Thursday, September 29, 2011

Ah what a difference getting out the big camera with a backdrop makes. It was worth the effort hauling stuff in from the garage and even the couple of hours trying to get the necklace photographed on black velvet - which absolutely did not work.
By the time I realized that white on white was best, the afternoon light was already fading. But the sharp angle of the sun gave me that dark background. Thank goodness the sun is shining again today.
I am working on the blue necklaces now. I find it really helpful to leave the beading cord extra long and running it through several stones so it holds well enough for me to hang the necklace, let my hot ideas cool off and if necessary, make adjustments before crimping and cutting it off.
I love all the 'stuff' going on in this! However, when I laid aside the first one with the idea of adding more to it, it suddenly seemed so simple and. . . good for what it was.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Yesterday's necklace is still not finalized. I need to think on it a bit more. I found that by leaving a long tail on the bead wire I can move the necklace around and still be about to open it up and redo any part that does not hang right. I did a second one in similar colors but needs more immediate care before I show it to you. Each day I vow to set up the photo backdrop to get better photos than just these wobbly scans. Really not fair to you!

That is a Debbe Hulle lampwork bead as focal point.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

It does pay to redo things! I often think of 'stringing' as the easy part of a necklace or the less time consuming part of the job but for some reason re-stringing this seemed to take up most of the afternoon. I am often amazed when a necklace "takes over and tells me what to do." I had no idea of having the dangle on the side but somehow in this version the large-link copper colored chain was just that much too long. Rather than cut it to fit I added the stone dangle. I am getting eager to make photos of this series with the proper set-up but hanging the backdrop is such a hard job and I hate the plastic smell of it so it has to be done in the garage.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Here you can see what happens when I put the shorter section of tubing at the top. If you could see it on the neck of a real person you would notice that the side interests sit far too high. Also the thicker, longer section of tubing does not hang right. It needs the 'drape' of the softer tubing. So the job today will be to cut this one apart and to redo it.
However the work was not wasted as I have a new idea on how to made the second beaded section better and faster. Instead of sewing it in with thread, I will make the section on the beading wire with loops at both ends. Then I can thread it on the main loop and get chain and beads done together. This will encourage me to add MORE to the bottom. . .

In this photo it is hard to see that the brownish lump on the left is a bottle covered with 15s. A lot of work that gets wasted here.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The joy of this design continues! I am still making the neck loop too large. I think the problem is because my 'tubes' were made too large to begin with. Am eager to try another necklace with a shorter tube to see if I can get myself to correct this 'error' by understanding the piece instead of measuring it. It really helps me to see scans of the works. It is so hard for me to be critical about the actual piece because I am so overwhelmed that it turned out as good as it is.

I am hoping I can get to the new necklace this afternoon. I have promised myself to pack up books for shipping, but I really want to just want to sit in my chair, listen to Margaret George's story of Elizabeth - The Virgin Queen as an audio book and make necklaces.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

I got a second one made in just one day only because I had done all the tubes before. I am very pleased with this one and feel I am making each one better than the last. Found a way to suspend the chains on the wire center so I can avoid jump rings.

I like the shorter ones like this one so the excitement is closer to the throat. I did not redo the one from yesterday after I tried it on and felt that for a tall woman it was just the right length. Last night at midnight I had another necklace in gold tones on the tray.

There is enough the same on them so I can confidently move into the creation part and yet there are so many options that every necklace can be different.

Unfortunately the chains do not hang well in a scan so I am going to have to set up the photo stuff again. Also I need some good photos for Etsy. I could post more items if I had the photos. . .

Friday, September 23, 2011

Finally got up the courage to put one of these new necklace designs together. All month I have making tubes, just because they are fun and I love doing them. However I had been putting off the actually completing the design because I felt I needed to be feeling really good in order to give the job my very best. I did this yesterday and then stayed awake for hours in the night planning the revisions. I am hoping to make them this afternoon, but first I wanted to show you the initial attempt.

Much of my time at the computer this week has been given to getting seven items up on Etsy. What a lot of work and there is still so much to do even before anyone does order something. My shop is called BeadsNJane .

Sandy has been marvelous at hand-holding and giving me pages of possible corrections to my postings. She has been simply super.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Our bead group, Beads N' Beyond, had a very successful meeting yesterday thanks to efforts of Sandy Smith. She talked about her experiences selling her silverwork jewelry on Etsy. Wow, what a power presentation. On her computer we could visit her site, and she compiled a fantastic hand-out with all her points, figures and addresses. You can check out her site but you really missed something if you were not there for her enthusiastic and down to earth talk.
Several members had tried, or at least investigated Etsy, so for some Sandy's comments were encouragement and validation. For others she introduced all the processes and skills need to run a successful store online.
There is a lot to do in the set-up but for someone like me with so many beaded works and less and less ability to do vendor booths, I feel I must make another attempt. Armed with the handout I intend to start up again.
Thanks Sandy!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Am back to beading and how much better I feel! I have something to lead me forward. The new ideas are like carrots to my days.

Then this morning I got the notice from Fire Mountain that the Circle of Hope Beads are posted on this site . I was thrilled to see that one of my beads (the one in the right hand upper corner )was used in the advertisement! Right next to mine, as if they knew our connection, is one of Debbe Hall's lampwork beads (with the big bright flowers). I think Debbe, ever generous as she is, had contributed more beads than anyone else! At the website you can see all the beads donated which will be for sale in October.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Flaying. I think that is the word that describes my approach to bead work in recent weeks. I knew I wanted to have my beads take me somewhere but had no idea where that was. Makes picking projects very dicey.
Then yesterday, after picking up the unsold "Ghost Mouse Returns to the Great Pumpkin" from Art in the Redwood - which should have greatly depressed me - I stopped at Carla Fagan's for a Studio Discovery Tour visit. It was such a joy to see her work and scope out where she gets her beads and what she has that I do not. It was interesting. . . I really stopped to see her double strand necklaces because I have had nudges to go in that direction. Amazingly she only had one ($1,735.) because she had sold the other one. All the rest of her over 30 necklaces were single stands. Lovely yes, but I was looking for more. . . excitement? inspiration?

On the way home I realized what I was looking for what I had been doing in these two necklaces! I get to combine my delight in bead weaving with the bands around the neck (and have smooth 'no clasp' parts under the hair and bead stringing in the front that is asymmetrical. So I had to see the work of someone whom I admire only to find my way back to my own work.

One thing I did learn from Carla was how to store and display my 'better' necklaces. She had each one in a glass covered black jewelry tray. Yes! I thought and then wondered how much those would cost. To my delight I found out they are called Riker cases and can be gotten from Fire Mountain for under $10. each. A new part of my admiring my own work is to give it dust-free, professional protection and display. All in all, a very productive day in spite of the big pumpkin still on my shelf.