Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Getting ready for fall

I've been in a polymer clay mood lately which is a good thing because even though we have had cooler weather than normal for this time of year the bugs have kept me inside.  I feel like putting in for hazardous duty pay every time I venture out into the mosquito laden jungle that has become my backyard.  I haven't pulled weeds or vines for  weeks and the flower beds are overgrown. I do force myself to go out ever other day to water, a lot of effort and money went in to those flowers and I'm not about to let them die. So I screw up my courage, get on my battle gear.... the longest heaviest pair of jeans I own, a long sleeved shirt and a scarf around my neck.... I'm tempted to wear a ski mask and gloves but the neighbors already think I'm weird and I don't want them dialing 911.  Even bundled up the last time I went out I ended up with 2 bites on my left hand, one on the palm below my thumb, I've never had a bite on my palm before,  and a third on the back of my neck..... must have been a tiny space the scarf didn't cover.   I read a note from my cousin Gina on Facebook that said "I'm thinking about laying in the grass so the chiggers can finish me off!!!"  I know just how she feels.

This is my overgrown gazebo..... it so needs to be trimmed but will have to wait until cooler weather and the demise of the insects.  It's saving grace is the Morning Glories that cover the top, they are  indeed glorious.

Click on the photos for a closer look.

What really bugs me is I have plants in containers on my front porch, no mosquitos there... and I go for walks around the square, no mosquitos there..... it's just my backyard,  I'm convinced it's a conspiracy.... all the mosquitos in town are congregating in my backyard.  I'm going out again when I finish todays post.....wish me luck,  if you don't hear from me in a day or two alert the authorities to send out a search party!!

Okay, that is out of my system... on to jewelry for Fall

I have been going through my bead stash looking for beads that match the Pantone 2013 Fall Colors

Asymmetrical layered & textured Heart beads strung on a hand made chain of colored wire and glass beads.

I used this cane to make beads and a large focal bead.

Here is the finished necklace and earrings.

I used the end piece of a border cane to make these beads.

I added "Hemalyke" beads and matching chain to create this necklace and pair of earrings.  The raised dots on the large bead go well with the "Hemalyke" beads.

"Hemalyke" is a "look alike" for natural Hematite.

I made these oval beads some time ago and wasn't sure what to do with them.  I set them out on my worktable with the mirror image focal bead and they sat there for days.  Heather came along and added the Swarovski flatback crystals, I liked the look so glued them in place.  Ar first I tired black glass round beads to make links then I remembered I had a small cane in matching colors.... my new method of cane storage paid off, I immediately found the little cane and made matching beads. I used black wire to make o rings and the hook and eye clasp.

This necklace hangs really well, so pretty on. I like the added bling of the crystals.  This one may be a keeper.

I "painted" these textured chunky beads with a handmade finish of PearlEx & Future.  I usually don't put finishes on my beads, just sand and buff if I want shiny. After they dried I stuck them in a 200 degree oven for 15 minutes to set the finish.  I couldn't decide if I liked this necklace.....

.....I like it better after adding chain in the center along with another star drop. Much better don't you think?

I do like the matching earrings.

This is a reversible Mokume Gane pendant with a Scottie dog on one side.

and a fish on the other side.

I made o rings of olive green and dark blue 20 gauge wire then combined them with complimentary beads in blue and green along with stamped metal spacer beads to make the links and earrings.

I don't have a necklace to go with these "Love Bug" earrings.  The stamped design is sealed with Kato liquid clay.

The back of the hearts are a solid red/orange.

I have more sets made and more in the works, no photos yet,  so I'll be back in a day or two. 

Hope you enjoyed looking. 

Thanks for stopping by. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Inchie Necklace & other Polymer Clay Jewelry

I know... I'm behind on my blogging again, sorry about that. I got sidetracked with reorganizing my canes which lead to reorganizing my beads and then to attempting to finish some of the the many jewelry projects I started and set aside. Here are some of the results.

First off I took all my canes out of Glad food containers. I put the longer ones in these big clear storage containers that were on sale at Michaels.

Another big container of canes.  I really like these, wish I had thought of it sooner. So much easier to find the canes I'm looking for.

The shorter ones are in bead containers that I buy from Fire Mountain Gems, I love these containers and use them for my beads too.

I keep them on a shelf in my studio, as you can see I have lots of the little containers and 2 of the big ones. I like these because the lids are clear and I can see inside without opening the lids.

Now that my canes are organized I have been using them to make lots of beads..... which I will show you later.

Now here are some of the necklaces that I finally completed.

I used a set of inchies with matching beads to make this one.

I also used an inchie as the focal interest in this pendant. I had half a broken bracelet that I hadn't tossed out, now I'm glad I didn't.  I am quite happy with the way this turned out.  

I added a drop to this pendant and used red glass beads asymmetrically on the chain. 

I made the bales with coiled  wire. The back is textured with sandpaper and painted with PearlEx

 Getting ready for fall with the warm colors on this necklace and complimentary earrings.

Closer look at the necklace.

Back side of the necklace beads.

Closer look at the earrings.

I strung this pendant on waxed cord. The beads are separated by  Chinese Button Knots.  It always takes me longer to tie those darn knots than it does to make the beads but I like the way they look so I guess it is worth it,

Close up of the pendant and beads. 

I had a hard time deciding how I wanted to string this pendant. I tried it on rubber cord, didn't like that, then on satin cord, didn't like that so I ended up putting it on suede cord but the color was wrong. So.....

I came up with the brilliant idea to dye it with alcohol ink and it worked great. After letting it dry I tested the cord with a drop of water to see if it would rub off and I also wore the necklace for several hours to see if it would come off on my skin and yay!! it didn't.  I love the color, don't you?

Closer look at the pendant and dyed cord.

Now I can have cords any color I want, I have lots of suede cord and lots of alcohol inks. 

That is it for today, I have more to show you but the timer went off and I need to take beads out of the oven.  

Thanks for stopping by. 

Sunday, August 4, 2013

More Inchies & Other Beads

Saturday was the Highland Street Art Fest 2013. Local artist spend the day drawing wonderful art on the streets surrounding the town square. Here are the winners

First Place.

Second Place

Best in Show

First Place Amateur (This one was done by my next door neighbor)

The rest are some of my favorites

I always like the big flowers

This one is fun

Love this bear

Lot of work went into this one

Another beautiful flower

Cute puppy

We live very close to the square  and can watch all the activities from our front porch.  The Street Art is   one of my favorite events.

Several of the local artists sell there wares.  Each year I look forward to adding to my collection of gourd art from Buffalo Tracts artist Lynne Slack. This year was no exception, I purchased several pieces. I will take photos and show them to you next time I blog.

Okay.... here are my latest "Inchies"

Peachie colored flowers on a purple background... and matching designer beads.

Close up of the beads.

I made hexagon beads to go with these. I call this design "Stormy Sea"

Close up of the layered and textured  Inchies.

More layers and textures in shades of purple and green.

Satin folds adorn these Inchies.

This is just a doodad pendant I made with a thin sheet of folded clay. I added half a  swirlie bead at the top.

Another colorful doodad pendant.

I also finished three necklaces.  Added chain to my "young love" pendant.

 and also put a chain on one of my mixed media Pod pendants

I spend 10 or 15 minutes looking for the third necklace.  I was wandering around the house muttering under my breath completely baffled as to how I could lose something I just had in my hands when I happened to glance in the hall mirror..... yep, there it was.... on my neck.  I put it on to check the length.

Have you ever tried to take a photo of yourself  with the "Photo Booth" on your computer..... reminds me of the old fashioned photo booth photos at fairs when I was a girl.  I took several, they were all bad.    This one peeking over my reading glasses was the best ....  looks like I have a stiff neck.

Some time ago I bought many spools of colored beading wire from a company that was going out of business.... I decided to try one of the colors on a simple bead necklace, it is the one I'm wearing.... here is a closer look.

And I also made a few beads from my cane stash.

I like to use square canes to make round beads, These beads are pictured with the cane I used....

 and so are these...

And I finished a pendant that I've been working on for some time.  I continued the swirl in the top bead on the background of the bottom piece as well as the touches of amber wire.

That's it for now.  I'm off to play with beads and wire.  See you soon!

Thanks for stopping by.