Sunday, January 19, 2014


I confess I have a problem. I am a collector of crafting supplies and I can't use them. Because I am saving them, you know, for that perfect special project ...

The problem is those words "limited edition". It won't be around forever? I can't get more if I use it all up? Oh the horror. Better save it. And the collection continues to grow.

It's not just a specific craft either. It seems to be all of them. My desk is a fire hazard with the stacks and stacks of scrapbook paper that is just too pretty to use.

My studio glass racks are at capacity because I am hoarding these odd lot out of production glass rods that you will never get again! Because you know glass lampworking cane is a valuable collectible. Um yeah, not so much.

I might be able to fund my retirement with the stash of sterling silver beads and toggles that are just waiting for the perfect necklace. But hey, at least sterling silver is a precious metal and traded commodity so maybe that one isn't so bad.

And the kicker; I learned how to knit so I've been a knitting fiend during this icy cold winter that is freezing me out of the glass studio (a girl needed something to do to keep sane since I couldn't torch). I just discovered a fondness for hand-dyed wool yarns. Yep. You guessed it. Hand dyed = rare and potentially non-reproducible. So guess what I am knitting with these? Nothing. I have to save them, you know, for that perfect special project.

GAH! This silliness has to stop. I don't do "New Year Resolutions" but this year I am making an exception: USE IT. I cannot keep hoarding all this stuff or I am going to be turned into one of those reality television shows. Or maybe that wouldn't be so bad. I could get my 15 minutes of fame and have my life splattered all over the tabloids. Um, no. Back to the resolution.

I am going to knit with my hand-dyed yarns. I am going to make beads with my rare glass. I am going to create a necklace with my precious silver. And I am going to get cracking on that scrapbook for my daughter and use all the pretty paper. Just use it.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Focal Mania

In case you are not from around here (Minnesota), we are having the coldest winter on record in the last 20 years or so. It is so ridiculously cold the governor has canceled school for the entire state on Monday because the forecast HIGH temperature is going to be NEGATIVE 15. That's just plain wrong.

Sadly, this means I am not getting a lot of torch time in. The outside temperature needs to be above 20 degrees or my ventilation system freezes out the whole house and my fingers start to go numb - which doesn't generally help my stringer control.

Since it appears this cold trend is going to be around for the rest of the winter, I have decided to maximize my sparsely precious torch time by only making focal beads. I can usually get 3-4 focals made in a torch session, whereas a set will often take me 2 sessions to finish. By limiting myself to focals I can offer more beads with more variety during this cold snap. Be on the lookout for some new and exciting bead sets come Spring when we can finally crawl out of this hole and come out of hibernation.

We just so happened to have a little reprieve last week and I was able to finally make some new beads after another short hiatus (I seem to be taking a lot of hiatuses lately ...) Here's a sneak peek!

All these beads will be listed on eBay over the next few weeks. If you want to know exactly when they go up for sale follow me on Facebook as I always post my new listings on my Facebook page. The first one is up for sale now on eBay.

Stay warm and happy beading!