Friday, August 29, 2014

Tis the Season!

Oh my Gosh!!! Are y'all as frantically tired as I am?? School has started with a bang!

I addition to that, I've got lots of new irons in the fire.One of which is the honor of being a guest blogger for Art Jewelry Elements! I love this blog, it's one of the few I actually keep up with on a regular basis.
I know, I have been a total slacker on posts...All I can say is, I'm trying to do better. It is rather hard to keep up with all the social media outlets and keep your finger in the pie, so to speak.
Facebook can literally eat up your day, but if you don't maintain a presence there, you're not going to have folks remember you when they are in need of a pretty piece of jewelry, you know?
I do have a Twitter account, and Instagram. I use the Twitter to post for giveaways, and that's about it.
I post pics of food I make on Instagram, and the adorable clay pieces my daughter creates.

I'm in the process  of creating an online shop to finally! sell my designs. That was a looonngg time coming, let me tell you! I still don't have all the ins and outs figured out, but I just can't wait til I do, otherwise I'll be dead and someone else will be selling them!

Hope you're all doing well, gearing up for the Holiday Season! It is an exciting time, I love this part of the year, even though it's rather hectic. The weather turns cooler...

I start baking PUMPKIN EVERTHING!!!!!

So, what about you? Do you love this season of busyness, or dread it? Blessings, Shirley

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Choosy Chicks Choose Chicklets...Reveal time baby!

 Ok, this was such a fun challenge!
The awesome Rita (Toltec Jewels) put out a request for artists interested in playing with some of Sue Kennedy's new bead design, chicklets.
If you've ever had the pleasure of designing with Sue's beads, you will totally understand why it was a joy to create with this bead!

I received the top bead on the last row. Yes, that yummy orangey pinkey color. Sooo gorgeous!!!
This is a small bead, so you would think I would choose to create a bracelet, right?
I wanted to make a necklace, so I could feature this baby front and center.
Wanna see? Course you do, that's why you came. Insert dramatic cloak swishing....TADA!!!!!!!

I created a double rope with kumihimo and 3 bead spiral peyote.

 Here is a close up of the kumihimo. I looped the end, and added some jump rings to the loop for a fun texture. This has 8 elements, with a chocolate bamboo yarn creating grounding for the sparkle yarns in burgundy, yellow, and orange.

 The peyote spiral picks up the darker tones in the bead, along with a softer shade of the oranges. The spiral has two size 8's, and 1 size 11 seed bead. This is a quick spiral that packs a lot of visual punch.
 I created a butterfly bail to suspend the bead from the ropes, 

 and added some simple fringe to the bottom. The butterfly bail gives such a nice contrast to the ropes, and the darker beads just point straight to that fabulous chicklet!!
 I may go back and add more fringe, it's driving me crazy the way it keeps separating to either side!

Here are the rest of the lucky participants!
Thanks Rita, for another super fun challenge!


Guest of Honor & Featured Artist:  Susan Kennedy

Sue Kennedy's blogs:                               SueBeads...A Beady Girl's blog
                                                               Art Jewelry Elements
Sue Kennedy's website                            SueBeads
SueBeads Art Beads                                SueBeads


Toltec Jewels                                 


Linda Anderson                             

Jennifer Reno                                 

Shirley Moore                                

Kristen Stevens                              

Marybeth Rich                               

Jael Thorp                                      

Melissa Trudinger                           

Andrea Glick                                  

Nan Smith                                      

Blanca Medina                               

Shai Williams                                  

Carolyn Lawson                             

Rana Wilson                                   

Robin Reed                                    

Robin Showstack                           

Sheila Prosterman                           

Karla Morgan                                

Kari Asbury                                   

Kelly Rodgers                                

Jayne Capps                                  

Mischelle Andrade Fanucchi          

Heather Richter                             

Chris Eisenberg                             

Kathleen Breeding                         

Linda Landig                                 

Crystal Thain                                 

Cheri Reed                                    

Heather d-Entremont                     

Dini Bruinsma                                

Lori Schneider                               

Tammy Adams                              

Melinda Orr                                  

Lennis Carrier                               

Cynthia Machata                           

Elizabeth Hodges                          

Debbie Rasmussen                        

Tanya McGuire                             

Charlie Jacka                                

Ev Shelby                                     

Sharyl McMillian-Nelson              

Jasvanti Patel                              

Thanks for joining me in celebrating this challenge. Blessings, Shirley

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

A Time to Stitch Five

Today's the day people! It's here, it's here! What? Well, the reveal for A Time to Stitch, of course!
This is one of my very favorite challenges, and it is run by the awesome Therese Frank and Christine Altmiller.
So this challenge was to take one stitch, and make 3 identical pieces, changing either the size, or the color of the beads.
I chose flat herringbone, it's one of my favorite stitches for it versatility. I took this challenge one step further, and used silver-lined, opaque, and matte finishes as well as the three different colors. I guess I cheated a bit, because I also used a silver metallic in each of the bracelets, and a coordinating size 15 for the edge beads.
I really love how they turned out, and I hope you do as well!
I found these awesome buttons to use as my clasps.

I am so thrilled to see the differences in each bracelet.

Because of the silver lining on the purple bead, this one has an overall shiny look, and you don't see the pattern as much.

 This one has such a dainty look, and the button fit perfectly with that feel. The matte finish really allows the pattern to stand out.

 I adore this one! The opaque beads show off the pattern so well, and that mother of pearl button has just the tiniest hint of  green in it. I was working on this one while not at home, and there were lots of distractions around. was a bit short. But the longer clasp looks fine when it's on, and I love how I ended up creating it. I will definitely use the technique again. After stringing enough beads to fit around the button, I strung 16 more. Then I square stitched the last 8 to the first 8, and embellished the top with a tiny 15. Worked great!

Just like the bracelets themselves, each loop showed off the personality of the bracelet.

 Yep, these three girls are stars of the show around here! Thanks for joining me on this wonderful challenge. 
Now you get to see the rest of the participants!

Therese               Our wonderful hostesses!

Shirley     You are here!

Saturday, June 7, 2014

It's a Chicklet kind of day....

Do you enjoy blogging challenges? I am quite addicted to them!
There are some that just fill me with joy...Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Blog Party, Therese and Christine's Time to Stitch, and pretty much anything Rita (Toltec Jewels) decides to host!
Rita has a new one, and I'm so very excited I get to participate!! It features the wonderful work of SueBeads!!! I know, right? Sue makes beautiful lampwork beads, and I have yet to play with any of them, so I'm thrilled to be in this challenge.

This is a new shape Sue has created, called Chicklets. They are just adorable, and I can't wait to get mine and start playing. The list is full, but I'm sure you could play along if you already have some of these cuties. And if you don't, why not head to Sue's shop? And pick up two or three or a dozen...
Stay tuned for more excitement throughout the summer, as I kick my loom and kumihimo disc into high gear!
Blessings, Shirley

Saturday, May 10, 2014

8th Bead Soup Blog Party Reveal

Welcome to the reveal!!! If you've not heard of the Bead Soup Blog Party, brainchild of Lori Anderson, you can check out all the details here.
This is a huge blog hop, over 500 reveals, so I will keep it short and sweet. Well, for me anyway...
My partner, Rebekah Payne, of TreeWingStudios, is an incredibly talented polymer clay artist. She also creates some fantastic leather goodies, which I am so lucky to get to play with one of her newest styles!
Just a quick remind of my fab soup...
 A softly romantic bead palette. Not my usual style! 

 And my oh-so-fab focal and clasp.
The rules state that you are only required to use these babies...but, of course, I was in happy land with all my other goodies!

My daughter was very involved in this Bead Soup. She requested a specific style for the necklace. I had created a necklace for a Seam Binding Challenge for Artisan Whimsy in an asymmetrical style. Half kumihimo braid, half filled netting. Let's see what you think....
 Soft and delicate. Yes, I'm so going to wear this Sunday for Mother's Day!

 I wove a short strip of chenille stitch to connect the two ropes. The netted section has part of the soft burgundy print fabric inside, while the kumihimo is braided with one strand of 4mm lavender AB firepolish beads, chocolate bamboo yarn, and burgundy sparkle yarn.

I am so stoked over these coiled wire ends! If you want to make some of your own, head over to the Cerebral Dilettante for the tutorial.

Next up is actually the piece I created first. I've recently become obsessed  enamored of loomwork. I knew when I saw that strand of fabric covered beads that Rebekah's mom had stitched, that I wanted it to be in a loomed cuff. I had an absolute blast creating this cuff.
Soft and romantic again, with those fire polish beads showing up in the dangling fringe, and some of the new brick beads in the mix as well. I used hex beads in a metallic iris to create loops to hold the fabric rope in the cuff, and a simple RAW edging for the top. The clasp is from The Beading Room, and the wide ribbon crimps are from Twilight Fancy.

Isn't that a beautiful clasp?Sorry, I couldn't help modeling it. Just ignore the freckles, k?

This last piece I just finished last night. Not because I was running late, but because I didn't think I was going to be able to do justice to Rebekah's heirloom buttons, so I had decided I would create something later. But they just kept talking to this is what happened.
I had enough of the fabric left to create a soft cuff.

Flat netting this time, in a soft matte amber, accented with metallic Czech seed beads and edged with a buttermilk cream to pick up the color of the buttons. And I got to use one of Rebekah's rose petal beads as the closure!

 I used the Czech rondelles Rebekah sent as the toppers for the buttons. This cuff is super soft, and oh-so-special to me. It will be a sweet memory of her precious gift, and this fabulous blog hop!

There were several things I didn't get to incorporate, like the petal beads, and the MOP chips. Rest assured, they will be used! As will this little guy that I beaded for the fabric cuff, then decided it didn't work.
 I've got a couple of ideas brewing, but for now, have fun hopping!
And a huge thank you to my partner Rebekah, and to Lori Anderson for such a wonderful experience!!!

Here's the link for the participants:

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Check her Bead Soup partner!

Yes, it's almost time for the reveal, and I totally forgot to show y'all what I got!
I have been so blessed to be partnered with Rebekah Payne of TreeWings Studios. Rebekah is an artist extraordinaire! She creates the most awesome polymer clay pieces, in addition to some seriously cool leather and wire pieces.
Rebekah really sent some very cool pieces for me to play with....wanna see?

The most gorgeous packaging!

Can you believe all that coolness?

 The stars of the show, handmade clasp and leather/polymer clay focal. Isn't that just the dreamiest focal??

I adore the mother of pearl button on the clasp. And do you see the little polymer clay rose on the button? Sweet!

 Super excited about this...Rebekah's mom hand stitched the material around EACH bead in this strand!!!

Antique buttons from her grandmother, czech rondelles, and mother of pearl chips!!

 A swirly brass big hole bead, some cool petal beads, and more of Rebekah's polymer clay roses.

Yes, this is a seriously romantic bead soup! I've been very busy playing in it, and hope you'll come back May 3rd to see what I've created! Blessings, Shirley

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Color of Dreams Blog Hop

I'm so very thrilled and excited to show you what I've created for this special hop! Rita, better known as Toltec Jewels, invited us to participate in a very special challenge. She generously shared a gorgeous art bead with each of us, created by the awesomely talented Patricia Handschuh.
I'm telling you, I was quite the little happy camper when I opened the package. Patricia creates very intricate patterns in these beads. Here's the shot of the beads that Rita mailed out to us.

Simply a riot of happiness, right? It was fairly easy for me to decide what I wanted to create...just a matter of getting it all done. I really went right to the wire with this one, which means that I had to take the pics last night, rather than in daylight. I'll be out most of the day Sunday, but I am going to add daylight pics to the post later.
The bead was small enough that I could have created a bracelet with it, but I decided I wanted a necklace. Specifically, a set of necklaces. I chose to create a trio of lariats, with the bead taking center stage as the closure.
I had so much fun just playing around with different styles, beads, and techniques with this challenge. So, surprisingly, one of the ropes is a simple string of beads. But it worked, and taught me that simple can still have a big impact. The second rope is a kumihimo braid with a matte orange accent bead. The threads used for it were a variegated yarn, white crochet thread, and two strands of matte ab orange beads.
The third rope is a twisted RAW that has a pretty, delicate spring look to it. Which is rather funny, because it has in-your-face hot pink, and metallic green beads in it! That's one of the coolest parts about playing with beads for me...all the endless combinations of colors and styles.
Here's a shot of the focal bead. I surrounded it with an alternating square of CRAW. 

I love how different the strands are, and yet they pick up all the gorgeous colors in the bead. The ropes can be worn alone, or together, with the clasp or not, which makes it so very versatile.

Here's a closeup of the individual strands. I'm really loving all the subtle color changes in the kumihimo braid from the variegated yarn.
Thank you Rita, for sharing Patricia's beads with us. I'm so happy to have found another source for beads, and thrilled with where this challenge took me. Please go visit all the other participants in this wonderful challenge! Blessings, Shirley

Honorary Artist: Patricia Handschuh
Patricia's blog:            The Color of Dreams        
Patricias Etsy:             The Color of Dreams
Hostess: TJ                Jewel School Friends
Kay Thomerson           KayzKreationz
Audrey Belanger          Toki No Hourousha

Alicia Marinache          All the Pretty Things
Terry Carter                TappingFlamingo
Lori Schneider             Bead Addict
Jenny Kyrlach             Wonder and Whimsy
Asri Wahyuingsih         Asri's Beadwork
Dini Bruinsma              Angaza by Changes
Karla Morgan              Texas Pepper Jams
Debbie Rasmussen        A Little of This, A Little of That
Veralynne Malone          Designed by Vera
Kathy Stemke               Vintage Memories Jewelry Design
Mowse Doyle               Mowse Made This
Heather Richter             Desert Jewelry Designs
Lori Poppe                   Adventures in Creativity with LorilliJean

Jayne Capps                Mama's Got To Doodle
Andrea Glick                Zenith Jade Creations
Kathleen Breeding         99 Bottles of Beads on the Wall
Becky Pancake             Becky Pancake Bead Designs
Karin Martinez              Fairies Market
Miranda Ackerley          Mirandack

Penny Houghton           Smelly Nelly
Carolyn Lawson           Carolyn's Creations
Chris Eisenberg            Wanderware
Christie Murrow          Charis Designs Jewelry
Monique Urquhart        A Half-Baked Notion
Eve Shelby                  Raindrop Creations Jewelry by Evelyn
Cryss Thain                 Here Bead Dragons
Jasvanti Patel               Jewelry By Jasvanti
Nan Smith                   NanMade Handmade Jewelry
Sue Kennedy               SueBeads
Jean Yates                   Snap Out of It, Jean! There's Beading to be Done!
Debbie Rogers             Debbies Treasures
Marybeth Rich             A Few Words From Within the Pines
Shirley Moore              Beads and Bread
Shaia Williams             Shaiha's Ramblings
Kathy Lindemer           Bay Moon Design
Linda Anderson           From the Bead Board
Judy Turner               Silver Rains
Gloria Allen                Gloria Allen Designs
Regina Wood              Ginas-Design
Robin Reed                Artistry HCBD
Mary Goovars            MLH Jewelry Designs
Marlene Cupo             Amazing Designs
CJ Bauschka              4 His Glory Creations
Robin Showstack        The Crazy Bead Hoarder
Cynthia O'Toole          Sparkles and Sweets

Jael Thorp                 Jael's Art Jewels
Renetha Stanziano      Lamplight Crafts