Friday, November 21, 2008

Getting Sent To Time Out

Ron has a friend at work with a 20month old little boy that is learning about time outs. From the stories that Ron has told me, it is quite funny. He will hit his Mom and then say "hitting bad, I got to time out", then with a big smile on his face, he goes and sits himself in time out. He does it at his school too, hitting someone, laughing, and putting himself in time out. I am sure it isn't funny to his parents, but I found it cute when I imagined it in my head.

This morning, putting one's self in time out is resonating with me. I haven't been hitting anyone, but I think I need a time out. I don't know what it is... maybe it is the come down after all the show excitement of the past month... or maybe it is the lull before the holiday craziness that is going to ensue... or maybe it is the "family drama" I have going on in the background right now (that I don't blog about out of respect to my in-laws)... whatever it is, I am just not feeling like myself.

I am usually a very happy, bubbly, excited person. And right now, I am just plain down. So, this morning I decided to put myself in time out. When kids go to time out, they are supposed to think about what they did wrong. I am not going to be doing that, though. I am going to focus on reminding myself about the things I am doing right. I am going to take the next week off from blogging and take some time to get a little recentered. I am going to cherish my time with family... I am going to reflect on all the things I am so very thankful for... I want to slow down and get reconnected with my art... and hopefully, I will get that bit of rejuvenation I need to kick this funk and get back to being me.

I'll be back on Monday December 1st and feel free to send any emails you need to. I'll be here! And, in the meantime... A Very HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Website Stuff

Just a quick note to let you know I finally finished updating my website with new jewelry. You'll find goodies in the Necklace, Bracelet, and Pendant sections!!

That Was Fast

Tuesday it was a ball of yarn... today it is a mitten for my Dad. (Mom, make sure Dad doesn't see this!!) I am loving all the projects that are available on the knitting/crocheting website Ravelry. If your on it, friend me, and you can track all the projects I am working on that I won't be showing here, lol. This mit was made with a pattern by Kate Gilbert (I actually went to high school with her). This pattern, Gifted, was so easy to do, and I need easy!! I remember that when we were growing up, my Grandma Kester would knit mittens for everyone. My Mom would give her a couple of balls of Red Heart yarn from Walmart and a few days later we would have new mittens. My kids wear some of the ones I used to wear!! Now that I am a grown up crafter, I know about "good yarn" and "bad yarn", so no more Red Heart mittens... these were made with Reynolds Smile yarn. I just happened to pick out my Dad's favorite colors... green and yellow. I can't wait to give these to him. He'll be packing snowballs to throw at my boys in no time.

Another finished project is a special Christmas gift for my god son, Ben. He is getting so big!! And he already has a new sibling on the way. I wanted to make him something he could grow into and then have it be passed on to his little brother or little sister. Is this or is this not a "Kab's Kid Sweater"?!?! Bright turquoise and stripes in royal blue. I know I have made these beads before. LOL. This is my first baby sweater ever. And I learned a ton. The pattern was from Knot Another Hat and it is by Gardiner Yarn Works. The yarn for this is Heirloom and its cotton (if I remember right).

Next up... leg warmers for Lauren.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Two Cup Of Coffee Day

aka A Boring Blog Post...

Today is one of those days where I really shouldn't blog, lol. Life is boring and I don't have anything witty or clever to say. I don't have jewelry share or a cool idea to tell you about. I am just plain tired.

Lauren has been sick the past few days which is making for very little sleep. I am painting away at my FIFTEEN cabinet doors in the kitchen, of which nine are done. I have a pile of laundry up to my hip bone. Oh, and that list of projects I told ya about yesterday. We have a bunch of snow too.

See... nothing much to talk about.

I think its time for another cup of coffee and/or a nap on the couch. Don't you think that's a good idea?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Commence The Christmas Crafting

I told myself that I wasn't going to do anything related to Christmas until after Thanksgiving. Last year I think I started to early and used up all my Christmas spirit. By the time the big day rolled around I had already overdosed on the holidays and wasn't in the mood. But that is no way to spend what should be a such a magical time of year.

So, I told myself I would wait.

But I can't.

I have a rather ambitious (for me) list of handmade goodies I want to make for each member of my family. I haven't officially taken "The Handmade Challenge", because there are too many things I'll end up buying at Target, lol. But, everyone gets something handmade with love from me. If I am going to make things... I need to get started if I want it all done in time. So, I am braking my pack with myself and I got started on my list.

My list has all the projects for each person listed and narrowed down to just the right project for them . This afternoon I went for an outing with my good friend Lindsey to the local yarn store. I am fully loaded with all the yummy yarn I need to get the jobs done. I'll share a few here along the way. Unfortunately, I come from a long line of present snoops and I know my Mom and sister wouldn't be able to NOT look here to see what I am making. LOL.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Moving Right Along

Weekend? What weekend? I didn't know it was the weekend?

Dang, what a whirl wind of a couple of days that just was!! Most of the past 48 hours has been spent in the kitchen. It started around 10am on Saturday, and finished about 10pm on Sunday. Ugh. Can anyone say "nap time"? Before all that though, Jacob had 6 football playing best friends over for a birthday party on Friday night. To say 7 boys (ages 11 & 12) in one place is chaotic, is putting it very very lightly. HA! They are so much more then chaotic. Jacob has a big divot in the top of his nose, one left a sweatshirt outside in one of the gardens, and one left with a very torn shirt. LOL, oh well, it was all in good fun.

But back to the kitchen.

Kitchen Before (on Saturday)

Yucky Yellow Formica Counters Close Up

I had a plan of attack in my head going into it. Little mini goals to get the bigger goals done. The big goal: the counter tops in and the new sink hooked up. So, on Saturday, I went to Lowes and bought all the materials. (3 pieces of counter top, miter corner kit, end caps, electrical supplies, and a new sink cost $494) We started small and installed the short 4 foot area of counter to the left of the stove. Then we had to move some light switches near the sink. That was done in plenty of time for an early bedtime Saturday night. LOL.

Sunday was the rougher of the two days, for sure. My Dad came over to help. It was a pain in the butt to get that big run of counters out. The sink side is just about 11 feet long and the side near the stove is about 7 feet. We pulled out the old sink, then had to saw the counter in half to get it out. Even with a gigantic crowbar, it wasn't budging. OH, and when we took the sink out, we got an estimated date of the last remodel. The date on the bottom of the sink was 9/30/69. My Dad says that would have been when the sink was made, so the remodel was probably in 1970.

Rusty was so helpful. Ron couldn't have installed the sink without him.

The sink was the worse part of the whole project, but worth it. The old porcelain lined cast iron was always stained (unless I had bleached it the day before), anytime the kids dropped something glass in the sink it broke (at least 3 glasses since and one bowl since moving in), and the bowls were really kinda small for how big the sink was. Getting the size of the whole just right was really the problem. You are supposed to leave a 1/4in lip for the sink to set on, but there is about 3 inches of wiggle room on the underside of the sink, and I thought that you could make the lip bigger, but I was wrong. It to HOURS to get it in.

We went from this...

... to this. (yes, I have a park bench in my living room)

There is still a lot to do. But the worst of it is finished. I am going to work on painting the base cabinets this week. And if I stay on track, I will be doing the tiled back splash by the weekend. Oh, and I should tell you... the colors really aren't working out as I had hoped. Since we went with a pre-made counter top instead of a custom one (and saved about $2000), I didn't get the chocolate brown color I wanted. I had to go with this more gray/brown color. So, I probably won't do the seafoam blue tiles I was thinking I would use. Now, the plan is for simpler bisque tiles in a running bond pattern, and maybe an accent tile in a blue-ish color.

The Kitchen Now (or Sunday Night)

With all the weekend happens, I didn't get to finish updating my website with new jewelry. I am going to work on that more today. Be sure to check things out!!

Friday, November 14, 2008

A Tale Of Two Kitties

LOL, it is a sad day in Kerry Blogland when all she has to blog about is kittens, but hey, that's what is going on in my life right now. It is 6:30am, I am up way before I should be and the coffee still needs making. But, I am feeling chatty anyway. So, forgive me my rambling. You can skip reading today if you aren't up for it.

You might remember earlier this summer the addition of a little kitten to our family, Miss Sally Seashell. Sally and me, we never bonded. She was loud and fussy, prissy and uptight, and was more interested in playing then forming a loving connection with anyone. I am not a pure preed cat kind of person anyway. I like my side of the road "free kittens" much better. Besides, I had my lovely Bity Kity and no little Sally Seashell would get in the way of our love.

Bity Kity was an indoor/outdoor cat at our old house. We lived in the country so that was okay. But here has more traffic, and more wild life... so we attempted to make her an indoor only cat. It lasted the first month we were here. Then Ron couldn't take the digging up of plants and using random areas of carpet as liter boxes any more. He convinced me to let her outside. We started slow, just letting her on the deck, but with in a week she was all over the backyard. September 12th was the last time we saw her. We looked all over!! We put an ad on Craigs List... we drove up and down the street looking for signs she had been hit. We looked in the woods. Nothing. I didn't put up signs, because I figured, I don't pay attention to those signs, why would someone else? Someone called on our Craigs List ad saying they saw her just 2 streets away. I went to that street 3-4 times a day for a week and never saw her. I cried every morning missing her. Bity Kity was the first cat I had since having to give up Rudy, a cat I had for 13 years that started peeing in Jacob's crib as an infant. I miss both of them terribly.

Last week, my Mom took a visit out to visit friends in an area where Ron and I had our first apartment. Under the porch of our friend's house, Mom found a mommy cat and babies. Upon further inspection we think this mommy is on her third litter of kittens in about 6 months. Of course, Mom wanted me to have one. These were feral kittens, but a few had been held and handled since birth so they were tame and loving. I told my Mom a very firm no... and that I wasn't ready to replace Bity Kity yet.

Yesterday, I am getting ready to paint another coat of paint on the cabinets when I notice my Mom's car in the driveway. What is she doing here? I thought. She was caring a box too. Oh, she must be bringing Lauren something. I thought. NOPE... in the box was two dirty, muddy, under the porch living, white as snow, heart breaking boy kittens. I was instantly smitten. We bathed them, and snuggled them... cleaned their ears and played with them. The smaller of the two told me his name was Charlie. He was Charlie the minute my Mom opened the box. He was spunky and curious... playful and likes to perch on your shoulder. Now, the bigger boy on the other hand... he's a thinker... quiet and reserved... a lovey dovey white ball of mush. All the while we cleaned them up, I told my Mom we couldn't keep them... Ron would never go for it. She said she was just happy to have rescued them. She didn't want them living in the mud and cold under a porch. She said she would take them to the humane society. YEAH RIGHT! She just walked out the door and left them to run away with my heart.

I called her and had her come back and get them. Lauren and I both were sobbing messes. I called Ron through my blubbering and he said I could have one. ONE! I had my Mom bring them back, yeah both of them. My heart was made up on who I wanted but I had a little hope that seeing them together would soften Ron up. Nope. He stuck with saying just one. I have to give Ron some credit. He isn't a pet person at all. The fact that he said yes to one without me needing to just do it without his consent is a huge step.

So we kept this little guy. The bigger boy. The fluff boy. The snugly boy. Jacob wants to name him Tiberius, Ron likes the name Troy, Andrew likes Jack and Me and Lauren like the name Rusty. Why Rusty you ask? Because he has this little spot of orange on the top of his head. You can barely see it, but it is there. Just a little bit of rust on his snowball body, lol.

Yes, he slept in our bed last night. Surprisingly, it was Ron and was snuggling and spooning him!! LOL. He stays close to me. He is never far from my ankles. He is already liter trained! And, he literally hasn't stopped purrrrring since he walked in the door yesterday. I think he is as thankful for being rescued from the muck as we are to have him here.

Charlie found a very fast home on Craigs List. He is in the hands of a cute young couple that she always wanted an all white cat... and he always wanted a boy. I heard them giggling as they walked to the car and she was saying "I am so excited... he is so adorable." And their was a skip in her step. We are still hopeful that Bity Kity will come back too. Lauren says she is gone on an adventure, Milo and Otis style.

Okay... so that is my Thursday and Friday... what is up with you?

Jack Tiberius Rusty Troy Bogert

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Heads UP!

I have started posting new pieces to my website!! YOO HOO!! No longer will you be plagued by countless *SOLD* items. LOL. I am starting with necklaces... then I'll work on bracelets. I am warning you... I don't have much. So if ya want it, you better get it!

More pieces coming Thrusday and Friday too!

The Big Kitchen Remodel Of 2008

I told you a few weeks ago that this was coming. I told you that in the couple of weeks between the art show and Thanksgiving, the kitchen was getting a face lift. You can see the first step in the project HERE. Yesterday, I started on the second step... the upper cabinets!

My before shots really leave something to be desired, I know, but you'll get the gist. The cabinets aren't as dark as they look in this photo. They are a light wood. We aren't sure what the cabinets are made of... maple? birch? Whatever it is, it's blond wood. Ron really wanted to rip all the cabinets out, but these cabinets are the good kind. Made in the days when craftsmanship was a point of pride... not a price point like in the big home improvement stores. These aren't going anywhere! The drawers are deep and slide so nice. The cabinet doors swing so wide, you have to step out of the way to open them! At one point, the kitchen still had the original extra wide stove. But I hear from the neighbor that someone got it in a divorce, lol. We'll be taking care of that extra space on each side of the stove. Goodness, those gabs catch a lot of crud.

It is hard to get a good shot of the kitchen in one frame. My kitchen sink looks into the family room, where the toasty warm wood burner is. See that shiny silver edging to the oh so lovely yellow formica counter tops? See why I wanted to do the remodel?

So, yesterday, all the upper cabinet doors came off, and the bases were primed. I'll be painting the first coat of "Linen White" on those bases in little bit. I know what you are thinking... Kerry? Painting white? Are you feeling okay? Well, linen white is a pale, slightly yellowed white that is very creamy. It is just enough yellow to balance the brown counter tops and blue walls and teal tiles. You'll see... it'll all come together.

The cabinet door face lift was Ron's idea. He saw an advertisement that came in the mail showing cabinet doors that had this little rails of trim on them. He thought it would doll up the doors and make them look a little newer. So far, having only 4 clamps in the house, this has been a pain in the butt. But, I am going to pick up more clamps today. Hopefully it'll speed things up.

Okay... the rough schedule for the next couple of weeks... Upper cabinets finished by Friday... Saturday and Sunday, replace the counter tops and put in new sink... next week, finish the lower cabinets and paint the walls... next weekend, tile the back splash. Here's hoping we can stick to my plan!

Monday, November 10, 2008

More Reasons To Celebrate

As if having a successful art show and being on the cover of the paper wasn't enough reason to celebrate... we have a birthday in the house today!! My Jacob (aka Bee-Bop to Lauren) is ELEVEN today!! WOW, how can it be?!? It was so funny, Jacob was asking me this morning as I was making his specially requested pancakes, "What were you doing right now when I was born?" I told him that at 7:15am I was getting ready to go into the doctor's office because I had been up all night with severe back pain. I told him, I didn't go to the hospital until around 2pm. Lauren asked "but Momma, who is gonna take care of use when you are at the hospital?" LOL.

And now... the official recap of the show! (with a couple photos)I'll say off the bat that I am pretty tired, and it is a Monday morning, and I am pretty tired... so if I repeat myself or lose my train of thought or go off on tangents and forget what I was going to say, you'll just have to forgive me.

As you know, I set up Friday afternoon. The staff at the museum was AWESOME! They unloaded my van for me and had all my "stuff" to my spot in about 10mins. It took me about an hour and a half to set up the tables and arrange all the display stuff. Not bad for working by myself. (everyone was working so no assistants, aka my sister, was available to help for set up) I decided to go without the white swirly fabric table clothes on top of the black ones. It was distracting. I will still use it for outdoor shows, but for here, it wasn't the right fit. The displays really worked great!! I loved being in front of the window, the view and natural light was wonderful.

Friday night was the preview party. This was the view from my spot! Those paper lanterns were highlighting the silent auction that benefits the museum. In the center "pavilion" area were 4/5 other vendors. The main ballroom was up the stairs that were near that last big pillar. This is when we figured out that the traffic really wasn't going to naturally flow our way. People would come in the front door, wonder around the center pavilion, then head up the stairs... not knowing anyone was in the back corner. The museum put volunteers at that last big pillar to start directing people our way by Sunday morning, so that was nice.

Oh, those half mans on the floor? Yeah, those are from my booth neighbor. She was still setting up at 8:00pm when that preview party started at 7:00pm.

First thing Saturday morning, Bonnie and I did end up doing a quick booth rearrange. Actually, it was more of a maneuver then a rearrange. We pulled the tables back about two feet and lost about two feet of table space and our way in and out of the booth. If you look at the tiles on the floor, you see where the neighbor's tent leg is? Well, there was only one tile worth of a walk way before moving my tables. But hey, at least the trees were fake, so we didn't kill them when we smashed ourselves against them to get from behind the booth. (insert eye rolling here)

One of the highlights of the weekend was the dinner party we were treated to after the close of the show on Saturday. The homes of 5 or 6 of the Gallery Council member's homes were opened to vendors for dinner. We were invited to the home of Teddy Carr and her significant other, Mark. The other artists there were Nancy & Alex Solla of Cold Springs Pottery, jewelry artist Nancy Valle, and you aren't gonna believe this... the teapot guy, Eric Serritella! Eric and I talked about the Rochester Magazine article and had quite a laugh. He had wondered "who the heck is this?" when reading the weird quote they had from me. He was really down to earth, and it was great! There were two other artists there as well, but I am terrible with names. Sorry other mystery guests! Dinner was fantastic, the best roasted salmon I have ever tasted. And the conversation was even better. It was great to be at a proper dinner party. Ten guests gathered around a beautifully set table with gorgeous artwork on the walls and great talks over wine. Makes me wanna get myself invited to more of those!! LOL! Anyone having a dinner party soon?!?

I don't have any photos from Sunday, but Francie from JOOLZ stopped in to say HI and she posted a photo from Sunday on her blog. Sunday was the big artist presentation day. I was nervous and excited at the same time. The demo room in the Creative Workshop at the museum was set up theater style with rows of chairs. First thing I told people was they wouldn't be able to see if they were so far away, so I told everyone to gather up close around my table. At one point there were about 40 or so people packed around. I was asked lots of questions and we had a good dialog going over the roar of my little Hot Head torch. I think it went well, people laughed at my silly nervous jokes (I even joked about there being too many people and that was why my hands were shaking adding some raised dots to a disc, lol), and many people came up to me after to show to thank me for showing them what I do. Gallery staff told me it was great too. It is always a relief to get through things causing such nerves.

Sunday really flew by. I was packed up and heading home before I knew it. I can't wait till next year. I hope hope hope I get to be apart of the show again!!

Alrighty, that is the official recap. Time to get ready for the birthday boy's family party! Oh, and Luaren just informed me that her stuffed monkeys are getting married today. It should be quite an event.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Making Headlines!

The front page of the LIVING section of this morning's newspaper has me in the "Artist Spotlight"! For those outside of Rochester, or who can't get a copy of The Democrat and Chronicle, you can see the article HERE!

YOO HOO!! I am thrilled to be showcased in the paper!

More to come tomorrow. For now, I am totally beat.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

I Say Thank You... A Lot

D'oh... I forgot my camera at my booth... tucked away under some boxes, hidden from site. I'll post pics tomorrow, I promise!

The preview night for The Fine Craft Show went off without a hitch. No wait, there is a tiny hitch (or a couple), but I'll get to that. The chili dinner was delicious and they had a great display of all the advertising/publicity the show has gotten. (if anyone local has the weekend section from Thursday's paper, can I have it?!? there is an ad for the show using my jewelry!) I was shocked to see just how many things were made with my "Icing On The Cake" photo. It was really cool to see. My beads frame the invitation to the preview party, I am on the posters in Wegmans!, I am in little ads in the paper. It really is too cool.

The little hitch in the show so far has been my location. My spot is beautiful, I love it, but it is tucked in a corner and kind of out of site. So many people last night said "I didn't know this was back here?" It didn't stop people from buying though! And that is nice. Super NICE! I had a bit of a dicey situation with two woman wanting the same necklace. Eekk. Bonnie says I didn't handle it right, but what can I do? Lady A tried it on, loved it, set it back down on the bust, and her husband said to his wife "is there anything else you like?" and she went on to trying on bracelets and he said to my sister "we'll take it", meanwhile, Lady B had tried it on too (several times) and was wearing it again while Lady A's hubby was telling Bonnie he wanted it. So I said nicely to Lady B, "Lady A would like to buy that piece, unless you are?". She quickly took it off and handed it too me, but was very disappointed. Bonnie says I shouldn't have taken it off her neck and should have let them talk to each other. Feel free to leave a comment of what to do in that situation in the future, I would love some opinions!!

Another hitch, my neighbor. She didn't realize that this was an indoor show, and has set up a 10 x10 feet easy up tent... inside... like under a room with a ceiling. And just so she could hang a sign. It kind of jets into my space and is cutting what flow of traffic there is. I may need to totally rearrange me booth to accommodate her, but we'll see.

So, why the post title I have today? Well, there are a lot of people who come by my booth and say to me "you do really beautiful work". And I politely thank them. I often think that people are just being polite themselves and filling the silence with a compliment. I can tell by the 10 pounds of 14K gold jewelry they are wearing that they don't really think it is beautiful work. But, there are people who come by, pause, and you can see a gentle sigh in their shoulders, a tilt of their head, and they take a small breath to say "you do really beautiful work". Those people truly lift my spirits and make me glow with pride. So, I say thank you.

The show last night was filled with just those kind of people. And I am truly thankful to each and everyone of them.

Okay, okay... I admit... all my worrying was for nothing.

Friday, November 07, 2008

0... Showtime

Yeah, yeah... I know it is a really dark photo, but I am only gonna stand around taking photos of my paste-y white knees for so long before I say, enough is enough. So, a dark photo it is. Makes it more dramatic anyway. HA!

There are a few personal revelations I have had in this year of being 30 years old. The first was a few months back when I discovered that just because I have straight hair, doesn't mean I can't benefit from using a flat iron. After just one use, I wondered how I got along without it. The second occurred this weekend. Instead of having wine and cheese and crackers with Ron on Sunday afternoon like I blogged about, I went out for a little retail therapy. And I bought these boots. Now I wonder how I ever got through 30 years of life without a pair. They are perfect with my black pencil skirt. They are my skirt's new best friend. They shall always be together. And I love that I can zip them all the way up without any pinching. My calves must be getting smaller, lol.

Tonight is the big night. The van is packed... the jewelry is set to go... and I am a nervous wreck. All is right with the pre-show world. Tonight there is a chili dinner for the artists before a "Mingle With The Artists" preview party from 7-9pm. I have no idea what to expect and I am worried about my jewelry holding it's own against the likes of the $3000 teapots that were mentioned in that article earlier in the week. A bunch of you have been sending me emails wishing me luck and I just wanna send out a HUGE THANK YOU!! I appreciate the love and support.

I have my batteries charged for lots of photo taking at the event this evening. I will try and update before the artists' breakfast and show tomorrow!!

Wish me luck.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

1... No More Distractions

Sometimes I am pretty convinced that I have adult on set attention deficit disorder. I am supposed to being doing one thing but I am so easily distracted by other things. Yesterday, I could no longer ignore the overwhelming urge I had to create something new for the booth.

It started last week when Carter shared photos of her booth. I left a comment about seeing those cool faux displays up close. Next day she left a comment back... next day I emailed her... then the next I emailed her again. Yes, I admit, I was stalking her display cases. Carter sent me photos Tuesday night with another view of the display. That was it... I was done for. My attention was no longer my own to control. It was fixated on booth displays.

Carter's booth pieces a very unique. She made them herself and have lots of cool things like moving parts and formica bases. With the time restraints I have, I obviously couldn't go to those lengths in just a few days. But, I still convinced myself I needed something new for the booth.

There is just something about objects being under glass and having a spotlight on them. I think it makes you oooohhh and aaahhh just a bit more. It makes you realize that the things should be respected, not tossed about. It shows they are special and have value. The person making them cares enough about them that she wants them to be protected.

Ron helped me hash out a few ideas in my head. Here is what I came up with.

I made two of them, but just used one for a quick mock set up. It is a 18in x 24in piece of acrylic (1/4in thick) from Lowes. It was only $15. I then bought a dowel for $3 and cut the pieced to length. The front is 6in high and the back is 8in. It only took an hour of googling to find out that the angle I needed to cut on the dowels to get the right pitch was 7degrees. (I suck at trigonometry!) I over came my fear of Ron's miter saw and cut all those angles myself. :) Then spray painted them up. A pre-drilled holes in the plexi glass and added the dried legs this afternoon. Ta da... my own faux glass table display.

I haven't decided yet if it was worth all the trouble. But I think $40 for two displays wasn't too bad. I will probably take a run to Target or Staples later today to see about some new lights. Mine are so bulk. YUCK! I will show you how the display comes together when I set up tomorrow.

Before then though, I would love to hear what you think of this little DIY project...

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

2... Brace Yourself

As I have been saying for the past few days... I have been working on bracelets! And would you believe, the beads were all made yesterday? Yeah. I was on a roll. I love these colors. They are a warmer version of "brights". They are dark periwinkle, turquoise, transparent ink blue, coral yellow/orange and transparent topaz. I really, really like 'em.

"Swirl On" Lightbuble bangle, "Timeless" bangle, and regular "Bang Gal!" bangle. Two old-ish favorites and one new one. I had to remake that Lightbulb bangle THREE times because I kept snipping the core wire too short. I doubt Lauren could have worn it the first two times I made it. (insert annoyed with self eye roll here)

"Soggy Boggy" bracelet. I got it into my head yesterday that the "Soggy Boggy" necklace would make a cool bracelet. And I am glad I gave it a try. It is sort of a cross between the "Soggy Boggy" design and my "Snagged" design. The beads are smaller, wrist appropriately sized, and the little beads on the clasp help keep the clasp from spinning where it shouldn't.

"Brace Yourself" bracelet. I saved my new most favorite for last. Last week when I made the "New Snagged" style necklace, the idea for this bracelet popped into my head. I am thrilled with how it turned out. It hugs your wrist in just the right way. It is full without being bulky and heavy. *sigh* I love it.

I am working on more bracelet beads this afternoon and a secret project for my booth too. Keep your fingers crossed that the booth project works! If it does, I'll share that with you tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

3... Vote

I can not believe that there are just three days left until the start of The Fine Craft Show on Friday Night!! And I can not believe that the horrible election campaign ads are finally gonna end and all the Target Christmas commercials are about to start!!

So, you may have noticed that I don't blog about politics. But really, how could I let this Nov 4 go by without at least mentioning it? I remember growing up, there were two conversations that you never had with my Dad. 1) You never ever ask how much money he makes, he would rip your head off. 2) You never ask who he voted for, cause it isn't anyones business. It isn't that way so much now. I have done may parents taxes several times, lol... so I know how much he makes. And he is quite happy to share his political views. I think I am still very brainwashed and tend to favor the "it isn't anyones business" philosophy.

Here is where I stand... you just gotta vote. I don't wanna know who you voted for... and I am not gonna tell you who I voted for... you should just vote. And don't tell me your vote doesn't count. Votes count! When they add up that "majority" vote, you are one of the millions!! Okay, your just one, but one still makes that number bigger then it would be without you.

As for show prep news, I am working on the three P's today... Polishing, Pricing, and Packaging. Lauren has a friend here for the morning and she'll be here straight through lunch. The three P's will be the perfect thing to work on!

Monday, November 03, 2008

4... Getting To Sleep

Do you ever have trouble sleeping?

I had a heck of a night last night. I tossed and turned for hours. The last time I looked at the clock, it was 3:45am and I was up this morning at 6:10am. That isn't much sleep! And that isn't like me. One of the reasons I am able to get done what I do is because I don't deprive myself of sleep. At one point in the night, I told Ron (who was mostly asleep) that I couldn't quiet my mind and it was making me anxious and agitated. Nope, I didn't have any coffee... nothing to drink... just a glass of water. Huh. I just don't get it.

Anyway, there was an interesting turn of events last night, and maybe it was that bothering my sleep. I got an email from Rochester Magazine that the latest issue was on newsstands. I grabbed my pal Lindsey and we took off to Barnes & Noble. The article is a huge bummer! I knew going in that three artists were being interviewed about the show. After more then a half hour on the phone with the writer, and a photo shoot in my studio, out of a 3 page spread I had a three line paragraph that was a total mis-quote and not a single photo of my work. The writer said that I hand make my beads in a kiln, wrong... that I wield 2000 degree torches, wrong (I only use one torch)... and that I said "These beads are a step up from what you find at JoAnn Fabrics," wrong. What I said was that the quality of handmade beads is worlds beyond that of mass produced beads and things created with them are truly one of a kind. The way I was paraphrased makes me sound like I am belittling what I do. I was bummed too because the whole feel of the article was very condescending. The title was "Art or Craft?" and it had comments of about "sticker shock" and "$3000 teapots". Yikes. I was so disappointed that I didn't even buy a copy of it. Oh well. It was out of my hands. I know what a FANTASTIC show this is going to be and I know the incredible quality of work that will be presented.

Speaking of work... I made a Playground bracelet over the weekend. I haven't made one in ages and I gotta say, I am not feeling it. I think I will take it apart and make something else with it. We'll just have to wait and see. In fact, I decided, I got to stop making necklaces and work on bracelets for the rest of the week. Should be fun! Stay tuned.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

6... 5... Dancing With Delusions

It is happening again. Right down to the day. I am getting burned out and feeling the blahs. Just like last time. I don't have quite as much going on as last time, but still. I feel really tired. Jacob has been running a high fever most of the weekend and I am starting to think I might be coming down with it too. So, I am taking the rest of the day off. I am kicking back this afternoon with a tray of cheese and crackers and a glass of wine. I will probably regret it tomorrow since it means I won't have any beads to clean and create with in the morning but oh well. My sanity is too important.

Before I go and relax, here are the latest things from the studio.

"Dancing With Delusions"

Pam mentioned my new blue hollow necklace reminded her of the work of artist Dale Chihuly in comments the other day. I love Chihuly's work. LOVE IT. Last night while I was making beads, I was having trouble with my hollows colapsing (again) and at some point decided to stop fighting it. Instead of fighting, I decided to exaggerate it. The warped onion-ish shape that I let the beads take on reminded me of Chihuly's Floats. I experimented with making headpins in the shape of the blown coils that he uses in Chandeliers. It is a little wild and funky, but I think I love it. It reminds me of these funky creations.

Alrighty... time to go crash.