April 30, 2012

Bead Cruise 2013

It's been a busy time as we finalized details for Bead Cruise 2013.  I'm super excited about the new classes I will be teaching next year!  I'm offering this Art Deco Tiger Lily class as one of our full day choices.  

My 2013 cruise is sailing out of New Orleans next year, so I'm really excited about playing with the theme of Jazz and the 1920's.  My next class is also vintage include:

During the Filigree Blooms class we'll delve into vintage-inspired cagework with seed beads and filigree.  I'll also share how to make those sweet French beaded leaves.

And my last class is my popular Nest Pendant.  This class is so much fun and students love walking out with several pendants and lots of inspiration!

Registration opens today - space is very limited so don't wait!

When: March 2-9th

Where: New Orleans, Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Jamaica

Who: I have a great line up of national known instructors including Kerry Bogert, Tracy Stanley, Ronna Sarva Weltman, Beverly Herman and Erin Siegel.

What: A week on a cruise ship, taking classes, having fun with beads, friends and exploring tropical islands!

April 19, 2012

Beauty and Strength

A few weeks ago someone I know was diagnosed with breast cancer. I felt so sad to hear the news but then I got mad and wanted to fight - yes, fight cancer in general. Me and it's big ugly head in the boxing ring - gloves off!  I felt like I wanted to create something for her to remind her how strong she is and that she will beat this. 

After some Google searching about symbols of strength I ran across the Protea flower.  Beauty, right?  I read that the protea flower is a symbol of strength because it's so resilient.  If there is a fire and the flowers and stalks are burned, the roots survive and grow back after a fire.  Wow, could there be a better symbol for someone battling cancer?

Protea are also one of the oldest flowers, dating back to over 300 million years!  They also have over 1400 types of protea and change shape several times over it's growth.  It starts out looking like an artichoke. opens into a cup shape and them blossoms into a lotus looking flower.  I just love everything about it.  And with so many variations I have a feeling I will be visiting this inspiration over and over again.

April 17, 2012

Daffodils and a Daffy Girl

New work heading to Stony Creek Beads with me this weekend.

Current Mental Distractions:
Bead Cruise registration is opening this weekend.  How did I pull that off!

Trunk Show & book signing on Saturday.

Spending the weekend with my favorite Beady Auntie.

Dr. appointment tomorrow. The knee is healing - just keep me away from treadmills.
(Don't ask, but I had a serious Lucille Ball moment and a limp once again.)

Making more beads tonight - going to play with some new ideas.

I need to squeeze in a blog tour for my book, something I have yet to do - what's up with that? 
(Yes, in a Seinfeld voice!)

Seriously thinking about getting a booth at Bead Fest this year.

Bead & Button is looming.  Looming....LOOMING.

And then there is my email box - can I hire someone to answer my emails?

Jess: he is so cute when he is rolling beads, packing up your orders or making us dinner.
What I do without him!

Current Obsessions:
Gotye (love this song

eBooks (thanks to a gifted Kindle Fire)

Sari ribbons

Watercolors & children's book illustrations

Paintings of France by Maurice Utrillo

Swimming at the Y

Yep, that's my life at the moment. 
Throw in two teenage girls and my family into the mix and that's my whole world right now!

April 9, 2012

Clever You!

I love seeing what you guys do with your Humblebeads.  You can share you links or photos on my Facebook page.  Today my friend Rose Noble sent me the link to this necklace - she totally rocked my tiny charm into an eye-catching pendant.  Love lemon and teal!

Fellow ABS blogger Rebbecca Anderson created this garden-inspired bracelet with one of my dogwood beads.  Love the tiny wisps of threaded knots between the beads.

My dear friend Erin Prais-Hintz used my beads in this FABU tutorial and feature on the B'Sue Boutiques website.  This is going to be an ongoing series with Erin using art beads paired up with the product line from B'Sue Boutiques, so it's one to watch.  Erin always inspires me and amazes me with what she can create.  Now, the sad news is I don't make these pendants anymore.  I couldn't get consistent results even with using the exact same materials - but I think this bracelet would be pretty fantastic with my new Hibiscus pendants or even the dogwood pendants above.  You can find the tutorial here.

My final show and tell today is a fun pair of earrings from the talented designer and long time bead buddy Lorelei Eurto.  She makes it looks so effortless.  She paired up my disks with some ceramic charms from Elaine Ray.

You know what I would love to see? Your projects inspired by my book or the projects in there.  Have you made something inspired by Jewelry Designs from Nature

Now I have you all worked up to pull out your Humblebeads right?  Heck yeah!  So guess what I'm also offering 20% off in my Etsy shop for today and tomorrow.  Sweet inspiration sent right to your door.  Use discount code BLOOMING when you check out.

Happy Creating!

April 3, 2012

Spring Inspiration

Every month on the Art Bead Scene I pick an inspiring work of art for the monthly challenge.  This month I was choose John Waterhouse's painting called Boreas.  I was drawn to the landscape that looks like my own Michigan fields dotted with daffodils and gusts of wind that bring a reminder that spring is a slow and steady visitor. 

Daffodils are on my mind this month and on my bead table - I'll have pics. soon.  So until then I matched up a few other items from my shop that compliment the painting.  I'm especially looking forward to seeing how the flowing element of the painting will be incorporated into everyone's entries this month - I'm drawn to the dark gray silk ribbon in my stash.

April 2, 2012

Dogwood Blossom Jewelry

Spring Eternal

I spent some time making jewelry this weekend.  My sweet aunties came up to visit me and we sat around playing with beads, snacking on cookies and chatting the afternoon away. Rosanne and I swapped beads and pawed through each other's treasures. She traded me a bird from Spirited Earth with some lampwork beads and a deer from Round Rabbit.  I'm quite pleased!

I love how everything is slowly coming to life, the blooms on the trees mixed in with the copper and browns left over from the long winter. I wanted to capture that in my necklace.

I picked up the beaded bead and flower focal at Micheal's a few weeks ago. This necklace includes patina branches and pine cones from Patina Worx, one of my dogwood pendants, the pearl beaded bead is another find from Michael's.  The enameled piece is something I created thanks to Barbara Lewis' book!  I threw in some lucite flowers, a clock charm from Earthenwood Studios and a pewter branch embellished with crystals.

My sweet Evangeline modeled it for me.  I'm finding more and more of my inventory incorporated into their daily outfits, mostly pendants - they are quite fond of my nests, book pendants and some of my smaller pieces.  I don't let they big ones like this go far from my bead table!

The clock from Earthenwood Studio.  I love how a simple bead can change a design into a story.  A visual clue can add a bit of poetry into a random collection of floral components. You can read more about using beads to create poetry in your jewelry in my book, Jewelry Designs from Nature.

More of my dogwood pieces - I'm loving these for spring.  I made the smaller version a few weeks ago used here in the earrings. The dogwoods were created from an antique spoon in my grandmother's collection.  I feel so sentimental whenever I see these, thinking fondly of her and summers spent in South Haven over the last few years.  I'm looking forward to our first summer here as residents, soaking in the beach, the farmer's markets, gardening and all the beauty Michigan has to offer each season.