Thursday, April 28, 2011

Are you superstitious?

I am. Just a little.
I think most Italians are.
We "touch iron" if an ambulance is passing by - it's our way to "knock on wood"; we change our way if a black cat crosses the street; almost everybody has a "santino" (card with a saint reproduction) in their car and they possibly have a red horn as keyring.
I love red horns. I've always had one. I remember bringing a big horn with me at every school trip.
I've lost it in one of my many movings, but last year when my BF and I moved together, his aunt sent this:



Red horns are tipical of the Naples area, especially since some places in that region are famous for coral production and they have gorgeous items.
My mom always brings me something whenever she goes there, last thing was this keyring:



This is Pulcinella, a local mask, on a red horn.
The best amulet, anyway, should be this:



It's a mixture of all the possible amulets together: a hunchback holding a horse shoe in one hand and "making horns" with the other hand (it's like a rock and roll gesture, but without the thumb and is used to protect from bad luck), mounted on a red horn.

Ok, of course all this stuff is just for fun. Nobody really believes it, it's just a mixture of old superstitions! But it's always nice to have an amulet.

Talking about horns...these are the last earrings I made:



And this is a pendant for myself, still have to figure out the necklace



And remember: horns must always be gifted!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Spring swap - my surprise

I'm late, I know, but I spent these last days in total chaos and travelling.
So it's really time to show what I received for the EBW Spring Swap...I don't like posting pics of myself, but I think I owe it to my swap partner!



Thanks a lot Sue!!!
Please visit her shop Crystal Wonders on etsy, her pieces are amazing!



I'm really enjoying this gift, especially since my latest favourite eye shadow is a bold orange.



I'm also very proud that my "swap-receiver" Ruthie was happy with the necklace I made for her, jump to her supercute blog to see pics - and maybe stop for one of her many giveaways!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

April giveaways

Easter has just passed but there are are still a lot of surprises: 2 wonderful giveaways!

The first is at MAKUstudio which is celebrating its 1000 etsy sales...congratulations by the way!
They make wonderful raku pieces of art.



Go to their shop and see yourself!

The second is from Lark Jewelry & Beading, giving away 14 books - some of them signed - which everybody would want to own.



I said FOURTEEN!!!

I'm usually too lazy to partecipate, but these are really amazing.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

EBW Spring Swap

A couple of months ago the Etsy beadweavers Team organized a Spring Swap.
Now the time has come to show you the result:



It was a cute idea: we challenged ourselves to make something for a person with different tastes and preferences.

It's useful to stop and think about what others might actually want to wear.

We can make amazing pieces of jewelry but sometimes people just want something to put on with a t-shirt and jeans.
A lot of people love beads but don't wear them because they don't have a suitable occasion.
I think it's up to us to make them feel like it's always ok to wear beads and there's always something perfect for any occasion - That's what I learned!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The grey city

I once read on a blog I love that every Japanese city has an adjective which defines it, known to everybody.
In Italy it's more or less the same.
Rome is "chaotic".
It's funny 'cause most of the people who say that have never been to Rome. But it's reknown. Full of people, full of cars, traffic is crazy and people don't walk: they almost run.
Venice is "romantic". It's THE city for lovers. I've never understood why, because yes: it's beautiful and has a singular architecture, it's almost dreamy at night.
But I don't find it romantic. It's humid, uncomfortable and it's also falling to pieces due to the nonexistant maintanance.

And Milan...well, Milan is just GREY.

Everything here is grey: weather, buildings, even people. After living here a couple of months you find your skin is becoming paler and paler, with a greyish nuance.
That's why many people are "tan-aholic" (is that a word??)and get sunlamp almost every week.
It's not like the sun is never shining here, of course there are wonderful periods (like this week) when the temperature is high without being annoying and you can take a walk...into the city. Yeah there's more or less only one big park, it's beautiful but you might get out from there with a hundred bites of mosquitos.

Living here is especialy difficult for people coming from seaside cities in the south of Italy (like me) where it is perfectly normal to get out from the office at 2 pm and go directly to the beach to have lunch with your family and enjoy the rest of the day. This happens from may to september, depending on the temperature.



In my hometown it's not conceivable that you stay home and don't go to the beach if the sun is shining. Even with a whirlwind (which we are pretty accostumed to).Even if it's 42° C outside.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Spring...is it around the corner???

It's that time again...time to vote your favorite piece of beaded art on the Etsy beadweavers blog.
Here are the entries:



All amazing as usual!

I don't know about you, but here in Italy we just had 3 days of heat with an incredible rise of the temperature - up to 30° C!
It seems more summer than spring around the corner...
But (of course) rain is coming in a few days.
I'm going to enjoy the sun as much as possible on my little balcony...pretending I don't have a million boxes to unpack.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Nostalgia

"A bittersweet longing for things, persons, or situations of the past. The condition of being homesick."
That's the definition of nostalgia.
Can a person be homesick when she hasn't left her home yet?
Yes.
I am. Right now.
I'm in the final phase of packing after a couple of weeks spent in Milan - you might imagine I'm moving with the whole furniture, since packing is requiring so much time,but actually I'm not: it's just a couple of armchairs and a big bookshelf. And a big, huge, amount of stuff.
Tomorrow morning people will come and bring all my stuff to Milan in a new (temporary) little apartment, and looking at empty shelves and drawers is making me nostalgic.
This has been the first house I've shared with my BF and we have a lot of funny memories here, mostly due to the lack of space and the constant presence of boxes and beads everywhere.
This little house has been so comfy and heartwarming, and this city has welcomed me back after 3 years and given me so much joy. I'll miss it a lot.

Positive thinking: our new house has a balcony with access to the garden. It's hidden from everyone's eyes but still it's reached by the sun, so I'm planning nice evenings on my Ikea armchair sipping tea and reading. Or beading.
I'm also thinking about planting some flowers and herbs, hoping my famous green thumb won't let them die.