Monday, March 26, 2007

What a Way to Start the Week! (I've had a busy weekend...) - Week of March 25 - 31

Saturday we had Chinese food for lunch. I had two fortune cookies (I love fortune cookies, they are beyond yummy). I got the following two fortunes:

"Sunday is a good day for relaxing."
"Nothing can keep you from reaching your goals."

These inspired me I guess, or at the very least, they helped to invoke my muse. This weekend I did more crafty things than I've had a chance to do in a while, and I managed to get quite a lot accomplished.

Saturday morning I decided that this weekend I would finish up the belt my MIL asked me to make for her. We had bought the beads back in October, and in January, I picked up some additional coordinating pearl beads to go with the ones we had bought. But until this weekend, I hadn't really done much with the project. I spent a few hours one weekend sketching pattern ideas, but then set them aside, totally uninspired. But this weekend, that all changed. On Saturday, I strung the beads for the main part of the belt. Saturday night, I had my MIL "try it on" to make sure I had the length right. Then Sunday, I created the clasp and the dangle of beads. This is the finished belt:

And here are some close up shots of the pattern of the beads and of the wire clasp that I made for it using 16ga and 26ga(I think) wire and a potato pearl:

But I didn't stop there on Sunday. I had a "Wrist of Flurries" bracelet that I had assembled back in December, but just hadn't finished it off with a clasp yet. So Sunday, I experimented with one of my clasp ideas, using elastic and a button. It looks a little cheap frankly, not real polished or professional. It works, but I won't sell that version or anything. Originally, I had used a toggle clasp (see the first set of photos) and it worked okay, but I didn't really like the way it "wore". It just didn't look a great when being worn. The bracelet is quite wide, and the little toggle didn't hold it together neatly. I'll have to play with some other ideas. But here's a picture of both the original piece (where I used a toggle clasp) and the new version (where I used a beaded loop of white elastic).
The first is of the original one with the toggle clasp (I love the snowflake buttons, they worked perfectly with 6/0 beads):

And here's some shots of the elastic band clasp version (I adore the white round clasp button, so I'll probably remove the band and try something different with this one):

I had assembled another wide peyote band bracelet in shades of blue-green. Again, I just had the clasp part to work out. So Sunday, I finished that up and used the toggle clasp. It works fine on this bracelet, since it's not quite as wide of the "Flurries" one.

You can see a few imperfections due to not all the beads being the exact same size and shape, but I like it that way. As one author put it, things like that are okay, think of them as your own little spirit beads (check out the great book I linked to above is you want to understand that more).

After all of that, I took all those pictures I'd been meaning to take. I needed new pictures of my Very Cherry Earrings for my Etsy shop, since I made some new pairs (with fixed crimps). I also took some pics of my Rawhide earrings to replace the ones I currently have up on Etsy, since I realized that I took most of those with the Sepia setting on. Doh. If you want to see those, you'll have to visit my Etsy shop. And of course, I took all the pics you see above. Plus, a few weeks back I was inspired by all the polymer clay artists I was seeing on Etsy. Many make mini foods, mini food charms, and mini food beads. I also found some great polymer clay artist sites who are doing the mini foods thing too. These look so fun to make and are always just too cute. So I tried my hand at it and made a slice of Key Lime Pie.

This is what I came up with:

Not too bad if I do say so myself. By no means perfect or sell-able, but it was a fun little experiment.

And here are some pictures of my experiment with making a clasp out of clay:

And in addition to all that, I folded and put away all the laundry, cleaned up around the house, copied some new music onto my MP3 player, cleaned the cat litter, did dishes, downloaded every single podcast from CraftyPod (if you've never seen her site, you must check it out today, look for a post about it later this week) and much more. I got a lot done in just two days. I feel so much better for it too. Its amazing how those little things that you just can't seem to find time to do, can really weigh heavy on your mind, and bog you down. I feel really, well, not to be too cliche, but, free. Just getting something done, accomplishing something, can do wonders for one's mood and outlook. And then the fact that I finally completed a few old In Progress projects, really was just the icing on the cake (or would that be on the key lime pie?).

Add to all of this the fact that our foster dog Dorothy was adopted on Saturday, and it was a great weekend!

Monday and Tuesday I finished up a pair of rainbow earrings (pics hopefully next week), and started a new spiral rope necklace, also in rainbow. The craftiness continues. And on the drive home yesterday, I recorded two more blog posts that I hope to get typed up and posted this week. Wow me.

Oh, and we got a new foster dog on Monday. His name is Aidan and he's a 7.7lb Chihuahua (he's smaller than our cats or out Min Pin). Check him out if you need an "Awwww" moment. :D

Here's hoping I continue to have a productive and crafty week, and that you do too!

Thanks for reading and happy beading!

1 comment:

Knotgypsy said...

I'll say you were busy! I posted my new blog entry before reading your comment. Scarlet says she was thinking about one of my projects...But perhaps you are right, she was visiting you. Your hard work seems her style. Yes, I agree, it is freeing to finish up old projects.

I love the items you have shown us here. The button does not really look as bad as you seem to think. I like the bracelets, and those cute little pies...Well, I had better get back to my beads before Scarlet gets too impatient and leaves again.