Saturday 29 March 2008

Something old - something new.

What have I got to show you today? Well I haven’t had chance to come up with any new designs just lately, as I’ve got lots of testing and writing up to do for projects that have already been accepted for magazines. I’m ploughing through them though, and hopefully I’ll have everything finished in a couple of weeks so that I can then move on to trying out some new ideas I have jotted down in my various notebooks!

In the meantime, I thought I’d show you my Butterfly Pendant which is in the latest issue of Bead and maybe some of my international readers won’t have seen it. It’s a Herringbone stitch pendant, with a tiny Brick stitch flower and a butterfly charm, hung from Memory Wire and decorated with garnet Swarovski crystals. There are two more projects coming up in the next two issues of Bead – Frog Pendant and Dragonfly Pendant.

I also thought I’d show you a pair of earrings I’ve just made for myself. As you can probably see, I am mainly a bead weaver, but I recently treated myself to a gorgeous necklace from my friend Julie of Lush Lampwork made especially in colours to match a top I have. Julie also made me some matching smaller beads so that I could make myself some earrings. They are nothing fancy, I wanted the beautiful beads to speak for themselves, so I have just added some light sapphire Swarovski crystals, formed a couple of wrapped loops and hung them from some sterling silver earwires that I made by wrapping some wire around a pencil! I love them and am virtually living in them!

Tuesday 25 March 2008

Easter Inspiration!

Well, I spent the Easter holiday period at my parents house and whilst the weather wasn't fantastic, a mixture of sunshine, snow, rain and lots of wind, we managed to get out and about and nearly walked the poor dog off her feet! I remembered to take my camera with me this time, and thought I'd attempt a few inspirational 'arty' shots. Now that I'm uploading/downloading (whichever way it is!) them, I see that most of them are out of focus - especially the one's where I was trying to be a bit clever and position my camera in amongst some gorgeous velvety moss at eye level - more practice needed I think! Still, I think the pictures below capture some of the glorious natural inspiration that surrounds us, such intense blues and greens at this time of year and the hedges were covered in the beautiful Blackthorn flowers with their delicate fluffy middles - can't wait to get beading!

Wednesday 19 March 2008

A birthday present.

It was my bead-buddy Claire's 40th (shhhhhh!) birthday on Sunday. I was hoping to meet up with her at the Harrogate beadwork fair, but unfortunately I couldn't make it so I had to post her present to her. She's received it and now I know she likes it, I thought I'd post a picture of it here. Claire is cat mad, so I made her this quirky little 'Cat in front of the fire' tag. It's a bit different to my usual 'floral creations' I know, but it's a bit of fun and in fact my latest project in Bead magazine is along similar lines! See Claire's beautiful work on her website Clasicat Designs

Monday 17 March 2008

Whew! Where did that week go?

Well it's been over a week since my last post and it's all been a bit of a whirl! Mum didn't make it to the biopsy appointment last Monday, due to the severe storms that were battering the South Coast last week - but she has another appointment on April 1st. Thank you to everyone that has sent their good wishes and support, it means so much to both of us.
So what's happened in my beady world since last week? Well some good news regarding the Pink Ribbon Pin - it's going to be a project on Beading Daily sometime soon, so anyone that wants to can make their own special pin. Of course, these ribbons have become a popular emblem for various causes, and so I have also made Teal Ribbon Pin (representing ovarian cancer) to show how different they can look in different colourways.

I've also made a new Pink Ribbon Pin, with a 9ct gold stick pin, which is going to be auctioned by Beading Daily, with all the proceeds going to a breast cancer charity. I will post details of the auction here as soon as I know them!

What else? Well most of the week was taken up with either beading the pins, sourcing the materials (thanks go to my friend George of by george for helping me find the gold and silver stick pins!) or preparing the instructions and diagrams. Bead & Button is finally available in UK shops (with my Foxglove Trio on the cover) and I must admit, it was a great feeling to be able to walk into WHSmith on Saturday and see my design on the shelves! Beadwork is also due out sometime soon, with my Supernova Choker project in there and I believe the latest issue of Bead is also due out and I have another project in there - Butterfly Pendant ... sorry Julie ;-)

So all in all, a pretty busy but exciting time - now if only we could just get Mum well!

Sunday 9 March 2008

Pink Ribbon Pin!

As some of you know, my lovely Mum has been battling breast cancer for a couple of years now. It seems to be the one persistent black cloud in our otherwise bright sky. Tomorrow she has to have another biopsy to see if the cancer is back or if it's just scar tissue from the two previous lumpectomies. I made the Pink Ribbon Pin today in honour of Mum and to acknowledge her bravery in the fight against this dreadful disease. My heart goes out to everyone in a similar situation.

Friday 7 March 2008

The secret's out!

Well the secret's out a bit sooner than I expected! The fabulous bead artist Zoya Gutina has very kindly added an article about me and my beadwork to the 'Jewelry Making' section of her website. Take a look and be sure to visit my gallery of work whilst you are there. Zoya also publishes a monthly newsletter on her site, and March's issue which is due out soon, will also include me as 'Featured Partner'. There is a link to Zoya's website on the side bar - go and have a browse at her gorgeous and intricate creations.

Thursday 6 March 2008

It's all happening!

Well I haven't actually managed to do any beading for the last couple of days - even though I've got a queue of projects to test and write up! I've spent the last two days trying to take some half decent photos with my lights and light-tent (I'm afraid my own set-up is nowhere near as neat and tidy as the picture above!) and then messing about with them in Photoshop - this is all new to me and it's taking me ages to get the hang of it. The reason I've spent so much time on this when I should be beading? I've got a very exciting project coming up - I don't want to say too much about it now, but all will be revealed in a few days. Watch this space!

Tuesday 4 March 2008

Feels like Spring!

A touch of snow this morning, but it's a beautiful sunny day now. It's that time of year again when everything seems to burst into shades of pink and yellow - Forsythia and Flowering currant in almost everyone's garden. So today I am fitting in with Nature's theme and working on my pink lap-tray to finish my yellow Primrose Pin. It's one of a series that will be in Bead Magazine hopefully in time for next Spring!

Monday 3 March 2008

First blog!

Well, thought it was about time I joined the band of beading bloggers! The first step was a website and now it's a blog - whew I feel almost modern! It's been such a roller-coaster of a year and suddenly my work is 'out there' and I'm having to come out of my shell. Think I'm going to struggle with blogging to start with, being a naturally quiet and shy kind of girl, but I'll soon get into the swing of it!