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June 2007
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August 2007

Flea Market Finds

Judi Well, I'm guilty of FleaMarket-can't-stay-away-itis.  And the visit of friends Judi and Richard Teske this past weekend gave me, well, another excuse to visit the thrice weekly Montsweag Flea market, a mere eight miles away from Wiscasset (aren't I lucky?).

My last cool find was an old, old tiny red table with decals for FOUR DOLLARS!  Fits perfectly next to the toilet to hold my beading magazines :)

Judi and I went last Saturday and found more old treasures:  carved jadeite stone totems.  Judi asked me to make a necklace of hers and at first I was going to braid some multi-strands of beads, but had a better idea:  I would make a Kumihimo fiber braid and this is the result (also pictured are my two "totems"). 

Kumihimo is an ancient Japanese technique that had many ceremonial uses but was also used by Samurai warriors.  The intricate braiding was used to join pieces of their elaborate armor together.  The Japanese used thin strands of silk but when you employ funky nubbly and eyelash yarn, totally unique textures are produced.  For Judi's necklace I had some great tulip shaped copper cones and embossed toggle clasp to give the piece a finished look. (Click on the photo for a larger picture.)

My "Papoose" Necklace

 Beadinpathlogo1old_3 My second visit of the summer to Beadin' Path (one of the best bead shops I've ever visited) in Freeport, Maine yielded more treasures. 

The store specializes in vintage (over 50 years old) Lucite beads and has an enormous collection sorted by color on the wall.  A few steps up, another wall has Czech glass beads in thousands of different shapes and colors.  The choices are awesome.Papoose_2 

My find this time was a strand of ochre-colored beads that had a narrow tulip shape.  They presented a design challenge for, when strung end to end, they tended to twist around so you could not see the opening.

I also found some wonderful faceted French jet glass beads (very old) and Voila! my Papoose necklace came to life.  I simply made each one a dangle with a tiny coil at the bottom and then hung them from the necklace base. 

I think it's very sweet! (Click on the photo to get a larger picture.)

I call her Twinkletoes

Twinkletoes_2 My latest concoction features unusual long, twisted Czech bugle beads. 

I've threaded brass wire thru them and looped each end.  The bottom curl has been pounded so that it's a little flat.  Each is hung and separated by freshwater cultured pearls in the most beautiful luminescent khakis and teal, irregularly shaped and quite kinky!  It's adorable on a real body.

The matching earrings are hung from bronze dangles made by hand by my friend Renee Chock of Albuquerque, NM.  (Click on the photo for a larger picture.)

Ceramic beads at Ingram Gallery

Ceramic_beads Now that we're back in Maine, I've re-established my relationship with Ingram Gallery on Main Street in Wiscasset.  Larry Ingram has two of my pieces right in the front window, including "Dance the Night Away" which he's priced at $585 (includes earrings :)

He did pretty well selling my things last summer for only a month or so, so we'll see how it goes.  Many, many people pass by every day, most are waiting in line for hours at Red's for the 'world famous lobster rolls', only a block away.

The pictured piece features 5 very old ceramic beads from 1850's Japan.  Larry asked me to make up a design with them and luckily, I had some perfectly-matched freshwater cultured "potato pearls".  These are separated by turquoise disks and tiny copper balls.  The big surprise is that I have added an "extender" which can be taken off and worn as a bracelet, making the necklace a princess length, or if worn long, the necklace can be passed over the head.  It thought it was pretty cool and he loved it!  (Click on the photo for a larger picture.)