Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Blue and White, Wine Charms and Crochet Goodies

Welcome to my latest blog. I'm off to sunny South Africa this week-end so you won't hear from me until I get back. It's the first time in about 15 years that I am going back and I am so excited! Just wish I could take my whole family with me. I hope to come back with my creativity rejuvenated. I'm also looking forward to getting inspiration from the traditional African art and handcrafts.

I love it that our team is so diverse. American born CC lived in Thailand prior to moving to Chile, and the Asian influence is so clearly visible in her jewelry. When I saw CC's (Blue and White Wear) beautiful Chinese Ming Blue and White Pendant and Beads Necklace, I was immediately struck by the pendant created from a porcelain Ming Dynasty shard.  Three porcelain hand-painted  round beads flank the silver framed pendant on each side. The characters on the beads represent longevity, happiness, wealth, love, and good fortune.

I love the sentiments expressed in this necklace - what a meaningful gift to give someone you love.

If you like to entertain and you're always running short of wine glasses because your guests keep getting confused as to which is their glass and so take another clean one. Well, Absolutely Kismet has the answer  - a set of 6 wine charms made from seed beads, focal beads and pewter charms. What a great hostess gift, too. These charms fit around most stemware and some coffee mugs. You can also custom order so that you get exactly what you need to dress up your next party! .

Ellen Mackler of GMaEllenCrochetGifts was inspired by her very creative grandmothers and her love

of crochet is a result of their influence. I also love to crochet, so I was very taken by her

Drop Shell Crochet Jangle Bracelet/Necklace . She has crochet natural shell beads on nylon thread. This can be worn as a necklace, wrapped four times for a bracelet or an anklet. The possibilities are endless!  I can imagine this worn with a white sheath dress - what a stunning image!

Please visit these wonderful shops - you will be as amazed and delighted as I was by their creativity.

I look forward to sharing more when I return from South Africa.

Monday, February 13, 2012

When I look at my team members' shops, I am overawed at the variety, novelty and beauty that abounds, and all the artistic talent that is out there.

I felt an immediate kinship with Beader Bubbe as my life is immersed in that of my four precious treasures, ranging in age from 10 to 16. My fourteen year old granddaughter, Micaela, is my constant supporter and design advisor and, in fact, is co- administrator on my FaceBook fan page. I also love to read and Agnes has a wonderful blog for anyone trying to find a good book to lose themselves in. 

My goal is to learn how to use polymer clay and so admire people who are able to produce such professional jewelry. I love the colors on this Rainbow Necklace - they are perfect for lifting our spirits on a gloomy winter day or for enhancing a spring or summer outfit.

Connie Haskell in her Redemption Art Shop has a unique and eclectic collection of wonderful items. If I were an interior designer, I would go no further than this shop. I particularly love the Tea Pot Copper Portugal Vintage.

 With my South African upbringing, tea time was marked in our home every day, and I still get nostalgic when I see beautiful teapots. I remember a copper one in my mother's house.

In her Empty on the Inside shop,  Annie Olverio has a wonderful display of beautiful cards. I love it that they are empty on the inside so that I can write my own message which is always so much more meaningful than a commercial one. Her cards are so varied in design that there is a suitable one for any occasion. In these days of fast living and instant gratification, how special when someone sends you a card that they have actually taken the time to think about the message.

I chose to highlight the Groovy Greeting Card as it is my favorite, but the artwork on each card is stunning!

Enjoy my blog - I'm still grappling with the page formatting, how to mix graphics and text with an easier flow. Any ideas?

Monday, February 6, 2012

Unseasonable Season

Usually at this time of the year, when I look out my windows, all I see is white. This year has been different and even the bulbs are confused and starting to appear. Instead of using the usual winter colors and heavier designs, I'm tempted to go for spring colors. I haven't yet seen a color trend for the next season, but I loved the peach, apricot and coral colors of last year.

In three weeks I'm going to South Africa for a vacation and look forward to the beautiful beaches. Cape Town is one of my favorite places - it certainly rivals California with its spectacular scenery. I'm also hoping be inspired to try different styles in my beading.

This is one of my recent designs. Please give me feedback.