Tuesday, December 30, 2008
On the cat intelligence scale Honey Boy is right up there at the top, maybe even above the top.
I know Honey Boy is smart because he can plan ahead.
Honey Boy and Casper are the two youngest cats Mom and Dad have. They are also the most playful. They like to chase each other around the house. Honey Boy will start chasing Casper in the kitchen. The chase proceeds into the living room where the roles reverse and Casper turns around and chases Honey Boy back into the kitchen. Sometimes, though, Honey Boy will start after Casper, but will briefly break off his chase to open a kitchen cabinet door, thus creating a "bolt hole" for the return trip when Casper chases Honey Boy from the living room to back to the kitchen. Honey Boy plans ahead. If my Dad is around he sometimes shuts the cabinet door before the chase gets back to the kitchen. Dad gets a kick out of the surprise on Honey Boy's face when he finds that the door isn't open.
Honey Boy is smart enough that he gets into more trouble than the other cats. I'm pretty sure he's the one who got himself briefly locked in the refrigerator one time. He's always thinking of something new to try. Mom says if there is a crash somewhere in the house she knows it is Honey Boy. I read a science fiction book one time where one of the cats had been altered so that it had opposable thumbs. The cat had a little tool belt and would use it to do things. I can see Honey Boy doing lots of things if he had opposable thumbs.
Mom has one of those talking scales for blind people. You touch it with your foot and it turns on and says "hello".... then "I'm ready." Then you step on and it reads out your weight, and says goodbye. If you step on it before it's ready, it doesn't work.
All the cats love the scale, especially Casper. In the middle of the night the cats will be amusing themselves with it. Mom can tell which cat it is by how much they weigh. I think we should write the manufacturer and tell them their scale is so easy to use, even the cats can operate it.
Here's Casper: (9.4 pounds)
Friday, December 19, 2008
Mom and Dad have a little mixed breed dog named Sadie. Dad found Sadie sitting beside the highway several years ago. She was waiting for the jerk, errgh...person, who dumped her to come back and pick her up.
Here she is. For some reason she's a little camera shy and won't look up at the camera.
Sadie is the smallest of my parents dogs. She is the smartest and the boss dog as well. She follows Mom around the house all day and keeps those other dogs in line.
Sadie has the natural ability to tell when Mom is going into a diabetic coma. She has barked her head off and awakened my Dad several times at night when Mom had a severe low (low blood sugar episode).
Mom has been legally blind for many years, but two years ago she lost all of her vision. Sadie, cunning little dog that she is, has figured out that Mom can't see. Mom and Dad will be eating at the kitchen table and Dad will get up and leave the table for a moment. Sadie will hop up on the table and start eating Mom's food right out of her plate. Mom's not real happy about this.
Mom and Dad lost one of their older dogs, Boogie, a few weeks ago. Sadie and Boogie had a regular begging routine at the table. Sadie got on Mom's right side and whined. Boogie got on Mom's left side and poked Mom's thigh with her nose. They had Mom well trained because she gave them treats when they did this.
Sadie still has a regular begging routine. She gets on Mom's right side and whines, and gets a treat. Then she goes to Mom's left side. She's a short stubbie little thing and can't reach Mom with her nose, so she pokes Mom's thigh with her foot. And she gets ANOTHER treat. It's a good thing she doesn't have opposable thumbs because she could really get into trouble then. Mom, of course, gets a kick out of Sadie impersonating Boogie.
Now if their cat Honey Boy had opposable thumbs he could get himself and all the rest of us into trouble. That's a story for a couple of days from now though.
(This is Casper with Sadie.)
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
pearl and hilltribe silver earrings
Monday, November 10, 2008
Archaeologists have found this gorgeous 2,000 year old earring in Jerusalim. Check out the short 3 image slideshow here for a pic that shows a model wearing the earring.
I could see something similar done in wire. Instead of the bead pattern around the large pearl, a ring could be wrapped in wire, or a twisted wire used.
Saturday, November 1, 2008
The prettiest part was the older section. I never did get out to take angel pictures because I didn't want to intrude on the the visitors. I did snap a few pictures of sections of the cemetery that didn't include visitors, but they don't show the scale of the beauty. Usually the cemeteries with the angel statues are older cemeteries, and there aren't a lot of graves with flowers. Here, almost every grave had flowers, and you can see in the second picture that there were decorations hung in the trees.
In our family we don't have the custom of visiting the graveyard. For one thing, no one is buried close by. They're mostly far away. We do have our backyard pet cemetery decorated somewhat with flowered garden stakes. I keep planting flowers and plants there, but they don't do well since there is too much shade.
To those deceased loved ones, both named and unnamed, and those dead, both known and unknown, we call your name, we remember you, and we pray that you cross the bridge to Heaven and walk the green hills of Summerland, now and forever.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Today I went through a lot of vintage and "junk" jewelry looking for items to use in the green line I'm developing. I came across a really unusual pair of earrings signed Vendome. I searched for similar earrings online and found this excellent video about historical costume designers. Enjoy!
Monday, October 13, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Also, I seem to be in the process of completely changing my jewelry style. The consequences of this is that right now almost nothing I do satisfies me. I feel rather like my brain is exploding with ideas. I have several pieces which I need to finish for this show that aren't finished yet. I keep harrying off on experimental projects which really need more work before I'm ready to sell them. I don't have nearly the amount of jewelry done that I usually have before a show.
Speaking of experimental projects here is a bangle bracelet that I've been working on. I bought soft copper 1/4 inch tubing at Lowe's. I was going to make copper beads. I went to Home Depot for a tube cutter and found a cool thingie to bend the copper tubing with. I'll post more on it the tool thingie later. The beads went right out of my head and I started playing with the tube bender. The bending worked pretty well, although I did learn a thing or two that will help me next time. This bracelet is the result. It's not finished yet. I am going to wrap wire around the ends of the copper tube, and rotate the copper wire leaf a quarter turn. Then I'll antique the silver and brush the copper to shine it up. Or maybe I'll just antique all of it with liver of sulfur.
One of the things I like about it is it fits on my forearm and stays there comfortably.
For way too long now I have been in the process of moving all my jewelry stuff from everywhere in the house to one room. Of course, I'm also still trying to get rid of the stuff in that one room so progress is slow. In the mean time, I CAN'T FIND ANYTHING. I'm stuck in that stage of organization where everything is completely disorganized.
Enough complaining! I'm going to go work on some jewelry.
Monday, September 29, 2008
Here is the link to part 2 and part 3.
Mr. Golden also has this video at Mind Bites in one part. The video quality is better. It's not free, but it is only one credit and part of the money goes to a selected charity. A single credit is only $1.99, less if you buy in bulk.
So many viewers of his videos had trouble finding the jewelry blanks that he is now selling them at his website, and in one of his Etsy stores, Golden Supply. While you're over on Etsy, check out his digital art here, and at this store, Mot and Dot, that he runs with his wife.
Sherri Haab has written a great book on creating resin jewelry.
I have this book and have been very pleased with it. Ms. Haab also has kits available for projects in her book.
Monday, September 22, 2008
photo by Erin
I just purchased two tutorials: Moana Hoop Earrings and Framed Cabochon Pendant from Earrings by Erin. These are great tutorials by Australian wire artist Erin.
The Moana Hoop Earrings features 32 color photos and 12 pages. You also get a video link with the tutorial showing how to do the Koru spiral motifs. I found the tutorial to be well illustrated and well written. The experience level on the Moana Hoop Earrings is listed as novice to intermediate.
The Framed Cabochon Pendant tutorial is listed as an advanced tutorial. This tutorial has 28 pages and 68 color photos. Like the earring tutorial, it has good photos and is well-written.
One of my favorite things about these tutorials is that they are designed for use with round wire. I know a lot of wire workers like square wire, but I prefer the more ethnic look of round wire.
Read an artist interview of Erin at For You Designs.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
I'm working on a couple of slide shows but so far the browser crashes every time I try to load it here, or else Blogger refuses to save it. I've been trying for three days. I'm going to post the slide show separately, if possible. We'll see.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Okay, maybe I'm stringing that turquoise a little intensely. In the next one though, I look like I'm torching that art clay with my eyeballs. It's not my most flattering picture. And yes, there is a flame on the torch, but no matter how I set up the shot the camera I had then wouldn't pick it up.
Be sure to check out Tammy's free projects at her blog. She also has some good articles about craft writing. I have a link to her latest book, Picture Youself Creating Metal Clay Jewelry, on the Amazon sidebar.
Monday, September 15, 2008
photo: Monica Magness
This week's tutorial review is something a little different. Instead of a wire project here is a tutorial on a fresh style of fabric bead. Most of the fabric beads I've seen involve rolling the fabric into a cylinder. Not this design! Instead, scrap fabric is turned into a round bead, embellished with seed beads. It's perfect for all those little fabric scraps left over after a project. I always think they are too pretty to throw away but I never know what to do with them. Aaack! Now I really do have to save them!
This bead design is easy to customize since you can add your choice of beads. I think you could also wrap some ribbon or yarn around the bead and stitch it on. And if you just have to have wire, a little colored art wire wrap would be pretty. You could wire the seed beads on instead of sewing them.
This beautiful design and tutorial comes from Monica Magness of Girl-Gone-Thread-Wild. Monica is active in the Pink Artist project. You can help out and enter the drawing by making a donation to benefit the Susan B. Komen for the cure Foundation.
Sunday, September 14, 2008
photos: New York Post
I looked at a video of Ralph Lauren's Spring 2009 Ready-to-Wear line. The designs are reminiscent of Indiana Jones, Bedouin fashion, and with some updated forties uniform suits thrown in. Very, very nice. The fabrics were shimmery and included sequins and beads. It made me want to get out my Folkwear patterns and play with fabric. That bag in the second picture above reminds me of the wonderful vintage Army Surplus store ammo bag that my cousin carries.
The accessories included tribal style jewelry, chandelier earrings, and lots of turbans, Indiana Jones hats and leather belts and leather and canvas bags. Ethnic style jewelry should be a good bet for next year, judging from these examples. Teal never seems to go out of style either; look at the gorgeous necklace set above.
Accessories photos: Harper's Bazaar
Saturday, September 13, 2008
The little red dot northeast of Dallas is Greenville.
We're just now starting to get some light rain and the winds have gone from nothing to crisp in the last few minutes as we start to feel the effects of Ike. Our major concern here will be power outages, and I have food planned around that, although if power stays out very long we'll need ice. That, and Buddy cat is not home. I'm a little worried about him. Lately he has been around sporadically and we suspect he has found someplace else to get food. I hope they let him in.
We don't usually have much wind damage in the immediate area of our house because we have woods to break the wind. As long as a tree doesn't fall on us we are okay.
The eye of the storm is around Huntsville, I believe, and it is still a category one storm. I think by the time it gets here it is supposed to be a tropical storm.
There's been a lot of comparison between this storm and the 1900 storm since both hit Galveston. The 1900 storm is the worst natural disaster to hit the U. S. and 6000 people were killed. Our family lost two young boys, 8 and 11, I believe. Family history has it that a many-time-great aunt got all her nephews and nieces in the upper story of their house. The storm surge carried water into the upper story and at one point a chest of drawers came through the window with a cat hanging on. They rescued the cat. The nieces and nephews were all safe. After the storm they moved from Galveston, and took the cat with them.
Friday, September 12, 2008
In fact, Cornell University is doing a population study of Ladybugs and has asked for the public's help.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Monday, September 8, 2008
Eni writes in her journal that "The site will be a community, sales venue and bank of knowledge all wrapped in one. It will have articles, tips, tutorials, Q&A section, member profile pages, student galleries and a lot more. The idea is to SHARE information on jewelry making -- not only wirework, but all artisan techniques -- and store it in more efficient ways than the traditional forums and newsgroups."
Sunday, September 7, 2008
I'll be helping out at my parent's while Dad has some minor surgery. I plan to take some supplies up there and get some jewelry done while I'm away.
Thursday, September 4, 2008
I joined Posh Mama a few weeks ago, and last week I won the Posh Mama Summer Gold Medal Award. It's on the sidebar.
Posh Mama is fun and interesting. Most of the social networks I belong to revolve around jewelry so this is different for me. I always find interesting articles on the front page and links to interesting Posh Mom's. Check it out.
Monday, September 1, 2008
Friday, August 29, 2008
I imagine it is going to be hard to find someone this time of year, especially since they are limited to a male teacher because the teacher must also coach boys. Right now the other coaches are doing the athletics class so I don't have to do that. That makes it easier because I have extra time to grade their papers, make copies, and all that other stuff. The kids in the classes are pretty good kids and the permanent teacher will be able to enjoy teaching them I think. If I stay there very long I'll miss them after the new teacher comes.
My son started tenth grade this year. He has chemistry for his science class, which I'm a little worried about. Luckily my husband knows chemistry so at least one of us will be able to help him. I'm going to have to work with him on his Spanish II. I'm not great with Spanish, but at least I've had some. If there was a skateboarding class we wouldn't have to worry, but alas...
Monday, August 25, 2008
Photo by Theresa Olin.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Monday, August 18, 2008
Beaducation currently has 10 free classes, 29 classes available for purchase, and 9 classes marked "coming soon."
The "for purchase" classes range in price from $12.00 to $38.00 with most being in the $38.00 range. I purchased the Mermaid Braid Bracelet class and have found it very complete and easy to follow.
The classes show a close over-the-shoulder view from the angle you would be working from. Classes never expire, so this means you can go back again and again and watch it as many times as you want to . Each class is divided into fairly short segments, so you can review just the ones you need. The Mermaid Braid Bracelet class is divided into ten segments:
- tools and materials
- step one: braiding with copper wire
- step two: braiding in lap
- step three: adding the cap
- step four: braiding with sterling wire
- step five: making the loops
- step six: shaping the bracelet and adding the clasp
- design ideas
- get to know your instructor
Purchased classes also include good "print yourself" instructions with pictures. There are no printed instructions on the free classes.
Techniques taught include chain mail, metalwork, mixed media, seed bead work, and wire work. At the time of this posting the mixed media classes are marked "coming soon." These include classes utilizing felt. All of the classes are graded according to skill level required.
Instructors include Lisa Niven Kelly, Barb Switzer, Laura McCabe, Dallas Lovett, Kate Richbourg, Lisa Claxton, Kriss Silva, Emily B. Miller, Mel McCabe, Colin Mahler, Gail Crossman Moore, and Iris Sandkülher. Quite an impressive list!
The shoppe also carries kits for many of the classes. Other supplies and tools are also available. They have a good selection of metal working tools, including some that I've not seen other places. You can buy stainless steel shot in convenient two pound bags, as well as metal punching pliers in two sizes, bracelet bending pliers, and their "fat daddy" cutting pliers for heavy gauge metal. They have a good selection of pattern stamps for metal, including some exclusive designs. Metal blanks in sterling, copper, and gold filled are available. One thing about their supplies, especially their metal stamps and cutters: they frequently sell out. If you don't want to be caught waiting until their next order arrives, buy quickly.
Friday, August 8, 2008
Pieces range from simplistic to complex, yet each will jump start you on your own projects. The book is divided into several sections. Each photo is numbered. Chapter 1, Beads and Baubles, is by far the largest section with items 1 through 313. Next up is Paper + Mixed Media with 314 through 440. Polymer + Precious Metal Clay follows with items 441 through 602. Chapter 4 covers Vintage and Repurposed items with numbers 603 through 749. Fibers + Fabric is next with items 750 through 864. Items 865 through 1000 are covered in Wire + Metal. The book concludes with a very short appendix of jewelry-making techniques (beginner level), an artist directory and index, and resources.
There is something for every skill level here. The type and style of jewelry is very broad, so if you've been doing only one type you can get inspiration on types and styles that you are unfamiliar with.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Monday, August 4, 2008
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Here's a necklace and earrings set that I made that will shortly go up in my Etsy store, Essential Adornment. It features large diamond shaped freshwater cultured pearls, sterling silver, and large Swarovski crystals. This is the only time I've found pearls this color blue. The color is gorgeous, plus there is enough iridescence that the pearls will go with more colors than blue. I'm really happy with the way it turned out.
This morning I was pleased to see my blog "Clip on a New Look" on Her Accessories.
Her Accessories is my favorite fashion blog and I've been following it for a long time. Gleaming Things is new, but I expect to be following it for a long time.
Check them out!
Monday, July 28, 2008
Friday, July 25, 2008
Unfortunately, Tutorial Monday may not be out until Tuesday due to our being gone and my medical checkup on Monday. So if it's not out Monday, look for it on Tuesday.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
And maybe a pack rat or lizard.