Monday, April 30, 2012

Spring Flowers

Mom and Dad always have the prettiest flowers in their yard. I decided on a recent trip that I should share them with you. Enjoy!


Thanks for stopping by :)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Beaded Tassel Earrings - Tutorial

I was inspired by some earrings that I saw on Pinterest and decided to try my hand at making something similar. They are beaded tassels. I made two pair and changed the process slightly after the first. I'll show you both methods here, in case you'd like to try them yourself.

You'll need two cones from the jewelry finding section at your local craft store. An assortment of embroidery floss and the beads of your choice. Other findings in the first pair included 2 jump rings, and 2 eyepins.
I wanted purple, grey and black, so that's my embroidery floss choices for the first pair. Cut your floss to lengths. You'll double each piece, and I'd rather cut off extra than have something too short, so I probably started with 12"-14" strands. Once you've got your floss strands cut divide them out for the two earrings, then put one grouping through each jump ring. You want them stationary, so take an extra piece of coordinating floss, wrap and tie it tightly up against the jump ring. 
I opened the eye on the eyepin and hooked it through the jump ring too. Then I tested it to make sure the entire jump ring would go inside the cone. At first it didn't, so I took my needle nose pliers and squeezed the jump ring until it did. Then, just to keep it from sliding out while I was beading, I bent the pin over to hold it in place.

 I wanted this first pair a little fuller, so I split each strand of floss in half to three threads each, (as you know, embroidery floss starts out as six threads). Now decide on your beads. I went through my seed bead stash and picked out the colors I wanted and just dumped out some into a shoe box lid. I didn't want the beading to be uniform, so I just made a pile. Then I was ready to start adding the beads to the tassel strands. 
Now, here's where my trial and error might help you. I was making my finger tips raw trying to wet and twist the ends of the floss so it would go through the tiny sead bead holes when I decided to try some school glue and it worked like a charm!
Squeeze a dollop out on a piece of cardboard.
Drag the end of one of the tassel strands through the glue.
 Twist the glued end and let it dry for about 30 seconds. (I would glue and twist 10 or so strands at a time then bead those all at the same time then glue more strands and bead, and so on.)
The process that seemed to work the best for me was, bead a strand, slide them up, figure out where the knot should go. Tie it, clip the excess thread away, then slide the beads down to the knot.

 Keep doing that until they're all done. Then repeat for the second earring. I just used my judgement on the length of the strands, I didn't want them exactly uniform, so I cut them accordingly. When I started on the second earring I kept the first completed one handy and just used it as my gauge for determining the lengths of the strands on the mate.
Cut off the excess pin length, bend it into a loop, and hang it on your earring wire.

For the second pair, I wanted to make them red, white, and black. I also wanted to bead the entire strand of floss and make this pair slimmer.

Because of the excess that I cut off on the pin on the first pair, I decided to try it without using a jump ring. I uncurled the eye at the top of the pin, just straight enough to go through the top of the cone. I formed a bigger oval shaped loop on the other end. Make sure it's thin enough to fit all the way into the cone.

Select your embroidery floss and cut the strands.

Divide them.
Put one group through each of the altered pins. Don't forget to tie it off to secure them.

Insert the threaded pins into the cones and re-form the loops at the top.
Glue the ends and twist them tightly.

 Select your beads.

 Start beading the strands.
 Decide on the lengths, tie the knots, clip the excess floss, and slide the beads back down to the knot on each strand.
 Hang the finished tassel on your choice of earring wire.

Then repeat for the matching one. Use the first one as your gauge on the length so they match.
If you try to make some for yourself, be sure and let me know. I'd love to see your creations.

Thanks for stopping by!

I'm linking up at Debbiedoo's Newbie party and all the others listed on my Link Parties page.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Cards Game

I've been neglecting my blog of late. Work's been a bear. Seventy hour work weeks don't leave a lot of time for blogging or anything else for that matter. Things are better now. I just had the perfect storm of projects all happening at once, but the deadlines have been met and things are back to normal now. 

I have a back log of things to post about, so I'll probably make up for the missed weeks in the coming days. Hopefully I haven't permanently lost any subscribers. If you're one of them that's stuck it out, thanks!

To really appreciate this post you must know that I am as unlucky as they come when it comes to winning a drawing. If I buy a charity raffle ticket I right away consider it a contribution, because I know I won't win.

My employer was generous to offer Cardinal tickets to the employees, so I put my name in the hat, and guess what? They drew my name! Yay! And for a game on a day that I had already planned to take off work, (partly to recover from the long work days from the last few weeks). 

The St Louis Cardinals! Here's a photo journal of the game. 

Pretty sweet seats, huh?

The arch. 
Fred Bird, pregame, warming up the crowd .
The World Champions take the field. 
The line up. 
My little Nikon Coolpix does a great job, but check out this guy's giant camera! 

The World Champion's dugout 

Did I mention that we're the World Champions? :) 
Fred Bird working the crowd 
David Freese, the MVP of the world series last year. He wasn't in the lineup for the game but came out once to pinch hit.

We didn't win, but in our defense, I'm sure The Cards were tired. After all they spanked Cincinnati 11-1 the night before. It was great to see the game! Mr ShowMe and I had a blast! 

Here's one last picture for the day. The St Louis Arch from a stop light as we were leaving down town St Louis after the game.

Check back in the coming days. I'm working on a tutorial for some really cool earrings that I'm making, I have another photo journal to post, and I've drawn out the pattern for a new purse design, so if it sews together like I plan I'll be sharing it soon too.

Thanks for stopping by!