Friday, August 31, 2012

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 signs are increasing.  The leaves are already starting to change!  The mornings are dark when I get up.  As much as I don't like the dark, it does mean that time is marching along.  We are getting closer to the holidaze, always a fun, family time.   However, now, the time is to embrace the change, to smell the smells, to jump in that pile of dried leaves. 

2)  It's been extremely and unusually HOT this week.  I don't do well in extremes of heat, but this forces me to stay inside and focus on the closets that need to be cleaned, the light switches that need a swipe.  As much as I'd like to be out on the go, I am forced inside to be in and on the go.  That's not always bad.  My closets are getting cleaned!

3)  The best day of the year happened for me on Monday!  Monday was the day that teacher workshops started in our district!  I wasn't there!!!  That is so sweet!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Seriously, Pixie Marie?

Pixie has no interest in toys
even when they are treats.
She really can't find them.

See what I mean?
Seriously, Pixie Marie?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Easy Peasy Free Lampwork Bird Bead Tutorial and one that should be good for Beads of Courage!

I'm sorry that some of the photos are a little bit blurry.
It's hard to make beads and photograph them
in front of a torch.
it's free!!!

This tutorial is good even for beginners.
I am assuming that the knowledge for safety is something a lampworker 
will actively practice,
therefore, I will not go into safety in this tutorial.
The birds I will show you how to make are the blue one and the ivory one.
They are the basic bird.
The others are the variations.

You only need 3 rods and two stringers to make the basic bird.
The other colors are for variation.
Decide on the basic color of your bird.

Make a barrel bead on your dipped mandrel.
Heat the barrel to glowing.
The size can be any size you want.
I make the beads for Beads of Courage, so they are about 1-1.5 inches long.

Flatten your barrel.

Heat the flattened bead to glowing a little above the middle of the bead.
Make a dent there.
Don't let the dent touch the mandrel.
That would be way too deep.
Also remember to keep flashing your bead in and out of the flame to keep it warm.
Flash the bead frequently as you work.

Remembering to flash your bead in the flame,
heat the other side of the bead and make another dent in the bead.
Many of my beads end up looking like a "z" with the dents.

Decide which end will be your face and which end will be your tail.
On each side of the bird's face, add a dot of white and melt into the glass.
Remember to keep flashing the entire bead in and out of the flame!

This is the other side of the bird with the eye dot.

Keep flashing that bird in and out of the flame!
Add a dot of clear over the white dot and melt in to the glass.
Flash, flash, flash!

Add a black dot over the clear and melt into the glass on each side.
Flash, flash, flash.
You have now finished the eyes.

Keep flashing that bird!
Add a large dot of yellow where you would like to place the bead.
Make sure it is fused to your base color.

Turn the bird over.  Warm up it's little tail end.  Add a dot of whatever color you like for the tail.  It can be a pretty big dot.  Heat it well to make sure that tail is fused to the body, and keep flashing the bird.

Keep flashing the bird!!!
Melt a bit of glass on the end of the rod and make a swipe on each side of your bird's body for wings. 
I usually swipe the wings a second time with glass and melt a bit.

I used my brass stump shaper to make little dents in the wings for texture.
You can leave them plain if you like.
Keep flashing!

If you like, you can add a little top knot.
I made a couple of birds that have little hats on.
Check out the variations!
Now, before you do anything else,
give that little bird a warm bath in the flame, 
then put this critter in the kiln and anneal it.
You're done!
If you donate your bird to 
you will put a smile on a child's face.
Just click on the link and the link will take you to the 
BOC donate page!

See, I told you this was 
Easy Peasy!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The Good the Bad the Good

The Good:
I have been enjoying my new Zooziis Extra Large Bubble Press

The Bad:
I made a bead that I just loved and was hoping to sell it until I saw
in it.

The Good:
The bead is mine now!!!
I'm happy!

Monday, August 27, 2012

So, if You're Wondering What Angela Garren Has Been Doing Lately...

Then take a look at these!!!
Remember how Ang describes herself:

Smartass, I'm a smartass. Some days, the spiritual side of me takes over. . .but in the end, I'm still a smartass.

Mom, Wife, Sculptor, Smartass. . .that about covers it :)

In spite of her description,
Ang's work a serious dedication to art.
Each painting is unique and individual.

Take a look at Ang's Blog.

I Love This One!!!

Once in a Blue Moon.

Here's the Inspiration.

Here's the painting.

This just keeps getting better and better, doesn't it!

Doesn't this look like a quilt block?
I Love it!!!

Since Ang is not on Etsy,
if you are interested in any of these paintings, 
contact her on Facebook
email her

Didn't I tell you she was great!!!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

I Heart Macro! Pixie's Eyes

The Girl is Tired.

Her fur is salt and pepper.

She's starting to get tired!

She's asleep!

I Heart Macro!

Pixie Lies

'Nuff said!

Friday, August 24, 2012

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) Friends and food are always a great combination!  It's so nice to get together and eat.  Conversation is great!  All and all,  fun!

2)  I love it when Pixie cuddles.  She's been a real cuddler this week!  She seems to look for a reason for cuddling.  Oh, well, my legs are asleep, but that's okay because she's cuddling.

3) Helped pick out the new sound system for church.  It's going to be great!  The great thing is that so many people chose to come and help.  It was awesome!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I think I forgot to tell you about this...

My bead is in Fall 2012 issue of 

Yes, it's in here!!
Turn to page 19.

Look up to
That's it!
Wooo Hooo!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

So, Are You Sure You Don't Want to Enter

that blog hop?
that challenge?
that contest?

Think about it.
Each necklace that I am going to show you was made as a result of a blog hop, a challenge or a contest.

I made this necklace using polymer clay focal beads.
I hate to say this, but I don't remember which blog challenge this was for, but I do remember it was at a time when I couldn't make glass beads, so I used polymer clay.

Again, I don't remember why I made this, but I knew for this challenge or hop or contest,  I had to put myself out there.
I think this challenge had something to do with color.
I wish I had recorded why I made this.

I can't remember why I made this piece, but it's primarily polymer clay.
I love the beads even though they are not what I normally like.
I'm looking forward to fall to wear this!
I really wish I had recorded the reason why I made this necklace.
It's made of glass bead hollows.
I love the colors and the fun.
I wear it often.

This necklace was from a challenge by the Art Bead Scene Blog.
I love the way it turned out.
I'm glad I made this necklace.

Fear can prevent us from getting out there and seeing our own potential.
Even if you're nervous.
Even if you think that no one will like what you make.
Who cares?
Do it!
Find those blog hops.
Find those challenges.
Find those contests.
Growth only happens with pain.
Stretch your ideas.
Develop your creativity.
You won't be sorry you did.

I'm not sorry.
I only wish I could remember why I made four of these necklaces.
From now on,
I'm documenting!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Sigh! More Drama!

I can't sell this beautiful bracelet.
As you know, I have become addicted to beaded kumihimo.
I made this bracelet using daggers.
I love it!
I want to sell it, but I can't.
Oh, here's the bracelet.
Know why I can't sell it?
The bracelet is too heavy.
The clasp that I fashioned using my lampwork beads opens.
It won't stay closed.
I'm not sure what I will do with this, but it has to be made again.
I will be taking it apart.
Should I make it into a necklace or rework it into a bracelet with fewer daggers?  
What do you think?

Monday, August 20, 2012

I don't know if you saw this post on Facebook or not, but

Nikki Carollo taught us how to make her lizard beads.
Here's the post:

Here's how we do end of day beads in the studio:
1. Put a white short on the end of a (undipped)mandrel.
2. Wrap matching transparent colors around it - 2 are green, 2 are blue, 2 are mixed.
3. Don't forget to find some sparkles to add in,
we love sparkles.
4. Add some random white stringer or clear on top to make sure it's enough glass for a base bead - lizards are needy.
5. Melt it together, wind the hot mess directly onto a mandrel (with bead release this time!) and shape it as needed.
6. Add lizard, or frog, or leave it be as a fun focal bead.
7. Fini.
So, I decided to see if I could make lizard beads like Nikki.
Here's the result!

 Okay, so it's not as good as Nikki's is, but it was fun to make,
it's now in my BOC bowl.
Thanks, Nikki!!!!
Be sure to visit her Etsy store for more eye candy!!!!
And if you decide to try Nikki's directions,
let's see what you do!!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

I Heart Macro - Daggers

I bet you thought I meant real daggers.
No, I meant 

I Heart Macro!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Candy Corn for Beads of Courage

Looks like I'll be sending in my beads for
sooner than I had planned. 
After reading Marcy Lamberson's blog yesterday,
I'll be sending off a box on Monday.  
Click HERE to read Marcy's post.
I thought these beads would be going off in September, in time for Halloween.
Instead, they will be boxed up on Sunday scheduled to leave Monday for 
Beads of Courage.
 First, there's the traditional candy corn.

Ready for some candy corn bones?

How about a piece of candy corn pie?
I do have more beads than these to send off.  I just don't have near the number I usually send. 
I do know it will help.
If you are a bead maker, check out the BOC 
read Marcy's blog.
Both of these resources will explain so much to you about the great need for

Friday, August 17, 2012

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) Got to see some friends for dinner this week that I hadn't seen in two years.  It was great!!  They are such loving and caring people.  What a blessing to have them in my life!

2) Pixie survived her experience with kitties.  Walter told her what to do, and, of course, she did it, but overall, she was happy.

3) We've had our first hints of fall this week, and it has been WONDERFUL!  This has been such a HOT summer, the respite has been great!!  Weather affects me, and this week, it was nice!!!  Yahooo!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

She's Home Again!

Walter was planning his capture of her.
He schemed and schemed!
Then he made his move.

And Pixie was trapped.
She was his pillow!
She had no choice.
 Then, we came home.
She's so tired.
It was stressful!
She just needs her rest!
She's happy now.
Those kitties boss her around so much.
Now, she can sleep.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

A Few of My Favorite Things

I really do believe that things happen for a reason. 
I have been having some 
"computer issues"
involving my photos.
As I was trying to fix the issue with the help of the good people at Apple,
I suddenly began to import thousands of photos!
I don't know where all of them came from.
Some did come from my blog, but others,
I don't know.
They were mine.
I just don't know how 
IPhoto managed to import them
As I was looking through them,
I saw some of my old favorites.
These are beads and jewelry I made that I really liked.
Here are some of my favorite things.

I made this heart using glass from recycled wine bottles!
I need to make more of these!

I made this "creature" from a photo of a tutorial that was being offered several years ago.
I didn't buy the tut because the creature in that tut was made from 
boro glass.
I only use soft glass.
Boro is very hard glass.

This vessel is one of my favorite vessels!
I truly enjoy making vessels, and this one really stole my heart.

After two years of frustration, I finally learned how to make
Beaded Kumihimo!
This was one my first completed bracelets!
I used one of my tiger bead beads as a closure.
I love beaded kumihimo!

I'm starting to get better at this craft.  I've added beads in the middle and more beads for closure.
 Last, but not least, my 
The eye patch I made for my cataract surgery.
This was fun to make and
fun to wear!!!

Stay tuned.
New topics coming soon!