Saturday, December 18, 2010

IT'S LIKE DRAWING

At this stage of my lampworking or glass beadmaking, I am most delighted to literally make renderings on my beads as I would on a piece of drawing paper. Perhaps this is one huge influence that makes me use white glass as the background for most of my recent beads. White is a pure color where other colors can show their true identities. Sure, it has a huge disadvantage, not everyone likes to wear or use white beads.

Another advantage or disadvantage which I can't tell is, I love making round beads too. I probably have said this before, it brings forth my childhood days of playing marbles with my cousins. Childhood is one of the best times in life - something we only grasp when we are older. The round bead feels good in my hands, it soothes me. Try holding one in your hand, rub the bead, see how it makes you feel.

It's already the fourth Advent and 2010 is almost coming to an end. I can't believe that this year has come and is going soon. Wow!

Have a peaceful fourth Advent with your family and loved ones.


RED FLAME
available on my online shop

THE LITTLE CLEOPATRA
available on my online shop

THE LITTLE EMPRESS
available on my online shop

THE LITTLE GEISHA #2
available on my online shop (to be listed today)

THE LITTLE GIRL WITH EARMUFFS
available on my online shop

RED DAHLIA
now up on Ebay

THE SECRET GARDEN
now on eBay

THE LITTLE PRINCESS
no longer available

FLOWERS IN SPRINGTIME
ending on eBay tonight


SWEET MEMORIES
on eBay

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

WHENEVER IT GETS COLD...

Whenever it gets cold this time of the year in the Northern Hemisphere, my thoughts go to the homeless. I feel very blessed to be living in a warm home whenever I see them loitering in the city. I can't understand why this situation is still exists in this day and age especially in a developed nation like Germany. Yes, this is the time for giving and caring for the unknown homeless. My thoughts go out sincerely to all the homeless in the world.

I have a new bead series called "Tomonau" doll beads - "Tomonau" means "accompany" in Japanese. Think of them as good will dolls.

She's available on my webstore, click on her name to go to my webstore

She's available on my webstore, click on her name to access store

"ICHIKO"
She's going to be on eBay tonight

"MIYUKI"
not listed anywhere yet but she's for sale!

"GOLDEN MIDNIGHT"
coming soon on eBay...
these beads are totally covered from hole-to-hole with 22k gold leaf with the stringer work in dark ivory, which is also the base glass of the beads, accompanied with turquoise and dark ivory spacers


already on eBay - please click on the name above to go to auction.




Thursday, November 18, 2010

KEEPING THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS

So pleased to be able to work with silver foil on my beads and not burn the living daylights of it! Both the gold leaf and silver foil are one of my proudest achievements, I would say. I no longer think about the technicalities of the torch, glass, etc - I can't tell you exactly when what it is, but I have learned to "read" the glass, its reaction and the flame. There comes a moment where you cross the threshold and, lo and behold, it becomes second nature to you.

I enjoying with in black and white, I can't shake loose of this combination and I use black for my design work. Ok, I have lots of colored glass rods in my storeroom, believe me - it is a lot - and I keep telling myself to use them. But you know what, when you're not convinced of anything, it simply doesn't bring joy to the work. In fact, it is agonizing. Of course, I can't tell whether others get bored with seeing the same-old, same-old or not. Being a full-time lampworker, I do have to consider several issues such as - what I like, what others like and what will actually sell. Not an easy task, is it?


HIGHER LOVE
clear with silver foil & black designs (what else?!)

SILENT CONVERSATIONS
clear with black and white

CLOSE-UP OF SILENT CONVERSATIONS
I admit, this is my personal fav set!

CARROT RED

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

DID YOU KNOW THAT...

Luxembourg has one-tenth the population of Singapore but is almost four times larger than Singapore? Recently I was curious about Luxembourg and this is what I found out:

Luxembourg:
square area: 2586 sq. km or 998 sq. miles
population: 488,000

Singapore:
square area: 660 sq. km or 255 sq. miles
population: 4.8 million

Hamburg:
square area: 755 sq. km or 291 sq. miles
population: 1.8 million

Yes, you can imagine how Singapore is filled with skyscrapers - in comparison, Luxembourg and Hamburg have midget buildings.

I feel on top of the world when I get my lampworking second wind again (though who wouldn't?) - it's been a struggle making beads that "make sense" to me (meaning that I have to like them myself). Probably it has to do with the November grey weather which came with a sudden thud on the head; you can imagine how it landed squarely on my head. I was not at all motivated to make any beads - it was definitely an all-time low. I admit, my forlorn lampworking attempts provided me an outlet with sock-knitting, ordering yarn although I said that I would not stock up on wool yarns. Forget that I even thought I do not want to stock on yarns, I have already acquired a lovely collection of wool yarns. Besides the obvious material difference in glass and wool (duh...), I have to say that wool hardly weighs anything, they are very squooshable (which means I can stash them away without hubby noticing, hahaha!!!) and gosh, the luscious colors - they make you go wild!!!

As with any hobbies, sock-knitting has brought me up to another level with my lampworking - appreciating not just colors but the magnificent lace knits and designs by the very talented knitters which have their work published in books and on the internet. Imagine, the two little stitches - knit and purl with help from their friends, yarn-over, ssk, etc - can create beautiful wearables.

Here are some beads I made over the past two weeks to present - all of them will be on eBay.


ROSES ARE RED
I made an off-mandrel focal bead in this set

THE CHRISTMAS SONG
made with Bullseye glass
Each year around this time, I begin to make "Christmas-y" sets


THE NIGHT BEFORE CHRISTMAS


GOLDEN SNOWFLAKES

UPSIDE DOWN, DOWNSIDE UP
black-and-white set with a vessel bead (off-mandrel focal)

WINTER, WINTER

JUST YOU AND I

FRIENDS

LEMON AND LIMES

TEENAGE CRUSH

Thursday, October 28, 2010

ONE OF THOSE DAYS

Every so often, I become out of sync with my work - lampwork, to be exact - and "wander" around aimlessly. Perhaps it has to do with the grey days we are having for the past weeks that makes me feel hopeless. Tomorrow I leave for the Netherlands for a lampwork event called Flame-On! which runs over the weekend. I admit, my mojo just returned two days ago and I am feeling better. Still, I didn't get to turn on my torch till about 7pm yesturday because of unavoidable errands and by about 9pm, I was falling asleep at the torch. Ah well, it was definitely way too late to make beads. I struggled on but called it off by 9:30pm.

By the way, I have found a new hobby - sock-knitting. You might ask, isn't lampworking already a hobby, why take up sock-knitting? Well, that's exactly it, lampworking is a job for me - similar to perhaps your office job - and there are days where we need to turn our minds off our jobs and enjoy a hobby. Hobbies are good for the soul. The colors, the feel and the texture of woolen yarns are exactly the medicine the doctor would have prescribed for me. With glass beadmaking, I do not see the results of what I am doing till the next day when the kiln has cooled down to room temperature. If it is a new glass color I've not used it before, I might be in for either a pleasant or nasty surprise when I open the kiln. With knitting, I however see the pattern evolving as I work row for row and I get really excited when that happens. Each row contributes to the entire pattern and on its own, it's a just row of stitches. See, why it is important to have a hobby?! It invigorates your mind and you need time-out from your daily routine. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy...

Let me share with you a couple of beads I made recently - enjoy looking and see you soon!

OFF YOUR ROCKER

THE LONE CHERRY TREE

ANGEL WINGS

UNTITLED, gold-leaf covered bead
very large bead, it's 26mm in diameter


Friday, October 15, 2010

VERY PLEASANT INDEED...

How do you like the packaging? Pretty darn cool, don't you agree??! So, what is this? This is a bar of soap made in Malaysia and still has the same soap fragrance that I remember as a little girl. I asked my parents who live in Singapore to get me a bottle of Cuticura talcum powder as I l can't find this in Germany. Hey, something Asian is not easily found outside of Asia! Some habits die hard... Anyway, my husband was on his business travels in the Asia Pacific Rim region and his last stop was Singapore, where he spent three days there and overnighted at my parents'. Can you imagine, my husband sees my parents more than I do. He's been there at least four times this year - mainly business - and I haven't been home for the past four years. It's bad, I know, but my folks and I skype almost daily, thanks to technology, we keep in cyber-touch!! Well, he came home with my favorite talcum powder and attached to the bottle was this lovely packaged soap (yes, it was a freebie) and when I took a whiff, it reminded me of my childhood, my parents, my sister and my home country. Even my husband said it was typical soap scent "from those days".

I guess I won't be using the soap, more likely I will continue to sniff at it - yeah, how to get a natural high...

Some focal beads I made this week. Ok, not too much lampworking activities from me - I am going through a rough phase again, not really sure what I want to make. I was going to go cold-turkey with gold leaf, but what the heck, I ended up using it again!!