Hey Look! A Shiny Object!

I was all ready to put together a blog post of finished projects but a busy summer of household changes, places to visit and family gatherings have intervened. Seems like it’s that time of year to start new things.
At this years Bead & Button show, I got this really cool raku skull from Maku Studios.  Some people freak out over skulls. Gee, we all have one and it does hold our incredibly essential brain. Such an interesting piece deserves more than just a row of beads around it; the brass “wings” do the trick.
Raku skull from Maku Studios
Raku skull from Maku Studios
Challenged with filling in awkward spaces without a plan is no fun for me. I came across a crown charm that fit perfectly on top of the skull. It’s moving along now!
Once again distracted by other shiny objects, I left my skull with awkward spaces behind (insert joke here) to try dimensional leaves. I had some success. The first was too clunky and had too many steps. The second option was streamlined but still to clunky. Taking all afternoon and into a late evening to get to the third option, I think I have something that is eventually going to be a nice looking leaf in a bigger project.
Dimensional leaf experiment
Dimensional leaf experiment

In the midst of all the slow progress with bead embroidery projects, I did finish a bunch of earrings for the gallery and an upcoming show. Now I had better wrap up a tutorial for a class. Hey look…another shiny object!!!

Steel and copper earrings
Steel and copper earrings
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Fun Finds

I love thrift stores, flea markets and a good rummage sale. It’s fun to find something that you can use everyday at a super price and even more fun to indulge in something just for the heck of it. Best of all, I like finding a treasure that can either be incorporated into a jewelry design, used as a unique storage option, or a clever display.

I’ve got a couple of favorite haunts that constantly provide materials for my jewelry making endeavors. Thankfully, the little antique shop I love the most is a good 6 hours away. Thankfully you say, why yes, because if it were any closer I’d be broke. I get there about four times a year when I go to visit my place in the woods. The last visit was fruitful as usual.

I picked up this wonderful doll case. Not only will it work as a display piece but it can double as storage as well. I should add that there’s a childhood connection too, I had one just like it years (just a couple) ago. I’ll brighten up the inside and set it up for display but I don’t want to tinker with it’s excellent condition too much.

Doll case ready for a transformation.
Doll case ready for a transformation.

During the same trip to my mecca of treasures, I found a stash of old family photos. In other stores I’ve seen them labeled as “Instant Family”. I get a kick out of these old photos. They all tell stories and some are awfully silly. They got me to thinking about a fun project and if all they do is inspire me and put a smile of my face from time to time, they were worth the $2 price tag.

Long, lost instant family.
Long, lost instant family.

Last but no least from a separate trip to a more local store, I found this amazing case for only $3. It was perfect inside and out and didn’t have the very customary funky old aroma of a thousand different soaps and other assorted toiletries from days gone by. This little green gem holds all my stitching supplies and looks good doing it.

Organized needles and threads...finally!
Organized needles and threads…finally!

Now that I have places to display and put things, I had better get creating!