Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sunday again

My goodness the last week passed in a blur. It was spring break in Oregon, and the central Oregon coast is a popular destination. The place I work is an antique mall and consequently tourism driven like many local businesses. The horrible traffic and long hours paid off with lots of sales and sore knees. I was longing to get back to the torch, but at the end of the day just too tired. So yesterday and today I spent many hours with flames and melting glass. Yea!!! Some of the things I made even worked out as well coming out of the kiln as they did going in. The photos are of what I found when I opened the kiln last night. I am hoping for an even better showing tonight. I especially like the long SW colored bead, the cute little cat (with a crack, darn it), and the pea pod. I finished up a lot of beads I needed for a Sock Hop exchange I am in, as well as the crazy looking one that was an assignment for an online class I am taking. Overall I am pretty happy with the results of over three hours spent melting glass. What do you think?

Monday, March 23, 2009

My Blog got an award!!!

My friend Louise, from Fireseed, gave my blog an award for exhibiting either gratitude or a great attitude. I am very honored and humbled to receive this prestigious award. Here is what it’s all about:

The Lemonade Award is given to sites which the giver thinks show either great attitude and or gratitude.
The rules for these awards are:
1. Put the logo on your blog.
2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.
3. Nominate 10 other blogs.
4. Add links to those blogs on yours.
5. Leave a message for your nominees on their blogs

I don’t think I’ll make it to link to ten other blogs but here are some for starters!

They are not just my friends, but they are incredible designers / flameworkers / silversmiths, but also fabulous promoters of their own work and the work of others!! Thanks for all you do!!

Pam The Blue Between
Maggie Bead Towne
Gwen Valley Creek Studio
Cheryl Lavender Cottage
Angela Blue Lagoon Blog
Barrie Barrie's Jewelry World
Deronda Deronda Designs

Well, nothing much new today. Got my beads out of the soak this morning and there are a couple of good ones some mediocre ones and some really bad ones. Oh well, at least I made some. I also know now why Louise makes Monkees and I make cats, and skulls. The monkeys that survived are sort of like Larry, Moe and Curly. One of the peapods has a crack in the back and the other one has a sharp spot (I am going to try filing down). Yikes. But dang it one of my skulls had its pupil pop off. I was so focused on heating and reheating I forgot to melt them in a bit. At least there are a couple of things that actually worked. That's what I get for trying to make Sock Hop beads. I made five spacers on one mandrel, but only have four because I have no clue where one of them went to. It came off the mandrel hit the kitchen floor and shot off somewhere. Dad says I will find it with my bare feet after I have forgotten about it.
From the final bead you will see I even tried pulling twisty, quite an feat for someone who has never really been taught to pull stringer.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Friday is here, the calendar says it's spring . . where is it?

Just a quick drive by to say I had a fantastic time torching last night. I didn't make much, but what I did is great. Here is a preview of what I made. See if you can identify it:

I'll be back later with the rest of the beads. Suffice it to say this was definitely my favorite. How fun is this!!! I also made a ruffled bead, a purple and turquoise bead and some little ivory spacers (4-on a rod) just to see if I could.

As promised, here are the others. Some little dark ivory spacers, a wavy bead made with copper green and silvered ivory stringer (SIS to glassy folks) over Opal yellow. I heated gravity swirled and crimped it, then reduced it to bring out the metallic shine. Then I made a bead that is nearly 1.25" (31mm) high using a dark ivory base with turquoise and EDP (Evil Devitrifying Purple-I love it!!) and SIS, then squished and dotted and melted and dotted with transparent purple. Isn't it a cool bead. I made the back flat so it would lie nicely when worn. Don't forget if you want to see them bigger, just click on them.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy St. Patty's Day!!

Sure and begorrah, 'tis time for the wearin' of the green. And taking a page from me own grandma's history I thought it would be nice to green up my blog a bit. The peapod me comes courtesy of a fun bead I made a couple of days ago. A peapod. I made it to go with a pair of socks for a Sock and Bead exchange on Wet Canvas. Speaking of Wet Canvas, have you checked out the Etsy shops of my WETsy group? We are offering free shipping and green goodie specials during the month of March in honor of St. Patty himself. Click on the link to the right and visit the shops of the participants. Find the pot of gold in their listings, buy something wonderful and reap the rewards, not to mention seeing some really wonderful hand made goodies.

Here are the beads I made on Sunday. Wow, was it fun. You will see from the wild and crazy things I have been making I am making some serious progress on my glassy skills. The little dotty beads were great practice, and show that my ppp (practice, practice, practice) has finally paid off. The little fish is pretty fun, and a new touch is adding a second color to the tail. The peapod was such fun and frustration to make. Have you ever wondered how people add melty glass to already melty glass, keeping it hot enough to keep from cracking, while building up more layers and not letting the previous one melt? Sound confusing? Well, let me tell ya, it is a lot more than confusing. It is also frustrating, insane, and just darned hard. I don't know what I was thinking even attempting it. But, it was fun, and I am so happy it worked. Next time I am going to remember to get out more than one green before I start and see if I can't make the little cap a different green, and maybe the peas, too. The skulls have become one of my usual things. This time, though, I tried to make a floral bead which was going fairly well for a while, and then went a bit wonky. I remembered my friend and mentor, Maggie, always says if a bead goes bad she makes it into a shell. Well shells are her hallmark and skulls are mine, so the purple skull started life as a floral bead, but I like it even better as a skull. What to you think? The cat was the most fun of all, He had a mind of his own. He said he wanted to be a Gremlin (Mogwai) or Yoda, or at least play a bit on the typical cat-like appearance. I let him have his way, and I am so happy he is mine. A tiny piece of his tail popped off (on the back side) while I was building him and I won't sell him like that. Of course I think he is pretty happy where he is.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Thank God/ goddess (according to your beliefs) it is finally Wednesday. I have hope of making it to the weekend. I heated up the kiln at about 7:30 pm hoping to get dad off to bed at 8 pm and torch right away.
Instead I nodded off, he stayed up until 8:45 and I got him to bed then. So my torching adventure didn't begin until a few minutes after 9 pm. I was feeling a bit tired, but as soon as I fired that baby up the energy came flooding back. I focused on a skull to start with, then moved on to fish and finished up with a cat. The skull is for my OWOH winner, and the cat was just because I wanted to. The fish were, well, practice on what I had tried to learn a couple of days ago. I am still trying to perfect my stringer work, fins, etc. It is so hard to melt in the things you want without melting stuff you don't want melted. Thinking the new torch idea is valid.

I got a call from the Veteran's Hospital in Portland and my cousin is back in the hospital again, with a toe infection again. He is a diabetic and doesn't exactly do what is best for him. I know it must be hard to behave, but it is his life that is at risk. He will be their guest for the next few days, then we have to figure out how to get him and his vehicle back to Lincoln City. He drove himself up there for a "routine" office visit. Not so much.

I hope your week is going well. Mine is moving right along with the addition of new styles of beads, and new glass. Fun is in store for the weekend for sure.


Monday, March 9, 2009

Here are the latest beads I made. I am in an animal exchange on and had no clue how to make animals, or what sort to try. Friday night I made a cat that was laughable. So I set out last night to make one I would like. I figured I would start by making something I know how to make . . . a skull. Next I made a cat. I thought keeping it simple would be the best idea, it worked. I love the little guy and now I want to make a bunch more. Then I thought I would like to play with some reactive glass and see what happened so I made a little test bead. It turned out great and I really love the way the colors play nice together. I then made the piece I really love and will make a ton more of . . . drumroll please . . . a fish!!!! I LOVED MAKING HIM AND HE TURNED OUT GREAT. Okay so he has a fin that's a bit short on one side, but look how far it got Nemo!!!
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Thursday, March 5, 2009

5/5 Meme

My friend Louise, Fireseed, tagged me in her "5/5 Meme" post. I thought I would give it a shot. Who knows what I will find, it could be fun, finding a folder with images, clicking on the fifth folder inside it and picking the fifth image to post.

Sounds easy, right?

Sounds like it could be fun! But who the heck knows if I have nested any of my photo folders. I just might have to organize them again first, then choose 5/5.

The photo above is my 5/5 at work. It is a photo of my friend Barrie's cat I put in my inspiration folder. When I am having a crappy day at work I look in there for something to lift my spirits, or give me a laugh, or maybe even inspire a new bead. Well, I got home and checked my folders, the fifth one contained all the beads I have made to date, so I was naughty and skipped that one since i have already posted all the beads and found a cute photo of my cousin Bob's dog, Jammers. Isn't he adorable!!!?!!!

You five ladies may have done it before or something similar - but just in case you haven't, here are the rules!

Here’s how to play:
1. Open a file folder
2. Click on the fifth folder.
3. Click on the fifth photo.
4. Post the photo and describe it.
5. Tag five other bloggers for the Meme.

So here goes with the tagging:

Barrie (only fair, since her cat is the one in the photo)

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Spread the Love Award

Thank you Barrie, ( Barrie's Jewelry World ) for giving me this wonderful award! Just think, an award for doing what I normally do!! How cool is that?! In turn, I get to award it to 5 deserving others! It will be tough since she is one of the people I would have chosen, as are her other recipients! The award is supposed to go to people who take the time to leave a comment, or a word of encouragement, or a compliment on something that I created. Here are the rules:
1. The winner may put the logo on their blog.
2. Put a link to the person who sent you the award.
3. Nominate 5 blogs.
4. Put links to their blogs.
5. Leave a message for your nominees.

Here are my nominees:
1. Mallory of For the Love of Beads
2. Nancy of Nancy's Arts, Crafts and Favorites
3. Paula of Life on the Island
4. Trish of Sun Daisy Glass
5. Cheryl of Lavender Cottage

All five so deserve much more, and I am honored to call them my friends!! Visit their blogs and their wonderful shops on Etsy, too.

It's March Madness in the Land of Team WETSY!

Look for a pot of gold hidden somewhere in each of these shops, buy something from the seller and make sure to mention which listing in their shop the pot of gold is hidden in, and receive their special offer. Make sure you wait for a new invoice before paying IF the offer includes free shipping. Click on the shop name and it will take you directly to their shops on Etsy. Mine are the last two shops listed at the bottom of this post. Please visit mine, too!!! Thanks!!!

Bead Towne
Free shipping and a green glass surprise to anyone who mentions finding the pot of gold.

A green glass surprise to anyone who mentions finding the pot of gold.

D White Creations
Free shipping on jewelry for the month of March.

Lavender Cottage
Free shipping when the Pot-o-Gold is mentioned, plus a free pair of Petite Wrapped Hoops.

The Blue Between
Free shipping if they mention finding the pot o' gold graphic

Free shipping on all items except earrings during March if the buyer mentions the pot of gold during checkout.

Sun Daisy Glass
Free shipping for finding the pot of gold.

Do Bead Do
Free shipping on all items for the month of March.

Diane Hawkey
Free shipping plus a gift with every order for mentioning pot of gold.

Glass by GirlFriday1962
Free shipping on the person who buys the hidden pot of gold item.

Starlight Designs
FREE SHIPPING and a green goody surprise!

Cassandra Designs, our jewelry
Xhule, an artistic land of darkness and light
Free shipping and a bonus gift on both shops with mention of finding the pot of gold and telling me which listing it was in.

Thanks for stopping by my blog, and please visit my shops and those of Team WETsy for some great gift ideas!!