Saturday, March 31, 2012

Pantone Spring Trend: Cockatoo

Time for another Pantone Spring 2012 color highlight! This time, I'll be featuring Cockatoo, which is a sort of a funny name for this color, since I couldn't find any actual Cockatoo birds in this color when I Googled it?! LOL In spite of the questionable name, this is one of my favorite colors of the new Spring fashion trends. It brings to mind a much needed vacation getaway to a gorgeous beach and cool tropical breezes. Pantone describes it as "…a tactile blue-green…sure to make your spirits soar. This unusual hue adds a whimsical touch to the palette and will make a statement this spring."

This lovely shade is a little hard to find in glassy form, but I've found a few options that I think are a really close match…

Caribbean Sea (Effetre)

Light Turquoise Alabaster (Effetre)

Mint Lozenge (CiM)

And if you're really lucky and/or skilled working with silver laden glass, Gaia can make a gorgeous mother-of-pearl effect with this color too!

Gaia (Double Helix)

You could also experiment with layering a transparent color over an opaque base to achieve the right mix of blue and green to create this elusive, but totally yummy color. I think I'm going to play with combining Cockatoo with other Pantone trend colors like Margarita or Starfish for a cool, beachy vibe! *Ü*

What colors do you think would look great with Cockatoo?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Pantone Spring Trend: Tangerine Tango

It's time to finally get around to showcasing all the Pantone Fashion Trend colors for Spring 2012! The first color I'm going to talk about is Tangerine Tango, which is Pantone's Color of the Year and described as “sophisticated but at the same time dramatic and seductive…reminiscent of the radiant shadings of a sunset, [it] marries the vivaciousness and adrenaline rush of red with the friendliness and warmth of yellow, to form a high-visibility, magnetic hue that emanates heat and energy…a vivacious and appealing refresher to enliven anyone’s outlook this spring." Sounds good to me! ;-D Although I must confess, orange is one of my least favorite colors and I certainly don't look good wearing it. LOL But I love it combined with pinks or metallic gold, or used as a bold accent in jewelry.

Here is a set of glass spacer beads I listed in my Etsy shop recently that has been getting an awful lot of attention—they were featured in at least 9 different Treasuries in just one week! So I'm guessing that a lot of people are excited about this vibrant color too, and it sure helps brighten the last of these grey Winter days as we make the transition into Spring…

Tangerine Orange Lampwork Spacer Beads

These beads were created out of a Vetrofond odd lot called Dreamsicle, which is a rich orange with a core of a lighter, creamy orange in the center which I think gives them a more interesting effect. This is the first time I've used it (although it's been sitting in my glass cubby for a few years! LOL) and I really like it, imagining it will also be very useful for Summer and Autumn bead designs too.

Here are some other glass colors that would make great Tangerine Tango designs:

Clockwork Orange (CiM)

Transparent Orange (Vetrofond)

Tangerine Dark Yellow Special (Effetre)

Tangerine Intense Odd (Vetrofond)

I could go on for a while longer, as there are several other shades of this juicy color offered by various glass manufacturers and in other COEs. I'm looking forward to using it more often from now on, especially combined with some of the other Pantone Spring 2012 colors! *Ü*

What are some of your favorite colors to mix with orange?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Magical Bonding Time

On Monday morning, I spent about an hour cleaning over 180 beads with such energy that by the time I had finished, my right hand was cramped into a tingling claw for at least 15 minutes! Why all the frenzy, you ask? Because I was frantically trying to finish up and ship out as many bead orders as possible, in order to clear my schedule for the next couple of days so that I could spend some special time with my oldest daughter, Katie, who is home on Spring break from college. She wistfully mentioned to me a few months ago how much fun she thought it would be if just the two of us could go away somewhere someday to bond and reconnect. So I made some quick arrangements and guess where we were for the last few days?!? If you look closely at the above pile of beads, you'll see several designs that should give you a big clue…

Yup, we just spent 3 days at one of our favorite "magical" places on earth—Disneyland!! YAY!!

We gladly left 40ºF and random snowfalls and traded it in for 75ºF days full of sunshine, palm trees, and blue skies—not to mention a whole slew of exciting rides and an abundance of highly imaginative things to look at! (You're not feeling the least bit jealous, are you?? LOL) It was a little on the crowded side because of Spring Break season, but we still managed to go at least twice on all our favorite rides.

We also spent some time visiting California Adventure, where Katie eventually talked me into trying the Tower of Terror for the first time. FYI: I'm deathly afraid of heights and sharp drops tend to make me feel sick, but she managed to convince me that if I just kept my eyes shut and could get through the "first drop, which is the only big one and after that they're all really small ones" then I'd be fine. After all, I was too chicken to try Space Mountain until I was in my 20's, only to  discover that I LOVED it.

Well, my *precious* daughter totally LIED!!! There must have been at least 5 or 6 long, sustained rises and drops to that horrible ride and I screamed so constantly, I almost forgot to breathe several times. By the time the ride was over (it felt like it lasted at least 20 minutes?!), I was trembling so much I could barely walk out.


But there's a happy ending to this adventure story—after all, it IS Disney, right!? ;-D Katie and I had a wonderful mini vacation, using the time spent waiting in lines to talk and catch up on all sorts of random things, we screamed in silly voices and laughed on the roller coasters until our eyes watered, and had a lot of fun exploring the cool little shops and other activities.

The "cherry on top" was getting to watch the amazing World of Color water and laser show twice—and on the last night, we ran like crazy back to Disneyland immediately afterwards to catch the fireworks show. We made it just in time and it was the perfect way to celebrate the end of our very special trip! *Ü*

I wish you many wonderful opportunities of your own to spend with your loved ones this year—whether it's big or small—they will truly appreciate it!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Spinning Like Crazy!

Bet you've been wondering why my posts have been so long and far between lately, huh? Well, there are a couple of good reasons, most of which include:

* I'm trying to build inventory in preparation for a big 3-day bead show (eek!)…
* My mother-in-law, Dora, fell and broke her hip and then had to have surgery to replace it…
* I've been blessed with several large custom orders, so have been spinning glass day and night…
* I'm still working on trying to get my studio and home reorganized…
* AND I need to work on our tax return (**oh, joy**)…

So I'm afraid my blogging has suffered in the aftermath of all the above. *sigh* But the good news is that my MIL came through her surgery with flying colors and is now on the mend and my custom orders are about 50% completed! YAY!! (Still working on the other stuff as best I can in between!).

So I just wanted to pop in to say I'm still here and plugging away—but will be lucky to post once a week while I work on finishing up everything else on my big "to do" list right now. I hope you'll bear with me and hopefully, in a week or two I'll have some fun new stuff to share! In the meantime, here are some quick pics of what I've been up to (please ignore the flaking bead release! LOL)…

Hope you're enjoying some beautiful Spring weather (and not a surprise snowfall like we got this week?!) and wishing you bountiful tax returns too! *Ü*

Friday, March 2, 2012

Friday Find: Beaded Laughter

Since I've been so busy lately with making humongous amounts of beads for customers and an upcoming show, and then hosting my recent Giveaway, I'm too pooped to spend much time waxing poetic over one of my Friday Finds today. But I think this one is perfect to announce on days like this, with a classic example of a "picture is worth a thousand words…"

This find is in the form of Sylvie Lansdowne's hilarious and hunky blog, Beaded Laughter, which provides photos of a variety of famously handsome actors quoting bits of wisdom and appreciation to any lady who is into beads like me. What mix could be better than that?! LOL Sylvie's focus is on her favorite hunka hunka burnin' love, Gerard Butler. But my faves are when she features George Clooney or Hugh Jackman—I just know they're looking into my eyes and speaking to me directly with great warmth and affection! *insert swoon*

So make sure you're next to a chair or sofa before you check out her blog, as I can guarantee you'll feel like swooning too! LOL

Which guy is your favorite to talk beads with? *Ü*
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