Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year!

My greatest wish for 2008:
Peace on EarthWishing everyone a wonderful and peaceful New Year!

I have a gallery of my favorite beads from 2007 set up at
Come check it out!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

More Silvered Glass

This is Double Helix odd lot K-108:
K-108 Double Helix Glass Beads
I can't get enough of these silvered metallic glasses. Years ago when I worked with tiny seed beads, all of the Iris colors like Iris Blue, Brown, Green, Purple and the metallics like Gunmetal, Silver and Gold were my favorites. My tastes haven't changed, I still love this look. I even changed my avatar today to a picture of some of my favorite beads from this past year - disc beads made from Nyx glass.

Friday, December 28, 2007 Gallery

If you'd like to see a gallery of my work, visit me on
Click this link to see my gallery:
Thanks and Enjoy!

New Double Helix Odd Lots

Double Helix Glassworks recently put up bunch of new odd lots and test batches, new Khaos glass and old Terra glass for sale on their website, and I was lucky enough to get a hold of some before it sold out.

Here are some test beads I've done with a few of the glasses. My aim wasn't to make great beads, just test out the colors.

Here's a bead made with Khaos glass:
Bead made with Khaos by Double Helix

These are made with H123-b. I like the color on the un-encased middle one. The outer two are encased with clear:
Beads made with H123-b by Double Helix

This is my all-time favorite of the test batches I've tried, K-102. I will definitely be making more beads with this glass:
Beads made with K-102 by Double Helix

More photos to come as soon as I can get back to the torch. I can't wait to try my old Terra, I've missed that glass so much!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

More Psyche Beads

Here is another set of Psyche beads for your viewing pleasure. This is Psyche swirled over Dark Topaz:

Psyche over Dark Topaz Bead Set
Sometimes I make a set of beads that I'm not ready to sell because I love them so much. This is one of those sets! I'm going to hang on to them for a little while! The photo shows a close-up of some of the beads, but there are actually about 20 in this set. Each one is a little different from the next.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Psyche Experiments

Here are some test beads I've done with Psyche glass, trying it out on different base colors:

The base glasses are, from left to right:
Vetrofond Moss Agate, Opal Yellow, CiM Thai Orchid, Medium Topaz, Vetrofond Green Ochre, Dark Topaz, ASK104 Caramel Apple, CiM Hades.

There seems to be an endless variety of colors and styles to be gleaned from Psyche, depending on the base glass used. You can see the sets I made with the Moss Agate and Dark Topaz in my last post.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Messin' with my Psyche

Over the past several weeks my glass bench has become littered with little stubs of used rods and stringers of Psyche glass by Double Helix. I've been obsessed by the endless effects Psyche produces, depending on the color of the base glass it has been applied to.

Noticing last week that my Psyche stash was getting dangerously low, I called to place an order with my glass supplier Frantz Art Glass. I found out that Double Helix has suspended making more Psyche for the time being while they work on producing more of their much-anticipated new batch of Terra glass. In other words, Frantz was out of Psyche with no word of when it might be in stock again. Sheer panic overtook me, and I proceeded to scour the web for anyone who still had some Psyche for sale. I found some at ABR Imagery, and now I have an entire pound of Psyche with which to continue my late-night experiments! (....maniacal laughter....)

In a recent post, I showed you pictures of my "Earth Gems" sets which were made with Psyche on a base of Canyon de Chelly glass by Creation is Messy (CIM). This week I've completed several new sets with other base glasses. These are going up in my Etsy shop:

Psyche on a base of Vetrofond Moss Agate:
Psyche on a base of Moss Agate

Psyche on a base of Dark Topaz:
Psyche on a base of Dark Topaz
More Psyche photos coming soon. Thanks for checking in and have a wonderful day!

Friday, December 14, 2007

New on Etsy - Etched Terranova!

Here are three new sets I have up in my Etsy shop.
The first two are organic sets with large 3.5mm holes:

Silver Cinnamon, silver foil and Silver Plum "rivets"
Silver Cinnamon and Silver Plum Donut Bead Set
Ivory with silver dots:
Ivory and Silver Dots
This third set has an Ivory base with silver foil and Terranova scrollwork. Like its cousin Terra, Terranova does not etch easily. So, I put this set into the etch bath and got a nice matte Ivory base with shiny, un-etched blue-green Terranova designs:

Etched Ivory and Terranova Bead SetClick on any of the images to visit my Etsy shop!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Silver Plum 'End Cap' Beads

I have some new focal beads for sale in my Etsy shop. They are from my series that uses silvered glass and Silver Plum "end caps." I love the metallic look of Silver Plum, and I loved making my own end caps with it on these focal beads.

Clicking on the images will take you to my Etsy shop.

I love the rough look of this one:Silver Plum and Kronos Bead
This is one of my absolute favorites. I've encased the bead with varying thicknesses of clear glass, which made the Kronos stripes underneath undulate in 3-D wave patterns:
Silver Plum and Kronos Bead
This is another favorite:
Silver Plum and Kronos Bead
The weather continues to be cold, snowy and rainy, but the snow is really beautiful on the red rocks, especially when the sun comes out. Here's a photo from Airport Mesa, at the vortex:
Sedona Snow, Airport Vortex
Have a lovely day, and stay warm!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

A Snowman in the Desert

We had our first snow here yesterday. Snow is an exciting event in Sedona, because most years we only get a few snowy days or a dusting of snow here and there. We might only have one or two days each winter that are decent snowman-making days.

My 12-year-old daughter ran around in the falling snow yesterday - and got soaking wet, like kids are supposed to do - and she made this cute snowman. I took this picture around mid-day today, so he had already melted a lot. He's kind of sad looking now, but I had to document this rare snow art opportunity with a photo!

Snowman in the desert

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Fun with Psyche

Psyche glass by Double Helix might just be my favorite of all their silver glasses. A wide range of color can be coaxed out of this glass, depending on the number of reducing and oxidizing cycles I put it through in the flame. The two sets below are my latest favorites, though both of them sold quickly on eBay and Etsy and I had to send them out to their new homes. Selling is great, of course, but sometimes there are sets I really get attached to! I've named these sets "Earth Gems."

Here's a photo of the full set I had on eBay:
Earth Gems full set
And a close-up of the large beads:

Earth Gems close-up
And a set of round beads I had on Etsy:
Earth Gem round beads
The brown base color on these sets is "Canyon de Chelly" from CIM glass. Over the past few days I've been experimenting with different base colors, and each one produces a totally different reaction with Psyche. I haven't photographed them yet, but when I do I'll post the photos here.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Two New Sets on eBay

New sets posted on the 'bay tonight, "Calliope" and "Sage-Amethyst Nuggets":

Calliope Bead Set
Sage-Amethyst Nugget Bead Set"Calliope" is made with the new CiM color "Thai Orchid" and an odd-lot "Dusty Rose" coral. The word "calliope" has been running through my head for the past few weeks, and I found out that Calliope is one of the 9 Muses and daughters of Zeus. She is the muse of poets. A calliope is also a steam organ, like the kind found at carnivals and on old-fashioned merry-go-rounds. (I'm sure all the music is digital now!) I'll have to look up why the muse and the steam organ have the same name. I wonder what the connection is?

I'm enjoying being back up on eBay. If you'd like to visit the auctions, click on the pictures.

Torch time, woo-hoo! See ya!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Who Knows Where the Time Goes?

That's one of my favorite Sandy Denny songs from the 70's... a good song for this time of year:
Across the evening sky, all the birds are leaving
But how can they know it's time for them to go?
Before the winter fire, I will still be dreaming
I have no thought of time

For who knows where the time goes?
Who knows where the time goes?
I love to write in my blog as often as possible, every day if I can, but the past few weeks have flown by. I've had family visiting, I've been sick, I've gone out of town, all kinds of distractions to take me away from blogging! But I'm back, at least for today!

I have a favorite bead of late, made with Terranova glass. I've been wearing this one on a Bead Hitching Post pendant for the past week - I think it's a keeper! It's a landscape, with the Terranova at the top making the starry night sky. In addition to Terranova the bead has Vetrofond Odd Olive, Effetre, ASK Caramel Apple and Raku.

Terranova Landscape BeadI love this new Terranova glass and I've gone and bought more of it already. I'm still practicing with Luna, too. Having a harder time getting a lot of color from Luna. This next bead has a Luna base with pure Terranova and Terranova/Luna stringers on top. The picture is a little low-res, but you get the general idea of what the bead looks like. I'm getting a lot of red and purple colors from these glasses.

Luna and Terranova Bead
I guess you could look at the Luna bead and say it does have good color, but I'm hoping to get more in the blue-green range and not just the orange. If it weren't for the addition of Terranova stringer on top, the bead would be mostly yellow/orange.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Jewelry on Etsy

I love the "Bead Hitching Post" pendant findings made by Bronwen Heilman of Ghost Cow Glassworks. They are changeable bead pendants, meaning you can remove the clutch at the bottom of the post and switch the beads out. The style can be changed to match what you're wearing. I've made a few necklaces with them and posted them in my Etsy shop. Here's a photo, click on the image to see the Etsy listing:

Etched Button Set on eBay

Besides the Terranova set I have listed this week, I also have this set of etched button beads listed. They are made with ASK104 glass. Here's a photo... click the image and it will take you to the auction page:

Terranova Set

I've gotten some nice color from Terranova by using it as a stringer with some silver foil. The foil seems to bring out the brighter colors, or it strikes faster in the flame when there's some silver added.

I've made a huge set that has been my obsession over the past week, and I've listed it on ebay. It's been forever since I've posted an auction! Here is a photo of the set. Click on the picture to see the auction!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Terranova and Luna

I'm a big fan of Double Helix glass and use many of their colors in my beads. One of my recent beadmaking challenges was learning to use their Terra glass. I'd finally practiced with it enough that I was getting good consistent color, and I was loving the bead sets I made with it. Terra had become my favorite glass.

I now have only two 3-inch pieces of Terra left on my bench! I tried ordering more last month but was sad to hear that Double Helix had discontinued making it. Instead they've come out with two new silvered glasses, "Terranova" and "Luna." I ordered a 1/4 pound of each to try them out.

So far I'm finding them tricky to strike, but then Terra was really difficult in the beginning too. Since I've practiced so much with Terra, I now have a little bit better idea how to strike color with these new glasses but it's still going to take practice. Here are my very first experimental beads, first the Luna:

And the Terranova:

The large button focal is Terranova and Luna swirled together and encased. The white speckles on the beads are silver deposits that are part of the color of this glass. ...okay and probably some dust too :)

I've made some more beads with Terranova since these photos were taken. I can understand now that I had not been getting the glass hot enough in these practice beads, and so the range of color is not as broad as it could be. The glass didn't reach a good striking temperature, mostly because I'm used to working cool. Still, the translucent honey-amber color of the Luna is nice, and you can see more color in the Terranova beads when you look at them in the sunlight.

The color is not bad for a start, but the beads I made yesterday with Terranova really blow these practice beads out of the water. I'll show photos of them in a future post.

My main inspiration to keep practicing with Terranova and Luna is that Double Helix has offered to make the old Terra again if we can make these new glasses "sing."


Back to the torch!
Have a great day everyone!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Cell Phone Charms

I don't usually make my beads into jewelry, but I had fun making some cell phone charms recently. The charms can also be used on zipper pulls, as rear-view mirror charms, etc. It's like having a fancy piece of jewelry for your accessories that makes them unique and stylish.

Generally I get frustrated making jewelry because it's so tedious, even though I used to make a lot of it. I really like making the beads now, and leaving the jewelry designing to the pros.

Still, when I make a bead or set of beads, I have to think ahead and become a jewelry designer for a moment. I try to visualize how my bead set could be used in a piece of jewelry. I try and think what jewelry designers need: eye-catching colors, unique designs, beads with good holes and beads that are weighted correctly. Still, I never know what creative ideas that a jewelry designer might come up with, and so I make beads that I love and hope they work for someone else, too!

Now I'm off on a tangent... I loved having the opportunity to make a small-scale piece of jewelry with these cell phone charms, and I realize how fun it can be to design jewelry with my beads even if they have a 'wonky' shape. The Kronos disc beads in the photo are lop-sided with an off-center hole, but they look great in a charm like this.

(I will be writing more on wonky/fugly beads in an upcoming post!)

I have a few charms up in my Etsy shop if you'd like to take a look.
Enjoy your day!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ancient Beads Unearthed

Something ancient and Egyptian must be hanging around my studio... is it the Halloween season, or just a sign that I need to clean up in here?

More disks.... these ones are a new style I'm attempting, the thin textured disk. It is more challenging than the chunky disks I have been making. I love the look of these, like old weathered copper. They are made with Double Helix's "Nyx" glass:

Ancient Disk Beads
And, the sacred scarab. There are many interesting stories about scarabs. Winged scarabs, also called "heart scarabs" were worn on the chest of Egyptian mummies to protect their journey to the afterlife. The god Kephri was said to take the likeness of a scarab as he pushed the solar disk across the sky. A scarab amulet provides the wearer with healing and protection. Here is my metallic scarab bead made from Double Helix's "Psyche" glass:

Scarab Bead
Both of these are posted in my Etsy shop today.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Etched Disk Beads

My obsession with disk beads continues! The shape looks simple but it's actually kind of tricky to keep them from rounding out in the heat of the flame. I love the challenge this shape presents. After months of practice with disk beads I'm only beginning to get the hang of it.

My latest favorite sets are these two groups of etched disks. I've posted them in my Etsy shop:

'French Garden' Etched Disk Beads

'Tucson' Etched  Disk Beads

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Psyche Beads

Here are my first Psyche beads. I love this glass! Click on the image to see the listing in my Etsy shop.

Psyche Beads

Mandelbrot Fractal

In one of my recent posts I mentioned that the pattern on a bead reminded me of a Mandelbrot fractal. I love the way organic-style beads often get this fractal look to them. Here's an image of a Mandelbrot fractal:


Thursday, October 11, 2007

Autumn Disk Beads

Just had to share this picture of my latest favorite disk bead set. They recently sold in my Etsy shop, but I'm already planning the next set.

Autumn Disk Set

New Glass Colors - Do the Happy Dance!

It's always Christmas when the UPS lady brings a box from Frantz Art Glass! I ordered a bunch of new colors, many of them Vetrofond odd-lots. They have names like "Moss Agate" and "Lichen." I'm always looking for more colors for the earth-tone palette.

I also ordered some silvered glass by Double Helix - Nyx, and their new glass, Psyche. I haven't even tried the Nyx yet because Psyche has stopped me in my tracks! This glass has a beautiful peacock-hued, oil-slick metallic shine to it. When I take some photos of my new Psyche beads I'll post them here.

Here's a bead I've just posted in my Etsy shop, made with some Vetrofond odd-lot colors and silvered Hades glass by CIM. The way the colors and the silver reacted with each other made patterns that reminded me of a Mandelbrot fractal:

Mandelbrot Focal Bead
Back to the torch... Have a great day everyone!

Thursday, October 4, 2007


Oooooo....... some ghosts are haunting the pumpkin patch!Halloween Ghost and Pumpkins Lampworked Bead SetHappy Autumn everyone!

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Beads on Etsy

It's another beautiful day here in Sedona. This is the month to visit if you want the perfect temperatures and clear skies. It's hard to be on the computer when the weather is like this, but I have lots of new beads to upload to my Etsy shop.

I've also made the cutest pumpkin and ghost beads for Halloween, but I don't have a photo of those yet. Next post!

Here are some of the latest offerings in my Etst shop, come on by and check them out!
Browns and Metallics Set Lampworked Beads
Autumn Disk Lampworked Beads
Organic Encased Focal Lampworked Bead

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Disk Beads

I've been practicing a lot lately making disk beads. Here are some Terra disks I've just posted in my Etsy shop:Terra Disk Beads
Making disk beads is a lot of fun but very challenging. The glass wants to spread out on the mandrel as it's being heated and the thin disk shape tends to become fatter. There are a couple of techniques I'm using to keep them thin. One is using a low flame so as not to overheat the bead and cause it to collapse. I also use the flat surface of my marver along the sides of the bead to keep it in an upright shape. Sometimes I use my mini-mashers and go all around the bead flattening it out. It's usually a combination of all of these things that makes the shape work. I'm still practicing and at times it's very frustrating. When it works out though, I love the results.

Here's another disk bead set, also in my Etsy shop. These are made with a base of Green Ochre and raku frit:
Olive Disk Beads

Sunday, September 23, 2007

More Beads

The past few days I've been posting new beads into my Etsy shop. I'm featured in the Etsy Storque Showcase today, and my shop has gotten a lot of views :) Here are some of the new beads I have up:
Lavender Berry Crystal Set
Earthy Focal
Etched Violet BeadsHope you had a good weekend!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

"Water" Beads

Another beautiful day in paradise. I have been working on photography, and thought I'd share this photo of some of my favorite beads from my "Water" series. Enjoy!
Water Bead Set

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Gorgeous Day

It's a beautiful day here in Sedona, 80 degrees and not a cloud in the sky. The mornings have been crisp and cool, that perfect fall weather that always reminds me of going back to school no matter how old I am. Since moving away from New England five years ago, the thing I miss the most is the color of the leaves in October and the sound of them swishing underfoot as I walk in the woods. That's my reminiscing for today.

In current news, I have a few new sets up on Etsy. Thank you so very much to my faithful customers, who are making it difficult for me to keep my shop stocked!

Here is my favorite set for the day. It is similar to the olive green set in my last post, but this set is made with Ivory:
Ivory Etched Bead Set
Have a wonderful day everyone!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Etsy Offerings

I have some new beads for sale in my Etsy shop. This one is my favorite, it's a set of 8 beads in olive-colored glass, etched, with fine silver dots around the circumference:
Olive Etched Bead Set
Yesterday I was busy beadmaking. I have some beautiful new sets now to clean up and photograph that I'll be putting up for sale on my website and in my Etsy shop.

It strikes me as funny sometimes that beadmaking is what I do, yet with all the photography and computer work, etc etc, the actual making of the beads takes up only a small portion of the total time and energy spent on the business.

It's all fun, though. I absolutely love what I do!