Lampwork Jewelry Contest

Are you in the mood for a contest?..how about 5 of them?..Fellow lampworker Laurie Smith is running a series of contests for both lampworkers that design using their own beads as well as jewelry designers using other artisans lampwork beads.

Check it out..and if you design with your own beads or other artisan made lampwork beads please do enter!

Even if you don't enter take a moment to take a look at the beautiful entries, and vote!


High time for a Makeover!

Thanks everyone for playing along and signing up for the newsletter...I promise you won't be inundated with letters..ha. I'll be doing good to get one a month out but I'll make sure they're news worthy.

Here's the list from random.org and Congratulations to Miss Benita..send me your snail mail and I'll have this bead on its way to your house~

There were 9 items in your list. Here they are in random order:

  1. Benita
  2. Nicole
  3. Leah
  4. Shelley
  5. Shelby
  6. Tracie
  7. Theresa
  8. Coleen
  9. Laurie

Timestamp: 2009-05-25 13:46:05 UTC

on a side note..as an artist I of course enjoy layouts and graphics and am quickly bored with the look of my own site or blog. I've left my site alone for some time but this blog was due for a shake up don't you think? I found the Cutest blog on the Block site yesterday and couldn't resist.


Enter to win the bead!


Sign up today and tomorrow for my newsy newsletter and your name will go into a draw for this flameworked glass bead. Encased sparkling dichroic glass on juicy tangerine~pale blue floral.
A tart little focal. Measures about 18mm.

Sign up box is on the right..


American Idol..

Both Adam and Kris are amazing ~ but this song, 'Mad World' sung by Adam was just achingly beautiful. This isn't the live version but its much better quality. If you didn't get to watch last night..give this a listen.


The art of Lampwork

Lampworking is a type of glasswork that uses a gas fueled torch to melt rods and tubes of clear and colored glass. Once in a molten state, the glass is formed by blowing and shaping with tools and hand movements. It is also known as flameworking or torchworking, as the modern practice no longer uses oil-fueled lamps. Although the art form has been practiced since ancient Syrian (1 Century B.C., B. Dunham) times, it became widely practiced in Murano, Italy in the 14th century. In the mid 19th century lampwork technique was extended to the production of paperweights, primarily in France, where it became a popular art form, still collected today. Lampworking differs from glassblowing in that glassblowing uses a blowpipe to inflate a glass blob known as a gob or gather, thereby inflating it by blowing air into the blowpipe, whereas lampworking manipulates glass either by the use of tools, gravity, or by blowing directly into the end of a glass tube.
Early lampworking was done in the flame of an oil lamp, with the artist blowing air into the flame through a pipe. Most artists today use torches that burn either propane or natural gas, or in some countries butane, for the fuel gas, with either air or pure oxygen (which can be produced by an oxygen concentrator) as the oxidizer. Many hobbyists use MAPP gas in portable canisters for fuel.
Lampworking is used to create artwork, including figurines, trinkets, curios, Christmas tree ornaments, beads and much more. It is also used to create scientific instruments as well as glass models of animal and botanical models.


I'm not above Bribery

Did you notice the brand spanking new 'subscribe to my newsletter' box?
Well, technically it asks you if you want to preview the latest from Sweetwater Designs...over there in the right column..

If you sign up now through this holiday long weekend I'll send you 300 Entrecard credits..yes, unfortunately this only means something if you're an Entrecard member.

Please leave me a comment if you want to receive the EC credits.

For those of you who are not..I'll think of something interesting to entice you with next week.


Choice suppliers ..

Highlighting a few of my favorite suppliers for your perusal this fine sunny morning..
Each of these has been a good experience for me and come straight from my list of choice sellers. Enjoy..

Cahootz ribbons..I've always only purchased the ribbon but I see she's also selling some mighty fine looking head pins there. The ribbon is ultra fine quality..I loved the colors I ordered and was super happy with her.

I ordered a small leather wristlet for my Mom from this gal in Victoria, BC quite some time ago. The customer service was knock out but the wristlet was so well made and Mom loves it to this day..Hollyhawk is the name of the company. I think I'm in love with this leather card case now..
This seller is on the bay..Flat Earth Trading Company. I bought a wooden bust from him for jewelry display and like it alot. Service was superb. They're in Arizona.
hmm, those would look great with some of my bracelets and necklaces hanging from them...

Another lady with a fun shop that provides good service and product is Charlene Anderson-Purveyor of all Things Creative.
I ordered tools from her but she's got lots to look at..this handy tool caught my attention this morning~ stainless steel mandrels that give you loops from 1.5-10mm:

I had to borrow Mom's #9 knitting needle to make a component for my bracelet the other day..those tools would've come in handy.

I've got way too many favorite glass suppliers to mention but one of the choice suppliers in Canada has to be the Lauscha Lady
The glass is clean, well wrapped and she uses paper to cushion (not styro peanuts) Service is quick and orders are always exactly as ordered..Love her.
Just a sampling...I'm a big online shopper so stay tuned ~ I will be adding more in a couple of months!


My Mother is the smartest person I know..

For one thing she’s always known exactly how I feel…how smart is that? when half the time I myself am at a loss.
She has mothered six children and sustained more than 40 years of marriage before Dad passed away more than 10 years ago. You have to be very near brilliant to pull that one off.

Growing up my mother derived great satisfaction in being self-sufficient. While we lived on Vancouver Island we had a small acreage. Just enough to keep a couple of cats, a dog, a cow and a few laying hens happy.
She and Dad planted gardens
that produced copious amounts of corn, carrots and potatoes. Not to mention her tomatoes, strawberries and grapes. They all flourished under her green thumb.

Most of our clothes were sewn from Butterick and Simplicity patterns. I have some treasured recollections of hiking myself up onto those stools and leafing through the massive pattern books in Woodwards while Mom tried to find something I would like.
An impossibility, I’m sure.
This was the 70’s and I wanted to wear jeans and mini skirts. Mom would have none of the jeans and preferred jumpers. You couldn’t roll jumpers up. It was an ongoing battle until we met somewhere in the middle and agreed on skirts.
I don’t know if she was ever onto me rolling the bands down on my skirt in order to show more of my rebellious thighs ~ if she was, she never let on.

My mother is brimming with colorful creative sparks. Her cupboards are full of things made and half made by her own hands. There’s very little in my mothers house that she has not crafted, and crafted well. Now, her grand-children are certain that if Mom can’t make it or fix it Grand-mother for sure can. They’re right.

I adore and admire her. I can only hope I’ve learned my lessons well from her and maybe someday if I’m very lucky my kids will think I’m the smartest person they know…I Love you to the sky Mom. ♥



Success and failure. We think of them as opposites, but they're really not. They're companions - the hero and the sidekick.

Quoting Laurence Shames


8 Things

Snagged and Tagged by Wendy of Sand & Sea Designs
~ she creates lovely jewelry

and is just starting up her Etsy shop so go and take a look.

8 Things I'm Looking Forward to:

1.The actual arrival of Spring..it's still pretty brown in this part of the country
2. The mail delivery gal..I've usually got an order or 2 coming in for glass or beads or books or sheets of metal or tools..you get the picture.
3.The printing of a paper that will have a write up about Sweetwater Designs in it..yahoo.
4. Teaching what glassy things I've learned in the fall of this year..getting that ready to go.
5. Hearing my nephews voice on Mothers day when he calls my sister ..he's on a 2 year mission in Virginia!
6.Road trip to Edmonton next month
7. Started watching the first season of Lost with DH last night--Looking forward to the rest of it tonight. good show~ had only previously seen bits and pieces of it.
8.Melting some glass for the first time in a week as soon as I'm finished with this post!

8 Things I Did Yesterday:

1. Made a sterling silver and copper ring for my daughter...not bad.. accidentally reticulated the band. Pretty but not not what I had in mind.
2. Made my daughter pose wearing one of my silk wrist wraps. Got several photos of her hand at different angles. Took way too long as far as she was concerned...she began giving me rude hand gestures to photograph.
3.Gave her the ring..
4. Went for a walk to a park that is several blocks away..penance for a piece of chocolate cake I ate at lunch time.
5. Wrapped and posted an order to France..wow, a beadie goes to France. I'm always a little tickled about that.
6. Washed and folded 2 loads of laundry
7.Wrote in the flap of Dr. Suess's 'Oh the Places you will Go!' for my son. Made myself cry.
8.Gave myself a dark purple pedicure.

8 Things I Wish I Could Do:

1. Talk my son out of joining the Army
2. Move myself and all of my family back to Vancouver Island..or just some place warmer~
3. Travel to Ireland
4. Own my own gallery
5.Find a good hairstylist who does a good job of cutting naturally curly hair.
6.Build a house that uses solar and wind energy.
7. Own a summer house by the ocean..
8.Talk my son out of joining the Army.

Some of my favorite blogs that I've tagged are:

Silver Sachet

Izile's Oddities

Art by Sarah Pitman

Ollie McKay's Chic Boutique


Photos for the Northerner

I'm writing a small article for our local newspaper so Miss Birdie helped me with the photos..I'm not sure which I'm using but the top one is just for fun...what's the general opinion between the bottom 2? the camera can't seem to photograph both skin and glass at the same time ~ the bracelets look like lead..but que sera. I like them anyway..but which one?