Monday, May 31, 2010

World's Largest Underpants

I did the art and craft show at the Alma Highland Festival this weekend. My dad, age 87, was the oldest veteran marching in the parade. You rock, Dad! It was very hot but there was a great crowd and I did almost double what I did last year which was very encouraging. I hope the rest of the summer follows the same trend for all of us. My next door neighbor was Crystal Wilson, a talented tie-dye artist. I'm old enough to remember doing tie-dye back in the sixties but Crystal has taken tie-dye to a whole new level. The most fun I had all weekend was hearing people's reactions to her size 100 tie-dyed underpants. If you can't live without a pair of these giant undies, you can contact Crystal at (989) 875-6175.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Week 22-Pink Opal and Tourmaline Earrings

These I'm pretty happy with even if I don't wear pink. I still think it's a beautiful, feminine color. The drops are some large pink opals that I got when Rodene and I road tripped to Munro's last week. I added rose quartz, moonstone, pink tourmaline and some creamy gold keishi pearls (also from Munro's). I like the way the coiled earwires turned out and they're closed at the top so nothing can work it's way off. I'm caught up for now. I'm leaving tomorrow for Alma and the Highland Festival. My whole family will be there for the weekend so I should have lots of help at the art fair even if I don't get to see any of the festival. Wishing everyone a safe and great holiday weekend.

Week 21-Garnet Bracelet

This is another piece that I'm not too sure about. The clasp began life as a failed earring compoment and ended up in my spare parts box. The string of garnet beads definately needed something ornate with it so I pulled out the earring and turned it into a clasp. I like the idea but I'm not sure I like the shape.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Week 20-Lots of Viking Knit

I Viking knitted this week until I ran out of wire. The first one has a beaded bead focal-the only beading I know how to do. The second one uses Greek Mykonos ceramic beads, and the third one has a giant heavy Bali bead that I picked up somewhere in my travels and could never figure out what to do with.

Week 19-So I Made Another One

I felt the need to make another citrine bracelet after last week's didn't turn out as expected. I bought these citrines from Beadifferent in Oxford, MI, and I ran them through the tumbler for a long time and they came out perfectly. These were too dark to use with the pale aquamarine beads so I paired them with sunny yellow 14mm shell pearls.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Week 18-Aquamarine and Citrine??? Bracelet

This bracelet turned into a disappointment. I thought it was really pretty when I made it. I used big round aquamarine beads and soft yellow faceted citrines along with the spiral links that I hand forged and soldered. The colors were summery and reminded me of sun and sky. Then I put it in the tumbler. When it came out I dismayed to find that the citrines had lost all their color. They were dyed! I wrote to the supplier and he confirmed that the citrines were very pale so they lightly dyed them. I told him that citrines listed as AA+ quality would be heat treated, but they shouldn't be dyed. So now I don't know if I should remake this with natural clear quartz, or just tell people that the beads are very, very pale quartz since citrine is a form of quartz. Or tell them it's citrine with no color. GRRR.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Week 17-Kazuri Bead and Pyrite Bracelet

I really like using Kazuri beads in my work. They're not only beautiful but the factory in Kenya provides good wages, child care, and health care to disadvantaged women and individuals with special needs. I've combined these with double rows of faceted pyrite beads and oxidized the sterling silver.