Monday, October 24, 2011

October Jewelry


What are you doing for Halloween?

This Halloween I miss going to the pumpkin farm trips that I used to do with my little preschooler friends in the Montessori school. What astonishes me most is the wonder in their eyes. Seeing such a vast mass of orange color, the weird sizes and shapes of the pumpkins and a trip where they could show off their family to their teacher and their  teacher to their  family was such a special treat for them.

It is that sense of wonder that I want to hold on to and take into my life and never lose it. This is what my little students taught me.





As I was thinking about these things I did manage to knit a necklace with carnelian chips and antique gold swarovski crystal beads with very thin  gold filled wire. The various shades of orange in the carnelian chips made me happy, a feeling of October that I could pass on to my jewelry creation!

A friend came over last weekend and he is so nice, he took some pictures of my just finished piece.  He is quite a photographer and many of his landscapes are published in magazines!  At the bottom of this picture you see his web address, not my store:)

Wasn’t that thoughtful of him to give me this precious gift, appreciating my creation and taking pictures?


October ornament
Walking further down the memory lane, I remember the smell, sound and images of my home in India, where I was born and brought up. This is the time of Diwali.

It is  that time of the year when we clean, paint, fix our homes and renew it with beautiful things. New clothes are bought for each member of the family, including the helpers. Sweet meats cook in the kitchen. Friends and relatives visit with greetings. Children light fire crackers.

Cities dress with garlands of light. Each house is lit with lamps and candles. We pray to banish all darkness from our mind and fill it up with goodwill.




This is the time to give.

In my store too you’ll find a coupon for Diwali Special.

Just put the coupon code DIWALI10

It is valid until Nov 10, 2011. Diwali will be on the new moon night, October 26th , this year.

Wish you Happy Diwali and Happy Halloween too.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Time Management

How do I manage time?

How do I  get more hours out of the twenty four hour day?

And am I a multitasker? or, do I rather prefer to finish one project before starting another?  These were the questions my Etsy  blogger friends asked.

It reminds me of a workshop I had taken a couple of years ago.  We were to fit a jar with some big stone pebbles and a bag of seed beads.  I found to my surprise that when I poured the seed beads first I could not fit the big stones any more.  When I started with the big stones and then the seed beads, they somehow all managed to fit in the same amount of space.



My 24 hour day is like the jar.  When I started with the big jobs first, I could manage to squeeze in the  small jobs (seed bead like ones ) too.  The analogy is great.  But the challenge is to understand which ones are the important pebbles and which ones are seed beads.

To me I prioritize in the following order: health, immediate family, career and job, home and hobby, extended family, neighbors and friends.  Some times I do get side tracked and waste the whole day browsing in the internet. 


I do use a to do list, a google calender, an organizer binder and a kitchen timer to keep me in track.  Believe me, with out these tools I would be lost.

But today, this Sunday afternoon, I stop to ponder how important is it to accomplish those to do list?  It is equally important to slow down, take a break to smell the rose, enjoy a cup of hot coco and just do nothing.  That makes me more aware about life and living and what I value in this journey.

That helps me to prioritize the to do  list for the following days.

Well you asked - am I a multi tasker?

Heck yeh!  Some times I am like a whirled wind maniac, tangled with many projects at the same time.  Especially,when I am beading other ideas come and I can't stop.  And all the beads and findings make a huge big mess like this -





I hate this but I am so caught up playing with the muse, I just can't help it.



But I really do not like that.  I like to take one job at a time and like to be nice and organized, having a place for each thing and every thing in its place.

Life is not quite like that with  me.  So while the washing machine tumbles I wind up coils to creat earring.  I use the 30 minute timer to see how much time each jewelry project takes.  This helps me to price them too.  Then I must get up to give my eyes and back a break and load the dish washer.

While the stew simmers I catch up writing my blog or upload in Etsy shop.

But the best thing I like is to sit down with a bowl of yummy munchies and  check on the comments my friends leave in my blog , which is  multi tasking.  Isn't it? :) 


















Monday, September 19, 2011

A Jewelry Story

I'll remember this jewelry story for a long time and after I came back from the wedding party ( that I went to attend this weekend) I was itching to put it down in my blog. It deserves a post in my journal.  Sorry, it took two and a half days.

I met a wonderful lady last Saturday in a wedding party.  She was a School Principal and I was  in the school community for some time too,  so we  had many common concerns and topics to share.  We were worried the way the  school districts are cutting Art Programs.  It is always the" budget " to blame.

I told her I was going to participate in an  Art Fair on October 1 and 2 as a jewelry artist and this fair - the Art in the Park Fair, sponsored by the Alamo Danville Art Society ( ADAS) is contributing 10% to the school district.  Actually we, vendors are giving 10% of our sale to the  local San Ramon school community for restoring the Art program.

It is a great thing that ADAS is bringing the artists and the community together to solve this budget problem.  Art is essential to many people especially children, we both agree.

Coming to know that I make jewelry she told me  a beautiful story that I want to share today.

Why do we wear jewelry?  Well, to show power.  You know who is the king or the royal heirarchy from the crowns they  wear;  to show STATUS - that is why people go for  expensive jewelry; just  for the sake of BEAUTY, for EMOTION - that's why you wear your wedding ring and now  I learned that you also wear jewelry to remind you a special message.

Here is her story:

Long ago when gold was only $35 an ounce, Helen went traveling with her husband and bought a moonstone.  In  this far away land this precious stone was a great buy she thought  and perhaps her husband bought it to her lovingly as a souvenir.  But what will a round moonstone do unless it is set?

Much later, another day on their walk,  they came to see a small sign  saying JEWELRY REPAIRING  or something like that.

They open the small door of the shop. It  creaks.  A man with a heavy foreign accent appears.

"How may I help?"

They showed the moonstone and asked if he could set it to a ring. 

"Yes, of course, I'll put some  tiny Hyderabadi pearls that look like grains of rice around it ...How'bout that?" - he asked.

Helen could see it in her mind's eye.  Perfect.

"But you'll have to pay for the customs, mailing and a small charge for my labor" - said the man.

They agreed.

Many days passed.  Helen really did not expect it will ever come.  It is one of those things we get into  when we buy souvenirs in foreign countries, she thought. 

Then, one day  when she had  almost forgotten  about it, the door bell rang.

"You have a packet Ma'am from a foreign mail"-  said  the Mail man.

It was that moonstone ring surrounded by tiny rice pearls!

Helen showed me her ring.  It is beautiful, but more beautiful is when her eyes glistened.

-" It reminds me not to lose trust in people.  Never to lose hope! That's why I wear it."

                                                **************************************                                                             
In the mean time I am working extremely hard for this show.  I'll show you what I had been doing until 2 in the morning yesterday night:




Here I tried to integrate the Viking Knit  of the West with the Bali beads  of the East

Here I tried to integrate the Herring Bone Wire work  that actually came from Old World Basket weaving with a  present day twist.





 









Tuesday, September 6, 2011

New beads - new attempts

I got some interesting beads .  But I was not looking for them.  I went to buy a Lazee Daizy Viking tool.  Lately I am into Viking knit.  I bought a spool, the French spool kind of thing, but it did not do what I wanted.  So I was dilly dallying.. should I buy this plastic tool for $29.99?  what if it does not work in my hands any way ?  But I did and just before going out these black and white beads rolled into my hand.  The designs are so pretty I could not leave them.

Here is what I did with them.



Thursday, August 18, 2011

Interesting pictures from the Smithsonian Museum

I have some interesting pictures to share with you  from  the Smithsonian  Museum. 

Yesterday we went to the Smithsonian Art Gallery These pictures are  in the  West wing  where they have the Renaissance and the early works.

Here is an interesting one :



What do you think these women are talking about?  Now look at this:

Monday, July 11, 2011

Craft Fair- Is it Worth It

The Craft Fair – Is It worth It

Craft fairs for artisans are a way of life.  You pay the booth fees, mail your best pictures, and then anxiously wait for the passing score.  Okay, you pass.  Then you e mail one hundred friends and fans  (!- well they really don’t care you come to know that gradually, yet this is the rule of the game. You shrug off and do that again any way).

Then for a week or so you worry if you have enough inventory and stay up until 2 pm until your eyes burn and neck falls off.  Then in the morning you panic – do you have enough white space! So, you keep on practicing the display  on your kitchen table disrupting your family life annoying everyone, and then you make several trips to Jo Ann and Michael’s craft stores brushing your credit card over and over and then get upset with your own self…

Then the final day comes.  At the dawn break you haul your tent, tables and all that and get ready for the elbow grease. You put up the tent successfully.  Yeh! (By the way, my crafty friends, I bought a new tent after extensive research and it has made us quite happy so far)
Before it all starts

My friend, Kathy (another jewelry artist) and I usually do the shows together.  I don’t know what I would have done without Kathy!  No, we are not at all threatened by each other; our styles are rather complimentary, not competitive.  That makes our neighbor, Ann (another jewelry artist from the next booth) and the others from close proximity pause to think and then they nod in approval.  True, we all have unique styles, and people do need lots of jewelry.  So now we all feel confident and comfortable and wish each other.
Our Booth is done

It’s warming up.  The music is in full blast now.  I don’t know if I can take this rap until 6 pm.  But I see Kathy is swaying with the beats.  A bunch of teenagers enter with ice cream cones in their hands.  One of them humming “baby baby…” Is it part of this same song?  I can’t tell.

All these happy humming, swaying, people laughing and having good time kind of bring a positive mood in me too, they wash away my doubts and I am kind of liking this punk rock or whatever...

Kathy says, “I am glad that they are not playing country”

They are frying fish or something.  It’s delicious and my stomach is growling. Besides, Nina told me I should not miss Bake Sale Betty.  But people are coming like crazy.  And you know what is sweeter than honey!

Visitors are coming
So we munch on dry almonds and trail mix and sip water.  It is not polite to talk with your mouthful and you may have to do that any minute. I am glad things are moving from Kathy’s table too quite swiftly.

You need to take a potty break.  But there is a long line even in front of the port-a-potty.  So you  have to decide to stop sipping water.

I crane my neck out the tent when it is a bit less busy. There are so many vendors with so many cool things.  But there is no way I can go check them out.  We are all busy with our own booths.  So many of them are in wheel chairs selling hand made products. We out source jobs from this country.  Now, this is another America I see. I would not have known it had I not involve me like this.

An elderly lady approaches.  She is looking for earrings.  I think she spotted one.  A young girl exclaims “ Nona, this one!”   

“YES”!

It is an earring I made last year with a Breast Cancer Awareness bead and a twisted wire design that is actually an error, a deviation from the tutorial instruction I was trying to accomplish.  But I liked the mistake and made a few earrings in this style.

The lady asks for a mirror and then with a happy smile brings the earring  to me.
“I had been looking for something like this for a long time.  This is the best one. I want to buy this.”

I was touched.  “Is it going to be a gift?” I ask.

“A gift to mysel"'  she replies " to celebrate my first anniversary from Breast cancer. One year cancer free today”

“In that case I give you a 10% off”

“God bless you” she said.

“You be healed completely soon” I say.

 She nods with a smile. Kathy and I exchange glances as she walks out.  We feel our eyes misty.

“She made your day” Kathy remarks.

After the show, this morning with the morning cup of tea in hand my husband comments – “Boy, you slept like a log “ True, I did.  I was sooo tired.

The way your adrenaline flows …before, during these craft fairs …it’s something.  It takes a lot of energy, physically...”

“Physical, emotional spiritual…” I add.

 Is it worth it?  I wonder.

Absolutely yes.  One hundred times, for sure.    

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Champoussin - a charming village in Switzerland

Champoussin is a charming village in western Switzerland.  Where is it?  Well, you may not find it in an ordinary map but it is close to Geneva airport- about two hours away in car or train.  If you find Geneva try moving eastward along the lake Geneva.  You may find Lausanne, Montreaux and in a smaller font a spot called Aigles.



You may take a AOMC  train from here.  This rather tram like train  will take you to Val d'Illiez station in forty minutes.  Then you take a bus up to the Champoussin village.

We landed in Zurich airport and took a train ride to Aigle.  It took us about three hours.  The view from Lausanne to Aigle is spectacular.  The train track is right next to the lake.

We saw tiny back yard gardens, tranquil lakes with boats floating on them. Then again, even Switzerland has its share of concrete walls and graffiti on them. But I found them artistic.





When we reached the Val d' Illiez station we expected to find the bus at 4:30 pm,  but today it is Saturday and there are no school children,  so no bus!

We were assured that there will be one at 6:30 pm though,  the last one.  We were hungry and thirsty.  A lady came out of a restaurant to help us out and made us cafe latte and a very delicious dish of grilled cheese on thick bread.  She knows as much English as I know French but we made it finally and she made a call for us to the hotel to confirm that we'll reach with the last bus.  When the bus finally arrived, she went and told the driver to wait for us.  We were the only two passengers.

Champoussin is awfully pretty and tranquil.  It is an out of the world place.  The little log cabin room  where we stayed in was very cute, comfortable and basic.  You can see the snow capped mountains from the little veranda and the rolling green hills.  It is so quiet here- with only occasional cow bells tingaling from time to time .  There is a farm on the top of the hill where they also make home made cheese.

There is no wifi or  telephone in the room, but you may find them at the hotel lobby .

There is a grocery store at the bottom where you may find basic things and home made bread.  Things are expensive here. Like an egg cost me a dollar!  There is also a restaurant, para gliding things and thermal baths.  This place is a ski resort in winter time.

But it is equally pretty in summer.  The lupins are in bloom.  There is a smell of fresh sweet milk and pine mixed in the air.  You hear the rustling of the leaves and slow moos of the cows and their cow bells.

It is a happy place with simple beauty. 
 









 

Thursday, June 23, 2011

A day in Vienna

The ceiling of the Opera House in Vienna- see the 24 k gold work on the ceiling
June 23, 2011- Vienna

Had a wonderful day today with Rinka.  Though the day started with a shrill alarm at 5 o clock in the morning and we all had to climb the five floors of  stairs,  nothing really was that dangerous.  After half an hour later everything seemed safe and sound (less- no pun intended) and we all climbed up in the elevator (!).  No fire truck really did show up to save the residents in this diplomats’ unit.  Any way it was a weird chance to meet Rinka’s neighbors.

Rinka took us to a nice cafĂ© and introduced me to a drink which was a mix of coffee, chocolate, lots of whipped cream with a swirl of caramel sauce.  Yummy.  I had a  soft boiled egg and roll with all kinds of jams.



We took the tram and came to Belvedere Museum.  Here I focused on Klimpt.  I love his The Kiss but I did not know so many things about this picture.  Gustave Klimpt chose bold rectangles in the pattern around the male figure, and roundish motifs for the female.  They have their differences but those differences are trying to melt for something soft, loving… the figures are surrounded by flowers and gold dust.  The Kiss is soft and beautiful.

Other pictures worth mentioning are “The Bride”, “Adam and Eve”, “the Meadow “ where he showed how the poppies in the fore ground stood out merging the big tree with oranges in the back ground.  There is a picture by Van Gogh- a landscape.  He shot himself two days after painting this picture.

The garden is fantastic.
Here you see the inside of the stage of the Opera House - A rare thing.  As a holiday there is no rehearsal going.  So we could see the inside of the stage


From here we went to the Opera House and we took a guided tour.  It is a holiday today so there is no rehearsal and we lucked out to see the inside of the stage.

It is magnificent.  The hall, ceilings and the whole place give you goose bumps

The inside of the auditorium


After lunch we had gelato.  It was so good.  Rinka knows all these little nooks and corners of Vienna.  My senses are so stimulated today.

After we came home it started to rain and get cooler.


Sunday, May 8, 2011

My Mommy and Me

My Mommy and Me
My Ma and Me - probably my first picture
On this special Mother's Day I was thinking about my Ma. There are so many memories, so many moments to cherish, laugh about and feel serious about.  What message did she leave for me to pass on?  consciously and unconsciously?

She was very beautiful and as a young child I used to get awestruck seeing her getting ready for parties.  She paid attention to beauty .  I remember her saying  to me  one day,( on  one of those morose teenage days) - "Go pretty yourself up" - she even wanted to share her lipstick! "and see your self in the mirror with a big smile"   Phew!  I said that day.  But you know-  I found later on - IT WORKS.

She paid attention to beauty around her too.  Much before green living became vogue, she taught me -  the want less, waste less  mantra and to give away generously. She showed me how to pretty up the surrounding with simple things.

She was a great friend, a good friend, my Ma,  and when I miss her,  deep inside I feel that she is right there inside me.  I have not really lost her.  

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Help - a book that I am reading

I am reading a book named "The Help" .  It is so interesting that I cannot put it down.  It is one of those books that you really don't want to end.  Therefore my beading, business and other house hold  things are at stake.

This is the author's  first book and it is going to be a movie I hear.  I got it as a birthday present from my daughter.

Lately I did not read much.  And I was thinking my concentration is getting poor or some thing.  Why can't I just stick to the one I am reading and just finish it?  I was kind of mad at my self.  I found the answer.  




Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Spring has sprung

Spring has sprung.  Look at our  wisteria  tree and oh, the smell.

I am enthused to create two earring pieces too.  The first one, a knitted piece was when I got inspired by a cob web and the dew on it.

The second one - I name it WISTERIA.

I was motivated to do this from Mystic Pesto's blog.

You can join in the celebration by visiting these participating blogs!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

What did I do with my buttons?

What did I do with my buttons?

I'm late, I'm late - I feel like that rabbit in Alice in wonderland.  I live in California, so my day starts out a bit later than most of my blog hopping friends.  On top of that I spent a whole lot of the day today thinking about the design, then  creating my bracelet ( yes, I am one of those last minute persons...I don't want to be...but

When I was kind of satisfied I found the day  light is almost gone.  Well, still I took advantage of that slanting last beam of the afternoon sun ray on my window sill and I'll show you in a minute what I did.

I started with the lady.  I name this piece "She- and  her dreams".  This button is  sent by Cat.  It took me a long time to find out what I want to put in here.  Then I thought that keeping it most simple,  knitting it  with   waves and waves of  dreams and thoughts is what this piece should be all about.  I thought of my mom (who has passed away in 2007) as I was making it.
I am so anxious to see what the others have done with their buttons.  Please do hop on their blogs too.  Here is the list and a short notice from Michelle who kindly arranged this whole BUTTON project.

Here is Michelle's note:

You might also want to tell your readers about the giveaway--if readers comment on any (or all) blogs, they can win a set of buttons.  The full rules will be on my blog, but basically, each comment on a different blog gets them one entry.  So if they comment on all posts, that would be 25 entries!  But if they comment 25 times on Lori's blog, that only counts as one entry!  The giveaway is open to everyone.

As always, feel free to contact me if you have questions.

Thanks,

Michelle
www.michellemach.com/blog/

******************************
*********

1. Cat - Boo Beads

2. Cindy - Sweet Bead Studio

3. Cory - Art with Moxie

4. Cyndi - Beading Arts

5. Dita - Alankarshilpa

6. Donna, Marti, and Michelle - Beads & Books

7. Erin - Treasures Found

8. Hope - Crafty Hope

9. Inca - Zerenity Design

10. Katrine - Army of Sock Monsters

11. Krista - French Elegant Jewelry

12. Kristie - Artisan Clay

13. Linda D. - Lutka and Co.

14. Linda L. - Linda's Bead Blog

15. Lody - Lody's Beadworks

16. Lori - Pretty Things

17. Loretta - Loretta's Boutique

18. Malin - Beading by Malin de Koning

19. Mary - MK's Creative Musings

20. Maryanne - Zingala's Workshop

21. Melinda - Melinda Orr Metal & Clay Jewelry Designs

22. Saskia - Perlendistel

23. Shannon - For My Sweet Daughter

24. Shirley - Beads and Bread

25. Stephanie - Confessions of a Bead Hoader
 



Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Yeh! My Buttons

My Buttons

I was in this button swapping project. I  had to choose some buttons for my partner Cat from boo beads and send it to her.
 

Similarly I received a nice pack of buttons from her too.  Like her, I love buttons made of natural materials too.


Aren't they beautiful?  Cat made the copper one herself and her mom made the one with the letter D.  I am so touched to receive hand made buttons.

O, I forgot to mention that I found some vintage copper buttons from an old jacket.  I discarded the jacket but saved the buttons to share with Cat.

Cat and I both saved one sample piece  of each button for our selves and would share later what we did with them.  In the mean time, my head is working more than my hands and that is the hard part.  Now I just have to carve a couple of quiet hours when I can totally immerse in the creative process.

Well, it is 9:39pm now.  The night is still pretty young to me.  I should rather be beading than blogging.


 



Monday, April 18, 2011

7000 Bracelets For Hope

7000 Bracelets for Hope- What a touching thing to organize.  Every time I visit Lori's blog I get some thing new and enthusiastic.

The project is that we have to make a bracelet with BLUE ( Denim blue is their awareness color).  This bracelet then  has to be sent to the Global Genes Project ( The address is:
7000 Bracelets of Hope /Global Genes Project
24701 La Plaza Suite 201
Dana Point, CA 92629 .

The Global Genes Project, an advocacy group for children's rare disease awareness is going to send it to the seven thousand families having children with rare diseases to show them love and support. You may visit this site to see how you can help.


112 jewelry artists have already joined knowing it from Lori's blog.  You can see their wonderful work if you visit Lori's blog to get the links.

I wanted to be a part of it too.  So what if I am late!  Better late than never.  So, I started thinking about my blue bracelet.


My thoughts took me to Sedona, Arizona where I went last year.  I was pretty sick at that time.  I remembered buying some turquoise beads  from a bead shop and then I  was sitting facing the red monolinths, waiting for my husband.

An interesting feeling came to me.  I had heard about the vortex power of Sedona.  I closed my eyes and prayed that may the beads in my hand have magic power to heal and cure the wearer.  I don't know  who'd get these beads in future, but I had known the healing power of turqoise.

I prayed for myself too, may I be cured soon, so that I can sit and do my beading.  My prayers were answered.  I hope the rest be true too.

 With these thoughts I created this bracelet with tiny turquoise and silver  beads.  They are  individually strung and then I  knitted the silver wire part with a pair of very thin knitting needles to form the half circle part.  At the end  I finished  adding  some oval turquoise beads and silver adornments as you see in the picture. There is an extender to accommodate different wrist sizes.

I'll send it soon to the address given with a note and my prayer.  May it heal a child.










Sunday, April 17, 2011

Going Green

Go Green

As the signs of spring hop in, tiny new leaves on the branches, the wisteria blooms with lovely lavender blossoms and the gold finches swing on my bird feeder I feel like giving Mother Earth one big hug again.  Thank you for being so beautiful.

I become extra vigilant to protect her.  I take oath to think more how to reuse and recycle more the things  I already have.

I have  to ship some one a box .  I was going to buy one but then I found a box  just across the room that had  brought some materials for me the other day.  I decided to use this box.  I repacked it using some nice contact paper.

Now I save the bubble mailers that were posted to me and just put a nice piece of contact paper on it and use it to ship my things. I save money in buying the mailers  which I'd rather use to buy a delivery confirmation when I ship something.  In my etsy store it will not make a difference that way.

I learned a lot of tricks from the Eco etsy site and their ideas stimulate me to think new ways of going green. 

   




Friday, March 18, 2011

Check out this interesting thing from Rings and things

A humble offering to Japan's refief

My humble offering to Japan:

I get immuned and numb when I see the same pictures over and over on the T.V screen.

On quiet moments if I zoom out, and try to think that it is just not two dimensional, what happened to those people is real, I shiver. So many people have lost their homes, lost their loved ones, so many children can't find their parents or food...

It could happen to us too. Can I fathom that?

Japan is such a beautiful place. I have been there several times on my way to India. Yet, all those sky scrappers, modern equipments and highways look like a child's toys, as if a child is playing with his lego set, in contrast to the vast ocean when you see it from high above - when you take a bird's eye view.

We human being are so small, so insignificant against nature's vast force!

I have high regards for that nation. They are so disciplined, hard working, spiritual people. They are resilient and will recover, but right now what are they going through.

As I watch out, I see our cherry tree in full bloom through the window. I think of Japan. I was first introduced to flowering cherry trees in Japan. Being a young girl from tropical India I had never seen a cherry tree before that. And I planted a wish that some day may we have a cherry tree in our home.

My wish was granted. The tree is full of rosy whisper soft bloom today.




My eyes well up as I work on my beading project. My knitted wire work gets blurry. I wipe off. I put the last crimp to secure and decide to offer this humble creation with my prayers to the Japan relief fund.




Thursday, March 17, 2011

Agony of artist's life

I had been reading about Renoir and  how he painted.  It is interesting to note that even artists like him had to go through such misery concerning money..  The story opens , Renoir with a broken limb trying to manage painting. He broke his arm trying to paint part of a house and fell down from the ladder

In his dreams he visualizes known people, common people as his models.  He murmurs to himself never to waste time doing things that you do not love to do.

He wants to sketch normal life, happy stories of his time in history...but the agony is, he has to compromise to things that pays him more.  He hated to take  salon commissions and paint aristocrat families all  seated on velvet sofas but that is where the money was coming from.

Do you feel like that some times?   Do you hate the marketing and selling aspect?

I do when I have to make the same pieces over and over.  I try to stay away from that.  And since I am not that famous and no one is really bugging me to do the same pieces, I do have the luxury to not do what I hate.

Actually at this phase I kind of like when people asks me to do custom order.  A friend of mine asked me to make some thing for a girl born in October.  She bought a  turquoise in copper  book marker I made earlier.

So I made two book markers this time.  One with tiny  pink tourmaline beads and the other one with rose quartz chips both knitted in silver heart.

Rose Quartz in silver heart


 Now Pink Tourmaline tiny beads in knitted heart

Both are October birth stones depending on the Zodiac signs -  Libra or Scorpio
Which one do you think she'd like?  Which one do you like better?



Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Knitting with beads and wire

Knitting with beads and wire is my new passion now.  I used to knit a lot when my girls were little, then I picked up beading.  Now I find that I am inclined to knitting with beads and wire.

Knitting with wire is quite different from knitting with yarn.  Wire knitting can tense your fingers.  Now it is getting better each time.  The wire loops will not be the same as working with yarn.  Then again knitting with wire has its own good things.  It is much forgiving in terms of shape.

My very first book was Knitting with Beads  which I got as a Christmas gift in 2009 from my daughter .I did not see too many books in this area.  So this time from the library I brought some craft books ( March is National Craft Month, I came to learn) and one of them really caught my eye.  It is Element of Style by





I think I'll try quite a few designs from here.  I came to know that there is a yarn named Habu which is just what I was looking for.  I knew it exited but I was not sure what to ask when I go to the knitting store.

Now I am a person who cannot really follow a recipe or direction all the way.  If I am not really judged or tested, once I understand the basic I deviate.  So this is what I tried from her book




and this is what I came up with.

Did you see any books on bead knitting?  Will you please let me know? 




 





Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Modern Anna Karenina


The Modern Anna Karenina

Would a girl kill her self like jumping on the train track, the way Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina did?

I was thinking about that as I woke up this morning.  Yesterday night we watched Anna Karenina,   the black and white version of the movie.

Just a few days ago, we, ladies were gossiping about a girl we all knew. Her life resembles very much like Anna Karenina.  Let’s call her Mia.

Mia had a caring, loyal dutiful husband, Greg and a sweet little boy Tommy.  But, Ryan, a character, all on a sudden barged into her life like a comet and topsy turvy her whole being.  Mia’s tranquil, safe life was changed. 

Mia found a spark in Ryan’s eyes, a different kind of caring, some irresistible attraction that brought a new meaning in life to Mia.  Mia came to know what she was missing.

When she was confronted with the choice of her safe, secured married life with Greg and Tommy, as a bonus in one hand and Ryan on the other, she chose Ryan.  It was hard to leave Tommy, yet Ryan won.

Like Tolstoy’s Anna, Mia hung onto Ryan and whispered in his ears “Remember I have nothing else except you”.  Ryan kissed her back.

Couple of years passes, now Ryan wants Mia’s divorce papers to settle in the society rightfully.  Mia cannot manage to get them.  Ryan changes.

Mia finds that it is nothing but time that takes away that special spark.  Ryan and Greg are basically very similar.

Mia is a lonely single woman struggling each day over this issue.  Would she crush herself like Anna Karenina did, I wonder as I knit absent mindedly.

May be Mia will find that there is more to life. Of course she did the right thing listening to her inner self, leaving her secured life for challenges. Of course she did the right thing leaving Ryan too.   Mia, I salute your strength for following your heart for what you think is right.  You have a lot of hurdles on your way, but believe me, don’t you quit now.

May the morning sun beam embrace you with its warmth, may the hungry humming birds in your feeders remind you that you are needed.  May there be a little boy waiting for you at the corner of the road like Anna found one in Venice, who stretches his hand for you.  Let there be something to show that you are valuable, you are needed.  May you hear these messages inside yourself.

May you find that there is more to life that just men’s appreciation. Don’t you kill yourself like Anna Karenina.

My knitted jewelry  piece is done now.  Here it is:






Monday, February 28, 2011

Inspiration for art


Inspirations for art


Inspiration is everywhere, especially today.  It’s one of those days.  First of all – did you watch the Oscars yesterday?  I am talking about Natalie Portmans dazzling dangler.  Oh what a design!  That red-purple tassel brushing her soft shoulder kept me up for quite awhile yesterday night and the first thing I did this morning is visiting my STUDIO ( I mean my bead storage) to find what do I have to create some thing like that?

Well. As soon as I come up with something, I know it may be quite different; I assure I’ll share it with you.

In the mean time I hopped two blogs and was just mesmerized with all the things they have to share. 

Lori was talking about this sumptuous Bead Soup event.  I wanted to be part of it even not knowing exactly what it’s all about.  But I did it.  I learned how to put it in my web blog.  I can see your smirk. But hey, I am learning.  I am not techno savvy okay!

Then I went to Mortira’s blog and oh my, I hopped from one link to another, reading all the book reviews she had and found that I have spent the whole afternoon.  The sun is down, I did not fix supper, did not clean the dish washer… my house is a mess.

But hey, there is some thing I can share too from last few weeks– my knitted jewelry

These days I am doing a lot of knitted jewelry.  I got inspired from a knitting blog and got hooked with the needles but could not let go my wire  or the beads ….so this is what is happening.


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