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! 

Friday, November 13, 2015

Fine And Dandy Jewelry's Reveal for the Superstition Blog Hop Sponsored by Paisley Lizard

Friday the 13th is finally here, along with my submission for the Superstition blog hop! A big thank you to my friend, Tammy Adams, of Paisley Lizard here for hosting this blog hop and making the adorable lucky black cats! I was thrilled when Tammy announced that she had made 13 lucky black cats, and would be giving them away to the first 13 people to comment on her blog. I got one! My teenage daughter has been ogling it ever since I got it.

Here's the necklace I made:
It reminds me of a cat stargazing at night. Think of the "Figaro" episode with Sylvester and Elmer Fudd!
I love the pink and black with the shiny gunmetal.

Twelve lucky stars and one on the extender. It's a 20" chain, plus the extension. Very comfortable and lightweight to wear!

Now, for the story behind the creation. I considered many superstitions that would have been fun to incorporate into a piece of jewelry. If I had just the right bit of ladder shaped chain, I would have used it (it's bad luck to walk under a ladder). I had some wood beads (knock on wood for luck), but they didn't go along with my design. I have some crackle beads (step on a crack, break your mother's back), but decided to keep it simple. Of course, I used the black cat. Many people believe it's bad luck for a black cat to cross your path. I mounted this one onto a midnight toned gunmetal filigree that frames it quite nicely. I added 13 (because it's a superstitious number) stars (because people wish on them for luck). They are pink rhodonite star beads, and doesn't the black and pink look pretty together?  You can find the chain at B'sue Boutiques Jewelry Supply as well as the jump rings.

Read this article for 10 superstitions about stars. I never heard of some of these! But I'm sure you've heard or said "Well thank my lucky stars..."

I'm not sure if I will list this in my Etsy shop or keep this one. I might just share it with my daughter! I hate to part with my limited edition kitty. 

This is  the list of participants in the blog hop. Start with Tammy, and then you can skip mine since you've already visited, and go on to Betony's next. I love comments, and so do the other hoppers, so feel free to comment on the pieces they've worked so hard on. Thanks again, Tammy, and thank YOU!

Tammy Adams (Hostess)
Renee Hong
Betony Maiden
Coral Law
Lee Koopman
Jeanette Belmont
Shai Williams
Beth McCord
Robin Lynne Showstack
Lori Blanchard
Deb Fortin
Michelle McCarthy
Maria Rosa Sharrow
Kim Dworak
Divya N
Karin Grosset Grange
Mowse Doyle
Rebecca White
Shawneen Fagnani
Catherine King
Brook Bock
Kari Asbury
Nan Smith
Carolyn Lawson
Linda Anderson
Ann Schroeder
Melissa Trudinger
Kathy Lindemer

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Change It Up! Blog Hop Reveal by Fine and Dandy Jewelry, and Sponsored by B'sue Boutiques

Change it Up! The final reveal is finally here!  I decided to create an autumn cornucopia brooch for my entry.  It fits right in with my new Autumn Garden line.  I used this raw brass stamping

from B'sue Boutiques.  It is raw brass, lead and nickel free, and American made from the original die machines.  Pretty, isn't it?  The goal for this challenge was to creatively manipulate the piece in a new way.  Colorize it, cut it, bend it, add patina or enamel, embellish--whatever you like.

My result is this: (click on photos to view them larger © Fine and Dandy Jewelry by Renee Hong)

Cornucopia Brooch for my Autumn Garden Line, fall 2015 by Fine and Dandy Jewelry.

I'm going to add better photos by Saturday.  I ran out of light.  I should know better, as a photographer; but these are better than nothing!

The filigree is rolled into a cornucopia.  I will try to show a different angle with more pics later.

In the B'sue Boutiques Creative Group on Facebook, we've been talking a lot lately about "caging," a technique involving "sewing" things onto a filigree backing with fine wire.  You can add beads, pearls, buttons, rhinestones, whatever you like.  This was a popular look in the legendary Miriam Haskell's jewelry line. I thought I'd give it a try.  I manipulated the filigree into the shape of a cornucopia...sort of.  I hope that's what you see.  I asked my 16 year old and my 9 year old what they thought it took a bit of prompting ("thing Thanksgiving!"), but they guessed it!  What could be better to add to a cornucopia than these fun  Carmen Miranda fruit beads from B'sue Boutiques!

Yes, they are plastic.  But they make the cutest little dangles.  I made some fun Day of the Dead jewelry from the once; it sold immediately!

I added some of my favorite India glass leaves, just wired right around the attached bails and they added a pop of color and some weight, since the plastic beads are very light.  In addition, I used some absolutely gorgeous Czech glass flower button style beads.  You can get them here and also here. The India glass comes in different colors; translucent and opaque. I love the whole selection

There's a touch of re-purposed silk sari ribbon there, in pretty autumn colors. I find that adding just a small piece of ribbon or lace to an otherwise "hard" piece can give an aura of romance and prettiness that is the perfect finishing touch.  My cornucopia is now brimming with fruit, flowers, leaves and the pretty green/purple ribbon.  How did I get the nice fall colors on the brass, you ask?  I used alcohol inks, blending until they looked the way I wanted them to.  This stamping has a lot of texture, so a mix of colors works well.

I admit, there is one last step to complete this brooch.  Brooches are said to be the "in" thing this fall 2015.  I just sold a brooch today.  So, what I need to do to finish this is add the pin back.  I have one ready to go, it has 3 holes on the back. I tried wiring it on.  It just didn't happen to turn out the way I wanted yet, so that is going to be finished up soon.  I am moving next week, so it may have to wait just a bit.

I learned a lot making this brooch; this is the first time I really tried caging other than adding some pearls to a pendant once.  It isn't perfect, but it looks nice; the wire is very thin and blends perfectly with the tones of the "cornucopia" as it's copper. It was kinda relaxing.  I have some more projects in mind for later.

I am going to come back and add some other photos with better lighting later today, maybe Saturday. Time was running short on me with the upcoming move and LIFE. : )  I sure am thankful to be a part of this group that B'sue got together. It's like a cornucopia of blessings being associated with Brenda Sue and all the wonderful members of the Creative Group.  Please take a look at the other entries in this blog hop below.  I can't wait to get back from my morning appointments tomorrow and start hopping!  Thank you for visiting.  Please leave a comment if you'd like; I'd appreciate it!


Brenda Sue Lansdowne
Jewelry Making Outside the Box

the rest of the Change it Up! BLOG HOP PARTICIPANTS:

Mary Deis
The Rose Sword
Jann Tague
Clever Designs
Lori Beekman
Renee Hong
Fine and Dandy Jewelry
Cynthia Wainscott
Exotic Peru Jewelry
Dana Hickey
Magpie Approved
Mary Beth Quigley-Spiker
Q Settings
Karen Eaton
KJewelry Creations
Shari Gardner
SLG Jewelry Designs
Alison Huie
Ally's Baubles
Pamela Anger
Novegatti Designs
Carole Carlson
Cindy Peterson
Howling Dog Jewelry
Marcia Tuzzolino
Aurora Designs
Charlotte Smothers
Sea Horse Ranch Life
Catherine Shattuck
Victorian Rose Boutique
Kelly Wymer
Winged Wisdom Enchantments
Clare Wells Nemeth
Papercrafting Magic
Erin Whitacre
Shattered Time
Lynda O'Mara
Lomara Creative
Ginger Hammond
Lynn Leigh Designs
Ingrid Anderson
Lilis Gems Artisan Jewelry
Deb Beechy
Harry Wood
Oscar Crow
Delyssa Maxwell
Past Time Fancies
Paula Gaskill
Lovely Layla Bugs
Irene Hoffman
Heart's Dezire by Irene
Alexandra Sefton
Imaginary Jewelry and Altered Art
Leslie Carver
Adorn Divine Designs

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Fine and Dandy Jewelry Announces the Winner of the August Social Media Share Contest!

Every month I have a contest.  There are several ways to participate:

1. Post a photo of your order in an Etsy review
2. Post it on Instagram and tag #JewelryFineAndDandy or @texasrose73
3. Tweet it and tag @reneeelainehong
4. Post it on my Fine and Dandy Jewelry and Art Facebook Page

I use a random number generator and choose one winner each month, who receives a $20 credit to spend at

Congratulations, C.A.!  Thanks for playing, and enjoy!

Thank you to Create The Cut graphic design for the template used above.

YOU could win next month!

And don't forget:  the 500th order in my Etsy shop is FREE!
It's getting really close. See details here: