Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Wowza!!! BEADS!!!

I preface this blog with a note about being sick... please, if you are sick, contagious, sneezing, coughing, sore throat... please don't go out, don't attend festivals, programs, concerts.... or wear a mask... please!!!!
Sorry, my bad.
I've been sick you see. Man flu... or my girl version of it. My son and  best friend got sick and I swore I wouldn't catch it, but did.

Bead Soup has been on my brain for several weeks now.   First with the announcements of partners, the pairing then unpairing... and subsequent repairing... no... yes? is that right...repair? I suppose so, I got a new partner, one that is quite wonderful!!! Skylar Bre'z is totally awesome and probably just the right person to pair me with... thank you Lori Anderson!!!  Her blog is BrisingBeads Designs and she has an Etsy shop at BrisingBeadDesigns go by and give them both a look, her work is wonderful!

So I had packed a bead selection before I did the Scottish-Irish Faire in Midland, thinking that I would send it as soon as I got done with the weekend, but when I got around to really trying to get ahold of my partner, I found out that she had dropped out of the Blog Party. I was shocked and sad, but then when they paired me so quickly with Skylar, I knew that it had to be for a reason. I think we were meant to meet. So, I had the package, and thought I'd get it in the mail, but didn't, there were a series of crazy, catastrophic and totally normal events that happened. Sometimes it seems that best intentions just go astray. Skylar just had surgery and she still got my soup out! She was so gracious about me being late... I thank her profusely.

Skylar received her package today, so sorry for the delay... sigh... I made the two polymer clay cabochons, guilded them with copper leaf, and thought they were kind of neat.I found the domino with the face at the local bead shop, I don't know who did the work but I didn't like the way it was finished, so I guilded the sides with copper as well. There are two stone cabochons and a fused glass pendant and an assortment of stuff! The favorite thing I sent (my favorite!) was the four pieces of Venetian Glass that Mona Mitchell had brought back from Venice, she told me not to get too excited about them, they are made by young apprentices to practice their glass work,
by young, she said she meant really young kids. I loved them anyway, whether they were made by kids or not. I think they are pretty. I sent three colors of silk that I dyed, a couple of strands of lampwork beads, some crystal and some glass pearls and some copper and silver end caps and clasps. some stone rosettes, stone beads, mother of pearl beads and an abalone shell. I happen to love shells... I love working with them. Sooo... I had most of the stuff already picked out, I just added the two rock cabochons and.... when I found out that Skylar did felting, I added some curly roving and a skein of turquoise wool.

I received my package about a week ago, I was in the midst of family crisis and being sick and didn't get to look at the stash.... What Skylar sent to me was amazing!!!
I really love the colors and the beads that she chose. What a selection!!! there are the turquoise that I love but also this beautiful assortment of copper, lampwork, pearls, and glass... such pretty things!!!
... I am drooling still, thinking of all the things that I can make!!!!
I just  love, love, love the large glass bead. It is absolutely beautiful!!!
There are so many things in here that I don't know if I can list everything!!! There are several glass cabochons, a copper plated glass pendant, copper beads. turquoise and glass and ceramic and metal... and... and.... there are vintage beads as well, several clasps and chains.... and the Pièce de résistance... a skein of beautiful yarn!!! I am so excited to work with all this. I think I might have to pack it up and take it with me this weekend to Bead Fest Texas!!! I have some down time and I might need to do some creative stuff!! LOL! Seriously, I think I might take a few things. I am taking all my tools anyway, can't hurt to get started now!
In case I didn't get a good picture... LOOK at the beautiful skein of yarn that is just waiting to be fondled and drooled over....

I thank Skylar so much for sending me such wonderful items... in such a varied palate. I can't tell you how excited I am that we are getting to know each other... 

Friday, March 21, 2014

Families

I thought about posting about a lot of things today, but I had to stop and think about what was really on my mind.
My Father-in-law passed away this week and it got me to thinking about my husband and my Father and my brother. I look back with fondness to all three of them. It is bittersweet memories with them. All three left way too soon for human likes... and I am sad still, even after all these years that my Father is gone, and if I should live so long, Even after the same amount of time will be still missing my husband and my brother  I am sure, that they both went a month apart was hard... but... with all things, the pain is softened with time. .
My Father is always on my mind it seems, though I was pretty young when he passed away, I have al these memories that make him still close.
He was a fun man, though I guess I didn't realize it so much when I was a kid. He had a fun sense of humor, really dry, most like an Englishman, though his family was Scottish for the most part. Maybe the sense of humor is the same? I don't know.
He would talk about something and walk away, come back later on and pick up on the thought like he never stopped talking. I could always follow the thought but I think it drove my Mother crazy! He just kept thinking about something until it worked itself out.
I was allowed to go fishing with him, since I could sit for a while without talking. I guess that was what he enjoyed about fishing... the peace. Our house was noisy when I was little. A normal house I guess. My oldest brother was already moved out but when he was home it got noisier, and the other brother and his buddies, playing records and laughing, my sister playing the piano or her friends laughing and cutting up, me and my best friend, I am sure the loudest.... I guess going fishing was a relief!
My brother, James, also let me come fishing with him some, he would even slip a little goldfish on my hook to make me feel better about sitting quietly. I loved him for that!  My dad would just let me sit or wander around, not ever saying much, and never asking if I wanted to fish, 'cause usually I didn't.... I just liked the solitude. I guess my Father and I were more alike that i had thought.

I was sitting at the gravesite, thinking about my husband, his grave stone right to my right foot, thinking about how he and my son were together, and how different and yet alike they were. My husband never saw a stranger, my son painfully shy like me... My Father and my husband were a lot alike that way. My dad had friends all over the country, and I am sure all over the world for that matter. He was a good and kind man, never met a stranger, went out of his way to help people.
My son will be the same way later on. He just needs a bit of growing up and time away from me. Though, he will always be quiet I think. He just doesn't have a lot to say to other people, he will always keep one or two close friends to talk to...

I was tremendously proud of the way my son handled himself this week. Since his Father passed away, he hasn't been around that side of the family as much. Before his passing, my husband spent a lot of time with his own Father, and we were at their house the night before he passed, laughing and joking around. He worked with his brother so they were pretty close, spending so much time together, but he did put some distance in there at times... So, after his death, I took I took my son  over to see his grandfather as often as possible, but we never knew when he was in the hospital or when he was gone for any reason, we just didn't have any way of knowing much... but we went often enough I guess. Sadly, in the years since the death of my husband, my brother in law hasn't been very close to my son, the other brother lives away and it is fewer and further between when we see him, but he is probably closer to my son... that and his wife is the sweetest person you could ever imagine... and my son dotes on her.
This week has been filled with people in from different parts of the country, friends and family together and talking and laughing and it has been nice. My son loves the larger families, he wished for years that we had a huge family.... sadly we don't. My family is scattered around, and even the ones that are close, aren't. My son has said over and over that he misses everyone, but this is not an easy way to get together.
I don't know much about my father's family, I have been searching for their past, but usually come up empty handed... I traced his mother's mother's side of the family back to them coming to the states back in the mid-1600s but the rest is so hard to find. My Mother's, Mother's side of the family is back to somewhere in the 1100s, but other than that I don't know a lot either, not much left there, or that I can find.  My brother James passed away the month before my husband, my oldest brother lives away, and my sister doesn't speak to me, not for a while now, she has her own reasons...
So, we feel kind of alone now.
My mother is still alive, but it is harder and harder for her to come to the house, I have a truck and she can't hardly get into it, and it is hard for me to go to see her. Since I haven't been able to drive for so long, it has taken it's toll. I depend on everyone else that can take me to do anything.
Well, that should be enough of me going on the way I have.
I will post again tomorrow with my Bead Soup arrival, it got here earlier this week but I have been so busy I didn't get to stop and look at it.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Disaster averted

Whew! Thank goodness!
I was anxiety ridden yesterday because the woman I was partnered with for the Bead Soup Blog Party had dropped out, me, being the ever so doubtful, thought she probably read my blog and decided that I was a lunatic and didn't want me as a partner....
But Lori Anderson, her husband Rick, and Lisa Liddy stepped in and found another match for me... which I believe was a totally better match in the first place!!!
My new partner's name is Skylar Brez and her blog is full of wonderful things. Brising Beads Designs is the blog, and it is full of women's history (She's working on her PhD in History) and she has pictures of some of the prettiest stones that she has to work into bead embroidery... her facebook page has some of her work, that is absolutely gorgeous! I can't wait to get to know her...
I forgot completely to take a picture of the soup that I put together... I can't imagine that, how do you forget that... I've been oohing and ahhhing over the pictures of soups that have already arrived at their destinations, and I didn't take a picture yet... sooooo... I'm carfully unwrapping and going to take a picture in a little while as the wind is up but should subside soon. Then off to the Post Office with the little package of sunshine!!!
I am so excited!!!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

8th Annual Bead Soup Blog Party!!!

I have been so excited about the BSBP this year, I really enjoyed the party last year and was so excited to get to meet someone new this year. There are so many wonderful jewelry artists out there, and I haven't met many of them, I am kind of slow on the uptake on Blogger, I don't quite know how to find people on here. I have to find them somewhere else and then go to their blogs, so I am kind of lost when it comes to jewelry blogs, BSBP is a great way to find bloggers who have jewelry as their main interest.
I can't say that jewelry is my only interest, but it is a huge interest...

So I was so excited to get Lori Anderson's email stating that I had been accepted into the blog hop, and believe me, that was an ordeal in itself. I guess that using gmail isn't my forte either, I haven't understood how it works for a while now, since the changes that they made, I haven't been receiving my mail like I thought I should.... and low and behold, I started digging around and there were a ton of emails that I hadn't seen... I thought I hadn't been accepted, I thought maybe I did something wrong... I knew I made the deadline, but thought something else had to be done.... sigh

So, I was at the Midland Scottish-Irish Faire over the weekend, and I just left a message on the Bead Soup Cafe site for my partner, and friended her, and sent a message, and subscribed to her blog....and hadn't heard anything back, which is ok, it's just been a few days, and then today.... she messaged me that she dropped out...

 I am so sad.

So what do you do???

If all else fails, I will use the bead soup for her as my own, and have my own self as my partner? I can write myself little messages of encouragement? I can surprise myself with a package? sigh.... I can make something and post it.

Friday, February 21, 2014

New Workroom~ not really, just revamped workroom

I've been preoccupied the past few weeks with working on a space for my sewing room. I continually have had it all over the house and thought that it was time to take back my workroom. The space was a horrid place with an unfinished floor and partially finished walls, and I had my sewing desk and a lot of fabric in there, but nothing was organized and it was impossible to get to my sewing desk. I will not ever show a picture of the state it was in before I started... I am too embarrassed, and I will show pictures of the empty space as soon as I find the lead to the computer from the Nikon... I have grown to hate that cute little camera.
The space is by no means finished, but it will suffice for now. I have tons of sewing to finish, from dog collars and leads to capes and tutus and arm warmers, and the list goes on and on and on....
March is upon us and I am woefully behind. Festival season is about to start and I have very little inventory.

Sooooooooooo.... here goes, my short and sweet little tribute to the workroom... 
The ceiling is still a mess, but the walls turned out ok. the floor is half done but I moved in and started working anyway. 
The problem is always lack of space. I could have a warehouse 100x100 feet and still would need a bunch more space. The real problem is that I have sewn for ages, then added other crafts to the mix... I don't just make kids clothes anymore, I don't just make quilts anymore... I don't just paint, I don't just sculpt, I don't just make fairy stuff.... sigh... 

So, I have got a lot of sewing machines and I don't have room yet to put them in, but I have several in so far. Trying for space for three of the machines that are in cabinets. I have this desk that I will use for most of the sewing and have several portable machines that I love, and another desk for the serger, and a cutting table, and then tons of bookcases and shelving.. and those fun little rolling drawers, that are indispensable... There are two metal carts that are on wheels, and my old Government issue file cabinets... and one old wooden cabinet that I don't have in yet, but will be in soon...
I decided after working for a little bit on the room that there was no way on earth that my jewelry bench and all the junk that I have will ever fit in here. Which is ok, really it is. There is plenty of space now for it to stay in the room that it is in. I like the idea of not having the sewing stuff in with the jewelry... as jewelry making is totally filthy work.  I don't even have all the nasty dirty stuff in my jewelry workroom, because it is too dusty or fumy to be in a smaller space. I use the closed in back porch to do grinding and heat related work then take stuff back to the workbench. 
So, here are a few more pictures...
My old file cabinets, two of the drawers are being fixed, and will be back in place tomorrow...
I love this old thing. It was olive drab but I had a wild tear and painted it one time. Love the colors, but thinking maybe they need to be lime green and turquoise???
These hold a ton of stuff. I have patterns and files and junk in them... and I need to sort through and get rid of junk that I haven't used in forever...
 This is one of my little sewing machines, a "toy" that works pretty well.. Still needs cleaning up, but I love the color of this one...
 And this little beauty is one of my favorites, 





The little Singer isn't bad...




A few of my little friends came along with me in the room change. I have a whole shelf of junk that the kids give me or I saved from the charity shop box of toys not wanted anymore... The Green Power Ranger is knocking a hole in the "wall"





I think this is my favorite machine, I know it isn't expensive or anything but it is cute and pretty and I love it. It still needs the handle replaced and to be oiled and a new needle but it will sit on the shelf and be pretty a while longer!
I have been working the past week, and need to keep on track and not be distracted by pretty toys and rearranging too much... I moved my paints into the room the other day and have been multitasking.  I also put a table in for my son to do his "work". He does grab bags for kids with candy and a little toy. He keeps all the money from the sales and can spend it on whatever he wants.. .which is usually something from the festival we are at. He is also making rubber band bracelets and paracord bracelets... he wants to do chainmaille... but still doesn't get that it will take him forever to make something to sell... he thinks the small pieces that he has done might sell.... sigh.... I might have to buy them from him to use in a bracelet or necklace or something.

Working on butterflies, no dragonflies yet, but will work on them over the weekend!

Saturday, February 01, 2014

100% of the Proceeds Will Go Towards Brett &Leah's Baby Boy | Memorial/Funeral - YouCaring.com

It is not often that I find a cause that is worthy of posting. I happen to think this is worth the post and the plea to help.

Brett McDaniel was killed in an auto accident on the 30th of January, 2014. He leaves behind a grief stricken wife who is carrying their child, a boy. I know first hand that losing your husband is a horrible thing to go through. It is heartbreaking and you feel left alone in that place that not many understand. What is more heartbreaking is to have a child to explain about the loss... what can only be more painful is to have a child that will never know his father. I can't even begin to know that pain.

Please, if you can spare even a few dollars, please help out. Money won't ease the pain, but it will help with the costs of funeral, doctors, and bills and baby.

100% of the Proceeds Will Go Towards Brett &Leah's Baby Boy | Memorial/Funeral - YouCaring.com

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

counting down to Christmas

I found some tunes on the radio and we put up the tree today, I'm getting there. I say we put the tree up but so far it is just the tree and the lights. I guess that is better than nothing?  I'm trying out some green LED lights this year, last year I tried out the purple, but they ended ujp being way too dark, and I didn't think they looked good mixed with the white... so, it ended up being all white lights, but this year.... I am going against tradition altogether. I put on lime green lights tat I got at Sams for Halloween. I just knew they would be perfect on the Christmas tree.... I am still not sure... but they are on and I'm not taking them off! 
The lime green would be perfect with Grinch-like ornaments, and I may do that yet. I think a Whoville tree top star would be cool. 



So, we went to the Artwalk in Alpine the weekend before Thanksgiving, and got snowed in. Well, not really so much snow, but tons of ice.  The little cabin we stayed in was cozy and warm, but  the walk was pretty miserable, though we got to see some really wonderful artists, and I ate fried pickles...which is one of my favorites!   We stayed in Ft Davis the first night and skipped the receptions that I really wanted to go to. But that was even nice. We stopped at the Mercado and got a couple of hens and a bottle of wine, and made dinner  which was wonderful and I enjoyed the wine.
 

The next morning, my son made breakfast for us... which was really wonderful! He is really getting to be good at making things, he even made toast on the griddle... which is my favorite! Ended up the road on to Alpine wasn't as bad as we thought it would be. There had been a car go off the road just North of Ft Davis, on the road to  Balmorhea, and we drove about 30 all the way, but from Ft Davis on to about 4 miles out of Alpine the road was actually clear. go figure. 

 We ended up cooking dinner instead of going out, and we played out with the dog, taking turns freezing with her. She didn't want to come inside, She absolutely loves the snow and ice. My son skated around and spent a lot of time on his bottom! But he loved every minute of it. When we finally went home, the roads had cleared a lot, only making us drive really slow a couple of times, just in case. Everything was melting but the  further North we got, the more the

clouds were building, It looked bad, but ended up not being bad at all. Our electricity had been off while we were gone, I don't know how long, but there had been power outages all over town. The house was cold but it was good to be home. '
Mom stayed over for a couple of nights, and we had Thanksgiving with my sister's family, My daughter and grandson were here as well, but seems like we didn't get to visit at all. 

 We  had another cold spell this past weekend, a lot of ice and school was called off on Friday, which makes it bad for my son, he has his GT on Friday, and I don't think they will be able to make it up... 

So, between being sick, holiday and company, getting the chance to snuggle...and the ever growing pile of laundry, and projects, I haven't got anything done!


Forgot the gloves!
I am working on a quilt, well, actually three quilts, I started one a while back, it isn't as far along as I had planned, but it is ready to be in the frame, I just have to get that frame out and put up, one is already all cut out and in the process of being sewn together, and one is half cut out. I dyed fabric yesterday for the last pieces of the quilt that I am sewing, and for the other half of the quilt to be cut out.  If that makes any sense. 
I've dyed cotton, flannel, and chambray

these are ready to go.
I can't wait to finish them, they are all three for Christmas presents, soo.... I'll not show the whole thing, that way no one will know who itis for...


getting set up is my favorite part of sewing!
I love sewing with this old machine, and it is handy to take with you when you travel. I do have a cheap little portable, and heck, my old Kenmore and Brother are portable, but there is just something that makes you want to sew on these little Singers.

what not to do with your cutting mat!
I ruined my cutting mat, one side only, when I was painting something or other, but then I stuck down pieces of tape, and who knows what...So I add this as a "what not to do with your cutting mat"... I know, I know, I should take better care of things ,but you iknow... I never take the time to put something down to catch paint, glitter, tape, paper mache, gosh, really there is too much to count when I start messing around... I do put the mats up usually, but sometimes, I'm in a hurry, and well... I just don't think about having to scrub off all that stuff.  I seem to put a lot of junk onto my cutting mat, and I really do turn it over sometimes, and sometimes I get out my good mat, and use it  then put it away quickly... I use it for silks and fabric that I want to be extra careful with. 
Strings off the Chambray that I dyed.... All I can see of these is making some jewelry!





Friday, November 08, 2013

The Pioneer Woman does it again!

I just love Ree Drmmond, the Pioneer Woman. She has the best blogs, blogs that usually make you laugh, sometimes to think, and sometimes to cry. Her recipes are to die for and she is just a powerhouse... she home schools her kids, she writes these wonderful blogs, has recipe books and kids books and a wonderful husband.... and she has a cooking show on Food Network.... I think she is amazing.
Well, today she is giving away another one of the beautiful mixers in turquoise and floral. I enter her giveaways, but I have never won anything.... but I have hope.  I am hoping that I win this mixer... I covet it. I am in love with it.... and I need it!
Well, ok, so needing it isn't part of the equation, I don't NEED it.... but it would make life so much easier. Like when I got the food processor, I didn't NEED it. I wanted to update the way I prepared food. I had used the old hand cranked grinder for everything. I made chow-chow and relish with it, as well as grinding venison, pork, beef.... well, everything that had to be ground up. I didn't use it for pecans though, I have a modern chopper for that. You know, one of those little gizmos that fits on top of a glass jar, you turn the handle and it feeds the nuts from the top through the grinding teeth and into the waiting glass jar?  Oh, come on, doesn't everyone use that?
OK, so my kitchen is still kind of out of date. My food processor is the same one that I bought about 20 years ago... my blender is near 30. OK it is about 35.... but it still works great. I do need to update. I have my Aunt Billie's stand mixer from the 1950s... and a hand mixer that is only about 10 years old. I do have a microwave. I do have a toaster oven, and a coffee maker that my old boss bought for me, yes, I haven't worked for him in a dozen years, but.... OK, I don't like change.
I would love a new mixer.

I haven't been working on jewelry this week. I had a bad spell with my eyes, but I worked on a kimono that I've wanted to try out. I made my own pattern based on another one that I saw, but I didn't like the way it looked, but the idea was good, so... .I drafted the pattern, cut it out in fabric and have it most of the way finished. I can't tell if it will lay well still, I used a heavy material because it was handy... but I did have fun hemming it.
I own a few machines, sewing machines that is. I own quite a few, but the thing I love about some of them is that they have all the gizmos that go with them. Usually it is the old, old machines that have all the added feet. The newer machines might have some feet, but they deny the coolest feet, making you spend a fortune for the ones like lace attachment, cording, bias binder foot.... I know not many people use those, but, darnit, they used to come standard on the old machines.

I have an old Singer Featherweight that has all the bells and whistles, so I tried out one of the feet, the hem roller, on my Brother and it worked, well, pretty much worked, the shank is just a little bit too long, or the attachment shank is a bit too tall, but with three hands you can make it work....
I hemmed the whole of the fabric with just a quick pass, and I was so pleased.
Yes, I could have used the Featherweight to do the hemming, but it doesn't have a threader on it. I have to have a threader if I am sewing by myself. Or a bunch of magnifying glasses, and I just didn't want to mess with that.

When I get the finished product done out of the right weight cloth, and screen printed, I'll post a picture. OK, when I find the cord from the camera to the computer, I'll post a picture. Yes, I have lost it. I do have the Cannon, but I am wanting to use the camera that has the bigger screen that I can see instead of having to use the little view finder. ... Nothing can be easy around here.


Thursday, October 31, 2013

Goodbye to October {Next blog down is Halloween.Day of the Dead Blog Hop post}

Hope your Trick or Treating was fun tonight, I've been blue all day, feeling my age. My 11 year old decided he didn't want to do anything for Halloween this year, his bestest friend went as a gladiator, and was sooooo cute!  I think my son had second thoughts when he saw his friend's costume, but it was too late. We only had a few kids come by, usually there are a lot around 9pm since the church by us has a carnival of sorts going on each year, but this year, I don't know if parents are just Halloweened out or what. They did have a lot going on this past weekend, and I guess it being a school night.... more candy to eat is what I say.

The Halloween/Day of the Dead Blog Hop in my post below, I started this necklace but put it aside and did the Gothic necklace instead....
I finished the Day of the Dead necklace. It turned out cute, but not what I planned.... OK so you know by my last post that not much ends up like I start out with. i am not sure that I like it, too much gliter I think. I had a hard time with the glitter on the vinal, geting it to stick down but not be rough... I ended up using a glitter glue, making a design, then when it was dry, I used a jewelry glue, and we will see how it goes. I lightly sprayed the polymer skulls with acrylic after they were painted, and I kind of like where they ended up. I couldn't decide if I liked them or not, but.... this is  one of those necklaces that is just for fun, not for profit things!

I cut the vinyl for several other projects, a couple of bracelets and a ring, when I had this large piece left over, I knew it had to be for something big and bold! The picture doesn't show it well, but I ruffled the vinyl, which was a bit tricky to keep it even, and it came out pretty cool, gave some dimension to the piece.  I used a velvet ribbon attached with black wire, then wrapped with wire, and left it as just a tie. I think in hindsight, I might like a clasp. I had fun with the polymer and remembered that I don't make polymer beads because it takes so long. I respect everyone that works with it. Glass as well. I just don't have the patience to work with either. Every now and then it is fun to go back and make flowers or skulls! but not something that I want to do every day.  I still like to make masks, but really, I haven't been working much with them... I am trying to make a vase out of clay, I made some pieces of graduated color polymer for a project that I was working on and loved the colors so much I wanted a vase out of them.... I just haven't gotten far with the design, I thought I knew the shape I wanted, but.... I got to thinking that it needed to be taller to really use the way I want to.... and the design I started out with was too squat to be useful......... Pictures if I ever get it made.
Well, here's to the last of October 2013. May it be remembered fondly. I don't know about you, but I am so ready for Thanksgiving. I miss family and friends so much, and good food.... and cool weather....

Monday, October 28, 2013

Happy Gothic Halloween~~Halloween/Day of the Dead Blog Hop

The past few weeks have been spent dreaming of possibilities, what's possible to do, what's possible to just dream.  The Halloween/Day of the Dead Blog Hop reveal is today, and all the thoughts and dreaming of possible designs finally down to this........
Before I show you.....
I had someone ask me how I can work on jewelry if I am blind.... or in other words, they just don't get it, the concept of blindness... One time I had surgery and explained to the aid who came to help me to the facilities that I couldn't see... when I came out, by myself, I wandered to the bed, she said..."I thought you couldn't see"... well, no, I can't, it is the only big white blob in the room, I figure it is my bed....
I thought I'd share a little of my work with you, and let you see how I can work... and see... and sometimes, not see....
 Some of my jumble of tools, This isn't everything, but I've been working on the kitchen table this week (again)... I can't hear the door or the phone in my workroom, and I can't see or hear my son, and he's been sick again, so.... here I am, tools and junk on the table, and yes, I fell off the wagon again, that's a Dr Pepper sitting there. Bad for drinking a soda, and bad for having it on the table while I am working.
 moving over a bit, my tools and necklace board, I don't use this much, but love it when I do, I have one that is printed on the fuzzy velour necklace stuff that I bead on, I use that more often. More often than not, I just measure on me...
I don't always keep my tools in such a mess, but lately they have been put away, and they got dragged out, put up, dragged out.... I haven't worked much in the past 6 or so months that I don't use them as much as I need to.
 This is more often than not how I work, sometimes on a piece of paper, sometimes off the top of my head. I usually know what I want to make, then just do it, or sketch out just the parts that I need help with... sometimes I will draw and cut out a piece that I want to make, but like the bat in the picture, I don't always follow my drawings or cut outs anyway, so why bother?
I doodle more than I sketch. If given colored pencils or markers, I will draw all day and forget that I am supposed to be working!
 Here's a peek into my junk box. I love this thing. I keep it full of pieces that I either messed up working on or spare parts that I didn't use. Sometimes it overflows into a bowl or even into a box. These are just polymer clay that has been cooked and some are even painted.  I say they are polymer, but I see a piece of glass peeking out from the box as well.
These are the most important items in my toolbox now. I have a number of magnifying glasses, but these two are my favorite. I also have a pair of jewelers lenses that I clip onto my glasses, they are for when I am putting in a small screw or threading a needle, not for normal use... though the doctor told me to get a pair of the glasses to use for regular work, I don't like wearing them for everything though. It is difficult to look at anything but close up items, so, I use the little flip down pair.
I love this one, it clips on to what you are working on and you can move it. It also has another base that has a strong magnet on it. I sometimes like that better when I work on a metal tv tray. Yes, I do have a few of those. I bought my son and I the divided plastic trays and love those, You can sit and work and have little copartments for everything you are using, though mine is always running over.
They make these with lights, but I haven't found one that really lights up enough to really help
This is the magnifier that I wear around my neck. It is necessary now to use this one in conjunction with the clip on. It has a light but I don't like it either. Not bright enough. Funny, I need a lot of light, but the mix of medications makes it almost impossible to have a light on. Some days (most everyday from late May to mid-October) I spent in a darkened room, laying down most of the day. I am off four of the medications now and my cornea is almost healed, the retina is stable, Yipee!
Day of the Dead sketch
Now the blog post, I removed a lot of this, I had kind of made fun of myself for being ADHD, changing the plans and welllll... I thought instead of scaring everyone with the way my brain works, I'd pare this down a bit... I fumbled with several ideas; Day of the Dead, Halloween, scary, Gothic, fun....  Several sketches and ideas later....
head for Spiderus

Spiderus necklace idea
Another Halloween idea... I like this one
 
I had bounced a few ideas off my son, and he likes that goth look, and I have made a few pieces that everyone loved, I thought OK, so here's the opportunity to do something a bit different, what could I use, since I am not going to cut out anymore vinyl, and I don't have any latex, and..... well.... I thought about using the vinyl tape as the base to build up resin and make a pendant, embedding a bat and maybe a moon, or....
 You can call me crazy if you want, but I had fun making this, and I really had forgotten how fun it is to make bats.
I made a rough sketch and then cut out the drawing and used it behind some parchment paper to a roughed out bat, it turned out cute?
There was only one change that I made. The eyes were just kind of cartoonish when I put in the white eyeballs, I kept them for a minute until I put the lids on and... ewww, they just looked pretty bad, so I cut them off and built up the face again and hollowed out the sockets for some glass.  I smoothed it before I stuck it into the oven, and when it came out, I just had to do a bit of sanding here and there,  and voila, I had a bat. Just to add the eyes, that in hindsight, would have been cool to just imbed a couple of glass beads into the clay instead of having to glue them in, but...
I wanted something gothic, but not all in clay, and I don't want to do a lot of metal, so I decided to try using resin on paper, since I have this cool scrapbooking paper that is pretty and I love the blue color, and... well, the first attempt was ok, but I didn't use the vinyl tape on the sides and I kind of had a mess, then I found a squeeze bottle that had a really great small tip, and that helped get the resin in just the places that I wanted it to be, and I made some pretty cutouts, inked them, backed them with sticky, black card stock and inked the sides, then resin-ed them and glittered them, and stuck in some stuff and decided I like the purple beads that I have.... hahahah So I cut out a few more pieces and got out the purple ink and did the magic all over again. after I cut out he holes I went back and reinforced the back and put more resin over the glitter, and poked through the hole again, so it would be stronger.
There was a slight hiccough with the bead portion of the necklace. I thought that I could use Fireline, but the bigger cut stone that I used chewed right through it, so I used a black plastic covered wire to string them
 added a few extra bangles and so forth, I used the pigment and then gave it a light spritz of acrylic sealant, and with the pretty clasp (that I stumbled onto, it was marked 'charms' and was on clearance)...I like how it turned out.



By the way, I did make the vinyl with polymer clay flowers and skulls, a picture of it is in the blog above this one.  I love flowery skulls :)

 Go by and give a visit to the other participants in the Halloween/Day of the Dead Blog Hop, they can be found here Blog Hop  or by clicking on the names below.
Have a Boooooootiful week!

 Participants for the Blog Hop



Kathleen Breeding  http://99bobotw.blogspot.com


Dianne Miller  http://www.artbydianne.blogspot.com

Lisa Liddy  http://www.lisaliddy.wordpress.com

Toltec Jewels  http://www.JewelSchoolFriends.com


Laura Medeiros  http://Www.zoeowyn.blogspot.com

Veralynne Malone  http://www.veradesigns.blogspot.com





Jenny Davies-Reazor  http://jdaviesreazor.com/blog







Stephanie LaRosa  http://Www.stringaholic.blogspot.com





Nicole Valentine Rimmer  http://www.nvalentine.blogspot.com




Sarajo Wentling  http://www.sjdesignsjewelry.blogspot.com










Dawn M. Gallop  http://www.flipflopsandpoptarts.com
 Christine Damm   http://storiestheytell.blogspot.com

Have Fun!!!