Monday, April 30, 2012


Do you ever remember details about certain pieces of jewelry you make, but aren't sure why?  I distinctly remember sitting at my dining room table on the 4th of July, waiting for the fireworks to start in town so that we could all go outside and watch.  

I have  no earthly idea why I remember that!  I also remember thinking the cubes would make a cute charm bracelet--especially if I did them in different colors.  These earrings are actually pretty simple to make using a length of square stitch that is folded and stitched again to make cubes.  Their longer length makes them perfect for times when earrings are a must, but a necklace isn't needed.  I've worn them for dressy occasions, and also paired down with jeans and a black tee.  Maybe this 4th of July I'll get around to making that charm bracelet!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Long Days

Yesterday was one of the longest softball days ever.  The girls had a tournament, so we left home at 8 a.m. and didn't get back home until 12:30 a.m.!  It was all worth it, though, because the girls were the champs and also undefeated.  I think Hannah liked getting her hands on the trophy:

Five ball games and she still looks cute!  It's amazing how all the parents did was watch, but it exhausted us so much more than the girls!

Tonight I added a chain to my birds nest pendant.

I used copper chain and laced the same brown cording I used in the nest between the links.  I added beads to match the "egg" and also used the same small flowers I used in the nest as accents.  I have to say I'm quite happy with the way it turned out.  I also made a pair of earrings to go with it.

Looks like it's turning into another late night.  Hopefully I'll make it to bed before 2 a.m., though!

Friday, April 27, 2012


I just ordered and received the birds nest tutorial from Humblebeads.  I love the nest in the tutorial, but I didn't want to copy it exactly, so this is my version:

I think mine is a little more ornate.  I used copper and silver accented with brown cording.  I think this calls for a simple chain to suspend it from.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

On the Roof

One of my cats is either not the brightest crayon in the box, or a genius.  I'm starting to think she's outsmarting me.  She's learned to climb onto the roof and act like she can't get down so that I'll take pity on her and let her in through the window.  It's worked really well for her the past two nights, when we've had thunderstorms.  She's gotten to sleep inside--something she doesn't ordinarily get to do because of the allergies Travis and Hannah have.  This morning I awoke to her sitting on top of me, running her (very sharp!) claws down the side of my face.  I think she thought she was being helpful by waking me up.  If it weren't storming, I would have gotten her off the roof, put her back outside, and then if she climbed back up then so be it.  But, I'm a sucker and I can't stand the thoughts of her on the roof when it's raining, and especially when it's lightening.  I think she's got this figured out.  Smart kitty!

The meeting with the Lays building folks went well today.  The jewelry making classes are a go, and I should be able to start in the next 3-4 weeks.  I'm excited and hope there's a lot of interest!  It's a small town, though, and everyone is so busy these days it's hard to find time to do anything.  Got my fingers crossed, though.  I think I'm going to start with the basics first--basic earring, bracelet and necklace making.  

In honor of these classes, I thought I'd show you some pics from some of the classes I took when I first started making jewelry.  This is the first pair of earrings I made:

I almost cringe when I see them now because my style has definitely evolved, and my skills have improved so much.  This is a necklace from a pearl knotting class I took:

 I haven't knotted in a while, so I need to brush back up on the technique.  Finally, these are a couple of pendants I made in a class on wire wrapping pendants:

These were the most basic of the ones we made.  One of the others I wear fairly regularly, and I sold the last a long time ago.  

Off to bed now.  Hopefully I can avoid waking up in the morning with a fresh batch of claw marks!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Tomorrow afternoon is my meeting with the folks from the Lays building about teaching jewelry making classes there.  I have to admit I'm a bit nervous.  I've taught a couple of classes before and had a lot of fun doing them, but those were classes I put together myself.  This seems more "official" I suppose.  Maybe that's the reason for the nerves.  

I don't know yet how many classes they would like for me to teach, but to be prepared I pulled together a list of ideas.  I've also found a few pictures of possibilities.

Most of these are pretty simple stringing projects, but I threw in a couple of beadweaving pictures, as well, in case things progress.  If you're interested in any of these pieces, they're available in my etsy shop.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Trash to Treasure

I had a friend at work contact me the other day about a bag of jewelry she received as a donation for the college's Relay for Life yard sale.  She said she thought I might like to have some of the pieces to take apart and make something new.  I was quite excited about the prospect, and today I received the jewelry in campus mail.

As they are now, I doubt any of the pieces would sell.  Most are old with broken or dirty pieces.  But, I think with a good cleaning, quite a few beads can be salvaged.  Hopefully within the next couple of days I can get to work on some "trash to treasure" pieces.

Remember a few weeks ago when I mentioned the possibility of teaching some jewelry classes?  Well, I got a call today and I have a meeting Thursday afternoon with the scheduling folks, so it looks like it's becoming a reality!  I'm so excited and hope several people are interested in taking the classes.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Flowers and Broken Chairs

I was very anxious to start beading this evening, since I had an idea burning in my head all day.  I was about halfway finished with a pearl bracelet, strung on memory wire with a flower focal, when the chair I was sitting in broke!  I wound up on the floor (but managed to not unstring what I had strung!).  In all fairness to me, our dining room set is rather old.  We inherited it from a cousin after it had been passed along to them from another relative.  It fits well with the style of our house, but unfortunately it isn't in the greatest shape--as I was reminded tonight!  Travis got a big kick out of it.  Hannah just gave me a "poor mom" hug.  Guess it's time to get serious about that diet!

The bracelet turned out just as I had imagined, though, and I put together some pearl earrings to compliment it.

I think the bracelet has a very summery, romantic feel to it and the pearls in the earrings match those in the bracelet.  Not bad for something I wound up finishing while standing!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

The Zoo

Today would have been my sister's 33rd birthday.  She passed away suddenly 4 years ago from a blood clot.  Missy and I didn't exactly have the same fashion sense.  She made fun of me every holiday because I like to accessorize to fit the occasion.  Of course, the more she teased, the gaudier I had to be!  She probably would not have been caught dead in most of the jewelry I make.  I miss her terribly, but she left behind a little boy, Jourdyn (and yes, I tried my best to talk her out of that spelling), who is exactly like her--in looks and in actions.  

On a happier note, we took a group of kids from church to a little zoo in a neighboring county yesterday.  It wasn't a big zoo, but we had a lot of fun.  The kids are much braver than I am:

On the far left is  my daughter, Katie, who appeared to be a little leery--like her mama!  Then, my other daughter Hannah, Savannah, and my niece Grace.  I liked the cute furry animals a little better!  One of my favorites was the spotted leopard.  In his (or her?) honor, I made these earrings:

If I had been on the ball, I would have made these ahead of time and worn them to the zoo.  That's something my sister would have rolled her eyes about!

Friday, April 20, 2012

For Suzie

Last weekend, my very good friend, Suzie, asked me to make her a necklace and earrings set with red and silver beads.  It's always a little challenging (or sometimes very challenging) to do special orders for people--particularly if you do not know them well.  My style may very well not be the same as someone else's.  Fortunately, I know Suzie well enough that I had a very good time making this set:

I sent the pictures to her this morning, and she loved them!  The best part is now we have an excuse to get together for lunch--as if we really need one.  

Tomorrow is supposed to be filled with a trip to the zoo and then a softball game.  It's supposed to rain all day, though, so I'm secretly hoping for a nice, rainy day at home.  I'd like nothing more than to curl up with a good movie and book--but not necessarily at the same time!  And, then there are all those unfinished jewelry projects to work on...  

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Large Hole Beads

A while ago, Pandora bracelets became very popular.  I have one, and I love it, but the beads can be expensive.  Pandora-style, or large hole, beads can be found practically everywhere now, and many of them are very affordable.  It seems as if every craft show I attend has someone selling them, so last fall I started picking up a few whenever I came across them.  Rather than adding them to my bracelet, however, I decided to do something a little different, and use them in earrings.  This pair is nice and bright--just like the weather here today.

For these, I simply ran a bit of chain through the hole of the bead, attached it to a jump ring, added a crystal, and then attached the ear wires.  Here are a couple more designs I created around the holidays.

Several bead supply companies sell these, as well, so stock up.  The possibilities are endless!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

I Need a Vacation!

I know I talk a lot about wanting to be at the beach, but today I seriously need a vacation!  I've had a few very frustrating days at work, it's been rainy, I've been very busy...  I need to get away!  I would love to go to Charleston or Savannah this summer, but I'd say if we go anywhere it will be to the beach.  It just seems to work out really well with the girls and it's easy to relax there, too!  

Since I spent last night working the concession stand at the softball field (which I have to admit was a blast, by the way), I have nothing new to show today.  I did,  however, come up with another wish list--this one beach themed.  I'd love to get my hands on some of these!

 These pieces could definitely get me in the mood for a vacation--even more than I already am!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Finished Pieces

This is the necklace, bracelet and earrings I made from the beads I showed you last night:

I hope my friend likes them, but more importantly, I hope his wife likes them!  I think it will be a pretty nice surprise!


Monday, April 16, 2012

New Beads

I got some new beads in the mail today from Artbeads.  I ordered these the other day after having a set requested from a friend.  He is going to surprise his wife with a necklace, bracelet and earrings.  This is not the greatest picture, but it's all I have at the moment.  

It's hard to tell, but the dark beads are navy and the lighter ones are coral.  Then, of course, there are the butterfly charms.  Hopefully tomorrow I'll have pics of the finished pieces.

This is going to be a busy week.  Aside from work, Hannah had a game tonight, I work the concession stand at the field tomorrow night, another game Wednesday, a game Thursday, housecleaning Friday and then a trip to the zoo with our church youth group on Saturday.  After an hour or so on a bus with the kids I may be ready to move in with the animals! 

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Bitter Sweet Bazarre

Today I participated in the Bitter Sweet Bazarre to raise money for juvenile diabetes.  I had a great time and met some wonderful people.  My sales were pretty good, considering there wasn't as much traffic as I had hoped.  It may not have been the ideal Saturday to hold this event, as it was little league opening day in at least three of the towns in the county.  But, I was pleased and so were the organizers.  Here are a few pics of my table:

This was definitely a good show to begin with.   I may try to do one or two of the local craft fairs this fall.  The two I have in mind last two days, so I'll have to have some help if I decide to do them.  There are things I would tweak about my display, but I think it worked out well for my first time and for this particular event.

Luckily the little league schedule in our town was running a little behind, so I was able to make it in time to see all of Hannah's first little league game of the season.  It's a little sad because this is the last year she'll be young enough to play, so I want to take in as much as I can this year.  We have a great group of girls and parents, which always makes it a lot of fun.  

I think it's about time for bed.  It's amazing how tired you can get sitting around...

Friday, April 13, 2012

Show Preparation

Tomorrow is the show to benefit juvenile diabetes I'll be participating in.  Last night I set up my table and put some things on it to make the setup tomorrow easier.  After I set up everything, I realized I need a lot more room for earrings.  I have an idea for earring displays, but I'll have to change a lot of what is already on the table--like the tree and the apple lamp.  Hopefully it will turn out well.  Here's what I had as of last night:

The basket is full of earrings that need to be displayed.  Everything still needs to be priced, as well, and then packed back up and loaded into my car.  Since Hannah has two softball games this evening, it's going to be either a late night or an early morning.  I think I'll try to finish everything tonight--might make sleeping easier!

Wish me luck!  I'm excited about tomorrow, but nervous, too.  It's one thing to wear my creations and receive compliments.  It's another to put them out there like this, hoping people will like (and buy) them!


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Wish List

Today has been one of those days--you know, the kind where you get to work and aren't even sure you're wearing all your clothes!  I've felt very scatter-brained, possibly because on top of working I've had to try to track down what time Hannah is leaving for her softball game and which field they'll be playing on.  I have to remind myself that everyone isn't as organized as I think they should be!  

Since I'll be sitting out in sub-zero weather (well, okay, it's in the forties today) watching softball this afternoon, I'm not sure I'll get anything new made tonight.  So, I thought I'd show you some of my favorite things on etsy.  These items are on my wish list for when I have a few extra dollars to spare (which isn't often!).  

This last picture is a coffee mug from Jangles.  I can see myself drinking my coffee from it while making some wonderful pieces with all the other beads on my wish list!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Finished Project

Last night I showed you my half finished bead project.  Tonight, the finished necklace:

I absolutely love this button by Jennifer Jangles.  I think the style is so fun.  I used seed beads to attach the button to jump rings that I accented with small red seed beads.  I used those same accented jump rings to connect the other beads I used in the necklace--red and turquoise glass, along with sea glass and red glass flowers.  I think this will liven up my work attire tomorrow!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Tonight's Bead Table

I thought I'd post a few pics of the project I began working on tonight.

The pendant for this necklace-to-be is a button from Jennifer Jangles.  I adore her ceramic beads and pendants--they're so bright and fun!  I ordered four buttons when I ordered this one and each is a different color.  I wanted to start with the yellow because it will go perfectly with the outfit I plan to wear Wednesday (yes, I plan my clothes several days in advance).  Assuming, that is, that I'm able to finish this piece tomorrow night.  Hopefully this time tomorrow I'll have a new necklace to show off!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Jewelry

Tomorrow is Easter.  Well, actually, since it's after midnight, I suppose today is Easter.  I spent most of the evening making jewelry for the girls and I to wear with our new Easter dresses.

This is Katie's bracelet and earrings:

This is Hannah's bracelet and earrings:

And, this is my necklace, bracelet and earrings:

I hope everyone has a wonderful Easter!