Thursday, July 30, 2009

July 30, 2009

What a couple of frustrating days at the torch. I finished watching Smiley's video on off mandrel pendants, and decided to try boro beads again. I have problems with boro - probably because I'm new at it. I've burnt off mandrels, having almost completed beads drop onto my table never to be recovered or used, there are lots of air pockets left in encased beads, I'm not getting the colors from the glass that they say I should be getting - it's a challenge....I've got some hints from some of the beadmakers on Lampwork Etc - and will try again tomorrow. One thing I've learned---I'm reminding myself of what I did to make these beads on the little white circles of paper attached to the beads. How many times have you made a bead, only to go back to it a bit later and not be able to remember how it was made?

Monday, July 27, 2009

July 27, 2009

Awhile ago, Ann asked me to make her a special set of beads - she had a necklace in mind, and needed more beads than I usually sell in a set. She wanted a large set of my ochre, turquoise, and brown beads - stripey beads, beads with dots, lots of ochre spacers. She had some of her own beads and needed my beads to complete her design. I'm thrilled at what she's come up with. And I love it when people send me pictures of their finished projects. Here's hers. Enjoy. Please check out her Artfire site where she has many lovely pieces of jewelry as well as some of her mosaics for sale.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

July 21, 2009

So, we were driving home from our daughter's in Virginia, and stopped at the Bob Evans in Breezewood for Bruce's favorite breakfast. We were sitting there eating, when an elderly man who had finished his breakfast stopped at our table on his way out of the restaurant. "Forgive me", he said, "I'm just like this", and goes on to tell us the following story.....

"An elderly lady was told by her doctor that she had to take a certain pill for the rest of her life. No exceptions, the doctor said....she must continue the pill for the rest of her life. But not to worry, he told her, he would call up the pharmacy and have the prescription sent to her home. Later on the same day, this lady called up the doctor, being terribly upset - he tried to settle her down to see what the problem was....she asked if he was sure that she would have to take the pill for the rest of her life. Yes, she was told...but she continued, examining the pill container again ---- it says "no repeats"."

At that, the gentleman who had stopped at our table wished us well as we all had a good chuckle, and continued on his way.

Monday, July 20, 2009

July 20 2009

We're back from visiting our daughter near Washington DC. Finally, after about 4 road trips down there, we have figured out how to get to her place with the least amount of road rage as possible. The beltloop is just traffic that we are not used to....bit with her help, we've found an easy way to get to the Braddock metro station, which is very near her home.

Our visit was really nice - the weather was fantastic - great for walking and enjoying the outdoors. We walked to old Alexandria, where we got our by-yearly running shoes, and most important, we were able to visit Arts Alive - a glass store in Old Alexandria that totally impressed and intimidated by people I've envied were there - great pieces of glass art that I can only hope to equal some time from now. It gives me something to strive for. I am totally impressed with Heather Trimlett's twistie control and her disk beads - hoping that she gives a class in either Toronto or Detroit one of these days.

We had a great walk at the Great Falls Park Trail - seeing a couple of the locks of the C&O Canal - and a great day to enjoy it - half sun, half clouds so that it didn't get too hot. Aila, our Belgian Shepard was great also. Right now, she's accompanying Bruce with his harmonica - howling's so funny. She's a great dog. A one family dog. She is only happy when we are all togather, otherwise, she's worried about who's not present.

No pictures this time. Maybe I'll get on the torch tomorrow, or sometime this week. There's zucchini bead to make tomorrow - we were gone for 3-1/2 half days, and three zucchini are big enough to make bread from.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

July 15 2009

Thought I'd include a picture of an awsome bracelet that Manamoon made from one of my focal beads - check out the rest of her jewelry at She's done some really interesting stuff with wire wrapping.

Monday, July 13, 2009

July 13, 2009

I am at a blahh spot for making beads - sales tend to be not as fast as I would like, or I don't seem to be making what jewlery makers are looking today, I made for myself. While at Bead and Button, I bought a couple of Dora Shubert's beads - two larger beads and two of her tear drop beads. I've been wondering what to do with the tear drop beads, when a friend of mind said she was thinking the same and was about to make some beads to encorporate them in a bracelet - so that's what I tried. I really wasn't happy with about half of the beads that came out of the kiln, but the ones I'm showing are going to be OK. I just need another day at the torch to come up with enough to complete a bracelet.

Another thought I had was to see how small I could go. Last week, I had a commission to duplicate a set of beads that I made over a year ago. Since then, I think I've improved, and my customer must have thought so also, as she asked that the beads be 8 x 11 mm - which is smaller than I traditionally go. I had a go at it, and am hoping she will be happy....Those beads are made, so I decided to see how my favorite beads would look smaller. I LOVE black base with bright turquoise, pea green, and purple beads - here's the result. Think I'll make more of those tomorrow - Can't you see a bracelet with black spacer beads - or maybe an 18" necklace, each bead wired to the next....lots of torch time coming up.

Oh, I almost forgot to let you know - My blue hollow beads took first place - that's FIRST PLACE in the Artistry in Glass quarterly bead competition - I'm quite proud of these beads - hollows, decorated with my murrini, twisties, and stringers. Have a look - the blue ones.