Saturday, August 11, 2012

Bead Soup!

I did this thing that jewelry makers and beaders do called Bead Soup.  The creation of Lori Anderson, the idea behind it is to spark creativity and take people outside of their comfort zone.  A bunch of artisans sign up, she assigns partners, and we send each other a focal (pendant), clasp, and other stuff.  You must use the pendant and the clasp and the other stuff is optional.  My partner is Dita Basu.

I've been remiss in posting about this and advertising this because I've been OMG busy!  So I really should have posted what Dita sent me about a month ago.  But I didn't. So here it is now:

As soon as I saw that pretty blue focal, I knew I wanted to wrap it in copper and do so in a fun way to match the whimsy of the dots. So I started doing that and then remembered I hadn't taken a picture of the package.  And I wished I'd taken a pic of the packaging too because she really did a very nice job with that and I have learned so much from her before even opening the package.  How's that for inspirational?!

I had never before wrapped a bead.  I've been meaning to.  I've wrapped chains, but not yet a bead.  Anyway let me show you the finish product before I meander too much.

As you can see, I kept on with the curly copper theme.  I didn't use much of her beads (I'll use them in something else) but they were definitely the inspiration behind my using so many pearls.  The turquoise matches the blue pendant much better than what shows in the picture.  

Without further ado, let me post the list of other participants.  Hopefully you'll have time to stop by and don't forget to leave a comment and tell them you did!  I know I enjoy reading people's comments and I'm sure the other artisans do too.  Also don't be afraid to hop around on the list below.  So often people begin at the top and by the time they hit the 'm's' they are tired of looking and hopping.  I try to skip around and show some love to the people in the middle and on the bottom of the list.

Hostess, Lori Anderson, Pretty Things

Adlinah Kamsir, Dream Struck Designs
Adrienn Lukacs, Raszputyin Designs
Agata Grygiel, Cytherea Bijoux 
Alenka Obid, Pepita Handmade 
Amy Dickerson, Damyjo Designs 
Amy Schmidt, Amy's Treasure 
Amy Severino, Amy Beads 

Andrea Trank, Heaven Lane Creations
Anke Humpert, Anart Island Studios
Ann Rishell, My Critical Eye
April Grinaway, Brooklyn Bead Goddess 
Ashley Bunting, Miss Ashely Kate 
Astrid Boyce, Astrid Boyce Beads 
B.R. Kuhlman, Mixed Mayhem Studios 
Barbe Saint John, Saints and Sinners

Beata Benkone Meggyesi, Beahobbi
Brandy McNair, Bella Vita Handmade Jewelry 
 Bryna Lumb, Bryna's Bead Box
Carmen Lau, Little Maketto
Cate van Alphen, Fulgorine
Cathie Carroll, Cathie Carroll's Studio
Cathy Khoury, Touch Jewelry 
Christina Stofmeel, Feng Beads 

 Collette Collins, Fire Fly Myst Artisan Jewelry
Courtney Breul, Beads by Breul 
Crystal Thain, Here Bead Dragons
Cynthia Abner, Created Treasures
Deana Hager, Just Deez'Art & Life
Debbie Phenes, Deb Joy Sing
Dhea Powers, Java Bead

Diana Welte, Lilyweeds
Dita Basu, alankarshilpa
Dorota Zeranska, gdymamczas 
Dot Lewallwn, Speedie Beadie
Elisabeth Auld, Beads For Busy Gals
Ema Kilroy, Ema K Designs
Emma Todd, A Polymer Penchant
Eva Sherman, Eva Sherman Designs
Evie and Beth McCord, EB Bead and Metal Works
Francy Inman, Francy's Studio

Ginger Bishop, lilmummy likes...
Giorgia Rossini, Jo in Wonderland
Ine Vande Cappelle, Jewels by Ine 
Iveth Caruso, Creative Atelier 
JJ Jacobs, Coming Abstractions
Jackie Ryan, Kydo Jewellery
Jeannie Dukic, Jeannie's Blog
Jelveh Jaferian, Jelveh Designs
Jenna Tomalka, Twin Birch Studio
Jenni Connolly, Jenni's Beads

Jennifer Van Horn, Jennifers Jewels and Junk
Jo-Ann Woolverton, It's a Beadiful Creation
Johanna Rhodes-Nash, Fire Phoenix Creations 
 Joyce Blair, Bent Wire West Coast
JuLee Wolfe, The Polymer Penguin
Karen Vincent, Swallow Tail Jewellery
Karin Slaton, Backstory Beads
Kayla Potega, The Eclectic Element 
Kim Dworak, CianciBlue
Kris Lanae Binsfeld, Cherish Designs by Kris Lanae

Kristen Latimer, MJM Jewelry Designs
Kumi Fisher, Malie Kai Designs
Kym Hunter, Kym Hunter Designs
Lennis Carrier, Windbent
Leslie Wayment, AA Beads & More
Linda Murphy, Bonita Bead
Lisa Johnson, Whimsey Wonders

Lisa Sittniewski, Love, Yesterdays
Lois Moon, Que Onda, Q'Town?
Lola Surwillo, Bead Lola Bead
Lorelei Eurto, Lorelei's Blog
Lori Bowring Michaud, Artfully Ornamental
Lori Finney, Using My Beads
Margareta Saari, Mags-koruja
Maria Horvath, Horimarika Beads
Marian Hertzog, M's Place

 Mary Ellen Parker, BeeTree by m.e.
Mary K McGraw, MK's Creative Musings
MaryLou Holvenstot, time2cre8 
Martha Aleo, Ornamento
 Maybeline Tay, The Jewelry Larder
Megan Collins, Churchy & Her Sailor
Melissa Meman, Art. Life. Love.
Melissa Mesara, One-Eared Pig Beads
Paige Maxim, Paige Maxim Designs

Pam Farren, re-maker
Pam Hurst, Pam Hurst Designs
Patricia Handschuh, The Color of Dreams
Patty Miller, CabariBeads
Penney Klapoth, Faerie Acres
Regina Santerre, Regina's Writings
Rhea Freitag, starrgazer creates
Rochelle Brisson, A Creative Chelle

Sabine Dittrich, PerlenDschungel
Sandra McGriff, Creative Chaos
Sandra Neights, Petalo Azul
Sandra Young, It's a Bead Life!
Sara Oehler, SoftFlex Girl
Saturday Sequins, Saturday Sequins
Shanti Johnson, Sunshine Bliss
Shari Replogle, Plays With Paper
Sonya Stille, Dreamin' of Beads

Stefanie Teufel, Stefanies Sammelsurium
Tammie Everly, TTE Designs
Tania Spivey, Moobie Grace Designs
Therese Frank, Therese's Treasures
Tina Holden, Polymer Clay Bytes!
Toltec Jewels, Jewel School Friends 

Tracey Nanstad, A Beadiful Mess
Tracy Choy, BumbleBeads Designs
Valerie Norton, Hot Art

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Graduation present

I made this for a friend's graduation.  I wanted it to symbolize him breaking away from one thing and emerging into another.  Made from a natural malachite cabochon from Magpie Gemstones (the most appropriately named store EVAR), 22 gauge copper plate (for the bottom piece), 30 gauge copper plate (for the top piece), and the rivets and pin back piece could have come from anywhere.

I'm thinking of making some similar pieces for sale.  What do you think?

The front

The back

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The messy workshop

We've been discussing messy workshops over at B'Sue's Blog. Someone decided it would be a good idea to share photos of our messy workshops and do a blog hop about it.  In a momentary fit of insanity, I signed up.  Rutroh.

I wish I could afford studio space but rents around here are just too high and a studio would effectively double both my monthly rent and my utilities.  Hence, I make do with TV trays near the sofa and stashing supplies anywhere I can find a likely space.  My entire apartment has become my workshop.

So with that in mind, I share with you some of the more prominent spots.  They aren't particularly good pics but I guess they will do the trick.  Click on them to make them bigger.  You'll like them more better when they are bigger.  Trust me on this one :)

The messy TV tray
The messy TV tray part the deux.  And my carpet. 

First up is the messy TV tray.  I kind of move things around and to a side in order to have working space.  I took the second shot so you could see some of the focals I'm working on right now.  You'll notice a lot of B'Sue's stuff in there!  I seem to be going through a Steampunk phase.  When am I NOT going through a Steampunk phase?

The messy cart

The messy cart part the deux

Next is the messy cart.  The cart is where I keep the bulk of my supplies -- the ones I use every day.  I'm always mostly organized because the apartment is very small and therefore organization is key.  You'll see my gaggle of tools on top of the cart there as well as a bin of wire.

Close up of the plier conglomerate

The messy bin of chemistry -- Rennaissance wax, patinas, glue, etc.  All in one place.

The messy basket of everyday components and the messy tool bag
I thought I should get a shot of my messy tool bag.  You can see a few hammers sticking up out of there and not a day goes by where I'm not using hammers.  My indispensable Sunshine cloth for polishing. Also the messy basket of findings and every day components -- in those cases are the things I use the absolute most.

The not so messy dapping block!  And ModgePodge!  And Pronoia!  Origami! Stamps!  This table has it all.

A side table with my dapping tools, my stamps, some Modge Podge and other assorted odds and ends.

A messy table of supplies.

A messy bookcase with supplies
You know those drawers B'Sue showed in her video that had a bunch of stuff.  In my house, those drawers are tupperware containers.

So now you know my deepest darkest secret -- I don't have a studio and create everything on TV trays.  One of these days someone is going to find out I'm pretending to be a real artist with a studio and everything -- but until then, my secret is safe with you, right?  After all, anything on the internet is sekret!

Here's the other participants of the blog hop!  Please visit their sites and see their messy workshops.  I bet they have real studios.

Brenda Sue Lansdowne
Robin Delargy
Kim at Cianci Blue
Jennifer Jazwick-Smith
Mary Shannon Hicks
Tracy Swartz
Jacqueline Marchant
Lynnea Perry Bennett
Terry Matusyk
Laurel Steven
Dr. Brassy Steamington
Pamela Takeshige
Kris Lanae Binsfeld
Outre Art
Linzi Alford
Deb Davis <<<YOU ARE HERE>>>
Tamara Jones
Harry Wood
Gerry Nickerson
Elizabeth Owens-Dwy
Georgene Lockwood
Charisa Sloper
Jennifer Justman
Mary Deis
Cheri Reed
Sondra Kolner
Sonya Ingersoll-Stille
Lori Anderson
Sandra McGriff
Shelly Joyce
Joan Williams
Kashmira Patel
Deb Beechy
Ginger Bishop
Kelli Jacobson
Natalie McKenna
Andrew Thornton
Mary Govaars
Kate Mulligan
Lisa Lodge
Tami Luchini
Monique Lula
Lee Koopman
Jayne Capps
Susan Lloyd
Cynthia Wainscott
Stephanie Amanti
Alicia Marinache
Sam Hamp
Lennis Carrier

Friday, February 24, 2012

Stone identification project

Do you like this necklace?

I do too.  And I really wish I knew what those stones near the pendant were.  I know they are some kind of jasper. I'm tempted to call them speckled jasper even though there is no such thing but people make up names for stones all the time so why can't I be one of them?  Anyway It will be for sale as soon as I figure out what kind of stone that is.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Deb Goes to Brunch

A couple of my friends had birthdays so we took them to Sunday brunch at the Hyatt.  Looking at the following pics, and there are a lot, will cause you to be hungry.  You have been warned.

First there was the buffet.  Where you could get as much as you wanted of dessert and seafood and eggs and bacon and baked goods and salads and omg food!

Artichoke Salad

Asparagus Salad

Caprisi Salad
Smoked Salmon

More bacon and sausage than you could shake a stick at

They had these little bottles of tabasco to go with the seafood.  Cute!

Tiny Tabasco

There was a lot of dessert at the buffet.

Moose of various sorts and little cakelet things
Chocolate cake

Close up of the little cakelet thingys

Some sort of cake or pie

Strawberry cake, I believe

We tried to be good at the buffet

Being good at the buffet

Someone else trying to be good

Not all of us succeeded

Why are the shrimp and the oysters gone?
The shrimp and oysters are gone to make room for the main course, which was cooked to order.  Here we see excess personified with steak, eggs, and corned beef hash.  As if the steak wasn't enough by itself.

Steak, eggs and corned beef hash

Salmon steak.  Wait Rebecca! Stop eating so I can take a picture of your meal.  Yes I'm kind of dangerous with a camera.

Rebecca's salmon steak.  It looked really good.  She seemed to enjoy it.

I got the eggs benedict with crab meat.  It was teh yum.

Eggs benedict with crab meat

Did I mention there was all you can drink mimosas and champagne at this brunch?

Bottomless mimosas

Why is the mimosa gone?  Cuz you drank it fool!

Why is the mimosa gone?
Oh good.  A refill.

Yay mimosas!

The gang's almost all here.  One person was a bit late.  I'm not in the pic cuz I am taking the pic

My wonderful friends.  I love them so much

The gang is now all here.

Rebecca, Laura and Stacia
Stacia strikes a pose

And the birthday cake.  Because there hadn't been enough food already.

Totally cool

Last but not least was Flor, our fantastic wait staff person who waited on us hand and food and catered to our every whim. Ok maybe not every but she was definitely cool.  They tacked on the 18% gratuity as is customary for large parties and we tipped her extra over that.  An awesome birthday brunch.

Flor the amazing waitress
The most amazing thing about this was that I didn't take pics of everything.  I tried... oh yes I really tried.  But there were salads and eggs and potatoes and the like at the buffet that did not get pics.  And I didn't get a pic of everyone's entre.  This is a fantastic Sunday brunch and I recommend it to everyone.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Sari Ribbon Blog Hop

I'm participating in a Sari Ribbon Party Blog Hop.  This blog post is about 6 hours too early and I apologize for that.  It is early because I have an offsite meeting for work tomorrow that I have to leave for at O-dark-thirty, I wanted to check all the links, and I won't have time tomorrow.  So given the choice between links possibly not working and not showing up in the preview and posting early -- well I hope my diligence that the links are all working will count towards forgiveness for being early.

So what is a blog hop, you might ask.  Well that's where a bunch of jewelry designers design something with the same theme and then put up pics of their designs and a list of links to everyone else who participates.  And what is Sari Ribbon, you might also ask.  Sari ribbon is left over silk ribbon from making saris. Fiber is the next best thing in jewelry making these days and its really neat the way you can incorporate the ribbon.

So, without further ado, here are the pics of my designs.  Ok a little more ado.  As is usual for me, there cannot be only one because indescision is my middle name!  So I have a few.  Enough with the ado already and on to the pics!

The front of the Sari Ribbon and Wood necklace

The back of the Sari Ribbon and Wood necklace

I saw a picture once of a necklace where the ribbon was knotted and used as part of the design and I have wanted to do something like that ever since.  What you see here is my attempt.  The beads are all wood and nuts because these were the only beads I could find with a large enough hole to fit two strands of sari ribbon through.  Then I wrapped the ends with copper wire and twisted the wire at the end to make a clasp.  I could have left the ribbon alone and just tied it to finish but I thought this way was a tad more polished.

Charm and ribbon bracelet

My second project is a charm bracelet.  Once upon a time when you ordered from B'Sue Boutiques, if you ordered enough, you would get a goodie bag with goodies in it.  This was back in the halcyon days before she offered free shipping.  The free shipping is awesome -- don't get me wrong.  But I loved the goodie bags.  I always got a pretty decent sized bag of stuff that I hadn't ordered or even thought of ordering.  One of the things I always got in the goodie bags were a charm or two.  I never really knew what to do with the charms though and so I threw them into an empty tub of Earth Balance spread and forgot about them.

Now I have ordered a lot of stuff from B'Sue's shop (which I adore more than I can express adequately). So the tub got full.  One day I said to myself, "Self, if life gives you charms you should make charm bracelets."  So I did.  And then I made charm necklaces and earrings too but that is really the subject for another post. 

Anyway when you bead a lot, like I do, you tend to end up with a lot of left over onsies and twosies beads.  I throw them in a different tub.  So I wrapped some links onto the empty beads and used those and the charms to create this bracelet.  Then the Sari Ribbon Blog Hop came around and I said to myself "Self, why not throw some ribbon on that bracelet as a charm?"  So I did.  And here is the end result.

The charm and ribbon bracelet larger

So there you have my offerings for the Sari Ribbon Blog Hop.  I hope you enjoyed this and my ramblings.  Below is the list of other jewelry designers that are participating.  Enjoy the show!

Vickie Wills

Susan Kennedy

Michelle Mach

Michelle Lee Hardy

Ruth Crawford

Hilary Frye, FryeStyle

Diana P.

Brenda Sue Lansdowne, B'sue Boutiques

Elizabeth Owens-Dwy

Connie Rios-Relyea

Jennifer Justman  

Deb Davis


Cathie Carroll

Rosemary Cowit

Georgene Lockwood

Cathy Buckley

Harry Wood

Sonya Stille

Mary Deis

Heather Goldsmith

Susan Rouleau

Terry Matusyk

Pam Chesbro

Mary Shannon Hicks

Janice Everett


Kristina Johansson, Maneki

Kris Binsfeld

Alice Craddick



Catherine Jeltes


Sharon Palac

Deb Beechy

Jean Yates

Patrice Pfeiffer

Dorcas Midkiff

Lynn Perry Bennett

Linzi Alford


Cynthia Wainscott

Marie-Noel Voyer-Cramp

B'sue Boutiques Creative Group