Monday, April 29, 2013

my partner's reveal...

My partner, Amanda Tibbetts, has posted what she made with the bead stash I sent her.  She created a very pretty necklace that sets off the focal perfectly, and a charming bracelet which highlights the pretty clasp.  I think she did a lovely job.

You can see her pieces at: and you can find all of the participants of Bead Soup Blog Party by going here:

Saturday, April 27, 2013

can I have a drum roll, please...

I finished my second piece on Wednesday!.  So here are both pieces, with close-ups for both.  I'm please with how they turned out, and I have so say they are definitely out of my normal comfort zone, which was my objective.

Monday, April 1, 2013

First Blog Party Piece Done

Well, I finished my first piece.  I tired to combine brass and copper in one piece, but it just never was right, so I went with all brass so I could use my pretty focal and links.  After working and reworking, I finally am satisfied with the way it turned out.  Now on to the next piece since I haven't used the copper clasp yet (the rules say I have to use the focal and clasp).  I already have some ideas...stay tuned.  My reveal date is April 14, I think.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Mt Dora Spring Show

Well, I'm back and recuperated from the weekend at the Mt Dora Spring Show in Mt Dora, FL.  It was a nice show and extremely well organized...the best I've seen yet.  Lots of people, although not as many as their fall show.  But, most of the people weren't buying jewelry.  Not just mine, but I think none of the jewelry artists did well.  And we got rained out around 2pm on Sunday.  I did meet some nice people, both visitors and other exhibitors, which is always good, and I was certainly happy with the sales I did make.

This is my last big show for the season, so I'm going to be dedicated toward making my bead soup party design.  I'm really looking forward to it!

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Nice Comments from Amanda

My Blog Soup Party partner, Amanda, made some very nice comments on her blog--  She is a very talented artist herself!  I adore what she sent me and am especially pleased that she took the time to make the focal and other brass components herself.  I'm not sure how I'll use them yet, but I'm intrigued by the idea of combining the brass and copper in the same piece.  I really think I can do it so that it works!  I already have some ideas and plan to get started within the next couple of days. 

Monday, February 25, 2013

Photo of Amanda's Bead Soup for Me

Finally, my show this weekend is over.  I ended up doing pretty well, but I'm tired and way behind on so many things.  This is the primary item on my to-do list...posting what my partner, Amanda Tibbetts, sent me.  FYI, her blog is  She sent me a lovely collection, including nuggets and chips of lapis lazuli--what a deep, rich, beautiful blue!  She also sent gorgeous, iridescent moonstone and the prettiest aqua magnesite.  All my favorite colors!

Amanda also sent a couple of copper toggle clasps and some very intriguing copper teardrops...can't wait to come up with something good for those!

The very best part I saved for last.  Amanda took some extra time to hand make brass charms.  The focal is is a pretty round dome stamped with BEAUTY LIES WITHIN.  She stamped 6 smaller disks with a scrolled pattern and has punched them for use as links.  And the surprises keep coming!  She also stamped a smaller brass round dome and two little domes that I may use as earrings since she sent some nice earwires.  One is stamped with a butterfly and the other with my initial, C.

It is clear Amanda put a lot of thought into her contribution and I can't wait to get started.

Friday, February 22, 2013

My Soup!

I received my wonderful soup from Amanda today.  I love everything about it, especially the fact that she handmade the focal and some of the other pieces.  I don't have time to describe it right now, but I'll take a picture and list all the goodies, hopefully tomorrow.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

My Bead Soup is Enroute!

Amanda emailed me yesterday that her "soup" is in the mail.  Can't wait!  In the meantime, I'm getting ready for the Treasure Coast Gem and Jewelry Show, which is 12-5 on Friday, 10-5 on Saturday, and 10-4 on Sunday at the Vero Beach Community Center.  It is always an energizing show, plus I don't have to haul my tent and tables since it is indoors.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Amanda received my soup!

Amanda emailed me that she received my bead soup and likes it!  I'm glad because they are some of my favorite color combinations.  I don't have mine yet, but she is making the focal (oh boy!).  She deserves some slack since she is one of us who is still working full time.  I'm so glad I retired from my "day job".  Oh course, I've somehow managed to fill my days so I'm still pretty busy, but it is all what I want to do.  Here's a photo of what I sent Amanda.  Nearly all of these came from AA Stained Glass and Beads, which is my favorite local bead store.  The owner, Leslie Wayment, is participating the Bead Soup Blog Party for the second year and encouraged me to particpate.  Very good advice, Leslie!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Bead Soup Blog Party Stash for My Partner

My partner, Amanda, and I have exchanged emails and both of us promised to mail the goodies we have for each other on Wednesday or Thursday. I have finalized mine and hope to get it in the mail tomorrow. Here's a sneak preview...



Sunday, February 10, 2013

Space Coast Polymer Clay Guild

Yesterday I attended the Space Coast Polymer Clay Guild.  They meet once a month at the Suntree/Viera Library in Melbourne, FL.  It is a working session, from 11am to 4:30pm.  There were 5 of us there yesterday and I was amazed and impressed that a number of people saw us and came in to find out what was going on.  The meeting room is right near the front door and is the first thing you see.  We actually may have some new members from these encounters, and one woman stayed and Michelle, the founder, got her started on the basics.

At the Guild meet-ups you can do anything you want.  Either bring a project or learn something new.  Michelle had brought some books for us to look at and I picked Donna Kato's Millifiore book.  I made two canes from it, one using a Skinner blend and the other using my extruder.  Both came out great.  Now I just have to think about how I want to use them.  I'll post some pictures soon.

Bead Soup Blog Party Assignment!

I have received my partner assignment for the Bead Soup Blog Party!  This is going to be challenging but fun.  I'm eager to hear back from her.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Steep Learning Curve

As usual, I get myself involved in too many projects at once.  No one else does that, right?  :)
Anyway, I'm learning to do sculptural peyote and bead embroidery.  I've finished my first sculptural peyote pendant and when I finish the necklace portion, I'll post it.

I also took a class this week where I did my first metalwork (not counting silversmithing, which I've already done).  It was a bracelet of domed and patterned copper disks, starting from the raw sheet of copper.  I'll post that as soon as I finish oxidizing and polishing it.

This is all not counting the two necklaces I have started, nor the two bracelets.

I have a show tomorrow, the Sebastian Craft Club, in Riverview Park right here in Sebastian.  Seems like every show is better and better!

Meanwhile, I've been working on more polymer clay. I love the properties of this malleable, nice colors, and it doesn't dry out at room temperature. I've attached a few photos of some of my latest, a pendant and earring set, a heart pendant, and a pair of gold and red earrings.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Color Palette Tool

I was munging around on the web this morning and stumbled on a site that mentioned a tool that identifies the colors used in any image.  I've seen other tools, but for some reason this one stuck with me.  And...I apologize to whoever originally mentioned it since I have moved away from that site and forgot to make note of it.  Thank you very much for the lead, though!

The tool is called "Chip It" and it appears to be a Sherwin-Williams tool.  It is free.  You create an account, then upload an image and it shows you the color palette used in that image.  You can save it so you can refer to it later.  Here's a sample from a polymer pendant I made using Albina Manning's Hidden Flowers Tutorial.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Kickstarting the Creative Process

My friend, Leslie Wayment at AA Beads, participated in an interesting project last year through called Bead Soup Blog Party.  I saw how the experience was a great way to kickstart any creative block and to help you move out of your comfort zone. 

When she told me that the sign up is once a year and THIS WEEKEND is the time for this year, I knew that I wanted to do it.  Read the details on their blog.  Basically, two people pick a collection of beads/components and send them to each other.  It is likely that you will receive items and/or colors that you don't usually work with.  I love the idea of having to create something that way, so I'm off to sign up...I'll keep everyone posted on my progress with words and photos!

Introducing Me - My First Post

For my very first post, I'll try to explain who I am, who I want to be, and how I'm trying to get there.  For some people, it appears easy to write a blog about themselves, but not for me.  After this initial introduction, I hope to talk more about what I'm learning in the hope that perhaps I can inspire someone else to start the same process.

On my journey to become a jewelry artist I think I started in the right place...technique.  In order to be free to create, I felt I had to have a foundation of skill in multiple techniques so that I could combine techniques to turn an idea into something appealing.  So...I started at the beginning, with stringing.  Years later, I now have at least working knowledge in numerous areas.  Depending on what I'm trying to create, I can use one or more of the following:  stringing, bead weaving, kumihimo, Viking knit, wire crochet, wirework, silversmithing, chainmaille, cutting/ polishing cabochons, macrame, and my favorite-- polymer clay.

My natural tendency is to want to learn everything!. This trait has been useful, but it is also difficult since it is very easy to become fragmented.  If I see something another person is working on or a picture in a magazine, immediately I want to learn to make it.  Currently, I'm learning to bead around a cabochon and to use bead embroidery, sculptural peyote, while learning new polymer clay techniques through tutorials and books.