Saturday, August 27, 2011

Shadowbox Challenge Reveal

Hi all! The wonderful Lorelei Eurto set up a challenge with enameled shadowboxes from C-Koop. I was one of the lucky ones drawn to participate in the challenge.  What I love about this is how far it took me out of my comfort zone. As a beadweaver, I work with little tiny beads, creating pieces out of them, one bead at a time. Now, I had to figure out how to incorporate this lovely metal rectangle with gorgeous enameled colors into my skills.  I knew as soon as I received it that I wanted to put something in it, and I wanted a necklace that could be reversible, so you could see both sides of the shadowbox.  I turned to Diane Fitzgerald for help. I purchased her book, Shaped Beadwork, early this summer, and have been thrilled with the skills I've acquired thru the projects.  I chose an open diamond for the inside of the shadowbox. And, since the box isn't very big, I decided it had to be in size 15 seed beads. Those are some tiny beads, my friends!  And do you know what happens when you are working with a very precise, mathematical pattern, and you miss a step? You do not get a precise, perfect looking object! However, I really felt like it was meant to be, cause the slightly twisted effect of the diamond is in keeping with the random color patterns on the shadowbox, and in the necklace colors.
I love the overall soft effect of the necklace. It really has a lot of colors in it, but they all sort of blend together in the pattern.  The pattern is courtesy of Cynthia Rutledge, from the Sept Beadwork mag.
The only thing I am going to change is the beads attaching the box to the bail.  I think it needs a double strand for visual continuity.  Other than that, I am extremely pleased with the end result, and got complements the first time I wore it!

Now go check out the other participants! Here's the list:
11. Grubbi
          17. Shirley- Beads & Bread You are here
23. Andrew Thornton
Blessings, Shirley

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Do you need more beads?

Well, duh, of course you do! So head on over to Kristi Bowmans' blog DreamsomeDesigns and enter this awesome giveaway! Kristi's giveaway
Blessings, Shirley

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Really Cool Neighbors

Just thought I'd share a couple of pics of my neighbors!
Yes, we did sit the poor guy on a used lunch plate to take his pic!

 Somebody doesn't have a happy face. Good thing they don't have long memories, cause my daughter is constantly catching them to show me how cute they are. We have a pond in our back yard, and we feed them, so they aren't shy to come right up to your feet.

 This beautiful guy was making lots of noise this morning. He was about 25 feet up in the tree, so these were the best views I could get of him. He didn't think I was important enough to interrupt his breakfast search!

 Good thing I'm not a woodpecker, cause my headaches would have me starving. He really makes a lot of noise.
We took this fellow's picture earlier this summer. He is called an Anhinga. The interesting thing about him is that he dives into the water for his food, and then has to dry his wings out before he can fly, cause he doesn't have the water repellent on his wings that other birds do.

 The markings on his wings are quite lovely.
So, what kind of neighbors do you have??
Blessings, Shirley

Monday, August 15, 2011

Teaser, Got My Soup, and a HUGE Thank You Lori!!

Ok, just to warn you, this post will probably not make a lot of sense, cause I'm totally jumpin' up and down excited!!!  Played with Picnik forever today to get my teaser pics the way I wanted them, so here they are...

Mallory, I really, really hope you enjoy your soup, cause I gotta say....WOW!!!
I was so blown away when I got my package!!  Yes people, I will be venturing out..way outside my comfort zone....wanna see???
Check out the lovely packaging! Totally rocks.
So, that's all ya'll wanted to see, right?? No?  Well, then let's take a closer look, k?
 Can you believe this focal? Oh, I am just drooling all over it, good thing it's glass!

And the back is as pretty as the front!  I was still gasping over it, then my eye landed on....

 This baby! Oh lordy, this picture so does not do it justice! The swirls in the bead are just creamaliscious. (like my new word?)
You know I would have been over the top happy with just that, right? But no, here comes even more beautiful goodies!
 Awesome mix of stone chips, some really cool spacers in luscious orange, chocolate brown with a hint of red, and vanilla swirl. The far right are some sweet irregular shaped pearls. (I know there's a proper name, but I'm kinda, you know....giddy, right now)

LOVE this knarly, tough chain, and I'm super excited about the headpins. I've been wanting to buy some for a while now.

 Here's another shot of the clasp. Can you see those colors?

 I don't know diddly about stones, so all I can tell you is they are beautiful! A translucent wonder of reds, oranges, creams, and darker red shading to brown. You can see the bumpies on a couple of the spacers back there. Really cool!
All right, I know I probably used the word cool about 25 jillion times, but seriously, words just fail me.
The third topic of this post is the most important. Ya'll really can't know how thankful I am to Lori Anderson for setting all this up. I am a hobby beader, so I don't sell my stuff. That means that my beadwork doesn't give any return to our finances. I could not afford to make purchases of the quality and quantity that Mallory has sent to me.  I am so very grateful to both of them for their generosity and talent. Thank you both, so much!!!
Blessings to all, Shirley

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Treasury Color Challenge Reveal

Well, not as early as I would have liked, but I did get it posted on the day of the reveal. The lovely Amy over at Copper Diem set up a color challenge using an Etsy Treasury. We had two weeks to create something based on the treasury. I received this beauty.

Since I love the color purple, this should be easy, right? Well, I have these beautiful magenta purple delicas that I just love, but I have a really hard time getting them to play nice with other beads.  So I immediately decided I wanted to use them, since it is a challenge! Did I mention there were only two weeks to accomplish this? And that I had 6 other commitments in that two weeks? Oh heavens, I was sweating bullets to get this done.  It's not a complicated pattern, but I am enormously pleased with the outcome. I love making difficult, elaborate items, but I tend to wear my more simple, clean lined pieces most frequently.  I feel confident that this will be one of those pieces.

 I started with a purple and yellow theme, which I love the contrast of those two colors. However, I had done that a few months ago for a Margie and Me challenge, so I wanted to head in a different direction.  I wanted the purple to shine, but not overwhelm. Thus I went to my trusty color wheel, and found this triumvirate of purple, blue, and tigereye brown.
I am very excited about the new camera I just got (also in that two week time period), but I don't know all the ins and outs of it yet, therefore I can't find the macro setting! 
Thanks Amy for this wonderful challenge!  Please go visit the other participants to see their lovelies!!
Tune in tomorrow, and I'll introduce you to my Bead Soup partner! You really don't want to miss that! Blessings, Shirley

Copper Diem
Fuego, metal y color
Silver Nik Nats
Beads and Bread
Copper Penny Designs
Green Shoot
Wild Sally Road
Mamas Got To Doodle
Beads for Busy Gals
EBS Jewellery
Cianci Blue
Beads for Brains
Nicki's Reef
Sweet Girl Design
Nicole Rennell

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Awesome Beady Giveaway

Woohoo! Really cool bead giveaway. Almost $100.00 worth of beads. Just don't tell the girls at Tackle that Bead Stash that I sent you to Beads of Clay, m'k?
So, what are you waiting for? Go!!!

Have a Blessed day!, Shirley

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Baby Christian needs our help

Hi all,
If you have not already heard, the wonderful and talented Julianna Cannon is having a sale at her Etsy store to help out her precious preemie nephew, Christian. He was born 4 months premature, and there will be lots of help needed in the coming months.  Here's what Juls posted:
I am offering a 25% discount on everything in my Etsy shop, with all proceeds from this sale going to support the family of little Christian ~ my family.  They have not been able to get a room at the Ronald McDonald house yet and expenses are piling up on them.

I know many of you took advantage of my recent sale, but if you could share this one with others just to get the word out it would mean so much...and prayers would be the biggest blessing.

The coupon code is Christian for 25% off all listings.

Thanks for reading, thanks for sharing, thanks for the love and friendship, Rockstars.

 The true image of a fighter

If you've ever checked out her fab beads and wanted some, head over there now and indulge yourself, and help out baby Christian. And please keep all of them in your prayers and thoughts throughout this time.

Friday, August 5, 2011

VBS Comes to an End

Oh, the precious faces! These little sweeties made the work all worth it. It was exhausting, and I have to admit I took a nap every day when I got home. But I'm telling you, there is nothing like the excitement on those little faces as they file into your room, asking what craft we're making today. Our theme was the Armor of God. They made tshirts to represent the Breastplate of Righteousness, Sword bookmarks for the Sword of the Spirit, and of course, foamcore shields! My biggest disappointment came with the markers we used for the Belt of Truth, and the design of the Shoes of Peace.
Those markers came off on our hands if we even looked at them! And soap did not effect it!  The shoes would have been better if I'd just made little rectangles, but I told my helpers to trace their feet, and then when they cut them out, they cut along the foot line. So when we went to punch holes to string them, it was a very narrow space, and they ended up not being very comfortable. But I think they were still thrilled to make them. My camera died on me today, so I don't have any pics of the helmet and sword. They were really cute too.
Shoes of Peace

 Cool parachute to separate the areas.

 This is where they had snacktime.

The Breastplate of Righteousness

The Belt of Truth

 The Shield of Faith

One of the games they played was to "fight" the youth, who were representing the devil. The kids had their shields, and the youth threw soft sponge water balls at them. So the cool part was that whenever the kids shouted out the bible verse, the "devil" had to back up. I think it was such an effective way to teach them the importance of reading and memorizing Bible verses.