Bead Shop Update – Friday, 24th February, 6.30pm GMT

Phew! Finally! It feels like I have been making beads, glazing beads, firing beads, photographing beads, and listing beads for forever. (The prospect of not doing that for a while is kinda giddy-making.) But, at last, things are in place for an update this Friday, 24th February, 6.30pm GMT. Here’s a little preview of what will be available, including some new sawdust fired beads.

sawdust rounds sets

sawdust drop headpins 5

sawdust tusks 1

IMG_6572

Barely There Carved Pleated Bead Set

multi glaze smokey blue tattered set 1

faded shades crackle cone pair

sun up lantern spikes

final fire daggers

ocean side long drops

earring beads 4primitive faces 3

feather 1

green blue textured pod pins

lilac haze pod pins

moorland pod pins

mid-century seeds group

ombre crackle hoops

pale crackle seed pods

gold and ivory tusks

orange and turquoise moth 1

vibrant primaries moth wings

strange saucers set 1

hand-painted porcelain discs 1

spiked shapes 1

pierced stone shards 1

tropical waters leaves

two halves stoneware set 4

This is just a small selection from what will be the biggest shop update I’ve ever done. In related news, I have also managed to set up a newsletter so I can let folk know about upcoming bead shop updates. If you would like to receive it, just message me through the Etsy shop with your name and email address. Here’s a link to the shop. I hope you might find your way there on Friday (6.30pm GMT) to see what else is new. Ciao for now, Claire

Bead Shop Update: Wednesday, 14th September, 6.30pm BST

So, I’m back with the details of the bead shop update and some images of the other new beads I’ll be listing, aside from the sawdust fired beads I shared in the last post. The update will be happening this Wednesday, 14th September, 6.30pm BST. There are lots of new designs, including some new sets. I love the interaction of the glazes on these:

hazy-meadow-wheel-set-1

jewelled-primitive-barrel-set-golden-yellow

striped-primitive-barrel-set

primitive-scroll-set

sun-up-mini-tube-set

And this, above, is one of my current favourite glaze combinations.

sun-up-lantern-points

See?

There are a lot of new earring charms.

verdant-layers-bullets

dusk-over-snow-bullets

sun-down-bullets

escape-to-the-tropics-long-drops

tattered-industrial-drops

multi-glaze-numbered-industrial-drops

old-gold-textured-banded-drops

tribal-striped-lantern-drops

lagoon-and-egg-shell-pods

rosy-sky-shields

And that is just a few – believe me! I’ve also done some autumn. I don’t tend to do seasonal beads but, while I prefer summer, there’s something irresistible about the colours and forms of autumn.

autumn-leaves-group

seed-heads-group

seed-heads

But if that’s not for you there are some more colourful things.

moth-wings-group

There’s a scattering of head pins –

faded-shades-carved-porcelain-heapins

And the sets of earring pairs are making a return –

earring-pairs-a

along with more tubby cones…

glowing-embers-and-copper-tubby-cones

cognac-and-green-tea-chubby-cones

I think that’s most of the categories covered. Here’s a link to the bead shop. This lot will be up in the shop tomorrow at 6.30pm BST. I’ll leave you with a few more pics of more new things…

molten-ombre-cone-pair

red-copper-and-aqua-textured-discs

stick-stack-connectors-earthy

 

watercolour-wing-charms

Sawdust Firing Love

Several weeks ago I went to do a sawdust firing with Jenny Barton (Enigma Pottery), whose classes I attended a couple of years ago to refresh my ceramics knowledge.  It was the first time I’ve tried sawdust firing and a one-off session, so, in the weeks prior to doing it, I spent a good amount of time reading up on the process. Sawdust firing, if you don’t know, is a low-fire technique similar to pit-firing, but done in a brick built kiln or some kind of metal container (which is what I used), rather than a hole in the ground. The kiln is packed with sawdust and other combustibles, which surround whatever it is you’re firing. Amongst this, other materials can be included to create different fumes which produce different effects and colours on your work. This might include salt (and anything salty!), oxides, dried plant matter, different woods, different metals, etc… Once you’ve got everything in, you set light to the top of the sawdust and let it burn away slowly.  There’s no glaze involved: the look of the finished ware is entirely dependant on the chancy business of how the materials in the kiln burn. So, for some time, I was walking around looking at everything, thinking, ‘Will that burn?’ and ‘What will it bring if it does burn?’ I got a bit fixated..

sd-bone-beads

I’m mad about the results. I feel I can enthuse more because there’s so much chance involved, so I can’t claim that much credit. I had been pretty apprehensive about what would happen in the firing. I feared that everything would just get oxidised and turn black because there’s so little surface area on a bead. Don’t get me wrong, there are amazing studio ceramicists whose work is largely focused on using and adapting the blackened surface that can be achieved on sawdust fired ware (and, the wholly black beads I got are lovely); I just wanted to try all the things at once and, hopefully, get lots of variety.  So I was pretty thrilled to discover all these rich colours and subtle details as I cleaned the ash away from the beads. Thrilled to the point of thinking, ‘Oh my goodness! I just want to do nothing but sawdust firing all the time for the forever now!’

sd-buds

One thing I did contribute was a hell of a lot of burnishing. I feel a little giddy when I reflect on the hours which I spent rubbing away at these pieces. And then, once they were out of the firing, there was a whole heap of polishing and waxing. It’s crazy time consuming, but the finished surface is so nice.

ad-burnished-rounds-1

(Just perfect for Autumn, hey?)

ad-burnished-rounds-2

In my reading around the subject, I discovered a way in which I can actually carry on doing sawdust firing on a smaller scale – which pleases me very much!  I had been in two minds about it, but now it seems I’ll be able to make more, I’m ready to part with some of these. I’m still havering on pricing, given how long it took me to burnish and polish some of them. There are also some more kinda matt sawdust fired beads which I didn’t burnish and they will be cheaper.

sd-cones

Which means it’s update time! And I’ve just finished a large load of my regular fired, glazed beads too. I’ll share some pictures of those here in the next day or so, once I’ve got some taken, and I’ll confirm details of the update. It will be next week some time. In the meantime, here’s some more sawdust fired lovelies…

sd-head-pins

sd-spindles-1

sd-spindles-2

sd-pebble-nuggets

sd-little-logs

sd-tusk-charms

sd-carved-and-faceted

sd-pods

Oh, I haven’t included a link to the bead shop! Here’s one now!

Bead Shop Update – Thursday, 30th June, 6.30pm BST

Dear God, it has been a horrendous week here in the UK. It’s taken something to shake myself out of staring into the middle distance, muttering about ‘hell’ and ‘handcarts’. But things have to go on and I have a new batch of beads for the taking. So, I’m going to update the bead shop tomorrow night (Thursday, 30th June) at 6.30pm (BST). It’s not quite as large an update as the last few, but there’s still a good amount, including *LOTS* of earring charms. I had so much fun combining different glazes with the last lot that I did, that almost as soon as I’d sent those out I made up stacks of different shaped charms to experiment with some more. They fall loosely into three different shapes. There are these bullet shaped ones (I’m not really happy with the term but I can’t think of another, suitable name).

vivid horizon bullets

Sun Up Bullets

red and black crackle bullets

Then there are some long skinny drops –

serenghetti long drops

grass green and nut butter turquoise long drops

turkish delight long drops

And finally, there are these kinda dagger/lantern shaped pairs.

glowing embers daggers

heather in the distance daggers

moorland daggers

That’s just a taster – there are lots more of each shape. Another new thing – these bone beads. Well, there’re not strictly bone-shaped, more flared tubes. What would you call them?

earthy bands bone set

striped bone bead set 1

olive band carved bone set 1

And here’s a set with one tube and lots of rounds. I have to share it here because it’s one of my favourites.

neutral bone set 1

I’ve made more of these concave charms…

astral concave earring charms

…quite a lot more…

molten red and old gold concave earring charms

And revisited these crescents connectors I made a while ago.

norwegian blue crescent connectorsaurora and old gold crescent connectors

These tubby cones were also popular last time –

olive and red cones spring candy cones

And there’s a few more pairs of cones, including these.

misty mountain cone pair

What else? Oooo – hold the front page! – I made three more pairs of these moth wings in different colours!

moth wings 1

There’s also the regulation crop of head pins.

celadon crackle and old gold pod pins 1

frayed crackled bud head pins 1

Aside from all these, there’s a number of mixed sets…

softly, softly set 1

dark steely set 1

Randoms set 1

several lots of scuffed, faceted porcelain beads,

scuffed faceted porcelain nuggets (blue, red, navy)

and a selection of other miscellaneous earring charms…

stylised porcelain seed pods

sundown conical earring charms

I reckon that’s everything. So, 6.30pm BST, Thursday, 30th June, 2016. And ! here’s a link to the shop !

 

Bead Shop Update Tonight – 17th April, 6.30pm BST

We’ve had a loss in the family this morning so I hope you’ll understand that I’m not bursting with words today. But, I promised images of new beads and and some advance notice about when I’d be adding them to the shop. So, all these and many more will be hitting the shop tonight (Sunday, 17th April), at 6.30pm BST.

Astral concave earring charms carved ombre crackle charms confiture concave disc charms earth and sky piereced charms spain dotted red and black charms orange glow pierced triangle charms spring air lantern charms stylised seed charms tubby cones - turquoise and blueceladon crackle and shino bullet charms faded heather droppers giverny bullets stirred earth droppersbetween weathers long ribbed drops meadows stoneware cone pair dotted crackled stoneware cone pair scored sgraffito cone pair

earring pairs B 2 earring pairs F 1 peacock feathers pendant 2 bone china wing pendant emerald and tangerine striped drop head pins 1 black on porcelain primitive pod pins 2 hickory moth 1 bold bright moth wings pair

smoky blues pitted porcelain spine set scuffed faceted porcelain set 1 Striped stick set apache pinwheel lentils Southern Gothic sets

I hope you’ll be able to stop by later. Shop this way!

Bead Shop Update! Today!

!Wednesday, 3rd February, 2016, 6.30pm GMT!

!Shop here!

I know! It’s been a long time coming. I actually had these ready a week or so ago, but I thought I’d wait until February so people would have been paid and would no longer be struggling miserably through January. Mind you, I’m not entirely sure I’ve shaken that whole monkey off yet.

Anyway, on with a little preview. Normally I’d whip up a pile of Picmonkey collages but – at the time of drafting this – BT has been bust this afternoon (non-UK readers, BT is… oh, you’ve already fallen asleep…), and Picmonkey appears to be broken too. I’m quite glad to have an excuse not to have to sit here fiddling with Picmonkey. I’m just going to share lots of bigs instead. Starting with…

wings group 1

these, of which I actually have a group shot. They were quite a job: each hand carved with wee dental tools; two from bone china. But what to charge? The eternal agony of pricing…

There’s quite a few wing-y things.

smoky ming wing moth wing droppers 1

black and red tiger moth 1 green and purple moth 1

These were still popular last time –

striped primitive carved focal cone

sundown focal cone

And there are some wee pairs –

black scored cone pair crackle and red dotty cone pair

I’ve been struggling with making bracelets recently, so that’s had me thinking about bracelet-able things.

crackled pod bracelet bar 1 crackled spin bracelet bar 1 ship's wheel pod bracelet bar 1

As ever, there are stacks of earring charms.

dotted faded lilac crackle drops golden bullet charms melting point bullets

(↑particularly love the glaze on these!↑)

small crackle columns striped porcelain tusks

melting orange and charcoal pierced triangles

small wrapped tusks

That’s just a handful – like I said, there are loads! And to go with the earring charms…

earring pairs D 1 earring pairs C 2

Yep, that is Serenity and Rose Quartz. (Seems the Pantone website is down too!) Shame about the winter light. Lots of these photos would look so much better at another time of year. (Cases in point coming up↓)

In a similar vein, lots of headpins.

molten red long lily headpins 1

porcelain sgraffito drop headpins 1

stylized seed head headpins 1

Something different. I’ve had these buff stoneware clays for a while, waiting for something to do with them.

neutrals sw set 1

whites sw set 1

Lots of lovely neutrals. I’ve topped up some of the popular single beads.

smoky carved rounds snowy facets pinwheels

Well, these last ones are new. I also made these column-y game-piece focal things.

game piece column focal bead A game piece column focal bead B

That’s most of the things. I’ll leave you with a selection of others bits and bobs, and hope to see you on Wednesday (3rd Feb, 6.30pm GMT)! Here’s another link to the shop.

crackle hand pendant A stacked cap celadon crackle bead 1

charm set B 1

toothy pegs ming 1

New-ish year: new beads (anon!) and new-ish earrings

Well, happy new year… sorta. I am planning some more ‘proper’ posts with words and things in the weeks to come. I mean, planning. I have soooo many new things to share. I’ve just finished a real jewellery-making spreeeeeee! There’s the usual crop of earrings – my default, really. But I’ve also made around six bracelets and around eight necklaces. I find both more difficult. Necklaces have always been a bit of a challenge, but, I think, I actually really rather like some of them. Now I’ve said that, they’ll probably sit stubbornly in my shop and I’ll end up not liking them so. This making frenzy came at the end of a bead-making marathon. I spaced out the making of the greenware, interspersing it with making jewellery, but once it got to the glazing stage, it was glaze glaze glaze, day in, day out.  I decided to put off listing them until February, when folk will have a bit more money, I hope. I haven’t done the photos yet, but here’s a little teaser. (A bit of a blurry teaser, taken with my phone….)

earring beadsThis mound of earring pairs doesn’t look as large as it actually was. They’re now all strung into sets: eight sets with six pairs each. Anyway, I’ll be back with more bead images and information about dates and times for the update nearer the time. If you have requested a custom order, I’ll be in touch in the next few days.

I photographed all the new jewellery today. It was freeeeezing. It took a couple of hours and by the end of it, I could barely hit the camera button. I’m just about to set to on the selecting and editing, but I do have some things to share here today. The following are some of the first earrings I made this year. I listed them a couple of weeks ago and have shared them elsewhere. But, you know, I like to share everything here at some point or other, if only for my own record. Some of these have sold; the rest are available int’shop.

Wouldn't you miss me at all 1 brimming with lives 1boogaloo dudes 1 cold blooded old times 1 duchess 1 In waves 4 mathilde 1 psalm 1 shadow on the things you know 1 Streamin' Beads of Light 1 The Final Breaker 1 They've Got Some Hungry Women There 1 try out your god 1

Back soon!

Bead Shop Update – Wed, 21st October, 6.30pm, BST

Oh dear – long time, no post. Well, I’ve been busy. Busy making beads, which are finally ready to list. They’ll be hitting the shop at 6.30pm (BST) on Wednesday, 21st October. Working on this last batch of beads has really given me pause for thought. I’ve got into a kinda feast or famine cycle of making either all beads or all jewellery at one time. I don’t like it. I find myself wanting to be doing one thing when I’m doing the other. And, really, I think the two should be integrated so that one will inform the other more and push things forward. So, I’m giving some thought to how work this out. Anyway, you’re perhaps more interested in seeing these new beads.  I’ve spent quite some time working on a number of ideas that have lead me to make some larger, more time consuming pieces.  I’ve made more moths. Some, like last time, have lots of multi-coloured detail –

orange and aqua moth 2

blue green moth 1

But I’ve made a couple more from porcelain and did the wings with sgraffito in black and white.

red tiger moth 2

Boy, did that take some time. It was one of those things where you have to work through a number of delicate stages where, at each, there is the possibility that you’ll muck the whole thing up and have to abandon all your hard work. Fortunately, this time, I managed to avoid doing that.

I’ve also made some more kinda primitive pouch type things.

primitive pouch stitched 1

primitive puch (g'father clock) 1

Not sure I’d call that second one a pouch but it’s in the same kinda vein. The last lot of large focals are these large hand-painted beads.

puffin canvi 1

There’s more sgraffito on this one.

zipper canvi 3I’m happy with the way all of these have turned out, but I worry about putting so much time into individual pieces. It means I need to charge more for them if this bead making thing is going to work realistically, in the long term.  I got a bit of a telling off last time for not charging enough for things, like the moths. It’s made me reassess how much I charge for certain items so a few things will be going out at higher prices. I should say it was an affectionate telling off: if you’re looking for someone to blame, blame Petra!  I’m just telling myself if they don’t sell they can just sit in the shop looking pretty….

There are more cones, on which I’ve been trying different glazes and things.

focal cone 3

focal cone 5

focal cone 4I’m crazy for crackles at the moment. There are a few small pairs two, including these. Love the soft colours on them….

cone pair 2

What else? I’ve done a bit of autumn –

stained glass leaf pendant A

turning leaf pendant A

I never tire of seeing that molten red glaze when I open the kiln. I made this acorn mould about a year ago. I nearly forgot that I’d had it waiting all this time to be relevant.

acorn charms

I’ve also made more lots of rounds with glazes or finishes that have been popular. You can buy singles of all of these.

singles

And there’s lots more headpins, although not quite the baffling number I managed to produce last time.

celadon crackle lily pin 2

blister ball headpins 1

cobalt line drop pins 1

molten red lily pins 2

Another hit last time was the sets of earring beads.

earrings beads 1 A

earring beads 7 A

These are one of the things where I’ll be charging a little more this time. I was so unsure whether there’d be any interest in them, I initially put them out at a rather low price. They won’t be much more – just enough for me not to feel I’m giving my time away!  I’ve also been working one these chunky randoms sets.

Mixed set 1 A mixed set 9 A

mixed set 10 A

mixed set 12 A

There are quite a few and they’ve got all different types of ware in them and lots of different shapes, colours and sizes. I spent ages combining and recombining them when putting the sets together. I think that was me missing making jewellery.

As ever there’s a good range of earring charms of this kinda sort-green crackle wedges

crackle daggers two tone

shimmering sky earring charms

Surely that’s everything? Nope! I made all these pieces with kinda faux staples.

stapled earring charms

stapled wheel bead set 1 stapled pendant connector 1 peeling paper stapled pendant 1

Surprisingly labour intensive! Now, I think that’s the main things covered. I’ll leave you with a last few bits and pieces…

bone china ancients 1 scorched and tattered charms gold smoky pitted ball charms large glowing embers earring charms

….and I’ll hope to see you on Wednesday (21.10.15), at 6.30pm, in the shop!

More CABM Auctions

Just a quick post to let you know that I have some more pieces up for auction on the Ceramic Art Bead Market on Facebook. The auctions end at 9.45 on Tuesday night (BST). (If you’re not a member, it’s easy to join. Simply go to the page and click on ‘Join Group’.) It’s mainly more whimsical, colourful, fun stuff this time, including ooak pieces that I won’t be making again. Here’s what’s available:bird pair

parrot 1

misty morning lentil 1There’s some more head pin bundles. I’m pretty stuck on handmade headpins at the moment.head pin bundle D 3headpin bundle c 3And finally, one of these metallics stoneware bead sets –metallics bead set 1

And here’s another link to CABM…

Bead Auctions – Ceramic Art Bead Market

Just a quick post to let you know that I have a number of pieces up for auction on the Ceramic Art Bead Market on Facebook. The auctions end at 9.45 tonight (BST). If you’re not a member, it’s easy to join. Simply go to the page and click on ‘Join Group’. Once you’re approved, which should happen fairly quickly, you can scroll through the current auctions including my items. Here’s what I have available:

moth 1pouch 1cone pair 1headpin bundle A 1headpin bundle B 1

I’ll be auctioning some more items, including more ‘exclusive’, ooak pieces, in the next few days. Here’s another link to the Facebook page.