Friday, 29 April 2011

A new venture!

So, I've had my little Folksy shop for a wee while now and whilst I'm certainly never going to be giving up the day job(!), I do sell things there from time to time which is lovely. So, feeling a new burst of confidence (I blame my new camera!) I have decided to open an Etsy shop. One of millions and millions I know, but I've had fun today taking photos and writing up blurbs for a bunch of earrings I made this week. Next, it'll be the bracelets. And once my half size mannequin arrives (SUPER excited!), it'll be the turn of the necklaces. And for you my lovely blog readers, I have a special offer, should you wish to purchase anything from my shop for the first month it is open, I have a lovely code for 15% off - simply type NEWSHOP15 in at the check out and Etsy will do the rest for you. Here is a peek at some of the pairs I've just listed.

Hope you are all having a fab weekend and especially here in the UK with our bonus Friday holiday!

Wednesday, 27 April 2011


Another week, another Wednesday...another messy bead table! I had to smile when I saw Lorelei's post today...I mean, surely that's what a bead table is meant to look like, no?! It certainly is for me....I got some lovely goodies in the post today - an order from ArteBella and also some lovely brass handmade headpins. Have you noticed how hard it is to track them down? Or is that just me... Don't get me wrong, I love my usual copper (and possibly even prefer it to brass) but I also really like having the option of brass. And I'm not much of a mixed metals girl. Through necessity, yes, but not often through choice. Anyway, I digress! Back to the bead table. Which contains some hot new beads and some hot new headpins. 

I have also been trying out some of the new 'Magic' (Olympus' word, not mine) filters on my new camera. There are seven and my favourite without doubt is the 'drawing' setting. LOVE it. Completely random and I'm not totally sure why you would particularly want it on your camera but I'm really glad it's there! It also saves a normal copy of the same picture so you can compare and contrast if you wish. 

Along with the lovely Czech babies, I have wacked out a bunch of other art beads - creating lots of new stuff for a special project at the moment...polymer flowers by Elise Canning, lampwork beads by Laura Sparling, MidgetGemBeads and Juls, ceramic charms by Kylie Parry...all delicious.

The other filter I've tried out here is soft focus. Quite sweet but I'm not sure that it doesn't just look like a fuzzy photo that I just didn't manage to focus properly! See what you think. 

What art beads can you spot in here? I spy a Humblebird or two...

I hope your bead tables are full of colour and inspiration today :-)

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter everybody or happy sunny (hopefully) weekend if Easter isn't your bag! I'm in Whitby (North Yorkshire coast) 

at my family-in-law's, enjoying some lovely sunny weather and celebrating that my brother-in-law has just got engaged to his very lovely Floridian girlfriend. Ian and Laura are a fab couple and we're so thrilled for them :-) 

This morning, some of us went out for a walk on the beach, with the objective of looking for some rocks and/or driftwood for my jewellery shots. 

There wasn't loads of wood (although we found a lovely piece which will be great once it's been dried out) but we found some really cool rocks. I can never resist sticking my feet in the sea when I am near the sea but my goodness, the North Sea is bloody cold!! 

Enough to make your feet sting, if you know what I mean. I am a complete water baby and always run and jump into pools and the sea but not this one! It hurt my tootsies.

When we got back to the house I took some shots straight away with the dry rocks (I picked up about six rocks - not so much scope for finding such things back in Manchester!) and I think they are going to work pretty well. The rocks have a nice, matt surface, pretty flat but with some interesting ridges and for bracelets especially they are perfect. 

We also found a cool piece of slate-like material (can't remember the proper name) with loads of holes in it which I have a feeling may be awesome for earrings....fingers crossed! It's still quite damp and dirty so that'll have to wait for another day. 

In the afternoon, after an amazing roast dinner we headed out to a nearby river where you can rent a boat and go rowing - so fun!(really wanted to write "Such fun!" anyone else watch Miranda?!) 

I hadn't done anything like that for years, it was so sunny and peaceful and beautiful. There were some gorgeous wee lambs and their parents by the side of the river which I managed to snap. 

We've had gorgeous weather all week and I'm just hoping it will hold. Sometimes it feels like we in the UK get a week of sunshine and that's our lot for the year. I'm holding out for a proper summer! 

This has been a photo-tastic post but I'm going to leave you with a few photos of some jewellery I made whilst in Spain. I was so inspired by the sparkling blues, aquas, teals, greens around me....totally my colours anyway so being surrounded by them all the time was wonderful. I'm going to gradually load them into my Folksy shop but if you would like one and don't have a Folksy account, just drop me a line.

Water Flowers

Unnamed as yet....any ideas???!

Well done if you've made it to the end of this post! As a thank you, I'm going to have a small give away....the best type - a mystery grab bag of beads. It will contain Art Beads! Czech glass! Gemstones! Crystal! Ribbon! Phew, are you excited? I'm excited to make it up for you. Just leave me a comment, perhaps with a name suggestion for my dotty lampwork bracelet above, and I'll draw a name next Sunday. 

Monday, 18 April 2011

My new camera...

....and now just a very quick post about my new birthday camera! As some as you know, I turned the big THREE OH on Saturday whilst away in Spain...and my partner got me a new camera to replace the one I lost earlier this arrived today! It has a 1cm super macro function which I'm V excited about and lots of other functions I'm only just beginning to explore....however, I was just too excited to wait until I am a total pro with it (ahem! You'd be waiting a while...) and wanted to show you some beady snaps RIGHT AWAY. (Excuse my shouting capitals. I'm excited.)

Beads by Humblebeads and Laura Sparling. Photos by my lovely new camera! Still looking for that perfect spot in my strangely photographically dark house to go snap happy in but I'll find it...eventually...

7000 Bracelets of Hope

2 days late but I didn't forget! I was away in Spain until late last night and whilst I could pick up emails, I was nowhere near any internet that wouldn't have costed me an awful lot of money....I did have my beads so directly from the inspiration of the Costa Blanca are two bracelets for The Global Genes Project

It's a very good cause and I am so pleased to have been able to take part. Erin has written a very eloquent post about how she feels about her bracelet and sending it out - I don't have her way with words but these simple bracelets will be sent out with love and hope for the families that receive them. 

I've kept them pretty simple - something you could wear with jeans and a T-shirt or a pretty summer dress - as I don't know who I'll be sending them to or what their personal style will be.

I've also added extension chains to both bracelets (something I usually do anyway) so that they should fit any wrist size comfortably - a great suggestion Lori.  

Please read Lori's initial blog post about the project and have a look at the other participants blogs for some more beautiful bracelets. 

 1.  Lori Anderson, Pretty Things
2.  Jayne Capps, Mama's Got To Doodle 
3.  Kym Hunter, Creatively Kym
4.  Mandy Duffy, Beads for Brains: 365
5.  Charlene Sevier, The Bead Dreamer
6.  Lisa Boucher, Lisa's Clay Happenings
7.  Mary Harding, Mary Harding Jewelry
8.  Barbara Lewis, Painting With Fire
9.  Amy Severino, Amy's Beads
10.  Jennifer Pride, Jewelry by Jennifer Pride

11.  Jenny Cameron, Glass Addictions
12.  Susan Ferguson, Windrock Studio
13.  Mortira vanPelt, Inspirational Beading
14.   Brandi Hussey, Brandi Girl
15.  Jenny Vidberg, Shyme Design
16.  Angela Barribou, Re: Angela Rae
17.  Stefanie Teufel, Stefanie's Sammelsurium 
18.  Sue Hodgkinson, Hello Gorgeous
20.  Nicki Keller, Nicki's Reef

21.  JJ Jacobs, Coming Abstractions
22. Stacey Curry, Star Hitched Wagon
23.  Carrie Tahquechi,  Carrie T
24.  Deci Worland, Gem Trails
25.  Debbie Goering, Prairie Emporium 
26.  Staci Smith, Staci Louise Originals
27.  Francy Inman, 8 Second Studio 
29.  Cherin Poovey, Lanyard Lady 
30.  Deb Price, Green Shoot Jewellery Designs 

31.  Suzette Bentley, Ellies Bijoux  
32. Mallory Hoffman, For the Love of Beads 
33.  Shirley Moore, Beads and Bread 
34.  Kate Gardenghi, The Tropical Blonde 
35.  Marina Dobrynina, Savon Feutre 
36.  Molly Alexander, Beautifully Broken Me 
37.  Linda Djokic, Lutka and Co. 
38.  Cory Celaya, Art With Moxie 
39.  CJ Baushka, 4 His Glory Creations 

41.  Sandra Richardson, Sandy's Coloring Box 
42.  Sandi Volpe, Sandi Volpe Designs 
43.  Kim Roberts, Bahama Dawn 
44. Hilary Frye, FryeStyle 
45.  Emanda Johnson, Artemisia's Studio  
46.  Lisa Kavanaugh, Beading Bliss 
47.  Sue Kennedy, Sue Beads
48.  Raquel Amaral, Raquel Amaral
49.  Robyn Hawk, Daily Jewel
50.  Linda Inhelder, Must-Haves Jewelry

52.  Krista French, French Elegant Jewelry
53.  Andrea Robinson,  Madame Magpie's Shiny Things
54.  John Rasmussen, Rasmussen Gems and Jewelry
55.  Breana Fry, Vault 31
56.  Erin Prais-Hintz, Treasures Found
57.  Cyndi Lavin, Beading Arts
58. Dot Lewallen, Speedie Beadie
59.  Hope Smitherman, Crafty Hope
60.  Heather Pyle, Aquariart

61.  Adrienne Campbell, Adrienne Designs
62.  Dee Gordon, Runako Designs
63.  Judy Glende, Judith B. Designs
64.  Susie Hibdon, Vintage Susie & Wings
65.  Tania Spivey, Moobie Grace Designs
66.  Norma Agron, Norma's Clay
68.  Johanna Rhodes, Fire Phoenix Creations
69.  Raida Disbrow, Havana Beads
70.  Christa Murphy, Adventures of One Beady Woman

71.  Holly Westfall, Silver Rose Designs
72.  Catherine Pruitt, Boo Beads
73.  Deana Hager, Just Deez' Art & Life
74.  Lupe Meter, Gem's PC Corner
75.  Valerie Norton, Hot Fused Glass
76.  Janet Bocciardi, Honey From the Bee
77.  Kitty Durmaj, Perles and Life
78.  Rose Noble, Lady Noble Design
79.  Sally Russick, WireWorked
80.  Margot Potter, The Impatient Crafter 

82.  Lana Kinney, Something Unique by Lana
84.  Karen Bien, Everyday Gypsy  
85.  Rebecca Anderson, Songbeads
86.  Cyn Gagen, Creative Edventures
87.  Niky Sayer, Silver Nik Nats
88.  Deb Beechy, Beetique
89.  Marian Hertzog, M's Place 
90.  Kerry Bogert, Kab's Creative Concepts

91.  Judy Riley, Three Red Beads 
92.  Charlene Gray, Gray Girl Studio
 93.  Erin Fickert-Rowland, Elysian Fields
94.  Sharon Palac, Sharon's Jewelry Garden
95.  Maryse Thillens, Glass Bead Art
96.  Christine Altmiller, One Kiss Creations
97.  Eileen Bergen, The Artful Crafter
98.  Bobbie Rafferty, Beadsong Jewelry
99.  Rebekah Payne, Tree Wings Studio
100.  Mari Aparicio, Mis Amores 

101.  Tracy Statler, Make Bracelets 
102.  Marcy Lamberson, Studio Marcy 
103.  Kim Stevens, Picking Poppies
104.  Karyn White, Releases by Rufydoof
105.  Elisabeth Auld, Beads for Busy Gals
106.  Lisa Hamilton, Simply Irresistible Jewelry
107.  Serena Trent, All Things Made Jewelry
108.  Sharon Driscoll, Right Turn Artwerks
109.  Debbie La Rue, For the Love of Beading
110.  Maggie Towne, Maggie's Bead Towne

 111.  Cassandra Watsham, Designs by Cassandra
112.  Mary Ellen Parker,  BeeTree by m.e.


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