Jump to navigation
Beads and other Needs
Brand new beads!
Finally, a stroke of color inspiration! I don't know if these were inspired by the new glass I got or by wanting something to go with my new top...well, it doesn't matter, because I think we have a winner!
While I am still in love with the pink/aqua/coral combo in the usual koi beads, I felt that I needed to come up with a more subtle combination, as I realize not everyone likes super brights...This soft yellow is a new color to me, it is changeable to a yellowish pink, a really pretty tone for the fishies, and for the ruffles too, as you can see!
I'm especially pleased with this ruffle set, as Monday's attempt at a pastel set was a total bust. I mean ug-lee
! There will definitely be more like this to come, I can take the colors toward blues and greens or more toward the pinks, I think either way will be mighty flattering to the complexion...
I really wanted to work on some focals yesterday, fairies and mermaids specifically. Unfortunately, since I rearranged my workspace, I just can't get close enough for that detail work.
I changed the height of my worktop from eye level to about elbow height; it is easier on my arms, but obviously now it's harder to see...I tried using my magnifier lamp yesterday, I thought it would be the solution...LOL that will take some getting used to! I tried making the koi focals with it, and really felt like I was losing my mind with the distorted perspective. Yep, I've tried 3x magnifier reading glasses, too...they don't distort, but they don't help that much...maybe I can find a happy medium with the torch height...
Also want to remind y'all that you are invited to join the blog and post your comments. We want to know what you are up to!
Boy, are my knees tired!
We went back to Round Top yesterday, to one of the nicer shows...this was the first time we had visited it on opening day and were really surprised to see that it was super busy! The crowds were big over the weekend too, $2 a gallon gas be damned!
Speaking of expensive gas, we saw a funny item that is sure to be snapped up: a Texas license plate from 1977 that reads GAS 2 HI...Both nostalgic and timely! I remember those days of gas lines...sitting in the station wagon in the summer heat...that old disco song 'Ring My Bell' always comes to mind. How I hated that song! I'm sure no one suffered more in those days than the mothers of the world, stuck there with whining kids in the back seat
We found a few pieces to bring home, of course. Some very neat stone plates from India that will work as saucers for the unusual ferns I got Saturday. They have a beautiful home now inside a glass conservatory I've had forever:
And the case itself has a nice new spot on the cabinet we found!
Now don't laugh...the site of this lovely vignette is...in the bathroom! Hey, that is one room you are in and out of every day, might as well make it nice, right? Theoretically, the humidity will make the ferns happy...
Had a marathon day of koi beads and ruffles on Monday, but I don't like the colors of the ruffles I did...now what to do with them,
...Penny and I brainstormed the other day for new ways to use some of her findings; I am determined to work up a sample in the next day or so-if I can keep my hands off my knitting! I've made great progress on my water bottle carrier, at the expense of everything else,
Springtime in Texas
Friday was a lot of fun, sunny and very warm, probably in the upper 80's. Saturday was a lot of fun, cloudy, threatening and cold, barely reaching the 60's...that is the definition of springtime in Texas!
Another phenomenon we see are the bluebonnet picture takers. I wonder how many car accidents are caused every year by people pulling onto the shoulder of the road so they can take pictures of their kids, pets, each other, whatever, in a field of bluebonnets...do people do this in other places? And it doesn't happen just on rural roads, they can on be four-lane highways too...anyplace you find a nice patch you can bet you will see people photographing them and each other. It is a pretty nice regional quirk, as regional quirks go, that Texans are so crazy about our wildflowers...
Oh dear we found several fun things shopping this weekend, even bought an actual piece of furniture! And it seems we are building a collection of ugly cream pitchers. We bought the first one a couple of years ago because we needed it and wanted one with character. At the time I didn't think we could find a worse-looking one. On the bottom it says, 'Souvenir of Flint, Michigan'...what a vacation that must have been!
But my sharp-eyed husband spotted this one and well, how could we resist? After all, it is my favorite color...
Now, at least this one is a cow. It looks to me like the person who painted it had never seen a cow before!
I also swapped a bracelet for a set of shelves and a ring, and the lady I swapped with was interested in some jewelry for her store, great!
We'll be going back, as some of the shows don't open until this week. I have got to get a bunch
of beads done today if I'm going to be gone so much, going to Penny's in a week and need to replenish the bank account!--the very idea of coming away from a visit with Penny in the black is a joke, as I know we are going to some yarn shops....and Penny is a very BAD influence! Bad Penny! LOL don't worry, I do the same thing to her.
We like to talk about how much fun we would have if we lived closer together but I think we would both end up on skid row if we did!
The Real Spring Break
My husband NEVER takes a day off. There is a whole discussion that could be made about this, but I have accepted him the way he is and I try not to get too frustrated with him.
That said, there are two times a year when he can be persuaded to miss a day's work. Christmas and Valentine's? My birthday and our anniversary? No, and no. They are both the same event, it comes twice a year: Round Top
Round Top is the smallest town in Texas, pop. 81, and in the spring and fall it plays host to thousands of insane buyers and sellers of antiques, new stuff and junk. Over a few miles of highway between Carmine (car-meen) and Warrenton the pastures are thick with tents and shoppers. Oh, and the traffic!
Hubby and I will attend at least twice this weekend and next weekend too, as some of the nicer shows don't open till next week. There is a real carnival atomsphere to it, complete with kettle korn vendors and slightly creepy guys drinking beer at 10am. But everyone is there to have a good time, and you never know what you will find! mmmmm, kettle korn....
Our first big purchase was our beautiful antique front door, incorporated into our newly built house. We also found some vintage french doors which lend a nice feeling to the study in which I sit at the moment...Hey! I just realized that the desk I'm sitting at was bought at RT, one of the few times I went by myself.
Our other finds range from a growing collection of antique engravings, many are pages from old magazines, to really old blacksmith-made chains and fire tools. I took a set of chain and a poker on my visit to Mr. and Mrs. PennyMichelle last year...to no one's surprise, the airline people had inspected the box to see what the heck it was...
Hmmm, what else, what is something really weird that we have bought? There is the carved stone grotesque that could be pre-columbian, or not, but is cool either way, we named it Moe...There is the left turn signal arrow that my dad bought on his first visit to the show; he decided to carry it with him from the vendor, so that day ended as soon as he made it back to the car, lol. He rigged it with a motion sensor, and it sits atop the bookcase in our foyer as a handsome nightlight.
I guess it doesn't get a whole lot weirder than that; I sure wish Ken would get home so we can get out of here!
Darnit, I had a whole page of fun writing but lost it by clicking an email link; I thought it would open a new window but nope, just messed this one up.
So here are yesterday's beads:
These are all for Penny, so I have to go and clean them here in a minute...
Also lost was a brief discourse on the joys of trying on clothes, something as simple as a t-shirt comes in 5 different cuts from the same brand, some don't even seem made for human people...maybe they are for teenagers, who hardly qualify as human.
And introducing our new foster dog, Ruggles!
Wow, what a cutie! I traded Webb for him so that W could stay with someone who doesn't have so many dogs. His new foster dad reports that he is happy and doing well.
We had Webb for a long time, I think it is a good thing he went somewhere else before we got any more attached to him.
That reminds me, I guess I'd better go and wake up Lamb Chop, he'll sleep through the afternoon if I let him!
OOh there's a propane truck in the cul-de-sac, I wonder if I could hijack it and never have to exchange my tank again....?
Wow, it seems I do still know how to make beads, what a relief! I am so happy to have another day in front of me, there should be a lot more than this in tomorrow's picture. Below is a closeup of those lollipups, Penny sent me a special order for 3 Yorkies! I was so afraid I wouldn't remember how I had done this before, but I think they turned out quite adorable:
My favorite is the medium blue...these are also very cute from the side, they have a very doggie 'profile' to them.
Today will be fun, I'm making lots of mermaid dresses, colors at my discretion, woohoo! I think there will be a few surprises too...
Also today I'm going to try felting my first project...I knit a petunia-shaped flower, so far so good. Next I'm supposed to agitate it in warm soapy water and it will shrink and felt. Many people wash their piece with a couple of pairs of blue jeans for friction, but I'm sorry, my jeans are washed on cold and do not go into the dryer...nothing that could cause one milimeter of shrinking is allowed to come near them, lol, or things get ugly...in spite of these precautions however, sometimes they do mysteriously 'shrink'...you know it can't have anything to do with me
So I think I'll try to do it by hand in the sink...If it turns out well, I'll share a link so you can try them too...if it turns out badly, I'll share a link so you can avoid them...what the heck, here's the link: felted flower pin pattern
-for all you knitters out there (or yarn hounds like me), I'm using Brown Sheep Lamb's Pride worsted (RPM pink) for the flower, Patons Classic Wool merino (leaf, how clever!) for the stem and leaf. Now that I've written a dissertation on it, I guess I may as well post a picture:
It's pretty floppy at the moment, I'm dying to see it as it's supposed to be. My only previous experience with felting was when for some reason I put a bulky cabled wool/angora sweater in the washing machine. It shrank but miraculously, I like it better now. I promise not to wash it again, or one of the cockers will end up with it!
Hey Kim, do you ever make beads?
He he, it sure seems like I'm doing everything but
make beads lately, doesn't it? Usually, beadmaking is the last thing to go by the wayside when I get busy, as I have an obligation and usually some orders from Penny to complete.
I guess it happens to everybody though, sometimes things pile up on you by coincidence and even the tasks that you find most important may be less imperative. That is how it has come to pass that I haven't melted glass in a week! But it is a beautiful sunny day outside, and I have got all that other stuff, well, most of it, out of the way so that I can torch torch torch!! After I go to the dump...I share space in my studio with the trash, and I don't know if I can even squeeze in there right now as there are about 6 giant dog food bags just inside the door!
It sounds kind of pitiful I guess to have garbage as my roommate, but really don't worry about me, I could put it out in the garage but am more likely to get rid of it in a timely manner if I am inconvenienced by it.
I'm outta here!
Sproing, it's Spring!
For once, I have a nice stand of irises for springtime. I have had only sporadic luck with storebought irises, so last year I found a nice big patch of them along the highway and dug up a bunch of them. Success! These look great, and there are more to come from the looks of them. I hope they will fill in this whole area. If it weren't for that croaked chrysanthemum in the pot there it might look like I know what I'm doing!
I bought this rosebush about 2 years before we moved. It lived unhappily in a pot and when I planted it here it hardly seemed worth saving, just one tall stem with a few leafy bits coming off:
Just look at her now! The bush nearly fills this wall, it is easily 6 x 6 feet. I really believe in the roses from the Antique Rose Emporium
. Once they are planted in the right spot, look out! They will really take off...even if you are a plant murderer like me
One more garden picture, and I can't take any credit for this guy:
My husband brought home this tree-form wisteria from the local garden center and just look at those blooms...the other one he bought doesn't have any!
Haven't worked on any fun projects over the weekend, went to a Cocker Rescue
adoption day in a really cute little shopping area called Old Town Spring, basically a little neighborhood of old homes that have been turned into shops, we had about 25 dogs out on a really nice deck at a pet boutique. I made a total spectacle of myself when I dropped Ruggles' leash and had to run out to the street to catch him. I made a diving leap and got him before he made it to the street...then Dakota's collar slipped off and I did the same thing again...I think I must have looked a lot like Kramer, falling all over the place! I only hope I was half as funny...I am bruised for sure, LOL! Maybe I should tell people I went rollerblading or something...I soothed myself with a visit to a yarn shop on the way home. Yep, that made it all better!
Hi All...My name is Peabo, the Traveling Bear. I go with Penny to all her shows and ride along on all her trips. This week I am with Mr PM in Montana visting his parents at their new cabin. To give you a feel of the scenery, we have me in a few pictures...Here I am sitting on a rock in the river (don't tell Penny!) with a view to the West...
Here I am in front of the view looking downriver to the South-East
Here is one more of me on the deck behind the cabin overlooking the Stillwater river (yes, we are that close!!!)......
Look out, piggy!
I got this cute piggy bank for Christmas...see her little bag? It says 'shoe fund'...
Well, I found my summer shoes and miss Piggy is going to have to cough up! Don't worry, the picture is just a dramatization, I can get the money out the bottom
Trying to decide whether it is a good thing that I saved up enough for new shoes in just 10 weeks or a bad thing that I am emptying the bank after only 10 weeks...I get all the money for the 'shoe fund' from the change my husband leaves around the house and in his pockets! LOL it isn't all coins though, he tends to leave some bills in his pockets too. Maybe this will teach him! Gee I hope not!
I actually have a picture of beads for you too! I'm coming out to help Penny at a show in a few weeks, and I'm making as many of these bracelets as I can. Having a lot of fun with the color combos, and these are so much fun to wear.
Got a couple of cockers to trim today, but will get some torch time this afternoon. I'll try to get husband to take a picture of me in my very cool new hat that I finished last night
Busy busy me!
I just finished the beaded scissors holder kit that Penny brought me from Tucson, I didn't get the beading pattern just right in a few places, but I think he turned out very cute anyway!
Now maybe I can keep track of the little boogers!
Over the weekend, we (meaning I) started painting the shed...the idea was to paint the walls a color similar to the brick of our house and then use the same trim color. The wall color isn't exactly what we wanted...but I decided to just get over it and use it. I hope to cover the shed with flowering vines anyway...Oh and the leftover trim paint is vile! I'm going to have to get a fresh can to do that...Fortunately it is cold and rainy, so I'm off the hook for painting today...that brush sure gets heavy after a while! I'll post pictures when the paint is done, I hope to have it spruced up by then too...
Got a busy few weeks coming up, and will chronicle them here: need to finish a bunch of those doggie coats, two weekends are set aside for our favorite antique show/giant flea market, visit from Joan
and her hubby (she says they can handle 7 house dogs, we shall see
), and then I am off to visit Penny and help her out at the Head to Toe Women's Expo in San Diego...need to make lots of beads for this and hoping to have a couple of knitting projects under way too.
I'm pretty excited about all of these things, but it doesn't leave me much time to experiment with my designs...I sort of left off in the middle of those fairy hearts, didn't I?
Add that to the list!
Carson Show Summary
We had a great time at the Original Rubbertsamp Show in Carson this weekend...so much so that we will likely be back in July! The great thing about this show is it's short duration...only one day! Therefore all the shoppers know they have to get there and buy what they like. I have done this show with Penny a few times and it is just amazing the number of people that you see who attend it every year. We did a complete setup including the new copper pipe display and even extended it out to 8 feet! In one of my fits of premature memory loss, I forgot to include an extra coupling in our packing to allow the lights to also extend out to 8 feet...Oh NOOO!!!
Of course, I had a bag of 10 such couplings waiting at home in the garage...a lot of good they did me there...BUT, fine I thought...that's why I made this thing of materials common to any hardware store. So off I went to the local True Value as suggested by a fellow vendor who knew the area. It is was easy to find...it was filled to the windows with tools and supplies...it was 5:45 and they closed at 5
. I decided to drive around a little and try to find another store. I think I saw at least 10 auto parts stores, but no hardware!!! Undaunted (well, a little daunted), I returned to the show and told Penny I would go out first thing in the morning to buy one...that did not go over too well
. We needed the lights to start setting up the product displays
. Along came the Carson knowledgable vendor who directed me to the Home Depot some 6 exits or so south on the 405
. I guess you have to know me, but this scenario had trouble written all over it
...luckily though, I made it to the store with just one turn around and found my Holy Grail...a 3/4" copper coupling
! I bought four of them and a Diet Coke for my trouble. I rushed back, installed the lights on the display and the rest of the show was relatively uneventful
Muddled with enthusiasm!
In the heading of 'beads and other needs', you may have noticed that yarn is mentioned, although we haven't talked about knitting yet...the time has come. I ordered some yarn and a pattern for felted flowers (which I hope we can use on the display at the Bead&Button show in June). Then I saw this cool book and had to order it...it has patterns for everything from the 'freak' vest to an ice cream pint cozy. I needed this book because knitting sweaters when you live in Texas has limited appeal.
Turns out the author of the book is also editor of knitty.com, an online magazine with fun articles and links that I have been exploring all morning, visiting websites I hadn't imagined, and developing a serious need for a knitted purse...so in my 'queue' I have to finish my beaded scissors holder, then try some felted flowers, knit a jewelry supply folder holder for Penny and a water-bottle holder for me, and think of somethng to do with the beautiful yarns I cut into 2-yard pieces in anticipation of a scarf that just didn't come off...not to mention dealing with the ever present temptations of knitty.com and all my favorite yarn shops!
And I came home from Tyler after raiding Mom's fabric stash for stuff to make doggie coats...
Sensory overload!!! I am now so excited about all of these things that I am stuck before I get started. Hence, muddled with enthusiasm.
I almost forgot, I need to make some beads too...oooooh and the colors I have planned; I can't wait to show you! Oh yes and more fairies too!
You won't recognize Bunny and LambChop now that they have had their trims...Choppy actually looks like a pretty fancy cocker spaniel! We haven't had him for very long and last time I trimmed him he hadn't grown out quite so much. Guess we had better call him Lord Lambert von Choppington! Hard to believe both of these dogs came from animal shelters:
Now I already knew what a beauty Miss Bunny is:
She looks so cute all fluffed out though, it is not just from laziness that I let her grow her fur...well it is partly from laziness...I trim the cockers myself, and it can be quite a job!
Bead and Button Ad preview
Here is the ad we just finished for the Bead Show edition of Bead&Button Magazine.
As you can see, we are highlighting the new Mermaid designs. These have been doing very well so in between shows, we are trying to get some in stock. We just can't seem to resist, though, when it comes to listing one ocassionally on Penny's or Joan Miller's website so be sure to keep an eye out for them. Also, don't miss the current selection of beads by Joan including our Easter Bunny collaborations (here is a link: website
). Speaking of shows, this weekend we will be in Carson, CA for the Original Rubberstamp Convention and we hope to see lots of old friends.
Pix of the Tyler chix...
O.K. enough procrastinating...here are the photos Kimmie mentioned from Tyler. They were looking for a new image to replace the one at the top of the blog page and, as you can see, they chose to show some of their favorite things...namely, wild shoes and their Frank purses!
Here is a close up picture:
A close second choice and perhaps an occasional replacement was this photo:
Yes Ken (Kimmie's hubby), I think it's time to worry
There is definitely something wrong with the way I am set up to work, as I am once again having some yucky back pain...going to the Dr. this afternoon, sure would be nice if I could get a 'prescription' massage, but probably will have to exercise with the PT instead...going to try and brainstorm a new setup too so I can avoid this in the future. So I am stuck out of making beads yet again, what a drag!
I guess I'll make some more doggie coats, as mom let me raid her fabric stash over the weekend. I've also started a fun kit that Penny brought me from Tucson
Yes Penny, I am following the instructions!
It's frustrating not to be able to do what I want to, but actually having to think about it rather than do it sometimes forces me to come up with something better in the end. So I will try very hard not to be grumpy and sulk. So stay tuned and see what I come up with!
I typically enjoy this kind of weather, but I have two new pairs of shoes that are both suede and therefore I can't wear them in the rain, so right now I have no use for this nice cold rainy day! This is probably winter's last gasp, so I'll try and make the most of it. Believe me, when it's 102 with 75% humidity, days like this are a fantasy to me!
Have you visited my bead page
here? Mr. Penny put up the new colors of koi beads I'm doing, they are lots of fun...we are going to try and revamp the selection there, I guess it's up to me to send him the beads, LOL!
And about those new shoes...after our visit to the Dream House, we decided another trip into town was in order for some shopping...when we arrived we found our favorite department store in a shambles-major sale happening!
So what could we do but jump in? With an allowance from our favorite hermit, we were ready to go a little ape. I consider myself a seasoned veteran of many sales, and have seen some wild ones in my time, but I guess the women of Tyler were ready for this! The shoe department had literally mounds of shoes in the middle of the floor. Throughout the store, you could see non-sale displays pristine and untouched, while the rest of the department was tossed and piled like the inside of my closet! It made it a little hard to find things, but never fear, we persisted and came home with quite a happy haul...every bit as good as a big stringer of fish! Mr. Penny took a nice picture of Penny and me sporting our favorite finds, hopefully it'll be posted soon!
Now if I can get my day started, I hope to have some fun things to show for it tomorrow!
I missed my Rut!
This weekend was lots of fun, but I am a slave to routine and I love my little rut!
Got home yesterday and immediately spent two hours dusting and sweeping, this house was downright DOGGY!
I am surprised that the Dream House is still standing. We tore it apart after our visit,
...I'm sure that's half of what it's there for...I will sum it up by describing one room. The prep room/pantry off the kitchen features a subzero fridge, wine cooler, food processor and deep fryer-and no sink
. Multiply this kind of thinking over 6000 square feet and you have the Dream House! We also had lunch and a great visit with Liz and the cousins, I just don't get to see them enough! Hi guys!
I only took two dogs with me, and I'm sure my parents' dogs felt like that was plenty...my back does too after hoisting spaniels up and down stairs all weekend! Lamb Chop isn't crazy about them but is improving thank goodness. Keeping up with him outside is another story, as he doesn't hear and I have to chase him around to get his attention! I guess that's why leashes were invented.
Naturally Penny and I didn't get any real brainstorming done as we planned...nor did we get a new picture taken for the blog page...well, there is one that should be okay but it isn't of our faces. I'm sure you will see it here soon! I can't help but think it tells more about us than any regular portrait could, Ha!
Lots to do today, I want to try and stay one step ahead of the orders until Bead and Button show...can it really be all the way in June? It will surely be here before we know it!