Thursday, April 15, 2010

I'm in Love!

I’ve had my new HotHead torch for 2 weeks today, and have made over 200 beads! Most are small, simple beads--I’m working on shape--but I love them all equally.

I started with MAPP gas, but used 4 cylinders in 2 days. At $7.49 a piece! The local welding supply store had a better answer—a 20# tank of Chempro. Less expensive and 500 deg.F hotter than MAPP gas. So now I have an outdoor-grill-size tank of gas hooked to my HotHead torch. It even has a gauge so I know when it’s empty! Which, thankfully it hasn’t been yet.

Since the HotHead came into my life, my husband has been behaving strangely. He’s volunteered to make dinner. He’s started getting my son off to school in the morning. He stops by the computer for a hug. He even pokes his head into the garage “just to say hi.”

I wonder: how long will the honeymoon last?

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Beading Together!

My little bead room had some company this week! My 11 year old niece came to redeem her “Raid Aunt Kelley’s Stash” birthday coupon.

Earrings were the theme, and she brought shirts to design them for. She designed three pairs of shorter dangles: one pair from black triangle beads and clear and teal crystals, one pair with a rich purple pearl and two sparkly metal beads, and one pair with blue glass, yellow crystals and chain.

Before we could blink nearly two hours had passed!

It was so much fun to sit back and watch the joy on her face as she sorted and matched and slid beads on and off headpins. And when she said, “Can you make danglies here and here, and put this here like this?” to be able to answer “Yes! I can do that!” was priceless.

She’s coming back again soon. :)


Monday, April 5, 2010

WOW! (#1)

It's my first WOW! post. Yay!

I found a wonderful book on netting at the library the other day: Netted Beadwork by Diane Fitzgerald. I was drawn in by her stunning netted beads, but after my latest peyote stitch disaster, I decided to start with the simplest thing in the book.

Here's the result:

Pretty gosh-darned cool, isn't it?
It's a simple lace chain with one of the ends pulled into a tight circle. That's it! I'm so impressed.

If I come across any on-line, free-domain instructions I'll post them for you!

Off to try the netted beads, now. Happy beading!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

I can make beads!

See the beads on the blog header? I made those. They're borosilicate glass from Studio 34 here in Rochester (for those interested in a relaxed, no stress beading class).

I've been dying to go back and melt more glass, but just can't seem to get there. So, being of the sink-or-swim mentality, I saved up a bit of cash and bought a Hot-head torch, didymium safety glasses (I look like the biggest nerd in them), and some mandrels & bead release. Then I sat in the garage for three hours. With the door open, of course.

Some of the results weren't so great (my husband had to crack off a couple of the worst, stuck-on beads with a hammer), but I actually produced a set I love the first day!

I can't wait to see how the next batch comes out!