Monday, February 25, 2013

Bead Soup

My bead soup has arrived from Italy!  The recipe is.......

.....take a focal and a clasp....

....stir in some tibetan silver hearts, beads and elements inspired by nature......

...add a generous scoop of bead caps.....

...mix in some crystals, glass beads and mother of pearl.....

....and let it simmer until the 13th April.....

I'm very grateful to Jò for her generous bead soup.  I'm excited to get started with it.  There are things that I haven't tried using before but that is a big part of the fun of the Bead Soup Blog Party - you get to push yourself outside your comfort zone and try something new.  Please come back on the 13th April to see what I make with my bead soup.  

********Update: my reveal date has been postponed until the 27th April.  Poor Lori, who organises Bead Soup, hasn't been well recently and needs a bit of extra time to deal with the mammoth task of organising the Bead Soup Blog Party.  Get well soon Lori! 

Jò also sent me some lovely gifts - aren't I lucky?  The hair grips are gorgeous and she also sent me one of her fold-formed copper focals.  I haven't tried fold-forming yet - and after seeing what Jò has done I think I'm going to give it a try.  

Finally, I should say that my bead soup arrived a few days ago and I apologise for not putting these photos on my blog until now.  I've badly sprained my ankle and that has slowed me down somewhat this week.  I have a bay window in my house which is where I take my photos.  It is good because it has light coming in from three sides and it also has a really wide window sill for setting up the photographs.  However, the sill is quite high up so I need to stand up to be able to take the photograph - which has been a bit tricky with my sprained ankle!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Bead Soup!

I'm happy to say that I've joined in with the Bead Soup Blog Party.  In case you don't know, this is organised by the amazing Lori Anderson.  I don't know how she does it but I'm glad that does!  She has visited the blogs of over 500 people and paired us all up.  The rules are simple - send your partner a focal, a clasp and some coordinating beads - make something beautiful with them - and then show your design on your blog on reveal day.

I've been lucky enough to be paired with  from Italy.  She is a multi-talented lady - as well as making lovely jewellery, she does scrap-booking, painting, papier mâché, ceramics......head over to her blog to take a look.  She is also a lovely person - I've really enjoyed getting to know her.

She received my parcel of bead soup ingredients today.  I took a photo of what I sent her to show you but she has done an amazing collage of it so I'll leave it to her - go and see what I sent her.  The parcel that she sent me is still on its way from Italy.  I'll post a picture when I receive it.

Our reveal date is the 13th April so please come and visit our blogs then to see what we made.  It will also be interesting to see what the other Bead Soup participants have made - Lori has links to all the other participants on her blog.  

In case, like me, you don't know a lot of Italian you can put Jò's web address into something like Google Translate and it will put it into slightly scrambled English for you.  

********Update: my reveal date has been postponed until the 27th April.  Poor Lori, who organises Bead Soup, hasn't been well recently and needs a bit of extra time to deal with the mammoth task of organising the Bead Soup Blog Party.  Get well soon Lori!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Art Jewelry Boot Camp

I recently came across a blog challenge that seemed right up my street.  The Art Jewelry Boot Camp - run by the Love My Art Jewelry blog - gives a tutorial on a particular technique and then challenges you to do something creative with it.  The first challenge was to make balled head pins (have a look at the tutorial if you want to know how).  I’ve done this before – for example for this necklace - so I thought I’d do something I haven’t tried and balled both ends of the head pin to make a link.  

First, I balled one end of the wire and strung on two of the silver rectangles.  I then bent the wire into a semi-circle and scooted both rectangles out of the way and balled the other end of the wire – taking great care not to melt anything I didn’t mean to!  It got quite challenging to keep everything out of the flame as the chain got long!!  Here is a close-up of the links so you see what I mean…..

I like a bit of asymmetry so I added a couple of extra rectangles as a tassle (using balled head pins of course!) on one side. 

Go and have a look at the blog to see what other people have done with their head pins - you won't be disappointed, there are some wonderful designs.  

Monday, February 4, 2013

Back in the Saddle

You may have noticed a lack of blog posts from me recently.  I've been poorly with a chest infection/asthma combo that put me out of action for most of January.  But I'm on the mend now and I was getting fidgety, because I hadn't made anything for a while, so I got the resin out over the weekend.  Nothing is finished yet but here is a photo of some of the things I was working on - keeping warm by the radiator to make sure the resin hardens properly and covered up to guard against dust and inquisitive cats!  It felt really good to be making things again!!