July 31, 2009
Studio Tour Dreams
July 29, 2009
Last winner for today!
The fun isn't over yet! Scroll down to see how to win $50 worth of Humblebeads.
Studio Tour: Storage
Studio Tour - Inspiration
I am a big fan of filling your space with inspiring objects, art work and images. You need a visual feast to feed your inner artist.
I'm a also friend of the bowl o' goodies. I collect ceramic dishes, both commercial and handmade, to fill up with treasures. Picture above: in delicate lotus shaped bowls I keep the beginnings of a few projects I will work on soon. A bowl of urchins, how I love those urchins! A tiny bowl is keeping a precious little stone collection, moments from one of my days at the beach in Michigan. I have a abstract leaf dish that is filled with Humblebeads that I have stashed away.
In my studio I have a large inspiration board above my clay table. I pin up projects that I'm working on (waiting written instructions), my fav photos, clippings from books, other artist's beads and artwork.
Yes, that is where I make my beads. Nothing fancy, just a simple set up with easy access to everything I need. It looks a little bit different when I'm in production mode. I fill up trays and trays of beads for Jess to roll or that I need to paint. And then everything starts to fill up the table behind me. (You'll notice an abundance of wax paper, keeps the dust out of the clay.)
Birds are tucked into little corners all over my studio. This one came from my grandmother. On these little shelves I keep glass jars of some of my favorite beads. They are in front of cork boards that display a collection of sundries.
Well, I don't know about you, but thinking so much about my studio has inspired me to the next level. I'm ready to repaint, I have a nature/bird/tree theme in mind. Hmm, I need to finish the closet and keep going in here!
But wait, I have this awesome grand prize that I will be announcing at 5pm today. Anyone who makes a comment throughout the day will be entered. So there is still time to blog, tweet or facebook about the Studio Tour for up to 3 extra chances to enter. Just let me know here or in the 1st Studio Tour post where you did the deed. (hee, hee!)
Studio Tour - Tools
A few new tools I picked up this month from Rings & Things (as one of their blog partners):
A hole punch - how I did I live without this thing! You just twist those screw things and viola, holes in metal!
metal shears - watch out, I can cut shapes out of metal, I'm scared!
cup bur - I want to make my own earwires and this is so handy for smoothing those rough edges on metal.
Tools I can't live without:
My Lindstrom pliers. How long did I suffer without my set. I know, you look at the price and think "come on, how can they be that different from my ol' cheap-o's. You have no idea how comfortable they are and how much they are worth every penny! Put them on your wish list.
Dapping block - a new edition to my tool box, can you tell I love this little thing!
Bench block and ball peen hammer - opens up a lot of possibilities with wire.
On my wish list:
A torch! a small butane torch will be my next acquisition. I want to make those ball headpins so bad.
An embossing hammer for create some great textures on metal.
Brass earrings with golden branch beads. This design was also inspired by the book 101 Wire Earrings. Visit the Art Bead Scene for a review of the book.
How to win: tell me what tool you are itching to add to your tool box?
I will draw a random winner from the comments to this post at 3pm.
I will announce the 1st winner from the previous post in just a few moments...
Studio Tour - How & Why
I'm organizationally challenged, to say the least. Creativity and chaos go hand-in-hand in my world. But after a month of my grandmother's tidy little home and one too many episodes of Clean House, I decided I was done with my foolishness and needed to get organized and clean out my studio. A herculean feat to be sure!
My studio is a large room in my house, this is my office, sanctuary and occasionally ground zero. A space to create, where you don't have to clean up a project and drag it out the next day, saves a lot of time. But that may also be my downfall, it's so easy to shut the door and run to the front of the house when I'm tired of the mess!
My room is arranged in 7 stations: storage, clay table, beads/bead table, work table, computer desk, library and Jesse's corner. With each area stuffed with it's own supplies and tools as needed.
It's a work in progress! I'm in need of some real tables. Right now I work on folding tables, they serve a purpose but I think I could find something a little more stylish at Ikea. But this was my Clean House version, not the Design on a Dime episode!
I have more to share. The nooks and crannies if you will.
Right now I have my first prize to giveaway. It's this awesome pair of earrings inspired by the book 101 Wire Earrings and a matching lentil bead.
So how do you win them? Blog, twitter or facebook about my studio tour. After you complete your mission let me know which ones you did in the comment section below. I will draw one name at noon. Good luck! (Yes, you can get your name in the bucket 3 times if you do all three. Don't do any of those things, well then just email a friend the news.)
Need help cleaning out your creative space? I don't have a stash of magical elves to send your way, but here are some helpful links:
Art Studio Makeover Flickr Group
Tips on Conquering Your Clutter from Zen Habits
Bead Storage Tips on the Art Bead Scene
Stop back at noon for more of the tour!
July 28, 2009
Online Open House & Studio Tour
July 27, 2009
Pods & Leaves
I decided to take a quick photo of what my grab bags look like, for those who are curious. Each one has at least 5 beads, some more. I coordinate the beads so you have a nice selection that will work together. I have 6 new sets that I put together after a serious studio cleaning this weekend.
July 26, 2009
I miss green
You'll be seeing lots of green and water inspired beads soon. If I can't have them, I will create them! Above are two pendants filled with my branch canes. I have plans for a whole series of branch beads set in bezels. So many things to create, so little time!
July 25, 2009
A Fleeting Moment
One of my favorite days from my vacation, spent with dear Melanie and Rosanne - two very creative peeps. Rosanne had a copy machine and vellum, and I had old botanical books, a great combination for altered art/collage inspiration! Jess from Vintaj had sent me some wonderful samples to create bezels. Melanie torched them, we dapped, stamped, hammered and then filled until our hearts were content.
My series of pendants were inspired by summer's fleeting moments: the play of waves on a shore, dandelions blowing, a bird's song. I'm waiting for some more ICE resin from Bello Modo to add a second layer to a few of the pendants and will show them next week.
July 14, 2009
In the moment
I've been thinking a lot about my business over the last few weeks, how I've struggled to keep up as it seems to grow faster than my two hands can make the beads. Which is good, I love making beads and staying home to work. But I seem to have no balance and work to the detriment of missing out on my life. Spending time with my girls, doing things as a family, hanging out with Jess. Time is short, I don't want to put aside the most important things in my life to make a living. There isn't a Humblebeads factory, it's just me and my two hands.
And what about me? Is my life only about making things? What about having time to take care of myself? To have fun, relax, play, pray, read, dream. I need these things like I need water and air. I have been enjoying rediscovering these tiny pleasures, while I work part-time during my vacation.
So my etsy shop will close in the morning until the 23rd when I return home. My Humblebeads website will not open for retail orders until September when my girls are back in school. Wholesale yes, but retail shoppers will have to see what's on hand in my etsy shop or order from Bello Modo until I'm ready to work full-time again. I probably won't blog again until I return home. There are birthday parties, friends, creative play-dates, movies to watch, sunsets to enjoy, meals to savor, games to play, shops to visit, walks to take. I have 7 more days of vacation and I need to live them.
"We are always getting ready to live but never living." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
July 8, 2009
Don't forget to enter the Art Bead Scene's challenge this month! 3 great sponsors with a nice little stash of prizes. Here is a peek at one I put together.
July 6, 2009
July 5, 2009
July 4, 2009
This was a small show, only 17 vendors I think. And most were the kind that sell remainders, those cheap strands of pearls and stones for $3 & $5. And while those can be fun and you can find some interesting items I was the hunt for a few specific things. In particular copper from my favorite local show vendor, Beading House. I picked up 2 strands of copper disks. They don't sell them on their website, I use them often and have people emailing where to find them. I'm going to list them in small quantities in my etsy shop.