Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Mad Dash....Christmas season is here!

Where did November go? 

My last thoughts were on Veteran's day when I gloriously had the day to create nonstop.  A full 8 hours of nonsensical color combining and wire wrapping.  I made a bunch of ornaments that day and I'm in love with most of them.  Ok here come my excuses or singularly excuse....we caught the flu.  Started with the baby, then two days later R caught it.  24 hours later C caught it.  Then 24hrs after that I caught everything except the stomach flu.  Sore throat, cough, fever, congestion, more congestion, and a sore tooth which then turned into a failed filling which has been repaired but debatable if the soreness is fixed or not. 

Anyway there's my November.  And now it is Christmas season.  I have photos of all my new and amazing beaded Christmas ornaments.  If you follow me on Facebook you know that I've been slowly adding new ornaments and the occasional flower to the shop.  I plan to keep this up throughout the weekend.  My goal is to have everything Christmasy in the shop by Monday. 

I hope you are enjoying the new designs as much as I am.  I'll try and put a post up here now and again too.  I have exciting new ideas that I was to start playing with once the shop is up to date.  And I'm hoping to get my applications to a few art shows in this year. 
Have a Happy Thanksgiving! 

Sunday, November 09, 2014

Sunday Results

 Today I took over part of our basement and set up my studio.  I'm leaving it up for a week and seeing how much I can create.  I'm focusing on ornaments/pendants.  I want to go heavy on the wire.  I'm finding this freeform wire work wonderful and scarey at the same time.  I can't pick up a piece of wire and predict where it will go.  It's slightly unnerving b/c I'm used to being about to control the outcome of a piece. 
So far I'm pretty happy with my results.  I had requests for purple and red ornaments.  The one on the left is a bright purple petal that's super sparkly.  The middle red one is my new favorite.  I love the weaving effects. 

My plan is to spend this next week creating what I can.  Focusing on ornaments and wire work.  Nothing I'm posting here and on FB are on Etsy yet.  I'll focus on Etsy next but that will be a slower process.  So if you see something you want message me directly.

Saturday, November 08, 2014

chunk of time

I'm excited

A chunk of time is presenting itself to me.  A day.  A day with no day job and the kid's daycare is open.  And then next weekend C is taking R to Chicago so it'll just be N and me.  Which means I have time.  Time to bead or more likely weave some wire. 

I plan to go all out this week and transform part of my basement into a studio.  Bust out the hammers, anvils, and possibly the torch.  Right now my plan is to make a bunch of Christmas ornaments.  I want to practice weaving wire and wrapping free form.  Ornaments are fast to make and gives me the opportunity to try different techniques several times. 

Which brings me to my question for you.  What color ornaments would you like to see?  What colors would you put on your tree?  I'm mostly in this for the wire work the background color of the beads is secondary for me right now.  So ask and you shall receive.  =)

Monday, October 27, 2014


I've been finding small snippets of time to play with wire.  I want to practice and get better at freeform wire wrapping.  I'm not real sure where I want to take this skill.  Most of my ideas revolve around pendants and bracelets/cuffs.  And ALL of my ideas are way above my skill level.

So I'm experimenting.  Playing with weaves, coils, and colors.  Integrating them with flower petals of half made flowers that have been laying around forever.  Most of these experiments will be available as Christmas ornaments this fall. If you see something you must have for your Christmas tree this year don't hesitate to email me.  Time is hard to come by so it will be slow going on updating Etsy with everything I have.

These two are my most recent and my favorites. 

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Orchid Purple Rose

The contrast of the dark tips and bright centers on each petal was fun to put together.  I think it could work for a dramatic affect in a bouquet or a more fun and wild centerpiece.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Skull Roses, who are they looking at?

Perfect for Halloween decor or hostess gifts.  Show it off in a bouquet of silk black roses for an amazing Halloween centerpiece.

I really fell in love with these skull beads.  They have personality.  I don't have them wired into the flowers super tight either, so they have a slight jiggle to them.  Kinda looks like the skull is nodding to you.  The purple in this rose takes some of the creepiness out of the skull.  Or maybe it increases it by feminizing it. =)

4 stunning beaded roses each with a creepy skull in the center.  Each skull is surrounded by faceted glass and crystal beads to provide plenty of sparkle.  The wreath is bigger than my usual ones, 12-13 inches in diameter.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

New Fall Flowers

Rich purple toned rose with red czech glass accent beads and an antique black faceted glass bead in the center.

one of my new designs, sunflowers.  I love the wire centers in this flower.

Saturday, August 30, 2014


It's been quiet around here again and lately there's not much I can do about it.

About a month ago I went from part time at my day job to full time.  An extra 10 hours a week.  My schedule change caused a ripple affect and so C's schedule changed as well.  We've managed to not alter the boy's schedules much which is good, but they feel it through us.  Plus someones been sick, cutting teeth, rolling over and getting stuck on their bellies, or having bad dreams so sleep has been not great.  I'm not complaining, just explaining...that any moment we find we spend it washing bottles, practicing drawing letters, tickling baby bellies, making a decent meal, or collapsing in bed.  It's our life right now, and it's hard, but it's also great.

C took R to Chicago for the first part of this holiday weekend.  N and I have been hanging out and being stubborn about sleeping.  He's fighting it until he passes out.  And I stayed up as late as I possibly dare (1030ish!) taking photos of flowers for possible Etsy shop updates.

Alright, N is jealous that my attention is not on him.  Off to go blog raspberries of soft little cheeks.  Have a happy weekend.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sunday Night Things

Not as much beading as I'd like being done right now.  We spent a long weekend up in Chicago, testing N's travel patience and seeing lots of family.  He got to meet great grandparents and see all his grandparents plus cousins and more.  We are now home and content.  I love the feeling of getting home from an exhausting but successful trip.  The boys are asleep and I'm pretending I don't need to go to sleep in in the next half hour to be able to get up for work tomorrow.

Some how this spring I found time and energy to put together a small garden out back.  I planted tomatoes and peppers in pots like I usually do.  On a whim and with the advise of my neighbor I planted some potatoes.  I had a sack of taters that were starting to spud or maybe they spud's bud...not sure.  Either way we were potatoed out and I needed to do something with them.  So I spoke with my neighbor then decided to plant them.  I mixed up a bunch of compost with the soil out there and then made a mound.  Planted the budding spuds plus a few rows of pumpkins for R.  Tonight I harvested my first couple plants of potatoes.  Jackpot!!

How have I not planted potatoes before?  They were super simple to do and take care of with a huge reward.  My peppers are doing well and the tomatoes are ok, R eats any of the cherry ones before I can see them.  Pumpkins are just flowering but no fruits are forming.   But tomorrow it's sloppy joes and home grown taters for supper.  yum!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Channeling the Blues

I have an order for a wreath and I'm slowly getting started on it.  I have enough petals there for 3 flowers, one lily and two sunflowers.  It's funny that's it's taken me this long to get excited about this project.  I'm blaming the after the show blues...or maybe it's after the reorganization blues.  Once I finish a big project like that I go into a minor funk creatively.  This wreath is bringing me out of those blues and into these blues.  I'm excited to see where this wreath will go design wise.

Tonight I have a date with taking R to swim lessons with N in tow.  Then after they go to bed I need to file my taxes.  It's written on my hand so I shouldn't forget!  My folks moved down today so I'm hoping that's going smoothly.  And this weekend we attempt our first travel with N and R.  We head up to Chicago for grandparents and a wedding.

Hope everyone is enjoying this cool and sunny weather.  I'm hoping that tomorrow afternoon I'll get to steal and hour or two on the deck with these flowers.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

a quick post while he naps

I laid him on the floor so that I could run to the bathroom.  I came back and he'd fallen asleep.  So here's what's on my to do list right now.

~*~ Start a custom wreath that was ordered
~*~ Dig out my photo equipment and take pictures of my new stock
~*~ Halloween wreath...get excited
~*~ ugh taxes...must remember to do my sales taxes
~*~ I want to polish up my social media.  Look into Google Plus.  Does anyone out there use it?  Do they like it?
~*~ Polish up the blog.
~*~ this is a whole blog post on it's own but I received an email about it today.  Does anyone use Square as a store front?  Are they happy with it?  I like the way it looks but am a bit overwhelmed by the fact that I would have to drive all the traffic to it.  At least on Etsy I get maybe 1 or 2 random viewers a day.

Alright, he stirs.  Off to switch back to momma mode and get his jammies on.

Monday, July 07, 2014

the great reorganization

Is there really a good way to organize a large volume of beads?
I can remember nearly 10 years ago back when the Bead and Button forums were live and active seeing huge threads dedicated to the forever task of organizing our bead stashes.  It's a never ending always evolving struggle.  Not only are there hanks of beads which in my opinion work best in craft/embroidery floss boxes.  But it's the tubes of seed beads that throw a wrench into my system.  Although after searching the Internet 10 years later, there are lots more plastic boxes you can buy but really not any new wonderful ideas for bead organization.
 This past May my grandmas moved into an independent living apartment.  She was a beader too.  Ok, no, lets face it, I'm pretty sure both my Grandma and me are both bead collectors first and beaders second.  We love to have a stash of beads.  We need to have what we are looking for in person and on hand for when we need it.  It's just the way we work. 

It's been years since her arthritic hands have been able to string a seed bead, and with the move to a smaller living space she gave her collection to me.  It was a bit overwhelming because her collection is a lot larger than mine is.  She stored her beads in plastic drawers like the ones hardware stores sell to organize screws and bolts.  She had 5 boxes of plastic drawers filled with beads plus a few other piles of boxes and other miscellaneous crafty goodness collected over the past 20 years. 

With 2 lil boys in the house I have visions of those drawers crashing down and the nightmare of a mess it would be to clean up.  So I decided to stay with my box method of organization and go by color.  Seed beads are organized by color.  Gemstones and glass beads are separated from each other and roughly organized by color.  It was a lot of work.  I was really enjoying the process though.  When I was done I was actually a bit disappointed, partly relieved, and part of me doesn't want to touch it because I know it won't stay this organized!

I've posted some peaks of my new bead stash.  It's a bit overwhelming in all honesty.  Although it's great for when I have a project and I'm looking for just the right thing.  Most likely it's in the stash somewhere! 

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

random thoughts on the art show

~The show this weekend went well.  Not quite as successful as last year, but I broke even and it was fun.  I consider that a success.
~I think my booth display is really coming together.  I added a table this year that had my jewelry on it.
~I have a lot more inventory than I did last year.  Both with flowers and pendants.
~As much as I sell the fancier wine charms I'm not sure I will be making any more.  They just don't feel fun right now.

~I think I need to work on putting some eye grabbing pieces in the front.  I had the sunflower wreath sitting up front, but that didn't attract much.  So I exchanged it for the large vase full of lilies.  I'm not sure that helped much.
~I did have a bright purple flower on the other side of the booth that attracted a lot of attention.  At least 10 people stopped and looked at or touched that flower.  
~I had one repeat customer that sought me out to buy another flower.  I had several other people that had bought from me last year stop by and say hello and look around.  It was fun seeing all of them again.  

~Apparently I make lots of weird faces when I'm setting up my booth.  This was the least crazy expression in the pics.
~It was soooo hot over the weekend, I was very sweaty.
~There weren't as many artists there this year.  I'm not sure why but really it's a fun show that is decent quality.  I hope more people sign up next year.
~I met some really nice artists.

~Here is how I displayed my new jewelry.  I had quite a few people looking at the bracelets.  Some even tried them on. I think the prices scared them away.  But I wasn't really expecting to sell them at this venue.  It does encourage me to get them on Etsy.
~I'm not sure what to do next.  I'm mentally defragging this week, then I will figure out my next steps.  Clean/organize beads, get Etsy up and running again, explore more jewelry ideas.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Lily Lovin

See some fun new lily colors in the mix?
Don't they look fun together in large groups?

Come make your own bouquets at the Rhapsody Art in Bloom this weekend at the Peoria Botanical Gardens.  I'll be there near the front entrance, with these plus lots more new flowers to play with.  Saturday from 10-5 and Sunday 12-5.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Another peek

Here's a more intricate bangle that I'm super excited about.  It's a little bit bigger so wraps around your wrist a little more.  The nice thing about it is that it's made with copper wire so small adjustments to tighten and loosen it around your wrist won't hurt it at all.

I didn't realize the colors were washed out in these pics when I took them.  The wire wrapping is all in bright copper.  The beads are a really great pink, almost like a light cranberry pink, and the center beads are glass in a mix of browns, reds, and yellows.  This bracelet is my fave.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Jewelry Tease

Have I mentioned yet that I will be at the Luthy Botanic Garden's Rhapsody in Bloom art show again this year??  The show is this weekend, Saturday from 10-5 and Sunday 12-5.   It is the only show I am signed up for this year.  I am super excited about this year.  I am in the same spot as last year, right by the entrance near the front of the gardens.  If you are local I hope you'll come out to the show.  They are having music again this year, in more of a concert style.  And there will be an art project for kids.  It's a beautiful garden for a great local art fair.  Definitely mark your calendars.

So I mentioned a few days ago that I will have some jewelry available for sale this weekend.  I have several new bracelets available.  All hand wrapped with copper and color coated copper wire.  Each bracelet is completely a unique one of a kind piece.

These are my creations in getting a feel for wire work again.  I love wrapping the wire and integrating flower petals and combining colors.  Come and see me at the show this weekend and see these beauties in person.  They have a wonderful weight to them that just feels good on.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Where's Your Beach?

This weekend is amazing.  It's hot, sunny, and despite going back to work tomorrow and the show coming up next weekend I spent most of the weekend at C and mine's beach.  Our beach is our deck most of the time.  This weekend it extended out to the yard and our kiddie pool.  

At different points of the day all 4 of us were in the pool.  At other more rare and shorter periods of the weekend it was just C and I while the two boys slept.  Usually I would spend this time on our beach beading and working on flowers.  

Instead I spent all the time I could laying in the hot sun, enjoying a glass of wine with C.  Of course I have to show off the wine charms on our glasses.  

Where is your beach?  Where to do you go escape the everyday in your everyday?  

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

a slow return

Meet N, our second little man in the house. He joined us in early April and has been an adventure of his own ever since.  It's been a wonderful maternity leave.  I've enjoyed spending one on one time with N and watching him and discovering him.  He's soooo different than R is already.  It's a different kind of wonder and I feel lucky to be experiencing it.
I start my day job again on Monday but I've been steadily beading for the last month or so.  I signed up to be at the Luthy Botanical Garden Art fair in Peoria IL again.  It's the show I did best at last year and am really excited to be there again this year.  It's Saturday June 28 and Sunday June 29.  I have an exciting new stock to show off.  20 new flowers including two new designs.  A new stock of wine bottle pendants/ornaments, these were wiped out at Christmas last year so I have lots of new ones.  A great selection of colors for wine charms.  And I have a small collection of jewelry for sale, mostly bracelets that show case wire wrapping.  But I made a few pendants as well.
I'm keeping Etsy closed for now.  I still need to photograph everything to get that going and that will be a work in progress for a while.  I'm hoping to have an updated shop up by the end of July.  In the mean time I hope to see you next weekend.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Maternity Leave

Today is my due date and while our little one is still comfy cozy inside me, I figure I'll go ahead and start my maternity leave.  I'll be closing my Etsy shop for the next couple months.  Look for my return this summer.  My big hope is  to be back and functional in time for Christmas sales this fall.  My pipe dream is to maybe be functional and participating at the Luthy Botanical Art show again this  June. 
While I'm on leave I have hopes and dreams to be playing with more wire work and incorporating flower techniques into jewelry design.  We will see hope my hopes and dreams work out with our little guy.  Right now these next few months family time is most important to me.  I will fit in what I can.  
I will still be on Pinterest...it keeps my creative vibes and juices flowing.  It also inspires new ideas and tangents of where I could/should be taking my art.  Feel free to follow me this summer and see what fun metal, wire, color images are inspiring me.

I hope everyone has a happy and flower filled Spring.  See you this summer!

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Baby Shower Bouquet

Last month another one of my flowers made it into a bouquet used as the centerpiece at a baby shower.  I believe  the mother is expecting twins and did not find out the gender of either baby.  A gender neutral golden yellow flower accented with crystals in the petals was perfect.  It shipped out to California back in January was taken to a local florist to incorporate into a bouquet of fresh flowers. 

 The bouquet looks lovely.  Perfectly neutral and full of spring warmth.  I'm actually jealous of the fact I can see batches of green out the window.  Here in Illinois we've only seen white snow and dirty grey snow since December. 

Best wishes to the mother to be! I hope everything goes smoothly and may she have lots of patience for twins!!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Build a Valentine Bouquet

Different size and style beaded flowers combine quite well to become a really wonderful and unique bouquet.  This is my latest Valentine's bouquet.  You can find each flower selling separately in the shop.  They would all look magnificent with some fresh roses too.

Sparkly Light Pink Calla Lily
Cream with Pink Tipped Lily
Dusty Matte Pink Rose
5 Shades of Pink Flower

Only a week left of January, which means only a week left of the sale.  I don't see any more big pushes of inventory or anything flower related coming out of me until after the baby arrives.  Take advantage of 10% off today!  coupon code HAPPY1YEAR, in the Etsy shopping cart.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

something perfect for Valentine's Day

Looking for that perfect Valentine's Day gift?

Are they not so much the pink/red kind of person?
Or maybe they are one of those, "don't get me flower's they're just going to die," people.
You could be looking for something romantic that will last a little longer than a box of chocolates.
Or maybe it's not romantic at all and you and your bestie and having a screw the romance Valentine's this year.   

Whatever your situation is this year, here are a few bouquets that could be inspirational for your Valentine's shopping.  Buy the bouquet or a single flower, it doesn't matter.  Here are some ideas for a not so pink and red Valentine's.

The yellow flower has sold, but email me for a custom yellow one if you like this bouquet.

My anniversary January sale is still going on.  Get 10% everything in the shop for the month of January.  Use coupon code HAPPY1YEAR in the Etsy shopping cart.