State of the Studio

I've been avoiding the jewelry making area of my studio. Because it looked like this

The state of the studio

The above photo would probably be more effective if I had shot it from the perspective of standing there trying to actually create jewelry. My bead containers were stacked on the floor to get to things (and yes, I sit on the floor to use my drill press. Doesn't everybody?)

The state of the studio

Last night, at about 8pm, I suddenly couldn't take it another minute. I lost track of time until I suddenly felt so tired I didn't think I could lift another bead. It was 1:30am. Now it looks like this:

State of the studio part II

The bead containers are still spread all over the floor, but that's because I am painstakingly putting every bead that was piled on the bench, or thrown into a baggie or bowl, back where it belongs. So I can find them all again to pile them up somewhere else. One of the pitfalls of cleaning is finding unfinished projects you want to finish, or special beads you want to use immediately. It took a great deal of focus to avoid making new things. While making beads yesterday afternoon, I picked up my phone and shot a quick pic of what I see when the bead is in the flame. Of course, the difference is I am wearing special glasses that gets rid of the huge yellow flare you see in the photo.

My point of view at the torch

And while I would love to show you the final bead, it turned out very very ugly and would break the camera. Plus I would just be embarrassed that I made something so hideous.

Random Instagram

In no particular order... I snagged these gorgeous beads from Heather Powers. Not only are these the first I've owned, but it's the first time I've held her beads (gosh, that sounds kind of dirty...)

First time to see Humblebeads in person. And they're mine.

Gorgeous flowers hubs bought for our daughter after her final performance in a Spoof play of Harry Potter in which she played Moaning Myrtle, then also took on the role of Ginny Weasley for the final performance when "Ginny" couldn't make it. She had never practiced or learned the part and it involved her changing costume and hair 5 times. She earned these flowers

Flowers given to the actress after the final performance @livetodance2001

Pendant lights finally installed in the lake house kitchen

Island pendant lights

Sunrise the morning after our very first night staying at the lake house. No furniture. Yes, we slept on the floor. Because we like to "rough it" haha!

1st Morning at the Lake

The morning sun

Morning sun

How about a sunset too?

Amazing sunset at the lake tonight

The nail biter Colts game yesterday:

Go colts

Daughter volunteering at the Johnny Appleseed Festival for Windsong Pictures

Volunteering for Windsong pictures at the Johnny Appleseed Festival

I think of these as Amish action figures. But they are made of something like iron, are very heavy for their tiny size, and have zero articulating joints. I don't know why, but these make me kind of giggle a little bit.

Amish figures

I spent most of the time at Johnny Appleseed perusing the antique section of the festival. One of the booths had not one, but TWO of these buckets that look "vintage". What's wrong with this picture?

Brid bucket

I had to triple check to make sure I remembered how to spell bird correctly, because I was seriously thinking I had lost my mind. Knowing this was not an "antique," I looked at the bottom of the bucket...

Brid bucket tag

Hmmm..... I did buy a couple things at Johnny Appleseed, but will save those for another day. I've got big plans for them. Have a great Monday! I have jewelry and beads to make today.

Kalmbach Bead Soup Party Mix

Look what came in the mail.

Bead soup

  I wasn't sure if I would be lucky enough to get a bead soup sent from Kalmbach, but it appears I was. It was super exciting to get an envelope with the big sunburst sticker.

Bead soup

Ironically, my bead soup came from a bead shop called Heirloom Classics in Indianapolis. While I had never heard of the shop, I recognized the address as a place I had shopped at and taken lampworking classes from JC Herrell and Jari Sheese (the previous bead shop owner) before. The Fountain Square area is a very interesting place with very good food nearby. The building itself is gorgeous and bright.

Bead soup

Here's a close-up of the focal and clasp I received. I LOVE that clasp so much! And I love how the shape of the focal and clasp are rounded off triangles...or fans? I don't think I've ever used that shape before.

Focal and clasp

I already have a few ideas of what I want to do to play off the shapes of the focal and clasp.

Customer Gallery

You guys, there is nothing I would love more than to share what you've made with my beads, link to your blogs, shops and social media. Send me photos! Send me links to photos! I will share all with the world! Back a few weeks ago, Jeannie Dukic emailed me so I didn't miss her bead soup reveal. Her partner Jenna had purchased the focal for Jeannie's bead soup from me during one of the flash auctions for the blog pj party back in June. Here's what Jeannie came up with: Jeannie Dukic 1 bead soup blog party with glass addictions bead   Jeannie Dukic 2 bead soup blog party with glass addictions bead   Isn't it wonderful? Love it! I can't find it for sale on her jewelry website, but if you love it, make her an offer she can't refuse... Last night I got a message from Traci Zeller with photos attached. She won the bead I gave away as part of a fun day of flash giveaways on the Creative Bead Chat facebook group (join! It's a great group!), which happened to fall on the same day we dropped my kid off at his boarding school. So it was a nice distraction from being sad and moping. Anyway, she wanted to show me the bracelet she made with the bead. Here's the bead I sent her:

Glass Addictions Jennifer Cameron lampwork glass bead

Here's the bracelet she made: Traci Zeller bracelet with Glass Addictions bead If you love this bracelet, you can purchase it for yourself on Etsy. I love the name she gave it...Lunar Pools . You can also find Traci doing updates on her facebook page. Reminder...send me pics of your creations using my beads! Please. I'm not above begging, you know...

Random Instagram

My brain is fried. My time has not been my own the last couple weeks. As soon as we (FINALLY) close on the lake house (delayed twice so far...) and we get settled in, things will settle down and I'll have time to show you some new work. In the meantime, here are a few random Instagram'd photos I've taken the last week or so. This might become a regular post because I am having so much fun with it. Sitting on the back "patio" at the lake house

Lake James Indiana

The girl child sitting on the patio, playing with her favorite toy (iPod)

Girl child by Jennifer Cameron

Moonrise over the lake

Moon over Lake James Indiana by Jennifer Cameron

Dinner made by awesome husband (filet mignon with excellent spice rub, coconut crusted shrimp with ginger sauce, asparagus, and potatoes.


New bridge that just opened. The construction of this bridge caused mega hassle to get downtown.

MLK Bridge fort wayne Indiana by Jennifer Cameron


Fog near Avilla Indiana by Jennifer Cameron

  Since downloading Instagram, I have found and used a couple Instagram related apps that I just love. The first is Postagram. You use it to create a post card with one of your Instagram photos. You add a short message, who you want it sent to, pay 99 cents, and voila! The recipient receives a postcard within a week. I've been using it to send postcards to hubby's grandparents in Florida. It's so much easier than getting a card, printing a photo, addressing and putting a stamp on it. Once my account was set up, it literally took 1-2 minutes to make a postcard and hit send. The grandparents are thrilled to get 1 or 2 photo postcards a week, and it is exactly zero hassle. If you use this link to Postagram, you can try one postcard free (and in full disclosure, I will get to send one free too, so we both win). It works with iPhone, Android, or even just do it on the computer if that's where all your photos are. The other Instagram app I'm loving is Postal Pix. Sign up for an account, upload the instagrams (or regular photos) you want to have printed, pay, then they are delivered to your mailbox. I placed an order for somewhere around 22 prints and paid $8.23, which included shipping. The prints are gorgeous. I will definitely order again.

If Time Equaled Currency

(You can sign up for the Charm Swap until Aug 28th, theme is laughter, you get charms from other artists and also get to help Beads of Courage so everyone wins!) Last week hubs was channel surfing and came across a movie he had been wanting to watch called In Time, which I had never heard of. So he goes to the On Demand feature of our cable service, finds the movie, and starts watching it. I was sitting with him, not particularly interested. In fact, when I saw Justin Timberlake was the lead character of this movie, I made fun of hubs for wanting to watch a Justin Timberlake movie. He responds with "who's Justin Timberlake?" Sigh. Never mind. Even though I had no interest in watching the movie and was actually reading, the opening sequence caught my attention and I was hooked. The people of Earth did not use money. Rather they all had a countdown clock installed in their arms that measured how much time they had left. Once the clock runs out, they die. And the time on each person's clock is used as currency. It's how they pay their bills, buy groceries, cars and clothes. They can earn time through working, stealing, gambling, being gifted with it. People say things like "she comes from time" rather than "she comes from money". There were ghettos where people literally lived day to day...sometimes hour to hour and didn't make it because they ran out of time. The entire concept just blew my mind for so many reasons that I am still thinking about it a week later. When people spout off the cliche "time equals money," yes, it is true. Sort of. I prefer to think in terms of "opportunity cost". Broken down to its most basic definition, opportunity cost is the "cost" of making a choice over the next best thing....whether that cost is money, time, happiness, etc. Even that isn't quite as concrete as the idea of time=currency (I loved my Microeconomics class in college so much I almost majored in Economics.) If time was our form of currency, would you be doing what you are doing? How would your priorities change? I will be exploring this topic in more depth. I would love to hear what you have to say about it. Leave a comment if you want to express your views.    

How is it even possible August is almost over?

(You can sign up for the Charm Swap until Aug 28th, theme is laughter, you get charms from other artists and also get to help Beads of Courage so everyone wins!)   Can you say WHIRLWIND? Wow... The month started with me in Las Vegas. Where the only jewelry besides my wedding ring was this bracelet I made for the Bead Soup Blog Party reveal:

Bracelet by Jennifer Cameron glass addictions

Oh, and right before we left for Vegas I FINALLY got an iPhone...probably I was almost the last person on Earth to not have one. My husband still has his DroidX (same phone I had) and is still resisting the overwhelming urge to get the iPhone. But I feel his resistance is breaking down as he watches how giddy and delighted my phone makes me. Why is this information important? Well. Because I got Instagram, which means while we were in Vegas I took pictures like this:

Dragon by Jennifer Cameron

Airplane by Jennifer Cameron

Palazzo by Jennifer Cameron

Sugar factory Las Vegas Jennifer Cameron

Crystals Palazzo Las Vegas Jennifer Cameron

Chandelier Venetian Las Vegas

Postrio at the Venetian Jennifer Cameron

The Venetian gondola ride Jennifer Cameron

The Beatles in Vegas Jennifer Cameron

Chandelier Venetian Las Vegas Jennifer Cameron

The best part was that I didn't carry a big honkin' camera around. I could share my photos without hooking up a card to a computer. The photos are great, but made even more awesome by grunging them up and discoloring them like the film was exposed or like using a circa 1972 camera. Awesome. I have almost completely stopped taking pics with my Canon Eos Rebel xti. Sad, but true. Right after we got back from Vegas and the kids home from camp, the crazy started. What does this mean? Well...we tried to cram about 10 appointments/rehearsals/lessons/parties/activities into every single day before the school year started and we had to take our kid to boarding school for high school. The kids bought their own guitars at Sweetwater and got a free lesson. Let me tell you...if for some unknown reason you are in the Ft Wayne area, you NEED to visit Sweetwater. It's pretty freakin awesome. Not only do they have a cafe with free wifi, but also a free arcade and putting green for parents and siblings waiting for lessons to be over. They also have windows overlooking the warehouse:

Part of Sweetwater warehouse Jennifer Cameron

We also did the walk-thru of the lake house on a dreary gray day. We are supposed to close next week, but based on conversations I had with people yesterday, I'm not holding my breath all the ducks will be in a row by then. Sigh. After the walk through, we drove to an area across the bay to take a photo of the house:

View of the side of Lake house from across bay

We celebrated my turning 29 (again!) at Paula's with some of the best seafood I've ever had, and some yummy wine (yes, this is a technical term for wine connoisseurs everywhere)

Birthday wine selection Jennifer Cameron

The kids even dressed up for the occasion, even though they did NOT get any yummy wine.

Birthday dinner at Paula's with the monsters jennifer Cameron

We also had a going away party so we could all cry that my kid was going to boarding school. Except no one cried. Mostly we just laughed and ate. Then the neighbors (good friends of ours) stayed much later and we drank all the wine we had in the house. Which really wasn't that much, but makes us sound like total party-ers. We spent an entire afternoon at a paint your own pottery place because it was one of the things on our summer "to do list," which we hardly made a dent in.

Bisque it Jennifer Cameron

Bisque it Jennifer Cameron

Did I ever tell you about my First Time?

I don't generally like to share this kind of lurid information about myself...let alone show pictures. However, I am taking this very scary step so that others do not feel ashamed of their first time. Today we're covering the topic of first beads. What did you think I was talking about? After having a conversation with a fellow Etsian about her desire to make lampwork beads, and the fear that she might not ever get to the same level of experience and skill as other lampworkers, I decided it would be fun to have a blog hop of experienced component (bead, clasp, etc) makers and jewelry designers hosted at Art Jewelry Elements. I took a few quick photos. My camera is not really behaving itself lately, so these aren't the best. However, they are better than photos I was taking when I first started making beads... First up is my very first lampwork bead ever, wire wrapped into my first piece of jewelry ever. I made it into a ring that I still have to this day. No, I don't wear it. But since digging it out of the jewelry box to take a pic, I'm wearing it now. I had forgotten about it.

First lampwork bead and first ring

It's not the best made ring and not particularly stable. I'm not sure if I followed a tutorial or saw a photo and tried to replicate it, or if I made it up myself. I made this in 2005. I've slept since then so the details are fuzzy. First lampwork bead and first ring Next up is an ugly on the left made at about the same time. You can tell by my use of black, white and periwinkle. Also I encased it. Probably the first encased bead I ever made. Fancy! On the right is a very large, very wonky and off center round bead that I totally scorched. Some first lampwork beads In my first few weeks of lampworking, I tried florals.

one of my first lampwork beads

  one of my first lampwork beads Also, leopard print. some of my first lampwork beads I love my use of color on this one, but it's a very ugly shape. And chunky. Not very nice. one of my first lampwork beads Here are a few more recent beads (all made this year)

Lampwork Glass focal bead jennifer cameron glass addictions

Lampwork Glass focal bead jennifer cameron glass addictions

Lampwork Glass vintage upcycled skeleton key jennifer cameron glass addictions

Lampwork Glass nightmare insomnia series focal jennifer cameron glass addictions

Necklace by Jennifer Cameron

Big hole copper focal challenge and blog hop

2012 Charm Swap Sign-Ups

To participate in the charm swap, you must be willing to make enough charms for everyone in your group (including yourself) AND one extra so that a set of charms can be auctioned to benefit Beads of Courage. This means if your group has 10 people, you will make and send a total of 11 charms. One charm is a "donation" to be auctioned off to Beads of Courage. The last swap we made about $150 for BOC. (I would have to look it up for the exact donation because I don't remember for sure).

Spring 2011 Glass Addictions by Jen Cameron Charms

I will keep group sizes manageable, about 8-10 per group depending on the number of people that sign up. No need to worry about feeling overwhelmed with making 30 charms.

Spring 2011 Charm Swap

Because the extra set of charms will be auctioned off to benefit Beads of Courage and the main beneficiaries of BOC are children, the theme for this charm swap is "laughter". There is no sound as joyful, no medicine stronger, than laughter.
Spring 2011 Charm Swap Please read these other important guidelines BEFORE signing up.
-only submit ART CHARMS. What does this mean? Well, it means you have in some way created the charm through some type of manipulation. It does NOT mean you added a jump ring to a purchased charm and called it done or simply wire wrapped a craft store bead and called it done.
-only submit your best work, something you would be proud to show the world and your fellow artists.
-make sure charms are non-toxic, safe to wear, able to get wet occasionally (for those who use them as bracelets), durable, do not smell bad (smoke, fumes, rotting…).
-no sharp wire ends or other things which can poke and hurt people

Spring 2011 Charm Swap

-no organic bits like bone, feathers, etc unless they have been sealed well or burned off (like kiln or torch fired or whatever).
-you will include $6 (United States swappers, outside of US will have to be determined on a case by case basis) when you ship your charms to me to cover shipping, packaging, etc.
-please make sure you can meet deadlines before signing up so others are not disappointed.
-all art charms need to be in my hands by October 15th. No exceptions.
-Charm reveal blog hop and start of charm auction is currently October 27th (subject to change if we have international charm swappers). 
-you need to have a blog (if you don’t have one, go sign up for one!)
-you need to email me at jennifer. glassaddictions @ (remove spaces) by August 28th with your name, your blog address, and your shipping address. I will return your email with more specific guidelines within 48 hours. (my response time will probably be delayed this week, but I will be back in action full time starting the 20th)
-This swap IS open to those outside the United States...just be prepared to send your charms EARLY.
-Bring on those emails!

Spring 2011 Charm Swap

The HTML for the blog button is in the sidebar to the right------->

Glass Addictions by Jen Cameron

Please grab it for your blog. I used to have the html grab box below the button, but every single time I edit the list of participants, it gets all wonky and I'm pretty much sick of trying to fix it every single day.

 One additional note, I may edit this post frequently as questions come up because I am sure I’ve forgotten details. Do not be alarmed. Participants will be added below as they sign up. 2012 Charm Participants:

Jennifer Cameron, Glass Addictions

Erin Prais-Hintz, Treasures Found

Kimberly Roberts, Bahama Dawn

Natalie McKenna, Grubbi

Ginger Bishop, lilmummy likes

Cindy Gimbrone, Lampwork Diva

Perri Jackson, Shaktipaj Designs

Nightmare Insomnia Blog Hop

Click here to see my Bead Soup Blog Party reveal using Lesley Watt's components. AJE Component of the Month July hostess Jennifer Cameron glass addictions Remember all the way back at the beginning of July when I mentioned my Nightmare Insomnia beads were the component of the month for the July AJE design team? The reveal was July 31st. And I was so excited about being in Las Vegas with my honey, I posted about the reveal on Art jewelry Elements and COMPLETELY spaced posting about it here. So here's the list of participants. Please stop by, see what they created using the different varieties of Nightmare Insomnia series beads, and leave a comment telling them what you like about their design.
Beti Horvath: Stringing Fool
Gretchen Nation: Art Food Lodging
Karen Totten: Starry Road Studio
Kathleen Douglas: Washoe Kat's
Keirsten Giles: The Cerebral Dilettante Kristen Stevens: My Bead Journey Lola: Bead Lola Bead
Lori Anderson: Pretty Things
Rana Wilson: Rana Lea Designs
Shannon Chomanczuk: For My Sweet Daughter
And while Audrey was not an official participant of the blog hop, she created a necklace with one of my Nightmare Insomnia beads and wrote about what inspired her to create this particular design. Please stop by her blog and see what she did.
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