Friday, October 30, 2009

Have not been posting much here since the open studio show. I got 12 commissions from that and didn't feel I should be show them off. Got them all done (but one - waiting on an order) so I have gone back to making what pleases me. I had so many chips from ordering the chip promo deals from Fire Mountain so have started a series of these lanyard necklaces (anything to avoid findings!) I love how easy they are to get on and the central hanging interest divides us phat ladies into two acceptable parts!
Here you can see the stitch I used in the crystal contest entry. In the narrow parts it is done plain and with the crystals I added one to each step up. Here however, I used two chips per step - partly because I had so many, but mostly because I love the chunkier look.
Bambi had sent the round green donut from her visit as my personal shopper to the Moab Rock and Gem Show. When I saw it I thought, "I'll never find a use for that." and now it is the first thing I have used! Good she shopped for me or I never would have bought it! Thanks kid!

A Finalist!

Just got the notice from Fire Mountain that this necklace is a finalist in the Swaroski Crystallized Contest. Only early in September did I get the notice about the contest for using Swaroski crystals and the deadline was Sept. 21 so there was no way I could get an order in and back, and make the necklace, mail it and have it arrive on time. I had several crystals left over from making the lights on the Christmas tree and the large one I had ordered not knowing which color I wanted for another necklace.
I searched through all my beads scourounging up every crystal I could find and even cannabilizing other efforts! I piled these treasures together and from counting them, I determined the design. This was the best I could do with what I had on hand! Since the piece had to have a title I called it "Clearly My All" because I had used up every crystal I had.
The stitch is the ordinary spiral chain but I added a crystal in each step up. I was surprised how impressive such a simple idea became. Since most people use crystals for stringing I am hoping that my enjoyment of doing this sewing stitch will set my work apart. Also the embellishing, which I love to do, is not often seen and each of us embellishes in a very different way. Cross your fingers and wish me luck!

Friday, October 16, 2009

A visitor to the Open Studio last weekend brought in this lovely old jade dragon and wanted it to have a new necklace made for it. She liked the two-string random beading so we picked out the colors and yesterday I got around to doing this. I hope she will be as pleased with the result as I am!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Got all the lizards done for Lena's order. Am hoping it will quit raining so I can go to town (Point Arena) to deliver them to her store (Everything Under the Sun).

I ordered so many of these pin backs from Fire Mountain, so now I had to find ways to use them. Circular forms; wreaths. How easy can it get?
Today is the first day in a long time that I woke up without a "to-do" list so my mind is frolicking around asking,"What do you want to do?" and here I am!
Sold all my suncatchers except one so last night I prepared a bunch for embellishing. That is a good thing to do in the rain. Embellishing suncatchers. There is a small haiku joke in there somewhere.
rain on the window

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Photos from the Open Studio held on October 9, 10, 11. We did very well! All three days were busy. Saturday brought more lookers than buyers but Sunday and the commissions made up for that. The weather was supposed to be sunny, but the storm that arrived on Monday was already making clouds. At least it was dry and folks could get in and out of their cars without getting wet.
This is Rhoda Teplow with her pieces using many African trade beads. She had a harder sell since her actual beads cost more than the glass beads, so her prices had to be higher. Many said my prices were too low, but glass beads allow me to try many new things and then sell the experiments for reasonable prices.

The Independent Coast Observer, local weekly paper, carried an item about the Christmas scene win at Fire Mountain, and I was surprised how many people came in the door asking to see the work. A lady even came back on Monday with her camera to take a photo of it.
What sold the best for me? All my polyclay Halloween pumpkins went early and I could surely have sold earrings like I wore if I had had more. All the lizards (except the pink one) sold and I got orders for 5 more. Got a couple orders for necklaces in colors other than the ones I had. Another lady came back on Monday so we could design a necklace for her sister in London in mauve. I enjoyed that!
Many liked the spiral stitched adjustable necklaces and things with the Cubic Zirconia drops on them went quickly. Even the earrings at $30 all sold.
All in all the experience was good. We did lack light because the big florescent light went out and even new bulbs did not bring it back. We tried putting up all the spare lamps in the house. If the big doors had been open light would have been okay, but I have to do something about lights in the studio now. Did agree to be in the Christmas show in Point Arena in December.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Today is the day! The Open Studio with Rhoda! While she unpacks her things, here is a scan of the earrings I will be wearing. Made of polyclay. Only made the witches because I discovered that weird green color and felt it was perfect witch complexion.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Close up of the bottom.

Wednesday at Gualala Arts Center
The pillar is installed and all the beads are still on it. Naturally it doesn't photograph well and also my hands were still shaking so there is a certain lack of professionalism in the shots.
Sue showed up even before I could call her and she was extremely helpful. She got up on the cherry-picker and made the hook up. To my surprise we could use the crossbeam with all the lights! A good sized nail was already there, and best of all! the piece was exactly has long as the distance to the crossbeam. So no chain was needed! Perfect!
Sue was very comforting as the bead strands did end at various lengths and she simply suggested I add some knots and in minutes we had the bells brushing the stone floor in a perfect solution! Was so relieved. I had visions of myself sitting on that floor for days adjusting the length of the strings.
Also, from my calculations, the prism would be about 8 feet off the floor, but it isn't. Unbelievable. I think spirits worked on the piece when I got too tired to go and they really did it up right. Am so thankful!
Thanks to Scott who drove the cherry-picker and was so kind and calm!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Yesterday I was fiddling with the options for suspending the pillar. I hated the white nylon strings that looked so messy so I cut them all out. While looking for the hook for the ceiling in the tool cupboard I found about 15 feet of chain links I had bought years ago to suspend a lamp.
Perfect! The three supports fit right into the links and I easily got the top looking a lot neater. With the chain over the garage door support I could slowly raise up the whole thing. Naturally it hung crooked ( I made this!) but I was able to scoot the supporting chains back and forth until it hung straight - or more straight than it is in this photo.
Now to buy more chain (I do not know how high the ceiling will be - it slopes and will depend on where they put it). Asked Sue Friedland if she would go up on the cherry-picker for me. Hope she will. Need to assemble a repair packet to take with me. Otherwise, this is kind of done. Oh, Werner was helping me and he measured the distance I was using for the strings and we found out they are 20 feet long, not 14 as I had planned.

Friday, October 2, 2009

This is the frame with some of the strands tied on it. Each strand is in a plastic bag so they don't tangle. I have it in a box so I can move all those parts around together. I am hoping to take out the white string as it looks very messy.

At the end of yesterday I had all the strands tied on the frame for the pillar shrine except the center one. I had to add more beads. It may turn out to be too short yet. Today I plan to try hanging the frame with the strands in plastic bags to see how it balances. I tried to select strands of equal weights to oppose one another, but am worried about how it will balance in the end. Am getting very nervous about whether this piece will work or not.