Wednesday, June 24, 2015

More Works in Progress

Here is another copper piece that I've been playing with.  I love the shape of this flower.  It will look great in many different color combos.  Unfortunately, I freeze up every time I try and and start another one.  I can't quite pick a color combo that I'm in love with enough to redo this flower.  Silly, I know.  And I'll get over it.

So I've had this idea lately to try braiding the wire for an interesting flower stem.  This was my first attempt.  I haven't found a whole lot of braiding tutorials online.  Mostly just the same braids over and over again.  I think that calls for a trip to the book store to see what I can come up with there.  But for my first attempt at the mermaid braid I think it turned out pretty good.  

I think the piece need a single leaf just for a finishing touch.  And then it'll be done.  

Friday, June 19, 2015


I've had lots of posts in my head over the last few months and very rarely was I sitting in front of my computer when I thought of them.  Or maybe I didn't have a photo ready and who reads a blog post w/out photos?  Well to put that in perspective who reads a blog post if it's never written down?

When I was pregnant w/ my second monster I was as most people are, huge, swollen, and uncomfortable.  Some how in my hormone induced brain I decided that running a 5K would be an awesome thing to do... after I had the baby of course.  Much to my surprise this thought stayed planted in my head.  It actually became a goal.  I'm not a runner, I've never really enjoyed it.  But being able to run a 5K seems like a big (for me) thing to have on my bucket list.  So this spring I downloaded the Couch to 5K app on my shiny new iphone.  I also joined instagram.  The two are separate but I really enjoy snapping pictures of flowers that I run by and posting them on my instagram account.  I've been enjoying it so much that I put a widget on the side of the blog here to share. 

My 5K is scheduled for July 11.  The worst time of year for a first time 5K.  At first my goal was to run it w/out walking.  But I won't be ready for that.  I'm excited about it though.  So far in my training I can run 2.3 miles with only stopping to walk 2 or 3 times depending on how hot it is outside.  I've been feeling my muscles wake up and firm up.  It's pretty amazing. 

This is our week back from vacation.  It was a lovely trip with lots of family, hanging out on the boats, fishing, eating and drinking.  Now that birthday parties are over and vacations have been had I've been trying to get myself to relax and bead.  I  have 3 almost done copper tiles, that I should finish.  I have fleeting glimpses of color inspiration or flower inspiration, but haven't really been able to hold on to any of them. 

Two days ago I came across a small art show in Warrenville Il, which is near family.  I emailed for details, the show is in September.  Enough time to get some inspired work accomplished...if I really work at it.  Which might be what I need.  A deadline looming.  Something to be excited about.  I printed out an application, so we'll see where that goes.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Can you see it? a work in progress

May has been a crazy month.  There have been birthday's, cookouts, Aunt's visiting from out of state, registrations for kindergarten, and meetings with contractors for updating the house.  My oldest turns 5 in two weeks!  And we are having a batman party.  I have been working on making capes and masks for our guests.  N is getting a brand new blanket  for our upcoming vacation.  Yep we leave in 3 weeks for Hayward WI, for a nice, attempt to relax with two kids.  And while the sewing machine is out I'm going to make a picnic blanket for a gift for a friend.

While all this has been going on I managed to find some inspiration again.  It took a small hiatus when I found out I couldn't do the Botanic Garden show.  But after spending lots of my extra minutes on Pinterest I think I've found it again.  What do you see in the picture above?  It is my next and to me so far very exciting Copper Tile piece.  What do you think it will be?

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

What's Inspiring You?

I have things to say, but words aren't coming out.  Lately I'm absorbed in fun family projects and an upcoming vacation.  And when I get to a computer to write a blog post or do whatever I find myself on Pinterest seeking out inspiration and gorging myself on it. 

This is what I've found today.

This is quick snap shot of my Pinterest page, Fab Flowers board, because I couldn't figure out a fast, better way to get a taste of the pics altogether.  That said I think Dahlia's might be in my future! 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

a Graduation Bouquet

In April I was commissioned to put together a bouquet of flowers for a graduation present.  She picked out the flowers she liked and I added leaves and built the bouquet.  One of the reasons I love commission work like this is that I would never have picked out these flowers to go together.  But they work!  And beautifully! The teal lily is balanced out nicely by the blue stamen in the calla lily.  And the metallics in the pink flowers all coordinate together without the colors being the same.  I kept the leaves simple with some teals and limes.  It's really a lovely bouquet.  I hope the graduate enjoys them as well. 
If you are looking for a bouquet for the graduate in your life, contact me.  Now is the time to place your order.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Spring Bloom Success and Future show update

The Spring Bloom show last weekend was a huge success. I had a great time.  It was a fun show, indoors with a decent turn out.  Artists were doing well and people were having fun shopping.  You really can't beat that combination.  I did really well too. 
Here are some shots of my booth.  I borrowed walls from my mom.  They look so much more professional than my folding wicker wall.  The green curtain behind my one wall is actually my neighbor's booth.  Though it does look sharp behind the wall. 
Through out the show we discussed how to make mine and actually my Mom's booth better.  More professional.  I think the walls are definitely a step in the right direction.  But they do seem very blah in front of the white walls in a canopy.  The green just makes it all seem cozier.  The problem with curtains and a wall is that it gets awfully hot in a canopy with all that in the middle of July.  And people don't like to come into a booth when it's hot and stuffy.  Not to mention the sweaty monster I'd become hanging out in that booth.  I'm not sure where the balance is there. 

I sold my favorite copper tile piece almost immediately at the show.  I really hadn't even had a chance to share it.  (Unless you follow me on FB then you've seen it).  Sunflower went fast, a partial sunflower on a heat patinated piece of copper.  I can't wait to make another one.  The layers of petals were so much fun.  And I want to do some experimenting with color in the center. 
I've had a lot of sales lately and not only am I down to 50% of my copper tile stock now.  But flowers too.  I didn't have a flower in the color combination wanted by a customer so she placed an order.  This wonderful teal and blue lily with blingy crystals in the center is on it's way to her house as we speak.  I hope she loves it.  I sure do.  In fact I still have those colors pulled out to make some more. 

I'm more than a little disappointed to announce that this year's Peoria Botanic Garden show is on different dates.  In fact it's not in June at all any more.  It's the first weekend in August.  Which makes it impossible for me to attend.  C and I bought tickets to Lollapalooza that weekend, and they are paid in full.  So I will not be going.  I also was not accepted into the Chicago area art shows I applied to this year.  So despite my big plans for the summer, I may have already done my show of the year.  Yes, I'm bummed.  But it has also let up a huge pressure on me in an already very busy spring.   I still have two applications out I'm waiting to hear back from.  We will see how they go.

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

swallowed by the business side of business

For the first few months of the year I was oozing creativity.  Ideas, and colors, and big plans.  I made goals to try new art fairs this year.  And I enthusiastically started a new line of flowers that I truly feel is my new direction in beading.  It is the fork in my beading career's path that I've been waiting to appear for a long time.

And then March hit.  I was accepted into my first art fair of the year.  Spring Bloom in Bloomington Il.  In two weeks!  I'm excited that it is a new show for me.  I'm excited to see how this new group of people work.  And to meet a new people.  I plan to return to the Botanic Garden show in June that has been so good to  me.

Unfortunately, I was turned down from the other Chicago area shows I applied to.  They were a long shot to get into.  I chose some higher end shows and my booth is pretty scrappily put together.  I really don't have many of my new tile pieces to show off in a booth, and I think many people find my flowers and wreaths crafty.  Which won't go to my benefit in jurying.  Oh well.  I'm bummed but more looking to what next.  I have a whole year!  So I'm updating my booth look.  I'll show pics in the next post.

I'm going to relaunch my website.  I'm working on the new redesign, which includes lots of tweaking and decision making.  I'm working on all the last minute details for the upcoming show.  I'm looking into online and local galleries that might be interested in having a few of my tiles on their walls.  This is all a lot of research and it has resulted in a lot less creating than what was going on a few months ago.

I've set a date to start beading more new tiles after the show.  Basically starting in May I want to have my hands on some wire and beads.

Friday, April 03, 2015

Fresh Spring Wreaths

In preparation for the upcoming Spring Bloom art show in Bloomington IL, I have been making some fresh new spring wreaths. 
 I've been super inspired by yellow this spring.  I think the commission wreath I made in January started this obsession.  I don't have as big of a palette of yellow beads as I would like.  But it has been fun really experimenting with a color that I sort of ignored before.
Both wreaths plus one more I have not photographed yet will be available at the Spring Bloom art show April 18.  Or if you cannot make the show email me for prices. I hope to see you there.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Spring and Summer Shows so far

I spent a bunch of time this winter figuring out what I wanted to do with flowers this year.  Trying out new art shows is my priority.  So far I've applied to 5 and am thinking of a 6th.  I won't be showing in them all, I'm just trying to get into a couple.  I might have jumped in the deep end with some fancier shows than I'm capable of getting into.  I'm still waiting to find out about most of them

What I do know is that I will be at a show called Spring Bloom in Bloomington Illinois.  It is an in door show on Saturday April 18th from 10-5.  It is the first time I'll have participated in anything organized by the McLean County Arts Center and I'm excited to see how they work.   If this goes well they have a larger show in July that I would apply for in 2016.

The second show I'm fairly certain I will be doing this year is the Peoria Botanic Garden art show at the end of June.  I've been there the last two years and it's been good to me.  So I can hardly say no to that.

My new line of Copper Flower Tiles will be at these shows and up for sale.  They are truly what I am over the moon excited about and want to spend my time working on and exploring.  This piece is called Caged Lotus and it is inspired by my Aunt's line of Chicken baskets.  The wire work was so fun to do.  I can't wait to learn more braids and weaves.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Copper Flower Tiles

Creating art is all about leaps and bounds, or some times baby steps, slow motion crawling, or even two steps forward three steps back.  For years I've been talking and dreaming about incorporating more wirework into my flowers.  I'd play around with it and then get distracted by a fun color combination.  Or be discouraged b/c my wire wrapping skills were not advanced enough.

And then in December while discussing painting oils on copper sheet with Mom, it hit me.  All the pieces that I'd spent years trying to figure out how to put together just glided into place.  Like a puzzle piece that was stupidly hidden under the table.

Introducing a new line of flowers I am creating...
I'm not sure what to call this new direction.  Two dimensional french beaded flowers?  They aren't really french beaded flowers nor are they really 2D.  Wire and bead paintings?  Ugh, I need a name, something to call this.  I'm not sure why but it doesn't feel complete until I  name it.
I am completely smitten with this new technique and style of bead work. I love the free form flowers I can create.  The textures, colors, and richness I can manipulate from the copper background.  The fact the it is a framed piece which makes it a finished piece.  I'm competing with paintings with this art form and that is exciting.  An elevation from just a flower.  Most of all I am brimming with ideas. My fingers and mind cannot create fast enough to satisfy my creative flow.  But it is fun to try.

I have my first show of the year coming up in less than a month.  I'll post again soon with details. 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Spring and Summer Wreath

The second wreath commission I had recently is by far my FAVORITE wreath I've made to date.  They wanted it for spring and summer in the colors of pink, purple, yellows, and orange.  Bright fun colors which I was completely excited about.  And then I started putting colors together and it kept coming up Eastery.  Pinks are hard in beads to actually come up looking pink.  If you pair it with orange, they tend to look orange.  And even alone the salmon and watermelon pinks against the brown wreath came up orangey or peach.

And then I came up with the pink and gold hibiscus flower and the entire wreath just came together.  The bright yellow sunflower is amazing and the orange comes into play with orange wire in the centers.

This has given me the spark to make up a few more wreaths for my inventory this spring and summer.  Bright and fun wreaths like this one.  I feel like the wreaths I have are great but the colors aren't as cheery as this. 

The customer was very happy which I was super nervous about.  I'm not sure what's more nerve wracking, a custom order from a person I know or a complete stranger.  It is two different sorts of pressure.  Because I knew this customer I was able to make color judgment calls.  But I really really wanted them to be happy. 

This weekend two of the three boys are headed to Chicago to visit grandparents.  I'm staying down to run errands and do some beading while the baby sleeps.  I have another order I need to finish up and then some huge ideas I want to play with. 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Featured in ParaWire

Ok, I'm a little late to tell you about this, but better late than never.  This month I was the featured artist in Parawire's newsletter!  It was kinda fun to see my flowers in their email.  I've been buying my wire exclusively from Parawire for 3 years now and have been very happy with the quality and customer service.  

They also have a sale going on this month for all 26gauge wire.  Super helpful if you are like me and do some major ordering and restocking at the beginning of the year.

Can you believe it? 
2015 is here.
It's time to start fresh. Even though it'll still be winter for awhile, start thinking spring NOW, and your whole outlook will be a little bit brighter!
Newsletter - Dance Drop Shadow Image
Speaking of Spring...

    We're in love with French beaded flowers! What better way to prepare for the springtime? Using this technique, which has been around since the 17th century, wire (usually 26 gauge) and seed beads come together to make colorful bouquets that will last a lifetime. ParaWire offers over 40 bright and vivid colors that are perfect for creating those beautiful blooms.

Kick off 2015 with 15% OFF our entire selection of 26-gauge wire! Just enter jan2015 
at checkout. (You must order from the page linked above.)

Newsletter - Dance Drop Shadow Image
Marsala: Pantone's Color of the Year!

    Warm and inviting, Pantone's wine-hued Marsala is a rich and beautifully sophisticated color.
 Our Burgundy wire--one of the Metallic Colors--is the perfect choice for all of your color-of-the-year projects! It pairs fabulously with Army GreenVintage Bronze, and Black 
Newsletter - Dance Drop Shadow Image
Visit us at the CHA 2015 Mega Show!

    Coming to Anaheim this year? Stop by our booth (#558) to check out our latest wire colors and tools! 
Newsletter - Dance Drop Shadow Image
It's Almost Tucson Time... 

    It's never too early to start planning your Tucson shopping trip! Visit us at To Bead True Blue for all your wire needs-and be sure to stick around for a demo! Lisa PavelkaJamie NorthTeresa MeisterJodi Bombardier, and Diane Zigabarra are just a few of the incredible instructors that we'll have on hand. 
Newsletter - Dance Drop Shadow Image
Spotlight On:
Amy McGovern
    Artist Amy McGovern has been creating French beaded flowers for over a decade. With a contemporary style, she combines the rustic feel of copper wire with elegant Czech glass seed beads in rich and beautiful colors. Sometimes, she'll accent the flowers with metal, glass, crystal, and gemstone beads. "My goal," she says, "is to show you how beaded flowers can fit into your life. They are a permanent piece of art that will never fade or wilt." To learn more, visit or
Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter  Find us on Pinterest 
Save 15% on 26-ga. wire!
Shop HERE and enter jan2015 at checkout.   
Offer Good Through 1/31/15

Friday, January 09, 2015

Now is the time!

Now is the time to order your unique one of a kind Valentine's flower for your sweetie.  These flowers never wilt, fade, or die.  Perfect for those out there that don't like flower "since they only last a week."
 Pair a flower with a box of chocolates or a bottle of wine.
 Is your sweetie not a fan of the traditional Valentine pinks and purples?  Contact me and order your flower custom.  I have a huge selection of colors. 
 These flowers look good solo, but they are really amazing together in a bouquet.  Or even combine them with fresh flowers for a truly unique look.

Monday, January 05, 2015

A couple commissions

I had a couple commissions last year.  The first was over the summer for my Sister in Law. 
 She requested a wreath in her favorite colors, bright blues and purples.  This was a challenge for me.  The sunflowers came together fast and fun but pairing the right colors of lilies to keep to something I enjoyed making and something she wanted was a fun challenge.  Not every one has the same color preferences and thinking outside my normal box was good for me. 
 I'm happy with how it turned out.  It's fun and bright and very summery.  The purple sunflower is by far my favorite flower on the wreath.

Friday, January 02, 2015

lists and art shows for 2015

I'm starting another year with a pile of lists.  One for house to do's, one for Crymson Flower, one for life in general, and another for goals for the year.  It's hard not to start the year out with high expectations.

Currently I'm brimming with inspiration.  I'm finishing up a commission and after that I'm free to play with some new and fresh ideas.  It's also the time of year to decide what art shows I want to apply for this year.  This is completely overwhelming and intimidating to me. I know I want to do two local shows, one new, and then of course the Botanic Garden show that I've come to feel loyal to.  A third show would feel good.  Preferably one out of town and one in late summer/fall.  I want to stretch my comfort zone a bit by trying a different town.  Perhaps even venturing to the Chicago area.  It's scary but probably the right thing way to go.  I just have to find the right one to try out.

Does any one out there do shows in Chicago area?  Any recommendations?