Thursday, March 25, 2010

Made a new necklace

It's not up on etsy yet and it's not steampunk (but the next one will be) and it's human sized, not for a doll.
I'm pretty pleased with it.
I'd decided I wanted to work with more sterling, esp. after I scored some amazing focals to play with. If you've been around, you know I have a thing for faces--well, I got several in bone and this one in pietersite and sterling with carnelians.

(I tried to post the pic below the text, but that must be a trick I haven't learned yet.)

I had a nice string of pietersite ovals I'd bought a few years ago and had been saving for the right project, but when I looked at them with this piece I thought just stringing it with them would be too heavy, not to mention too obvious and too dark. 

So I dug around in my stone stash and came up with a couple of arrowheads (unakite?jasper? have to check my notes before I list!) , some lovely cherry volcano quartz rectangles, a few leaves (again I need to check!). I was playing with these but it wasn't quite working, so I rubbed a dab of "psychic power" oil on my temples and, voila! several of Karen Ovington's business cards (which I didn't know were there) fell into my lap.  Hmmm. 

For those of you who don't know, Karen Ovington makes absolutely fabulous beads which have inspired several of my other pieces.  In fact, if I go to a bead show with $ & know she'll be there, I have a Karen Ovington budget and an everything else budget, which sometimes has nothing left in it after I see Karen's beads.  Anyway, I have a small wood and glass showcase on a shelf in my bead room where I keep her beads, and I thought this was enough of a message so that I should go and have a look. 

Sure enough, there it was, that lovely black, rust, and white bead that looks like a lantern--just the thing! 
So I tried some reddish lave beads--way too pink, but the yellow ones were just right, picking up the tiger-eye-like gold banding in the pietersite and the yellow in the agate.

But something was still missing. I tried beadcaps--no go--separateing the beads with chain or wirework--nope.
Then I started digging through my stash drawers and realized I had these Indian beads, which I think are furnace glass, the kind where you pull a tube and then cut it into individual beads. They are, as I think you can see, white with swirls of black, copper, and gold, and the colors looked perfect.  Originally I tried a sort of fluted lantern shape, but that was wrong, as was the round one. But these tubes, with the colors swirling just a bit, were just what I needed.

So now I had center, left, and right side focal groupings.  Putting them together wasn't quite that simple, of course--the leaves were extremely difficult to attach, and getting a chain through the Ovington grouping required quite a lot of hole grinding in the Indian beads especially, but finally they were ready and I measured and attached pieces of chain between and after them to equal just about 24".

Then there was the question of a clasp. I had some small spring rings, but those wouldn't do. I searched etsy--and it's amazing how many people have commercially-made clasps listed under handmade, something etsy's currently trying to clrear up--but couldn't find on that looked right.  Then I remembered that I had some stuff from the last time I was playing with sterling and stones (years ago, that was) stashed in a drawer and, sure enough, there was a lovely little, but not too little, silver and carnelian clasp with a safety latch--just the thing. 

I put it all together, showed Seth, wore it to my craft group--I wondered about the length, but consensus is that it's right.

So, finally, I put a dress on my dummy, added the necklace, and took some photos.  I may need to redo them--the reflections make things difficult and I don't think I got the clasp--but I want to share some here and would appreciate comments. So here they are (hope I get the placement right this time!)

Sunday, March 21, 2010 F1 Key Virus F1 Key Virus

Posted using ShareThis F1 Key Virus F1 Key Virus

Posted using ShareThis

Four steam punk leather bracelets or cuffs for BJDs made and posted!

I am so pleased! I was trading stuff at my Tues night crafts group and got a necklace with leather & wood & maybe cork beads. One set of the leather ones just HAD to be made into steam punk doll bracelets for my BJDs (they fit other dolls around the same size too). You can see them scrolling past in my store slideshow or go over to The Creative Block and look at more pics while they're not moving.
They're a little clunky, but that's partly the style. Next batch, I think, will be more delicate. Leslie

Friday, March 19, 2010

from my friend Gail, about spontaniety & flexibility etc.


Too many people put off something that brings them joy just because they haven't thought about it, don't have it on their schedule, didn't know it was coming or are too rigid to depart from their routine.

I got to thinking one day about all those women on the Titanic who passed up dessert at dinner that fateful night in an effort to cut back. From then on, I've tried to be a little more flexible.

How many women out there will eat at home because their husband didn't suggest going out to dinner until after something had been thawed? Does the word 'refrigeration' mean nothing to you?

How often have your kids dropped in to talk and sat in silence while you watched 'Jeopardy' on television?

I cannot count the times I called my sister and said, 'How about going to lunch in a half hour?' She would gasp and stammer, 'I can't. I have clothes on the line. My hair is dirty.. I wish I had known yesterday, I had a late breakfast, It looks like rain.' And my personal favorite: 'It's Monday.' She died a few years ago. We never did have lunch together.

Because Americans cram so much into their lives, we tend to schedule our headaches.. We live on a sparse diet of promises we make to ourselves when all the conditions are perfect!

We'll go back and visit the grandparents when we get Steve toilet-trained. We'll entertain when we replace the living-room carpet... We'll go on a second honeymoon when we get two more kids out of college.

Life has a way of accelerating as we get older. The days get shorter, and the list of promises to ourselves gets longer. One morning, we awaken, and all we have to show for our lives is a litany of 'I'm going to,' 'I plan on,' and 'Someday, when things are settled down a bit.'

When anyone calls my 'seize the moment' friend, she is open to adventure and available for trips. She keeps an open mind on new ideas. Her enthusiasm for life is contagious. You talk with her for five minutes, and you're ready to trade your bad feet for a pair of Roller blades and skip an elevator for a bungee cord.

My lips have not touched ice cream in 10 years. I love ice cream. It's just that I might as well apply it directly to my stomach with a spatula and eliminate the digestive process The other day, I stopped the car and bought a triple-Decker. If my car had hit an iceberg on the way home, I would have died happy.

Now..go on and have a nice day. Do something you WANT to.....not something on your SHOULD DO list. If you were going to die soon and had only one phone call you could make, who would you call and what would you say? And why are you waiting?

Make sure you read this to the end; you will understand why I sent this to you.

Have you ever watched kids playing on a merry go round or listened to the rain lapping on the ground? Ever followed a butter fly's erratic flight or gazed at the sun into the fading night? Do you run through each day on the fly? When you ask ' How are you?' Do you hear the reply? ??? ???

When the day is done, do you lie in your bed with the next hundred chores running through your head? Ever told your child, 'We'll do it tomorrow..' And in your haste, not see his sorrow? Ever lost touch? Let a good friendship die? Just call to say 'Hi?

When you worry and hurry through your day, it is like an unopened gift....Thrown away...... Life is not a race Take it slower. Hear the music before the song is over.

To those I have sent this to... I cherish our friendship and appreciate all you do.

'Life may not be the party we hoped for... but while we are here we might as well dance!