Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Art Jewelry Elements July Component of the Month

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Blog Hop!!

I was lucky enough to win a drawing for one of Jennifer Cameron's wonderful Nightmare Insomnia Lampwork beads. This was part of a challenge sponsored by Art Jewelry Elements. And today is the big reveal. All we had to do was use our amazing bead in a piece of jewelry. Easy right? Weeeellll, At first I didn't think so. Here is the bead I won.

It's beautiful, complex, and large. I was also involved in the Bead Soup Blog Party effort, so what was I thinking challenging myself again? And then I realized what I needed to do was go with my strength. Although I admire complex designs, I did not have to push myself that far. Because this is a pretty complex bead. Here is what Jennifer had to say about her Nightmare Insomnia beads, after first explaining that she was coping with her daughter's nightmares:

'One night, as I was torching, I was stewing about this particular issue, and suddenly my beads started growing these stylized spider end caps thingys on them before I realized what was going on. The next morning when I showed my lovely daughter, she responded with "that's really mean that you made those because of my nightmare, but also really cool." '
So in a way this is an emotionally charged bead. I suddenly knew what I wanted to do. I wanted to turn the nightmare into a sweet dream. I couldn't get wild with dangles, crystals and fiddly bits, Uh-uh, no tassels, although I was tempted. So I started looking through my stash of seed beads and came up with some coordinating colors. A trip to the discount store resulted in the purchase of some bar shaped glass beads in cool colors - two of which coordinated with the Nightmare Insomnia bead. And after quickly laying out and stringing the main part of the design, it sat for a few days. I didn't know how to finish it. Ok, a couple of cones, then what? I really like magnetic clasps, for their practicality and also their ability to blend into many designs. But I needed something a bit more assertive. I went back to the store and came back with several clasps. Some small but decorative toggles, and a little larger, fancier magnetic clasp. Then I went with my gut. Magnetic it was.   

Here is, A Daughter's Sweet Dream.

The clasp

The camera liked my concrete steps better than the black velvet, go figure. 

Please visit these talented Artists to see what they have come up with for their unique bead!

Beti Horvath: Stringing Fool
Gretchen Nation: Art Food Lodging
Karen Totten: Starry Road Studio
Kathleen Douglas: Washoe Kat's
Keirsten Giles: The Cerebral Dilettante
Kristen Stevens: My Bead Journey
Lori Anderson: Pretty Things
Rana Wilson: Rana Lea Designs
Shannon Chomanczuk: For My Sweet Daughter

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Bead Soup is Served!

Rhapsody in Blue

The big day has arrived for the Bead soup Blog Party first reveal. First, a peek at what I received from my partner Carolyn Lawson..

The focal is a rectangular glass pendant, complete with bail. The clasp is a fancy silver toggle. The beads include these giant blue howlite tear drop shapes, three donuts, and other shiny blue beads and some silver spacers.Lovely colors, interesting shapes. What to do?  There is a lot here to work with, so I decided not to try to load everything into a few pieces. 

The Rhapsody in Blue Suite is Born!

The pendant/focal was obviously destined to be a necklace. In it I used the little blue teardrop shaped beads, the foil lined bars, some of the spacers, and some seed beads from my stash. The streamlined look is completed by a small plain magnetic clasp. 

Here it is modeled by the lovely Haruko!
Next, I made the bracelet that was screaming to be made from the howlite.

One of the donuts looked good here, and of course the toggle clasp went perfectly. Some Czech glass beads from my stash rounded out the design. 

Two pairs of earrings came next, one utilizing the last of the howlite (so pretty!) and a couple of the Czech beads, the other simply consists of the blue tear drops strung on head pins. 

A few days went by, and the idea for another bracelet presented itself.

Strung on blue cotton cord, this one introduces some hardware from my "furnace collection" and some round pink foil lined beads to complement the blue ones. The clasp is made from a metal bar from a simple toggle, and one of the donuts. 

This has been a wonderful challenge and experience. This is my first Bead Soup, but not my last!

  Hostess, Lori Anderson, PrettyThingsBlog.com

Alice Craddick,  Alice's Beads and Baubles
Alicia Marinache,  All The Pretty Things
Amanda Tibbetts,  Amanda Made
Amber Dawn Goldish, Inventive Soul
Annita Wilson,  AW Jewelry
Beti Horvath, Stringing Fool
Birgitta Lejonklou,  Create With Spirit   
Candida Castleberry,    Spinning Spun Sugar
Carolyn Lawson, Carolyn's Creations

Cassie Donlen, Glass Beadle
Cheryl McCloud,  One Thing Leads to Another
Cheryl Roe, BeadRoe
Christina Hickman, Vintage Treasures Jewelry
Christine Hendrickson,  Clamworks
Cilla Watkins, Tell Your Girlfriends
Cindy Wilson, Mommy's Dream
Cindy Wimmer, Sweet Bead Studio
Cory Celaya, Art With Moxie

Cory Tompkins, Tealwater Designs
Cris Peacock, Cris' Page
Cynthia Deis, Shiny Little Things
Cynthia Machata, Antiquity Travelers
Cynthia Wainscott, Exotic Peru
Dana Hickey, Magpie Approved
Denielle Hagerman, Some Beads and Other Things

Diane Valasek, Dragonfly Close
Doris Stumpf, Glaszwerg
Dyanne Everett-Cantrell, Dee-Liteful Jewelry Creations
Elaine Robitaille, Too Aquarius
Eleanor Burian-Mohr, The Charmed Life
Enik√∂ Fabian, Perl-eni
Erin Prais-Hintz, Treasures Found
Heather Davis, Blissful Garden Beads
Heidi Post, Ex Post Facto Jewelry

Hilary Frye, FryeStyle
Inge von Roos, Inge's Blog
Jami Shipp, Celebrating Life
Jayne Capps, Mama's Got to Doodle
Jennifer Cameron, Glass Addictions
Jennifer Pottner, Rock Candy Beads
Jennifer VanBenschoten,  Jewelry, Art and Life

Jenny Davies-Reazor, Jenny Davies-Reazor
Jenny Vidberg, Shyme Design
Jessica Dickens, My Jewelry, My Life, Me
Jessica Klaaren, Beadful-Things by Jessica
JJ Jacobs, Coming Abstractions
Joan Williams, Lilruby Jewelry
Judith Johnston, Judith Johnston
Judy Riggs, Rigglettes
Judy Turner, Silver Rains

Julie Anne Leggett, The Peaceful Bead
K Hutchinson, Jumbled Hutch
Karen Meador, Dreamcatcher Ranch
Karyn Bonfiglio, Plus Size Bangles
Katherine Gale, Terra Beadworks
Kathleen Lange Klik, Modern Nature Studio
Katja Benevol Gabrijelcic, Slovonske Technobe
Kelli Jacobson, Creative Moon
Kelly Ramstack, Adventures with Kelly
Keri Lee Sereika, Pink Lemonade

Kim Bender-Hora, KimmyKat
Kirsi Luostarinen, Kirsi Luo Korut
Kitty Bozzini, Kitty Lampwork
Laura Demoya, The Bead Therapist
Laurie Hanna, Laurie's Jewelbox
Leah Curtis, Beady Eyed Bunny
Lesley Watt, The Gossiping Goddess
Linda Inhelder, Must-Haves Jewelry

Lisa Liddy, Metal Me This
Mallory Hoffman, For the Love of Beads
Marge Beebe, Rock Creek Creations
Marianna Boylan, Pretty Shiny Things
Marion Simmons, Shade Tree Studio
Marla Gibson, Spice Box Design
Marta Weaver, Marta Weaver Jewelry

Marti Conrad, Marti C's Clay Blog
Maryse Fritzsch-Thillens, GlassBeadArt, Lampwork Beads
Melanie Brooks, Earthenwood Studio
Michelle Hardy, Firefly Visions
Mikala Coates, Maybe Just Perhaps
Mowse Doyle, HoCArt
Nancy Boylan, Snazzy Doodle Designs
Nancy Peterson, Beading From the Heart
Nicole Rennell, Nicole Rennell Designs

Niki Meiners, 365 Days of Craft
Niky Sayers, Silver Nik Nats
Norma Turvey, Moonlit Fantaseas
Paige Maxim, Paige Maxim Designs
Pamela Gangler, She Always Loved Pink
Patricia Johnson, Patricia L. Johnson Glass Art
Perri Jackson, Shaktipaj Designs
Raida Disbrow, Havana Beads
Renetha Stanziano, Lamplight Crafts
Shannon Hicks, Falling Into the Sky

Shannon LeVart, Miss Fickle Media
Sharon Driscoll, Right Turn Art Werks
Shelley Graham Turner, Fabric of My Life
Sherri Stokey, Knot Just Macrame
Shirley Moore, Beads and Bread
Skylar Bre'z, Brising Beads
Stacie Florer, Soul to Substance
Stacie Stamper, Park Avenue
Stacy Alderson, Iridal's Attic

Stephanie Haussler, Pixybug Designs
Stephanie Stamper, Rainy Day Designs
Suzette Bentley, Ellie's Bijoux
Tammy Jones, Jewelry Making Daily
Tanty Sri Hartanti, TJewellicious by Tanti
Terry Matuszyk, Pink Chapeau

Vonna Maslanka, Just Vonna

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Reveals are coming!

Thrift Store Blog Hop

It will be here soon! I have to get going. because I'm only this far along....

And started out like this:

I obviously have some work to do! One interesting thing, see those chains in between the enameled pieces? They aren't really chains, they are solid faux chains!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

14th Annual Port Jervis Arts Walk is History!

This is the way it should always be, well, maybe not the pickup truck!

Necklaces and badge lanyards
The Ports Jervis Arts Walk has long been one of my favorite local street fairs. Last year and again this year, I set up my little Stringing Fool Jewelry tent and offered necklaces, earrings bracelets and this year for the first time, ankle bracelets for sale. I did pretty well, and as always, learned a little bit for next time.

Earrings and bracelets, a few necklaces too!

The view from the booth

It was a perfect day to be outside, not too hot, and lovely. When we got there at about 8:15, there was a pickup truck blocking one of the spaces (the one next to mine, which happened to belong to my daughter and her friend.) At first it looked as if they were going to have to tow it, but finally the owner showed up around 9:30 to move it. Whew! if he hadn't driven away, we would have had to move to make room for a tow truck. 

Set-up was a little rushed, but I got to try out my new way of displaying earrings

It's a couple of plastic shutters I picked up at a yard sale earlier this year. Jim bolted them together, and used upside down, they become the perfect earring rack. The home made folded earring cards did not turn out as well, and I ran the printer out of ink before I could adjust anything, but this is a good technique for showing earrings. 

All in all, it was a grand day!

Friday, July 20, 2012

I used to say I never won anything

Copper Tube Earrings from MaryAnn Carroll

I entered a give-away on Love My Art Jewelry - and I won the most wonderful copper tube earrings made by MaryAnn Carroll. These earrings really rock. I could not at first remember what they looked like, but I thought "They could not possibly be the simple ones I remember from a week or so ago." But they were. I'm in love! 

You can see more of MaryAnn's earrings here Artisan Beads Plus but I think mine are the best. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Catching up - part 2!

Trashy Treasures

Saturdays around my house are often reserved for yard sales and Farmer's Market runs. Since the fridge was a bit full of last week's fruits and veggies, we skipped the Farmer's Market and headed straight for our list of yard sales. Jim usually writes up a list of the most likely looking ones from the local paper, maybe a few from Craig's List (not too fruitful in our area) and off we go. Didn't find much at first and then, Jackpot!! Here's the bag I found at an estate sale among collectible knives and dental kilns.

This is one fine find, and at $5.00, the sale manager may not have been kidding when he said the tag should have said $50.00. The clasp is Catalin, more commonly identified as Bakelite (chemically they are the same plastic.) It has a warm, amber-like quality to it, and I am very pleased. The brown leather has seen better days, but hey, it's older than I am. I think I am going store some of my vintage jewelry in it.

A while later, this popped up.

The color spoke to me. I am more of a green freak these days than I have ever been. And then, there's the lining!
Made up for not going to the farmer's market. I've got my watermelon right here! I'm not much for brand names, but this is an Anne Klein leather bag. Now the question is will I actually use it?

Hope everyone had a "fruitful" weekend!

Catching up!

Things Bloggy

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Ooops! Did I forget something? I am participating in the Blog Hop For Art Jewelry Elements July Component of the Month. I already own another Jennifer Cameron piece, but I really wanted to get up close and personal with one of the Insomnia Nightmare series, And here it is. I won this gorgeous bead! 

I am already working on the necklace that this bead will star in. Stay tuned!

What else? Well, the Bead Soup first reveal is right around the corner, on July 28. I am seeing blue beads in my sleep. Here's a picture of Carolyn's lovely selection.

I hope I have done it justice!

What else? 

On August 4, the reveal for the Thrift Store Blog Hop  should be lots of fun. Some of us are finding out, however, that the $1.50 price limit is a bigger challenge then we thought! In the U.S. at least, thrift shop owners want to wring every penny out of old stuff!

Here's what I chose to work with:

It's a pair of funky '80s (?) earrings from the designer Edgar Berebi. I try to avoid messing with vintage jewelry that may have some intrinsic value in its present state but look:

If you look closely, you can see that the original posts are smushed down and probably would not last long if straightened and used as earrings. And I thought they would look good as a necklace. More later!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Cool Give-away

Oh my, another cool give-away, by Fusion Muse!

And to make sure we keep our skills up, we need to blog about what we do with our winnings. So it's a challenge, too!

I have been alternating between productivity (I made some new jewelry) and lethargy (I did not take any pictures.) So I hope my next posts will feature photos!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Lori's doing it again!

In addition to the fabulous Bead Soup event, Lori Anderson is hosting a giveaway on her blog, Pretty Things

There are five prizes. One prize  is a collection of things that Lori bought and was given at the Bead and Button Show. Another is her Bead Soup book. You might also win her e-book on Blogging Inspirations, or a Bead Soup tote (how cool is that!) or a mystery bead soup mixed by Lori herself.

Hop on over and sign up!

Summer of Soup!

It got there!

Carolyn has her bead soup, and I have mine! Here is what Carloyn sent to me:
And this is the selection I sent to her:
(As you can see I was playing with the writing function on PicMonkey that day!)

I see some definite themes here. Donuts. Blue. Shiny!

Can't wait to get started. I have a few ideas in mind....

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

A little sneak peek

So This is a sneak peak at the Soup Mix I sent out to Carolyn Lawson. Maybe I have too much time on my hands!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Jennifer's Blog Party bead is here!

Update! Down below this post somewhere, I mentioned the awesome Blog Party at Glass Addictions, when I bid on and won the flash auction for a lovely lampwork bead made by Jennifer Cameron. Just when I thought that I would have no surprises in my mailbox, out popped my new bead. Sorry I do not have a picture of it in its new home yet, but here is Jen's picture!
Now, the challenge is to actually do something with it! (I have a few other special beads hanging around that I just look at from time to time, don't you?)