Thursday, 29 September 2016

Charm Swap 2017

Hello there!! Here is my post for Jen Cameron's charity charm swap!! This year's theme is Fairy Tales.  I always love to participate in this event!! It's great fun, and raises money for Beads of Courage!! Thank you once again Jen for all the work involved in making this happen!!

Want to know how fantastic Beads of Courage is, and what its all about? Click here:

I have two different charms that I made and need to mention here.
Before I do I just want to say that the "fairy tale" theme has been a learning experience for me.  I inadvertently may have gone more toward the fable direction with my theme, but I'm hoping all will be forgiven!!  I read some information that lead me to believe stories with talking animal were fairy tales.  I now know differently (I think?) - but hey - no going back!!

My first charm is inspired by the ever popular story of the tortoise and the hair.  I have always loved this story.  As a child I could relate more with the tortoise.  I seemed to take longer than others to acomplish tasks!! I found comfort in this story, knowing that speed was not everything, and slow and steady had its benefits!!  Now however, as an adult, sometimes I am racing through things wishing I would just slow down!! 

It is a double sided ceramic charm that I hand painted. It also includes a black and white beaded dangle that represents the racing flag.

The second charm is about a favourite children's book from when I was a child. The dream Tree by Stephan Cosgrove.  It's a great story about an ever curious caterpillar that wonders what life will be like as a butterfly!! She keeps asking the question - only to be told, "someday you'll know".  I could always relate to Pattie the caterpillar because I was always so curious too!! Still am in fact!!  If anyone out there has actually read or heard of this book - please tell me so in a comment!! I would love to know that someone else, somewhere, has also read this story!  I purchased a Kindle version  recently to read to my girls now!! 

This Charm is a double sided ceramic charm that was hand painted by me. It also includes a little woolywire cacoon. One of you will have gotten a cacoon made out of wire - that was when I ran out of woolywire and decided to try and make a cacoon out of wire!  Here is a pic of it in the stage of me painting on the surface.


Shortly I will post the details of when the auction will be held, and the link to it.  100% of bead sales go to Beads of Courage! There is no better reason to buy some art charms!!

Thank you for stopping by!! Below is a list of links to other participants!!  I had so much fun going through all the goodies I received!!

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

AJE September Challenge (TREES)

I am jumping in on this challenge at the very last minute!!

These beads are fresh out of the kiln this morning!!  As I photograph them they are still warm!! 

I really wanted to be able to be a part of this challange because I am forever in awe of trees!!   One of my very favourite places to think - is in a hammock in my yard that hangs between two trees. The upward view is all branches.  I can lay there studying those branches forever!  It's a happy place for me!!

The season here in Canada is fall and these particular beads are inspired by beautiful coloured trees of fall!  The pendants are made from porcelain, textured and hand painted by me.  Thank you for stopping by!!  Here are all the others that are included in the challange. 

AJE Team

Jennifer Stout Cameron

Lesley Watt

Jenny Davies-Reazor

Laney Mead

Niky Sayers

Cooky Schock

Cathy Spivey Mendola

Caroline Dewison


Brooke Bock

Karin Grosset Grange

Merja Sundström

Cindy Martin Shaw

Allison L Norfleet Bruenger

Melissa Trudinger
Kathy Lindemer

Gloria Allen

Shai Williams

Tammy Adams

Mona Arnott

Terri Del Signore

Monday, 29 June 2015

AJE Fitefly blog hop

When I read Jen Cameron's (from AJE) post about fireflies, I totally wanted to jump on board!!
 For a few reasons.  Like Jen, I too assumed fireflies were everywhere, until I moved to areas that did not have any! I really have missed those majestic insects!!  I was excited to join in this blog hop!  Plus the top rule was to have fun!  This was my kind of rule!

I wanted to come up with a ceramic pendant centered around my childhood memory.  As a child, we would find fireflies so fascinating that our curiosity would have us trap them in jars and stare at them in awe. Trying to understand how a tiny bug could shine so bright!  We would always let them free of course - because this insect had gained much more respect than most other insect species!! Especially the mosquito!!
"those summer nights"

I made my little firefly filled glass jar with stoneware clay, painted it with underglaze, then glazed it with clear glaze, and gave it a large wire loop to mimic a jar handle.  I decided to continue on and turn my pendant into a necklace.  A jar of flies is a bit different to use as a jewelry component, but I like different!  So my theme centered around summer nights.  Within this necklace are some glass beads, a brass bead, and a paper bead that all represent various patio lanterns.  You will also see the little night owl:) I scored the batik ribbon from a destash of Mary Delray-I just love this stuff and suppose it could represent a summer dress. I wore this necklace while camping and it was a perfect fit!
Thanks Jen and AJE - I did have fun!!

Check out the others who joined the blog hop!  Thanks for having a peek!

Guest Designers:
Melissa Trudinger -
Mary Detray -

Monday, 24 November 2014

Charm Swap 2014

Hey Everyone!

I just love participating in Jennifer Cameron's annual Charm Swap. Last year was my first and I was so happy to be here again. I love so many things about participating! The best part is raising money for a great cause - Beads of courage! Other great things like, getting a package filled with wonderful handmade charms by amazing artist!! Another perk is the wonderful group of warm friendly artist that communicate throughout the weeks prior to the swap - such a great group!  Even if I was a little to absorbed in my own life lately comment much!

  My Charms are inspired by the scripture Isaiah 30:41

but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
 they will run and not grow weary,
 they will walk and not be faint.

This was the first thing that came to my mind when I found out the theme was, "soar". That being said, I got started making  ceramic eagles feathers!

Photo compliments of the lovely Jen Cameron! Shout out to Jen for all her hard work! You are the Best Jen! Thank you for everything!

The charms were made from stoneware. I started out with an ordinary white eraser. I carved a feather into the eraser to give a light texture to add to my clay.

They were fired in my kiln, then hand painted, glazed and fired again.   I attached a little "dangly" made of little glass beads that I wish I could remember what they are called and where I got them! They seemed to go nicely with the eagle feather.

Look forward to seeing everyone else's charms! I got so many other goodies from these great artist: Monique Urquhart, Jenny Davies-Razor, Mallory Hoffman, Cheri Mitchell-Reed, Cianci Blue, Mariah Bitterly, Alenka Obit, Nancy Dale, Genevieve, Kristi Bowman, Lesley Watt, Rita (Toltec Jewels), Perry Jackson, Strega Jewelry, Cory Tomkins, Michelle McCarthy, and  Sheila Prose Posterman.

Please join me in hoping around all the other charm swap participants!

2014 Art Charm Exchange Participants

Jenny Davies-Reazor:
Lennis Carrier:
Shai Williams:


Saturday, 22 November 2014

Beads Of Courage Auction

Where will you be Tuesday Nov 25? I will be shopping for handmade charms in support of Beads Of Courage! Great cause to support and the charms this year are over the top!! Hope you will join me on Monday!!! Use the link below. Happy bidding!

Friday, 26 September 2014

Sept. ABS Painting Challenge

So I'm going to let you in on a little secret.  I have often wanted to participate in Art Bead Scene monthly challenge and what really gave me the push I needed this month was the prizes!  I'm a little embarrassed about that but... DID YOU SEE THE PRIZES!?

My design includes ceramic art beads I made to look similar to those in the painting, "The White Rose and The Red Rose" by Margaret Macdonald.  I used leather with a little texture and dye to give the look of the textured canvas. I also thread some green leather through the beads to hold them to the leather.  I finished with some silk and silk cording with a couple class beads and a copper clasp.

My photo is dark but I'm trying to get better at that! I enjoyed being part of the challenge.  Now if I could just figure out how to get my pics onto Flickr and use the link tool, I will be set to try this again another month!
Thanks Heather for adding me!!

Friday, 13 December 2013

Frozen Moment

The perfect moment

I won an opportunity to participate in a type of contest put on by Lorelei Eurto and Sara Lukkonen of C Koop Beads.  The C Koop Beads Book challenge.  Superior Beads of Duluth will be choosing a winner. Myself and 10 others get the opportunity to play around and come up with a piece of jewelry with wonderful component we received on the mail. The book component was developed by Sara Lukkonen and was done in various colours. The very reason I signed up for a chance to play was because I fell in love with the component!  I also love the idea behind the challenge, to support your local bead store!

Here is what I received:

Here is what I have to do with the piece:
Make a piece of jewelry 
Tell the story behind it
Use at least three components from my local bead store

This is what I created:

The Story:
I call this piece "frozen moment".  I know I'm not the only one to experience this.  You know those moments that are so perfect, that for a very short moment, time just seems to freeze, allowing you stop long enough to take in all of the really good stuff (for the purpose of storing it as a memory)?  I created this piece as a reminder of what one of those moments looks like for me.  This frozen moment is where I am completely surrounded by nature.  The only noise is that of nature.  Hearing sounds of water, be it the ocean, a river, maybe even a stream.  A perfect day, sun shining with a soft breeze.  Sheltered and shaded under a tree.  And as great as all that is, how much better is it with a great book in your hands to get lost into, maybe even a sketchbook!

The necklace is made using what I consider reminders of nature.  For example, unglazed clay beads represent earth.  An African trade bead painted with flowers (I have a serious obsession with African trade beads!)  Beads from bone, as well as leather lace.  The small double holed seed beads remind me of small pebbles in a stream. The aqua blue leather cording represents water.  The shell is very special, reminding me of the ocean that I so deeply miss!  I gave the book some pages by putting in some handmade paper (another hobby of mine).

My Local bead store


Even though my local bead store is a two hour drive, it is sure worthy of the trip!  Metal Designz in Saskatoon is a packed full of wonderful goodies for the jewelry maker!  The owners Shelly and Joe, are wonderful people too! If customers start requesting things, they go to great effort to carry those items!! I can even get equipment like flex shafts and rolling mills there (both of which are on my "want" list, but I am waiting on a shipment to come in so I can purchase a tumbler there!) For this piece the components I used from my local store (as mentioned above) are; the wire, the leather cord, jump rings (did I mention the owners are HUDGE into chain maille and jump rings are their speciality!), and the double holed seed beads I used.
Yay for local bead shops!!!

Thanks to Lorelei and Sara of C Koop Beads for this opportunity!