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1  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Stitch And BOTCH / Re: arrgh!!! just a rant on: March 18, 2008 12:23:04 PM
Ok I hear you! I run a website for artists that sell handcrafted items and your story doesn't stop at jewelry.

However take heart. We believe that the world is changing as it does and coming full circle. Many people are returning to the value of owning handcrafted items. The generation of immediate gratification and $$$$ are in for a big surprise.

For those of us who appreciate fine quality items and art know that there is no real comparison to the feeling a body gets by owning something that is handcrafted. There are lots and lots of people out there who seek handcrafted goods and fine art because they know that the time, good energy and pride that go into a handcrafted item "is" what makes the item valuable.

Don't get me wrong, materials count of course but the value of handcraft is in the creation. I have seen brass, copper and silver jewelry sell for just as high a price as a gold piece because of the creative nature of the piece.

Anyway so again take heart there is a huge population that continues to grow of appreciative folks who love handcrafted goods.
2  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Discussion and Questions / Re: I'm stuck in a seed bead rut - please help me get out! on: March 18, 2008 12:16:01 PM
If you are a seed bead lover then you must take a class or get a book and learn how to do some more intricate style beading like peyote stich, brick stich, etc. you will absolutely fall in love with the work.

Seed beads are my favorite I have millions and you can make so many things with them. Right now I play with the concept of reflective light sculpture using seed beads its so challenging yet relaxing.
good luck
3  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Discussion and Questions / Re: A Beginner's Supplies.. on: March 18, 2008 12:13:04 PM
You might be interested in a book called "Beaders Companion" it is a nice little but thick book that is easy to travel and take with you. Mine rides in my backpack.
This excellent little book provides bead identification, size, wire size, material or component identification and also gives instructions on stringing, knotting, working with wire and beading.

Its very affordable and informative. The way it is set up makes it easy to use and is good to take with you when shopping for materials.
4  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Discussion and Questions / Re: A Beginner's Supplies.. on: March 17, 2008 06:51:46 AM
First, there is never any dumb questions. As they say the only dumb question is the one left unasked.
Stringing has become so "complicated" if you are a new beader and looking at supplies. I am an old-school beader who learned on string and thread. Which you can still bead on. They sell it in any bead store.
Most people use it only for seed beading but you can still string with it as long as you know who to tie knots and you don't cut it with crimps. It is a very cheap way to go and works well.
All the really old necklaces used to be strung this way and they last 50-60 plus years. However, with that said softflex works very well for sing strand or double or triple. You can buy it in light,medium or heavy and all you need is a pair of flat nose pliers to crimp a crimp bead with if you do not want to invest in crimping pliers. Its durable and doesn't "kink" like fishline.
Do you have any books on stringing? If not you can go to firemountain gems and a few other websites and they have instructions on how to do the ends for softflex, or just hit me back and I would be more then willing to provide detailed instructions.
5  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Re: Stir-fry!!! Need recipe... on: February 27, 2008 02:42:46 PM
my favorite,
I take sausage, brown it through and through, do not drain any drippings leave them in the pan and add 1 cup water
once the water starts to simmer I add
green and red cabbage
green pepper sliced thin
red/yellow/orange or all three if I'm cooking for a crowd sliced thin
1 carrot sliced thin
2 small zucchini sliced thin
2 small yellow squash sliced thin
1 head broccoli broke up into little pieces
asparagus if in season chopped
Elephant Garlic or plain garlic peeled (if using regular don't cut the cloves and use a lot)

I put all the veggies on top and then put a lid on the pan. Simmer for only 4 -5 minutes, mix,  Veggies should be slightly crunchy I then add garlic powder salt and pepper sometimes a Cajun spice Its wonderful
Lots of veggies and the energy OMG its great!

You can add a sauce if your family likes it. Our favorite is a light peanut sauce when I do that I add slivered almonds.
6  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Re: Give me your crockpot / slow cooker recipes...Please on: February 27, 2008 02:33:09 PM
Just made this yesterday it was yummy!
Onion Lovers Delight!

4 chicken breasts, leave whole or cut into pieces
2 package of pearl onions -frozen or fresh (I used fresh)
1 large yellow onion cut fine
1/2 green pepper chopped
1/2 to 1 whole red pepper chopped
3 very large carrots cut into rounds 1/2 inch thick
1 whole garlic peeled and chopped
Chicken broth 1 large carton
1 can cream of mushroom soup,celery or chicken will work to

Chop all the veggies the night before and store in fridge.
The next morning lay chicken pieces in the bottom of crock pot
add all the veggies and garlic on top
mix the chicken broth and mushroom soup really well and pour into the crock
Add salt, pepper, and any other spices you like
slow cook for 8 hours.
This is great for anyone who loves onions like us its creamy and the pearl onions make it real yummy

For variation
Add
fresh peas
fresh peppers (chili)
fresh mushrooms
you name it!

7  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Discussion and Questions / Re: Soap Ingredients on: February 27, 2008 02:15:03 PM
I use products from my own sources all the time. In fact when it comes to a lot of the oils I prefer my brands.
Oats, dried herbs the whole deal.
8  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Discussion and Questions / Re: How do I make real jewelry? on: February 19, 2008 06:39:54 AM
There are several ways to make jewelry it depends how serious you want to get.

do you want to go into silver smithing? This is learning how to make jewelry pieces out of silver.
Do you want to go into Lapidary? This is learning how to make your own cabochons out of stone, shell, glass etc.
Do you want to learn how to bead? This is making jewelry out of beaded components that you purchase from all sorts of different places.

Out of those three beading is probably the least expensive to get set up for and you can take a class that will allow you to learn simple bead stringing in an afternoon.

Almost every area of the United States has bead stores or you can order anything that you may need on line even How-To-Books.

So really the first thing you need to decide is what type of jewelry making do you want to get into. Let me know!
V
9  REUSING/RECYCLING/RECRAFTING / What the heck can I do with THIS? / Re: Coffee Tins, Glass Jars, Plastic Containers on: December 05, 2007 06:38:50 AM
Great Idea!
why can't you use colored rope?
V
10  REUSING/RECYCLING/RECRAFTING / What the heck can I do with THIS? / Re: Coffee Tins, Glass Jars, Plastic Containers on: November 30, 2007 12:15:06 PM
All great idea's for cans off subject or not. I think Crafty people are the best recyclers in the world!
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