Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Tyler and Emily's Wedding

October 6 was a gorgeous warm autumn day in Pullman, Washington.  This was a very good thing when you're close to the 45th parallel and going to an outdoor wedding.

God truly blessed Tyler and my grand neice Emily on their wedding day.  Such fun for my husband and me because we got to stay with my younger sister who lives in Pullman for several nights.  And afterwards with my older sister in Pomeroy, Washington.  I love the wheatfields of home - they draw me like the ocean draws a sailor.

Here are some pictures from this lovely festive day:

The Venue

Colors were aubergine and lime

 My granddaughter walking in:


My brother's darling grandsons:

Bride on father's arm:


Husband and wife!!

Bride with my granddaughter Sarah, one of her five attendants:

My sister with granddaughter on right and her friend:

Learning how to salute from my sister who despaired of the rest of us.  This was a take-off from everyone looking into the sun at the bridal party during pictures after the ceremony.

Sarah and me:

Matron of honor - sister of the bride:


 . . . and mother of the newest member of our family in his daddy's arms (he wore a tux that day too  :)

First dance:

Aw!  the kiss!!  (see those lovely wheatfields in the background)

Cake, accompanied by - you guessed it - lots of cupcakes in three flavors:

Beautiful couple:

My sister with her first great grandchild!!!

Bride next day at the firehouse where the reception was held - she is an EMT and finishing college:

Congratulations Emmy and Ty! 

Wishing you God's Best in your marriage!!



Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Misty Winter's Dawn

I was so pleased to be able to finish an original creation for the Etsy Beadweaver's Team October Challenge titled 'Misty Winter's Dawn'.

My two bead choices for this challenge were gray tilas - a bead I have never worked with - and Swarovski black diamond bicones.  From there I looked through my stash for appropriate accompaniment.  My first design was to make a path of tilas bounded by distant mountain peaks with the bicones, clusters of dark green bead forests and gentle peyote rolling hills, a stream crossing with tiny chain boundaries, etc.

 But time was not on my side. 

After several starts and stops (tear outs) I got the top of the drop in place. I had no idea what would transpire after that.  On a road trip to southern Oregon - the Rogue River area - I sketched a drop that fell naturally to a 'v'.

The execution was not as was on paper, for as I worked down the 'v' and got the four tilas in place and was working on 3, it became very apparent that they would not center, I would either adjust or have to give up the project - no time for another tear out.

The temptation to give up at this point was very strong - on my graph paper diagram I had not completed the other side and I felt stuck.  I decided to just put two with a drop in the center and proceed.  I wasn't far from finishing.

I got over that discouragement and finally finished to a successful point.

Few days at home and off on another trip to a family wedding.  In my sister's home in Pullman, Washington, I finally came up with a design for the finishing strands that hold the triangular pendant in place.  It incorporates the tilas and bicones in a beautiful finish, I think.

The length can be as short as 15.5 inches or as long as 18.5. 

My sister's dining area faces north and is completely windows on three sides - the perfect place to take photographs.

My final challenge was to write a description that would fit the theme and describe what I thought and felt as I created this piece.  The tilas were the wet pavement, the bicones - city rain, the gray, a Misty Winter's Dawn.  Inverted it would be a tiara. From the air, a cityscape. 

I love the rich dullness of the gray tilas, and how movment causes the bicones to intermittently and randomly sparkle.

My challenge piece was entered with just a couple hours to spare!!  It is an elegant necklace in one of my favorite colors - gray.

Please visit the Etsy Beadweaver's Blog between October 9th and 15th and see the team's entries and VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE:  http://etsy-beadweavers.blogspot.com/

Thank you for visiting!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Knotted Crystals with Spaces

If you have been with me for awhile you know I have a customer who often brings vintage jewelry and beads to me for repair or update. 

A big departure from the Bear Claw Necklaces project I blogged about earlier this year is a necklace she would like me to do for her.  It involves gorgeous clear crystal rondels in graduated sizes, the thread being knotted to leave space between each bead. 


The thread is broken and unraveling.  I cannot tell but what it may have been completely broken at one time or had some other beads along this thread for there are no knots there.  One end of the box clasp is missing.

I decided to redo it with what is here and not add anything but I needed to keep the spacing with the knots.  I loved the novel design (new to me at least) and wanted to challenge myself.

The vintage necklace got a little bath - strung.  Usually I unstring beads for their bath.  But on this one, I didn't want to have to use a caliper to correctly string them in graduated fashion, so decided to cut them one by one as I did the stringing. 


My first thought after measuring the spaces was to use 3mm bugle beads and crush them later.  Wow!  Problem solved, or so I thought. 

But the size 10 silk Bead Cord I purchased to simulate what had been used before would not fit through the bugle beads.    I looked up the hole diameter of size 11 seedbeads and saw that they were a little larger than bugle beads.  They are generally 1.8mm long so I decided using two would work; they didn't fit on the cord either. 

Well, seedbead size 6 did fit over the cord.  I put four crystals on with these as spacers and crushed them just to make sure the space was right.  It was a little short but that was not the worst of it.  Crushing these glass beads cut into the silk thread and caused it to fray looking very unsightly, certainly not safe!

Glass was not going to work.  I had to use another substance that could be put on and taken off after the 'knotting'.  I had several metal findings to try and finally ended up with a 4mm crimp cover which I tightened just enough to let the cord slip through and hold it in place through the procedure.

Voila!  - - - A process in place, clicking along . . .

Until I got to the bottom of the curve and realized the beads on the curve were looking crowded.  Easy enough fix - just lengthen the spaces.

But now the beads look a little jumbly on the bottom - a couple bunching together and leaving a super large space.  Hum!  I think I need to finish the piece and mull this over a bit.  Perhaps glue on the cord in the middle of the space - but that will take away the free flow of the piece.  Do I care?  I don't know?!?!?!?


It was great to put the finishing touches on this necklace - here was familiar territory.  Here is a picture of the finished piece.  Still not sure how or if I will change the bottom curve.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Favorites from Followers

I was thinking about how much fun this blog has been.  My initial inspiration came from the Christian Artists Street Team (CASTTEAM) on Etsy.  They have a Mid-Week Blog Blitz thread on their Etsy team site that I like to partipate in.  Blogging once a week is sometimes a challenge but was something I thought I could handle.  The CASTTEAM has many ways to involve their team and is very fulfilling for the many members.  For me the involvement has to be fairly minimal and I thank them so much for this opportunity to be a small part of the community.

Many of my blog followers come from this team but not all of them.  Most of them have online shops so I decided to visit their shops once again and find my favorite item from what they're currently selling.

Here are items from 10 of my beautiful list of followers:

This one is from Kelly from SewEndless, who has a knack for making the most darling ruffle bags.  I especially like this one because of its cross body strap and casual look.



Oh, this is sweet.  I've loved morning glories ever since I found them nestling around the wheat fields near my childhood home.  I'm so glad morning glories have been cultivated to be non-invasive!!    Anne Marie of MoanasUniqueDesign does this lovely work on a number of surfaces including light switch covers, vases and wooden initials.

Suzie's shop called Suzies Imaginarian is aptly named because she comes up with great imaginative items that you didn't even know you needed.  This little coin purse is the perfect example.  First I like the black mesh fabric (she has other items made in this fabric) - you can see what is in it, it is washable and attractive.  The trim is perfect.  And she finishes it with a grommet and ring to attach to - well to anything you'd want it to bump along with, your purse, backpack; I can see it on my beltloop for biking and hiking!


Jen of Etsy shop Aloquin has a most amazing artistic talent, not only in painting but in poetry.  Her blog is a delightful read and gives you the heart behind the talent http://aloquin.blogspot.com/.  I am a devoted follower and my favorite blog so far is from August 31 of this year called Breaking Free. 

I love orange, so this was an easy choice from Julie's shop Maxiesknitwear.  She has these in other colors, a blue one trimmed in green that is a very close second.  Her shop has many lovely options in knit wear.



I love NanNa's Things, not only the shop but the person behind the shop.  I so look forward to Ann Marie's insights and comments on my blogs each week.  She has two online shops, NanNasThings and thebuttonlady3, where she does amazing creative things with buttons, see pin below.

If you need something scary, I'd say the countenance on this rusty owl would fill the bill.  Just don't get up in the middle of the night and forget it is there!!  What a hoot!



Forest Leaves Necklace woodland nature cluster of green jasper moss agate natural stones handmade charms on .925 sterling silver chain

Jennifer Kistler is not only an incredible artist but she lives here in Salem with her family and they attend the same church I do. Everything she does is lovely to look at including her blog: http://jenniferkistlerstudios.blogspot.com/ and her own website: http://www.cafepress.com/jkistlerstudios which has jewelry for the horse lover, artwork and photography items.
Tin canister candle
Another fellow Salemite (Oregon that is) is Terrie from Etsy shop HearthandWhimsy.  She sells candles and vintage items in her stores.  And she is always up to something very interesting - and often 'whimsical'  - which makes reading her blog a joy always:  http://www.hearthandwhimsy.com/.
Branda is from Argentina and makes and sells these amazing necklaces with knitted pendants in your choice of color.  Her shop 'branda' presents her many lovely knitted items in beautiful color coordinated fashion. It takes approximately two weeks for an item to reach the buyer but is very worth it because her work is extraordinarily beautiful.

 Square Necklace Knit in Green Acrylic on Silvered Base


Jessie Yost is on my Etsy Beadweaver's Team and does crazy beautiful work in beadwoven jewelry.  I particularly like her geometric pieces like this pendant made to look like a quilt block.  Her shop is filled with items that show off her talent and unique style!   http://www.etsy.com/shop/jess2bead.


 Here is the URL for this week'd CASTTEAM Mid Week Blog Blitz:  http://www.etsy.com/teams/6326/christian-artists-street-team-cast/discuss/10971131/
Thank you for stopping by!!

Monday, September 17, 2012

A Happy Combination

When grandchildren come to visit, the world stops for awhile.  I love the mornings when we amuse ourselves with lively conversation all scrunched up in our robes with mugs of coffee and hot chocolate.  Plans are made for the day starting with feeding the dog and proceeding to what we'll have for breakfast.  Then on to where we are in our art project and when we'll go feed the cows or if we'll get to the State Fair which is held here because Salem is Oregon's capitol city.  We go on bike rides or walks, listen to the crickets, the wind in the trees.  We watch Disney movies or play Uno. 

Because our grandchildren live hours away, when they get to come by themselves in the summer, we really try to make it a change from the routine.  A life away from soccer and swimming and tennis and school and schedules.

Our youngest grandchild is 10 years old, an only child.  Because her life is so hectic, there is no time for a pet in the home, so when she is here, I think her most favorite thing of all is our dog Slippers.  They are buddies.  Following are a number of pictures of them together, taken at our home and on the beach.

Walking down to the beach at Devil's Punch Bowl

 This girl is so strong!!

Oregon schools had already started so she was the only child on the beach that day.

Driftwood adventures! 

Only Anna could entice Slippers to walk up that log which was braced to act like a teeter totter.

My dear granddaughter poses Slippers and then takes pictures.  We laugh so hard at this silly dog!

It was a most happy visit!  We had great times and made wonderful memories - who knew this girl loves to go garage saling!?!  

Slippers and Anna will see each other again in November and take up right where they left off  . . .