Wednesday, July 31, 2013

An Experiment in Patina

I know many of you have experimented with Patina so this might be a 'done that' post to you. But for me it's something new and exciting. I'm using instructions from Denise Yezbak Moore in the February 2011 Issue of Bead Trends.  Yes it takes me that long to put things in to action. 

I'm using Vintaj 25 mm copper circles. The process takes three days or more depending on the level of patina you want. I was so excited  about how well this worked that I forgot to take a photo of the first day results.

Day two, very nice patina. Even the paper plate shines with color and salt crystals.

Day three.  I'm not happy with the results as they are more crusty than I wanted.  It's my own fault as I purchased coarse sea salt rather than fine by mistake.This is the convex side.

Concave side. I finished them with a little buffing and a light coat of Ren Wax.

'St Croix' with Scorched Earth drops.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Yes I Can Make Necklaces

So with all the earrings I've been making for the Art Jewelry Elements year long earring challenge it seems like that is all I make.  A little shop here in town carries my jewelry and now they have purchased another shop in Lawrence Kansas, which is both exciting and frightening. The opening day will be August the 9th, so I am in a panic to make more pieces. Needless to say I have plenty of earrings to send, but not so much in the way of new necklaces and bracelets. So this week I've been sitting down at my bead table to create and wouldn't you know it, nothing comes together like I wanted. Does that happen to you?

But I did manage to make a couple necklaces, but it was not without a struggle. This first one took three days of putting together, tearing apart, etc, etc, etc.

'Leaving the Nest'
Inspired by the fact that our daughter is in North Carolina and our son is moving to Colorado soon. This necklace has a variety of beads; Olive Jade, Green glass Druks, wood beads, Wasabi Czech beads, Green Snake Skin, along with  pewter branch and Vintaj Swooping Swallow.

While our family love to travel the U.S. My twin sister travels abroad. She always brings back beads for me  and I make a necklace for her and get some amazing beads to boot.
The jade bead at the top of the pendant came from China and is what she gave me to incorporate into a necklace. The reversible pendant also includes a stone bead and a red lampwork bead. The patinated focal is from Melinda Orr and is on the convex side which is hard to see here.  The pendant was made to represent a Chinese Pagoda. It's finished off with a simple brass chain.

The Concave side

And since this piece was for my sister I really I have only made on piece for the new shop. So now I must get busy making more!

Friday, July 26, 2013

52 Photos Catch the Sun

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Well there certainly was an abundance of sun this week with plenty of photo opportunities.
This photo was taken on the morning after a storm that rolled in the night before. I love how the soft morning sun reflects off the lingering clouds. This photo was completly untouched.

The sun reflecting off the sidelite of our front door.

The sun shining through the leaves of our Japanese Bloodgood Maple tree.

The evening sun.  This photo is unedited.

And I couldn't end this  post without this great song about the sun.  I apologize if this song gets stuck in your head all day long.......

"Here Comes The Sun"
The Beatles

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Little darling, it's been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it feels like years since it's been here

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Little darling, the smiles returning to the faces
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been here

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes
Sun, sun, sun, here it comes

Little darling, I feel that ice is slowly melting
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been clear

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
It's all right, it's all right

Please check Sally's blog to see more.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Around the Yard Again

I know I 've  shown you a lot of photos around our yard but it seems like every time I go out I see something new, like this tiny bird nest. It's about three inches across. I asked my father-in-law what bird might have a nest like this and he suggested an oriel or humming bird. It's the cutes little nest!

 Pumpkin bright and cheery. There's a bee hiding in there. He's camera shy.

A mama bird sitting on her nest. She has been there for several weeks and doesn't even blink an eye when I check on her. She almost looks fake.

 A little green apple, one of many on our apple tree.  Unfortunately they are always on the mealy side.

 A cool, cozy place for the elves to hang out.

No sign of the little red fox mama. She might be getting up earlier to beat the heat, or maybe she's caught on to me. I still watch for her every morning.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

AJE Earring Challenge

Sunday is the reveal for weeks 27 and 28 of the Art Jewelry Elements year long Earring Challenge.
In keeping with my theme of featuring a bead artist each week for as long as I can, I have made two pairs with beads from Petra of Scorched Earth. Check out her etsy shop, you'll be glad you did!
'Let Freedom Ring' made with Petra's colorful drops, lampwork beads from Twinstar, and Vintaj components.
'Drifter' with Petra's rustic daggers, Vintaj components, and lampwork beads from  Something New4 you (I lost track of her since she sold on ebay and would love to find her again.  If anyone knows how to find her I would be greatful.)
Just like the days of summer go by so quickly, it seems like we just started this challenge.  Yet here we are just over half way through the year. Thank you for sticking with me as I show off my earrings.  And please visit the AJE blog to see more wonderful earrings.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

52 Photos Routine

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This week we are to focus on the beauty and comfort of our every day routine. The trouble is I work part time so a daily routine is out of the question.

My alarm is set for 6:15 am and on my days off I might snooze once.

Once up I eat a bowl of Cheerios while watcing the Today Show.  You might notice there is no milk in this bowl. Yep, I eat it dry.  Also I mix the regular Cheerios with some Whole Grain Cheerios becuase they add a bit of sweetness. Then I head to my computer where I  check email and catch up on all my favorite blogs. 
I have a wonderful view of the front yard and the field across the road, and nearly every morning I catch a glimpse of a little mama red fox fetching food for her babies.  She quickly cuts across our yard and is gone in the blink of an eye.  This mornining I decided to take my camera out and see if I could get a shot of her, but she never came. Even at 6:45 am the heat and humidity was almost too much. 

So there you have it. Not much inspiration here, but please check Sally's Blog for more.

Friday, July 12, 2013

52 Photos Pretty Patterns

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Our assignment this week is all about patterns.

a form or model proposed for imitation
something designed or used as a model for making things
an artistic, musical, literary, or mechanical design or form
a natural or chance configuration

Just look at all the pretty patterns in these ribbons! 

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
~Romans 12:2

Thank you for stopping by.  Please visit Sally's blog for more wonderful photos.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Black and White Challenge

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Today is the reveal of Sally's Black and White Challenge.
The only rules are that we have to use only black and white in our piece, though we can use wire, metal or chain in silver, copper,brass, bronze, white or black. We can also use crystals to accent the piece.
 'World's Fair' is made with a gorgeous pendant from Hopemore, black onyx beads, glass pearls, and sterling chain.

'The Modern Wheel' made with a black and white lampwork ring from BlueHealer, and sterling chain.

I know this has brown in it but I wanted to show it anyway because it does have black and white as well.  I made this for my mom from beads my sister brought back from China a few years ago.  When mom passed away I got it back.

Thanks for stopping by.  Please visit the other participants at the list below.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

AJE Earring Challenge

Sunday is the reveal for weeks 25 and 26 of the Art Jewelry Elements year long earring challenge.
I purchased some wonderful beads from Eclectic Prairie and got to work right away.
This first pair was very difficult to photograph because of the shape of the wavy beads, and the shine coming off them. 
'Midsummer's Night' made with Eclectic Prairie's brown wavy ceramic bead. They have a little bit of blue in them which was diffictlt to photograph. Also included are Czech  'calm' beads from Arte Bella Surplus, and Vintaj components.

'Happy Go Lucky' made with  Eclectic Prairie's colorful ceramic beads and Vintaj Components
I don't make mismatched earrings often but I thought these were fun.

Thanks for stopping by.  Please check out the AJE Blog to see more earrings.


Friday, July 5, 2013

52 Photos Texture

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Texture is our assignment for this week.  I looked all over the house for some interesting texture but was not successful-unless dust qualifies.  We have lots of dust.
Instead I went outside for inspiration since it was such a nice day. The sun was shining, and there was a nice cool breeze. A 50 cent breeze my dad would say.

These photos are from our accidental pumpkin plants.

Love the little fuzzies.

Our whiskey barrel has seen better days.

The wagon wheel has wonderful texture.

I hope everyone had a fun and safe holiday.  Please stop over at Sally's blog to see more texture photos.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Around the Yard

Just the other day my husband and I were out in the yard.  He had his trusty camera with him and was taking a photo of a  very young bird nestled in the grass. The mama bird was very angry that he was so close to her baby. 

Soon we scooted away to give the mama and baby bird some relief.
This morning there were at least six little birds in the flower garden, with a watchful mama standing by.


A beautiful Asiatic lily with gorgeous color!

The accidental pumpkin plant is getting large and just yesterday I saw a few blooms!

A tiny mushroom.  I love tiny mushrooms.

Our Ginkgo tree. The leaves are smaller than last year but I'm hopeful.

Shasta Dasies--I just love these perky and very reliable flowers. I only wish they bloomed longer.

The wheat field across the road. It was breezy (as it always is in Kansas).

Thanks for visiting our yard.  All photos except the last one were taken by my husband.