Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Sakura time!

It's finally Sakura (cherry blossom) season!  I've been waiting weeks for the island's many bare trees to bloom.  The local festivals begun about 10 days ago and continue till mid-February.  So you'll probably be seeing more Sakura photos.  Until then I'm off to finish one of the many projects I have started.
All photo taken near the Yara castle ruins.

Saturday, January 28, 2012


This week I had a bit of catching up to do with my volunteer positions so by Friday I had earned some "me time."  After seeing several versions of crayon art on pinterest recently I thought I'd give it a try.  All you need is:
glue gun
drop cloth
painter's tape (optional)
I added painters tape to keep a section white to spell out the word I wanted which required an Xacto knife to shape the tape.  The next step is to hot glue the crayons in the order choosen.  Then prop the canvas up with the drop cloth extending around every edge at least 6 inches.  Finally turn the hairdryer to the hottest setting and have fun.
I chose to do mine so the drips would appear to flow up when hung.

Tips:  1. make sure to pull any tape off before the crayons have had a chance to fully dry
2. you can remove a little of the color from the letters with an Xacto knife if your tape didn't hold
3. add painter's tape to the edges or you'll have lots of crayon built up on the top & bottom

Monday, January 23, 2012

My first Beading Babes project

I've jumped in with both feet this year.  Not only have I registered for the Bead Soup Party, but I found Karyn's Beading Babes challenge, and thought I'd give it a shot.  Check out this challenge at Releases by Rufydoof.  So I sat down with the two patterns and start pulling beads. Of course, I was missing something no matter how I tried to combine my choices.

I have a time finding specific beads here.  So I've learned to be resourceful.  Yes I order online, but it takes weeks to months for anything to arrive.  (Remember I live on an island in the south Pacific.) When all my regular sources don't provide useful I give up on it.   That's what I did this time.  Seems not long after I let it go things often fall into place.  That's exactly what happened here.  A sidewalk vendor and a sewing shop were where the components for this project appeared to me.  Here's what I've done so far.

Forgive the poor photo.  It's been dreary for days here.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

paper beads

This weekend I sat down at my table and just didn't feel like beading.  So I attempted to make paper beads.  I learned no pattern works just as well as having a template, and some of the best beads come from what you cut off the pattern.  Biggest thing I've yet to learn-how to make two that look alike.  Even with two identical pieces for paper to start I've yet to create a pair.  Oh well still turned out great for a first attempt.  So cut yourself an elongated triangle, grab your Mod Podge, a paintbrush and a toothpick (or wooden skewer for larger beads) and try it.  HINT:  "Glue" as you wrap it around the toothpick, but be careful not to adhere it to the toothpick.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Smash it out!

Christmas gifts are great!  Among the fantastic pile of goodies I was given was a stamp set.  It my new go to when I'm too stressed out to focus on seed beading.  I went to Makeman (a Japanese version of Lowes) for washers to practice.  The Japanese do love their packaging.  Where else would your washer come in a bag like this.
Here's my first attempt, 
 and my first customer.  He paid me with a hug.
He wouldn't wait for me to go get jump rings so I made one with 
the aluminum wire I was using for my orchids. 
Since most of my orchid wires (the straight line behind the top spiral) are hard to cut and bend.  I've made my own fiddle heads that can be uncurled as needed.  

Can I just take a quick moment to pat myself on the back.  I have 3 orchids with bloom stalks right now.  I've never had one bloom again after the buds/flowers I bought it with were spent.  
Now I've got three.  Yeah me! 
I know the climate has a lot to do with it.  These orchids are outside even now. I love Oki.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Take a Walk

Today I took my camera on a path I've walked many times.  Here are a few things I saw.

No idea why blogger decided to space them oddly.  Can't seem to fix it.
Of course I had to look through the hole in that rock.

Here's what I saw.
Araha Beach
graffiti art
Sunset Beach

more graffiti art

I don't usually walk all the way to American Village, but today...

I decided to stop in Makeman (a DIY store) to buy some flowers

manhole cover

Twisted my ankle about two steps after this shot.  I'm fine. I just couldn't multitask well enough to walk/limp, carry my box of snapdragons and pansies & take pictures.  So...

The End

Bead Soup

First let me apologize for my absence.  I've been visiting other blogs, and got carried away exploring.  I started looking for inspiration and along the way found motivation, compassion, dedication, resilience and so much more.  There are so many amazing people to learn from in this world and blogs are one way some are sharing their talents with the the rest of us.
Speaking of amazing blogs Lori Anderson of Pretty Things is one of the reason I've finally decided to join the world of blogging.  I ran across her Bead Soup Party over a year ago.  I thought the idea was so clever.  I registered for Lori's Bead Soup Party this time and then found out almost 400 like minded people wanted to be challenged by being matched with a partner to swap beads with.  With 200 people being chosen I had a 50/50 shot.  Honestly I was completely on the fence about which way I wanted it to go for me.  I'm a beginner & my hop scotching from one jewelry making method to another makes me a master of noneBut I jumped and, I'm a in!  When I got the email I was so excited and nervous I felt like my skin couldn't hold in all the emotions.
Martina Nagele's beadwork
 My partner, Martina Nagele, is absolutely fantastic.  She lives in Germany and is an awe-inspiring seed beader.  She's even teaching at the Bead & Button show this year.  Yep, I'm intimated, but totally star struck as well.  Check out more of her wonderful work here.  If you'll be in Milwaukee, WI the first week of June you might want to sign up here for one of her classes at the show.

To quote one of my dear friends, "I'm totally jazzed right now!"