Thursday, March 25, 2010

Santa Fe

I'm back from Santa Fe, New Mexico, and recovering from six very full and busy days. The show was quite successful for me, I am really pleased. I had a lot of really nice input on my work, met some editors and some great customers, sold lots of beads and some finished jewelry, laughed and ate with friends and even squeezed in a few short walks and a tiny bit of shopping!

The food was insanely good in each and every place we ate, of a completely different calibre than the Mexican/Southwestern food we can get here. Everything was so delicious.
Each night Cris, Gail, Stacey and I took possession of these two comfortable benches in front of the wood fireplace, behind the restaurant in the La Fonda hotel. We talked and laughed and made fun of each other and took pictures and laughed some more.
Cris and Gail after a long day:
Stacey shows off her new boots and a pensive expression:
Cris and I in the La Fonda show space (picture pinched from Gail, thanks Gail!) Check out the fabulous chandeliers!
A few pics of my table, and a wee corner of Cris's. There were people in front of hers each time I went to take a picture...which is good!

It was a pleasure to get out for a few minutes and there were interesting things to see everywhere I looked. This is the oldest church in the US, built in 1610.

A beautifully cast bronze plaque:
A commemorative stone in the park in the center of town: This is the beautiful hotel, our show was here and we also stayed here. I'm so glad we stayed in this hotel instead of a more modern one, it was absolutely oozing with atmosphere (in a good way!). There were painted tiles and painted windows and painted walls, fat cushions and comfortable chairs everywhere, beautiful light from skylights, interesting little shops throughout, and the nicest staff. (Except for a couple of guys Cris and I encountered on Sunday night, we're not sure just what they were up to but we have our suspicions that sumpin' was goin' on!) Our room was tiny but the beds were really comfortable and our vivid yellow bathroom was a good way to wake up the brain. I loved it there and would happily move in for good if I could have a bigger room. And my girlfriend. And my cat. And my torch.
Some of the wonderfully shapely adobe buildings:

It was quite a trip. We slept very little...Cris and I see each other very seldom that we found we had a lot to talk about, and despite our best intentions each night, we ended up talking for hours before going to sleep.
I could go on, about the destructiveness of airline luggage handlers (2 brand new bead trays broken, my miniature dress form broken, my clip board smashed to smithereens), the stress of one of Cris's bags not appearing until late Thursday afternoon (it held half of her display items, including the bases to her display stands), how nice it is to go so far away and yet see some familiar faces amongst the customers, how sincerely nice the other vendors were all around was great fun. I hope I can do it again next year!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Detroit Airport and a Viking necklace

I know, I know, those two things don't really go together. I'm sitting in the Detroit airport on my way to Dallas and from there to Santa Fe, where I will be showing my beads at the Interweave Bead Fest. This should be fun. My suitcase is full of table display with a few clothes filling in the corners, and my carry-on is full of beads. My suitcase was 3 pounds over the weight limit, so I took out my lights and my receipt books, and put them in my purse, hey, it saved me $50!! That's $50 I can spend on beads! Or Jack Daniels! This is going to be a very interesting experience and it will be so great to see my friends!
This necklace is inspired by Viking pieces. The beads are all copies of 8-10th Century beads. To get that crusty ancient look they were rolled in baking soda as I made them, which creates wonderful pits and texture and crackling. After they're annealed they are soaked in vinegar until they no longer taste salty(srsly!) washed, etched and then tumbled for a few hours with steel shot to make sure they are strong enough to be used. They were fun to make and I will surely be making more of the checkerboard murrine. The round beads riveted to the silver discs are meant to mimic amber. It was fun to make.
I'm off to grab a slice of pizza so goodbye for now, I'll update with booth pics as soon as I can!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Un Hibou

An owl on a branch pendant in glass and fine silver:

Hibou is such an excellent word!! Owl is good, but Hibou is even better.

I'm working hard to get ready for the Santa Fe show, lots of juicy new beads and jewelry.

The year is turning, the birds are coming back. In the last few days I have seen mourning doves and grackles and heard my first red winged blackbird of the year. The cardinals are singing like mad creatures, fiercely red. The sun has been shining and the sound of trickling water is everywhere...melting snow, melting ice. The lake is still a plain of white, but soon, soon.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Fingerprint Prognosis Unknown...

My burnt fingers are healing, and they are the ugliest fingers you could possibly imagine. I won't even try to describe them. I am very curious to see if I still have fingerprints under there, right now the healing parts are as smooth as can be and red as a boiled lobster. Will my fingerprints grow back? Do I have a future new career in crime, because two of my fingers cannot be traced???? (I can't actually think of why this would be an advantage as there are not too many worthwhile crimes I could commit with the first two fingers of my left hand).
Stay tuned.

Happy Place

Antique sewing stand? Check
Vintage pure wool blanket? Check
1940's hand embroidered needlepoint down-filled cushion? Check. It blocks the draft from the window. Can't have that.
Happy cat? Check.