Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Art Jewelry Elements - Nightmare Insomnia

Today is the reveal of the Art Jewelry Elements Nightmare Insomnia Bead Blog Hop!
Crazy title right. Nightmare Insomnia Bead. *shudder*

In Jennifer's own words:

My 10 year old daughter, who turns 11 in July, inspired this series. The first time I made one of these, it was 4 years ago in the midst of a particularly bad spell of nightmares for her. Every single night she would wake up screaming and end up crawling in bed with us, plastered against me...elbowing, kicking, tossing and turning. Plus I would be sweating because I was crammed in between her and hubs. This means I really wasn't getting much sleep.One night, as I was torching, I was stewing about this particular issue, and suddenly my beads started growing these stylized spider end caps thingys on them before I realized what was going on. The next morning when I showed my lovely daughter, she responded with "that's really mean that you made those because of my nightmare, but also really cool." I continue to make them even though she no longer wakes up screaming about spiders or crawls into bed with us.

I wanted to take my beautiful but very dark feeling bead and give it a bit of lift. I was inspired by a dream of a monarch butterfly flying around just after dark. Her parents told her to come in earlier but she was having so much fun that she didn't realize it was so late. It got dark quickly and she became frightened. Led by the light of a friendly firefly they skip along the rocky riverbank exploring along the way. Soon they reach her home and must part ways vowing to always remain friends.

Here are the rest of the participants:

Beti Horvath: Stringing Fool
Gretchen Nation: Art Food Lodging
Karen Totten: Starry Road Studio
Kathleen Douglas: Washoe Kat's
Keirsten Giles: The Cerebral Dilettante
Kristen Stevens: My Bead Journey
Lori Anderson: Pretty Things
Rana Wilson: Rana Lea Designs
Shannon Chomanczuk: For My Sweet Daughter You Are Here!

Thanks for stopping by

Tuesday Tips

I love these pretty, dark blue nails. I am totally doing this color soon.

I have been getting a lot of questions about growing natural nails.
I am going to give a couple tips here.

First, you need vitamin a, you know the stuff found in orange veggies like carrots and sweet potatoes. This helps your nails stay hydrated and is just all around good for you, so eat up!

You absolutely need cuticle oil. Everyone should be using a high quality cuticle oil several times a day. It truly does make a difference. I like Entity Beauty Cuticle Oil but use whatever you can get your hands on. Smear it on, rub it in, repeat. Often, like 3-4 times a day. Keep a bottle by your computer.

I recommend pure acetone polish remover because all acetone is drying, that's just life but, if you use pure acetone you will need less and it will take your polish off faster limiting the amount of time your nails are in it. I also tell everyone don't remove your polish more often than once a week.

Please, do not pick off your old polish. Your nails are like a giant  a brick of sliced cheese, you wouldn't attack a brick of sliced cheese with a trowel or a peeler would you? Your nails have layers. If you pick off your acrylics, gel polish, or regular polish you are ripping away layers. This is bad! It makes them thin, really thin and sensitive.

I always recommend a base coat. I like, okay love, Sticky by Creative Nail Design (CND). I don't think you even need an extra strengthener if you use Sticky as a base coat. It is that awesome.

I love Super Shiny top coat also from CND. Reapply every other day for super long lasting and shiny nails.

Any other questions? Please leave them in a comment below and I will be sure to answer them in another Tuesday Tips.

Like this post? Please share it with your friends.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Finally Friday - Summer Tones

summer tones

I was really nervous when I first randomly selected this palette but I love the necklace I made so much I even wore it to work today.

These vintage lucite beads are so shiny and delicious looking I want to lick them.

Here is the next palette:
desert hues

You have till Next Friday to make something (anything) inspired by the palette. Stop back here next Friday and add you link in the comments below.

If you blog and use the Design Seeds photo in your blog you must link to Design Seeds.
Have fun and I can't wait to see what you have made!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Echo Creative Club - July

Today is the reveal for the Echo Creative Club.
I was going to burst with excitement over the beads I got this month. I immediately made 2 bracelets and have been dying to show them off since.

I started with this bracelet. I has a Tom Holtz number tag, hand wire wrapped crystals and the polymer beads I was sent by Jeannie. I loved the mix of purple, gold and silver.

Then I made this bracelet. I love it because it is simple. There are 10 purple beads and a cross so this could be worn as a prayer bracelet or just as a reminder of your faith. 
The cross is from Fallen Angel Brass.

Then came this necklace and earrings set.
The earrings are very simple chain and gemstone drops.

The necklace features the same gemstones and chain. Jeannie sent me this cute bird bead which I had to wrestle away from my 3 year old a few times. I wanted to give the little bird a house so I etched a piece of copper with the word loved and forged a piece of copper wire into a house shape and soldered the 2 pieces together. I then wire wrapped the polymer clay egg, from Secondsurf, onto the house.
This necklace is extra long measuring almost 30 inches

I love how this necklace turned out. It reminds me of the picture frame my sister bought for me when I was pregnant, which holds a sonogram picture of my daughter. It says - So Little, So Loved. 

Here are the other participants:
Cindy Cima Edwards  http://www.cindycima.com/
Jeannie K Dukic http://site.jkdjewelry.com/blog <--- our fearless leader
Shannon Chomanczuk  http://www.formysweetdaughter.blogspot.com/  <--you are here

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Tuesday Tips

Showing off my own nails today.
I had seen an article in a magazine where they did this Pistachio color and on the ring fingers they did a fuchsia color. I decided to do my own version and use sparkles on the ring fingers.
I think this is #1 on my favorite manicure ever list :-) I just love it!

For those wanting to know what I used, Gelish in Seafoam and Water Field.

I have been asked how I keep my nails so nice even though I work with metal and etch copper. 
My answers are:
 Cuticle oil, lots and lots of cuticle oil. I apply mine 2 - 3x's a day! I know this helps keep them growing long and resisting breaking and staining because I ran out at home for about a month and my nails were awful.
The second thing is lotion. I moisturize almost every 2 hours. If your hands are dry the filing dust will stick in the dry patches. I love Hempz in Pomegranate
Third thing is a gentle gylcolic peel. I use one from Entity Beauty which is amazing. It is a gentle chemical peel and not a harsh scrub. I use mine 1 -2x's a week.
Finally, gloves. Lots and lots of gloves. I usually layer 2 pairs when I am filing because I tear through them easily.
So that's my secret to how I keep my hands nice. 
Stay tuned I will be sharing the products I recommend to grow nails.

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, July 23, 2012

1800's Cemetery Inspiration

Next to the house we stay at in Upstate NY there is this old Church and Cemetery.
I got the chance on Saturday to walk over there and take some photos.
I love the old headstones, their shapes are so inspiring.

Happy Monday!

Corn and Blueberries

I spent Friday driving around Upstate NY with my daughter and my Mother In Law. Our first stop was at her favorite farm stand.

Corn so delicious it didn't even need butter

Grandma and her little helper

Cat in the flowers

So tiny!

Mmmm, garlic

Friendly farm cat

~Shannon :-)