Saturday, June 25, 2011

Day 8 - Bead Soup

I spent the day working at my daughter's house, helping her assemble wedding invitations for her business Kreative Event Services. She designs and prints the most fantastic invitations for any occasion. I didn't get home until after dinner... and then went to the movies with my other daughter. I guess you could say it was 'mother/daughter' day.

It was late when I walked through the front door at the end of my very long day... but I still had to make my Charm A Day. I looked through my stash of supplies... but no creative bolt struck me. Then I remembered a bag that was up in my bedroom... filled with beads that 'got away' during my move last October. By 'got away' I mean SPILLED all over the place!! I scooped them up off the floor, dumped them all in a bag, and then completely forgot about them... until tonight. THAT is what you call BEAD SOUP... a big mish mash of beads that don't really go together, but you don't have the patience to separate.

I reached in the bag, pulled a few out, and made 2 dangles (2 daughters... 2 dangles). I'm sure they don't look like much to you... not as creative as some of my other beauties... simply easy dangles. However, to me they look like the beginning of a wonderful bracelet. One that would not have entered my mind had the original vials not broken when I moved. How appropriate that I moved in October... and the beads are mostly black, orange, yellow, and green. Hmmmm... freaky huh?

Eureka! The Bead Soup bag also held my good jewelry tools that my friend Andrea gave me a few years ago (Hi Andrea!). I had been looking for them, to no avail... so went out and purchased a small travel set. It will be nice using GOOD chain nose pliers that actually GRIP when you need them to. Now... if I could only find one of the two pair of crimpers that I KNOW are here somewhere!!!

Have a charming day!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Day 7 - Suede Flower

It's 10:45pm and I haven't made my charm for today. Instead I am participating in the weekly online chat session with the art charm group... again soaking up their creativity and kindness.

The conversation headed in the direction of shopping at thrift stores, estate sales, and garage sales for unique items to use in crafting. I was reminded of the fabulous HOT PINK suede skirt I picked up for $2 at a local thrift shop... knowing for certain that I would find a use for the fabric. Not to mention the skirt was a size 4!!! Maybe, just maybe my right leg would fit in a size 4... maybe.  

So for today's charm, I ran upstairs, grabbed the skirt and began cutting. I reached in to one of my many jars of old buttons ( a goodwill find) for the center of the flower and tied it all together with some embroidery floss (purchased from a garage sale). Added a bead and a jump ring... and I had myself a charm!

In the interest of full disclosure I should mention that this is a 'repeat' charm. I made others for my flower swap... however THIS ONE was made this evening. The photo doesn't do the colors justice. The flower is HOT PINK, the top button is turquoise, and the thread is orange. Very bold and striking.

Have a charming day!


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Day 6 - Sunshine? Ship's Wheel?

For the past 6 days you have been following my Charm A Day challenge. Your emails have been so inspiring!!! Thank you! However, I'd like to tell you about how I got started. 

One day I was killing time at my local Jo-Ann's store. The cover of this book caught my attention.

So I bought it. For those of you who know me, you are in shock... right??? As a bookstore owner I can order any book, any time at wholesale. Why would I pay full price? Why??? Because I wanted to read this book NOW... not in a week... NOW! 

I drooled over each and every page and picture.  The authors, Peggy Kryzewski and Christine Hansen are charm goddesses! According to this book there were Art Charm SWAPS going on behind my back. All these wonderful little bundles of goodness were being shipped all over the world and I wasn't getting any!! So I grabbed my computer and started searching for Swaps. I landed on a new group forming on Yahoo... so I joined. It was weeks later that I found out the moderators were the very same authors I drooled over. Surprise!!!

I'm hooked! I love making and receiving charms. To check out where I get my inspiration... go to Peggy's blog:
and Christine's:

Better yet... JOIN US! Check us out at:

On to Day 6...

It's been raining all day today. HUGE thunderstorms. Dark, dreary, muggy day. BUT... sunshine filled my heart and soul when I saw my reservations came through for a trip to Florida in November (Thank you Catherine and Dan for your timeshare). As I was making today's charm I was thinking... Sun, funky sun. My hands made a ship's wheel instead. Funny how I planned a totally different charm than what actually emerged. Art has a way of doing that :-)

I hope your days are just as challenging.

Thanks for looking!


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Day 5 Flower Charm

It's day 5 of making a Charm A Day... and I haven't even begun to sweat. In honor of my new job at Michael's a friend bought me flowers... well actually a plant with flowers on it. So... my charm today is a flower made of buttons, beads, and wire. It looks much better in real life, but you get the idea.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Day 4 - Tillie Charm

Day 4 of the 365 days of making a Charm A Day. I still find the challenge fun. It seems to give me 'permission' to craft after dinner instead of cleaning, doing laundry, getting ready for the next day, etc.

I sold a few pewter Tillie Charms on my etsy shop today... so I thought it was time to play around with the same image except using polymer clay and a water slip transfer technique. All in all things went well, however the directions called for a film of liquid clay to cover the image for durability... and THAT layer rippled. UGH!! Up to that point the images were clear and strong. Knowing that the image should be protected some how... liquid clay is NOT the answer. Next week I'll try using resin.

Any way... here's the final charm:

Day 3 Father's Day Tie

I just couldn't resist making a tie... out of a tie for Father's Day.

As simple as this looks... it took longer than I thought it would... with a lot of 'trial and error'. A total of 4 attempts finally gave me the charm I wanted.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Day 2 - Bird's Nest

I love the way this charm turned out. It was a little rough on the fingers, but worth the effort.

I found a bird feather on the beach the other day... then I saw a photo of a bird nest charm another 'art charmer' made and was inspired to make this charm. 

It was a little rough on the fingers, but worth the effort.

Friday, June 17, 2011

I'm baaackkkkk!

Well... I wasn't off the blog-o-sphere for long, now was I??? I realized that blogging was fun... and now I have a REASON to blog... I've decided to make a CHARM A DAY for the next 365 days. Yup... all 365 of them. I wish I could say that it was my idea... but no. I had been thinking about the idea for a while now... but last night's Art Charm Chat brought it back up again. Some one mentioned it, my brain clicked, and here I am.

My goal is to make one charm everyday. Using all different techniques and skill sets. It's a way for me to expand creatively and have cute little charms as a result. I really enjoy making these little critters. They're addictive.

Some will have a story behind them, and with posting and journaling I should be able to look back in a year in awe at all I have accomplished. I am certain that some will be easy little nothing pieces... but don't we all have days like that???

To start... here is my very first charm....  

I spent the day at the Township Public Works office making arrangements for someone (besides me) to assist my mom with her weekly trash cans. So... I made an origami heart charm out of junk mail. Day one, COMPLETE.

Posting daily might be too cumbersome, so if you want to follow my progress I would suggest checking in once a week.

Feel free to post comments and cheer me on!!!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Signing Off...

Thank you all for following my blogs... but now it's time to say goodbye. This will be my last blog post.

I've decided that I'm spending WAY too much time on the computer, and not enough time on the things that really matter to me... in the real world.

It's been fun... and if I ever decide to add my 2 cents to the blog world again, you all will be the first to know.

In the meantime... keep smiling... keep creating, and above all else give your sweetie an extra little squeeze.


Self Proclaimed Artist

How does someone become an artist? Everyone has the ability to 'make art'. Some people use paint and paper, others use fabric... then again others create using sod and bushes. Art can be made with anything and everything. So... at what point would you call someone an 'ARTIST'? Is a landscaper an artist? How about a house painter?  A hairdresser???

A few weeks ago I proclaimed myself an artist. How pretentious is that??? I made the decision to give myself permission to tell total strangers that I am an artist. I then proceeded to paint a local icon, Tillie in watercolor. From there I printed Tillie on pillows, postcards, and made charms... and sold them at a local outdoor show. The charms and postcards were a hit... and I made enough money to repay all of my original costs with a little left over to pay for my mother's birthday dinner. All in all I was quite happy with the whole experience.

The original watercolor of Tillie was prominently on display. I thought the painting would be an 'attention grabber' and it added a nice focal point for my booth. The surprise was on me however, as quite a few interested customers inquired to PURCHASE the painting. Silly me never thought to actually sell PAINTINGS of Tillie. Wouldn't a REAL artist have thought of that??

Attending this show has taught me a lot. Not only the commitment it takes to get everything organized and ready for a show, but the strength and fortitude it takes to put yourself 'out there' for total strangers to see. You squirm as they scrutinize your painting, not knowing where to look... should you ignore them... or engage in conversation? I usually choose to engage. I slap a smile on my face, take a deep breath and ask, "Can I answer any questions?"

"Oh" they reply, "Are you the artist"?

Gulp. "Yes. Yes I am"... And I steel myself for whatever comments they might have. Some good, some bad... but hopefully constructive.

So I guess I can officially call myself an artist... although I'm not rushing out to print that on my business cards yet.

I urge you all to go out there and CREATE!!! Proclaim yourself to be the artist you know you can be. If I can do it... anyone can!!! Use whatever skill you have and enjoy... then MAKE SOMETHING!!! You too can be an ARTIST... just give yourself permission!