Mini Mo' Club June 2011 - Sea Heather

After taking a full year off from melting glass during pregnancy and after my son Ethan was born, I am very excited to be back to work and creating lovely little Mini Mo' packages again. This selection of glasswork for June is the very first collection for the the Mini Mo' Club this year.

The main colourway for Sea Heather Mini Mo is CiM Lapis and Effetre Dark Turquoise, two of my absolute favourite glass colours. I have teamed up elements of Sea Heather with CiM Crocus in my first test bead set and really put the murrini through its paces. On the left you can see Sea Heather murrini both encased and as a surface embellishment. The murrini in the round bead at the fore of this picture has been melted flat, spot heated and the twisted to form a delicate swirl.

I have encased the murrini in the focal bead for this set. First I made a small tube bead core from CiM Crocus and attached two murrini, one on each side. Next I heated the murrini gently until it domed and then used a brass pokey tool to indent the center of each murrini. I heated a gather of Lauscha soft clear glass and spot encased over the murrini fully to trap and air bubble and protect the murrini from smearing. Neat I put down some twistie in between the murrini for interest and then spot encased and melted te encasing layer smooth and marvered in to shape.

The three murrini visible inside my Sea Heather focal Bicone have each been treated differently, One was attached and immediately encased, one was melted partially flat and then encased. The third was melted completely flat and then encased.

Pictured above is one of my test bead sets for the Sea Heather shards. I've used CiM Gunmetal with is pewter patina as a contrast to the glossy aqua colour of these pretty enamelled shards.

In this large organic focal I have used a fairly substantial piece of shard and covered big section of surface area of the bead, dusting with some white enamel to add interest and texture just before garaging.

Here are all of the Mini Mo's for June together in their pretty packaging.

As an extra special treat I also made a second murrini pull, Atlantic, to send with the June Mini Mo's as thank you to my Mini Mo' Club members.You can see it both as surface decoration and also under deep encasement in my Pink Atlantic bead set shown here.

Jolene x

Frit N Chips lampwork supplies and Kitzbitz Art Beads


A treasure trove for Frit 'n' Chips

A huge thank you to Amanda of DameandGent Anna of annamcdade and Gemma of
BristolTreasuresUK for the recent treasury features for my newly restocked lampwork supplies shop FritNChips, I'm sure you would agree that they are all stunning and packed with pure joyous colour!

I'd also like to give a little shout out about the new treasury widget that I have recently discovered on CraftCult, it's easy to use and ever so clever...........

Jolene x

Artists Spotlight - Mel Harding

I have been looking forward to writing this spotlight since the start of the Craft Pimp artist spotlight project. All week various things have happened including the blogger upgrade blip and a whole evening down at A&E with my eldest (don't worry folks, it turned out to be nothing serious after all).

It's almost the end of the week and I can finally sit down with a mug of coffee and surf about the net looking at Mel's beautiful creations. Mel and I have a fetish in common for winged things. This intricate enamelled six piece topper is my current favourite piece in Mel's brand new Etsy store called >Inkydoodlecrafts

These seaside scenes are rather gorgeous too and would look lovely in tiny driftwood frames. You can also find pretty toppers from Mel at >Inkydoodlecrafts on Ebay.

Mel is moving in the exciting direction of using her own original designs exclusively throughout her product range and I have been lucky enough to see her first original topper up close, you can read more about the birth of a dragonfly on Mel's own blog. When I think about Mel and her work and creative spark I can imagine such bright things in the future, demoing to packed crowds at the NEC or pitching products and original artwork to the buyers for Ideal World. I have this lovely feeling that I will get to say one day that I knew her before she was famous.

Jolene x


Artists Spotlight - HazelB Handweaver

Hazel Brend is a professional handweaver living and working in beautiful North Wales. She gets inspiration for her work whilst walking our dogs in the stunning countryside in Wales. The colours that inspired this stylish scarf come from a male Mallard duck. Hazel takes photographs of her subject and then mixes dyes, paints the warp yarn (which is the longways thread in her woven creations) and sets the dye before she begins the weaving process. You can find this piece and other stunning scarves and wraps in Hazels's online store.

I asked Hazel if she would mind writing a short short article for us on Craft Pimp Forum to give us a better idea of the process and equipment involved in weaving such delicate and fine fabrics. She kindly agreed and so you can read more about her creative process here.

This is a picture of Hazels largest loom. She has three working looms in her weaving shed and they are intriguing and complex and baffling to look at. The rows of threads put me in mind of a beautiful harp and perhaps in a way it is fair to say that the fabrics that come to life under Hazels skilled hands are like music for the eye.

Here is a little look at what a collection of Hazel's work looks like, her stand at Erddig, a fabulous 18th Century Welsh Country house. Hazel travels extensively doing shows in the summer. At the back if her stand you can see some sumptuous patchwork quilts for children - I think there is just no end to Hazels talents!

There are a couple of galleries on flickr where Hazel's handwoven wraps and scarves can be seen. Hazel also has a beautifully stocked Etsy store

Jolene x


Artists Spotlight - Dianne Sandland

Di Sandland is an amazing chick, a compelling wordsmith and an amazing silversmith.

Today I am focusing on Di's recently released series of hand forged and acid etched sterling silver beads and findings. Dianne says - After a very long time trying I think I've finally achieved what I set out to do - and that is to incorporate sentiments and feelings into my silver jewellery and findings.

Di recently launched a competition on her blog to give one lucky winner the chance to win a set of her stylish beads - which, being honest, are the coolest thing I've seen this year! Her range is now very elegantly named Caprichos Expressions in Silver by Di Sandland.

The stunning sunshine toggle above is delicious beyond belief, looking at it makes be smile and evokes memories of happy seaside jaunts and sunny days. The ultimate in feel good findings!

Dianne will soon be opening her very own online shop Expressions in Silver.

Jolene x


A Perfect Circle

A Perfect Circle by Anna McDade

I am sure you will agree that Anna has created an stylish treasury jam packed with some extremely beautiful hand crafted treasures.

I'm thrilled that Anna has chose one of my new scarab tattoo bead pendant bead sets to be featured in her beautifully curated collection.

I am finding it just too hard to select just one piece from Anna's stunning Etsy inventory to showcase and so I wont.....I'll show you three!

Watch this space for a more in depth feature on Anna in the near future and she and I are fellow CPteam  members on Etsy.

Jolene x
Kitzbitz Art Glass

Flutterby Butterflies

Flutterby Butterflies by minipretties

A big thank you to Christina of mini pretties for featuring a piece of my lampwork in her beautiful butterfly treasury. My featured beads are is called "the one with the Moth"

Christina makes and sells a broad range of fabric and crochet items including lip balm holders, hair clips and brooches and textiles for dolls houses. I really like her newborn baby clothing best and love these little slippers!

Denim and Blue Plaid Soft Sole Crib Shoes

Jolene x
Kitzbitz Art Beads