Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Carol Myers: My New Bead Soup Partner!

It's that time of year again, when hundreds of creative jewelry makers from around the world gather together to participate in the Bead Soup Blog Party, hosted by the fabulous Lori Anderson! This will be the 7th time she has offered this popular event, but only the third time I've joined in the fun and I've been very fortunate to have been partnered with some of the most talented and giving ladies in the business. This time I was paired with Carol Dee Wingfield Myers, a wonderful jewelry designer who specializes in metal enameling and designs with a steampunk/rustic vibe.

One of Carol's favorite pieces featuring her cool enameled beads

Carol lives in Maryland and has been designing jewelry for the past 12 years. She's like me and loves working with a variety of mediums and styles, and anything with an artsy, unique flair. Her new blog is cleverly called Carol DeeZines and I was so happy to hear that she is also a certified torch-fired enameling teacher, since that is something I've been wanting to try myself soon. I've had all the supplies stockpiled in my studio for a while now, and am hoping Carol will give me a good kick in the pants to get me actually using them now! LOL

This year, the Bead Soup Party will be divided into three separate reveal dates, and Carol and I will be up for the first one, which is March 30th. We were supposed to send out our "soup mixes" to each other earlier in February, but we both had some things going on and agreed to delay sending out ours for a few weeks. It also gave us more time to learn more about each other and ruminate on what we wanted to send. Deciding what to send out is one of the most intimidating parts of the event for me, because I put a lot of pressure on myself to send things that will not only call to my partner in a special way, but challenge them a bit to try something new or unexpected since that's the main spirit of the Bead Soup. So several emails later, this is what I put together for Carol…

I had learned that pinks and purples were some of her favorite colors, so I made her a focal heart and a set of large rustic nugget beads out of a special silver-laden glass that creates a lovely raspberry pink and purple mother-of-pearl effect (hard to capture on camera). I also made the raspberry pink spacers, gold metallic discs and the bronze clay heart charm. Pretty amethyst chips, antique brass findings, golden freshwater pearls and a handmade brass clasp finish off her mix. I really hope she likes what I sent and I can't wait to see what she creates with them!

And this is what Carol sent to me…

Isn't it utterly delicious?!?!? You probably heard my squeal of delight when I opened her package and saw all the gorgeous metal enameled beads she made in some of my favorite blue-green colors. She also sent me two focals to choose from—the stunning layered flower in the middle and the largest round just behind it. A silver Bali clasp, pewter findings, large vintage brass beads, aquamarine rondelles, Swarvoski crystals and three different kinds of small iridescent beads complete my soup mix. And oh, yeah—everything was presented in a beautiful wooden bowl, which I learned was made by her talented husband, Steve! Now how cool is that!!?!

The wheels in my head started spinning the second I first saw all my new goodies and I'm anxious to start playing with my "ingredients" to see what kind of new recipes I can come up with. There will definitely be more than one piece coming out of all this yumminess, I'm sure!

So mark your calenders for the next three reveal dates (seen under the Bead Soup photo on my right sidebar) and be sure to visit here (and Carol's blog!) again on March 30th to see how creative we got with our mixes! *Ü*

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Valentine Bonus Special

In honor of Valentine's Day and to show my love for all my friends, fans, and customers (who often qualify for all three categories!), I'm giving away a FREE bonus heart bead with every order of at least $25 from my Etsy shop HERE or directly via PayPal invoice (just message me from my Facebook Page or email me any custom requests). And for every additional $25 added to your order, I'll include another heart!

These are just a few of the bead colors I'll have available to send as your gift(s) that will be chosen randomly—but if you have a strong preference for a certain color, just let me know when you check out and I'll do my best to make it happen. Each luscious looking heart measures about 13mm high by 16.5mm wide—the perfect size for a darling zipper pull, charm, or romantic earrings.

And I'm not just offering these goodies through Valentine's Day—this special offer will be good through the entire month of February!

Are you feelin' the love?!? *Ü*
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