Sunday, May 27, 2012

[Bead Soup] Seed Beading Challenge

Hello friends!   How's your weekend going?  It's a long weekend for us in the USA as we are celebrating Memorial Day weekend.  I am relatively new here but I salute and pay tribute to all the men and women who have served and sacrificed for this country, including my dear husband.  

It was a very hectic month for me as I moved to another State.  This weekend was personally designated for crafting and beading.  About two months ago, I joined Lori Anderson's Bead Swap and was partnered with T who sent me these wonderful assortment of semi-precious stones and beads.

The tube of seed beads were gorgeous and because I wanted to challenge myself with seed beading, this was my first attempt.  I adhered the focal semi precious stone to my backing using E-6000.  The clear/silver beads were stitched using even count peyote followed by green and pink 11-0 seed beads.  Black rondelle German crystals were added to the two stones and green rondelles to the piece in the center.
To create an accent, I added gold 11-0 seed beads and finally 2 layers of green.
After 4 hours of stitching and un-stitching, here is what I came up with.

I totally love the organic feel of the stoned and beads and I am hoping that I could assemble it by the end of this day.  Visit the blog soon to see the finished piece.

My first Bead Swap was fun and I can't wait to join the next one.
Thank you so much to my talented partner, T.

Have a great and safe weekend!

♥  Michelle  ♥

Saturday, May 12, 2012

[Deco Clay] Air Dry Clay Roses

Hello friends!  I previously wrote about my new Martha Stewart kit - you can read about it HERE.
I asked the opinion of some of our guild members on using air dry clay and most of them stated that it cracks, can be friable and too delicate to work with.  The only way for me to find out was to try using it.

I can say that my experiment was very rewarding.
 I combined white and red clay to come up with a light pink color - the clays were easy to mix and a little red clay went a long way.  I formed tiny balls and gently formed the rose petals.  The flowers that I made took only a few hours to dry since they were small and  I intentionally made the edges thin to see if they were indeed friable.
When the roses were completely dry, the edges were soft and not easily torn.  I placed floral wire on each rose and covered it with floral tape.

I was able to make a dozen roses measuring 0.5 inches in diameter.  These roses came in handy as I wrapped my Mother's day gift to a dear friend.  I got 3 of the wired roses, joined them using floral tape and laid them on the abaca twine.

Ohhhh... how I love the shabby chic color palette.
I will make more and bigger flowers and make a nice bouquet out of it.

To all my readers who are mothers as well, I salute you!  Happy Mother's Day!

♥  Michelle  ♥

Sunday, May 6, 2012

[Deco Clay] Martha Stewart's Air Dry CLay

The Cabby Crafter sends you warm greetings from our new home, far from the harsh and dreary winter snow.
The past 3 weeks have been crazy and slowly, I'm starting to settle down.
My craft bins have been idle for a long time but I was able to craft today.

I recently discovered that Martha Stewart released air-dry clay kits.  I always love the quality and design of her products so I bought a kit and a silicone mold.  This particular kit:  Crafter's Clay Nature Starter Kit -  includes 4 molds, 2 tools, 1 white clay and 4 primary colored clay.

It was my first time to work with air-dry clay and for me, it is handled differently from baked polymer clay.

The clay itself is wet (a bit sticky) and flexible; it is easier/quicker to combine the colors.
The molds are really nice and detailed.  I made flowers using the molds and free-hand roses too.
It dried in an hour but took about a day to completely dry.

Once the piece was dry, it was lightweight and can be glued to complete a design.
It was perfect timing that I don't have my polymer clay oven yet so I was able to play with air-dry clay.
I have ideas racing in my head using this technique and material.  Let's hope that it will materialize.

Have a great week, friends!

♥  Michelle