Thursday, June 30, 2011

Seeing Things Come to Fruition

This summer, I was lucky enough to be re-hired by my boss from last summer, a very efficient interior designer. Nearly a one woman business with only recently acquired full time help, I come in a few days a week to make sure fabrics are current, help her find things, and occasionally, go on site to some exciting jobs. I like having a hand in the creative processes and not just being on the phone - so when I got a chance to see the finished version of a job I helped with last year, I was very happy.

Most jobs we have are local. That being said, my aunt was one of them, and her family was just finishing up a house nearby. After they built a pool house, I had my hand in picking out fabrics for most of the furniture inside of it. Today, while over there, I had a peek at the finished product. Considering last time I saw it, the pool was a hole in the ground and the house was an empty wooden shell, this was beautiful!

Here are some crappily taken quick details to share - but to note, I spent hours searching for those rope and fringe trims, getting price quotes and availability, faxing orders for fabrics, and finding as many greens to match those fern pieces as possible. But now it looks great - so well worth it!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Abandoned Mines of Palmer Hill

When it rains in the Adirondacks, we often find ourselves hard pressed for activities. As an outdoor place, I often spend my rainy days inside, drawing or surfing the internet. After days of doing this, I was happy to get a text from my friend and professor Kyle, who wanted to go scouting for shooting locations. When he offered waterfalls and caves, I couldn't decline.

We spent the afternoon exploring, starting out over a river near the gorge just outside Lake Placid. Though you have to pay to get into that part of the park, this stop is free! Parking just after a bridge, we headed down a muddy trail alongside the river. We saw painters all around, and people swimming nearby, and it seemed like a great spot to come hang out. Like many other stops in my mind, I bookmarked it as a place to bring people in the future.

Driving on, we passed through a few small towns before locating a residential road on the GPS, and taking it up to a four-way fork, where several trails led off from the dead end. Parking the car, we picked the one that seemed right, and headed in. We were presented with what seemed like a secluded area highschoolers favored for parties - a fire tower with cell tower equipment, and a few electrical sheds. Passing on, we continued down a trail we thought to be the right way, only to find it was an area carved out down the hill for power lines. We were sure we were wrong. Getting back in the car to find another trail in in search of the caves, little did we know we'd stopped but five feet from the entrance to the large mine.

Treading into the woods, we came across a small cave, and some beautiful light hitting the water. Just before getting some good shots however, the light died on us. Hoping it would come around, we slapped mosquitoes in wait for a few more rays. When they didn't come, we almost decided to give up. But we knew that small cave couldn't be it. There were supposedly hundreds of feet of connected mines, and the big cave had to be somewhere.

Heading north along a wooded trail, we finally found what appeared to be a main entrance, covered in piles of rocks. It was astounding to think anyone made a living hiking up into the woods and diving down into these dark holes. But we continued on, finding a string of deep cuts into the earth, projecting a series of dark abyss'. None of them seemed friendly enough to enter, and we were worried dark holes might be all we'd find - until we spotted a familiar area. Not too far above us was the cell tower we'd witnessed not too long ago, and we thought we'd been wrong! All along we'd been two feet from it. We must be close. Up ahead, we were glad to see some promising sights, where large holes opened into the earth, letting down light into a much more open section.

Descending a rocky, muddy trail, we emerged from the stones into a refreshingly chilly cave bathed with light. Two large openings in the rock above let in mist that sunk in the humid air, and it felt almost like natural air conditioning amongst the cool rocks. The ground was littered with grasses and pools of water, and with bags, cans, and the occasional article of clothing. We'd come to realize it was also a local hangout spot, probably for teenagers looking for a place to drink. Remnants of fires and burnt wood sat damp in a rocky outcrop, and graffiti lined the dark walls along the inside - I questioned who would ever want to wander into a cave potentially drunk during a dark Adirondack night. But despite the mess, it didn't take away from the area's beauty at all.
Loosing track of time, we took photographed and explored every rocky crevice and grassy hill inside. It felt nice and cool, both relaxing and mysterious, and certainly breathtaking with it's awe-inspiring and wondrous atmosphere. I regretted leaving my wide-angle lens back in the car, though I know where the cave is now, and will certainly return.

We were hesitant to leave. After goodbyes, we hiked out and back up towards the cell tower and down the road, favoring the roundabout route for it's clearness, instead of taking the buggy almost-bushwhack wooded trail back to the car. Ending our expedition with the area's best local ice cream, we sat on the parking lot benches watcing the clouds over the mountains, in hopes the rain would lighten up for future summer days.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Salvaging and Creating

After a semester of not touching my jewelry box, I am back into creation! Before making many more pieces, I took out my dusty necklace holder, and eyed all the things I haven't worn in ages. I ended up reorganizing, and then taking apart several old pieces, so I could fuel my supplies even further. I figured I'd modify some old things to make them better, and sell many of my beaded pieces I made years ago, considering I don't touch many of them now. I was also finally able to fix many of the tangled chains and mend the broken earrings I hadn't had time to over last semester.

Of course, today's real gem was the earrings I created from a necklace I took apart. In this old webcam shot, you can see what this used to look like. The outer necklace here consisted of several tiny chains tied together, looping over several circles at the bottom there. In back, the slew of chains was tied to a series of links, and then a toggle clasp held it all around my neck.

After dislodging all the circles for my own use, the toggle was still connected to some chains, as was the receiving circle. I had an idea. Clipping off the toggle and a few links, I put on wires, trimmed the chains to the same length, and created a stunning pair of long chain-trailed earrings. I thought I'd sell them, but there's no way - I love them far too much! Here are some quick shots I took to show them off to a friend:

After separating out many old creations to sell, I have made a few new ones I have already put up:

All in all, I've been pretty productive lately. I hope to make a few sales, and keep on creating soon! To take a look at my etsy, I have many more necklaces and crafts for sale, as well as some vintage clothing. Cheers!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Let Summer Begin

Sorry I have been lazy with the posts. All my energy lately has gone to blogging for Rome. Though I might post a few things here, all of my travels and many accompanying photos are here.

For now, I'm basking in the sun of this semester's surprisingly good grades and no work.