Jan 31, 2012

Evergreen Series

I’ve started on my Jewellery line for 2012. This green and copper series will be “Evergreen”. Not exactly the Pantone Tangerine, but that one is coming. Evergreen reminds me of the forests I live in with branches criss-cross each other and light reflects through in between them.

I’ll be working in sets of earrings, necklace, bracelet, but am also working on different shapes at the same time. I’ve put these up on my other ArtFire shop. I figure it’s better to keep my jewellery separate from my Tutorials and Supplies.

The bracelet with the Turquoise fits up to 7 1/2” and the one with the copper beads only fits up to 7”. I have a 6 3/4” wrist and the copper beads fits almost snug. The other one fits loose.


Jan 30, 2012

52 pairs of Earrings

This is #3. I call this series “Evergreen”. I’ve made these earrings, a matching necklace, but I also have some other items to finish up with this crackle texture. I’ve posted these to the Group Pool on Flickr. DSC06882



52 Earrings and Sanding Tip

I’ve just finished a couple more earrings to catch up with the 52 pairs of Earrings challenge since I joined a little late. Here is another pair and will post the other ones hopefully later tonight.


Here is a sanding tip. I always have to grope for the right piece of sandpaper in the bottom of the basin and look at the back which grit it is. Time consuming as it is, sanding isn’t my favourite part of claying, so now I use a small basin with the grit papers from bottom right clockwise, 320, 400, 600 and 800. Now I always know where they are! The little shallow pan has a flat bottom so I can easily sand the edges. I think I may try to use a two sided tape to hold them down, but for now, a couple of fingers hold them in place while I sand with the other hand.


Jan 29, 2012

Tina’s Crackle–New Technique

Is finally in a tutorial. I had to find a material to achieve this crackle and found several that work and they are easy to find, promise!

24 photos, 8 pages.

You can find it on my ArtFire and Etsy. I only list one at a time on Etsy because of their listing fees, but there are plenty on ArtFire.

Recently Updated

Jan 23, 2012

Crackle and Shimmer

I was going to post yesterday, but we ended up having an incredible hurricane with gusts of more than 100 km/hour winds which did a bit of damage to roofs and properties in our neighbourhood. The storm took us by surprise in how it picked up so quickly and fortunately our damage is minor. I tried to get photos while we were on the beach, but my video camera decided to have a hissy-fit and froze. Maybe it was scared of the storm, because it works again.

I made up necklace with one of my new crackles. First Batik and Shimmer and now Crackle and Shimmer. I made a few variations by combining with other techniques. I then applied resin and sanded the pieces. Not quite sure when I’ll have the tutorial ready, but I’ll announce it here. Right now I’m working on another one. 



Jan 21, 2012

52 pairs of Earrings a Year

I am so glad I was alerted to this the 52 pairs of Earrings a Year Challenge on Flickr. As I mentioned in my last post, I need to get back into finding some time for  creativity instead of just producing the same things over and over. Earrings are one of the fun things I like to make, so it was natural to join up.

This is my first pair. I wove some Japanese cube beads along with purple triangle beads. I make these little polymer clay flowers which I sell on Etsy.

Tina Flowers

Jan 20, 2012

Is it possible? part 2

I don’t like Glossy items for some projects and there are times when I want to preserve that Matte natural look that Polymer Clay has after curing. Here is the piece of lighter clay I wanted to share…If you look closely…you can see the channels that the cracks make in the clay. Remember that this clay is just as soft when it comes out of the package.

By now some of you have an inkling of what I did here (I emailed you) and there is one other person I can think of and he probably knows what I’m talking about, lol, but I’d love to hear some guesses… Wanna guess?? Would be so interesting and might spark further experiments…

Tina crackle 2

I’ll play a bit more today and will share with you on Sunday…

Jan 19, 2012

Anything is possible…

Or so the saying goes when one looks positively at things.

I’ve had a lot of things on my mind as you know from my previous post, so haven’t been able to produce or be very creative. But it’s been since November that my muse went on vacation and has left me sitting in my studio with piles of ‘to do’ lists pinned on the board.

I’ve made a few ‘little’ things but nothing substantial and this bothers me. I’m supposed to work on some orders, but you know, I’m tired of making things that I’ve been steadily producing since 2000. That is 12 years! You can say that I’m just bored with it and am procrastinating badly, but what to do when the shops keep asking for the same stuff! because it sells! I want to sit and design something new, something 2012! Maybe something Mayan tribal with an Oceanic flair, lol. …but…mmm….this years trend are layers of chains, roses and flowers…and my muse calls me from overseas and says ‘chuck that thought aside, create your own trends’.  Artists are supposed to do this, right? I might use some of that Pantone Tangerine Tango tho and I envision some Coral, Carnelian with hints of Rose quartz and Tiger eye…but I digress from what I really want to tell you!

So, this afternoon I sat playing with some surface treatments as I’m also supposed to work on some buttons and while this clay sheet is a little dark, I think I’ll be able to reproduce this with a lighter colour. I had a scrap piece of green clay with copper and gold flecks in it, rolled out flat, sitting in front of me at my desk. As I stared at it, and it, at me in return…the question popped into my mind “Is it possible?…”

Is it possible to create a crackle on uncured clay without the use of metal leafing? without a 2 part crackle medium? without heating the clay and causing it to crack? without Future Floor polish which takes so long to dry?? mmm…

YES! it is!

…this is the result. I’ll share more soon…

tina crackle

Jan 10, 2012

Lend me an ear?

You don’t know what you have…
...until it's gone.
I've never been vocal about my illness as it is such a private thing, but right now I can hardly contain myself that I feel I need to blurt this out, somehow, somewhere... I'm not sure if it's right to use a blog, or to write to a yahoo group, or on Facebook, but what the heck, I am so ‘up there in the clouds right now’...I'll tell you my story.
In the late 90's or early 2000, I don't even remember unless I can ask my Dr. next week, it happened so suddenly. My husband and I were redoing the front of our Mobile Home. It was only about 10 years old, but the front was affected with black mould and we were tearing it all out to be redone. Just a few hours into the work, despite wearing a mask, my head began to spin, it hurt so bad and I ached all over. I ran a bath to seek relief, but it became worse and that night was taken to emergency and hospitalized. The doctor on call didn't believe it came from the mold as it is a common occurrence on our wet coast, but as a precaution held me overnight. The next day, despite not being able to walk on my own I was sent home where the illness took me down into a spiral that would last for 6 months. I had come down with a Virus that affected my balance center and vision. Later the Doctors would determine I had a virus of the hearing organ and an inflammation in the connection to the brain. They said it wasn't Meniere's (because it normally affects only one ear) but whatever struck me, it caused me to be bed-ridden for more than 2 months and convalescence for another 4 or so. For weeks I was unable to even open my eyes because the world was spinning every second of every day and my eye muscles kept my eyes rolled into my skull. I was unable to walk nor could I control my balance. I actually feared for my life and thought I would die.
I wasn't extremely religious, even though I was raised a Lutheran Protestant who believes in Jesus. I prayed to God to please help me. I wasn't very religious, but and our small town heard about me and sent a Minister to my home with 2 others who blessed me. Not long after I was able to get out of bed and would sit up a few minutes here and there and eventually take more and more steps, but some people were talking in our small town when I would stagger into the grocery store, that I must be suffering from alcoholism. Never assume! lol. I wasn't even on any medication other than something for motion sickness.
It was this virus that would slowly take my hearing. From then on I have lost more than 50 decibels and am continuing to loose on average 10 decibels every 3 years which will mean I'll likely be considered deaf in approximately 15 years.  I'm considered moderately or half-deaf right now and although I'm not really one to complain, I wanted to write to some of you who know me, how much joy I'm experiencing right now. Pure and utter joy!
Yes, I'm soooo happy that I can hardly see the keyboard as the words are swimming. (Good thing is I don't need to see as my fingers remember the keys). I can hear!! What a tease this experience is, to remember what it used to be like. Alas, it will be short-lived as I only get to try these digital aides for 2 weeks, but I already don't want to give them back. The difference they make... The first thing I did when I got home is phone my daughter who instantly said "Mom??? I don't have to repeat everything I say!!!! what's going on?!" For years I struggled on the phone in general and in the last couple of years I wouldn't even go near a phone unless I absolutely had to and would make my husband do all the talking for me, or I would have to get out my amplifier and that darn thing just amplifies absolutely everything and would make my ears hurt. Now I realize an amplifier is just NOT like a hearing aide at all. I can still hear some sounds in the normal range, but the rest is just gone. I could no longer hear paper ruffling, leaves falling, birds whistling in the morning, the microwave or oven dinging when done and even the alarm clock wouldn't wake me anymore!!...but at least in person I could still hold a conversation by reading peoples lips, but that wasn't possible on the phone!! How I missed holding a conversation! Some of my friends didn't even know I was hearing impaired and some still didn't until now, but I began to repeat over and over the same words many times in one conversation..."I'm sorry?" "Excuse me?" Do you know how... tired...I... am... of saying these words? of course I feel sorry when something bad happens to someone else, but I'm so tired of having to 'apologize' for my hearing loss. I shouldn't have to apologize everywhere I go! And the hearing loss has turned me into a Hermit. It has turned me anti-social...because I cannot participate in full or I have to pretend I heard what was spoken...it is a lonely world.
My father-in-law, who has age related hearing difficulties, before I even tried this second pair of ears, said that I wouldn't like them. I can't believe he said that and I thought ok...they must not be working then, but when the Clinic offered me to try them before having to purchase them I said "why not!" And oh boy, was my Father-in-law wrong!! Well, my loss isn't age-related either, lol, I'm not that old.
My husband joked that these might become the most expensive pair of Diamond Earrings I could ever imagine owning (not that I own any!!), but I also can't understand why our medical system won't be covering me for these Wires in my ear, not one penny of it and since I don't have any sort of insurance...well, it will be a difficult road to come up with 5 grand for these babies, they might as well be Diamonds. My mother said she'd love to help me out, but doesn't have that kind of money and I was raised to never purchase something that I don't have the money for. I'm tempted to put them on my Visa like the Clinic says I can do, but what if I can't make the payment? Will a guy come to my house and tear them out of my ears and repossess them? LOL, the thought!!
I now regret having gone for the trial...I shouldn't have tried them unless having the money first, but I thought that my Father-in-law would be right as he doesn't like his. Too bad he can't just give me the one he has! but it doesn't work that way. And I wrongly assumed that Medical would cover me because of an illness and a medical ailment. Our Canadian healthcare is so strange...same with a Wisdom tooth...if you get them pulled at a Dentist then you pay, if done in the Hospital, then Medical pays...If by chance the Ear Doctor says there is a remote chance this is in any way operable...then medical would cover the surgery, so why not a Prosthetic...but then...who is listening? But I thank 'you' personally, for lending me your ears…
If you can, or want to help contribute toward my hearing in any small way, please look on the right for the fundraising activity. Each contribution, even the purchase of a tutorial or supplies from my shop, adds up toward my quest. 

Jan 1, 2012

And the Winners are…


I used the Random Number Generator to draw winners of my “Merry Christmas Giveaway” for the 3 pendants…and the Winners are…


Julie Witt, Barb Alexander and CraftyLinda I’ll be emailing you to get these out to you…

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