Friday, September 5, 2014

Blue Fantasy Blog Hop and it's Spikey Cool

Two broken needles, three mistakes (corrected), one bead broken mid design, and 4 design ideas later, I turned out the necklace.  Here's how it went down.

 I was digging the crap out of messing around with the spike beads but nervous as a virgin bride at the same time.  It's my first time out with them and when the package came and they were in it,  I felt that same mix of horror/fascination I got the first time viewing The Exorcist, when Regan does the 360 degree head turn on Father Karras.  Freaking scary, but you can't look away.  I had not worked with them before, but I thought a bead embroidery piece might work well, as long as I had seed beads to match.

One thing about living in Key West is there are not a slew of bead stores, so if you don't have seed beads in stock and you are 5 days out from the deadline, you're outta luck.  Fortunately, I did have beads that I think worked well.

Every experienced beader knows that now and again, a bead, thread, or stitch will misbehave like it's possessed.  Most times we can rescue something from its demonic undertaking and carry on.   But, when my bead broke, it was way back in the beginning of the design of one of the medallions.  I had already edged the piece and was stitching and tying off thread when it happened and I had never had that happen before.  I wanted to throw myself down the stairs like Father Karrass did in the Exorcist movie, except there are no stairs in my house.  No -- next idea please.

I decided to see if I could sneak a new bead in along with the other beads.  Beads can be funny about you adding beads in a row after the fact, and refuse to let the new bead lay (or is it lie) just right. However, I think I pulled a quick one on them with it being really late at night, cause even I have trouble telling just where that new bead is.

Oh, and did I mention how an edge bead just decided to up and free itself from the design after I had completed the edging.  This I could not figure how to rescue, so I pulled the whole dang thing out and redid it after a long, low hissing sigh and a few choice words.

The beads weren't finished taunting me.  I had finished the fringe and tied the thread off when I noticed one of the fringes was missing a bead.  Arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!  After loud prolonged moaning that alarmed even my bead hardy dogs, I figured a way to rescue it without completely redoing the fringe.  I started a new thread and stitched through all the fringes, except for about the last three (one of which had the missing bead).  I cut the thread they were on so there would be a long enough thread left to stitch back through the design and tie it off.  Then, I added the last three fringes.  So several of the fringes now have two threads passing through them.  Not a bad thing, I figure.  Ha-ha, naughty beads, I got the last laugh.  Or, did I?

My First design idea was to link the medallions into a bib style necklace (see picture just before the earrings), but was not digging how that was looking as I went along.  Next, I was going to just use one medallion in the necklace, but felt it looked too common/boring.  This is a  blue FANTASY  challenge after all.

This will tell you more about me than I really want you to know but when I first saw that this was a Blue Fantasy challenge, all I could think of was the Fantasy Suite on The Bachelor in which the dude gets to hook up with 3 girls (one at a time of course) in nice hotel suites before he picks two to meet his mom and dad (ha, ha -now that I read this it sounds so ridiculous).  Anyway, if I were the gals, I would want to be rocking a pretty hot necklace for that event, eh?  With that in mind, I decided to make a long one-stranded necklace with the linked medallions, which I was happy with, until I saw there was about a half inch gap in the strand.  How did that happen????  I know I pulled the thread really tightly as I was stitching and tying it off.  It's a conspiracy, I thought.  Those conniving beads convinced the thread to pull a quick one on me.  This meant war!!!

 I was determined to make it work despite all the bead shenanigans.  I prayed to the bead gods long and hard (translate desperately) for a solution and came up with the idea of doubling the long strand by hooking the center to the medallions.  Of course, this meant the necklace was now too short to close around my neck, so I added a jump ring to secure a few beads to the end on each side and Voila..

 Here is what I started with.

And Here is what I made.

I was going to link these medallions in a bib style but decided against that.   Spike in left corner had just been glued to lacy's stiff stuff prior to stitching.  Medallion is right corner is completed.  Medallion in center still needed to be edged.

Nothing too fancy but I like them.

Now on to the rest of those hoppers with a big thanks to our host, Lisa Lodge.

Your hostess:  Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist
Kim Dworak, Cianci Blue
Karen Grosset Grange, Ginkgo et Coquelicot
Veralynne Malone, Designed by Vera
Jo-Ann Woolverton, It's a Beadiful Creation
Heather Richter, Desert Jewelry Designs
Carolyn Lawson, Carolyn's Creations
Candida Elkins Castleberry, Spun Sugar Beadworks
Shaiha Williams, Shaiha's Ramblings
Eleanor Burian Moore, The Charmed Life
Gloria Allen, Wings and Beads
Laurie Vyselaar, Lefthand Jewelry
Terri Wlaschin, Dances in Fog
Lisa Prewitt Knappenberger, LiRaysa Designs
Toltec Jewels, Jewel School Friends
Raissa de Guzman, Abloro

Jill Bradley, Jilly Beads

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Sometimes you Just Gotta Rework it!

This necklace began it's life as a a straight forward stringing piece.  I checked the archives but unforunately, right before I moved, I got into a "search and destroy" mission and removed most of the files from my computer, including the original design of this one.  I am clueless as to why this frenzy involved deleting most of the pictures of my old work.  It's true I was planning to ditch this computer.  And, yes, it's true, there were some early designs that made me cringe.  Still...????   Anyway, here it is today with gorgeous handmade lampwork flowers from a German artist whose name slips my memory.  Her work is so exquisite.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Gemstone and Metal Blog Hop - The big Reveal

Yikes! I am doing this on my SmartPhone (while swearing) surrounded by boxes from my recent move to Key West. No matter.  The beads must go on!!!

Unfortunately,  I just realized to add pics from my SmartPhone, blogger only let's me take a picture. So, I can't access my gallery that shows da booty I got.   It was a lovely mix of picture jasper shapes and silver findings.

That cool leather triangle focal is from Melinda Orr. I threw in a few of my painted beads and wire, and some ceramic beads just cause I could, he- he.
Next I went Tribal.  I really love mixing shades of brown and then throwing in that chunky eye bead (agate?) I had around for ages. I think it was watching me the whole time.  But, I outspooked it cause I was damn near giddy crazy when I finished. 
Thanks for checking me out. Here are others who participated.  I need to send you to our gracious host, Lisa lodge's page.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Ocean blog Hop - The Big Reveal - And There is a Bounty, Mates

The Drop

I was astonished by the hefty weight of beads that showed up in my mailbox.  After hauling the package down to my secret bead cave, I tore into it like a hungry beast finding scraps in a dark alley after weeks on the prowl.

 There's a Turtle bead - be still my beating heart!!!!

I was well into my third or fourth piece (of eight) before I remembered to take the “before” picture showing the beads as they arrived.  Oh well, I thought.  I am among friends who break this rule all the time.  Aren’t I?  See my previous post for the "Before" picture.

The Big Reveal

It just tickles me to make necklaces that can be worn different ways. You can change the look of this necklace just by turning the piece around.  Funky, chunky by day; elegant, swellegant by night.  Or live on the edge and wear it with half sea glass, half beads and chain in front.  
 But sign of the Turtle bead???
Water Spirits

Water Spirits Bracelet
Next up, I decided I wanted to bead weave and create texture and movement.  An icy cool, sassy sea siren on the lookout for naughty pirates and missing turtles.
Sea Siren
I am thinking some earrings are needed about now, aren't you? 
 Psst, do you see a turtle? (Answer:  Not yet - Turtle bead's killing me cause I can't find a home for her)
There are still tons of beads left burning a hole on my table. The guilt is weighing me down.  So, I think, well, I will make a loooong necklace. Yeah, yeah, that will do it.  Something you can wear extra long using lots of beads. I added a clasp so you could also shorten it (see end of blog for another way to wear the piece).  And because I needed to use that clasp somewhere!!
Wait!   This can't be happening. The Turtle bead is left stranded on the table.
Sea Treasure
Well, I did not do much wirework I noticed. How about a bangle? Something I have not tried before. Why not make some waves, eh? 
 I won't say it but you know who is missing...sigh.
Happy dance time!!!!  Turtle has made her appearance!!!  And she's rocking it, way ahead of the rest of the beads.  Oh Yeah.  No matter how they toss the dice - it had to be (some of you will know why I put that line in here cause elsewise it makes no damn sense).  I called this "The Keys" because if all goes well, we will be living in paradise Key West in a couple months.  If there is anyone living there already, please give a holler in the comments section.
The Keys
More views of the pieces 
Another way to wear Sea Treasure
Looking forward to hearing what you think and which piece you like best.  And to seeing what everyone else did with their booty. Thanks Lisa Lodge of  Pine Ridge Treasures for hosting this delightful event.  May the beads be with you.  Links to others in the hop.
Ocean Blog Hop May 31st Reveal:
Your hostess:  Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist
Christie Searle Murrow, Charis Designs Jewelry
Kim Dworak, Cianci Blue
Karin Grosset Grange, Ginkgo et Coquelicot
Candida Elkins Castleberry, Spun Sugar Beadworks
Veralynne Malone, Designed by Vera
Monique Urquhart, A Half-Baked Notion
Katrina Taylor, I Wanna Go Out
Mary Ann Macri Jacobs, Trucksville Crafts
Jeanne Steck, Gems by Jeanne Marie
Ann Schroeder, Bead Love
Marianne Baxter, Simply Seablime Jewelry
Terri Wlaschin, Dances in Fog
Margaret Pelech, Margaret Pelech's Ocean Blog
Jo-Ann Woolverton, It's a Beadiful Creation
Kathy Zeigler Lindemer, Bay Moon Design
Heather Richter, Desert Jewelry Designs

Andrea Glick-Zenith, ZenithJade Creations

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Ocean Blog Hop - Da Stash & Sneak Preview

Wow!  I got a lot of stuff from Lisa Lodge for this hop.  In fact, I was so excited tearing into everything, I forgot to take a picture until after I opened and got into some items.  Now, I know that never happens to any of you.  Luckily, I was able to rescue a number of the beads, which are pictured below.  I can tell you I was determined to and did use every bead (well nearly every).   I made 8 pieces of jewelry, including strung, bead weaved, and wire worked.  There are 2 big reveal dates (May 31 and June 14th).  Mine is the May 31st date so stay tuned...

The Stash

The finished jewelry

A two for One Necklace - creating detachable parts

After I created this necklace, I wondered if it would be better plain or with the leaves added. My sister-in-law suggested I find a way to m...