Archive for April, 2009

my new jewels
I finished my new necklace featuring the lovely bronze pendant I got from Artbeads.

The Heart Has Reasons - necklace

I used antiqued-brass findings, freshwater pearls, red and bronze Czech fire-polished beads, and antiqued-brass beads.

I wanted to go for an antique, asymmetrical look, and I’m very pleased with how it turned out. These pictures really don’t do the necklace justice – it’s much prettier in real life!

The Heart Has Reasons - necklace, close-up

It’s surprisingly difficult to design an asymmetrical necklace because balance between the two sides still needs to be maintained. It took me about 2 to 2&1/2 hours to design and complete this necklace, and probably half of that time was spent staring at it and trying out different combinations of beads and chain.

The Heart Has Reasons - necklace, close-up

I also wanted to be careful not to draw attention away from the pendant, but to use the beads to add subtle additional interest as well as a bit of color and sparkle.

Of course I had to make a matching pair of earrings – just something simple to complement the necklace.

The Heart Has Reasons - earrings

And here I am, wearing my new jewels.

My new jewels

there’s no escape from mother’s day
I was not planning on making anything (as gifts) for Mother’s Day. Then my Muse said, “um, no. Here’s an idea. Now do it.”

My Muse is very bossy. I better do what she says! (And to be fair to my Muse, it is a good idea!)

~following the Muse~

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a gift in time
I did manage to finish my brother-in-law’s bracelet in time. It turned out very nicely, and more importantly, he liked it. Of course I forgot to scan it though. But he has to give it back to me to adjust the length (it’s a bit too long), so I’ll scan it then. I used red jasper tubes, sterling silver beads, and black seed beads.

the heart has reasons
I’ve been working on the necklace incorporating the bronze pendant I got from Artbeads. I’m going with a vintage look, using antiqued brass chain and findings. I’m also using some red and bronze Czech fire-polished beads and freshwater pearls.

Taking Flight by Kelly Rae Roberts

The Librarian added a review of this wonderful book by Kelly Rae Roberts. I just love her work and wish wish wish I could draw faces like hers. They’re so lovely! Scroll down to the bottom of the Librarian’s page to read the review.


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finally, spring
I noticed the trees outside the window at work are blooming pretty white flowers. I’m so thankful my desk faces the windows. Otherwise I’d be looking at a wall all day. yuck.

shipping woes
My Vintage Halloween projects are safely across the country now, in the hands of Somerset Studio. I won’t even say how much I paid for shipping. It was ridiculous and I’m not letting that happen again!

I utterly dislike packing up my work to mail. Tagging everything, finding appropriate shipping containers, packing, labeling – I hate it! A whole night spent on mailing. yuck again.

scary scary ladies
But anyway, here are my Scary Ladies Vintage Halloween gift tags.

Scary Ladies - Mary

Scary Ladies - Helen

Scary Ladies - Viola

And here are the backs:

Scary Ladies Vintage Halloween Gift Tag - back

Scary Ladies Vintage Halloween Gift Tag - back

Scary Ladies Vintage Halloween Gift Tag - back

I think they turned out well, although I do think I went a little overboard and maybe there’s too much stuff on each tag.

We’ll see if Somerset likes them!


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cool new stuff!
I recently became part of Artbeads Blogging for Beads program, which basically means I get to check out some of their beautiful jewelry-making products and write about them.

So here is the first item I chose – a cool bronze pendant:

Bronze pendant from Artbeads

The words read “the heart has reasons that reason cannot know”. I love its organic, antique look, and I especially love the bail with that little twisty part – a very nice detail.

Artbeads has a large variety of these bronze pendants to choose from – check them out! Enjoy!

I do have a necklace planned for this pendant, but this is one of my very busy times at work and for the past week and a half I haven’t had time for hardly anything! I’ve been finishing up my Vintage Halloween projects, which are done but of course not mailed yet because I haven’t had time to find an appropriately-sized box (so I guess I’ll be paying an arm and a leg again for overnight shipping!) and the gift for my brother-in-law which of course is not done but needs to be in less than 24 hours. Then there’s Easter and I haven’t gotten my daughter white socks or sandals to go with her dress. Thank goodness today I had time to take my son to get his tux for the junior prom next week.

Thankfully tomorrow will be the last of my overtime and I can get back to a more reasonable schedule.

~toodles for now~

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boo to you
So here are my Vintage Halloween Party Favor Sacks. I was kind of in a hurry when I took these pictures – and it shows. They’re not very good, and they really don’t do the sacks justice. But I won’t have another chance to photograph them before I pack them up, so these will have to do. The handles, which you can partially see in the pictures, have ribbon wrapped around them.

Vintage Halloween Party Favor Sack - Boo

Vintage Halloween Party Favor Sack - happy halloween

Vintage Halloween Party Favor Sack - trick or treat

I love how they turned out – way cuter than I ever imagined! I’m very pleased with them.

One of my goals with these sacks was to not use any liquid glue. So I used my sewing machine to sew together the image, the orange cardstock, and the text, and then adhered that to the sack with double-sided adhesive. I used brads to attach the hats and sewed the beads onto the flowers. The only liquid glue I used was Diamond Glaze, to attach the flowers and for securing the ends of the ribbons.

It was fun using non-glue methods, and faster too, since I didn’t have to wait for glue to dry.

I’m still working on the tags. I have all the components completed; it’s just a matter now of sewing everything together.

artful blogging
I finished reading the latest Artful Blogging. These were my favorite articles:

Michelle Ward’s Raising the Bar: Photo Presentation for your Blog. Michelle shares tips on turning the photos on your blog into something special, memorable, and interesting. I’ve already started to use her ideas.
Angela Harris. Pure, delicious eye candy.
Teresa Sheeley. Love her delightful, whimsical art.
Jenny Doh. Great article on what it means to be an authentic artful blogger.
Lisa Parks. On living a beautiful life.
Gillian Hamilton. Love her gorgeous art.
Project Blogway. I totally would wear that blouse on page 95.

~off to play with my scary ladies~

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