Monday, 24 November 2014

Welcome to the 2014 Art Charm Exchange Blog Hop!

Today is the official reveal of the Beads of Courage Art Charm Exchange and the beginning of the charity auction on eBay with all proceeds going to Beads of Courage. This post will chronicle the creation of my charms and show you all the beautiful works of art I have received in this exchange. However the main purpose is to increase awareness of this wonderful charity and encourage you to participate in the auction.

I signed up for this challenge and proceeded to puzzle over what to create.I'm amazed at all the different interpretations of my fellow artists.

The theme is "soar" which made me think of birds.
Future birds in the nests,

Feathers to help them soar!
Mama birds and their babies ready to "soar"off to Jennifer and the other artists!
I took poetic license with the "Soar" theme and decided to "soar" into the unknown by revealing my polymer clay creations to the world for the first time since I've been spending so much time with it these days and I love these little birdies!

Just a few of the
thoughts that went through my head while waiting!

Worry, worry, worry!
Are my charms good enough?
This is my first time revealing my polymer clay skills to the jewelry world.
Will they survive being mailed all over the place or crumble into a million pieces?
There are some amazing jewelry and component artists participating in this challenge.
Why did I ever think I could compare?
Will I be embarrassed forever and afraid to show my face on my blog?
Will anybody bid on my charm in the auction?

2-3 weeks passed and the wait was over and I received the most amazing collection of charms I could have imagined.
I initially took individual pictures of each charm and cards of each artist but this blog post would go on much too long so I took some group shots to show you who sent me such fabulous charms.

I was quite humbled by the quality and artistry in the charms. I have been admiring the work of most of these artists online for a couple of years and am thrilled to finally own some of their work.I received a nice mix of charms from the USA and other international locations. There is a enameled copper kite from Leslie of Thea Elements in the UK, a polymer clay leaf from Alenka of Pepita of Slovenia , a beautifully hand painted pink glass bead from Caroline of blueberribeads in the UK., a ceramic feather charm from Terri of artisticaos, a fellow Canadian from Saskatchewan and my own polymer clay bird on a nest from Ontario

And from South of the border in the great USA.....
.Perri Jackson of Shaktipaj Designs made a wire wrapped glass hot air balloon which was a great interpretation of our "soar" theme, Jenny Davies-Reazor also came up with an original idea with her ceramic butterfly charm, and Kristi Bowman pulled her inspiration from the clouds soaring above and made a copper clay cloud charm imprinted with the letters soar. Birds were the most common element in my charms this year with two more besides the one I made. Michelle of Firefly Design Studio made a fabulous ceramic bluebird with a blue crystal and cloud dangle and Sue of SueBeads made the great handmade red glass bird cute! (the pictures don't do it justice)
The Beads of Courage art charm auction is running now!You can easily own one or more of these fabulous charms too! Head over to the Art Charms for Beads of Courage eBay site and put in a bid on whichever charm strikes your fancy. You can own an artisan made charm and donate to a wonderful charity at the same time.

2014 Art Charm Exchange Participants

Jenny Davies-Reazor:
Lennis Carrier:

Friday, 21 November 2014

Beads of Courage

"Beads of Courage" is a charitable organization that provides support to children with serious illnesses. They provide beads to the children to mark accomplishments and milestones on the treatment journey they are on. It is a non-profit organization that is currently supporting over 30,000 children around the world in USA, Canada, New Zealand, Japan and United Kingdom. The beads are "earned" by the children as they make their way through their treatment plans. The beads give the children a tool to help them understand and tell the story of their illness. You can read more about it here.

Jennifer Cameron of Glass Addictions has organized a Blog Hop, Charm Swap and Charity Auction to provide awareness and donations to this great charity. It is taking place this weekend with over 60 jewelry artists participating. Jen co-ordinated the charms made by everyone and sent a package of 10 charms off to each of us after receiving 11 charms from each of us. Quite a mammoth undertaking on her part. We each received 10 different charms and will be showing them on our blogs Tuesday November 25th .
November 25th is the date of the eBay auction which features one of each of these charms. You can easily own one or more of these fabulous charms too! Head over to The Beads of Courage eBay site and put in a bid on whichever charm strikes your fancy. You can own an artisan made charm and donate to a wonderful charity at the same time. The auction will be here

As a teaser here's a picture of my charms ready to send off.

Please check back here on Tuesday to see the real charms and check out the auction.

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Playing with Clay!

It's official.....I'm seriously addicted to polymer clay! My jewelry table has been taking over by all my polymer clay tools, work surfaces, texture sheets, rubbing alcohol, bag full of multiple shaping tools, paint, sandpaper, etc, etc, etc. I've been having so much fun as I search for my style and learn new techniques to create what I imagine I can do with this amazing media.
Last week after making a whole bunch of pc headpins and painting them fun colours I created this Garden of Strange which resembles a garden from another planet....or so I imagine. Lots of fun but I'm not sure where I'm going with this.

I've listed some pairs of headpins in my Etsy and Indiemade shop but no nibbles yet. I guess they are only appealing to a particular, quirky kind of jewelry maker. What do you think about them?