Ta Dah!

Look at this. This is the clearest and most tidy that my work table has been since… since… I started working on it:

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Also: I have a tidy, tidy stash:

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All orders are packed (thank you!):

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Essential purchases have been made and delivered –

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– and appraised by Dexy:

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And unwrapped:

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(yep, all essential stuff, that….)

Which means….. it’s time to get the mud out!:

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If you have any bead custom order requests, now would be a good time to ask. Email me: somethingtodobeads@gmail.com.

Final day of Sale, plus things and stuff

I’ve done a woeful job of promoting it but today is the last day of the Spring sale in my jewellery shop.  In case you don’t know, I’m offering 25% off all jewellery, including a good number of pieces that have already been reduced. All you need to do is apply the coupon code SPRING25 when you check out. This means you can get this bracelet for £22.50, which seems a crazy price, frankly.  (Click on the links below the pictures to go straight to the shop listing.)

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Sea Wreath

These earrings – always a bit of a personal fave – can be yours for 12.38.

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Picasso Coins

This bracelet will be just £20.25.

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Soft Geometry

Which, again, is pretty daft. And this necklace can also be had for £22.50.

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Folksy

Sometimes you just want make space and what have you… Many of the items in the ‘Sale’ section of the shop will be removed and no longer available from tomorrow, and the price of those that remain will be put back up. So, it’s now or never on a good few items…

Aside from all this, I thought I’d share a few pics of other things that have been happening, like you should do on a blog. On Thursday, the gallingly good Caroline Dewison of Blueberribeads shared a post on Art Jewelry Elements showing some stamps that she had made by lino-cutting. This is the sort of thing I have been meaning to do, but I hadn’t managed to get my finger out and do it. Thanks to Caroline, I finally gave it a go.  As Caroline said in her post, it’s often not really desirable to use commercially produced stamps and textures, and I generally try to avoid doing so. I made some plaster moulds whilst I was still doing pottery classes last year and I’ve loved having them to use. I wish I had the opportunity to make more. I do own some moulding compound but I always feel I should be all organised and have everything planned before I use it, and that sort of thing tends not to happen in my world. The beauty of the lino-cutting thing is that you can just have a bit of a doodle and see what you come up with, and the materials are relatively inexpensive so it’s no great disaster if you bodge it up. I’ve got a little mound of carved lino bits now.  I’ve yet to try them out properly on any clay yet but I did try a few bits, just to see if I was on the right track.

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a huddle of houses

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some flowery bidnizz

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scribbly Giacometti-style faces

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And as you can see here, you can save up any stray offcuts and carve them to make textures for rolling beads over. I’m looking forward to seeing these glazed.

What else? There’s been some sun the last few days – the proper stuff that actually makes you feel that Spring might just be a possibility. Dexy has be sprauncing around on the terrace sniffing the air…

dex in the sun

…despite having mysteriously developed arthritis in his back legs. He’s only six. He’s a medical marvel, really – always managing to find some new ailment requiring extensive and expensive treatment. Thank the lord for pet insurance. Apologies for the cruddy little mobile phone pictures. Here’s some better shots of him that I’ve had on my desktop, waiting for to be shared, for an age.

snoozy dex

Other than that, I don’t have much to report. I’ll leave you with a tune that’s been buzzing round my head for the last day or so…

Sales speak and sore paws

It’s been a rather fuggy week.  I seem to have spent much of it trapped inside, stuck in my arm charm, doing repetitive tasks.  I finished the sprucing up of the jewellery shop.  I’m half-happy with the results.  (All the new jewellery is listed – including a few pieces I’ll share here.)  One of the final chores was standardising the listings – very repetitive.  I’ve always had great difficulty writing listings, a far greater difficulty than the task warrants!  I found myself writing this stuff – ‘this beautiful’, ‘featuring a wonderful’, ‘a very lovely’, etc., etc. – and it just didn’t sound right.  It probably sounds a bit precious to say it but it just didn’t sound persuasive coming from me.  I really have always admired the shop name Buy My Crap.  And I also admire listings that give a detailed, descriptive account of the piece and its making, highlighting its qualities and loveliness.  I just can’t strike the right tone.

travertine 1

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I don’t imagine anyone finds it easy to enthuse at any length about what they make.  I’m hoping the format I’ve arrived at (which includes losing the adjectives) is an okay compromise.  It might seem a bit impersonal.  I don’t know…  But I’ve probably spent more than enough time fretting about it for the time being.

teal cottage1 copy vcp (ceramic cottage – Bo Hulley Beads, ceramic flower – Captured Moments)

The other repetitive task that has dominated my time during the last few days is bead sanding.  Once done with shop-sorting, I was quite ready to get to work on some new bead designs.  Several days on, I can say that my desire for bead making has been thoroughly sated.  I’m very happy making them, but the sanding…. .  I’m sure there must be an easier, quicker method than the one I’ve arrived at.  And my hands are in ribbons!  Anyway, I must have made about 150 beads and they’re all sanded finally.  Now it’s time to add paint details to the ones that need it, then, some will need glazing.  However, I’m going to leave off the glaze with most I think.  I’m always tempted to finish beads with it because I think it will protect the surface, but for some designs it just doesn’t look right. Also, some people prefer beads unglazed.  There’ll be photos soon and I hope to get them listed by the weekend.  Today, however, I’m having a break.  I’m going for a pub lunch.  I know – on a Tuesday!  But I must leave the house.