Monthly Archives: April 2013

Bead Soup Blog Party is here! The third reveal.

Kudos to my resilient partner and Bead Soup Blog Party hostess, Lori Anderson. I don’t know how she managed to survive organizing over 540 of us, with three different reveal dates, and a host of unanticipated medical issues. Lori, you’re seriously amazing!

The Bead Soup Blog Party (BSBP) happens only once a year. By signing up in January, all participants agreed to have Lori pair us with another jewelry designer; to have the partners exchange a quality package of beads; to make one or more pieces of jewelry with those beads adding in whatever we needed or wanted from our own stash; to use both the focal piece and the clasp we were sent; and to post our creations on the assigned reveal date.

Here are the beads I received from Lori at the end of February:
The whole idea of receiving beads chosen by someone else is to embrace the challenge. The selection I received from Lori was full of fun pieces. But I admit to being way out of my comfort zone as I pondered how I would be using them. The ceramic piece by Elaine Ray was very cool looking with beautiful shades of blue and purple, and very much bigger than what I am used to working with. (2 +3/8″ in diameter.) I didn’t even think about what I was going to do with the rest of the soup until I had a plan for that focal piece. No matter how hard I listened for it, it was not saying “necklace” to me.  Instead it said, “brooch!”
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The back story:
I’ve been experimenting a little with fold forming, so I knew I wanted to fold some silver sheet, enhance it, and find a way to attach it to the ceramic piece. I drilled three holes in the ceramic. (Yes, it made me very nervous! But I thought, “hey, I’m used to drilling rocks and glass, so I should be able to drill this too…”) I folded, hammered and stamped the silver piece. I soldered two lengths of 16 gauge wire to the back of the silver piece to use as rivets. Before riveting the piece on place, I punched 4 holes in it so I could attach 2 short strands of beads. A nod to necklace I didn’t make. I pushed the wires through the holes in the ceramic, and coiled them to finish the back of the rivet. I did not take the time to engineer a pin catch with rivets. (That would have been a great plan, and I wish I had done it.) Instead I had a plastic pin back, that I covered with the sari silk that was part of my soup. It’s held in place with a chemical bond. (That’s the fancy way of saying epoxy.) The last little bit on the back, that looks like a belly button, is a purple rubber washer with a bead inside. It covers the third hole I never used.
I wish these photos did a better job in showing the pretty periwinkle color of the glass beads that Lori made herself. I knew right away I wanted to use them with the dyed jade beads (center of necklace) she sent. The darker beads are actually patina-ted  copper in a purplish blue. The smaller light beads are amethyst. I was so sure I would be making an asymmetrical necklace with my soup. Surprise. I must have needed symmetry when I put this together!
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The  jade beads below really challenged me too. I liked the potential of the two holes, and had a lot of ideas for them, none of which panned out. I kept trying to mix the color with  complimentary colors, getting out the color wheel, trying all manner of combinations. I ended up having better luck bringing out their greener side. Even with the pearls and chain, the holes looked out of proportion with the finer wire until I added the green leather. I spent much more time with these than I thought I would, but I really enjoyed the challenge and the result.
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Lori’s own lampwork beads (above) and the silver shell beads from Bali (below) were my most favorite parts of the soup she sent. I love the ease and comfort of an elastic bracelet. I haven’t taken this one off since I made it. It looks great next to my watch and I get to admire the silver shells and smile whenever I check the time!  Thanks Lori. This bead soup party has been such a fun experience, and I learned a lot.
That’s my reveal, but there is SO much more to see. You simply must start with my partner, Lori Anderson, the Bead Soup hostess herself!  Then continue to hop through as many of the participants in the list below as you would like. Just click on the link next to their name.
Here’s the soup I sent to Lori:
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 Start hopping my little bunnies! Here’s the list:
Adlinah Kamsir
Agi Kiss
Alenka Obid
Alison Sachs
Amanda Tibbetts
Amy Sims
Ana Cravidao
Andra Marasteanu
Andria Poole
Angela Perkins
Anja Schultz
Ann Sherwood
Anna Nordeman
Annita Wilson
Arlene Dean
Astrid Boyce
Barb Fernald  (You’re here)
Betty James Hoppensteadt
Birgit Klughardt
Bonnie Coursolle
Brandy Thomason McNair
Brenda Sigafoos
Carmen Lau
Carol Wilson
Caroline Dewison
Cassie Donlen
Catharine Temaluru
Catherine Turrell
Cheri Reed
Cherrie Warzocha
Christa Murphy
Christina Hickman
Christina Stofmeel
Christine Hansen
Christine Stonefield
Cilla Watkins
Cindy Cima Edwards
Claire Lockwood
Colleen Vinthagen
Dagmar Liebisch
Dana Fowler
Danielle Kelley
Deb Fortin
Dee Elgie
Denise Milward
Diah Anggreni
Diana Gonzalez
Diane Valasek
Dita Basu
Donetta Farrington
Doris Stumpf
Elizabeth Bunn
Elizabeth Drake
Elizabeth Jones
Elizabeth Stolarczyk
Ema Kilroy
Erin Kenny
Evelyn Duberry
Fay Wolfenden
Francesca Watson
Gen Smith
Ginger Davis Allman
Giorgia Rossini
Hannah Annear
Heather Otto
Heidi Kingman
Ildiko JaraiInge von Roos
Iveth Caruso
Jackie Locantore
Jacqueline Keller
Jane Pranata Lim
Jennifer Davis
Jennifer Tough
Jenny Vidberg
Jessica Klaaren Http://
Joanna Matuszczyk
Joyce Becker
Judith Johnston
Judy Riley
JuLee Wolfe
June Butt
Karen Mitchell
Kari Asbury
Karin King
Karin von Hoeren
Karla Morgan
Kathrin Lembke
Kathy Stemke
Katja Benevol Gabrijelcic
Katy Heider
Kay Thomerson
Kelley Fogle
Keren Panthaki
Kimberly Idalski
Kirsi Loponen
Klaudia Tóth
Krista Quantrill
Kristina Hahn Eleniak
Kristina Johansson
Laney Mead
Lara Lutrick
Laura Guenther
Lauren Potts
Laurie Vyselaar
Leah Tees
Lena Adams
Lesley Watt
Leslie Wayment
Linda Kropp
Linda Newnham
Linda Younkman
Lisa Boucher
Lizzie Clarke
Lora Bright
Lorelle McIntyre
Lori Anderson
Lori Finney
Lucie Bouvier
Malin de Koning
Marina Dobrynina
Marina Kosovic
Marion Simmons
Marita Suominen
Marjolein Trewavas
Marsela Schroth
Martha Aleo
Mary Govaars
Mary K McGraw
Maybeline Tay
Mea-B. Uebler
Melissa Trudinger
Menka Gupta
Merja Sundström
Merja Syrjämäki
Michelle Buettner
Michelle Escano
Michelle Wigginton
Milla Hope
Miranda AckerelyMischelle FanucchiMowse Doyle www.mirandack.com
Mrs M Makes
Nan Smith
Natalie Davidson
Natalie Moten
Natascha Marty
Nikki Banham-Hall
Noemi Baena
Norma Turvey
Pam DeBoer
Pam Hurst
Patti Pruhs
Penny Houghton
Penny Mills
Rachel Van-Walsh
Rebecca Sirevaag
Regina Santerre
Regina Wood
Roberta Fauntroy
Rosanagh WatsonRose Johnson
Rosemary Cheslock
Rossana De Gaspari
Sabine Dittrich
Sam Waghorn
Sandi James
Sandra McGriff
Sandra Wollberg
Sandra Young
Shai Williams
Sharon Palac
Sierra Barrett
Silke Gröber
Siobhán Keogh
Stefanie Teufel
Stephanie Stamper
Sue Hamel
Sue Rennie
Susan Kennedy
Susan McClelland
Susanna Lehto
Suse Stelljes
Susie Hibdon
Suzann Sladcik Wilson
Tara Plote
Terri G.
Terry Carter
Terry Matuszyk
Theresa Frank
Tina Bosh
Tina Noonan
Toltec Jewels
Facebook Participants
Audrey Allen
Cindy Wimmer Muse
Cynthia O’Toole
Deb Floros
Debbie Jensen
Erin Honeycutt
Kaushambi Shah
Lisa Lloyd Harrison
Mary Jane Tanner
Valerie Tilghman


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Busy, busy, busy….

…how things have been lately. I’ve been putting quite a bit of time in my studio to get inventory ready for the summer season.



This includes lots of metal clay beads and earrings.



You might even say things have been going swimmingly!

St. Patrick's Day swim. Water temp 37º


Some of what I’ve been working on has to do with tomorrow’s big BEAD SOUP BLOG PARTY! Yes, Saturday is the day of the big third reveal, of which I am an eager participant. I can’t wait to see what everyone has made. Over 200 people were involved in this bead swap. That’s a lot of blog hopping to see everything, but I plan to see them all, even if it takes me all week.

TOMORROW, right here. I’ll be posting photos and a description of my process with the beads sent to me by my BSBP partner, Lori Anderson. I will also be posting the list of all the other participants with links to their blogs so you can hop as much as you like. See you in the a.m!


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Where have you (I) been?

I am way overdue for a blog update. Some of that has to do with the fact that I’ve been working and some to do with the fact that I was away for a week., just before Easter.

First stop on my trip was to see my friend Holly Kellogg in Connecticut. We had signed up for a 2 day class at the Silvermine Art Center. We’ve been great friends ever since meeting on the airport shuttle on the way to a PMC conference at Purdue in 2006. We like to take workshops together, as it gives us a chance to catch up and be creative at the same time. Here is how we look when considering what workshop to take next…..



This time it was a “Box pendant with Concrete” workshop taught by Robert Dancik. Quite a lot of fun and yes, you will be seeing some concrete in my future work. Not sure how soon, but the ideas are definitely percolating.

Here is Robert demonstrating how to do a heat patina on copper, and a few of his concrete pieces from class and from a show he had at Silvermine.  He’s an excellent teacher. (And thank god so is Holly. I came down with a stomach bug and couldn’t travel when I expected, so I missed the first day of class. Holly helped me catch up on the night before the second day.)

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With my creativity revved up, I said goodbye to Holly and headed to Rye to see my friend Susie. I was going to be at her house for Easter dinner and we had plans to make out own version of the Easter bonnet for all of the ladies; Easter “fascinators!”   This meant a trip to   A I Friedman for supplies like silk flowers, birds, floral tape and wire; and a quick stop at CVS for some headbands.

For all of the time we have spent together, Susie and I have never sat down to spend creative time on a project. We had a blast. I’m proud to say there is not one bit of hot glue on these wearables. They’re quite solidly wired together and wound with floral tape. Where appropriate, they are also sewn. IMGP4198




Here are the five finished fascinators. I wasn’t sure if everyone else would just think we were being dorky, but they all seemed to be happy to have something festive to wear for the party.

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We didn’t want the guys to feel left out, so we made boutonniers for them.



I think everyone looked great, even fascinating. A lot more happened on my trip but I’ll limit this blog to the creative part of my journey.


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