Monday, May 30, 2011

Tribute on Memorial Day

"Vietnam Reflections" by Lee Teter

They are dead; but they live in each Patriot's breast,

And their names are engraven on honor's bright crest.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Upper left corner - Grandpa Ralph, served in the Marine Corps in the South Pacific
In the middle - Grandpa Lee served in the Army in the European Theater
Upper right corner - Uncle Gerald, served in the Marine Corps and died on Iwo Jima
Bottom left corner - my dad, Ralph, served in the Army during Vietnam and retired in 2001
In the middle and the lower right corner - Me, served in the Army from 1991 to 2001
To all who have served or who are still serving, "THANK YOU!"  There are no words to express our (mom and my) gratitude for your service to our country.

I have never been able to think of the day as one of mourning; I have never quite been able to feel that half-masted flags were appropriate on Decoration Day. I have rather felt that the flag should be at the peak, because those whose dying we commemorate rejoiced in seeing it where their valor placed it. We honor them in a joyous, thankful, triumphant commemoration of what they did. ~Benjamin Harrison

Sunday, May 29, 2011

I Heart Macro Sunday

First off, I am in love...

Bing Image
I am in love with frit!!!!!  What, you thought I was talking about something else :)

This is the "Tub o' Frit" I am playing with.  Sandi, of Sandi Carrico Jewelry Artist, was liquidating her glass inventory and she was kind of enough to ask us if we would like to purchase some frit from her.  Are you kidding me, "YES, YES, YES!!!!".

Bing image

I was like a little kid asking their mom for something from the store.  "I WANT ME SOME FRIT, I GOTS TO HAVE ME SOME FRITS - I WANT, WANT, WANT!"  I was all for throwing myself on the ground and whining and crying for the frit.  I didn't have to stoop to such drastic measures, mom said yes we could buy the frit.  I think she felt a temper tantrum coming on if I didn't get the frit, my mom is the bomb!!!!  Love you mom :)

I am in so much love with this frit right here - Apricot Sorbet.  Oh boy!!!  The color just looks tan, but you put the frit on the glass and oh my goodness!  IT IS THE BOMB!!!  I must find me some more of this wonderful and glorious color!!!!

This is called "Monet" and it is a subtle color.  I am still working on finding a color glass where the frit shines.  I do like how it sort of makes a spiderweb design on lite transparent purple.  I want to see what it looks like when I etch the beads.

This is called "California Poppies" and it is a wonderful orange.  I have only used it on two beads but I want to play so much more!  Oh Sandi, all of the frits are wonderful and I am having a blast playing with them!!!!

This is a shot of some of the glass I used to make the beads found below.  Oh, all the brown spots you see on the table are from glass popping and landing on the table.  Which is much better than landing on me or mom - hot glass on tender parts of your body is sure not fun.  You lampworkers know what I mean :)

These are some of the beads made with the "Apricot Sorbet".  I will get these cleaned up and pictures taken so you can see them better.  I am so excited about these beads.  Love, love, love.  Sorry, can't stop gushing and I am usually not a gushing person, just ask mom :)

More beads that I worked on.

Mom went on an earring making spree.  I think she completed nine sets of earrings and two keychains.  Now that the sun is out today I hope to get photos taken of these bad boys.

Another image of the earrings from the side.

Here is a full length image of all the earrings that I need to take photos of.  I think mom did a great job on all of those earrings.  I think she might be working on more now.

So, that is my Heart Macro for Sunday.  If you would like to play along head on over to Studio Waterstone and join in the fun.  Or, if you don't have a camera take a minute to look at all of those who are participating.  Have a wonderful Sunday!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Treasury Week

This past Sunday I opened up the Etsy store again and we have been honored to be in a few treasuries this past week.  I thought I would share them with you.  There are lot of great artists out there and it is an honor to be featured with them.

Fabulous Friday - Our Enameled Butterfly Bowl

Abby's Favorite Orange Necklace Finds - Our VK necklace

Fire and Water - Our Enameled Pendant Necklace

Where There is Smoke, There is Fire - Our Enameled Copper Fire Pendant
Monday VS Funday - Our Comedy/Trajedy Necklace
It is so great to see all the different artist out on Etsy.  We had a lot of fun looking at all the different stores featured in each of the treasuries.  I hope you have a wonderful holiday weekend!  Don't forget tomorrow is I Heart Macro on Studio Waterstone's blog.  I plan on joining the fun and I hope you do too.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

BTW (Bead Table Wednesday) - 05252011

It is another BTW (Bead Table Wednesday).  I think this is the first time this month mom and I have participated, but this month has gone so fast I can't remember if we did or not.  I still feel like we are in the beginning of the month and not the end of the month. 

Today is also my 10-year anniversary since I have been home.  Mom and I arrived in her driveway at around 6am from a long, long, long drive from Fort Hood.  Around 8am my grandma called asking if we were going to meet her for lunch at 11:30, welcome home Beth :)  I still can't believe it has been 10 years, it feels like it was just yesterday.  I miss the Army but I don't regret my decision to get out, because if I didn't get out I wouldn't be here today showing you our Bead Table :)

As you can see we really aren't using a table; we are using mom's washer and dryer to lay all of our projects out.  We can't work on her kitchen table because of the cats and until recently it just has been too cold to work out in the garage.  So, these are multiple projects in the works.

This necklace is called Cotton Candy and the only thing that needs to be done is for me to add the clasp to the necklace and the bracelet.  If you can't tell I have been playing in Picnik with the photos :)

This necklace is called Black Widow and as you can see I just need to add the chain to the beads and the clasp and it is done.

Not sure what mom has planned for this one, but she has all the components laid out.

Mom has the polymer flowers laid out with the beads she wants to use in the projects with the flowers.  I am sure she has a plan, mom always has a plan!

These are the other projects sitting on the dryer that need to be worked on.  If you can see to the right, that is all new Zebra Wire that mom ordered that came in last Saturday.  We have some others on back order but I think we will be using the wire to make more Viking Knit.

Well, that is it for us tonight.  Head on over to the BTW Flickr site and see what everyone else is creating on their tables.

Oh, so you know, all the polymer clay flowers are from BeeTree by m.e. and the lampwork glass beads are made by mom and me.  Except for two boxes, those have beads by Juls and Cindy Gimbrone.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

I Heart Macro - 22 May 2011

It is another I Heart Macro Sunday.  I don't think I have participated in the last few weeks, which sucks, but life sometimes gets in the way.  Some of these images are from last year and some are from this year and even two are from this morning.  The above image is one of my all time favorites and I had to share it again.  I love that you can see the designs on the bee's wings and how delicate they look to carry the bee around.

This image is from two years ago, when I was walking to class I saw tons of spider webs with dew drops on them.  Again I love to see how delicate the spiderwebs are, but they are so strong at the same time.

This photo was actually taken last week when friends and are walked around the horticulture park not too far from where we work.  I just love the different textures in the photo.

The last two pictures were taken this morning when mom and I left the restaurant where we had breakfast.  It has taken us almost a year to find a place to have breakfast.  Our favorite restaurant, of all time, closed almost a year ago.  It is so hard to find just the right place to feel comfortable and have great food at a reasonable price all at the same time.  These iris were next to where we were parked, and I just happened to have my camera in the car, and I took some pictures.

I highly recommend playing a long with I Heart Macro!  It is so much fun and it is so cool to see what everyone else took pictures of with their macro settings.
I am off to take pictures of inventory and I hope to update our Etsy store today.  Mom will either be sawing out pendants or working on making jewelry, you never know with mom :)  Have a wonderful Sunday everyone!

Monday, May 16, 2011

May ABS Challenge Piece

This month's Art Bead Scene challenge piece is called:  Cache-cache (Hide-and-Seek), 1873, by Berthe Morisot, Oil on Canvas, 18 1/4" x 21 3/4".

Mom and I were thinking of basing our necklace off the Victorian top hat the woman is wearing but after talking with each other and designing the hat we decided that when we sawed out the hat from copper you would not be able to tell what it was.  So, mom decided to design something around the parasol.

As I said in yesterday's post mom was having a lot of difficulty designing a parasol and she about gave up, but she persevered and came up with a brilliant design.  Both of us are really happy with the way it all came out.  Yeah mom!

When I started to enamel the parasol mom said she didn't want it stark white, so I decided to add transparent rose pink to the white.  I always test the colors on the backside before I enamel the front side, so I had my fingers crossed that the pendant would look as good on the front as the back did.  Crossing my fingers paid off.

Mom wants to call this piece "Flirtatious" because there is a whole language in the use of the parasol.  Flirting is the adult version of hide and seek!

"Flirtatious" is accented with lace agate, fresh water pearls, our lampwork "Sugar" beads, and white lace ribbon.  The pendant is 20 gauge copper that mom sawed out and then I enameled.

I am using mom as a model so we can show you what the necklace looks like worn.  I am really happy with the way this turned out.  I think I am going to wrench out my shoulder trying to pat myself on the back.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Frustrating Saturday and Redeeming Sunday

Have you ever had one of those creating days where nothing goes right?  Well, that was mom and me yesterday.  We have a commissioned piece for a friend's granddaughter.  The granddaughter wants peace sign earrings in blue.  So, mom sawed out four pairs of peace sign earrings.  Two pair I was going to enamel different blues, one pair was going to be done in reds for mom and the other pair in purples and greens for me.  Out of the four pair of earrings only one pair was not messed up yesterday.  I couldn't get anything to enamel right.  So freaking frustrating!

While I was enameling mom was working on the design for the May Art Bead Scene Challenge piece.  We were going to saw out hats for the piece but then we decided you wouldn't be able to tell they were hats.  So, mom and I decided to do something with the parasol.  Mom said she was so frustrated trying to come up with a design for a parasol that she almost gave up and told me to come up with something.  Mom prevailed and sawed out a parasol.

This morning I got over to mom's house early so we could work on sawing out more peace sign earrings and file and sand the pieces mom sawed out yesterday.  The sawing, filing and sanding took about three hours this morning and then it was off to enamel.  I had my fingers crossed that today would go better than yesterday and crossing my fingers helped!

This is a close up of one of the blue powdered enamels I was using today.  This is transparent Prussian Blue.

These are the earrings waiting to be put into the kiln.  The set on the right has three different transparent blues (Prussian blue, water blue, turquoise) on the earrings and the set on the left has Atlantic blue, skye blue and sprinkles of cobalt blue on them.

While I was enameling the earrings I also enameled this pendant.  It is a dove holding leaves.  I am really happy with the way this pendant turned out, especially after yesterday's fiasco of enameling.

Here are the finished earrings.  I made three different types of earrings which I will let my friend choose from for her granddaughter (I like giving people a choice - what I like, they may not like).

The last set of earrings I really like how the colors turned out (yes, I wrote down what I did) because I want to use those colors on 10 leaf pendants I need to enamel next weekend for a necklace mom wants to make.

Here is a shot of the piece we are working on for the May ABS.  This will have to be finished tomorrow because both mom and I have ran out of steam.  I am really happy with the way the pendant turned out and I can't wait to see what the finished piece is going to look like.  Stay tuned for more, hopefully tomorrow.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Flower Thursday

Two of my co-workers and I walked over to the horticulture park where a lot of the flowers are blooming.  You all know me I love me some close-up of the flowers, but of course I don't know the names of the flowers which you would think I would learn as I am taking photographs.  Oh well.

Enjoy the pics everyone.

Tonight, while I am working in mom's yard, because I won't let her mow or weed whack yet, mom will be sawing out pendants.  I will be doing an enameling session on Saturday so I hope to have no items to show you all.  Have a wonderful Thursday, just one more day of work!!!!
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