Tuesday, June 26, 2012

♪♫ Corina, Corina ♫♪ and ♪♫Heather Trimlett Too♫♪

To learn more about Corina Tettinger click here.
So I finally broke down and bought Passing The Flame, by Corina Tettinger.  It's been around forever and I think she's done at least 4 editions.  I'd put it off because a) it's pricey, and b) I thought I knew it all.  Well, I actually found it on Amazon used at about 25% off, and then I found out I DIDN'T know it all!  I'm so glad I have it now.  Corina has a new fan too!

Her book was so inspiring because she gave instructions on how to make every bead she pictures in the book.  She writes from the heart so you can almost hear her voice when you read it.

I learned some tips and tricks that I thought I knew how to do, but she showed me a better way to do them........if that makes any sense to you.

One day I'm going to take a class from her while I'm down in Florida where she teaches almost every year.  I'd really just love to meet her.

She sells her beads on her website (click above) and they go just as fast as she posts them.  Her signature bead has a little green frog perched on the side.  A friend of mine has one of her bracelets and it's gorgeous!

Heather Trimlett is another beadmaker who has inspired me.  She is the "Queen of the Twistie!"     To the left are a pair of earrings I bought from her last year at "The Gathering" along with her Twistie Tutorial and the really cool tools that come with it. 
Click here to go to Heather Trimletts website.
Right below are some beads that the "Queen" herself made.  I hope she doesn't mind me showing this picture in my blog.....it's free advertisement! 

One day while reading over Heather's web site I saw her "40 Bead Challenge."  It was a challenge to us beadmakers to stretch our imagination and develop more eye hand muscle coordination.  The deal was to use only 2 colors of glass, a dipped mandrel, fire, and gravity.  No tools allowed, no raised bumps, and all the beads should be round and as close to the same size as possible. Well, this seemed like a pretty good way to stretch my eye hand muscles and see what my imagination could come up with.

I chose CIM Freeman and CIM Tuxedo.  I started out simple and got progressively more complex.  Well, after a while, I did get very bored with just black and blue, and I wanted soooo badly to do some raised dots, but I stuck by the rules.  There was one bonus, there was a reaction between the Tuxedo and Freeman rendering a silver halo effect around the blue, very interesting!  I tried some designs that just came into my brain, I tried the "tried and true" and I ended up with a set of matching beads that I believe I can sell.  These little suckers took me 4 days to make, averaging 10 or so beads a day.  The time consuming part was SLOWLY melting in the dots so as not to distort them.  You can probably spot a few in there where patience escaped me.  And NO, I didn't cheat, I did not make any other types of beads until all 40 were done.  Next time I'm going to use 3 colors and I'm doing raised bumps too. 

Be sure and check out Corina and Heather's websites, there are so many beautiful things to see there and so much to learn......and of course buy!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Just Mailed My Soup to Jane!

My Bead Soup Partner is Jane Haag.  She and I have been in touch, sharing addresses and websites. 

I selected some of my favorite beads with some sweet colors and I already know that she's going to make something absolutely gorgeous with them.

I am now anxiously waiting to see what she sends to me!  She is a silver-smith and she has some really lovely work on her website.  I already know the clasp she will send me will be amazing! 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Bead Soup!

I'm very excited to be a participant in Lori Andersons' Bead Soup Party!  It is my first time and I hope I'm able to put together something interesting for my partner.  

The thing is, I'm not much of a jewelry maker.  I am a lampwork artist and that's where I'd prefer to spend my time.  Now, that doesn't mean I don't have some findings and other necessary supplies to make jewelry, I have to make things with my beads to wear sometimes.  

This past winter, I spent some time with my friend Marie Weulfing who taught me some of her tips and tricks of the jewelry making trade.  She makes lovely pieces, and she's a very good customer!  I'm also one of her good customers since I often give her a handful of my favorite beads and ask her to make me something with them for me. So under her tutelage, I've learned some of the skills I'll need to know to put together something that looks professional.

So in the mean time, I'm on the look out for new ideas  for jewelry designs.  I like to hang out on Etsy and Artfire to look at all the beautiful work that designers put on the web.  There's no end to the inspiration I find there!

While I was in FL this winter, I made so many beads!  I've selected just a few focal beads to show off here.  I will have a hard time deciding which beads I'll send to my partner.  I know that she doesn't have to use all the beads I send to her, but I'm hoping she will.  I'm going to select beads that coordinate.  I'll probably go to Michaels and pick up some cute charms and complimentary elements that should make it easy for my partner to get inspired.