Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Bead Table Wednesday

What can I say?  It's not gonna be a bead party every week.  After spending all day yesterday creating my space at Coyote - I'm taking a bead break today - and READING.  And I even went to the library for an actual hard cover paper pages hold in your hand BOOK.  (Down to my last dime here at the end of the month - so no new books for the EReader.  Bummer).  So here's what the bead table looks like - but it ain't pretty - maybe next weeks will have a little more creativity....

See told ya.  And I bet if you have to look at that "Elusive" necklace one more time, you'll scream!  :0)  Don't worry - it's off to the art gallery in a few weeks....

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I Heart Coyote

I love my new little space at Coyote Wisdom.  I love everything about it - bright, happy, spiritual, FUN - a very good energy space.  I have added more beads to the inventory,(with more space to grow on), and even had a regular customer from when I had the Schoolhouse shop stop and buy some beads today!  THANKS, LINDA!  I'm sooooo glad that the Universe has presented me with this wonderful opportunity, and I thank them for it everyday. 
Here is a photo of what it looks like today - after I added the sign, the tall bracelet display, and the rod across the top of the window frame.  I will be adding a second rod just a few links above this one - for SWAROVSKI'S.  That is a West facing window - so it gets plenty of afternoon and early evening light for the sparkle! 
The official "Open House" to introduce me to the clientele that don't already know me (I've been in the metaphysical arena for over 15 years - and managed a similar store for 6 of them), will be Saturday April 30th.  We are going to offer Mini Readings that day, too - so there will be beads, readings, food AND FUN! 
I'm so happy to be living such a great life right now - DESERVING and loving every minute of it! 
Bead happy!

Monday, March 28, 2011


Some projects take me days, months even years - some take mere hours.  This is the final result of "Elusive" - that I just blogged about earlier today.  It amazes me sometimes how quickly things will flow...and how wonderfully they turn out.  Here she is - from start to glorious finish:

(Sorry this last one will give you a neck crick)  There are earrings too.... 
Anyway - I love how this one turned out....$135.00 probably an Art Gallery piece beginning in April....

Lost and Found

Those of you who know me on Facebook have heard this story already - but since I also have a photo and update - I'll share it here, too.  Yesterday I decided to get some work done on the pretty blue cab that had been slated for "Spring Rain Fairy".  I'd been carrying the entire box full of pieces and parts around for a few days with no time to actually open it - finally, no time like the present.  So I removed my notebook and pattern book from the box, and started rummaging for the cab.  No cab.  Picked up every bag, looked closely. Flipped through the pattern book.  NO CAB.  Now the clock was ticking, and time was awasting.  Went through my second project box - maybe they got mixed.  NO CAB.  Went through my jewelry inventory tray - NO CAB.  Frustration was setting in.  Emptied the trash.  Cleaned off the bead table (needed to be done, but didn't pay off with that now irritatingly blue cab). Went through ALL of my stack trays and drawers.  Went back through the project box a THIRD time - NO CAB.  It had been almost an hour of searching.  Back tracking.  Thinking about where I had been - where IT had been.  Trying to keep my mood from completely darkening due to that nasty blue cab, I stopped searching and got on Facebook.  Posted a 'missing' poster, asking for information and a REWARD of beads for anyone that could help me figure out where I put it.  I decided to try and put it out of my mind for awhile (because I thought I was out of my mind that it could be LOST in the first place), but still couldn't step away from the bead table.  Decided to do a little more organizing - moved my little notebook that had been in the project box - and there it was.  A tiny little corner of a little plastic zip bag peeking out from between two pages.  TADA!  Caught ya!  And now it's found.  And because it seemed to have such a strong opinion about not being a part of the Spring Rain Fairy piece - it has now become the focal point for a piece of it's own: 
The finished cab will be attached to the pretty Chinese crystal, and they will become the focal point for the piece I have chosen to name   - "Elusive".
Bead happy everyone - here's to finding what you may have lost, too!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Bead Table Wednesday

On my bead table this Wednesday:
Preparing the Cool Stringing kits for sale at Coyote, and a BUUUUNCH of stuff that needs to be torn apart and reworked - or given totally new design homes.  I usually save these for when I'm feeling destructive.
Putting together the kits has been fun though - I love to design and play with layout, so I design it, lay it out, take a picture of it, and then bag it up and add all the instructions and info.  No actual stringing involved.  Big payoff - I hope.
Bead happy, everyone!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Mouth wide shut - mind wide open

I've been trying to be good this week.  I've started to comment on several blogs (bead and non bead), and have changed my mind before posting.  Don't know why - it usually makes me feel better to comment, and I try not to be nasty with or about people, I just set people straight, give them needed info, and basically say what I think-agreeable or no.  But because I haven't been doing that so much this week, I think my mind is concentrating on ME, and what I can do about MY beads, my sales, my art, and my LIFE.  I have a list of things to talk to the bookstore owner about today - like having a fun, psychic fair type open house to introduce me and my beads and jewelry to the new age community members that may not know me already, and introducing kits for bracelets with semi precious stones, listing the healing properties, adding another display rack - stuff like that. Plus I've got a few more project rolling around in my head that I should probably write down before I lose them, AND, last but not least (this is the part of the blog that DOES have me opening my mouth, so Etsy lovers beware)  I think I've also made a really big decision - I'm getting out of Etsy.   I have to wait until July to actually be DONE, but I will not be listing items anymore, or relisting, or renewing.  I know that will make me virtually unseeable by Etsy shoppers, which is one of my biggest pet peeves about them.  They need to figure out a way to feature scroll items from ALL the shops, not just the ones that listed in the last 5 seconds.  And paying to be featured?  Don't waste your time.  Not part of one of their little cliques (teams)?  Don't bother trying to sell.  I've listed items in my shop on a DAILY basis for over a year - semi precious beads, glass beads, cloisonne beads, jewelry (total waste of time), and have had less than 20 measly sales to show for it.  And my prices aren't high.  In fact, I think they're pretty good compared to some of the other beads listed out there ($200 for a strand of garnet.  PLEASE).  I even offer FREE shipping.  AND send a free bead with order now and again.  All of my feedback has been happy and positive.  But it's evidently not enough for the word to get out to the customers.  Etsy is just entirely too inundated with sellers of the same or similar items, and it's just too hard to predict what key words to use, and the easiest way for people to find your item before the one that just got listed a second ago.  Now, that being said - there are some exceptions - I have a few Facebook and blog friends that are successful, great sellers there.  And I wish I knew their secret.  But I've decided to stop wasting my time on finding the key.   I tried to be a part of the etailer world - it just hasn't worked out for me.  So I'm going to concentrate on what does (or at least what has in the past) - selling good, quality semiprecious beads to the community here in town, through the bookstore for now, adding more classes, kits, hands-on quickie 'make & take its',  custom pieces, and eventually, maybe, my own store again.
Did I say mouth wide shut?  Ooops.  Oh well.  I guess that's what blogging was invented for - opening minds, hearts, souls and MOUTHS when the mood strikes us.  I'm sorry if I offended any Etsy lovers with my rant - but I have a feeling I am not alone.....

Monday, March 21, 2011

She's taken a turn....

The Spring Rain Fairy, that is.  As I posted this morning, she's now got hair, and wings, and a few this and that's - but I wasn't happy with how far away from the edge of the piece her face ended up - sooooo - I folded it over - and voila, magic, hokus pokus - she will now become a side of another of my reversible pieces.  Alas - the LAST reversible piece I did (Maiden Mother Crone) took over a year.  This one may also meet that fate, because I now need twice the cabs, twice the beads and TWICE the time!  But I think I like where it's headed - here is the next phase -

I may also need to make a second matching wing - easier said than done since I found that one completed in a box from YEARS ago...I may not even have the same color Delica's anymore - but, since I'm headed to my LBS this afternoon for the other seed beads - I'll just add those to the GROWING list!  I usually try to give the second side of the reversible pieces a separate name (the back side of Maiden Mother Crone is Mesa Verde), and this one may end up with a moonlight theme.  We shall see...and I just realized I have a second one of those faces - so she may appear on BOTH!
You just never know where intuitive creativity will take you.  Sometimes it's a very wild ride!

Is seed bead work on it's way OUT?

I probably shouldn't have done it.  Because it was rather depressing.  I sat and scanned several sellers sites on both Etsy and Artfire yesterday, admiring the work involved, and looking at when they joined and how many sales they've had.  And it was a grim discovery - most of the people that do the detailed, beautiful, time consuming seed bead work - sell very little of it.   One sale, maybe 3 sales, sometimes even NO sales - in the last 2 years.  Not the information I was hoping for. And I should have known.  I've got a few pieces listed amongst the beads on my OWN Etsy site - and have sold NO jewelry in the whole year I've been selling.  Only beads.  I guess I was hoping to find better results on the whole.   Because I love this type of beadwork so much.  It makes me happy, and it's really more like therapy to sit and put those little beads together to create something beautiful.  But at some point, you really have to ask - is it all worth it?  I would like others to appreciate it too - and not just by looking at the photos.  Don't get me wrong - I love when people comment on my photo postings, and appreciate each and every one.  I try to respond to each of them as well.  But appreciation don't pay the bills. Or buy more beads. Simple as that.  So where do I go to sell this work?  I know I'm not alone in the love of creating with seed beads - but have we so over saturated the market for teaching the stitches and offering projects, showing everyone how to make it themselves - that we, the experts, the teachers,  can no longer successfully sell our own work?  It's a little unsettling, but I shall press on.  Maybe I need to start a 365 days of jewelry thread - post a different, fairly new piece of jewelry every single day - because I'm getting close to being able to do that already!
And now that I've gotten THAT off my chest - here's an update on the Spring Rain Fairy.  The first photo you saw of her looked like this....
And now she looks like this:

She looks much happier with hair, don't you think?  I should have a couple nice relaxing bead days this week.  I'll try to take a few more in progress photos during that time - but a trip to a bead shop with seed beads is definitely in order - the idea for the necklace portion is a double spiral rope - and I definitely don't have enough 'rain' for that....

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Now that's class!

Had a wonderful time teaching today.  I don't really consider it teaching - especially the girls I had today.  They all needed very little help, and each created something a little different than the sample - and each other.  All were happy - and fast! It was more like a party, and it only took them a little over an hour.  That's because we opted not to read through the Celtic Knot info I looked up for them on the web.  Just gave them the handouts, FYI - read on your own time kind of thing.  Probably won't do that every time - next class - the Earth Energies class - will consist of Earth sign Astrology AND Feng Shui - things I know a lot more about than Celtic origins.  But we still had fun, and they all plan to come back, and are already requesting more difficult projects after ONE lesson!  I plan to put together a peyote class for summer, and also create kits of the various classes that I teach that will be available for sale in my little shop space.  SOOOO many ideas.  So little time.  But at least because the girls were all so quick today - Spring Garden Fairy has begun!  She now has hair, and wings.  Can't wait to see where she flies from here.....
Next time I teach, I promise I'll bring the camera.  OR have a phone with a camera.  I feel so lame that I don't have that feature on my little prepaid phone.  Maybe someday....when I start getting popular - and getting tons of calls!
Looking forward to having some bead time in the next few days, but also need to find some time to prepare more items for Etsy.  Not ready to give up yet - still waiting to be let in on the secret to selling lots there!  Also still researching and watching the trends on ArtFire.  Don't want to over-extend, though - I'll never get to bead if I do that!  And a non-beading Babbler is an unhappy Babbler!  LOL
Bead Happy!

Friday, March 18, 2011


OH, MAN! Sorry, Kate! It just took me til this morning to notice that your web address in my last post was missing the E in kate! MY BAD!  SO SORRY!  THIS is the correct one -
And as long as I'm here - do any of my fellow beading readers have Artfire shops?  How do you like it?  Does it work for you?  Is it easy to navigate when setting up and listing?  I'm considering opening both a bead shop and a jewelry shop.  I HAD one from them a long, long time ago when they first came on the scene - never sold a thing, but didn't know much about the whole concept then, and of course, they were just starting out too.  Thinking about round 2 - but want some input if I can get it.   I did start a website as some suggested - but that's been harder to get up and running and maintain than I expected, and although I'll have the domain name for awhile, I'm just not sure I'll get the exposure from it that might get from a more public site.  My Etsy sales are slow, slow, slllllloooow.  Just wondering what to expect from Artfire...
Bead happy, everyone.  I'll be out and about all day, without internet access (HORRORS!) - so I'll be excited to check my replies when I get home tonight.  Thanks a million!

Thursday, March 17, 2011


Since this has been a pretty profitable week, I decided to splurge on something I've been wanting for awhile - and managed to get them on sale as a bonus -- a kit and workbook from the great Kate McKinnon.  She's having a sale over on her website - head to her blog for the link if you want to get a great mix of seed beads AND your choice of books or patterns from her shop, all at a wonderfully reduced price.  Seems I'm always anxiously awaiting the mail - whether it be for art gallery commission checks, bead magazines, or bead orders.  Got the bead magazine on Monday, the art gallery commission check TODAY, and now, next week I can anticipate not just my order for Kate, but also an order from Etsy!  So a few more Etsy sales wouldn't hurt, and I'm crossing my fingers that all 4 folks show up for class on Saturday (the bookstore where I'm teaching does not request prepay sign ups).
I've also had a pretty good week at Coyote.  Connie has presented me with TWO sales checks, one of which is for beads!  We were hoping that I would start selling those right away - it took a couple of weeks, actually.  So hopefully as people start passing the word, we add some info to their website, and start shouting more on Facebook and blogs, they will become as regular as book and gift sales.  She and I decided that because that is the goal (to have super regular sales) that she will only have to pay me for them once a month.  Although the extra cash has been nice this week, it only seems fair.  Besides - see what I do when I get too much extra money in my hand all at once.  SPLURGE!
Can't wait for my order, Kate.  I bet it's simply smashing!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Flickring 2

Well, I added my photos to the Flickr site and sent them to the group feed for Bead Table Wednesday. I just can't figure out how to share it here or on Facebook...anybody out there that can tell me how - thanks! So for now, I'll just post the photos here:
This one is the finished Vinery pieces and rings and notes for the Art Gallery, and on the right is "Spring Rain Fairy" all ready to get started.

This one is a spiral rope project, my bag of semi precious bead strands for the Sun Sign bracelets, a couple of necklaces destined to be torn down and reworked, and on the far left - Maiden Mother Crone waiting for the Gallery....
Last but not least - the box of beads for Saturdays Celtic Creation bracelet class. 
Happy Bead Table Wednesday everyone!


As I strolled through my favorites list of blogs in the wee hours again this morning, I came across what I hope will be a fun group over on Flickr called Bead Table Wednesday.  So I joined.  I hope.  I have a hard time maintaining that kind of stuff - but it looks like a good way to get more exposure out there - so I'm going to give it a whirl.  And since it IS Wednesday, as soon as it's light enough outside to get that photo - I'll be posting my Bead Table Wednesday photos.  Not much on it right now - it's all in my travel bag from yesterday.  But I hope to have a few hours of bead time today (maybe get that spring fairy started) so I'll be getting it all back out of the bag - and the table will runneth over....
Speaking of yesterday - a few delightful surprises in store at the store!  Connie presented me with a commission check for not one - but TWO pieces sold in just the last week.  YAY!  AND....I now have FOUR students signed up for my Saturday stringing class.  FOUR.  Count them - FOUR.  I know that seems a measley amount to many of you who teach classes of 20 or more at a time - but for me, four is huge.  Especially lately.   I've taught larger groups before, when working through other bead shops, but not in a long time.  If you can't tell...I'm SOOOOOO happy.  I just hope I live up to my own hype! LOL It's been awhile since I've taught, but as I commented to fellow beading blogger Lorelei just yesterday - when I teach, it's more like a big beading party.  I share techniques and know how, provide hand outs and instruction, but we have fun and laugh at the same time.  It's a great gig if you can get it - and since I'm planning to offer classes once a month, I'm hoping it's a regular gig with LOTS of students.  The classroom holds about 15 people around the tables (we can get that many in Thursday morning prosperity group if we squeeze)  -  but for a beading group - that's probably too many all at once.  Wouldn't THAT be great.  I'd have to offer TWO sessions.  I'm putting that thought out there for the Universe right now....15 people.  Now THAT'S a gig!
Tune in later for the link to my Bead Table Wednesday group blog....

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

More embroidery

Since I started the subject yesterday - here's another of my bead embroidery pieces that's been around awhile.  It's rather unique in that it's reversible - faces on one side, desert jasper on the other.  The necklace itself is rather long, and you know how long necklaces tend to sway and flip around - with this piece, it doesn't matter!  This one took over a year to complete - and for some reason, I just got good photos of it yesterday.
The name of this piece is "Maiden Mother Crone".  I think I will try to sell it at the Art Gallery next time I switch out pieces. 

On a sort of related note - I'm thinking of opening an ArtFire shop.  I had one when they first got up and running - with absolutely no results.  But I didn't know much about it then, and I'm sure they've improved along with my knowledge.  I have had no success with jewelry on Etsy though either - only selling beads there - so I really wonder how so many of you successfully sell jewelry through these sites.  What are people looking for?  I've noticed that it isn't necessarily that they want inexpensive pieces - many of the pieces that I've seen sold are quite detailed, seed bead laden time consuming pieces with hefty price tags.  I think I fit in that category, and don't think my pricing is unfair.  In fact, if you haven't read the marketing article in the newest Beadwork magazine, you really should.  The paragraph regarding putting your own worth into your pricing really hit home for me, because it's how I feel about pricing my art - and it's an argument I've had with other artists.  I've had both beaders and non beaders tell me artists shouldn't charge for their time if they truly love what they do, or that I should just want to sell it, no matter what the cost ($5.00 versus $50.)  BUT - that is EXACTLY why they SHOULD!  Never devalue yourself or what your know your work is worth - because if YOU do - the potential buyer will too.
This piece is priced at $150.00 - still a good price when you consider it's two necklaces in one.
Bead happy everyone. 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Embroidery time

Finding time to DO bead embroidery when it's TIME to do bead embroidery is quite the feat.  Now that I have everything gathered for my spring rain fairy - I just don't seem to have the time to get her started.  I did find a surprise in one of my UFO boxes today, though - a partially finished set of fairy wings, beaded in the EXACT same colors that I plan to use for her.  Thank you, Spirit!  Now I'm at least a little bit ahead of the game.
This project has also got me thinking about the other pieces that I've embroidered - and where they ended up.   Unfortunately in some ways - I still have most of them.  Fortunately in some ways - I still have some of them.  They are beautiful works of art that are worn, and admired.  I still show and try to sell a few of them on occasion - this one will have it's second round at The Lansing Art Gallery  when I take the other vineyard pieces to them in April...
Maybe if she appears as a part of the whole theme, she'll find her new home.  Looking forward to seeing how spring rain fairy emerges....that's part of the beauty of embroidery and freeform work - it tends to create itself (with a little help from the person holding the needle). 
And as far as those dreams - never did get the nap, and now I think I'm going to go try to dream again - FOR REAL.

A fairy tale

I think I have a plan for at least one of those floating head pieces I posted a few days ago....Since we're getting close to spring, and with April showers come May flowers, I'm thinking a spring 'fairy of the rain drops' kind of thing. I've attached the face to a piece of Lacy's Stiff Stuff, part of it a bit loose, so that I can 'lift' it away from the back and build the beads up a bit under that side - sort of a 3D affect.  She will have hair, and more importantly - WINGS.  Choosing colors was the hardest part so far (since I've barely started), but I think I'm going with teal, copper, bronze and a cool color of seed beads called "Rain".   I really do have sooooo many other UFO's that I should do first, but I'm afraid if I don't start her soon she won't be done in time be considered a spring rain fairy, instead just hanging out in a box waiting to be heard.
So with the exception of the custom bracelet order and finishing up my class instruction and stuff for next Saturday (3 students WHAAAHOOOO!), and Etsy listings, of course - she may just become my priority for the next little while (like I need another priority!).  I have a really cool book that was published by Rita Sova a few years back with nice wing patterns in it, so that will be the starting point.  I hope.  I'm still debating on whether or not to make it a large breast plate type necklace, or a smaller pendant AND pin combo.  She will probably tell me herself once I get started on the embroidery.  I didn't really attach her to a very large piece of Stiff Stuff, but I've been known to attach pieces together before, so who knows?
Bead happy, everyone - may all your bead dreams come true....and I only speak of dreams because that's what I really should be doing right now instead of blogging.  Especially since we just lost that extra hour.  Can you say Sunday afternoon NAP?   I knew that you could!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Totally random photos....

Just a few things - finished, unfinished, idea stages, just things:
The heads are something I picked up today.  Not sure what I'll do with them, but since I love working with faces, I thought it might be fun to work with something a little more modern looking than my usual mystical beings.  These are flat on the back, so I'll probably use some Lacy's Stiff Stuff, and I may hide those hideous necks...
Then there's the first of many "Simply Sweet" Spiral Rope bracelets.
Nothing fancy, very simple, very inexpensive to make - and buy.  I'll probably post some on Etsy, take a few to the bookstore, maybe a few to the Art Gallery.  I just pulled out colors to go with the grapevine inspired pieces I've been doing, plus I plan to do at least one in each color to match:

These.  My original pattern flower rings.  MOST of them are like Dahlias - I've made one that is more like a Rose.  These were made at the request of the Art Gallery, so they'll be going there in April.  I'm pretty proud of this happy accident.  And they're so simple that I'll be able to easily put together kits, and teach it for a ONE DAY make it and take it class.  Not too complicated, few supplies.  BIG FUN!

I finally got a clean bill of health from the opthalmologist today.  YAY!  Don't have to go back unless the redness returns, which I'm not worried about.  He did want me to keep taking the drops he gave me - but wouldn't you know - that little magic bottle is finally empty!  I can't believe that little thing lasted as long as it did!
Busy day tomorrow.  My favorite day - Thursday.  My prosperity group meets in the morning, and I never know what will happen there.  Some days are a total bitch fest, with everyone having something to vent about.  Some days we share wonderful stories of abundance and faith, and some days we do marvelous meditations.  It's fun, it's relaxing, it's calming, it's girl time (unless James decides to poke his head in) - I look forward to it every week.  AND - now I get to combine it with an afternoon of beading and conversation with the clerks in the bookstore where the prosperity group meets.  All in all - Thursdays ROCK!
Bead happy all!  TTFN

Morning has broken....

and with it has come another gray, dreary, rainy, SLEETY Michigan day.  Yuck.  And wouldn't you know, I have photos of some jewelry to take.  Photos always turn out so much better when I can take them in natural morning sunlight.  Guess I should have timed that one better - yesterday was GORGEOUS.  Sunny, a little cold still - but just the sight of the sun somehow makes me feel warmer, inside and out.  Hoping today's rain doesn't last long.  Sure could use some more gorgeous....
Today is what I HOPE will be my last visit to the ophthalmogists office for a very, very, VERY long time.  My eye seems to have mended (for those of you haven't scrolled to previous blogs - I scratched my cornea), and I am seeing just fine.  First thing in the morning blurries and pain were a biggie for the first few days, and for some reason it took longer for me to heal that normal, I guess just cuz I'm special.  But today seems clear, bright and painless.  I just hope they say the same.  I had BEAD plans for all the money that is now lining the pockets of someone in the eyecare industry....
Still got big bead plans though, hoping that the customers of the bookstore will appreciate AND BUY - them: semi precious stone bracelets based on the astrological Sun signs.  I pored over the internet and went through my numerous astrology books here at home looking for stones and COLORS to coordinate with the signs, and I think I've found just the right affordable combinations.  I had originally planned to do semi precious bead birthstone bracelets - but am not willing to pay the price for, and in some cases search for, beads like Sapphire, Emerald and Ruby.  I plan to make them in a range of stones, with some having more than others, so that I can vary the prices.  I'll probably start gathering them all together so that THOSE are what I actually sit and make while spending time at the store.  Time will tell.  Hope they are a hit.  Heck, at this point, I hope someone even comes in the ROOM.  It's only been a week, I know - but I hope people will start hearing about my little bead space - SOON.  Still working on getting a sign for the front porch of the store (actually a house turned store), hoping that will help.
Anyway - enough babbling.  Hubby has arrived home safely through the sleet from his graveyard shift job, and I'm thinking scrambled eggs are in order!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


I found out something I CAN'T do on my NooKColor EReader today - BLOG!  It will only give me the keyboard for the title space - but not this text portion.  Bummer.  That was one thing I had hoped to do while sitting amongst my beads in the calm wonderfulness of Coyote.   There haven't been very many customers in the store - for them, or for me, so it's a little slow - but it is still a much happier, calmer, nicer place to bead.  Great music, great company, great room- GREAT energy.  But not blogging.  Oh well.  That's something I'll just have to do when I'm here on my laptop. Or I suppose I could TAKE my laptop.  Just thought smaller and more compact would be easier....
And as long as I'm here, finally blogging - a quick vent about my shopping experience at Kroger.  I'll skip the entire idiot in the parking lot incident and get right to the question - WHY bother to have lanes that specifically say EXPRESS LANE 15 items or fewer - when you still allow full overflowing carts full of groceries through the lane?  2 EXPRESS LANES.  2 open regular lanes, and 2 self serve (I loathe self serve-they NEVER work correctly), and still people think the rules don't apply to them.  I kept my mouth shut - but believe me, it wasn't easy - hence the reason you're reading about it here....
Anyway - got some wonderful beading done today.  Finished another flower ring - photos soon.  This last one is my favorite, but I made it so it's a little small for me.  I can't keep them ALL!  :0)  Off to the Art Gallery they'll go next time I switch out pieces....
Bead happy,

Monday, March 7, 2011

Where's the Love?

I've never had an opportunity to meet, let alone converse with, some of the big names in beads out there, like Marcia, and Kate, and Diane, and Beverly - but I really wonder, how long did it take them to become the successes in the bead world that they are today?  How long did it take people to take notice?  Is that what they set out to do, or did it just happen?  Cuz - I'm beginning to wonder if I'm either trying too hard - or not hard enough.  EVERYONE told me I needed a website, so I started one, and started out trying to keep it updated, kept up the Etsy listings, kept linking everything to Facebook, and sat back and watched.....nothing happened.  There must be a secret.  I know part of it is where I'm located.  Mid Michigan was hard hit by the failing auto industry, and the crash of the housing market.  Our own household took a hit when my husband could no longer do real estate appraisals due to the idiocy of the mortgage lenders. But because I put myself out there on the web - the WORLD WIDE web - I guess I was hoping for a little more love. And I'm sure that very few, if any, of the big names in beading were overnight successes - but it does beg the question - "how do you get noticed?"  The bead world is huge, despite the fact that I've had many people tell me that it's a dying fad, hence the reason there were so few jewels at the Oscars this year.  It sure doesn't seem like a dying fad when you see all the books and magazines and online sites that there are out there in cyber space.  I DO know that most of the brick and mortar bead stores in my area are gone, including my own.  And it's really sad.  I would love nothing more than to still be able to offer customers face to face beads - but they didn't seem interested.  At least not around here. 
So where IS the love?  How do I gain respect, and customers, and recognition, and FAME by creating with beads, offering classes, coming up with my own unique designs and patterns, and the list goes on and on.  I guess you can just call me a wannabe....and you'll find me where ever there are beads - no matter what the fad may be.  My trays of finished pieces without homes are getting taller and taller....but it's who I am, and what I love - I just need to find the counterparts that recognize, appreciate, and BUY it, so that I can AFFORD to continue to do what I LOVE - everyday.
I appreciate and bow to the masters out there, you seem to have found the key to success....and I hope I am awarded it too, someday....

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Everybody loves FREE beads!

Head over to Happy Mango's blog for a great giveaway, Mardi Gras style!

Happy Mango always has something fun going on!

Enter to win - and get a second entry by blogging, too! 

Anything's better than a scratch in the eye

For those of you who haven't friended me on Facebook, you may not have heard that I have had a minor setback in the beading territory.  On Tuesday of last week, I began noticing a redness, and an irritation in my right eye.  I don't know about you, but if you have an itch, you rub it, right?  Well - after an entire day of irritation, which at first we thought was Pink Eye, I decided I better have it checked out.  Not Pink Eye - but a scratched cornea.  Yikes.  How'd that happen?  I wish I knew.  And that was the question of numerous techies and doctors at the Ophthalmologists office as well.  Gee Doc, I did it on purpose, cuz I love you guys and your THIRTY dollar copays PER VISIT so much.  So I haven't done much beading - just resting, and putting drops in my eyes. 
Now, I could seriously go off on a tangent here (just see previous posts if you think I can't), but let's just say - drug company owners are obviously BILLIONAIRES.  Upon my 4th visit in 4 days to 3 different doctors, yesterday's doctor decided I needed a different, stronger antibiotic drop and called in the prescription at my local pharmacy.  Upon arrival I am told two things - 1.  My insurance provider wouldn't cover it (big surprise), and 2.  It'll cost me $100 for a 5 oz. bottle.   NOT.  Still not sure why we pay insurance premiums when all they do is deny, deny, deny, but - I digress and touch on a tangent again.
So, needless to say - not doing that drug long term, and sticking with the one they gave me to begin with instead.  As of today, my eye looks fine, and feels fine.  Back to the FIRST doc I saw when I go on Wednesday - and they better tell me the same.
So I'm afraid most of the beading plans have had to be postponed - the most serious of which was spending time in my new space at Coyote.  They are so loving, and so caring and SOOOO understanding.  But I feel it's important to be there to not only become familiar with their clientele, but for their clientele to get to know me, AND instill my energy into the store and the room.  Not going to happen with a freaky eye (as my friend Tracy calls it).  If everything happens for a reason, as I so much believe that it does, then I'm still trying to figure out what the reason for this weeks drama has been.  Maybe just cuz I never have any, and it was my turn.  Yay.
The one bright spot in my beading week was the request from my 8 year old niece.  When I attended her birthday party a few weeks ago, she noticed and oooohed over the jewelry I was wearing, and I explained to her how I made it.  I never thought that an eight year old would remember it.  So imagine my surprise and delight when I received her request to create a bracelet for her to give as a gift to someone.  She was so funny - and she actually negotiated for the price!  HERE is the bracelet I made (to her specifications) and it will be sent to her tomorrow.  Kids these days.....

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Cool Beads at Coyote

Today was the official start of Cool Beads at Coyote.  The set up reminds me more of what I would have for a table at an art fair - and for now, it's enough.  I'll be adding a round table off to one side, which I'll sit at and bead while I'm there most of the time.  It's a work in progress - we've got an idea for another rack hanging in the big center window, and a short narrow riser for another rack in front of the window ledge.  I am also looking into having a sign made for the front entrance - THAT will make me feel really important!
Wish me luck - I'm hoping this will grow into something good - a little smaller is ok (if you've never owned or managed a store have no idea) and I think the customer base is going to be much more open to my design style, too. 
Bead happy,