Monday, 29 December 2014

O Christmas Tree

My new Christmas Tree, very tall but narrow just right for the only place in the house for it.
Its growing on me, we gave it a silver and blue theme (needs more blue I reckon!)

I love to have a real one but hubbie said no this year because I normally get one with a root ball so if it survives Christmas we plant it in the garden, he wasnt up to potting it up because his back just wasn't up to it. So went shopping day before Christmas Eve and got it half price!  Good result!!!

Oh and see the glass bauble right near the top underneath the angel I made that this year at the Flame-off. 
It is glass blowing my very first attempt. 
I was quite pleased with myself.


Hope you had a great Christmas!  

I did!


Merry Christmas to Everyone
and

A Very Happy & Prosperous 

New Year

2015

xx Elaine xx

Sunday, 19 October 2014

29 Years Ago Today

Yes 29 years ago I got married to my long suffering hubbie, through thick and thin we have endured many trials and tribulations in our life together. 

For a number of years we went through fertility treatment and finally tried IVF, 3 attempts later we succeeded and my daughter was born, a great bundle of joy she was too.

Sadly no more babies came along but I love being a Mum and only wish I could of had more.  Billie is 17 now, my beautiful daughter is growing up, last year she passed all her GCSE's amazingly passing all 11 of them. This year she has just completed her first year of her A levels but she's been having a few problems and is also suffering with some teenager problems too which haven't helped either, I've had to help her through this difficult time. Its very hard on teenagers now lots of stress from exams and peer pressures but she is getting there but it will take time and she is getting very frustrated with the situation, we will get her through it though, hopefully very soon.  She has had to drop her A Levels and is now at College doing an Art & Design diploma which will be an equivalent of 3 A levels when she is finished, then she hopes to go on to do her Foundation in Art and Design before trying for her Degree at University.  So still got a long way to go yet, fingers crossed she'll make it through.

So I've been having a hectic time helping my close family through difficult times, what with my Mum and now Billie. 

We carry on!!! 


We decided a few years ago that we didn't really use our Zoo membership fully so we had to make some cut backs on our spending so we had to let it lapse, sadly.  A couple of weeks ago I felt we needed some family time, so we could relax and enjoy being together, where we are all comfortable with going, so I decided we would go back to the Zoo and get our memberships renewed.  It is on our doorstep and a very lovely location on top of the Chiltern Hills which we call The Downs!  Whipsnade Zoo is famous for its conservation of wild animals under threat of extinction and membership fees help with this cause.

Since we have been gone they have had some new additions to the animal families.  New tiger cubs, Asian Elephants and very recently a baby giraffe.



 
Isn't he cute
 

 
 

And we think this is the proud Dad but I couldn't swear to that!!!  He did give the little lad a few nips when he tried to eat some of his supper!!  Ha Ha!!


Giraffes are my most favourite of animals so graceful and elegant, with great big beautiful eyes.  I keep having attempts at drawing/painting them but to no avail, with these pics I might be able to give it another go!!  We'll see, I'm not the most confident with drawing!! 80)) I do love to paint but just don't seem to get round to doing any, for quite a few years now actually, maybe I will again!!


Til next time


E x




















Sunday, 12 October 2014

Finally snapped!

If you read my post of 12th May you will have seen I made some beads to match the dress my friend Rosemary was going to wear for a Wedding she was attending in June. The dress had lots of blues in it on a cream background, the beads were absolutely fine but they never really jumped out when put up against the dress!!

Now, on a closer inspection of the design on the dress I found some other colours that weren't so obvious but would stand out more so, when worn!

Back to the drawing board I went!!

I love the matching game!! I found some colours that seemed to work and here is the end result


 
Smoky Blue Trails  
 



 



I teamed it with sterling silver and I created all the clasp hooks and ear wires. I did enjoy creating this set as it is all my own work other than the chain and silver spacer beads, it was fun putting it all together, this was the main reason behind taking up lampworking in the first place.





Rosemary seemed pleased with them all, as this was her birthday present (all being a bit late) and I was pretty pleased too as all the large smoky purple beads are encased with smoky grey transparent glass, I seem to be mastering encasing!!!   Yay!!!

Happy Bunny!!!


E x

Thursday, 25 September 2014

What a Summer! Where did it go?

As the last rays of summer are giving us a bit of an 'Indian Summer' as autumn is setting in and the leaves are falling and the nights are getting chiller, where did my summer go! 

My last post was back in June and since that post my life got turned completely upside down!!  On the 13th July I rushed my Mum to hospital with a chronic pain on her left side of her abdomen.  The evening was spent in A&E while they worked out what was wrong with her!  They linked her up to a morphine drip, x-rayed her and then admitted her onto a ward for the night.  She was booked in for a CT scan in the morning, they then found a massive cyst on her ovary, this was the cause of her pain.  


They moved her up to the gynae ward, the consultant spoke with her and told her he would need to give her a full hysterectomy to remove the cyst, it was possible it was cancerous. 


She had to wait a couple of weeks for her op on 7th August, it seemed like forever caring for her at home while she waited.  He rang me immediately after he had finished the operation to tell me it was most likely benign, we still had to wait 10 days for confirmation from the lab though.  It was confirmed as being benign, great news!!


Oh Boy what a summer!!




She is recovering really well, her op was nearly 7 weeks ago, her scar has healed over and she is practically self sufficient now. I have been able to leave her to feed herself and she does her  own washing up too. Last week the Occupational Therapy team brought her some gadgets for her to use to make life easier! And my brother bought her a new adjustable electric bed, how fab is that!!  She loves it!!





She is a fabulous Mum and has always been there for me through all of my difficulties, this was my turn to repay her for her love and to look after her through this difficult time. We are totally ecstatic that she has come through this and we haven't lost her to the nasty disease that is  -- Cancer!!!


So as you can imagine I have made nothing for this time spent looking after Mum!
No jewellery.   No beadmaking.  My housework and washing has piled up over this period as well as all the jobs I was going to do through the summer holidays, all not done!!!

Lots of catching up to do but now I'm back at school its taking time!!
I'll get there, I am especially desperate to get back to my torch, hoping it will be this week, fingers crossed xxxx


Maybe next time I will have something new to show you, hearts are in my mind, here's hoping 80))

E x



Tuesday, 24 June 2014

New pod shape and new glass

Yes I have new glass!


I went a little mad with my purchases, picked them up at flame-off and now finally getting round to trying them out. So more headpins, really loving making them!  

Practising different shapes and ideas, pods being one of them.

I've had a few breakages with them so there are quite a few I cant show you as the have cracked really badly.  Below are a few of my trials....



My new pod like shaped headpins in dark multi, these are also on brass wires




These 2 are a lovely dark teal transparent glass on copper wire


These  below are made using dark fossil glass another favourite glass that does its own thing!  I think I will make some in pod form too.  Yummy ....  but don't eat them!!







The fossil and the teal ones are now listed in my etsy  bead store.  The multi headpins are nearly ready for listing, I need some different photos of those too then they can go up.

So I will be busy listing over the coming days and get ready for my giveaway ........


watch this space ..................


E x





Saturday, 7 June 2014

UFO's

No this is not a sci-fi post .......  UnFinished Objects or UFO's for short!!!

I do have lots of them but this one I finally finished as I have a buyer for it.

 
Tangled Rose Bangle in Teal


Originally it had a different look but I decided it wasn't really very wearable as it was, so I gave it a tweak and a rose seemed to materialise! I am really pleased with it now, my buyer fell in love with it instantly.





I love the colour of the weaving wire it really stands out on the coated copper base wire, its in a basket weave with a coiled end to finish each side.  My designs always seem to have an abstract or asymmetrical element somewhere in them, its my style and I love it!!



Just need to finish a few more now!!!  Ha ha!!

Till next time

E x



Friday, 6 June 2014

Coring Chatelle Beads

Chatelle beads (if you don't know) are my big hole charm beads (5mm dia). Most people have heard of Pandora beads these are glass charm beads which thread straight onto the bracelet and they have a silver core to the hole.   I have named my charm beads 'Chatelles'. Can you see a connection to my ChatElaine Glass Art name?? 80))  Well I liked it!!


So I have been making Chatelles for sometime but unlike Pandora beads I don't silver core the holes. I have used grommets or rivets which you can glue into each end of the hole, these work ok but it depends on the hole width so can leave a gap in the middle of the hole core, not so good!!

However, I would like to core the beads properly but don't really have the right tools to do it. I decided last year to get some dapping punches as this was the cheaper option to achieve the coring because most of the coring tools/machines come from the USA. So getting them here is quite expensive with shipping of heavy equipment and the added customs charges probably on top as well, hence dapping punches!

Well now then, have I used them punches ...... N. O.  No!!

Couple of weeks ago a lampworking friend had a Meet-up at her place and guess what, she has a number of different coring machines and they were all out for us to try!!!  Yippeeeee!!!


She showed us how to use each one, what we needed to do and we were off 'out the blocks'   as quick as you like!!  Cutting the tubing to length, annealing the metal and into the machine to get it to lay down each side of the hole.

Here is my first bead cored in copper

 
Confritti  Heart in Pink with a little flower on the shoulder


I now have some copper tubing on its way and my dapping punches will get dusted off and taken out of the box!!  Very soon.

Been busy making beads lately so hope to have more to show you, hopefully, just so long as the kiln fairies are being kind.

Till next time

E x




Monday, 12 May 2014

Birthdays

There has been a few birthdays in my world over the last month or so, all needing something special.  My friend Rosemary's birthday was at the end of March,  I wasn't sure what to get her, then I thought why not make her some beads as she is a novice jewellery maker, she loves gemstones and watches the Jewellery Maker TV channel constantly and buying various gemstones that catch her eye!

I wasn't sure what to do so I made some beads and they didn't go to well as I was trying to create a leaf as a focal bead but I need a bit more practice I think and it ended up I didn't have any beads finished for her actual day!  So lots of apologies were given to her and I promised to make her something very soon.

Oh dear it was difficult to get something sorted so I decided to ask her if she wanted any colours in particular. Ah well 'blues' really she said, as she has a new dress to wear to a wedding she is attending in early June.  She sent me pics of the dress and off to the workshop I went.



 
 
It is from Phase 8 and its called Edith Blossom Dress its very pretty, I tried to match the blue colours, so I picked some blue glasses in various shades and also included a new CIM colour Antique Lace which is a cream colour and some splashes of black too.


 
Edith Blues Set


I was quite pleased with the match.  I popped round to see Rosemary yesterday and we did a little match up with the actual dress and the transparent blue (Effetre Lagoona) was a bit dark but the other blue was really spot on, along with the cream too!  she liked the beads but they weren't quite right.

Now I have seen the dress up close there was a few other colours in it that seemed interesting so I am going to try and recreate those by doing a little colour mixing to see what I can come up with.  I will let you know when I have had a play and see what happens!



The next birthday was my Mum's, her birthday was last weekend she was 78 and I didn't have a clue what to give her.  She doesn't really want for much, I often make her something but wanted to do something different this year, so I decided that it would nice to take her up to London and go to the Theatre to see a show. I told her what I was thinking as I wanted to take her to see something she would like to see, so I gave her a little list.

I fancied seeing 'We Will Rock You' and few others but when I told her what one interested me she agreed that she wanted to see it too.  If you don't know what that is well its based around Queen songs but the story is set in the future when there are no musical instruments and everything is online including music.

 
 
I found some tickets for us both to go on Saturday (10th), its on at the Dominion Theatre in Tottenham Court Road.



We went up on the train and had a great time, it was really fantastic. It was like going to a concert really the singers were really good. She loved it and so did I.



 
 
 
Yes it really did have a motorbike on stage!
 
 

We had a bit of dinner up there too. She was pretty worn out when we finally got back home but she said it was well worth it.




I have been making lots of different headpins again, I love making them so much scope for using them with the glass finials on the end of the wire.  I use mostly raw wire like copper, brass, bronze and I will also try some sterling silver too. I won't use plated metal as it will be difficult to clean it as I think the plating metal will probably come off during the cleaning process.

Hoping to get some of the headpins listed very soon in my etsy shop, here is a bit of a preview for you


 
Marbled Ice Headpins


 
Multi Leaves and Drops Headpins
(previously seen but now annealed)






Also a nice pair of round beads in the new colour from CIM called Poseidon





Great for a pair of earrings, loving these may need to keep them for myself!!  80))


Till next time




E x









Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Having fun with Headpins


Yep I've been making some headpins.

I love making headpins, I wasn't sure how to make them in the beginning as I didn't know the best way to hold the wire while I added the glass. So I chatted to a few fellow lampworker friends and came up with using scrap wire and wrapping them onto a mandrel with it.

This works really well but is a bit time consuming getting them prepared. I saw Linda from Earthshine Beads on fb showing a photo of her demoing at a show at the weekend and she was using a pin vice to hold the wire. I think I might try it out and see how that goes!  So thank you to Linda for that idea, very helpful.



Dark Multicolour glass by Riechenbach
I love this glass one of my favourites at the moment, made by Riechenbach Dark Multi is a reactive glass but it just reacts in the flame with not much or no effort at all really, it just does what it does, just like MAGIC!!
                                    

Right then, I made drop headpins first the browny/red ones at the top, then I made the bluey, greeny, purpley ones next (Yes it really is the same glass) then I made the leaves at the very top of the above photo and they had more greens in them, with some brown and purples too.  In the first photo at the top of this post you can see some ivory beads and these have some d.multi dots and trails on them.





Now I went off to this years Flame-off in Uttoxeter a couple of weeks ago, had a great time because it is a lampworkers convention which happens once a year (not often enough).  It is an event for glass beadmakers hosting demos, supplies, beadmakers selling their own beads and the torch area, so we can get our fix if necessary and beginners can try out torches and have a go at making a bead or two possibly for the first time! I took a turn at helping out on the torches this year and really enjoyed helping some complete beginners make their first bead and a few others who needed some help with how to control the glass and even reshaping a bead for a lovely lady called Beryl.  It was such fun I may do it again next year. Some of the demos were fabulous and I did end up buying a few 'keepers' from some of the many artists there!

I stocked up on many different things but of course I couldn't come away without buying some lovely glass!! Oh boy was there some lovely, gorgeous and definitely delicious glass. 

CIM glass is my favourite glassmakers and they have some lovely new colours, below is one of them but its not quite come out a very good colour likeness. It still looks gorgeous but I will try and get a better photo tomorrow.  Sadly both of these headpins have cracked.  I don't think I got them into the bubbles quick enough as well as I may have pushed them to far into the bubbles and maybe they were touching the side of the bowl.  I always batch anneal my headpins as I always put them on the bottom of the kiln floor, instead of putting them into the kiln while I am making them.   



CIM Poseidon 


Must make some more as I love this new colour, which the name escapes me right now!!!  
Updated above ....

There are some lovely new oranges, pinks, lilac and all with great names for them as well.  Sunset, Frangipan (pink), Alleycat (orangey/yellow), Trade Winds (very dark blue), Gypsy (very dark purple), Rudolph (red), just to name a few!


So lots of making to do and some photos to take as well.


I will see you again very soon.



E x



Updated with names!   8.5.14




Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Top Tip Tuesday ~~ Tutorial ~~ How to make Wrapped Loops

How to make:  Wrapped Loops



You will need:

Wire cutters
Round nose pliers
Flat nose pliers
Chain nose pliers

Head pin
Beads


1.  Onto a headpin place on desired bead(s), do not trim headpin as you did in the turned loop.





2.  Grasp the headpin with round nose pliers, approx. 4mm above the bead





3. Start to pull the wire around the blade of the round nose pliers, using your fingers or chain/flat nose pliers, to form the loop.





4. The wires should cross over





bend back the upright wire to centralise the loop (as in the turned loop)             

    




Tip: At this point you need to attach to the chain and/or earwire, if do not want to use a jump ring to attach the bead component.



5. Now take the chain nose pliers and hold the loop,




Grasp the loose end with a second pair of pliers (I use flat nose pliers but you can use whatever you have), pull this wire around the upright wire; ensuring this wire is perpendicular to the upright wire.



Tip:  If the wire is not perpendicular you will get sloping or diagonal wraps and they may not be neat and tidy. Using the flat nose pliers, straighten this wire so it sits perpendicular.



  
6.  Continue to wrap the wire around the upright until you get to the bead, the usual amount of wraps is 3 but it can be any number you want it to be, you are only limited by the length of wire left on the headpin.





Tip: While winding take the wire to the top (still holding the loop with the chain nose pliers), let go with the flat nosed pliers and reposition your hand by grasping the wire from the back and carry on by pulling the wire round and towards you 







and up 



let go again and reposition as before to pull upwards to the top once again






Don’t try and complete a wrap all in one go!





7.  Take the cutters and trim off the wire end as close to the base wire as possible.




Tip: You may need to straighten the loop after the wraps are complete as it can sometimes tip over slightly. Put the round nose pliers back into the loop to do this, as if re-turning it again.


 
Also the base wire can bend over slightly, just use your flat-nose pliers to straighten the loop so it becomes upright again.  

    

8.  Take the chain and/or flat nose pliers and tuck the end in by squeezing it down









slowly moving round the wire so no more wire is sticking out, until it is neat.










A Wrapped Loop





The wrapped loop is a little difficult to get right but with practice will become easier.


I hope you find this tutorial helpful and if you have any difficulties or any questions please contact me, I am happy to help.


Once you have mastered the wrapped loop, it is a very useful skill to have and can be used in many different ways within different types of jewellery making, earrings are a very common use but can also be used in bracelets, pendants/necklaces for linking or connecting components together, maybe in brooches and even in other types of accessories.




 
Bangle on a wire, connection to chains.



 
Beaded Finial on the clasp of a bangle
 
 




 
Necklace - Beads on a wire, connection to chain





 
Bookmark -  Connections between beads





Next time I will cover Coiling (I do not use a Gizmo) all done by hand.


Until then lots of practising required.  80))


E x






Saturday, 12 April 2014

Torch has been lit!!

Yes siree, I finally lit my torch for the first time this year. 

I cant believe its taken me this long to do it.  

Well I did have a reason .......... Flame-Off.

This is the annual UK lampworkers event, its a convention with torches, beadmaking supplies, lampworkers village and most importantly demos by famous lampworkers from around the world.

I usually go every year, its fab, Shopping and demos all in one place. Heaven!!
Well its is to other lampworkers anyway.

So I needed the practice, get me going again........  about time I hear you cry!!!  
Maybe eh???


So this was Tuesday --- Today I am here!  At last 80))


I will try and get some pictures to show you!! And of my purchases too!!


HAVING A LOVELY TIME!!


Right off to bed now more shopping to do in the morning.   80))


E x


Sunday, 30 March 2014

Mothers Day -- Strange Day Ever

Yes it has been a bit odd today, I needed to get some things done but decided to start with a little lie-in, so I got my Lee Child book out and had a lovely relaxing read. Billie my daughter came in with my card, my flowers were already in a vase downstairs as she went out yesterday to get them. Beautiful they are too. ♥

We had a Sunday morning chat on the bed (well I was in it), we do this from time to time!  She was already dressed waiting for her boyfriend to come round for the day, he lives a little over 6 miles away so he usually gets dropped off by a parent. She hadn't seen him for a few weeks coz she'd been really busy with school work. 

We had a nice morning! 

I needed to get up and get on, so it was now afternoon and so up I got, reluctantly! Had breakfast, put washing out .... The first phone call came in, I answered it .... it was the boyfriend! He can't come over yet he'd been out last night and on the way home left his mobile in the taxi and needed to go and get it back. Probably be about an hour or so. So she waited!  Oh dear!!


I needed to finish Mum's earrings off, went up into my workshop to do some hammering on the earwires, finishing was going to be a bit of wrapping as the silver bead hole was a little large and it kept sliding off. Great one done .... other one I just needed to tuck in the loose end of the wire............. CRACK!!!!  The bottom swaro crystal split right done the middle and flew across the room!!!  Damn and Blast it!!!!  More like S**T and B****R!!
Thats them knackered , now what am I going to do!!   

I promised Mum a new pair to replace the pair she loved and took on holiday, she lost one of them while she was away, yonks ago, these were them!!!

Luckily I had a back-up gift but still I was very annoyed.  She would understand I know she will, I have a truely wonderful MUM! ♥♥♥

3pm 2nd phone call comes in ..... he's not coming now, getting a bit late ...... she's not a happy lady!!  Wasted day ...waiting,  when she could have got on with some artwork. Deadline and 3 day exam straight after Easter holidays!!

Pretty upset with him now!! 

I said go do some work so you don't waste anymore of the day!!
'Yep, I suppose I'd better' she said    80((

3rd phone call comes in 10 minutes later, he says 'I can come over if you still want me too.......'

'Don't bother I'm gonna do some work now'   phone goes down!!!

Now she is totally wrecked!!
Started doing some work but her heart wasn't in it.


I go visit my Mum.

Two hours later I come back, shes talking on fb to him, lots of apologising, not going down to well ....

We chat, she has a Mummy hug, I think its over!!!

She contacts him, this is the last time, she says Goodbye!!!!

Weirdest Mothers Day ever!!!

Now to make a new pair of earrings, no pics today, Sorry! 

Maybe next time!


E x








Sunday, 23 March 2014

More blogging required

I am needing a kick to get me started,  I have finally added some posts this week but I really need to set myself some goals because I am totally unorganised at the moment.


I did promise to add more tutorials to my blog and so I need to make LISTS!

Yes back to the good ol' LISTS!

Whenever I lapse not using Lists I just go to pot!
Here we go then .........


1. Do tutorials for my blog.

2. Take photos of beads with new backgrounds to update them.

3. Make new beads and cabs.

4. Make some new jewellery, try out my new letter stamps and disc cutter

5. STOP PROCRASTINATING, get on with the jobs I need to do (see all of the above)

6. TIDY THE HOUSE -- ITS TERRIBLE!

7. Go to bed at a decent time! Not at 2am, 3am, 4am I'm getting to old for this!!

Hello my name is Elaine I have an addiction -----  LAZINESS! 

Blinkin' well pull your finger out and get on with something women!!!!

Right I am now officially told off -- will it help  ...........  I doubt it!!

E x

Thursday, 20 March 2014

RED Hair

I dyed my hair for the fancy dress party and I love this colour.  My last colour was a darker shade but I really like this one.

I don't do 'selfies' much but thought you might like to see what a great colour it turned out.



 
pondering  mmmmm
 
 
Looks a bit pale in this photo, I took it on my new Galaxy Note and not sure how to change things yet, need to work out how to use it properly I think!!
 
 
That's all this time
 
 
 

E x

 

Flowers into Glass

I have been taking some photos of flowers blooming in my garden.  I cant believe how many buds my Camelia plant has this year, usually I don't get many but with all this rain we've had this year its absolutely covered!!  Apparently they love lots of water and with all our rain we've been having it has gone mad!


 


Here's a close up of one bloom, I have taken to having a go at making some flower beads and need some real life blooms to help me make them as accurately as possible. (Well within reason!!) 80))



Lovely and sunny day but I think I got a good enough shot for my flower collection.


I also have some double daffodils that hubbie has put into my kitchen window box, its a shame to cut them but they are so top heavy they just droop over so much.










So now they are in a vase on my kitchen window sill, so now they have moved inside..... they just smell divine!




 
 

I purchased the yellow ones but again I want to have a go at recreating them in glass too.

I have seen many types of flowers/buds in glass on-line and I do have an e-tutorial I want to practice too, just need to

FIRE UP MY TORCH!!!!!!

I will keep you posted how I get on!!!

Till next time



E x