I am not the best about keeping records about my stock, so when I’m making something to sell, I sometimes have to spend some time hunting down what components are, try to estimate what I spent on it so I can figure that into the price. I can usually tell you the story of where I bought most of them.
For instance, the antique English cut pink milk glass beads on today’s rosary-style necklace? Got those at the Alameda Antiques Fair (Have you been? You really should. Here’s a sample of what you’ll find. The next one is tomorrow.) at the end of a long Sunday. I loved them but the guy wouldn’t haggle down enough and I couldn’t afford what he was charging, so I walked away. He literally chased me down five minutes later and here I am, the proud owner of a dwindling strand of these really fabulous milk glass beads. If you don’t know English cut, it’s like faceted but it’s all imperfect and kind of nubby since they’re so old and a bit rubbed down, making them soft around the edges.
For Day 4 of the Necklace a Day Challenge, I wanted to make something pastel and gunmetal because that is my favorite color combo — the grey frames the beads so they pop more. I was set on the pink and peach, and was looking for a pendant when I found this old teardrop the color of the inside of a lime. I knew where I’d bought it (the giant bead show they hold every fall in Oakland, another event you should check out) and that it was a gemstone but had to spend a little while hunting more info down for my etsy description. Here is what I learned:
Serpentine is also called New Jade even though it is not a jade. It’s found pretty much everywhere and is also used in brake lining and fireproof fabrics. If you’re a Scorpio or Gemini, or down with Saturn, this is the rock for you. It’s a protective gemstone associated with the heart and activates the kundalini while protecting you against snakes (!), diabetes, PMS, and anxiety.
I don’t know how much, if any, of that is true, but you cannot go wrong wearing a calming anti-snake talisman that you can use to fix your car in a pinch.
Plus it’s a really pretty piece for spring to go with all those soft antique-y neutrals you’re wearing.
Special shout-out to Julie’s Coffee & Tea Garden, where I made the Day 4 necklace. Julie’s is the best place in the world to sit around with your #1 americano and pile of beads being super productive with no distractions at all in a gorgeous, cozy setting.
Use coupon code FEBRUARY12 for 15% off anything in my shop through the month.
I’m making a necklace a day through February. See all my daily necklaces here. Then stop by to visit per:cent blog, who’s doing it, too.
3 lb. fava beans
3 lb. potatoes
2 red pepper
5 lb. tomatoes
2 lb. zucchini
3 baskets strawberries
1 bunch thai basil
There’s a house on the corner with a little white picket fence and the sweetest garden that I’ve been admiring since we moved here. I recently properly met the owner at a meet-up a mutual friend puts together — very random!
I sometimes peek through the knots in her fence — forgive me, her garden is so lovely and I am so curious! — and admired her magical little back yard — I’m envious of her green adirondacks that blend in like camouflage.
Her next-door neighbor has a spectacular tea tree, which is something I tried to grow a few years back but managed to kill within a few weeks. Maybe it’s time to try again.
I’ve been gathering a few more flower tutorials:
Zucchini and Me: Knitted flowers for dummies
CRAFT: Easy Ribbon Rosettes
Sumo’s Sweet Stuff: Zipper flowers
Mary Janes & Galoshes: Roses or Peonys and Petals
100 Layer Cake: DIY fabric flowers by Michonne
lilyella: Fabric Rosettes
BONUS — not a flower how-to but it includes flowers and is super cute and springish:
Joli Paquet: A Lark’s Tale Cuff
It’s unofficial flower week. Post yours, leave a link in the comments, and pass it on.
I realize my neighbor’s Japanese maple is not a flower, but it is quite spring-like so I say it counts.
Abby declared it unofficial flower week. Post yours, leave a link in the comments, and pass it on.
i went to the beach and it was FANTASTIC. the tide was super high, i sat on the little landing strip of beach [seriously, it’s about 5′ wide right now, edged with all the flotsam from last week’s storm] and it was warm enough to remove my jacket.
i sipped my iced coffee, read the weekly, wrote a journal entry for the first time in ages and ages [i have been more diligent about the hardcopy daily 5s]. thought about where i can cajole chad into going tomorrow [forecast temperatures]:
santa cruz 
bodega bay 
gold country 
maybe point lobos or even big sur if we could get up early 
so santa cruz or jamestown.
i forgot my camera so i will share one of my old photos of Crab Cove that is similar to today’s vista:
Busy bee, lots and not much going on.
Tomorrow night is The Wizard of Oz at the local theater. Too bad the glittered shoes I made for Halloween fell apart, but I’ll probably throw on the gingham if it’s not too cold.
Which it might be, it’s been unseemly cold here lately — low 40s every night, my friend in San Jose had HAIL yesterday morning. Which is kind of getting me down, I am dying to wear my skirts and flip-flops and break out of all the constricting layers of sweaters and just let my skin BREATHE.
Also tomorrow is my return to painting after spring break, especially exciting after seeing Geninne’s The Process. How gorgeous is that? I’m going to water my acrylics way down tomorrow. I’m still working on the succulent flower, though if I was starting the project right now, I might work from my photo of some freesias I got at the farmer’s market last week, I really like how the bokeh here already looks painted.
Another one from Sunday:
There is a big patch of these along the shoreline walk, I spotted them and was transported back to the vacant lots of my childhood. I have no idea what they’re called, some of them have purple, pink, white, yellow flowers all on one stalk.
Today was just work, work, work. I worked before I went to work, and then I came home from work and did a little more work. We did go on a walk before Lost came on, down to the beach in the balmy dark. I cannot believe a few days ago it was mid-December cold and pouring like you would not believe. I am sure we are not done with the rain but I hope we are moving on into the warmer part of the year finally.
I am looking forward to painting tomorrow, I liked my butterfly [Project no. 1!] a great deal more at the end of class Monday than I did at the beginning [red is magical!] and will hopefully be feeling at least that much better about it by the end of Wednesday’s class. I still can’t draw my way out of a paper bag but I might end up not being the worst blending texturizer in the world and that’s more than I expected I’d accomplish.
I’m going to try to remember to photographically document tomorrow for A Day in the Life, as N. suggested a week or two back. Anyone else want to do this?
Is it spring there yet? It finally warmed up a teeny bit Sunday, just in time for the time change. We bundled up, dug out the Beach Blanket, and went to the beach here in Alameda. It’s rained so much this winter that there’s a big grassy area on the sand — that’ll dry out in no time, but it’s very nice for now.
There were quite a few people flying kites.
Chad practiced his Mandarin and I raced through Mary Karr’s new memoir, Lit (her first, The Liar’s Club, is one of my favorites) until it got so cold we couldn’t stand it anymore.
Then we walked down along the shore and back on the public path, admiring all the fresh wildflowers.
Today was even nicer so I took an afternoon break and walked over and lay in the sand reading. Hopefully the weather will hold out til my next self-employed day, which is Wednesday.
I bought myself a bunch of ranunculus the other day at the farmer’s market. They’re in the dining room so I see them about 80 times a day as I walk back and forth through the house, which makes me very happy.