Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Count down begins...

Only 26(ish) more hours, at least in MY time zone.  Then it's go time!  I'll be subjecting you to babbling on a daily basis.  I hope it's all at least somewhat interesting to SOMEONE besides me. 
I had an interesting visitor in my shop today.  An older gentleman (retired PLUS) who had been in over the summer, that saw the beads as something to use to build his fishing lures.  We began a conversation then about my husbands favorite fishing holes in the area.   Well.  He came BACK today, and PAID ME (too funny) to draw him a map of the most popular one, and where the 'hidey holes' were that we enjoyed fishing from.  I accepted his few dollars, and chuckled.  But it gets BETTER.   As I'm having a short conversation with another customer about my previous work as manager of the local new age bookstore, the man's wife came along, and overheard the conversation.  Come to find out - SHE was a regular customer and TEACHER at that same store just a few years before I came along.  I had heard her name mentioned many times in the past, and we have many friends in common still in the area.  I can't WAIT to tell Carole and Kathy how small this world really is.   I KNEW I liked that man. 
I also had a chance to 'touch base' with Dee from Polka Dots, one of the 3 other remaining bead shops in the area.  They specialize mainly in lampwork beads, swarovski and accents, and having 'on the spot' parties for bracelet making.  They are so nice - and have no problem sending me customers when they don't have the right thing.  And vice versa.  I send people to them too.  They don't carry the seed beads, and the semi precious stock that I do.  So Dee and I put our heads together (she shops at MY store too!) and are going to talk to her boss about doing a collaboration class - they help the student create a lampwork bracelet, and then I show them how to EMBELLISH it with seed beads and accent beads.  How fun. 
So I had a pretty great day.  Hope you all did too!  Happy almost NEW YEAR!

Monday, December 28, 2009

This is just practice

I think I'm getting an early start on the 'blog a day' thing.  Seems I've had a chance pretty much every day to blog just a little.  Practice for the year to come....
I had planned to head out this morning for coffee with a friend, and the library and my usual Monday morning errands - however - I hate driving in the snow, and snow is what we have out there this morning.  I was going to post a photo - but it's being stubborn about uploading.  So I think I'll just stay home and work on my project instead....tentative title "Marguaritas with Lime"....but that may change depending on where the next portion of my creativity takes me...above is a little teaser of what is transpiring.  Enjoy.  I know I am. 

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Back to it

"Another year over....a new one just begun..."   Or at least almost.  I'm ready to head to the shop today, and hopefully greet a bunch of happy, sated and bead oriented people.  There are gift certificates to use and sale still going on, so hopefully, with the snow gently falling, and the sun peaking out, today will be the day.  I'm ready for 'em!
We didn't really exchange gifts this year, since we considered our Florida trip in October a birthday/Christmas gift rolled into one, so I got myself the best gift I've had in a long time.  The book 'Beaded Colorways' by Bevery Ash Gilbert.  If you haven't seen or better yet - BOUGHT - your copy of this book yet - RUN to your nearest computer and order it now.  So beautiful.  Informative.  Colorful.  Creative.  It's a great color resource, and the projects are lots of fun, too.  I can't wait to get started on my ideas as soon as I arrive at the shop today.  That's the downfall of having my studio 20 minutes away - I can't just pick up and get started.  I have to keep my ideas in my head, or sketched and noted, before I can begin.  But having the studio here, and the shop there, well - that didn't really work either.    So if you don't already have Beverly's blog and website info in your Favorites - here it is -
Order your copy today!  You'll love it just as much as I do!
Happy Beading!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas....everyone

My eggs for deviling are boiling, the pudding for the mousse eclairs is chilling, still have cookies and snacks and casseroles to prepare for both the Eve and the Day. 
Hope you're all snug and cozy and enjoying a wonderful 
holiday season.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Nobody blogs like Kate

I am in awe of Kate McKinnon's blogs.  Always has something quirky, interesting, fun or downright exasperating to blog about.  I feel her happiness, pain, gladness, joy, or whatever else she might be feeling that day - sometimes more than once. 
I've been thinking about my New Year attempt to blog 365.  So I've been paying attention to what's been going on around me while at the shop.  And I'm thinkin' - it's not going to be that difficult.  There are some crazy, shall I say EXCENTRIC people that come through that antique mall every day.  Many people confuse them (and even ME, unfortunately) with being a Flea Market - which we aren't on a full time basis.  Only one weekend a month in the summer - IN THE PARKING LOT.  Actually, most of the other vendors, along with the antique dealers - are high end.  We don't allow alot of 'flea market' type junk, and all of the craft vendors MUST be juried.  But still, some people think they can come in and talk us down from $3.00 on a bag of beads to $2.50.  Like $3.00 was a frikkin' fortune.  Please. 
So anyway, I hope it's ok with Kate that I've included the link to her blog here in my blog - she's very passionate about her metal clay, her beads and her life - check it out.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

365 days of blogging?

THAT is a complete turn around from what I was contemplating just a few months ago.   No one can accuse me of NOT being wishy washy - I am, after all, a Libra.  We have a hard time making up our minds right away on anything, AND also have the knack for seeing both sides of many situations.  So, during one of my many insomnia filled middle of the night thinking extravanganzas - I've decided to make the year 2010 the year of 'a blog a day'.  I am also going to MARKET this in the shop and through my email - and hopefully get some people actually reading my babbling.  I know I enjoy reading the many blogs in my favorites file.  So instead of kicking it to the curb - I'm embracing it.  Bring on the blogging!   And look for a possible website, too.  I have a couple basic 'freebies' with shop info floating around out there somewhere, but I have been thinking about again trying an actual website for some of my art pieces.  Probably not beads, though.  Too time consuming.   Or maybe just Etsy.  I'll be working on that as soon as this holiday hustle and bustle is over - and our family get together is not until Jan. 2 - so I've still got just a little more bustle to hustle than most! :0)
So tata for now (TTFN), and I may not see you again until Jan. 1.   Or then again....(it's a Libra thing, what can I say?)

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Creating by accident

This is what happens when two so-so designed pieces of jewelry are relegated to the 'take-apart' box.
Only these ended up on top of each other, and VOILA!  "Mardi-Gras-dess" was born.  I've had the porcelain face (by artist Laura Mears) in my collection for several years, and she's taken on at least two other manifestions before this - I believe - final one.  I LOVE how this turned out.  I had planned to add another circle to the bottom of the first - but then decided she was perfect just the way she was.  I have decided to try to part with this one, and have her for sale at the shop. 
And speaking of selling - I am thinking of taking on a few new ventures after the first of the year.  The first being trying a few of my art pieces on EBay.  Although I know (and don't want to know) nothing about selling on EBay, the owner of this little antique store where my shop landed is a whiz at it - and has offered to do all the work for me - for a very small part of the profit (yes, she does love me!).  And, I am again considering opening an Etsy shop.  I know that Etsy is inUNdated with jewelry vendors - but I feel I'm unique enough to stand out in the crowd.  This is still in the 'mulling it over' process.  I need the planets to all be aligned properly before I make a decision!  :0)
Hoping to have a wonderful last Saturday before Christmas sales day today!
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to one and all!
Cool Moon Creations & Beads
Lansing, Michigan

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Drumroll, please....

'Night Music'
Here she is - complete with froggy quartet.  This was so fun to wear for the first time on Saturday.  Lots of "beader's handshakes" and admiration.  Is that why we all enjoy beading so much?   Because of the compliments and the ooohs and aaahs we receive?  The most fun for me when I create 'on the fly', is that I never quite know how it will turn out.  No specific layout, only a little bit of a plan, and the name came almost immediately on starting it, which only increased the fun and detail.  There are a few more photos posted on my Facebook page, if you'd like to look.  Look for me under my name - Sheryl Stephens, in Lansing, MI. 
ENJOY!  and Merry, Merry Christmas to all.....

Saturday, December 5, 2009

A little 'Night Music' please....

It's finished.  It's LONG.  But it's not too heavy.  And I don't have pictures to post of it yet.  I'm going to wear it today, because I'm teaching a class that involved fringing, so I think they will appreciate the work and artistry that is involved in this piece.  Again - I am proud of my accomplishment, and believe it came out even better than I would have hoped.  I have planned to keep it for myself - but I suppose if someone were to offer me JUST the right price....
And speaking of which - that's what I've started doing with some of my display items in the shop lately, too.  In a conversation with my Thursday morning Happiness group, we decided that putting a high monetary value on items that I value highly, and don't necessarily want to part with, is a more positive, prosperous way than telling people, 'sorry that's not for sale'.  So I've placed $500, $200 and $100 price tags on many of my Amethyst and Selenite pieces that I use to display my work on.  I suppose if they want to pay that much - I could probably part with them.  (In my market - I don't think they'll want to pay that much for A ROCK).
So I'm off for a wonderful day of embellishing spirals - and lots of customers, too.