Sunday, 20 December 2009

A treasury !

A quick little additional post just to say a pair of my ear bobs have been included in a gorgeous wedding themed Etsy Treasury "The Finest Day" curated by the lovely Lynn Davy do have a look at the lovelies she has collected together !

Santa Baby...

...put a present under the tree, for me....

Yes its that time of year again and amid the chaos the tree has gone up.

I love putting the tree up and this year is no exception, or at least it wasnt the first time before it fell over. However its up again now and the twinkly lights are adding to the festive feeling !

I have a couple of new baubles this year -

I try to add a couple of new ones each year, since i first got my own house I have been slowly building a collection and I enjoy taking them out of their boxes and putting them on the tree each year, its like meeting old friends again. From when I first got really interested in glass I have always tried to find handmade baubles and this one has a fab little lampwork tree inside it !

I have also been on a mission to add some home made glassy decorations too so in addition to the twisty icicle i made last year I have been making lots of twisted icicles in a gorgeous silver rich glass that has a fab gold metallic surface, just perfect to go with my other decorations (gold, blue, clear, irridescent and chocolate)

I hope you are enjoying your christmas trees and decorations too, please do add a link to any pictures you have of your own tree, I'd love to see !

Thursday, 26 November 2009

London Glassblowing Opening and Christmas Event

Tomorrow is THE BIG DAY. The new London Glassblowing Workshop and Glass Art Gallery are finally opening to the public. There has been a huge amount of work gone into the move to the new premises and it looks great, and there is now a shop frontage for the gallery with a huge glass entranceway that not only lets in lots of light but offers passers by tantalising glimpses into the gallery and hot shop !!!

Why I hear you ask are you telling me this ? Well, one because I have been involved in helping with the aforementioned huge amount of work which is why you haven’t been able to see as much stuff as usual on my website. And two because I have a small selection of my work on display in the gallery, for sale, for the duration of the event !

If you can make it along between 27th November and 6th December, the grand opening is being combined with the annual Christmas open house sale so there are some great bargins to be had with some very attractive prices on the art glass pieces in the sale (not to mention the opportunity to see my pretties in the flesh) and its open daily from 11am to 5pm with late nights next week too (more info on their website) I am not demoing this time but I will be there over the weekend this weekend and Thursday to Saturday next week. I forgot to take my camera with me today so the pictures of my work were from my phone (sorry !!) but I will get some pictures to share with you when I go in on Saturday. I would love to say hi to anyone who can make it so if you can come along do please come and introduce yourself !!

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

New piece

I have a new piece Im quite pleased with. It is, for me at least, a bit epic. Its inspired by the work of the lovely Sarah of Flame Force Five who makes amazing necklaces with lots of beautiful round beads like this one on her flickr. Im pretty sure this is the biggest set of beads that I have ever made and I had to do it in more than one sitting but I am pleased with how its come out.

So what do you think ?

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Ear Bobs are Back

Technically, they did not actually go away I just havent had very many of them recently ! I have expanded the selection of designs and I have decided to put all the ready made Bobs onto Etsy (see the link on the right). I will still be doing made to order bobs via my website and if you dont have an Etsy account or would rather buy the ready mades through my Chameleon Designs website just shout and I will list them there for you.

I have 2 new styles of Bobs for you, "Sparkle" ear bobs, taken from my galactic beads are shimmery sparkly little babies that are just so, well, pretty. They are great for dressing up without the weight of long earrings (especially good if it is going to be a long night out and, like me, your ears start to protest after a few hours) but they are subtle enough to be great everyday earrings too. Can you tell I love mine and have been wearing them all week ? In the name of product testing of course !

The second new style are "Dazzle" ear bobs made with encased palladium leaf to give a little razzle dazzle but without being mega blingy. Both styles are available in a variety of colours.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

I got an Etsy Treasury

Im so impressed, I was actually online at the right time and then ..everything went a bit funny so I thought I had lost it but a lovely lady sent me a message to say that I did get it and here it is, a selection of work from the FHFteam on etsy in soft muted colours. If you want to see some more of the work from this collection of glass and jewellery artist search using "fhfteam"

Winter Wonderland Treasury

Monday, 2 November 2009

PMC level 1

I spent the last few days at the PMC Studio in Amersham doing a PMC level 1 course, some of you may remember I won the Beads and Beyond PMC competition back in July and my prize was this certification course. I had a great time and expanded my knowledge of working with the silver clay and I got to chat to some lovely ladies who were also on the course. So now for the pictures of what I made as I know that is what you are really interested in :o)

Im going to share pictures roughly in the order that the pieces were made, so to start off with the first piece was to be made by taking a mould from something and to make a piece that included a fireable gemstone. I chose a cute little kitty button to work with and below you can see a picture of the button and the fired pendant which has a marquise cz nose !

a little polishing later (Sorry I know you can see me in the reflection, bit of a eek to photo is this one) -

Im thinking I will oxidise it a little to try and bring out a little of the detail a bit more, if I do I'll share a photo of how he turns out. The next task was to make a "dry construction" bead I loved this bit which involved cutting the shapes of clay you want drying them over a former to dome them and then putting them together and getting the piece all sanded and lovely and ready to be fired, definitely a task to indulge in for those who are a little anal about things (like me, there, I said it before anyone else can !) My piece was quite simple, a different leaf print on each side and the rest left plain, the plain got the high shine treatment (think lots of elbow grease with the burnisher) and the leaves I left as brushed to give contrast.

Next we got to work on making textured band rings which was an interesting excersize for me too, having not made a ring in clay before. I chose a texture that could be fun to add some resin to, to give it a bit of colour so once I have finished polishing it (it has only had a tumble so far) I'll have a play and let you know how i get on.

We started to really multi task at this point as there were several bits that needed to be started and then left in order to dry so we worked on a piece with wood clay where you make a shape and then paint it with the pmc in order to leave you with a hollow form when it is fired and we needed to work on our leaves. So in no particular order, I give you my painted geranium leaf -

and my hollow formed House, decorated with paper clay tiles, I couldnt decide whether to make a house, a barn a bird house of where to go so its sort of a "rustic dwelling" lol -

We did a pmc set glass pendant with some dichro, not my best piece by far but interesting to do -

And last but not least we made a 2 part clasp with PMC and fine silver wire, I decided on a sea theme in the end as I know I have some findings somewhere that might go quite nicely ...

So there you have it the products of all my hard work :o) looking forward to playing more with the clay soon and finishing some of the projects I have had on the go for a while now !

Friday, 23 October 2009

Its all go ...

Its been a busy busy week not least because I started a new job on Monday ! So I have been dashing around the house each morning getting ready and then contending with the wonders of the uk train system. I am not a natural commuter, I do not like crowds and confined spaces (...hmm I hear you ask, why then did you take a job in London ?? ) but I have managed to find a slightly quieter route which only gets horribly busy for the last 3 or 4 stations near london so I have not been completely tearing my hair out !! I have discovered getting home again can be a big of a chore depending on which connections I catch or miss but hopefully I will fathom that out eventually.

The skitties are most befuddled by it all having become used to me being at home since I finished uni they have gone from sulking and totally ignoring me (Monday night) to now being mega cuddly as you can see from the gratuitous picture of his cuteness above.

As for things of a beady and glassy nature well I have quite a bit of news to share,so Im going to spread it out a bit over a few days so I dont write war and peace and bore you ! So for today pictures of the rest of my charm collection - Initials !! Im really pleased with these and have decided on 3 styles to start off with, the two shown above are "Deco" which as the name suggests is art deco style uppercase letters which are available with or without colour (shown in Aqua), and "Type" based on old fashioned typewriter keys, again available with or without colour. Below is the third option "Romance", almost Art Nouveau style uppercase letters, the one shown is mine as I'm sure you guessed and has been brush finished for a satiny look.

Ok thats it for today, there will be more to follow soon, with pictures of more new things I will have available shortly !

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Into orbit - galactic beads online now

In this months issue (Issue 7) of Making Jewellery I have a step by step project to make the pendant and earrings below. Pretty and elegant and suitable for both dressing up jeans and casuals or taking centre stage with a little black dress.

These beads have a lovely shimmery sparkle to them that I just love they make me feel like christmas is coming and its time to get a-making some pretties for the party season, so I have made some more for you and they are online now HERE.

Id love to see what you make with these so if anyone wants to share pictures when they have made pieces I will post them here so we can all see.

Monday, 12 October 2009

Charmed Im sure

I have something new to share with you today, good job really after I have been away for sooo long !! I am very excited about these though, I have been busy making charms ! These are suitable to go on the european bracelet systems such as Pandora and Trollbeads and are lovely little dangles style charms.

These are dream cloud, wish upon a star, and one of two options of finger print charm. The Dream Cloud charm is show below has sparkly aqua colour that is, well, dreamy. It has DREAM written in the silver which shows through the transparent sparkly colour.

Wish upon a Star is my favorite, Im really pleased with it and will be keeping this first one for myself ! This one has a pale blue sparkly colour through which you can see the "wish" that I wrote in the silver.

The finger print charms I was a little conflicted about as there are quite a lot of finger print things available and I wanted something different. So I went with the finger print as a pattern in the piece rather than as an obvious finger-print-pushed-into-the-piece and I thought it could use a little colour so I added a little sparkle colour in purple. I did a simple uncoloured option too as I know some people love silver pure and simple !

I will be able to do these in your choice of colour, from the sparkle colours shown or from a huge variety of non sparkly colours.

These are the first ones, I have some more designs I am even more excited about but I need to keep those under my hat for a few days yet so look out for another post about those soon !!

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

GBUK Confectionary Competition

I thought I would share with you what I made for the GBUK (Glass Beadmakers UK) competition that was held at the GBUK Bead Fair last Sunday. The theme was confections and so this is my cake stand and cakes bead -

The cup cakes were made off mandrel - for the non Lampworkers that means they are soild glass made on the end of a glass rod rather than wound onto a mandrel as a bead - and then the bottom layer of the cake stand was made, the cupcakes were then attached to the stand before the top layer of the stand went on and the last little cake was added.

The beads were all put into a display case anonymously so that people could vote for the one they like best and I got 2nd place :))) it was great fun and I got a prize too :))

Saturday, 12 September 2009

And the winner is ...

Kristin of K S Jewellery Designs !! Kirsten if you can send me an email please then we can sort out your prize :o)

Thank you all for reading and for your lovely comments celebrating my blogiversary with me :o)

Friday, 11 September 2009

Autumn is in the air

Yes its that time of year again, some of the leaves are changing colour on the trees and some of them are starting to scatter and tumble across the ground, when I step outside first thing in the morning to empty the kiln there is a nip in the air and all is bright and has that clean freshness to it, all the signs are here, Autumn is coming.

It always amazes me how much the seasons in general but autumn in particular affect my work. Autumn always, without fail affects my colour choices. Sometimes it sneaks up on me and all of a sudden I look at the beads I have made and their colours and there is a little lightbulb moment, other times it is a more conscious choice. These are some of my beads from the past few days, anyone see a bit of a theme here ??

This year Autumn hasnt snook up on me, there is a fern I can see out the back window that has turned the most amazing bright acid green / yellow, its absolutely stunning, I'll have to try and get a photo of it for you !

Monday, 7 September 2009

Something a little different

Really I should be quite good with a sewing machine, or at the very least kind of "at home" with one as my Mum makes wedding dresses and ever since I was small has made me clothes from my school uniform to prom dresses. I do remember making a pair of pyjamas and a few other bits and bobs under her tuition but it has to be said that its rare my sewing machine comes out these days. However it was unearthed over the weekend for the shortening of some trousers and I went and dug out the fabric I bought, erm, back in January, to make a bag with.

As you can see the pattern cutting was a highly technical process, lacking a table big enough for my cutting board I took over the kitchen floor !!

but all the pieces eventually got cut out, with a few little adjustments of my own to the design and sewing could begin. As you can see below I work in a very tidy and organised manner *ahem*

However it did eventually get done with only one slight oops that was quickly remedied and here it is, my variation on Amy Butlers "Birdie Sling" pattern -

So now while the sewing machine is out, I guess I have no excuse not to make the tool bag for my blowing tools that I have been meaning to make for ooo, erm, well about three years !!! I'll let you know how I get on !!

I also want to say a BIG thank you everyone who has commented on the blogiversary post, keep them coming dont forget you have until Saturday evening to enter :o)

Friday, 4 September 2009

blogiversary prize draw details

Hello, ok I have finally thought :o) I have decided that Im indecisive lol, not exactly news to anyone who knows me I realise !! The result of this is that Im going to offer the winner a choice of prize from-

1) A pair of my Sterling Silver "leaf" stud earrings

2) A borosilicate Bisous silver core bead of your choice
(not actually one of these pictured but there will be a selection to choose from when I photograph the new ones )

3) Your choice of one of my new focal beads
...and no, I dont have these photo'd either but I will get that done over the weekend !

And what must you do to enter ?? Simple, just comment below ! Open to everyone, winner will be drawn by random number generator in the evening of Saturday 12th Sept so you have a week to comment


Good Luck !!

Wednesday, 2 September 2009


Woo Hoo !! Ive officially been blogging for a year so a huge and Mahoooosive THANK YOU to all my lovely readers. I think this calls for a give away, but it needs to be something special so I will have a think and see what loveliness I can come up with and put a post up later on with the details.

I wanted to share with you a cool site I came across when reading Metal Clay Magic I skipped over to try it and I love it, and Im not sharing how long I stayed to play on it lol but I suspect you could spend hours on there if like me you like to look at photos. The site I'm wittering about is Tag Galaxy and you put in tags for what you want to see pictures of and it brings up little worlds of pictures, whole galaxies of handmade loveliness if like me you choose at lampwork or silver clay ...and im sure I will be going back soon to look up lots of others.

Anyhow I must skip back of into the garage to slave over my torch :o) I will be back with info on the great giveaway later

Thursday, 27 August 2009


That is how many glass colours I have, well I do also have a handful of random "odd lots" but for the sake of argument I have 286 colours. How do I know this ? Because I have put them all into some glass storage that my lovely man made for me.

I did have to spend a "few minutes" sorting the glass out into colour order first as my various different makes of glass needed to be merged from their different areas into the one unit. (that and the fact I like putting things into colour order, strange as it may be I find it very soothing)

and the next job ? labelling all the pigeon holes ...

hmm so i'll see you all sometime next year ??

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

No time like the present

So I made a start, I confess one of the beads may count as a bit of a cheat since it was the dotty bead that was part of my last post ! But I have finished my jens pind bracelet and started to fill it. If you fancy a jens pind bracelet like this for yourself, do pop over to designed by George where you can get one of Georges gorgeous handcrafted pieces.

Having finished the bracelet and appropriated the dotty bead, I decided it looked loney, so I made two beads to keep it company, one is one of my favorite styles, a simple etched bead with fine silver dots.

The other is something I have been meaning to try for a while, inspired by Denise of DKS Lampwork, She does beautiful florals on a background of mesh but Ive gone for a simpler approach and stopped having encased the mesh, Im very pleased with it and Im looking forward to trying this with a finer mesh very soon as I love the affect.

I suspect it will be a little while before I managed to make anymore but I am looking forward very much to continue filling it up, hopefully with some home made silver charms too !

Sunday, 16 August 2009


I have finally gotten round to making some more silver core beads, and I am quite pleased to say that I like them ! This is surprising in the case of three of them as they are made from pink glass... getting worrying this isnt it !! But this is special pink glass, it is Aurae from Double Helix Glassworks which is a silver rich glass that produces a range of colours and effects.

I also did something that I havent done for aaaages, I made a dotty bead (as you can see on the left of the picture) also using Aurae and it has a lovely mother of pearl shine on the dots.

One of the things I decided whilst I was working on these was that it was about time I made myself a set of beads for ME !! and that it is about time I finished making my jens pind bracelet so that I can wear the beads on it when I finially make them ... It is in that stage where I can wear it as a bracelet but not with beads on as it needs to be slightly longer for that to allow for the space the beads take. So that is a little goal I have set myself and I look forward to sharing the results !

Tuesday, 11 August 2009

Sma Bla Giveaway

Ok I had to share this with you in case you have not already come across the gorgeous work of Anna-Karin as this is your chance to win the gorgeous pair of earrings below which she is offering in a competition running on her blog until the 31st August.

I am lucky enough to own some of Anna-Karin's creations including her "nothing to hide bracelet" which is one of my favorite pieces of jewellery (pictured below)

Do check out her flickr pages too for some stunning eye candy - Sma Bla on Flickr and her etsy shop - Sma Bla on Etsy.