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