Friday, August 26, 2016

Bead Fest 2016 Here and Gone in a Flash

Bead Fest was so much prep- weeks of making beads, and painting beads and sealing beads and pricing beads...................

Prepping for my class.................

and getting the house ready to leave the family for 4 days................

And then, this:

(settling into my room)

all the beads................all set up!

And then friends started rolling in.

Barb B. and Diana P. showing off their Staci Louise Luna Moth bags- great for bead show shopping !!

Suze Weinburg stopped by (blurry pic by my son!!) and bought some fun and unique beads to play with

Kristie of Artisan Clay stopped by to chat and fondle beads- we even got to shop a bit together

(one of my helpers)

Yvonne of My Elements whose personality is as bright and colorful as her beads

Tracey Donoughe who's matte ceramic beads beg to be touched.  I ended up scoring a ton of beach stones from her this time around, see below in the "booty" portion of the blog

Nikki of Thornburg Bead Studio- who always has some amazing color combinations and textures- her new large urchin beads are a must have

Marsha of Marsha Neal Studio - who had not just beads, but fun ring holders, felted art and other miniatures that are just divine

Diane Hawkey with her ceramic beads, and her house sculptures and pot heads.  I love her sense of modern art and whimsy!

And you will never believe who I ran into at Yvonne's booth!  My high school art teacher!!!!  We had so many smiles catching up.  I loved our art program at our high school and took it as a major, so I got to have art twice a day!  I learned as much there as I did my first year of art in college.  This was such an awesome surprise (what a small world it is!!!)

Marsha wore a necklace I made her using her beads, my beads and Nikki's beads all weekend.  I love keeping her adorned with jewelry to wear!!!!

...........................and there were so many more.  I am just happy I got the pictures I did.  Between gabbing, and selling and shopping its amazing I remembered to take any pictures!

I should have gotten a nice shot of my booth / class helpers together, Barb Bechtel and Amanda Leonhart.  They were priceless.  I could count on them to jump in and help customers when I was not there or got too gabby.
Here is a pic I stole from Amanda's page.  She could often be found covering for me when I wasn't there.

And here is a pic of Barb and I at a late night dinner after teaching class.  She was an excellent class helper and I couldn't have done it without her!

Our back corner, Diane Hawkey, Marsha Neal Studio, Nikki Thornburg Studio and me, have so much fun.  Great laughs, and our beads all go well together too.  

Diane Hawkey called us the "best bead squad ever"!  I could not agree more.

Thank you to everyone who stops by each year to support my business and allow me to make new and exciting things.  I look forward to the familiar faces, laughs and bead chat.

I did my own share of bead shopping of course.

Here is the score of beads I came home with.  I tried to be good, really!  but I really do go through the gemstones, and I needed some more colors of certain shapes.

ammonites and carnelian

Turquoise, amazonite, and lots of appatite

some more of these electroplated stone beads!!!  can't get enough of them- they go great with my gold rush beads

citrine nuggets with decent size holes, amazonite and pink opal- these are chunky and gorgeous

star bone beads, and dino-bone beads- i cannot keep these in stock

Golem Studio Beads- my first batch from them- excited to play

Antique brass beads from Hands of the Hills- these have such an amazing patina of time on them

Marsha Neal Studio Beads (I can never get enough of them)- love love love her colors and textures

Lucet's for weaving from Cooky Schock- haven't tried it yet, but plan to take them to the shore with me next weekend

gorgeous glass beads from Thornburg Bead Studio- do you think I like that yellow green????  So glad to get some of those gorgeous urchins!

I managed to steal some of Barb Bechtel's beads while she had them out at our bead swap!

These are gifts and I love them - cards of paintings by Shelley Graham Turner (aren't they great?  I love her work)

It was so nice to see Andrew Thorton and William working the Green Girl Studio booth.  I got my hands on some of Andrew's beads

I pawed through Diane Hawkey's beads until I found the "must have's"  That blue cat and the devil dog are my favorites!

I got double this amount of natural holey stones from Tracey Donoughe- I cannot wait to use them.  They all have natural holes in them

So, it was good shopping and I am really happy with my haul.  I can't wait to start playing with them!

In the meantime, I came home with lots of beautiful beautiful beads to share with all of you who didn't make it to Bead Fest.  I plan to have an online sale, on facebook here.  I will list some Monday night (August 29th) for those of you who work days, and I will list some Tuesday afternoon (August 30th) for those of you who work nights.  So stay tuned on my Facebook page for details!!!!!

My Painting on Polymer class went well, the students all made really cool pieces they can be proud of!  More on that in another post!

For now, I leave you with what they made!

Monday, July 11, 2016

Tinicum Arts Festival: Weekend Review

What a wonderful weekend at Tinicum Arts Festival.  
As some of you may know (if you follow my blogs or Facebook) sales at shows have been really down for me.  Like, REALLY down.  I was getting quite discouraged.  

I had considered not doing Tinicum Arts Festival at all this year.  And that is huge, because I have been doing that show for around 13 years.  It is like family there, great vendors, its in a shady park, the folks that run it are like family too.  Anyhow......

Instead of not doing the show, I did some thinking and decided to change directions and add some art prints (linocuts) and hand dyed and printed purses to my booth- and that gave me a nice distraction.

So for the first time in a long time I was EXCITED again to do a show.  If for not other reason, then to show off my stuff.  

But then I started to follow the weather for the weekend, and sure enough it was chance of storms and temps in the mid to high 90's!  Now, I don't do well in the heat anymore.  And I don't mean, like, it is uncomfortable, I mean, I feel ill.  My heart races, I ache.  It really effects me.  So I spent the week praying for better weather (no storms) and lower temps.  I also got a bigger batter operated fan, a small hand fan / mister, and brought an extra cooler of water and a bowl to fill and dip my feet in should I get too overheated.  I have a bunch of neck coolies in the cooler which I rotate too.  They really help. (neck coolies has something in them that absorbs water, so you can keep it in the cooler once you activate it with water, and then tie it around your neck.  Cools you down instantly!!!
Here is the woman I buy from, I add a new one each year to my collection!!!

Here is my newest batik fabric one (not activated yet)

I am so happy to say, the storms broke up, with I think only one overnight on saturday while we were gone (looked as if there was only one tent casualty from that, and she didn't have weights on her tent, so......................)  Instead of the temps being in the 90's for Saturday as the weather said, they didn't even crest 70!!!!  With it being misty out it was actually chilly.  I didn't use any of my "cooling" kit.  Instead I put a shawl over my shoulders part of the morning.  Sunday was gorgeous, high 70's low 80's, sunny.  I broke out my fan for that day, and used a neck coolie for pack up, but it was not bad at all.  It is amazing how much better I felt after the shows with it being in oppressive heat. 

Another thing that helped me to feel better, is that I invested in a nice chair to sit in.  I need to sit up high, since I sit behind my tables.  I used a stool forever, because it was cheap, and collapsible, and I stand most of the time anyhow.  But the last year my body has protested this (not to mention, slower shows mean more sitting).  I found this one on amazon, and could NOT believe the price.  Not to mention, it is roomy (I am not a little woman) and sturdy (must be able to be thrown in the back of a vehicle with multiple things piled on it, repeatedly and survive.  Well, I love it.  It takes up a bit more room in the vehicle, and the booth (its very wide), but I felt wonderful and relaxed.  I was just what I needed.

Here is the link to the listing on Amazon.

My son Aiden (14) was my helper all weekend at the show.  Set up, tear down, sales, booth watching.....fetching me food.  He was wonderful.  I love spending time with him and he enjoyed catching some new Pokemon in a new location (yep, he is into Pokemon go!).  He got to walk around with a fellow artist and dear friend who didn't do the show this year too, and I think he really enjoyed spending time with him and having that freedom.  I am so thankful he enjoys shows and the arts!!!

I had to play with the display since I had new items.  The first day, with it being misty out, we had to keep the prints inside and the bags.  

First they were tucked in a corner (nope- didn't work well) 

and then we moved them up more (better). 

 But on Sunday when it was sunny, we moved them out front as I had wanted to have them, and they got soooo many people looking through them, which was nice. I sold a few as well!

I also brought extra hangers for the bags, since they were soooooo clustered together  on Saturday.
You couldn't see the designs or root through them well because they were piled on top of each other..

Sunday they were more spread out, and I even put the tote bags out front.  They got more fondling and I even sold some of them.

I also ditched my shutters for the earrings and used closet shelving we had in the basement.  Worked better because I could have them inside for bad weather, and didn't have to take them down at the end of the day to lower the tent or to have the sides on.  

I think sometimes I love setting my display up as much as creating!!!!  I still think I need some sort of coat tree for out front to display the bags.  I think they need that.  Eventually I will do that!  For now, this is my last outdoor show till September.  So today is cleaning up, rinsing off the tent, drying walls and table cloths and packing it up till fall.

Another thing I want to mention, because, you know, polymer- is my friend Mary-Lynne Moffatt, who took BEST IN SHOW,  at the annual Art Barn art show, which brings artists from all over Bucks County and NJ as well.  Out of all the entries, in all mediums, she got the Best in show.  Go Mary-Lynne and go polymer!  I love seeing polymer taken more seriously as an art form!!!

Her chess set is something to behold, and I wish you could see it in person.  Each piece hand sculpted.  

You can find her on Facebook here.

Anyhow, I am glad I did the show.  There is such a feeling of family there.  Even a slow show there is nice because there is good company and lots of artist to visit and chat with. 

I wish I had taken more pictures.  I am so busy talking I always forget!!!!