Saturday, January 30, 2010

This is so Neat!

I received so many hugs from all the OWOH bloggers! Thank you all so much for your kinds words. This is such a blast!

Sandy, a polymer clay artist, told me about Operation Beautiful. Its premise is to help other women remember that they are Beautiful! And my friends, get this--you spread the message by leaving it on a Post-it-Note in places where women can find them (washrooms, dressing rooms, etc.)

Ok, now how perfect does my OWOH giveaway of a Post-it-Note holder fit into that! :D

Thanks Sandy!

Friday, January 29, 2010

One World One Heart

I have been gliding on my own magic carpet meeting new artists and being constantly reminded of the wonderful spirit of fellow bloggers. I couldn't let another day pass without joining in as a participant giver of this kind-hearted project created by Lisa Swifka.

In case you haven't heard, One World One Heart is simply a way to spread the love and meet new people. And what better way to do that than give a handmade gift? So my friends (both old and new), leave me a comment and include a way to contact you - either your blog name, email address or both!

If you happen to be the name I randomly select, I will send you a refillable Post-it-Note holder that has been completely hand stitched and beaded by me! It will be a pretty little addition to your desk or purse.

Even the back has been embellished, because-well, you know, sometimes its just hard to stop beading once you get started!

That's my little logo on the inside (its supposed to be a bleeding heart stem)

So if you could use a handy little note holder,

leave me a comment by Midnight on February 14th

I'll post the lucky new owner on February 15!

And then click on the 'ticket' in my sidebar and take your very own magic carpet ride to other wonderful blogs! But be warned - it may be a long (but happy) journey....... on last count I saw over 800 participants! I would have to say this should be called One World One BIG Heart :)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Keeping the love flowing

I had 2 small porcelain heart beads as part of my Artbeads Valentine promo. Naturally, I thought a pair of earrings would be perfect, but as you know, earrings are my least favorite to make. I love the gigantic rings that are popular now. Hmm, why not try a bead embroidered ring!
I backed it in ultrasuede and then attached a peyote stitched band with random colors mixed in for fun.
Oh yes indeed, definitely going to be making more of these! Too fun to make and it matches my turtle love necklace quite well. The bright colors are just what I needed on such a blustery wintery day as today.
On a more subdued color scale, I made a very feminine looking necklace with the wooden laser cut pendant. It drapes really nice when it's on, but you'll have to take my word for it. Nobody here would model it for me for so I could take a picture of it in action.

The clasp is a really sweet puffed sterling silver heart available through Artbeads. It's very secure. The size 11 beads are those awesome matte jet apollo that I had gotten awhile back (they are the same as what I used on the box in my banner, in case you couldn't tell). And the 3 mm faceted rounds are a pearlized champagne color (also available from Artbeads) that I happened to have from an old project too. Those crystal drops are 16mm Swarovski baroque pendants (again, available through Artbeads) that I originally had bought for my Marcia Decoster Whitby earrings that I didn't use. Well I guess that just makes it a total Artbeads piece!
Fine Print: I received the porcelain heart beads, laser cut pendant and sterling silver heart clasp at no charge from Artbeads as part of their blogging partners program.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

So Silly

I love turtles. So when I was given the choice of Valentine components from Artbeads, I knew I just had to have this stoneware pendant. It was so funky and fun.

I was really surprised at the quality of the finish. So smooth and shiny. Yum! Artbeads carries a huge selection of these stoneware pendants - I wish I could have them all. Hmm, maybe if I win the $1,000 Shopping Spree Sweepstakes from Artbeads.......yeah, that would make my year!

Since the pendant was so great, I didn't want to over-embellish it. But that little turtle-love was looking a bit lonely, so I decided to make a playmate for him.

After making the shell, I stitched it to a piece of pellon-covered posterboard, added the legs, tail and head and trimmed it as close as possible. I used my favorite glue (Crafter's Pick) The Ultimate and sandwiched the chain between the turtle's base and the ultrasuede. After letting it dry overnight, I edged it in a color to match the stoneware pendant.
I had visions of the beaded turtle sliding right down the chain, but luckily that didn't happen.

I've got another Artbeads project on the table - using this beautiful wooden heart shaped pendant, I think its going to be really sharp.

(If you hurry, Artbeads is offering their Valentine components at 15% off)

Fine print: Artbeads graciously provided the stoneware pendant at no charge to me, but that did not influence my opinion of the product, it really is sweet!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

So Sweet

The lighting wasn't ideal, but I couldn't wait any longer to share Grace with you.
Sorry for the fuzzy pics!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Its all good

Well, Graceful Grace is coming along really well. I am still fascinated that the beading has taken on a life of its own. I am not really thinking about placement, pattern etc., just going with it.

I don't know why this surprises me. Maybe its because the last few things I've made have been through patterns with specific instructions, I'd forgotten the magic of beading from the heart.

I did plan this monogram for the back. I wanted it to somewhat resemble her face, so I did a band of the peyote stitch and am filling it with two shades of size 15 in greenish/pinkish/goldish hues.

I got up to stretch and take a break. Came back to Rainy making himself comfortable on the only semi-available spot! EEEEEK!
Luckily, I didn't have a million beads out on my mat, so he didn't jumble everything together. In fact, he got up so carefully, I would have never know he was there had I not seen it! Hmmm, I wonder how often he sleeps there when I'm at work?
Saturday was just beautiful here in Western New York. Another opportunity to take a walk in the woods. While I was exploring a grove of pines (you can see the grove in the left of this picture), Pete crossed an open field to get a picture of this tree. I love the shape of it and how the sky changes color (and I didn't enhance or change it digitally)

Sunday brought gray skies (again) and rain. What? Rain! In January??!! Not fair! Ah well, good excuse to stay in and bead (like I need an excuse!).

Saturday, January 16, 2010

More on Marcia, Grace, etc.

My Love for Marcia Decoster's Beaded Opulence designs still runs true. Here is her Whitby earring design. I didn't add the baroque teardrop crystal to the bottom as she did though. It made the earring much too long for me. My mom bought me a fabulous snake skin print shirt for Christmas in shades of black and gray. These earrings are a perfect match!

After receiving my surprise gift from Grace, I just had to clear off the bead table and get to work on my next Good Woman doll.

I had a face on stash from Linsart, but no body. Bummer. Looks like its time to get out the dreaded Singer Sew Quick. I haven't had very good luck with it (sewing machines and I have never gotten along no matter how simple or elaborate). But after a few attempts, I was able to produce a somewhat OK shape.

She's coming along quite nicely. But, once again, the design I had in my head is not at all what is taking shape. Just beading from the heart (and not the head) again! Can't beat that. IN case you didn't watch my previous post, my gift from Grace was the raku bead button you see. It was made by Lisa Peters and is really really nice.

Now that my oldest is 19 (ouch, how can that be?), she has adopted her first dog.

Meet Diesel, the newest member of our family. A 12 week old SPCA special mix of who knows what. He was brought into the shelter as a wee baby and just put out for adoption the day Claire happened to go. Fate.

He's very good and has already learned his 'sit' 'stay' 'come' manners. Such a smartie!

I'm off to go check up on everyone's posts--happy beading!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

For Grace . . . With Much Gratitude

The videos tell the story.

There are 2 because, well, you'll see......

Here's the bead button!

My camera must be tired after taking the video--the pictures aren't that great. It wouldn't focus. But I can guarantee there will be more posting about this treasure coming soon, as I am anxious to get working on my Good Woman doll in honor of you, Grace. Love Ya!

If you have a few more minutes, well ok....hours, to spend bead hunting, check out Lisa's artisan treasures. They Rock! I have to go stick to the housework plan.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Feeling lucky?

Even if you aren't feeling lucky - you've got to get it on this HUGE sweepstakes from ~~ $1,000 !! My heart flutters at the thought.......Good luck!

Monday, January 4, 2010


After pouring over the projects in Marcia DeCoster's book Beaded Opulence, I settled on 3 projects that I wanted to start with on my right-angle-weave-learning journey. First up was a ring pattern called "Quetzal". I know its far from perfect -

-but its good enough for my daughters to be fighting over who gets to wear it and my daughter's girlfriend has asked me to make her one too.

Then I tried a bracelet called "Terracita" (what is with these names??!). I LOVE love LOVE this bracelet. The one in the book is all blues/violets and was hard to pick out the pattern, so I wasn't real clear on what the design was going to look like, but when I made it in these earth tones, the pattern really popped!
I loved it so much, I made a pair of earrings to go with it.

The last project on my short list was Whitby (finally, a semi-normal name - well, at least I could spell it without having to look it up again)-- an earring pattern. But, I haven't taken pics of those yet. (blame it on my new Wii or that darned knitting addiction.......)

Speaking of crystals~~we finally got a beautiful snowfall this weekend, blanketing everything in sight. No wind, just a steady fluffy ultra light snow. I love how it stacked up on the rose of sharon seed pods.Ahh, winter in western New York - beautiful!