Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The Mane Event

The theme for the EBW October challenge was announced on August 29th - Animal Instincts.  My immediate thought was the obvious - some sort of animal print peyote cuff.  Then I thought about what it would mean to *use* my 'animal instincts' to create an entry.  Sarah (thebeadedlily) wrote a post about wanting shark teeth.  That reminded me that I have some shark teeth, maybe I should use those!  But no, I couldn't do that for this challenge, that was gonna be her thing (you can see her amazing piece here).  I'm sure I'll use them at some point, after all, it's been on the back of my mind ever since I collected them.  Just not for this challenge.

Eventually, I remembered that I have these little wooden animal beads - giraffes, zebras, lions, and leopards.  Along with these beads, I have several large bone and wood beads.  All of these were picked up in South Africa by my husband's aunt, and eventually made their way to me.  

Those beads, along with a melange of brown-themed seed beads, a couple of large glass beads, and some tiger's eye came together in this truly OOAK necklace, 'The Mane Event.'

Sorry, I just couldn't resist the bad pun. :)  As well as featuring lions (among other animals!) this necklace is reminiscent of a lion's mane.

Starting October 9th, visit the Etsy Beadweaver's team blog to vote for your favorite entry!  I (of course) hope you pick mine, but it's okay if you choose to vote for one of the other marvelous entries.  ;)

Question of the day: Besides something animal-themed, what other roads could you go down with the theme 'Animal Insticts?'

Monday, September 29, 2008

Bead It Forward

For the past few years, Jeanette Shanigan has been collecting and sewing together beaded squares into quilts.  These quilts are then donated to Bead Artists against Breast Cancer for their annual auction.  You can check out previous squares and find the information for how to contribute to this project here.  This year, the theme is hearts.  Several members of the EBW team are trying to get enough squares together for an entire EBW quilt.  

Here, at long last, is my contribution:

1) Asymmetrical heart in peyote

2) my first foray into the world of herringbone!  A very simple heart pattern, but I like how it turned out. 

3) Two-drop peyote with a freeform heart attached to the top.

4) Regular peyote black background with two red hearts attached to the top.

And here they all are together!  Which is YOUR favorite?  I'm torn between the asymmetrical heart and the herringbone heart.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Green Peyote Triangles Cuff

I've dipped my toes slightly further into the peyote triangle pool, and came up with this cuff.  Since adding it to my store about a week ago, it has already been featured in two treasuries, as you can see in the post below!  

I had fun with it, and it has sparked new ideas to store away in my list of things I want to make. That list should probably start materializing on paper before my brain gets too crowded.    
This cuff is available for purchase at my Etsy store!  Here is the direct link to this piece.

Speaking of my mind getting crowded with ideas - I've been on a designing spree for flat cuffs (in a variety of stitches).  However, I have a slight problem in that I don't have the beads I want for actually making them.  I also don't really have spare change to purchase said beads.  On top of that, I don't have much spare time between attempting to keep up (more like catch up!) with readings for my classes, plus doing some teaching.  You know, grad school. :)  

Someday, I hope to be able to share those cuffs with you!  In the meantime, I'm strategizing over how to save up and use my spending money for beads. :)  My husband and I have alloted ourselves monthly 'spend on whatever we want' money.  We're having to be thrifty with me in grad school, and the job market the way it is right now, but having that set amount worked into our budget is... nice.  It's guilt-free bead money!  (Little though it may be)  Now if only the sales would just start rolling in....

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Treasury Thank-you's

A big thank-you to everyone who has featured my items in a treasury the past couple of weeks!  I know there is at least one treasury which I didn't get a screenshot of, but still a big thanks to those curators as well!

And now..  Thank you to Kim of RegalBeads for featuring not just one, not two, but THREE of my items in this lovely treasury entitled 'Stained Glass'!   Included here are my Stained Glass Cuff, Green Peyote Triangle Cuff, and my Pink Ruffled Circle Earrings.
Be sure to check out Kim's shop for her lovely beadwoven items!

Esther of GreenEnvyDesigns also included my Green Peyote Triangle Cuff in her lovely treasury 'Foraging Etsy's Forest'.

This treasury entitled 'OMG Beads! EBW Team Beauties' from a couple weeks ago features my Midsummer Night's Dream Necklace.  Unfortunately, I failed to record the curator of this treasury.  :(  If it was you, give me a holler so I can properly thank you!

This Treasury entitled 'Just a Preview' was (I believe - correct me if I'm wrong!) curated by Ileana of EnchantedBeads.  It was a pre-voting preview of some of the entries for the EBW September Challenge, and feature my No Shades of Gray Cuff.

A big thank-you to everyone who has featured my work in your Treasuries! 

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Stained Glass Cuff

Once upon a time, I made this pair of stained glass earrings, using the brick stitch.  They sold at a rodeo I went to back in June.  But I liked them, and kept the general idea in mind.

Finally, a week or so ago, I finished this brick-stitched cuff, my Stained Glass Cuff.  I like how it turned out.  
I tried to keep the colors both quasi-random and quasi-regular.  What I did was have two piles of bead containers - 'used' and 'unused'.  I actually did a good job of keeping on my tray only the colors I was currently using.  Then when I finished a diamond, I put those beads away, and the container went into the 'used' pile.  Once all of the 'unused' had moved over to 'used', it became my new 'unused' pile.  Kinda silly?  I like the look of randomness, but at the same time, I couldn't bear the thought of using MORE of one type of bead than all the others!  Or, heaven forbid, have adjacent diamonds of the same bead!  (It was hard enough to convince myself that it was okay to have two of the same color touching)

Random regularity will bother me if it's not of my own making.  For instance, bathroom tiles.  If there are a bunch of tiles in repeating size patterns, I always look for repeating color patterns.  I think that they should be laid out in repeating patterns so that I can find the patterns!  Is anyone else weird like that?

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Stars and Butterflies

Remember those wonky squares?  The ones I used to make this bracelet, these earrings, and this bracelet too?  While playing with them, it seemed like I could make stars by putting 5 of them together.

Tada!  It's true.  

On the red star above, I had put together 3 of the 5 squares, and held it up to show my husband.  His response?  "It looks like a butterfly."  Brilliant.  So then I made a couple of butterflies.
These can all be used as pendants.  I picked up some ribbons yesterday to string these on, photograph them with, and send with them when they sell.  Once the Ike rains move through and we have a sunny day, I'll be able to photograph that and list them on Etsy!

Maybe I should several of the stars as Christmas ornaments... 

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

September Challenge!

It's that time again folks...  Time to vote in the Etsy Beadweavers September Challenge!  
Here's a preview of the entries.  Go to the Etsy Beadweaver's blog to find links to each piece, and vote for your favorite.  Voting ends at Midnight EST on September 15th. 
EBW September Challenge Mosaic