Friday, November 6, 2015

Carving a Printing Block

Carving a Printing Block from Victoria and Albert Museum on Vimeo.

I had to share this. I have a few printing blocks from India. You can make your own fabric designs with them. They look great on the wall as decoration. They make great textures for metal clay. You can use them to display your jewelry. They are beautiful all on their own and they are just cool to have!!

I didn't realize how much work when into making them.  This is a fascinating video. They work with rudimentary tools to make these wonderful repetitive designs.  I have to imagine that this type of work is very zen.

The Victoria and Albert Museum has an exhibit right now on The Fabric of India.  This video is from that site.  There are also videos on indigo dyeing, weaving, and embroidery.  I would love to see this exhibit. I'll just hop a jet to London for the weekend...LOL.  

I'm lucky enough to have a beautiful scarf that was given to me by one of the women at work...who is from India.  I always complemented her on her scarfs and she brought one back for me after a trip home.

One of the perks of my job is working with people from all over the world. And it really is a huge perk.  I've learned about different cultures, eaten amazing homemade food, and have some wonderful friends. And sometimes....I get presents :))

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Happiness is......

.....having a weekend all to myself!!!

It's been a summer filled with too much work due to a new job...but happiness is the new job.  It's also been filled with taking care of my Mom.  She fell and broke her hip in July and I have been going home each Saturday to clean, wash and run errands.  But again...happiness is spending more time with her. 

Today....I have a weekend to myself.  I didn't need to go to Mom's and my husband is in the south of France...unhappiness is your husband going to the south of France and due to circumstances...not being able to go with him. Sucks. But I stayed home to celebrate my Mom's 90th birthday so...happiness is being with my Mom and family on her birthday.  Quite a milestone and she is doing really well. 

I'm taking the weekend to catch up on things  My flower beds are all weeds but those are going to have to stay that way....a couple months and everything is going to be dying off anyway. I have a long list of house repairs that need to be done...but those will still be here next weekend.  This weekend I am going to clean up my studio and draw and....I put together my 12" guillotine shear. 

Happiness is a new guillotine shear.  Doesn't every girl want one??!!  Of course you do.  You may not know it yet...but you do.  It cuts through metal like butter and cuts a full 12" sheet of metal.  TOO MUCH FUN!! And of course it's sitting on the dining table.  I don't cook much but I can cut metal!!  

Monday, June 29, 2015

Practice Makes Perfect?

I've always enjoyed Austin Kleon's blog and books.  This is a good read with a very simple but powerful your craft...everyday. I remember a lecture I went to with a watercolor artist. Something he said stuck with me....not that I have been able to live up to this....but he told us that you have to practice every day. He paints everyday.  Not many people are born like Mozart who was playing in public at the age of 6. Most of us have to slog through our days...but I guess that's the point.  Practice, practice, practice.

Okay campers rise and shine and don’t forget your booties

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Bead and Button

I finally had a chance to go through my photos and stash from Bead and Button.  How can it seem so long ago?  I have been working my butt off in my day job...which has turned into a day and night job.  
But this weekend I took a break.  We went to the Summer Solstice at the Cleveland Museum of Art last night...always a good time.  Ran into a number of people from work. 

And today I decided to go through my B&B stash and photos. B&B is always a whirlwind.  Between teaching classes and spending time with friends.  It goes so fast. 

The first stop is always the Calderone Club for great pasta and fried eggplant...which is heaven!!

Karen, Paul, and Cris...smilling because they've had eggplant!!

Then on to the business of teaching.  We taught a metal clay class and a couple of twisted bracelets classes, and a fabrication class. 

Metal clay samples from class

Students hard at work
Twisted wire

Bracelets made with the twisted wire

Everyone gathering for show and tell

Show and tell.  These ladies made a lot!!
Another mandatory dinner is Mader's.  Great German food.  And a picture in the massive chair they have. 
YiYi and Cris
Then on to the business of shopping.  Funny...I am drawn to the same things every year. I guess that's not a bad thing. 



Lots of etched agate

Love this print block

Lapis.  These chucks are gorgeous

Wood beads inlaid with silver.  They make great accent beads.

A table full of trade beads.  My version of heaven!!

Serious discussion about beads?

Shell...called hippos teeth because of the shape.

Bronze accent beads

Carved Lapis

Dinosaur bone...yes...dinosaur bone.  Aren't these great?!!

Gary Wilson stones!!

Arthuro and YiYi with Billy Gardell from Mike and Molly. We always seem to see someone famous when we are in Milwaukee.

Goodbye Milwaukee...see you next year!!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Only three seats left.....

If you want to take the Forged and Twisted Bronze Bracelet class on Wednesday, June 3....sign up soon.  There are only 3 seats left!!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Cleveland Flea

Today was the first Cleveland Flea of the season.  I thought there might not be so many people there since it's April....but I was wrong.  They place was crowded.

I was looking at this mutli-drawer cabinet.  I'm thinking it could be painted black or even red and distressed.  It would be very cool in the studio.  Maybe next time. 

I didn't expect to see this at the Flea.

I was looking at the table for my studio. It would be great for my kilns.  It has a cast iron sewing machine legs on it. 

Some other salvage. Metal drawers make for great storage. 

Drooling over this. I'm surprised you don't see drool marks all over it. I kept touching it. I had to restrain myself from licking it. 

Food trucks.  There were quite a few and they all had long lines.  

Picked up some really cool wooden coasters with images from Cleveland. From Foundry Woodprints

I got a FREE hammer!!  It didn't have a price.  When I asked...the guy told me I could have it.  He said he didn't want to throw it out so he just put in on the table for decoration.  It was from Yellow Door Goods.  They always have really cool things but I never get there early enough to buy them.  They sell out early. 

I also got this old mold for making bricks.  It is going to be great on the wall used as shelves.  

All in all a good day at The Cleveland Flea.  If I would have had Lou with me I might have picked up more stuff.  I just couldn't carry some of the other stuff.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

58 days until Bead and Button

The Bead and Button show is only 58 days away.  It's coming up quickly.  Below is the line-up of classes that Cristina Leonard and I will be teaching

The first class, on Monday, June 1st, is our Shadow Box Pendant in PMC 960.  It is a two layer pendant with a built in shadow box and tube bail. It's a fun class and you get with work with PMC 960 which is a combination of fine and sterling silver.

The second class, on Tuesday June 2nd, is our Forged and Twisted Bronze Bracelets, Earrings, and Rings class.  This is great class because you get to use a hammer and FIRE...something every girl should know how to handle.  

The third class is on Wednesday, June 3rd.  The Forged and Twisted Bronze Bracelet class is a shorter version of Tuesday's class with a focus totally on bracelets.  And did I say that you get to work with FIRE.

The fourth class, on Thursday June 4th, is our Forged and Stamped Pendant and Earrings.  It's a great class to learn fabrication techniques.  You will learn to use metal shears, forge, stamp, texture, and rivet. Valuable techniques that you will use over and over. 

Bead and Button is always a great show.  If you like to make jewelry and have never attended this show you owe it to yourself to go.  

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Great Books

I picked up a couple of books in the last few weeks.  The first is "Senufo: Unbound".  This book is the show catalog to the exhibition, "Senufo: Art and Identity in Western Africa" at the Cleveland Museum of Art.  It is a large book and has 287 pages filled with photos from the exhibition.  It provides amazing inspiration.  You can get it now at the CMA book store or pre-order on Amazon.  If you can't make it to the exhibition, the book is the next best thing.

The other book has been around for a long time but I finally picked it up.  "The History of Beads" is also a large book with 396 pages. I've been wanting this for a while.  I am going to enjoy reading about the beads I have been collecting for so long.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

My Marketing Plan

Last year at Bead and Button my friends did an intervention.  I think it went something like this ...."We want to talk to you about your marketing plan".  I started laughing because I haven't had anything up on Etsy for a couple years. Since December I've been putting items up on Etsy and I now have 22 pieces.  That is big for me.

I am constantly working on improving the photography.  For right now I have a rhythm going. I stopped taking pictures at night using lights.  Instead I am taking them during the day taking advantage of our corner windows in the dining area.  Because I work this limits the days I can take pictures to Saturday and Sunday.  And the timing is critical.  I shoot in the morning before the sun comes streaming through the windows.

One of these days I need to switch from my little point and shoot to Lou's DSLR. step at a time.

Here are a few of things that I have on my Etsy site.