afghan airplane alcohol ink altered altered book apothecary ArtPrize asian atc baby basket weave bats beads beads necklace kumihimo beeswax beveled glass bird bird cage birds black blanket bling blood bones bottles bracelet brass bronze bug Bunnies burlap butterfly button buttons cabinet camera candy corn canvas cat cats chalk charlotte charm charm copper metal grundge embossed patina charms chick chicks christmas christmas tree clock face clock parts cloth coins cold connection collage color copper corsets cream CREATE 2011 creepy crochet crows crystal cuckoo clock dew drop doll dolls doors easter eggs embossed etched etching eye eyeball eyeballs fabric face fairy fat book faux tintytpe feather felted fingers flower flowers fold formed fork friends game garage door hook garden gears ghost ghosts girls glass glass slide glitter gnome goggles gold goose Grand Rapids grundge halloween hat haunted house hearts hedgehogs hens and chicks house humpty dumpty images ink Jack-o-lantern jewelry journal kids knitting lace ladies lenticular lucite mail mannequin measuring tape men metal mice Michigan molding paste moon moss mummy necklace nest numbers orange ornament ornaments owl paint paper clay patina pencil pendant pictures plumbers tape portfolio potions published pumpkins purple purse rabbits rats ravens resin rivet rub ons rubber stamp santa sewing shoe silverware simple pleasures skeletons skulls snaps snow snowman snowmen solder Somerset Gallery spider spiders spooky stamped stamping stamps steampunk stencil swap swaps tags tan thimble tim holtz tintype tissue paper pattern tombstones toy transfer paper tree under the sea valentines vampires victorian vintage watch web window wings wire wire sun wire wrapped witch witches wood worry doll wreath zipper

Monday, July 7, 2014

Out of my box

My focus has been on improving my metalsmithing skills and I'm sad to say my blogging has felt the results of that. I will try to do better.
One of my goals for the second half of 2014 is to "work out of my box" two times a month. I struggle with beading. I would much rather be pounding metal. One of my other goals is to incorporate some of my past skills from the fiber industry.  One of those skills is kuhimiho. I used to do this japanese weaving on a much larger scale. Lately I have seen beaded necklaces created in this style... here is my first attempt.  I already see changes for the future.. but it was fun to do a dip into my past.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Winter is over and spring has sprung with lots of inspiration

Hello everyone… Welcome spring and new adventures.

I have been off the grid for a bit. Well, the blogging grid that is. It's been a busy winter. And what a winter it was. I'm going to do a quick catch me up.. so be prepared 6 months in a flash…..

******One quick disclaimer.. At this time I have no affiliation with any products or shared tutorials. Other than maybe belonging to a shared interest group. I simply share this information to pass on knowledge.

Give me a hammer, a flame and a piece of metal and I'm in heaven.

My latest project was been this air chased bracelet. The inspiration came from this tutorial video posted in a metals group I belong to. Kharisma is a wealth of inspiration and energy. It's fun to watch her videos and get all caught up in her enthusiasm . This was so much fun that I have made a few more.


My Mule Team earrings. I am addicted to this process. Sarah Boo's Musing shared her process here. As you can see I did not get the red but love the purple and coral tones I did achieve. I have my notebook out and taking notes. Will be changing up the water (used tap here) to bottled and distilled. I used my MAP torch. Going to try it with butane and propane. Sounds like a whole blog post dedicated to the process.




In my Charming world.. I participated in a bird, a caged bead, game piece, watch parts and a gift card swaps. At one point this was sitting on my bench.


Up close and personal… charms, charms, charms…. Fabulous swaps and so much fun.

Lucky Squirrel white shrink plastic,  sharpie pen and rubbing alcohol. I created a faux bone effect with my chick in a dress by Invoke Arts. I wish I could remember what die the bird cut out is. Its a set of two and a fairly new die.. like released the last 6 months.



Bird pendant using Spellbinder/SLK Media Mixage  house die cut out of some 30 gauge copper and then embossed with Vintaj's India Archway and Woodland birds dies .


Caged bead swap. I made these brass cages first. Then reread the instructions to realize they needed to be made of silver..  No hurt feelings here. I was really debating on sending them any way. I like them so much. They are created with brass beads, bead caps and jump rings. I colored the center bead with Vintajs Opalite patina.

Caged beads that were the result of following the rules.. lol. Don't you hate it when you are so excited about a project and skim the rules.. Lampwork bead, wire, bead caps and balled heads pins.. Simple as that.

I hosted this swap in a charm group I belong to. Actually all these charms are for ArtCharms yahoo group. The rules for this was to create something from those pretty gift cards we all get. Here was my contribution.. Steak and Shake. It was hard to get a good picture. They are metallic and holographic. Plus of I loved that 50's feel.

 This was such an amazing swap. I will have to ask if I can share some of the others creations. I was totally amazed and what others created.
Game piece swap. Above in the tray is a pile of space ships. Those came from a game my boys had and I just couldn't get rid of them. Below monopoly. I used wooden house shapes and covered them with monopoly chance and community chest cards and then sealed them. Each one is different. Again another fun swap.

Last but not least.. watch parts. I just finished these up. This one was a struggle for me. I have many prototypes. Shrink plastic which I ran through my printer and then used watch gears.


Well folks that does it for now. Many, many more things to share and on the bench. But this turned out to be a long post. I just couldn't stop and or decide what to share.. so went for it all. Enjoy.


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Let's get the season started…...

Here is the first of my Christmas creations… I had so much fun making these.

They are for a swap I am participating in over at ArtCharms yahoo group.

They are made from goodies from my local reuse/recycle factory recycle store Learning from Scratch. I used metal caps, bead snowmen from a necklace and rubber caps. Put some scrapbook paper in the back, punched a hole in the top to create a loop with a head pin and covered the inside edges with snow paint and some glitter. I filled the cavity partially with ice resin after it hardened added some white mica flakes and watch gears. Then added another layer of resin to seal the parts in. Added some ribbon and a curled ornament hook to finish them off.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

What a month!!!! But I guess late is better than never

October is usually my most active month. This year I came down with a flu/cold/whatever thing. It knocked me off my feet for more than a month. I'm still not awfully recovered.. Here is is what I did create.



I had a one for one apothecary bottle swap. I had this glass bell ornament from Melissa Frances, 1962 Embellishments line and thought how cool this would look. The cat/poison apple statue is a big box item that I had in my stash.






The bats are a La-La Land Crafts die that I absolutely love. I cut the bats from Lucky Squirrel black shrink plastic, prepunched a hole and attached the wire before shrinking.

My vampire blood vile is a old watch parts glass tube I had picked up at an estate sale colored with some alcohol ink.














Fairy fingers are bits and pieces from a plastic skeleton I have cut apart and used here and there. The base is covered with some scrap halloween paper and has some moss scattered around. I hope my swap partner enjoys this as much as I have making it.

Here are some tags I created for a swap in my yahoo group AlteredWithOutLimits. These were fun. Took a #8 tag and layers paint and inks to give the spooky effect. This haunted house is a die also from La-La Land Crafts. More shrink plastic bats. The pumpkins are also shrink plastic.




My last project was a haunted house page for another swap in my yahoo group.


I created my page with a spooky word background. Spritzed it with some orange and yellow and stamped a couple of images on. Several Tim Holtz items to be found here..the house, crow and cat and the gingerbread on the bottom. More shrink plastic was used. My little monster in the windows are fake fingernails. Not sure where I found them but thought they would be a fun addition.


Monday, September 23, 2013

Getting my creep on with Barbie

I recently hosted a swap over at ArtCharms called Getting Your Creep on. The specifications of the swap was to use doll/body parts. I started out with 10 Barbie dolls and created 33 "creepy" charms.


I started out pulling off Barbies head. I used the face portion of the head and maneuvered them to fit in a bottle cap. I then pounded over the edge to help hold them in place.



I had to use those cute little ears hidden under all that hair. I had these cute little bottles that I thought would make a great vessel to hold the ears.


For my last charm I used Barbies hands. I used a brass cap to cover the end of the hand/arm where I had cut it off and with a little bit of wire wrapping it had a completed look.





Here is my completed project with all the Get Your Creep On charms swapped over at ArtCharms.



Thursday, September 12, 2013

Wind-ohhh Charms

Who wouldn't like charms for their window. I had this great idea to take a beautiful fork and add some bead and a chandelier crystal. What fun to have the light reflecting off the crystals.


I started out with these great forks I found at an estate sale. Cut out the center tines and played with bending the outer one. I didn't care for the look since I was not able to get them some what the same. So in the end I cut all the times off and drilled some holes. Letter punched the word dream on each one. Wire wrapped some seed style beads around the bottom and attached my crystal. These were fun to do. I see myself searching out some more old silverware and having one hanging in each of my windows.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

For the love of bugs....Riveting, Reconstructing, Animating

I had the opportunity to take a quick trip to Chicago to take a class with Gail Crosman Moore at CREATE. Her workshop left my head spinning with ideas. We deconstructed raw brass stampings and created pieces with movement and dimension. I thought I would share my creation.



Gail shared some of her favorite coloring techniques. They ranged from alcohol inks to fingernail polish to rub and buff and gilders paste.  I loved the idea of fingernail polish. I used this wonderful lime green on by bugs body, his head is actually orange in color and his wings are purple. His short wings are what give movement to my creation. I'm still working what I'm going to hang him from.