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Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Celebrity Party Guest!

To see my Bead Soup, click here!

I have a lot of catching up to do, as the Bead Soup Reveal Day was the same day as my rescheduled birthday party (for those of you who aren't regular readers, it had to be postponed due to a tropical storm on Labor Day Weekend). I looked as much as I could during the day, and then as much as I was able to on Sunday (I was feeling a little rough). And I'm trying to get through 10 or 20 a night until I'm done.

But the most exciting thing happened at my party! My friend Bridget, who is in my etsy circle and who I have not seen in months, walked into the bar wearing a lovely party dress. I got up to hug her and better examine her dress when a very familiar sight caught my eye. Could it be? Was I really seeing what I was seeing? Was it Lorelei's "Soaring in Africa" necklace? In my presence? After it had been staring up at me for months from the cover of this summer's Stringing Magazine? You know, this one?

Sure enough, it was. Bridget had noticed it when I ♥'ed it on etsy and she just had to have it.

What a wonderful birthday surprise that was!!! I couldn't stop telling everyone all night, but I think I was the only one to truly get it. Though Bridget was happy to discover her necklace had been on a magazine :)

On another note, I don't participate in the I ♥ Macro thing everyone else does, but I wanted to share this photo I took the other day. This hole in the sidewalk is no bigger in diameter than a Sharpie, yet a little plant saw fit to grow there. How cute!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Soup du Jour (9-17-11)

Time for the Bead Soup Blog Party Reveal! If you've made it here, congratulations and thank you. Due to my not checking every link like Lori always says, the link to my blog on the list most people are posting takes you to my partner's blog. It's my own fault for not double checking. Oops!

To see what my partner Gretchen Nation sent me, click here. And make sure to check out what she made; I think she did a beautiful job.

I think I had the same problem as a lot of people -- I completely made and scrapped two previous versions of this necklace. I wanted to include at least a little of almost all of what she sent in one necklace, but it just looked too busy or tacky or incongruous. So ultimately, I made a typical me style necklace, just with different beads. I really don't know why I stopped there. I have so much more good stuff to play with. I just had it in my head that I was done, and now seeing everyone else's multiple pieces I feel a bit underachievy :(

The first thing I did was get the focal together. That never changed. I was so crazy about the two pearl stick pieces the way I had them stacked with the blue beads - it reminded me of a Japanese character. And in case you hadn't yet figured out that I have a bit of a Japan obsession, I do.

In fact, I expect this pattern to become a recurring theme in future jewelry. I love it. It's so simple, but it really appeals to me. Now I just have to get a ton of those pearl stick things.

After I came up with that, I knew it would be perfect above the long shell focal.

I wire wrapped it all together with my favorite antique silver colored 24g wire. Nice and messy wraps to go with the messy natural look of the pearls and the focal. 

I tried making a big fussy thing with tons of dangly bits -- it was way too crowded and looked forced. I tend to prefer more simple minimal designs. The focal needed to be the star of the show here, so I thought maybe I'd just hang it on the coordinating cream colored piece of silk she sent. That was boring. I wound up just picking a few of the beads she sent and went about wire wrapping them in a simple pattern and then added the clasp. The only thing of my own that I used is the wire and some jumprings. I'm quite pleased with the result even if it's not TOTALLY different. It's just a Heidi necklace, but with different beads than I would normally use. Until now, that is! I will be repeating that Japanese character thing.

See the link at very the top of my page to go to the complete list of BSBP participants! 

I will be donating this necklace to the Fur Ball - a big fundraising event in October to raise money for local animal rescue groups. They're having an auction, and I wanted to help out. I got my dog from an animal rescue group, and I know they need all the help they can get.

Happy Hopping!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Tea with Her Majesty

Well my first attempt at having a birthday weekend got Tropical Stormed out, but this past weekend I was able to make up for some of it. Sunday, I had my family party. My mom made my favorite --Veal Piccata and a delicious carrot cake. My 5 year old nephew helped me blow out the candles and there are photos, but they are as of yet not in my possession.

I do have plenty of photos from the English Tea Room, where some friends and I enjoyed High Tea. They brought out the Queen for a photo op. (And before anyone corrects me that pinkies out are uncouth, we were just being goofy and I am fully aware!) We had a really fun time and I left with 3 bags of tea -- Paris Black, Maple Cream, and Baroness Grey. Mmm...

The Queen and I.

 Teas and knees.

I don't think the Doctor is in here.

Also, on the day after my birthday, I received a very unexpected and wonderfully generous present in the mail! Rebecca Anderson sent me the lovely Moogin Poppy necklace of hers I'd been eyeing for months! I nearly fainted with joy when I opened the package. Thank you again Rebecca! I love it :)

I also went shopping and bought some fabulous shoes and I got my new drivers license (with a fairly decent picture, which is always a plus). And my mom introduced me to a young coworker who had seen my etsy and really liked my jewelry. She bought a few things, including some of the most favorited pieces I had on etsy: this necklace and this bracelet.

I will leave you with a necklace I made with one of the Golem Studio pendants I treated myself to for my birthday, and another necklace made with some beautiful deco bits from Heather's Big Box o' Vintage Treasures.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

For all the Owl Lovers out there.

Watch this video. It's hilarious!!!

Rotate your owl!

This is the most bizarre, yet enjoyable thing I've seen in a long time!!!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Lee Crashed My Party!

My birthday is next week. The one we all dread. The Big 4-0. So I knew I had to do something really special. After much deliberation and opinion gathering, I decided the easiest and most likely to be successful plan was to have an early evening until late night gathering at a centrally located bar -- tomorrow. There's this couple I'm friends with -- one works there, and the other insisted on cooking jambalaya for 50. Another friend was going to make my cake, Steve and I were going to pick up some finger sandwiches, and I was going to make my world famous guacamole and my new specialty, sun dried tomato & basil hummus. I was so very excited, I could hardly wait. And then that stupid Tropical Storm Lee developed and decided to rain on my parade. I awoke around 3 am to discover the power was off, and then an hour or so later, the first of three robo-calls announcing a tornado warning again woke me.

So after much deliberation and opinion gathering, I decided to cancel my party. I hope to reschedule it soon, but September is a very busy month, and it'd be a little anti-climactic to celebrate my birthday a month late. Things have kind of slowed down for now, but the storm isn't moving. It's just sitting there dropping rain all over the Gulf Coast. They promise much more over the next two days. Fortunately, I didn't get the finger sandwiches. But I did have 10 avocados ripening on the window sill. We polished off one batch of guacamole last night. Four more batches to go...

The silver lining, I guess, is that I got to finish up a few pieces of jewelry and even managed to photograph them in a brief sunny reprieve we had a couple of hours ago. Tonight, I'll be making a huge pot of Donald Link's Chicken & Rice with Mushrooms Soup. My mom gave everyone his cookbook a couple of Christmases ago, and I've made this soup quite a few times. It's easy and delicious, and will be the perfect antidote to all this howling wind and rain. I wonder if it pairs well with guacamole...

Thursday, September 1, 2011

I Feel Like a Star!

The delightful & talented Rebecca Anderson interviewed me for her blog! Thank you so much Rebecca! Go check it out, and if you're not already following her, please do so. She makes the most lovely jewelry.

And since nobody likes a blog without pictures, I'll show you just one of the beads I bought from Golem Studio's Big Summer Sale yesterday. I splurged, since it was such a great sale and I totally love Golem pendants and it's my birthday next week and I had to get myself something special, right?

Funny, none of the beads I got were the things I had initially been drooling over, but I am quite thrilled with what I chose. This one in particular reminds me of a dress my mom made for herself in the 70s that I always liked. She recently gave it to one of my nieces. I want to be selfish and keep this one for me. Sometimes, you just have to do that! I mean, it was my birthday present to myself.

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