Thursday, 27 October 2016

A milestone birthday

baked chocolate cheesecake strawberries birthday cakes

Today I'm sharing a little snapshot into the life of the Two Cheeky Monkeys family after Mr Cheeky Monkeys celebrated a milestone (read "getting old") birthday!  I'm so blessed to have this quietly zany man in my life, and it was fantastic to be able to celebrate his life with a little (maybe not that little) shindig at TCM HQ.

birthday party food spread table cake fruit chips dukkah crudites dips

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Wuthering Heights...With A Twist

I know you all know by now just how much I love working on custom creations.  But sometimes, a custom order enthrals me much more than others due to the back story behind the commission.  This latest custom creation was one of them, capturing my heart with the loving and romantic motivation my customer had in reaching out to me.

image cufflinks cuff links wuthering heights quote literature emily bronte two cheeky monkeys with a twist whatever our souls are made of his and mine are the same

If you're a literature buff who knows Wuthering Heights well (or at least all the famous quotes), you will notice something a little off with the quote in this set of cuff links.  Can you see it???  For those who can't, the quote should read, "Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same."

image cufflinks cuff links wuthering heights quote literature emily bronte two cheeky monkeys with a twist whatever our souls are made of his and mine are the same

However, this set was commissioned as a wedding gift from a loving sister to her brother.  And she asked to alter the quote to read hers instead of his as a representation of her brother's love for his fiancee and bride-to-be.  So really, how could my heart not melt, knowing that these cuff links were created for a loving family eagerly awaiting a special day and the inclusion of a new family member!

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Words, Words, Words

image bridesmaid locket necklace bridal wedding would you be my bridesmaid ask a friend to be your bridesmaid filigree botanical two cheeky monkeys

This past week has been a bit tough, business-wise, with various dramas going on behind the scenes which make me question my decision to run a handmade business.  But, seeing how much my Cheeky Monkeys love having me around all the time, and receiving beautiful comments about my work from so many of you has encouraged me and I found the energy to work on a few new items I have been wanting to add to the store.

image bridesmaid locket necklace bridal wedding would you be my bridesmaid ask a friend to be your bridesmaid filigree botanical two cheeky monkeys

The first of these is a little quirky and a little fun all at the same time.  For many women, asking their sisters and/or closest friends to be their bridesmaids is a very exciting thing, especially if their loved ones don't live in the same state or country as they do.  So I decided to create a customisable bridesmaid locket, gorgeously filigreed on the outside and adorned with a matching leaf charm and bead of choice, and on the inside, asking your BFF if she would be your bridesmaid.  Fun, isn't it!

image watch necklace pendant charm to kill a mockingbird atticus finch harper lee jem two cheeky monkeys

For the literature buffs, I have also been working on more watch necklaces featuring beloved characters.  This offering is one for the Atticus Finch fans, and features an antiqued copper watch face teamed with gorgeous tiger's eye beads and antiqued copper beads.  I love how the antiqued copper finish complements the tiger's eye beads (long time favourites of mine for wearing and using in jewellery making).

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Sundance-Inspired Kisses and Hugs Necklace Tutorial

If you remember back to my Kisses and Hugs-inspired earring tutorial way back in July, I promised that I would share a tutorial for a matching necklace.  Well...I've finally gotten round to putting the promised tutorial together!  So, without further ado, let me show you how to make your very own Sundance-inspired Kisses and Hugs necklace to match those earrings you made.

image tutorial sundance-inspired kisses and hugs necklace diy freshwater pearl red beads

Supplies:
- one potato-shaped freshwater pearl, approx 8mm
- 4 x dark red Czech glass rondelles, 4mm
- 6 x medium red Czech glass rondelles, 4mm
- white nylon beading thread (Nymo's nylon thread or Beadsmith's beadstring are both good)
- 40cm delicate gold chain (I used a figaro chain from my stash, but use whatever you have or like)
- gold-plated necklace extender
- lobster claw clasp
- 5mm gold-plated jump ring
- beading needle
- liquid superglue or fabric glue

Method:

image tutorial sundance-inspired kisses and hugs necklace diy freshwater pearl red beads
 
1. Line up your beads on a beading tray in the following order: 3 x medium red rondelles, 2 x dark red rondelles, freshwater pearl, 2 x dark red rondelles, 3 x medium red rondelles.
image tutorial sundance-inspired kisses and hugs necklace diy freshwater pearl red beads thread beads onto beading thread
2. Thread a beading needle with the beading nylon.  Thread your beads onto the nylon in the order you set out in step 1.

image tutorial sundance-inspired kisses and hugs necklace diy freshwater pearl red beads tie beading thread onto chain end

3. Divide your chain into two equal lengths.  Tie the beading thread onto the end link of one chain, making sure to tie a secure double or triple knot.  Snip off any spare thread and dab with a small drop of superglue or fabric glue to secure the thread onto the chain.

image tutorial sundance-inspired kisses and hugs necklace diy freshwater pearl red beads tie beading thread onto other chain

4. Push the beads up to the knot you just created, making sure not to leave a gap.  Repeat step 3 with the other end of the beading thread.  Make sure to tie the knot as close to the beads and chain, ensuring that there are no gaps between your beads (but don't make it so tight that the bead alignment warps).

image tutorial sundance-inspired kisses and hugs necklace diy freshwater pearl red beads attach clasps to chain ends

5. Attach the necklace extender to one end of your chain and bead combination.  Then, using the jump ring, attach the clasp to the free end of the chain.  And there you have it, an elegant, but different way to wear freshwater pearls!

image tutorial sundance-inspired kisses and hugs necklace diy freshwater pearl red beads

As with the Kisses and Hugs earrings, you can use different coloured beads or a different finish of chain to create a necklace which suits your look and wardrobe.  Don't forget to share if you make one of these necklaces for yourself!

I'm joining in tutorial Tuesday fun here.

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Don't panic, but there are only 10 more weeks till Christmas!

When it comes to Christmas shopping, I think there are two types of people: the ones who think it's ridiculous that the stores are already selling tinsel and Christmas sweet treats in September, and the ones who can't get enough of it all year round.  But whichever category you fall into, thinking ahead is always the best way to go if you want to give the gift of Two Cheeky Monkeys or Domum Vindemia pretties this Christmas.

image christmas tree vintage decorations room photos

So, please take note of the following dates and start planning your handmade Christmas shopping early!
For customers in Asia, Oceania, Europe and North America: please have all your shopping done by November 29th.
For customers in Australia: you have until December 12th to do your shopping.
Purchases made after these dates may still reach you in time for Christmas, but they will definitely have to go via Express Post if you want to receive them this side of the new year.

Image source: http://myposhomedia.com/vintage-christmas-decorations-easy-to-make/

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Locket lovers rejoice

Today I am sharing two new creations in my space which will have the locket lovers in raptures of delight (I hope). The first is an addition to the store which has been in the works since Mother's day this year, when a friend asked me if I could customise my mother-daughter locket sets for grandmothers.

image grandmother locket necklace quote jewellery jewelry two cheeky monkeys handmade for her

After some research, I have settled for the sweet quote "A garden of love grows in a grandmother's heart".  It make me miss both of my grandmothers, the one I never got to know because she passed away just after I was born, and the one I knew who passed away when I was in my early twenties.  And it makes me love the relationship my kids have with my mum.

image grandmother locket necklace quote jewellery jewelry two cheeky monkeys handmade for her

My other locket offering is for those who love miniatures and personalised pieces.  I teamed cute vintage lockets with typewriter key-inspired images to create a darling little ring to hold your favourite person's initial(s).  This ring comes in a choice of upper or lower case letters as well as a choice of black or beige typewriter keys.  So tell me, whose initials would you choose?

image initial locket ring handmade typography two cheeky monkeys monogram

Thursday, 6 October 2016

DIY Beaded Bar Necklace

I was a little shocked to find that it has been nearly three months since I last shared a DIY with my lovely readers, so I have been busily working away on projects to share with all of you.  Today I am sharing a very easy beaded bar necklace project, perfect for adapting to any bead colour or type you love to use.

image beaded bar necklace diy tutorial two cheeky monkeys

Supplies:
- 6 x 7mmx11mm faceted rondelle Czech glass beads
- 15cm length of 18-20 gauge beading wire
- chain (I used 2 x 21cm lengths, but pick a necklace length that you like)
- lobster claw clasp
- 1 x 5mm jump ring
- 1 x 10mm jump ring
- jewellery pliers

Method:
image beaded bar necklace diy tutorial two cheeky monkeys
 1. String your beads onto the wire.  Bend one end of the wire at a right angle, approximately 2-3cm from the end.

image beaded bar necklace diy tutorial two cheeky monkeys

2. Using your round-nosed pliers, bend the short end of wire round into a loop.  (You may find it easier to remove the beads when doing this step.)

image beaded bar necklace diy tutorial two cheeky monkeys

3. Hold the loop with the flat nose pliers in one hand, then carefully wrap the short end of the wire around the main length to create a coil.  Snip off any excess wire after wrapping 3-4 times around the main wire.

image beaded bar necklace diy tutorial two cheeky monkeys

4. Push the beads firmly against the coil you just created.  Then repeat steps 1-3 to create a wrapped loop at the other end of your wire, as close as possible to the beads.  Gently press the beads and wire to create the "bar" shape you want: straighten against a ruler to create a traditional bar necklace, or press the middle and then ends to create a gentle curved shape.

image beaded bar necklace diy tutorial two cheeky monkeys

5. Attach one chain to the loop on one side of your beads.  If your chain is unsoldered, you can simply open up a link and attach it to the loop.  If your chain is soldered, you will need small jump rings to attach your beaded bar and chain to each other.

image beaded bar necklace diy tutorial two cheeky monkeys

6. Attach the clasp to the end of one chain with the 5mm jump ring.  Then attach the 10mm jump ring to the other loose chain to create your necklace closure.  Now wear your necklace with pride and feel free to share with me on social media if you make one of these pretties for yourself!

Don't have the skills to make your own? There are a few versions of this necklace in-store, or contact me to commission one in your favourite colours.

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Buntings for little ones

Last week I shared the various jewellery creations which had been inhabiting my creative space.  So this week, I wanted to share two new buntings I've been working on, which are now available in-store.

image the tale of peter rabbit bunting green beatrix potter handmade domum vindemia australia etsy

Both of these buntings are customer favourites, with the Peter Rabbit bunting having several iterations in different lengths and tape colours.  This current one features bright green tape to hang the bunting, chosen because it nicely reminded me of the grasslands and farms in Beatrix Potter's stories.

image paddington bear bunting domum vindemia michael bond children homewares handmade

The Paddington bunting has only been a recent addition to Domum Vindemia, but already proved itself to be popular and hard for me to source new Paddington books to re-make.  There is also a Jemima Puddleduck bunting in the works, which I will show off another day.  Which bunting do you prefer?

*** Stay tuned for an elegant necklace DIY coming up on the blog later this week. ***
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