Posts tagged ‘environmentally friendly’

sneak peak!

i call him the grim keeper!  he’s the latest in my series of upcycled jewelry storage and display.  i can’t believe it, but i found this stainless tray at the thrift store.  i have no idea what it was, a spoon rest maybe?  now, with a little decoupage magic, it’s been transformed into a super cool tray to store your jewelry, wallet, cell phone…maybe even your skeleton keys.  ba-dum-bum tsccch!

he’ll be available soon at my etsy store once i get him ready for his close up.

February 4, 2010 at 7:07 pm Leave a comment

as promised…upcycled jewelry storage

new to dogwood & poppy: storage with a side of snark.  for those of us have been accused of having too much crap and/or leaving it all over the place.

i created this one-of-a-kind upcycled tray from a thrift store find (the silver plate tray) with some paper, stickers, and ink.  i decoupaged the paper onto the tray, added the stickers and then stamped it so that it reads: “yes, but it’s MY crap”.  then i sealed it, so you can wipe it down with a damp cloth when needed.

i think it’s perfect for storing jewelry or whatever else you need: keys, cell phone, ipod, loose change, whatnot. put it in your bathroom and keep make-up or soap in it. give it as a gift to your messy valentine. or for someone who has it all…and now needs a place to put it. i can think of some men who would benefit from a place to put their crap…

the tray measures 9.5wide x 5.75high and is about half an inch deep. that’s a lot of room for crap!  it’s available at my etsy store for $22 USD plus shipping & handling.

sorry, the tray does not come with my crap; you have to supply your own. the necklace doesn’t come with the tray either, but you can buy it through my etsy store if you want.

January 28, 2010 at 5:24 pm Leave a comment

Oh oh it’s magic!


STOP IT IN IT’S TRACKS: The best way to keep sterling silver jewelry shiny is to prevent tarnish in the first place.  Tarnish is caused by sulfur dioxide from the air reacting with silver, and the best way to prevent it is to keep your jewelry out of the air.  Try sealing your items in a zip top bag; there are specially made bags and anti-tarnish strips you can buy, but this is by far the cheapest.

GREEN IN MORE WAYS THAN ONE: Tarnish is natural and totally normal, so when the inevitable happens, clean your sterling silver with baking soda.  There are a couple of ways to do this, but the simplest is just to make a paste with baking soda and water and use a clean toothbrush (not one that has ever had abrasives or chemicals on it as this could damage your jewelry) to gently scrub the tarnish away.  Then rinse your jewelry thoroughly and blot it dry.  I like to do this over a bowl, but if you do it over a sink, be sure to put something in the drain so you don’t lose anything.

YAY CHEMISTRY!: The baking soda acts as a super gentle scrubber, but it also oxidizes the sulfur that causes tarnish, releasing small amounts of hydrogen sulfide gas.  A quicker way to deal with really tarnished sterling is to put jewelry into a bowl with about 2 Tbsp. baking soda, a pinch of salt, and a crumpled up piece of aluminum foil.  After a few minutes, your sterling will look like new.  How does this work?  Again, the baking soda oxidizes, the salt helps transport the tarnish through the water, and the aluminum foil traps the tarnish, while the gas is released into the air.

SMALL PRINT: Of course you have to be gentle if you opt for the toothbrush method.  DON’T leave your jewelry in the mix forever.  DON’T dunk things with silk cord or pearls or water soluble crystals like flourite, as none of these stay the same when you add water.  GOOD RULE OF THUMB: if you are worried about using this on porous stones, don’t.  Just use it on the sterling silver.  Use a little paste for any tight spots and carefully wipe away with a cotton swab or tissue.  DON’T use this method on silver plated items; they are not actually sterling silver and the coating will come off.  DON’T worry too much; I use this method all the time and don’t have any problems.  I have heard people say that this method degrades sterling silver, but the reality is the degradation has already happened from the tarnish.  When you remove the tarnish, you are removing something that USED TO BE sterling, but is now just the dark grey stuff covering up your pretty shiny piece underneath.

BONUS POINTS: For super shine, buff your jewelry with a soft cloth, like microfiber or chamois.  It’s not environmentally friendly, but in a pinch I use a ‘sunshine cloth’, which is a soft cloth embedded with polishers (wash your hands afterwards!).  You can find them online or at most jewelry and bead stores.  They seem to run about $5 and I use mine a lot.  It lasts a long time (I store mine in a plastic bag in between uses).

December 17, 2009 at 6:34 pm Leave a comment

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