Sunday, March 24, 2013

Weekly Challenge 3: Use Tila Beads

Tila Beads are these square beads with two holes running through them.  When I saw the challenge, my first thought was to skip it.  I know, not very challenging!  Then, I decided to go ahead and give it a try.  I ordered these wonderful Transparent Sea Foam Luster Tila beads and a Size 6 Silver Lined Opal Pastel Yellow Round Seed Bead for an accent.  I ordered smaller yellow beads, but they were too "gold" for the Sea Foam Luster Tila's!

I have never actually "bead weaved" before.  I always try to use wire or something firm and substantial.  With Tila's, they are thin and fragile.  The wire just was not working the way I wanted it to and I was breaking many of the beads.  I had a design in mind.  I have never actually "bead weaved" before, but decided to give it a try.  

It worked, but there is a lot of movement between the beads.  In one way, I like the organic nature the beads hang.  But then, the anal-retentive part of me thinks they should lay perfect at all times.

What do you think?  I love the color the combo!

So, I used a product I have never used before and a technique I have never used before!
How wonderful is that?!?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

I Cooked Something!

I cooked something AND it was easy AND it tasted great!

I am not a Suzie Home-Maker by any means.  When I have a day off from work, Hubby will come home and thank me for NOT cooking!  My last day off, I wanted to cook.  I looked in the cabinets and found a can of cannelloni beans.  Performed a simple Google search and found this awesome recipe!!! 


1 deep skillet, a handful of ingredients!  YUMMO!  Did I mention that I hate beans.  I even ate the beans. Simple, flavorful, filling and healthy!

We are also in the process of purging our basement of useless things we have collected down there.  One item was a bread-maker.  I got that baby out and even made homemade bread!  That is also pictured above!  I had everything on hand except for the Escarole.  I made a quick trip to our local fruit and vegetable peddler, Peter Rubi and got that all important healthy ingredient!

Go me!  Maybe I can become a Domestic Goddess!  Here is what my Hubby Posted on FaceBook about my cooking feat:  

I don't believe it. I came home and had this. I'm calling the Vatican tomorrow because I believe my wife has been possessed.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Weekly Challenge 2: Use a product you have never used before

I have been grappling with a custom order for a month now.  A mom-friend sent me 11 coins and wanted them made into a necklace.  The first idea she had was a no go.  She had found a pin on Pinterest and wanted me to come up with a bib style necklace.  The original pin had the crafter using felt for the backdrop.  The weight of the coins made it impossible for this to work.  I experimented with some crafting type coins and felt.  Yes, dear friends, for any type of wear ability -- this is NOT GOING TO WORK!!!

I was having issues with the design.  The coins were too heavy just to stack on top of one another in a design or just to have the edges glued together.  I needed something with bit of femininity  but still use the coins in a pretty way.  I kept envisioning those coin belt buckles of the 1970's-80's.   Yeah, not really digging that either. 

Then, boom!  Filigree!  (Mmmmm... my three past jewelry posts have been about filigree...)  and a scary thing called E-6000 epoxy adhesive.  I had never used E-6000, but had added it my arsenal of jewelry making supplies.  I decided to incorporate the 6 pennies and the 3 quarter sized silver toned coins.  All the larger coins had an image of Queen Elizabeth II (I think...) on them.  

This has been a fun project.  E-6000 is an really user friendly epoxy.  If you have ever used epoxy or resin, these products can have minds of their own.  The best clean up to use with it is baby wipes.  The hardest part of using E-6000 is you have work slowly and in layers.  I did glue the coins to the filigree and to each other in one day.  12 - 24 hours after that, I glued the backing filigrees on.  12-24 hours after that, I glued one side together.  The final day, I glued the other side together.

With this project, I have learned and awesome new technique and fell in love with E-6000.  My design options are endless.  I am only limited by my own fear.  Why I fear anything with creativity  is beyond me.