Friday, January 25, 2008

I'm late, I'm late . . .

Gosh, I meant to post the following weeks ago! But better late than never . . .

As part of the PIF venture, I will send a handmade gift to the first 3 people who leave a comment here on my blog requesting to join the PIF (pay it forward) exchange. I am not sure what that gift will be yet and you may not receive it tomorrow or next week, but you will receive it within the next six months. The only thing you have to do in return is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog.

NOW THEN, I need to amend that paragraph to read that I will send a handmade gift to the first SIX people who leave a comment and commitment to the PIF venture since I participated in two PIF announcements.

Soooooooo -- let's see who makes it into the first six . . . . .

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

A heartfelt thank you . . .

to all of you who voted for Galilea and offered so much encouragement and compliments. She did not win the competition but when she arrives back in southern New Mexico in late March, Galilea will be on exhibit in both our local bead store and a marvelous art gallery in downtown Las Cruces.

Participating in this competition was an amazing experience and you may be sure there will be more beaded art dolls in my future.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

77 Days of Elving . . . more or less!

Well, the Vorenberg Workshop elves were a pesky lot this past holiday season. Nag, nag, nag -- and bicker, bicker, bicker over their employer's project list. Then they dragged their heels about leaving, insisting that there surely must be just one more thing to make.

No photos were taken of all the knitted and crocheted headwarmers, caps, shawls, scarves, and toddler and baby sweaters nor of the wardrobe of handmade dolly clothes but those rascal elves did allow time for quick shots of most of the beaded items.

This is the Mandy daughter's Christmas bracelet, the first cuff bracelet I have ever made. It is titled "From Sea to Shining Sea" because it was conceived and executed throughout the 2007 World Series baseball games and you just know which song is played during the 7th-inning stretch of every game, right? Mandy holds an MFA in media arts so I took great license with the design which was centered around a misshapen face I molded, then stained. Vintage rivolis and flatback peridot gems flank the bracelet.

Our daughter Melissa loves green nearly as much as I do and her Christmas bracelet is entitled "In a Zen Mood". Yet another handmade face finished with a copper patina is surrounded by Chinese chrysophrase nuggets, green turquiose chips, polished green stone nuggets, and vintage rivolis.

Elena, our oldest daughter, fell in love with this necklace design in a beading magazine while visiting last summer. It only seemed logical that it must be made for her. The necklace was made up with a "gazillion" Swarovski crystals, black charlotte beads, black and crystal seed beeds and finished with a sterling silver S clasp.

We have eight December birthdays in our family now with the addition of tiny Baby Natalie on December 15th, who is the granddaughter of our daughter-in-law, Shelley, and our son, David. Shelley's birthday is two days before Christmas and we always strive to make it extra special. She is a burgundy girl and this bracelet features vintage rivolis surrounded by freshwater pearls, garnet chips, and crystals.

Son David's birthday is the week before Christmas and he is always a great challenge to make an interesting gift for. A beautiful edition of The Tolkien Miscellany was accompanied by this "Tolkienish" dagger bookmark which I crafted out of another face I molded and gave a bronzed patina. The hilt of the dagger features a piece of faceted Tibetan turquoise held with bronze metallic beads and the blade is fashioned out of the same beads in peyote stitch.

Daughter Jennifer is a blue person and this bracelet's design seemed a natural fit especially with all the snow she experienced in the northern part of New Mexico in the weeks before Christmas. Her cuff bracelet was done in a different manner in that I made a peyote strip the width and length of the brass blank, then embellished it with freshwater pearls and cobalt blue glass beads of every shape and size. It is titled "Arctic Blooms".

"Winter Zen" was made in a similar manner to most of the gift bracelets utilizing a winter palette of colors. It, too, has a handmade face and vintage rivolis, freshwater pearls, and green sea glass pieces. Since it has not gone to it's intended recipient yet, she shall remain nameless here . . .

Alas, my dear husband's new sweater is far from being finished. Knitting for a six-foot, seven-inch tall man is a great challenge under normal circumstances but with all the handmade gifties being churned out by those boisterous elves here, I am sorry to say that only twelve inches of the back of Jim's sweater has been completed.
Knew I shouldn't trust those elves to get it done . . .