the years and from the current year. 

We have a regular Christmas tree too, with all the expensive ornaments and trim, but our favorite will always be the Charlie Brown one.  I hope that when my kids are grown that I will continue this tradition and keep creating hand-made ornaments each year.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Featured Etsy Artist

Featuring Fire Bug Candles on Etsy.  I met the artist, Tina, at a local yoga studio where I practice.  I have one of her double-wicked candles and the smell is delicious!  It's a blend that smells like butter and vanilla.  Yum!  Tina just recently opened an Etsy shop, and I'm so happy for her!  I think this candle (pictured) would make a perfect Christmas gift:
Peppermint Bark Candle
From the artist, Tina
"My Dad called me a firebug when I was a young girl, as I loved poking at the woodburning fire and watching the flame of burning candles. I started making candles as a hobby a couple of years ago and shared them with friends and family. I just began my Etsy store in November of 2011, ready for the holiday season. I hope you enjoy the candles as much as I enjoy making them!"

For more from her shop, click here.

Friday, December 9, 2011

A Tip for Recycling PMC Silver Clay

PMC (Precious Metal Clay), or silver clay, is a recycled product.  See my posts here and here for details about how it originated.  It is so much fun to play with (I mean work with) this product.  You can imprint just about anything into the clay, put it in a kiln, and it comes out looking like this...

One of my favorite things about PMC is that you can actually recycle and reuse your "mistakes" (pieces that were chipped or just didn't turn out right).  I had been saving those "mistakes" for just such an occasion.  I read countless tips about how to reconstitute unused dried clay - adding distilled water to the clay, wrapping it in cling wrap and waiting for it to magically turn into the expensive clay that I had bought.  It didn't work as I had planned.  I found it difficult to get the right consistency. Using a little rolling pin (pvc pipe) to press out the lumps helped, but the clay was too sticky to work. It kept clinging to my hands, until... 

I discovered a new tool - the toothpick!  I kept working the clay, poking it with the toothpick, exposing it to air to dry it out, then spraying with water for more moisture. Voila!  I came pretty close to re-creating the original product.  Here are a couple of photos of my new discovery and how it worked for me:

I especially loved how once the clay was in ball form, I was able to use the toothpick like a handle and pick up all the loose bits of dried clay that sticks to the cling wrap.

Hope this tip helps those out there who are frustrated with the challenging process of reconstituting pmc. 

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Just Learned Something New - Bird's Nest Pendants

Thanks to a tutorial on Sarah Ortega's blog, I'm trying my hand at wire-wrapping bird's nest pendants.  What do you think so far?

Really kind of fun to make.  I'm thinking of putting them up for sale in my shop, http://www.moondogtreasures.etsy.com/ .

I'm the creator behind this blog, and Moondog Treasures: yoga jewelry for women and men, mala bracelets, Sanskrit mantra necklaces, and wire-wrapped beaded crosses. I use this blog to share what I do and to feature other talented Etsy artists whose work I admire. Contact me at moondogtreasures@live.com.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Current Best Seller at Moondog

This OM necklace was a great seller from Moondog Treasures at the most recent trunk show I've done.  It was a favorite among the students at a yoga event that involved 108 Sun Salutations in celebration of the beginning of fall.  The necklace features a wire-wrapped glazed ceramic bead with the om symbol.  Om is the peaceful vibration of all creation.
Yoga necklace with sky blue om pendant on silver ball chain.

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

This week I'm featuring Etsy Artist, minimalista.  She's from one of my favorite places, California.  She includes images of the Mexican painter, Frida Kahlo, in many of her items.  I own a Frida t-shirt from minimalista.  I love the individualism that shows up in Frida's artwork, her love of nature, and her portrayal of suffering.  Here is an example of one of the Frida scarves from this etsy seller:
From the Frida Kahlo website:  Frieda Kahlo y Calderón was a Mexican painter, born in Coyoacán.  Perhaps best known for her self-portraits, Kahlo's work is remembered for its "pain and passion", and its intense, vibrant colors. Her work has been celebrated in Mexico as emblematic of national and indigenous tradition, and by feminists for its uncompromising depiction of the female experience and form.

"I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best."  --Frida Kahlo
This is my favorite painting by Frida.  I got to see this portrait at a special exhibit in San Antonio many years ago.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

This week's artist is Flor Larios.  I love her paintings of the Virgin Mary.  She's a big fan of Frida Kahlo too!  Just like me!  From her site..."I'm a self taught artist & illustrator. I love to paint and create decorative art pieces for the home and for you to wear.  I like angels, fairies, madonnas, nativities, butterflies, and ladybugs. I love art! I get my inspiration thru Frida Kahlo's art and religious icons."

Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal
  I've admired this artist for quite some time, choosing this particular item to showcase because it has a personal significance for me.  My sister, her daughter, my daughter and I got to visit the Shrine of the Miraculous Medal when we were in Paris last summer.  The site was so unassuming,  nestled in among the other buildings along a Paris sidestreet.  
Outside the religious site

A sculpture inside the courtyard

Inside the courtyard - a close-up of a carving of the actual medallion that many Catholics wear
Inside was a beautiful chapel where we happened upon the beginning of mass (in French, of course).  There was school of children visiting.  We listened to their angels' voices singing every song during the mass.  By far, this was absolutely my favorite part of Paris. 
Inside the chapel

Statue of St. Vincent de Paul

Friday, October 7, 2011

Finishing the Precious Silver PMC Pendants

The previous blog entry showed precious silver in its clay form, after it had been shaped and stamped.   These next few photos show the finishing process.
(Above) Fresh from the kiln. Fired at 1200 degrees F for 20 minutes

(Above) Soaking in a baking soda solution after being dipped in liver of sulphur.

The two pics below are the finished pieces.  The "namaste" is a custom order for a friend.  The "Be the Change" is for sale in my shop.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

All about Precious Silver with Moondog Treasures

PMC is Precious Metal Clay.  This material was created by the Mitsubishi Corporation in the early 1990s as a way to recover silver, gold, and platinum from old computers, medical instruments and photography supplies.  A method was developed that allowed the combination of precious metals into a type of clay that could be used to make jewelry and other products.

The PMC comes to me in clay form.  It contains of particles of pure silver mixed with an organic binder. I take images and letters and press them into the clay (see photos below), then fire in my kiln at 1200 degrees. When the binder is burned away during firing, it leaves a pendant of 99.9% pure silver. 

It's nice to know that PMC is made with sustainable/recycled materials.  I am even able to use the leftover clay and “mistakes” again by re-constituting the clay and creating a new product.

Clay in its raw form, before firing.

I'm adding a few new designs to my PMC pendant collection:  Mahatma Gandhi's quote, "Be the Change"/"harmony" with lotus flower/tiny om pendants/"moksha" (sanskrit word for freedom) with om symbol/"ananda" (sanskrit word for bliss) with lotus flower.  Some other best-sellers I'm including are the "namaste" ring pendant, Ganesh pendant and om symbol pendants.

All of these will be for sale soon (after they're fired in the kiln and polished) in my online shop, Moondog Treasures.
PMC in its finished form.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Moondog at Yoga Event at Lifetime Fitness

Moondog Treasures was invited to be a part of a yoga event at Lifetime Fitness last weekend.  It was a special gathering of people for 108 Sun Salutations to celebrate the Fall Equinox.  I met lots of fun, dedicated yogis there and got to share some of my creations with them.  Here are some pics of the featured items from the trunk show.

Gorgeous blends of dyed jade, turquoise and jasper.

Soldered pieces - Shanti peace, Ganesh

Agate bracelets with sari ribbons

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

This week's featured Etsy artist on my blog is a chef, Sparkles Kitchen!  I traveled to Paris last summer with my family and I'm really missing the macaroons! 
From the chef:
"I’m not a professional cook and I can’t explain why I love baking so much! I guess it’s because i feel that there is nothing more heart-warming and satisfying in the world when people I care smile and enjoy the food I made for them. I am the happiest person in the world when they say “yummy” to my food!"

Take a look at all the flavors:

- Valrhona 72% Dark Chocolate
- Black Sesame
- Macha Azuki (Green tea with Red Bean Cream)
- Passion Fruit
- Raspberry
- Salted Caramel
- Sumiyaki coffee
- Rose
- Lavender
- Coconut
- Madagascar Vanilla
- Ume (Japanese Plum)

Saturday, September 17, 2011

The Soldering Iron is Hot!

Here are a few photos of what I've been up to on a rainy Saturday.  The soldering iron heats up to 465 degrees F.  I take images and secure them between two hand-cut pieces of glass.  Then they are soldered together with lead free silver solder and a super hot iron!!  The pendants go on faux leather black or brown cord to become a necklace.  I also create Christmas ornaments with favorite photos that I solder together.  They'll be featured soon in my shop.


Saturday, September 3, 2011

Wrist Malas for Men

From my Etsy Shop:

kavi mala bracelet for men

For the week of September 7-14, Yoga Jewelry by Moondog Treasures is donating 54% of all sales of mala bracelets to charity in honor of  the Global Mala and in memory of several dear friends.  This year's donations will go toward the American Brain Tumor Association http://www.abta.org/

Monday, August 29, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

I really love this Etsy artist!. I've bought several of her screen-print t-shirts - one with windmills, another with hands in namaste, one with a California bear, and another with the Eiffel tower.  Today I'm showcasing her talent and her contribution to recycling/repurposing.

About the Artist, ZenThreads:
Welcome to our "GREEN" custom screen printing shop! Our vintage and urban inspired goods are hand printed to orderOur vintage and urban inspired goods are hand printed to order.

We use a printing process which is free from harmful environmental chemicals or solvents. Not only is it safer for the planet and our shop, but water-based inks look and feel like they're part of the garment. Your items will come pre-wrapped in a reusable drawstring cotton bag, hand screened with our logo. Ready to give as a gift, or keep for yourself!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Malas for Charity in September

For the week of September 7-14, I'm donating 54% of all sales of mala bracelets from my store to charity in honor of  the Global Mala and in memory of several dear friends.  The Global Mala is an incredible yoga event that will be going on across the world on the weekend of September 24th and 25th. Click on the picture below to see more malas (for women and men) from my store or to purchase a mala bracelet.
I've gone to California many times to study yoga with my teacher, Shiva Rea, the coordinator of this event, (photos are all throughout this blog - scroll down). It is very close to my heart.

Friday, August 19, 2011

“What does it mean to be a real human being, to live that huge Heart of spontaneous virtues, to be a gift to the planet, to be someone who is a vessel of Shakti and wisdom and service and love. This is our consideration.” ~ Paul Muller-Ortega

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

This week's artist is Mae Chevrette.  I found this piece inspiring.
About the artist:  Hi! My name is Mae, and I am a 25 year old full-time artist living and working in Boston, Massachusetts. I am very curious and love all things creative, fun, and interesting.

I grew up in Seattle, Washington and moved to Massachusetts for college, with a few summers spent living and playing on an island in Georgia. I've taken about a dozen roadtrips alone in between those three places and I think it helped create a love of geography, old maps, found objects and hidden stories, which I try to incorporate into my art as much as possible. Each painting combines inspirational words, beautiful photographs and lots of bits and pieces of things found along the way.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

From the workshop

Origami Om Necklace
this necklace has a soldered glass pendant with the symbol for "om" on one side and the word "bliss" on the other. both images are on delicate origami paper. om is the universal sound of all creation.

the images are secured between two hand-cut pieces of glass that are then soldered together with lead free silver solder. the pendant dangles on an adjustable silver ball chain with lobster clasp closure.


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Etsy Seller of the Week

This week's Etsy seller is Love for Earth.  I just recently purchased some of their reusable produce bags.  Happy to do my part in saving the planet!
From the seller:  I'm a full time mom, and a Full time Etsy seller! I also teach sewing and love patternmaking. I began making reusable bags over 2 years ago and I am thrilled that I am still sewing something I love for others to enjoy and at the same time...not WASTING plastic bags!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

From the workshop...

My latest addition to the shop:  bracelets made with sari ribbon.
introducing my new *shakti* line of bracelets, accented with remnants from actual saris. shakti is the concept, or personification, of divine feminine creative power. a sari is a dress worn primarily by hindu women; consisting of several yards of light silk material that is draped around the body.

these chunky agate stones show off beautiful shades of pink, orange and brown. these large beads are strung on clear strong elastic cord which is double-knotted at the end.  for more spiritually-inspired jewelry designs, see http://www.etsy.com/shop/moondogtreasures

Friday, July 8, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

This week's featured artist comes to us from coastal Maine, Sojourn Curiosities.  Here's a little bit about her: "I specialize in wire & mixed media jewelry. My pieces are built around historic hardware, vintage buttons, sea glass, and found natural materials, such as shells and stones. Each piece has a story to tell. "

Friday, July 1, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

I love to feature Etsy artists on my blog.  This week's artist is Treehouse 28.  I own some of her creations - custom-made.  Great quality and very unique style. 

From the artist:  Treehouse28 clothing was born here at Etsy.  Etsy is special to me, a place where I can interact personally with customers and expand on my creativity. Everything I make here is custom, unique to each customer's specifications.

I design all of the pieces from scratch while incorporating my passion for uniqueness, beauty, simplicity and comfort. Every piece is hand made, cut and sewn... from start to finish :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

From the workshop...

The latest from Moondog Treasures:

moonlit OM fine silver pendant on rosary beaded chain
OM symbol pendant made of silver precious metal clay on a black and silver beaded rosary-style chain. om is the universal peaceful sound of all creation.

this is from my collection of PMC (precious metal clay) pendants. PMC is more pure than sterling silver. it contains particles of pure silver mixed with an organic binder. when the binder is burned away during firing, it leaves a pendant of 99.9% pure silver.

i've pressed a stamp with the om symbol into the clay, then fired with a torch. after that, the pendant was tumbled to buff it to a high polish.

Monday, June 20, 2011

From the workshop: thai silver om flower pendant on black agate strand

hand-strung beaded necklace of black agate gemstones with a unique karen hill tribe silver pendant. stamped into the flower-shaped pendant is the symbol for om, the universal, peaceful sound of all creation.