Make it Work

Make it Work

Another weekend done and dusted.  Wish they would last longer, although, even if they did, I would still complain they weren’t long enough.  This weekend has been restful and relaxing, with beautiful weather and nowhere to be.  No plans or schedules.  Nothing more taxing than walking down the shop for some milk.  I even watched some bad TV, which I rarely do, and slept in without guilt, went walking with a friend (arranged at the last minute) and had a couple of crafty days.

On Friday night I went out with friends from work.  I was suffering with a headache and a bad case of the “I really don’t want to go out and be sociable” blues, so wasn’t the best company for anyone.  We went to dinner and a pub in the city and then on to a comedy night.  It was ok.  I kinda get tired of the same old dirty jokes and swearing.  I’m not a prude (*stamps foot and pouts*) but I do think it is lazy when comedians use bad language and jokes about sex in order to get a laugh.  It’s just a bit…predictable.  We also had a group of hecklers in the audience which was VERY annoying.  There is nothing uglier than a bunch of middle-aged women, drunk as skunks and twice as obnoxious.  It’s just embarrassing.  And, as I said, annoying.  The comedians managed to get the last laugh on them in the end but it still spoiled much of the acts.

Yesterday I got stuck into K’s order for more jewellery.  I finished everything she asked for – hope she likes them all but of course I will change them if not.  I made :

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…a wood and ceramic necklace with K’s red coral beads.  Not sure if I like this one – but it’s not for me so maybe K will like it…

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…ceramic and coral earrings…

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…and a shell and polished stone necklace.

I also had to fix a couple of things for her and put a clasp on another necklace.  I made a few other pieces (for my own stock) as well including :

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Then I decided to have a change and try and make some cards.  I haven’t had much luck with them lately.  Nothing I make seems up to standard, so I was determined today to make something half-way decent.  I just need to MAKE THINGS WORK, even when I am unsure of them. I started with a card I am making for a friend at work who is having a baby (girl) soon:

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I’m quite pleased with it – I didn’t want to use just the typical girly pinks…

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…so I used a combination of pastels and brights and some bold text and buttons.

Then I attempted a more “shabby” card.  I have always preferred that kind of style, but just lately I haven’t been able to create anything I’m even remotely happy with.  I didn’t do much better today, but it’s a start.  So I made this “blooming tree” card with some vintage text and lace:

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…it’s ok, not my best effort, but alright!

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Lastly, I made a card using some papers that I was given – colours I would not work with normally.  I thought I would try and go fairly simple (I have a tendency to just keep on adding things) and stick to the two main colours of orange and mauve.  I added some liquid pearls and a stamped sentiment right at the end (I also added another bubble/blob as you can see in the last two photos – it was unbalanced otherwise):

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So, not a wasted weekend and one of much rest and solitude.  Back to work tomorrow – looking less and less forward to work days as August progresses and the big relocation of 90% of our staff to a new building begins.  I’m going to miss everyone (but not the politics) and just don’t know if work will be the same from now on.  But I will have to MAKE IT WORK!  I need to  suck it up and do my job and live my life with a little less whinging, and a little bit more backbone and tenacity.  I have always been scared of change and this last year has showed me that I CAN survive it and even learn to embrace it, if I just hang in there.  With the divorce coming up, I am a little more fragile than usual and needing support more than ever – but I will have to be my own cheer squad and try to just remember that I actually have things pretty good and will be ok 🙂

Hope your weekend has been happy x

Not-long-enough Weekend

Not-long-enough Weekend

Well, it is late Monday afternoon on a long weekend.  I think they should call them “longish” weekends…they never seem to go any less quickly than regular weekends and I am still wishing I had gotten more done.  I did make an effort to be sociable this weekend and actually hang out with people other than my Mum.  I went to my best friend’s on Saturday evening for a catch-up, saw another friend yesterday for brunch (she gave me a belated birthday gift – a voucher to an AWESOME bead shop that I haven’t been to yet.  Can’t wait to go!) , my other good friend this morning for a walk and late breakfast and my brother came over this afternoon with his partner and their four munchkins (whom I adore but my little house is not really very kid-friendly, in that it is small and probably boring when all I have is Jenga to play and maybe some colouring-in stuff if they’re lucky).  So I did see actually people this weekend and did not hole up like a hermit (which is my usual M.O.).

I did get some things made.  My friend K came over last week and bought a whole bunch of jewellery from me and then ordered a whole bunch more.  I think I am not her partner’s favourite person because money keeps tending to waft over in my direction which isn’t good when they’re supposed to be saving for their next holiday.  However, K and I have come to an agreement that I have to complete this latest order for her and then we will most likely have a break.  I need to make things for my upcoming market (still now sure when it will be or where) and she needs to not spend a large proportion of her pay packet on things I have made for her on her request. But she is awesome and makes me laugh so I don’t begrudge her (or her money ha ha) in the slightest.

I finally finished off one of her sea-shell necklaces.  This thing has been bugging me for weeks.  The shell refuses to hang straight.  I guess when Mother Nature creates these things she is not making “must hang straight so pendants can be fashioned” a priority over “must make a nice house for sea-dwelling creatures”.  Which is fair enough.  However, after much cursing and several attempts, I managed to finish it and get it to hang somewhat satisfactorily.  That’s a bit of a lie – I’m still not happy with it but it is the best I can do with my limited skills!  K wanted this large shell (I think she found it in Bali or somewhere like that…) to have some bright reds and ethnic tones to complement it.  I did the best I could…

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She had also picked out some pretty blue and white beads from my stash and wanted something with a sort-of-Mexican feel:

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Next up, a fairly simple necklace with some other beads she picked out.  I’m not sure about this one…I might re-jig it.  I’m not happy with it and it doesn’t “sit” right with me when I’m not happy with something!

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Next was a bright turquoise and red number which turned out ok.  K had picked the beads and I just added a few extra ones to complete it.
Red and turquoise ALWAYS works (thank goodness):

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After that, I quickly put a few other pieces together before the light got too bad and I got too tired and over it.  I’m trying to work on a few bolder pieces here and there, just to try and cater for people who like things bright and chunky, not dainty or delicate.  I really like the square, ceramic beads on the next necklace – they give a different look to the usual round or oval ones;

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Then I made this one using a large howlite red bead that I had been saving and not using (which is dumb and I do it a lot – just use it already!):

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Some pretty silver and polished magnet earrings (these don’t fit in the colourful and bold category…).

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I made lots more cabochon hair clips today too – they are good sellers and handy for last minute gifts etc…

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Another batch of rings made from panels from a broken bracelet.  I look out for the bracelets in op-shops all the time now – they made great pendants and rings, even earrings.

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I also made these funny little earrings.  Red and black are pretty popular colours and these are actually quite heavy, good quality ceramic beads.

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Last and definitely, in this case, least are these earrings.  Possibly the world’s ugliest pair.  Chocolate brown and gold – hmmmm, not exactly a winning combination but I am trying really hard to not just make things that appeal to me.  I’ve been wrong in the past with things I’ve thought were so ugly but someone else loved them – you just can’t tell.  Anyway, you have to allow for people with bad eyesight or strange fashion sense ha ha!

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So, that’s me done for the weekend.  I have nothing else planned now except for some ironing and rustling up some dinner.  At the moment I am living on steamed veggies and a little grated cheese on top.  I’m just not in the mood to cook much for myself and at least with steamed veg I am getting SOME nutrients and not living on cereal or toast.  Which I could do very easily.  Trust me.

Hope your weekend has been productive or restful (whichever you prefer) and that your week ahead will be fabulous!

All the best x

 

Baby, it’s HOT outside!

Baby, it’s HOT outside!

Phew!  It is hot.  I mean really hot.  So hot that even I am hot.  And I am never anything other than cold.  Right now I’m am sweating as I type this.  Sweating is gross and I am so not used to it.  Ew.  It’s still better than being cold, but it even so…ewwww…..

As a consequence of the heat wave that we are experiencing here in sunny Perth, I have been doing very little crafting.  Too hot.  Too sweaty.  All I want to do when I come home is sit on an air-conditioner and drink gallons of water.  And watch re-runs of 21 Jump Street (but that’s another story…I’m having a Peter De Luise thing at the moment).  My dining room table is covered in craft supplies (nothing new there) but I am not doing anything with them.  Not much anyway.  Every so often I fiddle about with a few beads but then get heat-cranky and can’t be bothered doing much more than that.

I have made one new bracelet this week (aside from a couple of orders I had to get done) and it is not very inspiring – I used all the same kind of bead for Heaven’s sake! :

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…it is light and cute for Summer I guess though.  The little wooden beads are very lightweight and sorta rustic looking (if you squint your eyes and imagine something rustic looking) and it was at least something.

Mostly I just shopped for things to make stuff with this week.  I went bead shopping.  Which is always dangerous.  I had to buy two huge bead boxes on the weekend because I was running out of storage.  I went to Galaxy Beads in Morley on Saturday.  I spent an hour in there and tried to choose carefully…but it is so hard because they have such lovely stuff and I get a bit bamboozled looking at it all.  I picked up some basic colours that I needed (red, orange and green ceramic and wooden beads) but still couldn’t find any yellow ceramic ones.  I am searching in vain for those it seems.  I got some lovely feature beads which I might keep to make things for myself…maybe.  I always say that and then sell or give away whatever I’ve made.  Until I get my ears pierced again it seems a waste to keep earrings for me and I don’t wear many bracelets except for my favourite silver bangle which I never take off.  But perhaps I will change that this year and become super colourful and blingy…

 

Anyway, check out some of the beads I got, starting with these gorgeous lavender, gold and silver ones – so pretty!Image

 

Next up, these oriental-looking ones – love the colours and the metallics and the tiny wee flower in blue:

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These little glass beads were so cute – I don’t know what I’m going to use them on but I had to get them…

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I LOVE these pale blue ones…they were pretty expensive but I just really liked them..

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These embellished lamp work beads were in a bargain bag but they’re really unusual colours…

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Licorice Allsorts! That’s what these ones remind me of.  They too were in a bargain bag which made them less than half price…

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So, it would be fair to say I left with a large dent in my purse…but not too large, I was careful and only bought what I thought I could use.  I was disappointed not to get the yellow beads I needed but I will keep looking.  I really, really need wooden animal beads but they are nowhere to be found.

I didn’t just buy beads – I was also given lots by other people this week.  My friend GK gave me these :

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They are panels from a bracelet, but I think they will make lovely rings.  I love the colours (especially the purple one) and I was really happy to be given these, as well as some bright wooden beads and some pretty glass ones.

While out shopping for card for my birthday invitations, I found these adhesive cabochon flowers in a stationery store:

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…they’re suppose to be for invitation decorations but who’d waste them on that?!  They would look much better on a nice ring…

…don’t you think?

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I also (whilst looking for 2nd hand jewellery) picked up this cute handbag in an op-shop.  $2.00!!! Crazy price.  It was a little bit grubby so I sponged it with some stain-removing laundry soaker and the marks came out.  Look at the lovely embroidery and beading on it!
(excuse my toes in the first shot…)

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So, a lot of shopping and not much crafting going on this week at all.  I will get back into it soon.  When the temperature drops below a bazillion degrees.  Until then, it’s just me in as little clothing as possible, lots of iced water, a fan and 80s cop shows.

Stay cool everybody 🙂

Pretty Pegs

Pretty Pegs

How did it get to be Sunday afternoon again already?  I don’t know where the weekends go.  The weeks themselves fly by, but then it gets to the weekend and time just speeds up even more.  So unfair.

I’ve had a nice couple of days.  The weather has been lovely (too hot for some at this time of year but I love it) and I’ve spend time with my Mum and Mother-in-law.  I did a simple high tea/morning tea yesterday, nothing extravagant and we had a nice time just catching up and chilling out.  I wanted to stay in touch with my Mother-in-law as much as possible, after my marriage break-up, so I have tried to keep things as they were, at least between us.  She has always been very kind to me and welcomed me into the family straight away and I would hate to lose contact with her.  I’m not sure what the protocol is when you break up with someone, but I feel that I didn’t break up with her or the rest of the family so, while keeping a respectful distance from the ex and not making things uncomfortable for him (I don’t need to turn up at every family gathering) I think it’s ok if I at least see them for their birthdays and other big events. This week both my Mum and Mother-in-law celebrated their birthdays, hence the morning tea.  November is a busy month for me with lots of birthdays and other occasions.  I’m also doing a watercolour painting class in a couple of weeks which I am looking forward to (with some trepidation – I’m not the world’s greatest painter AT ALL but I do love the look of watercolour).

Last night (actually, late last night – I was up past midnight naughty girl) I prepared a bunch of pegs for making into my “Pretty Pegs” sets which I aim to sell at my mini-market.  They are good little sellers – easy to make and not a lot of initial outlay for materials.  Good for stocking fillers and just look really pretty when displayed.  They are also a good “TV Craft” i.e. they are something I can do whilst watching telly.  I like to multi-task! 🙂

So, last night I glued co-ordinating papers to the pegs in sets of four.  I used Ranger Matt Accents – it glues well and dries quickly, sealing the paper to the wood nicely.  I left the pegs to dry overnight to make sure the paper had bonded well.  This morning I sat and snipped the paper so it was nice and close to the edges of the pegs and then sanded them to give them a lived-in, distressed look and to take off any rough edges.  I hate sanding – it takes forever (well, not really, but I am an impatient crafter!).  I had quite a few little sets to do:

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Lots of pegs!

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Extreme close up! 

Next I will tie the pegs together in their matching sets with a length of raffia (which I have just realised I have run out of) and attach a little tag that gives ideas for using the pegs and voila!  That’s it.  Easy-peasy.  Which is what you want on a lazy Sunday afternoon.  I am hoping to make a few more things today…so stay tuned! 🙂

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Cheated a bit here – I used a photo from some sets I made previously (“here’s one I made earlier!”)