Friday, March 28, 2008

Color Block Friday: What's in a Word? - 2008.03.28

Now, since I've been making these beads the most common likeness people use is berries. I love this, mainly because I could exist on berries everyday for the rest of my life! Okay, well... maybe not everyday but, you know what I mean. Organics, things in nature, etc... inspire me in what I do and how I work. Even the smallest phrase; collection of words, can bring about a different point of view with what I do. I take words very seriously...

For instance, take my newest color story "Bryant Park". I think of a big city with all its diversions. Cement, trees, colors of purple and gold - like royalty. This was my inspiration for this particular color story. Earlier this month I highlighted one of my newest colors "Crocus" in a gorgeous flowery shade of purple. I wanted to stay on the purple path and continue with Bryant Park by highlighting the other purple in that series: Mulberry.

This brings us back to the berry likeness. I can remember my earliest memory of my beads and how someone wanted me to make a bowl full and eat them like berries. Of course, in the early days, I didn't see this. Now, I wish I could remember who it was that gave me this image of organic delight. I now see my beads hanging from every tree, shrub and exotic plant. They are little pods, berries, and seeds. Droplets of water that glisten. Or, honey ladened buds of gold.

Next month I will have a new color story featuring some shades not yet used. 1st Friday in April... check it out!

xo - Pink

Photo of The Day - Snowing Petals & Steel

Portland Waterfront Park & the Steel Bridge - City of Roses 2008.03.28

Thursday, March 20, 2008

What's the Difference? A Bead Lesson - no.1

I know that many of you understand what my work entails... tiny seed beads. But, how many of you know the difference between the Regular "Single Bead on Chain", the Giant one, and the size I use in my "Linked Bracelets"? Well, the difference is in the seed bead.

Here's the skinny: Most of my work uses the size 15/0 seed bead (as in the image here with red beads - pic.1). My Giant 1" beaded rounds (25mm) use size 8/0...see, much bigger (pic. - 2). The reason I use the 8/0 for my giant 1" is that it takes as much time to make this size as it does to make the regular size 3/4" with the 15/0. Seed beads are categorized by size with numbers - the bigger the number the smaller the seed bead. The sizes I use most are 15/0, 10/0 and 8/0 .... are you saying "Huh"?

Let me explain... the 3/4" (actually, just shy of 3/4" or 16mm) single bead on chain is made with my 15/0 seed beads and they are very tiny as in this poppy bead here on the chain (pic. 3). I weave each bead to the next one-by-one and this takes time. The 3/4" bead takes approximately 1 hour to weave. Now, if I were to use the same size 15/0 on the 1", as you can see there is a significant difference in size from this image (pic.4), - and I do occasionally ... then it would take me just over 2 hours to make. So, it's not that I don't LOVE to make the 1" "Tiny Giant" (as I like to call it), it's just that I have to be in a certain mind-set when I want to make them. Usually it's many in one sitting. At any rate, there are several contributors to the infrequency of this bead but, time is the biggest. (Wait until I you see the necklace with these giants... it took awhile but worth every moment...very exciting!).

So, now you know why first, I charge more when the see bead size gets bigger, as on my newest "Limited Edition - Disco Inferno" bead (I used size 10/0 - same as the bead on my Linked bracelet) and second, why you don't see the Giant size with the 15/0 seed bead.

I do hope this was helpful information about the size that you like or want or just deciding which bead works best for you. In a later post I will give you more perspective of the beads while modeled. I know sometimes that it can be difficult to know what the jewelry looks like in relation to the body... so watch for the work being modeled!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Etsy Artist Feature - Little Put Books

There are so many great artists on Etsy - it begs the cliche´ "So many artists... so little time..." I have to say that Ryan of Little Put Books is definitely one of those great artists and so much more. She creates these beautiful little pendants made from scrabble tiles (selling ffrom $11 - $15) - underneath all that beautiful paper and images is a common ordinary scrabble tile - remarkable! She also carries in her store: accordion books ( 3 for $14), journals ($18 - $28), magnet sets (4 for $12), etc... all with lovely paper and an attention to details.

On top of that she had a remarkable blog called "All Things Littleput". It gives much need advice to fellow Etysians that are just starting out or to those that need an added push when they feel like giving up. It is an invaluable source of ideas and inspirations not to be missed.

You can find her pendants in almost any theme or color theme - a truly unique gift at a great price! I am really partial to her "Looking Glass" series. These are photos that Ryan has taken and miniaturized. I love photography and it is impressive that Ryan has developed her photos to be tiny works of art around your neck - fantastic!

So check out Ryan's store - you won't want to miss any of her new work!

Monday, March 17, 2008

TQB Designs on DIY Alert!

Hey I was interviewed for a local blog called DIY Alert! I have to say that I rather enjoyed this interview process. The most interesting and favorite question was about my Color Block Friday's and why I have them. There is something in our minds about Friday. Something giddy;freeing. I like to celebrate the small stuff and I like to celebrate with color!

It's also interesting to see where a person can be inspired. This is the last question (and one the interviewer gives to everyone): Where are some of your creative spots in Portland: My #1 spot is definitely the Re-Build Center on N. Mississippi. If I'm feeling creative block or if I am just having a day when I NEED inspiration this is where I love to go. It works every time. If you haven't been to the Re-Build Center - what are you waiting for!

So, if you feel inclined check out my interview. It talks about how I got started and the total seed bead count on one of my beaded rounds...

Thanks DIY Alert!

Also, if you love crafting and want to know the goings on here in Portland, subscribe to their newsletter - it comes right to your email in box!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Etsy Gods are with me...

Okay I was on the front page twice again today:) Now, don't be annoyed... I can't help it if my fellow Etysian create such stunning Treasuries! Check them out - this first one was created by ZsBCreations from The Netherlands was on just past midnight, so it was almost like yesterday... the second one is from one of my newest favorite Treasury creators GekkoKamen (see her last treasury with me) - thank you both so very much - you are talented!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Color Block Friday - Luck O' the Irish - 2008.03.14

...and I don't even have a smidgen of Irish in me... But, how could I resist but to do Green for the Spring Season selection Color Block! Green is renewing, fresh, and representative of new growth, not to mention St. Patrick.

St. Patrick was credited with driving the snakes from Ireland (an early version of Samuel L. Jackson with "Snakes on a Plane"). St. Patrick's day came from his original Christian Feast Day (also may have also been the date of his death in 1737). When Irish immigrants came to American they started to celebrate this day, first in Boston, and then with the first St. Patrick's Day Parade in New York City in 1766 (The History Channel).

Now that the history lesson is over (okay, I'm a history geek, I admit it), let's get on with the colors. I love green. I also have over 10 selections of green in my bead collection. Crazy I know but, I sometimes have a difficult time thinking up a color collection without adding some green.

With a fantastic selection of green in my Etsy Store - take some time to check out my newest earring design, made with cilantro - "Chained Earrings". These have a great, contemporary feel, especially with the long ear wire to balance out the chain dangle. I also have some new bracelets and necklaces in this mighty shade!

I think the bottom most images here has the best views of all my green shades and here's the list - starting clockwise from the top left: wasabi, vine, mint, granny smith, dill flower, pine, emerald, chartreuse, leaf, cilantro, olive, sage - 12 in all.

So get your green on this Spring!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Esty Artist Feature - Anna Ruby King

Okay, I have to say that I didn't actually find this artist - she found me! Anna (of annrubyking), had put me in some her Treasuries and since then I have loved here work - of course, all things tiny fascinate me! I fell in love with these miniature birds made from fabric. She then places them strategically on a card with a clever theme - this one is "The Seedeaters", and sells them in a set of two for $11.50 (what a great price for all that work)!

Anna says that her work is inspired by all sorts of things especially, scientific drawings, diagrams, maps, illustrations and finally her great love for fabric. I absolutely love the cards she makes with the fabric. Such an original way to "color in" the image - whether it's chickens, horses or just a block background (this one is "Fabric Squares - Japanese Red and Blue" that sells in a set of two cards for $12.00) - it really is outstanding! I can't wait to buy some of her cards!

Her store is also full of the most marvelous and whimsical bird art. She does Original, ACEO and Gocco. Her central theme covers all aspects of birds (some flightless and some looking for nesting materials). This ACEO original has birds taking a shopping trip to look for that perfect wedding gift (this is "The Walking Birds White" one sells for $7.50).

So, take some time to check out her store - you'll never know what you may learn about birds - some may break out in song!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Etsy Front Page - Thank you!

Okay, so I was on the Front Page of Etsy twice today - how do you like that? Well... I like it of course! I really can't believe my good fortune but, I'm not all responsible. Check out the beauuuuutiful Treasury put together by annarubyking. (See my next post featuring her fabulous card and bird prints).

...and secondly, (in this instance I was actually an alternate)... by GekkoKamen a buyer from France... lovely indeed.

Thank you Etysians!

- Pink

Friday, March 7, 2008

Color Block Friday - Crocus & a Walk

I know that in the past I have featured color groups: whites, browns, yellows, etc... but I was thinking... I would like to change things up a little bit. The groupings will still be in the mix, and I will showcase those once a season - look for the Spring Color grouping this month but, this week I am featuring an individual color. It is one of the more interesting colors in my collection. I am focusing on a new color(s) for the season each month - usually the color(s) that gets the most attention. And why not start with Spring!

I plan on working it like this: it could be one or four different colors each Friday - just depends on how busy I am. I will give you my inspiration with each color(s) that way I can share a little about the beautiful Pacific Northwest. The images will be taken from my neighborhood or beyond, but always in the PNW. Frankly, I wouldn't live anywhere else... well... let me give that some thought. But, for now I love where I live.

This last week I took a walk to my very favorite place to get coffee "Albina Press" on N. Albina. It is right off the Mississippi Neighborhood. I love Mississippi - especially "Pistil Nursery" this time of year: they have baby chicks and they are sooooo cute! I just love visiting them... Anyway, this is THE place for coffee in Portland, I think. The baristas are so good that they are sent to National competitions and often win or place! Not only do they have great coffee, but they also take the time to display the work of a local artist on their walls - so great! This is such a lovely place, with large windows in the front to let in tons of light (we crave it here in the PNW), and they have free wi-fi too. So bring your laptop, have a cup-o-joe and relax... it's definitely worth a trip. After my cup-o, on the walk home, I found these beautiful blooming crocus' and just couldn't resist the inspiration, the newness, the fresh flower feel from them - hey it's Spring!

So, as you many have guessed form the hint above, I am featuring "Crocus". I absolutely love this color! Really, to be honest, I've had this color in my repertoire for many years, and have sold it at some of my local retailers but the fact is... I have a hard time with purples. Not because I don't like the color, although, I do think it tends to have some problems getting along with the other colors in the
sandbox. But, because I just haven't wanted to battle that battle.

When incorporating it with other shades it was always so forced and I was never happy with the turnout.
However, with some time away (almost a year) and a little
patience, I think I may have a handle on this purple thing now and will feature my newest color collection "Bryant Park" over the next few days. I feel so accomplished!


Monday, March 3, 2008

TQB Designs - "Tincery, Quincery & Blunt"

The Queen Bead. Although I thought of my company name many years ago (I was 15 to be exact- and quite the giddy high school student then), the name has evolved over the years, as have the processes. I like to think that my intentions were original, but alas, it was not meant to be. So, officially TQB Designs stands for: Tincery, Quincery & Blunt. This is a medley of silly words with absolutely no philosophical or meaningful connection to me and what I do (thought I have say that I am quite blunt sometimes - that fits). Why, you say, did I choose this route for my business? Well, because "The Queen Bead" as well as their derivations: "The Queen Bee", "Queen Bead" "The Queen's Beads", etc... have been used over, and over, - and I feel that I have evolved past just the "bead" part of what I make. I truly love the metal work part of the jewelry making process, and strive for perfection in that as well. To me the metalwork should be as noticed as the beadwork.

In the end, I just want to have fun, with what I do (and keep people guessing at the same time). I often am asked at the shows I do: "What does TQB stand for?" ...well this is it. I know that I will keep evolving as will my work so why not throw in a little crazy? Crazy?... Perhaps so ... but I love what I do, no matter the name.

- Pink