Sunday, October 30, 2011

inspiring pictures

 Have a great week ♥

Image Credits - source unknown

Lets dream about... a home office

I found these lovely home office pictures...

Image Credits

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

New pattern ring ♥

Pretty ♥

This is a solid sterling silver ring, it has a beautiful & elegant flowing flower pattern,
with lines & a detailed design all the way around the band. 

The inside, & sides of this band are a sanded finish. The top, of the ring - which features the pattern is lightly polished to highlight the pattern - making it eye catching at every angle.

This band measures 3mm wide, & is 1.3mm thick.

This ring is made to your finger size.

R320  + R28 Postage (incl. full tracking.)

email :

All thula jewelry comes securely, & beautifully gift wrapped.


Monday, October 17, 2011

This weeks inspiring pictures ♥

♥ Have a great day ♥

Image credits - unknown source

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I love.. little bunches of flowers ♥

Today I went to one of my favorites shops in PE, The scrapbook nook (On Main road walmer, Port Elizabeth) , I bought some pretty paper, & some deicious treats from their new bakery/restaurant that has just opened right next door.

I decided to pop into Casa Rose (next door on the right hand side of The scrapbook nook)  as they always have beautiful fresh flowers and I wanted to get something for my mom.

I wanted a "little" bunch of something.. and instantly was drawn to the pale pink roses that were on the front desk.

Flowers are always great, but I do love small bunches of them.. they are so pretty, & more manageable.

I also absolutely love their old glass vases... they have so much character... and theres so much you can do with them.

Casa Rose in Port Elizabeth does flower orders too.  

Casa Rose : Florist & Gifts :    152 Main road Walmer, TEL :  041 5813839 
Or visit their website here

My flowers from Casa Rose

Friday, October 14, 2011

How to : Make a blackboard

♥ blackboards

I recently fell in love with the idea of a blackboard.. whether it be in your kitchen (for recipes, or shopping lists) or in your workspace for notes & reminders... its just a nice thing to have.. and can be handy too.

I wanted one for my workshop... so I can chalk down all my jewellery orders,
and their deadlines.

When I realized you couldnt buy a blackboard anymore (they are all green - the one's you can buy from stationers) I was dissapointed and did not want a green chalkboard.

So.. I .. with the help (most of the help) of my boyfriend Bryce, made one! So get your boyfriends/ dads/ husbands in check this weekend to help you make one.

I wanted a distressed look for the frame... and I think we did pretty well.

In total, the maisonite for the chalkboard, the wood frame, glue.. paint... everything cost roughly R300.00

You will need :
Maisonite - inexpensive, and very smooth. This is what will form the actual blackboard. :
(Decide on the total size you'd like your chalkboard to be.) This is the size of the piece of mainsonite you need to purchase. My mainsonite piece measured : 90cm x 120cm

You can also use the size of the maisonite to determine the length of the 4 pieces of wood you will need for the frame.


My piece of mainsonite measured 90 x 120cm
We chose 7cm wide pine, and 22mm thick.

We had the  4 piecess of pine for the frame mitred (so that all the pieces of wood for the frame fit together squared) where we bought the wood - (Builders Express) at 45 degree angles - our pieces of pine for the frame measured : 2 x 90 cm &  2 x 120 cm

Cold glue wood glue

2 colors, I would suggest white which will be used as the base of the frame,
Then another color, we opted for gray which looks great distressed and is also fairly neutral.
We chose matte PVA paint. Luckily sample paints were available for purchase, and it was just enough for our frame.

We used panel pins to secure pine pieces for the frame against the piece of mainsonite.

Blackboard paint
We used plascon : School Board Paint. ( About R80.00 )

Two paint brushes for painting your two colors onto the frame aswell as your blackboard paint.
Be sure to have some thinners handy to clean your brush after paitning the mainsonite with the black paint.

A small piece of an old rag

A tea bag & some hot water



Knife, or scraper

Once you have everything laid out, Get Started...

First step, is to mark off on the maisonite with a pencil, up to what point the blackboard paint must be painted to. Dont paint the whole piece of mainsonite, as before the frame is nailed to the mainsonite, the frame is glued onto the mainsonite piece. The blackboard paint will prevent the glue from setting :

Next, start painting your piece of mainsonite with the blackboard paint right up until, and a little over the lines you have marked off. Paint quickly to prevent paint build up on the board - this paint dries quickly.
Also remember to paint the whole piece of mainsonite in one directon.

See how you go - You may need to paint it twice. If it is very bumpy, lightly sand it down.

Once you've painted the mainsonite, leave it to dry & Begin working on the frame.


Join one of the shorter pieces of pine for the frame, with one of the longer pieces of pine with the wood glue. (otherwise, if you've opted for a square blackboard, join any two pieces)

While the wood glue is setting,   hammer a panel pin into the sides of each of the two pieces  of pine.

Do the same with other set of two pine pieces.

Don't join all 4 pieces of pine together before joining it to the piece of maisonite.

Once the blackboard paint has dried, attach one of the 2 joined parts of the frame to the mainsonite with some wood glue.
Place the other 2 pine pieces that are joined on the maisnonite aswell, to see if you need to make any adjustments to the placing of the 2 joined pine pieces you are about to panel pin to the mainsonite.

We used a vice to hold the two pieces while we hammered in our panel pins.
If you dont have a vice - wait for the glue to dry, and get resourceful :)

Once the wood glue has dried holding the first 2 joined pine pieces to the mainsointe,
Turn the mainsonite board upside down.

Begin to hammer the panel pins in a  zig zag about 2-3 cm apart along where the pine pieces are joined to the maisonite.

Keep note of how wide the pine piece of the frame is - so that you dont hammer a panel pin through the maisonite that will be showing in front - making up the acual blackboard.

 Do the same with the second set of the 2 joined pieces of pine.

Now it will start looking like a blackboard ! ♥

This is where the fun begins... 

Experiment, and have fun with painting, and paint techniques.

If you want to go for the distressed roughed up look like we did, paint the frame with a base color, we used matte PVA - white.

Let your base colour start to dry, and then.. start applying your second color.
We used rough sandpaper, a scraper... and our fingers to apply our second color!

Wait for the second color to dry a little bit before wiping a few areas with a rag giving more of a distressed look.

Apply some more paint.. scrape.. sandpaper it... just have fun and remember theres no wrong thing to do.

Let the paint dry a little more... and give the frame more of a distressed finish with a tea bag, and a piece of rag.

Squeeze your teag bag over a piece of rag or cloth, and apply the rag all over the frame.

Use an old pocket knife, the point of a scraper, anything a bit sharp - and scratch away at a few areas on your frame.

This is what our frame looked like when it was finished.

Make it your own, and make it special by painting the Date on the back, and take a picture of yourself and a loved one making it    :

I used clear lacquer to paint over a picture of my boyfriend and I as we were finishing off the blackboard :

Enjoy, & have fun ♥

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Interview.. with Ileana Hunter

When I found Ileana's work after searching for original art on etsy,
I was so amazed at her talent, and her work.

Ileana is a graphite artist, living in the UK.

Enjoy ♥

1. Describe your art in 3 words.

Monochrome, clean, simple.

2. Have you been formally trained as an artist? Where/ by who?

No, I am completely self taught.

3. What are you most likely to get up to on a Sunday?

Out on a walk with my husband and white doggy, looking for books I haven't read yet, or on a windy beach in Norfolk looking for shells (I never find any!)

4. How long have you been creating your art?

5 years - I started very whimsically, while I was at Univerisity studying Psychology. And never looked back.

5. What inspires you to draw?

My own inner life, people and objects around me, simplicity.

6. Which of all the pieces you have created stands out most in your memmory, and why?

'Learn to Fly' :

I think with this one I've created a good balance between simplicity and complexity. And I can look at it without feeling the urge to pick it up again and fixing problems - always a good sign!

7. What is the best part of being an artist?

I have the luxury of being myself.

You can see more of Ileana's work here
Or email Ileana :

About me

email me 

My name is Jessica (You can call me Jess though).. and I am the one woman show 

behind Thula jewellery.

My passion for hand forging jewellery started when I began my first apprenticeship

in 2008. Even although I had studied jewellery design & manufacturing before, there

 are many big differences between studying this work and actually doing it. I didn’t

fully realize what I was getting involved in until I began hand forging fine

jewellery, full time.

I began to develop a passion, and love for hand making fine jewellery. I began to

love everything about the process.

It wasnt until last year, after setting up a fully kitted out workshop at home that I

began to really think about what it really was that I wanted to make, and the type

of jewellery that I myself would love to wear. I really began to fully realize and

appreciate just what I could do with my tools, equipment and my two hands.

I found working for myself liberating , and I grew to find new energy and motivation - which I build on everyday.

I emerged myself in my workshop, and in my sketch

(doodle) books. During this time I began working for myself, and on my own, I

made a lot of mistakes, and didn’t quite know what I was doing a lot of the time –

and in turn, I learnt a lot. I have become a much better, and more confident jeweller through this.

I started day dreaming about having an etsy store about 3 years ago when I first

stumbled upon the site.

I really liked the handmade concept of the e-commerce site, and would always

spend hours scanning through the hundreds of items I'd totally buy if I just

knew how!

…Then one day, I did some research and realized that there wasnt actually much

holding me back from having an etsy store.. so I thought, why not just give it a

bash. It is a wonderful extra to my work, and I find that it keeps me busy when

local work gets a bit quiet. I am constantly changing and developing both my

etsy store aswell as my blog, and am excited to see where the online part of my

jewellery business will take me.

I put a lot of time into marketing and promoting online, through platforms such as

tumblr, twitter, facebook, pinterest & flickr just to name a few. It seems to pay

off, but it can be hard work.

As I have been trained by a number of professional goldsmiths, I can really

appreciate fine jewellery, but I also have a love for the imperfect.

I understand the concept of fine jewellery, and can deliver what the client wants

in terms of a fine jewellery piece, however - I also appreciate the character, and

what is unique about a rustic (roughed up, “unfinished”) piece of jewellery.

No two are the same. Each piece has their own sort of battle wounds which to

me is a little kind of... beautiful.

Jewellery doesn’t always have to look perfect and identical to the one made

before it. Perfect can very easily be boring. I like to celebrate this idea, with

my rustic jewellery pieces.


As I am still learning, and growing as a jeweller, I plan to offer designs in gold,

palladium and platinum in the near future.

For now... my appetite for "the shiny" is satisfied with the sterling silver I work

in, which also makes my jewellery affordable and within the reach of many.

I love doing custom work, and love to create something special and unqiue for a


I have made jewellery for clients in Japan, Switzerland, Norway, Canada, America, Greece,  Thailand, Germany, Belgium, Australia and South Africa. 

Many are repeat clients - this is the biggest compliment.

Thank-you for taking the time to read a little bit about my background and my


 I hope you will take the time to read and enjoy my blog. ♥


I have been interviewed & featured on a number of blogs, take a look : 
Interview on CityGirl searching
Interview on ForgettingNeverland
Interview on Samoosas&slup chips
Feature on
Feature on Rootedmag
Feature on Of beauty & love
Feature on Little Miss Ivy
Feature on Sunflowers & Spears


Thoughts on "handmade" ...

" The ascendancy of chain store culture and global manufacturing has left us dressing, furnishing, and decorating alike. We are encouraged to be consumers, not producers, of our own culture. Our ties to the local and human sources of our goods have been lost. Buying handmade helps us reconnect.    " -
Nothing you can find in any hypermarket, or walmart, can compare to something that has been handmade.
There is an undeniable piece of the maker in every handmade item – a spirit that invisibly marks every piece in a special way that no mainstream, mass produced item can.

I found this while reading Meagan Vissers' blog ( and I think her words just sum up what I'm trying to say perfectly.

"When you buy something that is handmade by an individual, whether you realize it or not, you are showing your support for another human being. You are saying, I’d rather buy this original oil painting from you and wait for you to ship it to me than head down to Rooms to Go and pick up a piece today that is twice as large and half the cost.
Why? Because of the quality. Because of the time, thought, and effort that went into your original work of art. The blood, sweat, and tears (figuratively speaking) that you went through to ultimately call this work “finished”. And most importantly, because I would rather give the money to you and help support a small business like my own, than to a corporation with mass-produced products that will never even know my name."

Buy Handmade ♥ Be unique.

Monday, October 10, 2011

This weeks.. inspiring pictures ♥

Image Credits

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Good idea... inspiration pin boards for your home or workspace.

I often see a picture.. read a quote.. take a photograph... sketch some doodles.. & get inspired ♥ Why not collectively keep these bits & pieces together... & take inspiration from them whenever you are around your collection.

I just ordered mine from Valmac Stationers.. in Port Elizabeth. It Cost about R400.00 & measures 1 metre by 90cm I went with the gray felt option. ♥   :::

I might make it my own by making a distressed wood frame for it (or rather.. getting the boyfriend to make a distressed frame for it ♥  ) ..  It does need something.

Image Credits
my own image

Friday, October 7, 2011

Let's dream about... kitchens ♥

 I love a pretty kitchen. 
My dream kitchen.. is light... airy... and has a lot of reclaimed wood. ♥
Lets dream about kitchens ♥

Image credits

This is a custom order I did last week, two round tags with the name's "Jean" and "Carla" and then the client wanted the standard heart charms I normally use for these necklaces, but she especially asked for an opal.

I usually add 1 pearl, and 1 white topaz to these charm necklaces.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Biwa pearl ring I made today.

This is a sterling silver ring I made this afternoon,
It features a white biwa pearl.. that I have set in a bezel setting.

♥R370 + R28 Postage (includes full tracking)

Monday, October 3, 2011

inspiring pics of the week

Pretty, & inspiring pictures

Image Credits
1. - unknown souce
2. - unknown source
6. - unknown source
7. - unknown source
12. - unknown