Saturday, December 27, 2014

Focus on Life • Week 52

It's the final week of "Focus on Life" the weekly photography challenge put on by Sally Russick!!  I kind of fell off these last few months with this challenge and blogging in general!  But with today being the last day I wanted to be sure to post!!

This week's prompt is "Gather".
Week 52:   Gather
 Gather your thoughts.  Gather up all your ideas.  Gather around the fire. Gather the words that have been missing.  Gather up courage to try something new in the coming year.  Gather together. Gather up love!

We had a wonderful gathering this week with my family and I didn't take any good pics of the group together.  But we had good food, played lots of games and had lots of laughs.  Here's a pic I snapped early in the morning while I was prepping food:

I can't believe this year is nearly over!!  Recently I have had little opportunity to blog, I've either been working, or beading up some holiday gifts.  Here's a sample of beadwork from the holiday season that was sent out as gifts!

I enjoyed participating in the Focus on Life photo challenge this year - even though I missed a few weeks along the way.  It was a fun and challenging challenge and it was great to meet other bloggers out there!!

Click on the links below to see the subject of other Focus on Life participants!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

I'm In Love....

...with Tulip beading needles and 8mm chatons.....among other things!

So it's been two weeks since my last blog entry, and a lot has happened.   I picked up this book by Sabine Lippert...

Excuse my French....but this book is bead weaving porn.   All the finished pieces look so yummy!  Just the right amount of sparkle, lots of gorgeous components, so much beautiful, original work!  The only bad part was that I didn't have the proper supplies to start any of the projects... So I promptly jumped on Fusion Beads to order a few chatons. rivolis, and coordinating bicones....and ahem...I got a little carried away.  I blame it on the book.

Since I was already getting a bunch of stuff...I finally took the plunge and ordered Tulip beading needles.  And, wow, am glad I did!!!   Holy sturdy beading needle - these little lovelies were everything I ever heard about them!  Slim in size, super strong.  Three projects later and my #12 needle is as straight as I started it with!

So while I waited for my crystals to arrive, I stumbled upon some patterns from Bead Origami's chemistry series of molecules!!!  Yowza!  When I saw the Serotonin and Dopamine Molecule pattern I knew I had to have it.  My stepdaughter is currently pursuing her PhD in neuroscience and I think this beaded serotonin molecule will be a great fit.

Cindy's instructions are positively amazing. Between the perfect illustrations and the well written, easy to understand text instruction, this pattern is so easy to follow.  It is labeled as intermediate, but I think any level beader would find this pattern a pleasure to work on. I can't wait to treat myself to more of Bead Origami's patterns!

When I finished my stepdaughter's necklace I launched right into another for my mom, who is a cell biologist!  So glad to have found this chemistry series for the science-y people on my gift list!
Still deciding if I want to add a chain to this or attach some dopamine molecules!!!!  These are too fun and I love that the only beads required are seed beads! 
In other beady news I am excited to announce that Bead-It-Forward will be at Bead Fest Philadelphia next year!!!  Bead Fest has graciously decided to partner with Bead-It-Forward so we can auction off the 2015 finished products!!

And speaking of Bead-It-Forward - I am running the animal pattern contest through December 15. For more information click here.  Check out the prize list too - it's growing and I am so grateful to everyone who has been so kind to donate:
Nancy Dale - NED Beads - pattern/tutorial
Kristen Stevens - KAS Beadwork - pattern/tutorial
Sandra Halpenny - book (Beading and Designing Bracelets)
Artbeads - prize package of beads, wire and more

I am also donating a pattern and including some beads and backing from my own stash! 

Looking forward to posting more soon with lots of new pieces made with 8mm chatons!