Tuesday, March 31, 2009

France, Anyone?

I am so super excited tonight. Kate McKinnon has booked another session in the South of France for late summer of 2010, bookended by a week in Paris at the beginning and a week in Barcelona at the end.

You can check out the details here:

Wow, doesn't that sound like a dream of a trip? I think so. I plunked my money down for the deposit right away, it only took me maybe half an hour of "oh man, my poor credit card!" chatter in my head before I was able to override that voice, take Kate's advise that it's only money and life is meant to be lived, and hit that "pay now" button. It felt really good to do it and now I am counting down. Only 72 weeks to go.

I tried out the pool in my apartment building for the first time tonight. I've been living here for four months now and just haven't seemed to had the time to check it out before. Plus I've been working on getting my back strengthened up, going for physio, and didn't want to monkey with that. But the back is stronger, I've started doing a little walking now that the weather is headed towards spring and figured it was time to check out the pool.

I've been noticing that evenings after work, nobody else seems to use the pool. Tonight was no exception, I had the place all to myself, the water was warm and it was lovely. From the north facing window, you can watch planes as they head east, having just taken off from the airport and today, I imagined those planes heading off to Europe. It's a great flight, because you leave around dinner time, fly through the darkness and hopefully get some sleep (but not really because you're way too excited), land first thing in the morning and hit the streets of Paris or London or St. Petersburg or whereever you've landed and head off exploring. Tonight, I was watching those planes and thinking, "Next August, I'll be on one of those planes!"

Care to join us? There's an idyllic stream right behind La Cascade we can dip our toes into...

Monday, March 30, 2009

The Mystery of the Missing Beads

I came home from work tonight, intending to immediately get busy making a bracelet for a colleague at work. She had been looking at my "Spring Blooms" Inspiration on the Beadfx website last week and noticed a bracelet designed by Dwyn Tomlinson that she really liked, so she asked if I would make it for her. She printed out the components list for me and I bought all the beads last Thursday night when I was at the store. Sadly, it wasn't until Friday morning that I realized the list of components was printed on both sides of the piece of paper she had given me and I had overlooked buying the items on the reverse side of the page - d'oh! (Listen up kids, saving the environment can be dangerous!)

That meant the making of the bracelet was delayed until my next visit to Beadfx, which really wasn't too long to wait, since I was back there on Saturday afternoon for the lampwork gathering. I spent most of yesterday finishing up my Inspiration piece for next week's newsletter so I was all gung ho to get going on the bracelet tonight until...I got the first inch of the bracelet strung, only to realize that one little package with 3 crucial beads is missing. The 8 mm Swarovski crystal faceted donuts, to be exact. The colour? Mocca.

I know I bought them, they are on the receipt from Thursday night. It is possible that they might be sitting on Anna's desk because I took the beads in to show her on Friday so she could pick out a clasp, since the one on the list is out of stock, and she wasn't in the office today to notice if maybe they are somehow tucked under her keyboard or hiding under a piece of paper on her desk. I shall investigate that possibility first thing tomorrow.

If not, that means they are somewhere here in my apartment, just somehow separated from the rest of the beads I bought last Thursday. Did I drop them? I don't think so, I've looked under the table at least three times now. Did a cat pick up the bag and sneak off with it? Entirely possible. Did I accidentally mix them in with some other beads? Maybe, but I kind of doubt that. Or maybe they got left behind on the counter at the store? Also possible. Could they simply be jumbled with a bunch of other beads that are currently located in a rather helter skelter fashion on my work space? This is the most likely scenario but the first few attempts to locate same within this hodgepodge have not been successful.
Where, oh where can they be?

I'm off to search again. It's really bugging me that they are missing, that I can't finish the bracelet. I don't feel right starting something else until I find them. If they are really gone, I will buy more when I go back to the store this week so it's not the end of the world but still, it's a mystery. (Nancy Drew, where are you?) But in the meantime, I feel compelled to keep looking. And maybe tidy up the bead stash at the same time, so nothing else inadvertently disappears!!

Stay tuned...and yes, I shall be offering a reward!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

A Lampworkers Gathering

Yesterday, Beadfx hosted a gathering of lampworkers. People, including my sister Janine and me, started arriving around 4:30 p.m., although I must admit I spent some time shopping before joining the people gathering in the studio. The Dixon Chick was teaching one of her wire crochet classes at the store, which finished up at 5, and then she joined us as well, ready to hang out and begin celebrating her birthday (which is today, Happy Birthday Stephanie!!!).

Dwyn demonstrated a new machine that Nortel has available, used for adding metal liners to lampwork beads. Here's a picture of her and Peter discussing the machine (okay, I admit it, I wasn't paying enough attention to remember the name of the thing!):

Here's a photo of Erin (AirWynn Glass Designs), Stephanie (The Dixon Chick) and myself (Cynful Creations), taken by my sister Janine:

It was a fun outing, with pizza, cookies, lots of conversation and exchanging of ideas about glass and beads. Many thanks to Beadfx for hosting the event. I look forward to attending the next one!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Beading in the Dark

I have just finished participating in Earth Hour 2009, joining millions of people around the world turning off their lights for one hour, between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m., to raise awareness of global warming.

I must admit, I hadn't really planned ahead or thought through what I would do with myself during this hour of being home alone, sitting in the dark with the soft lighting provided by my one flashlight and the one candle I could find at 8:25 p.m. It was a little too dark to actually bead, although I probably could have done some wire crochet if I'd gotten everything gathered together in advance.

In the end, I spent the time drafting this blog on paper, then laid in bed and read for the rest of the time.

I was disappointed to look out the window and not be able to note any difference in my normal evening view. Both the plaza and the apartment building across the street from my building appeared to be operating as usual, with most of the apartments well lit. That's a shame. Too bad someone at the local power station couldn't just flick a switch for an hour and turn everyone's hydro off...

Like the insulators the other day, it was only as I was taking a picture of the candle in the mason jar (where I'd tucked it to keep it safe for the cats, as I don't like having burning candles near them since the time Max swished his tail through the flame of one as he walked past it on the coffee table. He didn't seem to notice but I could smell burning hair!), that I realized it was imprinted with the words "Canadian Jewel, Made in Canada". Wonder if it was made by the same glass company that made the insulators???

I did take this cool photo of Max by flashlight, as he was sitting on the dining room table in the midst of my bead stash.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Glass Discs (continued)

What I started to talk about in yesterday's blog, before I got distracted by insulators for communication wires (which is apparently a huge topic, there are websites and chat rooms and magazines and trade shows) is that I tried making glass discs myself after seeing these ones on the cover of the November/December 2007 issue of Step by Step Beads, which I picked up from one of the vendors at the Toronto Bead Society meeting this past month.

(Notice that one of the discs in the photo above looks like the turquoise hydro insulator in France, see how I made the connection??)

The basic idea is that you make some twisted stringers and then layer colours and types of glass together to make discs, using the twisties to give a playful edge to some of the more colourful ones. The magazine very kindly posted the artist's how-to instructions on their website for people like me to download, which was most helpful.
I didn't do too badly, for the first time out, but I definitely need more practice. As you can see from the photo, some of them are more triangular shaped than round and I melted in the twistie too much on a couple. Mine are not quite as consistently layered or disc shaped as the magazine photo but look a little lumpier and amateurish. In general, they are not as nice as the ones made for the magazine by Kerry Bogert, but unlike me, she's probably done it more than once, so I'm not worried. I definitely had fun making them and can't wait to try again!!

As with so many other things in life, practice is a big part of getting the desired result when it comes to lampwork.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Glass Discs

I had an hankering to make glass discs about a week ago. Actually, the idea started forming in my mind last summer in Durfort, France, when I first noticed the really cool hydro insulators they have there. The fact that they are circular, turquoise and shaped like discs was quite a novelty to me, given that the ones we have here at home are quite different, more like mushrooms in shape and they tend to sit on the top of hydro poles, as opposed to the ones in the south of France, which seemed to have wires going through them horizontally, as well as sitting on the top of the hydro pole.

As I am typing this, I am realizing that I really don't know why glass insulators are even required on hydro poles, so I decided to check in with my good friend, Google, to see what I could find on the topic.

I only got as far as this great article about the Dominion glass company that made the insulator pictured to the right. Apparently, insulators in colours such as purple, blue and amber are more valuable in the antique collectible market, but the company actually stopped making them because their customers complained that insects were using them for nesting places - who knew???!!

According to this article, which you can find here: http://www.insulators.info/articles/dominion.htm, it seems that my insulator was made in 1942, although there are also five dots above the diamond trademark which could also indicate years - unfortunately, I can't really understand from this article whether that means I'm supposed to add 5 years to 1942 but I can see that it was made using mold number 8.

I must now interrupt the writing of this post to go unpack the rest of my insulator collection (which is not vast, I only have 4). Excuse me a moment...

Okay, it turns out, my second Dominion insulator is slightly more amber in colour than the first, although it's more like a really heavily watered down ginger ale colour than a true amber. It also has the number 42 on it, but there are no dots above the diamond D trademark and it indicates the use of mold number 4. It also has the drip bumps on the bottom, while the first one is totally smooth.

The other two insulators are quite different in shape. One is a clear white colour, with the initials CSC and "Made in U.S.A." stamped on it, as well as the name Whitall Tatum, the numbers 4 - 46 and the letter A in a circle stamped on it, and the other a pale green, stamped with the words "Canadian Pacific R Y Co". The clear one even has a piece of metal tubing of some sort sitting inside it.
Clearly, more investigation on this topic is required. I'll have to continue tomorrow with the original point of my blog topic, the glass discs I made a week or so ago, which look nothing like the ones from France, as it happens!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Coloured Wire

Don't know if you know this but Artistic Wire comes in all different colours these days. I'm not sure if this is a new thing or if it has always been available in a variety of hues, maybe we Canadians just didn't have access to the full range before now? Or maybe our local bead stores weren't carrying it as much in the past? For whatever reason, it's here now and the choices are many.

Here's an example of wire crochet using the rose pink wire, very light and pretty for spring:

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Speaking of Buttons...

I bought some lovely vintage buttons at the Bead Oasis Show on Sunday from the ladies at Black Tulips Designs. They have the coolest vintage beads, I always check out their table when I see them at bead shows and I always end up buying something from their selection.

These little white flower buttons are especially sweet, I couldn't resist them.

Monday, March 23, 2009

The Bead and Button Show 2009

I have decided to attend the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee in June. It's a bit of a splurge financially but I think it will be well worth it. According to their website, it's the largest consumer bead show in the world. There are hundreds of classes and workshops to choose from over the eight day schedule and talented artists from all over will be there to share their skills and knowledge. I'm excited to go and check it out for myself and even more excited to know that the same wonderful women who shared my Puerto Vallarta workshop in January will be there with me! Our days will be filled with learning, shopping, socializing, and lots and lots of fun - we are going to have a blast. I can hardly wait!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Bead Oasis Spring 2009

This weekend was the Spring Bead Oasis Show, held in downtown Toronto. I didn't sign up for any classes this time around but I did volunteer to work at the Toronto Bead Society table, did a two hour shift this afternoon which gave me an excuse to check out the show and (even better) the opportunity to get free admission. Ah, the rewards of volunteering are many!

Met some lovely new people (hi Nancy, if you're reading this), saw some old friends, bought some delightful beads although I did do a reasonable job of restraining myself. Sort of. (I tried, I really did.)

It was a bit bizarre getting to the show today though. It was awfully busy downtown as there was a lot going on this afternoon - Raptors basketball, lots of kids and parents who were apparently headed to Disney on Ice at the Skydome, Canada Blooms (the flower show) and - the part that really confused me - lots of teenagers and people in their early 20's dressed in costume. Luckily, as soon as I saw Stephanie, she explained there was also an Anime convention going on, so that explained the young woman I saw dressed up in a black short skirted outfit with lacy petticoats underneath, carrying the Hello Kitty doll. (It was still a bit disturbing but at least I know there was a reason for it, hopefully she doesn't dress like that every day.)
But the most bizarre thing was the weird guy with the pacifier in his mouth that snatched my debris-covered tray right off my table at the hamburger place because he wanted to eat my leftover fries - wow! Also disturbing but at least I was finished my meal and hopefully the food did him some good.

Here's a picture of me and Stephanie having fun at the show:

and a picture I took of the Royal Bank Plaza - the cloud reflection is totally cool!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Back to the Drawing Board

I'm taking apart a necklace today. It's one of the first ones I ever made out of wire crochet and I really liked the combination of colours (turquoise, black and white) but I was never really happy with the finished product. The strand with the largest size of beads was shorter than the other strands (it was before I figured out how to balance the number of large beads against the smaller ones when doing wire crochet), so it always looked a little lopsided on the one side where the bigger beads ran out, plus I used a type of silver wire that is heavier and not as shiny for some of the strands which gave the finished product a really cheap look. So I decided that I would just get busy with the wire cutters, take it apart and remake it properly. I think sometimes you just have to do that, otherwise it will always nag at you that your finished piece just isn't as nice as it could be. I never felt completely comfortable with this piece and rarely wore it, but often wished I felt better about it so I could wear it. Today is the day to fix all that.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Hello Spring!

Thank goodness, it has finally officially arrived. Of course, given that we are back to single digits, barely above zero temperatures as of last night, we're going to have to fake it until we make it for a little while longer.
I saw my first robin the other day, which is a sure sign that things are progressing as we would wish. The big question is, will we get one more snowstorm in the next few weeks? No one knows for sure but I've heard people aren't putting away their shovels just yet.

By the way, have you noticed how Google has a different picture/letter combination on special days? Today, it looks like this:

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Exotic Glass

I just got home from lampwork class, which was good as usual. Tonight we worked with exotic glasses (the kind you melt for beads, as opposed to the kind you wear that have really thick frames, a fake rubber nose and a Groucho Marx mustache). More instruction than usual as Dwyn showed us what happens with various types of glasses when you reduce the flame, which means turn down the oxygen and just heat the in the natural gas. We learned about striking the bead and neutral flames and heavy reductions, all sorts of new terminology which will probably drift out my brain by morning, good thing there were handouts and I took notes!

This type of glass has more silver in it so it reacts with the heat and the gases to make really cool colours in quite unexpected ways. I'll post photos once I get the beads back (and no, my beads won't look anything like the one below but this is to what I aspire). They're baking in the kiln in the store right now and by morning, the automated thermostat will have cooled down the kiln to room temperature and the Bead Fairy at Beadfx will take out all the beads in the morning and take them off the mandrells for us, which is really nice to have someone else do for you.

I snagged this photo from the website for Double Helix, who is one of the manufacturers who make this special glass and who was kind enough to donate free samples for our class:

Isn't it beautiful? Kind of looks like the earth from space, only with more green tones. Believe it or not, it's a bead. Wow.

Here's their website: http://www.doublehelixglassworks.com

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Students Can Be Teachers

I was at Beadfx last Saturday while Stephanie Dixon was teaching one of her wire crochet courses and popped in to say hello to her and her students. I met a lovely lady by the name of Hyacinthe Miller, who was wearing a fabulous necklace which looked like a fringe of bead dangles. It's amazing to me how you can meet someone in a class who is obviously incredibly talented in their own right but they still want to learn something new. Maybe she is a Sagittarius like me, apparently we have a thirst for knowledge and personal betterment that is not matched by any other sign in the Zodiac.
Hyacinthe's necklace is quite lovely, made from a combination of beads on head pins and sew on embellishmens. The design really gets my brain firing with ideas of ways to vary the style she has created. I can't wait to get started!
In the meantime, here's a look at Hyacinthe's necklace:

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Luck of the Irish

Happy St. Patrick's Day, everyone!

While Kermit the Frog has been known to lament, "It's not easy being green," that is not the case today. On March 17th each year, many of us, Irish or not, are wearing green and wishing each other "Top of the morning". My mother likes to call herself Marg O'Fawcett to celebrate this annual recognition of all things Irish (the other 364 days of the year, she's known as Margot).

If you're looking for more information about this "holiday", check out this website: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/03/090316-st-patricks-day-facts.html

May good luck be with you wherever you go, and your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow.

Monday, March 16, 2009

March Madness

For some, this phrase means NCAA basketball playoffs. It is also associated with the Mad March Hare who took tea with Alice in Lewis Carroll's classic Alice in Wonderland. For parents of school age children, it could also represent the craziness that ensues when your kids on are March Break, usually preceded by one of your offspring saying for the 100th time, "I'm bored, there's nothing to do" in a somewhat annoying and whiny tone of voice.

For those of us in the beading community, it means something much better - the annual sale at Beadfx!!! Not only is almost everything 20 percent off, if you are a Toronto Bead Society member, you also get a 15% discount on top of the 20th discount. This, my friends, is called double dipping (not to be confused with getting an extra layer of chocolate on your ice cream cone at DQ but equally good in the general scheme of things.)

You can shop online (in your pyjamas, late at night, without leaving the comfort of your own home) or you can head in to the store to personally touch the objects on display, weigh them in your hand, hold them up to the light to see the gleam, compare and contrast colours, before carrying them to the cash register for purchase.

But don't delay - the sale is only on this week and then it's gone again until next year...

Sunday, March 15, 2009

A Variety of Vessels

This week in lampwork class, we made vessels out of the glass. I made a little blue one out of a pretty CIM glass called Laguna Bay, and a little brown jug with a tiger twistie to give it a bit of colour. They are quite small, the blue one is only about one inch in height and the brown one is maybe 1 1/2 inches high.

This time around, the vessels turned out quite different than the last time I made one, in June of last year, for which I used a bit of frit for decoration:

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Ever Wanted To Record An Album?

If you've ever wondered what it might be like to be a musical recording artist, you might want to try this exercise I came across on Facebook:

1 - Go to “wikipedia.” Hit “Random Article”or click http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random. The first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.

2 - Go to “Random quotations”or click http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3. The last four or five words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.

3 - Go to flickr and click on “explore the last seven days”or click http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days. The third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.

4 - Use Photoshop/MS Paint or similar to put it all together.

I don't have Photoshop so I can't put my album cover together, but I can tell you the results:

My band would be called Silas Reed (named after an American journalist/poet/communist activist named John Silas Reed, 1887-1920), the name of the album would be "Laughter Is The Best Weapon", from a Mark Twain quote: "The human race has one really effective weapon, and that is laughter" and the album art would look like this:

(many thanks to the artist who took this photo, Naranjetin, who hopefully won't mind my posting his or her picture here - it's quite lovely.)

Friday, March 13, 2009

Bags of Beads Reveal

This past Wednesday night, the Toronto Bead Society members revealed the items they had made with this year's Bag of Beads Challenge. All I can say is, what a fantastically talented bunch of women we are!! Words are not sufficient to describe how fabulous these works of art really are, so here are photos of a few of my favourites. As you can see, they are absolutely incredible and represent hours of work for all involved. Kudos to all who participated. To those who didn't, don't be shy, come play with us!

P.S. The captions you see if you hold your cursor at the bottom of the picture frame are my names for or comments about the pieces, not those of the artists who made them.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Beadfx Inspiration #2

Yesterday, The Dixon Chick and I had the results of our second "inspiration challenge" published in the Beadfx newsletter and posted on their website (http://www.beadfx.com/). Yes, we are legends in our own minds, no doubt about it.

This time around, our colours were mint green and gold. Stephanie told me that when she first looked at the beads, she immediately thought of St. Patrick's Day. No surprise then that she called her project "Eire". You can see it here: http://www.beadfx.com/inspirations/inspirations.php?id=224
For me, the colours made me think of spring - that new bright green of the foliage when the leaves first appear out of the ground or on the tree branches, before the flower buds appear, before they've "weathered" a little bit or been burnished by the sun's warmth. When the leaf is still new and fresh. I called my necklace "Spring Blooms".

I must admit, these beads were a little challenging to work with, as the shapes were unusual (ovaltines and squarelets) and the holes were small, so I couldn't simply slip them on a jump ring and attach them to something, which I would have liked since they dangle well. (Although apparently Stephanie did exactly that - how? how?) Instead, I decided to crochet part of it, inspired by Stephanie's talents in that area, but added sections of strung beads as well. I crafted the pendant out of 22 gauge wire, the same wire I used for the crocheting. The glass flowers were in keeping with the spring theme.

You can check out the details of my design, component list, etc. here: http://www.beadfx.com/inspirations/inspirations.php?id=221

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Bag of Beads Reveal

Tonight is the night the Toronto Bead Society members reveal what they have made with the Bag of Beads (a.k.a. "BOB") stash they received at the January meeting (wow, that two months just zoomed by, didn't it?)

As you may recall from my posting on January 15th, we all got the same collection of beads to work with and can create whatever we might choose. In early February, I took a class with Rachel Nelson-Smith, which inspired me to use the BOB beads to make a fringed bracelet.

Part of the challenge involves working with a few unusual pieces. In this case, we had freshwater pearl beads identified as "mussel shaped" that have holes in them but are unusual shapes. I wrapped them in copper wire to add a little extra something. We also had to use rattail, which is a soft cord, which I knotted into a pleasing shape and then embellished with beads.

Here is my finished result, which I call "California Caramel" in Rachel's honour, as she hails from there.

On Friday, I'll post pictures of the creations of some of my fellow TBS members. Be prepared to be amazed.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Happy 50th Birthday Barbie

Okay, apparently one of my loyal readers was dismayed that I didn't blog about Barbie's birthday yesterday, so Sharon, this one is for you.

It did cross my mind to mark this special occasion, and apparently there is a Barbie bead connection, in the form of Barbie's Bead Bonanza, so I wouldn't be too remiss if I mentioned it here. But according to this photo, she doesn't really want anyone to know she's that old. Can't blame her, I don't want anyone to know I will someday be that age either!!

I've been looking at images on Google, trying to find a photo of the Barbie Dream House I had when I was a kid. You'd think, out of the 792,000 photos they have on this topic (can you imagine??), that one of them would look like the one I had back then but of the 300 or so I've looked at so far, none of them do!! I suppose it's possible that the plastic and cardboard domiciles didn't survive the 70's but I find that hard to believe, as there appear to be several versions of the 1962 version available. The one I had folded up into a square box-like shape with a handle on top for easy travelling, it folded open into three sections that were the rooms. It was, of course, pink in colour.

Apparently there are lots of people with pictures of their own versions of Barbie's dream house, which I find slightly alarming. However, it seems nowadays Barbie herself is living in a 3 storey house, so she has moved up in the world from the one storey bungalow she had when I was young. Guess she did okay in the divorce from Ken. You go, girl!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Bead Embroidery

2009 is definitely the year of seed beads so far. Yesterday, I took another step into the seed bead zone by taking a class on bead embroidery taught by Heather Taylor at Bead Junction. The piece we made can either be a brooch or a pendant, depending on how you finish it. Since mine isn't quite finished yet, I've included a picture of Heather's pendant instead, to show what the final creation will look like (ladybug is optional). I've also included a picture of Colleen's (below left) and Helen's (below right) versions of the piece, to show some of the possible variations - Colleen used pearl hearts as compared to the ecru coloured glass beads that Heather used and Helen picked a totally different colour scheme and bead combination and was well on her way to a totally different but equally beautiful creation.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Creating with Buttons

The day we went to the junk shop in Puerto Vallarta and found the buttons, I was especially thrilled because all week, I had been wishing I had a different collection of beads with me, a more colourful selection with which to mimic the vast array of bold colours we had been exposed to in the furnishings and decorations and plants of the Hacienda Mosaico and the city of PV. Ever since we'd arrived in Mexico, I had been amazed at how colourful everything was, the stores, the food, even the people.
As Heather said, she hadn't realized how beige her surroundings were at home until she saw how Sam had decorated the Hacienda. I definitely had to agree with her, although I'm sure part of it was just the doldrums we were feeling by being only halfway through a grey and cold winter season up north.

So when I found myself this stash of buttons, I immediately got to work making a necklace and a pair of earrings that I could wear to feel more a part of the colourful energy all around us.

(The focal bead for the necklace was a gift from Colleen, who had picked it up for me on a trip to Turkey this past November and which went perfectly with the buttons. Thanks again, Colleen!)

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Treasure Hunting in Mexico

It occurs to me that I have neglected to tell you about our trip to the junk store during my visit to Puerto Vallarta back in January. It was only a few blocks away from the Hacienda Mosaico, an easy stroll on a warm, sunny day when we wanted a bit of a break from jewellery making.

From the outside, it looked like someone's garage, as if they had just opened the doors to let people see what was inside. We explored the various aisles, exclaiming over the treasures and just plain old junk, and marvelled at the quantity of miscellaneous stuff piled high to the rafters, all of it covered with a layer of dust.

There were a lot of larger pieces that I had to ignore, especially a few pieces of furniture and a very cool pair of suits of armour, as there was no way I'd ever get them home to Canada but Kate ended up buying a fabulous metal dragon that she then managed to fit into one of her suitcases by packing the dragon first and then fitting all her other bits and pieces around it. Me, I could barely lift the thing but it certainly was magnificent and worth the trouble to get it home.

I ended up buying several packages of buttons after rooting through a couple of boxes full of a multitude of them that Heather found on one of the shelves. I think we all ended up buying a few different packages, but I believe I bought the most.

Tomorrow, I'll show you what I did with some of them. :)