Activities at the Old Place

 Last month we were still having some cool weather so the wood stove was humming. No sense wasting all that heat... up near the ceiling is a great spot to dry heavy wool socks. 

John cut some shelving for a skinny closet we  made and here I'm varnishing them a few times. Luckily the floors are still unfinished so no worries of any drips.

 In order to save as much space as possible we hung 3 old solid wood doors on sliding barn door rollers.   After we cut the extending bolts shorter and gave it 2 coats of top coat paint. One door each for my studio, John's studio and the storage room.

 we built wall to wall bookshelves at the end of the kitchen/LR... put them up on a platform that we fitted with electrical outlets.  

 Just finishing the last one and it's about ready to be stood up. 

 have the tops on now and prepping to varnish

note to remember for next time... do not keep tea cup beside paint can.. almost stuck my brush in there more than once.. 


Below are a few pair of earrings that were sent out to customers during the last while.

 Fresh Water Pearl and Sterling textured dome

 Balls of Yarn earrings in Copper

 Sterling Wrapped forged Copper

Sterling Wrapped Amethyst on handmade spiral earwires

 Cat and Kitten

 When we moved last fall... I purged much... gave away a Kenmore machine, exactly this 1968 model, to my daughter ... gave away 9 others too... but somehow, as fate would have it... someone posted this on Kijiji and now it's sitting on my desk

She just needed some cleaning and oiling... She weighs a ton and sews a very fine seam.

All the snow has finally gone and popping up in an area of grass that is all but ignored is a cheery patch of Crocus. What a happy surprise... Just love them.. Now just waiting for the grass to green up..
Happy Days All


At Work at our New Very Old Place

 We are spending every day at our in-progress Desideratum Art Studio... building up our stock for the coming season... bringing back many of our favourite designs as well as a few new ones.
 Above are Three new designs we will be adding to our collection this year. 

the Peridot and Silver, a bit closer, $25 pair

 Throughout the fall and winter we have been feverishly working on our old house to make it livable. Here John is trimming to size and squaring up these very old doors we have had in storage and have been carting around for some time now.
 I love the long panels... John had to do some fixing to them before they could be used... trimming to make them even and square, filling in spots where there was damaged wood, changing position of the hinges and cutting out and affixing old porcelain doorknobs, but he did and we managed to save them ....we had 3 of this type.

 We were recently informed by an auctionereer that these two old panel doors appear to be of the Victorian period mid 19th century circa 1850... love to find out information about architecture and historical artifacts!!

 cutting out a lovely smooth spot for the hinges.. John informed me, that this part of the process is called mortising. 

 Good fit. we wished we could have found some antique hinges like we found and put on all the doors of our last house in St. Martins, but they have become more difficult to come across . 

Here John sculpted out the set in spot for the other side of the hinge on a little upstairs closet.the process involved in hanging doors is quite time consuming when done from scratch!!!!

These are a few of the old square nails we removed from the antique doors. I find them beautiful!

 Copper  Goldstone and Sterling Silver Bracelet

 Sterling Silver and Jasper Bracelet

 Black pottery glass, jasper, amethyst and Sterling Silver Bracelet

Zebra Jasper, amethyst, and Sterling Silver Bracelet

Abstractly fused copper and silver rectangles combined with handmade African Bauxite beads... with copper... light and earthy... lots of movement... unusual how the silver formed a "T" in the fusing process completely by happy accident. 2 1/2" total length... one of a kind and only pair like this available... $25.00 pr.
.....if interested please send us an email. we ship asap 
.... background ink drawing of crows from my sketchbook, 

Been a long winter in the middle of New Brunswick... We are ready for Spring. Won't be long now!! 
Cheers everyone!!


Jewels by Desideratum Art Jewelry

 Fresh Water Pearls on Handmade Sterling Silver wires

 Sterling and Copper link with Amethyst drops

 Textured Sterling Silver Triangles with Amethyst stones

Textured Sterling Silver  with long Copper Triangles

 Large Sterling Textured dome

 Silver Men on Textured Copper dome

 Textured Sterling Silver Wirework Birds  ~ Sold~

Faceted Czech Glass with Antiqued Steel and Hematite Heart

A few designs that have come to light after our move...  seems many of our designs had been tucked away... nice to find them..  if interested in purchasing contact me here

Cortlands Make the Best Apple Pie

 We have been living at the "new" old homestead for 8 weeks now.  Can't believe the last year has gone so fast.  When will it slow down. 
 I remember when I was a kid, how long the days were... they seemed to drag on forever.
 Not anymore!

So if that's the way it's gonna be, we have to do as much as possible in these new very short days!!
...and one thing I wanted to do was to go picking apples.. 
yes I know we should have been working on house projects, finishing up outside things before winter ...but when Apple time is calling, I am going to answer.

Beautiful big box of Cortlands.. My favourite kind! 

We went down to the nearest Orchard, the one that I pass every time I go to the Post Office to mail a jewelry order out. The fellow who owns it is Mr. Doucette.  He's a super nice older gentleman, tall and lean.. with big glasses and a floppy hat.

He has the most beautiful orchard you ever saw. It is up a very long, very steep, very narrow, winding driveway... almost an adventure just heading up the hill to his farm... but when you are there, you're surrounded with all the bounty of Nature. His orchard is huge... rows upon rows... they were loaded down with fruit... and so well cared for, it was a pleasure to  gather apples there.  He had Pears and Plums earlier in the season, too.

So some peeling, some slicing,, some cinnamon, brown sugar, dabs of butter, sprinkles of lemon juice, good stir and the filling was ready. Smelled so good!

 Mixed up the pie crust... love the old pastry blender I found at a flea market.

Found my favourite long round rolling pin.. Such a cool wooden tool. last forever, it will.

 Finally rolling out the crust time.  I use Lard in my crust

...made enough for 3 pies ...tops and bottoms.
Popped them in the oven and cooked them about 35+ minutes at 350 deg..  but always test for the temperature of your own oven. 

I might have scorched them a bit on the bottom as I'm not quite used to this oven yet
but they tasted great!! 
The fragrance that filled the room was well worth it..
 I wish I could bottle it!!

Moving Down the Road

 Down the driveway and on our way from St. Martins.

 outside Saint John

Driving through Fredericton

Arrived  and unloading into the shed

Happy we had our 4 cds. of  fire wood stacked and dry for the winter

 Here's John with  another couple loads in our "Beverly Hillbillies" moving trailer

Well. here we are. At our little old house.  Hope we don't have to do that again, ever. Huge, Huge job.
I am ready to stay in one place for the rest of my life!!!!!!

It has taken a while to sort through things and it is still an ongoing task.. and it will be for a while. trust me. 
I did manage to carve out a little niche to carry on making jewelry and sending it out. It was a almost a pleasure to hide away in the studio and not look at the stacks of boxes and belongings piled up to the ceiling around the little house.  still lots of sorting to do, but a lot has been purged and given away in the last month. Whew!  
Still, because we chose a house that has been and will be, a project, for a while yet, we have more things to finish up before the winter.  so carry on, we will, till we're done.

John is hankering to get his woodworking tools out of his future painting studio.  

But to finish off for now.... Here's a few designs we did this summer.

 Carved bone skull and textured steel... Handmade at Desideratum, $25

Peridot and Sterling Silver. Lots of movement.  $30. ...
Handmade at Desideratum.

"Earth Mother Totem" earrings. Handmade by John Ackerson in Silver and Copper.  
...displayed on a sculpted dragon cup by my son Zachary Gypsy Cunningham, who works as a fab food creator at The Lunar Rogue Pub, Fredericton.
...if interested in the "Earth Mother Totems" contact us at or message, $50. pr . I think I may have 2 pr.

These "Book and Mug" earrings ($ part of an order, on their way westward to beautiful Banff, AB. Thank you, Richard Norton at "About Canada" Gallery. 
...background mug was created by the talented Helen Stanley, New Brunswick Potter.

  Sterling Silver Domed Squares...
... large ones are approx.1/2" sq.  $25
...Small ones are approx. 3/8" sq. $18

...background is a pattern from my sketchbook in gouache... really love the combination of those colours together
Opaque soft green glass with sterling wrapped Amethyst (matched as close as possible as all are unique in size). handmade, one-of. $35.

Mama and Baby  $

Little pair of "Ladybugs" in Copper and Silver, handmade. $25. 

"Sigma - Pi" with Sterling Silver and Carnelian . Fused, handmade at Desideratum. $40. one of a kind, 2" long top of earwire to bottom of earring, sterling disc is 5/8" across.
...if interested contact us at

...displayed on the neck of John's guitar that he hopes to spend more time on, one of these days.
Cheers everyone!!!