Saturday, January 31, 2009


steph from vlaDtheBaT's aTTiC gifted my blog with the proximidade award.
what does it mean?

proximidade is described as follows:
"This blog invests and believes in PROXIMITY - nearness in space, time and relationships. These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in prizes for self-aggrandizement! Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers!"

the instructions (as passed on to me):
"The rules are: This blog award should be sent to your favorite eight bloggers and they, in turn should forward to eight of their favorites. You should include the text for Proximidade (above) in your announcement blog."

so, now i get to escort you to eight of my favorite blogs (but this doesn't mean all the other links on the right aren't wonderful - that's why i list them as them wonderblogs)

perched on a thin branch

cynthia thornton of green girl studios

andrew thornton


apron thrift girl

kab's creative concepts

dear ada


gone to the dogs

dick, my husband, has started a new painting.
it's of our decorative hounds.
hang on tight - i will keep you updated as it progresses - this ought to be a wild ride.

Friday, January 30, 2009

a warm bath

before the beads come off their mandrels they get a nice long warm soak. this makes them easier to remove and then ream out the last little bits of clay resist.
this is last night's production happily submerged on my kitchen counter.
a little bit of a close-up.

ray lamontagne - "joleen"

he may be a bit too much like cat stevens - but who cares?

pandora aurora

a little bird done with encased "pandora" glass made by double helix.
the bead is just a wee thing but i almost got all the elusive pandora colors out of it. double helix is a very exotic american made glass that is full of metals. this mysterious glass does all kinds of enigmatic stuff in the flame - like turn a rainbow of pastel colors.

i braved the tundra last night and went to open torch. mostly i worked on sets - i have got to get some big necklaces done. i know i should stop grousing about the snow and cold, after all this is upstate new york and we all know how to handle winter. but, having said that, this has been an especially grim winter. the snow and cold has been relentless. what can you do? just have some more oatmeal for breakfast before bundling up to go dig out (again).

the new colors of glass that i ordered from moretti and more are very luscious. i should have some nice sets of stuff to show in the next couple blog posts. i can't wait to pick up my beads today - i am anxious to see how one particular set of large lentils turned out - they were inspired by dirty snow drifts. huh?

Thursday, January 29, 2009

a winter's snark

winter has gone too far.
the cold here is relentless.
more shoveling, more scarves, more snarking.
i am dreaming of dandelions -
and bare feet.

Monday, January 26, 2009


this is my test bead for creation is messy's (cim) color clockwork.
i <3 clockwork. it's hard to see in the photo but this orange-red glass, cherry sized, bead is somewhat transparent - so the dots (of double helix pandora) seem to float above the surface. Photobucket
i am going to make myself a big rope of these.

good morning claude

oh bliss!
here is one of the first beads made using some of my new glass.
sorry about the coin - i forgot to take a snapshot without it.
when offering your beads for sale on etsy i think it is important to have one picture with an object in it that shows relative size. i could use my hand, but it's so old and crinkly that a nice shiny penny seems a better choice.
the lobes of this heart bead are messy glass(cims) peacock and the soft girly pink tip is messy gelly's sty. the center of the bead was tightly wrapped in a sheet of fine silver foil and then dots of double helix pandora were melted in. yes, i made the leap and indulged in some double helix.
i love that the dots look like water lily leaves.
the whole bead reminds me of monet's water lily paintings.

since this is a valentine's bead i will tell you that one of the places we went on our honeymoon was monet's gardens at giverny. for me, it is the most romantic place on earth.
i just listed the bead on etsy.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

love bird

it'a a bird - it's a heart.
this focal is a full two inches long.
the base is dark special brown, the polka dots are white, the swirly tip is pea green and the bird head and tail are some random bits of red i had on the bench.
i am enjoying bead making more than ever.

i bought a bunch of new glass last week and when the box arrived i could hardly believe how gorgeous some of the colors were. i am so in love with messy (cims) sangre that i am going to marry it.
a huge hot house spider mum.
what a treat it was to sit next to it while i had my coffee at the public market this morning. everything is so dead outside that flowers almost seem unreal.

Friday, January 23, 2009

frosty blue

a simple birthday gift for a friend.
an etched blue heart pendant with a couple of huge pearls.
blue is her favorite color.
pfft - i only seem to use blue hues when i am making her a gift. i just am not a bluegirl.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


continuing on with my mushroom fascination -
i made a set of glass amanita muscaria beads.
the stems are dark ivory with a bit of avacado frit swirled in, the tops are special red with white dots. very fun and simple to make.
the plan is to mix them with some wooden beads to make a cartoon woodland bracelet.

gary jules - mad world
what a lovely video.

Monday, January 19, 2009

heart pounding

a whole bowl of new heart focal beads.
i will be plinking away at listing them on etsy the next couple of days.

look what i came across at an estate sale on friday.
two small old wooden boxes filled with treasure.
open them up and - viola.
steel things to pound words into stuff.
my heart skipped a beat when i found them.

a grim haul

when we reached alfred university yesterday afternoon the campus roads had not been recently plowed or salted. this meant that we (and everyone else) could not get our car up the hills to the dorms.
so... we carried her metric ass ton of clean laundry, books, records and record player, one guitar and one theremin, a bag of shoes, personal grooming products, a big old camera bag, three pillows, a box of dishes, a drawing board, her new bed quilt and various teenage artist sundries up these three flights of outdoor stairs AND then two more flights inside her dorm.

it was the acme of suck.

p.s. my photo is not underexposed, this is a light as it gets these days, it's a perpetual state of frozen winter gray.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

anyone shopping for love?

a couple of new things just landed in my etsy shoppe.
a glass bluebird cocktail ring. (SOLD)

and a big heart shaped focal bead that comes with a matching bumpy little buddy bead.

sorry for the brief post - we're delivering miss baby back to college today. i have a big pile of love to share and some really juicy thrifting finds from friday morning that i want to crow about - tomorrow.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

quilting roses & birds

this is one of my secret christmas present crafting projects.
i waited to blog about it because i didn't finish it until today.
i made my daughter, miss margaret, a quilt.
the top and the back were finished by christmas morning.
since it was my first quilt i had no idea how long it took to complete one.

finishing it today was a perfect winter's afternoon project. i watched the obama inauguration train on tv while figuring out how to put the binding on.
quilt front

it's no wonder that quilts are heirlooms.
having said that - i cannot wait to start a second one. this time i will have a better idea how long it takes and i will not have a deadline looming -a quilt is definitely not something that you just whip up.

quilt back
it is made almost completely from vintage fabrics found at estate sales and second hand shops. i did have to go to a store to buy the (bamboo) batting, some cool multi-color thread and the binding fabric - but other than that it is a true scrap quilt.

she's very happy it's done in time for her to take it back to college.
i want to mention that this quilt would not have been possible with out my friend margaret spevak. she's a quilt teacher extraordinaire. check out her website: quilting with margaret and her new class schedule.

Friday, January 16, 2009

papa's got a brand new paintbrush

in my house everybody paints.
after a long hiatus from painting my husband is back at it.
above - he is working on the third in a series.
please note that his shirt matches his paintings.
here are the first two.
sorry, there is no explanation.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

sitting pretty, swamp style

apparently i have a new office assistant.
miss kiki is not happy unless she's perched on a chair.
we adopted her at 3 years - and have had her almost as long.
there is no changing her.

swamp beads
a big hollow and some lentils. the base glass is a random stripes of different transparents - including light gray, grass green, light topaz and straw yellow. the cores were partially rolled in raku frit and scribbled on with intense black.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

queen crimson

i am still loving the big heart focals.
queen crimson
dark purple red, dark ivory and fine silver wire.
and this one too.
this one is just dark ivory and fine silver wire.
i never cease to find the reaction between dark ivory and fine silver entertaining.

today i succumbed to the siren song of moretti & more.
the ever helpful thorntons are having a big sale.
oh yeah, i did a big order, heavy on the messy glass.

i feel delightfully naughty.

etsy both SOLD

Monday, January 12, 2009

speckled hen

sometimes inspiration comes from weird places.
seriously, have you had this beer? it's my favorite.
the ladies were torching away at more fire glass and lamenting how it was too bad that we couldn't bead and drink at the same time - and i ended up making this little speckled hen.
it started with an ocher yellow core encased in straw yellow, then some brown squiggles and lots of orange and white dots were added.
she's so cheerful.
it's up on etsy.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

being love birds

an early valentine.
periwinkle birds perched on the lobes of a transparent red heart with bits of white frit.
it's just shy of 2" long.
it's in my etsy shoppe.