Posts Tagged ‘gift’

Continuing with the tradition I started on my 40th birthday, I bought myself a birthday gift. Jewelry, of course. And continuing with tradition I chose to support an artist on Etsy. When I saw this beautiful necklace by Danita, featuring her drawing of Marie Antoinette, I knew I had to have it. I am very familiar with Danita’s work, since she is a regular in the Stampington magazines I obsess over. Her lovely figures are simple, yet alluring and mysterious. And the eyes! Amazing.

I just adore my new necklace!

Thanks for stopping by!


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This post is rather late, seeing that my birthday was over a month ago, and we’re on the verge of spring, but I really wanted to share this necklace, so…

Last year when I turned 40 I decided to buy myself a gift (or gifts) and I ended up buying a few pieces of jewelry from different artists on Etsy.

I thought this would be a good tradition to continue, so this year for my 41st birthday I bought this necklace from Wearable Art by Jude

a tree in winter

I had contemplated buying this last year but didn’t. So I decided to get it this year. I really love it!

me in the winter

This necklace reminds me of a teaching by Joyce Meyer. She said there are times in your life when it seems like nothing is happening. You’re not getting anywhere, things are not working, and you’re ready to give up. Like a tree in winter, you feel bare and dull, empty and lifeless. But don’t be deceived! Inside, there is new life preparing to burst forth at just the right time.

So just hang in there!


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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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I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas and Hanukkah (for those who celebrate them, anyway). Mine were wonderful – I am blessed with a loving, fun, and generous family.

My husband gave me some very cool gourmet chocolates by MarieBelle. Each chocolate is handcrafted from the finest natural ingredients, and the top of each delectable treat offers an artistic rendition of a unique retro-inspired scene or design. Flavors range from the traditional (butter caramel and coconut) to the unusual (champagne – yummy! and gianduja – I don’t know what that is). These are fun chocolates – just ask my daughter.

Here are a few of them:
MarieBelle chocolates

I received my ATC’s from the Artella Holiday Memories swap a week ago but hadn’t had a chance to post them, so here they are:

Artella 2008 Holiday Memories ATC Swap

I love the variety. From top left clockwise the artists are: Jan’ice Rogers, Cheryl Richards, Karen Solliday, and Pamela Tucker.

For Christmas I made necklaces for my sister and sister-in-law. They are the same as the crystal pendant necklace I made for myself a couple months ago (mine was the test drive!).

The one for my sister:
Julie's Christmas gift 2008

And the one for my sister-in-law (this one is exactly the same as the one I made for myself):
Erin's Christmas gift 2008

And here is the collage I made for my Mom:
Mom's Christmas gift 2008

This was my grandmother’s older sister Charlotte, for whom my Mom is named. Charlotte was killed in a car accident a couple months after graduating high school. My grandmother was only seven at the time. She remembers Charlotte as being very sweet and calling her “my sugar cookie”. My mom spent a good deal of time last year researching the details of the accident because my grandmother’s memory was a bit hazy.

And then there were a bunch of photos of Charlotte in a box of old family photos my Mom lent to me, and I also found her commencement card and a thank-you note she had written to one of her aunts shortly before she died, thanking her for a graduation present. So looking at these photos and other items and knowing my Mom’s interest in her inspired me to create a collage in honor of her.

I’m happy with how it turned out. I did a bit of sewing on this one, which I love to do. And I didn’t use any glitter glue – I wanted the collage to be more serious, and not glitzy. The buttons represent history and the connections that female family members have to each other. I’ve read many a blog entry or magazine article where the author mentions how she treasures a button box given to her by her mother or grandmother.

I suspect not many people would recognize the evocative power of a button.

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The most wonderful news! My two Marie Antoinette canvases have been selected to appear in Stampington’s special MA publication! I’m very happy and excited. So that $20 it cost to send them overnight has turned out to be money well-spent. The publication is due to come out on April 1.

On the Christmas gift-making front, I have an additional gift completed. I have pictures to post but not until Christmas! I also started working on a gift for my mom. I hope she likes it. It’s not jewelry, for once.

In other exciting news, for the first time in two-and-a-half years I am caught up on my magazine reading. I’m not quite sure how that happened. But I recently finished the December 2008 issue of Bead & Button, and I’m almost done the November/December 2008 issue of Somerset Studio. I have one Artful Blogging and one old issue of Somerset Studio left. Whatever will I do? Buy more magazines, of course! There are new issues of Sew Somerset, Belle Armoire Jewelry, and I think Somerset Workshop. Plus there’s Stuffed coming out in January. Thank goodness. I’d be lost without my magazines. They help keep me sane!

This is the cover of the current Somerset Studio. I just love this star by Rachel Killpack – it’s beautiful.

Somerset Studio Nov/Dec 2008

And here are Hearts, by Sharon Martin. I adore these!

Somerset Studio, Nov/Dec 2008, p103

Also in this issue – notice of the April 15 submission deadline for next year’s Vintage Halloween issue. I’m planning on making two pieces – one with the same photo I used last time, and something else. I’ll have to look through my old family photos. I think I scanned one of some scary-looking women specifically for use in a Halloween creation.

I’m not sure what I’m going to make yet. I’m not actively thinking about it, just keeping it in the back of my mind.

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Perhaps too much of everything is as bad as too little. – Edna Ferber

I found this great book, Organize Now! by Jennifer Ford Berry in Joann’s a few weeks ago, and within ten seconds of skimming through it knew I absolutely had to have it. It wasn’t in my budget at the time, but as soon as I got paid again I ordered it from Amazon.

This book will be my organizational bible, and as soon as January rolls around, I will be on my way to a more organized way of being. Since having my daughter I have learned that being organized and planning ahead is the only way to stay sane. Read more about it on my Librarian page (you just have to scroll down a bit).

I finished one Christmas gift last night – yay! I’m feeling confident, time-wise, with regard to finishing the others. But I’m well aware of how time flies, too.

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I’ve been reading Beadwork August/September 2007 (I’m just a little behind on this magazine!). The master class article in this issue is by Marcia DeCoster.

She discusses her “concept of small component design” – creating beaded components which can then be sewn together in different ways to form pieces of jewelry. I love this idea – a single component would not take too long to make, and would be easier to experiment with. Marcia’s work is beautiful – delicate and lacy, and very textural.

One of my mom’s birthday gifts is finished – the one that is something I’ve never made before. I’m very pleased with how it turned out, all things considered. I was inspired by a certain book, but the item I made is my own design and I didn’t use any instructions from said book. Which in hindsight may not have been the best idea. It is far from perfect, and if I did it over again, I would do many things differently. But it’s pretty and sparkly, and in the end, isn’t that all that really matters? If the edges are a little crooked, throw some glitter glue on it! If the papers don’t quite meet in the middle, throw some glitter glue on it! No one will ever know the difference. I think many problems in life could be solved with a little glitter glue.

The digitally-altered book contest is now officially open for voting on Artella. Most of the entries are lovely. There are two in particular that I think are fabulous, in terms of artistic vision and creativity – Everything and Anything, and Notions. These two books are amazing! I’m going to vote for one of them, but I haven’t decided which one yet. I’ve never been the kind of person that could vote for herself, and quite frankly, these two books are better than mine anyway. But mine is pretty good, I think.

Thanks again to Erin for the title of this post – I’m not sure I got the words exactly right, but that was absolutely hilarious. Well put!

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