Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Bead porn

You knew it existed.

Did you think it would be like this?

Even I am shocked. I've unpacked all my lampwork beads and put them in a drawer (no, I will not tell you which drawer, that is a state secret) and now I can pore over them, raggedly mumbling, "my presiousssss . . ." for hours on end.

And, since I can see them easily and often, I may even use some. Actually, I figure I'm going to have to use some, or the drawer will fill up and I won't be able to buy any more.

We all know what a tragedy that would be.

As you can see, they are neatly organized; I string them on pipe cleaners and attach a tag at the end with the artist's name on it. When I have a card, I punch a hole in that and use it. They're not organized by color or anything, but that's okay. When I use lampwork, I usually start with the lampwork beads and match other beads to it.

Now, where shall I start?

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


I have a new cellphone that takes pictures and sends them to my computer via bluetooth.

Pretty fancy, eh?

Don't tell me that you've been doing it for years; I've only recently given in to carrying a cell phone at all, and now I'm texting and taking pictures with it.

If it strapped to my wrist, I'd think I was Dick Tracy.

I took this photo while taking the garbage out; the sky was so pretty, even though, surprisingly enough, it really didn't color up much. I don't know why; it was cloudy enough, but it just sorta went from blue to grey to dark. No reds, no oranges.

It was another really hot day here today; it's still warm out there. Usually by now we've got a breeze and it's cooler, but not tonight. I guess summer's just late this year.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Busy, busy, busy

Hmm. Seems I've used that title before; I typed "Bu" and up it came. No matter; it still works.

We spent the weekend up in the Sequoias; no computers, no cell phones. It was lovely to step off the treadmill of life, but today, I'm back on it with a vengeance. I'm working on an article for a European magazine; it's for a necklace that I hadn't taken notes on, so I'm reverse-engineering myself.

I'm actually making it in a much more organized way this time; the original had quite a few "by gosh or by golly" moments that have been smoothed out this go around. I've also changed the color scheme, and put in pearls in place of the crystals; I'm writing the instructions for both options, so this one will be a necklace and a variation.

The magazine article is scheduled for Spring; I've been beading and writing like a madwoman today. I want to get it done and sent off as quickly as possible so that they will have plenty of time to prepare it for publication.

Then it will be back to finishing up my "Darkness" tutorial. It went into a holding pattern when the magazine article came up.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Lunatic fringe

I'm fringing today. Long, lovely strands of seed bead fringe; it's been ages since I made a fringe this long and lush. I don't know why I suddenly stopped adding long fringe to pieces; but, looking back, it's been awhile.

Maybe I stopped doing it because it's a pain to get right. I know, it couldn't be easier; just count, and make sure to go through every bead, but, for me, it's a hard element to get right. It's a slow process, and I'm not a patient person. Sometimes, making fringe gives me just too much time to think.

I haven't wanted to think for awhile; I've wanted to keep my mind occupied. I still feel that way, actually; but I needed to fringe this piece, and I guess I probably needed to think, as well.

It's time.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I'm beading as fast as I can

I'm almost finished with the structural part of my Haute Couture contest entry; one side is done, and the other is lacking only the last element.

I'm trying to get it finished as soon as I can; I have the possibility of an exciting new opportunity on the horizon; if it comes to fruition, I will need to spend quite a lot of my time on it over the next month or two. I've also got a couple of new projects that I'm in the process of turning into tutorials; I need to find some time to finish those, as well.

But right now, I'm caught up in my contest entry.

I love making big, over the top pieces. They're fun and exciting; although they take weeks (and even months!) of beading to make, I love watching them grow and change. I never know at the beginning of the day what it will look like by the end; I love the twists and turns that these big pieces go through. It's like reading a novel; the plot develops gradually and I don't want to put it down.

But just as my eyes will close while reading, my hands (and back!) need breaks from the beads. It's time to take a little walk; the beads will be here when I return.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Haute Couture

I'm still working on my contest entry for the Haute Couture Beading Contest; it's coming along slowly, but it's gradually taking shape. I have to confess that I've been haunting the site, looking at the entries on a regular basis to see if anyone has used "my" picture yet.

I am very happy to report that they haven't. I have no clue why that matters to me; there is no rule that says that only one person can use a photo. But I am hoping against hope that no one else picks the same one as me. I'm sure we'd do very different piects; I'm sure that a dozen people could pick the same photo and come up with entirely different ideas.

Okay, I'm not that sure.

It could happen.

I'd better get back to beading now.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

My room

Here it is; my very own studio. I love my new workbench; I have lots of drawers, and two separate work stations.

That means no more beads in the keyboard!

It also means that I get up and stretch more often, as I move from beading station to computer and back again. That's always been one of my biggest problems; I get involved in what I am doing, and I forget to get up and move around.

It's so nice to have room to spread out, and someplace quiet to go when I want to work. My family can cook, eat and watch movies without stumbling over me and my beads, and I can work in peace without being stumbled over.

It's a good thing.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Nearly done

Simply put, I've been working like a madwoman. My studio is nearly done; I have a few odds and ends to move yet from the infamous cupboard under the stairs, but the furniture is in place, I have hung some pictures, and made a new cover for the old futon.

I've even put a lovely (and very fragrant) vase of roses and lavender on my workbench. My twelve-foot-long workbench. That's nearly four meters for those of you who speak metric.

I can't believe it's mine!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

In the white room

If you were a little girly-girl in the 1960s, I'm sure you remember the White Bedroom Suite. It had everything a girl wanted, and it was white. Pure, pristine, and feminine. The canopy bed was a froth of lace; the dressing table had a mirror over it, and the desk was a confection that would thrill any girl into doing homework.

Of course I wanted it. I don't know if the girl in the frilly pink robe with the beautiful doll was in the ads, or a product of my imagination, but she was my idea of perfection. I knew that if I had a room like that, I would keep it spotlessly clean and I would be happy forever.

It was not to be. Looking back, it was an utterly impractical room for a real little girl, but it entered my consciousness in a way that even Barbie couldn't touch. I don't long for an impossible figure; I want an impossible room.

I've updated that dream; the canopy bed has been jettisoned, and I no longer have any use for a dressing table. But I now own a white work area in my brand-new studio. It has two workstations flanked by three storage sections; I have nine small drawers, two large drawers, and a bookshelf shelf. (Or I will, once I finish putting the drawers together!)

It's white, but it's a practical white; it's all powder coated, so it's easy to wipe up any spills. It certainly cost less than any single component of my dream bedroom; but it's perfect. My workstations are high enough to work either standing up, or perched on a stool; and one workstation is under a north window with a view of the hills.

It's a dream come true.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Easily amused

I've just found the special characters menu on my computer; it's been there quite awhile, but I didn't know it was there. That may have been a good thing, as I'm sure to annoy people by using it for awhile.

So, now I can type things like this:
or this:
or this:
or this:

There are quite a few new toys for me to play with.

{Did I mention that I'm easily amused?}

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Just keep swimming

Sometimes, when I keep going, trying to make things right, it just doesn't work. I throw good beads in after bad, and, in the end, everything has to come out anyway. It's worse, of course, when I've suspected all along that it was going to happen that way.

Other times, it works.

Happily, I'm in the second position tonight; the first three rows were iffy, but now, with the beginning of the fourth row, I think it's going to work. I'm glad I didn't pull it all out; I'm glad I kept going.

It doesn't always turn out that way, you know.