Cherry Blossom Kimono

My daughter was given a figurine of a lovely Japanese girl wearing a beautiful kimono.  I wanted to make her friend a similar gift for her to wear as a reminder of her kindness.  The cherry blossom design was inspired by a lovely swatch of gray fabric (pictured below). 
Just a few of the beads headed to Beads of Courage.  The purple minion comes with a
little jar of antidote.   I ♥ Beads of Courage!

Dia de los Muertos Set

A bead set finally made it to Etsy, although it won't last long.  I combined the "Lollies" lentils with a fabulous new sugar skull.  Good luck!

Flowering Cactus Paperweight

Love how this off-the-cuff project turned out (below).  I made a larger version (above) at home.  Hoping it brings you a little bit of sunshine to your day.

Minion Invasion

Picture above is a "Dream Bead" for a special kiddo participating in the Beads of Courage program.  After the bead went into the kiln, I was still in a MMM: minion-making-mood.  The paperweight project below came to life.  It needs a bit of cold work to finish him off.  I have a couple other fun projects in the works.  Until then, enjoy a banana.  My treat!

2014 Beads of Courage: Bead Challenge

 A lovely day creating beads for super-special kids.  Special thanks to Beyond the Torch for hosting the wonderful giving works event to benefit Beads of Courage.  A great reminder of life's blessings. 

Boys need beads too

I think we tend to associate beads with girlie-girl jewelry, however some of my favorite beads are designed for boys.  They can be strung on a backpack clip or lanyard.  This one is for my nephew, however the design would be great for Beads of Courage donations.  Real life superheroes do not always wear capes!

Check your Boo-bies 2014

An oldie, but a goodie.  Check your Boo-bies 2014 is a throw back design from years ago.  Love the little ghost holding a pumpkin.  The pumpkin's vine is a hidden hope ribbon design.  A friendly reminder that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Freestyle Swirled Marble Bead

Occasionally, I have a bit of time to experiment after the regular class demos.  Many times, I am limited to the glass rods running loose in my travel size storage container.  Here is a fun freestyle marble bead resulting from a bit of experimentation with gravity swirls.  Love the color combination! 


It's not quite breakfast, it's not quite lunch... it's Brunch.  A cabochon demo from class last week, featuring a tiny frog and a yummy snack.  Enjoy!

Dia de los Muertos 2014

I wanted to design a festive Dia de los Muertos necklace kit for class.  After 9 sketches, I finally settled on this design featuring an adorable lampwork sugar skull.  Counting down the days until class on October 7th at the Mesa Arts Center.  If all works out, I will be demoing the sugar skull at the M.A.C. Fall Festival.  Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Welcome to Paradise Necklace

I'm not a jewelry designer by any means, however I am thrilled with how the design turned out.  The project will be submitted for an exhibit, so fingers crossed!   


 "Larkspur" is a lovely dichroic focal featuring hues of lush violet.  The ends are capped in jet black for a polished finish. 

Dive Into Glass

It is complete and available for instant download on Etsy.  The eBook is a compilation of techniques and recipes to create your own duck themed glass projects – included in this booklet are step by step text and photograph instructions for intermediate to advanced flameworkers, 80 high-quality color photographs and helpful tips. In addition, I include all CiM and Effetre names/numbers used throughout the tutorials. All of the glass referenced in this 47 page book is COE-104.  Here is a sneak-peek for your eyes only: 


Cloudscape features new colors by CiM.  The lush palette includes Ice Floe, Trapeze, Whisper, Gypsy, and Zachary. 

Another view:

Friendly Fox

The updated design is based on the original from last Spring (seen below).  He is too friendly to be released into the wild.  So he will be joining the animal menagerie headed to Beads of Courage in September for relocation.

A Mother's Love Series

Two words sum up the reason I love Beads of Courage: 
Giving Back

My son was born with a congenital heart defect. He underwent surgery when he was 4 months old. When I design beads for Beads of Courage, I often think of the incredible medical treatment he received through the challenging journey. 
For me, the most difficult moment was the morning of the surgery. Having to let go was almost more than I could bear. Fast forward 11 years, he is a healthy, energetic young man and my sidekick... more like partners in crime. 
He is my inspiration for the design series, "A Mother's Love". Special thanks to Donna Felkner Aka-cgbeads for donating her fabulous BR-132 Snowman/Animal Body roller to be auctions during the Arizona Society of Glass Beadmakers Challenge Day at Beyond the Torch Gallery & Studio.

Join me @ the Beads of Courage 2014 Bead Challenge - September 20th

Beyond the Torch and the ASBG is hosting the 2014 Beads of Courage Bead Challenge in Scottsdale, AZ.  Donna from CG Beadrollers donated some fabulous beadrollers for use during the event, then auctioned after event to benefit BoC.  The ASGB asked me to share a list of silly "kid" themed beads which were made with the BR-132 Snowman/Animal Body roller.  Here is a sneak-peek!  
If you would like to see the rest of the whimsical designs or place a bid on the wonderful CG Beadrollers, join me at the free event, hosted by Beyond the Torch.  I will be flameworking challenge beads and demonstrating the versatile CG Beadrollers between 10-2pm.  Come see the fabulous tools in action!
Omgosh, he has a belly button!

Water Ballet No. 2

Earlier today, I was reunited with my focal "Water Ballet No.2".  The photograph by David Orr, captures the graceful beauty of the lovely focal. 

Laguna Agate

Another take on my "Urban Haute" design with new, rich colors from CiM:  Cobblestone, Heartthrob, Chia, and Mahogany.  The end result reminded me of a lovely Laguna agate cabochon which I purchased a few years back.  A bit of Southwest flare!

Green with Envy

About five years ago, I had a lady refer to my beads as juvenile.  The comment made me pause for a moment.  My better-half insisted the lady was referring to the fact that my beads are "youthful, fun, and whimsical", instead of the correct definition "reflecting psychological or intellectual immaturity".  After the comment, I felt the need to branch out and experiment with more "grown up" designs.  Another part of me wanted to rebel, stomp my feet, and refuse to create anything which could be labeled as "mature".  If you have followed my blog throughout the years, you can tell which part of me has won in the design department.  Maybe I suffer from PPS (Peter Pan Syndrome) and I'm too full of sheer mischief for grown up designs.  So, for the readers who are suffering from PPS, this post should contain a warning of mature content... shield your eyes! 

Leopard Geckos

A clutch of leopard geckos for Beads of Courage.  My goal is 200 beads, so far the count is up to 130.  Off to fire up the torch!
Don't let their size fool you, they eat a lot!  #highmaintenance

2014 Fall Early Bird Code

The 2014 Fall discount code for Mesa Arts Center is “Circus”.  The code will allow students registering for 2 Fall classes to receive 10% off the regular price.  It is only valid during the first week of registration.  Registration begins tomorrow, August 1st.  

**2014 Fall  Classes**
Flameworking: Intermediate to Advanced

Register online or by phone (480) 644-6500.
Mesa Arts Center Glass Studio on Tuesdays from 6:30 pm to 10pm

2 Class Sessions:
CAF14GL025-01  August 26th - October 14th (8 week class)
CAF13GL025-11  October 21st - December 16th (8 week class) 

Learn new techniques to design and create a variety of beads and off the mandrel projects.
As always, student demo requests are welcome!

A short list of the upcoming class syllabus and demonstrations:

Complex Floral Cane
Double Helix Silver Glass - Terra
Pumpkins and Gourds (CiM paperweight demo)
How to pick a Fall Themed Palette
Mesh: Copper, Brass, and Fine Silver
Landscape Focals
Fine Silver Foil:  Encasing and Surface Detail
The Basics of Stringers and Dots in Seasonal Themes
Lapidary Faceting with a Denver Lapping Machine
Flamework Cabochons and Cabochon Systems
Painting with Stringers

**2014 Fall Workshop**
Fall and Winter Workshop
 October 12th from 1pm to 5pm
Workshop Section:  CAF14GLW058-01
Register online or by phone (480) 644-6500.

The workshop combines a variety of designs from my Festive Fall and Winter Wonderland Workshops, along with new designs for 2014.  Let's welcome the holiday season by creating fun themed focals from
molten glass through use of various techniques!

Spring Cleaning in (almost) August

It is time for a bit of cleaning in the studio.  I boxed up 123 beads and shipped them off to Beads of Courage today.  It was cleansing to say the least.  Many of the sets were my best and most special pieces.  While cleaning, I found my personal stash of bracelet connectors.  Originally, I saved these with the intentions to create something fabulous.  Time passed and life got busy.  What can I say, the "best laid plans of mice and men oft go awry".  So here is a chance to take advantage of my procrastination.  I'm offering the 3 connectors in a bundle deal on Etsy.  They are perfect for bracelet or necklace projects:

The connectors usually price for $35-$40 each, however the listing is priced well below individual retail... someone will be getting the deal of the century.  As always, free shipping to the US.  If you are a lampworker and like the honeybee design, visit Kerri Fuhr's site for the tutorial.  All the best and happy beading!