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

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Clean Up Fix Up Blog Hop

I know, right? Who wants to clean, when you can design?? Well, apparently, I was a bit over the top in the messy department...
Anyway, I guess there are a lot of us out there, because when Sharyl first posted about cleaning up, a boatload of folks agreed to do it too! Ok, I'm sure y'all have more exciting things to do than see my messy space, but I do understand...
It's kinda like a train wreck, you just can't stop yourself from looking...

This is the school desk. You can see I've taken over one spot, and am inching my way towards the second seat as well.

This is the bead desk my hubs created for me from a tv armoire. That back board did have 3 shelves to hold my seed beads, but since he used nail glue, my beads overpowered them and two of the shelves fell. Cause beads have superpowers. 

 This is the 'general crafts'/grain buckets/empty shipping boxes/homeschool resource section. See why it's exhausted trying to stay clean??

Ok, so I didn't get everything cleaned, but hey, I'm rather thrilled with what I did get, so there. 
 You seein' this??!!! Not a BEAD in sight!! Totally weird, right?

This is a special corner of my desk. The bead frog and the angel were made by my daughter, and the awesome sheep is a gift from Cooky Schock. It is a special gift from The Shepherdess store, precious to me since the store is now closed.

My spools of fireline, clon, needles and glue. And basket of stones for photos. For some strange reason, that basket of stones is very calming to glance at, which is why it is on my desk.

My tool holder, wire holder, and empty tubes and boxes holder. Hey, it works, ok?

The school desk is looking better, and I've definitely stepped back to just the one spot, but I didn't get to touch the other area of the room. You know, that catchall side? Well, I'm still a happy girl over my EMPTY desk!!!!
K, go head off and see what everyone else accomplished. Blessings, Shirley

Participant List:

Friday, February 28, 2014

Are You Ready to Bead Soup???

 My first Bead Soup Blog Party My first Bead Soup Blog Party

It's getting exciting around here! Some of the participants have been matched up. I love the anticipation of waiting to hear who my partner will be, and that first email!
If you've not heard of the Bead Soup Blog Party, please check out some of my past entries, and for more info, please check out Lori Anderson's blog. Lori started this blog party several years ago, and really had no idea it would take off like it has. To my knowledge, there is not another blog hop that is quite this big in the beading world. I attribute the success of it to Lori herself. Not only is she a fantastic designer, but her caring heart shines through in absolutely everything she does. Throughout her struggles over the past year with health issues, she has continued to be present and accounted for in her blog, her facebook, and her inspiration. I know I would not do half as well handling all that she has, and still want to host this great Blog Party.

 One of my favorite pieces.

I've grown as a designer each time I've participated, and glue myself to the chair on reveal day, hopping from one blog to another. I cut and paste the list to a word document, and highlight each blog, or comment to go back later.
You will always have folks that sign up, and then don't participate. It's really a bummer, but it does happen. Then there are computer glitches, life events that overtake us, etc.
I love reading about the process of designing the pieces, sometimes more than the piece itself. Ugly? I don't really feel that way, since I don't expect everyone to like beadweaving either. What I do appreciate is their effort and commitment to the challenge.

Ok, I still have a bit of cleaning to do before my reveal tomorrow for Sharyl's Clean Up, Fix Up Blog Hop. See ya tomorrow! Blessings, Shirley

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Word for the Year....Leaning

Have you decided on your Word for this year? I'm a bit late, as this year has already rushed into existence with me standing bewildered on the sidelines!

This one took some soul searching. I didn't stick to my word last year too well. I am still coming to understand myself as a designer, and what I want 'my look' to be...
What I have come to understand is how deeply I respect designers of patterns. I have grown and developed as a designer myself because of the teaching I have received through patterns and tutorials.
I have participated in blog hops and challenges, and each time have grown better. word for this year is LEAN.
I am leaning on my understanding of my skills, and lack thereof. I am leaning on the expertise of designers that teach me to be better. I am leaning on God's understanding of His plan for me, not my own.
Truthfully, if it were up to me, I would happily spend my days beading and interacting with lovely folks on FB and blogger. But that is really just a fantasy, cause I don't have unlimited funds, but, more importantly, because at some point, you have to put your work out there and see if anyone responds to your style.
And what if they don't? Well, as crushing as that might be, I hope I would take it to heart that I need to explore my style more, focus on my skills a bit more, and try, try again.
I will also continue to LEAN on my awesome FB groups.
One in particular is a new skill that I have been extremely excited over...bead looming!
It is so far from my usual fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants style.
I hope you'll come back and hang with me while I explore the possibilities of the loom, and learn
more about some great artists while I'm Learning and Leaning!
Blessings, Shirley

Now, you know I can't just let you leave without some eye candy, right?
Original Koi Fish pattern created by Erin Simonetti, beaded by me. (My very first loom piece)

Matte black and green kumihimo rope, designed and created by me, for custom button and focal by Sheri Mallery of Slinging Mud. (focal not shown)

Netted bracelet, instructions by Carol Cypher in Mastering Beadwork. Custom button designed by me.

 Peyote crosses, pattern in Beadwork June 2013 by Alice Coelho.

 Guitar string bangles, designed by me.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

A Time to Stitch 4 Reveal

I can't think of anything better than starting the new year off with two of my favorite designers. Therese Frank and Christine Altmiller.  They came up with the great idea of having a blog challenge based on beadweaving stitches.
The ones they chose for this time are: Netting, which is the required stitch, Chevron, Chenille, and Spiral.
I was only able to create a piece using the netting stitch. I'm very, very pleased with the way it turned out.

One of my 'go to' books is Carol Cypher's Mastering Beadwork. It is such a great reference tool for the basics of stitches. I also love the little 'Tips and Tricks' that she offers. So off I went to brush up on the stitch.
For some reason, I have a brain cramp with starting the netting stitch. Hey! Don't judge! :)
Anyway, this is called 'Spiky Bracelet' in her book. It uses odd count netting, which means that your turnaround is accomplished with a little picot. It turned out really pretty with the colors I chose, and of course, my photos totally do not do justice to the sparkle factor in this pretty.

It's so lacey and delicate, and those 3mm fire polish twinkle ever so nicely!

Well, I was hoping to show you the details of this beaded button I created for it, but I don't think it shows up very well. I should have taken a photo of it before I attached it to the bracelet. After working 6 rounds, I went back down to the beginning, and worked the first three rounds again, to give it some height for the loop to fit around the bead, and to stiffen it up a bit.

 I love the hexagonal shape of the netting.

This was a fun challenge, as always, and I thank Therese and Christine for starting it. Blessings, Shirley

Please go check out the other hoppers to see what they created.


Saturday, December 14, 2013

Sally Russick's 3rd Annual Ornament Swap

Today's the day! I'm so excited to get to show you what I received. Christmas is my very favorite time of year, and I love ornaments, so I was thrilled when I saw Sally's post about her ornament swap.
I quickly signed up, and waited with anticipation to find out who Sally had chosen for my partner.
Well, if y'all heard a squeal, and wondered what it was...yep, it was me! Cause my partner is.......the awesome Karen Williams!!! Girl wonder, crafter extraordinaire. Queen of freeform. The face behind Skunk Hill Studios.  Ms. Karen led me through my first experience with freeform with her fantastic book, Freeform Peyote Beading.
Now, Karen has the most wonderful eye for color and texture, so yes...the pressure was on! What to make? what to make?  Well, I'm supposed to be showing you what I, you'll have to go see what I made over at Karen's blog.
Sally's instructions for this hop were pretty simple, email, talk about what you like, and let the designing begin.
Karen and I are pretty similar in our color loves, and we both love the old fashioned style Christmas.
A couple of years ago, I purchased a very unusual tree, just for me. It is made from iron, and rather reminds you of a Charlie Brown tree. I fell in love with it the moment I saw it. And I knew exactly what it would hold. Very special-to-me beady ornaments! I have a couple from swaps from last year, and now I get to add Karen's to it! Want to see? Well, of course you do!

Isn't that just the most beautiful piece you've ever seen? I love blue, and stars, so yes, I'm a very happy girl.

 Karen's attention to detail is something I strive for...sigh. Aren't all those little star sequins too cool??

I love bugles, but hate to work with them, so I'm very glad I have a piece that celebrates their beauty...and I didn't have to stitch it! :)

 And it's signed! That makes it so very special for me.

I told you she is an amazing artist...yes, she made the card too! (Sorry, I actually took this pic sideways....please tilt your head to the right. There, see?)

And, and , was wrapped in her own hand dyed paper! Yes, I do have all the packaging from her, because it's all this beautiful, and it's mine....not sharing, no, I'm not....
Now, go check out all the other goodies in the swap. And when you get to Karen's, cross your fingers that she doesn't have close ups, cause I can tell you, I do not stitch as well as she does! 
Thank you so much for putting this together Sally!
Blessings, Shirley

List of Holiday Ornament Swappers

Sally Russick and Beth and Evie McCord
Erin Prais-Hintz and Melissa Trudinger
Karen Williams and Shirley Moore
Lori Finney and Alicia Marinache
D Lynne Bowland and Paula Kramer
Kim Bender Hora and Jenny Davies Reazor
Becky Pancake and Lori Anderson
Veralynne Malone and Therese Frank
Tanya Goodwin and Sandi Volpe
Jeanette Ryan and Rochelle Brisson
Patti Vanderbloemen and Susan Kennedy

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Two for One Reveal-Lampwork Blog Hop

Yeah, I did. I signed up for TWO hops, with reveals on the same day. I know, what was I thinking?
Obviously, my brain wasn't working at that moment.
You can go here to see what I created for Therese Franks' Birthday Challenge.

Y'all know Lisa Lodge's Blog Hops are always fun, right? Well, if you've never participated in one, you owe it to yourself to sign right up! She has a couple that are open right now, you can check them out on her blog.
I did sign up a lot later than everyone else on this one. I was really, really trying to resist....we see how well that worked, huh? Anyhoo....have you ever been a bit starstruck when you get beads in the mail?
Of course you have, what a dumb question. That is exactly how I feel every time I see JulsBeads. That woman has some serious mojo magic with lampwork. I was thrilled when I got my package from Lisa, and opened it to find these babies!  Beady Alert! Juls is having a MEGA Sale on her entire shop! You're welcome. 
 And you just need to take my word for it if you've never held any of her beads, the pics really, really don't do them justice.
The deep blues offset by the swirls of no-clouds-in-the-sky-blue are just....yeah. Let me just head off to Dictionary dot com and see if I can find a good adjective.

Nope. Couldn't find one. So, let's just carry on, shall we? Now, of course, I wanted these babies to be front and center, and I wen through several different ideas on my way to the solution. I made a sample piece of netted rope that picked up that deep blue perfectly, but it was feeling a bit too delicate for me, so it got tossed in the 'I'll do something with that later' pile.
This pattern is from  Laura McCabe's Embellished Beadweaving. I've used it several times, I love how fast it works up, and looks so very different depending on the bead choices.

This is why I love this pattern. Depending on the beads used between the pearls, it has a totally different feel. I used some Czech crystal lined, that have an irregular profile, which translates to a more organic overall look.

Well, this one was to help you see the entire length. Not lovin' this pic so much, but hopefully it gives the idea...

 Those matte raku beads are mainly a dusty brown, but they have lovely hints of blue randomly popping up. The other 11's are a silver lined crystal, and a shiny topaz with black diamond inside color. The pearls on the rope are a deep blue, almost indigo. I really, really heart this necklace. It has a surprisingly vintage feel, and the soft, rather neutral colors mean I can wear it with a TON of stuff! Happy Me!!!!
As always, a HUGE Thank you to Lisa for a great Blog Hop!
Here is the list of participants, have fun!!! Blessings, Shirley

Your hostess:  Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist

Mary Govaars, MLH Jewelry Designs
Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes
Kathy Zeigler Lindemer, Bay Moon Design
Laurie Vyselaar, Lefthand Jewelry
Annette Rivers, MamaOwl's Mess
Shaiha Williams,   Shaiha's Ramblings
Kay Thomerson, Kayz Kreationz
Karla Morgan, Texas Pepper Jams
Lori Jean Poppe, Lorillijean Creative Corner
Eleanor Burian Moore, The Charmed Life
Leah Mifflin Tees, My Beady Little Eyes
Terri Wlaschin, Dances in Fog
Sharyl McMillian-Nelson, Sharyl's Jewelry
Jo-Ann Woolverton, It's a Beadiful Creation
Veralynne Malone, Designed by Vera
Linda Aspenson Bergstrom, TBD
Toltec  Jewels, Jewel School Friends
Judy Turner, Silver Rains
Gloria Allen, Gloria Allen Designs
Kathleen Douglas, Washoe Kat's
Connie Tipton, TBD
Christie Searle Murrow, Charis Designs Jewelry
Andrea Glick-Zenith, ZenithJade Creations
Michele Dotson, Star Jewels
Chris Eisenberg, Wanderware
Jennifer Clifford, TBD
Kathleen Breeding, 99 Bottles of Beads on the Wall
Molly Alexander, Beautifully Broken Me
Carolyn Lawson, Carolyns Creations
Shirley Moore, Beads and Bread   ----------------------- You are Here
Bonnie Coursolle, Jasper's Gems
Alice Craddick, Alice's Beads and Baubles