Sarcasm Says Happy Craft Month!


Happy Craft Month!!!! So….have y’all been getting all crafty? WE HAVE!!!! Well, I say “we”. I actually mean “me”. Poor Becca is poorly so she asked me to guest post.  She has no idea what she’s in for! HAHAHAHAHA! [sce emoji=”evilgrin”/] By the way, Becca will be back next week with that thread review y’all are wanting!

A little about me…I’m the guilty party that created the monster [sce emoji=”devil”/] that eventually became Becca’s Beaded Bangles. I’ve been making jewelry for more than 10 years and I’ve crafted all of my life. My style is a bit different than hers though. (don’t tell her but i don’t even OWN a seed bead. Not even one! Ed. note: that’s because she gave every single one she had to me!) I create from things i find or that are given to me. I started out doing things with shells and bits and pieces I found on the beach. That quickly expanded to things like car parts and rocks and old computers. [sce emoji=”whatsgoingon”/]  LOL  Yeah, I know it’s a bit odd. And that’s ok because that’s what art is supposed to be! I use bones, antlers, pelts, old draperies, and I’ve been known to rip up clothing. [sce emoji=”bomb”/]

Hiking with 2 of the mutts!

Of course, I use beads too, just not tiny ones that like to run away from you…. I like big honking pieces that make a statement! Anyway, I sell cars, and I have a couple of grown kids, a husband, and 6 dogs.  I created my “studio” in the corner of my new-ish hubby’s living room. Nothing fancy because I’m way too rough on stuff but it’s functional and I don’t feel like I’ve been sent to detention away from the fam. I spend as much time as I can outdoors hiking, swimming, canoeing, and generally getting into trouble any way I can find. (Bec will vouch for me on that!) I’m also rebuilding the gardens I sort of inherited. And of course, like all of you, I have a myriad of other life obligations that keep me running pillar to post every day. And like anything important, I force time for creating because without it I’m completely lost and I get depressed and laundry doesn’t get done and my family gets frightened I’m going off the deep end.  But that’s enough about me.

So what are you creating? Late winter and spring are always good for delving into new things and stretching your creative eye. Lately I’ve been playing with leather (that started as pants and a jacket. Don’t worry. They were pretty hideous as clothes but the leather is first class!) I can’t say that I’ll do this long-term but it gives the rest of my brain a break. It’s a sort of cure for “creative block”. I actually took several weeks off after Christmas because I would sit at my bench and *poof*. [sce emoji=”dull”/] Nothing. A total abyss. Ugh. So trying new things sort of sets everything on restart and I can move again. I strongly recommend trying new techniques, a new craft, a new perspective. Even if you never do it again, you’re forever enriched by the experience and will always see things a little differently because of it.

Speaking of doing new things…. Have y’all seen the new “Jackie” tutorial Becca did? She is actually the first designer to create a necklace with the AVA beads. Yeah…so… I really did create a monster. [sce emoji=”doctorstrange”/] LOL I don’t know how she does it. [sce emoji=”skipping”/] I really don’t. All those little tiny monsters! I mean beads.  Yes, I meant beads… LOL And she makes it all look effortless too! [sce emoji=”lalala”/] So go try a new pattern! Now is the time to snap it up because her  is it safe to buy antabuse online entire http://palm.capital/.com/embed/rR9qY-TzfZM webstore is 25% off this month with coupon code zithromax cost NCM17! (And she really needs the money with all that expensive medicine they have her on.)

“Jackie”

Y’all take care and come back now, ya hear? It’s time for me to go fold laundry and be an adult so I can go cut up more stuff! [sce emoji=”facepalm”/]

Oh….I almost forgot….. I promised I would also remind y’all that blogs ain’t free. It would be awesome if you could throw your spare change over this way. Don’t throw it hard cuz that would hurt.  Just toss gently, maybe.  Even better if it’s dollar bills!

Keep rocking your truth!

Sincerely,

Abby Lynn

Wire and Wine

Sarcasm Has Another Contest!


Larry Linson, Sr.     5/16/37 – 1/24/17

I have really missed connecting with all of you. There, I said it. However I have had some issues with my health and a death in my immediate family, in addition to losing two Facebook friends. So, this week I am dedicating my blog to Larry Linson, Sr., a wonderful beader, gifted computer programmer, and an amazing friend to me. Many of you know him from the beading groups. I knew him on Facebook, and then he became a “silent” sponsor of this blog and we had many long telephone conversations about politics, family, life in general, where he never failed at sharing his wisdom with me. I miss him very much.

So, I promised you last time I would show you what all I have been working on since the last time I posted anything. Well, there are so many of them, I am just going to post the pictures, and if you have any questions, please comment below!


 

Next week I will begin a series of thread reviews, like I did with the bead boards. It will include Fireline, Wildfire, Nymo, SoNo, Sinoko Nozue, and Hana. If you have a favorite thread that I haven’t listed, please comment below with the brand name and why you like it. I will also be reviewing thread burners.

So anyway, Sarcastic Beads and Yarn is holding a Pin It To Win It Contest! Prizes will be awarded randomly to FIFTEEN winners! (You must have a U.S. mailing address due to postage fees.) Those of you who live in Canada and wish to participate, please contact me via private message on Facebook.

The rules are simple: Pin an image of YOUR version of a project from any video from the YouTube channels Beading4Perfectionsts, B4Pbakup, or Potomac Bead Company (hey, don’t forget one of their videos is MY “Penny Pincher” bracelet!). Those of you who belong to the “Seedbeaders” group on Facebook may also use Larry’s RAW necklace pattern as a tribute to him.

Go crazy! Make it YOUR OWN creation! Don’t just change-up the bead colors, make it a completely updated design of your very own! Then pin ONE photo of your creation (be sure to watermark it) on my Pinterest Pin It To Win It board. Winners will be picked at random. Share the contest on your Facebook page (you will have your own special link) for 5 more bonus entries for everyone who enters from your link!

The contest will run from 12:01 a.m. February 1st, 2017 through 11:59 p.m. February 28th, 2017 CST. You must be a subscriber to this blog, have liked my Facebook page, and be a Follower on my Pinterest Page, all of which can be done in your entry form. When you are ready to enter, just head over to my Facebook page HERE and look for the “Pin It To Win It” tab to enter. Mobile users can enter HERE. Once you have completed your entry form, I can add you to my Pinterest board HERE to pin your entry. The winners emails will be picked by a random generator on 3/1/17 and posted here and on my Facebook page. However, you can’t win if you don’t enter!
PRIZES:

So head over to YouTube and start screening projects so you can get started on YOURS! The designers and I can’t  wait to see what you all come up with!

Good luck and I can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with! Also, don’t forget to wear red THIS Friday for the “Go Red for Women” campaign, in recognition of women’s heart health. It’s a cause VERY close to me! Until next week, stay smart or stay smart sassy!

Becca

Sarcasm Does Cheat Sheets


ny

Ahhhhh, that wonderful week after Christmas. You know, the one where the holiday excitement in your little one’s eyes is now glazed over by boredom (already!) with their newest toys and gadgets and you are ready to climb the walls wanting them back in school? Yeah, that’s the one. I had almost forgotten what that feeling was like, and then wham! My grandson starts kindergarten and he is staying with us this week. But alas, my wonderful hubby being the awesome Grandpa that he is, has planned on taking him hunting and out to the farm for some target practice with his new Red Ryder BB gun we gave him for Christmas, leaving me free to catch up on my beading.

Speaking of my wonderful hubby, I gotta tell you, he is one that actually listens when I say stuff. I have been talking about going to our local Harbor Freight store for months and getting a rock tumbler to use in my wire worked jewelry. Christmas Day comes around and I opened my beautiful diamond and sapphire (my birthstone) necklace and then I have another big, and heavy box to open.

The "I have The Greatest Hubby in the World" Christmas present

The “I have The Greatest Hubby in the World” Christmas present

And people say romance dies once you say I do. Any guy who buys his wife a diamond sapphire necklace and a rock tumbler for Christmas is a keeper. And he’s mine, so all of you single ladies out there keep your grubby little paws to yourself!

Anyway, I was thinking the other day how much I wished I had a quick reference on my computer or tablet to all the different beads around, especially with all the new shaped beads that seem to be coming out almost weekly. Well lo and behold, when I purchased my digital edition of Quick+Easy Beadwork, Winter 2015, they featured a couple of pages of diagrams that I will be sharing with you here for you to bookmark on your devices. This issue also features 30 bead projects using these beads, bead embroidery with metal, and some 30 minute earrings. You can purchase it from Interweave here.

2 hole beads pt 1

Two hole Beads

2 hole beads pt 2

Two hole and Shaped Beads

Shaped Beads

Shaped Beads

And what reference would be complete without a few most know terms? These are brought to you courtesy of Beading Daily, where you can find an entire Glossary of beading knowledge here.

Cull your beads. Remove beads that are wider or skinnier than the average size bead-using consistently sized beads results in uniform beadwork. Keep the beads you removed because beads that are too thin or too wide can come in handy when filling gaps and when making gradual decreases and increases.

Pass through. To pass through means to pass through a bead a second time, moving the needle in the same direction as the way it was initially strung (Fig. 1).

Pass back through. To pass back through, move the needle in the opposite direction as the way it was initially strung (Fig. 2).

Image

Repeat. When the word repeat appears after a semicolon, repeat the instructions that precede it in that sentence only. For example, here you’ll work the entire sequence three times for a grand total of 6 stitches and 3A: “Work 2 stitches with 1A in each stitch; repeat twice.”

Repeat from *. Repeat the instructions, starting at the text that follows the *.

Row vs. round. Rows of peyote stitch are worked back and forth; rounds are worked in a circle.

Secure the thread and trim. Tie 1 or 2 knots around threads between nearby beads, weave through 3 to 4 beads, and trim the tail close to the beadwork with scissors or a thread burner.

Splitting the pairs. Work 1 bead between the 2 beads of a pair in the previous row/round (Fig. 3).

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Step up. Use a step up to prepare for the next row (or round). Unless otherwise directed, do this by passing through the first bead added in the current row/round.

Stitch. When directed to work a peyote stitch, string 1 bead and pass through the next up bead. The motion of stringing the bead you want to add and going through the next bead to lock the bead in place is considered 1 stitch.

Turnaround. Change your stitching direction without exposing the thread or deviating from the established thread path.

Up bead vs down bead. The top jagged end of a flat strip of peyote stitch consists of up beads; the bottom end is made of down beads. The very basic nature of peyote stitch is to string 1 bead and pass through the nearest up bead. The bead just added becomes the new up bead; the bead just exited is now a down bead.

Working thread vs tail thread. The working thread is the end with the needle, doing the work of stitching. The opposite end is the tail thread.

With all the terminology that we beaders use, sometimes it seems like we are speaking our own secret spy code. I love the look of confusion on people’s faces when I’m speaking bead. Somehow it makes me feel superior. My husband just thinks I’m nuts and spend way too much money on beads. He’s half right.

And I’m not going to let you go this week without showing off something I beaded. This bracelet (and please do not laugh) took me nearly three years to complete. I don’t mean the time and labor, but the design process. I must have started it and ripped it apart 20-30 times. I am just not used to working with cubed beads and this bracelet is square stitched almost entirely in 4mm pink marble Miyuki cube beads with 4mm firepolished and 11/0 galvanized pink rose seed beads adornments. I guess the reason it took me so long is I just will not let anything be completed until I consider it good enough to adorn someone’s wrist, neck, ears, you get the drift.

"Rose Marble Windows"

“Rose Marble Windows”

I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season and has a very Happy New Year. Don’t forget for all your beading needs to check out Eureka Crystal Beads. You simply can’t beat their prices, fast and free economy shipping, or the amount you get for your money. Heck, Toho seed beads are sold in 20 gram tubes and super duos in 25 gram tubes! They are also ALWAYS running some kind of a sale! Another thing, they have some great absolutely 100% FREE downloadable patterns. There is a link to those on the sidebar on this page. Use discount code A10SAVE20R and receive 20% off your first order!

I am planning on posting a lot more tutorials in the coming New Year, so be sure to go find that little box that subscribes you to my weekly dose of snark in your email and fill it out. Every now and again you will get a bonus posting mid-week! Please let me hear from you in the comments too. I want to know what you are beading, what you think of my blog, and don’t forget to send your sarcasm memes to beccasbanglesofal@yahoo.com to be used in a future posting!

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

Becca

Sarcasm does a Free Tubular Chenille Tute!


swearing

Every year without fail, my Mom and I used to go to the local Gem & Mineral Show here in Montgomery, AL to ooooh and ahhhh over all the gorgeous stones and be fascinated (well, I was, anyway) at the lapidary and flint knapping exhibitions. I never realized just how much of an impact it was making on me until I became a TOTAL rockhound, as far as collecting cabochons goes! Apparently, all those trips over the years with her made an impact on me! Now I can not seem to get enough of those beautiful stones that I now bead around and make into jewelry. It seems that a little knowledge seeped in over the years too, because as I started collecting these beauties, I could recognize on sight what they were and even some of the regions they originated from.

Well, this weekend was this year’s annual show, and I took my grandbabies with me. My five-year old grandson is an absolute shark fanatic, and has been since he was two. He can recognize a shark species just by looking at it, and some by their teeth. The look on his face today was absolutely priceless when he saw the Megalodon tooth that was practically bigger than his head! Besides all the cool cabochons, firepolished crystals, and tools I left with, I left with an ecstatic five-year old grandson with a paper bag FULL of shark teeth, many of which were fossils!

Montgomery Gem & Mineral Show 2015

Montgomery Gem & Mineral Show 2015

So the picture above is just some of the jewelry on display at this year’s show. The bracelet in the center, done by me, is done in Chenille stitch, but instead of seed beads, I used ALL magatamas – two colors. Chenille stitch is my go-to stitch whenever I need a beaded rope for a pendant, and is also my most popular selling bracelet. It can be done in a variety of beads and endless color combinations. However, doing one entirely in magatamas? That took time, patience, and a lot, and I do mean a LOT of profanity! Forget sarcasm, profanity was in order for this one! I still haven’t figured out why I named it “Tranquility” other than it just reminded me of the tranquil feel of the waves of the ocean (after I got it done). No, seriously, this is probably one of the prettiest Chenille stitch bracelets I have ever done, and I have done quite a few.

"Tranquility"

“Tranquility”

So here is an easy picture tutorial from Jean Campbell for tubular Chenille stitch that was published in Beadwork Magazine and also on Beading Daily. I hope you find it as easy to follow as I did!

Using approximately 3′ of Fireline or Wildfire, string 6A beads (shown in green in rounds 1 & 2)

Round 1:

Form a ladder stitch with your 6 strung beads and then ladder stitch your 1st and last beads together to form a ring.

Form a ladder stitch with your 6 strung beads and then ladder stitch your 1st and last beads together to form a ring.

Round 2:

String 1B and pass down the next A of the prev. round, then up through the following A; repeat twice. Step up through the 1st B added this round.

String 1B and pass down the next A of the prev. round, then up through the following A; repeat twice. Step up through the 1st B added this round.

Round 3:

String 2A, pass through the next B of the prev. round; repeat twice. Step up through the 1st A added this round.

String 2A, pass through the next B of the prev. round; repeat twice. Step up through the 1st A added this round.

Round 4:

String 1B, pass down through the next A of the prev. round, and up through the following A; repeat twice. Step up through the 1st B added this round.

String 1B, pass down through the next A of the prev. round, and up through the following A; repeat twice. Step up through the 1st B added this round.

Round 5 – repeat rounds 3 and 4 until desired length.

Final round – Always end with a round 3 repeat. Then without adding any beads, ladderstitch your threadpath so that your first and last rounds match.

So I know what I want for Christmas, and I DARE one of you to get it for me! My lovely advertiser, Amazon, has the coolest thing for a snarky person such as myself! I present to you the Sarcastic Ball! It basically says everything I already do, or when I need to think of something, I can just toss it! Please, please, please somebody get me this!

Sarcastic Ball

Sarcastic Ball

If one of you really gets me this, I swear I will remember you in my will! Of course that means I would have to have something to leave you…. Anyway, that wraps it up for this week folks. Please find that little email sign-up box on this page and fill it out, if you haven’t already. Just for doing so, you will be forever subscribed (until you opt out, but you won’t, you know you won’t) to my snarky (but witty!) and beady ramblings each and every single week! You could even leave me a comment below and that wouldn’t even hurt my sarcastic little feelings not one bit! Of course if you don’t, I might get snarkier on you next week! You all be good, Santa’s watching!

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

Becca

Sarcasm is a rockhound


sarcasm2A couple of years after I got into beading, my favorite Bead Fairy, Cyn Wilson, introduced me to the use of focal pieces in my work and how to do peyote bezels of cabochons. What, wait, these beautiful…..rocks! That’s right, rocks. Most people hear me talking about my rock obsession or see me scrolling through my Facebook feed looking at slabs and cabs and think either A.) she’s got a screw loose; or B.) does she know something I don’t and are these valuable? Well, the answer is B! The right kinds of rocks can be extremely valuable, and I have learned so much from them!

rockmeme10

My favorites to work with are blue lace agate, moonstone, lepidolite, and pietersite. Most people who collect or buy mineral cabochons do so for wire wrapped jewelry. That is something that I desperately want to be good at, but right now I am all thumbs, as you can see.

My first wire wrapped cabochon, an agate wrapped in copper.

My first wire wrapped cabochon, an agate wrapped in copper.

I have discovered that I have a knack for bezeling these lovely stones with peyote stitch into some fairly decent looking pendants. Then they are either placed for sale in my online store here, or I add a beaded rope, usually done in chenille stitch, and sell them as necklaces, also in my online store. These two are available now. I so enjoyed doing this Shasta Chrysocolla cabochon mined in 1 specific mine from California in a hand beaded bezel of chocolate and mint to accentuate the lovely vein of Chrysocolla running through it. The cabochon was provided by Danny Wade. The black Chinese Writing Stone by Ken Sexton is incredible with its markings and challenging shape. It comes with an 18 inch black and silver chenille stitch beaded rope.

Chinese Writing Stone with 18 inch chenille stitch beaded rope.

Chinese Writing Stone hand bezeled with 18 inch chenille stitch beaded rope.

Shasta Chrysocolla mined in California hand bezeled in turquoise and chocolate Japanese seed beads.

Shasta Chrysocolla mined in California hand bezeled in turquoise and chocolate Japanese seed beads.

My husband keeps threatening to take my bank card away from me because of my rock addiction. I have a display case full, plus enough to fill another. That doesn’t even count all the dichroic glass, polymer clay, and resin cabochons. I have even started making a lot of my own polymer clay cabs for bead embroidery. I love to work with the sun/moon faces as focal pieces, but most of the ones you find for sale online are hand carved out of bone, making them rather pricey. I can make a dozen of them in whatever colors my piece calls for in less than half the money.

This has been a rough week. My home away from home, The Enchanted Bead had to close their doors permanently as of this past Friday at 5:00 p.m., due to the owner’s illness. Cyn Wilson has been a blessing to me, a sister, a friend, but most important, she is a survivor, and will fight like hell with her newest health challenge. I love her and will miss the bead shop, but more important, will miss seeing her on a regular basis. I have learned so much from her, and hope to continue to do so. I am currently working on a project in her honor.

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

Becca