Thursday, May 17, 2012

May ABS Challenge and Other Things

Italian's House at Monmarte by Maurice UtrilloOil on panel, 53 x 76 cm
Mom and I actually completed the May ABS Challenge piece way before the deadline and I think that maybe a first.  Mom and I actually agreed on what we wanted the design to look like plus we wanted to try something new.

Mom and I thought we would make a bracelet for this month's challenge piece.  For some reason mom and I both suck at making bracelets but one of the ideas we came up with, at the Nappanee show, was making cuff bracelets.  We would still have the sawing element of what mom is excellent at and I thought I would try patina (which I found out I suck at).

I so wanted to do this piece with patina from Missficklemedia but I totally suck.  I have the Chestnut Brown patina from Shannon's store, I have the tutorial and I have the materials, but I have no freaking clue what I am doing wrong.  Talk about frustration and disappointment because I thought it would look awesome with the Chestnut color.  So, I "Improvised, Adapted, and Overcame".  I sanded it all down and stuck the darn thing in Liver of Sulfur and made mom sand it down.  I thought mom brought out the richness of the color and I love the sanding effect.  We did seal it and wax it, but both mom and I will test this piece out before we start selling them.  Mom and I both react differently to metals so we are going to see how it goes.

Here is a close up of the beads.  I thought making a set of our "Green Gable" beads would be perfect and we accented the piece with Freshwater white and green pearls.

Mom and I also had differing opinions on how the piece should be put together.  We sort of had a "discussion" on Sunday.  She didn't like my idea and I didn't like her idea.  But we did end up going with mom's idea with the elastic cord, though instead of knotting it I want to crimp it - so there will be a slight tweak to this piece later.

Here is mom wearing so you have an idea of what it looks like.  I am happy with the way the design came out and I can't wait until we make more of these up.

So, there it is - our May ABS Challenge piece.

Some other news - look what came in the mail and I so can't wait to play with.

I finally broke down and bought some stamping tools which I have wanted and wanted for a very long time.  I bought these from Impress Art.  I also broke down and bought their hammer.  What made me finally break down and purchase them is because of Erin's Challenge of Literature blog hop on May 31st.  I knew exactly what piece I was using and I really wanted to stamp some of the lines to be part of the challenge piece.  I am so excited to use these and I have my fingers cross that the design will work as well in theory as it does on paper.  Come back on May 31st and check out what everyone is revealing!

We also finished a couple of special order pieces and will let the customers know that they are ready. 

This is a necklace for a customer in Nappanee.  She bought one of our necklaces at the show and wanted us to make her another one in blues.

The flower polymer clay pendants are from BeeTree by m.e., the glass beads are made by us and it is accented with copper findings and freshwater pearls.  We really hope she loves the piece.

These are a pair of earrings to go with the necklace.  We just now have to contact the customer to let her know the pieces are completed.

The next special order was for a five decade rosary.

All 53 small beads, 6 large beads and cross are handmade by us.  I used a transparent blue with frit melted in to make the beads and cross.  The rosary center is a Sterling Silver dove and the accent beads are Czech beads.

Here is a close up of the cross.

A close up of the beads.

Another look at the full rosary.  I really like how the colors turned out and I hope the customer likes the piece.

Not sure what is on our plate for this weekend - I know for sure working on the Challenge of Literature and maybe more cuffs.  Who knows - when we write a list of things to do we never go by it anyway.

I hope you all have a great rest of your week and a wonderful weekend.


  1. Hi Beth,
    The cuff for the monthly ABS challenge is very pretty. I have not seen a cuff made like that and I am sure it will become a popular item at your shows. I love the necklace and earring set M.E. makes some beautiful polymer clay flowers. The rosary is beautiful I like how it turned out.

  2. Amazing art coming from you two!!! Simply amazing!

  3. You've been two very busy ladies! I really like your finished patina on the cuff. It's very unique and not something that anybody else can duplicate... which totally makes it a work of art in my book!

    Love the blossom necklace. It's truly beautiful.

    The rosary is so special. I cannot imagine how excited the customer is going to be when you let them know it's ready. My grandfather made beaded rosaries in his last years. I still carry the one he made for me in my purse. That was before I started making jewelry. Who knew beading would run in the family?

    Well you and your mom know... because you do it! ;) Have a terrific weekend my dear!

  4. As always....fabulous work you two....especially love the cuff bracelet and the Rosary. Don't you just love getting new toys in the mail...have fun!


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