When I last checked in, I mentioned that I would be taking a little break from crafting for about three weeks following my first craft show of the year. I didn’t stop making things completely, but I didn’t touch my torch for two weeks. I even managed to get a little bit organized. A very little bit.
I was hoping that during that time, I’d get my new oxygen concentrator so I could hook up my new torch. Plus, I was giving my left hand a chance to rest.
My poor hand… Ever since I started testing the limits of my Cricket by making larger beads, my mandrel-holding/spinning hand has become swollen and achy. According to WebMD, I most likely am suffering from DeQuervain’s Syndrome**. It’s also called, “mommy thumb,” “washerwoman’s sprain” and “gamer’s thumb.” I think it’s time to add “lampworker’s thumb.” Or maybe “bead maker’s thumb.”
That reminds me… While taking some time off from crafting, I did some searching for new craft fair venues. I came across a Craigslist ad asking for craft vendors and telling them to contact them via email for an application. So, I did telling them that I was a lampwork artist and jewelry maker. I got a response back that said, “We’ve already got enough jewelry vendors, but we could use your lamp artistry.” /facepalm
Sigh. Yet another person who thinks “lampwork” means making lamps. What is a girl to do? Oh, yeah. MAKE LAMPS. So, I did, though not with my torch. I used my bottle cutting “artistry” to turn a Skyy Vodka bottle into a hanging swag lamp. Of course, I had some help from my hubby when it came to actually wiring the lamp, (and when I say “help” I mean that he wired the whole damn thing before I could even snap pictures to use as reference,) and it turned out pretty nice.
The awesome thing about bottle cutting/lamp making is that it can be done inside my air-conditioned house, rather than the garage. OMG, it’s been so hot lately that I really have to go out to torch by 6:00am just to get a couple hours in before it gets too hot to work out there. It’s been too hot to work out there, even when just etching the copper for earrings…
…Which makes me really glad that I found (yet) another thing I can do in the house during inclement weather – beading. It was brought to my attention that all of my jewelry (bracelets, specifically) were very breakable, being that they were made from glass. A young girl at the Summer Stroll in Yuba City asked me if I had any bracelets that just tied on. I didn’t, but I started looking at stuff on the internet and learned that macramé is making a big comeback.
Other than some embroidery floss “friendship” bracelets I made when I was a kid, I never learned how to macramé. I watched some video tutorials, dug deep into my bin full of stringing materials, and tried my hand at making some macramé bracelets. I imagine that a twelve year old at a summer camp is probably accomplishing the same thing right now, but still. I was pretty proud of myself. I grabbed a few of my “almost” orphan beads (which means that there are only 2 or 3 matching beads) and strung up a few on some cord that I had. But, I can’t truly feel like it something new unless I buy a bunch of stuff from a craft store or two.
So, that was a couple weeks ago and there has been an evolution from hemp cord macramé to leather mosaic wrap bracelets. I watched a video tutorial and fell in love with these bracelets. They are comfortable to wear, fun to make and apparently, pretty trendy. Four trips to the bead shop and $100 later… It never ends.
My next sale will be Sunday, August 11th, 8:00am – 3:00 pm, in Placerville. I’m going to be partnering with Susan Lopez of Patsy Emporium again. Come say hi!
** Either I have this De Quervain’s Syndrome or osteoarthritis which sounds like something that someone of a more advanced age would have. I’m going to go with “Gamer’s thumb.”