Insomnia, my old friend

Sleep is an elusive thing this week. That is, real and lengthy sleep. So, after waking up at 4 a.m. (on a Saturday!!), I poked around online looking at information about liquid enamels. That got me to wondering about enameling pieces of copper that had been etched. How would a transparent color look over that?

So, I got myself out of bed and etched some metal.

Copper etched with salt water.
Copper etched with salt water.


I’m sad to say the results are not what I’d hoped for. Maybe just a clear enamel would be best. Maybe I need a lighter coat of the lightest transparent colors. Although I’m frustrated and feel like I wasted an hour or so, I know it was a good start, and I’ll forge ahead.

If you look close, you can see a hint of the owl.
I’m disappointed in this hedgehog. Breaks my heart to see the blotchy enamel, too.
More blotchy enamel, but at least you can (kind of) see the hedgehog.

So, time to pick the beads back up and work on this guy.

The beginnings of a bead-embroidered cat. He's a little frowny, I know.
The beginnings of a bead-embroidered cat. He’s a little frowny, I know.

And, in recognition of the big things — thank you, Elizabeth Warren — and the small things, like forging ahead in the face of craft fails, these pendants are also in the works.



The Unpost

How did it get to be nearly the end of July? Summer feels like more of a theory this year than an actual season. I suppose that’s ok, as I’ll take this cool weather over last year’s sweltering temperatures.

Last week I participated in Lake Forest Park annual summer craft vendors’ day. It was a great day in the sun, meeting new people. And, there I’m able to sell journals, so I spent some time making a few journals. (How much do I love my bind-it-all?!) And, how much do love the journal I made from a copy of the Christian  version of the Ungame?! I glued in some question cards, and think that overall it’s pretty great.

It’s Wednesday, and I’m already feeling good (that is, ready) for Saturday’s market. There’s just a little gluing and some connecting of shrink plastic pieces, and I can call it good. It’s amazing how many jewelry elements I have squirreled away that are nearly ready to go, but haven’t been completed. I will be making use of those.

I have next week off from the day job. I think I’ll putter around, do some enameling and put some beads to good use. All I know is that I need a week at home.

Also, twice last weekend I was asked about teaching. It’s exciting, but terrifies me. That seems kind of silly because I’ve been thinking that I should have gone into education. Could that be “two great ‘tastes’ that taste great together?” I don’t know. What I do know is that, as usual, my head is full of ideas, thoughts, worries, speculation and so much more. How to make sense of it all?

stamping, painting, beading and enameling

Sunday is project day, and there are a few things to show.

After nearly a year since taking my first and only enameling class, I broke out some copper blanks, enamels, my torch and had at it! (Yes, Morgan, I wore a mask and protective eye wear!) I love enameling. What took me so long to try it again? Laziness? Distraction? Fear? Could be any and all of these things. I don’t think I could have gotten back to it so easily without the help of the tutorial at Beaducation.
The Washington state pendant gives me much pleasure. And, I’m happy to have learned that you can enamel on pre-1982 pennies.
On a less-than-thrilled-note, I got some crazy pock marks on one piece. Hmm … what went wrong?

On Friday, needing something new for the market, I finished a spiral stitch bracelet. There’s something so festive about the colors of the beads. They make me happy. For sure the size 6 beads don’t try my patience (and eyes) like the spiral stitch project I started with size 11s months ago. (It was a slow day at the market, and with only six Saturdays left in the season, I need to decide how many more times I’ll return. Two, I think. At least.)

And, I finished another quad stitch necklace. I love this stitch. Plus, the bead colors look like colors I’d like to wear.

Today I took a class with Kae Pea. We stamped and played with paint. Do I love anything I did? No, not really, well, maybe … It’s a start. I am excited to dig through the stamps I have to see how they can be incorporated into doodles or hand-painted pendants or pins. Plus, we go to try Peerless watercolors. There’s still so much to learn and try! Plus, dabbling in other media feels good after so much time with beads and resin.

I feel like I had my hands in a good variety of projects over the last few days. That makes for a good weekend! Hmm … my mini torch is still out. Maybe I should finish the small encaustic pieces I started last year… Did I say good weekend? I meant great!