Jul 272007

I was honored to be asked by Rena Klingenberg (Home Jewelry Business Success Tips) to read and review her new eBook, Secrets of a Handcrafted Jewelry Shopping Service. The book was made available online July 24, and I have to say, it’s fantastic! Personally, I am starting to implement some of her ideas and use some of her tips…and I can’t wait to report back the results.

If you are interested in expanding your selling horizons beyond simple art and craft shows, please check out Rena’s book. Now through July 30, if you download the book, you’ll also receive bonuses! Visit http://www.jewelry-books.com/shopping-service.html for more information (including my testimonial!!)

Jul 222007

While the rest of the world devoured Potter yesterday, I spent the day experimenting with colors and shapes. It was pretty fun putting together some combinations that I have not done before! Usually I’m pretty monochromatic, but a friend’s post of an Amber and Lapis necklace inspired me to get out of my box, so to speak.

First up, some Paua shell rectangles with tiny Apatite chips. Simple design, but I like the way the Apatite brings out the color that reminds me of Caribbean waters.

Next, tiny top-drilled white pearls paired with chunky pale pink ones. I love the soft colors in this set, but mostly, I’m pleased with the findings…everything’s made by me! The clasp is a simple hook, and the connector is a Rose ring (using two pieces of wire instead of one) with the shank pieces spread open. The ear wires are actually made from 22g half hard wire…I’m finding that it’s more comfortable than heavier gauge for me.

Finally – a rich and royal looking set! Emerald Swarovski crystals, deep purple faceted Amethyst, and chunks of Amber are worked into a color and shape combo that looks fantastic in person – the photo just doesn’t do justice! This is the one that was inspired by my friend’s Amber and Lapis piece…and it took me a while to get just the right color and shape design before I was pleased with the end result. And pleased I am!

Jul 182007

Land of Odds’ annual Ugly Necklace contest winners have been announced!

First place was awarded to:
Julia Vogl and Maggie Ollove of Oberlin, Ohio for their truly awful entry (and I mean that in the nicest way!)

Runner up was the incredibly horrific entry from Hillary Schmeichel of Long Beach, California. Just looking at it makes me want to pour Lysol in my eyes…..

The 2008 contest gears up September 1, 2007, with entries due no later than March 15, 2008. Those deadlines tend to sneak up on you, so start designing something Ugly now!!!

Jul 152007

Turquoise is a nice stone for summer jewelry. It makes us think of the southwest, and it is what I’d call a “casual” stone, although it can be dressed up to go great with a summer frock!

Today I experimented with some wonderful African Turquoise that I’d gotten at the last Rings N Things trunk show here in Omaha, and created two totally different bracelets from the same batch of turquoise.

Inside (with matching earrings) are some nifty copper beads and a copper toggle paired with just a couple of pieces of the flat lentil-shaped turquoise. On the outside, I’ve used some Bali silver spacers, square coral (to add some shape interest) and a hand-crafted sterling S clasp.

I haven’t done much stringing lately, but I’m really pleased with both of these pieces. Tell me which one you like better!

Jul 122007

In my mailbox today:

Bead-a-Day Calendar 2009 Call for Entries

The 2009 edition of the Beading Bead-a-Day Calendar is being compiled, and you’re invited to submit your bead projects and tips for publication. Here’s what the editors are looking for:

– Original beading projects and techniques at all levels, from beginner to advanced.

– Submissions can be short or long. Shorter projects are handled on one day of the calendar, others are broken up into multiple days.

– Project directions should be clearly and professionally presented and submitted in a MS Word document by email or by snail-mail on a CD. Any diagrams or digital photographs should be submitted at the same time.

– All images must have resolution of at least 300 dpi and minimum size of 4×6 inches. (If you cannot photograph your project yourself, you may be asked to mail your project to the editor to be photographed.)

Submissions for the first half (six months) of the calendar must be received by October 2007. Submissions for the second half of the calendar will be accepted through November, and possibly into December. To increase your chances of getting published, the editor recommends sending your submission(s) as early as possible.

You may send submissions by email to
Sharon Hessoun (Editor, Beading – Bead-a-Day Calendar 2009) at calendar09@gmail.com.

If you’d prefer to mail-in a CD, please email Sharon for the proper shipping address.

Sounds like a great opportunity, and while the deadline of October seems like a long way off, it will be here before you know it!!!

Jul 112007

Got this in my email today and it’s too good not to share!!


Shop online for 50–80 percent off your favorite craft books

Loveland, Colo., July 10, 2007: Interweave Press announced today its annual, highly anticipated hurt book sale, eginning today at 10 a.m. MDT at http://www.hurtbooksale.com/hurt. More than 125 craft books will be deeply
discounted and sold online only on a first-come basis until inventory runs out.
This is a great time to pick up bargains on both hardbound and softbound
books about beading, jewelry making, knitting, crocheting, felting, spinning,
weaving, needlework, and other popular crafts.

Hurt books are still in good condition but imperfect in quality and have minor
dings such as a scratch on the cover or a bent page.

The savings run deep and some books will be combined for greater discounts.
For example, the knitting titles Scarf Style and Wrap Style from the popular
Style series will be available at 50 percent off individually ($10.98 each) or for
$15 plus shipping if ordered together—that’s over 65 percent off the retail

Other sought-after titles to be marked down for the sale include The Beader’s
Companion by Jean Campbell and Judith Durant, The Knitter’s Companion by
Vicki Square, Felted Knits by Beverly Galeskas, and Beaded Embellishment by
Amy Clarke Moore and Robin Atkins, as well as rarer titles such as the
Weldon’s Practical Needlework volumes—the perfect gift for needlework
history buffs and a fantastic value at 50 percent off the original price of $30

Hurt books cannot be combined with normal products at check-out and phone
orders will not be accepted. All sales are final and books are nonrefundable.

Checking out the prices, they are about 1/3 off the lowest price at Amazon.com….so I say go for it!! Have fun shopping!!!!

Jul 082007

Two very dear friends of mine, Delia and Deb, have formed a new charity. In their own words, here’s what Operation Marine Corps Kids is all about:

700,000 children in this country have a parent at war. When babies are born to deployed troops, it’s doubly hard for both mom and dad. The dad must wait weeks or months to meet his newest child. The mom has responsibilities of both parents, juggling the exhausting care of a newborn while meeting the needs of other children without the help of her husband. It’s a sacrifice, and one that military families make every single day.

Operation Marine Corps Kids is a new effort designed to support the quiet heroines of this war and the littlest heroes – the kids that miss their daddy but know that he is away helping to protect them.

Operation Marine Corps Kids will send care packages to the families of deployed troops when babies are born. The packages might include a hand-crafted baby afghan, cap or bonnet, booties or toy. With sufficient resources, we’ll also be able to include a handmade toy for other kids in the family. It’s a small, but significant, gesture of love and support for those who keep the home fires burning alone.

Even if you are not a crocheter or knitter, Operation Marine Corps Kids can benefit from your donations. Please visit the blog to find out more.