A chronicle of the meanderings, false starts (which in retrospect, while sort of embarrassing turned out to be highly instructive), epiphanies, selective apathy (still evolving), wild mood swings, opinions (subject to frequent change), and life lessons of an inveterate dabbler (and her latest dabblings).

Sunday, April 24, 2011


I'm working myself up for a couple of projects. Unfortunately I couldn't just dive in because I was out of everything--beadcaps, headpins, connector rings, etc.

So while all that stuff went round and round in the tumbler, I toyed with the random stuff on my bead table. And some of the components destined for other projects seemed to work nicely with some of the other stuff on my table. (Most of the "other stuff" on my table were things I really wanted to use in something, but just didn't have the right "thing" for them yet).

This piece below came about because I got a bug up my ass to find out RIGHT NOW if those donut bails I started in the car (and finished at home) would fit any of the stone donut pendants I had. Turned out one of the bails fit this "golden horse" jasper donut perfectly. I put the bail on there and left in on the table and it was so big I couldn't help but look at it day after day. When the germ of an idea came into my head I had to jump on it. Repeatedly for a couple days. (Tired now). This is what eventually came out of the hopper:

I like the main portion with the leather, but I can't decide if I like the shorter section with it. I just seemed sort of bare with all that length so I put that in there. What do you think? Leave it or take it out? (Beach stones from Stonestudiostoo on Etsy).
Of course I had to make earrings to go with it.
Earrings To Go With It
(Gray lampwork spacers by Beingbeads; earwires, headpins and beadcaps by moi; also with faceted moukaite and brecciated jasper).

These earrings below happened when I took some of the big beadcaps I was doing for my button pieces (stamped on the inside to be used upside down) and popped them on top of a smaller bead. They looked more like a big floppy hat then than a little watch cap. I put a little bead up inside there to make them sit up a little higher. I like the Japanese straw hat effect. Like you're digging weeds in your garden in Kyoto on a hot sunny day and you don't want to get brown spots. Or like a fuchsia blossom. Vaguely. So I did some more but stamped them on the outside, like a traditional beadcap.

Japanese Garden earrings

I was trying to think of a more interesting way to fasten a decorative seed bead to earwires, and I thought these itty bitty beadcaps I've been making might work. They're like a little nest for the bead to sit in. I wrapped some wire right above them to keep them in place.

I had these nifty cylinder beads with the cutouts sitting on my table because I thought I might use them in the jasper pendant, but that didn't look right and I was too lazy to put them away. But then I put a big beadcap on top of those and I liked that too! So this is what eventually became of them:
Japanese Lantern Earrings
With tiny turquoise heishi, moukaite again wearing tiny beadcaps, and ivory bone spacers.

Now I can't decide whether I should start on that other project now or take a nap. I'm leaning towards the nap. Like literally leaning in my chair. I'm really tired.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Fooling Around

With metal wire and sheet.

These are some things I was hammering in the car recently--Some 12 and 14 gauge gauge copper wire, and some copper sheet. I decided to decorate them a little with stamping and antiquing and try them out as earrings. This first pair I left simple, with some faceted glass in a sort of lavender-periwinkle that changes color depending on the light source (lavender in sunlight, almost aqua in fluorescent light).
With lavender glass
I've been thinking of tourmalines lately (but not wanting to spend the $$, so instead I got some berry and pine green seed beads to sort of get in the tourmaline mood), and wanting to try wiring seed beads onto things so these are a real experiment! They ended up looking really Christmasy (I didn't expect that! Maybe it's the way the top curls over, makes me think of elf shoes)--probably need some black in there to really pull off the tourmaline thing. But I like them anyway. So they'll just have to sit in the shop until December. Ha.
Pink and Green Extravaganza
These last ones I'm not so in love with, although I like the beads in them.
I think I've had enough of the bar earrings for awhile now, but I'm glad I discovered that wiring seed beads isn't very hard. They were very cooperative! Think I might do that again elsewhere.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Necklace

OK, I made a necklace today with my remaining Alisha White copper green discs. Here it is:

The Necklace

Alas, I had to use them all so no pendant in the offing. Large iceberg blue lampwork spacers by StudioRent.

Friday, April 15, 2011

I Think I Broke a Tooth

Nibbling on these DELICIOUS beads!!!

I went to the bead store looking for moukaite and fancy jasper roundels and came home with this instead:

Face-Melting-Blue agate slabs
Poppy jasper and rugged green turquoise
Everlasting shell roundels, picture jasper square tubes, and fuschia-colored Aqua Terra Jasper pendant
Not quite sure what possessed me with that fuschia pendant. It was bright and my Reptilian Brain saw it and said ME BUY PRETTY ROCK!!!!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Alisha White is a Genius

I snapped up these lampwork discs a few weeks ago from Alisha White's shop--couldn't resist that verdigris/copper combo! I've been contemplating this bracelet ever since. Finished it up this evening.
Copper and Verdigris Bracelet
With amazonite, moukaite, fancy jasper, opalite, copper and leather. (Can't believe how that cord from LeathercordUSA in "Splash" exactly matched the lampwork! That leather is like crack.) Had some great, murky light through the heavy cloud cover when I got home from work--love these longer days already! This is my favorite light to photograph in. Wan and gray, because it doesn't distort colors and there's just enough crispness without it being harsh.

I'm feeling more comfortable with my metal stamps. The BF gave me a really, really big hammer. Now I need more stamps.

I still have four of these discs left. I'm not quite done nibbling on them (I just want to gobble them up!) but when I am I think they will go into a necklace. I might end up with one left over and that might end up in a pendant. Or lodged in my throat.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Exercises in [Relative] Simplicity

I was ultra tired of looking at the same old crap in my shop (every time I put something new and cool in there someone buys it--HMPH!!!), so I thought this weekend I would just do a bunch of old fashioned "quick" stringing projects that would go together "fast." The first one took me all day. (What in the hell was I doing? Oh yeah, the crimp wouldn't cooperate and that goofed up the wire and I had to start over. And oh yeah, I didn't have the right size coil ends to I had to make those. And then I guess I had to make some chain because I didn't have that either...Then the photos wouldn't turn out. And then I guess I was fooling around with a few other projects at the same time and got sidetracked...)

Anyway, here are my "simple[er]" pieces from the weekend, just so there would be something new to look at in my shop. I used my first Artisan Clay charm for this one. With some leather and some nifty matte seed beads in a semi-metallic, subtly variegated denim blue from Fusion Beads.

Blue Jean Baby (there, now you'll be hearing Tiny Dancer all night! LOVE Elton).
I started wiring up the ceramic focal on this one below last night, from Macarroll. I am proud to say I had the whole thing finished this morning before the clock went to double digits (that is meaningful for me--if it's single digits it's still "early"). But then I wanted Mexican food all day. Bad. I couldn't stop thinking about guacamole, tortillas, queso dip and enchilada sauce.
South of the Border ("Yo quiero Taco Bell!!!")--See what I mean?
With poppy jasper, faceted moukaite, handmade olive green glass beads from Indonesia (via Happy Mango Beads), and fabulous wide leather lace from LeatherCordUSA. Cute little gingko charm from Fusion Beads (or was it ArtBeads?)

Oh, did I mention it's reversible?

 I was too lazy to go the store for tortillas so I made earrings to go with it instead:
Mexican food earrings
Then I sort of cheated and photographed and listed earrings I made the other day. So that didn't really count.
Mr. Blue Sky Jasper Earrings (HA! Now you have ELO in your head. LOVE ELO. Almost as much as Elton.)
But then someone bought them a few minutes after I listed them and I had to make them again. That DID count.

(In the midst of all this I was making another custom "Button Magic" (that's what I'm calling it) necklace from the remaining turquoise discs it turns out I DID have enough of after making the last one (but now I don't), so I was multi-tasking. Or at least bi-tasking.) I just happened to be thinking about lime and teal while I was working on this custom piece (which just happens to be olive green and turquoise--not so much of a stretch), and reflecting on the giant tub of Indonesian lime green and teal beads I had from Happy Mango Beads when I suddenly wondered what the little lime green spacers in the tub would look like on a jump ring. I had to find out RIGHT AWAY. So I took a little detour and ended up making these:

Lime and Blue Raspberry Beret Margaritas (HA!! Now you've got past-his-prime Prince in your head. It all went downhill after Purple Rain. )
I had other BIG plans for other "simple" and less "simple" pieces but I ran out of time. I didn't even waste any time bathing or going to the gym or eating (one must obey the Mojo) and I STILL ran out of time. DANG.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

The Two Faces of Eve

I'm quicksilver. My moods change in an instant. I'm unpredictable.

Must be The Change.

One minute I'm all shabby chic and romantic, and the next minute I'm all modern industrial. Literally, from like one minute to the next.

See, look at this:
You didn't know I could do this, did you? They're all soft and cuddly.

Those weathered copper hearts are by (you guessed it) Shannon at MissFickleMedia. Czech glass lentils in peridot AB finish with little copper pearls. But then you blink and I've gone all Blade-Runner-meets-Mondrian on you:
Completely unsentimental and not particularly romantic. My style exactly.
It was nice for a change to have already-made components. I get so tired of having to make all the parts before I can put them together. I need to train the BF to do that.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

I Can't Get the Eggs and Bacon Done at the Same Time, Either

I've been intending to make earrings with these raku lampwork discs from BlueSeraphim, but just didn't get it done until last night. About a week after I finished the bracelet that would have gone with them (see previous post.) It would make far more sense to have done these earrings a week ago and listed them with the bracelet. Or better yet, listed them both with the necklace I did several months ago. (However, my inspiration was just not ripe for all these things at the same time.) I have the same problem with cooking. I have eaten many self-cooked meals in stages. First the toast, then the eggs, then the bacon, because I couldn't seem to get it all done at the same time. Ah well, this is my cross to bear.

So here they are, I've been meaning to try fastening disc beads to small strap-like pieces of metal. I like bending the top of the metal over to form the loop. I stamped a little design on these. I'm still totally spastic with the metal stamp, just can't get the design in there very deep (wimp?) and it moves around. Going to have to practice. Maybe I need a small sledgehammer.

Do you raku? I do.
With iolite and little purple glass beads

I cleaned my fingernails for this picture so I wouldn't look like a carny.
That's all for now, I have to go get ready because we're having bar food tonight.