Monday, June 28, 2010

Terri Brush Soldering Class

I was so excited to finally attend this class to learn how to solder. I am always amazed at the jewelry made with glass bezels, and like so many crafty people we think to ourselves, "I can make that!"  So my hubby Tyler got out all of his soldering equipment and let me run with it. Of course the results were disastrous! I needed professional help! Luckily my girl Maija posted on her blog about this class. So I counted down the days and at last got to terri class. It was in an upstairs studio in Solana Beach. There was an ocean breeze that filtered through the room and she had it decorated so sweetly with all of her equipment and jewelry. Luckily Weller 100w soldering iron
s come in this lovely teal blue color, and she had all the decorations to match!  It is touches like that, that make taking classes special and the efforts are appreciated.  Now for the class, the first half was creating the tiny collages to sandwich between the glass. The second half, we got down to the soldering! First thing we learned was how to wrap our pieces in copper foil.

Then we fired up the irons. Of course I burned myself almost immediately when I tried to pick the Weller up like a pencil! It blistered right up! But I am trooper and just kept going (thanks to me I think Terri might be bringing a first aid kit to class now!) Then Terri did a demo and it all seemed easy enough. The are some really great things about this class. First was that, Terry and her assistant went to each student and helped one on one. Not "here, give it to me and I'll show you" help, but let us hold the iron and coached us through our mistakes.  As an added bonus artist Julie Haymaker Thompson
was also taking the class and added in some extra hints about some other mediums we could use in our jewelry art. It was like two classes in one. Julie is really a great teacher and I am excited that she will be teaching at the Artistic Affaire Les Sirene event in July. Also, this class included all of the equipment and supplies. I was able to decide if I liked doing it enough to invest in the equipment and supplies. Also, someone made some delicious brownies and the food was tasty! With all of that said, get yourself to a Terri Brush soldering class, and enjoy all that she has to offer! Here are some of my creations that I made in to necklaces. One I made for my dear friend Julie, and the other for myself!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Craft Night at the Vintage Emporium

Craft Night at the Vintage was great! Look how shop owner Julie dolled up the Vintage for our little soiree!

   We made these adorable BEACH  banners.
A kit with all the tools and supplies needed were provided. Add to that, a few glasses of crisp white wine and brie, and you have quite a relaxing fun summer evening with friends. We had so much fun we have already made plans for out next class!

 We will be making mini books with a summer theme. Attendees will learn how to do a basic coptic stitch binding. I will also be bringing tons of design options, so you will really be able to make your book your own! Details coming soon, but if you want to see class samples, check this blog post!
Thank you to all the sweet dolls that attended, and as always thanks Julie for being such an awesome hostess!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sweet Birthday Memories

This is one of my favorite childhood pictures, I am not sure who's birthday it was. We used to play pin the tail on the donkey, I would love to find a vintage one of those again! I am wearing one of my favorite blue gingham dresses, and of course today as I turn 41 years old, I still wear my hair in pigtails. (Only I need to find some of those doodle ribbons!) In this picture also is my sister Michelle (center) and my terror of a little brother Paul to the right! My Birthday brings me such mixed emotions as it's always near Fathers Day. My dad passed away from Lung Cancer in 1992 and I always miss him so much during this time. Thanks you everyone for the Facebook Birthday wishes! Not doing anything special today, just taking some time off work for a Doctors Appointment and a visit to see my Mom.  Then this weekend I am taking a soldering class in San Diego, and probably at some point go to Ruths Chris for dinner!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Hand-bound Recycled Mini-Coaster Books

Last year I took a wonderful book binding class at the International Printing  Museum in Torrance. It was taught by Book Artist Lucia Frias Villarreal . She has a Masters degree in bookmaking, so I feel I learned from the best! She taught us Coptic binding which was developed in Egypt as early as the second century AD. Essentially it is a stitching method where you attach your pages "signatures" to your covers.  I have collected several drink coasters from Chili's and thought they would make some great starter covers for my mini books. I had all of these wonderful Vintage images I collected to use for my Summer inspired projects, but didn't end up using all of them. So I printed out my favorites and started stitching away. Traditionally you would use a special waxed string. I ended up using bakers twine which I waxed myself using a tea light! I really loved how they came out. I used some vintage book pages from damaged books for my signatures.
{coptic edges}
{i love this vintage Barbie image}
{inside the signatures you can see the bakers twine}
{the pages are from old books, a toy collectors catalog and a family satire from the 70's}

I am thinkin of offering this for a class at the Vintage. They are so fun to make, and a bit challenging!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

New Fashion Trend or future Regretsy item?

Inspiration can come from anywhere. But there is a place that, by its design, forces you to be inspired... yes the local craft store. Since so many scrapbook stores have gone out of business, and the Tall Mouse closed its Cerritos Location, that leaves me with good old Joann and Michaels. Usually my trips to these places are extremely focused. My husband and I are total home-bodies and heavan forbid we leave the house on a Sunday. But ever once in a while we have to make the obligatory Home Depot run. That's when I say, and "Oh we need to hit Michaels too". Then he makes his heavy sigh sound. "Don't worry I know exactly what I want, i'll just be a minute." And off I rush with blinders on thinking..."only tacky glue, only tacky, glue". Well today Tyler is off hanging out with a buddy, and I get ALL the time I need at Michaels. I am not sure if that was a good thing. I walked down every aisle and when I hit the wedding area I saw some blank hair clips. I thought wouldn't that be cute if I wired a bunch of vintage buttons and watch parts to one of those. So I did, and I kinda like how my first (and possibly last) attempt went. I personally like it, but not sure what the reaction would be if I wore it to say... work? Maybe it would be looked at as fun an quirky? Maybe someone might ask me if I found it on Regresty?
I think I will wear it to work and I will let you know the results! -Denise

Saturday, June 12, 2010

New Toy Test

Yes, it will be a miracle if this works on the first try; here we go!

Did it work? Leave a comment and let me know!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

New Toy on it's way!!!

I am so excited to get my new toy! I heard about this mini HD video camera listening to Leo Laporte the tech guy on talk radio. The camera is new, but videography is not new to me. Before I got into mixed media, altered art and scrapbooking, I was obsessed with making videos. I even made a half hour long epic of our vacation in Thailand. Now I intend to make some "crafter on the street" type videos where I take my camera to flea markets, thrift stores, craft supply shops, art stores, ect. I may even do some tutorials. I got inspired by my girl Earleen (I would post her blog, but she doesn't have one! Find her on Facebook) She has posted a few videos on facebook and it really made me miss my video camera. Now all I have to do is reacquaint  myself with imovie. I used to be an imovie master, but I just opened up the latest version and it is way different! And now about my toy! I always buy my electronics on Amazon. I have Amazon prime so everything is two day shipping. I make sure my items arrive on my day off, but I totally screwed up because I am working this Thursday! So I will have to wait until Sunday to really play with it. I bought this camera because of its size and video quality. I found with my larger mini camcorders I never really used them for long periods of time, I didn't need a ton of storage space for video because I uploaded and erased the tapes all of time. Now I just have a SD card that I can just pop into my USB card reader. This camera also has an external mic port. Something that really makes a difference in the quality of your videos, it's amazing how much external ambient sound the camera mics pic up. I bought a lapel clip mic for it, so we will see how it goes, I am hoping it give a more polished look and feel to my videos. I am also looking forward to taking my camera on vacation, ski trips, and also to work. At one time I made videos of my employees and they loved them, so I am hoping to make some more inspirational and motivational videos for them. Well that's all for now, back to making more mermaid goodies, hopefully my next post will have a video!!!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Went to a Vintage Paper Faire and came back with Bottles!

Two Sundays ago I went to the Vintage Paper Fair in Glendale, Ca. It was quite overwhelming! I saw vintage magazines, photos, maps, letters, and die cuts. The majority of the items for sale were boxes and boxes and boxes of postcards. There were people just sitting at the tables flashing through thousands of cards looking for those gems. Several table had cards for 1.00, but most of the cards I wanted were in the $15 to $20 range. I really loved the old Barnum and Bailey Circus cards like this one above. But the real find was when I came to this table of vintage letters. She had this group of vintage bottles behind a stack of letters. I was looking at them and the prices were pretty reasonable. She said, "give me a price and I'll sell you all of them, I am tired of carrying them around!" I was sure her price would be out of my range, but it wasn't. I am not going to even tell you how much I got them for, it was such a steal!! I did research them after I got them home, and none of them is significantly expensive, no "diamonds" in the rough, but they are diamonds to me. I am going to decorate a few and take the rest to my next show to sell.  That's part of one of my "flea market" strategies, If I am looking for say vintage jewelry, I don't go to the vintage jewelry places, I go to the guy selling fishing rods and if he happens to have some vintage jewelry lying around... that's where the deals are! Oh and that reminds me I found some REAL vintage silver tinsel garland, not Bethany Lowe vintage style garland, but the real deal! Of course from a lady selling ceramics!
I really loved learning about these bottles and am ordering this book from Amazon: