Sunday, February 7, 2016

Keeping Up and Torch Time

Time to update here since it's been almost 2 weeks.  Why is it that with every good intention of keeping updated here that inevitably something gets in the way ?  lol !  Such is the way things go I guess.  At least there are the good intentions.  :) 

I did have quite a bit of torch time in these almost 2 weeks with a specific project in mind for several of those torch sessions.  Oh I did make some other beadies as well but the bulk of my time spent there was making glass leaves headpins/beads.  Yep, leaves and LOTS of them with more to come.  I think I need more anyway.  I really should start the project so I know exactly how many I need.  lol !  Again, the thought of good intentions.  Still, as you can see in the photo just below, there are LOTS of leaves in many colors. I need to decide which color(s) to go with AND - to etch or not to etch.  Hmmmmmm...............If I etch, the green leaves in this photo will not etch for some reason.  Some colors just won't.  Maybe if I tumble etch them ?  At any rate, I have made MORE leaves already (not pictured here) to bring the total up to about 80.  Once I decide what color(s) then I can move forward. 

As for other beadies made this past week, take a look below.   I so enjoy making beads with this technique.  Sometimes I just don't know how they will turn out in the end.  I love being surprised when I take beads out of the kiln.  :)  I did learn the original technique from a tutorial I purchased however I have changed it up a bit to make it my own and I love the outcome.   They're just fun to make. 

Another bead type I enjoy making is the one below.  No special name for it.  They're tube focal beads with a special no longer manufactured glass frit that is very reactive.  Fun to make and the outcome is always quite pleasing.  This one is etched.   
There are more beads from the past week but those are for another time.  No matter the time of year or the mood I'm in, being at the torch to make these glass beadies always, always makes me happy.  :)  In fact, even though it's only about 30 degrees this morning with it staying rather chilly all day, I'm going to be at the torch in about an hour.  lol !   So, I am outta here !  :)
Thanks so much for coming by.  Come back again soon. 
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Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Winter Beads

I really don't know what that means !  lol !  I just needed a "title" for this posting and couldn't think of anything real clever.  So because it's winter and I am still making beads, why not Winter Beads ? 

I really don't have any "winter" beads per say to show, just beads, bellflowers and such.  Probably mainly bellflowers and "such" since that's what I've been making lately.  I did receive a new press last week and made one bead with it but won't show it until I'm a bit more familiar with working the press.  It's a bit of a tough one so will take more practice. 

I also received a new tool to use when making the bellflowers & other headpins.  I ordered and received it along with the latest size bellflower press I purchased.  The tool is the wire holder you use when making bellflowers or whatever sort of headpin using a wire.  It's the Carlo Dona slider wire holder and may I say I LOVE IT !  Yes, it's a bit costly and yes there are MANY other ways to hold the wire that's cheaper or can be made at home but believe me when I say, this handy dandy tool is the best !  I've used all of the methods I just mentioned including what was probably easiest for most (pin vise) but this way, is a thousand times better and SO VERY EASY !  Here's a photo of the tool and it can be purchased thru the only Carlo Dona distributor in the US - Spiral Arts If you make these pretty little headpins on ANY kind, I highly recommend this tool.  Photo below.  I borrowed the photo from Spiral Arts website and enlarged it so it's a little bit blurry.

Since receiving this new wire holder and the newest size (to me) bellflower press, I've been making bellflowers and lots of them (see photos below).  Also some more leaves and what I'm calling "do-dads" or little extra's to go along with some bellflower groupings I've been putting together.  I got some new leaf presses some time ago and am finally giving them a go too.  Anyway, photo's below of some of the bellflowers and etc. I've made this past week.  The newest size press is 16mm with 6 points and that's what most of the flowers are.  It's a really nice size.  The two groupings shown in the other photo's below have several size bellflowers in them.  I LOVE making these pretty little flowers.  :)  The last 2 photo's below show the sizes of the bellflower presses I have.
This grouping of flowers and so on are only a part of what I made.  There are a bunch more.  lol ! 

This pretty grouping of bellflowers, leaves and etc is made with corals, pinks and peach.

This grouping is made with Cranberry or gold pink and pinks with leaves and do-dads.

These two photo's are the sizes of the bellflower presses I have.  Yep, I have 4 of them and they are ALL the original Carlo Dona presses.  These are the presses that have been made for a very long time by the original designers family in Italy.  These presses make THE BEST flowers out there.  There are other so called bellflower presses out there but the quality just does not compare by any standard. 

I have a couple sets of beads I made as well but will keep those for another time.  I have so many of these bellflowers that I need to either sell them or make something with them.  :) 

My Facebook page -   ALL MY BEADS

Thanks much for coming by.  Come back again sometime.  :)


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Ok so Belated Happy New Year !

With the start of a new year (now in progress) alot of us wish to start anew with fresh ideas, a clean slate as it were.  Or if in the middle of a project or venture to finish it up and THEN start fresh.  Either way can be exhilarating and bring a whole new outlook to your world.  Nope, not in either place.   lol !  I'm not being pessimistic or anything, I'm just not in that place and who said I had to be ?  :)  When you think about it, that's ALOT of pressure on someone actually.  I mean, What if you just don't have any new idea's or maybe you don't want any new idea's ?  lol !  What if what you are working on or dealing with is exactly where you want to be ?  :)  It would seem to me with all sorts of media telling us we need to start a new year with a new outlook and that if we aren't in that mindset or position, we are just not "right" or something.  lol !   Well, I'm ok for now as I am.  Playing with fun stuff at the torch and working on getting my steady hands back.  I know what I need to do alright without anyone telling me how I should be or feel.  lol !  Hey, I've started the New Year right where I want and need to start it.  :)  So as far as I'm concerned, do what you feel you need - not what the media says you need and enjoy !  THAT'S where I'm at.  Happy New Year everyone !  

So with that, here's what I've been doing when I can.  I'm at the torch of course.  lol !  So far I've not been able to torch every day.  Seems there is ALWAYS something that needs to be done first.  Still when I can I'm there.  Still keeping it simple, still making beads I enjoy making. 

Want some eye candy ?  Ok here's a few beadies I've done over the past week.  Had fun making them too.  Simple is the key word.  :)  My hands have been giving me so much trouble lately, simple is the only way at the moment.  That's ok though cause I think these beads are pretty cool.  :)  

Thanks so much for coming by.  I hope you make it back sometime. 
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Where you will find my beads, silk cords and some jewelry for purchase or just to look at.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year !

Yep, I know I'm late with the Christmas part - couldn't be helped.  At least I'm on time with Happy New Year !  lol !  Anyway - I hope everyone has a happy and prosperous New Year in 2016. 

What I'm looking forward to - Seeing our new grandson again, colder weather soon,  making beads and more beads, learning and practicing new techniques at the torch, a less stressful year. 

We were in Missouri for the holiday's and witnessed the flooding caused by all the rain in about a 4 day period.  It rained continuously for at least 3 days where we were visiting and obviously in other parts of the state.  As most know, I-70 was closed at Hwy. 79, in both directions for about 12 hours due to water over the road !  That just doesn't happen !  It didn't happen during the '93 floods even !  We lived in Missouri in 1993.  As we found another route to the airport, we passed MANY rivers and streams that were at the road, ready to go over the road.  One did, on Hwy. 50 at Union, Mo.  going west.  Thankfully, we were going the opposite direction on 50.  At the Arch, the river is at 44 feet we heard and in 1993, it was at 49 feet and at the Arch's steps.  This is ALL from rain.  Only rain in just a matter of days.  In 1993, it was from several months of snow melt and rain.  Incredible.   

This past month has been an interesting one.  I did get a new press.  A cute little guitar press and I love it and had a lot of fun playing with it the first week I got it.  That was what seems like ages ago but in actuality was only a few weeks ago.  Am ready to play some more.  :)  Photo's to come just below.  It took some searching to find this press but finally did.  So far, the guitars are simple with no real designs added but that's coming.  I just wanted to practice using the press so that's what I did.  I also found a little elephant press I had forgotten about so tried that as well.  The little critter really is cute !  Will explore more.  :) 

That's all for now.  Time to get my day started and get some more catching up done !  Thanks very much for coming by !  Come back again sometime.  :) 

Come on over to my Facebook page at:  ALL MY BEADS  to keep updated.  You can also find beads, OPB's, silk cord and jewelry all for sale.   

I still have a sale going on in my Etsy shop.  Come on over and check it out.  Click on the photo's to the right of this posting.  Will take you directly to my shop. 

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Thanksgiving and Beads

Ok, so there's really no connection between Thanksgiving and Beads in reality however, that said, I must say I am thankful that I found this wonderful craft/art of making glass beads.  sigh.  It was a long time coming and I just can't give it up. 

I am the first to admit, I am no artist.  There are folks out there that are so creative and artistic in this medium that I just cannot compare.  That's ok though.  I knew long ago when I started I was no artist.  Never tried to be.  I just enjoy being mesmerized by melting glass.  What a joy ! 

So what does constitute being an artist ?  Is it the ability to create new and unique objects/items ?  Here is the definition of an artist, according to Merriam-Webster dictionary: 
a person who creates art :
 a person who is skilled at drawing, painting, etc.
: a skilled performer
: a person who is very good at something
I am none of the above !  lol ! 
It says nothing about creating "new and unique".  I KNOW for a fact there are bead artists that will disagree quite loudly.  lol ! 
Definition of craft according to Merriam-Webster:

 an activity that involves making something in a skillful way by using your hands
: a job or activity that requires special skill
crafts : objects made by skillful use of the hands
That's where I'm at.  A crafter and I love it.  :) 
Since I have no artistic qualities (hehehe) I make simple, uncomplicated beads right now.  I did the complicated stuff in the past.  When I had more energy.  lol !  When I was more ambitious I guess.  I'm at that point in my life where, easy is more fun.  Oh don't get me wrong, I still have PASSION about this craft.  I can't get enough.  I LOVE the choice of colors, the different glasses, the frits, the tools, etc, etc.  lol !   I think about it often when I'm not at the torch & get excited.  I have dreams about it.  lol !  All that passion stuff, I still feel.  I just prefer taking the easy way whenever possible.  Why not ?  And those days when I feel extra rambunctious, I dig in to the tutorials and go for it.  lol !  I have LOTS of tuts I've never even tried due to the complicated steps.  They're fun to read and look at the pictures though.  :) 
Since my last post, which seems ages ago, I have FINALLY just gotten back on the torch in the last 2 days and it feels soooooooooooo good !  I've made simple fritted beads pictured below, more bellflowers which are still in the kiln and a few experimental beads which I won't show.  They aren't worth the time to photograph.  lol !  The second set below is a "re-do" of beads I made previously.  Too big of a set so downsized and made 2 sets.  This one with a focal. 
So enjoy the eye candy for this post and come back again soon.  Time for Thanksgiving dinner is drawing near.  Cracker Barrel has a really good turkey dinner !  lol !  Thanks for stopping in and I hope you and yours had a great Thanksgiving day !   


Friday, November 6, 2015

Since My Last Post...............................

It's been a long few weeks with no torching and still I can't breath out of my nose.  Feeling better, just can't breath.  Ugh.  Since no beads were made, I have no brand new photo's to post - except a few of beads I "re-did".  Photo's below. 

Since my last post, the time fell back and it took everyone a week to fall forward !  lol !  Time for that tired tradition to end.  No need for it to change at all anymore. Leave it at Spring Forward.  More sunlight in the day means healthier people. 

Since my last post, I noticed not as many folks have stopped in here.  I am guessing that has to do with my removing old, outdated posts about Kumihimo.  Can't help it.  That "art" has moved far ahead of where I was when I made those posts.  So, bye bye. 

Since my last post, I got a couple new "toys" to play with.  I did try one out last week and LOVE it.  Can't wait to use it more.  It's a masher that mashes absolutely perfectly  parallel compared to any other masher out there.  Pricey but worth every dime.  Second toy is a press or mold that came from Germany.  Can't wait to use it either.  

Since my last post, I I've cleaned up/out my bead stash.  It was a long time coming.  BOC got a nice box full of almost 300 beads and a nice person overseas got a nice boxfull of beadies !  :)   

Since my last post, the weather is changing dramatically however not like it should be.  Instead of getting cooler and STAYING cooler, we are getting temps in the 70's !  For pete's sake, it's NOVEMBER !  The leaves are covering the ground and still falling and it's still in the 70's !  Very little color in the leaves I'm guessing because we had very little rain all summer.  Yet, we have been getting TONS of rain the past 2 months.  Go figure.  

Since my last post, I've cleaned up my desk, my torching area and my silk cords are better organized.  

Since my last post, I've added OPB's (other peoples beads) for sale on my Facebook page.  Destash Beads For Sale  I've had these beads for MANY years, never used any of them so they need to find new homes.  Send me a message over there if interested in any of them. 

Promised eye candy photo's.  Enjoy ! 

Thanks much for coming by.  I hope you come back again soon.


Sunday, October 25, 2015

Beads - Beads - Sick (you know like, " Duck, duck goose ! )

I know it's the same ole' same ole' but it's what I do and love doing.  Still, the last week and a half it's been no beads, no torching I should say, nada.  Sick and more sick is the way it's been at our house.  Yuck.  Still feeling it but starting to ease up.  What bothers me is within 48 hours of going to the doctor, who INSISITS everyone MUST come in every 6 months whether or not we need to, I was sick.  Yep, went in healthy and 2 days later, sick.  This is just ridiculous.  I need a new doctor.  Hard to find one that's even likable where we live.  Anyway, that's the last time I do that.  It's happened before.  After going to the hospital once for a mammo.  Within 48 hours, sick.  It's crazy.  Doctors offices and hospitals are for sick people.  We need places to go to if we are NOT sick and just need an xray or bloodwork done, we can go and not have to worry about what strain of flu we're going to catch or when will the cold kick in - or worse.  No, I'm not a clean freak or sterilize everything freak, I just want to be able to go into a doctor's office and feel at ease that I won't get sick.  lol !  Yeah, I know, it ain't gonna happen.  Oh well............

I am getting a few things accomplished this weekend.  Finally getting my bead bowl cleaned out.  Have a nice little bowl going for BOC.  It's been a long time I sent in any beads and it's about time to get moving on it.  Back to making at least one bead each torch session for BOC kids.  I know they need them.  They always do.  It also means I'll get back into sculpting a little again.  I love to sculpt the little dino's I've done in the past and teeth.  Those are fun to make.  So that is my mission - at LEAST one bead per session for the kids.  :)  The few photo's below are what I have done in the past for them.  Fun stuff. 

I am anxious to get back on the torch.  So what's new right ?  lol !  Can't help it.  Looking forward to trying something I've never worked with before - gold leaf.  Have used silver foil, leaf and powder many times but never gold.  Mainly due to the cost.  That stuff is EXPENSIVE because it IS real gold.  And we all know how much gold is per ounce these days.  So, will be very careful about using it.  First, I'm going to "build" a little tool that will help me work with it better.  A fellow lampworker posted a free tutorial on how to make this tool on her blog here Hot Glass Chick's Blog .  It will hold the gold leaf in one place in order to make it easier to use.  That stuff just literally flies away.  This tool will keep it from doing that.  So if you're a beadmaker and have never seen this, check it out.   Well worth the pennies you'll invest in it.  :)  Thanks to Shawnette for sharing this.


Time for me to sign off for now.  Thanks for coming by.  I hope you come back again soon !   Have a great week !