Wednesday, April 17, 2013

B&B Bead Buzz Blog

Back in January, I was reading "Bead Buzz", the editor's blog at Bead and Button magazine. The post was about making jewelry with family heirlooms. Jane Cruz told about how she made a keepsake necklace from a very special button of her grandfather's. I felt compelled to leave a comment, and it lead to a fun and lively email conversation about jewelry, family and Missouri (the place where my mother grew up). I sent Jane some photos, and she asked if she could use them in a future blog post. Of course, I said yes.

Fast forward to yesterday.
I pretty much forgot the details of the conversation - after all, it was over two months ago. Imagine my surprise to receive an email from Jane yesterday saying she posted my photos on the Bead Buzz blog!
I have made lots of jewelry over the years, but the pieces I made with my Mother's treasures remain some of my most prized. I gave most of them to other family members, including my Mom. She wears hers often.

I kept this one for myself!
Thank you Jane. It was fun to get to know you a bit!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Upcycling chandelier crystals!

I'm a member of a small local gallery - The Orchard Artworks. It's an artist's cooperative, and we have shows about every month. Being a jewelry artist, I don't do "solo" shows, because it would take A LOT of jewelry to fill the gallery room! But we often do "group" shows.

There is a fun group show coming up in May, featuring Upcycled Art (art made from re-purposed and recycled items). I am gearing up for this show, using found objects and old stuff (when I'm not using an artbead, I'm usually using an antique bit of some kind). I normally do not like the look of chandelier crystals in jewelry, because they always look like what they are - chandelier crystals! But, in the context of the show, I've been inspired to pull some out and use them. I have to say that they are growing on me! I paired some with some old buckles. I think some of these would look good worn in multiples.
This crystal is about 3 inches long!

This crystal was actually off an old candlestick bobeche.

I wrapped wire around and over the top to stabilize. The old wires in the crystals look pretty fragile.
 I have always loved old buckles. I used to buy them at auctions, with no plan for them. I was just buying them as artifacts from a by-gone era. I mean, who wears these kind of buckles anymore? I've got Bakelite, celluloid, Sterling, brass, rhinestone studded, pot metal filigree, and simple plastic buckles.
This buckle is celluloid.

Dyed pink Mother of Pearl buckle! My pink MOP beads just happened to match!!

I'm headed to Beadfest Spring tomorrow. I don't NEED any beads, but I'll probably come home with plenty to add to my stash. ;-)

Friday, April 05, 2013

Bead Soup follow up

My bead soup is in the previous post, please scroll down there to see it (or click here)!

I thought I'd post a photo of my partner's (Bridget Torres) bead soup, since her website is tricky to navigate. I could not find her photos when I visited, so I thought maybe other hoppers had trouble too (or maybe I'm just too dim to figure it out!). On her website, you can view Bridget's slideshow by clicking the little boxes next to "Bridget's Creations". Her bead soup is the bottom 5 photos.

Anyway, here's her finished soup!

I think she did a great job!! Feel free to leave a comment, I'll forward it to Bridget!