Friday, December 21, 2007

Happy Holidays

Here it is almost time for Christmas. I wanted to make several dolls for friends, but ran out of time. Oh, to not have to work & just spend the day down in the Art Cave creating, but I have to work so we all can eat around here. I have the weekend off a the hospital, but have to do the family thing & pick my Grandmother up from Portsmouth. My fingers will be itching as I'm in a critical stage of creating a doll. It has the body & legs done, with the head sitting on the desk ready to be needle sculpted, and the fingers needing to be "gloved". But I have time to do that...

I got my package from Australia with all kinds of goodies to play with. Chris & I are planning on the spending the two days after Christmas experimenting. He's really getting into making more fabric faces for me. I even caught him down in the Art Cave with an Iron! I think he's hooked too.

Here's a picture of Chris & I back in 1978 on Christmas at my parent's house in Portsmouth. Chris had brown hair & I had LONG hair! My goodness we both looked so young!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Deep Sea Diver

This is a project that I finished for my Ohio Beaders Challenge called "chip challenge". We had to use chips of some kind in a beading project. I've been wanting to do a fish for awhile & had been playing around with different forms. When I bought a strand of dyed MOP chips, it just clicked that they should be scales. The base for the fish is a felted styrofoam ball with tyvek beads. I used one of two baby dolls I found at the thrift store & made her into a mermaid riding on the fish's back. I didn't really attach her to the fish, as I'm thinking of using the fish in a class proposal for AFIC 09. I am going to call it bead coloring as I used the patterns of the material as a basis for the bead patterns. I'm going to be working on more projects like this to see how this bead coloring thing works out.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Sept & October

I've finally got the camera out & took pictures of my leaves for Sept and October. I'm still stuck on the November one & might skip it for a couple more weeks until I can wrap my brain around what I want it to be. November is a tough month for me. My Father died on Veteran's day back in 2001 & so I thought I'd like to do something in remembrance of my Daddy. As for Christmas, I have a picture of my Scotties sitting on the stair case watching me decorate the tree. Nothing like looking up & seeing three Scotties desperately trying to "hoover" popcorn into their mouths.

My September leaf actually does have a picture of Brutus Buckeye in the glass blob. It is just hard to see, but he's there. Gotta brag, but the Bucks are going to BCS championship in January. Go Bucks!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Holiday jewelry

My friend Katie from NJ, asked me about beaded sea horses in a Jill Oxton Cross Stitch and Beading magazine. So I finally found it under a pile of other projects I wanted to work on. Well, that was it! Now, I'm stuck doing square stitch sea horses. Darn that Katie! I've got Christmas cards to work on, shopping to do, and a doll to make, but NO....I'm addicted to making those sea horses. Here's a picture of a necklace I came up with. I used the spiral rope article Beki Haley wrote in this current edition of Bead Unique. Oh yes...I want to bead the Rivolis too, but time. Think Santa will bring me more time?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

More bragging

Along with Sparkle getting in 500 Handmade Dolls, I have another brag. Pat Duchine asked me to write an article about beaded art dolls. I couldn't figure out what to do that hadn't been done before by other beaded doll artist. Then my boss asked me if I'd like some plastic beaded curtains...OF COURSE! I'm a hoarder and will take almost anything. At the time I was working on a wrap doll with the fabric faces that Chris does for me. I threw the plastic curtains on my work table next to the other project & it was like a piece of bolt lightening smacked me. So I came up with The Podlings. At first I called them Pod Babies, but someone took that name in a previous issue of Soft Doll & Animal. Pat loved the dolls & when I actually took them down to Annie Hesse's MM&M conference in Richmond Ky, I sold all of them. I had 3 weeks to make dolls to send with the article for photography. I was really a Speedie Beadie then. But I'm so happy with the article in the Feb 08 issue of Doll Crafter and Costuming. The close up photos are just amazing. Oh, I have to thank my husband Chris for doing all the graphics for me . He's a treasure!

Finally back

I'm finally back to blogging after being so busy this Fall working on projects, projects and more projects. I have to take a moment here & do a little bragging. First off my doll Sparkle is in the new Lark Book 500 Handmade Dolls. Page 213 & yes, I do have it memorized! What really surprised me is that she is on the back cover. A member of BeadArt posted that she saw someone's beaded doll on the the back that looked familiar. She wrote and said that it looked like my doll. I didn't believe it, but then someone else wrote & told me the same thing. I about fell on the floor when I got my copy & there was Sparkle on the back cover. Knock me over with a feather! It was a big kudos day to me. Here's a picture of the back copy

Saturday, September 8, 2007

August Bead Journal Project

We are one week into September & my how time just flies. I have managed to get a picture of my August Bead Journal Project done. Was I so wrong when I said that Ohio State Fair was in July...wrong! That as the Franklin County Fair I was musing on. No, The Ohio State Fair is in AUGUST! I spent a whole day sitting at the Arts & Crafts building doing demos on beaded art dolls. Most people were so overwhelmed that I actually sew the beads on instead of just gluing them down. GLUE! NEVER!!!!!! So in tribute to State Fair month, my journal leaf has candy & ice cream buttons that I found in an antique store, a face of a child which is who loved to come to our booth & handle all the dolls we had on display, and naturally the Bounty of Nature. I'm a big orange/carrot kind of person so I beaded an award winning carrot for the Fair. Blue Ribbon winner...well, not really, but still I like it a lot.

Also I've been so involved in recycling for art that I also included a picture of an Ornie that I did for Yahoo's Group ArtDollz. She is the arms & legs of a Dollar Store jester doll, the body is an Advair disc, and the head dress is that of those weird combs you get in a package of hair dye.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Bead International piece

Bead International's CD is well on its way to the Dairy Barn down in Athens Ohio. Am I ever relieved that it is done. I just got off the phone talking to my best buddy, Cyn & we both agreed that it was just so draining & was really taking over such a big part of our lives. Everything else bead or even art related was put on the back burner because I HAD to get BI pieces done, photographed & all the computer work done first. The naming of the files really gave me a hard time. My DH did all that for me & he too had some time trying to figure out what everything meant & actually did call Amy Doeringer to get her take on it. Whew...but it is done! Finished! Now waiting to hear if any of my pieces is going to be accepted. Finger's crossed. And yes, Cyn & I agreed to get BI '10 done early! LOL!!!!!!

This is the bracelet that I submitted. It is called Wyoming Sunset as I got inspiration for it while vacationing out at Devil's Tower in Wyoming. We camped at the base for three days. It was so fabulous to wake up every morning with the Tower outside our tent window. Every night there was a monsterious thunderstorm so each night the sky was painter's delight of colors and patterns. I used textured fabric as the base with aluminum cuff blank that I bought at Dick Blicks. Then I just enjoyed beading it with textures and colors that winged me back to those days in Wyoming.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Betty Sketti

Nothing I love more than nice jaunts through all the local thrift stores in Columbus. Nothing like finding a dress with material that is just astonishing for only $3. And I've been seen going through the housewares looking for all those brass candle stick holders as they make great doll holders. But what has made my MUSE go into over drive is the toy aisle. There are all those unloved dolls and stuffed toys. Some have seen better times and are painted, "de-haired". or just plain dirty from small grubby hands, but then there are those that probably haven't had one second of love. Many are on their way to the final resting place of all unloved toys, the dumpster. So I decided to start a new line of dolls called Dumpster Dollz. I bought a bag of unloved trolls, Barbies, and Speghetti Betty's. Down to my Art Cave we all went where with a tiny bit of surgery, a few cuts here, a stitch there, some glue everywhere, I've created doll forms that can be beaded, painted, or just plain covered with clay. This is a doll that I've called Betty Sketti. Betty's head is from a Betty Speghetti doll. The form is my own creation & then every inch is beaded like mad. I chose the orange & black colors because that was the colors of the fabric, but then then orange is the "inner me". So enjoy Betty, please. She is being entered in Bead International 08. Let's hope my Dumpster bound dolls can find true love someplace as a treasured doll.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Pink Swimmer

Pat from Doll Crafter & Costuming is just spoiling me rotten! I just got my new issue & in the gallery is my Pink Swimmer that I submitted. I made her last year & now that I look some of the beading just doesn't please my eye, but I still do love this wee little doll.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Tiki Goddess

Along with beading like mad! I've also been playing around with mixed media doll making and decided to take a plunge into working with Apoxie Sculpt. I took a class back in May with Jean Bernard, and never got a real chance to sit with the stuff & get mess. Well, I did just that. I took a fashion doll (my niece told me this was Ariel) that I bought at the thrift store. All those poor sad unloved/unwanted dolls sitting on the shelf made me so sad so I bought 6 of them. I got the head at the Dollar Store. After playing around, getting paint every where & getting my husband to help me figure out how to mount the doll onto a stand, I finally came up with this final doll. I'm going to send slides of her to Art Doll Quarterly for their Altered Fashion Doll challenge. Keep my fingers crossed that they like her & want to print a picture of my funky Goddess.

June and July Bead Journal project

Boy, I'm really slow at getting my two bead journal projects up on this blog. I've been busy trying to get my Bead International pieces done before the deadline & YIPEEEE...they are done. Also working on other projects. I feel like I'm an acrobat juggling all these different projects while working a full time job. But I am WOMAN...I am TIRED. LOL!

Okay, I came up with my big game plan for the year. What I am going to do is to make each month of the Bead Journal project s leaf using the same leaf shape but they will be in different positions as I'm going to mount each of the leaves on a tree wall hanging with three months being on each branch. June/July/August are green leaves. September/October/November will be brown leaves. December/January/February will be white leaves. And March/April/May will be probably pink leaves. I want to follow the change of seasons here in Ohio. Each individual leaf will be something important that has happened to me in that month.

As you see in June, it was my vacation. We went out to South Dakota & Wyoming. The plains were in bloom and so green. Their drought was broken & I got to witness the plains green and vibrant with flowers. I fell in love with the swaying grasses and the blue straw type flowers growing everywhere. July is Ohio State Fair time! Wheeeeee...nothing like a big corn dog/elephant ear & lemon shake to go with the hubbub of the Fair. But I digressed a little here, because what July means to me is the memory of going to see the circus on July 4th at the Rose Bowl when growing up in Los Angeles. After the circus, they would have such a display of fireworks that to this day I can still see the colors. So I chose a Clown's face that I got from a friend, Emily Eckel & surrounded him with blooming colors of red white & blue to celebrate our country's birthday.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Spam Guard

Boy, I'm a horrible blogger. Here I haven't written a thing since I got back from vacation. It was fun. Made it all the way out to Wyoming's Devil's Tower. Awesome place! Anyway, since this is about Beading for a Cure, I thought I'd share a couple things. First off, Beading for a Cure is a wonderful group of women who do this all for the love of a long departed friend who died from Colo-Rectal Cancer. They all decided to get together to raise money for cancer research in her name. Being beaders, they decided that what better way to honor their friend's memory, than to have a challenge & auction. This is my second year with the group. I never knew Laney, but I do know people who battle colon cancer and was ready to stand up & add my name onto the list. We pay & receive a kit of beads. We have to use at least one of each bead to the project & am allowed to add one extra type of bead of our own choice. I decided to do a doll, but needed more to cover the larger area than size 11s so I asked permission from the BFAC board & was allowed to also use sequins.

Now back to my vacation & BFAC. I can't go anywhere without taking a beading project. Yes, even when camping. So there we were in the camp grounds at Devil's Tower. It was hot & there was no shade, so we decided to go to a very nice park at the base of the Monument which is near where the largest population of prairie dogs live. I was sitting at a park table with all my beads surrounding me working on Spam Guard's body. Several women came over to see what I was doing. I tried to explain the concept to them, but all I heard was..."those colors don't match". Yeah really...I already knew that. So I told them to wait & I'd show them what he'd look like with his head attached. Still got the comment "still doesn't match". So I was very disenchanted with this doll. I put him aside, for the rest of the trip & worked on my MoonMan instead which the same women the next day exclaimed he was "just gorgeous". Poor Spam Guard! I did finish him & with each pull of the thread as I attached his helmet, I began to like him more & more. I brought him home almost finished & he sat on the top of my eMac doing the duty that I gave to him (he's not too good at it, but I still like him). Every day I'd look up & see my wee warrior smiling down on me & began to like him more & more. Finally the day came where I had to send him off to AJ. He's gone. I miss him. So what am I doing to get over my grief...I'm making another Spam Guard just for me & oh yes, this new one does have colors that match.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Getting ready for Vacation

Well here it is getting twilight outside, and my car is already packed for vacation. We are heading for South Dakota. We are going camping for 10 days. Can't wait as we haven't been on vacation together for over 3 years. I'm sure Chris will be waking me up before the crack of dawn to get ready to go. He's so excited. The dogs won't be happy. They like to sleep in on the weekends. Poor poochies. My niece, Amanda, is going to be staying here when we are gone watching the house and the Scottish hoard. I hate to tell her that the three have finally after all these years learned to hunt as a team. In the past three days, they've caught two adult rabbits & tonight I stopped them from adding a squirrel notch to their kill belts. It is their nature, but still I hate to see them kill small animals.

I've got my projects all packed up. I'm taking my doll for the NIADA challenge with me. Can't show him yet, as he's not completed enough. Also taking my Beading for a Cure doll. Darnit! I forgot to take a picture of the kit we got to work with. Not my favorite colors, but I have finally come up with something fun. I even did my own original doll pattern for it. Also got a bag for the Guilded Lilies Round Robin that I must finish before I get back so it can go on to Liz for her to work on it.

Had a bunch of small things to do tonight also. Got my application for the Ohio State Fair filled out & ready to mail. The deadline for that is the 20th. Also took some pictures of my Scottie dog band for Linda Bassett. Linda is going to a Scottish Terrier antique show down in Cincinnati. She told me it is her 11th year. We met each other that long ago. I stopped going when Fiona had her litter of puppies, and things just always seem to happen so I don't get to attend anymore, but miss all those guys from Wee Scots. Linda is using the pictures for some presentation. She was telling me what she was doing & it sounds like everyone in Cincinnati is going to be laughing large!

I also submitted another doll piece to Doll Crafter's and Costuming. It is for the Fall Gallery titled Fearful Fall Fun. I sent in a picture of my Dead Pirates. They were the villain challenge for Guilded Lilies last September. They heads are ones I found at Archie McPhee when I was out in Seattle visiting my friend Cynthia & going to ArtFiberFest. I saw those pencil topper pirate heads & fell in love with them. I had to have them (wish I bought more now), naturally they became funky dolls. I might work some more of this piece for the Whimsical Beads challenge, but might not. I have no idea what I'll be doing once I get back. But I DO KNOW that I must start my Bead Journal project. Got some ideas...finally.

take care & see you all in two weeks.


Tuesday, June 5, 2007


This is going to be one busy summer for me. Along with doing the 12 month beaded journal project proposed by Robin Atkins, I'm also going to be working on three pieces for juried shows, a challenge doll for NIADA, and a challenge for Beading For A Cure.

Now the later has caused me some discomfort indeed. We got the kit which is the challenge part, and none of the colors even spoke to me. Along with that there was a lamp work bead that threw me totally. I usually don't use lamp works in any of my work, so to even contemplate how to incorporate it into a doll design, put me far behind on the schedule. At first, I thought "why not just do a bracelet with the lamp work as a focal bead?". But that really isn't a challenge to me is it? I feel very comfortable doing beaded bracelets and to just do a bracelet wouldn't make me "grow" in my beading and doll making skills. So finally, two days ago at work I came up with an idea that has been growing inside my head until finally last night, I sat at my desk in the Art Cave picked up needle, thread and felt & began. I also looked in my bag of thrift store throw aways & found the perfect head for the doll I'm working on. Oh yes, naturally it is going to be a doll. Then I got out my hoard of sequins because I got permission from the board to use sequins, and I chose for my extra bead type to be added. I'll get a picture of all of this later on & post. It looks pretty chaotic for now, but I've got it all worked on inside the noggin. I've even got a name for this piece...SpamGuard! So, I'm pushing myself to get this, and my NIADA doll done by July. I'm wanting to have an NIADA artist critique SpamGuard as this is my second orginal doll design. My fingers will be smokin'! but my brain will be coolin' off.

Meanwhile I've settled on the form for my Bead Journal. It is a secret until September!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Is it Summer???

Yeppers, it is HOT. I mean turn the air conditioner on hot! But we are NOT letting AEP get a bite out of our wallets yet. So I've been spending alot of time down in the Art Cave playing. I spent all day yesterday working on the ATCs for a swap I'm in. All I got left to do is to put the rivets in them & sent them off to Tracie. I'm also working on my NIADA challenge piece. NIADA is going to be in Detroit this year. Only a three hour drive, so I'm going with my friends Linda Apple & Cyndy Sieving. Also a couple other Columbus doll makers will be there, Judy Skeel & Inez Bausch. Hope to run into them & have a few laughs. I've heard that this is the most drool worthy thing there is when it comes to doll making. I'm looking forward to getting to see the best of the best in person & get my Muse sparked with ideas. I'm not taking any classes, as I've got to get back to work, but I'm always open for some inspiration. Linda talked me into doing the Challenge for NIADA. The theme is Over the Moon. Naturally, I'm making a beaded doll. I'm doing a Moon Man, so we'll see if I can get it done in time. Between NIADA in July & now is our vacation. We'll be going to South Dakota for 10 days.

Guess I should mention my dogs. I love Scottish Terriers. I guess I should say that is how I got into beading. I met Cynthia through a Scottish Terrier e-list & be became friends. She is the main culprit in my beading obsession. I blame her every single day! I know her ears are BURNING! But if I wouldn't have fallen in love back in 1989 with a sweet little Scottie dog I named FalaPink, who knows what I would be doing now. So my FalaPink is the one who got me on this course in my life & made me realize I'm an artist. Thank you my sweet puppy boy who is waiting at the steps of the Rainbow Bridge with our sweetie wheatie SkyeBlue. Love you guys every single day.

Sunday, May 27, 2007


I got up very early this morning, even before the dogs & decided to work on a few ATCs for a swap due June 1st. Yes, I'm always one of those last minute kind of people. I know what I want to do, but just can't seem to get the gumption up to finish on time. I used some of the Hoffman Fabric for this year's challenge which has beautiful flowers and butterflies on it. I did a bit of sewing on it, but I must admit this is something for me as I'm not very good at using a sewing machine. I only bought one last year for a conference in Ky. I'm learning to use it, but am always amazed at what other artist can do with fabric and thread. I really wish I didn't have to work full time so I could just sit downstairs in my Art Cave & play. But alas, gotta work to feed my addiction and the poochies. I joined a new group on Yahoo called CrazyArtDollz. Sounds like fun. Great excuse for me to explore using different techniques & media. Don't get me wrong...I still am in love with beads. They obsesses my soul, but I want to venture into some other territory & see if I can get into more trouble! LOL! Well, enough for today. I've got a picnic to go to & the weather man is calling for thunderstorms. GREAT! Think I better leave my beads at home. Don't want to be like Dorothy & get caught up in a funnel cloud blasted with all those sparklies. Wait, maybe I do. It'd be one heck of a rainbow, wouldn't it?

Friday, May 25, 2007

First off 5/25/07

Just got off work & decided to work on my blog page for awhile before I scoot over to Judy Skeel's house for a doll maker's tea party. I'll be tired since I worked all night long, but I still gotta spend some time with my Guilded Lily pals. Judy taught me alot about doll making. I actually called her one evening & questioned her about what a "dart" was. Okay, so I flunked home economics back in the dark ages when in high school. I really didn't know what a dart was & when she did I. I'm working on a pattern of my own right now. It is for the NIADA challenge (over the moon). I'm making a moon man eating the Moon which you know is made of cheese. Naturally he WILL BE BEADED! I'm sharing this picture of my last beaded doll. He was for the AFIC (Artistic Figures in Cloth challenge called "Object in my Obsession". Since I have Asthma & breathing is definitely my obsession, I did Gustave Breathe. He is a troll pattern called Mopsey by Ute Vasnia. I loved working on him & learned alot about needle sculpturing. He's not totally beaded, but I still love him. Unfortunately since the doll pattern is not my original design, I can't enter him in any juried bead shows. So poor Gus will stay here with me & make his "professional" coming out at the Ohio State Fair. Enough...I must drink my coffee, wake up, change clothes, get my stuff together & get over to join the girls in a fun morning