Sunday, September 28, 2008

September Bead Journal Project - Done

Well if you look at this you know that I am a newbie to beading, but
I had a great time doing it and hope that those who see this enjoy my efforts. I have already (in an earlier post) noted why I picked the Twin Towers for my September project. The more I beaded the more I wanted to bead. All of the picture was beaded except the buildings surrounding the Twin Towers. I wanted them to remain in the shadows. Two problems I have are (1) the size and getting it right (2) finishing the edges. Right now I am going to call this one done - at the end - hopefully - I will have plan for what to do with my bead projects and finish them in an appropriate way. This one has ended up being 4 1/2 inches square, not the 5 inches I had intended.
The back is ultra suede. My friend Keri gave me some fabric she bought after 9/11 that had the New York skyline. I used a piece of that for the back to cover my stitches. It looks really good with the piece.
The top is done to simulate a US Flag and I thought that it added a lot to the piece.
Hopefully I will approve as we go along. Now I have 2 days to concentrate on Halloween costumes before getting started on October. Ideas are in my head for that one already. See ya'll in October.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Mail Art & Having Fun - 2

I just had to share this story with ya'll regarding my mail art envelope. Today I took it to the post office. I requested that it be hand cancelled so it didn't have to go through any machines. The lady at the post office just stared at the envelope. She ask "do you want a regular postage label or do you want to use stamps?" Well being an agreeable person I told her whichever was easiest for her. She opened her stamp drawer and took out several stamps, held them to the envelope and then suggested which stamps would go best with my colors. It was too funny. It cost a whole 7 cents more to put the stamps on, but it was so worth it for the experience of seeing how the post office enjoys an artsy envelope. I hope during the journey a few more people get to smile along the way and most of all I hope my friend Mary Lou smiles when she gets it next week.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Mail Art & Having Fun

My friend Pat ( does envelope art. If you buy something from her on her site you might get an extra surprise. I can't promise, but you never know. Her items are wonderful in themselves, but she is a sweet person that will go that extra mile. Anyway she got me interested in doing some mail art.
I took gesso and base coated 4 envelopes. While I was at it I gessoed (is that a word) 2 books that I bought for $1 each at the used book section at Savers. They still need more gesso and lots of work. Back to the mail art, I digress. The fun part was using different paints - the one I completed was done in #565 Metallic Bronze a Lumiere Paint by Jacquard. The colors are shiny when they dry and just glow. The side paper is a copy of a paper out of one of the Stampington Magazines by Somerset Studio. I like to copy my images and use the copies in case I want to use them again. The picture is a postcard "Henri De Toulouse-Lautrec - A La Mia, 1891. On one of my flea market searches I found a book of Postcards from the Museum of Fine Arts. It contains 32 French Impressionist painters art work, so I have a wealth of cards to work with for future art. I added the woman in the oval frame from some other pieces of art I collected. My idea was the men in the picture had to be talking about something - what better for 2 men to talk about (especially French men) than a beautiful woman????? The papers were added with Mod Podge. Haven't we been using that for years. I used it in the 60's and it is still a good product today. You can use white glue with water, but I like the consistency of the Mod Podge.
This envelope will be sent to my friend Mary Lou with some information she had requested about paper piecing a quilt. I could give it to her in October when our Beaders group meets again, but I think she might enjoy a little regular mail. She used to be the Postmistress in her town so mail seemed like a good idea. I hope she has as much fun with the envelope as I did making it.
The other envelopes are painted and ready to be decoupaged. Inspiration for another day!

Monday, September 22, 2008

More Beading Comments - Part 2

This is part of my work in progress. The main clouds are done in the crystal beads, accenting clouds will be done in a flat ivory. The towers are done in irridescent multi-colored beads to give them main stage in the story. I outlined in black between the buildings and the water. The piece was not working out to be a size I want to work with the rest of the year. At this point it was 4 x 5 inches when trimmed. I have thought all along that I wanted a 5 inch square piece to work on. It seems like a good size. The bottom water is beaded - not in the picture - but still quite a bit to go.

Since October is looming over the horizon, that means October and Halloween. There are only 2 grandchildren in my life. Every year since Gianni (she is now 7) and Will (he is 4) have been born I have made their Halloween costumes - except last year when I was having additional problems with my health. Gianni has been various things from a fairy to a witch. When Will - her cousin - was born I had 2 to do.
The first year Will was here Gianni was a witch and he was a scarecrow. Next year they were Raggedy Ann and Andy. This year Gianni will be a red devil and Will will be a pirate. October is also the International Quilt Show in Houston and for the first time in 4 years I am going again. My October project will be 5 x 5, but may not be totally beaded - maybe accents for that one, but who knows. On to September finishing.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Bead Journal Project 2008 - Part 1

It is time for me to do a little posting on my 2008 beaded project. This project has been refreshing and relaxing to do and I can't wait until it is finished. Anyone who has read my blogs knows that September 11th has a dearer meaning to me -not just the tragedy of that day, but of going forward and building friendships. My personality does not dwell on the negative and tries to be positive as much as possible.
The picture below is a tour/postcard book from 1976 that my daughter found for me while we were on one of our infrequent trips to an estate sale together. She not one to accompany me on these days, but this was one of the rare ones that she decided to go. Now surprising to me she has started going every Saturday morning with her friend Amber to yard and garage sales. Go figure!!! She calls to let me know of her finds.

I chose the bottom picture for my beading project. I printed it on 100% cotton transfer sheet - not the quick fuse kind. Now I am beading directly on the fabric. The colors are varied colors of irridescents, crystal for the clouds, white for one of the lower clouds and blue crystal beads for the water. The other buildings are staying gray and in the background to make the Twin Towers stand out from those buildings. There are some other touches I plan on doing a little later.

This is an exciting challenge for me and hope that it turns out well. My goal is to improve my beading each and every month as we go along.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Vanished Memories and Old Friends Revisited

There are no pictures for this blog - hope ya'll don't mind. Recently a dear friend who I had lost contact with emailed me out of the blue. Vona and I have spent the last few days catching up via email and I hope that we get to see each other soon. You see back in the 70's and early 80's Vona, T.E., their son Tommy, Jr and daughter Teri lived across the street from me and my family. She was there when I had my babies, through my divorce and then when I remarried and moved away we lost touch - my fault - it is sad when you get too busy and don't take time for old friends. But I have never forgotten her and her family and how close we were all those years.
Our kids have all grown. Her daughter Teri was my favorite babysitter when the kids were little. I always felt safe when Teri and her friend Suzanne would keep my kids because they were so responsible and their Mom's were right next door. Now Teri has a little boy of her own.
Do you remember when neighbors were neighbors? I hope some of ya'll out there are still having those kind of neighbors. You visit over coffee, you share things with each other, you even sometimes take trips together. Ahhhh nostalgia!!!! Vona I do miss you living across the street.
During one of her emails she told me the house on our old street was gone. I knew that the neighborhood had run down and that a couple of houses had burned, but I didn't realize that the house she was talking about was MY old house - until today!! I drove down our old street, the street where I lived for 10 years with my then husband, where my babies came home from the hospital to that little house and where I lived for almost 5 years after the kids Daddy walked out one day. So many good memories in that house, some bad memories, but mostly good. Well the house is gone but I still have the memories and old friends. Thanks for reconnecting Vona.
God is good and just keeps on blessing me every day.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Button Group Friends

A hobby I was encouraged to pursue is button collecting. Keri the one in the yellow started our group. On her left is Kathy, then Sally, Pat and Barbara. Jim is not there he was away in Oklahoma. Button collecting is a very addictive hobby, but the fun we have sorting through buttons is immeasurable. Do you know you can sort through a "poke box" of buttons thoroughly and the next person will always find a treasure or two that you missed. I don't do this for the value, but more for the joy of a beautiful button that was on someone's clothing a long time ago. Now Jim loves the new modern buttons and there are some unusual and beautiful ones, but I love the old ones. Especially the ones that tell a story or depict a story or character or a building. Being a lover of historical novels makes the button collecting more applicable. Keri provides her home each month for us to meet. We bring a lunch and visit and share. It is a wonderful group to be in.
You can sometimes find great buttons at flea markets and antique stores, sometimes you even can find them at yard sales. Of course with all things collectible the "hunt" is most of the fun. We put (well they do, mine are a mess) them on acid free cardstock to display them. Buttonbytes is a group that collects and shares buttons and has a wealth of information. They are on Google.
Also you can go to and get lots of information. Join and you get a wonderful booklet in the mail a few times a year.
Most of all you get to spend time with friends and isn't that what it is all about.