I'm running in circles with my hair on fire!!

Of course not literally. Emotionally, though, you bet that's how it feels. This is killing me - especially putting the jewelry boxes on sale (OW!) - but ya gotta do whatcha gotta do - *sob*

Everything in my Etsy shop is ON SALE. Tell your neighbors, tell your friends, get your kids to spread the word!

So if there was anything you've had your eye on but felt like you just couldn't . . . now's the time! Once these listings expire, they won't be renewed again!

Right now I'm in the process of getting all the studio beadwork (experiments, favorites, odds & ends) photographed and prepped for listing in yet another crazy bare-bones rock-bottom sale coming soon - 

Here's a peek at what's to come:

I gotta go put my hair out now, but there will clearly be much more later!


We Came. We Saw. We Bought. Oh, and We Sold, Too.

Tucson was . . . a little different this time.

It was still huge - 44 shows and over 4K vendors - but we noticed the crowds were a little thinner this year. We had no trouble finding parking. We never waited for service when we went shopping. Walking those narrow aisles was no problem. I would be very interested to see their final numbers.

We were in a small show of less than a dozen vendors so that by the end of our five days we all knew each other, we all liked each other, and most them felt it was worthwhile to give it a go again next year. All in all we had a great time - the drive (both ways), though long was fun and entertaining. It was great to break our journey by visiting friends in ABQ and dining at favorite places. The weather the entire time was incredible. I finally managed to shake that Cold from Hell while we were in Tucson. Also, I think there was medicinal value in that Tucson Tamale I ate the first day.

If you'd like to see what The Jade Dog acquired for her shop (and for herself), check out her Instagram - HERE.

Here's what I found on my travels - both in ABQ and in Tucson:

On the way to the Whole Bead Show, we stayed with my dearest friend in Albuquerque. She had given me a gift card to Michael's, so naturally we went there and I spent it all.

This is the lovely place we called home for the week:

Now for the swag (and they were all BARGOONS, I swear!):

I took the day off on Friday and just hung out at the hotel - sadly the water in the pool was too cold for me (lower 50's) - and all I could think was . . . I SHAVED FOR NOTHING!
This was the view from my room. I did go out and sit in the sun and read my book, so not a total loss.

On our trip home, we stayed with my friend once more - and this time we went with her on some errands and also stopped at a fantastic local art supply shop in Albuquerque, Artisan, where I found some Tombow doubles I had lusted after for quite some time.  

We got back to my Little House on the Prairie on Tuesday night - and one of the first things I did was of course to spread out all the fabulous boodle and take a picture.
We also got a pile of free beading magazines, the Tucson catalogs, and my one personal indulgence - that beautiful South African handled basket. 

I think it goes without saying that once I stop feeling like I'm still riding down the highway, there will be a whole lot more later.


Tucson Here We Come!

As many of you know, my daughter Darcy is the owner/operator/goddess-in-chief of The Jade Dog, and she's got a table at The Whole Bead Show, one of the fabulous shows going on at the BIG BIG Tucson Gem Show, January 31st through February 4th, and I will be there as her lovely assistant! Come see us at the Quality Inn & Suites, 5251 S Julian Dr., in Tucson, Arizona. We're on the courtesy shuttle line!!

Which is my TVP* way of saying my Etsy shop will be on vacation during that time.

When I get home, I'll be hard at work setting up my finished work/destash clearance sale! Wish me Big Luck with that - and in the meantime, I'll try to make time to post some pictures from poolside at our posh hotel.

I would show pictures of what I've been up to lately, but no one really wants to see a trash can overflowing with snotty tissues and half a dozen bottles of Nyquil. You get the idea.

Before I caught the Cold From Hell, I did make something just for me.

And on the Barb-Way front, I'm in the home stretch for finishing up the Black & White wardrobe for the Jade Dog to work her stylin' mojo upon.

And the Barb-Way doesn't show any sign of coming to end just yet - I got my hands on Even More vintage 50s-60s patterns - it's just a matter now of finding the right fabrics . . . 

More later!

*TVP - Thinly Veiled Promotion


New Section & New Listings for the New Year

As of this posting, Some of the Etsy in the sidebar should showcase my new section & listings - barrettes! Or you can click here ->Barrettes! and scroll down just a bit below the featured listings.

I'm working on new designs all the time, for bracelets, necklaces, all the stuff I love to make, and some of them I love enough to list on Etsy. Some of them get thrown into the WWYT (what were you thinking?) pile, along with designs that were just too impractical to produce on a wider scale.

And one of these days, I'm going to photograph everything in that pile and list all the "studio work" at ridiculous prices, just to clear space for yet MOAR ideas. I may have threatened to do this once before, but I sense my space available will soon make this a priority.

Cheers, and more later!


Phase Two of the Barb-Way

I fell down a rabbit hole.

A 1950's French rabbit hole.

Behold, my Barbie dress collection, "Paris 1952." See if you can spot the Dior "New Look" suit.

Let me break this down. The first part of the collection are these dresses with bows.

Then the sundresses:

And the shopping outfits:

I used plain eggshell muslin and some hand-painted muslin and linen I cranked out back in 1995. The hats and bags were made with felt, ultrasuede, chamois, and leatherette. 

I swear that Phase Three will be the end of this madness, when I make the black & white collection for The Jade Dog.

Unless I get sidetracked by beading the muslin stuff from Phase One.

But I won't. I'm longing to get back to the Big Fat Art Project. 

So - more later for sure.


Project Barb-Way. No, Really.

I set aside my Big Fat Art Project in order to make some holiday gifts and do some baking and finish a book series I've been reading (the Poldark novels by Winston Graham). And then *this* thing came up.

I was messaging with my daughter, who has been - let's just say she's not been herself since November 8th. She mentioned that when she's really down she breaks out her Barbie dolls and makes art jewelry for them. We talked of this and that and before I knew it, I had committed to making a dozen outfits for her in black and white. I have a lot of old Barbie patterns so I showed her what I could do, she picked out what she liked, and I made prototypes in muslin - because that's what you do when you're designing a collection, right? I showed her photos of how everything turned out, and she made her final selections from there.

A sampling of the patterns

Most of the prototypes

So I took a little break and did some baking and started making some gifts for my grandsons. I also decided I would decorate my house for the season - get a tree and all that - something I haven't done in sixteen years. I've always been too busy with decorating the bookshop. I went over to the Dollar General where I knew I could find an inexpensive tree, and while I was there I wandered down the toy aisle.

Let me back up a minute here. I had four Barbies I found at a thrift store a few years ago - I got them for an art project I never quite got around to. When it was Barbie's 50th anniversary, they came out with a reproduction doll EXACTLY like my first Barbie, which I never forgot, so of course that was my birthday present to myself six years ago, which increased the herd to five.

And last month I got a surprise package from my BFF Antonia, which included the Barbie-as-Sandy doll. Now there are six.

I get into this whole Project Barb-Way thing, remembering how much I enjoy making the tiny clothes, getting all nostalgic, and walk down the toy aisle in the Dollar General.  So now the herd has increased to nine.

I can't believe I did that.

No. Wait. Yes I can.

Kirsten, Jane, Emma, and Violet were the original four.
Tamsin, Regan, and Deirdre are the new kids.

Now I need to make some clothes for the two Ken dolls I have . . .

Just to legitimize all this for the beadwork blog, the plan is to eventually bead all these outfits.
Honest. That's the plan, anyway.

More later.


My Big Fat Art Project

I gave up on National Novel Writing Month after only three days - a new record for me. There were just too many other projects piled up to give it the kind of attention I have in the past.

My favorite project at the moment is My Big Fat Art Project. It's underway, and the first tile is finished!

Playing with techniques and a minimalist palette is proving more challenging than I originally thought, as well as being interesting, and strangely compelling, work.

Only nineteen left to go -


More later -