Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Beadwork Challenge!

If you're familiar with Beadwork magazine, there is a regular column called "The Challenge!" (I added the ! - it just needs to be ! don't you think?). Artists, shop owners send in a "kit" of beads for the editors to incorporate into jewelry. Apparently it is a very popular column. I had to sign up last year for the April 2007 Challenge. The kits have to be sent off early of course so they can make the items and then photograph them, etc.

I'm giddy and nervous!!

Ok, so I've broken the first law of business, "never let them see you sweat!" My business goal for the past year has been- pimp my beads! If I had my druthers, I'd do the middle child thing and just be quiet! Pimpin' the beads is a HUGE step for me! So, I'm excited that I actually have done it and scared to death at the same time!

Ack! Feels like the first time I performed with my tap dance group when I was 5 years old! People are looking at you, Cindy, smile and keep tapping!

I'm tapping off the the post office now to send out the kits! My beads will make an appearance in the April 2007 Challenge column of Beadwork magazine! (tap, tap, tap!)

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Guilty pleasures.....hooks and patterns

November 26, 2006....Ahhhh today I confess my guilty pleasurs! Totally off the glass topic, I'm a crochet addict when not in the glass studio! I've mentioned this before but today I'll come clean! Along with hording glass, I'm hording crochet patterns!

My mother taught me how to crochet many years ago when I was a kid. Mom didn't know how to read a pattern like she never followed a recipe - crocheting was all trial and error and figuring out what looked good. I think she probably had memorized a few patterns taught to her like the granny square or an afghan pattern and the rest of her work was done in a combination of the stitches from those memorized patterns.

A few years back, I decided to pick up the hook again and knew I needed to know how to read a pattern. So off I went to JoAnn's and signed up for a crochet class. Within a class or two, I had the knack of pattern reading and was so pleased that I started buying every pattern book I could get my hands on! Ponchos, shawls, shrugs, sweathers, mittens, hats, purses, name it! I have a pattern for it!

Here's my latest guilty acquisition....Japanese Arigumi crochet dolls and Hello Kitty pattern books. I won't tell you how much I spent for a pattern book that's written in Japanese! But there aren't any English books like this and I have a hankering to crochet some dolls! (Darn that Crochetville!) I believe or hope that between the international crochet symbols and the pictures, I can figure out the doll patterns. Otherwise, I have spent alot of money for some great crochet eye candy!

Crocheters who make dolls are really sculptors at heart. Crocheting 3D objects is sculpting with yarn. Funny how most of us go into the yarn shop and don't see a 3D object when they look at skeins of wool and acrylic. Doll makers do.

My mother was able to crochet dolls without a pattern. That's the reason for the Chilly Willy picture. I loved Chilly Willy - you know the penguin that cried ice cubes?! He was soooo cute! Mom made me a Chilly Willy once without a pattern....hat, scarf the whole penguin! I'm pretty sure I still have it in the basement somewhere. Kewl she could do it without a pattern!

I'm sure that after I do a few, I'll memorize the pattern just as I've done with the mittens I've made this season. I've made so many, I no longer need to look at the pattern to make them. Then I'll be able to crochet just like Mom!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Glass artist required to be graphic artist!

I wish someone would have told me that I needed to become good at graphic arts, photography and business when I started making beads! There's really no end to the number of times I need to have an ad made or tweaked for a magazine or website. Including my own! This is the new banner I made in Photoshop for the Cindy Gimbrone Beads website. I had a lovely ad made from a graphic artist - I really loved it! The problem came when I needed to tweak it for the website or a web-ad I wanted to take out - I couldn't tweak the ad! I decided as well intentioned as it was to have someone else make the ads, I just had to make them myself. It was the only way I was going to know how to tweak it and update it regularly. I like what I've come up with and I know that I can do the adjustments on it as necessary. When I get my logo completed, I'll be able to tweak the banners and include it.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Memberships and Logos.....

November 15, 2006....Flare up with overuse syndrome has kept me from posting as often as I like. Today I'm going to circle back onto the idea of logos and memberships. I'm a member of the International Society of Glass beadmakers and I've posted their logo today. It's a nice clean logo in blue and white. It makes the point and is very recognizable in the glass world.

Along with it, I've posted a photo of a drawing my son made of me. It's "mommy anime style." He actually drew a complete anime figure but I've only included the head here. At one time, I thought of using this as a logo. Afterall, how awesome is it to have your logo be drawn by your son!?! I love this drawing and keep it at my desk but I don't think it qualifies as a logo. Logos need to be simple and convey the idea of what I do or my name in a basic way. So, I continue to tinker away with ideas of flames, beads and image. I'll continue to circle back around to the logo idea every so often until I find one I like. Stay tuned!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Knots and the Annealer...November 13, 2006

My tutorial for the Lucky Knots and Lampwork bracelet will be appearing in the Annealer Magazine in December. I did a bracelet because in teaching the class, I realized that a necklace takes too long for a beginner. I've also changed the closure/clasp on the bracelet from the original design (shown in the picture).

Let me tell you that photographing knots can really tie you up in knots! You'd think black cording on a white background would work but it's hard to see which cord goes where. So I had to choose two colors of cording and show the knots in progress. You get to see the "reject" photos here, I sent the two colored pictures to the magazine. The entire tutorial will be in the Annealer magazine in December.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Lost blogposts.....

November 3, 2006....Do your posts sometimes go off into cyberspace and disappear? I've had a few that once I hit the publish post, the screen blinks repeatedly and then tells me that there was an error. My missive has disappeared and errored! When I go back to re-write, the moment is lost!

I've been working on the other craft that makes me ruin my hands - crocheting. I love the fact that a generation of young women (in their 20's) are hooking! I see alot of fun and innovative patterns coming from them and it's fabulous!

I've been on a mitten and fingerless glove kick lately - hooking up a mitten in a couple of hours gives me a sense of satisfaction - I can complete something and don't just have an ongoing throw or shawl project - I actually get something made!