Thursday, July 29, 2010

Rattus rattus

Dissection without the mess!  One of my favorite things to do when I'm procrastinating is to look at etsy.  Imagine my delight when I found this pattern!
It was my first attempt at needlefelting...what fun!  
I am going to give him to a science teacher at my school who is also a knitter.  She's going to be speechless!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

New Echo Challenge: Stripes

This week's challenge at Always Chrysti and Ilka's Attic is "stripes".  Below are some colorful toy guitars on Olivera Street in Los Angeles.

A beautiful old building 
The Train Station in L.A.
The Grille of a Classic Car Seen on Rodeo Drive

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Fairy Tale Come True Necklace

This is the second necklace that I salvaged from my attempt to make "Sally Jean Alexander's Love Bird Necklace".  As I described in my previous post, the end result sadly ended up in the junk pile.  
I could not get the solder "beads" that are around the piece to be a consistent size, even though I learned how to make them in Sally Jean's Soldering for Virgins class.  I'm sure it will come in time but to solve the problem, I snipped individual balls from a sterling-plated ball-chain and soldered them on.  That certainly takes a steady hand!  The necklace is also reversible:
Dangling from the heart is a blue bead from a Peyote Bird watch that I wore until it died beyond repair.  A stainless steel chain closes with a sterling silver toggle clasp that I bought many years ago at a trunk show at a local bead shop.  I am thrilled with how this turned out!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

My Soldered Masterpiece

Last summer, I spotted a class taught by Sally Jean Alexander called "The Love Bird Necklace".  Unfortunately, it was already sold out.  I figured since I had taken a class from her in the past, maybe I could figure out how to make it on my own.  It took all summer of trial and error...soldering and unsoldering, and when it was finally done, it weighed a ton and didn't hang right.  At the end of it all, I had learned why it's better to take a class (the instructor has already made all of the mistakes and can steer you around them) and I had a pile of what seemed like junk at the time.  Well just the other day, I pulled it out of the junk heap and took it apart and put it together into a different necklace and I love it!  If you love it too, it is for sale on etsy!

I drew bird shapes on glass and used a glass grinder to shape the pieces.  Because the collage is sandwiched between two pieces of glass, getting them to be the same shape and size was the first challenge!

Antique chandelier crystals give it a touch of sparkle.

The beautiful pewter bird is by Lynn Davis and is perfect for this piece!  An Artgirlz Spikey Heart charm finishes it off.  

I learned many things by attempting this project...most importantly, don't throw out anything that you are disappointed with.  Put it away and then look at it again someday.  And when given a choice, take the class!!!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Echo Challenge

I found an interesting photography challenge via Deryn Mentock's Something Sublime blog.  Two bloggers: Always Chrysti and Ilka's Attic have chosen "Market" as this week's theme.  My husband and I just got back from Los Angeles, where we stayed at a hotel right across the street from LA's Farmer's Market.  Here are some glimpses into our adventure!
The colors and scents were intoxicating:
We saw unusual fruits:

There was temptation everywhere:

There was some dark humor (photo by Peter Folks):

I loved the old-timers:

It was a magical place:

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Star Spangled Triple Berry Cobbler

I took my favorite berry cobbler recipe and used a cookie cutter to make stars instead of "cobbles".  Happy 4th of July!