Wednesday, November 27, 2013

World Collage

This is it. The finished World Collage. I added fabric icebergs, glitter dimensional paint in silver, blue and purple, alcohol inks in various colors, some more silver glitter paint, some more alcohol inks, some silver threads that I created a mesh with and cut into squares, and then I had to stop. It was done, or as done as I was going to make it. I don't really feel 100% that it is done but I do feel 100% as if I don't want to work on it anymore.  I was done. I kind of sort of mostly like it but it was an experiment from the beginning and I had no idea how it might come out. I learned some things about the materials I used and it was a fun project. But I'm personally still critiquing it. At this point I think I would have to start over to correct what doesn't feel right about it.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

More Icicle Ornaments

I'm still working on those ornaments. I have 19 done so far with many more to make.

I've been off on a tangent doing some small quilt projects until my sewing machine decided to get flaky. I had some Christmas patchwork projects planned and finally got all the fabric I wanted to use together but that will have to wait. I love these colors and it's all snowflake fabric.

And I'm in the middle of a collage project that I'm sort of stuck on what I want to do next with it. It needs more of something, paint, lines, texture, color, shapes,....  I'll be working on this some more. I just hope I don't end up hating it when I get done messing with it. That happens sometimes.

work in progress

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Beads Beads Beads ... Icicle Ornament

This is my beading station. I'm still working on those icicle ornaments. Whenever I want a little break from the daily routine I can sit down and make a couple fairly quickly. Preparing the wire is the most work to the project. I have some ideas for other shapes besides a simple icicle that I may try.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Vintage Glass Icicle Ornaments

Yes, I have been making those ornaments I talked about last time and I have many more to make. I was surprised by the number of glass beads I was able to salvage from the old Christmas chains. I've also found some interesting shaped inexpensive new glass beads to use as spacers between the vintage beads. I'm pleased with how they are coming out and look forward to seeing them on a Christmas tree.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Christmas Projects

I'm starting a new project. I have some vintage glass Christmas tree chains handed down to me years ago that I treasured but didn't know what to do with because they were badly damaged from years of use. Many of the glass beads were broken and the chains needed to at least be taken apart and restrung. I hesitated to do that because of the fragility of the beads so they have been stored in a box with other treasures for many years. Recently I've seen many examples of beautiful beaded icicle ornaments made from many kinds of beads including vintage glass beads. As soon as I saw these I knew that's what I needed to do with these beads. This is the first of many ornaments I expect to make with my heirloom beads:

Friday, October 11, 2013

September Bracelet Projects

September was a busier craft month for me. I continued to work on jewelry but I also got back to work on a few other projects. This month I finally got some beading wire and crimp tubes and pliers and made some simple bracelets.

And I made a copper and pyrite wire wrapped bracelet for a guy.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Paint and Collage Play

It's been awhile since I've done any paint or collage work. There are a lot of reasons for that but they  really don't matter because I put my craft space back in order and I have been at it again. I don't really know what to call these little art pieces. I was inspired by the many examples of Art Journal works and pages and books so popular now. Art Journaling, as it's called, was a good jumping off point to trying some things with paints, collage, stamps, texture, mixed media, etc. My problem is that once I finish the 'background' for an art journal page I don't want to mess it up with words, or or images or whatever else people put on their art journal pages. I'm totally uninspired to do any of that.  I like the "Art" half of art journaling and would rather leave my journaling in the many written and electronic journals I keep daily. My right brain and left brain are both getting the exercise they need just not in the same place. Here are a few warm up pieces I've done this month.

Monday, August 26, 2013

July/August Projects

Besides going to Summer movies, reading books and collecting seeds from my "mutant" marigolds, I'm doing the occasional jewelry project. 

These two bracelets are made with copper wire in silver and bright copper finishes. The beads used are pyrite, hematite, goldstone, copper and glass.

This is a Mixed Media necklace or sun catcher made with assorted glass and handmade beads and a replica skeleton key pendant also embellished with beads and wire.

This is another heavier bracelet made with copper wire, pyrite, copper, and black stone beads.
This bracelet started out as a chain making experiment. I used the same chain making shape you see in the simple chain below but added small beads to each link before I closed the loop. All the beads are glass and the wire is silver finished copper.

A simple handmade chain link bracelet. Charms could easily be added to these links to make a more elaborate bracelet.

This was just a quick little "I'm bored" project using up some odd colored marble beads.

That's all the jewelry I've made so far this summer.  I have ideas and plans for other wire and bead projects, not just bracelets. They are all written down, some of them sketched, and I'm sure to get to many of them eventually.

I've barely done any drawing this year so I took a break from whatever else I was doing and sketched a little imaginary butterfly. I love drawing butterflies and I've casually studied the variety of the wing patterns and markings in my Butterfly encyclopedias. The wing shape and marking pattern in the drawing below are from a real species but the color is made up. I only need to sketch half a butterfly because then I go to Photoshop and play with that to create the digital pictures you see below.

That's all the crafts I've done this Summer. I feel like Fall is already here but most of my flowers are still blooming. Maybe next time I write the story of my "mutant" marigolds.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

May/June Update 2 (plus July)

Well, it's the middle of July and I'm still writing about May and June. Oh Well. Actually, not a lot of writing. Mostly pictures of the jewelry I have been making when I wasn't reading a book or watching all eight seasons of Supernatural on Netflix! I honestly did not expect to like that TV show, who knew? Anyway, this is what I have finished in the last 2 1/2 months:

Oh, and I forgot I have also been working on some quilted/embroidered pieces for as yet undetermined future uses. I may use them for soft handmade book covers, coasters, little keepsake bags, pencil cases, mini wall hangings, etc. Not sure. I sit and work on them when I watch TV and as they stack up I think about what I might make with them.

Monday, July 1, 2013

May/June Update 1

My craft activities have been hit and miss the last couple months and somehow I never got around to posting anything about them, but I have been doing a few things.  I finally finished a set of four Butterfly collages that I started sometime in 2012. 

As I worked on each collage I improved on the processed I used and was happier with each completed piece. After I finished this set of four, I decided to continue working on this theme idea and prepared four more background canvases for more Butterfly collages.  These backgrounds are again collage on canvas but with paper and paint instead of fabric and paint. I plan to make the butterflies again out of fabric collage layers. 

I'm not sure when I'll get around to finishing this second set of collages. Hopefully, it won't be another year from now, but I'll be sure to post something when I complete them.

Monday, May 6, 2013


The world is finally green again and I am working a a few different projects. Spring gardening, some quilted fabric patchwork projects, some butterfly collages I started last year, and more wire and bead practice. I have been making some beads out of wire and paper, wire and fabric or just wire. It's all part of my learning and experimental process. I want to embellish some other projects like handmade books or mixed media wall art with bead and wire. I'd also like to make bookmarks, purse charms or key charms. Currently I am making a variety of different bracelets as practice and shown below from newest to oldest.

This bracelet is copper wire and chain with sodalite chips, red coral beads, and red river stone beads:

A bracelet of copper, readline marble beads , and goldstone chip beads:

In this is bracelet I used some homemade beads I made from denim or dark blue fabric or denim fabric threads. The fabric beads are wire wrapped with natural and red copper wire. The red bead chips are semi-precious and the butterfly is red stone:

These are a few of the bead making experiments I have done.
Variations using pieces of old denin:

Map paper wire wrapped beads:

And assorted wire and bead links:

Finally, I also tried using galvanized steel wire from the hardware store with simple blue glass chips and red glass beads: