Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I Love a Color Challenge!!

Welcome to the reveal for the Treasures Found 2nd Annual Color Challenge and a special thanks to Erin for putting on this fun challenge and blog hop! 

Unfortunately I finished my piece yesterday and the rain was coming down hard all day. I had hoped when I got a glimpse of this little beauty that the sun might make an appearance:
Of course I am only sharing this fact because the lighting was HORRIBLE all day and I haven't quite mastered lighting a photo on a rainy day...in fact...I rely completely on sunny days!  (I guess if I continue to do so I should stop procrastinating!!)...so I am not particularly happy with how these pictures turned out....

Anyway!  I'm so glad I got to take part in this challenge.  I really do love a color challenge!  It is especially great when you are forced to put colors together you might not normally do so on your own.

As was the case with this challenge.  I was able to pick my 'main color', orange, but then Erin selected a  palette for me with orange as one of the colors.  The palette came from Design Seeds and my palette was called "Winged Tones":
  

I fell in love with my palette immediately and knew I needed the perfect focal for my challenge piece and so I was delighted to call upon my Bead Soup Blog Party partner, Alison of BeadsByEarthTones!  I showed her my palette and asked her to create a custom piece for me. 

Here's what she came up with!

If you haven't been over to Alison's Etsy shop, you should really check it out.  She makes beautiful polymer beads also - but I'm really in love with her Imprint Series!

So without further ado, here is what I did for the color challenge!!


I am excited to see a lot of familiar faces on the list of challenge participants and I can't wait to check out some new faces too! 




Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Cassowary

Happy Thanksgiving! 

I am getting my house and kitchen ready for tomorrow.  We'll have 8pp altogether which is totally do-able and should be lots of fun!

I was able to finish up one of my squares for the Bead It Forward quilt.
 We are lucky to live relatively close to the National Zoo, and I absolutely love the bird section of the zoo.  I especially love the cassowary exhibit.  I love their ancient look and their shimmery colors.  This was from a trip this past June:
 And here is the beaded up square:

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!


Saturday, November 19, 2011

Sneak Peek and more free patterns

I've been having some very busy work weeks lately...but I have managed to spend a bit of time beading!  I am almost finished with my second Beading Babes piece and am looking forward to seeing everyone's creations!  Here are some sneak peeks of my pieces so far:
I just love the way the St. Petersburg stitch feels when completed.  It's like fabric!


To my other Beading Babes...how are you liking this Earthly Tones piece?  I love the way the cubes come together in the tubular herringbone, but I have never done any weaving with size 6 beads and I'm finding it a little challenging!  I almost wish I had some yarn to weave them with!


I am starting to think about my piece for the 2nd Annual Challenge of Color blog hop.  My color palette by Design Seeds is "Winged Tones".
 
I absolutely love these colors and started selecting some beads to start my project.  To kick it up a notch, I've commissioned my Bead Soup Blog Party partner to create a focal piece for me!  I'm so excited! 


Here are some more bird patterns for any fellow weavers who are interested in creating a square for the Bead It Forward quilt project!  I am planning to conquer one this weekend!



Feel free to contact me if you need a larger resolution pic of the pattern or if you would like it in a pdf.  
Have a great weekend!




Saturday, November 12, 2011

Bead Swap!

Went to a local bead store today, Bead Soup, in Savage Mill for a bead swap!  I thought it would be easy to put together a bunch of beads to offer for trade, but the bag I took was rather small.  Truth is, I didn't really want to give up ANY of my beads!!!! Even still, I was able to make a few trades and I ended up with a nice little bunch of beads to take home.  And it was nice to meet a few other local beaders. 


I've been hankering for some donuts and one of the lovely ladies took a cloisonne off my hands for them.  

I started working on my Beading Babes piece, Sleek In Silver (though in this case it's Sleek in Purple, Pink and a little bit of silver), this morning.   It is true, that the pattern works up very quickly. 

I only had one mishap so far when one of my Tila's broke, and then proceeded to cut the working thread! Ugh! 
I don't have any briolettes for this project, however I found some top drilled beads that will do the trick.

And just in case you haven't had enough of my cute dogs (I'm so modest about my pups, huh!?) this is my new view from the bead table:

I am planning to finish my  "Sleek in Silver" piece tomorrow morning and then dive into the next piece, "Earthly Hues". 




Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Lost & Found

So the truth is....I lost my beading inspiration some weeks ago...to my defense it was probably around the time we had a death in the family and in the meanwhile I picked up two new work contracts...and my food & wine festival is less than 100 days away (pressure!)....and so on and so on and so on...

I tried a bunch of times to go up to the bead room....I would set up my computer to watch Hulu, and would put some beads on the table (my regular routine)....but then I would just stare at the beads, and really just watch tv...kind of pathetic actually!!  Then I got so irritated with myself that I just stopped going upstairs altogether. 

Two weekends ago I met up with my girlfriend down in Virginia.  We have an annual fall tradition of taking our kids to the pumpkin farm and goofing around for a day:



Bridget showed me a dress she would be wearing to a wedding the following weekend that looked very similar to this:

So when I got home that day I thought I could get my inspiration back by throwing some earrings together for her to go with her dress (I had grand plans for a bracelet too...).  

I figured I would make them on Monday, put them in the mail on Tuesday, and she'd have them by Wednesday.....plenty of time before she got on the plane on Friday...however I must have known better, which is why I never even mentioned it to her.  I started them on Tuesday....and finished them while the wedding was actually taking place....(these earrings take about 40 minutes total to create)  :( 

Again - pretty pathetic!!!
BUUUUUUUT - it did get a spark going for me.  although I was ready to call it quits in the bead room, I decided to push it a little more and forced myself to bead up one of the patterns I created.  


It's a tiny little piece - 1.5inchesx1.5inches....but I swore I wouldn't do anything else with my spare time until I finished the little guy....and you know what?!  Picking out the colors...seeing the pattern come to life....it really made the magic happen for me.  I found my inspiration again.   Thank you little blue jay!!!  Big things really DO come in small packages.

Now I feel refreshed and positively itching to get back into my beads!  Which is why I signed up for the color challenge over at Treasures Found.  (For this challenge, Erin assigns all the participants a color palette from Design Seeds)  And I'm dying to get started on my Beading Babes pieces.  Our group has two patterns to choose from this time around and I'm planning to do both!  
My inspiration has been lost and found many times over the last 17 years that I've been a 'beader'.  But it's been a few years since I've hit a slump like the past several weeks!  I am thrilled that the fire has been lit again. 

What do you do when you're in a creative slump?

Friday, November 4, 2011

Bead&Button Bead-It-Forward

So I haven't spent much time in my bead room lately...much to my chagrin.  I have enjoyed reading my new Beadwork and Bead&Button and I love the concept behind Bead & Button's Bead-It-Forward project...in which the founder: "corralled squares of beadwork from around the world and pieced them together to form bead quilts that were donated for" their annual [charity] auction.  


Since I've had a huge workload lately and been spending most of my time in front of the computer I decided to draft some bird patterns for this great bead-y cause.  I haven't worked any of them up yet, though I intend to try one or two of them this weekend.  But if anyone would like to work up a square, you are more than welcome to use one or some or all of the pattern's I've created!  The deadline for submission is March 12 and I hope to post several more bird patterns between now & then!







Happy Beading (and here's to hoping i get a few hours in the bead room this weekend!)

And in other news....my new puppy is doing great...and could he be any cuter!?!

...and if you are so inclined...and can spare 1 minute and 13 seconds...here is a video that (in my humble opinion) is pretty cute and funny!