In the Studio

This weekend has been spent in the studio making jewelry to sell next week at Adorn Me, the mixed-media jewelry retreat in Houston, Texas. I finished new samples for my classes.  Proposals for workshops are usually due a year in advance, so try to go in right before I teach and freshen up my work a bit. Since I bought some really wonderful new beads, charms and fibers to work with at the To Bead True Blue show in Tucson, I was itching to get into my studio and play.


I really adore Green Girl Studios and all their whimsical charms. My dear friend, Carol LaValley, was shopping with me and fell in love with a flying pig charm. I spotted these new chubby little potato fairy charms with sweet wings resting above a little rump and just had to have them. I kept the necklace design simple here by focusing on the Cold Enameled Heart bezel, where I used our brand new Iced Enamels in ivory and filled it with ICE Resin, of course, and then made a charm dangle using the fairy. A tiny bit of this gorgeous pink velvet ribbon from Thailand that I discovered at a friend’s booth in Tucson adds the final pop of color. This little wee baby will be up for sale at the Adorn Me expo.

For all you Texans out there, my Bangle Angle class is nearly full, but there are still spots open in my other classes. If you are around next weekend and want to make some jewelry with me, I’d love to see you there!

Here’s wishing you a truly Artful week.

2013 classes so far

Cold-Enameled Heart Necklace class. Learn all new enameling techniques for adding color to metal and also advanced resin techniques as well.

Cold-Enameled Heart Necklace class. Learn all new enameling techniques for adding color to metal and also advanced resin techniques as well.

I’m still working on building my new website. My goal is for it to be up and running by Jan. 10. which is the in-store date for Making Metal Jewelry. The site will have a gallery of my work, my class schedule, an option to purchase signed copies of my books, etc. Since I’ve been getting questions on my Facebook wall about next year’s teaching schedule, I thought I better put it on the blog now.

Susan and myself and many of the ICE Resin team will be at the Craft and Hobby Association trade show in Anaheim Jan. 11-15. Susan and Kristen are teaching sold-out workshops during the show and I’ll be in the background helping them TA since the classes are maxed out at 50 people. This trade show is open only to members of the crafts industry and is one of the big shows we do each year to introduce our new products. We have some amazing new things coming out next year and are thrilled for this show to get here.

Then, a mere two weeks after CHA, we’re heading to the Tucson gem show — To Bead True Blue — where the team is teaching lots of interesting workshops. If you love making jewelry and you’ve never managed to get to Tucson in February, I suggest you put it on your bucket list right now and find a way to make it happen. Anything and everything with gems, minerals, beads and unique objects is found and focused on at these shows. I’ll be teaching five classes in Tucson and registration is going on now.

Feb. 28-March 3, I’m excited to be teaching classes at Linda Young’s event Adorn Me in Houston, Texas. There are still spots left in many of the classes, all featuring metalwork and/or mixed-media jewelry with top instructors. Take a peek at the workshops here. A couple of classes, such as  So You Want to Write a Book, are classes I’m only teaching at this event for 2013.

I’m thrilled to be back for my third year at CREATE, hosted by Cloth, Paper, Scissors magazine in Orange County, California. I love this show so much because the event organizers always let me teach both straight mixed-media and also mixed-media jewelry classes. I’m thrilled to be doing a journal, as well as some very cool new classes using our brand-new products and techniques that we’re introducing at CHA and Tucson. Registration for this event just opened yesterday, and my journal was featured on the announcement email. So very cool to see as an instructor! I’m in such amazing company at this event and a few of the instructors are my very dear friends. I get a smile on my face every time I realize I’m going to get to see them very soon.

The last event to tell you about for now is the Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee. This is another one of our annual big shows for ICE Resin. I’ve been at the show the past three years with our company, but this is the first time I’ll be teaching there as an instructor. Honestly, this is an event I never thought I would be instructing since it’s home to many of the best of the best master silversmiths and jewelers. It was kind of a pinch me moment when the acceptance email came in. I’ll be teaching resin, of course. (grin)

There are a couple more events I’ve applied to that haven’t been announced. I’ll be adding those to the calendar as soon as I hear (fingers crossed) that I’ve been accepted. Just a little note on this, I’ll be writing a future column on the teaching application process for those of you who wonder how this all comes to pass. I did write a basic one for CreateMixedMedia last year. If you didn’t get a chance to see it, you can click over to my columns on the website.

For any of you whom are thinking of going to an art retreat for the first time, but are maybe wondering if you can afford it or if it’s worth the time and expense, let me tell you they are! When I fell in love with mixed-media all those years ago, it was these retreats and the amazing, giving and wonderful instructors that set me on my path. It was a journey that’s been life altering for me, and I’ve seen the same story told again and again for many others.

Here’s wishing you a truly Artful day as you head into the final stretch of the Holiday season.

Art Unraveled in 3.5 weeks

There is still time to sign up for Art Unraveled, a terrific mixed-media retreat the first week in August in Phoenix, Arizona.

Yes, I know….Phoenix in August??? While it seems like an oxymoron, this summer art retreat makes perfect sense. The event organizer, Linda Young, gets a killer deal on beautiful suites at the Embassy Suites hotel at $79 a night. These same rooms in high season run double that. No worries, the hotel has adapted just like every other Phoenician who’s learned to live inside an oven during the summer. They crank up the air conditioning!

I’ve been attending Art Unraveled since 2005, because it’s in my hometown and also because it’s where I got my start in mixed-media art. I truly love this event. The best teachers from all over the country come in and put on top-notch classes.

This is the first year I will be teaching the event, and I am so jazzed. I have two classes, a short 3-hour class on making resin paper and then an intensive 9-hour class on working with resin in jewelry-making. Students will be making the gorgeous butterfly necklace with resin-paper beads from Explore, Create, Resinate: Mixed Media Techniques Using ICE Resin. This workshop is the in-depth version of the book and I am keeping my fingers crossed people like it as much as I think they will.

There is still time to sign up for my classes. Please go to the Art Unraveled website and check it out. While you’re at it, hop on over to the Adorn Me site as well and see what I’m up to in Texas next March for that event.

Ricë Freeman-Zachary, whom I absolutely adore as an author, artist and friend recently did a podcast with Linda Young talking about Art Unraveled and Adorn Me. If you’ve never been to either of these mixed media events, take a listen for some inside skinny.