Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Happy New Year

I know I am a day early but I am working a night shift tonight and have a party tomorrow evening so I am not sure if I will get to the computer or not!
It is that time of year when we like to reflect on things done and not done and set goals for ourselves for the coming 12 months!

For those of you who follow my blog you will know I have had a bit of a rough ride this year. Leaving the security of my university job was a massive step but essential for my health and well being. I took 6 months out and got myself well again and am feeling fairly ok now! For the last 2 months I have been doing agency work as a nurse at my local hospital and have surprised myself with how much I am enjoying it. My initial thoughts were to make a go of the jewellery business and whilst that is still something I am striving to do reality has bitten and I need to be earning a regular decent wage which with the best will in the world the jewellery business is not able to provide me currently.

So my goals for this year are as follows:
1) continue to work in the hospital to ensure a regular decent wage (no more eating food at my parents cos I can't afford to buy my own!!!)
2) find the balance between working as a nurse and making jewellery ( this is gonna be tricky as I am working shifts again but where there is a will there is a way
3) save up enough money to do my level 1 silver metal clay certification
4) be happy and well and a decent mum to my kids and a good wife to Tony.

Maybe that 4th item should be 1st in my list as this is the ultimate aim of my life. I did not write it in priority order but as things came to me. I am smiling now as this is classic of my mind I really should learn to put myself first a bit more and stop pressuring myself so much.

I am off now to see what I wrote last New Year (and to go to work shortly) so I will leave you all with hearty good wishes for a Happy New Year. May 2010 bring you everything you want, health, happiness and with a bit of luck some relaxation from money worries!
Here is to 2010........cheers xx


Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Asymmetrical lariat

Asymmetrical lariat
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Is this my second post today???My memory is awful LOL. Anyway I wanted to share this with you. I have been practising my soldering over the last week or so and made a chain of 8 links in 1.5mm silver wire. I have been playing with these 8 joined links for a couple of days to see what I may make with them and my initial idea was a bracelet. I included the glass beads into the design but could not think of a clasp to finish the piece so I was left with 8 links and no real design. I then thought of my favourite necklace - the lariat...and wondered if I could make an asymmetrical lariat and ta dah here is the result.

What do you think??

Tuesday, 22 December 2009


Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
I have been practising my soldering skills and am quite happy with what I am able to do now! These were the matching earrings for the lentil pendant I made. As you know I love the pendant so I have kept it for myself but I am very happy with these as well so they will be up for sale in the New Year once my shops reopen.
I am going to get into my shedio tomorrow as well as I have a few orders for beads that are not urgent. I am actually looking forward to making some beads, will have to see what I can make.

Anyway must be off I have a few more presents to wrap and I need to do some kind of inventory to see what else I need for the festive season.
What are your plans for the holidays? Wherever you are and whatever you are doing I wish you a peaceful Christmas and best wishes for 2010. I am sure I will blog before then but just in case LOL.


Monday, 21 December 2009

Beads and Beyond tutorial

I mentioned a little while back that I thought I had a tutorial in this month's Beads and Beyond....well I do. It is a bumper silver metal clay special and I have a fantastic flower necklace with purple pearls in it. I must hunt a picture out now and put it up here to show you. This is my 4th tutorial and I have also done 2 readers challenges so this year has been fab for getting myself known in that arena. I hope to continue in 2010.

Saturday, 19 December 2009

Belita Beads

Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
One of my collections of beads has gone quiet lately. I was making quite a few of these for a while but sales tapered right off. I was going to re launch this year but even in the sale I simply could not shift the last few of my Belita beads. I am not sure what to do now with them. As I have not been making them lately my success rate is fairly poor the last 4 I tried to core all broke :o( So anyway one of the things I am thinking about over Christmas is do I carry on making these or shall I leave it to others who make gorgeous ones! I think I know the answer but I do have a few of these for sale still. They are 4mm cores so fit the Troll bead system feel free to shout me to see what I have and they are only £10 each!

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

A bird on the hand....

Bird Ring
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
....many of you will have seen this little guy already as I have been showing him off loads lately. I originally soldered him to some 1mm wire to see if that would work and it did but the 1mm wire was not suitable to wear as a ring.
The ring he is sitting on now is a silver metal clay ring I made some time ago (my first and to date only attempt at making a ring I hasten to add). it was a bit out of shape so I have tidied it up as much as I can and then soldered the little guy to it. Whilst I was soldering he sat back a bit so his beak is up in the air but actually I prefer this to how I was going to have him so I left him there.

He is now proudly sitting on my ring finger of my right hand is is very comfortable. I can see a range of these after Christmas but I need to practice ring making first.

Other news: I have shut my Etsy shop and my website for 3 weeks until 4th January 2010. Things have been so hectic with the silver clay jewellery that I have not made any beads for a few weeks and also my mojo is off so I thought a few weeks off would recharge the ole batteries. I am still around tho so feel free to chat to me on email, through here or on Facebook!


Monday, 14 December 2009

Lentil pendant

Lentil pendant
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Here is a little something else I have been working on! I made this silver metal clay lentil and then placed it in liver of sulphur to antique it. I love it so much I have decided to keep it for myself and I have hung it from my macrame choker which has an interchangeable bail on it so I can wear different pendants according to my outfit.


Thursday, 10 December 2009


Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
So my bead mojo is still somewhat lacking but no such problem in the silver clay department.

This little guy is inspired by my friends Christmas decorations she has doves in cages trailing from her banisters and I thought I could make that! Or something like it! So here is my bird. He still needs a bit of finishing but I am very pleased with him! I don't think I am gonna make a cage but I think I will solder a ring to his back and string him from a necklace!

What do you think?? I hope all your Christmas plans a re going well. I think I may have finished the girls presents but you never know what you may stumble across.

Oh and finally before I go to work I think I have a tutorial in this months Beads and Beyond! I will get it tomorrow so can let you know then if I have or not ;o)


Saturday, 5 December 2009

You won't get customers if you don't advertise!!

Yesterday I did a market in Margate Old Town. It is supposed to be a 3 day market and last night coincided with the turning on of Margate Christmas lights. This has cost me £50 for 3 days and yesterday I made £20 and apart from one other lady I was the only person to make a sale. Why is this??? Because it was really poorly advertised. There are posters around and I saw some posters at Imogen's school but there was nothing in the local press I even checked last night in case I had missed it.

Please don't get angry with me and think I am putting down the guys I worked with yesterday because I am most definitely not. They are a great bunch, enthusiastic and keen to promote Margate Old Town but at a higher level they are being let down. There was a torchlight procession last night with 2 local schools being involved and I knew nothing about it. There were fireworks and carols with the Salvation Army. I knew nothing about it. There was a mini market with local craftspeople selling their art and craft. I only knew about it cos I was involved.

The torchlight procession was lovely so nice to see all the kids dressed with christmassy LED lights all over them. This has happened for the last 4 or 5 years maybe more and I have lived here all my life (nearly 40 years) and I KNEW NOTHING ABOUT IT. You would have thought that even by osmosis it would have got around the Thanet grapevine is a wonderful beast but not with this little snippet! Everyone moans about Margate says that there is nothing going on well last night there was and how many people were there??? I know for a fact that people stumbling across the market probably totalled a maximum of 100 if we were lucky.

How to advertise? I am no expert but there are some very simple and free things that can be done to raise the profile of someone or something. I should know I have done it with my own business!

1) Facebook fan page
2) Twitter
3) Blog
4) Join forums on the internet and promote yourself.
5) Local radio may promote you

No money involved in any of these and not a great drain on time a group can quite happily work these things together and raise profile instantly.

Come on Margate sort it out and stop being so apathetic.

BTW I am back at the market today from 11 til about 1.30 so come along if you mention my blog you can have a 10% discount on all your purchases.


Thursday, 3 December 2009

Christmas Sparkle

Christmas Sparkle
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
I made these last year and called them Christmas Sparkle cos they remind me of baubles that you hang on the tree. I am hoping for some torch time tonight so I will make some more of these I think! Very festive

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Rose lentils

Rose lentils a
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
My mojo has returned and I am very happy. I made 3 sets last night and this is a close up of one of the sets! They can all be found for sale on my website here

Other news: I am quite busy putting shifts in at the hospital to earn some money and get us back on the straight and narrow! Thankfully I am getting plenty of work so that is good!

From a jewellery perspective things are quite busy as well what with everyone getting ready for Christams. I had a jewellery party on Friday but you will never believe what I did............I left my box of jewellery at home. It was an hour long round trip to get them and as many of the guests had not arrived I decided not to bother. We are going to do it in the New Year now! Honestly I could not believe it!!!


Saturday, 28 November 2009

I made some beadies yay!!!

So finally after an almost 3 week sabattical and very little going on in the lampworking department I am pleased to announce that Molly mojo decided to come home! She has had a well earned break and the creative juices are now flowing free. The only thing missing now is time but I am happy to grab whatever few minutes I can to make beads again and I can tell you I am one happy bunny.

Pictures soon the kiln is still hot so won't be till tomorrow!


Sunday, 22 November 2009

Singing the blues

singing the blues
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Despite thinking all I can make is boring ole beads I managed to make these on friday and I really like them. Once again simple small but incredibly neat and totally useable in one or more pieces of jewellery (at least I think so!)

These are now for sale on my website here


Friday, 20 November 2009

Rain, Rain go away

I know we needed some decent rain but why this much this quickly!!!

I am fairly lucky down here in the south we seem to have missed most of the water dropping from the sky but I have forum friends up in the Lake District and after watching Sky News this morning am quite scared for them!

Life as normal for me today I am having a shedio day (hoorah!) but these people their life is on hold! The waters are high and their lives are being seriously disrupted and in a lot of cases are actually at risk.

My thoughts are with you all at this time and I simply wish there was something more practical I could do. To those of you up that way please stay safe


Monday, 16 November 2009


So for the first time in over a week I think, I finally have some shedio time. I dip my mandrels turn on the kiln come indoors for a cuppa and some toast and at 10.30 off I go up my shedio! 1 hour later..... I give up! I can't make a round bead today my puckers are decidely dodgy, naff sharp edges and when I try to correct them I get lopsided beads!!! Grrrr.......OK make some nugget beads I have an order for and chill. Make 6 of them quite happily go back to round beads. Nope.... not happening..... so I think make small dotty beads. Start to pull stringer and think whats the point they don't sell...... so gave up for today!

Turned off the oxycon and propane, skipped segment on my kiln and it is now ramping down with 3 round beads (2 of which are not even worth the fugly box) and 6 nugget beads for an order! Meh!!!!!

We all have em and today is officially my bad day! Picture above courtesy of Google image search for "bad day" !!!

Hope your Monday is way better than mine! :o)


Sunday, 15 November 2009

Nightmare before Christmas

I am still practicing with my polymer plates and making stamps for use in my silver metal clay. A friend was totally impressed with my Jack Skeleton pendants I made a couple of weeks ago and asked me if I could make a set of the characters from NBC. So I did. I have learned quite a lot whilst making the stamps and also about using the stamps and sadly the finished pieces were not quite what she had envisaged (or me for that matter) but it is fine as I learnt a lot, expensive lesson but worthwhile.

2 of the charms have little "splits" in them so I cannot sell them but Imogen has bagged them for herself bless her but Oogie Boogie and Lock Shock and Barrel (shown here) will be on sale later today in my website. Just gotta finish them off with holes and a bit of a polish up!

Hope you have all had a restful weekend and not too damaged by yesterdays strong winds and torrential rain! See you soon

Friday, 13 November 2009


Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Another necklace to share with you guys! This is my focal bead and one of my hammered silver rings with a gorgeous ribbon by Diane at Sowzere.

The jewellery party went well sold a few bits and will hopefully get a couple of orders for fingerprint jewellery. And on that note today is the final day for orders for fingerprint jewellery at Savannah's school fair. I have 2 orders for the day so far and 2 orders at different times from the advert so not a bad response at all I think. I did have hopes of being absolutely flooded with requests but in hindsight that was a little naive. It is all about advertising and I did make a huge faux pas with the order form and information. I completely forgot to add my website address doh!!! Will take loads of business cards and leaflets to the fair with me to make up for that and there will be plenty of time for orders to be completed before Christmas.

Right best be off, Savannah is home cos she was ill last night so my shedio day has disappeared but I am finally going to get the stamps made for my art clay pendants! Photos later xx


Thursday, 12 November 2009

Quiet waters

Quiet waters
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
I have a jewellery party tonight, the first one not held in my own home!!! Eek! But the host is a friend so it should be fine! Anyway I have spent the afternoon madly making jewellery and this piece is one of the bits I have made!

The large beads were made by me last night and there are some of my mini spacer beads in there as well. 72 swarovski crystals and 36 small silver spacers finish the piece off and boy does it look awesome in the light! It really twinkles ;o)


Monday, 9 November 2009

Hollow beads

goldstone hollow a
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
I first made hollow beads about 18 months ago but simply could not get their shape right. I thought I would have another go and if you follow my blog you will know that I have made a few that I am happy with and have sold! This is last nights bead, amethyst with goldstone stringer and I love it! Do I say that a lot ?... sorry but I am very happy with the way this bead turned out! It is going up on my Etsy shop shortly and there are more views of it there for you to gaze upon ;o)


Sunday, 8 November 2009

Rose shards bead set

rose shards b
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Believe it or not the base colour for these beads was rose pink but the reactive glass shards I have laid down on top have fumed it and this absolutely gorgeous divine colour occurs! I have made more of these today I love them


Thursday, 5 November 2009

Teal delight hollow

Teal delight hollow
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
I am not sure that this picture does this bead any sort of justice but anyway here it is! I am sooooo proud of this bead and it's 3 little siblings! (see my Flickr album for a picture of the family group!!). I have to admit to thinking about selling my beadmaking gear on Monday evening whilst in my shedio. I simply (and I am not saying this for sympathy merely an observation of my state of mind at that point!) do not think that my beads cut the mustard. I do have some regular customers and to those people I say a massive thank you and no I am not quitting but I think I may have reached a point where I am not sure how to develop my beads further. I also want to thank everyone who has ever bought beads or jewellery off of me thank you a million times over. Each sale is as fab as though it were the first ...I love it that people like my work and want to buy it!

The answer, I think, lies in getting some more tuition but that involves money and right now things are harder than they have ever been and that is no word of a lie! But when I browse around other peoples beads I feel that my beads are merely ordinary! Nothing special at all, good puckers generally a good shape but nothing special. I have no imagination to work out how to experiment!!! I am in awe of so many different people's work and honestly cannot ever see my work being as awesome as some of these people! Humph!!!!!

Right moan over I am still making beads cos I took these ones out and love them! I guess we shall see what others make of them when they go up for sale on Sunday night.

I have not made it to my shedio today as planned cos my blessed car was on a flat this morning so my fantastic dad helped me out but took much of the morning up then I had to do the school run and get Imogen to the dentist as her brace had broken! And this evening my mojo has gone on shore leave so I think I will leave it till tomorrow. I have an order to fill which I will do and now the strikes are off (for the mo) the post should be easing gradually!

Are you having any fireworks this year? We are not as I literally do not have the money to watch it go up in flames like that so we resort to watching other peoples from the house! I guess it is warmer eh! always try to find something positive ;o)

Anyway must be off I am making stamps tonight for my silver metal clay so hopefully there will be little earrings etc coming out very soon

If you are having fireworks please be safe and enjoy

Monday, 2 November 2009

oops how rude of me.

I am so sorry I forgot to say a huge thank you to those of you who left comments for my little snowman prize draw. It is so nice to get comments from people and I do enjoy reading them and interacting with you all! I am real LOL!!!

A complete change in the weather again today the sun is shining and you would never believe how much rain fell yesterday that means Savannah and I can go for a little walk up the town to post some orders and mooch around for a while!

Tomorrow is quite a big day for me. As many of you are aware I quit my job as a university lecturer back in the summer and in May I applied for the nursing agency NHS Professionals. Well it has all finally gone through and tomorrow is my first booked agency shift at my local hospital. I am a nurse and have been for the past ....blimey almost 16 years but I have been teaching for the past 7 so donning a uniform and working with patients is going to be a little wierd to say the least. Not a completely new experience as part of my role as a lecturer was to stay clinically credible etc and I like to think I have been able to maintain a finger on the pulse of nursing so to speak. I did a shift with my sister a couple of weeks ago unpaid just to get me back into it and I really enjoyed it. It is good to be back with patients I have missed that!

The plan is to do 2 or 3 shifts a week but to still focus on my beads and jewellery business so I do not really anticipate it affecting things very much. The beauty of the agency is that I can do what I want when I want and it fits around my children, my husband and the business all of which are incredibly important to me and I have fought to get back over these last 6 months!

Wish me luck and I will speak soon

Sunday, 1 November 2009

And the winner is ....

.... Sharon. I have left a message for you on your blog. Congratulations.

The good news is that I am making these to order if you wish I will be putting it on my website tonight!

More news later but gotta go and wash up dishes


Friday, 30 October 2009

Flower brooch

Flower brooch
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Mmm...I love to diversify a bit and this is my latest venture! Polymer clay and my Sizzix Big Shot, some leather and suede samples and Bobs' your uncle!!! This simple brooch would be fab worn in loads of different ways! You could clip it to your handbag, or wear if on your scarf or clip it to your wooly hat or simply as a brooch! The possibilities are endless. Like this? it will be available in my Etsy shop later.

Dont' forget to leave a comment about my little snowman to be in with a chance to win! See Yesterdays post!


Thursday, 29 October 2009

Snowman Pendant Prize Draw

Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
I am not one for whimsical beads but each year around this time I do like to make themed beads. Last year some of you may remember my absolutely hysterically cute but sad angels!! and I have always made snowmen. This year I decided to make the heads only and really concentrate on getting them right! and here is my first one out of the kiln. I am totally lovin him and there are angels too!! More pictures of them later!

Anyway I am quite chuffed with this little guy so I thought you might like a chance to win him! All you have to do is leave me a comment at the end of this post and I will put your name into the draw. I will pick a winner on Sunday evening. (Necklace not included only the pendant is up for grabs!!!)


Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Sapphire trio

sapphire trio
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Ok so these beads have actually been sold but they are a beautiful example of a very simple range of beads that I do. One large tab bead and 2 smaller round beads. On a simple level these 3 beads will give you a pendant and matching earrings.

There are some beads in this style available on my website to buy and for those of you who don't make jewellery I will happily make them up into a pendant and matching earrings for a small extra cost! These bead sets start at £5 and will make fantastic Christmas presents for the folks in your life

Monday, 26 October 2009

Pink swirly lentils

pink swirly lentils
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
I think I may have mentioned that I have discovered polymer clay if not well I have and it is fab stuff. Not entirely dissimilar to art clay but a little trickier to manage as it gets quite sticky. I have been reading around the internet a bit and found some tuts on lentil beads and so I thought I would have a go and here is the result! My first set of 6 lentil beads. They look similar are similar size and if they come up well once cooked then I think I will definitely be putting them up for sale! Thing is I am not sure where to put the holes!!! Logic says side to side but something is wanting to make me put the hole through the middle!!! Mmm....maybe I should make them again and do both!


Red and black nuggets

red and black nuggets
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Here is Monday's scrummy beads for you to gaze upon. I am totally loving these colours and that leads me to something I would like to chat about.

There is very often and huge chasm between what I think will sell and what actually does. I am not moaning not by any stretch of the imagination but I am often bemused. The beads I am showing here are a case in point. Classic colours black and red with the Christmas season coming I think they look totally in place with a gorgeous black dress at a Christmas party yet they have not sold!

I know I only put them up for sale last night but I have just posted 7 lots of beads from orders off the website last night and surprisingly the black and red nuggets were not among them!

Anyway enough of that as long as people like my beads and continue to buy them then I am happy to keep making them and you know what there wil always be the bead or the set that you think will fly off the shelf but actually does not. Tis all part of the quirkiness of having my own business.

Have a lovely Monday

Sunday, 25 October 2009

dilly dilly mark 2

dilly dilly mark 2
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
The first version of these that I made sold in less than an hour I think off Etsy. I adore these colours I think the lavenders are gorgeous. Anyway this is version 2 with opaque and transparent lavender and will be availble to buy off my website tonight along with a few other goodies.

What have you been up to this weekend? I have had a very productive time. I discovered Tony has a grinder and I managed to persuade him to buy the spindle to adapt one end to a polisher and OMG what a difference to my silver! I am rearranging my workspace a bit so that has taken up some time today.

This week is half term for the 2 girls so I am not sure how much beading time I will get but I definitely need to make some jewellery as I have a party Friday and the designs for the Ingoldsby Gallery need to be finished my Friday as well.

Have a lovely week guys and don't forget new beadies on my website tonight

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Daily eye candy

pink and grey
Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
Ha ha I have managed to connect my Flickr album to my blog which means that I can show you pictures of my work direct from my album which is quite cool! I know a few of you fedback that you like pictures so here is todays choice.

This little set of beads will be available to buy tomorrow evening when I update my shop. These are made with a base of pearl grey covered with rose and with little pink flowers around. The beads have then been etched (which I do love doing!!!) A very cute and gorgeous little set of beads
Have a fab weekend guys

Friday, 23 October 2009


Originally uploaded by aurorabeadz
I have bought a kit thats enables me to make stamps that can be used to make jewellery with art clay silver. So I thought I would practise with images of Jack fromm "Nightmare Before Christmas" and here are the results. I am so very chuffed with them. Imogen is wearing the small one as I made it for her and the larger one is currently being discussed!!! It may have a new home xx

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Feeling bleurgh...

I think a dreaded cold may be on it's way!!! I am feeling a bit under the weather and I have the hugest blister on my lip. A leetle run down I fink.....

Anyway I am having a quiet indoors day today, bit of housework to do and I am waiting for a package to arrive. So time to get you all up to speed on my life.

I have some lovely photos of the Big Bead show to show you

This first one is me and Keiara behine our stand before the show opened. I look completely gormless he he. Aren't those stands fab? Keiara's husband made them and they were absolutely perfect I can tell you

This second one is a shot of one of the times our stand looked quite busy.

Keaira and I had a fab day and I have booked again for next year I will give you more details once dates are set etc! I am going to hopefully do more shows tho again watch this space and I will let you know!

Other news: I took one of my jewellery ideas down to the Ingoldsby Gallery in Margate on Sunday to show them as they have asked me to put together a range of jewellery that will be exclusive to them. It went down well so I am now busy making these pieces to have on show for the beginning of November. I am also doing a 3 day Christmas Market in Margate Old Town in December which I am quite excited about.

Savannah's primary school is having a Christmas fair on 28th November and I am having a fingerprint stand there so I busy getting the pre order letters ready to send out to all the mum's and dad's and I am hopeful that this will be well received. I am also donating a prize to the school prize draw but I am not quite sure what that will be yet!

All in all things are looking very good, I just hope this darned cold does not develop.

Anyway must dash, ooh one quick reminder I loaded up loads of new beads onto my website and my Etsy shop last night so please take a look!


Sunday, 18 October 2009

God I sound like an ungrateful cow...

...why I hear you ask!!

Wellllll.....yesterday was the Big Bead Show and I had a fantastic day. I sold some stuff, I met old friends and I made some new friends but I was slightly disappointed not to have sold a bit more! Thats why I sound ungrateful. I kinda got the impression I was not alone with these feelings...don't get me wrong I will do it again my name is already down for next year because it is not just about the sales on the day it is about getting known and promoting myself and I did sell a fair amount of stuff.

Maybe it is more about me setting goals and making them realistic, maybe I worry to much but I do have bills to pay and 2 children to raise. Maybe I have to high expectations.

You know what I thought about scrapping this post so I did not appear ungrateful and what you don't know is how long this post took me to write cos it made me think loads. I made the decision to quit my job as a lecturer and chose to be a full time lampworker and jewellery designer. Until 2 months ago this was merely a hobby that made me a bit of pin money to keep me in glass and now it is more serious but these things take time and expecting to be rolling in money after 2 months is incredibly unrealistic.

I said it before and I will say it again I am on a journey and so far I am loving it.

PS Those of you who told me how much better I looked yesterday compared to last year thank you for noticing and for telling me, It makes me realise how much better I actually am and how far I have come. Thank you xxx

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

The Big Bead Show and some interesting observations!

Saturday is fast approaching and I am on the final countdown to getting ready for the Big Bead Show. I am really looking forward to it not least cos I will be catching up with old friends and hopefully meeting lots of new ones. I have also had a chance to reflect a little on the past year as it was The Big Bead show last year where I basically debuted myself!!!

What have I achieved this year, well I can now encase beads, my dot placement has come on in leaps and bounds I have got my head around using presses. I have fallen in love with silvered ivory stringer and use it in practically every darn bead ATM ;o)

I have established a business that I continue to promote and since the summer I have been doing this as my full time job. I am having a ball. I feel like my beads have definitely started to grow up a bit and finally I don't feel like a complete newbie. I know I have been torching since July 2007 but I only got some 6 - 8 hours a week if I was lucky. This week so far I have done some 12 hours and it is only Wednesday. I still have so much to learn and some many more skills to master but you know what there is no rush! Yes my beads are simple but you know what I am finally comfortable with that. Many other lampwork artists strive to make complex and beautiful beads with infinite detail and don't get me wrong I want that but people still need simple beads for their pieces of jewellery and right now these people are my market!

My aim for the next 12 months; firstly to get my Art clay / PMC certification and secondly I really want to go on some glass courses to help me to develop these skills more!

Enough of that I have a few beads to show you. The first picture is a sample of the goodies I will be taking with me to the show on saturday. The second picture needs a little more explaination but I will let you look first.

The large pink and white bead is my first attempt at a focal bead with stripes! Much refining needed but a style I like! The 2 dotty beads are an example of what happens when you use incompatible glasses. The base is Bullseye violet striker with clear encasing and then what I thought was Bullseye white dotted around but when I took them out the kiln and cleaned them I realised the glass was cracking around the dots and therefore I had probabaly picked up some Effeter white and not Bullseye! I am normally very good about keeping my different glasses separated but obviously failed here but an interesting thing for you all to see.
The 2 bottom beads are Bullseye French Vanilla with Silvered French Vanilla round them. They were both on the same mandrel and were made with the same rod of French Vanilla and the same stringer so what happened to get 2 very different beads I am unsure! Any suggestions gratefully received.

Right enough blabbering I have beads to price up and earrings to make so must dash! Don't forget to come and say hi to me if you are at Sandown on Saturday I would love to meet you.

Oh and one final thing...the first 10 people to spend over £30 with me you will get a handmade (by me!) mini tote bag with a pair of earrings and a scrummy chocolate in free!! Here is a little preview!


Sunday, 11 October 2009


I spent last Monday with Gill teaching her how to make glass beads and we had a ball. 6 hours of teaching is quite tiring for me and for the student but we covered a fair amount and the picture above are the beads that Gill made and I have sent to her. I do hope she liked them.
I love teaching and if you would like to come along and have a go please feel free to contact me for further information. I do taster sessions and full day teaching so there is soemthing for everyone. What a fab Christmas pressie for someone!

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Eye Candy

Or at least I hope so!!! I am still getting ready for the Big Bead Show on 17th October. and have been busy on the torch making things of wonder for you to gaze upon and hopefully buy ;o)

There are more to view on my Flickr album here. a couple of them will be up for sale later on through my Etsy shop but things are a little quiet until after the show.


Sunday, 4 October 2009

Our little helper

For those of you who follow me on Facebook you will be aware that I have had some problems with my neighbours. I live in a mid terrace and whilst the walls are pretty good and noise is minimal there is obviously some noise that can be heard.

I have some really attractive paper in my hallway (not) and my hubby decided at the beginning of the week that he could no longer bear to look at it so he is wallpaper stripping must to the disgust of my neighbour who, at 8.30 in the evening was rapping on the wall complaining about the noise and waking my youngest daughter up. The "noise" of the wallpaper stripping had not bothered her at all!!!

Anyway my youngest has delighted in helping her dad out and is often to be found wielding a wallpaper stripper but today found her forte in hoovering!!!

She had us both in stitches mimicking her dad who can often be found hoovering on his hands and knees. This is apparently essential as the nasty woodchip wallpaper gets everywhere and is a tricky little sucker to clean up! I am just pleased to be shot of the nasty flower wallpaper and the purple gloss woodchip above it, bare plaster walls is way more preferable. Now to persuade him that sage green and lemon is scrummy for a hallway!!! Oh and the pink carpet is going as well I feel a nice sage green carpet also!

What is happening for the rest of the week? Well tomorrow I am teaching a new student for the day which I am really looking forward to, she found me as a result of the Art and Craft exhibition so that makes it all worthwhile in my book! Tuesday I am doing a sessional lecture for my friend in my old job and from Wednesday onwards it is all hands to the pump getting stuff made for the Big Bead Show on 17th October. Busy busy busy!!!

Right must be off roast pork for dinner and the spuds need sorting see you soon

Friday, 2 October 2009

Oops how time flies...

....I am so sorry it has been over a week since I last posted but I have been soooo busy!

A quick recap since I last blogged...

Last Saturday I went down to Margate Old Town and met some fantastic people who are busy developing Margate's Art Quarter. They had a 2 day market going on and offered me a stall for the Sunday. This was too good an opportunity to miss so on Sunday I did my first market! I had a fab time, met some gorgeous people and am most definitely doing it again. In fact I am doing it in December I will find the link for you later and post a bit more about it!

I met a lady called Janet who is one of the people who runs the Ingoldsby Gallery in Lombard Street in Margate and yesterday I went to meet her to discuss my showing some jewellery there. The outcome of that meeting was that I am going to design some jewellery that will be exclusively available through the Gallery. This will be on show from the end of November onwards.

Wednesday I met up with Keiara and we went over how we are going to put our display together for the Big Bead Show. is only 2 weeks away and I have not got nearly enough stock!
Keiara's husband has come up trumps for us and made some gorgeous display stands and our display is going to look absolutely awesome. The picture above is just a little taster of what I am taking with me!

Next Monday I am doing some tuition which I am really looking forward to, I have a tutorial to finish for Beads and Beyond Magazine as well as the Readers Challenge which I have been asked to do again! So all in all things are verrrryyyyy busy. I am totally loving it thank you everyone for supporting me for buying my beads and just thank you.....


Thursday, 24 September 2009

New this week

It has been a funny old week. I went camping last weekend and had a total blast but since being home I havebeen told of 2 deaths (not of anyone I know well but friend of a friend type of thing) and my youngest daughter starting school, and bank meetings and business meetings and just busy busy busy!!!

So I finally got down to making some beads and pictures are above for your delectation!

Now that Savannah is at school I am hoping to triple my time in the shed! The Business Link meeting I went to was very good and inspiring and I have a few ideas I am going to explore one of these is that my business is limited by how many beads I can make and at 6 hours a week that ain't to many. So getting shed time is essential. So as of next week I hope to get a good 15 - 20 hours a week which I am very excited about. I have also just taken a booking for tuition so all is good here.

I have a jewellery party tonight which should be great not least cos I get to catch up with a whole load of friends. I am planning on doing one party a month so I will launch that tonight! and final news I have bought the kit that enables me to make silver clay memory jewellery from childrens drawings as well as their foot prints and handprints etc! I am going to have to practise loads but I hope to get that running in time for Christmas. Exciting times and my little head is buzzing with ideas!!!


Sunday, 20 September 2009

And the winner is .......

......Clare Scott with her suggestion of dahlia beads. This was really hard actually to decide. I narrowed it down to lotus beads, dahlia beads, petal beads and desert rose beads. I could not I showed pictures of the various flowers to my husband and he decided on dahlia. Please also take some time to have a look at Clare's beads here

The dahlia is also co-incidentally my mum's fav flower so I think one is definitely in order for her!!!

Thank you so much Clare and to everyone who suggested names I have spent some time looking at some totally gorgeous pictures and one last mention to the suggestion of Rosette Nebula google it and have a look it is a spectacular sight!!!


Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Competition time!!!

I am really really enjoying making these beads at the moment and I am having a fair few ideas about them but I am failing miserably to think of a name for them. They kinds look like flowers to me but just not sure so I have decided as I have not posted a challenge for this months prize draw I will make the winner one of these beads in their chosen colours.

How do you win........simples.......leave a comment at the end of this post and on Sunday evening I will pick the one I like most and he or she can have one of my beadies!!!

So what are you waiting for get your thinking hats on and name my beads ;o)

thank you

Monday, 14 September 2009

The quest continues.....

.....for something that may even be near a "signature" bead for me!!! Have I spoken of this before I ramble about so many things!!!

There is this thing within the glass community to have a "signature" bead. That is not to say everyone HAS to have one but it is a thing that is held in high regard I think. To have a bead style, a design that is instantly recognisable as one of yours is like the Holy Grail! I am still searching.

Precision work or organic, dots or randomness what do I like. I actually like both. There are days when I will sit down and think today I am dotty (yes I hear you that is most every day!!! but we are not discussing my state of mind here LOL) and other days where I just play with the glass and get the organic thing! Mmm.....should I be striving for a signature bead, maybe my signature is that you just don't know what you are going to get with me. Well that is not strictly true one thing is for certain my beads are still fairly simplistic, simple but beautiful I hope! Have a sneak peek of some of this weeks work.


Thursday, 10 September 2009

New stock listed

Finally on my website here and my Etsy shop here

It all took me a bit longer than I expected cos my Internet went down this morning not sure why but anyhoo here I am and I have updated both shops!

I hope you are all well, I got so much stuff to catch up on so this is only a brief post but I will be back later with more chat

Tuesday, 8 September 2009


I am really missing not being at the torch it has been over a week now but I hope to get on the torch tonight and make some beadies to sell, I have some ideas for my Crackle bead range!

I have been pottering around Flickr this morning and came across this collection of totally stunning work. I can only ever hope to be anywhere close to this skilled!!! Click here to see the gorgeous work of Ruth. She also has a blog here

Carrying on the bird theme I also found these whilst browsing Flickr. I don't do sculptural bead work but am totally in awe of those who do. Their glass and heat control is just fantastic and these parrots are full of character.

Feeling somewhat inspired now I hope to be able to get a good evening on the torch and share my goodies with you tomorrow!


Sunday, 6 September 2009

You live and learn

Roman mythology is not really something I am totally familiar with let alone obscure goddesses but I have just been watching "Antiques Roadshow" and this guy had a painting of Cupid and Aurora. I had no idea Aurora was a goddess. Follow this link for more information here

What makes this interesting to me is the mythology behind it. Aurora is said to bring in the dawn each day and her tears for one of her killed sons are the morning dew. It signifies a new dawn much like my life right now. Without getting to profound this simply feels right that I have found this out now. It feels right that this is my trading name.

The Art and Craft exhibition is going well. I have sold a couple of pieces and the networking has been fantastic. The local paper has taken some pictures of me so hopefully I will be in the local paper which again can only be good!

Right "Waking the Dead" is on and I am actually gonna watch some decent TV

Friday, 4 September 2009

What I made for the Art and Craft exhibition

Not many words today just some pictures of what I have made for the Art and Craft Exhibition I am at for the next 5 days!