Saturday, June 30, 2012

How I became addicted

In conjunction with the latest iteration of the Bead Soup Blog Party, Lori Anderson, Blog Mom extraordinaire, has asked us to write how we got started beading.  I guess I have to drag up ancient history, because my mom started me on crafts in general.  I remember being very small and helping her with Christmas crafts, making angels out of Reader's Digest, making soldiers from wood clothespins to hold Christmas cards, making a plaque out of aluminum foil and tempera paint, sewing aprons, knitting a coat.  So, I got the bug really early on.

Later, in the 60's, when I was a hippie girl, of course, I had the requisite beads that I gleefully strung and wore.  My favorites were a strand of whole allspice that I had soaked and strung from a pattern in a hippie book.  They smelled SOOOOOOO good, and so did I when I wore them!  I saw a daisy chain necklace that I wanted to make, it belonged to my best friend, Tree Eagle, and I asked her how it was done.  She told me to figure it out.  (She wasn't one to share Ute secrets with the likes of me.)  But I couldn't figure it out, although the seed bead was planted.

Fast forward to the 90's, and I saw a magazine called Bead & Button, and it was being sold through Publisher's Clearing House, of all places.  On the cover of the first issue I saw, there was the pattern for the long coveted daisy chain.  I about fainted, and ordered the magazine right away.

So, many daisy chains and other amazing patterns later, here I am, designing my own patterns, participating in blog hops, and just generally enjoying what has become my obsession.  For those of you who read my blog, you have seen the bead shrine from Brenda Sue's Messy Workshop Blog Hop.  For those who haven't, here it is again.  

All I need now is my Bead Soup.  My partner is Michelle Hardy, and I can hardly wait to see what she sends, and I am sending hers out on Monday!  Woo hoo!  Here we go again!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Finished, finished, finished!

I finished the paisley bracelet for the Time to Stitch Blog Hop the day after it was due, but I was trying to finish other things, and just didn't get the pics taken until today.  Along with that, I also finished the Beading Babes June Challenge.  I chose the Four-Leaf Clover Cuff pattern from Helena Tang-Lim.  The first bracelet was the green one.  I chose not to use Swarovski crystals in either bracelet, because I didn't have enough of any one color to complete the project.  So, I went to the stash and found these cute spring green rounds, and three larger faceted ones for the clasps.  I used a lined rose for the color contrast, and a  tea rose green for the green delicas.  When it was complete, I decided it was a little too matchy-matchy for my taste.  So, I decided to make one that was all about contrast.  I used fire-polished AB crystals, and black and matte red delicas.  I found three giant black beads for the clasps, and I was good to go!  So, check out the pics, and join me over at Beading Babes on Facebook to check out all the others.

Paisleys (check out the cute kitty and fish clasps!)

Four-Leaf Clover Cuffs

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

More apologies.

In my psychosis last night to get my bracelet on the blog, I forgot my manners and didn't thank the two ladies who hosted the blog hop.  Thanks, thanks, thanks to Therese Frank, from Therese's Treasures, and Christine Altmiller of One Kiss Creations Beaded Jewelry.  Therese Frank and Christine Altmiller  This blog hop was great fun, and I really appreciate their efforts in coordination!

Monday, June 11, 2012

A Time to Stitch Peyote/Herringbone Blog Hop

Well, I didn't quite finish in time, but I decided to post this anyway, and I will update the blog as soon as I finish it completely.  It was so fun to make, but the truth is, I had a spectacular failure before I made this one.  I tried a circular peyote rope that I was going to combine with a herringbone rope, and suspend a focal from the whole thing.  Well, the rope didn't look the way I had imagined, but I was prepared to go with it.  However, when I suspended the focal (it was a lampwork donut with a triangular peyote and herringbone bail) it came out wonky.  No matter how much I worked the thing, it stayed wonky.  So, I threw it in a box with all the other rejects, and started this little paisley fun bracelet in neon colors including tangerine tango!  I thought I could get it finished, but I am just flat out of time.  So here it is, and I'll post again when I get it finished.  I have three cute clasps I plan to use on it.  They are little kitty toggles with fishy crossbars, and kitty face dangles.   I don't mean to be disappointing.  

This is my second blog hop in as many weeks where I either didn't finish, or couldn't get it together at all.  It is not like me.  I am a responsible beader, and hate to let down my fellows.  I guess I could blame it on my scratched cornea that hasn't healed in two months and hurts and makes beading slow going, but I'm not one to make excuses.  I'm just a pokey old lady, and I have to stop making pieces I don't like so I can get them done in one design shot.  This weird streak will pass, but my frustration is starting to show.  Sorry, everyone.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Art Bead Earring Swap Blog Hop

Hello all you bloggie fans!  This is a fun blog hop!  We each had to send earrings to two partners, and received a pair of earrings from each in return.  The ones I received were wonderful from my nifty partners Jenny Davies Reazor and Linda Younkman.  I really enjoyed getting to know my partners a little, and I hope they enjoyed chatting with me, too.  

So, here are Linda's cool blue earrings!

And here are Jenny's earrings, red hot and jingly!

Although I photographed the ones I sent to my partners, I'll let you see their blogs for my wild offerings!  So, here are the other earring swap artists!  Enjoy and thanks for visiting!

Diana Ptaszynski
Patti Vanderbloemen
Lesley Watt
Jenny Davies Reazor
Melinda Orr
Cilla Watkins
Stephanie Haussler
Sally Russick
Susan Kennedy
Mary Shannon Hicks  <------------YOU ARE HERE
Cheryl Brown

Monday, June 4, 2012

Friday, June 1, 2012

Good things mostly but, one not so much

The not so much:  I was supposed to post something for the Andrew Thornton Lima Beads blog hop today, and I just did not get the muse on this one.  I fooled with it in two different sessions, one version came out wonky, and another came out like the jewelry department at Walmart.  Neither was acceptable, so I decided that nothing was better than embarrassing myself and all involved.

The good:  I just joined the blog hop from a link at Antiquity Travelers.  That is a peach of a blog.  The linky list is on New End Studio and Katherine's Corner, both follow-worthy blogs in their own right.

More good:  I have made some decisions about my work.  I have long been contemplating my style.  I like to beadweave, and I love intricate work in general, whether beads, wire, paper, clay, whatever.  So, I am going back to what I love, and damn the torpedoes!  I have been in this fearful, "Oh, what should I do?", "Will people like it?" paralyzing fear conundrum for far too long.  I gotta be me.  So, my next project is gonna be full-on Shannon, and I hope it will be great fun.  I have been working on my conceptualization for about a year.  While I have gotten clear on that, I have been fearful about the execution.  Well, fear is no more.  I am over it!  Stay tuned.

Even more good:  I've been hit or miss about blogging.  I'm going to try to blog at least weekly, if not more often.  It has been part of the fear cycle, and I just can't continue to live like that.  I am what I am.  My art is what it is.  No more fear or apologies.  My husband has even been on my case because every time I ask him to do something for me, I apologize.  Who is this girl, and what happened to Shannon?  Well, she is back.  Full steam ahead.  No more negative waves, man.