Soup Has Arrived !!!!!!

Did I mention previously that I had an awesome partner for this year’s Bead Soup Blog Party??  Well, just in case I didn’t, let me now say it.  My partner, Natalie Moten, is awesome!!  Just look at the goodies she sent me, all the way from Anchorage to their new home in upstate NY!!!!!!!

Here is how everything looked as I took it out of the box.


Right away, you probably noticed a bright pink bead on top of the leopard box just like I did….we’ll get to that in a moment.  The top left is a package that was labeled as soap.

And guess what?? It is soap!  From an artisan in Wasilla, Alaska, Swan Mountain Soap.  It is called One Thousand Roses, and those are rose petals embedded into the top of the soap.  It smells great, too! OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA But I digress….back to the beads.  I couldn’t resist opening that leopard box to solve the mystery of the pink bead.  Inside the box was a gorgeous flower handcrafted by Natalie from beads and metal stampings.  The pink bead was at the center of the flower, and to fit in the box, Natalie had put a hole in the top that the pink bead could fit through.  It made for a great mystery! There was also a smaller flower and a birds nest that Natalie had made.


Natalie’s handmade focals. Aren’t these amazing?

Next, I peeked through the top of the little tin, and saw all kinds of sparkling goodness.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I poured out the contents of the tin, and all of these beauties were in there.


Here is a look at the entire soup.


I am absolutely in love with this soup.  I adore bold and bright colors, and being a lover of vintage, the big flower focal just calls to my heart.  I am so touched that Natalie made this for me.  Be sure to come back on April 13 and see what I have made with my soup!!

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Traveling Soup

I am currently packaging up my soup ingredients to send to my partner, Natalie Moten.  Natalie started out as  quilter, and was recently introduced to creating jewelry, and has found a new creative outlet.

Natalie and I both love lots of color, and her quilting appeals to me because of all the lovely brights. She has a great eye for pattern and design, and I’m sure she is going to make something beautiful with these pretty beads that I will be putting in the mail first thing Tuesday morning.


They are going to travel a long way!  I am in upstate New York, and Natalie lives in Anchorage, Alaska! How cool is that?

I am looking forward to receiving my beads from Natalie, and I’ll share them with you as soon as I get them!

Natalie and I are in the third reveal on April 13.  Please make sure you come back on that day to see what I have made 🙂

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Spring/Summer Forecast 2013 Part 2

So, we’ve already looked at the colors for the upcoming season.  What are some of the styles we’ll be seeing that utilize these colors?  And what other colors will be popular this season?

The Mod or Op art look in black and white is a holdover from the winter.  This is just such a fun style reminiscent of the 60’s.  You’ll find bold , blocky prints , as well as basic stripes. In addition to stripes, you’ll find fun looks with flower prints combined with stripes.  Black and white will also be combined with fuschia or bright red in color blocked looks.  Here’s a great pair of earrings for sale in my Etsy shop that will compliment these looks perfectly!


Red,  white, and blue is coming on strong for the nautical look.  Our most patriotic holidays are coming up in Spring and Summer, too.  Jewelry pieces in red, white and blue are the perfect accompaniments, and anchor themed jewelry (which was popular in Victorian times, and again in the 1940’s) is very popular this season.


This pin will be listed in my Ebay shop this month.

Floral prints, and flower jewelry will be seen all over, too.  Look for pretty brushed pastels fuzedflowerfullsize Oin Pantone’s seasonal colors, as well as oversized dramatic black and white.  Here are examples of floral necklaces that you can find in my Etsy shop.

Ruffles and peplum are popular again, as in this pretty dress by MiuMiu in Pantone’s nectarine.   There are big changes in footwear this season. After a couple of years of big, clunky shoes, kitten heels and flats are returning for the summer. The ballet flat is one of the hottest shoes of the season.  You’ll also see lots of strappy sandals for the summer.

Handbags are also getting smaller this season.  The suitcase  sized tote is being put aside in favor of small structured bags and clutches.   Here’s a pretty one in another of the season’s hot trend, a snakeskin print.

For all accessories (jewelry, handbags, and shoes), tassels are the hot accent this season.  Tassel earrings of miniature pearls and seed beads are a pretty casual accessory in the Pantone color palette, and chain tassels such as these earrings that I will be selling on Ebay.                      O

Here’s another pretty vintage inspired look with tassels that is for sale in my Etsy shop.


And here’s a vintage tassel lariat that will be listed on Ebay this month.


Note that this piece features a lovely cabochon in the color of the year, Emerald.

In addition to the pieces featured here, all throughout the rest of this winter, and into the spring, I’ll be featuring pieces to keep you on trend, at a price you can afford!!

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Spring and Summer 2013 Fashion Forecast, Part 1

BRRRR….even though we are still feeling the chill of winter , it’s time to look ahead happily to Spring and Summer.  You’ve probably already seen the colors and styles we can look forward to  this season in your local department stores, on line at websites like Pinterest, where  you can follow me ♥, or in catalogs or magazines you read at home.

The folks at Pantone are always ahead of the curve putting together the season’s IT colors.  No study of upcoming trends is complete without looking at these colors.  Of course, Pantone also names a Color of The Year. This color is featured year round in clothing and jewelry designs, and for this year, it is emerald.


This cameo necklace is featured in my store at The Craftstar

Rounding out the Spring/Summer palette are Grayed Jade, Dusk Blue, Tender Shoots, Lemon Zest, African Violet, Linen, Monaco Blue, Poppy Red, and Nectarine.


Grayed Jade

Easter egg

Dusk Blue

Macro crocus flowers

African Violet, Nectarine, Linen, and Tender Shoots

It’s probably no surprise that pastels will be the dominant  colors this season, but Pantone has rounded the palette out with a couple of brights for pop.

Monaco Blue, Poppy Red, Lemon Zest and Tender Shoots

Monaco Blue, Poppy Red, Lemon Zest and Tender Shoots

The bright red and blue will also be part of the return of the nautical/naval trend. This look comes and goes , but is always a fun look for summer.  The red and blue combined with white also make this combination perfect for all of the patriotic summer holidays.


Sarah Coventry Brooch, Will be listed in my Ebay store this week.

I think that Grayed Jade is one of the more unusual colors for the season.  To me, it is a cross between a light gray, pale green, and a sky blue.  My ebay store will be featuring several vintage items in this shade that will perfectly accent this summers fashions.

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On the left is an Avon necklace, circa 1980’s, and on the right, a fun circa 1960’s necklace still with the original “Genuine Lucite” tag.

Nectarine is reminiscent of last years color of the year Tangerine Tango, but a bit softer, with a less orangey look.


Sarah Coventry 1980’s Acrylic Necklace

???????????????????????????????Here’s a beautiful pastel brooch, and a very old one, too. This is done in pot metal, and features a plastic pink center with a rhinestone accent. The petals and leaves are painted in pastels. This brooch circa dates to the 1930’s.

Be sure to come back this weekend, and I’ll talk more about specific styles that incorporate these colors, as well as featuring more items that will be for sale.

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Time for Soup Again! (Bead Soup, That Is!!!)

Sign ups for Lori Anderson’s Bead Soup Blog Party are this weekend!!!  I love participating in this blog hop.  You can read all about it here.


I have been very fortunate both times I participated prior to this to be paired with wonderful partners.  For my first BSBP, I was paired with Tara Plote.  For a look at what I created with her lovely gifts, take a look here.

Starfish necklace made with 2011 Bead Soup items.

Starfish necklace made with 2011 Bead Soup items.

My second Bead Soup partner was Katherine Gale.  Like Tara, she was wonderfully generous in what she sent me, and packaged everything so specially.  You can see my post about my creations here. Here is Katherine’s blog.

Earrings , July 2012 Bead Soup

Earrings , July 2012 Bead Soup

If you have ever considered being a part of this event, but shied away for some reason, I recommend that you give it a try and sign up this time!!

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Memories and Thanks Blog Hop

Hello and Welcome to my Memories and Thanks blog hop creation.  This blog hop has been organized by Lori Anderson as a way for us to honor, or pay tribute, or give thanks to someone who has inspired us, or touched us in some way.  You can read Lori’s original idea here.
My piece orginally started out as a tribute to my little sister Kathy.  But once I got going, as most things do, it took on a life of its own.  I didn’t want my sister to be alone in my tribute, so I added my parents.  Later, I decided to include my mom’s parents, and my grandfathers sister.  These are the family who influenced me the most as I grew up, and all of them are now gone.  I didn’t choose to include my dad’s parents because I never knew them, and each part of my creation brings back a special memory I have of my family member.
My sister went into the hospital for a routine surgical procedure in the fall of 2009.  It didn’t turn out to be so routine, as her colon was perforated during the surgery. She became very ill, and needed a colostomy. Over the course of the next several months, she suffered one setback after another, and virtually never left the hospital. By June of 2010, she was on a feeding tube and a respirator, and at the age of only 47, me, my other sister, my sister Kathy’s husband, and her two children made the difficult decision to remove life support.  This is something I struggle with constantly.  My sister and I were not close as adults, and I grieve not only for her, but for the time we missed sharing together.  I will enjoy wearing this piece, because it makes me smile.O
My sisters absolute favorite love was cats.  She always had multiple cats in her home, so I chose a cat cameo from B’sue Boutiques to be the focal.   My mom also was a cat lover, so she shares part of this charm with my sister, but I also put  a second cat in the necklace so she could have her own.O
The rose charm represents my mom, and her mom.  My mom loved roses, and her middle name was Rose.  I attached it to an Asian coin, because every time my grandmother and I got together, her  destination of choice was a Chinese restuarant so she could get her chow mein.  The tassel at the bottom of the necklace is also there in honor of my grandmas favorite food.
My mom’s dad was a tinkerer, and an inventor.  He was in the Navy, and when we were children, he built his own cabin cruiser that we took boat rides on.  The gear and the clock are my tribute to his love of gadgets.  They are also shared by my mom, because she loved science fiction, and these pieces remind me of HG Wells writings.
The compass and the star are for my grandpa. He would use the compass to navigate, and the star represents his service in the Navy. He shares the star with my dad, who was in the Army.
My grandpa’s sister was Jeannette, and my mom was named after her.  My great Aunt Jeannette was a nun in the Sisters of the Assumption, and  we often recieved gifts from her in the form of crosses and religious medals.  My grandparents and my mom were very religious as well, and my grandmother had a special love for the holy family. This Miraculous Medal in sterling is a representation of that.
The shamrock and the Celtic cross celebrate my father Irish ancestry, something he was very proud of.
The charm with the French word “Non” celebrates my mothers and  grandfathers French Canadian ancestry.  My dad’s side also has French Canadian roots.  Ancestors on both sides were some of the original settlers in Canada in the 1600’s, and were involved in the fur trade.    The seed packet is for my dad.  If you have read my blog before, you know the gardening is a great love of mine, and I have my dad to thank for this.  He treasured his vegetable garden, and enjoyed his tomatoes and cucumbers!
Thanks for taking the time to look at my tribute.  Please take a few minutes to visit the rest of  the participants, and don’t forget to visit our hostess!!!!
Hostess, Lori Anderson       Pretty Things
Adlinah Kamsir                   Dream Struck Designs
Aimee Biondolillo               Aimee’s Jewelry Treasures
Alicia Marinache                 All the Pretty Things
Andra Marasteanu               Handmade by Indra Marasteanu
Andrea Trank                      Heaven Lane Creations
April Grinaway                   Brooklyn Bead Goddess
Barb Solem                         Vivi Magoo Presents
Becky Pancake                    Becky Pancake Bead Designs
Beth Emery                         Stories by Indigo Heart
Bonnie Coursolle                Jasper’s Gems
Cassi Paslick                       Beads: Rolling Downhill
Catherine King                    Catherine’s Musings
Cece Cormier                      The Beading Yogini
Chandra Leitz                     Juniper Goods
Charissa Nesler                   FireStorm Designs
Charlie Jacka                       Clay Space
Christina Hickman              Vintage Treasures Jewelry
Christine Murrow               Charis Designs Jewelry
Christine Stonefield            Sweet Girl Design
Chrizette Bayman               Bead Soup Mix
Cindy Wilson                      It’s My Sea of Dreams
CJ Bauschka                       4 His Glory Creations by CJ
Crystal Thain                      Here Bead Dragons
Cyndi Lavin                        Beading Arts
Debbie Rasmussen             A little of this, a little of that
Denielle Hagerman             Some Beads… and other things I like
Diana Gonzalez                  Arte y Poemas
Diane Hawkey                    diane hawkey
Dita Basu                            ankarshilpa
Donetta Farrington             Simply Gorgeous
Dyanne Everett-Cantrell     Deeliteful Jewelry Creations
Emma Todd                        A Polymer Penchant
Erin Kenny                         beadiful therapy
Erin Prais-Hintz                  Treasures Found
Gina Hockett                      Freestyle Elements
Gloria Allen                        Innovative Dreams Jewelry
Heather Marston                 CSW Designs
Inge von Roos                    Inge’s Blog
Iveth Caruso                       Creative Atelier
Jacqueline Marchant          Fiddledeedee Jewelry
Jami Shipp                         Celebrating Life!
Jean Yates                          Snap Out of it Jean, There’s Beading to Do!
Jennifer Reno                     Musings of a Crafty Jenny
Jenny Robledo                   Peppa’s Dream
Jennifer VanBenschoten    Jewelry, Art and Life
Jessica Klaaren                  Cellar Door Jewelry
Jessica Murray                   Whimsical Monkey
Joan Williams                     lilruby jewelry
Jo-Ann Woolverton            It’s a Beadiful Creation
Joanne Browne                   josjewels1
Jodie Marshall                    Jodie Marshall Lampwork Beads Wearable Art
Johanna Rhodes                 Fire Phoenix Creations
John Rasmussen                 Rasumussen Gems and Jewelry LLC
JuLee Wolfe                       The Polymer Penguin
Julie Bean                           Blue Pig Blog
Karen Mitchell                   Over the Moon Designs
Karin King                         The Sparklie Things Blog
Karin Slaton                       Backstory Beads
Kat Douglas                       Washoe Kat’s
Kay Bolton                        Toodles and Binks
Kelly Hosford Patterson     The Traveling SideShow
Kim Ballor                          Vitamin C … A Daily Does of Creativity
Kim Dworak                       CianciBlue
Kim Houston                       The Pink Martini
Kym Hunter                         Kym Hunter Designs
Laren Dee Barton                Laren Dee Designs
Lea Avroch                          LA Jewelry Designs
Leanne Loftus                      First Impression Design
Liddy McLaughlin               Liddy McLaughlin Art
Linda Florian                       Lily’s of the Valley Jewelry & Creative Creations
Linda Inhelder                     Must-Haves Jewelry
Lisa Hamilton                      Simply Irresistable Jewelry
Lisa Suver                            Fancee That
Lori Bowring Michaud        Artfully Ornamental
Lori Poppe                           Adventures in Creativity with Lorillijean
LouAnn Elwell                    Southpass Beads
Mandi Effron                       Craft-o-licious
Marcia DeCoster                 MadDesigns
Marcia Dunne                     The Alternative Foundry
Marie Covert                      Creating Interest
Marjorie Savill Linthwaite     bennubirdrising
Marlene Cupo                        Amazing Designs by Marlene
Martha Aleo                           Ornamento
Marti Conrad                          Marti’s Buttons -n- Beads
Mary Ellen Parker                  BeeTree by m.e.
Mary Govaars                        MLH Jewelry Designs
Mary Lindell                          Mary Lindell Artisan Jewelry
Maureen Connolly                 Mrs Beadsley’s Workshop
Maybeline Tay                       The Jewelry Larder
Melissa Elgin                         The Addicted Beader
Melissa Mesara                      one-eared pig beads
Menka Gupta                         Menka’s Jewelry
Michaela Pabeschitz              la mar de bonita
Mischelle Fanucchi               Micheladas Musings
Mona Rae Baroody               Who Does She Bead She Is?
Nan Emmett                          Spirit Rattles — Spirited Earth
Nancy Pedersen                    Something Heartfelt by Nancy
Natalie Davidson                  NorthShore Days
Nikki Douglas                      Bead It and Weep
Pam Farren                           re-maker
Pam, the Crazier Sister        The Crazy Creative Corner
Pam Traub                            Klassy Joolz
Priya Krish                           Hellopalz  
Rebecca Anderson               Song Beads
Rebecca Sirevaag                 Becca’s Place
Robin Kae Reed                   Artistry HCBD
Rochelle Brisson                  a creative chelle
Rosa Maria Cuevas              Helena de Troya
Sabine Dittrich                     perlendschungel
Sandi Volpe                          Sandi Volpe
Sandra McGriff                    Creative Chaos
Sarah Goode                         Pookledo
Sarah Singer                         String a Song of Sixpence
Serena Trent                         All Things Made Jewelry
Shai Williams                       Shaiha’s Ramblings
Sharon Palac                        Sharon’s Jewelry Garden
Sharyl McMillian-Nelson    Sharyl’s Jewelry & Reflections
Sheila Davis                         Stone Designs
Shelley Graham Turner        Fabric of My Life
Sherri Stokey                       Knot Just Macrame
Sherry Baun                         Unicorns Jewels
Skylar Bre’z                         Brising Beads
Stephanie Haussler              Pixybug Designs
Tania Spivey                        Moobie Grace Designs
Terri G.                                Blooming Ideas
Terry Carter                         Tapping Flamingo
Terry Matuszyk                    Pink Chapeau Vintage Jewelry    You Are Here!
Toltec Jewels                       Jewel School Friends
Tracy Kruse                         Goldkisses Art
Tracy Martin                        Nutkitten’s Jewelry
Zia Parks                              Anzi~Panzi’s Work Shoppe
Zoe Marcin                          Beads, Tea and Sweets
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2012 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 5,400 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 9 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

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