Thursday, November 8, 2012

Winter's Comfort Food

I'm going to start with the animal pictures today.
So this is what I see looking out my living room window.
A cow moose and her calf  noshing on what's left of our puny garden.

All that munching must have made them tired... 

Because they laid down and took a rest directly after the snacking.
How do you like my little raven bird? My husband HAD to get it for me at one of the local shows for my birthday
Alaska doll maker Mariska Wright of Mariska's Creations made these. You really ought to check out her page

So while the moosey's are getting their winter comfort food I decided to make some caramel and marshmallow candy.
This is my beater right before one of the whisks broke off. It said to whip it for 15 minutes until stiff.
This was about minute 7 so I thought it had to be good enough.
I was mesmerized by the gooey snail shape as it whipped.
Then I had to fish the whisk out of the marshmallow fluff.
It's always a mess no matter what I'm creating!

Not bad but it must have taken me over an hour to just cut and wrap these.

Back to the studio now. 
Here is my Pipnmolly talisman against the crystalized frosty window near my computer.
Don't put your tongue on it!

Let's talk about "product"
I happened to be perusing the Afro hair aisle when I spotted this can.
Ingredients: Petrolatum, microcrystalline wax and fragrance.
I'm thinking that it smells a hell of a lot better than Johnson's Paste Wax and might serve the same purpose for an application on metal like we do with our steel wire work and the like.
The smell was imperceptible the next day and seemed to absorb nicely too. The price was right as well for under $4
Cool can isn't it? So retro it could pass for vintage (except for the bar code on the bottom)

Then there was this  Australian Beeswax with petrolatum, iron oxides, mica titanium dioxide and fragrance. Smells pretty much like plain wax to me and it's black!
So there are cheaper options to experiment with.

You know how long it's been since I made any focal beads?
Long time. Things were hopping so much with my supplies there for awhile that I didn't take the time. It used to be all I did and I never made sets of anything. Things change and flip flop ebb and flow with this biz.. We're talking ebb currently but that's OK. I was losing my attention span for  the small stuff for a bit. 
I was spending most of my time making earrings for local shows and it seems like the newest ones are first to go. I didn't even get to document some of them. There's a really cool set on my phone that I clicked before I bagged them up. Now I need to figure how to get them  to my computer. Just send them right? Except we have no reception out here so I have to remember to do it when I'm away from home...which is like never during the week.
Oh yeah I did find some leeks at the local market and made some super potato leek soup.
Mmmm,  more comfort food!
Here's some  Alaskan inspired aurora beads that I used to make back in the 90's.
Wow, that feels funny to say that. I used to sell lots of these and then I got kind of tired of them.
Maybe I need to ressurrect the design, I don't know. I can't even figure out how to spell resurrect now. Oh must have got it because there's no red dotted line under it now.
Used to be a good speller too...and remembered names with a steel trap acuity.

So I was reading about double headpins over at Art jewelry Elements blog.
She gives a tutorial on  how to make double headpin connectors with copper. 
I took it a step further and did it with glass instead of just balling up  the copper.

So you can take this

And turn it into this you don't get that flippy floppy business of a single headpin when you're trying to connect it. Think of the possibilities! I plan on making some more of these to sell but my lil ol' studio is on it's way to shutting down soon until I get south and then I can put some time into making and listing some new components then.

I left this one shiny because I used a good bit of silvered glass ( Double Helix for those of you lampworkers in the know) and it seems to lose it's ethereal effect when I apply the crustification.
You'll be seeing these beads popping up in the shop varreh sooon.

Now would you believe I thought I was using the same base glass for these beads?
I was using up ends and they looked awfully similar starting out.
They still make a good limpet set don't you think?

Some more double headpins but these are on heavier copper wire - 18 gauge

Here I'm showing you their belly buttons. It was a natural birth.

More  crusty "oobers"

Shiny stripy Double Helix... See now you know what 'm talking about.
Lookit that gorgeous ethereal metallicnessosity!

These ended up with a plethora of multicolored speckles against that fossily base.

S'nother focal bead. I actually did crustify the double helix here just to be daring and all that. It does tend to take it down a notch and with the silvered glass being upwards of $100 a pound you don't want to squander it,  knowwhatimean?

Ah yes, another stab at this style. I'm holding back on selling these cuz you know... I need to make more and then maybe one day I can aspire to get them in a magazine or something. It's on my list of to do and join the club with all of you's published types out there. You know who you are.
I have a mighty stack of the rusted metal tiles waiting for me down in Arizona.
Did I mention it's less than three weeks till we leave!!
I'm paying a small portion of my winter dues to get out of here with this subzero and wind and all. 
But there's so much beauty to the winter here too it really is astounding.

I leave you with a peek at the undersides of these limpets.
If that doesn't get you excited I don't know what will.


  1. Kim that is a most gorgeous scene and what a wonderful thing to get to experience.
    Wow look at all that snow!!!

    Your items are lovely and your crusty things are very hot pepper like ;)

    I seriously thought you were doing some sort of ceramics before I read it was whipped candy it is a shell for sure!

    Take care

  2. Love the Moose photos.
    I hope they will have enough to eat this winter. Besides your garden !
    The marshmallow caramel candy looks fabulous.
    Hey... just so you feel comfortable when you come back to Arizona we are going for 86 today to 57 on Saturday with possible snow on the Catalina Mountains. Some crazy storm is blowing in. It will be gone in a second but still way too early for us.

    cheers, parsnip

  3. The Shiny stripy Double Helix are GORGEOUS! As are your earrings.

    And your candy looks amazing as well...

    I'm jealous that you have moose outside your window - would love to see that!

  4. The most exotic thing I have outside my window is a bluejay but I don't want to pay the subzero dues to see anything more interesting. As much as I like your crusties, the shiny beads are really beautiful.

  5. Ohhhhhhh, thanks for the gorgeous eye candy! Such yummy stuff you've created!

  6. Moose viewing from the couch!! Raven looks interesting but I don't facebook. Cabin fever candy? Interesting wax options. Who'd a thunk? Like the double headpins idea and your rusted metal tile earrings are well worthy magazine fodder.

  7. Oh boy would I love to see a moose in my yard!! Great shots! And as always I love all your work. Love those earrings, it's inspiring me to put alot more holes around some of my copper pieces. I have some almost ready to fire as a matter of fact I might add a bunch to some of them!

  8. Loving this post!
    Jealous of your moose view.
    Keep warm!

  9. The mosses are amazing oh how I would go crazy seeing that... Thanks for the wax options .. Cool
    Next belle Amoire deadline is coming up jan 15 th I believe.. Send your stuff in girl... Huge thrill to get in you will love it!
    Xxx cynthia

  10. Oh how I love your new style earings, oh yes about time to get in a magazine or two you! Hope you can hang in their and it's not too cold before you get down to warm(hopefully) Bisbee and play in the southern climes! Nicer here today but was cold this week. Not ready for winter myself this year. xox

  11. Great post, but my favorite line..."I happened to be perusing the afro hair asile......". Hahaha and with your fine straight hair, I can see just why you would be. Where to start? Amazing view from your window. A mama and baby! Fantastic! Your caramels look scrumptious. The new lampworking is wonderful as usual. Great twist on the double wire headpins. Great new earrings. Wowee. I need to go back and read it again to soak it all in. Thanks for the alternative wax choices. Whoda thunk it?! Now let me go back and peruse your epic and fab post again.....

  12. Wow what a post.... so much to see, and lots to learn about! Beautiful work as always Kim, and love the moose pics. Try to enjoy your last 3 weeks, as you will forget about the cold wind before you know it!

  13. Phew !!!thought your comfort food might have been those loverly Mooses out there !!!...........great great beads... you are a beadynosity .....xx

  14. No wonder your work looks so yummy, when you spend your free time whipping up candy marshmellow snacks...and that moose family--wild!

  15. Blimey crikey - you're leaving again - it seems like only yesterday that you were arriving back up there! W-OW - and I get thrilled looking at a fat squirrel!! What must it be like to have a pair of mooses (or is it just moose? Mice? Moo?) just hanging about in the garden?!!! Too wonderful!! Holy snakes, that looks cold though. Clearly you have a vehicle with very substantial tires.
    Where to start on ALL your gorgeous new creations?? Every one a stunner! Great idea with the double headpin - as you say, it lends itself to all manner of possibilities.Oh good lord - the colour of those ochre and grey crusty bits of ooberliscious - too good!! LOVE the rusty dangles - oh yeah, Belle Armoire will have your arm off for those, I'm sure!
    What a wonderful post!! Good luck with your forthcoming hike back to Arizona. What a wonderful way to live!!
    xoxoxoxoxox :O)

  16. was going to ask how long you are staying up there, am catching up here after no computer - no internet for what seems like an age. beautiful work kim and i love your collaboration with pipnmolly


You might have something you want to say about this!