Beads, beads, beads...

Beads, beads, beads...

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Pumpkin Jewelry

I did a little pumpkin for a challenge on the Polymer Clay Collective  group on Facebook!


...And some earrings to go with him!



 
Happy Fall Y'all!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Buttons and Beads

I have a huge stash of buttons.  All kinds of buttons.  I use them for the clasp on fiber neck pieces.  I decided that I also needed to use them for some jewelry.  Pairing a button with my new love of czech glass beads was easy.  I do have a question for the jewelry makers out there.


My question is how do you finish the back of a button that is wire wrapped like this one?



I also made some earrings to match!

 
 
I have worn the bracelet and it actually did not catch on anything.  I do think it needs to be finished on the back to keep the wire from catching on something.  Any ideas would be appreciated!
 
 
Have a great weekend!  M


Thursday, October 4, 2012

A Little Bit of Polymer

If you have read my blog in the past you will know that I make bigger beads on bigger pieces of jewelry.  I have gone in a new direction and have been making smaller accent beads out of polymer.  My new interest in "Czech glass beads" has caused this new focus.

So here are a few of my new creations with just a little bit of polymer...


The green round bead in the top left is the only polymer bead in this piece!


The brown nut bead in the bottom right is the only polymer bead in this piece!


There are three polymer beads in this piece but they are still small beads!

I am having lots of fun with all of this and that is all that counts.  Size really doesn't matter all that much now does it?

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Wool Felt and Polymer

The weather is getting a little cooler here... still in the low 80's upper 70's but it is a break from the hot and dry summer that we had this year.  I am originally from a cooler climate and fall is my favorite time of the year.  I started working with some needle felting with wool but when the weather got warm I put it away.  I got it out again and had some fun with it!

I made this flower...



and decided to make some polymer beads to match!


Fun!  I made a mold with some carving tools and had some fun with it.

I also had some polymer beads in my stash that were big and chunky so I made a felt piece to use with them.



This is kind of contemproary for me but I like it.


I just ordered some more wool and felting foam from Living Felt!  Needle felting with wool is like painting with fiber.  It is easy to do and something I can do while watching TV in the evenings.  I have some other pieces under construction that I will share soon.

Hope you are enjoying the changes of the seasons!  Happy Autumn

Thursday, September 13, 2012

In The Pink


The Bead Soup Blog Party  hosted by  Lori Anderson is really so much fun!  Lori works very hard to organize, connect and visit everyone who participates in the Blog Party.   This past blog hop included 400 participants from all over the world!  I have made so many online friends because I was part of this fun.  Thank you Lori Anderson!

One of the unique characterisitcs of Lori is that she has the tips of her hair died pink. To show her our appreciation a group called In the Pink  was started from the BSBP.  We were asked to do something pink with our hair and share our thoughts about Lori on our blog or on the Facebook group Bead Soup Cafe today.

I have had the pleasure of spending a day with Lori shopping and having lunch (with pie for dessert!).  She is soooo much fun to be around!  She deserves a big round of applause!

The pictures of "pink" hair are great!  I was going to actually do a not permanent color on mine but did not have the courage to do it!  So here I am with my pink hair!




Some energetic behind the scenes fun has been going on the last few months because of our love and appreciation of being part of the Bead Soup Blog Party hosted by Lori Anderson.   We love you Lori!

Friday, August 31, 2012

Over the Top

I am participating  in the Poymer Clay Collective Color Challenge.    The challenge was to make something out of polymer using the colors in the following picture.

 
I made a neckpiece using a fiber wrapped cord, polymer art beads and some czech glass beads. Thanks Jeannie K. Dukic, I had fun playing with this color palette. Check out the other participants at the Polymer Collective Facebook Page here.
 
I had some molds that I made out of polymer from decorative trim at Lowes and also from our bed! 


I made balls of clay and pushed them in the mold, added a few holes and ended up with this...

  
I call it "Over the Top" because it is big and colorful.
 
 
I am loving the czech glass beads!
 
 
Yes those are earrings on the left.

 
 And a view of the back!
 
 
 Go see what the others made too!  Have a great Labor Day Weekend!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

The 6th Bead Soup Blog Party Reveal #2

Lori Anderson of Pretty Things has brought together an awesome community of creative and sharing jewelry artists!  This is the 6th Bead Soup Blog Party and the third one that I have joined in the fun.  My partner Lori Callahan sent me some awesome beads to work with. 


I have not done much wire working and decided that now was the time to try my hand at it!  Lapis is one of my favorite stones.  I wanted to set off the lapis focal bead so I made it the center piece of my creation.

I used a simple chain to keep the focus on the wire work and beads.


 Next I made a beachy bracelet!


Lori made this awesome clasp!


I also made earrings that are simple and can be worn with anything!


Check out Lori Callahan's blog to see what she did with the soup that I sent to her! Thanks Lori - I love my bead soup jewelry!

 And also thank you to Lori Anderson.  You have been the best hostess and you are a sweetheart!  Make sure to check Lori Anderson's blog here so you can see the other soups for the Bead Soup Blog Party for Reveal #2.

Friday, August 3, 2012

do you hear it?

and those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music. friedrich nietzsche

Saturday, July 28, 2012

A Donation

I was asked to make a piece of jewelry for a fundraiser for ALS.  ALS or Lou Gherig's Disease is debilitating and there is no cure for it at this time. 

When someone asks me to donate my artwork for a fundraiser I have a difficult time saying "no".  I want to help.  However I have experienced some frustration because of donations I have given in the past to the point that I have learned to say "no" when asked.  I do donate to charities of my choice and prefer to give monetary donations rather than my artwork.

This time was different.  The person asking had purchased a piece of jewelry from me and they were very appreciative of my creativeness and the time involved in making the jewelry.  I couldn't say "no"!

I created this piece for the ALS fundraiser.


I tried patina on the copper for the first time.  I was surprised at how quick and easy it was!






I started out with the polymer yellow, green and orange beads.  It needed a pop of color so I added the blue.





I think someone will enjoy this late summer - early autumn necklace! 

Friday, July 13, 2012

I got a package today!

My bead soup was in the mail today! 

Woo hoo!  I love getting packages!


                                    

Look at this awesome tin that Lori Callahan of Dancing Wire and Beads made for my bead soup!  It is decoupaged on the top of the tin with lots of cool words.  I love it! And the soup looks soooo yummy!



"My, my" said the little birds "what do we have here?"  "Lots of pretties I see!"


That lapis focal has a gold streak down the middle!
I am loving that silver clasp and the pearls and shells!

There are lapis beads, coral beads, pearls and shells and a sterling filled clasp.... it has my muse swimming with ideas!  Totally different from beads that I have worked with which makes it so fun to do this BSBP!  Thank you so much Lori Callahan for the gorgeous beads!   I will tell you that lapis is one of my favorite stones.  Yay!  So exciting!  And thank you to Lori Anderson for hosting the 6th Annual Bead Soup Blog Party!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

A Collection of Fun Things

Thrift stores entice me.  Yard sales call my name.  I could spend a day in antique and collectible shops. I can spend hours treasure hunting.  I have been trying really hard to spend time making some new treasures from all of the "finds" I have brought home with me!


This piece has a mix of old buttons, charms from found jewelry, czech glass beads, an earring from my collection of jewelry from an aunt who passed away and it is on a chain I found at the local thrift store.
It also contains some polymer beads that I made.  I purchased a small Wedgewood plate from an antique shop.

I made two polymer molds from the raised relief on the plate.  I made a ball of neutral colored polymer and put a pin in the center for a hole.  Using the two molds I pressed on two sides of the ball of polymer with the pin in it.  This made a coin shaped bead with the same relief that was on the plate.  After baking this bead I antiqued it with acrylic paints.





I love how it all came together!

It is a wearable story... especially when you think about where those buttons have been!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

For My Daughter

I have been busy making jewelry for the bridesmaid's in my son's wedding.  I have a daughter that has been watching mom  make jewelry that she would actually wear... waiting patiently for me to work on jewelry for her for the wedding.

I have a collection of old jewelry from an aunt that we went through and found some interesting clear resin beads (I think) and some gold painted wooden beads.  We made up a bracelet and earrings to go with her outfit for the rehearsal dinner.  She is wearing a cream lace top.


She is happy and I have sore fingers... the sterling wire I used for the wedding jewelry is much easier to work with than the brass.  I am enjoying wire wrapping finally!  I have struggled to get this process down to where I am happy with it.

 I can't believe it is July 1st already!  This year is going by fast.  Hope you are enjoying your summer!  It has been a hot one!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Meet my BSBP Partner!

I am so excited to be a part of Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Blog Party this year!  I have participated twice and really enjoyed it.  I almost did't this year but at the last minute decided to join the Party!  I am glad I did and am looking forward to working with my partner.  We have some things in common! 

My partner is Lori Callahan of Dancing Wire and Beads... check out some of her creations from her Etsy shop.


I love the wire work and the colors of this bracelet.  Lori also does seed bead work that is beautiful!


I have been mulling over what kind of soup to send her.  She is multi-talented and has some awesome pictures of macrame work on her Facebook page.

I need to get something interesting together for her that is for sure!  It is going to be fun! 

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Czech Glass, Found Objects and a Little Bit of Polymer

I am a collector of "found objects"...so you know what that means!  I have a bunch of junk-stuff-treasures.  I cannot pass up perusing the thrift store or hardware store for my collection and I tell everyone to save their grandmas button box for me.  My treasure box is full!

I have also been overly attracted to czech glass beads lately... so I have  been working on using up my stash of  beads and found objects.


The button is from the winnings of a drawing from a button swap by Michelle Mach last year.  The key looking charm is a lamp finial from the hardware store.  The czech glass beads are from an Etsy shop Mountain Shadow Design.  I have also included some small green polymer clay beads that I made with green and translucent clay.


 I love making polymer beads but have started making smaller pieces to work with all of my other treasures.  I will share more of those soon.

I also made these earrings to go with this necklace. 



These are made from copper head pins, czech glass beads and some pearls from a "treasure find" from an old piece of jewelry.  I love repurposing old and beautiful things.  There is always a story behind buttons and jewelry that have been worn by someone many years ago.  Something to think about anyway.

Enjoy the summer sunshine and warm days!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Wedding Bells are Ringing

In less than a month my youngest child and only son will be getting married.  We are delighted and excited about the celebration of their new life together.  Taylor and his new wife Adrienne will also be moving accross the country after the wedding as he will be stationed in San Diego, California.  So this is a bittersweet time for us because he will also be deployed one if not two times before he is finished with his committment to the Navy.  We are proud of him and thankful to be part of a great country that has been served by many fine young men and women in our Armed Forces!

I have volunteered to make the jewelry for the bride and the bridesmaids.  It has been fun picking out beads and findings.  Her colors are aqua and red.  The girls are wearing aqua dresses with red shoes and will carry red Gerbera Daisies.  I have a sample of the fabric for the dresses but nothing to match the red in the shoes or the flowers.  I decided to get a mix of reds so that it should work no matter what the shoes and flower colors turn out to be.

Can I say that I was not a great wire wrapper before I volunteered for this project?!  I talked to a friend who does wire wrapping well and watched her work on a few beads.  I realized that the most important thing I needed were the right tools.  I invested in a great set of Lindstrom jewelers tools from Fire Mountain Gems.


I also used sterling silver chain and findings.  So my journey with wire wrapping was now on a new playing field!  What a difference in how easy it was to wire wrap using sterling silver and using great tools!

So here are pictures of the bracelet and earrings that I am making for the wedding!





My muscles were actually sore after I spent the better part of the day wire wrapping these beads for 4 sets of earrings!  I will say that I am much more confident in my wire wrapping abilities now! 

What do you think of the need for quality tools?