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August Component of the Month with Art Elements – The Reveal.

At the end of July Caroline of Art Elements posted up the design challenge component, a beautiful set of her lovely galaxy beads.. who wouldn’t want to design with these!


Of course I said yes!!

About the same time as the design challenge was set, all the Art Elements team – me included – decided to have a Christmas in July Secret Santa and my partner was Jenny – you can find her blog and website HERE

Amongst a collection of ‘the best’ Summer Christmas gifts I received some ceramic cabs and so when I saw the beads from Caroline I knew what I was going to do.  First photo shows my beautiful cab from Jenny and the divine beads from Caroline.

I decided to be inspired by the very talented members of the team and have a go with bead embroidery.  I love bead embroidery but I am not very good at it, all those fiddly beads, but it was a challenge so I dragged out my seed beads and blew the dust away and chose some colours and bits to go with my pieces.  I wanted a night sky feeling so went for deep blues and purples with a flash of gold.

I didn’t have a design in mind other than I wanted to combine the both elements and have some fun stitching beads.  So I did just that over a period of a few days, a few minutes here and a few minutes there….

My result was a very free form piece with dangles, a nod towards a Moon Goddess and the stars.

One of my favourite sayings is ‘you need a certain kind of darkness to be able to see the stars’.

I am going to attach this piece to one of my sketchbooks so that I see it often.

Hope you can join in the blog hop and see what others created with their beautiful beads and to see more of Carolines work take a look at her website HERE, you won’t be disappointed!

Here are the others that followed the challenge

Art Elements Team
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A doodle a day……

I love to doodle and some of them find new homes which makes me doodle more!!  All my beads start off with a doodle, some a little more than a scribble but it all helps towards creating a whimsical creature in both glass and on paper.

Some of my doodles are finding homes which has inspired me to make some of them a little better finished, still a doodle but a a doodle with design!

The three lovely Poodles below were a commission for a birthday gift, I did them all in glass too 😉

Although I did change the light brown one for a darker brown as he wasn’t quite right.  The finished pieces were well received by a lovely lady and those that gave her the gifts.

A couple of night time doodles that just make me smile….

And a few I have just listed in my Etsy shop.  Mounted ACEO’s, Art, Cards, Originals and Editions.

You can find them HERE at Izzybeads on Etsy

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Stourbridge Glass Bead Fair Bank Holiday August Weekend

If there is one thing I dislike the most is labelling beads for a bead fair, I would much rather be doing something creative, like making more beads!

It leaves me looking a little bit like this…..

But, it is a necessary evil as this weekend, August Bank Holiday 26th and 27th, I will be in Stourbridge, in the Bonded Warehouse Bead Fair exhibiting as part of the International Glass Festival.  As much as it is a working weekend it is also a socialable event as both

Caroline of Blueberri Beads  and Lesley of Lesley Watt Artisan Elements  

will also be there and we plan on lots of eating and drinking in the evenings as it is an opportunity to meet up and catch up.



Bring along a copy of this flyer that Lesley designed for us – show us on your phone or mobile device is nicer to the environment 😉 – and receive a show discount of 10% off your purchases with us.

Hope to see you there

The Bonded Warehouse

                                                                                                              Canal Street



DY 8 4LU


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Chinese painting workshop

I did a Chinese painting workshop yesterday in Ross-on-Wye near me,  it was interesting and I brought two of the brushes, a larger wolf hair one and a smaller squirrel/raccoon haired one – the teacher couldn’t remember as the smaller one was one used in classes but I fell in love with it and she let me purchase it, these brushes will be brilliant with my pencils – despite being told they wouldn’t! Was an interesting day, I was talked into it by a lovely friend as I didn’t really want to go but it was nice to do something different. I am not a fan of the highly stylized art, there isn’t too much room for being different in the craft in its purest form, it focus’ very much on copying old masters – so old their names are lost in the mists of time. That said, I loved working with ink, hence buying a couple of brushes to see how i can use them with my Inktense pencils – the teacher said the inks was probably not the same.. but I disagree, you grind the ink for Chinese painting as it comes in a stick and you would have to grind the ink from the pencil in very much the same way. Was rather pleased with my hummingbird and lotus flower, you had to go directly onto the paper with the brush, no drawing or practising first! and the paper was soooooo thin!! I used two types of paper, grass paper and bark, the bamboo and minnows are on grass the other on bark, grass is the beginner paper and I liked it you had more control over the ink the bark is a smoother texture and therefore more difficult to control the bleeding. All in all I loved the day and it was with a great group of lovely ladies, all older ladies but they have the best stories.. one lady was telling how she was in a Russian hospital and how much vodka was consumed as she wanted to have a local anesthetic rather than a general as she didn’t quite trust she wouldn’t wake up with her arm not removed – she had an arm injury – after the local hadn’t worked the staff resorted to giving her vodka and she was most alarmed that the surgeon partook in this too! This was many years ago, I was the youngest in the group by quite a few years and I imagine this lady had a good 35 years on me!  She was a delightful person with a twinkle in her eye, I would love to hear more of her stories.


The teacher for the class was Katrina Stephens and you can see more of her work HERE   

It was a lovely day and Katrina was a good teacher with a rather impressive collection of fabulous inks, the Chinese really do know how to display their products, everything is so beautifully packaged.

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Art Journal – it’s a dog’s life

I never really understood art journalling but have kept sketchbooks for years so this year decided to experiment.   The idea is to have fun no fiddling with details, no worrying about perspective and correct angles even colour is chosen through instinct rather than calculated thought.   I now understand the peace and freedom of those adult colouring books… I think…


The need to fiddle is really over whelming, this piece is not right and drawing on the crease of the book really causes problems, BUT, I had fun, I relaxed and I didn’t touch it up in any way!!