Monday, August 31, 2009


This is my final entry piece for the BJP. Of all the 12 pieces for this year challenge, this truly has been a challenge and has taken me the whole month to finish. It all started with a class at 1 stop bead shop here in Columbus. I got to take a class with Sherry Serafini's the beaded purse class. Well, after working on and off for this whole total month, it is DONE as of late last night. I was going to add fringe to the handle and sides but decided not to do that. It stands pretty much on its own. Oh and I DO plan to take this with me to the Bead Unique Retreat with me in Tahoe.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

WOW! Good stuff yesterday.

Yesterday I woke up feeling really tired. It has been a struggle at work this past two months as we are down two whole full time positions on night shift. We've been lucky to have one person from second shift work with us, but she's been difficult at times to work with. It takes a certain kind of personality to work the graveyard shift & keep your faculties straight. This person has gone from buzz to maniac. She's not sleeping & now is aggravating to all who work with her. Two of us went you our boss & told her we'd rather work short than have someone who argues with us & the nursing staff all the time. I think I'd rather be physically tired from working super short than mentally tired from not going off on this person who only wants to help. It is really hard to keep my cool. So, yes, I was mentally tired when I got up yesterday afternoon. I come downstairs with slits for eyes as I could not wake up, and there was this box sitting on the counter waiting for me. I made my coffee and was listening to the hiss it was making when Chris came inside & asked me what it was. For the life of me, I couldn't remember. Then I saw the return address was from Fran.

Fran is a wonderful dollmaker I met last year when I was out in Albuquerque at EDAC. Fran is from Las Vegas & belongs to a very active & fun doll club there. Fran also has a blog & was so excited about her 200th blog entry so she was giving out two gifts if you commented. I did not thinking I'd be the lucky girl, but there I was...lucky! And after I opened the box, look how truly luck I was! AMAZING hand dyed lace & ribbons, and lovely yarns. Included were batik fabrics to die for with some gold dust, and other things. Boy was I one extremely happy dancing girl. It made me forget all about my problems at work.

Then my day went sour again. We decided to go to McDonald's for a late lunch...wrong! It was cold, cold, and even colder. I wasn't in the mood to argue with the manager or to even combat the pimple face teenagers behind the counter. Funny, but some restaurants are decent, but then some are just mediocre. I think it all depends on the manager & we could tell this manager didn't give a damn about his customers. I'm never going to that franchise again as there are McDonald's that actually ARE clean & DO serve hot food. So there I was coming back home in a foul mood again. Chris then asked me if I was going to the garage sale at the bead store.

I put answering for an hour thinking would me in this foul mood really be happy there. Then I decided 15 minutes before 1 Stop Bead Shop would open its doors for the garage sale that I'd go. I jumped in the Element & was there 5 minutes after the doors opened. There were 14 vendors there besides the store staff selling things that they didn't want anymore. It was crowded, but not as bad as I thought. I looked at one table, nothing interested me, then I saw some findings that told buy me & make a doll with me...WOW! My mood changed with my Muse kicking me, or it could be seeing prices that shocked my senses straight. I then went crazy. Funny, but I was wearing one of my bracelets from a class I taught & two of my students said they saw it & realized it was me. Others saw it too & lucky I had cards to hand out as now I think I'll get a few more in my bracelet class in November. Also met Dixie who I met in Sherry's purse class. We talked about the fun time we had in the class. Dixie asked me if I'm done yet...not yet, but close. So here is the big stash of beads I got from the garage sale. I WAS HAPPY! FINALLY! I knew beads would redraw me out of my funk.

Then a couple episodes of X-Files (working on my box set I got for Christmas last year) and a wonderfully cool night to sleep & dream & wake up happy, refreshed & ready to work on that purse which will be in tomorrows post. Now to finish this up & get ready to watch Mad Man on AMC. Love this show.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Monica's blog

First off, sorry no pictures of the purse today. I'm ALMOST done with the handle. I also have a few brooches done for the swap during the Bead Unique Retreat in Tahoe (ALMOST HERE!). I wanted to write a little about a blog I enjoy following and a fellow artist that I really admire. I've known Monica for years now back when she was my Fairy Bead Sister from one of the beading forums we belong to over on Delphi. I've never met her in person, but I feel like I know her from her private e-mails and her blog. She is one fantastic artist and really makes people think about things with her poetry and her pictures. Today was no different. Monica was writing about Tea with Savannah Terry. Please check it out.

She is talking about finding old pieces of a woman's life such as her dishes, her letters, her pencils and other things. All these things hold her essence, but unless found by an artist are discarded and thrown away. Monica, by reusing these items in her own art work has taken Mz Terry's life and passed it on to others. I really was touched by these ideas as I feel the same way when I take these throw away toys and make them into bead items.
But what really made me sit back & really contemplate Monica's post was an incident that happened this Spring.

We live in a small subdivision on the suburbs of Worthington Ohio. There is a main street outside of our project with older ranch style houses probably built in the early 1960s. I was told that most of those houses were bought by workers of the Annhauser/Busch brewery only two miles south of us. I remember when we first moved her seeing these older African American people with their walkers going out to pick up their mail in their rural route mailboxes. Most of the inhabitants have passed away over the years, and many of the houses have been torn down to put in more newer homes on squeezed together on smaller lots. One house I remember because it had been abandoned for over 2 years with the grass overgrown. I wondered what happened to the old lady who'd I'd see get into her big Lincoln and drive down to get her mail. It was finally sold, and a new family moved in redoing the whole house from top to bottom. Chris & I were driving down the main road when he spied a pile of radios, and upright piano and other items on the side of the road. As we drove up into the drive way they put out a big sign that said FREE. I wish I had room for the piano, but our house is stuffed as is. Chris took the radios, and other items including a old milk jug. I opened a cabinet & there were records. I asked if I could just have the record. The new owner said yes. I can't believe what a treasure I found in her old records. Ones that I remember listening to on the radio back when I was a little girl in the back seat of my Dad's big Chrysler New Yorker with the radio blaring. Then I found 3 Dinah Washington albums. I wasn't sure who she was, so I pulled one out of the sleeve, cleaned it gently & placed it on our vintage stereo. It was LOVELY. I feel in love with Dinah's voice & then something made me feel weird. I could almost see that older woman sitting over on the couch smiling at me. I saved her music. Now I listen to Dinah all the time & get the other old Motown records out to listen to (oh she had some Tom Jones, and Engleburt Humperd- too). I wish I could know her name as Monica has found Savannah's name, but I do share in this woman's love of her music and her life.

BTW, you might have HEARD Dinah without knowing who she really is. I'd heard a car commercial & there was her song coming out of the speakers at me. I was thrilled to see Dinah's music is still appreciated even though it is used to sell cars.


ALSO...please check out my new button to get you to Monica's site for the Pink Artist Part 2 raffle. A QUILT and so much more to win with all money going to breast cancer research.

Monday, August 24, 2009

To the Post office....

TOMORROW! YES! I finally got everything printed, burned on CD, and written up. I'm ready to get up early tomorrow morning and head out to the Post Office. Now to some folks this is a very simple thing with no thought involved at all, but I totally HATE going to the PO. I think it all comes from when I was still living with my parents & I had to take packages to the Post Office to mail for my Mom. It was triple HE&& to send anything back in the 70s at our small town PO. You had to use the right kind of paper, with the right kind of tape, with the right kind of twine, and the label just so. Not to mention the PO closed at 5pm and the lines were L-O-N-G. I cringed every single time I had to go. It is much easier now, but I still put it off until the last minute. I KNOW you can have them pick it up but even that knowledge doesn't help. I still procrastinate. That is why I never do round robins with other artist. I never get the package on the deadline. BUT...I'm ready & geared up for tomorrow. I'm going to do this before breakfast & then treat myself to something yummie at the restaurant.

Everything is all ready to go to Land of Odds in Nashville. I made double sure that the CD would work, and have extra pictures of Rachel's Dream. I also had Chris read my story (okay another cringe thing ) and help me get all the paper work together. It is packaged & sealed.

Then I had to get everything ready for the Dimensions in Doll Making show which is in San Diego with the big Quilt show. I'm sending three entries for that. I'm sending Tootsie & Tullulah for the Barb Keeling Bra Doll Display. Then the hard part as the dolls had to be anthropomorphic AND mailable. I really wanted to send How the Chicken Crossed the Road, but I was afraid the rocket would break on the way to San Diego. So I went through my other pieces. Some were too fragile & some were just not human enough. So I decided to send my AFIC piece "Getting Motivated", and since the doll could be something humans do...I'm sending Peter in his carrot mobile (in my heading). The engine of the "car" roars when you pull the green ring. So, all packaged in a large flat rate Priority box with paperwork, check for return postage, Artist statement (boy do I hate writing these without feeling stupid), and business cards.

Whew...I took a big breath. So now to wait. Wait. And Wait. I am going to picture my judges as this group of happy go lucky Scotties from the movie Coraline. Who wouldn't laugh thinking of all those wagging tails and perky ears looking right at you. wait!!!!!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

More purse pictures

Okay, here is some more close up pictures of the purse I'm working on from the class I took with Sherry Serafini. Yesterday was a very nice Sunny day which sometimes can be unusual in Central Ohio. We are not known for cloudless days. Chris was taking pictures outside & thought to get some extra close shots of my purse. I just glued down the beading, and am working on sewing it down, then to fringe some of the edges. I'm also working on a square stitch piece for the handle. Yes, I really do want to use this purse. We were getting shots for the Land of Odds contest. Rachel's Dream has been done for several weeks, but I'm still struggling with the story they want. I was done, then went over the requirements for the story again, and realized I might have gone wrong. I was pretty distressed as I've got to get a CD burned & sent out for Warren to get by the 31st. So I sat Chris down & read what I had written. Now that is always tough as I am a tad bit verbose in my writings, but he actually liked it. Only told me to change a couple sentences (shock!). I'm over 5 words from the requirement, so I need to go back over the story & get rid of a measly five whole words. But anyways, got the pictures back from Costco today. AWESOME! They did a great job. Chris surprised me by getting a big 12 by 18 picture of close up of the beading on Rachel's Dream. It was only $2.99, but you can see every single bead. I'll definitely be posting more pictures of Rachel's Dream when I'm allowed due to the contest rules.

Now here is a picture of the back of the purse. Isn't that dichroic donut I have just awesome. It was the base of the color selection. I had bought it at Byzantium, when my eye caught something in one of the middle of a case. I had I think it was Corby pull it out & I bought it right then & there. I had no intention of using it for this purse, but when I got home, it just screamed at me. In the center of the donut are these sequins that I bought last year in NYC when Cynthia & I went to celebrate her 50th.

I am going to do a fringing off the edgings with these tiger eye chips that I also bought at Byzantium. I usually don't use stone chips, but the colors just matched this whole palette so well. I even took everything to the Sun filled window to check it out. So after I finish the edging, I am going to start the fringing. One thing did go wrong when I was working on this purse. In Sherry's class she told everyone not to cut out the Lacy's Stiff Stuff but I think 75% of the students didn't hear that. I didn't think I'd have much shrinkage, but I did so I'm going to have to do a little tweaking here and there so as not to attract attention. I'm hoping to get the purse done by the end of the month so I can add it to my 12month Bead Journal Project. But if I don't, then I'll definitely will get it finished before the Bead Unique Retreat in Tahoe.

Back to writing THAT STORY! dot

Monday, August 17, 2009


I don't know if I've mentioned this too much, but I use to collect Scottie dog antiques. Our house USE to be filled from top to bottom. About 4 years ago, we decided to only display a small portion of our collection as we were getting into mixed media art & dolls and wanted to display our new finds. So most were packed up & put away. I figure that when we retire, I'll get them out & the pieces we don't want, we'll sell & travel on that money. SO...I really try not to buy any Scottie items anymore. Last week, Chris & I were at Macy's. He needed to get a battery for his watch. We usually don't go to Macy's once they bought our favorite store (Lazarus) here in Columbus, but there are times you just have to. Well, we were walking down the aisle when Chris stopped & pointed at something. I turned too one look & was in awe. Dooney & Burke is my favorite purse & there sitting on a display was a dozen different Scottie bags. I was shaking as they were so darn adorable. Chris asked if I was going to get one. I told him no I'm going to resist. We then went walking out into Polaris Mall to get some candles at Yankee Candle.

I admit it. I LOVE purses and/or bags. I have a closet full of them, and know that I really don't need anymore, but whenever I see any type of bag be it small treat bags or ginormous tote bag I just want them. Some women love shoes, I love bags.

Luckily Chris tolerates this, but every once and awhile he does have to put his foot down & remind me that I really don't need anymore bags...BUT...then there are times when he sees a bag & just knows I have to have it.ndle. He looks down at me & ask "are you still thinking about that purse?". Goodness crackers, but after 35 years he does know me so well, doesn't he? So back we went to Macy's. I'm "trying" on bags & then making him hold them up at a distance so I can judge which one I wanted. Women were walking by smiling & he said "I'm trying to talk her out of this". HAH! It is all his fault. I decided on the middle size but couldn't decide on the white with black Scotties, or red with black Scotties. Finally I picked out which one I wanted & went to purchase. He laughed & said he knew I was going to get it & didn't I want a wallet to go with it? NO! At least not as long as he was with me. LOL!. So here is my Dooney & Burke Scottie bag. It is adorable! And probably Christmas will be seeing a wallet under the tree that will match.

Speaking of purses. Two weekend ago, I & my friend Pam took Sherry Serafini's beaded purse class. Now, I know I do bead embroidery, but I've always wanted to take a class with Sherry after my other beadie friends have told me what a blast she was. We took the class at a shop here in Columbus for 1/4 the price of the small class she was teaching in Milwaukee. The classroom was packed. The bead store owner over sold the class & wanted to add 4 more people, but Sherry said 21 was enough. We barely had room to work it & I had to be careful not to nick my friend with my needle. It was hot, and Sherry could barely move around. Really uncomfortable situation...but after an hour, I didn't care. Sherry was everything I've heard plus more. Now to explain this purse I'm doing...I've gotten into using beanie babies for my art projects & this time I wasn't going to stop. So I used a beanie bear head that I needle sculpted & put on a brass volume control ring from an old Admiral television. There it was ready to be glued down. Everyone else had beautiful glass, stone, or fancy cabs for their focal point...I had a bear head. Sherry stopped, smiled & said that was the first time she'd seen one of those! Then to beading. Guys...I bead very fast & I never draw patterns, so when everyone else was still drawing patterns on their Lacy's Stiff Stuff...I was going hell bent for water. I actually got 1/4 done before the end of the two day class. Sherry was friend Pam told her I was called SpeedieBeadie. Am i ever. And though this is an awfully out of focus picture, here is the front of the purse. I had to throw away the other pictures I took as they would have made anyone sick to see them as they were blurry! So I promise, more better pictures. I'm going to let Chris take them.

One other things...Sherry & I were talking about the Bead Unique Lake Tahoe Retreat & how much fun we were going to have. I can't wait to spend more time with her in a relaxed atmosphere with drinks & beads & fun & laughter & friends. I told her we have a core group that had been to WhimBeads' Vegas Retreat & many of us were returning & planned to have one heck of a time. I know that Beki Haley is having a day count down! ME TOO!


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

More collaboration pieces off the work bench...our new piece called "HOW the chicken crossed the road". We are going to be sending this off with the Bra Dolls to San Diego for the show. I'll post more about that later as I'll have to pull out my back up disc (this computer is on the fritz & I'm afraid to leave too many application or pictures on the desktop or when it dies, I'll lose it all).

Chris came up with the idea when his friend Leo gave him the big radio tube. He sat with it for days looking at it & decided it would be a great rocket ship. At first he wanted me to bead a monkey for it, but nothing that I had looked good riding the rocket. Then I pulled out the rooster, held it up to Chris with a question in my eyes & he said "PERFECT". I spent the last week beading the rooster while Chris worked on getting the rocket ready. He was stumped on how to make the fire until I brought out a bag of silk Mums & a bottle of Fabritac. He went crazy. I'm still beading the rooster. He then found other tubes to make the rocket look more interesting, and found copper tape, and wire. I'm still beading the rooster. We used some beading fabric sold my Nicole & used that to make the fins. I found some star pearls I bought a long time ago at Byzantium & thought those perfect. Beaded the edging of the fins while I was still beading the rooster. Chris got the stand ready by cutting up a banana holder, and got the finished rocket situated. I finally finished beading the rooster last night. Hurrah! When I got up this afternoon, Chris had the rooster "on board". Got this pictures JUST NOW & here it is...HOW the Chicken Crossed the Road".


Saturday, August 1, 2009

July's BJP

OH NO...I'm a day late, but at least I got it done. I've got so many deadlines coming up for this month. I'm STILL working on the Land of ODDs "All dolled Up" competition. I'm in a stall space because I can't decide wether to put a butterfly on Rachel's foot or not & I can't share with anyone pictures or I violate the contest rules. So I'm putting it on, taking it off, putting it on, taking it off. I think I'm probably going to go with a naked foot & put the butterfly on the base of the piece. I've also got a lady bug to finish for the base. AND THEN THAT STORY! I wrote one draft of it, but it sounds too preachy about the environment. I can't write something sweet & sappy because my piece really is about the environment. I don't want to sound trite, but then I don't want to turn people off by getting on a soap box. I'll have to find a compromise, but I want to do it by the 15th & get the CD & photos out to LOD. Also, doing a piece with Chris to send to the San Diego Quilt/Doll making conference. I'm sending the two Bra Doll from Barb Keeling's challenge & probably Sprout will go too, but the piece we are making is going to be hilarious. I'm almost done with my part & Chris has his complete. Hopefully by next week we'll get pictures, post, and put it all in the mailbox to wing its way to Lois.

Now for July's BJP. Yes, it is a penguin. WHY? Well, it is official but this July 2009 was the coolest July on record here in Ohio. We didn't have one day where it got to 90 which at this time of they year is totally amazing. We bet the record for the coolest July set back in "1878". Yep...1878. It is in the high 50s at night & sometimes I wear a jacket to go to work. The dew in the morning is really heavy which reminds me more of September, and did I say we aren't using our A/C that much so the electric bill is going to be nice. Dogs love the cooler weather & are happy to stay outside & bark, bark, bark. So here's something to remind of the cool Summer. I did start this piece back in May when someone at work wanted me to do it for her daughter's graduation. I got 1/4 of it done & then she quit & I lost track of her. So I put it in the UFO basket. Then a couple weeks ago, I was looking for something to do for July & it was so cool that night that I wore woolen slippers to bed. So penguin came out & got finished.

I'm also sharing Gilbert. Gilbert is my consolation prize for letting Gertrude go for the Beading For a Cure charity. She won't be auctioned off until 2010. That was a hard piece to let go, but I made a commitment. I'm pretty good about doing as I say...most of the time. I had the left over beads, and a little beanie hippo, so I made Gilbert for me. Speaking of beaded Beanies, I'm going to be a moderator over at Beaded Art Dolls on Yahoo this Fall for the Beaded stuff animal challenge. Everyone is already talking about it as Mc Donald's is having mini beanie babies in their Happy Meals for two more weeks. I'm excited to see what people come up with. I actually have a few that asked me about a normal size Beanie! I told them that it is okay, but it is going to suck up lots of beads & time. Heck, I'm called SpeedieBeadie & I have to actually think if I'm crazy enough to do a full size beanie. Oh well...