Monday, September 29, 2008

Brillante Award

Thanks, Janice, for awarding me the Brillante Weblog Premio! And now . . . ahem, is this thing on?

First, I must thank Janice. Not only for nominating me, but for being a wonderful person who always takes time out of her busy life to say hello and offer support to her friends. I appreciate it more than I can say! (And I will be back to visit you at the Jewelry Artist's Network, just as soon as I get a few things sorted. It's been wild.)

And second, I want to thank my posse of jewels (you know who you are!) for the love and fellowship we share every day at the Studio. You ladies give me something to look forward to every morning.

And next, of course, are all the wonderful lampworkers who keep me inspired and broke. Again, you know who you are.

And last, but definitely not least, I guess I really must thank my family, who distract me from beading and remind me that there is more to life than making jewelry.

And now, for my nominations:

The Energy Bible
Casto Creations
Laurel's Blog
Accent Yourself
Erin Lilies
Simply Shiny

Here are the rules if you’re nominated:
1. The winner can put the logo on their blog.
2. Link to the person you received your award from.
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
4. Put links of those blogs on yours.
5. Leave a message on the blogs you’ve nominated.
6. Write an acceptance speech in the style of the Academy Awards, thanking everybody’s mother, father, sister, brother, aunties and uncles and the kitchen staff at your favorite restaurant!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

At the zoo

We have a small zoo in our town, and today we took a trip out there. My daughter and I fell in love with the Channel Island Fox; they are such delicate and perfect little creatures. We watched one sleep; its little face was exquisite. It was so tender and vulnerable; there was something very special about it.

Unfortunately, it is a threatened species that may be on the endangered list very soon. I know; it's not the only one. But it's the one I saw today, and it is the one that is real to me.

Sleep well, little ones.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I love to learn

I signed up for a class today with the wonderful Gwen Fisher. She's stepped outside her comfortable beaded beads box and she's used her math skills to create a wonderful beadweave that she calls Kepler's Star.

The minute I saw it, I knew I had to learn it. Usually, I'll just buy a tutorial and learn it all by myself; but Gwen is teaching a mere 17 miles from my house. What better way to learn a new beadweaving technique and possibly meet some new beady buddies?

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Fringe benefits

Or not.

I have a love/hate relationship with fringe. I love to wear it, I love the way it looks, I love to make things with fringe. But I just don't have a feel for designing it. Yet.

Inevitably, I find myself ripping it out and starting over . . . several times. That would be a minor setback if I made the decision to rip it out after a couple of strands; but that's not the way it works. It doesn't strike me as totally wrong until it is almost all done; it's heartbreaking, I tell you, to rip out 40 strands of 3-5 inch long fringe . . . twice . . .

But that's okay; each time I learned a little bit more about how fringe behaves; or in this case, misbehaves. I finally got a fringe that I'm happy with; in this piece it needed to be a background singer, not a soloist. I'll have to remember that; it just might be important.

Or not.

Friday, September 19, 2008

I couldn't resist

I've put my new beads away; arranged by color and size. Yes, I did pet them a bit; I pulled out this one and that and just enjoyed the colors and the variety of finishes. Matte beads are my new favorite; there is something so wonderful about them. But enough of my precious; I could not resist using them.

I pulled out a gorgeous lampwork focal bead by Melissa Vess, with loads of colors in it, and I went drawer by drawer, from yellow to violet, pulling out dozens of colors that matched or complemented the bead.

Will I use all of them? Probably not. But what a lovely palette they make. I've started another lace piece, this time in glorious color.

Lots and lots and lots of color . . . .

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Beads, wonderful beads!

My new colors are here! and, just in time, I finished my pearl lace necklace. I haven't put it up yet; I'm too full of all my pretty new colors right now. So many possibilities; so many new colors and textures to try. My head is spinning; I don't know what to do first!

I may just spend a day or two poring over them and sorting them out. Getting to know them. Making friends. A few of them are already standing out in my mind; a particularly luscious green, and a matte yellow in particular.


Wonder if I have any lampwork in those colors?

bliss. sheer bliss.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Making lace

While waiting for all my beautiful new colors of beads to arrive, I decided to do a totally monochromatic piece; a colorless piece, in fact. I'm using only shades of off-white; freshwater pearls and pearly seed beads. I've dusted off my needlelace skills, and have worked a lace motif for the centerpiece of the necklace.

I've really enjoyed working on it; it's very different from, and yet very similar to, traditional needlelace. This necklace belongs to a bride; I'm not sure it would suit anything other than a wedding dress. It's a very romantic necklace. I'm nearly done with it; I'll most likely finish it tomorrow.

It needs an ornate clasp, and I'm too tired to start one just now. Besides, my new pretty colors won't come until Wednesday; I'll need something to do tomorrow.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

My beautiful girl

Today, my daughter had her first modeling gig. Isn't she beautiful?

A local shop held a fashion show, and she was one of the models. She did a great job, and had a wonderful time. I was so proud of her!

It isn't always easy begin the mom of a teenage girl; sometimes it seems as if we are dealing with what is wrong more than what is right. I guess that makes sense; the most energy goes to what needs fixing. But sometimes it is just so nice to step back and look at what has gone right.

I have a lot to be thankful for.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Gail, you're the BEST!!!

I was the beneficiary of a random act of kindness today, and it sure felt good! One of my favorite beadmakers, Gail from Beadles, just up and sent me an adorable set of the teeniest tiniest little pink and white conch shell beads. They are so cute!

But even better than the beads (did you think anything was better than unexpected lampwork?) is the thought behind it. I can't tell you how special it made me feel to get such a lovely surprise. I'm going to have to come up with a very special design and story for this one.

Thank you, Gail!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

New patterns = more beads

Raise your hand if you knew that was coming.

This morning, I realized that I just don't have the right colors of seed beads. I've got a lot of beads; even I have to admit that. But I just don't have the range of colors to do the more subtle shadings. I really, really, don't.

Okay, end of the rationalization part of this entry. I really just wanted some new colors of seed beads for the patterns I've been churning out. They will look ever so much prettier with new colors.

So I logged on to my favorite bead supplier and went through the list, picking this one and that one; and oh, gotta have THAT one, and may as well go back and buy a couple more to get to the next discount level . . . and oh, I NEED that color, and that finish, and THIS size and THAT shape . . . they're all less than $2 a box so how bad could it be?

Yeah, that bad.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

More fun and games

Okay, so I'm still playing with the computer. I'm not getting any actual beading done, but it sure is fun!

This is a version of the Mandelbrot set as a collar; wow, but I would love to have this! Again, I am not sure that my peyote-pattern-following skills are up to it, but I sure would love to wear it.

Can't you just imagine all that silky peyote around your neck? Yum.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Mandelbrot Set

I've been playing with a program that converts photos to bead patterns, and it occurred to me to go back in time to my I-love-math-and-physics days and dig up some graphics of the Mandelbrot set.

I don't know if I will ever actually work this up; it may well be more than I can handle, peyote-wise.

But on the cool scale, it's off the charts. I'd like to be someone who makes things like this!

Monday, September 8, 2008

oh WOW!!!!

What a lovely surprise! I submitted a bracelet to the Art Bead Scene contest, and was chosen as this week's featured designer.

My bracelet, Hollowings, features a lampwork bead by the incredible Donna Millard of Fyrebeadz.

Check us out! And if you're a jewelry designer who uses art beads, enter the Art Bead Scene contest.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Missing the mundane

We've been so busy this summer; I feel as though I haven't hardly had a moment to myself. It's been all good; just a wee bit frenetic. My goal for next week is to work on the mundane. It may sound strange, but I miss it. There is a strange comfort in performing small chores; in knowing that I am getting the little things done.

It's time to reclaim my routines.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

I'm featured!

Melissa Vess of Inner Realm Creations is such a sweetie! I used two of her beads in my Sand and sky necklace, and she arranged to have me featured on the LEST Street Team Webpage.

It's a gorgeous site, chock full of beady eye candy and interesting information about beadmakers and their art. If you've never seen the site, it is well worth visiting (and not just because I'm on it!). Take a look; there are some very talented bead makers over there.

As you all no doubt know, I love lampwork beads. I am so pleased to be featured on this site!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

beep beep beep

Does anyone else find their lives ruled by beeping things? Pretty much everything beeps at me to get my attention: my washer and drier beep, my oven, my camera . . .

My microwave has beeping down to an art. If I don't open the door when it beeps, it waits a few minutes and beeps some more. It will do that pretty much forever, I think. I can't always get to it right away, so while I've not exactly tested this theory, I do know that it repeats its urgent request to have its door opened now! now! now! quite a few times.

Uh, oh, there's the drier. Gotta go. It's beeping at me.