Wednesday, August 26, 2009

(Kind of) a Celebrity

The title of this blog post was provided by my dad in response to an email I sent some friends & family about my news.

I was contacted by Fire Mountain Gems several months ago about being one of the featured artist "success stories" on their website. Jessica King with the company was a pleasure to work with. She was always upbeat, prompt and fun. She sent me some questions based on my work, blog and other info and we went from there. Thank you so much to Jessica and FMG for this opportunity. I'm flattered beyond belief!

A direct link to the article is here. You can also get there by following the right navigation bar on any page of the Fire Mountain Gems site to the Jewelry Artists link. They even took the time to cross-feature me in the Featured Artists and Beading Contests sections. They linked to all of my Gallery pieces, including the Bead-It-Forward beaded squares that I did with the fabulous Etsy Beadweavers.

Many thanks to the awesomeness of Libby with the Bluegrass Etsy Street Team, as well, for plugging this on our team blog so quickly after I tweeted this earlier in the week.

I'm still waiting to hear back from Bead&Button about the project that I submitted. I had an email from Lora stating that they had a meeting on the 21st, but I don't know when I'll hear back regarding that. Eep.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Happy Week - Friday

One of my muses needs to be mentioned during Happy Week - music. I can remember back to the time when my parents had just moved from Paducah to Eminence, living in the house on Fairview Court. I remember my dad would leave the stereo on at night in the living room. I would sneak out of my room at the end of the hall and dance around the living room to the music. My favorite song at the time, that I remember, was Xanadu by Olivia Newton John from the movie of the same name. Oh yes, you have to believe we are magic :)

I grew up in a household where music reigned. None of us were particularly musically inclined, though my mom did sing in the church choir and once played the clarinet. However, the images of me curled up on the old, black leather sofa with my dad's gigantic headphones on make me smile. I remember dancing on my dad's feet or watching him play air guitar when he rocked out to Black Sabbath, Cream or Eric Claptop. My mom listened to Simon & Garfunkel, Conway Twitty and Alabama. I lapped it all up - my first 45 was Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust" and I vividly remember my Shaun Cassidy album and doll, as well as the giant pic of Barbara Mandrell I had. My taste was, and still is, quite eclectic.

Music has always been there for me. There was a period of time when I listened to classical music on public radio as I went to sleep, the dance offs I'd have with my friends at their houses, the endless school dances that I went to despite the fact that I never really fit into any real group, singing in chorus and the church choir and the obligatory singing at the top of my lungs when I'm alone in the car.

Music moves me. It can make me cry, it can make me bounce around the room, it can help me express myself when words fail me and I need to borrow song lyrics to do so.

Music has gotten me through some rather rough spots in my life. Hearing Pearl Jam's "Deep" and Tori Amos's "Me and a Gun" helped me face my darkest moments. Simon & Garfunkel's "Cecilia" never fails to make me cop around the room. Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here" makes me smile and weep at the same time. "Head Like a Hole" was an anthem during college, dealing with ignorance and apathy.

When I can't create, I turn to music. I can't paint in a quiet room. Give me a glass of wine, some music and I'll grab a canvas.

Happy Week - Thursday

I know I'm actually running a day behind & this will mean two posts today, but honestly, I'm not sure I could have posted a happy week entry yesterday if I'd tried. It was a bad day, coupled with not getting my Zoloft refilled in a timely fashion which resulted in my being a slight wreck.

But, throughout the course of the day, I was reminded of something, or rather certain someones, who make me happy. My friends.

I'm not talking about fair weather friends, acquaintances or the like, not that they don't have their places in each of our lives, since I do, truly, believe that everything happens for a reason. I mean the friends who tell it like it is, know what you're going through, pick you up when you fall, dust you off and help you get back on your feet.

There's Dawn... wow, where to start. This girl, woman, crazy insane chick calls me her best friend and vice versa. I don't know what I'd do without her. Dawn and I met in 1998 when we both worked at Office Depot, Business Services Division (an office, not a sales floor, thankyouverymuch). I have never clicked with anyone like this before or since. I swear we've known each other in past lives. From 2000 miles away, she can call me and ask me what's going on - why am I upset? I'll call her and tell her to quit emoting because I'm feeling it across the country. She tells it like it is and doesn't sugar coat it and I do the same for her. I love her, seriously, in a "I will do anything for this woman" kind of way. I think the heavens for her. Our biggest problem is that we don't get to see each other enough, since I'm in Kentucky and she's in California.

My mom. Yes, she's my mom, but she's also one of the best friends a person can have. She's honest with me when I don't want to hear it, compassionate and there for hugs when I need them and there for a laugh when I need to be picked up. She's a beautiful soul who puts up with more crap than she should, but that's just the way she is.

Lega. He'll probably kill me for mentioning him, but he's a bright spot in my life. I can have intelligent conversations, meet him for a drink or just zone out. If he knows I'm having a craptastic day, he'll come over bearing Monty Python. He's good for giving me a hard way to go!

Paul. We might not be married anymore, but he remains one of my best friends. We can still crack jokes with each other, discuss our daughter's trials and accomplishments and call each other if we need something. I treasure his friendship.

Patty. I've known Patty since high school (um... 1992), through college and beyond, but it's really only in the last several years that she and I have truly connected on a "what in the world would I do without her?" level. We entertain each other in the mornings with emails, kvetch at lunch, offer advice and support on jewelry making techniques and understand raising a child as working moms. She's supportive, honest and I'm damn lucky to have her in my life.

Chris. He's always been up front with me, given me good advice and offered a smile when needed. We don't always see eye to eye and we've definitely pissed each other off, but that just happens to be the way that our friendship works.

Amber. My daughter, my life, my friend. I hope that she and I can continue to have the kind of relationship my mother and I have throughout the years.

There are others out there - Kassy, my coworkers at the library, the insane people at the radio station, fun people at the Chamber, etc.... people who have blessed my life in some way. They have shaped me and allowed me into their lives. I thank them for that.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Happy Week, Wednesday

Thinking about things that make me happy has been an odd kind of homework assignment. We spend so much of our time focusing on what we "need" to fix or what's wrong that we forget about everything else.

There are times when I'm at peace, when I can allow myself to be calm and feel without going over the edge one way or the other. I might not be bouncing off the walls jubilant, but the world is right and life is good. This is happiness. How do I classify this? Is it one thing that does it? No, I know of several off the bat, but one stands out, especially with my upbringing and education.


Be it creating, viewing or even just thinking about it, art makes me happy. I can be angry and focus that energy on a piece and be calmed. I can listen to music and put my feelings about the lyrics or music onto canvas. Letting my fingers sink into clay as I sculpt is pure bliss.

I love walking around art museums and galleries. When I lived in Southern California, I would make frequent trips to the Norton Simon Museum in Pasadena. Their collection of Impressionist art was quite large and I loved visiting Degas' Little Dancer, Age 14. There was something about her that spoke to me, as well as Degas' chalk pastels. I enjoyed seeing the strips of paper he would add on to the side because he wasn't happy with the composition and thought a piece needed to be larger this way or that.

I took trips to Chicago to see the Degas & Monet retrospectives, as well as to LA to see the Van Gogh exhibit. These artists were passionate. Their emotions were conveyed through the years to me through their brushstrokes on canvas, use of color or fingerprints in clay.

Judy Chicago, The Dinner Party

I'll never forget stepping into the Armand Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. I was working on a project for college, taking slides of works for my own catalog. There happened to be a Feminist art exhibit, featuring the Guerilla Girls, Miriam Shapiro and others. I was stunned. I was... I was happy. Seeing these women take on art as a social medium just blew my mind. What I didn't know was that a life-changing exhibit had been brought out of storage and was on display in the lower portion of the museum. There... there before me was Judy Chicago's The Dinner Party. I smiled, I cried, I rejoyced at what I saw before me.

I knew then and there what had been buried within me and who I was. I was, am and will always be an artist in some way, shape or form. That knowledge, plus seeing art from the masters, lesser knowns, those just starting, my friends and even my daughter, that makes me happy.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Happy Week - Tuesday

Yesterday's happy post featuring Amber was easy to do. Trying to figure out today has been off & on my mind through working at the gallery & the library.

I suppose it should have hit me like a ton of bricks, or at the very least, a cascade of seed beads. Beads. They make me happy. I can't pass the vials of tiny seed beads without stopping to see if there's a color that catches my eye. I see beads or findings and think about how I can put them together. Most of the time I start a project not knowing where I'm going. I pick out colors that I like and see what comes along or buy a bead buy another artisan and see what I can do to enhance the beauty of that piece.

I started beading almost 7 years ago. It would have been September of 2002 when I got pregnant and it was shortly thereafter that I found out. One of the first things that happened was my OB/GYN kicking me out of my studio where I painted. I searched for an outlet and came across Bead&Button in a local store. I figured what the heck, bought it and some inexpensive beads.

What started as stringing and learning basic techniques has escalated into an obsession with beads of all kinds - gemstone, crystal, polymer, silver clay, lampwork, but mostly, my tiny little seed beads. I adore all of the vials of Delicas and boxes of Czech seed beads in various sizes that hang on the pegboard on my wall. I relish learning new techniques and seeing what pops into my head.

My favorite way to bead is just to let go and let it be. Freeform work used to frighten me, but asymmetrical pieces and those that just make themselves up as they go along now thrill me. There are exceptions to the "rule" (like my love of beaded beads), but for the most part, I just let the beads tell me where they want to go. It is said that Michelangelo spoke that his sculptures were inside the marble already. I'm not saying I'm Michelanglo by any means, but I feel that way about my beadwork much of the time. They move me where they want to go. Heaven help me if I try to make them do something they don't want to!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Monday of Happy Week!

I almost forgot about Happy Week, as I've been dragging today, my body a little wilted from the Woodland Art over the weekend. I did well, not gangbusters, but I sold some of my favorite one of a kind pieces, including my crazy quilt bracelets.

What makes me happy? #1 is my daughter, Amber. I never really thought of myself as the "motherly" type and probably still wouldn't classify myself that way. Nothing in this world makes me as happy as this crazy kid. She extremely sharp, funny and talented. When she hugs me or wants to love on me, nothing else matters.

There are times when she reminds of me of myself, other times when I can see her dad in her. She cracks me up when I hear my grandmother's laugh come out. That belly laugh and cackle are like my Meemaw is here, smiling at me from somewhere beyond.

I'm sure as she gets older, we'll butt heads about boys, dating, curfews and the like, but until then, I'll take the arguments about school day bedtimes , sugar intake and how long she can play in the shower. If she takes after me even more, I'm sure she'll tell me how I'm wrong and verify everything with her teachers, just like I did to my mom.

I love her more than I ever thought I could possibly love anyone or anything.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Oh Happy Week

The fab Tab at TabMade blogged about her involvement in Curious Girl's "Happy Week" next week and I knew it was something that I wanted to do. I've been rather stressed lately and a happy week is definitely in order!

So, next week, every day, I'll post a photo and some ramblings about something that make me happy. A jump start is the photo to the left of the best thing in my world - my daughter Amber. She's nutty, brilliant and has such a sharp wit that she makes me giggle constantly. Nothing better in the world than that little girl's belly laugh.

Today is the unveiling of the Spragens Memorial that our Arts & Humanities Council raised the money for. Gene & Nadine Spragens were great benefactors to the arts in Marion County, bringing in performing arts, giving away tickets to shows and establishing scholarships for music students. The sculpture is absolutely gorgeous - brushed aluminum music staffs with blackened music notes spiraling in a double helix. It stands in front of the new Performing Arts & Culture Center and will stand as a testament to their influence in this community. I'd like to someday be remembered as someone who helped promote the arts, especially the visual arts, within the community. There's something to be said for what the arts can do, be it in education, therapy, release or just plain enjoyment. I owe so much to the arts, visual and performing alike.

Tonight, we unveil the sculpture, revel in live music, relive history and peruse original works of art in our little ol' town of Lebanon. And it makes me really happy.

Friday, August 7, 2009

New Treasuries!

After a bit of a dry spell, I woke up to my work in not one but two treasuries this morning!

The first, "Shades of Red", was curated by WhimsyBeading of the Bluegrass Etsy Street Team. It's gorgeous! Many thanks to her for including my Autumn Colors Crazy Quilt bracelet.

The second, "They Tried to Make Me Go to Rehab" is a hilarious homage to the Etsy Beadweavers' collective obsession with color, primarily purple and green with a little turquoise thrown in for good measure! Many thanks to LittleStoneDesign for including my What If I'm a Mermaid bracelet.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Mom's Outer Banks Necklace

My mom came back from the Outer Banks, North Carolina last year with a hand full of shells and one request - for me to make a necklace for her. I really agonized over it for a while: Do I try to drill through the shells? Do I back & embroider them? Do I use bails and make some funky charm necklace type piece? In the end, I decided to make right angle weave bezels for them... all 18 of them. There are 16 shells on the necklace and two that I used for a pair of earrings.

The center shell posed a different problem with its shape. Mom had originally requested that I try to drill it, but I was terrified that I'd break the shell. Instead, I used a minimal amount of silver wire to wrap it.

The shells are an off-white and lilac to medium purple mix and I used gray Czech seed beads for the bezels. The shells are interspersed with stick mother of pearl beads. I'm really happy with the results, as is she!

In other news, I submitted my project to Bead & Button. I should know by September if they've accepted the project. First time for submitting a project!

I'm still waiting on news from the Use the Muse project and the FMG results.

Friday, July 31, 2009

B.E.S.T. Treasury

WhimsyBeading created a treasury based on Bluegrass Etsy Street Team members and included my Green with Envy bracelet. The treasury, "It ain't easy being green (BEST)" is a plethora of shades of green.

I'm still waiting to hear about the FMG and Use the Muse results. I submitted some pieces to "Creative Jewelry" for publication but didn't get in. There's always next year, so I'll work on something for that. In the meantime, I'm working on a custom order for my mom with some shells that she picked up along the beach on the Outer Banks last year. I also need to order some Lapis for a custom necklace for a friend.

The last week hasn't been a fun one for me and I've made some decisions that I'm not quite ready to go public with yet. Let's just say one door closes and another opens.

Monday, July 20, 2009


Creativesque created a treasury based on FAM Team members and included my Redbud Earrings. The treasury is a beautiful riot of color.

I finished my Use the Muse entry and my friend Stephen helped me photograph it. I can't reveal it yet (per the rules) but I'm pretty happy with it.

I also made a piece on Friday that I'm really happy with. I'm going to plot this one out & submit it to B&B, I think. I can't remember seeing anything like it. I made it up as I went along, but it's not freeform, and it's not so elaborate that I wouldn't mind recreating it in order to write the instructions.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Many thanks to Kim Reis at Creative Eye Studio and the gang at the Bluegrass Etsy Street Team for featuring me and my appearance in the Fire Mountain Gems catalog in their blogs today! Please got check them out!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Voting & Treasury Time!

The entries for the July challenge, "Here Comes the Bride" are in! They are as always simply beautiful, creative and amazing! Etsy Beadweavers took the time and have the talent to create these inspiring challenge pieces! Tiny little beads and a needle and thread along with incredible patience bring these selections to you to vote and choose your favorite. I am so honored to be included with such a talented group of beaders!

You can click on the item in the text list below the mosaic on the EBW blog which links to the Etsy Shop listing of each entrant where you will see more detail of each piece!

Voting begins today, Thursday, July 9th and ends midnight July 15th. Show your appreciation for the efforts of these amazing artists and take on the difficult task of voting for your favorite. (The ballot is on the side bar at right on the EBW Blog.) Again, the individual pieces are listed below the mosaic where you can visit each entry for more information by following the link.

My entry, "The Mermaid Bride" is #25 in the mosaic and on the right in the voting block!

Also, GrumpyTomsAttic put together a treasury of folks like me who took the time to vote in the CCCOE challenge. Thanks so much! The treasury features my Magnolia Derby Hat.

Monday, July 6, 2009

I Did It - Finally!

After 4 years of rejection letters, I finally got into Kentucky Crafted! I was fully prepared to have to run to the grocery store for a consoling pint of Ben & Jerry's Chunky Monkey, but I actually made it. I have a mandatory meeting on the 21st of this month to attend regarding what's expected of me, attending Crafted at the Market, use of logos, etc., but I'm pretty excited. The program requires no rejurying in every year and can be helpful in getting into galleries or retail locations, which is exactly what I need. Things have been very slow lately and I'm having to contemplate taking a full-time job in order to make ends meet. I really don't want to let the gallery go, but I have to be realistic.

There's a fabulous treasury I'm in that expires in just a few hours. It features many of the entries for the July Etsy-Beadweavers Challenge - Here Comes the Bride, including my "The Mermaid Bride". Thanks to the lovely enchantedbeas for putting it together. Check out both of her shops!

Please visit the EtsyBeadWeavers’ blog between the 9th and 15th of July to see all the beautiful entries in this challenge and vote for your favourite!!!!

I also listed quite a few new pieces the other day (and I have many more lucite pieces to photograph & list, but there's only so many hours in a day!):

Grandma's Crazy Quilt Bracelet:
Pink Bud Earrings:
Redbuds Earrings:
The Mermaid Bride (again!):

Keep on Searching for a Heart of Gold:
Warm Fuzzies:

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Treasury Time

DaisiesAreOurSilver put together a Kentucky-themed treasury ("Kentucky loveliness") and was nice enough to feature one of my hats! Thanks so much!

I started my entry for the EBW July challenge and am still working on my entry for the Use the Muse contest. My wrists have been giving me grief, but I'm happy with both pieces thus far!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Oh what to write...

I've GOT to get better at blogging. My life has been a bit crazy lately, but I need to take some time to visit this place more often.

I got my beads in for the Use the Muse project. I've pulled some of my beads out to incorporate into the piece, but haven't really sat down & thought about where it'll go yet. Most of my pieces end up telling me where they want to go, anyway! I've drawn out a few pieces and they usually end up veering off from my original intent. They know where they want to go & they're not about to let me force them in any direction other than that one!

I started working on the July EBW challenge - Here Comes the Bride. I missed the June challenge of humor, but that's ok. I think I needed a month off! This piece is definitely leading me in a direction that I didn't think it was going to go!

I was in a treasury last week, but totally missed blogging about it. Boourns!

I got an email from Jessica King at Fire Mountain Gems last night with the copy for my Success Story. OMG! I'm so flattered. My jaw hit the floor and I grinned like an idiot after reading it. What a compliment! Once the story is up & posted, I'll link to it.

The earrings in the post are a pair that I did for my friend Jenn as a custom order. Very happy with the way they turned out!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Check out the Bluegrass Etsy Street Team

The fab Devin Prather featured me on the B.E.S.T. page on FaceBook and Libby has used it for the B.E.S.T. blog. I'm feeling pretty loved right now!

Also, I completely forgot to blog about our B.E.S.T. giveaway for this month, featuring a pair of my earrings!

Announcing our June Giveaway!

Ear Buds
These hand crafted earrings feature dangles of small lucite flowers in light pink, hot pink and baby blue with centers in various colors. Threaded on silver-plate headpins, each with a wrapped loop for extra security. Flowers dangle off sterling chain and hand-made sterling earwires. Full length of earrings is 1.75".
These earrings are valued at $20.

How Do I Enter?
In order to enter this drawing, please visit my store, These Precious Things, then go to the B.E.S.T. blog and post your comment. Tell the B.E.S.T. team what you like about my shop or tell us about your favorite item. If you post this giveaway on your blog, let us know that too, for an additional chance to win.

We'll draw a random winner on June 30.

Good luck to all!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Long time, No post!

The last few weeks have been rather hectic around here, so I haven't gotten to post, even though I've been creating new listings in my etsy store. I really haven't had time to bead, so the items I've been listing are ones that I've had in the gallery for a while, but had neglected to post. Most of that is rectified now, I'm pleased to say. In the last few weeks, my daughter graduated from Kindergarten, turned 6, won a slew of awards and has made me just an all around proud mom.

The always lovely Ileana of enchantedbeads included my Chrysoprase Earrings in her treasury, Gotcha!

New listings!

Also, a pair of my earrings is being given away over at the Bluegrass Etsy Street Team blog. Go check it out!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Featuring... Me!

Just got word from the fab SpoolOfPlenty that she's included my "Tulle Anyone?" hat in her latest Bluegrass Etsy Street Team treasury, "Wedding Time in Kentucky."

In other news, I had an email from Fire Mountain Gems in response to a submission I'd made about becoming one of their featured artists. Turns out, one of the ladies in marketing began following my blog and reading other features on me! They asked me to be one of their success stories on their Back Cover artists! I'm really honored to be asked to do that!

I've been really busy with web design lately and haven't been able to create a whole lot of jewelry. I've done some repair work on some older jewelry for some ladies in town, but haven't had time to play. That's ok, since I get paid for programming/design time! If you're interested in checking those sites out, I've been working on, and

I've also started working 10 hours a week at the Marion County Public Library. Things have been so and I need the extra income, plus it's a great group to work with. I truly believe that we have the coolest librarians around, not to mention one of the greatest facilities, especially for a small town.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

May 2009 EBW Challenge

The entries for the May challenge, "Hollywood Red Carpet" are in! They are as always simply beautiful, creative and amazing! Etsy Beadweavers took the time and have the talent to create these inspiring challenge pieces! Tiny little beads and a needle and thread along with incredible patience bring these selections to you to vote and choose your favorite. I am so honored to be included with such a talented group of beaders!

You can click on the item in the text list below the mosaic on the EBW blog which links to the Etsy Shop listing of each entrant where you will see more detail of each piece!

Voting begins today, Saturday, May 9th and ends midnight May 15th. Show your appreciation for the efforts of these amazing artists and take on the difficult task of voting for your favorite. (The ballot is on the side bar at right.) Again, the individual pieces are listed below the mosaic where you can visit each entry for more information by following the link.

My entry, "The Prince and the Showgirl" is #11 in the mosaic and on the right in the voting block! My blog entry about the necklace is here:

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

EBW 2009 Beaded Quilt to help fight breast cancer

The following was posted on the EBW Blog by Susan Clinkscales. I'm really honored to be part of this project:

Last year after reading about the Bead & Button Show and their auction to help fight breast cancer, I came across Jeanette Shanigan's website and her beaded quilts. Jeanette asks beaders around the world to donate individual beaded squares based on a theme. She then sews the squares together to make gorgeous quilts, mounts them in shadow boxes and donates them to be auctioned at the Bead & Button show. In 2008, these quilts raised nearly $4,400 for breast cancer research.

Being a member of the Etsy BeadWeaver's team (EBW), I knew we were sitting on a goldmine of talent. I asked the group if they would like to make squares to be included in Jeanette's quilts. I would collect all of the squares and submit them at one time in hopes that they would all be included in one quilt. Fifteen EBW members stepped up and created 35 squares to be included in a 2009 quilt. The theme for 2009 is "Bead artists have the heart to take on breast cancer" and I believe the EBW contributors did a magnificent job representing it.

Below is a mosaic I created of all of the EBW squares. This is not the actual quilt, only a digital version using photos I took of each square. Please visit the Bead & Button Show website to find out more information about the auctions, which will be held June 6, 2009. Below the mosaic is a list of contributors and links to their shops. Click on photo to see full size.

First row (l to r): Susan Clinkscales, Eddy Downing, Eddy Downing, JoJo Curley, Swanee Hielscher
2nd row: Swanee Hielscher, Swanee Hielscher, Swanee Hielscher, Linda Davis, Smadar Grossman
3rd row: Smadar Grossman, Smadar Grossman, Smadar Grossman, Lisa Savoy, Lisa Savoy
4th row: Lisa Savoy, Jama Watts, Jama Watts, Jama Watts, Kerrie Slade
5th row: Kerrie Slade, Kerrie Slade, Kerrie Slade, Victoria Thompson, Victoria Thompson
6th row: Victoria Thompson, Kim Shaver, Dawn Nelson, Melody Murray, Melody Murray
7th row: Ileana Munteanu, Ginny Bracht, Ginny Bracht, Ginny Bracht, Ginny Bracht

Monday, May 4, 2009

The Prince and the Showgirl

I FINALLY finished my entry for the May EBW Challenge this morning - Hollywood Red Carpet. I really envisioned old Hollywood glam for this one, mainly one of my idols, Marilyn Monroe. It's the first time in a while that I've actually ordered beads for a specific challenge. I usually force myself to use what I've got in stock, making it even more of a challenge. This one, though, needed GLAM and some bang.

Here's the description I wrote up for my entry. If you've never seen The Prince and the Showgirl, check it out sometime.

I'm a sucker for Marilyn Monroe movies. While my favorite is Some Like it Hot, this piece reminds me of something Sir Laurence Olivier's character would have bestowed upon Marilyn's character in The Prince and the Showgirl.

This piece features a large Baroque champagne Swarovski crystal, measuring 1.25" wide and 2" long. Necklace itself is woven in netting with silver-lined gold seed beads in 11/0 and 15/0 sizes, silver 4mm faceted Czech rounds and 140 4mm Swarovski bicones in pink, topaz, ruby, amethyst, montana blue and pale yellow.

Necklace ends in a beautiful swirling sterling silver hook & eye clasp and measures 18" long. Central weaving is 6" wide and 2.5" long.

This piece was created for the May 2009 Etsy-Beadweavers Challenge - Hollywood Red Carpet. From May 9-15th, stop by the EBW blog at and vote for your favorite piece. Search for other entries on etsy with the keyword "ebwc" or search for other ebw work by searching for "ebw" or "ebw team" any time you want to shop for beautiful beaded items!

I also listed a few other items today:
Matching earrings for entry:

Friday, May 1, 2009

Run for the Roses!

Today is Oaks Day here in the Bluegrass State (that would be the fillies' race, for you non-Kentuckians) and tomorrow is the Derby. This state goes nuts, Louisville in particular. I've never been to the Derby and would love to go. I heard a news spot this morning on the radio, talking about how there were still tickets available for both the Derby and Oaks, as well as hotel rooms. That's a true sign of the weak economy, when you generally can't get a room anywhere near Louisville during Derby weekend.

BUT, on a happy note, simpleelementsdesign has honored myself and some other folks with a treasury dedicated to the Derby.

Run for the Roses

I've been programming the last few days and haven't done much in the way of jewelry. I did get some chain maille done last night with some cool anodized aluminum, but have other projects to work on today. Repair, custom redesign of a belt into a necklace, and a custom order. Hopefully, I'll get my EBW challenge finished and be able to work on my B.E.S.T. challenge entry!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Treasury Time Again

Paula at intothewoods1 has included one of my beaded ornaments in her treasury, "Surf's Up! Gnarly Hues, man." Thanks, Paula!

I haven't had time to work on my entry for the EBW challenge. I'm supposed to be working on the Chamber's website and need to get in that frame of mind. I'd like to have a good portion of it done before starting work at the library next week.

I also need to get my things together for the jury process at Kentucky Crafted. Is the 5th time a charm? I hope so. I hate rejection.

Speaking of rejection, I didn't make it into Bead Dreams this year. I'm planning on doing a piece just for the show next year, like I did in 2008. In my copious amounts of spare time :)

Monday, April 27, 2009

Oh what a weekend!

I had a pretty fabulous weekend. Friday night, my friend Kate and I took another friend, Anne, out for a night in Louisville. Anne had twin girls at 23 1/2 weeks and has been living in the Ronald McDonald House in Louisville for 8 weeks now. The girls are at Kosairs and are doing so well - just last week they were both extubated and have already been worked down to the lowest oxygen level! I've been kicking myself for not getting up there since the twinkies were born, but it was so good to drag Anne out for a night of conversation, dinner and good beer at BBC. We walked down to Borders afterward at 4th Street Live and then back to the RMH. I love Louisville and I love my girlfriends.

On Saturday, I got my kiddo and drove back to Louisville for a Bluegrass Etsy Street Team meet & greet at Tina Mackin's studio on Barret. What fun! It was so great to meet the ladies who came, put faces and voices to the names, as well as share ideas. After coming home, the fab Libby snagged a treasury (check out her soaps, one pictured to the right), including everyone who was there. My Blue and Orange Derby hat is one of the featured pieces.

Orange You Glad You're in Kentucky!?

Amber and I got back to Lebanon about 6 and stayed in. Sunday morning, we stayed in our jammies as long as possible before hitting her soccer party, the park and then back to her dad's. I got my butt kicked at disc golf by my friend Stephen and then had drinks at Los Mariachis. I love my driving disc in the pond, though. Drat!

I finished the chain maille bracelet I was working on for one customer, which allowed me to get some work done on my entry for the Etsy Beadweavers May Challenge. I have some other projects that I have to finish (paying projects!) today before I pick the needle back up on the challenge piece, but it's coming along rather nicely.

In other news, I got a part-time job! I'm so excited! I've been needing to do something that would guarantee income and I couldn't be more excited about the venue - our local library. I swear, we have the coolest librarians on the planet.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Pink Out - Oaks Hat Contest

I didn't have a contest in mind when I made my Derby/Oaks hats, but a local tv station, Wave 3 in Louisville, is having an Oaks hat contest. From the Wave 3 site:

"This year Churchill Downs will donate $1 for every person that attends the Kentucky Oaks to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, guaranteeing a minimum donation of $100,000. They are asking everyone to show their support by turning the track into a "sea of pink"... to wear pink to the track on Oaks Day in support of finding a cure for breast cancer."

On a personal note, my grandmother had breast cancer resulting in a double mastectomy when I was in high school and overcame it before losing her battle with depression a decade later. I'd like to think of her wearing this hat, laughing that incredible laugh that I'm happy to say I inherited. Family gatherings sounded like a din of hyenas :)

Love you, Memaw.

So, please go to and vote!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Run for the Roses

I absolutely love the Kentucky Derby. It's one of those times that I just want to strut around & tell everyone I meet that I'm from this beautiful state.

My dad has been on me for years to do Derby hats. This year, I finally heeded his advice and created some hats. I was supposed to make it to a friend's wine tasting tonight to show these off, but my body has other plans, so I just spent the last hour & a half listing these beauties on Etsy. I had tons of fun making them, even if I ended up covered in glitter, hot glue and feathers for a while!

The pictured hat is already sold. I LOVE those feathers!

In other news, I just got Mod Knots by Cathi Milligan in the mail. I've done some simple macrame in the past, but I'm itching to try these out! Because I'm too ADD to not try something new!

My beads came in for my latest EBW Challenge, Hollywood Red Carpet Creations. Can you say sparkly?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

New Listings!

I went nuts (like usual) the other day and glazed a bunch of glass tiles for jewelry. Today, I finally got around to adding 5 of the bracelets to my etsy store, along with a beadwoven necklace and bracelet.

Things have been a bit hectic with my schedule and I feel like I haven't gotten much done in the way of beading. I know it's not true because I've increased my stock in the gallery, but I just haven't gotten photos taken of everything for etsy. Sometimes, I just feel like my business gets in the way of my business! Of course, I'd sit and bead all day if given the chance, but I have to say, I've enjoyed hanging out with friends lately and working on my committee assignments. Yes, I am crazy, why do you ask?

Glass Bracelets:

Dutch Spiral Bracelet:

Bird's Nest Necklace:

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Voting Still Open

What a talented group of Etsians in the Etsy-Beadweavers team! I'm always blown away by their work anyway, but these challenges really are quite awesome.

The fab Ginny of Njema Creations has curated a Treasury featuring some of the entries in April's "Time Machine" challenge. Go check it out & don't forget to vote in the EBW challenge on the EBW blog. You have until tomorrow to cast your vote.

A Trip Through Time Treasury:

I have more pieces to photograph, but haven't been able to get to them. I'll try to rectify that!

In the meantime, I've relisted a few items:

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Glass, Glitter & Glaze

Robin from facesarefunny is doing a bang up job of catching treasuries for the Bluegrass Etsy Street Team. The latest, The Old Bald Cheater and 11 more b&w greats from the Bluegrass Etsy Street Team, features one of my glass tile pendants. Thanks, Robin! Go give the treasury some love!

Speaking of glass tiles, I spent much of yesterday glazing some decorative paper onto some new rounds for some bracelets, earrings and rings. I was covered in Diamond Glaze and glitter for a while, but it was worth it. Today's project entails a few more coats of Diamond Glaze and some sanding.

I also ordered some beads for the new EBW challenge for May, Hollywood Red Carpet Creations. It's been a while since I've ordered beads for a specific challenge. I've been trying to use up leftover beads from old projects, but I couldn't resist getting some Swarovski for this challenge. Ideas abound!

There's still time to vote for your favorite entry in the April EBW Team Challenge, Time Machine. Voting is open until the 15th of this month! Go! Vote!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Voting Begins!

The entries for the April challenge, "Time Machine" are in! They are as always simply beautiful, creative and amazing! Etsy Beadweavers took the time and have the talent to create these inspiring challenge pieces! Tiny little beads and a needle and thread along with incredible patience bring these selections to you to vote and choose your favorite. I am so honored to be included with such a talented group of beaders!

You can click on the item in the text list below the mosaic on the EBW blog which links to the Etsy Shop listing of each entrant where you will see more detail of each piece!

Voting begins today, Thursday, April 9th and ends midnight April 15th. Show your appreciation for the efforts of these amazing artists and take on the difficult task of voting for your favorite. (The ballot is on the side bar at right.) Again, the individual pieces are listed below the mosaic where you can visit each entry for more information by following the link.

My entry, "Time Standing Still" is #4 in the mosaic and on the right in the voting block! The link to my piece is currently incorrect, but my piece can be found here:

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Time Travel

It's finished & listed on Etsy, so I can blog about it now :)

Like TheBeadedLily, my first thought was incorporating watch parts into my April EBW challenge piece. My necklace was inspired by my love of SteamPunk and it's merger of Victorian era and Industrial Revolution. One of my close friends is a pilot and she's enamored with this era, which inspired me even more to head this direction.

This piece incorporates metallic 8/0 seed beads in shades of copper and bronze, woven around watch gears and other parts encased in resin. I'd already created the resin pieces for bracelets, pendants and earrings that I've been creating as part of my SteamPunk line on etsy. Further accenting the piece are drops of copper chain and amethyst faceted beads capped in copper. A copper toggle fastens on the side, adding a modern, assymetrical touch to the piece.

Necklace measures 19" in length, 4.5" at its widest point and 3" at it's longest in the center.

As always please visit the Etsy Beadweavers blog to vote for this necklace or your other favorite between April 9-15. Meanwhile, search "EBWC" on Etsy for more stunning bead woven Time Travel creations!