16 August 2015

Stay tuned...lots of new tiaras on the way!

I have been busy indeed making lots of new tiaras! Stay tuned, I am very excited to show them off in a few weeks' time. This year has been a struggle, and I've been neglecting my favorite hobby: tiara making. This is to make up for that, and there will be lots of new stock for Halloween.

A small taste of what's to come: some new tiara designs in a stack.

I also made another crab claw tiara:

A custom order for a customer. I made the three-clawed tiara for her originally, and she really just wanted the two-clawed one, so I made another!

04 August 2015

Purple Empress

Queen Hermione Tiara

I have once again gone back to a tiara that I made years ago, to revamp it. This was a tiara I originally made for an Alice in Wonderland costume for Hallowe'en, circa October 2011. You can see the original tiara below. I was never 100% happy with the design, so I never listed it for sale. I used lots of fun jeweled baubles: vintage clip earrings, mismatched pendants, and odds and ends. The band was originally wrapped in a bright blue ribbon, which matched well with the Alice theme.

To remake this tiara, I added another band to the bottom of the tiara, so that there isn't a "ballerina" shape to the tiara anymore. Because I didn't want the blue ribbon to show anymore, I spray painted the new band and the blue band silver (by masking off the parts I didn't want sprayed). To the band I then added a double row of purple rhinestones. The tiara is a now a lovely purple and blue theme, colors I don't often use in my designs. I also added some purple rhinestones throughout the tiara to help pull everything together.

The finished piece is quite magnificent, if I do say so myself!

The original tiara, circa October 2011.

The tiara itself is very large and grand. The design is also finely detailed and delicate, creating a very royal look. This would be a perfect tiara for a fancier Empress costume.

03 August 2015

Mermaids and Flowers

Crab Claws Tiara

Who knew people were going to like the crab claw tiaras so much? This one utilizes three real crab claws into the design. I ran low on supplies and did not have two even remotely similar crab claws, so I went the asymmetrical route, which I think works very well!

Golden Hydrangea Tiara

This tiara was actually inspired by a Pinterest post. You know the post where they show how you can make little metal wire outline flowers, then fill them in with nail polish? I didn't quite believe it, so I tried it! It does work; however, the tiara is only as good as the strength of the nail polish, so I decided to mod podge the whole thing, therefore reinforcing all the flowers. And of course, I like when things are spray painted gold, so spraying it gold pulled it all together. A sweet little delicate thing! Tiny glass aurora rhinestones decorate the middles of some of the flowers.

Seastar Tiara

And let's not forget about the mermaids! Oh, how I love mermaid hair accessories. This one centers around a nice large papier mâché sea star that I bought ages ago. This was always the intention for the sea star, so I painted it a nice opalescent blue color, put some glass rhinestones on it, and attached it to one of my handcrafted wire tiara bands.

Nice green sparkling seaweed sprigs are intermixed with faux turquoise and creamy white pearls, and I used some recycled green netting (you know the ones that your avocados come in?) to imitate...fishing nets, I guess. It sounds very weird now to say that I am imitating fishing nets on a mermaid tiara, but anyways, it does look good.

06 July 2015

More Creativity!

I've been neglecting not only the artistic creation (haven't been making too many new tiara designs) but the blog has been getting forgotten as well. The last post was from February! So sorry.

I buy things I am partial to, and I found these beautiful titanium-coated quartz crystal beads, so of course I bought blue and turquoise ones. The first piece I made with them was several months ago, and it's an asymmetrical headband. I've seen this type of headband in fashion magazines quite a lot recently, and wanted to jump on the design bandwagon. This one is a bit more elaborate, and is a traditional tiara design, with the pieces wired onto a very nice comb that I found off of Ebay, of all places! To fill in the gaps, I wired on little crystals in the same color around the base of the quartz.

The piece itself sold quite quickly, which was awesome. The biggest encouragement for me is when I make a sale, it gives me so much motivation to create more!

Red Queen Sceptre

Meanwhile, I've been wanted to get into the accessories market for a while. Many other princess-themed Etsy shops sell not only cute tiaras, but the wands to go with them.

Naturally, I went with the Red Queen theme, and made a simple gold and red wand that is about 14 inches long. It is made completely from wire and rhinestones, with some other craft findings. Definitely a lot of potential in this market to do some crazy stuff, so I've got the wand/sceptre idea in my head for future designs.

And of course, a tiara that matches well with the sceptre. This is actually a similar tiara to three others I have made in the past, what, 4 years? This is a made to order version, and I had the ingenious idea to not use a real watch face (where it can not only be expensive to find a watch to use the face from, but also consistency with what watch face is used and the color scheme, etc.). Instead, I used my handy Shrinky Dinks and made a watch face! So I get my classy Roman Numerals face that I love so much, and I can keep each rendition consistent.

Made to Order Queen of Hearts Tiara

05 July 2015

Love for an Artist

When I was in high school, a new bridge opened up in Tacoma, WA. It had been designed by an artist named Dale Chihuly, and included a popular installation by him called a "Persian Ceiling." Naturally, I fell in love with Dale Chihuly's work after that. His objects are colorful, bright, textured, transparent, translucent, and he works mostly in glass. Glass is a material I haven't much experience with, except for one 3-hour long lampwork glass bead class at Pratt Fine Arts in Seattle, WA.

Sunset Persian Flowers Tiara

In Seattle, there is an entire exhibition dedicated to Mr Chihuly's artwork, which makes sense because he does currently live in the city and was born and raised in the area. The pièce de résistance of the exhibition is a 100-foot long chandelier in the glasshouse. There are over 1,000 individual pieces of glass attached to a steel frame. The glass objects are very flower like, and are from the artist's Persian series, which he started back in 1986. The series is characterized by swirls of colored and clear glass, spider-web like texture, and colored glass around the entire edge of the piece called a lip wrap.

Not being a glass artist myself, and not having the resources to delve into creating a glass tiara that was inspired by this amazing chandelier, I set about trying to figure out what I could use instead to make those delicate Persian designs. First, I tried Shrinky Dinks, but the issue is that when heated in the oven, the flower shapes shrank too much, and actually ended up much too thick. They also didn't have the characteristic crimpy shapes that Chihuly's Persians have.

After a long pause, I then decided to try polymer clay. My sister had bought a large block of translucent white polymer clay. I made swirled canes with colored clay and translucent clay (similar to making a jelly roll), sliced off thin pieces, then carefully put these through a clay pasta roller. The pieces were ridiculously thin, which was perfect, and I carefully draped and shaped these over round balls of aluminum foil that were set out on a cookie sheet. I baked them in the oven for a good long time (that's the trick to baking polymer clay!), and out of the oven, I glazed them with polymer clay varnish.

Where does the tiara end and the chandelier begin? At Chihuly Garden and Glass, Seattle, WA.

I then had to hand paint the characteristic "lip wrap" on each one, so I chose yellow, red, and deep blue acrylic paints to do so. It was then simple to make a wire frame, glue each flower shape onto the frame, and voila!, it is absolutely perfect!

The tiara has about 25 of these delicate clay flower shapes!

08 February 2015

Artistic Inpiration

 Tiaras are all around us, you just have to keep your eyes open for them! These are some tiaras I've seen recently here in Seattle:

A handcrafted Swarovski crystal tiara made for George Ballanchine's ballet Jewels, at Pacific Northwest Ballet here in Seattle.

A handcrafted Swarovski crystal tiara made for George Ballanchine's ballet Jewels, at Pacific Northwest Ballet here in Seattle.

A hand crafted Swarovski tiara made for Pacific Northwest Ballet's production of Black Swan.

The prima ballerina Black Swan costume.

The tiara that Tilda Swinton wore while playing Queen Jadis in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe film. It is displayed at the Experience Music Project museum here in Seattle.

Robin Wright's Princess Bride costume, complete with the tiara. It is such a lovely, highly detailed gown. Also at the EMP, along with the Star Wars outfits below, which are on temporary display.

Queen Amidala's Regal gown that Natalie Portman wore in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace. The headpiece is made from gold and red lace.

Queen Amidala's Galactic Senate gown that Natalie Portman wore in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace. The headpiece is based off of traditional headdresses worn by Mongolian royalty. It is made from real gold.

A concept drawing for a Queen Amidala costume.

06 February 2015

Golden Crowns

Golden Trinket Tiara

I made some new tiaras in golden hues! The one above I made using jewelry and findings. I had these brass rings that I don't remember where they came from,  and I used these as the basis for the tiara. One top of these rings I have layered vintage earrings and buttons. From one side is a briolette drop, in a pale yellow quartz. The asymmetrical shape of the tiara is very attractive and high fashion.

Buttons and earrings in golden hues adorn the tiara.

This is another gold tiara, but instead of using vintage metal findings, I've used glittery gold craft sprigs and leaves. The tendrils that spiral out from the tiara add an amount of depth.

Fountain of Gold Tiara

29 December 2014

Tiaras just in time for the new year

OMG, a huge gap between tiaras this time around! I always have the ideas in my head, but I've been really busy at work, and visiting various doctors since my health insurance from my job kicked in in November. These are just two simple pieces I made last week.

Feather Tiara with Rhinestones
I've had these red sparkle feathers for a long time, they were just too cool not to buy! The trouble is, it took me forever to try and think up a design that would work for them. Then, the craft store I frequent started selling strips of colored acrylic rhinestones, so I've got a huge pack of red ones. I put them together, and voila! a lovely feathery tiara. 

Asymmetrical Quartz Tiara
A couple of times a year there's a gem and jewelry show in the city center, and I found these amazing titanium-coated quartz crystal beads/pendants. I had to buy them, of course, and I've been super eager to make some items from them. This is just a beginning, I have lots of really awesome ideas for these crystals. I have the purple-y ones, pictured, as well as blue colored ones.

The tiara itself sits asymmetrically, in a high fashion way. I think I saw this idea in an issue of W magazine. It's very punk, simple, and super stylish.

And I bought all these super cute bottles, and came up with Mermaid in a Bottle charms! These are so much fun, I remember having a mini bottle with a penny in it when I was a child, and it was one of my favorite items. This is even better! Inside the mini bottle are mermaid treasures: glittering seaweed, crystals, goldtone chain, a shard of crystal, a real crab arm, and a faux creamy pearl. A cultured freshwater black pearl acts like a charm on the necklace. Super fun!

These are available for sale in my other Etsy shop, Sparkle Pony Castle. I want to keep Moondust Jewels just all about the tiaras, so I don't want to branch out with other items and clutter up my shop.

Mermaid in a Bottle Necklace

20 October 2014

Elaborate and Fancy Crowns

Rainbow Candy Tiara

 I almost forgot to blog about my new tiaras! I made these in September, and it had been awhile since I made a tiara, since I got a new job and its obviously been eating up my free time!

The first one, the Rainbow Candy Tiara, is a tiara I've been wanting to make forever. I love color and rainbows and an overabundance of detail, so I used almost an entire pack of plastic raver beads to make this tiara. It is kind of a "Josephine" style tiara (named after the Empress Josephine of France, who was famous for wearing tiaras low across her brow), with the central point coming down a bit lower onto the forehead than I normally make my tiaras. A rainbow upcycled necklace drapes down the front and sides of the tiara, creating a beautiful effect. As you can see from the above picture, it is a very striking tiara.

Silver Queen Tiara

The second tiara is another silver trinket tiara. You all know that I love to make these silver themed tiaras, as they all turn out quite differently. It is all dependent on what items I have on hand to make the tiara, and I am constantly collecting silver items for these tiaras. 

Empress of the North Crown

The last tiara is a very elaborate winter queen tiara. I told myself that I wanted to start making really elaborate pieces, since they allow me to really be free with my art, and explore form and size and materials. This tiara utilizes a strand of frosty beads to drape across the forehead for a lovely effect. This tiara has already sold, but you can see more pics of it here.

30 July 2014

Never too much color or glitter!

 I don't think there is such thing as too much glitter or mermaid in any tiara. Am I right?

This tiara uses all my left over scraps of sparkling green craft findings. 

Even the tiara band is painted a sparkling green.

My favorite addition is the green star added to the top.

Ocean Flora Tiara.

Mini Princess Crown Comb.

This is a cute mini crown! It is attached to a faux tortoiseshell comb and is covered with a pretty translucent Angelina film.

This is a revision to my wing tiara! I've added a bunch of lavendar rhinestones, and purple Angelina film to the wings. It is like the coolest thing ever now. I mean, really.

Mercury in Flight Tiara.

And of course, you can never have too many rainbows or colors at once. I really don't think so. I have rainbow pants that are probably more rainbow than this tiara. 

I used up all my delectable scraps of craft findings, plus some sparkly beads, to make this delicious treat.

There's even a yellow glass skull bead with ruby glass rhinestone eyes. I went all out with this tiara!

This tiara is not for the faint of heart!

Rainbow Burlesque Tiara.

And I finally took better photos of my Purple Wedding Parure! I spent a long time trying to decided whether I should sell this, since I wore it to my own wedding, and it has a lot of sentimental value, but seriously, except for sometimes wearing the earrings and necklace, I never wore the other pieces after my wedding. I would LOVE for someone else to wear this at their wedding, or to wear with a really elaborate, expensive Halloween/Cosplay costume.

I love the brooch. I think people nowadays don't wear large brooches often enough. In fact, this is so large, I think it classifies as a stomacher!

Purple Wedding Tiara and Parure Set.

The whole set, including Tiara, brooch, earrings, necklace, and bracelet.

And the crowning glory of the whole set, the tiara. I am so proud of this tiara, I will miss it more than any other tiara when it sells. It truly is a masterpiece, and it is one of a kind.