Monday, November 25, 2013

what do you do with a paper bead?

Well, make jewelery, of course! I have a tendancy to let my bead rest in a bowl, jar or box, but did need to make some samples for a class I'm going to be teaching at BeadFX, in Toronto. I'm not sure when it will appear on the schedule, but if you're interested, mark January 26th on your calendar (but call in December/January to reserve your space). I've been away from bead stringing for a while, but have been lusting after one or two necklaces that I've seen on the internet (and in the shops). The black/green necklace & bracelet are a study in simple elegance, while the green one with the chain and charms is my first attempt at a funky, mixed media necklace! And then there's the green bracelet. How did that come about? Could there be two sides of me? Shocking, I know, but that's the truth. How else could a creative type like myself work in finance for all those years? As intuitive as I am, that old self still nags me to be a little more organized. Sometimes I listen, and sometimes I don't! The black/green beads called out for the black Swarovski Pearls and silver accent beads (thanks Pam, for helping me with that decision). The chains were re-cycled from thrift or rummage sale finds and the large silver circles were plucked from the stash. The green necklace presented quite a problem. I was initially leaning towards a long string of beads, separated by tarnished brass rounds. I made it and hated it!! Way too much green! Then I had a brainwave and decided to make a charm necklace, using only a few of the beads. I included wire wrapped beads, a tarnished brass spiral, thrift store chain and a resin paper leaf. My wire wrapping is a little rusty, but you get the picture. Rustic and out there! Perhaps a little deranged, but I like it! Then I had another dilemma. The rest of the green beads were sitting on my worktable, giving me the stink eye! Gulp! What to do, what to do? A cuff!!! Of course a cuff was the solution. Luckily, I had just enough beads left. Ladder stitch with Fireline thread, embellished with size 11 seed beads on Nymo. I'm happy and the beads stopped giving me the evil eye!! Whew!!! Take that you greenies! Still a few black/green beads left, so perhaps I should make some earrings. Either that, or another charm necklace. No green beads, but I do have a nice set of denim coloured ones that are just waiting to be dipped in their final coating. Not this week, but perhaps next!
So, what do you think of my latest obsession? Of course, they're not the only things that I've been working on. I finished my latest BJP leaf and have temporarily solved the how to hang dilemma for my dominos. I say "temporarily" because there's definitely more than one way to hang those 'suckas' so keep tuned! Photography of beads on the black background, by Deborah Milton.

Monday, November 11, 2013

wet felt, leaves and another paper bowl

I spent some time at the Creativ Festival (large stitch and crafting type show) a couple of weeks back and was absolutely facinated by a demo from one of the Swarovski Ambassadors, Pat Reisenburger. Pat had some fabulous samples to show, including felted flowers and crystal cabochons that she had felted into pendants and cuff bracelets. Well, I didn't have any crystals, but did have Ice Resin cabs that I had made and forgot to post about. A day or so after the show, I broke out the box of wool rovings and had a go at Pat's techniques. It was a lot of fun and I'm quite happy with the results. If you're interested in learning more, please click on the link above and check out Pat's blog. She has some great video tutorials! My first photo shows three different pieces. The felted flower, felted cabochon and I've thrown in a bead embroidered piece for good measure.
I have absolutely no idea what I'll do with the felted pieces, but the bead embroidered one is a class sample. Any ideas?
Of course I couldn't stay away from paper bowls for long!! As the last couple of bowls I made were a little flimsy, I decided to toughen this one up with crepe paper, dried leaves, vintage tulle and old book pages. I was trying very hard to make an all white one (except for the leaves), but thought it was a little flat, so added some watered down, Golden Interference paint in Gold. I simply love the result! Do you? More bowls, beads and felt to come........I've even been thinking about, 'gasp', taking out the machine and stitching a little something. Perhaps if I close my eyes, the urge will go away. LOL!