Bead Soup Party - the LAST day

Oh no - what will I do tomorrow? Enjoy this for the last time (and go over Lori's blog and keep asking her to repeat this soon :)).

Here are the last creative ladies that prepared some soup for you.

85. Melissa, One-Eared Pig Beads
86. Rebecca, 2SistersBeadwork
87. Karyn, Releases by Rufydoof
88. Denise, Bling on the Blog
89. Doris, Glaszwerg
90. Megan, Churchy & Her Sailor
91. Jo, Daisychain Designs
92. Jen, VanBeads Jewelry and Design
93. Kristie, Artisan Clay
94. Jess, Vintaj
95. Suzann, Beadphoria
96. Sharon, Sharon's Jewelry Garden
97. Michelle, bMichelle

Instant happiness

I knew it before, but somehow it struck me another time today. If I get a little beading in my daily rountine and make something (even the most simple design) it provides me with instant happiness. I felt tired and mentally stuck those past weeks, and often could not motivate myself for the most simple things. So as promised, baby was cooperative today, took a nap at lunchtime, and in a half hour I made this bracelet.

Now look at this. It is red. It has a heart. This is so not me. Maybe it was because I was wearing red pants today (do you have days when you realize one colkor attracts your attention? I only realized it because these past months I dressed myself and the baby in the same color without realizing, and figured it out only when people asked me....)

I like it. It's cute and simple (it was a short nap, so I did not have a lot of time to go through my stash upstairs, but had to work with what was sitting down here closeby).

Then after I was so motivated I went to the home improvement store and picked up the Dremel Versaflame we ordered for my birthday (enameled beads, headpins, here I come). Strangely enough when a woman with a baby shows up the only thing that three (yes 3!) guys had to say: " oh, so you will make Creme Brulee tonight!" with a big smile that kind of went away when I said "No I need to melt some silver".

After that I went to the garden center and bought three cart loads of flower, then came home, cut the hedge, cleaned out the weeds in the veggie garden, and then bathed the baby.

Beading provides instant happiness and energy. And tomorrow I will meet with Stefanie and we will play a bit with our beads. Stay tuned for pictures.

Bead Soup Party 2 - Reveal Day 7

Only one more day to go. And good news - I am working on a new piece to be posted soon. I need to admit that it is not one from my left over bead soup, but a necklace I will make for a colleague and friend of mine. We were on a business trip to Detroit last year and I sucked her into the beauty of Michael's.... although she does not even know how to string a bead, she bought quite a few elements that have been sitting in her closet since then. So yesterday I wore one of the bracelets she made, and she said she wants to buy it (also good news). And then she pulled out her Michael's treasures (which immediately make me start to drool, since I am dieing to go back there - which are by the way really not my style, but anyways), and what a surprise I had my tools with me and started a piece but I was missing the right things to get the necklace done. We will have a combined Nick & Nicki birthday party next friday, and will have some people over for a BBQ - but the garden and the house are a mess, so I am afraid that the weekend will be reserved for that. But maybe I get to finish it today, if baby will have a cooperative lunch time nap.

In the meantime - the second last bead soup reveal:

72. Cindy, Cindy Dolezal Designs
73. Valerie, Hot Art
74. Courtney, Beads by Breul
75. Johanna, Fire Phoenix Creations
76. Shea, gr8findings
77. Julie, Pryce Designs
78. Jeannie, Jeannie's Blog
79. Patricia, Verre Design
80. Christa, Adventures of One Beady Woman
81. Heather, My Muse
82. Susan, Night Beader at Large
83. Sonja, Drachenei
84. Jennifer, Glass Addictions by Jennifer

Bead Soup Party 2 - Reveal Day 6

Believe it or not - It's bead soup day today.

Here are more and more and more jewels to be admired.
Have you picked a favorite out of all of them yet (I did but shhh - I even have an Excel Spreadsheet - that's how freaky I am).

60. Carol, Carol Bradley Designs
61. Wanda, A Frayed of Fibers
62. Diana, Vintage Blue Studio
63. Marieke, Marieke's Blog
64. KJ, Silver Parrot
65. Maire, Maire Dodd
66. Shannon, Miss Fickle Media
67. Dana, Dana's Jewelry Designs
68. Charlene, The Bead Dreamer
69. Elisabeth, Beads for Busy Gals
70. Cathryn, Chile Cats
71. Missy, Melissa Rappaport

Bead Soup Party 2 - Reveal Day 5

This does not end.... Today is Day 5 (out of 8, yes 8 reveal days).

48. Nan, Spirit Rattles
49. Amy, Copper Diem
50. Malin, Beading by Malin de Koning
51. Anne, Gardanne Glass Lampwork
52. Alice, Alice's Beads and Baubles
53. Barbara, Second Surf
54. Amanda, Articulations
55. Heather, Humble Beads
56. Melissa, Melissa Meman, Art, Life, Love
57. Kate, Organic Odysseys
58. Patti, PJ Clark Designs
59. Stefanie, Stefanie's Sammelsurium

I did not visit any of the blogs yet, but go visit Stefanie's for sure (I had a sneak peak at her piece since she lives close to me, and I can tell you I really love it).

My bead partner Rebecca of Songbeads has posted her necklace and bracelet late last night, but it is gorgeous, so please go and visit her blog HERE.

On a side note, we went to the hospital with Meli today for a check up of her birth mark, and they said they suggest no treatment since it is already regressing. So good news - good day.

Bead Soup Party 2 - Reveal Day 4

First of all - thank you guys a ton for all those wonderful comments on my bead soup. That is what makes it really worth it (besides having a great piece of jewelry). It feels like my addiction reached a new level.

Now go and enjoy the next winning designs for today:

37. Filomena, Pink Velvet Bird
38. Lyn, Lyn Foley
39. Tari, Pearl and Pebble
40. Rebecca, Song Beads (GO VISIT MY BEAD SOUP PARTNER!)
41. Regina, Regina's Writings
42. Nancy, The Rabbit Muse
43. Whitney, Whitney Lassini
44. Maria, Garden Path Beads
45. Michelle, Life in the Bead Lane
46. Ann, My Critical Eye
47. Lisa, Lucid Moon Studio

Denise is having a MONSTER giveaway

Denise Yezbak-Moore is giving away 7.5 pounds of beads worth over 350 USD. I am speechless. Visit her blog and go play to get some (!) beads.
I might not be able to play out of Germany, but I want to let you guys know about the giveaway for sure, so you don't miss it. Good luck everybody.

My reveal

Ok - drumroll..... here is my finished bead soup result.

My lovely partner Rebecca of Songbeads has sent me a lot of beads (see pictures here). I need to say that I felt challenged, as I usually don't work with small beads. When I first started I sketched down a number of designs, but couldn't decide what I wanted to make. I actually have started a few other pendants that will turn into full projects to be published here at a later date. But then yesterday (I know I waited til the last minute), I finally settled on this one. I need to say I struggled. I wanted to stretch myself and create something that I will absolutely love. I am not sure what you ladies think, but I really like it right now. I must have taken this thing apart about 10 times yesterday, but now I think it was worth it.

So what's new for me:
1) Use of three different metals in one piece (copper, silver and gunmetal wire).
I always thought this does not work - must be wrong. But I wanted to try. What do you think - does it look wrong for you?
2) Using copper sheet metal.
I had this self adhesive copper sheet metal for some time, but didn't use it. I know that the execution part will hopefully improve over time, but I think for a first try it is not so bad (see the copper bar on the necklace and the ring).

3) The dark blue beaded sweetwater pearl flower.
I saw those a few times, but have never tried one. It was actually fairly easy, and I think it looks cute.

4) The BWB.
I invented the beaded wire bead. (Ok, let me dream for one more moment - I know I can't patent it, and people have probably done something like this before). I love the beaded beads that some of my friends are making, but I do not have their small fingers, so I thought it might work with wire as well. Plus it allowed me to use some more of Rebecca's smaller beads.

5) Using sari silk ribbon.
I actually got this from Stefanie at one of our last dates. I have never used it, but right after finishing this post, I will go buy some on Etsy.

6) Trying to make a 3D-pendant.
The wonderful lampwork bead I received from Rebecca is very large, and I wanted to make it the center of the piece. But since the rest was more delicate, it needed a kind of 3D frame. Like it? I know - remember I said "trying"

7) The gunmetal chain.
I wire-wrapped all of those links to create a knotted wire chain, which I think works well with the messy barbed wire look of the pendant.

8) Last but not least: the ring.
With copper wire, sari ribbon, one of Rebecca's glass beads, and some copper foil. Definetely not a ring to carry the baby around (and get stuck with the ring), rather for a elegant dinner in a restaurant (where you do not have to move your hands a lot). I know it is kind of high, but that's the way I wanted it to be.

Am I going the right way ladies, or is this too freaky?
Thanks for your honest feedback - please leave a comment, and then go visit the other wonderful creations of our bead soup party friends. And thanks again to Rebecca for being so generous and to Lori for that wonderful party - when can we do the next one?

Bead Soup Party 2 - Reveal Day 3

Just a quick note - there are the next 10 ladies revealing today.

27. Lisa, Alterity
28. Dale, Dales' Flights of Fancy
29. Melanie, Kookie Designs
30. Christine, A Hot Piece of Glass
31. Nancy, Beading From the Heart
32. Laurel, Rue's Daftique
33. Sandi, Do Be Do Bead Do
34. Nicki, Nicki's Reef (DON'T MISS THIS ONE)
35. Virginie, ViviBijoux
36. Janeen, Wild Vanilla

And stay tuned for my reveal at about 10 am EST / 4 pm German time. I have to do a little work this morning, but my piece got finished yesterday and I LIKE IT.

Bead Soup Party 2 - Reveal Day 2

View the next wonderful 13 ladies exposing their designs:

14. Jen, Jen Judd Rocks
15. Kella, Me But a Little More In Depth
16. Emanda, Artemisia Studio
17. Marie, Skye Jewels
18. Loretta, Designs By Loretta
19. Stacy, Sissy and Jack's
20. Joanna, Filcowe
21. Diane, Diane Hawkey
22. Marianna, Pretty Shiny Things
23. Anna, The Laughing Raven
24. Marcie, La Bella Joya
25. Lois, Que Onda Q'town?
26. Jayne, Mama's Got To Doodle

Ok ladies - one more day and it's me.... I guess I better make my last decisions today on how to complete this thing.

Songbeads' giveaway

My bead soup partner Rebecca of Songbeads has won Cristi's "Go"-necklace (she is so lucky) and she is having a giveaway to pass the happiness on. You can win a wonderful book called "Four seasons of beading". I don't have it and really would like to get this. If I win, I will host a giveaway myself. Hop over to Rebecca's blog to play along.

Bead Soup Party 2 - Reveal Day 1

Get this party started on a Saturday night
Everybody's waitin' for me to arrive
Sendin' out the message to all of my friends
We'll be lookin' flashy in my Mercedes Benz
I got lotsa style, got my gold diamond rings
I can go for miles if you know what I mean......

Ok, maybe not for me only. I will be up for the reveal on Monday.

But enjoy the creations of 12 fabulous designers who will post their pieces later today (US time zone....):
1. Lori, Pretty Things
2. Lorelei, Lorelei1141
3. Norma, Moonlit Fantaseas
4. Beth, EB Bead and Metalworks
5. Katie, KatieBead
6. Kimberly, Bahama Dawn
7. Debbie, Prairie Emporium
8. Lisa,
Joolz by Lisa
9. Kate, Tropical Blonde
10. Janet, Singing Woods
11. Julianna, Juls Beads
12. Erin, Treasures Found

I can't wait for tonight to see all the nice creations. I might go check if somebody posted already. See you later.

Lucidmoonstudio's giveaway

Sorry I can't come up with better titles. Lisa of Lucidmoonstudio is having a super cool giveaway. You can get a chance to win one of her really beautiful resin bracelets or a $ 25 gift certificate to one of her stores. Or you can buy something in her jewelry Etsy store (Lucidmoonstudio) or her NEW Etsy store Lucidmoonsupplies, where she offers the cutest polymer-resins pendants. Plus she is having a 20% off sale for everything in her Lucidmoonstudio Etsy store. Go read the full rules on her blog here.

Psychosomatic bugs and other animals

I had psychosomatic bugs today. I always have them running all over me when I come back from a walk in the fields or forest. Obviously they don't exist, but I can't sit down before taking a shower. I love the walks outside, but they mainly end with Nick saying "go take off your psychosomatic bugs".....

Before the bugs arrive, we took Knoedel, our grey bunny to the vet, since she pulled out a nail yesterday and can't really walk. The doctor said it is not inflamed but the joint is swollen a bit, so she has to take pain killers for 10 days (sometimes I feel I need painkillers too - just kidding). Caspi (black bunny) joined us, because the vet is kind of far away (bunny specialist that we always go to) and so we got them both vaccinated as well. Needless to say we have two very angry ladies hopping around hiding behind the curtain.

One of the other mommies I hang out with called me today and told me that she is missing her cat since Monday. So we thought we go for a walk in our area to see if we would find that cat (hence the walk in the fields and the psychosomatic bugs). Let's hope that Bruno will find his way home soon. His friend Anno is missing him very much.

The party's here!

The bead soup party will start this Saturday. For an entire week almost 100 designers that have joined the party will post their creations. That means over 10 blogs to visit every day. Isn't this fun?
If you are interested who the party people are, hop over to Lori Anderson's Pretty Things Blog here and see the groupings, read the rules and get prepared for the fun.
Mine will be up on Monday June 21st (good that I have some days left, because I am still tweaking it).
So stay tuned for some beady fun.

Giveaway land

I am trying to catch up on my blog reading and it feels like everybody is having giveaways. I even read that some people are passing this time as there are too many. I like this one too though, so I will blog about it - up to you if you want to play (if you don't I have a higher chance to win). So Cristi from 2 if by the sea is giving away the "go" necklace featuring a Jade Scott pendant and lampwork discs and raku nuggets from Blue Seraphim. To win you have a leave a comment and host a giveaway yourself. Interested? Go here to get the "go"-necklace.

Copper Diem Blog Giveaway

I can't believe it - Copper Diem is hosting a blog giveaway. You can win a pound of beads. Yes, that was not a typo. A pound. Do you want it? Jump over to the blog here.

Sale and a giveaway

Artisan Clay is having a 25% off sale and a giveaway. If you want one of her gorgeous pendants (and you should want one - because, yes, you guessed right - I already have one, so I know how cool they are) go visit her blog or her store directly.

The birthday of my best friend ...

.. has given me some headache - what should I give to her? Last year I gave her a voucher for her preferred spa / cosmetic place. Difficult to be topped. Her birthday is tomorrow and since mine is on sunday, we decided that instead of presents, we will spend an evening on the riverfront (yes we have a beach area) and make a picnic and have some champagne. Time is the best gift.

Nevertheless, I had already bought a book for her (the latest one from Minette Walters in german - she loves that writer) - and of course I made her a necklace. While I started off with everything symmetrical at my bead beginnings, I can't do it anymore right now. I love to find the balance of an asymmetrical piece and haven't made anything else in months. But she does not like that. So I tried a little symmetry again. How do you like it? I think she will enjoy it. It includes light and dark wood beads, red glass beads, green chita gemstones, and a few different seed beads.

I wire wrapped the chain and the clasp (that's what I do when I have absolutely no inspiration left in my brain - I can sit for hours and make wire wrapped chain). I came up with this "chain design" if you want to call it like that (I am sure somebody has done something similar before) - it's easy to make and it looks pretty cute I find. I have some left, so that will probably go into a piece for me. Maybe for the bead soup.

Spending an evening with Stefanie

You know by now that I have a new friend: Stefanie from Stefanie's Sammelsurium. She is also playing along in the Bead Soup Party, so we met on Tuesday to discuss our plans for the big reveal. None of us is done with our pieces right now, but we will do our best, both feeling challenged and wanting to create something really special.

While Stefanie and I did some beady talk, her husband / boyfriend made a wonderful dinner that night - Chicken with a red wine, olive and tomato sauce - hmmmm - unfortunately my baby was at home with Nick, crying, so I felt a bit rushed to go back and help them out....

Stefanie made a ring for me that you can see in the (really not so good) picture above. I am not a big fan of the word, but she literally whipped it up in a half hour. The pictures really don't do it justice. I feels really warm on the hand when you wear it due to all this Sari ribbon. I think she should go and sell those - wouldn't you love to own one?

Thanks Stefanie, for the dinner, the evening, the ring and your wonderful company. To many more beady hours...
PS: by the way, her bead soup piece will be really cool I think - the beads she got from Marieke are really gorgeous, and paired with Stefanie's talent, we are waiting for a great piece to be revealed in less than two weeks.

Make a wish at Kella's Creative Wishes

Kella is one of the ladies playing along in Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Party. She asked for feedback on her jewelry, so I really went there for the first time, and fell directly in love with two tiny books that she made. They can be used as pendants.

I received her package yesterday, and I need to say this was the nicest, most wonderful package I ever received. Packaging is adding just a little something to the actual piece, but Kella really went over the top. First I was super curious when I found the envelope in the mailbox....

Then I opened it - and found this. She handstamped the paper, the ribbons are matching the stamped tree and butterfly, the tags are handwritten, and even the business cards are handmade.

Obviously when I opened the little treasureboxes (she should actually go into mass production because these alone would be worth the money), I could not believe how cute these books are in person.

As if this would have not been enough, she added a little gift and put some heart tags in the package as well, made out of this beautiful thick paper. The card reads - thanks for making a wish at Kella's Creative Wishes. That girl really loves what she does, and I think you should all (I mean all!) hop over to her site and show her some love, leave a comment and make a wish (in her store).

Thank you Kella, this truely made my day. I hope I can meet you one day in the UK, and experience that love for your work in person.

To add or not to add...

This is my last post from the Netherlands where we spent our little vacation. Everybody left today, so it was kind of a sad day. Since I have been a kid, I always hated departure days after a school trip or a vacation. We spent the afternoon in the "subtropical swimming paradise" with the baby, which was not so subtropical and not so paradise, but it was fun for the baby. It cleared up afterwards, so we went for a walk later by the beach, and although it was really windy, it was nice.

Earlier in the day I made this bracelet. I love to make jewelry when I am on vacation, so the pieces will always remind me of the nice days spent. I am trying to make bigger things, so while this might still be really small to some of you, for me it is already quite big. And I love it. The question is just if I need to add a little charm on the chain. I am going back and forth with it. Any thought?

About being slow

We are on vacation in the Netherlands and today is our last day. We went with a group of 15 other friends (old and new ones) to a tiny resort (if you can call it resort) by the sea. We have a cute little house with a garden.
We had really nice weather the other days, but today it is really rainy, and the baby seems to be a little sick. Originally we wanted to go swimming to a nearby subtropical swimming paradise, but it seems like my ear infection is coming back and with her being not so good, I am not sure if we will do that. The other guys all left today, except one couple that we will meet for dinner. So it looks like we might go for a small walk later in a closeby village called Zierikzee. And that I get a chance to do some beading, since I did not go to the Creative Summer Fair with Stefanie in Cologne today. I am really missing that, but a) I really have enough beads and b) it would be stupid to drive back one day earlier. Stefanie called me yesterday and said she is really enjoying it though. She will maybe bring some wood beads back for me (= so I will have more wood beads in my collection). I used some the other day, when I made that little bracelet you see in the picture. Funny enough, when I was sitting on the beach with my pliers, and most of the other guys were playing beach volleyball, one of the girls came over to me and said she has done a metalsmithing course in Cologne and she is making jewelry. Stefanie and I talked about taking that class maybe in July or August. She wore a gorgeous pendant that she made, so maybe I will come up with something cool too.

When I sat on the beach there, I was working on my beads soup. It is a real challenge to me, since Rebecca was super kind and sent me so many beads that I have several designs in mind and cannot decide on one. But there is not a lot of time left, so I'll better hurry up. Maybe I will meet with Stefanie and we try to figure it out together.....

Let the sun shine

I have made a statement

There will be no traditional ABS Carnival Blogger Post in June, due to a lot of us bloggers being busy with Bead and Button Show. The unfortunate ones that don't get to go have decided (under the lead of the talented Cindy Gimbrone) to fill the empty space by creating a tribute piece to Bead and Button show: a statement necklace.

Now my statement contains neither a lot of beads nor a lot of buttons, but a lot of wire. For me, it is a true statement though. It is large. It is pink. It contains those wonderful etched lampwork beads from Mermaid Glass.

I tried to get out of my comfort zone (everything I make is small and more delicate), thinking that I will probably never wear this. And guess what? I really love it. It hangs wonderfully around the neck and collarbone, plus it is a totally new shape for me.

Are you curious about more statements? Visit all the blogs below:

Cindy Dolezal Designs

Cindy Gimbrone

Intuitive Sparks by Christine Hansen

Island Girl's Insights

Janel Dudley

Jeannie's Blog

Jen Velasquez

Sharon's Jewelry Garden

Kate Clawson

Marcie Abney

Mary Harding