January 29, 2009

What a Find....

Somewhere on my travels I had stopped in an Interstate Welcome Center and picked up some small, glossy, bookmark-like discount cards. I filed the idea away for future advertising that also might work for jewelry enclosures.

Last week I got a bee in my bonnet about having something new and updated to hand out when I visited some of the Tucson Gem shows. I searched and looked at Moo cards, mini cards and various special order cards. Of course, I couldn't be satisfied with the standard layouts offered and wanted to apply my own twist to the cards. I was also impatient and wanted them right away, not in 4 to 6 weeks. Can you say, "immediate gratification"?

I found a California company offering what I thought was an outstanding deal. One hundred (100) 3" x 1.25" glossy cards for $18.99, free shipping and almost overnight delivery. On top of that those 100 cards could have 100 unique photos on the front side. Oh wow, I thought .... what a fun thing to hand out and use as inserts, but wait ..... what quality would such a hurry up print job be? And could they really get them to me in less than 7 days?

First off, their Customer Service answered my email about my non-standard request right away and offered to work with me outside the standard system. I emailed my already sized photos with my own text on them - 10 different photos plus my own graphics for the text on the reverse side. They promised I'd have them before I really thought I'd need them.

I can't say how pleased I was with my order from
The print quality exceeded my expectations and they are beautiful. You can see a few examples in the photos of what I got. Having spent most of my corporate working life in the printing industry, I'm hard to please with printed products. These small jewels of a card are just what I wanted and excellent color & print quality. I feel like I just got a whole new wardrobe. Now I have to think of other ways to use them.

January 26, 2009

This 'n That - no Beads!

On New Year's Day we took a drive. Part of the drive was over the Bisbee Border Rd. Yes, that's the fence along the Mexican border. The only neat thing about it is the shadow it throws down the dirt road. I offer up this photo as just a great graphic.


I've had a hummingbird feeder out for about 2 weeks now. My neighbor has hummingbirds - I don't .... I have woodpeckers! I didn't know that woodpeckers were nectar feeders, but it's a hoot watching this male eye the feeder, figuring how to land on it, and then clinging almost upside down to get a drink.


My creative projects have just gotten a lot larger. I finally own a home in NH. It needs a lot of work and it's frustrating to be here in Arizona, trying to make plans for the Spring. Right now it's in cold storage, under a blanket of ice and snow. After 8 years of a small apartment over my Son's garage, it's time to move into my own quarters. The apartment was a welcome haven and a Godsend after my husband's sudden death, but it's time to start over somewhere else. What I will miss is having my G'daughter just bop in at odd times with, "I've come to visit for awhile Grandma."

Here in Arizona I've been working on enclosing a small back porch (maybe it could have been called a ramada). It had peeled pine logs holding up the roof and a dilapidated wood platform for a floor. The logs had rotted off at ground level and the sorta-wood deck harbored mold and critters.
Now it has a poured concrete floor and the walls are almost up. I've painted the new-old window the same color as the door so my neighbor (who liked the view) will have something similar to look at from her deck. I've a pile of weathered boards for the outside so it will look like it's been there as long as the 1800's adobe portion of the house. I'm ready for my part of the project; colors
and painting - this re-building part is taking too long.
Now I need to refocus and get ready for the Tucson Gem shows. Last report I heard, there was 40+ individual shows throughout the city. I'm not going to do any book signings this year, and will only spend 3 days at the shows. I don't really need anything other than to go see what's new and different.

January 15, 2009


.....also known as the "Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art".

In the "Flip a Strip" exhibit, honorable mentions included: Avery Architecture & Design of Chicago, Illinois for a proposal titled The Genetically Modified Strip. The Project Design Team features Richard Avery & Wendy Avery in partnership with the design firm giffin’termeer [Jess Giffin, Jim TerMeer]. Jess Giffin is my daughter and I had to make a trip up to Phoenix to see the exhibit. I'm very proud of what she has done in the design and art field.


I also took the time to look at the "radical lace & subversive knitting" exhibit. What fun! I wish I could have taken all of my knitting friends along for the visit. This knitted skin was worth a good chuckle.

I'm just sorry that they only had the video of knitting with backhoes.

Some of the other pieces were rather fantastic and left you wondering, "just how did they do that?"

January 7, 2009

too many

I unloaded the tumbler ..... now I have too many good choices for making dump glass necklaces! And this is what is left after I sorted out the bottle necks, handles and larger chunky pieces. Now what do I do? Have you ever not done a project because you had too many choices or possibilities?

January 4, 2009

Dump Glass Necklace

It all starts here .....
Glass, ceramics, metal bits from the Bisbee bottle dump, Gleeson Ghost Town adobes, or my own back yard. Here in the desert of Arizona the mining towns seem to be well littered with old broken glass and interesting other bits and pieces. Every year, after the Summer rains, more bits pop up in my back yard.

Last season I bought a rock tumbler, mainly to use with the glass. It's interesting colors and shapes, but I needed to knock off the sharp edges. No ocean here, but I end up with beach glass when I get done tumbling things.

Some of the pieces are just beautiful the way they are and I have been selecting my favorites and putting them into a straight sided vase on the window sill. Besides, they are too chunky and large to make into something wearable.

Now I've a couple of new bottles that will get broken up and tumbled. I can't believe I actually bought some wine just for the container colors. I like the idea of the mossy green glass with the deep cobalt blue.

The end result will be wearable, or at least I hope so. This necklace is a selection of tumbled ceramic pieces. I'll use adhesive copper tape around the edges, solder over that then solder jump rings to the edges. That way I can join the pieces together. This particular piece will be for a historical Archaeologist who taught me to identify broken dishes over two summers. I enjoy the fact that she will be able to wear artifacts like those that she has put on display in a museum.
I am sorting through the glass pieces that are done for other combinations that might work. The other that I think will make an outstanding piece is the great sun-purpled glass. It's such a nice soft unusual color.