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"I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul." by William E. Henley

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Thursday, December 23, 2010

wedding wednesday's... but on a thursday again

Spent most of the day in the studio working on different fun projects.. One of them being a prototype for a wedding crown I wanna wear. I made a rough one in copper just to get an idea of the size and style I am looking for. I think it might work. I am trying to picture how it would look in all nice and clean silver...

Can you picture it?

love ~tess


Monday, December 20, 2010

Sunday, December 19, 2010

announcement delayed

I am overwhelmed by the number of entries on my giveaway.

Thank you so much.

Stella and I are working on getting all the names jotted down and it's taking longer than I thought it would. So even though I really wanted to be on time (for once...) and announce the winner you'll have to bear with us and wait until tomorrow....


Love ~tess

Friday, December 17, 2010

pepparkakor & lussebullar

Sometimes I just have to go all crazy Swedish.
Can't believe it's only a week left.
Must wrap David's gifts... 

Have a fantastic weekend everyone!
I love you ~tess

Thursday, December 16, 2010

wedding (wednesday's) thursday

Finished my shoes...


I think I will just let the images speak for themselves


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

late night shop update

shop update TODAY at 8pm (philly time)

Sorry for the late night update but time ran away for me and I will not have time to update during the day. Contact me through Etsy if you have any questions about these new pieces!

Let's talk about blog - Where do you aspire to be in 5 years?

The Handmade division team do a blog post 
on a common topic on the 15th of each month...

I thought a lot about this.
I want to be a mother...
That comes absolutely first.
I am no spring chicken and I've always 
wanted a bunch of kids.
feels like I need to get started soon...

I can see it so clearly in my mind. 

I'm standing in front of our countryside house. Apron and all. Probably wearing wooden clogs too. Lisa and stella are chasing a mouse around the house. And our children are chasing them. I can smell the fresh bread baking in the oven. David is in his studio. The converted red barn. I spend a lot of time outside. In the garden. With my apple tree's and my gooseberry bushes. Planting seeds in the little greenhouse. 

Soil under my finger nails. 
And the sun in my heart.

When the kids take a nap I'll go in the studio and play with metal and stones. I'm not rushed. I can take my time. There is no soul sucking day job I have to go to. There's time. Time to reflect. 
Time to enjoy. Time to smile.
It's an old house with a big porch with one of those swings. That's where David and I sit after the kids have gone to bed. Sipping our tea. Cozy under the blanket.  Grateful for everything we've been blessed with. 
I can so clearly see us getting old together.

I want to be a wife, a mother and a better person. One should always strive to be a better person.. and I want to spend my time in places that makes me happy, surrounded by people I love.

No more compromises.

So there you have it. 
Maybe more of a dream than anything. 
But that is where I aspire to be in 5 years.

for more thoughts on the subject:

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

shop update tomorrow

circus butterfly brooch
Originally uploaded by novadesigns by tess

tomorrow wednesday
in the afternoon :o)

Lots of goodies...

oh and the wedding wednesday will be a wedding thursday this week..
So you will just have to be patient :o) This wednesday will be dedicated to Let's talk about blog. It's a good one.

love ~tess

Sunday, December 12, 2010

A little waterfall - Giveaway

I made this especially for you. 
A sterling silver filigree waterfall with 
a scrumptious Sea foam Chalcedony.
I adore this color.

Finished with a 18 inch chain with a 2 inch extender chain.

So what do you have to do in order to win this little waterfall?
I wanted to keep it pretty simple so there is 3 ways to enter. You can do one or do them all. Each counts as one entry. Please leave separate comments for each of your entries (it makes it easier for me to keep track)

1. Follow my blog 
and leave a comment to let me know
(if you already follow my blog just leave a comment 
to let me know and that will count for one entry)

2. Become a fan on my facebook page click here
and leave a comment here to let me know
(if you are already a fan just leave a comment 
here to let me know and that will count for one entry)

3. Do a blog post with a link to this 
giveaway and leave a comment here 
with a link to your blog.

The giveaway ends 
Sunday December 19th at 3pm (my time)
 and winner will be announced later that day.
Stella has kindly offered 
to draw one lucky winner.
Yeah I am also wondering how the heck she is gonna do that. I guess we'll just have to wait and see...

Let the fun begin!


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Friday, December 10, 2010

and there is more...

with some black patina and a heart set in stone 
they'll be ready to concur the world...

...on Tuesday me think :o)

MORE previews will be posted on here during the weekend.

Have a fantastic Friday my lovely friends

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

wedding wednesday's

wedding bouquet in progress
Originally uploaded by novadesigns by tess

my bouquet is slowly coming together....
I have to say it is trickier than I thought it would be..

I've added stems to all my vintage brooches and I've trying different compositions. Trying to decide which way I like it the best... The photo doesn't have all the little vintage earring flowers so I still have to work those into the design.

There are a lot of colors in the bouquet. I started out thinking that just that gorgeous greenish blue flower and ivory would look great. But then I added some yellows... and some peach.. and I also threw in some blue.. So it ended up a lot more colorful than what I started out envisioning. But I like it. It feels like a summer meadow bouquet.
Which is just what I wanted...

Now it's on my never ending list of things I need to finish..

next up on wedding wednesday's:

The Shoes

It will be good. You just have to trust me on that one.

have a fantastic day!
love~ tess

PS I have been working out with a personal trainer to get in shape. Yes I couldn't motivate myself enough to actually get to the gym. So he is doing a great job kicking my butt. YEAH! Wedding dress here I come! DS

Sunday, December 5, 2010

filigree fireworks

What can I say?
I am feeling the filigree...

On the positive side... 
my head is exploding with ideas

on the negative side... 
my head is exploding with ideas

literally EXPLODING
new ideas is fighting to get out while I am 
still working on the previous one..

like fireworks of the mind

Which is fun but it also makes it very hard 
to focus on one thing at a time..
Thus the bench is covered in projects...

which leads me to this weeks goal:

Finish them all!


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christmas Sale!

pinwheel cuff links
Originally uploaded by novadesigns by tess

Suffering from a severe case of the Christmas Holiday spirit I decided to offer a 20% sale in my novadesign etsy shop!

I have a lot of studs and earrings that makes great Christmas gifts ;o)

I am trying out those new coupon codes for the first time.
So just use the coupon code CHRISTMAS2010 when you check out and it will automatically deduct 20% of your purchase. Pretty nifty I think!

Now run and try it out!
God Jul! (merry christmas in swedish)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

wedding wednesday's

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

It's in the air...

 Sniff sniff.. Can you smell it?

 Ahhh there it is...

fills lounges with a deep breath of christmas tree scent

Looking kind of skinny you say? 
I promise you we looked at every tree we could find. Every one. 
I am very lucky to have such a patient husband-to-be. 
And he is lucky I am such a great Christmas tree finder...

 See I told you it wasn't really that skinny!
Oh I meant to ask you about the Christmas tree mutilation that is going on in this country...
One of the reasons it took us forever to find one was that almost every single one of them look like they've been pushed into a giant pencil sharpener and gotten all them lovely little branches cut off. 
So they look like a cone. A christmas tree cone. 
It was quite sad actually. I like my trees a little wild.

 It was quite the family gathering around the newcomer. 
They gave him a sniff and decided they would welcome Mr Christmas tree into the family. 
Lisa however made no promises to leave his accessories alone. 
She said if they're red, round and shiny they must be some sort of toy that 
should thoroughly be examined...

Upon closer examination David and I have decided we must add color to our tree. All my ornaments are white and red. Which is very classic and pretty... BUT I feel a need for some color in my life. Purple and gold. Purple and gold and green.. Maybe even some blue... 

Ahhhhh it feels so good to have a tree!

Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!
love ~tess

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

wedding wednesday's

 I told you David is making something amazing for our wedding. He is building a backdrop for the ceremony. So he started this weekend and I am just letting him go nuts with it...

Here's the sketch he made on a receipt when we were out for dinner a couple of months ago.
Looks pretty amazing right?! We're gonna bring the indoor outdoors..

Out of all the things we're making for the wedding this is really the one thing that makes my heart sing. I can't wait to see it completed :o)

love ~tess

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

tuesday thoughts

 I dusted off my little box of Christmas ornaments and decorations I've collected since I moved away from home. It's probably silly but I can't wait to decorate my home. If I could I would buy a tree right now...

I was raised quite nontraditional and we didn't have a lot of traditions around the holidays. Often we didn't have a tree and I think my mother wasn't a fan of doing things the same way most people do it.

But I can see now why I crave it so much. I want to establish traditions. I want routines and stability. I want a big Christmas tree with tons of lights. I want to bake big gingerbread cookies in the shape of hearts and write our names with icing and then hang them in our kitchen window. I want to have my 4 advent candles, where you light one candle every Sunday leading up to Christmas. I want to make my own sweet and spicy mustard to go with that baked ham. I want to make traditional swedish Christmas candy.. All with loud Christmas music playing in the background...

I can't wait to get started!

Lisa just wants to eat the Christmas bird :o)


Monday, November 22, 2010

Scrumptious Pizza Night!

 Saturday night was a date night! On our first Valentine together David treated me to homemade grilled pizza's. We made them on my little balcony in Atlanta. It was so much fun and it tastes amazing! So we decided to make them again. It was a little too chilly to make them on the grill so we used the oven which works just fine.

 The roasted bell pepper sauce is so good I could eat it with a spoon. 

Lisa decided to entertain us for the evening... She likes to explore small spaces... Bless her :o)

For toppings I think we used everything but the kitchen sink... Prosciutto, artichokes, mozzarella cheese, arugula.. Mmm it was so delicious!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend too.

lots of love ~tess

Thursday, November 18, 2010

silver babies in the tumbler

This one is making those tiny hairs on my arm stand up... 
It's not even finished and I am already on love...

I "drew" a little frame on this petite necklace. Little weights are swinging below on a chain. It's the first time I've made something with my little hand held engraving tool. I can see more pieces like that in the future...

 A batch of silver babies wouldn't be complete without a little victorian lady...

 Gorgeous ocean jasper necklace in progress... All of my silver babies needs to be finished up and oxidized before they will be presentable and ready for the Etsy shop... Maybe next week.. I don't want to give you an exact date yet..  But soon :o)

Overall I think I had a productive day on the studio.. But I didn't work on the stones I had picked out a few days ago...  I don't know why but sometimes I just get sidetracked and I just go with it.. Too curious not to I guess..  But next metal day I am going to get started on that butterfly piece :o) Promise!

see you later!
love ~tess

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

wedding wednesday's

Last Saturday it was finally time to go cake tasting! I had been looking forward to it for such a long time. I started looking for a bakery a while back. I needed someone who would be willing to make me a wedding cake covered in Marzipan instead of fondant..

Fondant taste like play-do or cardboard with sugar like a friend said :o)

Nothing that I want in my mouth on my wedding day. In Sweden there is a traditional cake covered on Marzipan called princess cake (you can get it at IKEA in their Swedish Food Market) and it is delicious. Marzipan is like almond paste (it's based on almond paste) but it's easier to shape and doesn't stick to your fingers. It's harder to work with than fondant because it's fresher and more natural. But let me tell you - it tastes GREAT!

So I found this bakery called Bredenbeck and it turns out they are not very far from us which is perfect. They promised me they could make my cake covered in Marzipan. So full of anticipation we headed over there for our scheduled tasting... but when we got there the salesperson told us that BTW they don't work with Marzipan. And I am embarrassed to say that I went straight into bitch mode. I mean I had been emailing back and forth with these people for months. They PROMISED!! I told her that if they couldn't work with it.. well then there was no point for us to taste their cakes. Period. She looked a little frazzled.. And said she was gonna go check witrh someone else at the bakery. 5 minutes later she came back and said it was just a missunderstanding and of course they could make it cobvered with marzipan. PHEW! All was well. I apologized for being short with her. :o)

Got got to try their raspberry swirl, pumpkin (which we both agreed wasn't gonna fit our spring/summer wedding), lemon and chocolate (I know there was more but I can't remember all the flavors!). With the marzipan you have to cover the cake with a fruit puree as opposed to fondant when you cover the cake with butter-cream. We picked a raspberry puree which was very tasty. David started assembling his own little samples by taking a piece of cake putting some raspberry puree on it and top if off with a piece of marzipan. Pretty tasty I must say. We really couldn't decide between the dark chocolate and the lemon one. So today we're getting to actual samples made up so we can get a better idea of the flavors together. I think I am partial to the lemon cake. The flavors were so fresh and perfect for a summer wedding!

The second part pf the tasting was talking about the vision for the cake. This is where it got really dicey. We had brought in a photo of a cake design that we liked. Which was originally a moderns ocean/wave theme. But we also brought in a plate that we found that had beautiful whimsical vines, paisley (not that we necessarily want paisley on the cake). But we figured if we could marry the two it would be the perfect expression for our outdoor, whimsical, romantic, forest fairytale wedding. David and I are both artists. Super picky, extremely difficult custom order customer. We know that. That's why we are doing about 90% of the wedding stuff ourselves.
We know we are crazy...

So as we are talking to the lady at the bakery we realized that we won't be able to just leave the design up the bakery. We HAVE to design it. We have to make a sketch for the cake decorator at the bakery to follow. Not that she isn't a fantastic decorator. It's just that we need the cake to look exactly like it does in our head...

David is fantastic at drawing so he started sketching out different versions of this whimsical forest, nature cake. The idea is that we are two kind of bugs on top of the cake and each tier has whimsical grass/ferns thingies. Very organic and flowing design. With small whimsical elements. The marzipan has kind of a beige color which will be the base of the cake.

We don't have one or two colors picked for the wedding. It's more of a feeling created by using a bunch of complimentary colors. The bridesmaid dresses are peridot. A paler sort of sage green. The center pieces have moss inside of them with the brown grapevine spheres. We will also have some sage table cloths (hanging out under cream/ivory top table cloth) and a bunch of those sage rice lamps/balls hanging from the ceiling of the tent. Lots of green in different but complimentary shades. For my bridesmaids I am also making fabric flower corsages/bracelets in the greens but I am also incorporating those dusty pink/plumes in the flowers so we thought it would be nice to have those colors somewhere on the cake as well. It's important that it has that forest moss green and that playfulness that we have throughout the wedding.

David's major is in sculpture so it makes sense that he would do the cake toppers.
I told you he is fantastic!

He's making two bugs. He said he was going to make me a wasp. Cause I have a curvy figure but I can be a bitch sometimes... ha ha we'll see what he does. I trust him! He did also say that he was going to be a walking stick... and I am not sure how I feel about being up there on the cake holding hands with a stick.. I think a part of me is terrified that he's actually gonna take a little branch and stick it to the cake LOL

I guess this is where I just have to let go and let him do his thing. He has never made anything I didn't like so I just have to let him play with it and we'll see where he lands. I have a feeling they'll be amazing. Just like he is...

and now it's studio time!
lots of love ~tess