Kalmbach Bead Soup Party Reveal

Kalmbach Bead soup glass addictions

Remember way back in September when I showed you this?

Bead soup from Heirloom Classics glass addictions jennifer cameron

Today you get to see what I made with the bead soup provided by Heirloom Classics (located in Indianapolis, my personal favorite city and the place I would choose to live above any other if I could pick up and move...I've already lived there twice). Here it is:

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party reveal jennifer cameron glass addictions

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party reveal jennifer cameron glass addictions enameled beads

I admit I struggled with this soup. Here is the focal and clasp alone:

Focal and clasp from heirloom classics glass addictions bead soup

The focal was my biggest challenge. I don't really work with stone. Also, when placed against the skin, the stone kind of goes blah looking. So the first thing I needed to do was back it with something. I decided on cutting a piece of 28g sterling silver sheet in a similar shape and size and giving it a bit of texture to add interest.

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party reveal glass addictions jennifer cameron enameled copper beads

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party reveal glass addictions jennifer cameron enameled copper beads

Then I decided to add a bit of color. Because I don't really do neutral. I had a curl of copper sheet that I had cut something...I don't remember what (don't throw anything away!) that made this really cool shape. So I enameled it in a turquoise color

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party reveal glass addictions jennifer cameron enameled copper beads

Then used some of the seed beads included in the soup, strung it onto fireline, and made a bail to assemble all the focal pieces together.

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party reveal glass addictions jennifer cameron enameled copper beads

I wanted to use the blue again somewhere else so it didn't look like it didn't belong. Also, I knew I wanted to use some kind of fiber. So I enameled some of these filigree cones in the same blue, and braided some recycled sari silk yarn with some gunmetal ball chain and attached both ends to the filigree cones.

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party reveal glass addictions jennifer cameron enameled copper beads recycled sari silk yarn

I wanted to use the black beads from the soup, but the scale seemed wrong. So I used some of my black enameled beads to finish things off. The clasp was my absolute favorite thing in the soup from Heirloom Classics, so I wanted it to have a starring role:

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party reveal glass addictions jennifer cameron enameled copper beads recycled sari silk yarn

Which gives the necklace a slight asymmetrical look, but I definitely didn't go crazy or anything... So out of the soup I was given, I used the focal, clasp and some of the seed beads. I would like to share the bounty of what I received. Leave a comment to be entered to win the remainder of the soup (minus the seed beads...they are all over the place!). I look forward to seeing what others made. Kalmbach will be showing photos of bead soup party creations on their facebook page.

Weaving, Patina-ing, Tumbling and business card display

My friend Lisa does a lot to support Wellspring, which is a local organization providing educational opportunities, summer camp, food, etc to people living downtown and in what we call the West Central Neighborhood, which is pretty much downtown. I lived in the west central neighborhood until I was 11 or 12 and love seeing the revitalization currently taking place. Anyway, she asked me to make something for their upcoming gala. So I put this chainmaille bracelet together.

Chainmaille bracelet for wellspring auction jennifer cameron glass addictions

Before it got to this final point, I texted Lisa with this photo to ask if it was acceptable:

Chainmaille bracelet for wellspring auction jennifer cameron glass addictions

She was thrilled with it. But I decided I wanted it to be less shiny. So I did this to it:

Patina chainmaille viper weave jennifer cameron glass addictions

This is after a liver of sulphur bath and a tiny bit of scrubbing with a 0000 piece of steel wool. After a bit more scrubbing, this is what it looks like compared to a piece of the same chainmaille weave without patina

Patina vs no patina chainmaille viper weave jennifer cameron glass addictions

Patina (which is basically the process of rapidly tarnishing metal) really is personal preference. I like it, but not all the time. I usually don't love super shiny copper. However, sometimes I do. It really depends on the person making the piece or the person buying the piece. Once I had steel wooled the bracelet to my satisfaction, I put it in the tumbler for a couple hours. I use one I got from Harbor Freight, but am thinking it's time to upgrade very soon as this thing doesn't have enough horse power for how much I use it

Tumbling chainmaille and lampwork bracelet jennifer cameron glass addictions

And here's the final result:

Chainmaille Viper Basket weave bracelet Jennifer Cameron glass addictions

One more thing...I was perusing a craft show pinterest board that Joanne Tinley curated and found this ideas for showing biz cards. I think it's brilliant!

While at Target this morning, I found Slinky Jr's in the dollar section:

Biz card holder slinky jr jennifer cameron glass addictions

This is my favorite biz card solution so far!

AJE October Component of the Month Reveal

My reveal post is so late! I had technical difficulties, but they are all fixed now. Kristen Stevens, one of my AJE teammates, was the host for the October component of the month. I love that she uses seed beads for components and still has hair...because I know I would rip mine out if I tried to do what she does. Here's what Kristen made for us to work with: Kristen Stevens beaded components Aren't they perfect for autumn? I received the green ones:

October COTM art jewelry elements Kristen Stevens

The color is way off in this's more accurate in the following photos. It's a more muted olive color. At first I was thinking of making earrings, and had laid some out, but I changed my mind. Because I'm allowed to do that. My biggest thing was I felt like the leaf needed more oomph if it is to be a focal. It was just so light and delicate...especially for my work. I also kind of wanted to steampunkify it a little bit (Yes, that's a word. Because I just made it up)

October art jewelry elements component of the month jennifer cameron glass addictions

So I backed the leaf with a brass cog, fronted it with a starburst thingy, a very sparkly swarovski crystal that looks better with its top side facing out like this (it doesn't show well in the pics because I had camera issues and had to use my phone).

October art jewelry elements component of the month jennifer cameron glass addictions

  I then used this rectangle texture thing from Vintaj. I had to make the hole bigger to fit the size jump ring I wanted to use and I also "distressed" it by using a nail file/buffer on it to take some of the patina off the high spots, concentrating on the edges of the rectangle and mostly leaving the center of it alone. I made these basic lampwork frit beads with fine silver, which I LOVE and will be making more very soon.

October art jewelry elements component of the month jennifer cameron glass addictions

October art jewelry elements component of the month jennifer cameron glass addictions

Wire wrapped each bead and attached them together with a couple different sizes of Vintaj jump rings then finished it off with some recycled sari silk

October art jewelry elements component of the month jennifer cameron glass addictions

I am thrilled with how it came out! I've never used beaded components like this and I love how lightweight they are...especially for the size. A big thanks to Kristen for letting me play! Make sure you see what others made with Kristen's components.

This Autumn, in Pictures

Autumn is my absolute favorite time of year. I just want to drink it in, make the nice parts last longer. Mums Pumpkin shopping Pumpkin Shopping Apparently pumpkins with peanut shell barnacle covering cost extra The reason I don't buy potted plants. Poor things hadn't been watered in 2 weeks and a slight breeze would knock them over I am horrible with plants. This is what our mums looked like after 2 weeks without water and a strong windy day. Poor things Autumn The back yard   Frog on the window as viewed from the front porch sidelight by the front door   Autumn at the lake upload upload Autumn My lawnboy

This Week

I am sorting this box of charms for the charm swap.


Each participant sent an extra charm to be auctioned off to benefit Beads of Courage, which is an organization close to my heart. Once everyone has their charms, we will reveal them on our blogs and start those auctions. We want to earn as much as possible for Beads of Courage, so start saving up now to win some of these amazing charms.

Donation for Civic Theatre

In my last post, I alluded to working on some donations that I would share the next day. Well...that obviously didn't happen because sometimes life gets in the way. The fundraiser was for the Ft Wayne Civic Theatre with a really fun theme for the evening. Local "celebrities" (politicians, business owners, news anchor) putting on a play where Snow White and Pinnocchio are running for the office of President of Fairytale Land. In an effort to support the local arts, I donated a couple pieces of jewelry. Also, because my sister in law is on the planning committee for this fundraiser and she asked nicely... First up, I donated a Viking Knit sterling silver and lampwork bead bracelet (my beads...of course). Handmade clasp. The only thing I didn't make or manipulate on this bracelet are the 2 end caps.

Viking Knit and lampwork bead bracelet jennifer cameron glass addictions

Viking Knit and lampwork bead bracelet jennifer cameron glass addictions

And because I was feeling generous, I also made a mixed media necklace specifically for the event with upcycled bullet casing.

Mixed media necklace lampwork bullet casing jennifer cameron glass addictions

I even made balled up the end of some wire to wrap the recycled sari silk to the leather cord. Actually, I think every piece of metal (except the chain in the tassel portion) was torched to darken or manipulate the metal.

Mixed media necklace lampwork bullet casing jennifer cameron glass addictions

 handmade clasp and jumprings

Clasp of Mixed media necklace jennifer cameron glass addictions

I wasn't sure how the necklace would be received in the silent auction, but it did pretty well I think as the last bid I saw was $95 for it. I think the bracelet went for $85. Hubs and I attended the event this year for the first time and had fun. Although, with the weather being what it was, I kind of wanted to skip it and curl up in front of the fireplace with my honey instead. But we went, bid on several silent auctions, and won 2 of them.

Morning in the Studio

I grabbed a cup of coffee to take down to the studio with me and set it down on the first empty space I saw.

Morning in the studio with coffee and Lenk butane torch jennifer cameron glass addictions

I kind of chuckled that I could reheat my coffee if it got too cold with my Lenk LPT-500 butane torch that gets super hot and works super awesome (compared to the 5 other butane torches I own) since it's sitting right there. I do actually have a mug warmer in my studio, but it's occupied right now

Mug warmer with glass murrini jennifer cameron glass addictions

Today I'm working on putting the final touches on a couple donations (more on this tomorrow) and also a new tutorial which I will be posting on Artisan Whimsy next week.

Second Studio Syndrome

Looking for the Bead Soup Book Tour giveaway? Scroll down or Click here Perhaps you have heard me mention we were building a lake house...several times....Anyway, it's done. Finally. Now onto the important stuff like what we need at the lake. And I'm not talking boats or furniture. I'm talking about studio space and how to outfit it. The girl child and I spent last weekend at the lake. I needed to finish my design challenge piece for component of the month so I grabbed a few bead boxes, some tools and wire, and called it good. It kind of wasn't, but it was enough for me to get the job done. The mess I made on the dining table in the process:

Already taking over the kitchen table

So I am trying to come up with a method of dealing with my jewelry making needs for the days I'm at the lake. Do I buy 2 of everything? One for the lake and one for home? That doesn't seem very economical.

Do I pack up the studio every time we head to the lake? I could, but the suitcase gets very heavy and it would be so time consuming to have to do that every single time.

This is what it looked like when I packed up the studio for a trip to Colorado.

Have Beads, Will Travel

What's a girl to do?

So I started thinking. Which can be dangerous at times...

I have a beading bag similar to this one

which was GREAT when all my beads and few tools fit into this bag. And yes, I do remember a time when that was the case. Not so much any more (understatement of the year). Plus it's a very uninspiring bag and I tend to throw my tools and wire and other flotsam into it. It also doesn't help me with the issue of WHICH trays of beads do I take? And having to pack them before each and every lake house stay. I'm sure by now you all think I'm a bit whiny. Or neurotic. Or probably both. I don't disagree.

Then I remembered an article I read in...maybe Cloth Paper Scissors? Or one of the Stampington magazines...I wish I could remember where I saw it.... About an artist mom who, like the rest of us artist moms spend countless hours waiting for kids to finish their activities in parked cars, on bleachers, in lobbies, etc. And she showed off her DARLING and ORGANIZED craft suitcase.

So I started googling craft suitcases and started a "Have Beads Will Travel" Pinterest board specifically for my finds.

Only one case was specifically for jewelry/beading, but the blog post is full of great info (the following photos are all clickable and will take you directly to original souce):

Jewelry crafting suitcase

 Here's a case showcased on the Better Homes and Gardens website

BHG craft suitcase

The following one is all over the internet if you do a google search. It's absolutely adorable and so organized from Amy Powers Inspire Co. blog

craft suitcase inspire co amy powers

Another case Amy Powers did for an article in Stitch Craft Create

Inspire co craft suitcase

Lots of inspiration and ideas to create my own traveling bead studio. I may double up on a few tools so that I don't have to pack/unpack/repack. However, I can take a few beads here and there from the stash. And perhaps working within the parameters of the suitcase will enhance creativity. Or it could make me really frustrated and want to rip my hair out. It could go either way.

It just so happens I bought a vintage suitcase a couple weeks ago.

Vintage suitcase

I haggled the price and got a great deal. After I bought it, I noticed a previous owner had scratched their initials and last name. I don't know if you can read it, but the last name is Stout. People, that is my maiden name. And it's not a common one. I keep meaning to ask my dad about the initials because I don't recognize them. But we have a very large family.

I wonder if it's like the ring story...when I was a child, my dad donated a ring he wasn't fond of and would never wear, to the church garage sale to raise money for something (don't remember what). I, of course, had never seen the ring.

We lived within walking distance of our church, so I went to the garage sale. With my own money. And no parental supervision. I was maybe 7.

Guess what I bought as a gift for my dad? The ring he donated. I hope he didn't throw out this suitcase just for me to buy it back...

If you got through this very long post and have any ideas for how to deal with 2nd studio syndrome, I would love to hear them. I will keep you updated if and when I decide to outfit this case as a traveling studio.

And TGIF! Have a great weekend everyone.

AJE Component of the month Reveal and Blog Hop

Please bear with me as I try to blog from my iPad. It really is a's my own fault for not being more organized though. Diana hosted the AJE component of the month for September. It looks like a leather button: Button pendant from Diana P It reminded me so much of a tweed jacket my maternal grandfather "Bopper" had with those type of buttons, that I couldn't get past it while trying to design around it. So this became an ode to my grandparents. Unfortunately I have no memories of my maternal grandmother, just the things she left behind and the stories my mom told me. She died when I was about a year old and Bopper died when I was about six, so my memories of him are pretty sketchy too. So here's what I made: Necklace Necklace The pendant from Diana represents my grandfather, his tweed jacket, his favorite leather chair. The clock hand represents the cuckoo clock we had in the house (we moved in with him when I was a baby to take care of him while my dad was in the Army). my grandmother's name was Harriet, but many people called her Heart. Thus the heart charm. Necklace She used to make very blingy Christmas ornaments with sequins, ribbon, upcycled costume jewelry, etc. My mom continued to put those ornaments on the tree along with our creations year after year. The rhinestones represent the Christmas ornaments. The leather again makes me think of Bopper's chair, but the avocado color reminds me of the whole house being carpeted in avocado carpet. I think the appliances matched the carpet....on a related note, my mom hates the color green. Necklace My grandfather did lapidary work and made jewelry. I have a few things he made me. Can you imagine what it would have been like if he had been around when I started making beads and jewelry? My husband is very lucky to still have his grandma alive and feisty as ever. Because I was so unorganized about getting this finished, I had to make it at the lake house where I have no supplies yet and no Internet except via phone or tablet. Fun. I grabbed some basic supplies to take to the lake, not really knowing what I was going to do yet. Luckily I grabbed the right things. I only wish I had brought a bench block and a couple hammers. Oh, and my butane torch. and maybe a camera. All photos were taken with my iPhone. Here's a photo from this morning showing how we've only had furniture in this place for 3 days and I've already taken over the table Already taking over the kitchen table Make sure you see what everyone else made. The list is here at AJE.
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