Beads and other Needs
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All together now...."awwwwwww"
Penny's kitty Mr. Bojangles really is amazing. He is just a lover! Regular readers of the blog know that I am very much a dog person. I like cats a lot, but I think I must smell like a dog because they aren't usually crazy about me. Not true with Mr. B--he loves everybody. The first time I stayed at Penny's house, he came in to visit me at 5am, body slammed, rubbed his head all over my face, and licked my ears. I was delighted to receive this early morning lovin' of course. When he was done, he just up and left without a word. I felt so cheap.
Anyway, Penny was going to put away SweetP's playpen (that's a whole nother story), and had moved it aside when the phone rang. When she came back, it was occupado!
What a ham
Voila'!! New Website!!
I have some exciting news today........Kimmie, my sister-in-law who usually blogs here, now has her own website!! Yeah!! You must go check it out! www.justkbeads.com
I am so impressed! She has waited beyond patiently for us to do her site and then in a single morning she creates her own! Wish I was that savvy! (I know certain things about the website stuff and beyond that I get seriously stuck. I am signed up for a class in October that should help.......I hope!!) She has a shopping cart and the works.......it is ready for you to purchase her fun beads and jewels. Treat yourself today! Miss Kimmie, you go girl!!
OK I am a slowpoke
beat me to it with her Austin post, but that's okay and no surprise as I usually have to percolate a bit before I post. We had such a great time! Tried to view the bat exodus Friday night but were rained out so went for Mexican food. On the way home we cruised through campus and found some bats dining under the soccer field lights! Saturday night we had a little dinner party of pizza and cake, perfection!
I brought home some of Paula's beautiful pieces, it took being neighbors at the show (tee hee yes I rigged it) for us to see how well our things went together!
Our cherry blossoms are perfectly complimentary:
The big bead on the left is one of my 'swimming' koi, I hadn't tried that shape before and I really like it. Paula took one to make a 'bead person' with, I can't wait to see how it turns out!
Go and visit her blog
, she took a picture of one of my little scary monster dolls who stowed away in her luggage. These were so much fun, I will definitely be making more and posting them.
Felted Frog Finally Finished!
I don't know why it took me so long to figure out what this guy was trying to tell me...It seems so obvious now!
He's coming to Austin with me this weekend, so if you want to see him, come to the show!
So I got an issue of the new Bead and Button magazine, it has a special section with pictures from the Bead Dreams competition...SO disappointing! The iguana's picture is the smallest on its page...what the heck is up with that?! I had an email that said pictures from Bead Dreams would be up on the B&B website last week but couldn't find them. I'll keep checking and let you know if the web pix are any better!
Ha, don't worry, no gruesome pictures here, just have to laugh at myself for being a fool and using scissors to cut some wire Saturday. I cut the wire but also a nice bit of my knuckle, and immediately knew I had to go for stitches. How did I know? I did something similar about 10 years ago. Very similar, only I was trimming a tassel and trimmed my finger along with it. Heh and we all remember the smashed open fingertip back in March don't we? There goes my dream of being a hand model.
So I've spent the last couple of days with a splint on my finger but now I'm going to have to chuck it, as there is SO much to do before the Austin show. I may end up having to pile my stash in baskets and sell it off if I don't get any beads made! Perish the thought!
Don't worry, the finger doesn't hurt at all and I have one of those knuckle band-aids on it and it doesn't bend all the way, just enough that I can actually do stuff--like type.
I also have a very exciting new toy. It's even more exciting than the bead crank!
It's a Jeep!
I never expected to enjoy driving a larger car like this, but it's fun! And I love having a doggiemobile that is also a convertible--the perfect car for me.
Pics with doggies inside coming soon
Wow, San Diego weather is insane. 72 degrees for a high temp? In August? You must be kidding me. How nice that I got home just in time for the hottest week so far this year. Yuck.
So, about Craft Week....we did play with a few ideas, but I have to confess we mostly just played!
I got a new tool at the Show, a wire coiling thing, so I can now make fabulous springy coiled beads using YARN!!! All those gorgeous, glittery fun yarns that I have to have 'just one ball' of now have a real use. It is such fun. I'll post a picture when I have a big pile of them to show you, and that will be very soon, as I've been cranking away most evenings since I got it.
Along with fiber beads, I've been cranking out the glass beads too. I will be showing at the Austin Bead Society Bead Bazaar at the end of the month, and it is definitely crunch time!
Speaking of crunch, I'm baking dog cookies at the moment. Penny has been doing it for the Yorkies for a while and they really like it...make little cookies out of canned food and bake until crisp. It actually doesn't smell as bad as I had thought; it is really like meatloaf. The dogs think it smells GREAT and they have been antsy ever since I opened the can
By the way, Finnegan has lost over 10 lbs! I had him weighed yesterday and he's down to 45 lbs. I knew I was feeling a rib the other day! Way to go Finker! We're going to have to call him Slim instead of Mr. Beef now...
Well, not quite 'adios' yet, not until tomorrow afternoon. I still have one full day to make beads, buy dog food, clean beads, pack beads, pack other stuff, find all the stuff I want to pack, do laundry, buy human food, embellish a felted frog, cancel the exterminator, go to the mall, call a dog trainer, and pray that my hairstylist spontaneously recovers from her cold and wants to cut my hair. I look like Peggy Hill!
Yep, I'm off to San Diego again, this weekend Penny and I will be at the San Diego Bead Society's Bead Bazaar
with lots of goodies and a special focus on Halloween. Wayne and Judie will be there too, and they'll display the felted critters I've been blogging about.
New stuff? Let's see, I'll have those big koi beads I posted a few weeks ago, and some fun big-hole beads to go on the beautiful silk necklace ties I got at B&B. Oh speaking of B&B, the Bead Dreams issue doesn't hit the newsstands until September 4, how frustrating! The iguana wants his 15 minutes of fame and he wants it now!!!! Maybe I can find someone who subscribes to it to let me borrow a copy before the Austin Bead Society show on Labor Day weekend. On the bright side, pictures from the exhibition will be posted on the Bead and Button website August 24, so mark your calendar
There should be lots of fun things to blog when I get home, Penny and I have set this week aside for all the crafty fun projects we talk about doing together but never seem to have time for. I'm taking one suitcase for clothes and one for all my craft supplies...haven't decided which will be the larger one...but I think I can guess...
I didn't think I'd ever figure out what this guy wanted on his head, but by George, I think I got it:
Maybe I'll call him George, for now anyway!
I managed to get the froggie samples sent off to B&B Saturday, I sent a rough-ish draft of the directions with it, I don't know if that will help or hurt, since they don't look quite perfect at this point...I never quite know what they are looking for with these kinds of things. Writing directions is hard!
So now I get to work on other stuff and even get the house a little bit in order! You know it's bad when you're sort of looking forward to housework.
I'm also hoping to get at least a couple of felted critters done to take to San Diego with me. Wayne and I are wanting to experiment with selling them as finished pieces. The hardest part will be figuring out how much they will cost... Of course I will post pics when they are done
Can you believe I have nothing on my knitting needles at the moment? Maybe I'll remedy that this evening, I have one more project from Stitches that wants to be finished!
Maybe I should sleep with the fairy under my pillow...
Things have been quite mad since I got back from B&B, I thought my mind would rest easier once I got all the special orders done...there's still one that's waiting on inspiration (it's nearly there, Yvonne!).
Once again on an insane schedule, trying to create a sample, design a kit and write directions for the felted frog class application, which has to be postmarked by Saturday. I promised Wayne a couple of finished critters when we meet again at the San Diego Bead Society show the first weekend in August...The 'Big' special temporarily secret project is calling my name (that's what I really want to play with), and oh yeah, I'm supposed to be a beadmaker, right? DUH!!!!
So anyway, I've been felting on these frogs like there's no tomorrow. The first sample was pretty difficult, since it was a deep red, which I love, but I had no fleece in the right color--ah! I found a few locks of it in the giant bag of yearling mohair locks, could I use that for the body? These are like what you would get if Shirley Temple didn't wash her hair for a few weeks, and if Shirley was a goat. They are gorgeous curls, but not really what you're looking for to felt a body with. But they were all I had, and they worked in the end...I finally ended up with what looked to me like a pretty so-so frog...I just couldn't figure out what kind of topper to give him...when I realized that my chances of being accepted would be a lot better if there was a bit more beadwork in the project. After staring at this thing and rifling through my stash (the dining room may never be normal again--and trust me, my standards for 'normal' are low), I decided I didn't like any of my ideas and I was going to have to make another frog in different colors.
I optimistically started the second one, feeling happier because I knew right away how she was going to look, and that always helps. I had thought that this could be a 3-hour class at B&B, that most people could at least have a finished if unembellished body to show, but now I don't think that will work at all. I'm going to bite the bullet and apply for a 6-hour slot. I think the students will enjoy it more if we can relax a little (just a little) and still end up with something to show for it.
What? You want to see these things? Oh okay:
I'm still not thrilled with the red guy's crown. If I have time I want to redo it with one of Penny's crowns. That was my first thought, but I didn't think I'd ever find one in the mess on my worktable...The white one has a couple of lead weights in her bottom to try and balance her out better in posing, but that makes her pretty heavy to use as a pin...I think these would look so cute on a hat or purse!
-that cloud they are reclining on is combed shetland wool..it's so gorgeous and reminds me of Grendel's tail!
Everybody's a critic...
Remember the little frog I was working on? I finally got him pretty well finished yesterday, fully poseable, he could even stand up on his own. Last night I found him in Finnegan's mouth. Well, half of him was in his mouth, luckily his head was on the floor. Geez Finnegan, if you didn't like it you could have just said something! Or maybe he liked it too well...
Anyway, I'll be sending off the 'real' sample and application to teach at B&B next week, so everybody cross your fingers that I get accepted. I think it will be fun, and everybody should be able to finish the basic form in class so they will be taking home something wonderful!
Speaking of something wonderful, I got this in the mail from regular blog visitor Noralie:
Is that the cutest little fairy you ever saw? Noralie is the most remarkable knitter. Look at the back:
It was hard to take the picture--the whole back is flowers, like a tiny bouquet--what they called in the old days a 'tussie-mussie'!!
She makes this up as she goes along. Unbelieveable! I'm going to hang her above my torch to drop inspiration down on me when I get stuck.
Thank you Noralie, she is very special to me!
Now about those beads:
OK, I took some pictures of those new koi beads I was telling you about. These are BIG! Bigger than a quarter! That's BIG for me!
This one was inspired by a very BIG bead that Bob Burkett had at B&B---wow that's a lotta b's...
and that's a lotta fish! 6 fish on that bead!
I'm excited about this one and definitely plan to do more:
This is supposed to look like a creek running through the grassy banks...
I think I will do some acid etching on this one, I'm not crazy about it at this point.
The felted froggie now has much more amusing flippers, when I'm quite happy with him, you'll be the first to see the pics!
Hee, get it? Frog Blog and now Dog Blog...Now that is some rapier wit, I tell you!
Ah well, cut me some slack, I've got strep throat and I'm not quite myself. Been feeling off since last week and yesterday I woke up with a flaming sore throat! My poor doctor was actually happy when he looked at it, he said it's been a crazy week full of long-term illnesses and calls for ambulances--he was glad to be able to actually fix something. I'm so glad I could brighten his day.
Anyway, this is called Dog Blog, because I've done a couple of fun dog pendants this week and thought I would share. They are both French Bulldogs, which seem to be gaining in popularity, and with good reason, they are so cute!
These were both by request:
First, Jacques, who is clearly very proud of his heritage (sorry the picture isn't the best).
And here's Annie, who's wearing a Utilikilt and making a B.O.B. like her daddy, Larry Brickman
. Annie's mom is Janelle Zorko, of Pigeon Point Glass
, she does beautiful electroforming on her glass beads. So who gets to wear her? I think I'll stay out of that debate!
I love the way the kilt turned out, it has all the right pockets and buttons and even belt loops!
I made some new koi too, but you're going to have to wait till Monday to see them!
OK, I've had so much fun with these felted critters that I'm going to submit an application to teach at next year's Bead and Button show. I'm thinking a small project could be completed in a few hours...I think the basic body could be done in a 3-hour class, with enough time to talk about embellishment and demonstrate a few techniques. Luckily, Wayne is behind the idea and would supply heads for my class kit!
So here's what I came up with:
Cute? Exciting enough to build a class around? He's totally poseable, and if I'd known I was going to make such a tall hat I would have left enough wire to make that bendable, too. He has purple and blue warts on his back. I think I'll try using sheet felt for his hands and feet so they're more flipper-ey. It would also be nice if he could stand up...
That's one thing about felting that's so cool: you can tear our and redo pretty infinitely.
I have until July 15 to figure things out, something tells me that's not as far away as it sounds...
I neglected to bring the Circle Jacket to Milwaukee with me and was roundly scolded for it, so here's a picture:
Overall, I'm really happy with it. I think I was a bit overzealous in cinching up the center, which caused that puckering. It should be fixable, if I ever get around to it...The yarn is so so soft and comfy, but was shedding and pilling a lot. Hey, you expect that with mohair -I think they call it 'bloom'-- so I went after it with my sweater shaver (carefully!) and it looks much better now. One of those things that will settle in with time and wear, I suspect. Can you believe there are only two different kinds of yarn in that? --Except for the boucle edging, of course. The main color is 'Riata' from Brooks Farm Yarn
, in the 'Maggie' colorway. The contrasting color is Ultra Alpaca
from Berrocco in Prune. Penny's sister LeeAnn helped me find it, and it was the perfect choice! The boucle is a silk blend from Oak Grove Studio
Can you tell, picking out the yarns was half the fun?
Oooh, you should see the colors Penny got...maybe I'll take a picture of the yarn when I'm there in August. Maybe I should crack the whip and get her started! Maybe she'll send me the yarn so I can make it for her! Maybe I should shut up before I get myself in trouble!
Back to Earth
Wow, Bead and Button is a whirlwind! We got some quality visiting time in with our friends Paula and Teresa
---Paula has a great blog and she always posts lots of pictures! We also had dinner with Wayne and Judie
, and with Joan
, Marty and Yvonne! We dined every night at our fave Italian restaurant--usually we mix it up going to other places too, but our waiter on Wednesday night was so nice that we couldn't be disloyal. Heladio, you're the best!
I did some fun swapping and shopping at the show, Bob Burkett is making some washer-like rings with his beautiful koi and dragonflies on them, I bought several and made them into pendants. --I don't think Bob has a website running right now, but I found a few pieces on ebay
just now and uh, well yes I bought a couple of beads...Bob is currently working with Cynthia at Green Girl Studios
. I've loved her work for a long time but never seem to get the chance to visit with her. Maybe next time, I hope!
Also swapped with Kate McKinnon
; she wanted a pair of Godzilla pmc pieces for earrings, so I picked out a couple of fun necklaces for layering. They look great with Wayne, my pmc froggie! And I got a bag of goodies from Yvonne
that I can't wait to play with. Check out her website, I'm making her a pmc pendant featuring Thatcher, her Cairn terrier, in exchange :cool:.
The Bead Dreams competition was pretty exciting. Joan won first place for her beads, and Wayne took second! Our poor iguana spent most of the show without a ribbon, but on Sunday he was given the People's Choice Award!!!! OMG I was really beside myself, I think Wayne was a little afraid I was going to have a major freakout! But it was just a minor freakout, no bones were broken. If any voters are here visiting the blog I just want to say thank you, this is the first thing I've ever won, I still can't quite believe it's true! But it's true!!!! Wheeeeee!
He's a handsome beast, all right...
And wait till you see what we're up to next...