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Busy...busy...busy...My Wyrd

Tuesday, October 14, 2008
It never seems I have enough time. I just don't get it. I'm organized...I'm proactive...I've pared down doing mainly lampwork. I work at my medium so that my speed doesn't interfere with the quality. So why can't I get everything done?

I'm not complaining...I'm lucky because I actually have more call for my beads that I have time to make beads now. I find that amazing because I don't teach, I shy away from being published, I really don't chat much on the glass/jewelry/art forums, and I'm not a big name in the biz. I still don't consider myself a lampworker...more of a silversmith and jewelry designer that happens to make lampwork beads as well. Which is rapidly changing because most of my time is spent in the torcher chamber.

I'm honest with myself to know that I will never be a GREAT lampworker. I make beads, not for the sake of beads but for jewelry designers. There's a difference. Great beads can stand alone but that's not my goal. My goal is to create beads so that the next person can create a piece of wearable art. Does that make sense?

This whole dialogue comes from a recent conversation. A person asked me why I feel this way. The bottom line is that I will never make glass sing, just as as I never made clay sing. I can make metal sing. Metal is my medium but it's the color tangent that keeps me going back to glass. There have been several times in the past five years that I almost walked away from lampworking. Every time, it's my wyrd to migrate back to glass.

I've finally come to the conclusion that I need a change. I haven't decided what that change is yet...but one is coming. Maybe it's just an attitude adjustment...maybe my new business venture will fill the need for my creative juices...maybe I just need to move to studio to different location. The last time I felt like this, I walked away from potter and moved back into jewelry. I don't think I can give up's too ingrained in me now. I more likely think it will be going back to doing more metal. Maybe mixing glass and electroforming or PMC.

I think that some of my 'change' need will ease up after I get the house smoothed out. I still can't find all my tools...that just drives me nuts. Enough...rant's the eye candy....
The above makes me miss Texas. I really seem to like this design because I keep repeating it in different colors.

The above is's a off shoot design from the mini Aurora Borealis series. I'll be adding the beady dudes to my Etsy shop today.

The below is from my Dish series. I had a huge custom order of Dish beads and made one extra strand for the Etsy shop. I really need to expand on the Dish concept. I've seen some jewelry that has been made from this series. I was very impressed on both how the beads worked up into jewelry designs and the designs themselves.

I've got a couple more projects that I'm in the middle of...then, it's Dish exploration.

Have you ever had an idea...that's not fully formed but you know you need to explore. It just nags at you until you just sit everything a side and run with it. Well, that's what the Dish series has been doing for the past couple of months.

Ok...I've got to get some work one...

Have a happy, creative day!

Working Vacation...more lampwork bead sets

Sunday, October 12, 2008
I’ve been looking at my calendar. The current schedule of work that will be going on in the house isn’t going to be pleasant. What’s next is carpet installation…that entails packing up and moving the entire downstairs except for the kitchen. Everything will be moved into a freestanding pod. The moving starts this Friday…the carpet will be pulled and the sub floors have to be sealed. Then the new carpet will be installed on the next Friday. All of this moving, packing, and noise going on isn't going to be compatible with business. So I’m taking a vacation. I won’t be accepting any more customs until mid-November and my Etsy shop will be closed from 10-17 to 10-25.

Ya know, I will be glad with this is ALL over but I’m dreading packing and moving my design studio. It has been only less than 6 months ago that we moved cross-country. Now, with my memory fresh, I know what I'm in for.

The above set turned out's a color scheme that I've been playing with.

The below was a joy to make...the colors just blended together like hot wax. I was actually impressed when I opened this kiln to find these two sets. I had a couple of request for larger sets than you normally see on Etsy so here's one.

Now on a personal not...I decided on a leopard print for the living room carpet. I figure if I had to live in a cookie cutter house (I'm not much on housing developments and much prefer historical homes), I needed something a bit more interesting to look at everyday. I was very, very tempted to do each room in a different animal print...but common sense prevailed. There is too much of a good thing.
The living room furniture is brilliant blue with lots of glass and chrome. There's floor to ceiling book shelves on one wall with a flat panel TV on the other wall. So I just couldn't figure out how to make it more interesting of a room...then I thought animal prints. Yeah...that's the ticket. :-)
I thought about doing the dinning room in tiger print or zebra but I'm using that room as my design studio right now. The family room has a big fire place in it so I also needed to add a fireproof hearth rug so I decided to do that room in that I can put a large run on top of it. I like the layed, textured look sometimes.
OK...I'm off to run some errands and to the airport.
Have a happy, creative day!


Saturday, October 11, 2008
I've always had issues with my photography...even more when the beads have a large amount of blues or metallic sheen to them. The below set is's the base glass. It's not an opaque and it's not transparent...more like an opal. Again, these colors come from CiM and again, I'm impressed with the glass.

What I do like about this photo is that the beads are just about true to actual size. Well on my monitor they are.
I've pulled a neck muscle so I've been moving rather slowly today. I worked at the torch, very slowly, for most of the day. I got two sets in the kiln currently. I'm betting that you will be seeing either of them. The only productive thing I really got done today is test some color combos and test a new mold. There's a learning curve with any new piece of equipment or tool...even new glass. The normal rule of thumb is that opaques normally melt faster and spread easier. The opals that I've been getting in have to be torched to figure out how they will behave. Time and practice are the best teacher.
I did get my paws on some new PINKS...the shades range from almost a fuchsia to almost a rose quartz hue. I'll start playing with these in the next couple of days. Right now, I've still got the violets and purples on my bench. I'm having a tough time changing color schemes.
Ok...I'm off to baby my neck.
Have a happy, creative day!

Brights...Lampwork in Blues

Friday, October 10, 2008
I'm back again...

The tree trimmers didn't show up yesterday. There was some sort of scheduling mistake. Oh well, they will be here anytime. So I'm up and have my day started a bit earlier than normal. I don't have a normal schedule....there are time that I get on a roll and work until 3am. There are times that I get up early and clean beads. Rarely do I start on the torch at 6am though. I find that my creative juices do not seem to flow until after several cups of java and the sunrises.

The below pics (lampwork, of course) are the brights that I was chatting about recently. There's more on the horizon but I got turned in a different direction for the last couple of days. (Look at the bottom pic) but will return to brights soon.

Below...set 1

6 Lg Nuggets...18mm by 8.5mm

1 XL Nugget Focal...21mm by 10mm

Pair...7.75mm by 12.25


Base color is an opaque Aqua...lovely color.

Below...set 2

6 Lg Nuggets...18mm by 8.5mm

1 Focal...31mm by 11mm

Pair...6.75mm by 11mm


Below...set 3

6 Lg Nuggets...18mm by 8.5


Base is a royal blue.

Below...set 4

6 Lg Nuggets...18mm by 8.5mm


All of the above have a watery feel to them. I think they would make up into lovely bracelets with little ocean charms. Maybe even a shell or two.

Here's what has grabbed my attention....

These are what I was chatting about yesterday....all the colors, except the black background are encased in clear. Which keep the colors true to color and gives the beads depth. Some have fine silver burnished in, like these, and some don't. I really like thee beads...the problem is that they are hard to photograph. Oh well, such is the life of a beadmaker. :-)
That's the end of my show and tell for this am...I'm off to see if the tree trimmers are here yet.
Oh...yeah, I'll be up loading a few sets on Etsy this am too.
Have a happy, creative day!

Lots of new ideas...lots of new lampwork beads...lots of tree limbs.

Thursday, October 09, 2008
I finally got the below beads cleaned and photographed. I got on a spree jag...a spree is a straight sided lentil. These are thinner than most...I got the new slim version. These measure 18mm in diameter but are 7mm thick. Plus the raised surface decor. They are much lighter so the 18mm sized could be used as earrings. I'm rather impressed with the shape.

The real life, eye ball to bead, the orange is more gold. I haven't figured out what happened in the photo session. Mmmmm....the more I play with it...the odder it looks. I think I'm leaving well enough alone. Every once in a while, more with blues, I get a set that I just can't get true to color. The outside pics are fine though. I'm glad that I do inside and outside pics. I think it gives you more of an idea of what the color scheme really is. It's still hard because each person's monitors are different and sometimes they aren't balanced.
The above are lovely hues...I did some color layering to keep the beads from looking like they were color blocked. I like them...they have a new color called Lapis. I'd call it Indigo but who asked me.
The above are still my me why...they just are. The bright blue is more of an electric or neon blue...I pulled these beady babies from the kiln and felt blessed by the kiln fairy.

Right now I'm working on nuggets. I was working on brights, then an idea hit me. I'll have a very, very limited 6-8 set series coming up. They are a total PITA to's clear encased stringers and twisties because I used a lot of fine silver on each beads. Fine silver is wonderful to work with but it will change the true color of the glass. So if you want a certain color, say like pink...add silver and it sometimes changes to a patina green hue, if you are lucky. Silver with certain blues or black is different...the silver behaves and sits on top of the glass. But I wanted to use some pink, violets, and an odd shade of pastel turquoise. I also used some yellow...a do not do with silver, well on this shade of yellow. It turns to mud.

I'll have pictures soon...I've got another couple of sets to make...then it's back to brights.

Right now, I've got to get moving and start my day. The tree trimmers are do anytime. Geez, I'll be glad when all of this is done.

Have a happy, creative day!

New Take on an Old Style...yep, more lampwork.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008
It's been a while since I've made this design...I'd say 'bout a year or two. I had forgotten how much fun they are to make. They are even more fun to make when I've got new glass colors to chose from. The base is a pale yellow opal in rod form. Then after I super heat the glass, it turns into a soft organic tan hue. It's really not a true opaque, it has sheen to it. It's another one of the new CiM glasses. As I've said before, I am really impressed with this line of glass.
Ok...brights on are my agenda for the next couple of days. I thought it's be a bit longer...but I got a huge amount of work done on the torch the last couple of days. So all my customs are DONE!!!! Yeah! I really don't do that many customs any more. I used to...but I guess times change. I really don't enjoy them like I did. It's not the work nor the creation of the's the raw materials. I used a lot of odd lots (glass runs that won't be repeated) and a lot of hand mixed colors. So a lot of times I'm not able to repeat the bead set. So when somebody's hard for me to say "no". So that's the main reason that I rarely do customs any longer.'s a torch day...I've got some new ideas for color combos. So I think I'll start my day and get cracking!!!
Have a happy, creative day!

New Lampwork...Lots of COLOR

Monday, October 06, 2008
I've been hard at work...both at the torch and getting the photography done. It seems like I never have enough time. I keep harping on this BUT...I need 36 hour days. Does anyone else feel that away?

The above and below, are from the same torch session. (that means that they match) The color of blue is's really not's really not's really not a typical teal but since I have not other word for it...teal it will be. Which is an opal. That's the base for above. I also used a teal transparent...which comes from a very old batch of Italian teal so it's more of what they call seafoam now. I also used a pastel (opaque) avocado and a transparent indigo...along with a dark plum, violet, and purple.

The above and below is a flow of Curmudgeons is called “Albuquerque". They have an Old Town feel to them. It's a wonderful place to visit for both shopping and culture.

The below bead set has a base of iced pale's a new color from Germany. LOVE IT! The glass is smooth as glass (get it, yeah, I know...bad humor) and it flows like warm butter. Again, more purples and violets. Purple is one of the 2009's colors...but that's not why I've been using so much purple lately.
I just got in a bunch of new purples and violets in. I just can't seem to get them off my torcher chamber's bench. I keep on reaching for them. I've just put them away...I'm moving off into another color direction.
Color is one of the main reasons why I got into lampworking...oh so many moons ago. It's the main reason why I stay with lampworking as well. Don't get me wrong, I like glass as a medium but it's still the color that keeps me chained to my torch.
There are certain traits that make color universal and timeless...such as green trees or the luck of the Irish but it can also have a down side as well like (green) seasickness or greed. I guess it goes back to if your "glass is half full or half empty".
Ok...I'm off...I've got errands to do...packages to pack...and to check to be certain that I am registered to vote in Hendricks country.
Have a happy, creative day!

Wearables...New Lampwork Bead Sets on a chain

Sunday, October 05, 2008
I've been working on a few new sets...on a chain wearables. It's the yearly 'gear up for seasonal sales' time so I thought...necklaces. I also thought, I want to make something different for a bit. That's what I did...
I used all sterling silver findings except for the stainless steel chain.

I love the above's kewler than kewl. Lots of turquoise...looks great everywhere...
The above is one of my favorite beads...

The above are large encasements....something I don't do a lot of. There's just something about a huge glob of hot glass on a stick that doesn't do it for me. I have to admit, these did turn out well.
I will be up loading a handful of these today on Etsy. that the eye candy is done. The new house saga goes on. Next week, the chimney dude will be here early Monday morning.'s fire in the fireplace time. Then the tree trimmers on Thursday. Then we have the POD delieved on 9-17 with that Saturday being pack and haul day. We have to move everthing out of the living room and family my design studio. OMG...the books...the beads...the glass cabinets. Then on 9-20...the carpets will be pulled and the floors sealed. The on 10-24, the carpet is installed. Then on 10-25, the move and cleaning begins. Then we need to get our stuff together to get the wood in here (fire in the fireplace wood). :-)
On top of all of that, I'm making beads and looking for new family room chairs. Gotta have something comfort to sit in front of the fireplace.
My goal was to have the house ready for Halloween!!!! I love Halloween, it's my favorite holiday in the year. When the house is done and the Halloween decorations are up...I'll post some pictures.
Well...that's my story.
Now for more beady news. I finally got the pics done of a bunch of new beads. Lots of NEW colors...I'm very impressed with the CiM color palette. (the color on the screen is lighter than they are in hand) You will be seeing a lot of new colors coming from me in the next couple of weeks. to the torch with me...
Have a happy, creative day!

Happy Girl Tokens...New Lampwork Beady Dudes

Saturday, October 04, 2008
Everybody needs a happy day...

It’s been kinda rough, if you read the papers or listen to the news. So when the times get tough, the tough make happy beads. Sure to put a smile on your face and a wiggle in your walk.
I loved making these...I even made a couple beads for ME!
They also look much better in hand than in the pics.

Anyway, I'm in the process of uploading on Etsy...then I'm going to finish up at the torch.

Have a HAPPY!!!, creative weekend!

Last of the Pendletons Series....Happy Beads Today...Go Away Palin

Friday, October 03, 2008
These are the last of the Pendleton Series...all cleaned and photo-ed. They will be posted sometime today and then I'm moving on to something else.

Ya know what I’m going to do today…make Happy Beads. Why you ask…watched the VP debate last night. OMG…please tell me it ain’t so. Mmmm…I couldn’t tell if Palin was Palin or Tina Fey. Will the real Palin please stand up and get some experience. Palin is a governer of Alaska, with a population about the same size of Indianapolis. Let’s get real here folks…just what does she know about mainstream middle class issues…like crime in the streets (gang bangers and drivebys)? Not everyone is a Pit Bull-Hockey Mom type nor do they want to be. Oh yeah, like I feel sooooooo comfortable with her lack of experience especially on foreign policy. More so since we are facing some countries with nuclear trigger fingers.

Also I kept on hearing about the great maverick McCain-Palin ticket. I’m not buying it now or from McCain’s history. Palin’s answers were what I call circle speak…not because she’s in the typical political format…no, it’s because she’s many times incoherent and clueless. Just because she’s a fresh face doesn’t mean I trust her because I don’t. This debate was in a very well structured setting…and she still couldn’t hold her own. Mmmm, I wonder why she hasn’t give a press conference. I’m betting because the media will have her for kibble. In my humble opinion, she failed again to show that she is ready to be VP. Go back to Alaska Palin…come back when you have figure out Senate Speak…because if she can’t communicate with the House and Senate, nothing is going to happen to get the mess straighten out. All in all, I’m just as impressed with Palin as I am with SPAM.

Now Joe Biden…yep, he’s ready.

Disclaimer...I'm not running for office, I really don't have the personality nor don't use my opinion as a yardstick. Go out and do your research...this year is the most important election in my life time. Not only for the US, but for the entire world.

As I said, I'm off to make some happy's time. It's a rough job but somebody has to do it. :-)

Have a happy, creative day!

Backyard Vistors and NEW Lampwork Beads

Wednesday, October 01, 2008
El' Groundhog and his flying feathered friend, Mr. Hawk seem to have taken up residence in our back yard. (pardon for the lousy pictures, they don't seem to want to pose for me yet) They aren't as friendly as Emmy. Actually most of the Indiana wildlife isn't that friendly to humans. Maybe if they get used to me, I'm the patient sort. The squirrels here are kinda sense of style like the Texan squirrels though. The squirrels here just make noise and won't even check out the treats I leave them. Oh well, time will tell.

I finished up a couple strands of new lampwork...

I really like the colors in the both of these. The above is already sold and the below is up on Etsy.

Now for the house update...the tree trimmers are are the chimney people (ya! it's almost fire in the hearth time) the roofers will be here within the next six weeks. We have already lined someone to pull the downstairs carpet and seal the subfloor, the pod is already been scheduled, and have furniture mover help in a couple of weeks. Now to find carpet. I took off yesterday, I still can't fine the bright gold carpet I want. So it's back to plan two, a mix of animals prints and berber. I've got to take off today to line that up. Yay, just about everything in the house will be done before SNOW.
Ok...I guess I better get my day started...
Have a happy, creative day!