Friday, July 29, 2011

Of bees and beads (Inspired by Nature: Bees)

This week the Inspired by Nature Challenge is about Bees.  Here is my submission. 

Here is my stylized bumblebee. The most classy bumblebee you'll see, says me ;) Can you tell we read a lot of Dr. Seuss?!

The Flower Pendant and beads were made my your truly and the lampwork is from JulsBeads.

As my regular readers know I am endeavoring to take more interesting and better photos of my work so here are the matching earrings to the necklace in several different settings. What do you think? Got a favorite? Let me know in the comments section. I am discovering that when it comes to photography the favorite of the audience is not always that of the photographer! Speaking of photos, the Tropical Blonde Photo Challenge is still accepting entries for the theme "Children" this week. I am allowing *2* entries per person this week! You can also vote for your favorite "Fauna" entry until Sunday night.

To see more of the Inspired by Nature Jewelry Challenge check us out on Flickr.  Also, Heather Powers is having a heat induced beady breakdown and is GIVING away a massive bundle of her amazing beads. You really won't want to miss this.

Finally, a huge, happy thank you to Lisa Crone over at A Bead a Day for her kind words about my work. Check out her blog to see what she said!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

BTW 7/27/11

This week I am SO excited to say that my very first batch of JulsBeads is on my beading table! If you hurry you might be able to snap up some her beads over in her Etsy store. She just added some awesome sets for only $15! That is artisan made, unique lampwork totally covered in awesome sauce  (and rinsed in fairy pee according to the description) for $15. Made by this chick that makes me snort my drink out of my nose almost every time I read her blog.  Seriously.

 Here you can see he beads which I am planning to pair with my Flower Pendant (available in multiple colors for you on Etsy). I also have plans for the seemingly disembodied wings because this piece is most likely going to be entered in the Inspired by Nature Challenge for this week.

 Here is actually the finished piece from the IBN challenge last week which was also on my BTW post as I was working on these mushrooms that day.

I have to say I was a little dubious when I started but I am thrilled with the way it finally came together. Even if the hubs did observe that I am having a "lopsided phase". I did inform him that we like the term asymmetrical much better than "lopsided". My preference was duly noted and has been implemented ever since ;)

Don't forget to check out this week's Photo Challenge! The theme is "Children" and I have had such a great response I am taking DOUBLE ENTRIES. That's right. You can send me 2 pics this week because trying to choose just one of these sweetie pies is just too darn difficult!

Hop over to Flickr and check out other Bead Table Wednesday participants to for more beady works in progress.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

New Photo Challenge Theme


Email your entry to by Sunday night the 31st of July.  Pictures do not have to be of your own children but the photo must have been taken by you.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Color Photo Challenge Winner is....

Anna Lear (number 2)!  

Your photo will appear in my side bar this week along with a link to your blog.

Here are all  the entrants for the Color theme along with their websites (if they have one).  

The blog buttons for these challenges are up and running so check them out in my side bar and grab one!

1. Ashlee Wilkinson. A lot of people loved the creativity of this shot!

3. Cara Jane

4. Hannah Gardenghi

5. Mandy at The Pocket Banana (isn't that the cutest name?!)

6. Brenda Coats of The Broken Quill.

7. Paul Gardenghi (the hubs) at

 8. Courtney Breul of Bead by Breul.

I need to revisit my weekly timeline for these Challenges so as of right now I will post the new Fauna Challenge entrants later today and tomorrow I will post the next theme for you to be sending to me this week.  Have an awesome Monday!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

It's an unplanned laundry day because...

...this adorable, cuddly, lovable little booger remembered his long lost Optimus Prime transformer was outside in the garden and he went out first thing this morning to get it. What I failed to realize was that it had been out there for DAYS and when he so lovingly came in to show me his prize he dumped about 50 EARWIGS IN MY BED!! Ok maybe it was more like 20 but that early in the morning and IN MY BED means there were a LOT of earwigs, people! Needless to say, I have much washing of bed linens to do today plus I keep finding the little critters scattered around because some of them got away. grrr.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

BTW 7/20/11

BTW 7-20-11

Today I am working on some new beads inspired by the Inspired by Nature Challenge over at Humblebeads.  This weeks inspiration photo stopped me dead in my tracks for a couple reasons.  First, the colors in the photo are some of my all time favorites. And then the mushrooms themselves. I always have ideas percolating in my brain for new beads and products but sometimes they don't go any further than ideas because something better or just more convenient comes along. Mushrooms have been like that for me. I think they are cute and all but I just never really had an idea that hit me that I really loved.  Until this week.  I am just playing with ideas at the moment, rough drafts and product development if you will. But the important this is that I like where I am headed.

Also, the new theme for the weekly Photo Challenge is up!  Check out this week's awesome entries for the "color" theme and vote for your favorite too.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Photo Challenge Theme

This week's Photo Challenge Theme is "Fauna".  
Wildlife, domestic pets, insects, arachnids....whatever (no kids, they'll have their own week ;)).

Just as an interesting aside, all the baby robin pictures were taken with my Android phone (first generation) because the nest is almost touching the ceiling of my patio and my big camera can't see into it.  I think, under the circumstances that's pretty amazing.

Here are a few ideas!

Click on any photo to see the large size.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Still Time To Enter!

I have to work "for real" all day today so I am leaving one last call for this week's Photo Challenge!  Get your entry in to me by emailing kathryn7 at gmail dot com. I will be setting up the post to vote on all the entries and post it on Monday. Read the Photo Challenge post here.  I am also working on some blog buttons for the participants which I will also put up on Monday. Happy snapping!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

BTW 7/13/11

These babies were a custom order from a friend. Once they were finished though they ended up being a little longer and heavier than we expected so I am going to make some adjustments to them and most likely end up with several bracelets to coordinate.

This awesome lady randomly stopped by my house this morning and took all my boys on a walk. Does she rock or what?! Thanks, Mom!!
This photo is a year old at least...just so you don't think this is her "walking outfit" ;)

And now they are due back any minute and we're headed for some water fun. Have a great Wednesday! Hop over to the group on Flickr to see what everyone has on their tables.

Also, I have thrown out my first Photo Challenge! Check it out and's not just for beaders ;)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Photo Challenge

Last week I mentioned hosting a challenge of my own inspired by some of those that I have been participating in like the ABS Monthly and Inspired by Nature. As I pondered how to present this challenge my first thought was to make it centered around beads and jewelry since I think most of my readers are so inclined. But then I got to thinking that many of you are already participating in various swaps, hops, challenges and it being summer many have kids to entertain (or at least keep from killing each other) so I wanted to do something that is a little different.

So I present my Photo Challenge!

Here's how it goes:

1. I will post a theme, hopefully each Monday.

2. You email me a picture (that YOU took) to kathryn7 dot gmail dot com. I don't care if it's old, new, taken on the most expensive Nikon ever or taken with your crappy flip phone camera. It just has to be YOUR photography.

3. The next Monday I will post all the photos (without names on them) and you vote for the one you like the best (your own or's up to you). Voting will be open for the business week ending on Friday.

4. By the following Monday I will post all the pictures again with credit and links to your blog or website (if you have one, if not I'll just post your name)

5. I will post the winner's photo in my side bar for the week with a link to their site until the next winner is chosen.

So, come one, come all and enter your photo in the first Photo Challenge on Tropical Blonde! Tell your friends on Facebook, Twitter, post to your blog....the challenge is open to anyone.

The first theme is...

The subject can be anything at all (ok, adult content, please). The only requirements are that YOU took the photo and that it is in color. Have fun!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Random mojo

Yay! I won the randomly picked drawing for the Inspired by Nature Challenge over atHumblebeads!! My post about my entries is here. Thanks, Heather! Also, check out the other entries on the Flickr group.

Just a quickie fun post today. You guys seemed to love the supportive, jewelry sporting husband I have so I thought you might like to see that he's rubbing off on my boys.

Check out their own accessories. Isaac is wearing a fossilized shark tooth and Jason's is a skull bead. Am I lucky or what?! I have the shark's tooth listed already, skull necklaces will hopefully follow!

Saturday, July 09, 2011

ABS July

Morning in the Garden at Vaucresson, by Edouard Vuillard 1923 reworked 1938
distemper on canvas, 59 ½ by 43 5/8 inches
Catharine Lorillard Wolfe Collection, Wolfe Fund, 1952

This month's challenge over at the Art Bead Scene is inspired by this painting.

Here is my submission called "Garden Party". It's never to early to party in my book!

ABS Challenge July '11

My piece includes my own art beads (Pink Garden Lentils and Flower Pendant which I put an extra hole in to make it a connector).

I also used some of my most recent Bead Soup beads to fashion my own leaves and bring in that rust color from the roof in the painting.

Finally, I took 3 shades of sari silk and braided them before wrapping them in wire to get that contained wildness feel that I get from the art. I strung the rust colored ceramic spacers on the silk before weaving them together and added the green seed beads to mimic pieces of greenery clinging to a trellis (or whatever you call those wire guiding thingees...can you tell I do jewelry NOT gardening?!).

Check out the other submissions here on Flickr.