Saturday, March 3, 2012

It's SOUP!!!

So here I am at the end of this adventure called the Bead Soup Blog Hop.  I've met a lot of nice people by being involved and I am glad I stepped out of my comfort (read total control) zone and took a chance.

I got these beads from Mandy Ainsworth a talented seed beader.

I can honestly say I wasn't sure what to do with them....but I decided to think on it for a few days and let my stash talk to me.  I used to do more seed bead work than I do now, but I find that the time it takes to complete a piece makes it cost prohibitive to sell.  But, I did these first pieces with a slight nod to the seed beads...

I was inspired by Edi Shaefer.  She posts these beautiful wire wrapped pieces on Facebook and while mine are not even close to what she makes I decided to give it a try.  I had all the silver seed beads and the wire, so I just had to figure out the design.  I like how it came out, and will try this style again.

I then went back to a design style I have been working with to use the focal bead...I call it Midnight Garden

I used the focal and created a black bracelet base.  Then I added lamp work, crystals, and the beads I got and used headpins that I created with coordinating glass ends.  I then added fibers until I was I never know when done is until well, I get there!  I am so lucky to be able to create my own beads so I could match what was sent.  I had the crystals in my stash.

Yes, these were beads I wouldn't pick out for myself, and I walked around with the focal bead in my purse for a few days trying to figure out what to make with it.  I am pretty pleased with what I came up with and am looking forward to seeing what everyone else made.  I have a gallery show on Friday so I'll get some feedback and maybe sell them that night!

Here is the list of participants....

Hostess, Lori Anderson Special Book Sneak Peeks, Cindy Wimmer
1.  Adlinah Kamsir (Singapore) and Hajer Waheed (Kingdom of Bahrain)
2. Adrienn Lukacs (Hungary) and Agata Grygiel (Poland)
3.  Agi Kiss (Hungary) and Carolien Muller-Genger (the Netherlands)
4.  Agnes Asztalos (Hungary) and B.R. Kuhlman
7.  Alicia Marinache (Canada) and Dita Basu
15.  Bonnie Coursolle (Canada) and Fay Wolfenden (Canada)
16.  Carmel McGinley (Australia) and Tracy Stillman (Australia)
21.  Cheryl Brown (Canada) and Diana Ptaszynski
22.  Christina Stofmeel (the Netherlands) and Eva Kovacs (Hungary)
24.  Cilla Watkins (Canada) and Elaine Robitaille (Canada)
25.  Sabrina Straub (Switzerland) and Kathy Combs
32.  Dee Elgie (UK) and Joanne Lockwood (UK)
33.  Dian Hierschel (Germany) and Eniko Fabian (Austria)
37.  Doris Stumpf (Germany) and Eszter Czibulyas (Hungary)
39.  Elke Leonhardt-Rath (Germany) and Marjolein Trewavas (UK)
41.  Erika Nooteboom (the Netherlands) and Giorgia Rossini (Italy)
43.  Evelyn Duberry (Canada) and Gaea Cannaday
45.  Ginger Bishop (military, Okinawa) and Martina Nagele (Germany)
48.  Helene Goldberg (Australia) and Karen Vincent
54.  Joanna Matuszczyk (Poland) and Julianna Kis (Hungary)
55.  Joanne Tinley (UK) and Michaela Pabeschitz (Austria)
65.  Kristina Johansson (Sweden) and Penny Neville (Canada)
66.  Krisztina Erlaki-Toth (Hungary) and Nicole Keller (Germany)
76.  Lori Finney (Canada) and Marie-Noel Voyer-Cramp (Canada)
78.  Marta Kaczerowska (Poland) and Milla Starchik (Canada)
83.  Michelle Jensen and Sandra Young (Canada)
92.  Rosa Maria Cuevas (Mexico) and Tejae Floyde
93.  Sabine Dittrich (Germany) and Sally Russick
95.  Shanti Johnson and Tracy Mok (Canada)
97.  Sonya Stille and Traci Zeller (Canada)
98.  Stefanie Teufel (Germany) and Tania Hagen (New Zealand)
100.  Terri Wlaschin and Wendy Blum

Please make sure to visit and leave comments for us!  We all like to know what you think of our work.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Review of the EuroTool Power Punch

So, while you are all waiting for March 3rd, I thought I'd
review a new tool I got today. 

In my enamel work I use a lot of copper disks and pennies.  The copper disks often come pre punched, but if I cut my own they need to have holes punched in them.   Pennies are an inexpensive way to show people how to enamel, but they have no holes.  Because of the thickness of the pennies I would always heat them up to anneal them in hopes that the holes would be easier to punch, but it was still a bear to do more than one or two.  So I started to look at the EuroTool Power Punch.

I love that this can cut a variety of hole sizes and up to a 16 gauge piece of metal.  So I did some research to compare prices and decided to order one from National Jewelers Supply.  They had the best price including shipping.  I ordered it and it was here in two days. 

It came in the case and had a small instruction sheet.  It was pretty obvious how it was going to work.  I decided to try the 1/8th punch on a penny.  I wanted a slightly bigger hole than I'd been putting in them using my other punch tools.  I would describe it as a hot knife thru butter!  The hardest part for me is my hands are a bit small so I braced the bottom on a table and punched!  The hole was perfect!  No sharp edges on the back at all.  I did a second one just to make sure it would work like this every time and it did.  I have an enameling class coming up and plan to punch some pennies ahead of time. The shop where I am teaching sells these so I figure I'll take mine in to show the students how it works.

I'm looking at a new disc cutter from Otto Frei.  They have several that I am interested in, I just have to decide which one to buy.  I'll post a review as soon as I get it and punch some discs!