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Archive for Tuition

Oh no, not more procrastination

Monday lunchtime

I’m procrastinating again….can you believe it? And this time it’s not tax or accounts, oh no, it’s sorting out my insulation and lining for my studio. I hate planning stuff when I’m not totally sure what I’m doing, or when I have too many design issues to resolve before I can do it, one reason why we still haven’t decked out the back yet (I want to get too many things out of the project). So what’s the hold up this time? I’m not sure, but I can tell you I’m feeling absolutely drained of enthusiasm or energy. I want to curl up into a little ball and snooze right now. But I can’t, I have to get this stuff ordered, especially as there’s a pesky bank holiday this Friday. Also the sooner I get this ordered, the sooner I can get back to play (sorry, work) at bead making. I’m sure that will be tomorrow now, and if that’s not incentive enough I don’t know what is!

I have a couple of places on glass beadmaking courses to fill again

1 place on a 1 Day Beginners Course Thurs 1st April……yes, that’s this Thursday!!!!!

…..1 place on a 2 Day Beginners Course Tues 25th to Weds 26th May……

contact me now to book your place

And I have also put yet more beads in my Etsy shop, here’s a taster….I know, I still can’t get over how regularly I’m doing this.


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You know you’re getting old when……

Friday afternoon

Life. It never goes to plan. It’s always unexpected. Wa hay, it’s fun isn’t it? Never knowing what’s around the corner, be it good or bad? I’m one of those people who likes a challenge, and I like problem solving, and I believe I’m flexible too. I’m saying this because today I had lots planned, but haven’t been able to do much of it because my poor daughter is home with a little sick bug. Fortunately she seems to be over the worst of it and is now feeling hungry, so that’s probably a good sign. I was thinking of taking the morning off, moseying into town to get my new spectacles adjusted….you know you’re getting older when you get your first varifocals, I couldn’t bear the thought of visible bi-focals making me look older than I am! I was then maybe going to treat myself to a coffee in Costa, then go home and leisurely make beads this afternoon.

But instead I’ve been updating my website, adding new events, writing news for my front page, answering contact forms and getting up to date with little tasks that suddenly seem to have piled up. I’ve been so intent on getting my Etsy shop up and running, and updating it on a regular basis that I seem to have let other stuff slip. I can’t win! Speaking of Etsy, I have added more new beads this week! And I have had my first ever sale to America, so exciting (for me anyway, I’m easily pleased). I really will have to go and lie down in a dark room if I keep this up…which I am doing! Look, there’s photos below of the new beads!

I have also 1 new place on a course, One Day Beginners Beadmaking on Thurs 13th May. Drop me an email to book this place. Have a great weekend.

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Course vacancy Sat 6th March!

Fri morning

just a flying visit to say I have one space on a beginners course tomorrow that has suddenly become available.

Yes that’s TOMORROW 6th March!

If you want to come drop me an email, and I’ll get back to you as soon as possible. I’m teaching again today but will check back often. Saturdays are rare for me to be teaching, and I know how you all want them, so grab your space now.

Oh, and I have some new beads on Etsy.

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Grand Etsy Shop Opening, new beads on my website and 1 place on a course

Wednesday morning

It’s all change here I tell you! I had my Grand Etsy shop opening last Thursday, well I say grand but what really happened was I put 4 items up for sale and did a tiny bit of promotion. And guess what…..I’ve already made 2 sales…..and I have restocked the shop again too…..phew, I think I need a lie down now, the excitement is getting too much! lol. And have you noticed more changes here? You can now find a link straight to my Etsy shop in the left hand toolbar of my blog and shop. This has a few sneaky peeks of what is on offer over there, so do have a mosey on down and see what’s occurring. Also you’ll notice a link to Twitter, where I will be announcing when I have new pieces in my Etsy shop and this website shop. So if you want to keep up with my latest work, you can become a follower.

As well as this I have also restocked my shop here with some new bead sets, perfect for a Valentine present, and here’s a peek……

Today the kiln is heating up as I write, I’ve sort of made Wednesday my main bead making day, with another day thrown in each week if I can. Of course this will be subject to change as my teaching schedule is very varied from week to week. I still have a space for one person on Wednesday 17th March on a One Day Beginners Course and if you’re wanting to learn but this date doesn’t suit then I still have days available in my diary to pick from. Contact me for more details or if you want this date. Life is certainly never predictable or dull here.

I’m going to put a photo here of my favourite set at the moment, which sold from Etsy, but I’m planning to make some more so keep a look out for them. This set is called Silver Waters and has dreamy transparent shades of blue, turquoise and teal with a pastel spiral inside and a slight golden glow when you view the beads from the side.

Toodles……..I’m off to play with my hot glass (in the snow)(It’s snowing here)(slightly)(ish).

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Today’s the day…I’m featured in Bead Magazine

Thursday evening

If you have come here via Bead Magazine welcome! and welcome also if you’ve arrived via my advert in the Making Jewellery courses supplement. I have new course vacancies on my tuition page and these are currently changing daily.

I’m very pleased to be featured in Bead magazine in the ‘Makers Profile’ slot this month, and if you’ve read the article you’ll know that my objectives for this year are to direct my business to be a more web- based one. To that end we’ve been working really hard the last week to bring my web site up to date and give it a bit of a makeover. I’m very pleased with how it’s looking now. I have a lovely fresh gallery with lots of lovely photos, and an updated front page (thank you Dickie). I’ve also re-stocked my bead shop at last, the first of many re-stocks this year. I have other changes to make but I’m not going to bore you with that, it’s for me to do and you to find when I’ve done it!

I’ve also been very busy this week getting ready for the bead fair at Ardingly this Sunday. I will have my usual mix of colourful beads, some new silver chains suitable for my Cloud Beads and I’m having a bit of a spring clear out so will have some reduced price sets and of course I’m refilling my popular bargain pots. Do come and say hello.

Here’s a peek at the new beads in my shop

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Snooooooooooooooooowwww again

Wednesday evening

And again, all over the place. Woo hoo it looks so lovely but also means that our daughter was home again today. More work has been done on her igloo, and she even made a snow girl. We had to use celery instead of a carrot for a nose as I can’t eat celery and I’m reluctant to use what veg we have left! Needless to say I’ve found it very hard to work again today after my huge success yesterday when I worked hard ALL day and ALL evening not stopping until midnight. I think I burnt myself out, oh dear. I was also worried about getting to the surgery for my flu jab as I thought I’d have to walk there and back (3.2 miles) in the snow and ice. Fortunately I got the car off the drive and we had a quick jaunt there and back. So I finally succumbed and had the jab! Well they did ring me and offer it, so I thought maybe I should have it, although our daughter did get swine flue in the summer and we certainly didn’t. So far no odd effects, not even the achy arm she promised.

And today I also got excited about my first advert! If you get Making Jewellery magazine I have an advert in the free courses guide, complete with a photo of my pink frit swirlers as can be seen on my tuition page and the home page….yes….more excitement, Rick actually put some new photos up for me. And even more exciting….they used my photos on the front page of the courses guide too. If you’ve looked at my tuition page since yesterday you’ll also see that I have at last announced my first special courses. Just drop me an email for details on how to book and to choose your dates.

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The end of the naughties

Thursday morning

To quote Britney Spears  ‘Ooops I did it again’. This is becoming a bit of a bad habit, not blogging for days on end. But, well, you know how it is on the lead up to Christmas and over the holiday.  At least Rick didn’t put Buffy on again the day after our mammoth Buffy Fest. Unfortunately we now also own the complete box set of Angel and 2 series of Dr Who, the ones with Billie and David Tennant (no 2), and one with Martha and David (no 3) ….I really have no idea when we’ll be watching these, as contrary to popular belief we do not spend every hour of every evening glued to the telly, as we have rather of lot of stuff to do all the time. And did I mention Shaun the Sheep? I also had series 1 of this given and was staggered to see there are 40 episodes…I had no idea there were so many.

It’s been a good holiday so far, probably far too much relaxing going on in all honesty, but I certainly needed a rest after all my running around to Guildford and back and keeping my exhibitions topped up with jewellery. So what else did I get for Christmas? I have to say my favourite present is a Wally trolley! Oh yes, I thought I’d never be seen dead with one, but they’re coming back into fashion, all the trendy ladies in France use them. I really don’t see much difference between a trendy trolley (and it does have to be trendy) and a suitcase on wheels. I was also very encouraged to see about 4 ladies my age and younger using them for their Christmas shopping in Horsham town centre. I shall be using mine for my exercise power walk to the local shop and back. This summer I was totally weighed down with very heavy bags of spuds and copious pints of milk and it was really getting very tiresome and sore on the hands and my back and shoulders. So I shall now parade to the parade with my black, red and white spotty bag on wheels (oh my dear, a plaid one just wouldn’t do….I wouldn’t be seen dead with the traditional looking ones).  Mine also has a built in coolbag, a pocket for a brolley, and various pockets for different things. Click here if you fancy a sneak peek at my designer chic! Oh what a wally trolley dolly!

Dates are booking up fast for beadmaking tuition in the New year…..see my tuition page for details and contact me for available dates.  I have 1 space for a beginner on Friday 5th February. I also decided to add some of the many testimonials regarding my courses that I’ve been collecting for the past few years. Thank you to everyone who has written such lovely comments in our book, you’ve all been great students!

Have a Happy New Year!

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I was a British Bead Award Finalist! woo hoo

Wednesday evening

Oh it’s all go! I’ve been at the Surrey Guild Gallery again today, and will be teaching again tomorrow. It all just seems to be non-stop for me at the moment, which is good but a little exhausting. After my big push for the Big Bead Show on Saturday I’m feeling totally shattered and keep falling asleep watching telly in the evenings! I spent the day in the gallery today matching beads to make earrings and floater necklaces (when there were no customers), it takes time but I think it is worth it, as I am very particular about attention to detail in my lampwork glass beads and jewellery. I am now ready to start making my jewellery again, just in time for the start of the run up to Christmas and the few craft fairs and exhibitions that I am taking part in.

The Big Bead Show was fun, it was lovely seeing all my friends again, meeting all my new customers and and seeing all my students who came to say hello, thank you for making my day. Our mystery free gifts went down very well, our new Sarah Downton Fridge Magnets with stunning photos of my beads, all photographed by Rick. I can also reveal that I was  finalist in The Bead Awards, something that I had to keep quiet for ages! I was one of 6 finalists chosen from many applicants, there should have been just 3 finalists but the standard of entries was so high that the judges had a real job deciding. In the end they chose to call in 6 entries and chose 3 winners. Unfortunately I did not come in the top 3, but I did have my entry on display in the awards room and was given a finalist certificate. I’m really pleased to have got so far, and would like to congratulate my friend Francesca Cerretta who came first with a really quirky bead, Manda Murdimer who came second with her sublime cored bead and Rachel Elliot (3rd) with her Retticello bead, and also Emma Baird and Marion Sidebottom who were the other 2 finalists with me.

Here are the beads I entered….Transition iii

Transition iii front viewTransition iii

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Tuition Date and stuff

Friday morning

Tuition date announced……I have 1 space available on a 1 day Beginners Course on Saturday 10th October. Contact me now to book your place!

Another day another dollar, or should that be bead? We had a great time last weekend, catching up with bead making friends from around the country and generally having a good time, oh, and we sold beads! I managed to stay fairly chilled in the end, and set a time limit for pricing up my new bead sets, which I actually managed to stick to, so I didn’t spend all evening sitting at the desk working like I’ve always done in the past. It was lovely to see some of you guys again and to meet some new customers. I am now preparing for the next flurry of fairs, which are next weekend at Harrow and 2 weeks later at Sandown – The Big Bead Show, this is the one where I need lots of stock, my new arrivals area was decimated at the end of the day last year. So I have had my head down as much as I could this week, and will be popping off into the studio shortly to continue my exploration of colour…..I’ve been trying new ways of using my many pots frit and I’m really pleased with yesterdays haul.

Just lately my mojo (and I actually don’t like using that word) seems to be coming and going. One day I have loads of ideas, and the next I struggle to think of what to make, even though the previous day I will be itching to try lots of ideas. I think maybe the pressure of fairs booked and only having a certain amount of time during the day to make beads isn’t helping. I know when I can spend time at the torch and feel I must produce as many saleable beads during this time as I can.

Forget all the business stuff I have to do, which again is falling behind as is the housework, blah! I guess there just aren’t enough hours in the day and I should stop being so hard on myself. The kitchen looks like a bomb hit it, and it’s not just me, it’s Rick, we both hate housework and will do anything else when home to avoid doing it. I’ve come to the conclusion today (well, actually I’ve always known this) that I hate washing up too, it’s all such a waste of creative time. I wish it would all go in the dishwasher. Maybe we should buy some cheap saucepans that can be bunged in with the rest of the stuff, or maybe we should be training our daughter to do the pots and pans….hmmmm….now there’s a thought.

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Phew..it’s been mad

Monday evening

Oh woops! I’m back, yes I do apologise for the long gap between posts. It has been manic and I’ve had to have my head down and keep focused and working hard to fit everything in over the past month. Open Houses, which were in full swing on each weekend sandwiching my sponsored walk, were successful, we had several visitors, and almost everyone left with some sort of goodies from one of the 3 of us. We had a lovely 2 weekends, with good weather and fun together in Ediths beautiful sloping garden, making new friends and enjoying each others company.

After that I had to prepare for the Contemporary Art, Craft and Design Fair at Winchester, this included getting all my stock ready, then a trip down with my cabinet to set up, 2 days stewarding on the Thursday and Friday, and then another trip last Sunday to break down the exhibition. I saved my energy and booked the salubrious Travelodge north of Winchester, and enjoyed 2 days there, with some fun but very rushed shopping in my lunchtime, and a very quick visit to my friend Simon’s bead shop there called World of Beads. Oh, and I managed to squeeze in a trip to the Hampton Court Flower Show the same week as the Winchester show, phew.

Then it was back home to yet more teaching, trying to tidy the house and catch up with stuff in general, and prepare for the next bead fair, which is this coming Sunday, at Ardingly. I will have my usual mix of yummy colour beads as focals and sets, and my fun bargain pots, which I have restocked since the last fair at Dorking. Catch you there, I expect I’ll be upstairs so do come and say hello and get yourself some of my new bead designs.

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New tuition dates and 3 days to go to Open Studios

Tuesday morning

I have space on another 2 day Beginners Glass Beadmaking Course next week, Mon 22nd – Tues 23rd June. Email me now to reserve your place on this or the other course from Mon 29th – Tues 30th June (one space remaining) running the following week…….

3 days until I have to set up my cabinet for Horsham Open Studios and counting (do you see my necklace at the top of the link web page? eh? eh?)……all is going well, if not a bit manic, as I am working from when I get up,  almost until I go to bed, with only enough of a stop just to eat lunch and dinner. But I’m getting there, at my last count I had 50 pieces of jewellery to put in my cabinet, not including beads on thongs or phone dangles, so I’m almost there. All I have to do now (ha ha…all) is clear out my cabinet which I use as a store most of the time, dust down the shelves and try laying out my display. Then I have to label my pieces with codes and prices and do a stock list so I know what’s sold, organise my packaging, leaflets, mirror, earring holder etc….I always forget how long that part takes. Then I have to find the lights, keys, extension leads etc…it all takes so long, so if I can get most of my work made and finished today that gives me a couple of days to sort the rest hopefully. Roll on Saturday….slowly please.

In amongst all this I have managed to book my ticket to the Hampton Court Flower Show (yipee), but more importantly I need to find time to go for walks, as my Race for Life sponsored walk is next Wednesday.  Thank you to everyone who has sponsored me so far, you know who you are, but there is still time for more sponsoring for those of you who haven’t so far and would like to. It’s very easy, just follow this link to sponsor me on-line and help such a worthy cause that affects all of us at some time and in some way.

I have to admit to struggling with this post today, as I’m outside on my favourite bench (well, it’s the only one we have actually but I love sitting here) in the very bright sunshine, with my brightness turned up so high, and I’m still struggling to read what I’ve put or even worse find the cursor! I thought I should pop outside and get some fresh air after being cooped up indoors all day yesterday. Well, I’d better get back to the grindstone…laters.

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I love my new studio!

Tuesday morning

I love my new studio! I can’t get over how spacious it feels inside, you could really swing a cat in there (apologies to all cat lovers), whereas the last one you could pick up a mouse but not even swing it…not that there were any mice in there of course. I have 2 workspaces set up in a sort of minimal way, and I’m determined to keep it as clear as I can until we start lining the walls, however I don’t seem to be succeeding. I keep needing more things to be able to work, ‘oh just that tool’ and ‘I really want to try that glass I bought at the Flame Off‘. What’s a girl to do? All that scrumptious new glass and lovely new colours from CIM, I’m aching to try CIM Sapphire and Cornflower and TAG Taxco Silver Turquoise. OH dear, I’m going to have to take the rest of my box of goodies down to the studio today and start using it, I can always stash it in one of the wire drawers I have.

I really don’t know where the last 2 months have gone, well I do, but didn’t get the jobs done that I’d hoped to, as I thought I’d have loads of time to update my website, write tutorials and generally tart things up a bit. But taking down the studio and preparing for the new one took all my energies and thoughts, I suppose I thought that may be the case, but had hoped that I’d be able to take advantage of the time and sort some indoor jobs. But I’m not going to beat myself up about it, I have a huge new studio and can make handmade glass beads again, which is bliss. I also started my glass beadmaking courses again last week, and have a couple of days this week and several dates to look forward to throughout June. Anyway, enough of my wittering, I need to get my kiln on and get making beadies for the Bead Fair at Dorking Halls on 31st May.

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Studio progress update

Monday tea time

Where did the Easter holiday go? Why am I sooooo tired? Why am I skint? Why is there a huge pile of washing up in the kitchen, you know, all the posh stuff you don’t want to ruin in the dishwasher? Why are there masses of glass jars and bits all over the lounge floor? and who left that shed in pieces around the side of the house?

OK, so here’s the plot, Monday before Easter we emptied my studio, that took longer than I thought it would, even with my packing things and tidying stuff away the week beforehand. Late Monday afternoon Rick removed the benches, power and stuff screwed to the walls. Tuesday we took the shed apart and carted it around the side of the house, this was very enjoyable as there was no way I could have done that for the last 10 or so years previous. Then Rick started excavating the plot to lay the next 12 slabs we needed, including digging out the pesky Virginia Creeper shoots and ivy plants everywhere. We managed to fill 2 of those Hippo bags you can get from builders merchants with the soil from the slope, which didn’t look particularly slopey until he started digging of course. Then he had to lug 12 bags of sand, 12 huge slabs, move the 2 heavy sleepers that were holding back the lawn, then move them 3 or 4 more times as they kept gettong in the way. After the slabs were laid we started repairing the surrounding fences, and removed 2 panels from the back of our garden so that we have slightly more room to walk along the back of the new studio to remove leaves and stuff. The panel removal revealed a huge tangle of more Virginia Creeper, which all had to be prised off the fence and chopped to fill the recycling bags, and the huge root dug up and disposed of. I also went around the garden and pulled out all the brown long leaves from the Crocosmia and grasses around the place, cut back the Pyrocantha and the Fatsia Japonica to reveal the Hellibores we planted last spring, and generally got rid of the plant rubbish. I then attacked the front garden border and had several subsequent trips to the dump, which in itself was entertaining as the bags were so heavy I had to drag them, then pull individual handfuls of plant bits into the skips until the bag was light enough to pick up and tip the contents away. Phew. Oh and we also had 2 trips down to look at cars, one of them to buy a car we wanted and had rung up to check it was still there, only to be told casually ‘Oh we sold that one yesterday’ when we got there. Typical.

That’s the progress so far, we now have to finish repairing the fences, paint them, and decide how many new sleepers and slabs we need to complete the area around the studio and the path down to it. I also need to organise the insulating materials, the internal cladding, the flooring, the ventilation and what benches I want. I’m also trying to choose a couple of lovely garden shades to paint the shed when it’s been up for a while. That’s all the good news, the bad news is that I’ve been let down on when the studio is being delivered, which is after I was supposed to be starting teaching again. This is very annoying and stressful because I now have almost 3 weeks without a studio, the time slot that I had planned for fitting out my studio perfectly, and now we have to make it just ‘OK’ to start teaching on time, and that’s with having had to rearrange a couple of students to come in June instead now. Of course even OK will be plenty to actually teach properly, it just won’t be fixed up permanently and decorated.

As far as the rest of the holiday and my tireness, that’s probably down to going away to the Flame Off last Friday and Saturday, but thats another post!

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Tuition Dates

Thurs evening

I have a couple of spaces available for beadmaking courses

The first is a space for 1 person on a 1 day beginners course Thurs 21st May.

The second is suitable for you if you have taken a course but not yet set up your studio, or if you are self taught and want to improve your skills or simply see someone else make beads. The dates for this 2 day refresher course are Sat 16th May and Weds 20th May.

See my tuition page for more information and email me now to reserve your place.

Plans are going ahead for my studio refurbishment, or should I say demolition and rebuilding. It’s been a long time coming, we chose a new shed last year, but the weather was soooooo cold in January that I had to put my plans on hold as we were concerned about freezing concrete. I’ve since found out that I don’t need to lay a concrete base, which I’m really happy about as it’s not very green laying masses of uneccesary concrete. I ordered my shed on Monday, with a whole 25% discount, the best I’ve seen for this make, and it should be here in 2 to 4 weeks. In the meantime we will be packing up the studio on Monday and dismantling it, then lifting the old slabs, cutting away the lawn to make space for the extra 2 foot width and hauling the sleepers along before laying the base. There’s so much to do but I’ve decided to deal with each stage about a week before it’s due to happen. I can’t be doing with sourcing everything right now as I have an urge to make as many beads as I can before I see my studio collapse.

So what about our fabby new car? Oh dear, after masses of agonising on Tuesday we walked away from the deal because the dealer couldn’t locate the Service History. To say we were gutted would be an understatement, but the saying ‘that you get what you pay for’, and ‘some things are too good to be true’ are spot on. It was such a good deal, very new second hand car with a low mileage and a high specification that was 1K less than it should have been.  So now the hunt continues, although I think we’ve narrowed down the choice of cars, so could possibly task a garage with the fun of tracking down our ideal car.

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All aboard the Skylark…not

Saturday evening

Phew it’s been a busy day, but very enjoyable. I’ve had 2 lovely ladies for a one day beginners course (waves 😉 ) and now it’s time for me to put my feet up. It’s Saturday night and I’m home alone as Rick has taken our daughter out for the afternoon and evening so it looks like it’s up to me to decide what I eat tonight, yay! I hear a pizza beconing cos it’s easy, hmmmmm, and it means I can watch BBC1’s zanny Comic Relief idea of getting celebs to do famous iconic dances. Last weeks Flashdance by Robert Webb was hilarious, I wonder if anyone else will come close to his performance. Then later when his nibs gets back I hope to kick off my shoes and watch this week’s Lost…

You know, I’m going to clamber onto my soapbox and have a quick winge about Sky. Why do they always knick the best shows from terestrial TV and prevent other channels from showing them, I mean, I know it’s business, but it really annoys me that they don’t have the guts to try out new series, they wait for terrestrial TV to try something out then if it’s a hit they nab it. They should have the guts to try things out for themselves and stop creaming off the best. I realise that it’s also a way to get more subscribers, but I think it’s way mean. I really miss 24, that was another quality series that was snatched away.  Rant over.

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Countdown to Christmas fairs, 1 week and counting

Friday morning

230 beads…………that’s how many I had to clean after my mamoth session on Tuesday added to the results of all my play work last week. Yikes, I really should try not to let them pile up like that. Today I’m having my final bead making session for the magazine comp, at least I hope it will be, I may have to sneak out tomorrow and finish off if the beads don’t sit properly together. My work on this on Wednesday was, I feel, successful, but it’s adding to what I’ve already done that could potentially be a problem as I’m reet proper fussy when it comes to making up my really posh sets.

I had another fab teaching day with 2 lovely ladies yesterday, and that was my last bit of teaching until the new year, and of the course the last this month, which has been chocka full of teaching dates. Now all I need to do is get ready for the 2 fairs I have next weekend, and the 2 exhibitions I think I’m doing, that also start next Saturday, so have to have the pieces to deliver on Friday at the latest. I’ve been trying not to get stressed about my work during the run up to Christmas and this has been working well, but to be honest, it’s working too well, so well, that I’m so laid back I’m horizontal and have done almost nothing to prepare. I have a stash of beads I made last month waiting to be turned into jewellery, but all my time has been spent doing masses of teaching, making my weekly order and getting to grips with Double Helix glass as well as my efforts to enter the magazine comp. I would normally have been making up jewelley in every spare moment, and all evening, but I’ve been so tired or busy cleaning beads and preparing my studio and tidying up from teaching that by the time all that’s done I need to rest……..I think I’ll put it down to still being a bit under par from the huge doses of anaesthetic earlier this year and my continual healing, after all it does get a bit zingy around my scar from time to time, so stuff is obviously still happening on some level.  Right, I’m off to run the kiln and start making beadies again. TTFN.

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Less of the Sergeant, more of the dancers please

Monday morning

Well helloooooo there. I probably shouldn’t be so chirpy as I am missing my jewellery class yet again – the place to go for me to have a fun afternoon chatting with like minded jewellery making obsessed ladies. And especially today they are having our Christmas class jewellery sale. Yes I’m a bit sad about this, but maybe it’s a good thing as I am still just sooooo wacked out. We really must get our car situation sorted out….anyone got an estate car for sale? anyone? anyone?

I just popped out to my studio, and man, it’s chilly out there, only 5 deg. C this morning, but I’m off out to make some handmade glass beads in a mini mo for my regular weekly order. Then tomorrow and Thursday I’m teaching yet again, I seem to be doing about 2 days a week at the moment, which is so much fun and a bit tiring but hey ho, it’s worth it.

The big question on everyone’s mind today is…who on earth is voting for John Sergeant in Strictly Come Dancing? It sure ain’t me, but he really should go now, I know he’s fun to watch how badly he does everything, but it now seems so unfair that the really fabulous contestants are being booted off the show a week earlier than they should and missing their potential to learn new dances and improve more. I suppose maybe we should be asking ourselves if the BBC are cheating and keeping him in to give the show controversy and generally rigging the polls to suit what they feel the show should be like? Or does he have a huge cake baking, blue rinse, daytime TV watching, lady fan base? Who knows.

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Sarah Scissorhands

Monday afternoon

I don’t know what’s going on, but the last few days I’ve spent bead making I seem to have managed to cut my fingers twice a day, that’s 6 cuts on 3 days. Wot? I just don’t get it! And of course they’re the kind of light paper styli cuts that keep opening up slightly and stinging lots. Ouch. So what’s going on?

Well, I think I may be starting to panic a tad, oh yes, it’s that time of year again when offers of exhibitions and shows, all starting on the same date, all come slewing in at the last minute to tempt me to join in. Now if it was one event after the other it wouldn’t be too bad as I could make some new stock, display that, then while it’s out there make some more to top it up and so on. But of course it’s not, and here was I planning to start making up Christmas stock in September and October, but what happened? I had 3 bead fairs in 2 months, only 1 that I’d actually planned well in advance, and that kind of put things back. I’m also very pleased to be doing lots of bead making tuition and I can now reveal that I have a regular order now too. I wanted to do it for a while before mentioning it here, but it’s going well and giving me lots of practice although it does give me less time for my other activities.I think I may have to resort to making myself a timetable, or I should say do some project planning to make sure I get everything done. Oh well, I’d better get off and put some washing on and run the dishwasher…what an exciting life I lead!

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Last few tuition dates for 2008

Monday afternoon

Phew, I’m glad this weekend is over. It was a very busy show on Saturday at Sandown, a huge event with masses of stalls and hundreds of visitors. Thank you to everyone who came to see us and say hello, and of course to everyone who bought my beads. My tray of new beads was decimated by the end of the show, I hope you all enjoy using them. I was so busy all day that it was only when I popped over to Tufnells late afternoon to collect my glass supplies that I realised how wet it was outside, yuch. Fortunately we didn’t have too far to drive to get home so were tucking into a well deserved curry and a bottle of wine by about 8 o’clock that evening, and today I’m sat here with my feet up having a second day of rest to get over the last 2 months solid of work. I now have to plan how I’m going to fit in the next 2 months work and sort Christmas at the same time, rather than leave it all until the last week before the event.

I have 3 tuition dates remaining this year, all of them for 1 person to attend a 1 day Beginners Beadmaking Course. The dates available are

Friday 7th Nov (yes…this week!)

Wednesday 12th Nov (next week)

Thursday 27th Nov

Email me to secure your place on one of these courses, the last dates available before next February! We are planning to replace the studio in January next year so I will not recommence teaching until February.

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No more poo ‘on a stick’ (ode to CMOT Dibbler)

Tues morning

Just a quick fly by to say hi (ooer that rhymes). I seem to be very busy, making beads for orders, teaching and getting ready for the Big Bead Show on the 1st Nov. Please note that this is a Saturday Bead Fair, not the usual Sunday affair. My personal targets for October seem to be slipping away without me achieving them, apart for one which was to try and master silver rich glass, which I’ve had a few hours at and have made wonderful progress, well, in one session at least.  I got all technical about it, went down to my studio armed with printed hints and tips and a tutorial, and a piece of paper to record my results and make notes on how I did it, where and what time it was put in the kiln….and guess what…no more poo on sticks! yay. Of course the second time I tried, but with a different technique and on ivory, all I got was tiny brown dots and very muted colours where I’d done a plunge dot. So now I need to work out how to get fabulous colours with encasing the stuff. Anyway, I must dash, I have a shed load of beads to make today, and they won’t make themselves you know…wags finger.

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