Archive for March, 2008

New Bead/Jewelry Project

Sunday, March 30th, 2008

I took a bead class yesterday – great teacher, great project and great instructions!  Here is a photo of it:


I love Jenni Bowlin!  I have that yellow rose leftover from her calendar project kit from january.  The pendant looked best photoed against that.  Now for a close up of the wonderful pendant with a Swarovski cut crystal (3omm!) in the middle (see how its multicut?  I chose the golden shadow I think so its got a nice vintage tone to it.  Now I just have to make it into a necklace.


And you see the little bit of glass behind that?  Carole told me where she got these great cupcake/dessert holders.  She puts her lovely pincushions in them.  I set them up for easter (and will now have to clean the one of glitter – but thats a whole other subject).


And what did I put in them for Easter?  I found the moss rock eggs that Teresa McFayden had shown – those are too funny!  Plus I can leave them up all through the rest of the spring, probably summer and into fall.  I so love green and moss so this is a great combination.  In the taller one I put the easter eggs I made following Amy’s instructions.  I sent off some of them to my sister with earrings inside for her and the girls.  I also sent one to my Bellitoria exchange partner.  (I haven’t heard from her – getting worried that the package has not arrived!).  I used a lot of that great vintage ribbon from Carole that is gradated from gold to pale yellow or purple to pale violet.  And for most of them I used a vintage piece of jewelry to decorate, but mine have flowers on them…still look good!  (Oh and that cupcake display stand is now COVERED in glitter!)


Don’t you just love those displays?  Carole is so creative – makes it always an experience to visit her ribbon shop!

Storing pieces of vintage jewelry for reuse

Saturday, March 29th, 2008

So I have been collecting interesting items in the way of jewelry and using them on different objects or in new jewelry.  Ok, I admit it – I seem to be addicted to rhinestones at the moment.  You can’t tell by what I wear of late but I seem to be drawn to shiny things!  Or is it because I live in Las Vegas?

So one of the blogs that motivates me is Seeking Everyday Beauty & Velvet Strawberries.  If you look at the blog entry titled Oh and one more you will see Andrea’s find for storing her pieces/parts.  (And a great collection of pieces/parts.)

I hunted high and low at two local Michaels but never saw this – probably was looking in the wrong area.  And I was in and out of several Tuesday Mornings looking for something like it and had no luck.  I did buy a substitute at Michaels but it was not deep enough.  So I just thought to put the idea in the back of my mind and hope someday to find a similar item.  Now while at Tuesdays I did buy what I thought was a drawer divider of sorts for the kitchen tool drawer.  Why I thought that was what it was is beyond me – I found it in the craft aisle.  (Isn’t it great they have a CRAFT aisle?  I have tassels collected from there that I am hoarding, lol.  They make great package tops for little kids – fun to play with!)

I unwraped/unsealed the drawer divider and was checking it for fit only to realize it has a COVER.  And said COVER slides off!  Well, by chance I bought the correct item to store those jewelry bits so I can see them but have them protected.  Here is a shot of it with the lid partially open that I took to show a friend how the cover worked (look at where the bubblewrap is NOT and you will see a shadow of the cover):


I think it will work!  And the wood color matches the wood in my workroom.  Sometimes you accidently discover what you are looking for all along.

Speaking of jewelry – Martha did pearl dying yesterday on her show.  Martha did it with Rit Dyes.  What I loved were the gradations of the pearls but Martha made me think that the powder dyes of Rits that I ignore should not be.  Her staff is so creative.  And then she stitched them on Silk ribbon and tyed it around her neck.  Look at the instructions or the video to the project – Pearls by Martha.  I bet this will work with real pearls too?   I have a lot of freshwater ones…


Storage ideas

Sunday, March 23rd, 2008

I do occasionally come up with some good organizational techniques.  (I just need to get them all at the same time and with time to implement them.)

So – controlling beads and keeping the space down – here is one of my techniques:


These were coca cola trays that I spray painted a neutral silver.  Then I used the watchman’s storage cases to separate the crystals.  And how do they stay there?  Well I helped them – I glued a magnet on the back of each of the containers (oh – BEFORE putting in the crystals – those lids don’t always hold!).


I can stack the trays on top of each other.  Easy to carry and easy to see at a glance what I have.

So then controlling and separating my stones from my beads is another problem.  Here is how I store those.  Of note – I usually have the drawers closed but I wanted you to see they really are full of stones.


My sorting approach on these – by color.  I just could not come up with another method to sort by.  So drawers have sophisticated titles as – Pink, blue, green, black – oh I have two called pearls…so I do have different colors in those drawers.  The sign turned sideways?  Well its a mix of two colors, lol. 

This is a CD holder that looks like the old file card systems in libraries.  Fairly shallow drawers – maybe 4 inches?

I have one other way of storing beads but that will wait for another day…

Ribbon Store

Sunday, March 23rd, 2008


I am lucky to have a friend who runs that lives close by.  First off, Carole is a FOUNTAIN of information and knowledge.  Just walking through her “store” is enough to inspire anyone.  She has ideas planted throughout to show you what you can do with the ribbon.  And some of the ribbon – oh to die for.  Oh heck, ALL OF THE RIBBON is to die for, lol.

Romantic Notions - sample idea

Do you see – Carole is always checking ribbon for “pull” capability.  Its amazing how many you can pull and it gathers itself!  Aren’t those great ribbons too?  I love ribbons that are gradations, give any project great movement.

Carols storeribbonstoretj maxx heads

Of course I shot these photos a long time ago – Carole has since rearranged the store since she has acquired some new antique store cabinets.  (New to her, but definitely antique!)    On the last shot above – don’t you love the heads?  Carole found those at TJMaxx I think – she just has ribbons dripping out like hair.  I think the heads were supposed to be plant holders.  And the cases below are antiques.  So nice to view the ribbons through.

ribbon storecarols-store-shot-5-spa.gifcarols-store-shot-7-vin.gifcarols-store-shot-8.gif

Now – Carole really is an on-line store.  She sells mainly through ebay – at –

Having said that – if you are ever in Las Vegas its worth asking if you can visit this treasure.  And believe it or not – its her GARAGE.  Ok – so it has its own AC and its a SIX car deep garage, but it blows your mind when you walk through the door.

Bellatoria Exchange – what I sent!

Sunday, March 23rd, 2008

Got packages done and mailed today for the kids for Easter.  It sure would be nice to deliver them in person. 

I also got the packge off to my Bellatoria “queen”.  That was a lot of fun.  I made everything in some way or another – mostly altering things.

I included a great card that has a woman on the cover, with a crown (of course!), saying – “The world does Revolve around me!”, lol.  Her website is

So I went with the “queen” theme.  I don’t know anything about my receiver so I had to make some assumptions -went with a mediums shirt hoping that if she was small and/or a smart dresser she could use it when painting or something to cover clothing.  If its too small I can swap it back…hopefully I will hear from Lori soon and can ask these questions (thus the reason I included my email address!).


Then I did earrings – again I assumed she had pierced ears since so many people do now.  If not I can replace it with a bracelet – but would need wrist size for that!  (Nothing is ever totally easy you know?)  You can see the stones in the above shot.  They are an opal type stone and so do not photo well so that shot is the best I can do.  But boy do the sparkle next to your ear.  I think I used swarovski purple with a finish to highlight the color.  (Isn’t purple the “royal” color?)

 I love the clothes pins that World Market puts out for Easter.  This year there were frogs.  So of course I had to make a frog prince!  He was the clip that held the “tiffany” egg package.    It was an egg decorated in the method that had put out a while ago – a plastic egg covered with vintage book paper, glittered and then wrapped with great ribbon and a button/jewel in the center.  I put the earrings inside the egg.  I put the egg inside a corsage bag (love those bags – you see thru it but it controls the gilter loss to inside the bag, versus all over the box!) and I used the prince frog clothes pin to close the bag.  Oh – I made the frog into a prince using a german scrap 6-pointed star and folded it in half, rolled it and it looked like a crown!

 And the final item – my favorite (although that crown was hard to cut and the earrings I have to admit I wanted to keep them!)…oh so the final item – I did a frenchwire rose roll pillow.  Now the pillow came from Walmart (went in to get the glue for the “tiffany” egg and came across this!) and the top piece came off making it so easy to do the work on!  I need to go see if they still have those!  I loved the “daimond” design on the ends too.  Great little pillow in neutrals!  Ok so I used french wire ribbons just recently purchased from


So my theme was all “queen”:

shirt – royal clothing

frog clothes pin – well just in case the prince hadn’t showed up yet

pillow – to rest the weary head that wears the crown of course

earrings in the egg – royal jewels stored in a royal box

And today I fixed the clock on these posts to my time instead of 7 hours ahead.

Next thing to learn on bloggins is changing the picture at the top!


Thursday, March 13th, 2008

First off – it feels like spring.  I keep getting flowers and enjoying them – right now its Irises!


And Easter is coming so I had to do an Easter basket of sort, but I wanted something that could stay out all spring…


That little bird is from One Hundred Wishes…love it!

Since I had an hour to kill before my appointment I decided it was time to visit Savers – haven’t been there in forever.  So I went in looking for linen napkins, and ended up with WAY more.  I hit the side wall and found a lot of FLOWERS, a bag of egs (that turned out to be a steal – there was at least one smaller egg in each of them…sometimes TWO), some neat deck style cards – I espeically love the “cookie” cards, organzas and the trays.

It turns out I picked up most of the missing pieces for the last two projects on Bellatoria, one of which I had not SEEN yet.  The one tray on the left is PERFECT for Project #4 of Bellatoria.  Can’t wait to do it.  And those gold roses – I want to glitter them, I think they will turn out beautifully. 



Thing a day – no idea what number this one was!

Wednesday, March 12th, 2008

T-shirts for the girls…I was trying new paints, new stencils, new techniques and thought why not make some t-shirts that should wear to great patterns as washed.  I like the results of Lauras, and Suzannes.  I like the concept of Emilys but think I chose the wrong colors…



Suzannes – I love the little pink rectangle – Suzanne hates pink so I am “EASING” it into her wardrobe…lol.  And the way the black bled so I made it more of a grunge look.


Lauras – this one is my favorite I think.  I love paisleys.


Project #5 – Jeans

Wednesday, March 12th, 2008

Ok this is a project I have been working on for months.  It took a while to get the settings for the sewing machine correct for this project!  I am actually working on three pairs for my nieces.

Here is Suzanne’s without any decoration on the leg.


First lesson (which I knew and had prepped for) was that it needs to be a special bobbin because I had to loosen the tension so the decorative thread would pull fairly easily from the case.   The second lesson learned much harder was to run the embroidery really slow.  The third lesson learned harder was to ALWAYS watch this type of work on a finished piece of clothing. 


After getting that all done I learned the choice of interfacing was more important than I thought!  I knew it had to be tear away and to use a temporary adhesive to hold the leg, but I did not think to make it a dissolvable one – that would have been much easier.  I had to pull out as much of the tear away as I could and then wash, wash, wash, wash them (in between pulling out tear away) before I could move onto the next step.


I still can’t get out all the tear away I used…its been long more than a day project – I wash and wash and wash.  At this point I best get these to the girls so they can get some use out of them.  I am not attaching the rinestones because I am not sure if I would be attaching them to the jeans or to the tear away and they then could become lose in my sister’s pride and joy (her laundry machine!).

Ok Laura’s jeans:


Suzannes jeans – I enhanced the left photo because it is a really good blend!


And Ms. Emily’s jeans of which there is some tearaway still there but some of this is the pattern too…honest:


Easter Project

Monday, March 10th, 2008

I saw this on another blog and thought it was such a cute idea that I had to make one.  Ok, its me – so I had to make TWO.  Well to get the variety of colors for the wreath I had to buy enough for two anyway…so I made two.  And I still have a couple boxes of little chicks available…lol.

My own “kit” contents:


And the results:


Now the question is which one do I like better?  I think its the one where all the chicks are upright…the other they seem to be “circling” a target?  Hmm – maybe I need to find a “rabbit” to put in the middle, or a scared coyote?

Thing a Day – Project 2 – Valentines Mobile

Monday, March 10th, 2008

I have been keeping up my decorations until I photoed this.  Time to switch since we are in March already.  I did, of course, have to make more than one.  So now I have one extra to make into a gift next year.

Here was the kit contents:


I didn’t use all of them, but most.  Not sure my photo does it justice:


Since I made two I added a bit of my own supplies into the kit.  Loved digging thru treasures!