Friday, January 8, 2016

Fine and Dandy Jewelry's Release of Chinese New Year Jewelry for 2016 The Year of the Monkey

Chinese New Year 2016 Jewelry by Renee Hong
Fine and Dandy Jewelry's new collection of Asian themed jewelry.

The Inspiration for my Chinese New Year Jewelry:

I have been wanting to launch a line of Asian themed jewelry for quite sometime, now. I love
researching antique jewelry online, and am particularly inspired by the early 1900's jewelry by
Czechoslovakian artists Max and Norbert Neiger and others. Many of the beads and materials they
 used in their workshops are still available. I especially love green glass, known as Peking Green

Glass. I use Cherry brand glass when I can find it. Green is my favorite color. Here's a Pinterest board

I have just for jewelry made in this style: Peking Green Glass Pinterest board Have you ever heard of
Joseff of Hollywood? He created the jewelry for Hollywood stars in the mid-1900's, think Grace
Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor, Shirley Temple, and so many more. My monkey sweater clip was inspired by his work. 

I have been collecting items to make Asian and Egyptian style pieces for some time; the hunt for 
these wonderful little beads and treasures is half the fun! Another element in jewelry design that catches my attention is tassels, which happen to be quite on trend right now as well. So, with 2016
being the Year of the Monkey (red fire monkey to be exact) and my stash being finally sufficient to
begin production, here goes! I promised to release the jewelry collection from Fine and Dandy
Jewelry and Art a bit early to give shoppers time to purchase and receive their jewelry in time for
Chinese New Year on February 8, 2016. Celebrations typically begin before that, and go on for a few

More about why I chose this:

 While my name may lead you to believe otherwise, I am not Asian, in fact. Myheritage is 7/8 German with a mix of English and Scotch-Irish; my husband is from South Korea (the good guys). One of my friends joked that I'm an Asian born in a white body, LOL....but Asian food has been a favorite of mine for a long time. I had a friend May, from Hong Kong, that made the most amazing scallion pancakes. She also made special traditional Chinese soup for me after I had my first child. She introduced us to the Chinese money envelopes (Hong Bao) for Chinese New Year--what a fun tradition! I love to learn about other cultures, foods, customs and celebrations. I think it makes the world a much richer place to experience! Another inspiration for making this collection was watching Korean dramas with my husband, particularly "Empress Ki" back in 2013. I was addicted to watching it every week! The architecture, scenery, food, clothing, jewelry, and of course the exciting story line whisked me away to another time and place. I have a customer and friend who is Chinese that gave me suggestions and encouragement for my Asian jewelry as well. I'd love to meet her someday!

Encouragement to stay on task: 

 It also happens that my collection launch date coincided with "FUF" which means "Finish Up Friday" over at the B'sue Boutiques Creative Group on Facebook. Jewelry designing members show their messy worktables on "WTW"--"Work Table Wednesday" and then are challenged to show the finished items on Friday as well as pin the entries to Pinterest boards.. There's even prizes for participation! Anyone who knows Brenda Sue Lansdowne will attest to her amazing generosity! So I will be qualified this week! See my post from last spring about her challenge class that taught me how to create a cohesive line of jewelry.

Components used: 

To make these pieces, I used matte gold plated brass, Czech glass, silk tassels, porcelain Maneki Neko "Lucky Cat" beads, gemstone beads, tensha beads, crystal, vintage chain, vintage Lucite cabs, and more. I search for only the best quality supplies for my jewelry making.

Family Time, and a great place to visit in San Antonio:

After all the hard work of researching, designing, making, photographing, and editing we decided it would be fun to get out and enjoy some family time at the Japanese Gardens. So here's some personal photos. I know you're thinking--Hey, the sign says Chinese Gardens, right? There's an interesting story behind this. A Japanese family used to live here. What a beautiful place to live, right? Well, after the Pearl Harbor attack in 1941, they were forced to leave. A new sign shown here with the name "Chinese Garden" was put up. In 1983, it was decided that the original name of Japanese Garden would be re-instated. It's also known as the Sunken Gardens here in San Antonio. I first visited in 1991 when I was stationed at Fort Sam Houston Army base. I loved visiting with my friends. Then, over the years, something happened and the gardens went into disrepair; no water or koi fish, it was so sad. After moving back this year I was beyond happy to see how nicely it has been restored. Another visitor told me today how she remembers when there were so many koi fish that you couldn't even see the bottom of the ponds. Sadly, there are only a few now; but I reassured her that one day there would be many again! And did you see the stunning waterfall in the garden? My youngest daughter loved the sound and the sights of it so much that we could barely get her to turn to us for a photo. I also should have planned better and fixed her hair. It was kind of an impromptu decision to go. Oh well! If you ever visit San Antonio, Texas, make sure you stop by this FREE garden. You won't be sorry.
Here I am with my two youngest daughters.
Sisters! Too cute!

Daddy showing the koi to the girls.
Someone took a rare family photo, how nice!

She loved that waterfall!
I love this one!

Could you imagine living here? Japanese Garden in San Antonio, Texas.

Where can I shop for the jewelry?

 I'd love it if you would take a look at my Etsy jewelry shop as I will be adding the Chinese New Year jewelry starting today. I will be adding more to the line, as well. Some will be reproducible, others one-of-a-kind since many of my supplies are limited vintage items. 

Where did you find the awesome graphics?   

I purchased these beautiful papers from Brigitte at Baer Design Studio's Etsy shop.
The clip art is from the talented Jasonz at Etsy's Yen Art Haut. 
I am so pleased with their work that I wamted to give them a shout-out! The collages were made by me, using their great elements.

Thank you for stopping by!