Oldies but Goodies - Mixed metals

Mixed metals - or mixed metal colors for the seed beaders - was this week's topic for the Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge (say that three times very quickly).
Unfortunately I can't show you much this time as only a few members found the time to play.

1 Jewelry Art by Dawn
2 MC Stoneworks
3 Violetmoon's Corner
4 Cat's Wire


Creative block

It's time for the monthly Jewelry Artisans Community blog carnival again. Our topic to start the year off is "creative block".
Let's be honest, it hits us all from time to time. Our muse - remember my Mabel? ;-) - runs off for vacation on a lonely beach, with sunshine and probably a colorful drink, and the worst part is, she doesn't even leave us a note where she went or what you are supposed to do without her until she has enough of being lazy!

When I have a creative block, it usually starts with me staring at beads in my stash drawers without seeing anything I feel like using, doodling and deleting forever in BeadTool 4, or I hold my trusted crochet hook in my hand, maybe in hope that it will guide me to the right wire and beads like a dowsing rod?
The next step could be making bead soup, putting random beads on wire with the chance of them staying on that wire for a long time, or crocheting a chain stitch circle and staring at it for a while.
As I don't write down the ingenious ideas I keep having, I can't pull anything from a notebook, either. If I did, chances would be that I see how not so ingenious these ideas are, especially the ones from the middle of the night.

So what do I do to fight that block? There are different ways, the following are only a few of them.

- I go back to a trusted design to get me going again, but not being a big fan of making the exact same thing twice (which tends to be a problem with earrings) I have to change something - the colors, the width, the beads I use.
It helps if the project is not too time consuming to give me a feeling of success and instant gratification. It also helps if it is something not too fiddly to give my thoughts the chance to wander and maybe come up with a new idea.

- I pick a cabochon and crochet or knit a bezel for it. It sounds simple, but often it leads to new ideas around that cab by adding a second layer, putting beads on that layer, or maybe adding an edging of beads.

- I choose a picture, open it in BeadTool and play with it, or I pick out an old pattern in my files that I haven't made yet and play with it.

- Last but not least there is the ripping up method. I get out an old WIP that I know is doomed and I rip it up. If the result is bead soup, I start sorting it until I run out of patience (usually when I start shooting beads across the room accidentally). It gives me a small feeling of accomplishment and prepares me to make something new.

What do other JAC members do about their creative block? Have a look here!

Bead Sophisticate
Jewelry Art by Dawn


Finds of the week - Tea time

I don't drink coffee. There, it's out. It just doesn't do anything for me. I can drink it, but the taste, well, it's nothing that I need unless you put some ice cream in it and whipped cream on top, but even that is a rare event.
I do drink tea, however, so today is all about tea time. Grab yourself a cup and enjoy.

50 English Breakfast Hand Blended teabags from Teaman

James Sadler Yellow Floral Teapot from The Vintage Teacup

Vintage embroidered cloth napkins from Cinful Oldies and Goodies

Creamer and sugar bowl set from Le Petit Poulailler

Three-tiered cake stand by Gifts From The Hart

Vintage tea kettle from Whimzy Thyme


Quote of the week

Don't worry. This is not going to turn into the "trash cult horror monster quote of the week". I just happened to have the DVD lying next to the one from last week, and as I am a little busy this weekend due to a chain of unfortunate incidents in combination with stupidity on my side *bowing to the audience* which forces me to rip up half of a WIP and make it again .... to cut the already long story shorter, I went the easy way.

I wonder if there will be a time when we are facing the umpteenth sequel of a tornado carrying sharks into cities or maybe I'm just very afraid for the future of mankind if we are - facing the sequel, that is, not a real tornado carrying sharks. Not that we would get sharks in our area, it would have to be a foxnado, I guess, or maybe a squirnado which might in fact be quite amusing. I don't even want to think about a catnado!

Oh, you want me to shut up at last and give you a quote instead? Let's see .... how about this?

Fin: I know you're scared. I'm scared too. They're sharks. They're scary. No one wants to get eaten. But I've been eaten. And I'm here to tell you it takes a lot more than to bring a good man down. A lot more that to bring a New Yorker down.

No one wants to get eaten. Wow. How inspirational.
Sharknado 2: The Second One, USA, 2014

P.S. I love sharks. I would be too wimpy to swim with them, but throughout the movie I have been kind of on their side.


Tackle that stash - Earrings with movement

Welcome back to "Tackle that stash"!
As a matter of fact this time I didn't not only tackle the stash, but also a second problem that I - and not just I - have. WIPs - works in progress. Those WIPs are driving me insane. There are those that are missing that last little spark that you just can't find. Or those that have a problem you haven't solved yet or that can only be solved by frogging. How about those that didn't work out the way you thought they would, but somewhere deep within you still know/feel/hope you can save them? Not to forget about those you have forgotten - how very paradox, isn't it?

This pair of earrings used to be almost every kind of WIP.
First it was a pair of earrings that I wasn't very happy about because it was missing something.
Then it was a pair of earrings that I started ripping up because I hadn't solved the problem of the missing something.
When I gave up on the thought of saving them, I ripped until I had two blue disks left and then I forgot about those. I have this vicious bowl eating that kind of stripped down WIPs ... and coins ... and paper clips ... and single earwires ... and had I mentioned the stripped down WIPs?

Well, I found them, and I gave them a silver edging, but they did need more than that, so I went through my stash drawers and found all the wonderful dagger beads I have which were just perfect. Finally I found the silver beads for that little shine in the middle - and voilà!
I know they look a little as if they were inspired by a dreamcatcher, but actually they were not. I just love dangles!

You can find them in my DaWanda shop now, and looking at all the daggers I still have, it doesn't seem impossible there will be more color variations eventually.


Oldies but Goodies - Rain or Shine

You know those days when you don't know what to expect the next minute? From rain to sun to rain to sun? I have no idea if something like that was the inspiration for this week's Oldies but Goodies Challenge on JAC, but I was reminded of it.
It was interesting to see that most of the pictures posted showed "rain" rather than "shine" (although I have to admit that I had more sunshine pieces that I simply forgot to post ... as you see, I added a different sun to the collage here, too ... artistic freedom ;-)). Is it because the color blue and drop shaped beads go together so beautifully? What do you think?

1 Violetmoon's Corner
2 The Crafty Chimp
3 Jewelry Art by Dawn
4 Cat's Wire
5 MC Stoneworks


Zibbet finds of the week - Fruit

Last year I did a post about delicious vegetables, now it's time to put some fruit on the table.
What is your favorite fruit? I'm like a child, cut me up some fruit and put it on a plate and I'll eat it, but I'm always too lazy to do the cutting myself, and I keep forgetting to eat the fruit as a whole until I notice some shriveled things in my kitchen that used to be apples ...

Instead I did some virtual fruit picking today, in the garden of Zibbet.

Strawberry shortcake newsboy hat by Cutie Hats

Green and red apple felt pin set by Ritzee Rebel

Orange fruit slice earrings by AlenaZstyle

Mini strawberry cookies by Cake It To The Limit

Fruit teapot garden stake by Recycled by Skattur

"Pears and satsuma plum" watercolor painting by Otilia Kocsis