Monday, November 12, 2012

Charm Swap Reveal

Way back, when the temperatures were quite a bit warmer, Jen Cameron, Glass Addictions, put out a call for a fun charm swap. I love participating in swaps and a bonus! The swap is also going to benefit Beads of Courage, an organization providing support and strength for children with serious illnesses. The criteria was that we were to a charm for everyone in our group plus create an extra charm to be auctioned off for the Beads of Courage auctions. The theme is laughter, after all what better theme to benefit kids and what a joyous laughing.

There were a ton of ideas swimming around in my head for this theme. Then one day, while my toes were in the sand and I was relaxing in the sun listening to my children play in the surf, it hit me. There's one place where everyone laughs and has fun, kids and those of us that are young at heart...the beach! 

All the other ideas were swept to the back burner, and I decided to create a charm that is a sand pail and shovel. Gotta have a sand pail and definitely a shovel for the beach! I cut the pail from copper sheet and sawed out a starfish design, added a little brass shovel, and a sturdy silver handle. The pail is oxidized to make the starfish motif pop. Finally, a piece of sari silk is tied to the handle, simply to add some color. I was gently reminded that people don't tie ribbons to sand pails, but hey, I thought it was fun!

A super big thanks to Jen for coordinating this event!

Don't forget the auctions, it's for the kids...laughter is the best medicine!

Denielle Hagerman  

Jennifer Cameron

Natalie McKenna 

Robin Koza  


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Mismatch Earring Swap

Once again Diana at Suburban Girl Studio hosted an Art Bead Earring Swap but this time with a kick...mismatched. For the most part I'm a symmetrical kinda gal, so this one was a bit of a challenge for me. My partner was Eleanor, Corner Store Goddess Jewelry. I was happy to meet a new beady friend, one of the reasons I love doing swaps, and the other...the goods...

Wonderful lampwork beads in all kinds of shapes created by Linda Wloszczynski. I love the colors, perfect for fall.

Thank you Eleanor for a job well done!

Here's a sneak peak at what I sent Eleanor. Simple, but mismatched none the less, this was a huge leap for me, but I'm happy with what I created.

Thank you to the lovely Diana for another super, fun swap! And be sure to check out all the other participants to see their mismatched earrings.

Have a great day!

Friday, October 12, 2012

A Love Affair

As of late, I've been finding my happy place in metalwork...

I've not really done any new wire jewelry, I'm not giving it up, just infatuated with stones and metal right now.
These pretties are residing in my Etsy shop, looking for a loving home:)

Have a great weekend!


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

One Done, Add Three More

I'm drowning in my "to do" list. Everyday after running the kids to school and going to the gym (some things I just will not skip!) I'm methodically plucking away at my lengthy "to do" list and as far as I see it...there is no. end. in. sight! For every one thing that is accomplished there are at least three more that should/need to be added, not counting the everyday household chores...laundry, vacuuming, dinner, homework... But alas, some of the to do's require my being out in the shop. Thank goodness! There have been some special requests for clients, some done, some still in the works, shows to get ready for, a couple swaps, oh and Christmas is coming.

This bracelet and earring set were a client request, still working on the necklace.
Lampwork beads from Jackson River Glass

Love the colors in this bracelet! The coral colored lampwork beads I purchased from SueBeads at BeadFest. Oops, never showed my BeadFest stash.

Again, these cabs were acquired at BeadFest.
Cherry Creek Jasper Metalwork Stud Earrings

Lots more in the works. The previous bracelet and earrings are available but probably will not make it to my Etsy shop anytime soon, if ever.

So much to do, so little time! Gotta get back to work on "the list".


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Lest I Forget to Say Thank You

There are a lot times when I lean on my mom for help me set up or break down for a show, watch the kids so hubby and I can enjoy some time together, take care of all the pets (no small undertaking), and the list goes on and on...she's always ready to jump in. At times I forget how lucky I am to still have my parents and that they live close, but not too close.
Recently, I finally got around to one of my mom's requests, new earrings. It's the least I can do since she does so much for me and my family.

It can be easy to forget to say Thank You. These are just a small token of my appreciation.


Thursday, September 6, 2012

Still Adjusting

I still can't believe that summer is over:( The kids and I spent the last week of August enjoying the beach, the arcade, and the boardwalk. We ate it up! It wasn't busy at all, the week before Labor Day is always the best! Shhh!, Don't tell! I guess it's because those who haven't returned to school are busy preparing to return, and have gone home to do so. Then we made a 180 degree turn! School started on Wednesday, while I love the lazy days of summer, I prefer routine and structure with the weekends thrown in to mix it up. It's always a huge adjustment period and I'm thankful for us all that the first week of school is a short one! Shew!

When the opportunity has presented itself, I've been working in the studio and updating my Etsy shop. There are a couple new pieces
absolutely love this stone!

and I had to say good-bye to one of my favorite rings. I so, so bad wanted to keep this one! (but then I feel that way about quite a few, lol) But alas, it went in the shop and found a new home. A good thing, cause then I can purchase more stones and metal!! Woohoo!

While I try to list more jewelry in my Etsy shop, I'm also having a sale! Save 15% on any purchase in my shop by using coupon code: LETSGO.

Now that the kids are starting to get settled back into a routine, it's time for me to get back to mine! I have high hopes for next week!


Monday, August 20, 2012

Tidying up my Shop

The last couple of weeks have been a whirlwind! We were at our place in Pennsylvania for a week with my parents, going, going almost every day. Then, back just in time for me to head back to Pennsylvania for a quick one day trip to BeadFest. Now it's time to get my Etsy shop back in order. I'm setting a goal for myself and I'm telling you so that maybe I'll keep it! I'm going to list at least two new pieces a day until most, if not all, of my jewelry is in the shop. It's not a huge commitment but it's a start, right? And while on working on updating the shop I'll be having a sale...15% off any purchase in my Sundown Bead Designs Etsy shop, just use coupon code LETSGO.


Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Playing with Others

A few weeks ago fellow Etsian Susan from Jackson River Glass contacted me about a possible collaboration. She would send a couple boro glass cabochons for me to set. Of course I was super excited, as I'd never really done a collaboration before, and quickly agreed. She sent a wonderful array of cabs, a variety of colors in a range of sizes, small to biggerish. 

It took me a little bit to get started, as summer is in full swing and the hours seems to disappear from the days. But finally, here are some of the pieces I created with her cabochons.

It's hard to tell from the picture, but this cab is a swirl of navy blue and dark green. The green has little flecks that look like sparkles or star dust, not a lot just a hint. The cab looked like what I would imagine would be the view of a nebula, so I wanted to go all the way with a celestial inspired pendant. 

For forever, I've been wanting to make some stacking rings. So not time like the present with this little cab. It's only about 10mm, pretty amber and pinkish colors and I really like the look of the mixed metals.

And finally, this necklace was kept more simple, as I really like the colors in the cabochon and wanted to showcase the bead.

I'm looking forward to working with the cabs that are left but in the meantime, all these pieces are in my Etsy shop


Saturday, July 28, 2012

Soups On

Here we are once again, all gathered around taking peeks at each others soup for the 6th Bead Soup Blog Party. I was paired with the very talented Shannon LeVart, Missficklemedia, and she sent me a wonderful assortment of goodies. So without further ado...

I love just about anything that is related to the ocean or sea, so my heart skipped a beat when I saw this wonderful focal, a copper polymer clay starfish with green patina. Since blues, greens, and turquoise colors seem to be in the majority around here, it was a perfect fit! And, no need to hide the pretty patina of the verdigris toggle clasp in the back, so it took a front seat, right above the pendant. 


The fun ensued, lots of antiqued copper wirework links and connectors, a smattering of patina-ted beads beads from Shannon, a few lampwork beads, a sprinkle of turquoise, and a touch of ceramic discs by Marsha Neal Studio.

The necklace is just the right length to show off the pendant and the little dangles.

And then...while I stayed safe with the necklace, I went way out on a limb with this bangle. I decided to make a bangle with the large toggle clasp...minus the bar. Heavy gauge copper serves as the base with the beads and chain from my mix. The bases is partially wrapped with some sari silk that was actually the wrapping around my package.

I was so far out of my comfort zone with the bangle! So much so that I kept second guessing myself the whole time but decided to stay the course to see what transpired. And I'm so glad I did, it could us a little tweaking but overall I think it's pretty cool! Especially because I like to layer bracelets.

There are plenty of leftovers, I just couldn't bare to use all my prized ingredients ...that's the hoarder in me talking...

Slip on over and check out what Shannon created with what I sent. I'm anxious to see myself.

Be sure to check out all the participants for the first reveal of the 6th Bead Soup Blog Party. And a super, BIG Thank You to Lori Anderson for once again hosting such a great party!


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Up for the challenge

The Art Bead Scene challenge really spoke to me this month. Typically, I don't make the time or effort to participate but this months inspiration sparked my interest and I love the hues of blue.

"Two Acrobats with a dog" by Pablo Picasso, 1905

The painting sparked the nostalgia of my youth. Not that I ever recall seeing any acrobats, but that I, myself considered myself an acrobat. No, I didn't walk any tightropes but I did love gymnastics, still do, and climbed the walls...literally! 

For my piece, entitled Circus Life, I pulled all the elements from the painting that I love...the geometric, diamond pattern, a splash of rosy orange, sand, and lots of different colors from the blue family.
available in my Etsy shop

Lots of art beads at work here, lampwork beads by  Blue Seraphim, Happy Skull, Catherine Ondrey (who is no longer making lampwork beads), a ceramic bead by Spirited Earth, and I created the diamond clasp connector.

I'm thrilled with this piece, not to mention that it'll wear with lots in my wardrobe...or yours, and I'm totally digging the diamond connector.

Be sure to check out all the entries from this month's challenge on Flickr.

Also, this month ABS is encouraging subscribers to donate a blue bracelet to the 7000 Bracelets Project This program offers awareness and support for caregivers of children with rare genetic diseases.