Friday, June 26, 2009

New Pierced Earrings

I finished these earrings the other night. I was working on them for the Thursday Sweet Treat theme "Whirling Colors in Mid Flight". Unfortunately, due to an extremely crazy week I never got them submitted in time. 

I've used the teardrop beads before, but this time I turned them upside down. This provided a whole new design direction. These are bead embroidered pierced earrings. The gray teardrop shell bead is surrounded by seed beads in cream, gold, and purple. The earrings are also embellished with purple jasper beads and Swarovski crystals. Shell fringe hangs from the bottom. The pierced earrings are backed in black ultrasuede. The posts are sterling silver plated.  

If you'd like to see what other people submitted for the "Whirling Colors in Mid Flight", you can check them out on the Thursday Sweet Treat blog.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A Tutorial and Giveaway

A couple of months ago, Natasha at Thursday Sweet Treat approached me about writing a tutorial to feature on her blog. I decided to take her up on her offer and I've been busy writing, taking photographs, and rewriting. Today that tutorial is making its debut on Thursday Sweet Treat. The tutorial teaches how to make a Bulls Eye Pendant like the one pictured above. 

Here's the best part if you go over to check out the tutorial and make a comment on her blog, you could win the pendant pictured above. So I hope you'll take a moment to go check it out. The giveaway begins today and runs through midnight June 29th. The winner will be announced on June 30th. 

If you decide to make a pendant, I'd love for you to share it with me. Happy beading!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Tiger Lilies

This past weekend the tiger lilies bloomed. They are everywhere. We have a line that surrounds our small garden near our house, but you can see them everywhere along the roads right now too. 

Orange and yellow are not at the top of my list of favorite colors, but I can't deny that these are beautiful flowers. I now feel challenged to try beading something using the same color combination as these lilies. I find yellow a really difficult color to work with in beading. I'm sure that is because it is not one of my favorite colors, but I also struggle to figure out how to complement it with other colors. I took a few moments over the weekend to study these flowers and I'm warming to the idea of yellow and orange. Maybe it is the deep red that separates the two. I have a few other projects in the works, but my head is now filled with a number of ideas. Oh, only to have more time to bead.

Is there a color that you find hard to incorporate? Have you been able to overcome it?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Pyrite Earrings

Here's the next pair of earrings. These earrings use a square pyrite bead and a pewter bead as the focal points. The beads are surrounded by matte gray and metallic blue seed beads. A beautiful metallic blue dagger bead hangs from the bottom with Czech glass beads on either side. The earrings hang from sterling silver ear wires and are backed in black ultrasuede.

It is a rainy weekend here so I hoping that I can get some more beading done. I'm also glad it's raining because I just don't feel like weeding the garden. I'd rather weed through my beads.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Purple Jasper Earrings

Somehow last weekend I found a lot of time to bead. I finished two pairs of earrings and two pendants. Now the hard part is getting everything photographed so that I can post them to my Etsy shop. Here's the first pair. 

These bead embroidered earrings use an amber Swarovski flat back crystal as the centerpiece. The Swarovski crystal is surrounded by size 15 seed beads in a dark cranberry and bronze square seed beads. A purple jasper bead is stitched above the crystal. A gold drop hands from below. The earrings are backed in eggplant color ultrasuede and hang from gold plated ear wires.

These earrings aren't very big and they are super lightweight. They're great wear everyday earrings. 

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Skipping Stones Cuff

While on our recent road trip, we took a few moments to skip stones on Lake Champlain. My youngest daughter was so excited when she got a stone to skip two times over the water. We could have stood there forever skipping stone after stone. 

I created the Skipping Stones Cuff to capture that memory. The center stone is a lavrovite stone. The stone is a combination of black, gray, silver, and blue. Each of the stones I bought is slightly different. Some have black spots and others have blue streaks across them. Three dark blue Czech beads are randomly placed on each side. Surrounding each of these Czech beads are seed beads that mimic the ripples of the water. The base is a metal cuff and the underside is covered with navy ultrasuede.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Photo Contest

Today, I enter the photo of my Pink Zinnia Ring to Timothy Adam's Etsy Worthy Photo Contest #2. The winner gets free advertising for their Etsy shop. 

So... if you have a minute, stop over at his site and check out all the photos. 

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Etsy BeadWeavers June Challenge

The entries for the Etsy BeadWeavers June Challenge Humor are in and voting has started. Twenty-one talented artists submitted their pieces based on the theme "Humor". Please take a moment to check out the entries and don't forget to vote for your favorite.

Although, I didn't get a chance participate in the challenge, I'm already working on a piece for the July theme "Here Comes the Bride". As soon as voting has finished for June challenge I'll share what I've done so far. 

Sharing the Love

Yesterday, I woke to a little surprise. Two of my blogging pals shared with me some blog awards.

Thank you Natasha at Thursday Sweet Treat  and 
Jenjen  at GottaLoveMom

It is my pleasure to share these awards with a few other bloggers that I follow. I hope you'll take a moment to visit their blogs and leave them a comment.

1.  Go check out the adventures of Milo and his family.

2.  Are you a runner and a mom? If you are you'll understand.

3.  Come check out the most amazing beaded creations you'll ever see, especially the current project. The White House. A must see.

4.  Another incredible beader. I love her use of colors.

5.  You have to check out her beaded dragon. And btw,  she makes the most beautiful flowers.  

6.  I'm not sure what I love more the photos or the stories behind the photos. 

7. Really beautiful jewelry.

8.  I eager to see what she finds out and shares with the rest of us. 

Monday, June 8, 2009

The First Pick

It was a good weekend. Beautiful weather and we picked the first strawberries out of our strawberry patch. We planted the patch three years ago. The first year, we had no strawberries. Last year we picked a enough to eat right from the patch plus some to make triple berry jam (strawberry, raspberry, and blackberry). The patch looks great this year. The plants have doubled in size from last year and we've got lots of green strawberries on the plants. 

As I took these pictures I was imaging a little beaded strawberry. I will add it to my notebook of ideas. I'm working on a project right now so it will have to wait. 

Oh, the reason for two (very similar) photos, both of my daughters wanted to have a photo of the strawberries they picked and they wanted me to post both pictures. So I did,

Friday, June 5, 2009

Moulin Rouge Sunflower Pin

Over the past few weeks, my family has been working hard to get our gardens prepared and planted. Although we grow a lot of different things, my favorites are the flowers. Sunflowers and zinnias are always planted. A few years ago, I stumbled upon these Moulin Rouge sunflowers. I thought that they would be a nice addition to the sunflower garden. We were all so excited when they finally bloomed. 

From far away these sunflowers look black. The contrast between the dark flowers and the bright yellow sunflowers was very dramatic. When you get up close, you can see that they are really a dark crimson. They have a velvet look to them. And as you can see below the bees really love them.

Last weekend, my daughter helped me plant the first round of sunflowers (about 1,500 seeds). Of course, we planted more Moulin Rouge and we will now wait very impatiently for them to grow and bloom. 

In the meantime, I posted my bead embroidered Moulin Rouge Sunflower pin to my Etsy store. Check out the listing to see more pictures of the pin.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Then Suddenly It Came to Life

A few months ago, I was reading the Etsy forums and I came across a delightful post. Another Etsy seller (Natasha) was starting this blog project called "Thursday Sweet Treat". The basic plan was that each Friday she would post a theme and then on the following Thursday she would post what artists created based on that theme. I followed for a few weeks and finally decided to participate. Since then I've submitted many pieces and have really enjoyed see how other artists interpreted the weekly theme. In addition, Natasha has shared interviews with other artists, support, and inspiration. 

So... this weeks theme was "Then Suddenly It Came to Life". She asked us to take our favorite childhood book to life with one of our creations. I chose the book "Magic Friend Maker" by Gladys Baker Bond. The story begins with a lonely girl in a city neighborhood who longs for a friend. She finds a friend after sharing a special stone she's found. The girls share many fun times together, often playing with the rock, the "magic friend maker". When the owner of the rock must move, she shares the rock with her friend so that the magic can work all over again with a new friend.

In the story, the girls discover that the rock changes color when they put it under water. The piece of abalone I used for the centerpiece of the cuff reminded me of that stone. I created the cuff around the abalone's colors and the colors from the picture on the front of the book. The one little girl wore a green dress and the other a purple one. The bead embroidered cuff is embellished with seed beads, Swarovski crystals, pearls, glass beads, and bugle beads. I used black ultrasuede on the underside of the cuff.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Purple Passion Cuff

The Purple Passion Cuff is finished. This cuff came together really quickly. Sometimes I lay out all the beads and I just instinctively know what goes where and what bead comes next. All the beads found their spot and settled into place.

The cuff is 1/2 inch wide with a purple cat's eye as the centerpiece. I embellished the cuff with lots of different seed beads, bugle beads, pewter beads, pearls, Swarovski crystals, semi precious stones, and glass beads. I used various shades of purple, pink, gray, and silver. As always the underside is backed in ultrasuede and of course, this time it is purple.

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