I Have Some Lofty Goals

I’m in an accomplishing mood.  I have great ambitions for my “free” time over the next couple of weeks.  Or maybe just for tonight, we’ll see how long I last… I want to update my class page, actually list stuff on my Etsy site, submit proposals for CREATE Chicago 2013, and the list goes on.  The kids are in school now and I’m working half-time.  One would assume that with that kind of schedule I would have ample time for creating.  However, I find myself still searching for more free time and wondering where it escapes to.

Today it seems like I spent the whole day stringing beads.  I do love to string beads and construct large, often gaudy pieces of jewelry.  I worked on a new button bracelet design today and am quite pleased with myself.  It was one of those rare times when my vision materialized right in front of me.  I really get a kick out of that fantastic success feeling.

 

They have the same basic construction as my initial button bracelets but with two strands of beads and a two-holed spacer bead placed strategically here and there.  I sure do enjoy stirring up those bead stews.  I call them stews now instead of soups because they are so darn chunky!  Below are two separate bracelets:

 

I’m also thrilled with the double-loop/button toggle.  You slide one loop around the button at a time, making for quite a stable closure. These two sort of display that feature:

 

Well, those assemblage trophies and vintage knitting patterns won’t list themselves on Etsy and my class page is so outdated it’s embarrassing, so I guess I must get to it.  It’s time…

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Splendid Goodies from the Artists’ Faire…

I attended the Artists’ Faire Friday night where there were tables upon tables of all sorts of mixed media wares.  From finished pieces to supplies, it was a ball room brimming with eye candy!  I found some rather unusual things…

 

Kari McKnight Holbrook had all these wonderful vintage treasures.  I found these little tiny glass bottles.  Not sure what I’ll do with them…

Fonts are all the range.  I got this baggie of letters for $2.00.  Again, not sure where these will end up but they’re coming to Maine!

 

Metals.  As of late, I’ve been dabbling with a stinky patina solution.  I got some good advice and some metal to pay around with.

 

Buttons.  I’ve been known to use a button or two.  I couldn’t resist the 6-holed buttons or the Lady buttons by Coffee Break Designs.

 

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Amazing Student Work!

I’m quite impressed with the quality and quantity my students delivered yesterday.  I taught “Painted Beads and Blooms.”  These sweet little bracelets look quiet and innocent enough but they are deceptively challenging!  These ladies did great, even after a silly yo-yo making blunder on my part!  Sorry again about that…

 

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Dinner and a Movie

So I made it to Lisle.  My flight got canceled out of Portland but I was able to squeeze in (literally one exit seat left) on another flight leaving just one hour later.  I arrived in Chicago no problems and from there I met a fantastic cab driver, Mike from Naperville Taxi, to chauffeur me to Joanns, Walgreen’s, and then to my final destination, the Wyndham Lisle Hotel and Conference Center.  Thank’s Mike- you are awesome!

I just had lobster Mac ‘n’ Cheese- real lobster, real macaroni, and real cheese.  Need I say more?  Now I sit in my room ready to shed the grown-up clothes, don PJs, and collapse in front of the TV.  Speaking of grown-up clothes, here is the grown-up pendant I wore for the first time tonight.  It’s a “Mandy Russell” original!

 

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Chicagoland Here I Come…

I’m in a less frantic than usual mood.  I’ve got all my metaphorical ducks in a row.  I just need to pack my clothes and I’ll be ready for CREATE Chicago 2012.  I really can’t wait!  There’s only one little hang up; I must find a Michaels, a Joann’s, or an  A.C. Moore as soon as I land.  I am not allowed to ship or carry on my alcohol inks.  Apparently, alcohol is flammable…  Some lucky student who isn’t boarding a plane will get to take said inks home with them.

For me lately,  my art making is like taking a chance at a gumball machine.  Not necessarily the kind with gumballs but the kind with different prizes.  You know, in those clear plastic containers with the domed lids.  They are filled with all sorts of goodies.  Rings, little plastic figures, keychains, sticky hands, slime, etc.  Like those machines, when I make art I have a finished image in mind but I never really know what I’m going to get.   And like those machines, it usually isn’t exactly what I wanted.  For a long time I’ve been dying to make a collaged gumball machine.  Finally, here are two:

 

 

I like my gumball machines- don’t get me wrong- but I didn’t picture them that way.  I guess I was going for the giant super duper bouncy ball and got a kind of neat keychain instead!  Hey- I just got a cool idea; to make art inspired by what you get out of one of those machines…What a cool challenge. One chance. Insert 50 cents and you get what you get.  Then get making…  Hmmmm….

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