Art Elements February Theme Challenge – Birds of Prey

Cathy Mendola chose Birds of Prey for the theme this month, and it’s a pretty awesome theme. You are going to see some amazing work by my team members and the guests who have participated this month! I had plans of doing more than I did, as indicated by the purchases I made for the projects I had in my head. However, I have been doing some work in my house, so whenever time permitted, meaning after work and weekend hours, we were pretty much doing the room renovations. One of them is going to be my study/studio, and I seem to be foiled at every move by trying to get some work tables. So I have only one small project to show you this month.  But first, the purchases!

This first Bali carved owl totem I got from fifirosedesigns on etsy – I wanted to make a mold and make my own cabochon to use in a necklace. However, I really did get around to doing that. So, I purchased the owl heads below.

These owl head cabochons are from ArtisticVariations84 on etsy – they are just fantastic, but arrived too late to make anything in time for the challenge. So they will wait until I have time to do something fabulous with them! Finally, I purchased some owl resin cabochons in the picture below.

These resin cabochons are from NixCreations on etsy – I couldn’t decide on which one I wanted so I ordered 5! It’s hard to see them in the photo, because we actually have a sunny day today. So, to make a short story long, here is what I made!

I chose the one I felt to be the most colorful, because I am really suffering from this winter this year. I used cup chain, which is probably my new favorite thing to do, to add color and texture. And then I just went with colors that spoke to me as sunny and fun! I hope you enjoy my post today, and hope you’ll check out what everyone else made – I guarantee there are many awesome things to be seen!

Guests:
Team Members: 
Cathy You’re here!

January Art Elements Theme Challenge – Moon

Lindsay Starr chose moon as the theme for the AE Design Challenge this month! Great choice, Lindsay! I knew I had a pendant from Vincent and Nooma from Inviciti that I wanted to use, and I have some moon face polymer clay cabochons I had made a while ago, so I was all set!

First, I used the pendant to create a simple necklace. I haven’t strung beads in a very long time, and being that I enjoy simple designs for myself, I set out to find the perfect red beads. I chose faceted red jade from Golden Age Beads.  I also spied some other beads I really want, but am basically on a buying freeze so….maybe another time! I separated the red jade beads with some cute titanium spacers I had picked up at a bead show a long time ago, and I highlighted the pendant with some gold alcohol ink to make the moon show up better!

The second piece I made was influenced by Game of Thrones. Late to the party as ever, I just started watching it. I’m on Season 3 Finale – I use it as a carrot to make myself walk on my treadmill for an hour. I am really taken by the wedding ceremony words George R.R. Martin wrote for Daenerys and Khal Drogo.

“As you are the Moon of his life, he shall be your Sun and Stars. Your
love shall be as ever present as those two celestial bodies…even
though they are sometimes hidden from one another’s sight. Your love
will be the guiding force that charts the course of your tomorrows,
holds your world together in difficult times, and will make life itself
shine bolder and brighter than we human beings have a right to dream
of.”

I was going to add some dangling stars to it, but since I’m not necessarily a dangly type person, I left it the way it is. They can always be added, anyways. Not sure what I’ll do with it, I just enjoyed making it!

I’m also posting for Kathryn Smith, as she does not have a blog. I found her on Instagram and when I saw her post this piece, I told her it was perfect for our theme challenge. She used a connector from Inviciti for her bracelet! You can see her other creations by clicking on her name, it will take you to her Instagram!

As this is a blog hop, I hope you visit and see what everyone else has made for the moon theme! Thanks Lindsay for a great theme choice this month!

Guests:
Art Elements Crew:

December Art Elements Theme Challenge – White

This month, the theme for the Art Elements Challenge was chosen by Claire and she chose “white”. Perfect for winter and the holiday season! I had all these ideas (I wanted to at least get to a white glass cabochon) but I did get one of the ideas done.

For a long time I have been pondering making a garland for my tree or mantle with my lampwork sugar beads – you may know what these are, but if not, photo is below. Pretty much every lampworker makes them, and at one point I had a pile of them. However, lucky for me I was able to sell them so no more inventory! I still think some type of garland with sugar beads would be a lot of fun, and maybe I’ll do that someday.

I remembered a free tutorial for superduo stars by Deb Roberti of Around the Beading Table. She has many free tutorials, and she also has some awesome tutorials for purchase! She’s actually having a sale right now, too! I hope you visit her link, she’s so generous for providing so many free tutorials!

Anyways, I made a pile of stars using three different combinations of white beads. This was fun, although I had to wait for some to arrive in the mail! I also got to use up some of the beads that I bought multiples of and wondered, why did I do that???? Do you do this too?

I made four of each color combination type, and then strung them up with size 8 beads in between! This was the fun part, seeing it come together!

I’m going to make this a year-long project, and see how far I can get with it. Right now, it’s slightly shorter than 5 feet in length. Below is a photo I took to see what it would look like on my tree.

So, that’s my project for December. Thanks Claire for the idea, it was a good one!

This is a blog hop, as usual, so I hope you visit and see what everyone else made! I also hope you had a wonderful holiday and have a Happy Healthy New Year!

Guest Artists
Art Elements Team

 

November Art Elements Theme Challenge – Stars

This month was Laney Mead’s turn to choose the theme of the challenge, and she chose stars. I had all these ideas of making polymer star ornaments with my little texture stamps, but did not get to it. Partly because I was spending some time coming up with more star glass ornaments.  Last year I made these clear and dichroic ones, and the black and dichroic ones.

This year I added three more colors, and have been making them non-stop!

I think I’m really partial to the red ones! Which do you like best? These can be found in my etsy shop if you’re interested! Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you enjoy everyone else’s star creations this month!

Guest Artists
Cat 
Art Elements Team
Jen 
Jenny  
Niky 

Facet Jewelry Box Projects Completed

Well I’ve completed my Facet Jewelry Box projects. If you recall from my last post, I was asked to review a box and I gave you a coupon code if you order in November. I’ll repeat the info below. Here are the projects I completed.

This is the Embedded Peyote Bracelet. This was very easy to do, especially if you know peyote stitch. If you don’t, its a great stitch to have in your repetoire and you can use the instructions to make this bracelet in a variety of colors! I think it would look great in southwest colors, myself!

These are the Woven Fringe Earrings. This was a little bit harder for me, just to maintain the tension needed. You need a little bit more patience for these, but they are worth it. And again, make them in a variety of colors! I’ve posted these photos on my Instagram and copied them to my facebook page as well.

You can find previews of future boxes on the Facet Jewelry Box FACEBOOK and INSTAGRAM
pages, just follow the links! AND in addition to all this, Facet has
given me a COUPON CODE for you to use, to receive HALF OFF your purchase
of your FIRST BOX when you use coupon code HALFOFF at checkout – Facet link here!

Facet Project Box by Kalmbach

I was recently asked to review a Facet Jewelry Box (by Kalmbach) – I said yes, of course! I was given a choice of either the Stringing Box – 2 quick and easy projects – or the Stitching Box – 2 more intricate, advanced needle-and-thread projects. Since I love bead weaving I chose the stitching box!

I received it very quickly. Please note, the box I received is no longer in circulation, but you can sign up for the November box and future boxes through Kalmbach here.

The projects come in this sweet blue box, very nicely and safely packaged. 

When you open it, here’s what you see – as you can see, you get a book of instructions and photos of both projects included in the box.

Here is a photo of the box, the instruction sheet and the projects – they are nicely packaged individually and labeled so there’s no hunting around for parts or beads! You also receive a spool of fireline that’s large enough for both projects.

The first project I received is the Embedded Peyote bracelet – this looks fun, and I like the colors, especially for the holidays! I think this would make a great gift. What’s also great is that you have the instructions so you can purchase more beads to make more bracelets!

The second project is Woven Fringed Earrings – enough beads for the pair of earrings and all the findings as well. Again, great colors for the holidays!

And finally, here’s a photo of the instruction book. You receive clear photos and instructions to make your pieces, and as I’ve mentioned, you can make the projects again and again with your own beads and findings.

You can find previews of future boxes on the Face Jewelry Box FACEBOOK and INSTAGRAM pages, just follow the links! AND in addition to all this, Facet has given me a COUPON CODE for you to use, to receive HALF OFF your purchase of your FIRST BOX when you use coupon code HALFOFF at checkout – Facet link here!

I will publish another post when I finish the projects – I wanted to get this info out there in case you’re interested in using the coupon for either a gift for someone or yourself! I’m going to CA for a week with my mom, so that’s probably a good time to get them done! I’ll let you know here and on my Instagram!

October Art Elements Theme Challenge – Petroglyphs

I’m afraid I just didn’t have the time to participate in last months theme, which was faerie. This month the theme is petroglyphs hosted by Karen Totten. Since I’m spending 10 days in Iceland this month, I really didn’t get to spend any extended amount of time on the theme, but I did find these AWESOME petroglyph earring charms by Jill of Foxpaws on etsy! I highly recommend checking out her shop – every package you get is a gift in itself – TRUST ME!

SO here are the earrings I made!

I hope you also visit all the other participants! I’m sure there will be some awesome creations!

Art Elements Team:
Lesley Watt: http://www.lesleywatt.com

Jenny Davies-Reazor: https://jdaviesreazor.com
Cathy Spivey Mendola: http://cmendola.blogspot.com
Sue Kennedy: http://www.suebeads.blogspot.com
Caroline Dewison: http://www.blueberribeads.co.uk
Laney Mead: https://laney-mead.blogspot.com/
Marsha Neal Minutella: http://blog.marshanealstudio.com
Claire Fabian: https://saraccino.blogspot.com

Art Elements Theme Challenge – August – Swirls

This month Marsha Neal chose swirls as the theme of the month! I’m enjoying the challenges as themes. I’ve been giving my wrist a break because of perceived carpal tunnel, so I’ve been doing a lot in polymer, and by a lot, I mean when I have a few half hours of time!

Here are the swirl themed polymer items I made for this month!

This first one reminds me of a fiddlehead fern, all closed up. I painted it with alcohol inks.

This next one is the before of the ammonite hearts I did. Two of my favorite things, ammonites and hearts! Colored with alcohol inks.

 I made two, the colors turned out very different!

More spirals in the form of polymer clay ammonite cabochons. I really love mixing the paints to color these! Plus you get a gratuitous flower shot!

 More ammonites colored with ranger patina inks and alcohol inks in that order.

 My fave, I think – I love the colors! Alcohol inks.

This next one was made with acrylic paint and I tried crackle on it, didn’t work out too well but gave it a texture, then sealed with liquitex.

And finally, a sort of work in progress. The idea is to looks a little like Van Gogh art, the swirls and the sunflowers. Not quite what I had in mind, but I just added it to a very short lampwork session so I’ll probably explore this more – I don’t have much of the sunflower cane so I have to be careful what I do!

Many of the polymer clay swirls are available in my SueBeads etsy store. I hope you visit the other blogs to see what everyone else made, and thank you Marsha for an inspiring theme!

Guest Artists:
Cat 
Art Elements Team: 

 

Art Elements Theme of the Month – Seed Pods

The theme for July was seed pods, chosen by Jen. I made a Pinterest board for seed pods – I seem to be using Pinterest a little bit more lately, although it’s such a time suck! Not sure how to get the image to appear, though, so you’ll have to follow the link I guess!

https://www.pinterest.com/suebeads/seed-pods/

I have made many headpins that look like seed pods, and wanted to make more, but just didn’t have time to do it in glass.  Here are some photos of ones I have made in the past.

I really really wanted to get some done, but I didn’t get to. What I did get to do was experiment a bit in polymer clay.  These beads were made using the “salt method”. You roll the polymer in salt (not the super fine salt but a little bit bigger grain) and then bake it. When they are done baking, you rinse them off and the salt melts, and you get this impression in the clay that makes them look like seed pods! The top bead is just a pretty orange/ochre color that I highlighted with bronze gilders paste. The bottom ones are made with a mica-y looking clay, and highlighted as well.

 I made a pile of “pod” shaped beads, impressed them with a plastic knife, and baked them. Then I used Burnt Umber Genesis accent medium, and quickly baked them again!

I sanded the extra umber color off, then started experimenting with all my different coloring mediums.  I used chalks, wax crayons, alcohol inks, acrylic paint, gilder’s paste and a Martha Stewart Glaze I picked up a long time ago at Home Depot.

Here are some of the results!

 In terms of the pods, this one above is my favorite! It reminds me of some sort of sea pod.

Then I made this pendant-style pod, literally using every single one of the above listed coloring elements!

As you can see, I favored a certain color scheme. My next polymer clay adventure will be to try different colors – I really enjoy mixing colors for a certain effect, so I think I’ll continue to explore that!

One last “fantasy” pod that I tried to experiment with – I was going for a sort of magnolia type pod look, not sure that I nailed it, but I’ll keep trying!

I hope you enjoyed our theme this month, and please check out what everyone else made. Thanks Jen for a great theme to work with this month!

Guest Artists:
Art Elements Team: 

Art Elements Theme of the Month – Sunflowers

It was my turn to choose the Theme of the Month for the Art Elements monthly challenge, and I chose Sunflowers! Why not? They’re nice and sunny and fun and lighthearted and happy and bring up everything summer!

I also know I wasn’t going to get much done because my boyfriend had his second hip replacement June 4 and he’s staying with me to recover. So I just concentrated on two things.

First, I made a sunflower cab. I didn’t have enough time to explore this the way I wanted to, but I made a prototype anyways. There are so many great lampwork artists out there who make wonderful sunflowers that I’m not sure I will bother anyways! But here you go!

I knew I wanted to make something beaded, a la Jenny Davies-Reazor and Lesley Watt, and other beady people, so I concentrated my free time on this.  It’s a beaded faux mosaic sunflower. I plan on framing it but haven’t gotten that far yet!

My intent was for it to look somewhat mosaic in nature – if you wanted all the beads to line up straight, you would draw lines on your beading medium (I used stiff stuff that was hand dyed by Meg Mullen) making sure they were straight and then you could follow those lines.

I made my piece on the diagonal. When I was done stitching the design on the stiff stuff, I backed it with some thin cardboard because it was too whippy. It will hold up better to framing now.

This is the back – pretty darn proud of this! I used ultrasuede to finish it off. I glued the design to the cardboard and then to the ultrasuede using E-6000.

And finally, the beauty shot. You can see there’s a little dimension to the piece – I used size 8 and 15 beads in the middle, and used large square beads for the edges for the mosaic look.

I hope you had fun with this challenge! There are so many amazing people who participated this month, I hope you give their blogs a look! Thank you all who participated – I can’t wait to see what you all made!

Guests
AE Team