Monday, November 30, 2009

Big Cyber Monday Sale!

I have several items in the Bei Mondi shop marked 20% off for Cyber Monday.  That's a sweet discount to grab a unique handcrafted item for the holidays.  Here's a peek of a few items up for grabs.


My Etsy shop is on vacation today and these items can only be purchased through the Bei Mondi shop.  And there is free shipping on all items! 

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Bunny Commerical!

Watch this video if you love bunnies!

Words, Words, Words and Cyber Monday Sale!

I'm going through blogging withdrawals.  I need to blog but I have another busy day planned.  First, painting pottery.  Miss Lauren will be painting a Christmas present for me with my husband's help and vice versa.  Then we're off to see "The Christmas Carol" in 3D.  I'm so excited about this movie.  I'm a sucker for Christmas flicks.

I thought I'd show you gals what I've been working on lately.  I'm sure you've heard me and others talk about the Charmsters group.  We all make charms for a specific theme and swap them.  It's always such a surprise to see what will be in your package when it arrives.  So the swap I am currently working on is called "Words, words, words!"  And here's my charms.

These charms were first metal etched and then I used a torch to add some color.  I used some oil on them before the torch and it made a tie dye effect.  They are a bit hard to capture in the photo if the light is not just right.  I then had my assistant (Lauren) cut out newspaper that we folded into envelope shapes (gotta keep with that word theme).  I like the way each one is unique and they all have an old look to them.  Hope the group likes them!  

I also wanted to tell everyone that I'll be having a big Cyber Monday Sale!  I'm taking 20% off half the items in the Bei Mondi shop.  There will be lots of goodies to choose from and if there is something you've had your eye on please let me know so I can make sure to add it to the list.

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving and a killer Black Friday!  Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


I almost wrote TGIF!  It really feels like Friday.  This is Lauren's last day of school until after the holiday so it is her Friday.  I hope to do some girl things tomorrow and the Monday after Thanksgiving to take advantage of the extra days she has off.  We might go paint pottery again or maybe Monster Golf or try something new for a change.  Money is tight so even watching a movie at home while playing games sounds good. 

Anyone traveling for the holidays?  I wish you safe travels if you are.  I miss my family so much but, unfortunately, traveling is not on the agenda for us on Thanksgiving.  Instead, we'll be making the usual feast for only three.  The hubby has turned into a real foodie recently.  He can't get enough of Food Network so he's decided to put a spin on all my old favorites for the holiday.  At first I was a little annoyed, this is my day to shine, right?  But if he shows an interest in it and is willing to help out, then why not?  "Sure, I'll go along with pancetta in my stuffing.  Whatever you want, honey.  Just don't burn the house down."  I told him the turkey was off limits though.  I gotta draw the line some where.

Well, I feel quite guilty.  Here's the deal.  I signed up for this craft exchange quite a while back and I still haven't blogged about it.  I guess other things have gotten in the way but there's really no excuses.  I received two amazing gifts that I can't believe I haven't blogged about before now.  The first one is from Bonnie Fisher from Explorations of Color.  This is a mixed media piece that is simply brilliant.  I've never seen mixed media up close before, I've only seen pictures on the internet.  I know, how lame am I?  This piece is so beautiful!  I don't know how good my picture taking skills are to see the fine details so I'll tell you a little bit of what I see.  The lady pops out a bit, she's actually kinda floating above the piece and her dress has been painted yellow.  And there is very faint type beyond the painted background that I can't quite make out.  The lines at the bottom of the page are actually sewn on!  How cool, she sewed on cardboard.  Oh, I just can't say enough about her artwork.  I've never dabbled in mixed media before but she has me intrigued for sure.  If you have the time please send some blog love her way.  Thanks, Bonnie!

And the other art I recieved were these sweet little apple earrings.  These were made by Lynette from Every Day Jewelry.  They are simply darling apples made of clay!!!  How did she make these?  While looking at her blog I noticed she has an Etsy shop where she sells these.  Check it out!  These would be perfect to make a pair of earrings out of for a teacher's gift.  Thanks, Lynette!

Here is my art exchange gift that I made for Diana Frey.  I wanted to make her a unique little flip book on Pittsburgh.  Sometimes ideas work out better in our head them the real deal!  It ended up looking rather childish but I decided that I would send it anyway but include another gift as well.  So, I added in these earrings I made with some metal etched pieces, freshwater pearls, and Swarovski crystals.  If you follow Diana's blog you'd know that she has great style and a real flair for decorating.  I was very nervous about sending this to her.


Ok, I am off to finish up some metal etching.  Enjoy your Friday Tuesday!  ;)

Monday, November 23, 2009

Vintage Sheet Music Necklace Tutorial

I entered into the Totally Tutorials Exchange Program recently.  For those of you not familiar with the program, here's how it works.  A supply seller sends items to a recipient willing to write a tutorial using the items.  This offers free exposure for the supplier showing techniques on using their product.  And the individual writing the tutorial gets free stuff!  I decided to try out this program for my friends at Tanith's Odds and Ends

 First off I want to say that you really need to check out their Etsy shop.  They have some really unique stuff like sheet music and dictionary pages from the 1930's that would be great for mixed media projects.  My favorites are the paper beads and the felt wool beads.  I'll be showing off some of their sheet music paper beads in this tutorial.  So here goes!

Here's the materials. 
  • 23 - 5 inch sections of copper wire
  • 3 - paper music note beads (from Tanith's Odds and Ends)
  • 19 - black czech beads in various sizes
  • 1 - large black czech bead for focal
  • 1 - Copper clasp
I used copper wire that was oxidized in liver of sulfur.  These were cut into 5 inch sections prior to dipping.  You can use any type of metal but if you decide you'd like a patina on your metal you must oxidize the metal prior to making the necklace.

To create a wrapped loop first start by placing the bead in the center of the wire.  Then make a right angle right above where the bead is sitting.

Slide the bead off and then bend the wire over the pliers to create a loop.

Finish by overlapping the wire to close the loop.

Next, grab the loop end with a pair of flat nose pliers with your left hand.  With another set of pliers in your right hand, grab the tail of the wire.

Wrap the tail end of the wire around the straight portion of the wire several times.  You can have these wraps tight and straight or go for a crazy look like I've done.

Now add your first paper bead and create another wrapped wire loop on the opposite end.

Connect another piece of wire to one of the wrapped ends of your bead creating another loop at the end of this wire.  Add another paper bead.  Repeat until you have three paper beads connected together.

Now start connecting the black beads in the same way by creating wrapped loops.  I added five beads on one side and two on the other.

Next, create a large wrapped loop on the end for your focal bead.  Add your focal bead and twist your wire to make a spiral holding the bead in place.

Create the other side of the necklace by wire wrapping eleven more black beads together.

Add a clasp to the end of your piece.

Here is your end piece.

Now you can use steel wool to polish up the wire and remove any tool marks.  This will create light and dark areas to your copper adding depth to the metal.  Voila, you're done!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Beady Goodness for Winners!

Beady Goodness for the winners of the Thanksgiving Treasures Game Giveaway!  These will go into the mail shortly.


Each kit will be different but all include a ceramic art bead or button, various gemstones, buttons, seedbeads, and czech glass.  Congrats again to the winners!  Have a great weekend!

Day Five of Artist Showcase

TGIF!  Hooray!  I think we'll be hitting the Arts and Crafts Show this weekend in Monroeville.  I'm hoping it will be better than that horrible food show.  Yuck!  I also need to go buy a turkey.  Did you guys know Thanksgiving is only in 5 days?  Yikes.  I don't even think that's long enough for a turkey to defrost to cook it.  We aren't having any family over for Thanksgiving so it will just be the three of us but I still make tons of food.  Why?  I guess to keep my little family happy.  :)  Anyone traveling during the holidays?

Ok, so it's the last day of the Thanksgiving Treasures Earring Exchange.  How sad!

Julie is a farmgirl with a vintage touch!  My favorite creation of hers is the cuff bracelets and she even has one in her shop that says "farmgirl" on it.  How cute!  "Julie, I will take your Vitamin C advice.  It is a crazy time of the year."  Please check out her blog when you have the time at Prairie Thistle.

"Shelby requested red, copper, short, and not too heavy....  I love working with all of these!  I made the earrings by cutting out tiny leaf shapes out of copper to keep the weight light, then hammered them for texture.  I added a faceted red coral bead that looked like a berry and a small rice pearl to join the metal with the faceted coral bead, it seemed like the perfect transition piece.  I then connected the copper, pearl, and coral combination to sterling silver leverback earrings that are lightweight and comfortable to wear all day...  I opted for simple, lightweight and comfortable.  A little earthy, with just a bit of red sparkle for the upcoming Holiday Season, enjoy Shelby!"

And last in the exchange is ME from the Bei Mondi blog!  I made earrings for Erin Prais-Hintz.  That was tough since this girl has been in like every beading magazine there is with amazing designs.  She asked for mixed metals and she likes the color plum.  I think I nailed both of those.  But those of us who follow her blog know that her husband is the "Bee Whisperer".  So, I had to include a bee sitting on a hammered flower.  Hope you like them, Erin!

It's so sad.  The exchange is over.  I will try to have another exchange in Febuary for bracelets.  If you are interested just let me know.  I might have only 20 people in this exchange so I can keep up with all the pictures and descriptions.  Be looking for more info on that at the first of the year. 

I hope to show off my tutorial in the next day of so for anyone who is interested.  It was a pain but it's done.  Now, go out and have some fun this weekend!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Bringing Back Memories

One year for Christmas my sister and I got a 45.  For those of you that are younger than I am, that's a record.  I was probably only nine or ten.  Even though most people were using tape players at that time, our family had a record player that worked so there wasn't much need in buying anything new.  So my sister and I got this record of Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson.  Fourty-fives only hold two songs.  I think one song was "The Man" and the other was "Say Say Say".  We played the heck out of that record!  Back then there wasn't much to choose from and this was probably the best record we had.  Well, I must have heard "Say Say Say" recently because it's stuck in my head (along with "Santa Baby" for some strange reason).  And everytime I hear it the memories of being a kid during Christmas time follow.  Isn't Christmas great when you're a kid?  The whole month of December is a delight from the decorations to the presents.  Oh, and the tree!  How wonderful with all those lights.  I remember I use to just sit next to the tree and I'd be in awe of it's size and beauty.  And the smell!  We always had a live tree and that pine smell takes me back.  So, I've decided to share the song with all of you.  It's a great video too that kinda tells a story.  Enjoy!

Day Four of Artist Showcase

I am in a funk.  It could be the glorious weather today (it's raining).  Plus, I need to do a tutorial that's due in a few days that I've been putting off.  I've never done one before and I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed by it.  Ugh!  

Anyway, I just wanted to remind everyone that today is the beginning of sign ups for BeadFest Wire in King of Prussia.  I'd love to meet you there if you are going.  I'll be taking "Wild Woman Bangles"  by Debora Mauser #2153 and I'd love friends to go shopping with.

Let's get going with day four of my blogging buddies creations.

The first artist today is Renate of Stregata  and she lives in Germany.  I always enjoying look at her flea market finds.  They are so interesting.  Totally different than what you'd find in the US.  She even found a hedgehog once in her yard.  So now whenever I think of her I think, "Hedgehog Whisperer".  Sorry, Renate.  I hope you don't take offense to that.  For those of you living in the US, I'm sure you remember the movie "The Horse Whisperer".

"I have had a fascination with jewelry for a very long time – I love to look at vintage and ancient pieces at the museum. In my metal work, I prefer a somewhat imperfect look; a little rustic or primitive perhaps. Currently, I am having a love affair with copper. Beads of all kinds are another passion, be it glass or gemstone.
For the exchange, I chose to combine etched bronze sheet - shaped into cones, with copper and beads of faceted turquoise (these have been colour enhanced) and matte teal glass beads. I love the archaic feel of these and the teal combined with the patinated copper/bronze. Hopefully, my exchange partner, Jeanette, will also love them."

Up next is Lisa from Lucid Moon.  Lisa is getting married very soon or maybe she already did.  Can't remember!  So wish this newlywed your best.  

Veronique wrote that she likes long earrings, prefers copper, earth tones and has sensitive ears.   I used niobium earwires which are hypo-allergenic and also a copper tone.  Then I used oxidized copper wire to wire wrap vintage pearl buttons of my late grandmother's, copper washers that I etched with a floral pattern, mossy agate teardrops and Swarovski crystals.  I made them pretty long since she said she liked long earrings, but I was afraid they might be too long.  However, Veronique said they are not, and she likes the length.  I also included some fun extra goodies for her to possibly use in future jewelry designs.  I noticed that she seems to like vintage things, and mixed media components, so I kept that in mind when choosing some
extras to send to her.

Cindy Wimmer from Sweet Bead Studio is next.  Cindy is one of the first artists I started blogging with.  She has a very big heart and mad wire working skills! 

"I wanted to create something to celebrate the season, so I chose autumn colors.  I knew Esther liked crystal with the AB finish so I chose a large, 8mm Swarovski crystal AB for the center.  I hammered the sterling silver wire a bit to create a frame with a coiled top section.  I made my own earwires...and I had to make a few before I was happy that the two matched up well enough!  I had fun coiling the wire and stretching out the coils as I went, adding a few Swarovski crystals here and  there for a random look.  I oxidized the earrings as we all know Esther loves a good patina!  Then I polished the earrings and was all finished!"

Last on the list today is Erin Prais-Hintz of Tesori Trovati.  Erin has very inspirational chats with her bloggers about the daily grind of life on her blog with fun photos.

"When I got the word about LeAnn Weih of Summer's Studio as my secret earring match I was so very nervous. She makes the most gorgeous components! I am not sure how I could compare. But I knew i wanted to make her something that could be dressed up or down. Her color choices were blues and green, especially with brown and that made it easy! She wanted longer earrings. So I used some antique copper chain and picked out some lovely peacock blue-green faceted pearls (I love the way the facets make them so translucent, like little stained glass windows). I also used my favorite Montana sapphire tabac bicone crystals on some longer kidney shaped ear wires. This was a really fun treat to participate in, and I thank Leslie for connecting all of us!"

We should be finishing up probably tomorrow with the rest of the artists.  And if the sun is shining where you're at could you please send some my way.  :(

Pins Make Me Happy

Oh yeah, the crazy pin lady is at it again!  They are just so easy and each one has it's own unique style.  They don't have to be a certain length like bracelets and you can add as much or as little as you please.  And use just about anything to pin them on.  It doesn't have to be a scarf.  At least no one knows you used curtains or a blanket in photos.  :)


So yes, here is more.  I do have to say that the last set I made sold quick so hopefully I will have the same luck with some of these.  Except for the music notes of course, those I made just for fun.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Day Three of Artist Showcase

We're on to day three of the artists in the Thanksgiving Treasures earring exchange.  

The first artist today is Sharon Palac of Sharon's Jewelry Garden.  Talented artist in wire and also beautiful clay creations.  Sharon made these gorgeous earrings and a necklace to match for Barbara Lewis.  The colors and swirls  are intoxicating!  Here's what she had to say about her creation. 

"I know she likes rustic, so that's what I aimed for. I made the beads from polymer clay and oxidized the copper."  

Our next artist lives in France making her intriguing pieces.  Her name is Véronique of Narrative Jewelry.  My favorite are her metal etchings which you will see in her creation for  Lorelei.   I just love the French script on these.

"I had been very proud to create something for Loreleï, but it put some pressure on me too. I decided after a lots of hesitations to make something with etched copper, as i read in one of her post that she would like to try it. As she asked for teal, i just put little beads of turquoise, all wrapped in oxydized copper wire. Except the beads, all is handmade."

Next up is Judy from Judith B Designs.  And guess who she made her lovely earrings for?  Me!  And I have to say they are my favorite.  They go with everything and are perfect for my style.  Thanks, Judy!  Here's what she had to say about her creation.

"I was so thrilled when I saw your name as the one to receive my earrings...I felt like I was making them for a friend and not a stranger.  The beads are Picasso glass beads, I just love the colors of them and bought them especially for you. I found the beads in a little bead shop in Nashville ( I have since ordered some similar ones from"

And the final artist today is Lorelei from Lorelei's Blog: Inside the Studio.  I remember when I first started beading and looking in all the various beading magazines.  I kept seeing the same name over and over.  It was Lorelei's name.  Who was this Lorelei?  I started following her blog and found out why she's in all those magazines.  Amazing artist with a big heart!  

"I drew Sharon Palac's name in the earring exchange. Sharon asked for silver, longish earrings in a teal and brown color combination.  I used some lovely ceramic glazed beads in a sage blue green and brown finish. I knew Sharon would like them. I hammered some little fine silver swirls and dangled them below each of the lentil beads and attached a wire wrapped faceted silvery glass bead to add a little bling. The earring wires are silver.  I had such a fun time going through Sharon's blog and trying to figure out what she might like, so I could move in a certain direction. Sharon has bought jewelry from me before and I tried to play off her previous purchases too."

I hope you've enjoyed reading about the artist's inspiration for their pieces.  Please stop back tomorrow for even more!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Day Two of Artist Showcase

First off I want to say that there must be something wrong with me.  I went to bed around 4am last night or morning, whichever you'd like to say.  It's not that I'm not tired because I am.  But I seem to find so much to do on the internet around that time.  Why?  Is that part of the day any better than the morning?  No so I should just make myself go to bed at like 11pm every day so I'm able to get up at 7am to get Lauren off to school without fussing at everyone.  So today I might be a little slow and grumpy so please excuse me if I am.  My cup of joy will hopefully soon wash all that grump away.  On to business!

We are at day two of these talented artists and their wonderful earring designs.  Please take a look!

We will start with the extremely sweet and talented LeAnn from Summer Studios.

"When I saw Lisa's name as the recipient of my pair of earings the simple design of these literally flew into my mind. You see I know a little about Lisa without even having to read what she liked in earrings. I already knew she has a fondness for dragonflies, blue, and silver. When I read that she also liked mixed metals, combining copper with sterling was an easy choice.

So what I've done is combine my porcelain beads and copper dragonfly charms with sterling silver heads pins and ear wires and copper bead caps. The copper charms and bead caps were given a patina to provide more contrast with the bright silver. They were all simply linked together to create a pair of earings that are a little over 2" from the top of the earwire to the bottom of the charm. Hope Lisa likes them!"

Our next artist is Shelby from Sundown Studios.  "Beautiful work, Shelby!"
"I designed earrings for Renate Starke-Krammer, she prefers copper and her favorite color is green or a green/blue mix. Right away I knew that I wanted to try a new technique that I have been trying to perfect for some time. Fusing copper...sometimes I have great success and others...well lets just say I fail miserably. As luck would have it...the day that wanted to create the rings for the earrings I had great success and not only twice but many times. So it seemed meant to be. 

These beautiful lampwork beads were the chosen focus because of the dominate green color with the subtle blue mixed in. Scrolled copper wire acts as bead caps on both the bottom and top of the lampwork bead. The fused copper rings are hammered for texture and two dangles were added to play on the colors in the lampwork beads. Then the earrings were oxidized and polished. These earrings are different than anything I have ever made because the lampwork dangle and the ring component are not attached, they each swing independent of one another on the earwire. Of course, had I been thinking at the time...I should have used a ball tipped ear wire so that the dangles could be removed easily, then Renate could have worn one or the other, or both together, as shown in the picture."


 Talented ceramic artist Erin Siegel is next and she is from  Every Heart Crafts

"When I received the information on my exchange friend and I read her list of favorites, I immediately thought of a colorful design with multiple gemstones. I took elements from her given info. and combined it with my own earthy style to create my earrings for her.

Wood & Stone Stack Earrings
These earrings are colorful, earthy and just a little funky! I started with red coral rounds, added some wooden bar beads, then I stacked on my own handmade Porcelain Pebble Beads and topped them off with some Lapis and Turquoise chip beads. I made custom sterling silver ear wires with wood bead accents." 

And our last artist of the day is the marvelous Jeanette from Fundametals.

"These earrings were created especially for Erin Siegel for the Thanksgiving Treasure Exchange.  I call these earrings, Pendulum Riveted Earrings.  I textured copper and sterling silver discs and then riveted them to 14 gauge copper wire that has been hammered. The earrings were attached to sterling silver earwires and then oxidized and tumbled to add contrast and shine."

Stick around for more artists tomorrow!