Tuesday, December 4, 2012

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

          I am sooo excited to see all the wonderful ornaments in this year's Art Bead Scene Ornament Blog. Again, the requirements were to create an ornament using either an art bead or a handmade bead.  I've tried to use each blog challenge to do something new. It's gets the creative juices going and makes me push past my insecurities. Coincidentally, I've been part of a ladies group going through Beth Moore's  So Long, Insecurity book study, so it seemed apropos to tackle something yet untried.
            Right angle weave has been a friend of mine these past few months ( the simpler versions, that is)  particularly a pattern I learned from a lovely Michigan snowbird this past March. When I realized that I could take the smaller earring pattern, and upsize it using 8mm or 10mm beads as opposed to the 4mm size, voila! Ornament idea!! And this is what was born...
Purple Papillion

                 What's not to love about purple? When these beads called my name at the local bead store, I answered! I chose the butterfly metal tag ( courtesy of Michael's)  to symbolize new things, and the word "dream" for inspiration. Stamping is something I've wanted to do for a long time, and this is my first baby step. The letters aren't nice and straight ( and yes, I used tape as a line guide) as I'd have liked, but again, baby steps. If you look closely you'll see a little heart in the corner of the wing, because it's hard to dream unless your heart is in it. Several pins on Pinterest suggested coloring in the letters with black Sharpie markers and then buffing off the excess. Black was too harsh, so a lovely purple Sharpie was substituted to keep with the theme. A new Stamping it out board was also created in my search for tips and tricks. I can't wait to do more of this.  Lisa Niven Kelly's book Stamped Metal Jewelry: Creative Techniques and Designs for Making Custom Jewelry might just be my Christmas gift to myself. One never knows.

                   After wire wrapping them all together, I remember a wire ornament hanger that a friend had given me. It was, however, very red, and thus unsuitable. After a couple of tries, and lots of discarded 20 g silver colored copper wire, the ornament hook became the finishing touch.

                    Don't stop here, though- there's many more ornaments to see! Here's the list of blog participants:
Art Bead Scene
Treasures Found
Song Beads
Viki O'Dell
Sue Beads
Modern Nature Studio
Diane Hawkey
Suburban Girl Studio
Jen Judd Rocks
Ellie's Bijoux
Island Girl's Insights
Life By The Seat Of My Pants
Too Aquarius 
Shelley Graham Turner
Artfully Ornamental
Charis Designs Jewelry  ** You are here**
Harrison Hollow Designs
Silver Nik Nats
Bead Soup Mix
Toodles and Binks
Bead Recipes
Play Sculpt Live
BeeTree by M.E.
Billi RS Rothe
A Half-Baked Notion
Kimis Jewelry and Gifts

 When you're done with blog hop, stop by my Christmas Ornament Ideas  board for lots of easy and fun ornament ideas.  Thank you, Heather Powers for letting me be part of this- it was a lot of fun!!

May your Christmas season be filled with blessings, dashes of grace and splashes of joy!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

A Sneak Peak

I love Christmas ornaments- especially hand crafted ones. So, last year when I  came across the Art Bead Scene Ornament Blog Hop, I was in ornament heaven! Heather Powers of Humble Beads posted an adorable seed bead ornament, and that was just the start. You can find the list of all of last years participants below her ornament tutorial.

Shortly afterward, a fellow beader challenged us to set  new beading goals  for the coming year, and I decided that this would be one of  mine. I was super excited when Heather said we could use either a bead using handmade components or an art bead. Here's a preview- you'll have to come back on December 4th for the reveal.

Until then, may your day have a splash of grace and a dash of joy!