Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Sqidoo 'Lens' on BJP

I tried making a Squidoo lens on the BJP, link above, hopefully. Check it out and let me know what you think of it....

December BJP

What a busy month December is! I haven't blogged once, and it seems like it's been ages. I have managed to finish my December page, the theme was snowflakes in the night sky, and my solstice present to myself was to not worry about making a bracelet this month. :-) We've had a bit of snow here lately, so the page resonates nicely with the season. I've been happily knitting and beading and making candles to give out as solstice gifts along with work and play (my son is home for almost a month for winter break from college, always a great time!). I'm posting a pic of the page and also a new bracelet I made the other day, done with the bead rope technique I learned this year, done in small sections and interspersed with some nice bali beads. It's a heavy, rich feeling bracelt, that I like quite a lot.
Happy holidays to all!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Bracelet finished :-)

I mounted the bracelet yesterday and managed to stir my febrile bones and get a pic of it today. Can't seem to shake this cold! All it is now is stuffy alternating with runny nose and achy bones, but it's beginning to frustrate me. I was hoping to get more done this week!
Ah well, I'm hitting the zinc and vitamin C and OJ and superfood.
On to planning for December's page!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Bracelet progress

Looks like I just might get the bracelet done. I'm home sick with a nasty little cold and don't have the energy to do much, so sitting around sewing this little bracelet to the blank should just about do it. Now WHY do I feel like it's cheating to just fill up the space with all these cool little lucite flowers and pretty cabs? I AM going to edge the whole thing with beads, but fairly large beads, I'm thinking of using some size 8/0's I got last year. Quite the departure for me, but, heck, I like the look.

Monday, November 26, 2007

This is my first post in November???

Where the heck, you might ask, have I been? Well, as some may know, November is National Novel Writing Month, and this is the second year I've participated. The deal is you make a goal to write a novel of at least 50,000 words in 30 days. It doesn't have to be good (one of the mottos is "December is for rewrites"), it doesn't even have to make sense, you just need to commit to write. My son, who has participated in this thing three times (while pulling a full load at a tough college), got me into it last year and I had fun with it. But this year I also had the BJP commitment and wasn't sure I'd be able to manage both. Well, I've made my 50,000 word goal, and even like my little novel so far, and I've finished my page. The page is in honor of the Mexican festival of the Day of the Dead which is traditionally celebrated on the first of November and even in some places for a week in November. I love the bright colors and flowers and symbolism of meeting up with our beloved dead for a bit, I think it's such a celebration of life. I used charlottes and various fancy beads for the skull itself, and then used vintage lucite flowers as the wreath surrounding the skull. Meanwhile, I'm hoping to get a bracelet done before the 30th and then I'll be quite proud. So far this month has been a blast!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Kwan Yin Bracelet

Today I mounted the Kwan Yin beadwork onto a bracelet blank, and I'm very pleased with the outcome. I think this is my favorite bracelet yet. Now to start my planning for November!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

October Finished!

It's all done but the mounting. I love the way the page turned out this month, it helped me immensely, and the bracelet! The picture, I think, doesn't really do it justice, but it's my favorite so far. I can't wait to get it mounted on a brass blank and wear it. It's a small Kwan Yin cab surrounded by shell heishi and different sizes of beads. I really feel I've moved out of my normal comfort zone (embroidering with almost all same sized beads), and found a new method of expression.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

October Progress

Well, my page for October is coming along nicely, and I expect to be done in a couple of days, then I can concentrate on my bracelet. I work with the hectic and toxic American health care system and am increasingly uncomfortable with the lack of healing in that environment. I've found that images of ancient shamans attract me, and help me center myself more. This shaman was originally found as a cave painting in France, and is called The Trois Freres Shaman. This is my beadwork interpretation of him. I've beaded him once before, on leather pouch for a doctor friend, and I always wanted a depiction of him for myself. I'm pleased with the way he's turning out, and also used some new techniques for using sequins that I learned from Mary Tafoya at a recent bead retreat (she was kind enough to gift me with the shell 'sequins' that I used as the ground under the shaman's feet).

Monday, October 1, 2007

Bead Retreat

I spent last weekend at a bead retreat. It's almost impossible to express how much fun I had and how much I learned. This year we learned how to make a kalaidescope cane with polymer clay (mine didn't turn out too well, but I get the idea). Another participant taught us a nice tubular herringbone stitch utilizing different sized beads that ends up in a lovely supple tube. I've been playing around with it today and also made a pair of dangle earrings along the same lines. A third participant taught us different methods of using sequins. All in all it was a great weekend and I feel so refreshed and inspired.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Another Versa loom project and poly faces

I'm having a good week again, very into doing more projects, when actually I need to be getting all my 'stuff' packed up for a bead retreat I'm going to this weekend. This is a yearly deal that I managed to get myself included in back in the late 90's. It's the most inspiring thing I do, beadwise, each year, and I always learn a lot. We should be doing some poly clay work this weekend and learning some other mixed media stuff as well as beading and SHOPPING!!
I can't wait! The bracelet was made on the versa loom in size 11 matte triangles, I used silamide as my thread and it has a lovely soft hand....

Friday, September 21, 2007

Love my Versa loom!

Having finished my September piece, I moved on to something I'd been wanting to do for a while, make a new bracelet pattern that I'll probably refine and sell on bead-patterns. It's a little day of the dead bracelet pattern, I haven't decided whether to mount it on a metal blank or make it a soft bracelet. I also played around with another polymer clay face that I made and mounted it on a little aluminum pill box, and have named it my moonface box. This one I'm selling on etsy.
All in all, a good week!

Monday, September 17, 2007


I spent most of the day working on the 'hair' of the central face on the womandala, and then I worked on the bracelet. Now all I have to do is mount last month's and this months bracelets (thanks to Betcey at Beyond Beadery, I have my bracelet blanks). I love how this one turned out.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

More progress

I've changed my schedule from full-time (3 12 hour shifts) to part time (2 12 hour shifts) in the ER, because of burnout and exhaustion. (I realized that if I'm frugal, I should be able to make it OK on just part time work, now.) I've been working nights for 25 years and it's beginning to wear on me. Anyway, I've got another whole *day* to work on my projects and am having a blast! So I've managed to get probably 2/3 done with my September piece and have mounted the cab for the bracelet. The blue doesn't show up as well as I'd like, it's more of a dark cornflower, and the pink is a color I think of as Cheyenne pink-lovely Charlottes that I got at the Gathering of Nations Pow Wow last year. I'm planning to try and do some sort of 'hair' for my face cab, either branched type fringe or a twisted fringe...not sure yet. And I'm not sure it will work, but it'll be fun to try.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

September progress

Wow, after the struggle of August, September is going much more smoothly. The bead embroidery part is well within my comfort zone, but the poly clay face is the first piece of poly that I've made that I think is really nice, and I'll make a face for my bracelet project, too. I can't wait to see what color progressions will come with the mandala. Right now I'm thinking reds and turqouises, but we'll see what happens.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

August BJP and bracelet done!

Phew! Not too far from the end of August, and I'm done, except for mounting the bracelet, which has to wait until I get more one inch brass bracelet blanks. My journal page was very uncooperative at the beginning, resisting the idea I had for it and insisting on going it's own way. Things got better when I relaxed and gave in to the process. I had no idea why or where it was going until it was almost done when the words "my compartmentalized life" popped into my head from nowhere. It went a lot faster after that. Looking at it, I correlate the right hand corner with my dreaming life, the next section with my work life, the next one to my emotional life, the next one I see as my creative energy and focus and the last one as my somewhat meandering spiritual path. It was an effort, but I like the outcome.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Ay! Busy Month

I can't believe I haven't blogged since the first! My page is moving right along but will go over a bit into September. Busy month and many changes in concept are to blame.... Hopefully I'll get some pics take by Sunday or Monday.
Cheers all,

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

July BJP and bracelet

Well, right down to the wire, but it's done and I'm pleased. I had planned to use polymer clay on the page this month but it never happened and I just went with the flow. I like it. The bracelet is fun, true bling and a great use for a vintage Swarovski crystal I'd been hoarding. Now on to August....I'm thinking warm colors. hehe

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Busy Month

Wow! Time is flying, and the summer is rushing away, but mostly I've been having a blast. Almost done with both my July page and the bracelet project, in and among other things I've been working/playing on. I hope to get the poly clay parts of my page done this weekend and get the bracelet finished and mounted before August arrives. Not much time left, but it's do-able.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007


July is here and I've got my page planned out. I had absolutely no idea what I was going to do so I researched July and was struck that the flower of the month is water lily, a flower I love, so I'm going in that direction. I'm going to try and make poly clay water lily leaves and a beaded flower, and I'm intending to work on my shading techniques. Funny, all the water lilies I've see are always in this dark, dark water, so I'm using a shimmery dark fabric on top of the stiff upholstery backing....should be an interesting project.

Monday, June 25, 2007

finished the June page

Well! I got going on it and finally finished today. Also managed to finish and mount the little laughing Buddha bracelet, that I think I'll end up giving to a friend who just finished her acupuncture training. All she's waiting for is the paperwork to clear and she'll be licensed to practice here in NM. Her husband has been a DOM (Dr. of Oriental Medicine) for many years now and she'll be practicing with him. I'm impressed with her accomplishments! She seems to have boundless energy.
Anyway, the pictures tell the story. I wish I could get a better pic of the page, but the sequins are so shiny they reflect even without flash, this is the first time I've done something that isn't completely beaded, but lets some of the background show through. I guess it's sort of 'multi-media' in a way, which is something I intend to explore this year, and I'm not really comfortable with the techniques yet. So yeah, guess I'm pushing my comfort level quite a bit, and really I'm not sure I 'love' this piece, but it does come close to being what I wanted.

Sunday, June 24, 2007


Wow, I hadn't realized how long it's been since I blogged. I've been steadily working on my page, and also a little bracelet. When I decided on the size of my pages, I cut them from a roll of stiff stuff like material I have, that Mary T. (Aunt Molly) gave me a couple of years ago. I believe it's some sort of upholstery backing, but works wonderfully for bead embroidery. It's in a seven inch wide roll, so when I cut my pieces, I also had twelve 1 by 6 inch strips that I decided to use for bracelets each month. Here's my progress so far... the page is coming along nicely and I'm fairly happy with it. It is an attempt to capture the vivid summer desert colors, although the sky is a bit dark, that's the only blue sequins I had and the color is one often seen on partly cloudy days in the high deserts. The ground is going to be partly beaded, sprinkles of green and purple, as the desert floor was covered in both colors when we passed through in the beginning of June.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

great trip

Carlsbad is lovely this time of year, hot but not excessively so. We toured the Living Desert State Park and the Carlsbad Caverns. Lots of inspirational material there, and I came home with many more ideas for my June square. But tonight it's back to work...

Monday, June 4, 2007

time out for inspiration

The way my work schedule works Wed, Thur, Fri nights from 7p to 7a. Off Saturday (which is mostly devoted to sleep), Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. This week my son and I have decided to take a quick trip down south to Carlsbad (about 300 mile drive), to tour the caverns which we haven't done for years, and to take in the sights. I'm hoping to get lots of pics of the caves and the desert flora. We should be back late Tuesday evening and then it's back to work Wednesday night. That takes quite a bit of beading time out of my month, but I think it'll be worth it. I'll post pics to the blog if I get some good ones.

Saturday, June 2, 2007


Ah! I've got my squares cut. All twelve of them, :-) I'm using a stiff stuff like material-I believe it's an upholstery stiffener, that Mary Tafoya gave me, and have decided on a 6x6 inch size, since I'm not really intending to fill all of the background with beads, necessarily. Mixed media is going to be my aim for this year, since strictly beads has been my focus for many years and I feel that the branching out is something I really want to do. My June square is going to be in honor of the summer solstice, longest day of the year, time of growth and light and warmth. Lots of ideas, but I'm not going to plan ahead. My first bead is going to be a button from my grandmother's collection, a nice brass looking filagree button, and then I'll try to work organically from that. More and more I've been growing an idea in my head of starting up a little bead and craft shop. I have a friend who is also a nurse who started up a coffee shop/bakery shop last year and she's encouraging me to start thinking about following my dream. So this month, as well as making a page for my journal, I'll be starting to formulate a business plan and estimate my start up costs. I'm thinking in terms of trying to get up off the ground by spring or summer of next year. Gasp! I put thought to printed word! A first step.

Friday, June 1, 2007

June first!

So many ideas for my bead journal rolling through my head, but I've got one more night in the ER to go before I can really start. I'm going to sleep today and hopefully get a little preliminary sketching done before I go to work tonight.... Can't wait til I really get going!
Wheeeee! Such a wonderful full moon night last night. How special to have an auspicious month start off with a full moon.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

For Miz Mary T

Mary wanted to see the entire batch of cards I've made so far. I've made a page on my website, that isn't really for general public viewing, but for Mary, and for anyone else curious about Bead ATC's, I'll provide the link here . Be aware the page is horridly graphics rich and it'll take a while to load....

First post to new blog: I intend to try and keep track of work I'm doing this year during the year of the Bead Journal Project, a year long effort begun by the noted beadworker, Robin Atkins . My first links will be to pics of Bead Artist Trading cards that I'm making for a swap organized by Beki from the All About Beads Forum .
The swap is organized in a one for one format, with participants sending in multiples of 5 cards...I'm planning on doing 4 different sets of 5 cards, and have already finished 2 sets. Wonderful for me, since I'm usually unable to do well with deadlines, and the deadline here isn't til September. (better not get too satisfied too early, though). I'm going to post one of each set here, and will later add all 5 of each set to a page on my website and will link to them later.
First set is Calaveras (skull for the Mexican Day of the Dead celebration):

The second is a stamped horse, a simple card, but I love the colors:

The rules for the swap are simply to make an ATC with at least one bead on it. Simple no? Well, certainly fun, if not simple. I'm having a good time doing these this time, I did the swap two years ago and had a terrible time with it, wasn't used to working in such a restricted format and I wasn't really familiar with the ATC world at that time. Since then I've been privileged to take a mini course in mixed media ATC construction from Mary Tafoya, aka seriousbeader, aka Aunt Molly, and I feel much more in control of the process now.