Giveaways are so much fun....

Ruthie at Rose Works Jewelry is doing her first giveaway of the year.  With about 5 million hoops to jump through ;)  But her excitement is catching.  Winner's announced on Saturday morning.  Maybe I'll win.. maybe not.  I love the suspense.

And like I said, her excitement is catching.  Maybe I'll do a giveaway of my own one of these days.

My Bead Soup

As my soup is cooking along, and after Lori's email this morning about blog traffic, I've come up with what I think is a wonderful idea.  One of Lori's suggestions was to let readers know that you'd be doing something special, like giving your piece(s) to charity, etc.  I'm going to go further than that.

When I'm done, and the reveal is over,  I will be putting my pieces on Ebay with 100% of the final bid going to the Kay Yow Cancer Fund, which is a part if the Jimmy V Foundation.

Now if you don't know who Kay Yow or Jim Valvano are, you are missing out.  I've never met either one, but both are near and dear to my heart.  They were both head coaches for the NC State Women's and Men's Basketball teams, respectively.  Jim Valvano led my team to their last NCAA Championship.  Granted I was only 6 years old at the time, but it's still a vivid memory.  He died of bone cancer just ten years later.  Now, Kay Yow is a legend in her own right.  I will be 34 years old in May.  Up until her death from breast cancer, there had never been another women's basketball coach at NC State in my entire life.

Why are these two people so important to me?  I was born and raised in Raleigh, NC, right in the heart of Wolfpack country.  I had been a fan since I was old enough to understand.  When the time came, NC State was the only school I applied to. I never even considered going anywhere else. 

So anyway, that's what I'll be doing with my finished pieces.  Thanks to Lori for the wonderful idea.


Some Thoughts

I'm thinking about trying a couple of things.

First I need to clear out some of my stash.  I have beads that I bought for a specific purpose and have a ton left over.  I just don't know what to do with them.  So I'll probably have a de-stashing sale in my shop up next week.

Second I'm thinking about adding an item that's customizable, but simple.  Like these:

They're quick and easy and incredibly cute.  Plus I have several different colors of E beads so a buyer could choose their color.

What do you think?


Another late night

It never fails.  I'm chuggin' along, listing items, creating new items, taking and editing pictures, and before I know it, it's after 2am.  Where does the time go?


My latest project

Three days ago, I had a clasp, some beautiful seed beads, and a vision.  Over 2000 beads, one catastrophic spillage, and a good amount of glue later, my vision was reality.

The photos don't do the colors justice, they are absolutely gorgeous.  Plus the clasp is Hill Tribes fine silver, which I scored at Ornamentea.

Now the question is this:  Should I leave it as is, or add a microscope glass pendant with a dragonfly theme?  I'm undecided.  Suggestions?


My Soup has arrived!!

My bead soup came in the mail today, courtesy of CJ.  I felt like a kid on Christmas morning.  The assortment I got is absolutely stunning!

I've never done a whole lot with the more chocolaty colors, but I can't wait to start playing and see what happens.


Trying something new...

I've decided to try my hand at something new.  The idea was planted in my head before Christmas while I was at Barnes and Noble browsing the craft section.  I came upon a book called "Beaded Chain Mail Jewelry" by Dylon Whyte.  I absolutely fell in love.  I'm happy to say that a used copy of the book is on it's way to me right now courtesy of half.com.  

In the meantime, I've been dabbling a little.  I'm actually making an attempt at a complete bracelet, simple as it may be.  I'm quite excited about how it's looking so far.

What you see there is ~2.5" of sterling silver and copper 4mm jump rings: 2 rings of silver in each silver link and 3 rings of copper in each copper link.  I can't wait till it's finished.

The only thing holding my back right now is a lack of silver rings.  I ran out :O  Ah well, I'll have more soon and will get back to work. 


As promised, may I present...

My finished product.  It turned out better than I expected.  But how can it not with such a cute little owl?  

I'm quite proud of how it turned out.  More paper beads could be in my future.


Back to your regularly scheduled program...

As I said last night, I was going to write about a Margot Potter inspired project.  But I got sidetracked.  That's ok, because I'm here to talk about it now.  

I was at Michael's a couple of weeks ago, wandering through the kid's craft section, when I saw a book about paper beads.  I had never heard of such a thing until then.  So I flipped through the book, and got the gist of the process.  Pretty simple, really.

Fast forward to a few days ago.  Again, I was wandering through Michael's, this time in the scrapbooking section looking for owl stickers.  No such luck, but as I was leaving I happened to see a coordinating series of scrapbooking paper, one sheet of which has the cutest little owls across the top.  And much to my surprise, they were $0.20 at the register, rather than the $0.80 on the display.  Score!

But I digress...

Cute owl paper + memory glass = a nifty pendant

Coordinating paper + glue + glaze = paper beads

Add in a few clay beads and silver-colored beads, and I've got myself a necklace.  I'll post the finished piece tomorrow...


Not exactly a snow day.

As a general rule, as long as I can remember, central North Carolina does not get snow.  That's not quite right.  We get snow sometimes.  It's either feast or famine.. a crippling amount, or flurries at best.

No, we get ICE.  Yes, ice.  Where the tiniest thickness on a road can send a car careening out of control.  Where the weight as it melts and re-freezes breaks limbs off trees, sometimes bringing a whole tree down.  It also takes out powerlines, so people lose power when they need it most.

So, I can't really say I'm snowed in.  I'm iced in. You couldn't pay me to try and drive anywhere today.  I've been stuck in the house all day. But, I've come up with a way to get rid of some of my stash of seed beads that I don't know what else to do with... I'm gonna make stretchy bracelets, each with a shrinky dink plastic charm, traced, colored, and cooked by your truely.  They'll be cheap and hopefully popular with some younger people.

At any rate, it'll give me something to do, and if nothing else, give them away free with a purchase.

Blue Jeans and Coincidences

I was going to write about my latest project tonight, inspired, coincidentally, by a project in Beyond the Bead, by Margot Potter.

I say coincidentally because I was browsing the blogs of other Bead Soup partiers, and randomly chose Margot's blog.


Bead Soup Blog Party

Several days ago, as I was browsing through other jewelry-related blogs, I stumbled upon Pretty Things by Lori Anderson, and her

Bead Soup Blog Party
Now I'm fairly new to the whole blogging thing, and this Blog Party concept amazed me.  What better way to introduce myself and meet other bloggers?  I'm pretty excited about it and have been feverishly digging through my stash for something good.  Something, maybe, that I don't know myself what to do with - to see how someone else's creativity brings it to life.  Like I said, I'm pretty excited about it. 


Black and Purple

A lot has happened since my last post.  Well, not a lot really, I just got married is all.  So I took a well deserved break.  Now it's back to work.  Slowly but surely I'm getting new pictures taken and at least posted on flickr.  I'm slower getting them on Etsy.  But I'll get there. I listed on of my favorites last night:

It's a good sized glass teardrop.  Absolutely gorgeous purple flower bursting from a black background.  I feel like this is a necklace that could be worn with jeans and a t-shirt, but at the same time, be downright stunning with that LBD.  Like I said, one of my favorites.


Photography... my nemesis...

Ok, so, this whole photography thing has got me stumped.  I thought I had a good thing going, but something's not right.  It's either too much light, too little light, or not diffused enough.  Or maybe it's the camera.  Unfortunately I cannot afford a better one right now.  Ah well, until then, I'm back to using old pictures.  In the meantime, I'm researching and asking advice.  Just how does one go about taking good pictures with a simple point and shoot camera?