Sunday, December 12, 2010

Playing With Palettes

I have a book that is fast becoming worn around the edges as I spend a lot of time simply leafing through it. I take it with me when we go somewhere and I glance through it while riding along in the car. I like to look at the photos and the different beaded images and then look at the scenery around me and find a palette based on what I see.

Margie Deeb has put together this book, The Beader’s Color Palette, to inspire us to take a good look at the world around us and find the natural palettes to use in our art. Whether beading or playing in clay, I am always trying to find new ways to do things. Sometimes, I can not think of a single thing to create. (That’s why I like this book so well!)

I had on my to do list, some kaleidoscope canes, as I have almost exhausted my entire collection. I sat here and stared off and fiddled around and couldn’t think of a single thing to do with my hundreds of brand new packages of premo! I got carried away when they went on sale and have boxes of clay now.

So, I sat on the couch and watched the news and picked up Margie’s book and started leafing through it again and suddenly I thought of the artist grade clay that I have recently switched to and how it closely resembled the oil paints and their unlimited ability to create every colour we know.

I began to look at the book and try and imagine what colours it would take to create the ones I was seeing in the photos. I tried to be picky about what colours I wanted to work with and the canes that I would make from the clay. That approach wasn’t working, I still couldn’t decide.

SO! I randomly opened the book and made myself create from the colours on the page.


This was the first cane that I did with this new thought process :)

Ecru is now my new favourite colour!


This fruit dove was on the adjacent page and I figured that with only 4 colours, it would be an easy cane. However, there were certainly MORE than 4 colours by the time that I was finished.


I never left the page with these two sea inspired pieces.

I think these two might just be my most favourite for the moment.

I did something a little different with these canes, I have nearly zero left over clay. I used every little bit of mixed and blended clay to either wrap or add a dot or outline a cane. I have 4 chunks of end pieces from these but for the most part every bit of clay was used.

I suppose the next step is to make some beads from these! I already have plans for the first cane, I think I will make a necklace set with matching bracelet from it.

If you are interested in the book, here is the book with a link to Margie Deeb’s site. It is well worth picking up.


Have fun!

Julie and Blu

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

New Bracelets

As promised, here are the new  beads!

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Polymer Clay Flowers with Swarovski accents, fun peas and carrots beads and lots of lentils.


Julie and Blu

Some Early Christmas Gifts!

A few weeks back, I was sitting at my kitchen table staring out over the top of my laptop. From my kitchen table, I can see out into my backyard through the sliding glass windows.  (I actually can sit and watch the shuttle launches from that vantage point)

I noticed this huge cat in my backyard, it took the brain a few moments to realize that it was a Florida Panther come to visit. I was so astonished that the only thing I could think of was to hiss/whisper to my husband, “Bill, come quick and see the cougar.” 

We watched it walk across the yard and then hop over the 5 foot fence into the neighbors yard. I regret that I didn't get a photo of this beautiful animal while he was here.

But this weekend, I looked up and these two characters were prowling around the backyard so I was sure to get their photo! I followed them around until they climbed a tree and I snapped their cute little faces staring at me through the oak leaves. They were juvenile rocky racs out for a Sunday stroll and they made me smile.



New beads – I have been experimenting with a few new bead shapes and will share those as soon as I get them finished. I did complete a couple new bracelets and will also post those as I get the photos done.

In the meantime – here are new beads:  

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Julie and Blu

Sunday, November 7, 2010

November Beads

A little bit of Holiday cheer and with Christmas right around the corner, I put together a nice holiday kaleidoscope cane which I promptly sliced up to create the latest pillow beads for sale.

The hardest part was capturing the metallic shine and shimmer of these beads. The green is pearl green, the red is pearl red and the gold is, well, gold. I worked completely in premo! this time around and the cane is not a very large one. I should be able to get a couple more sets of these pretty beads out of it before I have exhausted it. The off slices made a nice set of lentils as well. I think I will make a few more of those as well.

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I have added a dozen more floral rounds and a few tab beads. I haven’t quite geared up my bead making yet. There have been a lot of other personal issues going on right now that have taken time.

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The poinsettia beads are one of a kind and I will not repeat them. I happened to be fiddling around with some extra red pearl that I had left from my skinner blend and added some gold veins and put a yellow and brown bullseye cane in the center and “voila!” poinsettia beads!  :) They are amazingly lightweight and they will make a great necklace bracelet combination.  Add some extra red and green beads, some glass green leaves and you are ready for the holidays.

Here are my latest focal beads, they feature the latest waterslide decals that I have. They are on pearl, which is for my use only. They are sold on white beads.

These will become 6 new necklaces with blue and white beads and red and green beads.


That’s all for this week.

Stay warm and toasty, we are chilly in Florida and we are planning a move to Montana in the next couple of months, so I am appreciating the warm weather now.

All beads and finished jewelry are on sale at – take 25% off all items.

Have a great weekend,

Julie and Blu

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Almost Forgot!

All the items at which include these and many other beads and canes are all 25% OFF for the next couple of day!

Pillow Beads with Appliqué Style Millefiori Canes

Had to try something a little different and this was out of the ordinary for me.




I ended up with over 150 new bead sets this month. My ad will be in the next Stringing Magazine and there will be an ad in both the Handmade special magazine coming up and I will have an ad in the Tucson Bead Show special edition. I thought I might should have a lot of new sets of beads ready to go.

I have a bunch of new ones to make that are not finished yet. I have to get myself in gear and create ten or fifteen new kaleidoscope canes for more pillow beads. I have too many things to do :)

Enjoy the beads!

Julie and Blu

Monday, October 18, 2010

Buckets of Beads!

Off on a bead kick! I have all these beautiful floral millefiori canes that were just begging to be used up so I could create LOTS more. I didn't even make a dent in my huge inventory of canes. The end result was a bucket of beads. Almost all of them are floral round beads with a side order of pillow beads and lentil beads.

I still have a lot of beads to create and will get them done and up as fast as I can, until then, enjoy the bead show. :)


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There were a total of 78 bead sets that are new in the month of October. The one kaleidoscope pillow beads shown here are a one of a kind. I created this kaleidoscope cane and this is the only set of beads from it.

The florals are all bright and shiny and I hope that you enjoy them.

All are available at

Have a GREAT evening, Julie and Blu

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My latest polymer clay rondelle beads as earrings

I have been working on new bead styles and I have been a purchaser of many different lampwork earring pairs from some of my favourite lampwork artists. I thought maybe I would add a new style and a new product to the line of beads that I work with.


These beads were so much fun to make that I got the whole family involved!

Blu is usually involved anyway but I got my hubby to break out the dremel and help me drill the centers. He is now in the process of building me a stand for the dremel and we went and bought some fine bits. These earrings are just the start of some great new sets! :)



Julie and Blu

Sunday, September 26, 2010

New Bead Style

New rondelles are now in stock. I created a few sets and then decided that I needed to create a couple of earring sets. I have two sets done and now and working on finishing more sets!

What fun little beads!!



Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Some September Beads!


I tried a new style. I originally intended to create small 13mm beads for earrings, but I think I got a little carried away in the squishing! I have not tried them out yet in a set but I think they might be a bit bigger than I had planned.


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I also created several sets of lentils using my flowers and such for a change.

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I have so many bits and pieces of flower canes strewn all over my work space that I can’t hardly move, so my next project is to use up every bit of the flowers that are scattered all over so I can start on entirely new sets of canes!

I put these up for sale in BME under the floral rounds and lentils sections.


Julie and Blu

Saturday, September 4, 2010

My Scrap Buttons as Promised


I am sending over 2 pounds of buttons to the scrappers.


Happy Labor Day


Blu and I would like to wish all of you a happy and safe holiday weekend.  We are a little early but I think I might be a bit busy this weekend.


I recently got another great deal on premo! clay and managed to add 36 pounds of new clay to my already bulging stash. This new clay is just begging to be incorporated into beads, canes, buttons and anything else I can think of.

I am in the process of finishing up a stash of buttons for a scrapbooking get together where all of the proceeds go to help PS 37 , which is a special education school in Staten Island that services children with all forms of disabilities, including Autism, Down Syndrome, MS, etc. The proceeds from the 2nd Annual ALL DAY CROP FOR EDUCATION on September 25th.  I took a lot of my larger kaleidoscope canes that I could no longer use for covering beads and sliced them into funky buttons for the group.

Then, I went overboard a little and just started slicing canes and leaves and flowers and the next thing I knew, I had over 2 pounds of buttons to send them.  I will post photos once I get them taken.

You can read more about this PTA  here. They are a pretty remarkable bunch.

In the meantime, I am working on another batch of blends like I did on the 4th of July and will create a lot more flowers. I guess I only do these on holidays!


I used a gold and translucent cane to slice onto a set of black beads. I was looking for a faux wood look and I am not sure if I got it or not but this set with the blue Swarovski worked out just fine.

Added silver bali-style spacers and a toggle clasp and I was happy with it. I created two of these and only have one left.



Again, stay safe during your holiday weekend!

Julie and Blu

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Necklace from my Mokume Gane block


I have had these beads in my bead box for quite some time now and I just haven’t taken the time to create from many of my extra beads. When I create a set of beads, sometimes I will see a set that I think I can’t live without and I put them aside.

These are the creations that those beads and canes became.

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I have a lot more beads that I want to create. My workbench is filled with canes just waiting for me to slice them and I can’t wait to get to them!

Have a great weekend, Julie and Blu

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Southwestern Fantasy

Not Canes but they came from canes!

I like to use as much as I can from my clay and sometimes just a few lentil beads can become something more than the cane itself.

I liked these beads so much that I kept them for myself and I didn't follow my usual varnishing procedure and just left them in their baked state. There was just something that lent them to stay matte. I combined them with more earth beads by adding dyed bone beads and some potato pearls.

Czech crystal beads add shine and glamour to the necklace. It isn't "heavy" but it is a piece with some weight to it.

Finally! I have my project board cleaned off.
Off to create more beads!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Some Beads from the Latest Canework

Two New Sets of Lentil Beads with the Latest Canes:

I wanted to try some different style beads so I have been playing with lentil beads. This month has found me busy with finishing a website project up that I have been working on and so the beads haven't been on the forefront. I did get a chance to sneak off to the bead and gem show in Melbourne, FL last weekend and a LOT of money later, I came home happy, loaded with new gems, stones, bead caps, findings and flat broke! Of course, I had to go back the next day to re-stash after I finished a couple projects for special orders.

This set is a special order that I finished up from some of that stash. I recreated the black and white geometric cane and did this set. I took my latest bracelets and beads to work and the necklaces sold out and a few of the bracelets found new homes! Plus I took special orders!

I look forward to having more time to create more beads :)
Have a fun weekend,

Saturday, July 31, 2010

My Latest Beads

New Canes, New Bracelets!

I have been meaning to put a few bracelets and earring sets together using my latest beads and I just now have gotten the chance to do that.

I have 5 more sets that I need to finish up, but this is the preview of good things to come!

Have a fun weekend,

Friday, July 30, 2010

Latest Canes

Sunflower Inspiration

I was creating some sunflower earrings for a customer the other day and I thought about how much I loved this colour combination and that I didnt have any of it in cane form. So the first thing I did with my excess clay is do a geometric cane that I sliced up and made beads out of. More of that project later when I get the bracelet done.

The next thing I did was do a little bullseye caning and then some stacking and then some squishing and then some slicing for beads. I used all my extra left over clay and I enjoy the colour combination.