Sarcasm Shows Beautiful Work


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Happy Easter! I hope everyone has had a pleasant day. I have spent it with my husband and our granddaughter watching her play with all her books and assorted goodies the Easter Bunny brought her overnight to our house. It was so cute this morning after she ate breakfast watching her march around the living room looking for her “prizes.” That’s what we had to tell her so she would go off and look! She is a very precarious little 19 month old, and smart as a whip! To convince her to do something she isn’t sure of though is quite a feat!

I apologize for the lateness of the hour of posting this week, but as you can see, my blog undertook a makeover today! Then, just as I was getting ready to sit down and post to you all, a succession of transformers in my neighborhood blew up, causing my power to go out for a few hours. Only thing worse than having your power and your wi-fi out? Having it out at dusk with a toddler who wants their dinner NOW! lol

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I have had one heck of a week. I finished up the Sarcastic Beads and Yarn Spring 2016 Bead Challenge, got the winnings shipped off and no sooner had I taped the envelope shut than I got the phone call from my distraught daughter that my ex-husband had passed away. Though he wasn’t my daughter’s father (we didn’t even get married until she was nearly 10), they had stayed in touch in the years after our divorce, and she was upset about his passing, though it was expected. Her “stepdad” (and I use the term very loosely, because he has loved her as his own for the last 12 years) immediately went to go pick up our granddaughter so she could be with my ex’s family in their time of grief.

Even though my daughter hasn’t been his step-daughter in nearly 13 years, his family still listed her and my grandchildren as HIS in the obituary. I have to admit it stung that they would claim MY family as his, but then I thought about it, and realized how awful it must have been to die alone, with no one by his side, found by a nearby relative the next morning. Even though he was a very big public figure where we live, he was still alone. No matter how bad people treat others, they should not have to die alone. I pray that doesn’t happen to me, but then, I have my husband, daughter and grandchildren.

Last week I announced that Bridget Cook’s “Layers of Love” bracelet had won the Challenge. I shipped off her bead haul to her Monday, and since she lives in a neighboring state, she received it pretty quick. I would say she was pretty darn happy with it!

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Bridget Cook with her Grand Prize Pack of bead and findings

The five individuals who judged the Challenge (whom I can not thank enough!) not only picked a winner and a runner-up, but each went out of their way to give me some names of entries that deserved further recognition as Honorable Mentions.  If you have been watching the entry page, you may already suspect which ones some of these are. This week I would like to recognize them. To see their true beauty, please click on their pictures and you can see them up close!

Our runner-up with Jill Wiseman’s “Forever Tango” bracelet was Peggy Houser, but she also submitted a beautiful version of the Trendsetters pattern by Nichole Starman, “Chrysanthemum.”

Peggy Houser - Trendsetter's "Chrysanthemum" by Nichole Starman

Peggy Houser – Trendsetter’s “Chrysanthemum” by Nichole Starman

Hilary Coulter submitted several entries, but the ones that really stood out to the judges with her use of the color palette were her designs from Allie Buchman of Potomac Bead Company. Her “Misty Meadows” and “Dropping Flowers” bracelets were absolutely beautifully done, especially with the Czech cup button clasp finishes.

Hilary Coulter - "Dropping Flowers"

Hilary Coulter – “Dropping Flowers”

Hilary Coulter - "Misty Meadows"

Hilary Coulter – “Misty Meadows”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Debbie Steele Talley submitted a  lovely version of Jill Wiseman’s “Mambo” bracelet. I just love the way the clasp is hidden in the best part of the entire bracelet!

Debbie Steel Talley - Jill Wiseman's "Mambo" bracelet

Debbie Steel Talley – Jill Wiseman’s “Mambo” bracelet

And then there was Erin Wyatt’s submission of Allie Buchman’s Flat spiral bracelet using just about all of the Challenge colors! It was a thing of beauty! And to top that, she did a beautiful rendition of Jill’s “Pretty Posies” necklace, to boot!

Erin Wyatt - Allie's Flat Spiral

Erin Wyatt – Allie’s Flat Spiral

Erin Wyatt - Jill Wiseman's "Pretty" Posies"

Erin Wyatt – Jill Wiseman’s “Pretty” Posies”

And finally, (and please keep in mind that these were in no particular order) there was Dorothy Ferris fantastic version of Allie Buchman’s “Castanets” bracelet. Not only did she do a wonderful job with her beadwork, but her photography is lovely as well!

Dorothy Ferris - "Castanets"

Dorothy Ferris – “Castanets”

These are just but a few examples of the wonderful submissions I received in the Challenge. I hope to do another Bead Challenge in the Fall/Winter season. BUT, if you all keep up the pace with helping reach all these milestones with my blog, who knows?

You all are amazing. I can’t thank you enough for reading my ramblings each and every week. One thing though, my web fees are getting really expensive and I don’t know how much longer I can keep it up. I have a little donation box up at the top right corner of the blog if you wouldn’t mind kicking in a few dollars every once in a while to help out? I would  http://pelzerlaw.com/diflucan SO appreciate it! Your donations would not be coming to me in the form of your financial info or anything, as a matter of fact, it goes directly into my GoDaddy account for the fees here.

I really love coming to each and every one of you each week and would hate to stop. I know this week has been a Debbie Downer, but it was honestly hard for me to get up enough strength to post at all. I promise it won’t be like that again.  Next week I will be bringing you some beading tips!

Until next time, stay smart, or stay smart sassy!

Becca

 

Sarcasm has a Winner


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I am sooooo glad that this is Spring Break week where I am.  I can actually sleep late – wait, no, sleep at all, for that matter! See, I am the one who runs carpool for my grandbabies every day and with one gone to his other grandmother for the week and the Doodlebug being taken to daycare by my daughter and son-in-law, I have a few days free! Wheeeee!!! Eat, Bead, Sleep, REPEAT!

The other reason I haven’t had much sleep lately is I have been staying up each night long after.most of you, posting entries to my blog here to this little thing you may have read a thing or two or three THOUSAND about, the Sarcastic Beads and Yarn Spring 2016 Bead Challenge. My event was held over on Facebook, and was open to anyone who was an email subscriber to my blog and liked my Facebook page. Easy peasy.

Other than those two things, the other requirements were entries had to be from either a Jill Wiseman, Trendsetters, or one of Allie over at Potomac Bead Company’s patterns. The biggest and most challenging part of the whole thing was having to stick to the color palette. All entries had to come from the Spring 2016 Pantone Top 10 colors shown below.

The "must stick to if you wanna win" design colors

The “must stick to if you wanna win” design colors

Though you could enter as many entries as you wanted, they were limited to three per day, per person after the first week, because I was flooded with entries by the same people there for a few days to the point that other people could not get their entries seen on the event feed. Lesson learned! I also reserved the right from the very beginning to change up the rules and throw some curve balls out and this last week I did just that. Gotta keep you peeps on your toes!

Monday was Blue Monday, where all entries posted had to be done in the blue colors of the color palette. Tuesday was Tutorial Tuesday, where I posted my own Starfish with Superduos pattern that could be used for the remainder of the Challenge. And beginning this last Monday, nobody could submit the same pattern twice. Up until that point I was getting a lot of the same patterns from some people, but different colors. Another lesson learned!

So what is are all these rules and details about? Why so picky? Well, when there is a $250 Grand Prize of beads from Potomac Bead Company and a $50 gift certificate from Bello Modo for the Runner-up on the line, you get a little picky! My husband just groans and rolls his eyes every time he walks by the prize package that has been sitting on my dining room table the last two weeks, cuz he knows that once this thing is over I will be ordering ME all those beads that the winner is getting that I don’t have yet!

Grand Prize Winner's Prize Pack, courtesy of Potomac Bead Co., Hagerstown, MD.

Grand Prize Winner’s Prize Pack, courtesy of Potomac Bead Co., Hagerstown, MD.

I have to give a like this HUGE thank you to the five (yes, you read that right – cialis xcite canada 5) judges for undertaking such a monster task as to judge the nearly 150 entries I received. Judging a bead challenge is hard enough, but couple that with the gargantuan number of entries I ended up with… Well, all I have to say about that is, I am SO glad it was not me doing it!

For those of you wondering, why five judges? I have been a participant in several bead challenges myself, and 99% of them have always been done fairly, but there is always that 1% that leaves a bad taste in your mouth for the next one you are about to enter. I originally had four, but wanted a tie-breaker, just in case, too.

Though I am not revealing who my judges were, I will tell you that they literally come from all four corners of the USA, they all have multiple years of experience in the beading field, with the exception of one, who is fairly new to it, but she is an accomplished artist and was judging for color representation only. Each judge was judging a different aspect of the challenge, while the fifth judge was judging all aspects.

I have to say what an absolutely amazing bunch of entries from a tremendously talented and creative pool of beaders I received. You can see all the entries here. Each night as I was posting them here, I just shook my head and wondered when I was going to be as talented and gifted as these beaders are. I aspire to that! For instance, look at what my Runner-up and winner of the $50 gift certificate from Bello Modo, Peggy Houser did with Jill Wiseman’s “Forever Tango” pattern, while representing the Challenge colors of Rose Quartz, Limpet Shell, and Lilac Gray! (ya see what I did there? ha!) Peggy, Bello Modo has already been contacted and you should be hearing from them on Monday! Congrats!

Peggy Houser - Jill Wiseman's "Forever Tango" bracelet

Peggy Houser – Jill Wiseman’s “Forever Tango” bracelet

So, without further ado, I would like to announce that the Winner of the Sarcastic Beads and Yarn Spring 2016 Bead Challenge is (I think I have dragged out the suspense long enough, don’t you? hee hee) Bridget Cook, and her version of Allie Buchman of Potomac Bead Company’s “Layers of Love” bracelet, which represented the Pantone colors of Green Flash, Iced Coffee, Peach Echo and Fiesta! Bridget, you put in some wonderful other entries besides this one, as well. Congratulations! I will be shipping your prize pack out Monday.

Bridget Cook - Allie "Layers of Love" bracelet

Bridget Cook – Allie’s “Layers of Love” bracelet

I want to thank everyone who entered, thought about entering, or is thinking about entering the next one. You ALL are just amazing. I started this Challenge because I had reached 10,000 views on my blog, and since it started, you all have nearly tripled that! I can not thank you enough! But I would like to thank Jesus, my family, the Academy, my director, oh wait – I strayed again, didn’t I? See, that’s what happens when you people don’t comment to me enough! lol

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Until next time, stay smart or stay smart sassy!

Becca

Starfish Earrings with Superduos


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Don’t forget that the Sarcastic Beads and Yarn Spring 2016 Bead Challenge ends this Friday. Entries can be submitted until 11:59 p.m. CST that night. You may submit as many entries as you like, up to three per day, per person. It’s worth entering just for a shot at that $250 prize pack of those yummy beads from Potomac Bead Company and the $50 gift certificate for the runner-up from Bello Modo!

Don’t forget that in order for your entry to qualify, you MUST be an email subscriber to this blog AND have liked my Facebook page, Becca’s Beaded Bangles HERE. Now, onto the pattern!

Starfish Earrings with Super Duos

Copyright: Becca’s Beaded Bangles http://beccasbeadedbangles.com

For personal use only, no mass production. Please contact me here if you are interested in teaching this.

 

Materials:

8/0 round seed beads (15)

11/0 seed beads (around 40)

Super Duos (30)

Fireline or Wildfire

Size 11/12 Beading Needle (I recommend Size 11 Tulip Beading Needles)

After threading a stop bead, add five 8/0 beads and go back through the 1st for a circle. (Fig. 1)

figure 1

Then string one 8/0 between each bead in the circle, forming a pentagon shape. (fig. 2). Add 2 superduos between each 8/0 (fig. 3). Between each pair of superduos insert one 8/0. (Fig. 4)

fig 2-4

Going through the second hole of a superduo right after the 8/0, insert a pair of superduos in each pair in the previous round. (Fig. 5). Add two other superduos over each pair in the previous round, and two 11/0 to the sides of each 8/0 (fig. 6). Place a superduo over each pair in the previous round and three 11/0 on the sides, moving the thread through the beads inserted in order to merge the four included in previous round of 11/0. (fig. 7)

fig 5-7

Insert three 11/0 on the sides of each superduo in the previous round (fig. 8), then two of the three pairs inserted (fig. 9) and finally into a last round insert one 8/0 among each pair of two of the previous round (fig. 10).

starfish last 3

Add a jump ring to one 8/0 and attach to an ear wire. Congratulations, you are done! Enjoy!

Starfish Superduo Earrings

Starfish Superduo Earrings

My friend Tina Pawass of Freebird’s Innovations tried out my pattern and turned it into a necklace and bracelet set!

Freebird's Innovations version of "Starfish Superduo" earrings AND a necklace!

Freebird’s Innovations version of “Starfish Superduo” earrings AND a necklace!

Until next time, stay smart, or stay smart sassy!

Becca

Sarcasm Dishes Out Photography Tips


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Nothing irritates me more than to be out of my routine. My Sunday routine is get up and bead for a bit, have my convo with my higher power, and then write my blog so you guys can (hopefully) get a few laughs, learn a little something, and (puh-leeze!) throw me back a few comments after you do. This morning was ALL out of whack when we lost power in my half of the subdivision I live in for who knows what reason, probably a blown transformer or something. At least the weather was cooperative and it wasn’t pouring down rain, freezing cold, or sweltering hot though. But it was just overcast enough to where there wasn’t enough light to bead by coming in the windows, and the worst part, NO WI-FI!

OMG, what kind of world have we come to when we panic with no Wi-Fi? I mean, not grinding about my age or anything, but for pity’s sake, go back to 1993 or something and talk to your family or friends by a real frigging telephone or better yet, in person! I mean, seriously, when was the last time any of you sat down to dinner with your family without any of them staring down at their phones?

funny-cell-phone-quotes-424x500

So, how is everyone coming along with their Sarcastic Beads and Yarn Challenge Spring 2016 Bead Challenge entries? The Challenge closes THIS Friday, 3/18/16 at 11.59 p.m. sharp! Winners will be announced both here on the blog and on the Event page on Facebook on Sunday, 3/20/16! Just a recap of the prizes:

  • GRAND PRIZE: Potomac Bead Company out of Hagerstown, Maryland has donated a $250.00 mix of the following: RounDuos, DiscDuos, RounTrios, Czech Cup Buttons, Potomac Crystals, SuperDuos, MiniDuos, Miyuki seed beads, Czech Fire Polished rounds, Czech pearls, Flower cups, Spiky button beads, and assorted CzechMates and other multi hole Czech beads.
Grand Prize Winner's Prize Pack, courtesy of Potomac Bead Co., Hagerstown, MD.

Grand Prize Winner’s Prize Pack, courtesy of Potomac Bead Co., Hagerstown, MD.

  • RUNNER-UP: There will be ONE runner-up prize, courtesy of Bello Modo, a $50 gift certificate!

So, if that isn’t incentive enough to enter, I don’t know what is! I mean, I have had those beads sitting in my house for the last three weeks and it has been killing me not to be able to play with them! My husband just groans every time he walks by them, because he knows I will be ordering all the pretties in there I don’t have! Oh well!

pay for

So today I’m doing something in my Challenge that is going to make everyone else who has challenges scream. I’m having a Do-Over Sunday! That’s right, if you have ALREADY submitted entries to the Challenge and think you might want to submit a better picture of your entry (and it has to be the SAME entry) you may do so in the comment section of your original post. When you do so, please tag me in the comments so I will see it and change it on the blog posting. You have until 9 p.m. CST to do this!

I have received some GREAT entries to this Challenge, but some of them could be SO much better entries if the pictures were better! I have seen poor lighting, uncropped photos, uncentered photos, photos where the entire piece wasn’t in the photo, and photos where the colors were blurry, among other things.

So, I thought I would put together a few helpful tips for internet photography of jewelry for you!

  • Be sure to take a close-up picture of your piece, so the colors can be SEEN. If you have a macro setting on your camera, USE IT! Even cameras on smartphones have a macro setting. Check your owner’s manual to find out how to use that setting (usually with a symbol of a flower) to get the best detail on your images.
  • Natural light is usually always best. Photo lights are great, but they can require a lot of setup for your camera and when you are editing your final images. The easiest way I’ve found to take great pictures with natural light is to just place my jewelry on a piece of plain white paper, and place it in a well-lit window. As long as the sun isn’t shining straight through the window, my photos need minimal editing at the end.
  • For a challenge where colors are the primary judging tool such as this one, try NOT to use creative backgrounds like you would for an internet sales display. A plain background is best for this type of challenge, because anything in the background distracts from your color choices.
  • EDIT YOUR PICTURES BEFORE SUBMITTING! I can not stress this enough! So many of your pictures could use something so simple as just a white balance edit and that’s ALL.

I hope this helps, and remember, if you are re-submitting, you have only until 9:00 p.m. C.S.T. tonight! For those of you who have not submitted your entries, please take a look at these guidelines before doing so. I have so thoroughly enjoyed seeing each and every one of your entries, and have learned a lot from all of you! I thank you for that.

From here on out for the last five days of the challenge, no more entries will be accepted from you of a pattern you have previously submitted. For instance, if you have submitted Jill Wiseman’s flat spiral before now, you can’t submit another one. This is a challenge, and I am making it a little more challenging for you! Am I changing the rules up? YES! Did I promise you some surprises along the way at the very beginning? YES. Also, don’t forget no more than three entries per person, per day.

So, what do you have to do to qualify? Like my Facebook page HERE. Submit your entries (as many as you want, up to 3 per day, per person). Last and most important rule is you MUST be an email subscriber to this blog! If you are on a desktop device, just look in the upper left corner of the page and you will find the subscriber box to sign up, or if you are on a mobile device, scroll allllll the way down to the bottom of the page and click on “View Full Site” and then scroll allllll the way down again just past the comments and you will find the subscriber box there.

subscription

I am looking forward to seeing everyone’s final entries this week. Next week at this time, I will be posting two of your names as winner and runner-up! Squeeeeaaaallllllll!!!!!! I have goosebumps! Just so you know, I am not judging this, but some extremely qualified beaders and bead companies are!

Until next time, stay smart, or stay smart sassy!

Becca

Sarcasm Stays Up Late…..


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Y’all know that my “thing” is snarky, almost belligerent sometimes, sarcasm, so I thought I would compile a top 10 of my favorite snarky things I have found both online and in real life (yes, there is such a thing!):

1. People who point at their wrist asking for the time… I know where my watch is pal, where the heck is yours? Do I point at my behind when I ask where the bathroom is?

2. People who are willing to get off their behinds to search the entire room for the TV remote because they refuse to walk to the TV and change the channel manually.

3. When people say “Oh you just want to have your cake and eat it too”. Heck yeah! What good is cake if you can’t eat it?

4. When people say “it’s always the last place you look”. Of course it is. Why the heck would you keep looking after you’ve found it? Do people actually do this? Who, and where are they? Of course, I’ve been known to chase a 15/0 seed bead halfway across a room!

5. When people say while watching a film, “Did ya see that?” No Loser, I paid $12 to come to the theater and stare at the freaking floor!

6. People who ask “Can I ask you a question?”… Didn’t give me a choice there, did ya sunshine?

7. When something is ‘new and improved’. Which is it? If it’s new, then there has never been anything before it. If it’s an improvement, then there must have been something before it, couldn’t be new.

8. When people say “life is short”. WTH??? Life is the longest freaking thing anyone ever does!!! What can you do that is ANYTHING longer?

9. When you are waiting for your ride and someone asks “Has your ride got here yet?” If my ride was here yet, would I be standing here???

10. When people say about my jewelry like my wedding ring or my sapphire necklace just because I happen to make jewelry “Oh, did you make that too? Could you make me one? How much for something like that?” I mean, seriously??? Do people think because I work with tiny little seed beads I can afford to metalsmith precious metals and gemstones? Dang, I can barely afford my bead habit!

Speaking of beading, how is everyone coming along with the Sarcastic Beads and Yarn Challenge Spring 2016? I have seen some GREAT entries so far, and you can too by clicking HERE. You can also get a quick look at the Pantone colors that are required for the Challenge at the top of that page too.

Now, if you are anything like me, you totally get what it feels like when you just have to bead something – anything – but need something to inspire you and new projects to work on. There is something almost mystical about taking a needle and thread and turning a little pile of seed beads into a beautiful and wearable creation.

This month, I was lucky enough to score both “Jill Wiseman’s Beautiful Beaded Ropes, 24 Wearable Jewelry Projects in Multiple Stitches,”  AND “Japanese Beadwork with Sonoko Nozue: 25 Jewelry Designs From A Master Artist,” and I got them way below retail! Talk about beading inspiration!

Japanese Beadwork with Sonoko Nozue: 25 Jewelry Designs From A Master Artist"

“Japanese Beadwork with Sonoko Nozue: 25 Jewelry Designs From A Master Artist”

“Jill Wiseman’s Beautiful Beaded Ropes, 24 Wearable Jewelry Projects in Multiple Stitches”

“Jill Wiseman’s Beautiful Beaded Ropes, 24 Wearable Jewelry Projects in Multiple Stitches”

These two books, man oh man, if you ever need beading inspiration, they are definitely your go-to’s! Sonoko is, let me just say, bountiful with her use of Swarovski crystals, especially 3mm bicones, while Jill manages to touch on just about every beading technique we use in just one book. Also, let me remind you that if you are participating in the Challenge, that anything out of Jill’s book is an acceptable entry, as long as it is done in the Pantone colors specified.

So far I have received over 50 entries into the challenge. Yes, you read that right – fifty entries! One reason is because you can enter as many times as you want, as long as you limit your entries to three per day, per person. They must be uploaded to the event page HERE and only to the event page.

Once they are posted to the event page (and here is the reason for this week’s blog title) I stay up very late each night and proof and then upload them to the contest page here on the blog. If I have time, and I am near my laptop during the day, I will upload what I can, when I can. Just please do not panic if you do not see your entry posted on the contest page here until the next day. I can only do it from my laptop, and I am not glued to it 24/7. I mean, I have to have some time to bead!

So, I will close out my rambling and just remind you that in order to qualify your entry into the Challenge, you MUST be an email subscriber to this blog, which is easy peasy. If you are on a desktop device, just look in the upper left corner of the page and you will find the subscriber box to sign up, or if you are on a mobile device, scroll allllll the way down to the bottom of the page and click on “View Full Site” and then scroll allllll the way down again just past the comments and you will find the subscriber box there. You also MUST like my Facebook page HERE. Believe it or not, I will actually be checking this!

Keep those fabulous entries coming, and keep me up late at night! I would love to hear from you in the comments section below too, but if you have a question about the challenge, please post it on the event page. That way, everyone else with the same question will benefit. You people are just amazing with the entries I have gotten so far! Also remember that your entries must be something you created specifically for this challenge, and not something previously made!

Until next time, stay smart, or stay smart sassy!

Becca