Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Quick and Easy Earring Tutorial

This tutorial is so easy, I'm almost embarrassed to post it, but, I do need a blog for today, so here goes nothing. I hope you enjoy this post!

Here's the finished project, and I plan to wear these today.

Step 1: Here's what you need.

Two hoops -- I made my own, but you don't need to do that. Any hoops will work.

Two jump rings that will fit around the hoops-- I made my own so that they would fit.

Two ear wires--I made these, too, because I wanted this shape and size. I also used sterling silver. What you use is up to you on this. I can wear any type of wire in my ears. Not everyone can!

Tools: chain nose pliers, round nose pliers

Step 2: Open up your jump ring using your fingers or your chain nose pliers.

Step 3: Place the jump ring around the hoop and close the jump ring using either your fingers or your chain nose pliers.

(In case you are wondering what that glitter is on the inside of this hoop, it's nail polish that I put there for fun.)

Step 4: Repeat with the other hoop and jump ring.

Step 5: Open the little loop on the ear wire with your round nose pliers. Put the jump ring in there. Close the loop. Repeat with the other loop.

Ta-da! You have a new pair of earrings.

See, I told you this was easy! Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Look What Lauren Did with My Murrini! Wow!

Aren't these adorable? You can find them in Lauren's shop, Maybeads. This is Charlene.
Isn't she sweet?

I couldn't find this little guy. I hope that Lauren will list him soon, but, in the meantime, you can enjoy him.
He's cute!

Lauren, thanks for sharing!

Monday, March 29, 2010

New Treasury on Etsy! Lavender Fields Forever!

Love lavender? This is the treasury for you!

Purple Passion Fairy Wings
- CD Lampwork

Lilac in Sugar Beads - Skully B

Lavender Embroidered Organza - Delightful Designer

Summer Rose
- Sarah Hornik

Graceful Grape
- Divine Bijoux

Lavender Princess Bowband
- Tater tots Boutique

Lavender Fields Amethyst Ring - Moon over Maize

Amore - Ven Bead

Vintage Irish Rose Doily
- leaf people vintage

Dem Bones
- Glitterbug Originals

Organic Lavender Bunches - Faye Marie

Good Day Sunshine
- Cindy Lynne Glass

Enjoy! It's a good day on Etsy!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

And the Winners Are!!!!!!!!

Two people entered my blog giveaway! Thanks to both of you! I wish more had, but they each one one strand of beads!
Drum Roll, please!

1) Nicole/Beadwright, She has a blog giveaway going on now, too! Happy Birthday, Nicole!


2) Lynn from Trash to Treasure Art!

Please contact me with your snail mail addresses. You can convo me on Etsy if you like. That might work out, and I can then send you my email address. Thanks for entering! I hope you enjoy the beads. I'm just going to close my eyes and put one in each box.


Saturday, March 27, 2010

Today Is My Day Off

This is a quick blog. I'm taking today off. I'll be back tomorrow, but I plan to catch up on all the things I have gotten behind on due to having the flu. See you tomorrow with the winners of my bead blog giveaway! You still have today to register.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) The day this picture was taken, the river was overflowing. Pixie enjoyed her outing, but all she looked for was people to pet her! She loves people, and they love her! She always manages to make me smile.

2) I love my friends. A friend in need is a friend in deed. You know who you are. Thank you!

3) The weather continues to warm up. There is nothing like spring for me!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

What's New In My Etsy Store?

I've decided to add some new types of items to my Esty store. I decided to start featuring some kits.
This is the first of my inclusions.
This is a Change A Bead Earring Kit.
I plan to develop more types of kits once the taxes are with my accountant. That has to take a priority for now.

This is an easy make kit. You receive two chunky discs, two spacer beads, two handmade sterling silver ear wires, and two earring backs. I have a pair of these that I made using dark annealed wire. (I can literally wear anything in my ears.) I love them. Oh, and any of the spacers or chunky discs in my store will fit the ear wires. There is a lot of potential there. More will follow.

These are mandrels to make the pandora sized beads. They are 3/16".
You don't have to double dip with these.

I'm also featuring, again, some big hole beads--for the Euro bracelets. These beads are made in ivory with fine silver.

How about some handmade head pins. This group of headpins is very organic and rich. They remind me of wood.

Last, but not least, how about some earring pairs. These coral, chunky discs are so pretty! They will fit my changeable earring earwires.

Well, for now, that's it. Oh, I almost forgot. The last day to enter my blog give away is Saturday. I will post the winners on Sunday!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

New Treasury on Etsy!

This is truly a beautiful treasury! I love the beads in it! As one person commented, why would you buy beads that are commercially produced when you could buy these gorgeous beads? They truly are! Now, here are the links to the shops.

Elysiumbeads = Ghostly

SmilTroy = Music and Smoke

Ginnovations = Venetian Sterling capped/cored bead

Suuzdesign = Made in Paris

VenBead = Boro Glass Stone Focal Bead Donut

AKDLampwork = Pink Lantern Bead

StarlightDesigns = Blue Floral Focal

LillyBelleBeads = Strawberry Large Hole Pandora

CloudyWind = Two pieces Lampwork Glass Beads

NValentine Studio = Lilac Splendor

StudioMarcy = Royal Blue Beads

MelissaBeads = Purple and Turquoise Dots

Be sure to visit these artists! You won't be sorry!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Watching the River Rise

The Minnesota River crested Saturday night. This is an annual event and a harbinge of spring. Sometimes the snow melt is rapid causing flooding. More often, it's a slower melt. This year, the melting was fast. So far, the damage is not serious, but there is some flooding in the fields. Hopefully, this will not slow the farmers down as they sow their crops.

Believe me when I say, the levees are full at Sibley Park.

The river has reached the peak of its banks.

Another view as the river flows to meet the Blue Earth River.

Another view of the river.

Here you can see Veteran's Bridge. If you take this bridge you can drive from Mankato to North Mankato. Look how full the river is!

Soon the river will crest and spring will begin.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Beads of Courage, Beads in Space

What's going on? Beads of Courage is having a fundraiser that is out of this world, literally!

Your glass beads can be sent up in the Space Shuttle that is scheduled to blast off on May 14th! You have to hurry though. Here's the link to the information about this amazing fundraiser!

You can also check out the Beads of Courage Blog for more information. All you have to do is to get your beads to Lori Greenberg by April 12, 2010.

The beads will be judged by a jury of 5 individuals who are both bead makers and non bead makers. There is a weight limit of 8 ounces for all the beads, so be sure to read the instructions carefully.

And remember, it doesn't matter if your beads are chosen or not. (It would be great if they were, though!) The courageous kids on the Beads of Courage Team will be the winners! That's all that matters.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Too Late for the Ides of March Give Away I had Planned, but...

How about A Day After the First Day of Spring Blog Give Away?

I'm doing some spring cleaning. I have two sets of 50 spacer beads that I am giving away. They are both quite an assortment, but they are all handmade. I'm not saying that all of them are my best work, but I know they can be used in your projects very successfully, and where else can you get 50 spacer sized beads for free?

So what do you have to do to win?
All you have to do is leave a comment here in this blog. If you don't have a blog, please leave me some way to get a hold of you. That's it. Easy, isn't it? You don't have to blog about it, tweet it, unless you really want to do that. If you blog or tweet about it, it won't give you any extra chances to win, but it would be nice and I'd say thank you!

The winners will be announced next Sunday, March 28th. If only one person leaves a comment, then that person will win both sets. It's easy as pie to win! Go ahead and comment!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The First Day of Spring

Just as each part of a flower unfolds,

Opening to see the sun,

Showing bits and pieces of itself,

Until it's beauty if fully exposed,

So comes spring in Minnesota,
First a teaser,
Then the cold,
until, Finally,
Spring will unfold!

(Today, our high will be 38 degrees F, but at least there is no snow predicted!)

Friday, March 19, 2010

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) Spring is finally on the way! The snow is almost gone, and blue skies are appearing here and there as we sneak out of winter and the temperatures warm up!

2) Pixie and I took a walk without having to watch out for ice and without having to wear our heavy winter coats.

3) The solar lights outside are lit again! Yes, the sunshine is back!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

This is so sweet!

Just when you think it can't happen,
When things are too difficult for you to bear,
You find the joy of being unique
When the unbelievable is real.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Are You Wearing the Green Today? How About Your Dog?

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Check out Etsy for some Awesome "green" for your dog on St. Paddy's Day!

Look at this collar. Isn't it sweet?

Here's where you can find this for your pooch.

Need a tutu that's actually a breathable harness for your pooch?

Isn't this sweet?

You can find it here.

Does your pooch need a scarf? Check here.

And even if you don't have a dog, you can still dress in green. Enjoy yourself on this St. Paddy's Day!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

They're Getting More Popular EveryDay!

You know what this is! It's a key finder/holder, and these little beauties are growing in popularity.
I have two of the listed in my Etsy shop.

I love this one! ----------------------->

I love this one, too!

This is the Ultimate Purse Key Finder! Ask yourself this, how many times have you ever lost a spoon?

I even drilled the holes myself! What a fun accessory to add to your wardrobe, and it's practical, too!

I need to make one for me!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Shopping Etsy - Tutorials

I love to window shop on Etsy! This time, I did a search using the words
"recycle tutorials." What came back was 3 pages of tutorials. I had fun picking and choosing which tutorials to feature, and, in this case, to purchase.

See this tutorial?
I purchased this one from Mamachee on Etsy. I love the roses!

This tutorial ------------------------->
teaches the artisan how to make glass beads from used bottles! Isn't that a wonderful way to be green? This item is found in Stringythingy on Etsy.

This bracelet---------------------->
is made from recycled wire. Isn't is amazing? You can find it in the store Lost Marbles on Etsy.

See, wasn't that fun?

Saturday, March 13, 2010

New Treasury on Etsy!

If you are so inclined, please click and comment on this new treasury. I think it's good for people to see some of the things we use in our bead making. Thanks!

In the meantime, you can click on these links to tour their stores.

Lori and Kim make awesome murrini!

KnattyDreadz is one of my favorite places to shop for shards. Check out all their goods.

Cosmo Glassworks has a wonderful tutorial for making Inside out Beads using borosillicate glass.

Purple Lily Designs not only carries shards, but also carries findings and jewelry in her store. Her work is classic.

Sabrina Designs
has several tutorials and wonderful beads in her Etsy store.

Firebird Flamework not only has frit, but Deb also has beautiful beads and chain maille jewelry in her store.

Mary Lockwood
has both tutorials and beads in her Etsy Store. I own many of her tutorials. She is an amazing artist and teacher!

Anne Ricketts
, one of my 10,000 favorite lampwork bead artists. She writes wonderful tutorials and makes bright and beautiful beads!

Radiant Minds
writes tutorials that focus on one bead only. These tutorials are inexpensive and well written. The store also has some beautiful beads!

Ever After Artistry
writes some fantastic tutorials, too! I love her work which she sells primarily on EBay! I also love her tutorials!

Crystals Flipz Designs makes wonderful beads and even more wonderful dichroic stringers! They are so beautiful and easy to use! Be sure to read her shop announcement. both beads and EBooks in her Etsy store.

Sarah Hornik
features beads, discs, sets and Ebooks in her Etsy store. I love, love, love her work!

There are so many fabulous artists on Etsy. Please check out these people and find more!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Three Beautiful Things This Week

Three Beautiful Things This Week was inspired by a wonderful blog that Clare writes called Three Beautiful Things. Everyday, Clare writes about 3 Beautiful Things that happen each day in her life. It's a wonderful blog! I can only hope to imitate her in a very small way.

1) Today I am visiting dd. She's so much fun! It's always a great joy to see my children!

2) The temperatures have risen to near spring temperatures. We have had a lot of snow melt, rain, and fog this week. We even had a thunderstorm yesterday morning. I've never run so quickly when I was getting the newspaper!

3) A friend said the right thing this week at the right time. I felt so much better, and I truly appreciated the advice!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

She's Mine! I Get to Keep Her!

Sometimes, as a lampworker, you make a bead you really like. In this last year, I have been dabbling with sculptural beads. With a some tips from Marcy Lamberson, I have learned a lot about making these small sculptural beads.

When I made Rose Anna, I was so proud. I had used good heat control--the heat was very low but effective. I made this little ice skater, and I was excited when she went into the kiln to soak and cool.

When Rose Anna came out of the kiln, nice and cool, she soaked in the water a bit, then I pulled out my dremel to clean her. At the first rotation of the dremel, her legs broke. Dang it!

I measured Rose Anna, and she was/is 2 1/4 inches long. I didn't intend to make her that long, but that's the way she chose to be born. She has a mind of her own!

Now, I get to keep her. What did I do wrong? Most likely, there wasn't enough glass when I defined her legs. Doesn't matter. She's mine, and I plan to pull out my E6000 Glue. She's going to be in one piece soon. I think we'll like each other.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Janel Dudley - She likes fire!

Anyone who likes to play with fire is a friend of mine! Janel Dudley not only likes to play with fire, she LOVES to play with fire. Look at this----------------------------->
bicone in Janel's Etsy store. Isn't it beautiful?

Now, I'm going to let Janel talk in just a bit, but before that, I want to give you some links to Janel. Here we go.

Looking for Janel on Facebook? Here's where you can find her.

How about reading Janel's blog?
Here's the link to her blog.

Janel has another blog. This one is very inspirational.

Now, back to Janel's work, and I'm going to let her speak.

Look at these gorgeous beads!

In 1997 I took a beginning bead making class with Deb Crowley. She had shown me the basic how-to’s and told me to explore the glass for the next couple of hours. Ever since then I’ve been making beads according to weather/shop conditions.

I think my inspiration mainly comes from the way colors make me feel. Music is also a huge influence, I often find myself working to the beats of songs. People are also a contribution to the way a bead/beads will look like.

Look at how versatile Janel's skills are!
Meet Lester the fish.
Isn't he a sweetie?

I love eye beads! This one is great!
It's a Flying Eyeball, and it's in Janel's Etsy store.

Isn't she an amazing artist? Be sure to visit her Etsy store. You will
NOT be disappointed!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

If I could Love you More

It's not always easy to love
or to find love,
It's not always easy to give love
or to take love,
It's not always easy to see love
or to let someone see you love,
If you could love more,
You would find love,
You would give love,
You would see love
In all that you do
In all that touches your life,
Pure Love,
Only Love,
Peace, Love and Joy!

Monday, March 8, 2010

It's a Treasury on Treasury West!

Look at these AMAZING artists! It's a treasury on Treasury West.

There's Marcy for Studio Marcy. Isn't that eye great?

Then there's the Super Weiner Dog from May Beads.
How about Susan Lambert's Lampwork Bead With A Message?

Then there's Melissa Bead's Charmer Pendant! Isn't that great?

Then we have Ode to Luna from Cindy Lynne Glass.
Isn't that fabulous?

Have you ever heard of the Purple Inchworm? You can find that in Patty Lakinsmith's Etsy Store. It's absolutely amazing!

Then there's Moss on Stone Handmade Pendant. You can find that in Silver River Glass Works Etsy store.

Hollys Folly Silver Ivory Round is also included in this treasury! Isn't is beautiful. You can find it in Holly's Folly store.

This Simply Stated Winter Bead from Canyon Echoes on Etsy. I love this!

This Purple Pod from the Blue Between on Etsy is amazing! It is both stunning and dramatic!

This Lampwork Venetian Glass Horse Head is from Nightside Studios on Etsy! Isn't this bead absolutely AMAZING!

This set is from Fire Bird Flamework on Etsy. I love this! It's called After the Rain Focal Flamework and Accent Beads.

On top of this, there are 4 other artists who are "hidden" on Etsy, but as items sell, then I will replace their work in this blog. Hang in there! It's ready to go!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Meet Rena.

Get the tissues out. She's a beautiful child!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Shameless Self Promotion SaturDay!

Let's go to the beach today! I'm starting to feel the call of spring and SUMMER! What do you need to enjoy summer? I love the ocean! I never get there, so I have to be content with shells and fish. These items are now in my Etsy store.

This Ocean Blue shell was made from stained glass!
It's a different experience melting stained glass. It's more gooey and viscous. The results can be surprising, I've heard, but so far, so good!

Meet Alex the Wall Eyed Fish! He really wants a new home! Look at how bright and colorful he is. He'd look great as an ornament on a desk or as a pendant. He'd love being the center of attention!

This was my first shell that I made using stained glass. I love the fritted, marbled effect of the glass.
It's called Mystic Green Shell. It's nummy!

Here's Kiss A Me Fish. He'd like a new home, too! I love his lips!

All right, enough of me. Do you have something you want to show off? Leave a link in the comments to your item! Thanks for looking! I can hardly wait for the summer months of sand and sun!