Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Do You Know Where I Got This One?

About a week ago, someone asked me on the Etsy Forums where I got the names for my beads and jewelry that I post in my Etsy Shop.

The names of the beads and sets come from a number of different sources. Sometimes, it's just what comes to mind when I see item. Sometimes color is the overriding item that gives the piece its name. sometimes it is what the piece reminds me of like a movie, favorite memory, a song, or something from a book--fact or fiction. The name doesn't have to make sense to anyone, but me.

So, with that in mind, let's see if you know where I got the name for this pair of earrings.

Using a base color of the hot new pastel purple I got, I decorated the beads with warm tan and brown shades from a silvered stringer. The silver creates the variation in the colors and makes these beads really stand out.

Strung on sterling wire with hematite bead accents, these earrings are ready for anything.

Their name, you ask? I'm calling this pair, "Voices Of The Mountains". Do you know where this reference comes from?

If you do, be sure and post your guesses here on the blog. The first correct guess will win something from my shop. Good Luck!

I'll be adding this pair of earrings to my Etsy Store tomorrow morning, so be sure to come check them out.

Let the guessing begin!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

A Big Day For CGGE On Etsy!

As you may recall, I am a member of the Creative Glass Guild Of Etsy or CGGE. Today was a very big day in the Etsy forums for us since we have had one of our biggest, if not THE BIGGEST posting of new glass art today.

There has been so much new work posted that I have not been able to keep up with all of it and still have more to look at.

Our thread for today can be found HERE.

There are so many wonderful artists in this group, I think you will find persuing the links to new items and the chit-chat and banter between everyone very entertaining. Who knows, you might actually find something you can't live without.

All of the artisans in this group are very open and friendly and love the chat with anyone who may have a questions or request.

Won't you come take a look at some of the beauty you may have been missing?

I start one of these "What's New" threads each day on Etsy. The link to the new thread, once it has been posted, is added to the prior day's so that everyone can find the new posting since there are so many on Etsy going at any given time.

Come dive in!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Wander Down An Afternoon Trail...

Sunny afternoon skies, dirt trails through a late summer meadow, warm wind on my face. The world alive in warm, earthy colors. These are just some of the images that come to mind when I think of walking along a trail in the afternoon.

These were the inspiration for this latest pair of earrings that I have named "Afternoon Trail". What a coincidence!

Unlike my earlier earring pairs, this set is hung from sterling silver posts with a spiral design on the front of the findings. Warm shades of tan, brown and orange all collide in the focal beads of this pair. Cream colored stone beads with a wonderful mottling of variation in the stone have also been included in this set with some zinc star accents. All hung on sterling wire.

This lovely pair will be added to my Etsy Shop in the morning and I hope you can stop by and take a look.

Have a great night!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Notification Week Arrives

This week I should be hearing whether I will be participating in the Septemberfest Art Fair in Schaumburg, IL this fall. I sent in my application over a month ago and the May 1st notification date is quickly approaching.

I can hardly wait.

This weekend I placed orders for more jewelry supplies in anticipation of being in at least one show this fall. I've applied to two and surely they both wouldn't turn me down! (If they do, this blog entry would be a bit embarrassing, wouldn't it?). Might have try some revisionist history in that case.

Other activities this weekend included cleaning the beads from last weekend (finally, I know) and shopping for a new camera.

My digital camera is starting to experience problems as it would appear that the CCD (the thing that records the pictures) is starting to go out and I must replace it with a new one.

I've had this camera for many, MANY years, so a new one is well over-due and can only improve my picture taking abilities. Let's hope the new camera will help make picture taking simpler and faster yet!

My old camera is a Kodak and it has served me well, but comparing it to the new models on the market it was a dinosaur. It's 5 years old, which makes it a 35 year old camera in technology years.

I'm leaning toward a 10 mega pixel Olympus at the moment, but more shopping is in order. Once I have the new camera, I'll make some test pictures and post them here for you.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great night!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Web Site Update - Earring Gallery

As I'm typing this blog entry, the Earring Gallery 2008 on my web site is being doubled in size with 34 more pictures of my latest earring designs.

I've got more to make yet, so I'm not done, but I've run out of earring findings at the moment and will need to order up some more soon.

I hope you enjoy these new designs. Don't be shy about it. Let me know what you think by posting a note either here or on my web

Check out the web site's What's New section for more information on the update.

New Tools Coming

I've ordered up some new tools tonight that I cannot wait to get my hands on and try out. I've been wanting these tools since last June and now I have ordered them up.

Hopefully they will ship soon as these will enable me to take my beads to a new level of design and different plane of execution...I hope.

When I get the hang of the tools, I'll be sure to let you know when the beads from them are coming and let you be the first to check them out.

Take Care!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Ever Been To Neptune?

Well, neither have I, but with an out- of- this- world pair of earrings like these, you might feel like you have been!

This pair of earrings is entitled, "Oceans On Neptune" because the rippling blues remind me of pictures of this lovely planet.

The purple base in these beads is another new color that I'm so pleased with. It's a lovely pastel purple that doesn't come out lavender or eggplant. I cannot wait to try it out in some other designs soon.

I've used hematite disks to offset the lentil focals in this pair and accented the top and bottom of each earring with a pale blue stone (I don't remember it's name, sorry) that is nearly translucent. It's rather like a blue quartz and may indeed be a quartz variant.

Strung on sterling silver wire and leverback earring findings, this pair is ready for some adventure with you this summer and beyond!

I'll be posting this pair into my Etsy Shop tomorrow morning.

I'm hoping to have a web site update tomorrow for you with lots of new pictures. Things have been rather busy lately, but I will be home tomorrow night in time to work on them.

Take Care!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

On The Hunt

This is going to be a short one tonight since it so late, but I wanted to tell you about my hunt that I have started at the urging of some friends and customers.

What am I hunting for, you ask? I'm hunting for a gallery that I can display and sell my work in addition to my on-line and art fair presences.

I've contacted a couple so far and have sent out an official e-mail to one gallery tonight that looks quite promising.

With any luck, I will hear back from them soon to arrange a meeting. I'll keep you posted on how the search goes as things develop.

If you have any suggestions, I will definitely take them!

Wish me luck!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Beware The Temptress!

Tomorrow morning will see a new pair of earrings being added to my Etsy Shop in a brand new color.

This set of earrings, named "The Temptress", uses a new color from CIM--Lipstick. Specifically, these beads were created using the light shade of the colors which gives them a reddish-orange color that is very interesting.

Subdued when it wants to be, but also bold when it has to be. Much like the ladies, I'm sure, who wear this color!

Each bead was accented with black as the secondary color for an almost tiger stripe appearance to the beads.

Black onyx beads and metallic spacers are also included in the design. Each earring is strung on sterling silver wire with sterling leverback earring findings.

Don't forget to stop by and check them out tomorrow in My Shop.

Have a great night All.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

How Would You Like To Open Letters In Style?

Well, I have finally completed my first letter opener after several weeks of having these beads sitting on my work table, and you will get to see the new opener here first.

The beads were easy enough to make and I figured four would do the trick. However, when I put the beads onto the opener, there was a gap in the beads. They slid up and down and I could see the rod going through their holes. It was a catastrophe!

At least it was to me. None of my spacers in bali silver or zinc would fit onto the rod since the holes were not big enough. I was deadlocked and there wasn't anything I could do, until I found myself in a bead shop this weekend.

I was there purchasing something else entirely, and I found these little pewter stars with holes that looked pretty large. I tried them on and BINGO! They fit onto the letter opener and I completed the opener I started over a month ago. (Sometimes, art takes time!)

I'm calling this one Seaside since since the blues and greens in the beads remind me of the ocean. Now that I've got that completed, I've got many more to make!

I'm not listing anything new into Etsy tomorrow, but I've got a whole bunch of new earrings and their pictures, so they'll be loaded into the web site very soon!

Have a great week and we'll chat soon. Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

I've Actually Won Something!

I came out of the shower this morning to find an e-mail stating "You Win" and link to a blog.

As it turns out, I've won free ad space on the blog, Timothy Adams Designs. On Etsy, some users will put up posts to win items or ad space by posting onto their threads. I usually post when I see one of these and this time I won!

Timothy's another artist on Etsy who works in metal. He's got some terrific earring trees, among othe things, that I might just have to pick up before my next show. Check out his shop HERE.

Be sure to stop by both his blog and shop and say Hi if you like!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Have You Seen Amethyst Bubble Before?

Probably not, but I've named this fun and funky set of earrings "Amethyst Bubbles". Can you guess why?

Strung on sterling silver wire, two round lampwork beads in a pale shade of pink with tan highlights have been layered between hematite disks. On the bottom, large, lovely chunks of Amethyst have been strung. On the top, round amethyst beads have been used to echo the shape of the focal beads.

All of these elements hang from sterling silver leverback earring findings with a clamshell design.

This pair was a bit of an experiment since I don't usually use the gem chips in my earrings, but I love how these turned out (hint: more are coming in various colors in the near future). When I took them into work for my test market, they were very well received. Let's hope you love these too!

I'll be putting them into my Etsy Shop in the morning, so please be sure to stop by and take a peek.

Have a great night and thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

My 100th Posting!

Well, I cannot believe it, but this is my 100th posting on my blog. It's quite a milestone for me since I didn't know what I would have to write about initially, but I just decided to jump in and talk about my passions--glass, lampworking, and creating beautiful art.

While there have been a few bumps along the way as I have been getting my feet wet in blogging, I am very happy that it has been interesting enough to keep folks like yourself coming back to it over the past several months.

I want to thank you all from the bottom of my heart for sticking with me and please keep the comments coming to the blog. I love hearing from you whether you like something of mine or don't. Just feel free to jump in whenever you like!

Now on to the art...

Don't Get Sunburned!

This has been a very productive night. I've managed to make up several sets of new earrings and will be posting a set into my Etsy Shop tomorrow morning!

This vibrant red set is called "Bahama Sunburn" owing to the fact that the blues that run and ripple across the beads remind me of the clean, blue waters around the Bahamas and that sunburns are red. Sounds like a nursery rhyme doesn't it?

Oceans are blue.
Sunburns are red.
If this was your skin,
You'd probably be DEAD!

How's that for cheerful?

The earrings are strung on sterling silver wire and leverback findings along with black onyx beads and zinc stars for the extra pop in the design. These fun and colorful beads (the picture does not do the colors justice, but it's as close as I can get it) would look stunning at any summer event you may want to attend!

This set of earrings was made using a new color that I'm trying out from nice folks at Creation Is Messy (CIM). I have used several of their colors in the past and this new one I really like. It's called "Sangre" and is a very lovely shade which works up so nicely.

I can't wait to try it out as fins on a fish or some other creation. Check out their new colors HERE.

I've got more of their colors coming up in other earring designs that I've been working on, so keep an eye out for CIM. They have some really great glass.

Have a great night, and I hope you can stop by My Shop when you get a chance!

Chat soon!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

It's Late And I Haven't Started My Blog Yet

Usually, I know what I want to talk about when I start typing my blog. Either I have a new item coming to my shop or have seen or done something that I think will be interesting to my readers (and you know who you are!).

I guess this is not one of those times. Lucky you!

While I am working on getting another batch of earrings made up, time just keeps slipping away from me in the evenings. Tonight it was a doctor's appointment that kept me from getting home earlier. By the time I'd eaten, I was ready to just sit and relax (read: veg) in front of the TV.

I've been under a bit of stress for a while with work and other personal matters, but I am marching forward and soon will be back to my old self, I can assure you. The doctor did wonders to relieve the stress in my neck (yes, it's a real doctor).

I should have some new items by the end of the week in my shop and I cannot wait for your to see the new wine stopper and cool glass colors that I've been trying out in my earring designs.

However, since it is already late, as I mentioned before, it will have to wait until another night.

Keep me in your thoughts and I look forward to showing you some wonderful things in the future. Maybe even tomorrow night!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Happy Anniversary, O'Reillys!

Saturday afternoon, I went out to the stained glass shop that I took my first lampwork glass class in and where I now teach intermediate and advanced classes for their anniversary celebration.

O'Reillys Stained Glass has been creating and serving glass artists for 9 years in Crystal Lake, Illinois. To commemorate the event, there was food, cake and huge crowd of folks to watch demonstrations by glass sculptor Ken Herman.

Ken works in Borosilicate glass and has an unusual torch set up with a specialized table he's built so that he can use several flames at various angles all at the same time. He even has a large flame that comes up from the bottom of the table for melting larger pieces of glass, like paperweights (as you can see in the photo).

This blue perfume bottle is really gorgeous, but I'm partial to blue anyway. However, the stopper with the large flower is really something and quite a work of art in its own right.

The red bottle below is very dainty and a wonderfully executed piece of glass art. The flower stamen stopper is also a very nice touch to this piece.

It was great fun getting to see him work and all of the lovely creations that he has made. He works on a much larger scale than I do, and he was quite an inspiration to watch.

He makes some really amazing glass flowers, perfume bottles and floral scenes that must be seen in person to really be appreciated. I've grabbed a few of his pictures from the web, but more can be found in the For Sale section of O'Reillys Stained Glass's web site.

He's just starting to put his work out into the public and is looking into art fairs and other venues for his work. Who knows, he might just be at an art fair near you in the near future.

Thank you so much, Suzy for the wonderful afternoon and great party. It was a lot of fun and I look forward to celebrating your 10th anniversary next year.

Have a great night!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Feel Like A Treasure Hunt?

I guess it's actually not much of a hunt since you're here already and I'm going tell you what the treasure is and where you'll be able to find it tomorrow morning.

My latest set of earrings, "Amber Treasure" will be loaded into my Etsy Shop tomorrow.

This set of earrings has a warm amber glow from the opalino glass used in the lentil focals while dark trails of silvered stringers create a swirling pattern across their equators.

For those who may not know, opalino glasses are transparent when worked and darken in color while in the kiln. If the glass has not been worked too long, the beads will be semi-transparent in the finished product. I've had trouble with this type of glass before, but either I'm getting the hang of them or the new torch I bought last year is really bringing out the color in this glass. Maybe a little bit of both.

Either way, I really love how this set came out, and I hope you will too!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Life In The Clouds

Ever wonder what it would be like to live high above the ground in the clouds?

Perhaps the world you float over would be a huge gas giant or maybe a watery world with no land a tall where huge leviathans rule the deep.

Or maybe, it would be small world with a huge blue sky and bright amber clouds that flow on the gentle winds. That's the world that the focal beads in this set of earrings makes me think of.

As you might have guessed, the earings are named "Life In The Clouds" and are a bright blue color with warm shades of amber and brown weaving around them.

This set of earrings features heart-shaped stud earring findings in sterling silver. The dangles contain copper accent beads and black onyx along with the two lampwork lentil focals on sterling silver wire.

The earrings will look great year round and are perfect for those new summer outfits that you need to buy. Aren't they?

I'll be adding them to my Etsy Shop tomorrow morning, so I hope you can stop by sometime.

Take Care!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Earrings Anyone?

I've posted a new gallery of earrings from my mad jewelry making weekend on my web site.

Come check out the 46 new pictures of earrings and let me know which ones are your favorites. You can read about the newest addition to my site in the What's New section of my web site.

All of the earrings are strung on sterling silver wire with natural stone of one type or another. Some use leverback earring findings and others are posts. Both earring finding styles are also sterling silver. There's also some with accent beads for an added touch of bling.

Due to the technical difficulties of this morning, I will not be adding a new pair of earrings into My Shop tomorrow morning. Another new pair will be loaded on Thursday though, so check back tomorrow night to find out which pair will be coming!

Have a great night!

I'll Bet You're Wondering...

Hey, where are the new earrings that were promised in the shop this morning?

Well, funny thing, Etsy updated the loading process of the listing pictures since I last added an item to my shop which caused me to not be able to load them at all this morning.

For whatever reason, I've always had issues with Etsy needing to have its picture loading pages stopped in the browser and then re-clicking the Upload button in order to load the images.

Apparently, I am not the only one since there was a huge thread about all of the folks that could no longer add images, and I added my name to the list; hopefully this issue will be fixed soon.

A new "feature" they added was to prevent users from clicking the upload button too many times until the pictures were loaded since they were getting a lot of duplicate items. Unfortunately, this made my browser incapable of loading the pictures this morning, and I didn't have time to futz with downloading a new browser and trying it out before heading out to work.

Now that I'm back from work, I have downloaded FireFox and successfully added the images to the listing and the earrings are now in my shop.

To access the earring listing directly, click HERE.

So sorry for the delay, but now it is all taken care of.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Can You Handle Temptation?

It's been a while since I've listed anything new into my Etsy Shop, and I think it's time to give you a little temptation..."Crimson Temptation", that is.

This set of earrings has two medium lentils in a rich red and decorated with swirling pattern around the beads that reminds me of a large feather.  The pattern was created with a silvered purple stringers.  The stringer reacted with the heat and the glass to create an almost raku-like effect which I think is quite striking and interesting.

Black onyx beads, zinc accents and sterling silver wire and leverback finding complete the design.

These earrings could be work for an evening out on the town or just hanging out with friends and a local club.

I'll be adding this little item to my shop tomorrow morning, and hope you can check them out.

Have a terrific week!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

New Bracelets Loaded--Earrings Coming Soon!

This weekend has been all about jewelry.  I spent Saturday making 23 pairs of earrings and today creating new bracelets, and photographing all of the new jewelry.  This bracelet is entitled "Box Of Violets".

For more information on the new bracelets, and of course, more pictures, just check out my web site HERE.

The earrings will be added to the web site once all of the pictures have been sorted and edited.  Look for them in the next few days.

Have a great night!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Web Site Updated - More Purple Pix

Just a quick one tonight since its getting late, but I wanted to let you know that additional (and larger) photos of the "Purple Knight" and "Purple Squire" pieces have been added to my web site. 

Now you can see them in  more detail and even run them as a slide show, as you can with all of my pictures on the website.

For the whole scoop, click HERE.

Sleep Tight!

What Goes With A Knight?

A Squire of course!  

I was quite productive last night, completing the bracelet that matches the "Purple Knight" necklace, getting my beads cleaned from the weekend and finishing the last disk of Battlestar Galactica before the Friday night premiere.

The only thing I didn't get done was my blog entry, so I'm making up for that now.  

This charming bracelet, which I've titled "Purple Squire" keeping in theme with the necklace, features two of the "Deep Purple" hollow beads, sterling silver wire and toggle clasp, and a hand-woven Byzantine chain in aluminum.

The focal of the bracelet has been left straight, but can also be bent to curve around the wrist if the eventual owner prefers.

Since the chain is aluminum, which will not tarnish, and the beads are hollow, it a very light weight piece of jewelry and should be quite comfortable to wear.

This bracelet is designed to fit loosely on a 7.5 inch wrist, but, since it is chain mail, can be expanded or shortened easily to fit just about any wrist.

Driving Miss Daisy

Our evening out at the play was a lot of fun.  The First Folio production of "Driving Miss Daisy" was quite charming and warm and much more like the movie than I would have thought.

If you're in the area, you should definitely check it out.  It's sure to give you a wonderful evening of entertainment as it did for us.

Have a great day!