Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bead Bowl - The Sarah Hornik Focals

Still working on taxes...UGH. I sometimes feel Uncle Sam should pay ME for all the time it takes to document my life! OY!

Today, we're taking a look inside my overflowing bead bowl. I use my bead bowl for different things... In that big bowl is a stash of HUGE plain beads and vessels in case I ever decide to study electroforming! I have the kit... but no time to learn one more skill! Then there are wonkies and fuglies  - just-not-quite-perfect-but-still-really-cool beads. Those often end up in my Beads of Courage stash. I keep beads that I made one or two of as a sort of journal or a reminder to make more and turn them into a set. There are also beads that are one offs that I often use as freebies for repeat customers.

Finally, there are beads from classes. I hang onto them because I think they're cool and I hope to turn them into something for me to wear. But I often hang on to them to reexamine what it is I really like about them and try to find a way to adapt that to my own work...thus making the bead more my own. I know many feel that if a teacher teaches something in a class - a class that costs lots of money - it must be o.k. to make the beads she taught in class. But I feel a little weird about that... I want to take what I learned and use that in something that is mine.
I simply adore how far the webbing ran down the length of this bead.  This makes me want to play with droopy silvered ivory!

These are two of the beads I kept from a class with Sarah Hornik. I adore Sarah...she's an excellent teacher. But I adore her as an artist because she breaks the rules! Who says a bead has to be round? Who says the ends have to be even? Who says the two ends of a bead have to look alike? Just taking a look at her work can expand your thinking of how beads should be....why not break the rules? It's way more fun!

Here, the gold leaf work mesmerizes... I want to play more with leafing under heavy crystal!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Inside My Jewelry Box - Fairy Pendant

I love either really complicated jewelry - pieces that can be worn more than one way - or really simple "slide it on a chain and GO" kind of jewelry. The bulk of my own jewelry is the latter.

And since I'm still mired in work for my least favorite Uncle... I thought I would show off a piece from my jewelry box.

This is a fairy bead from Small Wonders. She's a traffic stopper when I wear her!

Just wanted to remind you - the Fire Divas Sale goes on!!! And my fans have a special discount code all their own for greater discounts! Whoo Hooo!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Creativity Abounds

One of the reasons I named my business Holly's Folly is... I knew whatever my "folly" was... the name would fit. And yes, I sort of regret putting Beads and Jewelry in the title here but I hoped it would help customers find me.

Since I'm preparing for a mini show and won't have lots of new stuffs to show off... I was hoping to shift gears a little and just talk about creativity. A creative person isn't limited to one area. Creativity is abundant in all areas of life.

Here are just a few ways I've been creative in the last week:

  • I got a shot in my arm and needed to ice it...only I had a dental emergency. It was kind of hard to hold the plastic cup of ice on my arm while in the dentist's chair. When the dental assistant walking me to my exam dropped a mask and went to trash it... a light bulb came on. I slid one ear loop over my bicep and placed the other just below my elbow. I turned the mask to cover my pain area and placed my cup of ice in just the right spot!
  • Running late in the rain for physical therapy, I was miffed to see my seatbelt had been outside of the car door in the rain all night...just what I wanted on a be cold and wet. I reached under my seat and grabbed a plastic baggie and placed it between my lap and the seatbelt. 
  • I'm always hard on my hands and this week managed to split a fingernail halfway down the nail bed! OUCH! I cut a silk teabag apart (saving the grounds in a metal infuser) and trimmed it to fit my nail. I super glued it in place and every day, I give it a coat of clear polish. It would look much nicer if it hadn't been on my "good" hand. But it does the job. It will take a few weeks for the split to reach the place where I can trim it properly. In the meantime, it doesn't hurt. 

And now...It's time for me to get a little creative with something wardrobe! I'm going to the taping of Dancing with the Stars with my BFF and her hubby. Her hubby is a world class long drive golfer and his student and good friend is a pro on the show. So we're going to cheer a friend and his partner on... and I haven't got a thing to wear! OY!

So... what are some ways creativity creeps into your life??? 

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Customer Appreciation Sale

I've been talking about the Fire Diva's Customer Appreciation sale for days. (Impulsive me had to start her sale a few days early!) Anyway... it's a great time to stock up on some FABULOUS lampwork glass beads by some really talented artists. And...the sale is only being promoted on our blogs and fan you sorta have to know a Diva to be in on it!!! ;0)
The Fire Divas wish to show our heartfelt thanks to you, our customer, for your continued patronage and enthusiastic support of us. Many of you have become our good friends ;-). It is customers like you who are largely responsible for making us the best that we can be. The consistent feedback and support we get from you has helped us scale new heights in improving the quality of our products.
Lutrick              ~              Icarus Beads              ~              Fire and Sand              ~              Ema K Designs
But we don't want to just talk about our appreciation—we want to show you in a more concrete way! Beginning this Friday, March 25 - April 2, 2011, we're having a Special Customer Appreciation Week—just for you! You will find sales ranging from 15 to 20% off our normal prices, and other special offers. The list of participating Fire Divas can be found below with specific coupon codes and sale details for either their Etsy and/or Artfire shops.   
Susan Lambert           ~           Ugly Duckling Beads            ~            Ashlyn Design            ~            Spawn of Flame
Holly's Folly Glass ~ 15% off her Etsy shop and 20% off Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS. I also have a secret code for my FAN PAGE MEMBERS ONLY. This code, posted in the Fan Page is good for 25% off my Artifre and Feel free to join my fan page for extra savings and more frequent sales and specials! 
Ashlyn Design ~ 15% off Lori's ArtFire shop and a gift with every purchase. Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS. **Please note that Lori's shop will be on "vacation mode" on April 2nd, so she will have to end her personal sale on Friday, April 1st. All other team members will have their items on sale through April 2nd.
SusanLambert ~ Specially marked spacer bead sets for $10 including shipping in her Etsy shop.
Lutrick ~ 20% off Lara's Etsy and ArtFire shops. Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS
Icarus Beads ~ 20% off Judith's Etsy shop.  Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS
Ema K Designs ~ 20% off her Etsy and ArtFire shops.
Spawn of Flame ~ 15% off Rosemarie's Etsy and ArtFire shops. Coupon Code DIVATHANKSSPRING11

Fire and Sand ~ 20% off Karen's Etsy and ArtFire shops.
Sun Door Beads ~ 20% off Michelle's Etsy and ArtFire shops. Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS
Ugly Duckling Beads ~ 20% off Kathleen's Etsy shop. Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS
Rivers Edge Glass ~ 15% off Barb's Etsy and ArtFire shops. Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS
Uvanomos            ~            Holly's Folly Glass            ~            Rivers Edge Glass            ~            Sun Door Beads
Babs Beads and Design ~ 15% off Susanne's ArtFire shop.

Shepherd Creations ~ 20% off Patrice's ArtFire shop. 
Uvanomos ~ 15% off Lluvia's Etsy shop. Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS
Amy Hall ~ Free shipping in her Etsy shop. Coupon Code: DIVATHANKS
Silver River Glass ~  10% off Sonja's Artfire shop. Coupon Code: DIVATHANKYOU
We're so happy to have served you in the past and will continue to provide you with the best in handmade artisan lampwork beads. We look forward to your continuing support, please keep in touch with us via your "comments" and your "likes" on this page, and don't forget to share us with all your friends! 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Sale is ON | See What I Mean???

The Fire Divas Sale is ON! It's our first EVER Customer Appreciation Sale! I would repost all the details here but there were a few kinks in the Diva blog...Blogger was puking strange code and some links were missing...'s a fluid thing. We'll get it worked out real soon. But in the meantime...check the Diva Blog!

Just remember, MY FANS get an extra secret discount! Codes in the fan page! Don't you want to join my fan page??? ;0)

And... I mentioned my learning curve on my new fancy schmancy camera. I blogged about this piece on was a prize for a contest there. 

The pic above was taken with my old piece of junk. And what wondrous photo did I take with Mr. Fancy Schmancy??? This one:

Oy... Lots to learn! 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Showoff: Custom Order

During my recent birthday sale, I sold a favorite bead to a childhood friend. She's not a jewelry designer so she asked me to make it a pendant for her. This is it right before its journey to her house:

The finishing touch was the butterfly crystals I found...LOVE THESE!

I hope to be back with a post later today about the Fire Divas customer appreciation sale! In the meantime, if you are a fan, the coupon codes with the extra discount is posted in the group!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Where Does It Go?

OMG! Sometimes I feel like time is a bullet train and I'm hanging on to the back by my fingernails! Every freaking thing I do seems to turn into some massive time suck!

Just today I was trying to post a little bank info in a journal I keep in Word. Only I find Word for Windows 7 to be so complex... I knew old Word like the back of my hand but EVERY thing I do, I have to have help for. So what should have taken two minutes took 30! OY!

And I bought myself a fancy schmancy new camera - cause that's surly why my beads don't sell: my pictures are crap. Now, I'm a really skilled photog...I was published when I was in my teens! But mostly due to finances, I've been limited to crap cameras of late. But after my job, for my birthday, I bought said fancy schmancy... and I HATE IT! The learning curve is so steep, I doubt I will ever take good pics with this thing! After farting around with it for over an hour, I went and got the cheap piece of crap camera, shot my pics and just got 'er done!

Anyway, life has had me down of know what's up if you read my other blog. I spent most of last week too depressed to move. This week I hoped to get back on track with this blog, listing beads and doing my dang taxes... except I keep running into the Time Thief!

Monday was spent looking for the battery charger for the new camera... and cleaning in hopes I would find said battery charger. And Dancing with the Stars started... MY best friend's hubby is good friends with one of the pros so...the show is a big deal.  Tuesday - caught up on orders and Mabel was puking... homemade chicken soup and lots of tummy rubs ate my time. And's three o'clock and I've barely made a dent in today's to do list!

So, let's wrap this up with some quick beady highlights:

The Divas are having a customer appreciation sale starting tomorrow! I started mine a "bit" early: 15% off my Etsy (was going to be Artfire...but you can't edit coupons over there.... see... even a sale is a TIME SUCK!)  and 20% off Coupon Code:DivaThanks

As always, my Fans get special discounts. Those are posted in the fan page group.

I'm hoping to start posting some interesting bits while I get my taxes finished... things in my bead bowl, my jewelry collection and even a give away featuring some CHA finds. 

Thank ya'll for hanging in while I've been MIA! And PLEASE keep voting... the giveaways go on...month after month! 

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Eyeing the Mystery

I hope as bead and jewelry designers, you subscribe to newsletters created by your favorite vendors. Yes??? Good! I love the Fire Mountain Gems newsletters. They keep me up on trends, have patterns and ideas and sometimes are about the history of a particular bead or jewelry style.

Their recent article on eye beads fascinated me. I admit, I've always had a fascination with them probably because my two closest friends are from  European cultures. I also live near a huge Armenian community - yet another culture that believes in the power of the protective eye.

I've had people / customers from our Western culture say to me point blank, "Eye beads are creepy."  I do my best to inform them of the history and the power that many cultures place on eye beads. From the belief that eye beads offer protection to the wearer... a steady, non-blinking source reflecting evil back on ill-wishers to the idea that you can deflect your own negativity by simply wearing an eye bead. These beads have been around for generations.

But what surprised me even more is the dots and bumps that are so common in glass beadmaking are also believed to add protection to the wearer. The implication is the dots confuse the evil and send it packing. And...dots really are just one more take on creating eyes.

I've heard different tales over the years as to the number of eyes that is desirable. A friend told me to never have two...that they cancel one another out. Yet the article pointed out that two eyes on a bead actually means protection for a love / marriage / relationship. 

The other magic number of eyes to wear is nine. But if your beadmaker is oh so talented with balancing lots of murini on a big bead... why stop there? Check out this 25 eye bead made my by friend Janel of Janel Dudley Beads (shop closed until she moves in April) 

I urge you to read the Fire Mountain Gems article to know more but I want to leave you with a question. This next photo is what is typically thought of as a common eye bead:

Made in China, most certainly not cleaned or annealed and available for around 50 cents. Please tell me, do you see the difference in of these mass made beads and the beads I and my fellow Fire Divas make? 

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Birthday Celebration 39% Off!

It's my birthday but I'm not gonna cry {this year ;-)  }. Instead, I'm offering YOU 39% off on my Artfire shop. Why 39%? It's the year I stopped aging! LOL! The coupon code is BIRTHDAY39. As usual, there's another special for my Fan Page members. If you are a fan, be sure to check yesterday's announcement... fans got a special deal and a preview of the sale!

Thanks so much for your support over the past year!!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Two Collections on Artfire!

Found my beads in two wonderful collections on Artfire.

My Eggster Bunny glass bead is featured in a chocolate themed collection.

And my Blue Denim hearts are in a fabulous all glass bead hearts collection: