Took a break from research to make some end-of-semester gifts for friends

One thing I love about making gifts for people is putting thought into their style. I consider the colors I usually see them wear, what sorts of designs they seem attracted to, and what materials they might like. Even if I am off the mark and what I’ve made isn’t exactly that person’s style, it is something that has been made uniquely with them in mind.


Vintage lace necklace with wooden and stone beads 

Last year I bought an enormous collection of vintage trim/lace/rick-rack off of ebay, I am beginning to experiment with using those materials in jewelry. I have never used the ribbon clamps holding the lace in place before, I am hoping that they will be durable and hold on to it tightly. The necklace feels so light and delicate with such a large part of it being merely lace. I used wooden beads for this reason, I didn’t want to use something heavy that might compromise the durability of the necklace but also would offset the airiness of it.



Earrings with wooden leaves and dyed cultivated pearls 


Earrings with red and purple glass beads, red clay beads 


Earrings with glass beads: blue faceted and gold foil faceted


Windowsill Gardening

It’s still a little too cold in the Northeastern US to plant much outside. I have peas and kale, who love colder spring weather, started outdoors. In the meantime, I’ve run out of front window space! Seedlings have taken over!



A plastic egg carton makes a very good seed-starting greenhouse. Most plastic egg cartons have three sections- one that goes under the eggs, one that goes over the eggs, and the lid. Cut off the one that goes over the eggs with scissors and then poke holes at the bottom of it with a knife. That piece will then fit right into the section that goes over the eggs, so that the one with holes in it can hold dirt and drain water, and the one underneath it can capture the water. Until the seeds sprout and get too tall, you can use the lid as the top of your greenhouse.

Editing to add some pics from my cellphone to make this simple process more clear:


Separate the two egg-shaped trays 


Make holes in the bottom of the separated tray 


Pick out some seeds, these were my choice today 


After putting the separated tray with holes back into the intact tray, put a shallow layer of dirt in each compartment and add a seed or two! 


Fill up the rest of the way with dirt and pat down