Saturday, September 28, 2013

CBC 2000 Giveaway

Recently a group I'm in on Facebook, the Creative Bead Chat held a giveaway for reaching 2000 likes.  There were about 40 different artists that donated prizes.  All you had to do was comment on the prize/prizes you liked and say how you would use the prize.  For example, would you wear it, give it away or create something awesome with it and if creating, what would you create with it.  There were some great prizes.  And Lo and Behold, I won a fabulous pair of earrings from Alicia Marinache.  Alicia hails from Burlington, ON Canada.  She loves working with silver and copper and semi-precious stones, bringing inspirations from nature into her art.  These are Etched Brass squares that have been patina'd and sealed, with glass lampwork beads attached to Sterling Silver findings.  Aren't these great?  They're even prettier in person.  It was so great of Alicia to donate these, along with all the other artists that donated wonderful prizes.  Alicia has a shop on Artfire, called All Pretty Things.  Why don't you jump over there after seeing what else I won and what the others won and who donated the prizes.

Also, because there was a small snafu with one of the other prizes that I though I had won, Melinda Orr generously offered to send me a prize package from her designs/stash. I love Melinda's work.  She has some of her designs HERE and more here in ORRTEC shop.  Melinda loves working with Metals and texturing and patina'ing them, plus leather.  Anyway, Melinda kindly sent me this great package with one of her new designs.  It's a piece of leather, wire-wrapped focal and copper wire.  I know what I want to do with it, just haven't gotten a chance to put it all together yet.  Plus I need a rivet/snap setting tool for the snap/clasp on the leather.
Be sure to check out all the other great artists and shops that won or donated prizes.  And if you really like making jewelry and networking with other artists, be sure to check out the Creative Bead Chat group.
To see some of my Wire-wrapped, Beaded Jewelry, Stained Glass, Mosaics or Fused Glass Kreationz for your home and garden, be sure to check out KayzKreationz.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Polymer Clay Wonky Bead Blog Hop Challenge

Recently Kristi Bowman-Gruel at DreamSome Designs issued a challenge for all artists using her new Polymer Clay Wonky Beads. I love them, they are so rustic and earthy looking and feeling to me. So I couldn't resist the call.  And as usual, I forgot to take a before picture of the beads I received.  When I got them I immediately knew I wanted to do something with macramé with the beads.  I recently started getting back into macramé. I used to do it back in the 70's when it was popular and have been falling in love with it all over again. I also knew I wanted to do something very rustic and earthy/country feeling.  I went back and forth between a bracelet or necklace. The necklace finally won out.  I finally found some hemp cord in the color I wanted while on our epic 1900 mile road trip, bringing our new Honda Goldwing back from Virginia. (But that's another post, and video of the Tail of the Dragon ride!) LOL  I also knew I wanted to use all the larger beads in the macramé part of the necklace and the smaller one as part of the clasp.  And since I love copper and felt it lent the right rustic feel to the piece I found a copper washer I had, hammered/textured it and used it as the other half of the clasp.  So the smaller bead is the toggle bar and the washer is the clasp.  I love the magenta, purple and brown of these beads, so I went with the natural hemp and the magenta hemp cord.  I also added some seed beads in the same colors to add a little bling.  Then I had to decide how to lengthen the necklace as I only wanted the macramé part for the beads.  I first braided this fluffy yarn I had to add to it, but didn't like the look with the macramé and earthy beads, so I had to come up with another idea. Since I was using the copper washer for the clasp, I thought I should use a copper chain.  But I couldn't find a chain I liked that I felt went along with the rustic look I wanted, so I decided to make my own.  I created these 'Figure 8' links, then hammered and textured them.  I also made my jump rings to attach each link.  I knew I would macramé the one end of the necklace back over itself from the end of one of the 'Figure 8' links.  But I had to figure out how to attach the small 'toggle bar bead' to the other end.  I finally decided to take some of the natural hemp, wrap it through the bead, back up over the end of one of the links and then wire-wrap it to the link with copper wire.  I really like the look, although I know some may feel it is too 'eclectic'.  But I think it all went together well.  Be sure to check out all the other 'hoppers' and see what they created with Kristi's Polymer Clay Wonky beads.  And please leave me a comment on what you like or don't like about my piece.  Thanks. This shows a close-up of the beads I was sent.

KayzKreationz Wonky Beads Necklace
Wonky Beads
Next is the bead I used as the clasp for the necklace.

KayzKreationz Wonky Beads Necklace
Wonky Bead clasp
Finally, here is the whole necklace with the Kristi's Wonky Beads, my Macramé and my Hammered Copper wire links and clasp.  Hope you like it.

KayzKreationz Wonky Beads Necklace
Wonky Beads Macramé Hammered Copper Necklace
And if you're looking for some of my other Wire-wrapped, beaded Jewelry or Stained Glass, Mosaic and Fused Glass pieces for your Home and Garden, check out my shop, KayzKreationz.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Goodbye Garfield

When our youngest son moved off to New York to do some volunteer work, we inherited his cat, Garfield.  He was a NEEDY cat.  Worse than a dog, but he was a lot of company.  He always wanted to curl up in your lap, between your feet or get right in your face.  He loved sitting on my husband's desk, draped across his arm or his laptop, so he couldn't work.  When we first got him, he was a little banshee.  He climbed the walls of the bathroom and you couldn't get near him.  But my son, Chris, kept working with him and taming him until he became our 'other' dog.  He was friends/enemies with my dog, Cheyenne.  He loved to slap her whenever she walked by him, of course, causing a ruckus.  Still, I think he really missed her when she died last winter.  He's always lost weight in the summer and always had a big pot belly.  But a couple of weeks ago, he just seemed different.  Then, last week when we got back from our motorcycle trip, he had really lost weight and just YOWLED at us all the time.  Finally, yesterday, we decided we needed to take him to the vet to see what was wrong.  He wasn't eating much, hardly drinking and didn't want any attention!  That was not normal for him.  Just a week or two ago, when we had gone walking, he couldn't stand being alone, so he followed us all up and down the road walking with us and meowing at us to slow down and let him catch up.  The vet informed us he had FIP,  Feline Infectious Peritonitus, which is untreatable and fatal.  There's not any pain with it, they just don't feel good, and their abdomen fills up with fluid, (hence the bigger than normal pot belly) and they don't feel like eating, drinking or moving.  We decided to bring him home for a little longer, as the vet didn't know how long he would last.  But we had to leave for a while last night and when we got home, it was apparent he wasn't going to last.  He hadn't moved, had thrown up on himself and didn't meow at us when we walked up on the porch or want to come in.  So we brought him inside for the night and hoped for the best.  This morning it was apparent he was ready to go.  He wouldn't get up, look at us, want attention, eat or drink.  So we mustered up our courage, wrapped him in a towel and I held him all the way into town, since he hated the cage.  It only took a few minutes to let him go.  We brought him back home and buried him out by his buddy/enemy Cheyenne under her little Redbud tree I've planted for her to give her shade.  They're right on the edge of the pasture and drive that they liked to go run and play in.  I'll miss them both.

Garfield in the grass