Monday, December 26, 2011

It's the again that makes it funny....

Or not so funny as the case may be. So, I meant to have several more posts last week with some really cute Christmas ring patterns, but I am sick. Again. I hate bronchitis.

Anyway, I won't be posting most of this week either, as I attempt to get better while still going to work every day. However, I do plan to participate in the Beading Daily Earrings-Every-Day Challenge in January 2012, so expect to hear back from me then.

For now, better late than never, here are some Christmas ring patterns:





Quote: Theories that diseases are caused by mental states and can be cured by will power, are always an index of how much is not understood about the physical terrain of a disease.
Susan Sontag (1933 - 2004), Illness as Metaphor, 1978
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Monday, December 19, 2011

New Ring Pattern: Poinsettia


The plant's association with Christmas began in 16th century Mexico, where legend tells of a young girl who was too poor to provide a gift for the celebration of Jesus' birthday. The tale goes that the child was inspired by an angel to gather weeds from the roadside and place them in front of the church altar. Crimson "blossoms" sprouted from the weeds and became beautiful poinsettias. From the 17th century, Franciscan friars in Mexico included the plants in their Christmas celebrations. The star-shaped leaf pattern is said to symbolize the Star of Bethlehem, and the red color represents the blood sacrifice through the crucifixion of Jesus.

Quote: “Percy, the puny poinsettia is hanging his bloom in dismay. If they had just kept him wetta, he’d be a houseplant today.” ~ From the song “Percy, the Puny Poinsettia” by Elmo & Patsy
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Friday, December 16, 2011

New Ring Pattern: Flame


Today's ring pattern invokes in me thoughts of hearth, home, and hot chocolate. Curling up with someone you love and doing absolutely nothing. Nice.

And since I just realized this ring has a lot more colors in it than I normally use, here is a list. I do feel that this is a very forgiving pattern though. So if you mix up a Dyed Opaque Pumpkin with a Dyed Silver Lined Red, I don't think anyone will notice.


Quote: One may have a blazing hearth in one's soul and yet no one ever come to sit by it. Passersby see only a wisp of smoke from the chimney and continue on the way.
Vincent Van Gogh (1853 - 1890)
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Thursday, December 15, 2011

New Ring Pattern: The Christmas Spider


I found several different versions of this folktale online, which is usually how it goes with these things. Here is the one I liked the best - it is from here.

A long, long time ago, a gentle mother was busily cleaning the house for the most wonderful day of the year ... Christmas Day. Not a speck of dust was left anywhere. Even the little spiders had been banished from their cozy corner high up on the ceiling. To avoid the housewife's busy cleaning, they finally fled to the farthest corner of the forgotten attic.

Finally, it was Christmas Eve. The tree was decorated and the children delighted. But the poor spiders were frantic, for they could not see the tree, nor be present for the magic of the season. The oldest and wisest spider suggested that perhaps they could wait until everyone had gone to bed and then sneak through the crack in the door to see the wonders of the tree. The little spiders silently and carefully came down out of their attic corner and across the floor to wait in the crack on the threshold.

Pretty soon all was quiet, so the spiders quickly crept into the room. The tree towered so high that they couldn't see the ornaments on top. In fact, the little spiders' eyes were so small that they could only see one ornament at a time. They all scurried up the trunk, out along each branch, filled with a happy wonder at the glittering beauty. The spiders loved the Christmas tree. All night long, they danced in the branches, and every place they went left a trail of dusty, gray web. When at last they had inspected every bit of the Christmas tree, it was shrouded in the dusty gray of spider webs.

Santa smiled as he thought of the happy spiders seeing the tree and how much they liked it, but he also thought of how sad the little mother would be over the dusty tree. He reached out his hand -- and just then the sun came through the window and touched the tree. All the webs started to sparkle and shine turning into shimmering, sparkling silver and gold. The tree glistened in greater beauty than ever before!

According to legend, ever since this happened, people have hung tinsel on their Christmas trees.

Quote: Aren't we forgeting the true meaning of Christmas? You know, the birth of Santa.
Matt Groening (1954 - ), The Simpsons
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Wednesday, December 14, 2011

10 days and counting! Plus a festive ring pattern!

Now, some of you may be shaking your heads and protesting that it is 11 days until Christmas. Well, I am not counting the days to Christmas, I am counting the days until I turn 37! WOO! I'm still winning! (getting older is winning in my book!)

Yes, I am a dreaded Christmas baby. Born Christmas Eve 1974 in Alaska in the middle of a blizzard. I've always been contrary. Now, many born around the holidays will bemoan the fact. And, being a Christmas baby has it's drawbacks - you can't have a party cause everyone is busy, you get one gift marked "Merry Christmas/Happy Birthday", and you generally tend to get overlooked. However, growing up, my parents did a pretty good job of making birthdays distinct from the holiday, and considering that all of their five kids were born in December or January, they had a lot of seperating to do!

I truly love my birthday. It is a day when I get to celebrate being me in all my frequently insane glory. By tradition, on this one day of the year, I don't have to do a single thing I don't wanna do. Me me me.

That said, I am usually the first on Christmas Eve to set aside the Birthday Cake and declare it time for everyone to open presents, as I really like to give presents as well.

My first present to you this holiday season is a lovely ring pattern of tree lights. I had some trouble with this one, getting the lights to look festive and not flat. I plan to bead this one up tonight, I think I will mixing my Delicas and my rocailles (rounded seed beads) to make the design really pop! I may also try using some nice shiny finishes for the lights and a matte for the green, to again add to the contrast. Enjoy!


Quote: There is nothing better than birthday cake. It's like a slice of concentrated love with buttercream frosting.
Takayuki Ikkaku, Arisa Hosaka and Toshihiro Kawabata, Animal Crossing: Wild World, 2005
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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Ring Pattern: Houndstooth

It has been really cold here for the past week or so. For some reason, when it is cold I start thinking about wrapping up in some warm blankets and wraps. My favorite wrap is one that belongs to a friend (though I steal it when she isn't looking) that is a wonderful houndstooth pattern. This has always seemed like a very winter pattern to me. Maybe because it is usually done in wool.


Here is a lovely houndstooth ring to be done in beads. Perfect to set off any holiday look!

Quote: Art is the imposing of a pattern on experience, and our aesthetic enjoyment is recognition of the pattern.
Alfred North Whitehead (1861 - 1947), Dialogues (1954)
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Sunday, December 4, 2011

Pictures of things I have been making lately....

My first real wirewrapped pendant.


Earings, earings, and more earings.




My pink kumihimo necklace. I think it may need a pendant. Maybe.


And finally. My ring for the December Etsy Beadweavers Challenge - Arabesque.


Forgot a couple. Here is the wrap bracelet I made.


And an etched bee pendant.


Quote: sorry, too much to do today, no time to go look up a quote... blah!
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Reveal: Art Bead Scene Ornament Blog Hop

Today is the reveal day for the Art Bead Scene Ornament Blog Hop!

For this challenge, I use polymer clay to make my ornament. I rolled out the clay, impressed it with a gears pattern, and then used a gingerbread man cookie cutter. Once the clay was baked, I used some gold ink to lightly highlight the pattern, then added the bail - made from a Vintaj connector!

I had a lot of fun making this ornament, and actually made up a bunch with my seven year old niece. Depending on the pattern you add and the design you cut out, you can get a very classic ornament or a very whimsical one. Great fun for the holidays and a great project to take on with a child.



Use the links below to visit the rest of the sites participating in this fun, festive blog hop! All sites should be live by 12PM ET 12/7/2012.

Quote: It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, everywhere you go....
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Thursday, December 1, 2011

Ring Pattern: Gears

Sorry for the delay between posts. Here is a lovely gears ring pattern, as I am feeling steampunky today. My sister has just discovered the steampunk style and wants me to make her up several items, so I have been wallowing in my steampunk addiction lately. I have also been knitting a Doctor Who scarf as a Christmas gift, making my first wire wrapped pendant, making polymer clay christmas ornaments, and getting a respiratory infection. Wheee!!!!!


Quote: Analysis and synthesis ordinarily clarify matters for us about as much as taking a Swiss watch apart and dumping its wheels, springs, hands, threads, pivots, screws and gears into a layman's hands for reassembling, clarifies a watch to a layman.
Author Unknown
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