Thursday, 31 May 2007

Oh No, Billy-Bob!

Driven to despair by what he had seen, Billy-Bob sought refuge in the bottom of a bottle and fell in with a bad bunch.......

Yes I am working on other things - I have a crochet project on the go but it is taking ages, plus I have a painting which will also take time - but the saga of Billy-Bob is becoming intriguing. I wonder what will happen next......

Tuesday, 29 May 2007

Is This the End for Billy-Bob?

"Cousin Betsy-Lou! Noooooooooooo..........................."

Latest Painting and 3 Necklaces

The above is the latest painting to be completed - got to say I didn't enjoy doing it much and now await to see whether it will be approved by the card company I have submitted it to. I think it is time I did some work that I enjoy, as it always seems to show through the overall quality!
The above is a little necklace featuring a glass vintage button in the shape of a flower together with some green glass leaves and tiny AB pink glass flowers, all on silver wire with clear glass seed beads. It is a very delicate and pretty necklace and I was pleased with how it turned out.
£15 +p&p
I don't know where the idea for this came from - I was playing with the beads that I got in a 'mystery' bag and wondered if I could make square spirals (a bit of a contradiction in terms there!) with copper wire, and with a bit of experimentation, this was the end result. It is unusual and very eye-catching - would look lovely with a summer top. The beads have a AB coating, so shimmer as well as have the stained glass look about them. £15 + p&pSOLD
This is a bit of nonsense using home felted balls, a long chain of crocheted purple hemp, together with bright pink and purple wooden beads with a couple of wooden birds and butterflies thrown in for good luck. It is quite a long necklace and would look great on a plain shirt or top. £15 + p&p

So I haven't just been frittering away my time knitting vegetables, there has been a bit of serious work going on as well!

Monday, 28 May 2007

The Perils of Billy-Bob Broccoli......

Faced with almost certain death, Billy-Bob wondered if the short-cut through the plate of salami had been such a good idea........

The above is the product of Fhi's imagination (check out her design on her blog) and my knitting needles. Yes I know, I should employ my time more usefully, but yesterday was such a rubbish day with apocalyptic weather, no tickets left for Pirates of the Caribbean, possibly the worst service at a restaurant I have ever had (Bradley at The Spur in Basingstoke, you have been named and shamed, mate - I'd look for another career if I were you...) that I felt the mood needed lightening up a tad. So I spent the afternoon clicking away and Billy-Bob is the result....I think he probably needs a safer home than mine!

Saturday, 26 May 2007


Back to crochet again, combined with fish as promised! This is a combination of green wire crocheted in single chains with beads, fish and shells, together with a curly strand of crochet interwoven to look like seaweed. I was a bit worried when half way through this one, but when all put together with a couple of chains attaching and shaping it, the necklace really looks very pretty and unusual. £22.00 + p&p

Thursday, 24 May 2007

Blue Spirals and Forget-me-Nots

With new beads and wire in abundance, I was spoiled for choice but decided to make the above as a lady I know was looking for a silver/white/blue necklace for a wedding. The first one is made with pale blue wire (simply gorgeous!) and clear glass beads and an asymmetrical design. It is very unusual and pretty. The second is made with silver wire, pale blue glass flowers and pale blue/clear glass beads. This is very delicate and feminine looking and just right for the summer. Both are £15 + p&p BOTH SOLD

After that, however, the lady in question actually bought the Silver Spiral necklace I made earlier in the week - and very nice it looked on her too this morning!

I heard yesterday that I will be receiving a parcel of fish - of the bead variety - from Athens, Greece sometime this week, which is good as I was running low! So there will be more fishy necklaces very soon. Apparently, there are now three huge bead shops in Athens - I visited two last year and was stunned at the selection - one shop is four stories high and the other more rambling store is as big as my house and just jammed from floor to ceiling with every bead, finding, pendant and chain that you could ever want in a lifetime! I bought a lot and it is probably just as well I no longer live there or I would be facing bankruptcy!

Tuesday, 22 May 2007

Silver Spiral

Due to lack of the required supplies (which arrived today - yay!) I stopped crocheting last night and made the above little number in silver wire and clear glass beads. It was surprisingly easy once I got the hang of making a spiral, and I think it looks very effective. The only drawback is that it is a little delicate - no handstands while wearing this or the spirals will shed their links! But with normal wear, nothing untoward will happen, as gravity holds it all together. Look out for more similar in the future. This is £10.00 + p&p SOLD!

The above are a wooden bead and gold link necklace in pink and pale turquoise with pink wooden butterflies; a crochet triple plait of 9 strands of warm gold wire with black AB seed beads; and a tiny bracelet of wooden flowers and beads on a silver link chain. Necklaces £10 and bracelet £3 GOLD WIRE NECKLACE SOLD

Today I received 3 parcels containing wire and beads (flowers, leaves and crystal) so I am ready to pick up the crochet hook again!

Monday, 21 May 2007

Ice Maiden

I feel like I am getting to grips with this technique at last - I finished this today , and feel quite pleased with it. It is not as extravagant as the last curly necklace, but I feel it is classier all round. It is crocheted with silver wire, irridescent white seed beads, a mixture of white and clear slightly larger beads and then finally small crystal faceted beads and larger clear glass round beads and oval beads with a slight AB sheen. I don't think the photo does it justice, but it is so fine and delicate I can't get it any clearer - you'll have to use your imagination! I think it looks like the patterns left by frost on the window, with the larger beads being water droplets as it starts to melt. This would look fabulous with an evening dress, especially against a tanned skin. £22.00 + p+p SOLD

I now have to give the crochet a bit of a rest while I wait for supplies - so perhaps it is back to chains for a couple of days!

Sunday, 20 May 2007

Buzzy Bee...

Here is a little chap that made an appearance yesterday. I have had him in my mind for ages, so last night armed with an insect book, black and gold beads and a strong pair of glasses, I set about making him a reality. I think he looks quite cute, especially nestling among the pot plants on the patio - although he is actually a brooch. I saw so many interesting beetles and bugs in the book, I am wondering how to accomplish making them -hmmmm....BUZZY BEE - SOLD

In the meantime, I am still crocheting wire, this time something in silver and clear glass, so watch this space as I have nearly finished it. Sybille says it is an addiction - I'm beginning to wonder if it isn't a sickness! I have so many future plans for this technique that I think I shall just have to give up everything else, including sleep!

Saturday, 19 May 2007


While browsing through various blogs the other day I saw someone using the technique I have used for curly scarves to make wire/bead bracelets. Having just been admiring Sybille's marine-themed jewellery, I put the two together and had an epiphany! The above is the result, a necklace of crocheted silver wire decorated with beach/sea coloured beads, pearls, shells, mother-of-pearl and little seahorses and fish. It is very eye-catching and to be worn by an extrovert, as there is no hiding away with this on your person. It reminded me of the tops of waves when they crash on the shore with shells and flotsam and jetsam being brought in together with the foam. Owing to the sheer amount of work and materials involved in this piece, it will be £22.00 + p&p. SOLD

Now that I know this technique works in wire, I plan to make more of the same, but in different colours - maybe green to look like kelp, and to incorpate other little marine items. I also think this would work well using flowers and leaves to make a garland effect.

The bead/wire insects are still at the back of my mind - I bought some supplies today and will attempt a little treasure later. Unfortunately, housework and gardening are the order of the day as usual on a Saturday, so I will have to wait until it is all done - talk about a carrot and stick!!

Wednesday, 16 May 2007

Sixties Beads and Mother-of-Pearl

Above is a charm pin that I have made for my son's girlfriend's birthday - I do hope she likes it! My son says it is too 'girly' but then what would he know! If anyone would like anything similar made, just let me know - I'm open to suggestions for the theme.
These three necklaces remind me of the 'love beads' we had in the sixties and seventies, which must have come from India and were multi-coloured beads on brassy wire chains. I have made the chains on these out of copper and gold coloured wire, with mixed beads from a huge bag I bought at the last Stitch and Craft Expo. The chain necklaces have Indian Lampwork beads as features. The central necklace is crocheted with old gold wire with a peacock tail type pendant, also crochet. This was a bit of free-styling on my part - I started something else but it turned into this! All the above are £15 +p&p.
This is my favourite of the week - I have made a silver wire chain and hung five pieces of mother-of-pearl shell interspersed with clear sparkly glass beads. When against the skin, this is so clean looking and shiny - a really beautiful little necklace, even though I say so myself. This is also £15, although you had better hurry as I am very tempted to keep it, especially if I get a tan this summer......

Saturday, 12 May 2007

Cat on a Mantlepiece

I have finished this painting at last! For some reason this took a very long time - not actual painting time, but other commitments taking over. This was painted using watercolour for the setting and Derwent Drawing Pencils together with my trusty black brush pen for the cat. I think it has turned out pretty well, even though I say so myself!

The next painting, already started, is of a cat lying in long grass with flowers and leaves around him - watch this space. I hope it will not take as long to complete, as I have several other pictures planned, including the greyhound mentioned a while back, and a pair of young zebras play-fighting that we managed to photograph at Marwell Zoo last month.

Hot Pink Beads and More!

The above are this week's creations. The first is a bright pink and turquoise wooden bead necklace, strung on gold effect hand-made chain. Working in an infant school, I am often made lovely necklaces by children using huge bright beads and this necklace was inspired by them - I have a tub of brightly coloured wooden beads and plan to be making more of these.SOLD! So I had better get on and make more then!

The second is a copper leaf pendant strung on a copper wire chain with clear glass beads. I have had the copper leaf pendant for a long time and finally found a way to use it - I am hoping the wire will darken with age and match the pendant.

The third necklace is a three strand crochet wire in green with assorted coloured beads, and a crocheted wire and bead pendant. I am pleased with the curly effect of this, and hope to be making more in the future. However, I am giving the crochet wire a rest for a few days as I feel like I have strained my eyes!

The fourth is a turquoise wooden bead necklace, featuring of course - fish! I have strung these beads on gold effect wire link and when it is worn, the fish hang from the central chain as if they had just been caught fresh from the sea. I plan to make similar items but incorporating shells and other marine themed beads/charms. I think I must be compensating for no longer living near the sea - I do miss it! SOLD

All of the above are £10 + p&p.

Tuesday, 8 May 2007

Dragonfly Necklace

Here is the dragonfly as promised - it came out a bit bigger than anticipated, due to the size of the beads I used for the body. I'd like to try with really tiny seed beads and see if it makes much of a difference. This was great fun to do and didn't take as long as I thought it would - I am now thinking of ways to adapt this and what other insects could be made.

Monday, 7 May 2007

Bank Holiday News

The wire arrive Saturday morning and I then understood why I have had such trouble crocheting with the stuff I buy locally - it's way too thick! The new wire is like thread and so easy to use, although I may just go blind in the process as it is so fine. So after a couple of practice runs, last night I managed to make the necklace above in silver wire with pale blue seed beads and even made a little round motif with a sparkly blue bead inthe centre. I am very pleased with the result - it looks like filagree and is very delicate. It is also delicate to wear - not that it will break, but the loops can get bent up if they touch clothing, so this would have to be worn with an open-neck top - but how special would it look against a tan! This is £15 + p&p.

I now have all sorts of plans for the rest of the wire - I am having to write them down and make sketches as I do not want to forget them. I feel like making a dragonfly out of beads and crochet wire wings - watch this space!
The above is the finished collar crocheted in hemp. All it needs now is a satin ribbon threaded through the loops in the centre to fasten it, but the shop is shut until tomorrow. This has held it's shape nicely and I think as it would be worn around the neck, there is no danger of it getting battered and pulled out of shape. Again £15 because of the time taken to make it - even fiddlier than the wire as the hemp varies in thickness as it goes along.
Yesterday was a pretty good day - I turned on the computer to find that my good friend Marina didn't want just one necklace, she wanted to buy three! So she had chosen the starfish/peyote bead confection and the 'Cobweb' necklace, pale green seed beads on monofilament, as well as a crochet wire/fish chain - bless you Marina! If this continues I will have to really get cracking and re-stock the more complicated necklaces - just as well I have actually sorted out the mess that was my bead and findings collection and can see what's what for a change. Not for long I am sure!

I took a 'day off' yesterday and we went to a huge car boot near Reading which was cold and starting to be wet but worth it. I found not one but TWO strands of the rainbow crystal beads that I have been looking everywhere for over the past couple of weeks with no success. (Who says Cosmic Ordering doesn't work!) Also a necklace of pale blue crystal beads also for cannibalisation, as well as the two fancy little finds above, both 50p. The belt buckle is absolutely gorgeous and at first I thought it was carved bone of some sort, but on closer inspection it is actually plastic. But from the front you could not guess and I love the delicate flower design - I will crochet a belt to go with it in the not too distant future. The earrings I originally bought to take apart but when cleaned up they look too nice. I do not think they are gold,maybe gold-plated. The only problem is they are the old screw-on design which HURTS! So now I am in a quandary - do I wear them and suffer, take them apart and put them on modern settings or just take them apart and use the beads? Any advice gratefully received especially as I would hate to destroy anything that might be worth more left alone!

And then we went and had Japanese food and watched Spiderman 3, so a nice break from the routine!

Friday, 4 May 2007

Lime Green & Clear Beads

The above is a seed bead necklace, three strands of lime green, two of clear, with two lamp work green beads and a vintage clear button in the centre. This was a result of sheer laziness - there are other projects I want to make but it involves sorting out the mess I have made over the past week in order to find the beads and findings (now I know why they are called findings, most of them end up down the side of the sofa...) so I just used what was immediately to hand. Now that it is the weekend, I will have a sort out and hopefully try something a bit more ambitious - I am awaiting a delivery of wire and hope to be doing some more crochet work, with a bit of colour this time. As well as painting, framing, gardening.......

The above is £15 + p&p