Monday, May 31, 2010

Murrini Monday

In honor of Memorial Day, here are some doggies in their patriotic murrini.

Sniff sniff.

Pug love.

Circus hippo sporting circus-style murrini.

Death-defying balancing acts call for some fun murrini.

This is mini murrini that I encased in clear.

All the murrini featured today is from Lori and Kim.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Monday, May 24, 2010

Murrini Monday

It's Monday! And you know what that means . . . murrini time!

The thing that's really neat about murrini is that it can be so versatile. Sometimes I want to maintain the shape of the murrini on the bead, and other times I like to let gravity take over. Here are some examples:

The murrini on this turtle is aptly called Smudges, and it's from rosebud101. Each chip is a little rainbow of color. I decided to put it on a yellow turtle shell and let it go wild. Yellow is a runny glass color, so the more I heated the murrini on it, the more it spread out over the yellow - it definitely smudged in a good way!

This kitty is sporting some of rosebud101's Chalcedony murrini. Each one is a little sunburst. I applied the murrini and let it spread on the cat's body, then added a smaller one to the tail and kept the shape a little smaller. I love the effect!

For owl eyes, I like to keep the murrini as close to its original shape as possible. For this owl I chose some autumn murrini from rosebud101. I heated the spot where I wanted to place it, then attached the murrini. Next I heated it slowly, then pressed it in. Looking good!

For obvious reasons, I don't let gravity take over when it comes to heart murrini. This little pink one by Lori and Kim looks like it's been outlined by hand. I love it!

And check this out! It's SpongeBob murrini!!! I can't even imagine how much work goes into making something this detailed. It's absolutely amazing, and you can find it and lots of other SpongeBob characters from Bikini Bottom at The Glass Zone.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010

Murrini Monday

I've been playing a lot with murrini this last week. Because murrini reacts differently on different colors of glass, sometimes I test out different styles before I make a more intricate bead. So I've started making these little hearts with a single slice of murrini on them. That way I'm not wasting it if it doesn't turn out how I'd hoped, but if it works out, then I have some cute little hearts.

The murrini slices in these heart beads are from Lori and Kim. I topped each one with clear for a magnified effect. The murrini on the right is called Mystery Spot, so that was definitely one I wanted to test out before putting it on a turtle, which I eventually did.

And here's some more Mystery Spot, only this time on a goth turtle.

Veiled rubino is a pink glass that I just got in the mail and was dying to try. So I made this turtle's shell out of it and added a Beach Umbrella murrini (from Lori and Kim) to top it off, then poked it while it was hot and added clear to trap the tiny bubble inside.

This froglet has claimed this murrini-adorned bead for himself. He's become quite attached to it.

You probably know this is a lovebird bead. But just in case you couldn't tell, he's got his heart murrini on to show his lovey doviness.

Happy Murrini Monday!

Friday, May 14, 2010

5 . . . 4 . . . 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . .


Sydney Newton

Eric Schultz / The Huntsville Times

Today is launch day for Space Dog and 16 other beads in the Beads of Courage Space Program. I'm going to share with you a story from The Huntsville Times by Victoria Cumbow, about how the entire program began. The following is all from Cumbow's story:

ATHENS, AL -- Sydney Newton, a Limestone County 6-year-old, has a new piece of jewelry that circles her neck three times. It's made with beads of every color, shape and size, and she strung all of them during the last six months of her journey battling cancer.

Replicas of some of those beads, along with a few newly designed beads, will fly with space shuttle Atlantis when it lifts off Friday afternoon from Kennedy Space Center.

Sydney's father, Jamie Newton, works as a contractor at Marshall Space Flight Center. When he approached NASA about the beads going into space, the agency loved his idea and processed it quickly in order to make the flight. NASA awarded 8 ounces of payload space to Beads of Courage - the nonprofit group that gives the beads to children with serious illnesses like Sydney. On Friday, 17 beads will be flown as one 8-ounce unit.

"Huntsville is in charge of payload, so if it can happen anywhere, it can happen here," said Sydney's mother, Cynthia Newton.

Once NASA approved the payload, Beads of Courage started a contest for bead-makers around the world. From more than 50 entries, 17 space-themed beads were selected to fly.

"It's another way of encouraging these kids," Jamie Newton said. "We want to give these children courage to get through this and help them reach beyond the Earth and stars.

"We can encourage these kids to fight so they can grow up to be the next astronaut and engineer," he said.

The Newtons left Tuesday for Kennedy Space Center. NASA officials invited them to watch the Atlantis launch as a family.

Sydney got her beads six months ago when she was at Birmingham's Children's Hospital undergoing treatment for rhabdomyosarcoma - a type of cancer often found in children. Doctors discovered a tumor behind her eye last May.

Each bead is different and symbolizes a hurdle, a struggle or a passed milestone in a child's journey with the illness.

"It's something to show for all she's been through," Cynthia Newton said. "She hangs it on her IV pole."

The memorabilia associated with beating cancer - a bag of hair, an IV pole, a radiation mask - are not things the Newtons want to frame on a wall in their Athens home.

A necklace comprised of colorful beads symbolic of every part of Sydney's treatment is something tangible to look at, to hold and to remember the battle.

"It tells an 11-month story," Cynthia Newton said. "It says, 'Look what I did.'"

Sydney can give you details about every bead on her necklace, when she got it and why.

Red beads represent blood procedures. A bead shaped like a dog represents the therapy dogs Sydney loved at the hospital. Bumpy beads are for getting over something difficult. The bead with a face and crazy hair is for Sydney's hair falling out. Glow-in-the-dark beads represent her radiation treatments. And the purple heart bead represents her finishing treatment.

Sydney's favorite is a cross between the purple heart bead and the dog bead. The bead shaped like a dog was made especially for Sydney. The maker of the bead designed a similar bead to be flown on Atlantis, and when Sydney said it was her favorite of the 17, she received a replica called the Love Puppy from the bead's designer.

It's been a long year for the Newtons, but so far things are improving for 2010.

Sydney's color is improving; her smile is flashing bright again, and even her 9-year-old brother Dawson can tell she's getting better by the way she picks on him. Laughter fills the Newton house, along with the sound of feet running around the hardwood floor - a sound Sydney's parents said they treasure after a year of her being weak, tired and sick.

On May 28, Sydney will return to Birmingham for an MRI with her beaded necklace around her neck. The Newtons say they expect Sydney to be deemed cancer free.

Have a safe trip, Space Dog!!!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Therapy Thursday

Need a pick-me up? When I do, I head to my favorite Etsy shops and browse.

These fish are hamming it up while cheesing for the camera over at anklebiterbeads. It's impossible not to smile along with them when you see them. They're part of a custom order that has sold already, but there are lots more funny critters in shop.

I love to hang out in glassali. Not only are her beads gorgeous, but her descriptions are hilarious. Find out why Stanley the owl looks so worried here.

One of my all-time favorite shops to browse is elukka. She just stocked her shop with these wonderful dog vase creations, including the one above.

I can spend a loooong time in this beanforest. The buttons crack me up! I have a bunch stashed away for gifts, including the taco one.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Giveaway Winner

I picked a winner for the turtle giveaway I posted nearly two weeks ago. I'm SO sorry it's taken me so long to post this! The winner, after using the random number generator, was Twix the wiener dog! And Twix is a wiener dog with a blog, aptly called A Wiener Dog Blog. So all you wiener dog lovers, and dog lovers alike, check it out! The pink turtle is on its way to Twix. Thanks to everyone who entered!

Art Imitates Youtube

Have you ever seen this video, or one like it? It's a bulldog who can skateboard! How cool is that? My dog beads think it's rad, and now they want to give it a go. And what a coincidence, my husband makes fingerboards, which are the perfect size for bead boarding.

Bruiser is trying out a toxicfingerboard. Check out his mad skills.

Look out - Pug Thug is joining Bruiser on the board.

Toxic Fingerboards come with a variety of cool graphics on the underside. This one features the Luke Molitor Signature graphic.

One of my favorites is the Bloody Puddle.

And who doesn't like Lime Slime?

Toxic Fingerboards can be found on Etsy or on their own site - Toxic Fingerboards. It's the brainchild of my son and husband.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Murrini Monday

My torch time has been limited lately, so receiving murrini in the mail has been like torture! But I've managed to sneak in a few murrini-filled beads with my new stash. Who needs sleep?

This blend of murrini is called Smudges, and it's from rosebud101. It is fabulous to work with, and as my daughter says, it looks like beach balls. I'm a huge fan of rainbow glass (who isn't?), so I've been having tons of fun with Smudges.

I named this pandora-style snake bead Smudge, after the murrini he's sporting.

I spy a beach ball in this sweet penguin's belly - nope! It's more Smudges murrini, and the shy penguin can be found at nlcbeads on Etsy.

This murrini from Lori and Kim is aptly called Jitterbug, and I did my own giddy version of the dance when I opened my pack of it last week.

See how happy Nellie the turtle is with the Jitterbug murrini atop her shell? She's up on her hind legs showing it off.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Periwinkle Makes Me Happy

I've been hooked on the glass color periwinkle. It's a blue-purple color that just plain makes me happy. It's also the color of my kitchen walls. But from the looks of my Etsy shop, you would think I'd just won the periwinkle glass lottery. Periwinkle is the perfect color for hippo beads and other fun critters, and when you dot it with transparent purple, well, it becomes even more fun! I'm not the only lampworker who enjoys the results of periwinkle. I've found a bunch of gorgeous beads made from this purple-blue glass.

If only owls really did come in periwinkle.

The periwinkle shell on this turtle is the perfect canvas for some pretty murrini. Plus, this turtle has a periwinkle pedicure.

Check out this gorgeous set from fellow Fire Diva AHouston that features periwinkle along with aqua and black - now that's a striking color combination!

SomethingNew4U, another Fire Diva, has turned this periwinkle tab bead into a lush garden.

I think I've found a lampworker who likes periwinkle as much as me! Aside from the center of this gorgeous star bead, periwinkle plays a big role in many of the stunning focals at studiorickrack.

I spy lots of periwinkle at beadygirlbeads. It pops out of her colorful creations, like this Zuma Big Holed Spinner Slider.