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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Best of Jewelry Stringing

Hi all!

I just received my copy of Best of Jewelry Stringing magazine in which I have a small part.  It's so nice to see Stringing again.  I love looking at all the beautiful designs for inspiration.  They always have the most interesting designs with innovative uses of components.  As a jewelry designer, it's always been one of my favorites and I was sad to see it go earlier this year. 

Get your copy of the Best of Jewelry Stringing today and maybe they'll bring the magazine back!  (I can always hope, right?)
Best of Jewelry Stringing 2017
These are the earrings they chose for the magazine.
Chandelier Earrings
Also, if you like the style of Stringing, there are some designs included in Interweave's bead stitching magazine, Beadwork, under Fast and Fabulous.

Happy Creating!

PS  My earrings were featured in the Beading Daily blog post.  Thanks, Debbie!
Jewelry Trends: The Top Classic and Modern Jewelry Styles and How to Make Them



Saturday, September 2, 2017

Etched Glass Sugar Skull

Hi all,

When I saw this glass skull at Michaels, I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it.  I wanted to etch it!


I coated the outside of the skull with etchall® etching crème.
etchall etching creme all sizes
Skull coated with etchall® etching crème

Here is the skull after etching.  It's now ready to paint.  Etching gives the glass a "tooth", a rough surface that makes it easy to paint.



At first, my thought was to paint it with some brown stain to make it look like a very old skull.  I still like that idea.  My second idea was to paint it as a sugar skull with bright, colorful motifs.  That sounded more interesting.

To start, I painted it with white acrylic paint.  The first coat I put on with brush strokes.  Then, I went over it with a soft brush pouncing to cover the brush strokes. 

Here's how it looked at this stage:
I added black paint in the eye sockets, nose and around the teeth.  Then, I added acrylic stickers in bright colors and different shapes and sizes.  It still needed more, so I added some paint dots in bright colors.

Add a few bright flowers like marigolds or zinnias for a bright and festive decoration.
Etched Glass Sugar Skull
This is an easy project that would be fun for all ages, and it's so easy to get started with etchall® etching crème.

The acrylic paint I used to accent the skull is from DecoArt®

Thursday, August 31, 2017

August Pretty Palettes Reveal

Hi all,

This lovely pond is the inspiration for this month's design on the Halcraft blog.


Peaceful, isn't it, among all the restless confusion of the world.  I think we all need a spot like this to sit and enjoy the quiet.

Here are the beads that I picked up for this challenge.
Instead of the green seed beads that Molly chose, I went with a blend of aquas in a 8/0 size.  I also added some turquoise Picasso Czech glass daggers.  They were just too pretty to leave in the store!  As usual, I head toward blue in my greens.

A couple of weeks ago, I remembered a stone donut that I had in my gemstones and intended to use it for my design.  Well, I could say that I changed my mind on using it, but the truth is I lost it somewhere in the layers of my craft "studio"!  Someday, I'm sure I will find it again, but not so far!

So, for the focal, I used a filigree button and a square wood bead that I had.  I dabbed the shiny pink filigree with some brown alcohol ink to mute the color.  I strung the button and beads together with brown waxed linen and left tails to which I added a few more beads.  The necklace is strung on black beading wire with a blend of the ceramics, wood beads and rhodonite in a choker length.

Water Lily
Here's another photo on a new stand I bought at Michaels:

I hadn't used the large rectangular wood beads, so I decided to make a second necklace.  For the focal here, I used a wood cut-out bead from a previous Pretty Palettes project.  I used the brown waxed linen on this necklace, too.  It's great for an organic natural look with the wood and ceramic beads.

Here's my second necklace:
Peaceful Garden

I still want to make some earrings with the turquoise daggers, but that will have to wait for another day! 

Stop by the Halcraft blog to see the beautiful designs from this month's inspiration.

Happy creating!
Terry


Monday, August 21, 2017

Baby Date Blocks


My youngest daughter takes photos of her daughters on a regular basis with numbers and words to indicate the date.  It's a very popular idea right now and helps you to remember the progress of your baby's growth when you look back at the photos.  Some of the numbers are on stickers and some are on shapes.  Another popular type is blocks.  So, using the JOY letters and numbers, some Smoothfoam blocks, scrapbook paper and washi tape, I decided to create some. 


Here's another view:
As you can see, you can change the words on the large block for different periods of time.  This is a different side of the same large block. 

You can also add more numbers on the small blocks, like this, and rotate or move the blocks to create a new date.  You can also lay them out in a line instead of stacking them.

These are very versatile.  Here, I used coordinated scrapbook paper in girly pinks, but any color combination would look great.  And, JOY letters are easy to color with dye, paint, ink or pens, so they don't have to remain white.

And, as a friend of mine suggested, you could use these as a countdown to Christmas with a change of papers (Thanks, Karen!).  I'll bet there are even more ideas out there - what would you create?

For all the information needed to create these, check out the Creating with JOY blog.

(As a member of the JOY design team, I receive JOY Iron-on product with which to create.)

Friday, August 4, 2017

Grape Cluster Pendant

Hi Crafty Friends,

As fall approaches, our family's thoughts turn to harvest.  We are grape growers, and this is the time of year when our crop ripens and is picked.  We watch the weather reports and the sky with increasing frequency as all farmers do.  We check the leaves for molds and test the grapes for ripeness.

So, with grapes on my mind and picking fast approaching, I decided to make a grape cluster pendant. 
Grape Cluster Pendant

To create this pendant, I am using etchall® dip 'n etch and some clear beads that I purchased at my local craft store.

I bought a variety of sizes in clear glass.  They are strung on plastic line, so I just removed the labels and taped them to the sides of a plastic container.  The tape is for me to use to lift them out of the solution.
Now, I can add the etchall® dip 'n etch to the container covering the beads. 
As you see, my etchall® dip 'n etch has darkened with time and use.  But, it still works perfectly.  After etching my beads for 15 minutes, I pulled them out and rinsed them off in running water.  Then, I returned the dip 'n etch liquid to the jar for another use.

Here are my beads after etching:
Etched Beads
They have a matte finish now with a "tooth" that makes them easy to color with paint or ink.  Today, I'm using some of Lisa Maria Jimenez' new line of inks from Clearsnap - ColoriQue.  She recently sent me some samples that I am happy to be able to use for this, especially since she sent me the perfect color for this project - Grape Vine.
I put the etched beads in a small plastic recycled container and added a few drops of the ColoriQue.
Using the paintbrush, I rolled the beads around in the ink to coat them.  Then, I took them out of the dye, patted off the excess and heat set them according to the instructions.
Here are those clear glass beads now - wonderfully purple - and ready to turn into a bunch of grapes!

To start the pendant, I created bead dangles by sliding the beads onto brass headpins and making simple loops.  Here they are arranged along the piece of chain to which I will attach them.
You can add more or less depending on how full you want your pendant.  Generally, attach the smallest beads at the lower end of the pendant and larger near the top, but mix it up a bit to create a more realistic bunch of grapes.  Make sure your chain is large enough to attach two dangles in a link.  After arranging, open a loop on a dangle, slide it into a link and close the loop. 

Here's my pendant after attaching my dangles:
Grape Cluster Pendant
I thought it needed a couple of leaves and found some acrylic grape leaves in my beads.  They needed some definition, so I added a little ColoriQue to them with a brush.  Then I attached them with jump rings to the top of the bunch.

Grape Cluster Pendant


Etching is so easy with etchall® dip 'n etch.  Check the etchall website for the latest specials and all the supplies needed for etching.

(I am a proud member of the etchall Ambassador design team and receive compensation and product for my design use.)

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

August Pretty Palettes Inspiration

Hi all!

I totally missed out on last month's Pretty Palettes challenge.  July was too full with a big needlepoint project and moving my Mom to a house around the corner.  I hope August leaves me a little more space for beady creativity.  I am posting the inspiration here to remind myself!

Molly has chosen a lovely quiet palette this month inspired by a beautiful pool of water lilies.  I love the calm, peaceful quality of this photo.


Here are the beads she has chosen:


And, here's the palette:


The photo of the lilies looks like a painting by Monet, and that reminded me that some time ago I bought some beads that I was going to use for a similar piece.  Some times I buy beads just because I like the look of them!  You never do that, do you?

So, I dug them out, and they will be the start of my piece.  Well, I found one piece; I know I have some smaller beads to go with this!
As you can see from the packaging, I've had this unakite pendant in my stash for a few years!

Here's a better photo to show the corals and greens in the unakite. 
Unakite
I think this will make the perfect focal for my lily pond-inspired necklace.  Now, for a shopping trip to buy some friends for it!


Wednesday, July 26, 2017

We're All Ears July Challenge

Hi there!

Today I'm on a music-inspired design challenge from We're All Ears on the Earrings Everyday blog.  Erin Prais-Hintz has inspired us to design earrings using a visual representation of a music piece.  I chose Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue represented by Andy Fillebrown.  The piece (along with American in Paris) has been a favorite of mine since I used to listen and dance to it in my parents' living room.  I liked to do a lot of interpretive modern dance in those teenage years. 

Here's the link to the YouTube video created by Andy Fillebrown:
Gershwin, Rhapsody in Blue
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XFF2miSQ4Zg

I am not sure how to get a screen shot, so I hope you'll watch the video.

It is something like the opening to Star Wars as you watch the notes come toward you, stretch and disappear.  You can see all the notes being played as if by two hands as you go in toward the center of the piece, then ripple outward in the runs of the notes.  It gave me a deeper appreciation of the complexity of the piece and how it all fits together because it allowed me to see it all at once.  If I were a pianist, I'm sure I could explain it better, but I only poke at the piano using my right hand.  I've never really learned the base clef, but it was fascinating to see the chords being played out visually while listening to the music.

One can start out with one idea or impression for a design in one's head and then the design evolves and changes as you try to interpret it with the materials and skills one has.  Meaning:  I thought I had that material in that color and I can't find it anywhere in this pile!  And, oh, I forgot I had that, maybe that will work here!

So, after trying numerous materials and ideas with a few camera glitches thrown in, here is my interpretation of the visual representation of Rhapsody in Blue.

Rhapsody in Blue
After all the frustrations, I am pretty happy with these.  I think they reflect the visual representation of the music with the different levels of blue notes.  And, they are full of movement, reflecting the swinging jazzy music.

For more earrings inspired by these unique visual representations, go to the We're All Ears Reveal.