I have been awarded the 'Kreativ Blogger Award' by Jamie of Creations by JAE. Thank you for thinking of me Jamie, and thank you for your upbeat personality that always brightens the day even when it is dark and overcast.
These are the rules:
1. The winner may put this award on their blog. 2. Please put a link to the person that presented you for this award. 3. Nominate 5 blogs. 4. Put links to all their blogs. 5. Leave a message for your nominees.
Once upon a time, in a kingdom far away, known as Los Angeles, there lived two roommates, in a village called The Valley. One holiday season Lord Tom, the taller of the two, gave Lady Elayne, the...shorter, a box of blue icicle lights as a gift. Ah, thought Lady Elayne, blue because it is my favourite colour, and because it matches my eyes, and because I celebrate Hanukkah. But alas, Lady Elayne, being unhandy and lazy, found the task of hanging the lights rather daunting. And icicle lights in a condo? She found that idea rather questionable.
And so the fair lady put the lights away for another year. And another year. And another year.
And so it came to pass that Lady Elayne moved to a land 4 1/2 hours away if you don't drive during peak traffic. A land of dry air, cactus, heat and slot machines. Las Vegas. And in this land Lady Elayne purchased a house. As the first holiday season in her new home approachethed, Lady Elayne decided that this was the year of the blue icicle lights. But alas it was not meant to be. She searched high (upstairs) and low (downstairs) but the lights would not be found. (Did we mention Lady Elayne was a slob as well as being unhandy and lazy?)
Sometime later, on a warm summer's eve as the lady rooted around her storage area (aka garage) she stumbled upon them! The blue icicle lights had returned! Lady Elayne waited anxiously for the days to shorten and the temperature to drop. She vowed she would have her blue icicle lights hung by the chimney with care this year.
Lady Elayne penciled the day in to her planner, and on that morning, in the month of December, she awoke, bushy eyed and bright tailed. As the scent of the fresh brewing coffee awakened her senses she sat with the box, carefully opened it up and found...
We interrupt our irregularly unscheduled blog to bring you...SNOW! What's the big deal you say? Well this is Las Vegas, home of 110 degree summers and cactus and wind. Not snow! The last time I saw snow here was when I first came to town and camped out in my mom's guest room. I slept through it actually falling from the sky but I did see on the ground and cars. Snapped a quick picture from the window of my guest room. It's still coming down and no sign of slowing down. I'm so excited.
Roz is a crafter from way back. She's always had some project going, be it knitting or crochet. So why not put some of those cozy, delicious scarves on our Etsy site and let others enjoy the fruits of her labour. This Chenille scarf is soft and scrumptious and washable too! And what an eyecatching colour, scarlet, ruby red, blood red, call it what you will, it's gorgeous!
Check it out at ChezChani, and you can be snuggling up to this baby in a week. At only $19 with $1. shipping, treat yourself!
Pictured is one my latest works, now available in our Etsy Shop. It's a bracelet inspired by the Leather Pride Flag. I'd never heard of this flag, but someone looking at my gay rainbow bracelet suggested it. We found pictures of it online and I had to give it a go. I think it came out very true to the actual flag. I'm not going to go into details about what the flag represents (partly because I'm not sure I'm clear on it.) I will say that while it's not for everybody, it sure is for somebody.
We are only doing one show this holiday season. It's this Sunday, Dec. 7 9AM-3PM at Temple Beth Sholom in Summerlin...Las Vegas NV (Town Center, 1 block north of Desert Inn. 10700 Havenwood Lane.) Given that our only show is at a Synagogue it's just as well I never got to my Christmas specific designs. Next year I'll have to plan earlier for that. I have no excuses for my lack of preparation, I'm pretty sure this season comes around the same time every year.
Hope all you Americans had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I was fortunate in that it fell on my day off and nobody cooks a turkey like my mommy!!
Do mother/daughter teams run in the family? They just might. My niece has decided that she has to start an Etsy shop with her mom's delicious handmade jewelry. I've always been envious of Lilith's artistic ability and that continues with her jewelry line which you can find at www.misslilith.etsy.com . Miss Lilith is an amazing artist but is clueless with computers so her brilliant and beautiful daughter, Shiran, is running the show. You can read all about it at www.misslilithjewelry.blogspot.com.
Just a quick note to introduce our new banner. Thanks to Nicole at Dusty Designs for her patience and skills in designing it. I had no clue what I wanted and what I came up with was entirely unsatisfactory. It took me a long time just to figure out how to add the writing and I'd already forgotten how I did it.
Roz has been busy as a bee making some really special cabochons/pendants. The first one is now on Etsy and there will be more to follow.
Over at the Esmarts shop on Etsy, is the Chezchani Charlotte's Web Bracelet. At the Esmarts shop, you will have the opportunity to choose from a wonderfully diverse selection from many of the members. Treat yourself to a visit, and remember, all proceeds will be going to a good cause.
The Roz half of ChezChani got tired of coming home to an empty house. So off to the Nevada SPCA we went to find her one good kitty. It's difficult to leave there with one good kitty, and we did not manage it. We left with two. Dandelion, aka Dandy, is approx. 7 months old, and incredibly sweet. Sweet Pea is approx. 3 months. The vet tells us she is part Calico and part Siamese which I happen to think is the best possible combination. My Izzy is a Calico, and my Mandy, was a Chocolate Point Siamese and I defy you to find a sweeter cat then either of them!
The SPCA is such a great place, you cannot sit down without cats piling up all over you. I do encourage everyone to consider an adult cat when adopting as they are harder to place. Everyone wants a kitten. So a great compromise? One of each!!
...But I was tagged so Tag’s the game.Tammy Powley is the one to blame so don’t look at me! Check out her wonderful blog, The Crafty Princess.
1. I get very upset at those seemingly adorable pictures of cats playing with wool. Mandy, my adorable, tiny, Chocolate-Point Siamese did that once. She ate some and because she couldn’t bite it off she kept eating it. It wrapped around her intestines. She needed surgery, but because she was so small, she never woke up out of the anesthesia.
2. I have a secret fantasy about living in the country. I would like to live within smelling distance of a horse. I don’t really think this will/should happen... it’s a fantasy.
3A. When playing a poker tournament, I will always chop at the end however I will never initiate a chop as I have a fear of rejection. 3B. I have a fear of rejection.
4. I love anecdotes (def: A short account of an interesting or humourous incident.) Here’s my favourite. One day I was driving in the Santa Monica mountains with my two roommates. Naturally the radio reception went out so I popped in a tape (remember tapes?) Roommate One who shall remain nameless says “Oh, the tape works in the mountains. I must remember that.”If Roommate Two who shall remain nameless had not been there to confirm, I would have thought I had hallucinated it. (Perhaps I’ll share my Madonna anecdote with you in the future.)
5. My biggest regret? Capping my front tooth.
6. I used to have an amazing memory. No longer.
7. I used to have an amazing memory. No longer.
6. I can only count to six.
I was remiss and I apologize. In a past blog entry “Customer Disservice” I failed to introduce you to the cats in the photo. Pat and Vanna (L-R) are Anthony’s furry kids. I know what you’re thinking, but Anthony really is straight. One of the things we have in common is that we were both on Wheel of Fortune (before we met.) It was a highlight of his life. I barely remember mine. Except I won a trip to Hawaii on the puzzle “Harry S. Truman.”
I had to make this bracelet, a Barbara Ellis design, in honour of a very worthy charity. This is information from the SHADH website:
Donkeys have been used as beasts of burden in Israel for the past 5000 years. They can be bought there for as little as 100 shekels - that's about £15 - and because they are so inexpensive, very little value is attached to their well being. Absolutely no veterinary care is given to sick or injured donkeys, since in most cases it would be cheaper to buy a new animal. For this reason when they are sick, injured, too old or surplus to requirements they are turned out and left to fend for themselves - quite often tied to a post without food or water and left to die. Many stray donkeys suffer from direct abuse and torture.
A group of children found a stray donkey and for fun, they doused him with petrol and set fire to him. Another group of teenagers decided they could make use of a stray donkey for their summer holidays. Later the same day, they either got bored or decided they had nowhere to keep the donkey so they killed him by hammering nails into his head. Other donkeys are luckier, they are taken to landfill sites and left out like rubbish.
Founded by Miss Lucy Fensom, Safe Haven For Donkeys In The Holy Land (SHADH) is a UK-registered charity of dedicated people who are devoted to achieving a common goal; to provide help for the donkeys of Israel, to improve their status and promote their welfare through education.
Based at Moshav Gan Yoshiyya, near the towns of Netanya and Hadera in Israel ( Click Here to see map of area ), SHADH offers a new concept in the protection and welfare of donkeys and mules in Israel and the Palestinian Territories, with a structure managed on the strength of charity registration in the UK, and registered in Israel as a foreign charity. This Safe Haven for donkeys relies entirely on donations to continue this work.
I work in the Casino Industry in Las Vegas. Just got an email from a friend who works at a major strip property telling me about all the layoffs.
Businesses panic in times of recession but one has to ask oneself, is laying people off really for the greater, and long run, good? What will make one casino stand out from another in a time when there are less players to fight over? A. The company that has better deals and B, (and maybe B. should be A.) Customer service.
Granted smaller companies may not be able to make their payroll these days, and laying people off may be their only chance of survival.
I am an Embarq customer. Have been for some time. I also have dish network. Wondering if a switch to something else will save me money. Perhaps Cox Cable though I've never cared for their advertising practices. If I should switch my TV service, perhaps I could get the best deal by switching my high speed internet as well. But last week I had a problem with my DSL. It took just a phone call to get it resolved, Embarq made some changes, got me back online and promptly sent me a new modem. A small mention of this in my blog led to a comment by an Embarq customer service rep, letting me know to contact them if there is any problem. Then, an Embarq guy started following me on Twitter, also telling me to let them know if there is any problem. And you know what? As a result, I will not even consider leaving Embarq. Why? CUSTOMER SERVICE!
I was working in a large poker room of one of the largest casino companies. A customer was trying to get through on the phone, to the front desk to see if his room was ready. Not having any luck I offered to call the Diamond Lounge to see if they could find out (that is the lounge for higher limit players.) I could not get through either. The man said “this is ridiculous, I’m never staying here again, I’ll stay at the Wynn.” So this major company saved, say $8 an hour on an extra employee at the desk or lounge, but lost a big player. Now this company shoves the customer service concept down it’s employees throats like I’ve never seen anywhere else, but doesn’t provide the manpower to achieve it.
Eventually, things will get better, but the customer who did not receive the service they deserve, will already be gone and comfy in the place that treated them properly. And they will not come back.
And Now For Something Completely Different. The holidays are approaching faster than a speeding bullet. I'd like to make a suggestion for your gift giving this year. Buy from ChezChani. Well that's one idea. Here's another. Why not buy a gift that will surely make your friends/family happy as well as supporting a fine charity? Best Friends is an amazing animal sanctuary. Check out their store for some affordable fun gifts. You can really make a difference and at no extra cost to you. You're buying the gifts anyway, right?
Well, the time is here again. The Jewish High Holidays. Rosh Hashanah is New Years (don't ask me what year it is.) Because I don't work on these holidays I had to take one of my precious few vacation days. This gave me a lovely 3 day weekend. Fortunately Yom Kippur, which comes up in a couple of weeks, falls on my weekend. On Yom Kippur we (theoretically) fast for the day. It's feast or famine for us, isn't it?
I'm trying to use my weekend constructively. Took Bam Bam to the vet. He's turned pink and has very little fur left on much of his body. Of course he turned into a monster at the vet and she said if animal control ever got him they'd put him down. Trust me, that is NEVER going to happen. We are putting him on some sort of medicine and going back in 3 weeks. He took his medicine like a good boy today. Barely fought me. In a duel, he would definitely be the victor.
I am currently working on a bracelet with the patterns of a deck of cards. I did not create this pattern (thank you Redbeast Designs,) but it's a beauty. Unfortunately it's been very VERY difficult and it is still not completely done. Every time I thought I was close to done I'd find a broken bead. I still haven't figured out the closure. I won't be doing this pattern as it is again. I will do card suits in a narrower bracelet.
My internet was down all day yesterday. Still down this morning so I called Embarq. Seems my DSL modem is no longer compatible with their upgrades. After some adjustments we got it going and they are sending me a new modem.
The new season of one of the very few TV shows I watch started Sunday night. I work on Sunday nights so it's been my practice to watch it online during the week. Can't seem to get that to load. Whatever will I do without my Desperate Housewives??
All in all, too many frustrations this week but one must put it into prospective. Those are all little things. I won't get into the financial frustrations because I'm sure everyone is feeling it in varying degrees. Suffice it to say my retirement was just postponed by at least 2 years. No I did not have a set date/age for that but the sooner the better.
On the bright side... the weather is still hot here in Las Vegas but it is supposed to go down to 85 next week. And while it's still summer weather outside, it is autumn in my heart and I had to make soup in the crockpot. And even brighter side...my Burberry inspired bracelet just sold on Etsy!
It was a battle between me, a stubborn beader, and Scrappy Hearts, a diabolic bracelet pattern. I can finally say that it's over and I HAVE WON. Oh sure, I thought I was finished before, until I saw that broken bead. And then, whilst fixing that area, I broke another...and another. But at long last I can finally say, victory is mine and Scrappy Hearts is up for adoption at ChezChani.
First day of my weekend, stranded on the island of seed beads. I look out, I see nothing. How long can I go on?
My only form of sustenance, my beads and the Julie Ann Smith design, Scrappy Hearts. I can do this odd Odd Count. I can I can. No, I can’t. I won’t! Too much stress..must...rest... I give up. Not worth the stress, an even count with a row of brick stitch looks just the same so why put myself through this?
Out damn seed beads. Have to start again. Okay, going fine now going fine going...not so fine. How did those amythest beads get mixed into the green beads? Out again. Well as long as I’m undoing I must be honest with myself. These colour combinations are yucky. I have to question my colour combining abilities. Perhaps Scrappy Hearts and I should take opposite spots on this island, live our days out alone. I’ve already given up on Odd Count, can I give up on Scrappy Hearts too and still be able to R E S P E C T myself? I will try one more time. You will not beat me Scrappy! (Sure is a lot of punctuation on this island.)
Fewer colours. Perhaps that is the secret to salvation. If Scrappy makes it out of this alive I will post a picture. IF.
(Pictured above, Spooky Kitties Bracelet. Design by Julie Ann Smith.)
Finally made my first Julie Ann Smith designed bracelet. Took a long time and was not easy to do but I think it was worth it. I just love her colourful fun designs. I have 3 more to try. Minor adjustments must be made as the patterns are in odd count Peyote and I prefer to do even count (want to know why...inquire within.)
Anthony and I went to see the tiger cubs again at The Secret Garden. They are out of the nursery and have a lovely area of the garden. We were lucky to catch all 5 of them out there. They were getting their bottles when we arrived. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I don't think there is anything cuter than a tiger cub.
I guess the jury is still out on the success of the e-poker tables at the Excalibur. I have not gone over there yet, I get most of my info on the message board at twoplustwo. We did go to opening night of the Eastside Cannery. First new casino in that area in ten years I believe. They did a very nice job, I wish it much success. The poker room is in a premium location, right by the front door. Cannery North, take notes. We didn't play because the players cards from the old Cannery didn't work there and the line was too long for new cards.
There is hope that the temperatures will drop out of the hundreds soon. Not soon enough for me.
I started a long winded blog about this issue and then I deleted it. Let’s just summarize with, electronic tables may have their place in this world. Cruises, small casinos in small towns that might otherwise not have poker, maybe even Sit’n’Goes, Satellites or Heads Up tables, my rumpus room (if such a room existed.) Might even be a place for people to fool around while waiting for a seat in a real poker game.
People do not come to Vegas to play poker this way. Tourists love to talk to dealers (I spent a lot of time dealing to tourists.) Tourists don’t care about the speed of the game (I was a tourist myself and if I lost my buy-in too early I had to go to bed. Faster game = faster loss.) Tourists don’t care about the rake (ask a tourist about the rake and a likely answer will be “what’s a rake?”) Even locals are paying $4.00 rake plus $1.00 jackpot rake instead of flocking to the casinos with the $3.00 rake or El Cortez which is still at an amazing $2.50.
I was at the gym yesterday and one old man says to the other old man “Have you heard about the Excalibur? I hope it catches on, save me on dealer tokes.” Other old man does not respond. (I’m guessing he didn’t agree but didn’t want to argue. Otherwise he’d have agreed, right?) This is for you old man, over 40 people lost their jobs but you can save a couple of bucks. Hey, life is grand. Here’s a crazy idea, just don’t tip you cheap _________. I’m sure the dealer won’t miss the two bucks you probably put out in a session.
And while I’m ranting about poker games and tables and dealers, why aren’t more dealers wearing cute ChezChani hand beaded rings?
Happy mid August from hot HOT (but dry) Las Vegas. Still plugging away at ye olde Peyote stitch. But I am looking around for other diversions. I'm now researching Chain Maille. For those that think it's sending out maille to ten friends and having them send it to ten friends...it's not. Basically you make chain by linking jump rings, small round rings, together. Let me tell you, I have seen some really beautiful work. I'm going to dabble in copper Chain Maille to start with and go from there. I do love the look of copper and I prefer the price over that of silver.
Of course you'll find our current work in our Etsy shop, including the newest listing, the Red Windows Bracelet. Just for fun, we're trying a couple of items on Ecrater. Ecrater is another site where you can find some fun and fabulous creations. I learned of this from another Esmarty, Lois at A Beaded Affair. Nothing ventured nothing gained. I'd give credit and a link to that if I knew who to credit and if that person had a site or blog...but I'm guessing not.
Up to this point I’ve only done even count Peyote with my own designs. Recently I fell in love with some patterns from pattern-maker extraordinaire Julie Ann Smith at Angelamps. Julie Ann is also a member of the mighty Esmarts Team.
Unfortunately all of the patterns I purchased are for odd count Peyote. Julie Ann was kind enough to send me several tutorials on odd count Peyote. I know I can learn it, I’ve glanced at it and believe I know what to do, but I’m torn. You see I was fortunate enough to buy an issue of Bead and Button last year that had a life changing article entitled Fast Peyote Stitch. The title is slightly deceiving because there is no such thing as fast peyote stitch, it should have been called Faster Peyote Stitch, or even more appropriately, Less Slow Peyote Stitch. A bracelet with a complicated pattern can take me up to 2 weeks to finish (I don’t work continuously of course, I have a job and I sleep.) Basically it taught me to do two rows at once. That makes it how much faster? You do the math. As far as I can tell, this method will not work on odd count Peyote. I have sent the instructions to Julie Ann, so who knows, maybe she’ll be able to put the two together.
Where does this leave me? Well, I can do the patterns as purchased and do one row at a time, or I can attempt to alter the patterns. I’m going with the second choice first. I’m trying to beef up my stock as we have in mind a nice craft show for the holidays and I don’t need to double my time on each piece. At least one of the patterns has an edging that will look odd if I knock off or add a line though. Sigh.
Atop this blog is a picture of Roz’s latest piece. I think it’s quite lovely. And it can be yours if The Price is...I mean if you purchase it at ChezChani’s cute little Etsy shop.
So there is a game of Internet Tag of which I have not been aware. I became aware when I got tagged by talented Jewerly Designer Jamee at Jonara Blu Maui. Imagine that, being tagged here in Las Vegas by someone all the way in Hawaii, is this internet thing wild and crazy stuff or what??
Here are the rules:
1) Link to the person who tagged you 2) Post the rules on your blog (this is what you are now reading) 3) Write 6 random things about yourself (see below) 4) Tag 6 people at the end of your post and link to them 5) Let each person know they have been tagged and leave a comment on their blog. 6) Let the tagger know when your entry is up.
Six Random Things about ME ME ME
1. I broke my leg skiing when I was 3 yrs old. That's why I was never a particularly good skier.
2. I have never voted (can't do it. For more info, inquire within.)
3.I have 2 high school diplomas.
4 I'm an extremely tight poker player. Some might say too tight. But only those that are actually paying attention.
5. I have a fear of phones. Well a fear of talking to people on the phone. Not everybody but definitely strangers, people I don’t know very well, and people I haven’t spoken to in a long time. Thank goodness for email.
6A On my first day of school in Ste. Agathe (that would be May of grade 5) my future best friend wrote in her diary, “A new girl came to school today, she had messy hair.” 6B I have messy hair.
Ok, now my turn to tag 6 people. You are, of course, free to not do this but I would be very VERY sad. :-(
Anthony and I went to Siegfried & Roy's Secret Garden at the Mirage yesterday to see the tiger cubs. I'd heard there were four and I really wanted to see them. We spent most of our time with our faces glued to the glass around the cubs area. It's a square room with glass walls on two sides. The other two sides are in the gift shop and there are several windows. A man sits in there with them, playing with them and breaking up fights. I guess he's training them but I don't know what they are being trained for as S & R no longer perform. As far as I'm concerned, there is little in this world as cute as a tiger cub. Three girls and a boy, the boy is a golden tiger, two white tigers without much stripes and a white striped one. Everyone was envious of the man in there with them and wanted his job. They may look like little babies but they sound like real tigers when they growl.
Today I searched the web for mor info on the tigers and everything I found, including the Secret Gardens site, says there are five cubs. But I was unable to find out where the fifth one is. I sent an email to the Secret Garden but who knows if they'll respond...(EDIT The day after I posted this I did receive a response from the Secret Garden. They assured me that there are still five tigers but that they sometimes rotate them in to the nursery.)
By the way I'm not posting pics because Ant didn't remind me to take a camera. We might have to go back next week, fortunately he gets a discount on the entry.
This is my latest fun ring design, I call it The Polka Dot Ring. I love making these rings. While it incorporates my one and only stitch, Peyote, it doesn't take hours and hours to make like my other items. Expect to see this one in lots of colour combinations. Because it doesn't take long to make, I'll be offering them at a very reasonable (read: cheap) price on Etsy.
I'm curious what everyone thinks on the issue of music on blogs and sites. Today I was listening to some nice music on my computer (right now, Trailors For Sale or Rent) when I went to visit a blog. Suddenly my music was mixed in with some classic music. Needless to say, it did not mix well. Sometimes when I'm online, I also have the TV on. I can't hear the Golden Girls gems when I'm blasted with someone's music that is often not to my taste.
I guess you know where I stand on this issue. Now I like music as much as the next guy, without my music there is no way I could do 30 minutes on the elliptical or treadmill. But I just want to listen to one thing at a time, and when I'm in my home I should be able to choose it. I could turn off my speakers and in fact I rarely have them on but sometimes I'm listening to music or watching something on You Tube or my favourite, Desperate Housewives.
I do agree, for those fun montages and slide shows, music helps the whole affect. But if I'm trying to read your blog, music only serves to clutter my already cluttered mind. And if I'm shopping, well, same thing.
I believe we are too constantly bombarded by forced music/noise...elevators, casinos, inconsiderate people... Please, let me have some peace in my own home.
Back to our regularly scheduled jewelry stuff. I'm thinking chokers and anklets. Of course in peyote. Chokers will not be too difficult, in fact I sold one recently that was just a plain peyote band in silver lined crystal with a GORGEOUS Swarovski button closure that could be worn in the front or back. Oops forgot to take a picture. I've never worn chokers(aptly named) or anklets so I gotta get my thinkin' cap on. Where did I put it?
In my early days of computer exposure I was introduced to a little video called Alien Song (Victor Navone 1999.) No matter how many times I saw it, no matter how depressed I may have been, it always made me smile. So for those of you not familiar with it, I found it on You Tube and I'd like to share it with you, my loyal readers (yes, both of you)...Alien Song.
Lately I'm in a ring phase. The ring with the Swarovski frame is now available in 7 colours, with more to be ready soon. I sold the Swarovski cube ring which was in our Etsy store. That was the most viewed item in the store so it really was just a matter of time. That one will soon be available in an array of colours as well. The ring shown above is my latest, the 'Rita Ring.
Rings are my favourite type of jewelry so it's no wonder I'm making alot of them. And I don't care for expensive rings. Since the last loss of a special ring (I still cannot think or talk about it without crying) I have decided disposable rings are the only way to go. When I say disposable I mean, reasonably priced and without sentimental attachment, so when/if it gets lost, it won't be too upsetting. So rich man, if you want to buy me that 5 carat diamond, just forget it...I don't want it. Cash will be fine.
After much hair-pulling I managed to put a SUBSCRIBE field on this blog. It's over there ----------> at the bottom. Just put in your email address and you will get only fresh blogs, none of that day old stuff.
I've just learned how to do these kind of cool montages on YouTube. I'm attempting to put one of them right here on my blog for all to see. I'm now going to press the PUBLISH POST button and if that montage is here and right it just may be a miracle.
"The Las Vegas Bead Society was established to promote, support and encourage interest, education and involvement in beads and beadwork. We encourage members to share their knowledge and welcome new members to join."
Maybe it's a beading thing, but in general beaders are a wonderful group of people. I have found this to be true on my beading email lists, my Etsy team (Esmarts) and with the LVBS. Even if I ever got over my beading obsession, I don't think I could leave the craft because I'd miss the supportive, generous, friendly people it attracts.
Now we've started the LVBS Yahoo Group, for members and non-members of the Las Vegas Bead Society. If you are a beader in the Las Vegas area, please join us at Yahoo.
I have been beading for a couple of years now. How did this happen, this obsession, this addiction? How does any addiction begin? With a moment. In a split second. True, I had dabbled in jewelry making many years ago but I barely remember it. I suppose it just didn’t ‘click’ because it came and went with out leaving a mark on my life, just a few boxes of odds and ends.
My obsession at the time of the ‘moment’ was candle making. That particular hobby came from my joy of reusing, never throwing anything away. I began to make candles out of the stubs of old candles. Eventually I learned that you cannot control the quality of your candle if you don’t know what wax it is made of, what scents have been used. So I just used the old candles as chunks. I made some really cool chunk candles if I do say so myself. And lots of nonchunk candles as well. Eventually I had too many candles so I tried to sell them. But candles carry a lot of responsibility. What if someone buys your candle and they burn their house down? So you gotta have insurance. And to make a really fine product you must test each wax with each scent with each mold. Well, frankly once I made a particular candle I never wanted to make another one just like it again,so forget the testing. And if you go to a craft show in the sun and don’t have a cover, they melt and they fade. Argh.
It was at one of these crafts shows when we happened to be in a spot next to a jewelry maker. . We started chatting and I admired her stuff and when I left that day I had a craving to make jewelry. I started stringing, then I fell in love with lampwork beads. I searched high and low for a teacher of lampworking in the Las Vegas area. Before my quest was complete I happened to take a class at a bead store on making a peyote stitch ring. The ring reminded me of the mesh Tiffany ring I had always wanted but hadn’t treated myself to. I took the class and I have done NOTHING but peyote stitch since. Definitely an obsession. It replaced my desire to learn lampwork (for now) which is just as well as lampwork would mean buying a kiln and lots of pricey stuff. So that’s on the backburner for now.
I do still make candles from time to time to give as gifts and will continue to do so until I run out of supplies which should be around...never.
"The Etsy Social Marketing Arts Guild (eSMArts Guild) is a global collaborative of mixed media artisans intent on further understanding and applying eCommerce advertising and promotion techniques. Our mandate is to foster friendship, creativity, connection, inspiration, discussion and plenty of cross promotion via implementing social marketing principles in order to drive traffic to our Etsy storefronts and other sales sites."
I didn't come up with that, thanks to our group leader!
The blogs will be written by various members on a rotating basis. My entry will appear on July 9...or 10 if I'm dragging my keyboard. It should be a fun and informative blog to look in on weekly.
That's the good news. The bad news is now I'll have to come up with original (or borrowed and reformatted) material for 2 blogs.
ChezChani thanks you for your support.
(Picture above is our newest item in our Etsy shop, made by Roz.)
Funny you should ask because I was just in the mood to tell you all about it. I grew up in a suburb of Montreal, St. Laurent. We always had a country house in the Laurentian mountains where we’d go weekends in the winter and then spend the summer. Around the time I was 10, my mother decided to open a ladies clothing store in the town we’d had our country house for several years, Ste. Agathe Des Monts, which is about 60 miles north of Montreal. I don’t have very clear memories of this but I do recall that there was a process where you had to have the name approved. Not sure who had this authority, maybe the city, but that’s not important. I seem to recall she’d tried a name that was a combo of all her kids’ names but it was rejected. Someone, I think an aunt, came up with Chez Chani (house of Chani.) Apparently stores had to have a french name and Chez Chani was inspired by my mother’s Hebrew name, Shoshanna. So that was the name of the store and everyone started calling her Chani. By the way it’s pronounced Shay Sh-ann-ee. Eventually we moved there, living along the lake, Lac Des Sables. And though it’s been many MANY years since I’ve lived there, and I’ve lived in several places since, Ste. Agathe was home to me like no other place has been. I will always miss it, as well as the bedroom set I was forced to leave behind. I found the picture above on the internet. It’s the main shopping street in Ste. Agathe. The first Chez Chani was on the right a few doors down. A second store was opened later in St. Jovite about 20 minutes north. The other picture is a new bracelet design I’ve come up with. It is peyote stitched with Delica seed beads and there is a Swarovski crystal in each little window. I’m playing with a larger one now.
I saw a picture of a ring like this in the Fire Mountain Gem Catalogue and I just had to make it. I am going to be making it in lots of colours because I just like it so much. Very comfy too. It will be on my Etsy site soon, at just $15. I'm also at work on a bracelet with little windows, in each window will be a Swarovski crystal. I love Swarovskis, there are those that would prefer them over diamonds. They have amazing sparkle, the best crystal you can buy. Should be ready in a few days and I'll post a pic.
It's my Sunday so I'm trying to get stuff done as well as just relaxing and doing what I want. It's another balmy day in Las Vegas, in the low 100's. BUT IT'S A DRY HEAT.
Don't have a lot of time but I would be remiss if I did not introduce my two furry babies. That is Izzy and BamBam. Izzy is short for Isadorabelle, because she is adorabelle. Bam Bam came indirectly from the pound in Los Angeles and Izzy the Las Vegas Humane Society. They have a message they'd like to me tell everyone. They think it's very unfair that when people want to adopt a kitty they always go for the kittens. "People, the kittens are easier to place so find it in our heart to get a grown kitty." The kitten stage is not that long so you aren't missing that much. And when you adopt a grown kitty, they are forever appreciative of their home and their family. And never go to a pet store! And keep your cats indoors for a longer healthier life. So that's it for today. Meow.
Chezchani is the mother/daughter team of Roz and Elayne. Roz is currently into glass and wire wrapping. Elayne is mad about Peyote Stitch. But just how much of this stuff can one person wear? So it's time to offer our work to you. Please check out our site at http://www.chezchani.etsy.com/. And if the stuff gives you ideas, let us know. Custom work is welcome. Custom colours, designs, sizes. Elayne can design rings, bracelets, small pet necklaces with names or initials. And keep checking, we'll add our newest work as fast as we make it. Which isn't that fast because handmade pieces like ours take time as well as love. Wanna talk to us? firstname.lastname@example.org.