Friday, February 26, 2010

Snowed In

snowed in living room
snowed in living room 2
snowed in driveway
I rolled over in bed about 3am and saw an odd amber glow. No, the house wasn't on fire... there was a total white out, that made the view nonexistant. When I finally came downstairs a couple hours later, we were officially snowed in with at least a foot of snow. School is canceled (for the first time in more than 2 years!), I can't even open the back door with the drifts, it is still snowing and is expected to keep snowing all weekend.

Keep warm. Stay safe. Have hot cocoa.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Jewelry Alert #2!

I just finished posting the bracelets and pendants from Totally Twisted on my website. Go 'n' get one!!

*special note* I will only be posting the pieces using my beads. The designs created using beads from contributing artists will be sent back to them with my love and thanks for being apart of my book. I will take a limited number of custom requests for those pieces. You pick the project, I pick the beads in *my* style that will best suit the design. Send me an email for more information and to place an order!

Between Me & Me

ripped it 1
ripped it 2
ripped it 3
ripped it 4
me: you can't do that...
myself: yes I can.
me: are you crazy? don't... you can't do that...
myself: yes. I . can.
me: OMG... I can't believe you just did that! You did NOT just do that.
myself: yes, yes, I did.
me: Kerry, that sweater took you over a month to make. How in the world could you just rip it out like that?
myself: cause, I didn't love it. I do love the yarn though. I would run away and marry this yarn. This yarn is my favorite. I couldn't waste it.
me: you could have given the sweater a chance... it could have grown on you... you could have learned to like it.
myself: Kerry, you know me... if I don't like it, I don't like it... and you know dang well I would never wear it.
me: but all that time and effort...
myself: this new sweater, its gonna be even better. it is gonna ROCK... I promise I will love this one... you'll see
me: you better love it... I am NOT going to let you get away with this again
myself: yeah, fine... whatever.
me: oh shut up and knit your stupid new sweater.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Jewelry Alert!

I just posted 5 original pieces from Totally Twisted in the Knock Out Necklace section of my website! These are the real deal, peeps. These pieces are the ones created for, photographed, and shown in the book. A few pieces have already been snatched up, if you want one... better hurry!

I will post bracelets, pendants, and earrings from the book later in the week.

The Tumble From High Hopes Hill

I have had a completely blissed out few days. I have had music cranking... I have done tripods in a blue tutu... and I in the past 48 hours, doing what I love most, I have made absolute crap!

high hope adventure 1

Here is what happened... I have a boat load of bottle caps at my disposal in my studio. I am talkin' hundreds. I have been wanting to find new way to work them into really cool jewelry designs. I have been pushing my creative thoughts to a place far outside the bottle cap box in pursuit of amazingly awesome possibilities. Suddenly it hit me... I could make them into bead caps... no wait, they need to be more then "caps" for the sides of beads, they need to be the bead. Wait, I have seen bottle caps made into beads before... how can I make them different? OH I KNOW! I will make them BIGGER, I will paint them... oh that would be cool.

high hope adventure 2

Now picture me in my studio on Monday with a bag of bottle caps, a bench block, a hammer, loud music, a dapping set, a blue tutu, metal cutters, and spray paint. Yeah, it was good times. I smashed and bashed and cupped and cut and dovetailed those bottle caps with all my heart. With each whack of the hammer I was getting a stronger foothold and climbing higher and higher up High Hopes Hill. I left my studio with bead parts all over the floor, covered in drying paint, and full of promise. *sigh* I was a happy artist.

high hope adventure 3

Fast forward to an hour into my Tuesday morning... cause ya know, before I even had my morning coffee, 2 seconds after I finished my run on the treadmill, sweaty and smelly, I tried to make those hollow painted bottle cap beads I had dreamed about all night long. I figured out really quickly that these were not going to be as cool as I thought and my slow slide down High Hopes Hill began. I felt determined though... could I ride the avalanche wave down the hill rather then tumble helplessly into a heap at the bottom? Maybe I was going about it all the wrong way? Maybe these caps would make for better bezels than beads? I could still paint them right? Paint the insides instead of the out!!

high hope adventure 4
high hope adventure 5

Insert wasting a few more hours here and start to picture me losing my cool as an avalanche surfer. Although the idea really sounds cool, and in theory it could be really cool... these things are crap. Where is Tim McCreight in your studio when you need him? I bet the King of Metalsmithing could create the lovely things clogging up me head.

high hope adventure 6

Determined to make the most of my studio time, I very very begrudgingly decided to flip on my kiln and light up my torch. What is the beady saying? When you are having a bad bead day, go back to basics. Right? Right. I was having a bad metalsmithing day, but that is just semantics. Whatever. A funny thing happened when I sat at my flame... my begrudged attitude faded out of site within minutes. I picked up my snow covered butt, brushed off the debris from my High Hopes Hill tumble, and with glass in my hand and even more new ideas in my mind, I set to climbing that hill again. This time a little bruised, a little wiser, but none the worse for the wear.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Start of Twisted Tuesdays

I have been toying with this idea in my head for a few weeks now and with Totally Twisted finally released, I think it is as good a time as any to get it started. I decided to make this first Twisted Tuesday post about what Twisted Tuesdays will be all about. Makes sense, right? Right.

I have said over and over how excited I am to share my new book with you!! And I really and truly mean it. I am one proud Momma when it comes to my baby Totally Twisted and I want to show it off to you. I want to take you behind the scenes (even more than I have already). I want to introduce you to the awesome bead makers you'll see inside and others I wish I could have worked with, I want to show you more wire projects, I want vlog (video blog) more, and I want to tell you about the awesome companies I have been working with too. Twisted Tuesdays will be when that happens. LOL... if I don't find a way to spread things out and pace myself, I will throw it all at you at once and that would be total sensory overload. I think this will be better.

Another thing I want to be able to do on Twisted Tuesdays is share what you all are doing with the book. So, I'll link to reviews (email me the link!), I will share projects you all have made yourselves, I will answer questions that come up, and really, hopefully, celebrate the fun that comes from working with glass and wire. Cuz' ya know its some serious fun peps... seriously. All things being equal though, when the not-so-fun stuff happens, we'll talk about that too.

To get the sharing started, I created the Totally Twisted Designs Flickr Group - YOO HOO!! Join the group and post photos of the projects you have made from the book. Share the projects the book inspired you to make too!! Everyone is welcome to join.

Last week I mailed out the initial flurry of books. They should be floating into mail boxes around the country (and OMG! w-o-r-l-d) over the next few days. I am waiting on pins and needles to hear your thoughts, and I have no doubt, there are others waiting to buy their copy of Totally Twisted until they hear from others too. I get that. If you have your copy and are so inclined, I would greatly appreciate reviews!! You can leave them on my website by visiting the Totally Twisted book page, and clicking "write a review" in the lower left corner. You can also leave reviews on Amazon, I think these reviews reach the most people! Just scroll down about 3/4 of the way, on the right hand side click "Create your own review". OH, and if you talk about the book on your blog, please send me the link, I will add you to the list of review links I started on my side bar.

Okay... I think that is enough twisted info for one day. I am excited about this!! And I hope as we get going, you will really start to look forward to Twisted Tuesdays with me. And I promise, this will be the only photoless post, lol.

Monday, February 22, 2010


upside down
because sometimes it feels like a three post day...
because sometimes it is fun to be upside down...
because my blue tutu makes me smile...
because I am having fun in the studio...
because loud music feels good and drowns out that ringing in my ears...
because dancing by myself and singing off key is okay...

and because I can.

Random Mondays

more random monday rambling

water color pencils

:: really looking forward to my studio time this week... I mean really really
:: can't imagine why people like ice fishing
:: why can't gerber daisies last longer than a week
:: so in love with a $1.47 shirt I got at Old Navy that I spent $30 on fabric to make myself a skirt to wear with it
:: could use some cute black flats to go with skirt and shirt

colored copper wire love 1

:: love my new treadmill, though my head is awfully close to the ceiling when running on it in the basement
:: I am antsy for wire I ordered this morning to get here... I am out of 16g & 18g
:: wonder how cool the stuff will be that I make this week without my staple wire sizes... hmm... good personal challenge me thinks
:: how much longer are the Olympics on
:: I am hungry

perfectly paired 1

:: my ears ring constantly
:: gotta start listing the jewelry from Totally Twisted on my website soon
:: thinking about starting "Twisted Tuesdays" on the blog
:: Lauren lost her homework over vacation and I can't for the life of me find where she put it
:: wonder if resin will smear my faber-castell pens

as always... you are welcome to use the comments area to organize your "random monday" thoughts. and I have officially decided to make "random mondays" a permanent feature on the blog!

And the winner is...

Congratulations to Michele!!

She wrote:
"michele farrand said...
The Sun, my Son & Snow!!"

Send me an email to kerry(at)kabsconcepts(dot)com with your address!!

Thanks to everyone who entered to win a copy of Totally Twisted!! I loved reading what is making everyone excited these days. We all need a dose of excitement in mid February, don't we?

Friday, February 19, 2010

Saturday Morning on a Friday

Reminder - there is a Totally Twisted Giveaway going on!! Go leave a comment!!

ravelympics progress 1
ravelympics progress 2
ravelympics progress 3

There is an amazing stillness in the house right now and I am really enjoying. I know it can't last for too much longer. At some point I will need to move myself from my comfy spot on the couch and wake the wild hoards, but for now, I am content to sit in the quiet. *sigh* Everything about this morning is whispering to me that it is Saturday. I was out late last night as if it were a Friday evening after a long week at work, lol. (with the kids being home as my "work" and being at book club as my "happy hour")

I ventured downstairs and made coffee, started a fire, surfed my favorite blogs, and sat to work on the last few rows of the skirt of Lauren's dress. You asked for progress shots and here are a few for you. That mug with the "K" was a birthday gift from Jacob. I saw it the grocery store one day when he and I were there, I told him how it would be a good gift... and he remembered. :) I love that boy/pre-teen. And these tasks are what I do most everyday, but on Saturday's I do it while everyone is sleeping, and that is what they're all doing now.

It's funny, I took that center photo on the coffee table because back on Monday we had friends over for a play date and the dad that was here has Lauren completely convinced that I am making her table cloth. Funnier still is that she is really excited about it being a table cloth, LOL!! My stars she can be a hoot.

*sigh* What a week huh? So much excitement. Another reason I feel like it is Saturday, the hecticness is finally slowing. I can't tell you how much I am looking forward to Monday. Crazy sounding, I know, but I am desperate to have some studio time. I want to/need to/have to get back to some normalcy. There are ideas to be worked out, and jewelry to be made, and I don't know what else... I need the time to figure it out while I have the energy!! LOL.

I hope you enjoy your weekend... whatever day it is.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Snowy Afternoon

First... in case you missed it... there is a Totally Twisted Giveaway going on!! Go leave a comment!!

Now... to how we spent the last few hours...
snow day 3
snow day 5
snow day 6
snow day 7
snow day 10

...freezin' our bums off at the park!! We had a quick 6inches of snow last night that made for perfect sledding conditions today. I made a big thermos of cocoa and out we ventured. The boys had some awesome wipe outs trying to jump off a ramp on their snow boards!! And Lauren was zipping down the hills on her boogie board. All our snowy clothes are drying by the fire as I type. It was a really great afternoon.

Shipping Changes

*Special Note*

I have had to make changes to my shipping policy for international customers. I have a bit of sticker shock when mailing out overseas copies of Totally Twisted! The book, when packaged, weights a little more then 1 pound and must be sent "Global First Class".

Here are the new rates when ordering a signed copy of Totally Twisted:
US Residents - $3.50 USPS Media Mail
Canadian Residents - $8.00 USPS Global First Class
Everywhere Else - $12.00 USPS Global First Class

Any charge beyond the flat rate I will pay. (Sometimes the rate overseas is $10, sometimes it is $14. I think $12 is a happy medium.)

Thank you so much for your understanding!! Those of you that already ordered your copies, no worries, there is no extra charge now. These new rates start today. Also, these rates only apply to orders for copies of Totally Twisted. When ordering beads or jewelry, as long as the total weight is less then 1 pound, the shipping rate will be $3.50.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Totally Twisted In The House!!

totally twisted in the house
They're here!! AAAAGGGGHHHH! I am a little excited, can you tell?!? I am at a loss for where to begin... do I start with how lucky we are that those printers in China were ahead of schedule and my book arrived two whole months early... or do I tell you about what I was doing yesterday when I noticed giant boxes outside in my breeze way and how I hadn't heard the UPS fella drop them off... or I could tell you about my envelope woes and how many times I have had to order new ones trying to get ones that will fit the book just right without costing an arm and a leg... or should I tell you about trying to decide just what to write on the cover page when I sign my name? Where to begin?!?

I will start with the timing. How awesome is it that the books arrived for an earlier release than expected?!? Amazon is still listing the release date as April 1st but they are already shipping and copies of Totally Twisted are popping up in mailboxes all over the country!! Now, here it is February 17th, not April!, and I am signing these beauties, addressing dozens of envelopes, and getting ready to send them out into the world. Sheer awesomeness people... truly! And em yeah, apparently, an 9 x 8 1/4 book won't fit in a 11 x 9 envelope, you need a 12 x 9 1/4 one. LOL. Trust me, I know. Thankfully, I have a shipping supply company that has next day delivery at no extra charge. They ROCK! And man was that UPS fella sneaky. Granted, I was a little distracted as I was babysitting my cousin's two year old daughter for the day. But still, he carried in four 20+ pound boxes and I never heard a peep. I went to wash some dishes, looked outside and there were all the boxes!! OH OH, and something super cool I saw on Amazon this weekend... they were down to only 5 copies in stock at one point!! EEEEKKKKK!!

I have been hemming and hawing over what I should write, other than my name, when I sign my books. Silly, I know. But I want something that is clever and catchy and, of course, *me*. It finally came to me yesterday and you'll have to wait until you get your copy to see what it says!! Some of y'all like surprises, so we'll leave it that way. And so y'all know, unless you specifically requested my to do the signing "to" you, I am keeping it simple. That way, should you ever want to hand it off you some one, it doesn't say "to my dearest friend Sally". LOL. Zing me an email if you want a "to"... there is still time.

So, how peeved do you think the post office lady is going to be with me when I walk in with 50 pounds of books to be shipped? LOL. I may go in the evening to the automated do-it-yourself post office to avoid the glares from everyone in line behind me. Oh the things you don't think of in the beginning!!

Okay... now what? I am hoping to plan a "blog tour" for the month of March. I have goodies galore up my sleeves for you. Namely, one word peeps... KITS. But before I get too far ahead of myself, let's do a GIVEAWAY!! Leave a comment here on the blog (just click the word "comments" at the bottom of this post and it will take you to the comment screen) with your name, don't forget your name!, and in three words or less tell me what has you excited today. I will pick a name at random on Monday Feb 22nd at 9am, and international commenters are welcome!!

signing Totally Twisted

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Breaking News!!

YOO HOOO!! I just got confirmation that 100 copies of my book will be delivered to my door step today. That means I'll be signing and shipping with week, sooner than expected!! Watch your mailboxes peeps... books will be coming soon.

I'm A Ravelympian

ravelympics lauren's yarn

Over on Ravelry, they do something fun during the Olympics. It's called "Ravelympics". To play, you pick a project (or two or three), cast on during the opening ceremonies, and hopefully, finish before the end of the closing ceremonies. Then, you win a fun medal to place on your Ravelry project page to show you competed (now the competitive side of me would love the have "winners" and gold, silver, and bronze medals awarded, but that could get ugly and Ravelry is a happy place).

This is my first Ravelympics, and with Lauren's birthday coming up at the end of March, I figured her Momma-made gift would make for the perfect project. The project is The Pixie Dress, a sweet whimsical crocheted dress what will look wicked super cute over jeans and a tee shirt (perfect for layering in these cold months). The yarn is Dream In Color Knitosophy in the color called "Strength" (kinda pricey, but thankfully, WEBS discounts the more you buy, and this yarn is superwash!). You enter your projects in different events like "Lace Luge" or "Cable Cross Country". I entered my Pixie Dress in the Lace Luge event and the Junior Olympics event (jr meaning made for a child).

I had fun casting on while watching the ceremonies. I have been crocheting since I was a little girl, and although I have to look up in the back of the magazine how to do each stitch (cause my mom just showed us how to do it, we didn't know the real names for stitches) it goes really quick. It can be so mesmerizing, really... almost hypnotic. The way you wrap the yarn, dive into the stitch, grab and pull through... do it a thousand times and tell me you weren't seein' double and nearly asleep.

Anyway, I am a little more than half way through the skirt already and thanks to my friend Lindsey's husband, she is convinced I am making her a table cloth, LOL. You can see why I had purple on the brain last week, yes? And speaking of which... the kids couldn't be off school at a worse time. I am feeling so inspired right now. I have lots of ideas brewing... I really wish I was in the studio. Oh well, February Break is just a week. They will be back in school soon enough. And, until then... I have a project to finish.

ravelympics lauren's yarn 2

Monday, February 15, 2010

should also be known as artist heaven

artisan works entrance
tour 5
artist in residence 1
tour 16
vertigo heights room3
tour 23
tour 25
artist in residence 2
frank lloyd wright room 2
fire fighter tribute room 6
fire fighter tribute room 9
kerry and ron 3
tour 37
tour 42
artisan works exit 1

I got the most amazing treat for my birthday on Saturday!! I got to spend a little time in artist heaven on earth... Artisan Works. This place is a true Rochester Gem and I can't believe I haven't been to it sooner. I was a kid in a candy store. These are just a few of the 200 plus photos I took, and I narrowed all those down to about 80 here in my Flickr Gallery. If you have the time, grab some coffee and click through each photo. It'll be like you were there!! I was truly awed and amazed. *sigh*

After that, I had a wonderful dinner before heading back home to chocolate torte and wine with a movie. I was so spoiled. And a huge thanks to my Mom for taking the kids off our hands so that Ron and I could spend this quality time together. Love you Mom!!

So, how was your weekend?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Friday, February 12, 2010

Rotating Tires

tires 1
purple tire
Rotating Tires

In Monday's random thoughts, I mentioned I wanted to make a giant transparent purple hollow bead with a big hole (or something to that effect). I didn't get much beading time this week, but I did get just enough to experiment with what I was day dreaming about. And it ended up being one of those times where I truly surprised myself at the torch. Because, holy crow, I did it!! I had an idea, sat down, tried it, and it freaking worked!! Sure, you might be thinking "Kerry, everything you do works", but no, it doesn't always and these, in my opinion, are really hard to make. I am feeling so proud of these.

Okay, so, I am calling this style "Tire" beads. They remind me of inner tubes you float around a lake on some lazy summer day. You know, the kind where your butt gets stuck in the middle, lol. After I shot that little video yesterday, I spent some time working up this necklace with a few of those tires. It is called, obviously, "Rotating Tires". It is so so fun!! I love it.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Watch Me Make A Bead - Hollows!

It has been way way too long since I made a how-to video for y'all. So, here you go!
Watch me create a pretty blue hollow bead in just about five minutes.

Some things you should know:
1)Yes, I know my glasses sit low on my nose. Sorry, they are too big. Besides, I like looking over the top of them. It lets me see what I am doing.

2)To me, my voice sounds high pitched and nasally. Ugh... but oh well... that is me. LOL.

3) I did this in about ten minutes with so script or practice. I just did it. So if there is something I missed or questions you have, leave a comment and I will do my best to answer it.

Enjoy and thanks for watching.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Soup Is Served

It's today, it's today, it's today... party time!! A few weeks back, I signed up to take part in Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Party. I was wicked super thrilled when I was paired with the divine Barbara Lewis as my co-cook in the beady kitchen. The ingrediants for my soup she sent were just.plain.awesome. I can't tell you how even more over the top excited it has me for the Painting With Fire workshop I am attending in DC in March. But enough gushing... on to the creations!

bead soup necklace a
bead soup necklace a detail
I knew the minute I saw Barbara's beads that I would be pulling out my own enamels and mixing them with glass. I started with a base of transparent light brown and dusted it with layers of lavender and bold blue, picking up the tones in the enamels that I think Barbara used. I thought hollows would settle perfectly into these sorta filigree like bead caps. I created a chain linking the beads together that is about 6 inches long. I attached it to a super long length of some very pretty raw brass chain. The chain is so long that you can wear it doubled up, or like a lariat, or like a long laynard. Love it.

bead soup necklace b
bead soup necklace b clasp detail
bead soup necklace b detail
That last photo there is seriously seriouly one of my favorite jewelry photos ever. As I made this second necklace, I using most of the extras that Barbara sent. The Czech fire polished crystals, the bead cones, some pretty little florettes, and that gorgeous focal. I knew I wanted layers, lots and lots of layer. I mixed in several different brass chains, waxed linen cording, and, to make it *me* some vintage enameled chain too. I also have had a couple Jade Scott pendants I have been waiting to use in something special. Yep, one of them is in here! Working on this got me thinking... if I did the "vintage style jewelry thing" that everyone loves right now, I would do it like this... vintage with POPS of brights. I mean really, Kerry=Color, does it not?

bead soup bracelet a
As if the necklaces (and the pair of earrings from the week before) weren't enough, I had so many beads that I could make some bracelets too! I told you she sent too much!! This first bracelet is styled after a Lorelei Eurto bracelet I (the top one) bought a few weeks ago as a treat to myself. I made some very think, very chunky discs in my favorite shade of transparent ink blue, rolled the edges in a few shades of enamel, and set them up on their sides like the ceramic ones in Lori's bracelet. I made a flower disc as the catch for the clasp to match the sweet Barbara flowers. *sigh* I love it, and it huges your wrist just right.

bead soup bracelet b
bead soup bracelet b 2
For this bracelet, I grabbed one of my big huge felted wool beads and popped it in the center of one of the larger caps Barbara sent. I made a big wire work loop, added one of my smaller hollow beads, linked to a short length of silk ribbon, the wool bead link, some copper chain, another Jade Scott charm, and a vintage enamel flower. Try to say all that in one breath, lol... it's a long sentence! Just so in love with this. It dangles off one side of your wrist, so much cooler then those springy bracelet key chain things, but kinda like those. LOL...

bead soup jewelry
Okay... so now what right? You have seen the soup jewelry from me, but you are still hungry right? I just wet your whistle and you need more!! First, check out what my partner created with the beads I sent here!! THEN, pop on over to Lori Anderson's blog and just start clicking... clicking... clicking... and check out what the EIGHTY plus other artists created. It is one hellva party... my guess it is going to last for days and we will all have hangovers... but in a good way. :)