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2007 BJP – June page

This is a picture of my June 2007 bead journal project page.

It’s about 3 & 3/4″ round, and it’s about my daughter. It uses her colors (which are SO opposite from mine!) and the words describe some of the traits I enjoy and admire most about her: compassionate, brave, curious, silly, resilient, insightful & wise.

It incorporates Czech glass flowers and firepolish, 2mm Swarovski crystals, and seed beads ranging from size 15/o to size 18/o. The colors look washed out in the pic — it’s much louder & brighter IRL.
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2008 BJP musings…

I’ve been assembling my 2007 BJP pages, and thinking more on what I’d like to try with my 2008 journal. My primary goal with last year’s journal was simply to get back into beading regularly. Beyond that, my “rules” were pretty flexible … try to work outside of my comfort zone in terms of color & technique, explore negative space (I always want to fill the page!) and give myself room to play. I opted not to look at other artists work along the way, so that I could reintegrate beadwork into my life without too much outside influence.
This year I think I’d like a bit more continuity from page to page, so I’ve chosen a reoccuring image/theme. No funky shapes this time (last year’s pages were round) but I’ll work a bit larger at 5″ x 7″. The “empty spaces” idea was challenging for me last year, so I think I’ll keep working on that one.
These are my ideas right now, but they’re flexible. I’m not going to start my new journal till I’ve made more headway in finishing the first one … but I think once I start the first page, it will set the groundwork/tone for the year to come.
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Diamonds on the soles of her shoes…

My to do list is trying to swallow me whole this week, so no long rambles today … Instead, I offer this pic of some lovely mocs we saw on a recent road trip.
They’re antiques, done in “lazy” stitch (LOL, what a misnomer!) and a sweet example of traditional beadwork. Not sure if these are plateau or plains work? Either way, I love these old time colors — check out that greasy green & the Cheyenne pink. IIRC, the red beads are old Venetian whitehearts as well
I’m intrigued by the fact that the soles are completely beaded. I wonder what it would feel like to walk in these shoes?
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Studio overhaul, take 52

This weekend’s big project has been to give my studio a much needed overhaul — again. It’s a familiar dance, we do it every 6 months or so. The beads start threatening to take over the house, and we high-tail it to the hardware store in search of new ways to corral them.

Our condo has great space for a family of 3 — but we need space for a family, an art studio AND a bead business. Moving is not an option for at least a few more years, so we’ve learned to be creative & maximize our space as best we can. Thankfully, my family is very indulgent 😉

This makeover will provide a third work table — devoted exclusively to packing & photography — and lots more shelving (“More shelving!” is like, my battle cry). I’m so excited by the prospect of being able to see my desk again! Maybe I’ll even post some pics when we’re done.

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Blog etiquette questions

Mary Tafoya’s post about “blogging what you do” has some good ideas for how to make blogging easy and habitual. I was psyched to see that, as I’m still new to this blogging business, and it feels a bit awkward … My inner critic is constantly telling me that the things I want to write about are dorky or boring (“gosh, Dre — who really cares why you like orange?”). I’m also unsure of how the whole blog culture works.

So rather than continuing to feel awkward & confused, I’m going to throw out some of my “stupid questions about blog etiquette”:

a) I’d like to write about other artists that I find interesting or inspiring. What’s the protocol on this? Is it cool to just write what you like & then drop them a note to say “hey, check out my post about your work”? Or is that a big faux pas? Should I ask permission first?

b) what about pictures? I can see where direct linking/bandwidth theft would be uncool, but what about uploading the pic myself & providing a link to their site encouraging readers to go check out more?

c) thus far, most of the folks on my blog roll are people that I know. I’ve stumbled across a few others that seem cool or interesting, but I’ve hesitated to add them cause I don’t want to come off like some weird scary stalker. Or is that normal in blog world ?

I think that’s most of it. Any answers or ideas are much apreciated!

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A Love of Orange
Lately, orange has become my “happy color”. Rust, sienna, hyacinth, tangerine, apricot — I can’t get enough of those cheery hues. Orange is a radical shift from my usual palette. I’ve always favored jewel tones (lots of emerald, cobalt & plum) or earthy hues — bronze, mocha, caramel, wheat, olive and moss. By contrast, orange is probably the only color that I’ve ever really disliked. To me, it screamed “obnoxious” or “immature” — but those negative connotations have faded. Now orange seems to exude warmth, welcome and joy.

So it’s a big change, and I can’t help but wonder where it came from. Is this a new facet of my personality emerging? Maybe it represents an energy or feeling(s) I want to bring into my life?

What does the color orange say or represent to you?

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Etsy mood ring

Ok, who was it that turned me on to Etsy? I’m not sure if I should thank you, or yell at you — cause I sure am spending a lot of time there lately! I’m delighted to find gorgeous work, quality supplies, a supportive network of creative people, and a green vibe that really appeals to me.

I opened an account awhile back, and have been trying to get a feel for the place from a buyer’s perspective. Gonna try my hand at selling soon (wish me luck! 🙂 — just need to polish off a few things first.

In the meantime, I’m just shopping (ok, mostly window shopping) and accumulating a ton of “favorites”. In doing so, I noticed that the things I’m drawn to can be sort of a barometer for my moods. The grouping below is from the last few days, and all of the items have similar hues. The stuff from the week before is all seafoam-y and mauve … kinda neat!