Monday, June 18, 2018

Indie Designer Interview: Steampunk by Maja

I had the pleasure of meeting my namesake several years ago and I will always remember seeing her jewelry for the first time! It literally cast a spell on me! So, I invited her over for a small chit-chat.  I hope you enjoy it too!

1. Welcome Maja! Please tell my readers more about yourself.
My name is Maja Tasic and I come from Pancevo (Serbia). I had studied and qualified for a dental technologist - a profession I chose under the influence of my parents, although I have always desired to study applied art, because I have always been drawn to drawing and painting. Aside from these two, my hobbies also included writing poems and making jewelry. I stuck to the latter.
I am married to Goran and we have two boys, ages 7 and 8 and I am also a stepmom to two beautiful grown up girls. We are one big, happy family!

2. How did the brand Steampunk by Maja get to see the day?
Steampunk by Maja was born out of the desire to create unique jewelry solely for myself. But then family and relatives got acquainted with it and the first orders started to arrive, replaced by handmade bazaars and online sales. The idea for this kind of jewelry first sparked when my husband poured the first pieces that got me hooked and I wanted to make them myself. That was back in 2012.

3. What were the first pieces of jewelry that you made?
It was a medallion flower, a medallion mirror and some square slabs...

4. Where did you first exhibit your jewelry? Do you remember?
Yes. It was at the mall called “Ušće” in Belgrade in 2012. I had a fantastic show and sold lots of my jewelry. But the thing that was more important and meaningful than the sales was the appraisal and compliments I received on my work. It gave me a sensational rise in self-confidence and a beautiful feeling of value and satisfaction that urged me to keep doing what I dream about.

5. What kind of jewelry are the buyers most interested in? Buyers are most interested in necklaces for themselves as well as for gifts, because necklaces are wearable in almost all occasions. Necklaces are closely followed by earrings and rings.
6.Do you have any favourite techniques?
I love working with epoxy resin because of the effect the designs have. I also love combining materials from my profession such as metals and acrylates that one would not usually find in jewelry supplies shops. Using those makes my jewelry even more distinctive and unique making it stand out from other jewelry made with similar techniques. I love modeling my own pendants and have my husband pour them in silver which is a rather demanding, more difficult and costly technique, but the final result is wondrous!

7. Where do you source your materials?
I buy them from specialized shops that sell raw materials in Belgrade and Novi Sad, some gift shops while I buy the small watches off my friends.

8. What is the most precious piece of jewelry to you as a designer?
Oh. It is difficult to select out any as favourite - I find everything I've made dear to my heart. I've poured my heart, my undivided attention and love into every single piece I have ever made.

9. What are you currently working on?
Right now I am working on some new pieces and collaborate with designers from Split (Croatia). I am expanding the  market :)

10. Future plans?
I plan to expand sales outside of Serbia and finally open my brick and mortar jewelry shop in Belgrade.

Thank you Maja! It was lovely having you over!
Maja's online shop.

Friday, June 15, 2018

DIY Bohemian Disc + Tassel Earrings

Happy Friday! Today we have a super easy DIY weekend project that is as cute as a button! We are going to make boho earrings with crochet discs and tassels.
What you need:
*4 crochet discs (pattern given bellow)
*2 embroidery floss for 4 tassels
* filling
* 18 big metal rings, 2 small jump rings  and 2 earring hooks
* tapestry needle
Crochet Discs Pattern (make 4)
Ch 4 and join to make a ring. Sc 5 in ring.
Round 1: sc2 in every stitch (10)
Round 2: repeat rnd 1 (20)
Round 3: sc2, sc1 (30)
Round 4: sc1 around (30)
Round 5: sc2, sc1 (45)
Round 6: sc1 around (45)
Leave a big tail which you'll use to join 2 discs together.
Thread the needle with one of the tails and sew the 2 discs together. Leave a small opening before you end, fill the disc in and sew to close it.
Make 2 long tassels. Instructions here.
Attach the ring to the head of the tassel and insert it into the disc from behind so that it falls naturally and does not turn.

On the upper part of the disc attach a chain of 3 rings, skip 2-3 stitches and attach another such chain. Join the 2 chains by 1 big ring onto which you attach a small(er) jump ring with the earring hook on it. Consult below picture carefully.
And with that, the earrings are done!

Have fun making them!

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Bohemian Summer Loading

Two years ago I started a Bohemian Summer series on the blog.
A topic that has added a charming stamp in the summer months; style that I readily turn to and continue to explore.
This year we continue to nurture the trend and channel some practical and effective DIY boho fashion and jewelry ideas, share lots of bohemian trends in home decoration and in general try to keep the flame of the bohemian spirit alive.
There is a DIY / crochet pattern for boho earrings getting ready for Friday, so do drop by. Until then, here's some boho inspiration to stir the flames up.
All respective links can be found on my boards: Bohemian Summer, Bohemian Jewelry and  Bohemian Home.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Rabendā- Jewelry That Gives Life to Stories

There is a new creative girl who joined us recently and we had a super fun and short interview. Meet Rabenda!

1. Who is the girl behind Rabenda?
A dreamer. An aspiring architect. A creative person :)
My name is Ana Stanoevska and I am a happy artist from the planet Earth. A lover of beer and comic books.
2. Why did you choose the name Rabenda? What’s its significance? 

 ラベンダー色 ; Rabenda; lavender – probably the only thing that influences me positively as the making of jewelry does.
3.What is the story that Rabenda tells?
It is a story called Keep the child in yourself! And read the Little Prince every now and then and enjoy the everyday things!

4. How did the idea of making jewelry become tangible and what was the first thing you made and showed to the public?  
Following the stories told by Eva Thissen’s creations and later watching my VIKI work, I got inspired and somehow I always believed I could do that. The Faculty, the “not having time” and similar excuses hindered me for ages, until I stopped and asked myself: “OK, are you happy now?”
I’d love to thank my family for the support and for always encouraging me with my crazy ideas :)
5. What motifs appear the most in your jewelry and where do you seek inspiration from?  
I’d say vintage motiffs, probably because I find myself in some old-fashion waters :)
6. What materials and techniques you use the most in your work?
I work with polymer clay and sometimes I combine screen printing with acrylic colors. 
7. What are the most wanted / the most sold pieces?  
All of my pieces are unique and one of a kind :)
But if we count in the messages I receive on jewelry, it turns out that this set above was the most wanted. I received many messages from buyers asking for the same. 

8. What kind of jewelry is the one that you make with immense pleasure?
To be honest, there are times when after making a piece I become doubtful saying to myself: “Is this for me or is it for sale?”      :)
Mostly I let go of them! I adore all of my book markers.
 And my absolute favourite is this one.
9. Your idols?
Oh, there are too many….Mainly Еva Thissen, Eddie Vedder and Sou Fujimoto!
10. What are your plans for Rabenda in the future?
I’d say “Times are hard for dreamers” but I’ll do my best to treasure the dream!  
Dream on girl!
Find Rabenda on social media:

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Yarn Cake, Anyone?

oh, my.... I am awfully late with this post. But here we are!
My yarn cakes, all bundled up and ready to be mixed and matched to make some happy kits!
For those of you who are just tuning in we are going to offer kits that will include this lovely sport yarn and our revised and updated crochet tube necklace pattern. It will also include a look book of {nearly} all the tubes we ever created and various styles and designs you can apply to them.
I am quite excited because this was planned eons ago, equally snail-pace produced, but we are starting to see the end of it. Or is it just the beginning?

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

The Flamenco Tube Necklace

My class had their junior prom recently and for the occasion I chose a red blouse with a black skirt with a print of soft delicate bouquets of flowers scattered about it. I had an "appropriate necklace" chose for the outfit, but on the very day of the party I chose not to wear it and instead make something that would be "me". I actually made flowers to resemble ones on the print, so in the end it was a successful attempt and quite eye-catching.
Again I played with my favourite tubes here and for this one I designed two flower patterns which are so easy to make I don't think I will use other patterns in a while.  
I may have mentioned the production of my crochet tube kits before - it has taken me ages, literally, but I think the time to reveal them is getting near and I plan to include the pattern for these flowers as a gift. But more on it when the time comes.
Goodbye for now. I will see you on Friday!

Monday, June 4, 2018

Sunday, June 3, 2018

What I Have Pinned Lately #11

Happy Sunday guys!
You know I am a sucker for Japanese fashion so I picked these two shirts to start my pinning frenzy / your viewing pleasure (hopefully) and our mutual inspiration to be!
The first one is so doable it would be pity not to try it. Of course an old shirt can be transformed into this gorgeousness - at least I think I can do it, only t find the right lace.
As for the one below, my word! I love the embroidered pattern and what makes this one really stand out is the  3D flowers. So, so charming!
I found both  on Rakuten and am showing these to you to let you know we can easily make or  refashion these instead of buying.
Next, I pinned this lovely textured sweater that looks absolutely smashing!
And maybe the best for the end - this amazing doily pattern by Draiguna:

Friday, June 1, 2018

La Coqueta - a Brand Shout Out

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase from this brand I will receive a small percentage of the sale. If you purchase a product through a link from my blog, you must take action with that company to resolve any issues, not this blog.
For those of you who have been following me since grandpa Noah's days, you know that one of my sweetest and longest wishes and dreams is to make children's clothes. So it was no surprise I was smitten in a heartbeat the minute I saw this amazing Spanish brand called   La Coqueta

Boys' Shirts

Celia Munoz, the creator of the brand is the mother of five and looking for traditional, timeless clothes for her children that would also possess a flair of chicness and carry a note of contemporary style, she gathered Spanish designers to work on the brand and produce beautifully made clothes which would be functional and hard-wearing: two words that would work as a spell to every mother. 

La Coqueta is known for the quality of its knitwear and the choice of colour and style. It is rare in children's' wear to find a product which is finished and designed with such care.
Celia says: "All of our Merino wool is knitted in small, family run workshops who specialise in hand knitting and every piece is finished exquisitely. Each item is washed twice (first hand washed, and then in the machine) and dried flat in order to ensure they will remain in perfect condition when they are used and worn by our customer on a regular basis. Comfort and fit is also very important. For babies, our workshops employ techniques that factor in the delicate needs of an infant, such as extra room around a babies sensitive waist area."
For Celia the process of designing a collection starts with the fabric and print. This is then translated into a pattern and a toile is made and tried on her own children to test the practicality and fit before it is launched in the next season's collection.

Discover more of La Coqueta's world.

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Drvengrad - Mokra Gora

On our holiday in Serbia, we visited Drvengrad. For all of you incurably in love with unique places, pin this down onto your travel list.
The ethno-village Drvengrad (Wooden town) is nestled right on Mechavnik hill, settled between the two beautiful mountains - Tara and Zlatibor. It was built by Serbian film-maker Emir Kusturica for the needs of his film Life is a Miracle.    Around the world it is also known as Kustendorf; The Kustendorf festival is also hosted by the creator of it - the award-winning director Emir Kusturica. It is a unique festival, without a red carpet, billboards and advertisements and it is fully devoted to film, music, friendships and exchange of creative ideas and energy.


The rectangular village's main street leads from the entrance gate on one end to an orthodox Christian church on the other end. The main street is paved with wooden blocks and surrounded by authentic log cabins brought in from their original locations and placed on foundations made of stone.

The streets in the village are named after many famous people. The main street carries the name of the Nobel prize winner, the writer Ivo Andrić.
Other streets carry the names of Nikola Tesla, Ernesto "Che" Guevara, Diego Maradona, Federico Fellini, Ingmar Bergman, Novak Đoković, to name a few.

“Drvengrad” has an art gallery, a library, a cinema called “Underground” after one of Kusturica’s most famous films, a cake shop, a couple of restaurants, souvenir stalls, etc.

The beautiful thing is that the log cabins can be rented if you are in for an adventure.

Just below these stalls on a lower level, there is an art gallery with a free entrance. We were lucky to see the works of Ratko Lalic.  We enjoyed them immensely for their expressiveness and phenomenally created 3D effect. I am not sure if my pictures do them justice...