Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Diary 2011 Project

I decided to join the fun with the Diary 2011 Project. See link on the right. It doesn't cost anything to join in and create one of the day pages of the diary. So, I've picked my date of 8/29 and now I have to design my page. Since it is in gray scale I don't want to use too much color that will get washed out so maybe a monotone watercolor with pen and ink drawing. I have to hurry up and start creating as my page is due next week. I'll post the design when I'm finished. If you want to join in, there are lots of dates left and not too much time.

More special orders completed. Well through all the remodeling mess I was able to finish a couple of special orders. The first set was for a repeat customer who wanted long leather necklaces that she could wear long or double up and wear short. The large square venetian glass pieces were the customers.

The next couple of pieces were for a new customer who wanted me to take apart and reuse 3 of her necklaces (2 pearl and 1 coral). Both necklaces turned out better than I thought and I'm sure she will love them. The first one uses only her beads with my fine silver fused links. The second one has a few of her beads and some of mine mixed in with soldered and hammered brass links.

I hope everyone is having a great week. Tomorrow is granite day in the kitchen remodel. We are making progress.

Monday, June 28, 2010

The Best Bead Giveaway Ever Offered By Denise Yezbak Moore

Oh, my gosh, can you imagine winning all of this stash of beads or even just a part of it. My giveaway may be over but you can certainly get in on this one. There is over 7 1/2 lbs of beads here. The giveaway ends on July 2nd so you better jump on over to Denise's blog Bling It On! and enter.

Okay, it's not like I don't have beads because as most of you know, I do, but we would all love more beads. What would you do with all these beads?

Remodel Update: Yes, we are still in the middle of the big kitchen remodel. Today paint went on the walls and tomorrow we pick up the cabinets so that the contractor can install them.....woo hoo. We almost have a kitchen back. The granite guys are scheduled for Thursday so by Friday it should look more like a kitchen. I'm still not sure when the floor and new window will go in. Wouldn't you think the window should be installed before the cabinets?  Humm, I may have to ask the contractor about that tomorrow.

I hope everybody is having a great week so far. Think of us in your nice clean and un-dusty house.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Winner of the CSN Giveaway

The winner is Rebecca. Congrats.

True Random Number Generator  8Powered by RANDOM.ORG

Saturday, June 26, 2010

June Tutorial - Multi Strand Leather Necklace

Just in time. I didn't forget but we were out camping and I made the tutorial while sitting at my little kitchen table so the pictures aren't as great as normal. I've already made a couple of these and everyone loves it. I was at one of our local bead stores the other day and noticed that they had a picture/poster up about how leather necklaces and bracelets are in fashion right now. Who knew that I could be in fashion....LOL.

Don't forget about the giveaway. Only a few people have entered and it's for a $60.00 gift certificate. You have until Sunday at 9:00 pm PST. Here is the post. Oh, yes, BTW, our kitchen now has walls and a floor and cabinets will be installed on Tuesday.....woo hoo.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Time for the Reveal

Bead Soup Reveal is here. I gave you a sneak peak last week but now you get to see the whole necklace and earring set. My bead soup partner, Cathryn sent me some wonderful beads in Summer colors. Be sure to hop over to her blog today and check out what she made. The first thing I made when I got down to it was the earrings.

Then I had to mull over the other beads for awhile. I knew I wanted to use the other orange open rectangle piece as a focal pendant so I made that.

I had some brass links that I had soldered so I set about placing all the other beads around and organizing them in a planned random pattern and ended up with this.
It turned out to be quite a long necklace, but that is what I wanted. I added the leather at the back to make it more comfortable and lighter weight.

This was a lot of fun and I highly recommend participating in bead swaps or challenges. Thanks to Lori Anderson over at Pretty Things for hosting the party.

If you want to check out all the other bead soup reveals today, head on over to Lori's blog where she has a complete list.

Don't forget about my giveaway for a $60.00 gift certificate to any of the CSN Stores. Here is the post if you would like to enter.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Has Summer Finally Arrived?

Be sure to enter for my giveaway on this post. You could win a $60.00 gift certificate to CSN Lots of wonderful items to use for yourself or as a gift.

We decided to get out of the house for awhile due to all the remodel dust and what do we find but wonderful weather. This morning it was sunny and 59 degrees. Now that may not seem warm to you but to those of us here in Washington State it's downright balmy especially if the sun is out. It was short, tank top and flip flops for me today. Ahhh, now if I could only get these allergies under control. I'm up to 2 Zyrtec a day, nose spray and eye drops....I'm not sure of what else I can try at this point. My only hope is that whatever is in the air will go away soon.

Have you check out the bead soup hop today. Head on over to Lori Anderson's Pretty Things blog and check out all the cool and amazing bead designs by today's artists. I'm getting caught up now in viewing them all. Such wonderful artists.

Come visit my post tomorrow for the big bead soup reveal.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Remodel Update Plus a Giveaway

Uugg, we are living with stud walls, no floor and lots of dust.

This is our kitchen.

Yes, we are having fun now. The plan is to work our way through the house. I won't even show you the picture of the dining room and living room which has all the kitchen appliances and dining room furniture and boxes in it. Oh and the dust. I don't know whether to clean every day or just leave it until we are finished.

So, in the dining room we will be refinishing the hard wood floors (carpet was already taken up) and then put crown molding around the top. Living room we will be doing the same thing. We are still up in the air about the office as we would like custom cabinets but then resale gets a little tricky as that is the spare bedroom also. Then we moved into our bedroom. Lots of ideas there besides just painting and replacing the carpet. I could do some redecorating. We got our new bed (no headboard yet) but haven't replaced any of the furniture. I could get a new bedroom vanity. Like this one.

This one would go with some of my antique furniture.

So, because I am living with so much remodeling I am hosting a giveaway. Yes, that's right just because I love all my readers...okay so I was given the opportunity to host a giveaway and it just so happens to be something that we would all love and that is a gift certificate for $60.00. The sponsor is CSN Stores, and Just Vanities is only one of 200+ sites they have that you can choose from to use the gift certificate.

This is an easy one to enter. 

1. Just hop over to Just Vanities and pick your favorite bedroom vanity and tell me what it is in a comment.
2. For an additional 2 entries blog about this post with a link back to me and to Oh be sure to leave me your blog address so I can check out your blog.
3. For more entries, tweet, facebook or use any other social media outlet to announce this giveaway and get one more entry.

Be sure to leave a separate comment for each entry. Yes, it is easier for me that way. I will use to generate the winner.

Things you should know. Please leave me your e-mail address so that the representative Jess from CSN Stores can get a hold of you if you are the winner. Also, please note that on some products you may have shipping charges to pay.

Deadline is June 27th at 9:00 pm PST, which is midnight EST.

Come on guys, $60.00 would make one great gift or even buy something nice for you. Like this laptop case, and look it's in my favorite color. You could send it to me. ha ha

How about a wedding gift or maybe you just need to update your steak knives. I know we just had to buy a new set for the motor home.
I'll remind you to enter throughout the week, but why not do it now while you are thinking about it.
Have a great day.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

And the Party Begins

As I have mentioned in previous posts I am participating in a Bead Soup Party that is being hosted by Lori Anderson of Pretty Things. There are 97 jewelry and bead artists participating this go around. That's a lot of blogs to visit so the big reveal of everyone's wonderful creations will go on for over a week. So, head over to Lori's blog and visit those participating today. My reveal date is the 24th, so you'll get to see all the pieces I've created with my bead soup as well as my partner Cathryn from Chili Cats.

Well, I haven't been dilly dallying around today even though I wanted to. I was able to finish two custom order pieces and one for me.

First here is mine. It is five strands of 1mm leather with various gemstones on each strand. I used mostly jasper and agates and then secured it at the back with more wire and covered it with a pewter cone.

Now for the special order necklaces.

I hope everyone is having a great weekend.

Happy Father's Day to all you dad's out there.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Craft Room Cabinets Done

Yes, finally the cabinets have been installed and I have everything loaded into them. I thought I would have a lot of room left over, but no, I filled it up. I did get some boxes of stuff out from under the desk so that was a good thing. Now what am I going to do when I get more stuff?

Doing the happy dance now.

As I mentioned in my last post, I'm participating in a Bead Soup Party. The party starts June 19th which is Saturday, so I'll be posting links to those participating so you can check out all their great creations. My date to share is June 24th as well as my bead partner Cathryn from over at Chili Cats. She just posted a teaser picture of the design she has made with the beads I sent her. This is going to be fun.

So, now back to the craft room. I took those pictures yesterday and now, you wouldn't recognize it. I decided to paint some beads so I have paint, beads, brushes and paper all over the table top as well as my art journal stuff. Oh, then this afternoon I received a package in the mail of some beads that two of my customers want me to remake.

Yes, I am still doing the happy dance as now I have a place to put things so that I can work on other projects.

For those of you interested in tutorials, I did have a craft site with .ning that will be going away as they are going to start charging for a basic web site... can you imagine that they want to get paid. Anyway, I went searching and found another site that I can host my crafty stuff on. I am calling it Wrapped Up! Check it out and let me know how you like it. All my tutorials eventually (even the jewelry ones I feature here) will be on that site as I can upload a .pdf file. So, when I post my monthly tutorial on this site, there will be a link to that .pdf so you can just download the instructions and pictures. Pretty cool huh. Oh, and my book Gem Tree Sculptures and gem tree kits are available for sale there also.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Time to Travel

With the remodel and all the noise and dust, we are feeling the need to get out of the house. Since we have been eating out of the motor home there really isn't much else we need to do to get it ready to roll. Even just a couple days away from the mess will be a welcome relief.

While reading through some of my creative blogger friends blogs, I came across Valerie of Additions Style. She mentions in her blog 7 ways to take time for art on vacation. Some of these I do now but I will definitely will have to take some of her advise with me as I do get so bored when I don't have all my beads and sewing projects with me. One of the things I do when traveling is take a notebook with me. I tend to come up with all kinds of ideas when I'm experiencing new things. If you want to find out what all the 7 things are, check out her blog.

Speaking of journals, I started my art journal this past week. So far I have 6 pages with a base coat of watercolor and now the fun starts with layering paint and more paper. This is something new for me and an idea that has been growing slowly as I want to get back into my art. What pushed me over was the Cloth  Paper Scissors site and the challenges they run. This is a mixed-media magazine site. I haven't subscribed yet, but most likely will since I really like their site.

I wish I had some things finished that I could show you....oh but I do, but I can't show you the whole thing. I joined a Bead Soup party and I received all these cool beads from my swap partner. See this post. Here is a sneak peak of my finished piece. I'll show all of it during the party. Click the upper picture to that links to the party to find out more about it.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Creative Blogger - MezziG of Creative Outlet

This week I'm featuring MezziG of Creative Outlet. What a wonderful creative soul. In one of her posts this week she shows us her most recent creation that she made for a bead challenge. It just so happens that she won this challenge. Isn't this just a great design? I never use seed beads in my designs but seeing the versatility in design, I may have to rethink that.

Fringe is such a big design feature right now as well as the bib style and this has both of those. Click on over and check out her blog.

Well around here life has been quite hectic. Our kitchen is almost gutted now. Sounds very hollow in there and it is so large. Amazing how big the room looks without cabinets and appliances. We are eating in the motorhome....feels like we are camping in the back yard...oh wait we are. I can't imagine living through a kitchen remodel without having another home whether it is a RV or weekend cabin that you can retreat to. Our dining room is full of the appliances and the living room is full of the dining room furniture and boxes of kitchen stuff. I'll have before and after photos when it is complete... you really don't want to see them now.

I was really hoping to have pictures of my new craft room cabinets to show you today, but alas I haven't taken them yet and I still have to unpack everything, so hopefully tomorrow.

So, until then have a great day.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Found Objects

I've been in an artsy mood lately and wanting to do more with my art (painting), so I thought the best way to get back into it was to start an art journal and to devote 30-60 min. per day to just creating with my paint, glue, paper, pens, etc. to see where I wanted to go with it. The journal would be my experiment with all different kinds of mediums such as watercolor, acrylic, pastels, collage and pen & pencil. I've taken a few classes in art drawing and watercolor, but other than that no other formal training so I guess I just don't know where to go. I've painted quite a few watercolors (I prefer florals) but wanted to venture into acrylics and so I did a few last December. I found it very forgiving unlike watercolor, so I'll play with it a bit more.

I digress as today's post is on found objects. As we pack our kitchen and other rooms for remodeling, I'm finding all kinds of things that would make great components in jewelry. Here is my latest pile.

As you can see I have some pop tops, wine corks, eraser, keys, old transit tokens and tax tokens, old pieces of jewelry parts, flower arrangement marbles some washers and nuts from my husbands tool chest and some old military ribbons.

The wine cork I make into a necklace component by sticking some 20 gauge wire through the middle and stringing a crystal on each end and then making a wrapped loop. The key I painted so far one coat of purple paint and I have glued a image on the back of one of the flat backed marbles and then added one of the washers (I think it will become a magnet). For the pop can tops, maybe I'll flatten them out and make earrings out of them. The eraser also had a piece of wire pushed through the middle in order that I could make a loop on top. I can see this becoming a cool necklace pendant with maybe a few other doo dads for a teacher.

Okay so what can you find around your house that you can use in jewelry design? You can't buy it, so no cheating.

For another idea to use with the wine corks, head over to Martha and check out her button stamps. I plan on making me some as soon as I can get all my craft room stuff un-boxed so that I can find my buttons. Pictures of the new craft room cabinets coming soon....hopefully Monday.

Cheers, I hope you are having a good weekend.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Show is Over.....Thank Heavens

Another year down. I really don't want to cook anymore....ever. We spent the entire show in the kitchen cooking and making sandwiches for the crowds of people coming to visit the show. I think I was able to get to the bathroom once a day and only today at 3:00 pm (an hour before the show closes) was I able to go shop for a bit. If you have ever dreamed of running a deli or restaurant....DON'T. Try running a lunch counter for 3 days before you venture into anything. Now I'm not saying that it isn't profitable, we were able to raise over $300.00 for the club and served all our volunteers at the show for free which equates out to a little over $350.00. So, if we didn't feed the workers for free we would have brought in $650.00 in just 3 days. Not too bad a profit. I'm just glad that I have a whole year to forget how bad my feet feel before it starts all over again.

One of the good things that did come out of this show was that my husband and I were invited to demonstrate gem trees and jewelry design at a gem and mineral show in Lewiston, Idaho in October. We've never been there and I'm looking forward to taking that trip in the motor home.

I keep thinking that life will get back to normal tomorrow but we have the contractor that will be here first thing in the morning to probably install my new cabinets in my craft room and I haven't even cleared the room of stuff so that he can get in there...dang and I really wanted to sleep in tomorrow. Then we have to go pick up the new slate tiles for our porch and kitchen so he can get started on that. I think he wants to start the demo on the kitchen but that may have to wait a week so that I can organize and get stuff packed up. I really have to admit that I'm not looking forward to living through a kitchen remodel even though the outcome will be great. I think we will have to go on a really long camping trip. Oh wait to do that I have to have a plan to pack up my craft room to take with me.

Okay now I'm stressed. I should probably just go to bed and hope that tomorrow I'll get a reprieve.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Time for the Show

It's that time of year where I don my kitchen apron and cook for our local gem and mineral club show. If you are in Western Washington you might like to attend. It is free to the public and we will have vendors, demonstrators, display cases, silent auction, kids activities and a raffle area as well as the lunch counter. Everything from rough rock to polished gems and beads will be displayed and for sale.

When June 4-6, 2010
Where:  Fruitland Grange
112th Street and 86th Ave East
Puyallup, Washington
Time:  Friday  12 Noon to 6 PM
Saturday 10 AM to 5 PM
Sunday   11 AM to 4 PM

I hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Weekend. We went to the beach in the rain....oh so much fun with all the rain and mud. We did have one day of no rain, but obviously at the beach it was cold and windy but the dogs loved it.

If you want to follow along I joined the bead soup party (see link at the side) as well as the {Make} Sew Along. The beads I received from my partner are great and I already have my necklace started. I haven't started my sewing project yet, but will after this weekend is over and can concentrate on it.


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