More Than a Memory

All my friends had Barbie dolls. I wanted one. My family was dirt poor. I got a 50c a week allowance. My mom knew how much I wanted a Barbie. She meant well. She saved syrup labels and sent away for this:

Not quite the same thing. At 15" tall, she towered over all the other dolls (much as I towered over all my friends) and I was heartbroken. Like I said, I knew Mom meant well, but this just would not do.  For many reasons.

When I was 12 years old I was in the hardware store in my home town - which sold housewares and toys along with lawnmowers and hammers - when I saw her, the doll of my dreams, with her Stella Stevens platinum blonde hair and her sidelong glance and I just had to have her.  I saved my allowance for months, but to make sure she would be there when I had the money, (to my shame now) I hid her in the store, behind some jigsaw puzzles.  When I had saved up the $3.50, I claimed my prize. 

She wasn't part of a fancy gift set then - she was in a red bathing suit with black high heels and little pearl earrings.  I would never be able to afford the beautiful store-bought clothes I drooled over, but she had to have a wardrobe.  So my father taught me basic sewing stitches, and my next door neighbor taught me to crochet, but I taught myself to knit, using twine and pencils, and in very short order she had her own closet (made from a shoebox) filled with original designs.  I dreamed many dreams through her, gained many skills and a measure of self sufficiency too.

I kept her for many years - eventually surrendering her to more "grown-up" interests - but I never forgot her.  Because of her, I was inspired to create.  She was my launching pad, if you will.  Now, almost 50 years later, I found her again:
A few months ago I found this reproduction of my doll and have been waiting and watching various sites for a price I could (sort of) justify. Last week, Barbie Collector  put her on sale and now she's mine again.
 As early birthday presents go, this one's a doozy.  I'm ridiculously happy. 


Holy Cats - I Really Dropped the Ball

Back in August of last year I started work on a bracelet box for myself.  I did several production shots and blogged a bit on it, but it's come to my attention I never posted the finished work.

So here it is:

I wanted it to look like a bunch of bracelets, piled and woven together on the top.  I really like how it came out.  I'm glad I finally remembered to take pictures of it.

More later - that's my story and I'm stickin' to it.


Principles of Good Jewelry Design ( a link to Land of Odds)

Principles of Good Jewelry Design

I received the Land of Odds newsletter today and followed an electronic trail of breadcrumbs to the link above.  I also saw that it had a "share" feature.  I've never done one of those to Blogger before and wondered how it works.  And now I know.  Enjoy!

While I want to finish this Fat & Thin piece,
I'm going to be busy setting up a new project list/schedule - there goes the afternoon.

More later, as always.


Fat and Thin Peyote

I forgot to post a photo of what I've managed to work up so far from Darcy's excellent instructions:

I picked out the colors a few days ago, working on it in fits and starts. I wondered a bit after the fact if I had any beads to pair with it. I looked at others' work with this same stitch and knew I had to find some chunky big beads to slap on each end - I found exactly what I needed in the bag of jewelry I inherited from my mother-in-law last year. I love when things come together, seemingly out of the blue . . .

(bits of jade, jasper and hematite)

I won't be using all of the pieces, but with the judicious addition of some lampwork spacers from ScottyBeads, I think it may end up a very interesting, and chunky, bracelet.

More later, as always!


Corazon de las Flores

One more - maybe with a bit of green this time.

I'm learning a new stitch!  Fat and Thin Tubular Peyote!  Thanks, Darcy!  I'm taking one of her classes by email, I guess you could say.  Now to fool around with ways to finish the ends . . . hmmmmmmm.

More later - can't be helped.


Mariposa de la Luz

I'm finding the simplicity of this technique to be very relaxing.  Two more and I'll get back to bead embroidery - I have at least four more treasure boxes, then three more handbags.  With a thing or two in between.

Now, here's my excuse for not finishing up the Multiplicity tutorial:  About three weeks ago I smashed my right index finger in a door, seriously discoloring the nail.  This made close-up how-to photos a little problematic.  I'm nearly healed so it won't be too much longer now.

More later, as always.


Corazon de la Luz

Many many years ago I took a road trip with my daughter and daughter-in-law to Lincoln, NE - to an amazing import shop where I found these giant carved wood hearts and butterflies. I had no idea what I wanted to do with them, just that I needed them. Now, after all this time I worked out what to do. Now, of course, I wish I'd gotten more.

4 mm jasper rounds, copper Swarovski glass pearls, Japanese glass seed beads, and a copper toggle clasp set off the carved heart very nicely.

The beaded fringe technique is my "wristra" variation on the Jade Dog's instructions, available here: www.etsy.com/listing/46171351/ 

Before I work up my next container series, I want to play some more with these chunky charms.

More later, it's what I do.