Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Yoga for Bead Makers

I am both a runner and a yogi (I think that word is funny) but this summer my running was sidelined due to a knee injury. Nothing major but something that called for resting it and working on strengthening my knee area. So, for much of my summer I did yoga....plenty of yoga......like 5 times a week! I love it and it is now a huge part of my life. It gives me stress relief and relaxation that I so need. Next year (I really wanted to do it this year) I will be doing Teacher Training to deepen my love of yoga and to hopefully teach a bit too.

What in the world does this have to do with beads?? Nothing really except that it puts you in a better mind set and it relieves all those tight neck and should muscles from repetitive use at the torch and reduces tension. If you haven't tried yoga, I would suggest you give it a try. Flexibility helps your body stay young and its great for bead makers!

Yoga Mat Cleaner Recipe
If you are a yoga practitioner already, I want to share this yoga mat cleaner I discovered while searching the web. You use white vinegar, tea tree essential oil and either peppermint, lavender or bergamont essential oil to make your own easy and inexpensive cleaner. I've been using in on my Manduka mat  and love it.

* 1/2 cup white vinegar
* 1 1/2 cup water
* 20 drops tea tree oil
* 15-20 drops of either lavender, peppermint, bergamot or an oil of your choice

Shake and spray onto your mat then wiping away or leave it to dry.

Monday, August 18, 2014

The Selfie Project

Oh, I know....its been awhile since I've been consistent here but I am challenging myself to be more diligent. To help me keep steady with my posts, I've decided to do a year long project that showcases YOU wearing or holding something you've purchased from me. It could be a necklace, bracelet, ring or even beads.....the only condition is that you have to be in the picture and you must be wearing/show something Bella Bead Jewelry.........I'm calling it :

The Selfie Project......
Starting NOW, You take a selfie (or someone can take it for you) wearing something I've created. 
A necklace, ring, bracelet or even holding beads or a bead you've purchased from me.
 Post your selfie on Instagram and include the hashtag #bellabeadselfie.
It's that easy. 
Post selfies as often as you'd like all year long....
I will be frequently (not sure exactly how frequently yet) be giving away Bella Swag
 for the images I find most eye catching or creative.

So, I sure hope you will take part in this year long project and help me stay current with my blog posts!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Juggling Act

As many of you know, I am an art teacher by day and glass bead artist by night. The last two years at my art teaching job have been ones of significant change......change is good but it can take a bit to acclimate to things. Instead of teaching 3 grade levels I now teach 6! I LOVE being busy but like I said, it takes time to acclimate.

With that being said, my annual Hearts for Hannah fundraiser failed to really take off. I just didn't have the time to dedicate to it. So, I will be offering Hearts for Hannah for the next week, beginning next Monday. I will post hearts as I typically do for this and those who want one can claim them here on my blog.

Thank you for those who have been asking....Where are the hearts? And thank you for your patience with me. I guess I'm not the best juggler :/

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Hearts for Hannah Batch #1

Finally! Here is my first batch of hearts that I offer for the Hearts for Hannah fundraiser. Please review the process for acquiring a heart since it is first come, first serve.

Also, please click the above Giving link to find out more about Joining Hearts and Hands and Hannah.

*  Look at hearts that are available on my blog. They will be labeled by Batch #
*  Hearts are $25.00. ALL proceeds raised go to Joining Hearts and Hands.
*  Select the heart or hearts you hope to get by commenting on the blog. Please note that you will not initially be able to see your comment. I must read them before they are made public.
*  I will note in the comment section who claimed what heart so that everyone will know.
*  I will post on Facebook when I will put up another batch to make it easier.

***Since this is a fundraiser where I donate my time, materials and talent, I can NOT take any special requests.....I hope you will understand :)

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Hearts for Hannah 2014!

Its time once again for my annual Hearts for Hannah fundraiser! For the past 5 years I have been donating my materials, time, talent and profits to honor the memory of Hannah Congdon and the 5 Fairport angels by selling my glass heart pendants. All proceeds collected are then donated to Joining Hearts and Hands. At the top of my page you will see a Giving tab where you can learn more about Hannah and the Joining Hearts and Hands organization.

Today is June 1st....the first day of my fundraising. I will post here a few times each week showing new hearts that are available. I will be posting hearts either later today or tomorrow. Please stay tuned so you can see what is available. I will provide more information as to how exactly you can get a heart at that time.

Thank you everyone for your continued support and being part of this fundraiser!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

What's Your Word?

At the start of every school year I select a word or phrase that is a guiding element for the work we will do throughout the year. I like doing this since I feel it centers me as the teacher but it is also grounds our lessons in a meaningful way. They are also a great connection to my "Essential Questions" for the school year.

I've also used this concept in my own personal artwork. Again, its a great way to focus and stay focused on what you feel is important to your growth as an artist. So my work this year actually sprang from a painting I did recently.

My word is Evolve.
:: flow with the evolution of the art I am being guided to create.
:: let it happen. don't try to force things or speed them up.
:: be true to myself as an artist. Acknowledge what speaks to me rather then worry what others think.
:: work to have my art reflect my sense of color, style and taste no matter what
:: learn from others. Especially the teachers I choose to take lessons from.
:: be open to new things.
:: take time to incorporate newly learned skills into my work. This is a hard one for me.
:: listen closely to my inner voice.
:: move to my own rhythm....rather than create because I have to do it for a show. Hard at times since those of us who do shows need to have product to sell.

I find that shows tend to make me antsy to get things done. This is good for the most part since I am Queen of Procrastination. But.....it is also a negative. Sometimes more is not always better. Sometimes more is less. Less thought. Less originality. Less special. Quality and personally loving each thing I make is my goal.

I will evolve into the artist I wish to be by following my heart with my hands. I will use my intuition and inner voice to guide and move me rather than the ideals of others. I will evolve into the artist I am suppose to be.

Monday, December 30, 2013

A New Year. A New Beginning. How Do You Begin?

Time really does fly by. Look, we are already on the brink of a new year! How do you like to begin your New Year? Do you make resolutions? Do you clean and organize your home? Or do you just plod on the way you've been doing?

I happen to love the thought of a new year and a new beginning. Here are a few things I like to do to start the year off. I don't call them resolutions...these are just things I always do.

1. Organize & Purge- I love to clear out the excess in our house. I sort and get rid of clothing, household items and my overflowing art supplies. (I hate parting with those but sometimes I must) I also begin that awful process of getting things together for taxes!
Last year, I organized my art space in the basement with new storage and containers for my many art/jewelry making items. So this year all I'll have to do is tidy up the art room...a big job for sur.

2. Clean- Anyone who knows me, knows that cleaning is not a fun activity for me. I LOVE a clean home but don't like to be the one cleaning. I find it a complete waste of my creative time. With that said, I typically set aside a few solid days to clan the house baseboards to windows. This year I will set aside News Years day for the start of this task....goes hand and hand with my organizing thing :)

3. Do something New- The start of the new year is a the perfect time to try something new. Last year I began running. Totally new for me. I also took a couple glass classes, one with Heather Trimlett and the other with Kim Edwards. I took a few painting class also...one with Flora Bowley, and the other with Pauline Agnew. This year I will take some more glass classes but will also take blacksmithing and welding. I'm also going to get certified to teach yoga. I enjoy begin a student and learning new things?

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Gargoyles. These creepy creatures have actually been a great seller! Its fun making them since you can see their individual personalities emerge with each push or pull of the hot glass.

My sugar skulls are also a favorite of those who like the unusual. I'm actually going to make MYSELF a Days of the Dead necklace. I always end up selling things which that is what I do but I'd like something for myself.....I shall construct soon!

I've been sick this last week so I have to catch up on some house keeping today but later I'll be out at the torch melting some glass into submission!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Arts at the Gardens

This weekend is the Arts at the Gardens show at Sonnenberg. I adore this show. 22 years ago Pete and I were married their and our anniversary is tomorrow! What a great way to celebrate our 22nd year of marriage. Memories fill my mind of our special day. My mother and grandmother (Non) were there but sadly they both have passed away but are forever in my heart. Do you think it would be weird to bring photos of our wedding day tomorrow?? I'm feeling sentimental :)

For all who are local, please stop out to say hello and to see what is new. I always have something new....its goes quickly typically so make Saturday your day to shop the show!