Saturday, 25 August 2012

Bead Soup Number 6, 3rd Reveal

Well the time for Bead Soup number Six's 3rd and final reveal....
and my name is on the list :)

I was excited to be partnered with Stephanie Dixon aka The Dixon Chick. 
I sent her an assortment in Cream & Black with Cream Freshwater Pearls, Black Velvet Ribbon and a pretty Cream Applique to name just a few pieces... sadly I deleted the picture of it (Doh!) so I can't show you what I sent. Royal Mail claim to have delivered it though so that was a relief in itself! I'm really looking forward to seeing what she creates with it all.

I waited for my parcel from Canada with a mixture of excitement and anxiety.
  Sadly, my parcel from Stephanie got lost in the world of postal systems (Booo!)
and so I have nothing to show you from Stephanie.
However.... my friend Sarah Goode from Pookledoo stepped in and gave me
a pretty little stash to ease my anxiety levels (Yay!) and so I was still able
to take part, even if it is in a roundabout fashion.

This is what Sarah gave me
 And these are what I made with her pretty little stash:

I teamed some of the Cream Roses with Rich Cream & Gold Glass Pearls and Black Findings to form the first bracelet.
 I used her 3 strand Clasp, Focal, Glass Pearls, Seed Beads & Sodalite in the second bracelet and mixed them with Silver Plated Hearts, twisting them together loosely.

So a huge Thank You to Sarah for staving off little Miss Anxiety and saving the day. And  Huge Thank You to the lovely Lori Anderson for hosting the Blog Hop and being a champion organiser!

If Stephanie's parcel does find it's way out of the mysterious world of 'post' I will be only too happy to make something and post the results. In the meantime, I'm off to blog hop and see what everyone else has been working their little socks off to make.
I do hope you'll join me?!

Hostess, Lori Anderson, Pretty Things

Kiss, Moonsafari Beads 
Alice Peterson, Alice Dreaming
Alison Sachs, Beads by Earthtones
Amanda Dittloff, Passion Smashin'
Andra Marasteanu, Bijoux de Monanage
Angie Szlovak, SweetBeads
Anitra Gordy, Leelu Creations
Ann Sherwood, Ann's Blog
Arlene Dean, A Glass Bash
Audrey Belanger, Dreams of an Absolution
Barb Solem, Vivi Magoo Presents
Barbara Blaszczyk, laboratorim Flory
Bianca Odenthal, Zydies Glasperlen
Birgit Klughardt, GitesBeads
Bobbie Rafferty, Beadsong Jewelry
Bonnie Coursolle,  Jasper Gems
Cece Cormier, The Beading Yogini
Charlene Jacka, Clay Space
Fick, En La Lumie're
Cheryl Foiles, Get Your Bead On
Christie Murrow, Charis Designs Jewelry

Christina Miles, Wings n Scales
Christina Stofmeel, Feng Beads
Christine Stonefield, Sweet Girl Design
Cindy Cima Edwards, Live to Design
Bauschka, 4 His Glory Creations
Claire Smith, Embergrass Jewelry
Cynthia Riggs, Cynth's Blog
Dana Fowler, Trunk Full of Treasure
Dawn Pierro, Turtle Moon Designs
Dee Elgie, Cherry Obsidia
Donetta Farrington, Simply Gorgeous

Dot Lewallwn, Speedie Beadie
Eileen Snyder, Dorset Hill Beads
Elizabeth Bunn, Elizabeth Beads
Eva Kovacs, Ewa gyongyos vilaga!
Evelyn Duberry, Sheba Makeda
Fay Wolfenden, Torch Fairy
Fen Li, Bead Flora Jewels
Gail Zwang, Angel Moose Enterprises
Geneva Collins, Torque Story
Grace Dorsey, Fan of the Flame
Gretchen Nation,  Art Food Lodging

Hannah Annear, Squintessential
Waheed, My Beaded World
Heather Goldsmith, As I Bead It
Heather Otto, The Craft Hopper
Heidi Kingman, My Bead Therapy
Hope Smitherman, Crafty Hope
Perez, Isolina Perez
Jacqueline Keller, CreARTelier
Jane Haag, Did You Make Something Today?
Janeen Sorensen, Wild Vanilla Designs
Jean Peter, Jean P. Designs

Jennifer Judd, Jen Judd Rocks
Jennifer L Justman, Soul's Fire Designs
Joanna Matuszczyk, Bizuteria z filcu
Joanne Brown, Jo's Jewels

Joanne Lockwood, Jo Bunkum (You are Here!)
Joyce Becker, Joyce's Joyful Gems
Judy Riley, Three Red Beads
Karen Mitchell, Over the Moon Design
Karen Williams, Baublicious
Karin von Hoeren, Creative Ideen

Karla Morgan, Texas Pepper Jams
Patel, Sadafule .. always in bloom!
Kate Richbourg, We Can Make That at Home

Lembke, AllesPerle
Kathy Combs, Torched in Texas
Kathy Lindemer, Bay Moon Design
Kay Thomerson, Kayz Kreationz
Kelley Fogle, My Life, One Bead at at Time
Kelly Hosford Patterson, Traveling Side Show

Koon, Only Road
Lara Lutrick, Lampwork Beads by Lara
Laura Guenther, Blue Antiquities

Laurie Lalonde, Simply Mod Jewelry
Kristiani, Soul of My Embodiment
Linda Younkman, Lindy's Designs
Lisa Chapman, Beach Cat Beads
Lisa Lodge, Pine Ridge Treasures
Loretta Carstensen, Designs by Loretta
Lori Bergmann, Lori Bergmann Design
Lori Dorrington, Lori's Adventures in Etsy Land
Lupe Meter, Gem's PC Corner
Lynn Davis, LLYYNN

de Koning, Beading by Malin
Mandi Effron, Craft-o-licious
Mandy Williamson, Mimi's Beading
Margot Potter, The Impatient Crafter
Maria Rosa Sharrow, Willow Street Shops
Marianne Baxter, Simply Seablime Jewelry
Marina Dobrynina, Savon Feutre
Trewavas, Room for Change
Cupo, Amazing Designs
Marsha Neal, Marsha Neal Studio

Marta Kaczerowska, uhuhu
Mary Govaars, MLH Jewelry Designs
Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes
Gupta, Menka's Jewelry Blog
Michelle Burnett, Reverie and Revival
Michelle Escano-Caballero, The Cabby Crafter
Wiropati, Uniquely Yunikua
Hope,  LB Creative Arts and Crafts
Mimi Gardner, Other Curiosities
Miranda Ackerley, MirandackArts
Natalie McKenna, grubbi

Noemi Baena, fuego, metal, y color
Pam Ferrari, Ferrari Originals
Pam Sears, Crazy Creative Corner
Penny Neville, Copper Penny
Rachel Baron, R. Baron Designs
Rachel Myers, Rockabead Jewelry
Rana Wilson, Definitive Designs by R. Wilson
Anderson, Song Beads
Sirevaag, Becca's Place
Riki Schumacher, Riki Jewelry

Rose Binoya, Ahtee's Blog
De Gaspari, Rdegas Blog

Sandi James, Do Be Do Bead Do
Sandi Volpe, Sandi Volpe
Sandra Wollberg, City of Brass Stories
Sarah Goode, Pookledo  My Anxiety Preventor!

Sarah Small, blog by salla
Williams, Shaiha's Ramblings
Shawn Mills, Shawn Marie Designs with Bent Wire
Sheila Davis, Stone Designs by Sheila

Sheryl Stephens, Babble Bead
Shiraz Biggie, Secret Song Designs

Collin,  Ahowin Handcrafted Jewelry
Sonya Stille, Dreamin' of Beads
Stephanie Dixon, The Dixon Chick  My Official Blog Hop Partner
Susan Kennedy, Sue Beads
Susan Sheehan, Strands of Thought
Suzann Sladcik Wilson, Beadphoria
Sweet Freedom, Sweet Freedom Designs
Tabatha Dinger, Modernly Created
Tania Hagen, Pelima Jewellery Design

Tanya Boden, Fusion Muse
Terri Gauthier, Blooming Ideas
Terry Carter, Tapping Flamingo
Tracy Stillman, Tracy Stillman Designs

Saturday, 4 August 2012

Thrift Shop Blog Hop Challenge.... Rags to Riches!

I finished my Thrift shop challenge! And a challenge it has been too.... I have made and unmade 3 things with my poor little broken necklace and finally realised I had been trying too hard. So I decided to do what I normally do and just stare at it for a while, put it away and leave it. Thankfully it worked and the idea came as I was playing songpop with Sarah.... 99 Red Balloons! Ok, ok, there are not 99 beads here but that's when the images began to pop. I slept on it and then made it this morning. Just one false start this time until I ended up with this double/wrap bracelet with the connectors & extension chain taken from my 50p bargain and put together with Swarovski Pearls & some sumptuous Red Coral. I realise some of you may have a problem with the use of Coral.... my apologies if you do. But I love it and am really pleased with the end result. Thank you Miss Goode for challenging my addled brain.
So now it's time for me to see what everyone else made. Please look too! Here is the list of the other participants in this hop:

Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Thrift Store Blog Hop

My friend Sarah over at Pookledo invited me to join her Thrift Store Blog Hop whilst I waited for my Bead Soup to arrive. It sounded so challenging, I just had to have a go! The idea is to purchase an item from a charity shop for £1 ($1.50) and turn it into jewellery. Well I'm all for mixed media and upcycling but I fell for this poor little broken necklace. It only cost 50 pence. What a bargain!
Now I just have to make it into something else..... wish me luck!

Here is a list of the other participants in this Blog Hop. Please pay them a visit to see their Thrift Store Pieces.

Julie Anne - 

Good luck to you all, I'm looking forward to seeing your finished creations.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Race For Life

Yesterday I did the Race for Life with some of my workmates. We have managed to raise £315.00 so far which is fantastic. If you can spare a pound or two please click on the picture below to be taken to the JustGiving Page:
 This is our team: Stacy, Leah, Claire, Vicki, Hazel, Little Laura and Me.

In case you have never heard of it, Race For Life is an annual event which raises money and awareness for Cancer Research UK.
 Cancer Research UK is the world's leading charity dedicated to beating cancer through research. We are fighting cancer on all fronts, finding new ways to prevent, diagnose and treat it to save more lives. We are entirely funded by the public. With your help, we can ensure more people beat cancer.

I would love to say I ran all the way but I didn't. In fact I walked more that I ran. The whole thing has highlighted that I am in terrible shape. The photo's are terrible (I would un-tag myself if it wasn't for the good cause) and it's left me feeling quite low and with very little confidence once more. So... next year I plan to be fit. And slimmer. I hope to run all the way next year and then maybe I'll feel like I have achieved something.

Saturday, 23 June 2012

DIY Lightbox Fail

Well, I tried!! I followed the instructions and everything and I just could not get on with it.

My lovely friend Basia put Photoshop on my lappy too but I'm struggling with it. Old dog new tricks & all that....

So I'm doing it my way. I have made my own version of a light box and lined it with white cotton (pillowcases). It's the fold out sort as apposed to one with a lid so when I fold it out I have more room to move and get in close. I take lots of pictures of each item and narrow it down to the best four images. Then I adjust the brightness to ensure the colours are true and that's it. No frills. Easy Peasy. These are some of the pictures I have taken. What do you think? I would greatly appreciate input and or advice :-)

The Dixon Chick!

The fabulous Lori Anderson has done it again ~ It's time for the 6th Bead Soup and I have been partnered with Stephanie Dixon aka The Dixon Chick!  I'm excited and scared at the same time.

Stephanie is a popular Instructor, a Swarovski Elements Ambassador, she has had her work published in a calender and magazines AND been on the goggle box. Follow the link on the picture below (Stephanie's work) to check out her Gallery. Beautiful wirework! 
I am eagerly awaiting for her reply to my email so that I can start rummaging through my stash. I have a gorgeous clasp ready and waiting, the rest depends on her reply. I doubt she would appreciate swarovski crystals though.... 
She has a facebook fanpage for us to check out too. Enjoy :-)

I didn't realise just how long it had been since I posted anything on here, how terribly lax of me. My laptop battery is kerput and only lasts 5 minutes (honestly... 5 mins!) unless it's plugged into the wall, so I have done very little tinternet wise for quite some time. Listing items on my Etsy shop and poke wars on facebook are about it. I have borrowed his lordship's old laptop to post this. Oh woe is me! *chortles*

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

And the winner is....

Shirley Jones Moore! Well done Shirley.... please private message me with your address so that I can forward your necklace
Shirley entered my facebook fanpage giveaway after the Bead Soup Party (I'm so loving right now...) and will be the proud new owner of this when we catch each other up:
I must admit I will be sad to see it go. So sad in fact that I contacted Dee who made it because I wanted to buy more of her lovely lampwork. And as luck would have it, she's having a little sale so I managed to snaffle some lovely goodies! Check out her page for some delicious bargains: Cherry Obsidia

Talking of delicious bargains... I have treated myself to some beading goodies this week. As well as Dee's Lampwork I am expecting delivery of some of this lovely stuff:
Gorgeous hand dyed mixed thread selections from therainbowgirl on etsy 
Beautiful lace from Lacebeauty, also on etsy.

After Lori's Bead Soup I am feeling quite brave and I want to experiment with my beading a bit more. I'm even going to try some bead embroidery. I know! Very girly and quite a shock to me too!

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Beads & Beyond Jewellery Maker of the Year Awards

Cast your Vote Ladies and Gents!

You know what to do.... click on the image to be re-directed to the vote form over at B&B.
It's nice to see some of my friends & acquaintances have been nominated as well as good old BD. Fingers crossed :)

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Kony 2012

Kony 2012. You're all grown up's and can decide for yourself

*11th March Update*

The Truth: Kony 2012 Exposed
Is it Fraud?

Killer toothbrush...!

OK I'm exaggerating again... :(
I felt the need to have a little rant today and so emailed a company who shall (for now at least) remain nameless. All joking aside (FB chat had me falling of the sofa with tears streaming), I'm really quite annoyed that such a silly, small object can cause a person injury. I can text, wash, type, drive... all the important stuff, but I can't bead! I can't grip a needle or a pair of pliers. Holding a pen is a bit of an issue too so I can't even jot down all the ideas racing through my head. Gah!!

My email: A tad boring I know.... sorry I didn’t inject it with a bit of humour or anything, I was in *rant mode*

Dear Sir/Madam,
I purchased 2 of the ******* toothbrushes a few weeks ago from my local Asda store and we have been quite happy with them.... However, the metal plate which holds the battery in is incredibly sharp. I discovered this when I attempted to change the battery yesterday morning (06/03/12) and it took a good chunk out of my finger (photo available if you wish to see evidence).  I asked my husband to take a look at it in case it was just me being dozy first thing in the morning but he agreed. He replaced the battery but now the brush won't work. He changed the battery on his own too to check if I had somehow broken mine altogether but his had the same problems: Difficult to change the battery without cutting yourself; Removing the battery bends the metal clip and bending it back correctly (again, without cutting yourself) to ensure it works seems impossible. I now have 2 of these brushes which only work when you stuff the battery casing with tissue to ensure the metal plate touches the battery but we have to leave the battery casing unscrewed else they remain permanently on. My finger is sore enough to prevent me from perusing my hobby (I make jewellery) and so I'm rather peeved to be not only out of pocket but prevented from doing something I love, even if only for a few days.
I look forward to your comments
Yours sincerely
A disgruntled consumer from Loughborough
Mrs Joanne Lockwood

I doubt much will come of it but I feel better for having a moan at them. I know it's just a cut and this time next week I will probably be beading again... but I wanted to bead last night! *whines* but it hurts!!

They are a Huge company and so should do their best to get it right and not injure anyone. Every time. Right??

Monday, 5 March 2012

That's All Folks....!

Well I 'think' I have visited all of the other 199 participants in Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Blog Hop to admire their handy work.... and Oh my, what amazing talent there is out there. It has been quite a humbling experience as well as quite tiring but Shed Loads of fun! Although the tiring bit could just be the man flu or the insomnia. No matter. I can relax a bit now! 

If you have not checked out my Bead Soup Partner's Fabulous Design,
This is an example of her lampwork. Beautiful!
Try her facebook fanpage too... she's only a few off 1,000 fans (hint hint!)

 I have been inspired by many things whilst 'hopping' and would like to thank All the participants for taking part and making it fun. Special thanks to Lori Anderson for all her hard work, especially with her being ill and in pain for most of it! Also, huge thanks to Dee Elgie for sending such a fabulous challenge pack for me to work with. I shall be returning to my comfort zone for a little while though, until I have recovered from it all and then I shall begin with the things I want to experiemnt with or take further: 
  1. Beaded Beads
  2. Wire Wrapping (especially having a go at making my own bead caps. Have no idea how yet...!)
  3. Mixed Media
  4. Allow my inner 'girlie' out a bit more
  5. Have a go at Vintage Glam
  6. Upcycle more
An upcycled piece I made in 2010

If I have not commented on your blog, please let me know and I'll pop over asap!

Sunday, 4 March 2012

kézzel és lélekkel: Blog Anniversary Giveaway

kézzel és lélekkel: Blog Anniversary Giveaway: What better moment to write my 200th post, than to announce the 2nd Anniversary of my blog? Yes, it's been two years... Two years of stit...

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Ta Daaaaa!

Today is the day of the great Bead Soup Reveal! I can't wait to go hopping. Hubby is on tea duty and my lappy is fully charged! For those of you who don't now what I'm on about... I entered Lorri Anderson's Bead Soup Challenge and was partnered with Dee @ Cherry Obsidia and today is final reveal and blog hop day :)

I can finally reveal my efforts for the challenge... I am quite pleased with the results. I'm not the sort of person that has a story to go with her projects, I don't get inspired by sea creatures, ocean tides or anything like that. I'm not saying it's a bad thing, a lot of my 'beady' friends are inspired in this way, I'm just pointing out that we are all different. My inspiration comes from the beads themselves and colour. It's that simple for me. So here goes....


For the first piece I chose to make a necklace because I tend to make bracelets all the time. I wanted to show off the crystal without encasing it too much, hence the nets of seeds. I also like to mix mediums and so finished it with an antique gold chain rather than making a seed bead chain which I often see with this style of beading. Although I have played around with netting before, this is so far from my usual 'style' it's unreal...

 I chose 'old gold' beads to bring out the flecks of gold in these lovely deep green goldstone beads and highlight the toggle clasp. My first instict was some simple stringing with tonal crystal and spacers or to bring suede into the mix, but again I felt I had to challenge myself and have a go at some form of 'beaded bead'. I'm not sure if I like this piece or not. I do want to experiement more with beaded beads now though.

 Three (x2!)
Earrings.... I don't make many pairs of earrings and so I thought I would have a go with the lovely Aventurine beads Dee had sent. Simple yet pretty I think.

And finally, Dee's beautiful focal.
 I wanted to keep it simple so as to not detract from the focal. I had so many fancy ideas but went with wire, ribbon and rubber tubing and some of the bicones Dee sent to bring out those lovely petrol colours. I'm not sure I like this finished piece either lol If it's not won in my fanpage draw I think I will re-work it.

So that's it, all finished. I thoroughly enjoyed the challenge and I hope everyone else taking part did too. Feel free to hop on over to my facebook fanpage (click on the jojo's beads banner) and vote for your favourite. The piece with the most 'likes' will become the prize. Everyone that 'likes' any of the 4 pieces (both pairs of earrings count as one piece) will be entered and a name chosen at random by a very clever widget. This lucky person will win the most voted for piece. Good luck!

Click on the banner below to visit Lorrie Anderson's Pretty Things Blog for the complete list of participants:

 OR use the splendid Linky Tool below to see what everyone else has created:

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Blog Hopper...

I have been blog hopping today via Lori Anderson's Bead Soup to take a peak at what everyone else has received and wow! There is some amazing (and rather intimidating) talent out there!
I am doing my best to visit every blog on the list but am only up to about 50 :/ I will do my utmost to visit, comment and follow all.....

I was a little disappointed to see that some have not blogged about the challenge nor posted pics of what they have received. I'm hoping that this is because they are too busy creating to blog about it. I sat up till stupid o'clock myself trying to perfect a part of mine. I thought I may of bitten off more than I could chew but I nailed it at around 1 am :-D I am still on the first piece though (I have four pieces sketched and planned) because I began with the one I knew would challenge me the most. That is after all, the whole point in taking part. I'm having so much fun with it, it's great and I highly recommend the experience. The only thing I am having trouble with is the actual reading everyone else's blog. Maybe that has something to do with having to pry my lil munchkins sticky little fingers off my laptop first though? hehe

 I have been lucky enough to take the week off work (half term) to spend some quality time with said lil munchkin. We had hoped for more snow so that we could make a friend for Albert.... yes, this is Albert. Him indoors and lil munchkin wanted to be sure everyone knew he was indeed, a He *sigh*

I had hoped to use some of this time to make more jewellery but I haven't had the time to as yet. A few days left yet though! I did find the time to take new photo's of all my tinkering's currently for sale on Etsy.... what do you think?

My lovely friend Basia has previously taken all my photo's but she will be returning to her homeland of Poland in a couple of months and so I need to be able to take my own photo's and be happy with them. She very kindly tried to show me how to use photo shop (I'm a technotwit!!) but I can't seem to get it to work the way she can... and so my trials with pics continue. I quite like the background and props but I can't get the colour/shading consistent. I guess that's what comes from setting it all up in front of the patio door to take advantage of the daylight.

I did think about investing in a 'light box' but funds are limited and so I might just have a go at making my own...
Click on the image to see this very clever chap tell us how...
is the editor and founder of Digital Photography School. He lives in Melbourne Australia and is also the editor of the ProBlogger Blog Tips and TwiTip Twitter Tips blogs. See.... terribly clever!