Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Fun with Bottle Caps: The Epic Conclusion?

...Or just the beginning?

After so much teasing and tantalizing, I figure it's time for me to actually write about my bottle cap endeavors. After all, it might be silly, but I'm excited about them and they make me happy... and I like sharing things that make me happy.

So, without further ado, here is what I made.

First up: magnets!

I think these are absolutely darling.

These were quite wonderfully simple to make...  Honestly, since the bottle caps are metal, it would have worked to just stick the magnets to the back and let the magnetism keep them in place.

I decided to add a little glue, just to give them some extra stick.

The backs!
...And, yes, these are Klutz branded bottle caps.
Perfect for prototypes. :)

The magnets from the front.

Artistic magnet shot.

Now, as I've been hinting, that is not all that I made.  

But, before I show you the rest of what I made, I would like to introduce you to my new friend:


Is a hole puncher. 

For metal. 

It was actually described specifically as being for bottle caps--and, whether or not they are the only tool for the job, they are simply perfect for what I wanted them for


(And, as a side-note, I should tell you that this is the first specialized, pricey tool I have purchased... and I love it. I now what to buy all sorts of fancy tools, and have decided that I will be replacing my multi-pack tools little by little as money allows... because now I know what I've been missing. And once you know, you can't go back. Heh.)


With this handy little contraption, I've made this:

Bottle cap necklace!

Close-up of said necklace.

And these:

Semi-matching earrings!
(Yes, one has copper and one has brass.)

Glamour shot!

...And then this:

Hairstick prototype...
Still need to work on what glue to use to make it
stable, but still cool!

The entire stick.

Stick close-up.

So, that is what I did with the Klutz bottle caps that I made.

But, is that the end?


I have purchased some blank-backed bottle caps (both silver and brass), and now have a few more curing...

Still working with the original resin, although I hope to try out
some different brands.

What will I think of next? ...I suppose only time will tell!

Hurray for bottle caps! 

...and hurray for having a place where I can share them! Thanks so much for stopping by! :)

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

All the Queen's Roses

Recently, I have not been as active on my store as I've wanted to be. I can blame lack of time, lack of inspiration, all sorts of things... But, I don't want to focus on that. 

Today, I want to focus on something that I did just post to my store.

...Or, should I say, somethings.

The Queen's Roses

Yes, indeed, there are five pairs of similarly-themed hairsticks, all using resin roses... 

Here are some close-ups:

If you're at all interested, the story and listings can be found on my Etsy store.

More than anything, I'm just happy that I can share them... They're up and listed and no longer staring at me in the pile of things-I-should-be-doing. After all, they're so pretty, they shouldn't just languish in my to-list pile!

So, yay!

Thank you for letting me share my victory. I'm really not sure why I've been in such a slump, but here's to hoping that I'm coming out of it. There is such joy to be found in shiny things, after all--and joy in creating, too. :)

Hope everyone is doing well!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Question: Do I Have an Obnoxiously Pink Necklace?

Answer: Now I do!!

One of the coolest things about making your own jewelry is the ability, at a moment's notice, to make accessories that match any outfit impeccably.

...And, yes, the outfit that matches these is fantastic.

Sorry for being scarce this week... Everything is well, just busy. And pleasantly busy, too--working on new projects, helping a friend get ready to go on vacation, failing miserably at my recent wire-wrapping endeavors (but, hey, at least I'm learning!). I'll try to be around a bit more in the coming weeks, though. After all, I have new bottle cap endeavors to share!

In the meantime, hope everyone is well! 

Happy Saturday!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Bead Hoarder's Blog Hop - Reveal!

Guess what time it is!

That's right... It's time for the Bead Hoarder Blog Hop reveal! Yay!

This blog hop is run by the fantastic Lori Anderson, of Bead Soup fame.  The idea behind the hop was to encourage people to use some of those "special" beads...  You know, the ones that have been amassed and squirreled away and deemed too precious to use.

...Until now!

Personally, I took it as an impetus to tackle my stash and bring some beauties to light. Specifically, for this hop, I tackled two different components.  And, in my regular modus operandi, for each component I have made a set: a necklace, a matching pair of earrings, and a hairstick. 

Apparently, that's just what I do.  *grin*

Set 1: Dinosaurs!

The Beads 

First up, are these darling little dinosaur beads.

Awww, look at the little apatosaurus!

Why I Was Holding Onto Them

I bought these beads back in 2009 on a trip to a lovely bead store called Beadazzled. Now, Beadazzled was the very first specialty bead store I had ever been to (I think I was in elementary school?), and so it's rather special.  It's also located in my hometown--where I don't live anymore--so visits are few and far between.

But, in 2009, I was in town visiting my parents for Christmas, and went there with my Mum. (I blogged about it here and here.) I had just started making jewelry again after a hiatus, so it was fun to gleefully flit about amongst all the shinies.

Me picking through the beads... Heaven!

Now, about the beads. They are hand-carved bone... and, as such, they were expensive.  

Yet, the price was not why I was holding onto them. Instead, I was holding onto them because they reminded me of a lovely time spent with my Mum, and I wanted to make something perfect with them.  

...And that fear of not being perfect made me just keep them in a cute little container, until a few weeks ago.

What I Made

So! Now with the back-story out of the way, here is what I actually made with those beads! I used some copper chain, czech glass beads, and some serpentine rounds (which I also purchased at the same time as the dinos). I actually re-did the necklace twice, because I didn't like how it originally turned out--but the end results make me happy.

The necklace:

The earrings:

The hairstick:

Everything together!


They aren't perfect (each piece has a little flaw that you can't see but I know they're there), but that hardly matters. It's happy that they are finally out of the box; I can wear my memories and smile.

After all, it's hard not to smile when looking at these little guys. :)

Set 2: Sand Dollars 

The Beads

The second component that I tackled weren't exactly beads, per se...  Instead, they were these beautiful and delicate sand dollars.

Yep, these are the real thing... So dainty and fragile!

Why I was holding onto them

These sand dollars were a gift from one of my sisters-in-law... She bought them while on her honeymoon (also, I believe, in 2009). 

Honestly, I just thought it was so sweet of her to think of me! I certainly wasn't expecting a present, and I thought it was really special.

It's a tree! Sure, it looks like just any old tree, but this was actually
taken when they were having their wedding photos done.
So, it's relevant! A relevant tree! :)

Again, I was holding onto them for sentimental reasons--I wanted the jewelry design to be "good enough" for something so thoughtful.  

(And, on a sidenote, I also admit to being a little scared of breaking them. They are so incredibly fragile, and I didn't want to mess them up!)

Again, I wanted it to be perfect. 

...Sensing a theme?

What I Made

Now, I should mention that I actually did break a sand dollar while doing this...  It just completely crumbled while I was working on the hairstick.  Sadness!

But, I realize that if I hadn't even tried, I would have never come up with these beautiful designs.  And--using dainty lightweight chain, purple frosted glass, and water-like clear glass--I think that these designs do justice to the sand dollars themselves.

The necklace:

The earrings:

The hairstick:

All together!

So, there you go! 

Those are the pieces that I made for this Bead Hoarders Blog Hop--six in total, and using two special components that are no longer in my stash! Hurray!

Final Thoughts...

I realized three things about myself while doing this. Granted, they were all things that I already knew, but they came into sharper focus.

1. I am more likely to hoard something based on sentimentality rather than price.

2. My perfectionism sometimes prevents me from trying.

3. ...I have a lot of beads.

And, because of all of those things, I'm going to try to do this again! There are more beads that I want to tackle and make into pretty things...  And I will be sure to post them here when I do!

And, since this is a blog hop, my post wouldn't be complete without this...  Feel free to visit all these lovely talented people, and see what they've made! 

The List of Participants!

1.  Lori Anderson, Pretty Things
2. Nancy Dale, NEDBeads
3. Roxanne Mendoza, Roxi Designs
4.  Melissa Trudinger, beadrecipes
5.  Rana Lea, Rana Lea Designs
6.  Perri Jackson, Shaktipaj Designs
7.  Rita Avila, Jewel School Friends
8.  Linda Anderson, From the Bead Board
10.  Erin Guest, Renlish

11.  Joan Williams, lilruby jewelry
12. Diane Hawkey, Diane Hawkey
13.  Jo-Ann Woolverton, It's a Beadiful Creation
14.  Sue Kennedy, SueBeads
15.  Lisa Cone, Inspired Adornments
16.  Kari Asbury, Hippie Chick Design
17.  Nichole Byers, Nichole Byers
18.  Lori Jean Poppe, Adventures in Creativity
19.  Linda Landig, Linda's Bead Blog and Meanderings
20.  Lori Schneider, Bead Addict

21.  Molly Alexander, Beautifully Broken Me
22. Cece Cormier, The Beading Yogini
23.  Niki Sayers, Silver Nik Nats
24.  Elsie Deliz-Fonseca, Eliz-Eliz and All That Craft
25.  Amber Dawn, Inventive Soul
26.  Heather Powers, Humblebeads
27.  Sarah Goode, Pookledo
28.  Monique Urquhart, A Half-Baked Notion
29.  JJ Jacobs, Coming Abstractions
30.  Cheri Reed, Creative Designs by Cheri

31.  Robyn, Museiddity
32.  Catherine King, Catherine's Musings
33.  Jacquie, Bead Gypsy
34.  Janet McDonald, Singing Woods
35. Kay Thomerson, Kayz Kreations
36.  Tanty Sri Hartanti, TJewellicious by Tanti
37.  Hannah Rosner, Good River Valley
38.  Rochelle Brisson, A Creative Chelle
39.  Nelly May, Smelly Nelly
40.  Skylar Bre'z, Brising Beads

41.  Beti Horvath, Stringing Fool
42.  Christie Murrow, Charis Designs
43.  Leanne Loftus, First Impression Design
44.  Valerie Norton, Hot Art
45.  Judy Riggs, Rigglettes
46.  Crystal Thain, Here Bead Dragons
47.  Terry Carter,  Tapping Flamingo
48.  Sue, Mid-Life Great Expectations
49.  Nan Smith, Wired Nan
50.  Miranda Ackerley, MirandAck Arts

51.  Marie Covert, Creating Interest
52.  D'Arsie Manzella, This Here Now, Mamacita
53.  Stephanie Haussler, Pixybug Designs
54.  Lori Bergmann, Lori Bergmann Design
55.  Johanna Nunez, The Lovely One Design
56.  Mary Govaars, MLH Jewelry Designs
57.  Becky Pancake, Becky Pancake Bead Designs
58.  Alicia Marinache, All the Pretty Things
59.  Debbie Rasmussen, A Little of This, A Little of That
60.  Nat, Grubbi Ceramics

61.  Marjorie Savill Linthwaite, Bennu Bird Rising
62.  Cheryl McCloud, One Thing Leads to Another
63.  Heather Otto, The Crafthopper
64.  Candida Castleberry, Spun Sugar Beadworks
65.  Tracie Dean, Dean Designs
66.  JuLee Wolfe, The Polymer Penguin
67.  Ginger Bishop, Lil Mummy Likes
68.  Karen Mitchell, Over the Moon Design
69.  Jeannie Dukic, Jeannie's Blog
70.  Dini Bruinsma, Angaza by Changes

71.  Birgitta Lejonklou, Create With Spirit
72.  Shalini Austin, Jewellery by Shalini
73.  Jayne Capps, Mama's Got to Doodle
74.  Ile Ruzza, Ilenia's Unique Beaded Jewelry
76.  Annita Wilson, AW Jewelry 
77.  Sherri Stokey, Knot Just Macrame
78.  Hannah Trost, PZ Designs
79.  Linda Inhelder, Must Haves Jewelry
80.  Miri Agassi, Beadwork

81.  Hope Smitherman, Crafty Hope
82.  Dyanne Cantrell, Dee-Liteful Jewelry Creations
83.  Susan Bowie, Susan Nelson Bowie
84.  Megan Milliken, MaeMaeMills
85.  Menka Gupta, Menka's Jewelry
86.  Ambra Gostoli, Chic and Frog
87.  Lori Lochner, Bloghner
88.  Gerda Jurimae, Gerda's Crafts Blog
89.  Susan, Mistheword
90.  MaryLou Holvenstot, MaryLou's time2cre8

91.  Mary Shannon Hicks, falling into the sky
92.  Karin King, The Sparklie Things Blog
93.  Christa Murphy, Adventures of One Beady Woman
94.  Jenny Davie-Reazor, Jenny Davies-Reazor
95.  Donetta Farrington, Simply Gorgeous
96.  Mallory Hoffman, Rosebud 101 - For the Love of Beads
97.  Danielle Kelley, Imbue the Muse
98.  Kym Hunter, Kym Hunter Designs
99.  Dolores Rami, CraftyD's Creations
100.  Marcia Dunne, 13 Alternatives

101.  Marlene Cupo, Amazing Designs
102.  Emma Todd, A Polymer Penchant
103.  Wendy Holder, Jewelry by WendyLea
104.  Michelle Escano, The Cabby Crafter
105.  Louise Glazier, Lily and Jasmine Treasures
106.  Dana Hickey, Wind Dancer Studios
107.  Lennis Carter, windbent
108.  Anne Betenson, Crystal River Beads
109.  Audrey Belanger,  Dreams of an Absolution
110.  Lisa Stukel, Carefree Jewelry by Lisa

111.  Janine Lucas, Travel Stories
112.  Claire Lockwood, Something to Do With Your Hands
113.  Kathy Engstrom, Catherine's Dreams
114.  Paula Hisel, Simply Beadiful
115.  Karla Morgan, Texas Pepper Jams
116.  Mischelle Fanucchi, Micheladas Musings
117.  Kim, Cianci Blue
118.  Linda Sadler, Ida Louise Jewelry
119.  Karen, Spokalulu
120.  Jennifer LaVite, Dry Gulch Bead and Jewelry

121.  Andrea Glick-Zenith, ZenithJade Creations
122.  Karen Martinez, Fairies Market
123.  Robin Reed, Artistry HCBD
124.  Amy Bright, LABweorc
125.  Jasvanti Patel, Jewels by Jasvanti
126.  Tammie Everly, TTE Designs
127.  Karin Slaton, Backstory Beads
128.  Natalie Moten, Running Out of Thread
129.  Sharyl McMillian-Nelson, Sharyl's Jewelry & Reflections
130.  Jenny Kyrlach, Wonder and Whimsy - You are here!

131.  LiliKrist, Handmade by LilK
132.  Jessica Klaaren, The Truth Space
133.  Cynthia Abner, Created Treasures
134.  Beth Emery, Stories by Indigo Heart
135.  Heather Davis, Blissful Garden Beads
136.  Jeanne, Gems by Jeanne Marie
137.  Sandi Volpe, Sandi Volpe
138.  Laren Dee Barton, Laren Dee Designs
139.  Steph, Confessions of a Bead Hoarder
140.  Carolyn Lawson, Carolyn's Creations

141.  B. R. Kuhlman, Mixed Mayhem
142.  Patty Miller, Cabari Beads
143.  Elizabeth Bunn, Elizabeth Beads
144.  Marianna Boylan, Pretty Shiny Things
145.  Lizzie Clarke, The Need to Bead
146.  Christina Miles, Wings 'n' Scales
147.  Patricia, The Color of Dreams
148.  Marde Lowe, Fancimar
149.  Ev Shelby, Raindrop Creations
150.  Sarah Small, By Salla

151.  Perri Jackson, Shaktipaj Designs
152.  Laurie Vyselaar, Lefthand Jewelry
153.  Pam Traub, Klassy Joolz
154.  Lisa Harrison, Daisy Meadow Studio
155.  Anzia Parks, Anzi-Panzi's Work Shoppe
156.  Ingrid, Lilisgems Handcrafted Jewelry Inspirations
157.  Andra Weber, Andra's Joyful Journey
158.  Kelly Hosford Patterson, The Traveling Side Show
159.  Adlinah Kamsir, Dreamstruck Designs
160.  Marci, That Nothing Be Wasted

161.  Kris Lanae Binsfield,  Cherish Designs
162.  Stephanie Perry, Mustard Bead
163.  Birgit Klughardt, Gites Beads
164.  Inge von Roos, Inge's Blog
165.  Rebecca Sirevaag, Becca's Place
166.  Sandy Markley, Gypsy Spirit Designs
167.  Elena Adams, Lena's Beady Blog

(You may notice that there are a few numbers missing from that list...  Some people, unfortunately, had life get in the way and respectfully asked to be removed. Best of luck to them and all that they are going through!)

And, phew, that really is the end! 

Here's an internet high-five for getting this far!

Thank you so, so much for stopping by, and I hope you have a wonderful day!  


Just to make sure that I'm not giving people the wrong impression, my Mum is very much alive and well!  

I just miss her, because we live in different states and I don't get to see her as much. But! We're visiting my parents again this Christmas... and there might be more Beadazzled in my future.  ;)