Monday, January 24, 2011

Terri Brushe's Crown Class at Urban Barn

My finished flat quickie crown
with black patina

This past Sunday at the Urban Barn in Escondido, CA, my friend Margo and I took Terri Brush's Crown Soldering class. (Click on this link to learn more about Terri's classes - Terri Brush Designs ) She was very organized and the only thing she told us to bring was some jewelry tools which she told us we could get a kit at Michael's for about $9.99. In truth, we didn't even need those.

Sample Crown

Terri provided all of us with the Weller 100 (the blue iron) plus and stand, a metal tray to work on which she told us we could take home with us, flux, solder, sponge, etc. etc. - everything we would need and then some. And then, of course, the product.

Sally's Tray

Crown in progress Unknown Artist

The Urban Barn is a great place to take a class. It is so big and airy with good natural light also. We were all at one long table as you can see from the photo below.

The long table where we worked

Terri got us all started cleaning, taping, fluxing and soldering about 24 glass bobbles. She is a very calm teacher and kept moving around the entire perimeter and was readily available for any questions we might have. This was not a first time soldering class so there were no Step One, Step Two instructions.

About noon, delicious pizza arrived and we could stop whenever we were ready and eat and have some refreshments. Later in the afternoon, cupcakes and chocolate chip cookies appeared. Plus,s there were giant bowls of M & M's with peanuts on the table.

In my immediate locations I met some new friends. Across from me was a gal named Robin Sanchez who lives in Oceanside and had super information about a "gig" that takes place about twice a year in Manhattan Beach and is put on by Artistic Bliss and Kim Caldwell. Check it out!

My end of the table

To Robin's left in blue was a gal named Nelda. It turns out she lives close to me but is allergic to birds and there for, since we have to my regret, my husband's double yellow amazon parrot, she can not come play at my home.

To my right was a very quiet and sweet gal named Debbie. Margo is sitting at the head of the table and my chair is vacant.

We were to make a base for the crown by soldering three glass bobbles together at a time and then soldering them to themselves to make a circle or part circle.

Two photos of Sally's base for her crown

I choose to work on a small flat crown for my first project. Any of you who have followed my blog know that I am a devout fan of Suzi Blu and her girls. I decided I wanted to make a crown for one of my girls. The width was only 2 1/2 inches. Below is the base that I started with for my crown.

Base for Sally's small crown

Enter the embellishments lady. I could not believe all that she brought in for us to add to our crowns or to just purchase for further reference. I don't know her name but she said that when we saw our credit card statement it would read "Peeps."


More "Stuff"
That's "Peeps" in the left hand corner of photo

Three photos of Sally's stash purchased from "Peeps"

Margo hard at work

Above is my friend Margo who solders so beautifully. She was very interested in the product we were using this day. She and Robin both mentioned that they didn't have to clean their tips like they usually did. Plus, the solder flowed so easily. I totally agreed even though I have hardly any practical experience. I did take a Sally Jean class last year. Most of what I know, I have learned from Margo. She is a perfectionist and does beautiful work. She also is amazing in Photo Shop. Below is my Christmas present from Margo. It is so beautiful. Thank you Margo.

Tree Ornament created by Margo

Unknown Artist wearing glasses with lights.

I didn't get this gal's name but she was soooo much fun. She is styling ladies with her special purchase from CVS pharmacy of reading glasses with bright lights on both sides of the glasses that shine down on what ever you are working on. She said they cost about $24.95 and come in various prescribed strengths. We all vowed we would be going there to purchase our own. Fun and practical!

Debbie fast at work on her crown

Close-up of Debbie's crown (I think)

Another sample - artist unknown

BEAUTIFUL finished crown - artist unknown

Terri and one tired eyes Sally

Friday, January 7, 2011

Silly Sal - Knitting Once a Year

Close up of Purchased Purse

Once a year, I knit for a couple of days. The reason it's only once a year? Well, our Best Man, Richard and his wife Sharon, come and stay with us and help us celebrate our wedding anniversary every year. We were married at our home at 8 pm on New Year's Eve, 1994. Sharon is a knitting maniac and makes beautiful and difficult projects. She doesn't scrapbook nor paint nor sketch. So, our common ground and how I can improve my knitting proficiency takes place at this time. This year they were at our home from Thursday before New Year's Eve and returned to their home in Glendale on Tuesday of the new year.

Purchased Purse

So before she visited, I went to the local Knitting Store called Knitting in La Jolla on Prospect. The owner is such a helpful person. I saw this beautiful purse that she had made and said I wanted to make it. Well, it turned out she didn't carry the yarn any more or any yarn like it that would work. Plus, she got the pattern on line from Sweater Babe - pattern #19. In the end, I purchased the sample from her along with the pin that I placed in the center of the flower she had designed that was not part of the pattern. The purse that I purchased is the exact color of the favorite very heavy sweatshirt jacket that I bought last year at JCrew. Plus, I also have Uggs the same color. Yea! I will finally match!

At home I download the pattern and now go off to find yard to make the purse myself. The next closest yarn store is by my friend Suzi Blu's home in Encinitas - The Black Sheep. I didn't find what I wanted there either so off to Michael's. They have this thick yarn always in stock and purchased the black and the gray.

Purse I made with two yarns

Here is the purse I made with the Black yarn. I added a skinny black fuzzy yarn with a white flag that I thought would spruce up the solid black yard. Well, two things happened: the skinny yarn really bulked up the yarn and the purse ended up a lot bigger than the sample purse; plus, you can't see the wonderful simple pattern with the fuzzy/flag yarn added. I then knitted a single stitch to make a latch to go over the plain white button I added.

Close up of my purse fastened with button

OK, what I liked the most about the sample I purchased was the pattern. So, I knitted another one and it came out perfect. But, it needs more than a button to compliment the simple design.

My dark gray purse

Close up of "my flower" that I winged

Amazingly, I picked up a crochet needle that we were using to tuck in the yarn on the back sides and proceeded to crochet a tight circle and try to remember how we did something like this at Margie-Romney-Aslett's workshop called Spark! The Event in Utah over a year ago. I just winged it and I think it is fine. I'm going to sew Velcro at the top to work as the fastener on this purse.

Pink hat that I made

The year before I had learned to make this little hat that was a patter from designer Kim Hargreaves, called Elsie. It is in a book called The Rowan Cork Collection. This hat was the first thing I ever knitted beyond scarves and one shawl. I actually made a couple of them the year before.

Pink Scarf that Patricia made

Well, Suzi Blu rents her house from the neatest gal, Patricia who owns the wonderful little shop in Leucadia called Embellishments. She had theses beautiful scarves that she crochets and I asked her to make me one in pink which she did. So, at The Blac Sheep, I found this beautiful silk/wool/Alpaca yarn that worked wonderfully with Patricia's scarf yarn.

Patricia's pink scarf again

I am going to wear all of this when I go back to Baltimore January 29 - February 1. Yes, this is the same time I was suppose to go with Suzi to CHA in Los Angeles this year. I am very sad to miss this fun time and Suzi understands. I have promised to help her however I possibly can all month while she prepares for CHA. My son is graduating and the entire family is going back there to be present and support Erik's accomplishments. I sure hope it is cold and I will have the opportunity to wear some of theses warm things I have knitted. When I visited him in November they had a warm spell and I didn't need any of the warm clothing I had brought.

New Year's resolution - to improve on my picture taking and presentations. I have no excuse except that I use a very, very small Sony Point and Shoot. But, I truly know PhotoShop and CS5. I need to take the time to use it when my camera fails me. But, I hadn't posted for so long, I just wanted to get this up.