Wednesday, October 27, 2010

My Lap is on Fire...

....because this laptop is burnin' up some photo editing:

The Capitol

I think I might have to print and see what it looks like.  When I first look at the colors in the sky it feels like they're pulling on my eyes...then the cool green settles them down.  Who would've thought you could actually feel a picture like that?

There are some more Capitol pics that I played with out in my Flickr album...let me know what you think!

Steampunk Soft Flex Stalking: PointyKitty

I was out wandering the Internet looking for goodness and came across the Soft Flex "Flex Your Creativity Beading Contest"'s time to vote on the finalists!  The theme this year was "Steampunk" which is kind of a cool take on components...rough and strong are used to reflect beauty and intelligence.  Most steampunk pieces feature gears, watch components, hardware, keys and other antique or aged bits and bobs turned into one-of-kind, handmade, multimedia creations.

I'm not honestly a huge fan of the steampunk style, but am always interested to see the latest and greatest, so I checked out the entries.  I know some of my friends and fellow bloggers have entries in there, which are all very cool...but, my favorite piece is this one by Alyska Bailey Peterson.  The mixed metal tones are the best part.  It makes me want to go bust out my base metal beads and wire and get something going.

"The Last Ten Minutes of the Lost City"

There's more to the story, though...I got permission to show this picture.  The funny thing, though, is that the entries only have the name of the piece and the artis.  So, I had to go on a bead stalking adventure to find out more about this girl and her work! haaaaaaa

Hence, I found her website at Pointykitty Studios.  That name just cracks me up!!!  Plus, there are more designs in her Pointykitty Studios Etsy shop.  When I contacted her to admit my stalking, she was sweet...apparently she has plans for a larger steampunk line, but they sell before she can photograph them and list them.  Wouldn't I love to have that problem!?  haaaaaaaaaa

So, I'm sharing my new finds as well as encouraging you to check out the other candidates in the Soft Flex contest because there weren't very many votes out there (which I can tell because after I voted, it reports the numbers for each piece.)  So, click here and go check them out.  I'd love to here what you think...or if you have a design out there, share a link!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Bring on the Shaterra

A couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to win the Art Bead Scene drawing in the September Challenge.  I didn't realize how lucky, though, until I redeemed the gift certificate for Shaterra Clay Studio.  Sharleen Newland's ceramic pendants are FANTASTIC!  I've had them out on my kitchen counter just so I could see them when I walked by...I even took them into my local bead shop so we could all oooohhhh and ahhhhh over them.  If you want to see more, check out her blog and then skip on over to her website.  I have a lot of them on my Etsy fave's too hard to pick just one.

I was motivated by my latest adventures with the Pantone Fall 2010 Color Report to bring out the "Golden Glow" and when I was looking through my stash, this donut was absolutely the perfect piece of goldness with a glowing raku finish. 

In addition to the Shaterra donut, I used some lampwork rounds from Loupiac de Gatteville and a ceramic round by Natalie Pappas from NKPBeads.  It has been a while since I went asymmetric, so I like how the art beads are balanced.

On that note, I'll send a little shout out to my friends on the Beads of Clay blog...I feel like they've opened up a whole new world of art beads that come from earthen clay.  Many thanks, Sharleen!!

Monday, October 25, 2010

More Pantone & - Woodbine This Time

Woodbine. Or, in other words, Army Green. You'd think I'd see enough khaki in my day to day military job, but with our latest Air Force uniforms, it's more of a dull gray than anything that would keep you hidden in a forest. So, back to pretty...Woodbine. This is Pantone's green in their Fall 2010 Color Report. Some freshwater pearls in a pretty olive color were my pick...

I went with shiny copper wire to create a funky little bracelet with tons of wire wrapping--I had to practice to be imprecise.  I adore little bangles and this design was fun and quick, so I see more of them on the horizon...there are lots of pearls out there!

Disclosure...As a parter in the Designers program, I received the olive freshwater pearls free of charge. I've been asked to review these products and give my honest opinion of the products...positive or negative. I am not being compensated by for my endorsement as it pertains to the products received and reviewed.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Pantone's Fall & Living Coral

As a parter in's blogging program, I was lucky enough to help celebrate the season with the latest hot colors according to the Pantone's Color Report for Fall 2010 in the Colors of Fall challenge.

I love they way Pantone describes the can taste, touch, and smell them...not just see them. 

Let me start with orange...okay, it's not really orange, it's Living Coral which is a "softer, more inviting orange with a hint of pink undertone."  How about an "accent in Tangerine?"  It's a "spirited color with an energizing effect."  Love it!!!  I started with a little pile of coral Swarovski pearls.  I wasn't really sure about the sheen and finish on them when I first opened my package, but the matte shine and richness grew on me...uh, I guess I felt the spirit and the energizing effect.

I dug out some memory wire and went for overload!  I often feel like I need Tim Gunn looking over my shoulder encouraging editing...but, this is one case where I threw him out the window and put on whatever I wanted.  There are some green Swarovski pearls that add another texture and then some olivine Swarovski crystals.  Oh, I threw in some purple, too, just 'cause I like it.

From there it was all art beads...all the time...coral-based lampwork rounds from Libelula Designs and perfectly colored lampwork disks from HMB Studios.

Since I started this time with the bracelet--usually the necklace comes first in my brain's processing--I kept my art bead groove on for the necklace.

In addition to the lampwork disks and rounds, I pulled out a little ceramic goodness that I picked up a few weeks ago at Art on the Avenue in the Del Ray section of Alexandria, Virginia.  Curt, my sweetie husband, was the perfect art festival companion...he let me shop and browse and shop some more as long as he got yummy festival snacks!  haaaaaaaaa  This gorgeous pendant is from Ceramic's signed on the back by Olivia with an '03 date.  She said it was one of her first pendant pieces, so I felt like I found a little treasure in her bowl of pendants and shards.

Disclosure...As a parter in the Designers program, I received the coral Swarovski pearls free of charge. I've been asked to review these products and give my honest opinion of the products...positive or negative. I am not being compensated by for my endorsement as it pertains to the products received and reviewed.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Why did the chicken cross the road?

Okay, it's a rooster...but, still, he has to get across for some reason...

To shop at a cute little bead shop in Occoquan, Virginia, for a ton of pretty things
To demonstrate a perfect Project Runway walk.  (Mondo kicks ass!)
To get out of my sister's driveway so he doesn't get run over. (Like one of his relatives.)
Maybe it was just to get to the other side and get on with his day.  :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Orange You Glad It's Autumn?

I sure am! haaaaaaaaaa Mind you, it's 90 degrees out, so it's not exactly feeling like it's supposed to, but I'll take it. I had a chance to visit with my four favorite little nephews, Steven, Kevin, Liam & Austin. They are so fun to be around, but make me appreciate my livealoneness since I actually get some peace and quiet once in a while, unlike my siblings.

I cut pumpkins up into jack-o-lanterns with Kevin, whose favorite part was the "brain" that came dripping out of the eye. He's a kindergartner, so I guess that's just how it is. From out there in the driveway working, there's a view of a small maple in the yard that's just about on fire with yellow-gold-orange-redness.  Gorgeous!!

My friend, Jason, just gave me the greatest fall news...there's a marching band competition in Norfolk this weekend!!!  haaaaaaaaa  As a former Syracuse drum major, he's more of a bandcamp nerd than I am, so we've already got our plans together for geeking out with some kickass drumlines!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Cider Spirited Bracelets

Last week during an Etsy shopping spree, I found some lovely big ceramic beads by Natalie Pappas of NKPBeads...she called them "apple crunching raku" which is just down the autumn-y leaf-strewn street in my mind.  Rolling them around in my hands, I perused my random stash and found some cool pieces with big enough holes to fit on some bigger wire...the faceted golden glass is new from Kansas City and the little brass starburst thingies are sooooo cool!  I've been waiting for the perfect reason to use them.

So, here are my two bits of bling that are channeling the spirit of apples and cider and all the cinnamon goodness wandering through my mind!

Aren't those big green raku beads amazing!

And, here's a few more of them combined with some brighter red wooden beads and some HMBStudios glass "green apple" of course!  haaaaaaaaaa

I'm all prepped now for my trip to Pennsylvania.  But, in the meantime,...these bracelets are both available in ye olde Etsy shop

Monday, October 4, 2010

Boys--A Great Reason for a Blog Break

Well, it's just one boy...and one boy cat.  :)

I've been off the blog for a while because my sweet husband, Curtis, has been home for a while on his R&R leave.  We've had lots of good time to catch up and lounge around together--since we've been married we've only really spent about two weeks in the same house, so it has been wonderful to have him here.  But, alas, he leaves again this week for another four months of his Afghan adventure. 

His kitty, Brando, was happy to have him home, too...can't you see the joy on his little one-eyed face!  haaaaaaaa

It hasn't all been just the two of us holed up here in the apartment...there has been some on-the-road adventures...and some beads.  We went out to Kansas City and had a wonderful visit with his family.  It was a quick trip, but we got to catch up with his Mom, Dad, brothers, sisters, and some fun nephews.  Plus, I was able to get the girls to stop into a couple of bead shops around the city--I have some serious goodness to share later on. 

The amazing discovery of the trip wasn't the bead shops, though, it was frozen margarita popsicles called Shark Attack Margaritas!!!  They're like those freezie juice things that you buy in a plastic sheath as liquid and then freeze.  They're only available in Kansas and Missouri at the moment, but watch out...they are awesome! 

I'm trying to get myself some projects set up for when my sweetie's gone and I get all sad and lonely...
- Teaching at Bead Haven on the 16th & 17th, so if you're around here in Hampton, come on down and get your beadin' learn on. 
- I'm in a jewelry swap courtesy of the greatest group moderator, Lori Anderson...I'm paired with Ms. Erin Prais-Hintz,designer extraordinaire.  We get to send each other a piece of finished jewelry from our stash--one that's okay, but just not awesome--and then tear them up and remake them into something new.
- I'm off to my cousin, Jacey's, wedding in Pennsylvania next weekend--I'll share the pretties that I contributed to her event afterwards when I have the full complement of pics.
- Oh, and there's the Fall Foliage festival back in my hometown...think orange & yellow leaves all over the place, the sound of a cider press, and the smell of funnel cakes. 
- I guess I should think working out, not funnel cakes...oh well!!  haaaaaaaaaa


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Bedford, PA, United States
I'm a retiree/artist/student who makes things. It's a nice kind of lifestyle!

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