Thursday, April 30, 2009

First Needlefelted Project

Last night I took a class at St Theresa Textile Trove in Cincinnati on how to make this needlefelted flower. I had never felted anything before last night, and was so surprised how easy it is to make something complex. (This flower is what I'd consider complex, for a beginner). Each student made their own design....the teacher, Sarah Miller, taught the technique. Sarah is a natural teacher....very very good indeed. She is teaching a class on a Magical Mushroom House, and I think that will be a great class if I can take it.

I want to start incorporating my own polymer clay buttons with needlefelting, but I'm not sure what exactly I want to make. I have an idea!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Newest Finished Pieces

This bracelet/earring set is a new bead design, derived from my "baby snail" design I've been doing for years. The sphere is basically flattened, creating a place for the swirls to be focal. I like these more than the round ones now, so I'm going to make more.

This nice ATC is a gift for a girl in India who I sponsor through CCF. She'll be 14 in August but I'm going to mail it to her sooner. I think I got the batik at Hancock Fabrics.

Living downtown, I'm a real downtown snob. This pin is for folks who love Over-the-Rhine, the neighborhood just north of proper downtown. The gorgeous architecture, colorful population and the rich history of the neighborhood makes it a real gem. I tried to represent the vibrant life in this pin. It was for sale on Etsy until I noticed the black string underneath the clear glass beads in the letter "R". Just WAY too obvious of a flaw. In the meantime I'm slapping it on one of my purses to show off, and hopefully get orders.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Newest finished pieces

This fish is not a funcional 'thing' right now....just has a backing that looks like water. I could attach a barrette finding or hanging apparatus on it, but I think I'll wait . One of my BIG DREAMS is to create a whole school of these embroidered fish. How many lifetimes would that take? Probably just this one, if I stopped making everything else. BTW all of my fish eyes are a single Stacker bead. You can buy it from my Etsy store. Check out my links on the left for the link.

Newest Stacker bead necklace. When I was sick a couple weeks ago I went nuts making Stacker beads. I have to make a few hundred of them to have a quality selection to choose from. Not all Stacker beads are great, but I do pick the best ones for the powerful pieces like these. It's for sale in my Etsy shop. If you would like a shot to make your own, visit this page.

Combining my polymer clay focal pieces with seed bead embroidery is one of my favorite challenges. The two just seem to go hand-in-hand. This brooch is also for sale. Mokume gane is my favorite polymer clay technique. It takes practice to know when your loaf is gonna look good or look like shit when you slice it. Some clayers just take all their scraps, slice off a chunk and call it mokume gane. But's a bit more refined.

Friday, April 10, 2009

New OTR Bead Painting

Here is my newest "bead painting". I would write an elegant description about it, but I am totally exhausted from a 9 hour road trip from Washington DC. Click on the title "New OTR Bead Painting", and you will be taken directly to the Etsy ad where I posted it. Yes, it is for sale.
I will write more about my trip this weekend. As for now, I need a shower and a nap!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

The Dogs

Last week I dog/house sat for some friends from church. These three dogs are HILARIOUS. One of my favorite times to watch them was when they would rush out the doggie door in the garage up to the kitchen to eat dinner. They were literally blurs, and sometimes two of them would try to fit through the door at once, and one of them would have to back down.

They're powerful protectors. Not everything going on outside grabs their attention, but the important things do: other dogs, Fedex deliverers, and paperboys collecting two dollars. I pity the fool that steps in that front door uninvited.
And then they're so submissive, too. It doesn't take long to make Sadie almost melt in slow motion onto the floor on her back. She's so strong and muscular. (She's the dog in the middle pictured above). But she can be overcome with just a touch of the forehead.
Aspen (the white one on the bottom) is older. I can tell by her eyes and her back legs....stiff hips. She's also not as quick to run the long distance around the backyard, at least not this week. Maybe she knew it was muddy. Her growl sounds like a bear. When she and Sadie were roughhousing my first night there, they both sounded like fighting rhinos. It was hilarious.
Bobby, the black dog above, is really the underdog. The others are so much larger (or at least taller, which means something in the animal world), so Bobby tends to be last. At feeding time, I have to get Sadie and Aspen on their own bowls so Bobby has a fighting chance to eat. Those dogs INHALE their food.
Anyway, thanks for letting me chill with your dogs, Pat and Burk. I had a lovely time. Can't wait to show you my newest bead embroidery piece I made largely in your dining room.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Today's color is BLUE

Today I posted the above earrings in my Etsy shop. It's all I'm putting up today. In fact, it's all I've put up all week because I haven't been close to my computer all week, at least not for enough time to get online.
Earlier today I dropped off a MASS AMOUNT of earrings and other jewelry to a new shop opening up in Glendale (small town just north of Cincinnati). It's called Glendale Handcraft Gallery. It's a cute spot...small but well-lit in an easy-to-find location. I wish the owner, Jennifer, all the best of luck. It's SO refreshing to see someone opening a NEW business (especially in the arts) when all the news you hear is that the financial sky is falling. My friend Sarah once said I'm "excessively optimistic"....and I am especially that way now, even when uncertainties of my professional future linger. If you live in or around Cincinnati, or will be visiting Glendale soon, please visit the shop and support it if you can. They are aiming to open on Saturday, April 11.

I can't wait til the next over-60 degree day! This spring seems like November!