Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken. - Oscar Wilde

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Newest earrings

Spent the day trying to learn how to download and edit pictures on my new laptop.   I have been really hesitant to upgrade because the new Windows is such a pain to use, but my old standby is just getting to be too slow.

I took pictures of earrings I had made with from my newest beads, and spent the last several hours trying to figure out how to edit them.  That was after I cussed repeatedly at the computer because it also makes downloading from the camera so difficult. Old computer, I plugged in camera, turned it on and it downloaded automatically.  New computer, I have to find the "my computer" function and them manually move the pictures from the camera. Probably is an easier way, but have yet to find it .

Darn thing is even giving me problems as I type this ... the screen keeps changing it's resolution and I am doing nothing but typing.  Very frustrating  ,,,.. I foresee a large learning curve.

At the last Puyallup clay gathering, Kim showed me how to make a leaf cane.  I am not a caner. I don't seem to have the patience for it, but I was assured it was an easy one to make.  Still have a problem with keeping the form of the leaf when reducing, but am told that too comes with practice.

Here is an earring made from one of the multicolored spiral beads I showed yesterday.
While putting away old beads on my worktable, I came across a pair dragon egg beads that I had made several years ago.  Finally made them into earrings.

And for my final pair ....these are not polymer, but I fell in love with these seahorse beads at Michael's.  Bought the string and made up these for me and a pair for my scuba diving friend. Hope she likes the beads as much as I do.


Wow, as many postings in 2 days that I have done in 3 months. Maybe the greys have ended?

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Left overs

Some members of my guild (the NW Polymer Clay Guild) have been getting together for a day of claying around in the South Puget Sound area.  It is closer to home than the official Clay Days in Shoreline (north of Seattle).  We have had two gatherings so far and hope for more.

I had not played with clay all winter, so at my first gathering I got ambitious and tried for Mokume Gane.  I really did not like the look I got.  I forgot to add Julie Picarello's secret ecru blend that really make colors more harmonious. So, I had half a block of stacked clay left. What is so great about polymer clay, however, is the fact that (repeat after me) "there is no such thing as wasted clay"!.

I took the block home and it sat on my table for about a month, till I had some time to work in my studio.  I ended up cutting the stack into sections that I thought I could make a jelly roll out of. It wasn't wide enough however, so I ran it through my pasta machine at a thinner setting. This caused the lines to widen, but they were no longer straight.  They had waved a bit.
    I then took this wavy section, laid it on a thin layer of black clay and made a jelly roll.  When I sliced into the roll, I found that each slice had different colors meandering though the spiral.  Kinda neat.  I wish I had taken pictures of the process, but since I was just playing I had no idea that it would turn out cool.

Here are the beads that I made from the jelly roll.

I love how the colors blend and overlap in the spirals.

Catching up

I can't believe it has been two months since my last blog, and it wasn't even about beads.  To tell the truth, I was not feeling too creative this winter. Have been focusing on other things.  I had a birthday in January and had to get a new driver's license, with a new picture. I am no raving beauty, but that pix was HORRIBLE!   I am getting older, and with age comes certain changes in the body ... that I know I have to deal with.  And I have not been dealing with the changes too well.   However, that picture acted as a catalyst.

     I hauled our butts down to weight watchers the day after my birthday ... have been tracking and eating right now for the last several months.  Right away I noticed that I have more energy and some of the aches are gone.  I have lost 9 pounds and my hubby a bit over 20.  Sometimes it doesn't seem fair that he is losing it so fast, but he pointed out that he has a lot more to lose than I do.  He is also becoming a walking champ.  We bought fitbits, and he is determined to get in his 10,000 steps a day.  He has gone from couch potato to someone who is searching the Internet for walking trails. His best find is a lovely 2.5 mile trail in Des Moines that ends at the waterfront. An easy walk for me as it is mostly downhill.  I even bought a good pair of walking shoes!
Des Moines trail in February. Dig that blue sky

Des Moines Trail

Pier at Des Moines Waterfront

View at Des Moines Waterfront.  Vashon Island in the distance.