Friday 31 July 2015

Art Beads, into Better Storage

This post was supposed to appear yesterday. I didn’t get it finished on time. Actually what was supposed to appear yesterday was my contribution to the Art Bead Scene July challenge. Even then it would have been a day late.

My schedule got all mixed up and busy. I wasn’t able to complete any pieces, and I had some great art beads all picked out too.

Speaking of art beads, I’ve started organizing a spot for them in my cabinet. A whole drawer just for them! Maybe two from the quantity… I went a little crazy lately, increasing my inventory (yeah, that’s the right word).

This was the drawer I was storing them in, all types of art beads mixed together.

The new ones didn’t even fit in the drawer. That’s a bunch of them on my bench in this photo, and I had already put some in the new drawer

Here’s the start of the first new drawer of art beads. This one is going to hold the ceramic and stoneware art beads. You can see some more of my latest acquisitions already in it.

Everything is going to be a lot easier to find after all this sorting and organizing. I can’t wait to start creating again.

Thanks for stopping by. Have a great day.

Monday 27 July 2015

Office Clean Up, the Next Chapter

Back on May 14th I blogged about the latest saga in my never ending quest to get my studio organized. I had been lucky enough to find the perfect storage cabinet. Problem was it didn’t fit in the available space. So…I started a search for a new bench to replace the door I was using. Success came in June.

With it being so late into the spring season I’ve been spending a lot of time trying to get all my gardening plans done before it got too hot. The studio rearrangement got put on hold until now. It’s too hot to work outside most days so I decided to move forward indoors.

The studio is starting to shape up. Here’s what it looks like now:

And here’s my grungy storage cabinet, all cleaned up with new knobs and feet added. It looks almost respectable.

My new to me bench/desk is much smaller so new organization skills are needed very much. As you can see from the photo above, there’s “stuff” all over it. I haven’t been able to start filling the drawers of the storage unit yet, but needed to work on a few things. The supplies and beads are waiting to go to their new home, along with all those gorgeous new art beads I’ve been adding to my collection (umm…inventory) lately.

With one final look back, here’s goodbye to my old bench and set up. Looking forward to the future.

Thanks for stopping by. Have a great day.

Thursday 23 July 2015

Kempenfest Barrie

Next weekend, August 1 to 3rd is the Annual Kempenfest Festival in Barrie and I’m there again. Wohoo!

There’s construction happening along the waterfront this year so the show layout is a little different. I will be located in the Market Square section, just to the south of the Knights of Columbus and Kiwanis Club tent. You will find me in booth 326, with the blue circle below. 

Map 4 is a cross section of the full site map, in the little square. The blue square is Map 4. There will be over 350 artisans exhibiting at the show, along with an antiques market, children’s village, stage performances, beer and food tents, and many different activities to participate in or watch. See the full schedule here.

Do come visit and see the many new pieces, all handcrafted by me.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

Tuesday 21 July 2015

Art Beads, Christmas in July

Somehow I got off track on my blog schedule over the first few weeks of July. It’s partly due to taking some time off my bill paying job, partly due to some big gardening jobs, rearranging my studio (still a work in progress by the way) and partly being distracted by pretty shiny things when online.

Hopefully I’ll get back on schedule now, starting with this post about my “Christmas shopping” in July. Christmas for me that is. Here’s what has come in so far. Wow!

I have been in such an Art Bead mood lately! So, details on what’s here:

Up first is this batch of Lampwork beads from Sue Kennedy of SueBeads. Sue decided not to go to Bead Fest this year and has been having a destash sale on her Facebook page. These are all so gorgeous. The photo just does not do them justice. Go check out what Sue has available.

From Jenny Davies-Reazor came these ceramic pendants and cabochon. I won the auction for them on the CABM facebook page. You can read more abount Jenny’s work on her website.

These ceramic and porcelain beauties are from Linda Landig, who hosts a destash every Wednesday on her Facebook page. There won’t be one this week though. Go over next Wednesday for the next sale.

There are two separate orders from Lesley Watt of Thea Elements in this photo. These were also all purchased through the CABM auction. Lesley also made a recent update to her Etsy shop, Thea Elements that you need to check out. The new variety of beads and focals is wonderful!

And the final photo is for some lovely polymer clay beads and charms from Dreams and Elements. These were actually a prize for my entry in the June blog hop for the monthly Art Bead Scene inspiration challenge. The challenge is a lot of fun and often stretches artistic boundaries for participants.

One of the perks of purchasing art beads from the creators is that they will often include an extra bead or gift in the package as a way of saying thanks for the support. Some of the ones above were such gifts and although they aren’t necessary, it sure is special to receive them.

I have made more purchases and am waiting for the mailman to bring those packages. Actually, it occurred to me that maybe I was going a little overboard with the buying. Never I say! There are just too many pretty things to add to my collection inventory. I do need to start making again though, otherwise I won’t be able to afford more.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

Friday 17 July 2015

We’re All Ears July Challenge

Every month the Earrings Everyday blog hosts a design challenge based on a theme. This month the challenge allowed for a wide range of options. Built around the theme of an African Storyteller and the quilts of Africa there was much to select from. The quilt designs that were selected come from the Siddi peoples of Karnataka, a South Western part of India. They are descendants of early African immigrants and slaves brought to India by the Portuguese in the early 16th century. I chose this pattern for my inspiration.

The first pair of earrings I made pulled their colours from the greens, browns and pale creamy colours in the quilt.

The deep beige/cream stoneware charms, with brown flowers and stems, were created by Cindy Pack of Art & Soul, and the complementary green and brown ceramic mini beads come from Gaea Cannaday. The beads are strung on antiqued bronze square wire and hang from antiqued copper leverback ear wires. (I noticed an open loop that needs to be fixed before these are added to inventory, something to take care of tomorrow)

The second pair are inspired by the brighter colours in the quilt, pulling on the blue, red and white colours.

The sweet little porcelain flowers in red and white were gifted by Lesley Watt of Thea Elements and just arrived today in a parcel with her lovely art beads that I won the auction for on CBAM. I matched them with some deep blue beads from Andrew Thornton’s Endless Sky design kit. The leverback ear wires and wires used to make the earrings are all gunmetal

When the theme for this month was first announced I did struggle a little bit, but then I started to remember rag quilts my mother and grandmother made when I was a little girl. Those quilts kept us warm for many years and brought back many fond memories. It’s those memories that these earrings spring from.

Please go and see what everyone else has made too.

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

Thursday 16 July 2015

Endless Sky Challenge Blog Hop

Back at the beginning of May I purchased Andrew Thornton’s kit for the Endless Sky Challenge, a beautiful design kit containing all kinds of pretty things including a selection of premium Czech glass, vintage Lucite, Quartz Crystal, Vintage glass, Waxed Irish linen cord, Recycled Sari Silk ribbon, a strand of Aquamarine chips, vintage Venetian seed beads, and a Luxury Bead Blend.

When the kit arrived, toward the end of May, I was delighted to see that Andrew had also added this handcrafted polymer clay focal, just as was promised

Of course time flies when the deadline seems so far away and I left everything for a while. I did create several pieces that I’m very happy with.

First up is this necklace which used most of the loose gemstones, the polymer focal and vintage Lucite ring, inspired by the tumble of loose stones in the kit. Every gemstone in the list is represented in the strand. I used Sterling Silver for the clasp and some of the Waxed Linen cord to tie the Lucite ring and the polymer clay pendant to the gemstone strand.

While I was finishing that necklace, this design was already dancing in my mind

These earrings are all glass, using some of the Vintage glass along with Czech glass and a tiny bit of the luxury bead blend. I used Sterling Silver wire to wrap everything and for the ear wires.

 I fell in love with the strand of Aquamarine chips and decided to use them all together in one statement necklace (all except one that is. It escaped to the floor and I didn’t find it until the necklace was done)

From my “inventory” I found the perfect complement in this large Polymer Clay shield that I won from Hilla Bushari of Hillovely in a contest sponsored by Lorelei Eurto. I strung the shield, Aquamarines and some of the glass beads (difficult to see in this photo) onto 49 strand Sterling Silver beading wire for security. Those stones are heavy! Before finishing off the beading wire I tied the gorgeous Sari silk ribbon onto the necklace and finished it off with a lobster clasp hidden behind the shield.

The final piece I completed are these fun little earrings, made with more of the glass beads and Waxed Linen cord from the kit. Because it works so well with the colours of this kit I used Sterling Silver once again to complete the earrings.

When all was done I had gone through a large portion of the kit. Was there much left? Well actually yes, but mainly smaller items. Lots for another day.

Please check out what everyone else has made too. 

Mona Arnott - You are here

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.