Friday, April 7, 2017

Bead Peeps Swap-n-Hop Reveal...

Today is the day for the 3rd annual Bead Peeps Swap -n- Hop...

This swap was again hosted by Linda Anderson . This is the 3rd year she has stepped up and hosted this swap so that some of us beady jewelry artists can swap some beads with a partner, create some awesomeness from said swapped beads and then share it on our blogs/Instagram for the world to see! I love doing these swaps it pushes me to work with and/or through things that I naturally do not gravitate towards or would not typically purchase and work with.  Every time I participate I like to try a new technique whether it be something small or something substantial, I try to push myself a little.

So this time my partner was Dana Philips. She makes ceramic beads and pendants. When I found that out I was so excited!! I love earthenware, mugs, plaques, beads you name it I love it! I was hoping to get some whimsical, cute animal or a pendant stamped with something, but what I got was much different, we are supposed to have a challenge and it was a little challenging, but in a good way. I am totally ordering a couple of pendants from her, the ones that I will order will be whimsical and / or a cute little animal. 

Okay now on to what we sent each other. The first batch will be what I sent to Dana.


All the pendants were made by yours truly. If you know me then you know that I adore soft soldering, love everything about it! As you can see I soldered 5 pendants for Dana. In case it's not obvious there's a real butterfly wing pendant, a real four leaf clover pendant ( my brother-in-law finds so many it's uncanny, one would think would have better luck than he does), the blue one is Kyanite, the gray is labradorite and the orange is aragonite, all gemstones. Then the others are 2 verdigris pendants that I patinated, the round one has vintage metal flowers attached. Then the cloche pendant is one that I assembled there's a cutie pie gnome(love gnomes) a little moss and a tiny mushroom that I made and painted. Then of course I threw in some coordinating beads, some toggle clasps and ribbon.

Now onto what Dana sent me.

The lampwork focal is Lorna Johnston, the little lampwork beads are by Jill Cage, the flower drops are from Bandana Girl ( Melinda Orr). The ceramic beads are made by Dana, I didn't know what the focal was, I was a little embarrassed I didn't want to be insulting in any way but I was clueless. Dana said it the seed from the tree of life series and it's named  Ellcrys, she also made the 5 ceramic beads and the headpins. She then sent a vintage key (right up my alley) some reclaimed brass beads and some oversized brass lobster clasps.

Now what I made with everything I was sent and of course a little bit about the how and why.

Really loved these drops. I wanted to use something a bit more colorful but after trying out, I don't know 10 combos, I decided that I liked the shape and muted colors of the Jasper beads the best.

Now these were made with  the lampwork beads that I was sent. I love the color purple so I had to use them somehow. I'm not a fancy girl, so making fussy things is hard for me, but these beads were beautiful and they called to be made fancy, like something you would wear to a party or with a formal gown ( you may not think so but that just goes to show how plain and unfussy my style is). I don't usually make my own components but I couldn't find any ear wires I like with the design so I made them myself out of 20 gauge sterling wire I even added the little bead and hammered to keep them in place. I really like how they turned out.

I rarely work with lamp work beads. I love them, I own many, especially sculptural beads, but to me they are something that I would collect like little tchotchkes, little pretties that you display, not something I make jewelry with. So this bead was hard for me. I had to think on it for a while and then I had one of those light bulb moments and I just knew what it would become, something for me to wear. I love long necklaces and have been making myself necklaces that I can layer and this became something for me to wear. I made the tassel using a couple of pieces of scrap leather that I had ( I cut apart leather clothing from thrift shops when I can get them for a reasonable price), cut a fringe and then rolled them together and added them to a bead cap. The bead cap was a bright silver so bright you could stop traffic with it  and I hated it so I added some Novacan black to give it that dark color I wanted. Then or course I wire wrapped some crystals and some leather lacing to finish it off. I left the ends of the leather undone so that I can adjust the length as it suits my needs.

Okay Dana said this was the tree of life seed, but having gone to Catholic school when I first saw the seed it reminded me of the Sacred Heart  that used to be one of my scapulars. The sacred heart symbolizes Jesus Christ's physical heart and his divine love for humanity. The tree of life thing had me stumped so I rolled with what I thought it was when I first saw it, so I paired it a vintage religious medallion of Jesus. I also used pearls, some brass chain, brown leather and one of those oversized lobster clasps that Dana sent. I must admit this turned out to be my favorite piece, this is for sure mine to keep. I can't wait to wear it.

This is what became of the vintage key. I tied a little vintage lace to it. Stacked some vintage mother of pearl buttons to hang the key from. I also soldered a large mother of pearl button into a connector  ( I simply couldn't pass up soldering and using something I soldered in a design). For this I have been hoarding this vintage silver chain I had to use it for this piece, I think it's sterling, the original clasp was broken but it was stamped.

And lastly I asked Dana which of my focals she was going to use and she said she wanted to work with the labradorite or the butterfly  I only had time to work on one so I chose the labradorite since I'm obsessed with  this stone.

I made a super long necklace this is one continuous piece. That can be worn different ways, there is no clasp at all. This one is also a keeper for me. So it's my soldered pendant and a smattering of labradorite beads, then I added the briolette drop to a jump ring at the end of the long chain. I cannot tell you how much I love this piece.

I want to thank Linda for hosting and Dana for being my partner I can't wait to see what you came up with! Oh and here are the other participants.

Linda Anderson (Hostess)
Hope Smitherman

Seed Beaders

Until next time,




Saturday, March 25, 2017

Bead Soup Blog Hop 2017......



I am so glad to be able to, again, be part of one of my favorite blog hops. It's been a few years since this one last took place. I would like to thank our lovely hostess Lori Anderson  for all the hard work and time she has devoted to make this exchange and hop happen for all of us!

I would love to introduce my partner Heather Marston. She is a busy mom, enamel artist and also teaches preschool. It was unfortunate, but we really didn't get to know one another very well, but our families and careers must take precedence, when folks are busy.  But I was sent a fun, yet challenging variety of hoarded goodies to work with.

This is the batch of hoarded goodies that I was sent. There are some Czech beads, a really big focal (neither of us know what the stone is) a couple of her enamel pieces, a couple of ceramic focals and lastly a couple of banana shaped beads.

Next is what I sent to Heather...


The top picture is what I hoard the most and that's labradorite. I love everything about it. I am always drawn to it. The 3 focals I have been hanging on to for quite a while. The others are  some strands of labradorite from my collection, let's be real I can actually call it a collection. The second picture it one of the other things that I tend to hoard and thats vintage crystal beads. I love them, they are very different from the modern crystal beads that you can purchase,  I think that it's the cuts and facets that set them apart.


I was so excited to open my package, there were a couple of things that I wasn't sure what to do with. I wanted to use or make something with every last thing I was sent, but I have a life outside of my studio and just couldn't pull it off. Believe it or not the bananas were the first thing my weird brain gravitated towards, I instantly knew what I wanted to do. So here's what I did with the banana beads.

He is totally going to hang from my rear view mirror of my car. I'm not exactly sure what it's called but that's what it is.

Then I just had to make a necklace with this enamel piece, it's beautiful. The colors are rich and the combination of colors is perfect. 

Next this is how I used the spotted Czech beads. I used 2 part epoxy putty ( for the first time) to make this ring. I really do love how it turned out. 

I took a picture of it on my hands and boy does summer need to get here soon, I need to load up on lotion and maybe get a manicure. Needless to say I will not be posting the picture of my pretty ring on my ugly hands!

The next one is my absolute favorite piece. I like simple, when it comes to jewelry that I personally wear. The ceramic focal I was sent was my favorite color, purple, I had to make myself a piece with it and this is what my personal style looks like. They are separate pieces and I have decided that I am going to make a load of similar style necklaces, in different colors, length, gemstones and charms, so that I can mix and match and layer them to match my clothes. I can't believe I never thought of doing that before.

Okay I am going to be super honest here, this focal was the hardest for me to work with, but I felt compelled to make something, since Heather had hoarded it and then shared it with me. I was stumped. Lori said no matter what, we are all jewelry artists so we can make something out of anything and that's what I did.  I tried a style that I have never worked with (tribal like) and even did some knotting work, also something I have never tried. I worked this piece for ages and just when I was about done, the thin leather cord broke from me over working it. I used so many colorful words, you have no idea how many, I mean so many. But I finally made it through making it, but after this I never want to look at it again. If someone wants it, let me know I will gladly send it to you! 

 I want to  thank Heather for being my partner and Lori for putting this all together. I hope everyone has fun hopping and I can't wait to see everyone's creativity! I almost forgot here's the list of participants....



Till Next Time,



Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Getting to Know One Another....

For a blog hop that I participating in, the hostess wanted us to give a little intro on who we are, what we like and don't like and maybe show some pictures of what we make.

A little about me...

-My name is Maria Rosa but all my friends call me Rosa, big ethnic family with too many Maria's so it's always been Rosa for me.

- My day job is managing a local health food store, which I love! I get to help people feel and be well on a daily basis.

- I love music! I try to always have it in the background of my life if possible. My taste in music is very eclectic. People think my Pandora is funny it goes from a song from The Sound of Music to Tim McGraw to My Chemical Romance, to the Beatles, it's all over the place.

- I'm not a big fan of movies ( I can't sit still for long). I'm also not a big fan of T.V. but I do love some Jeopardy, I have loads of useless crap clogging up my brain so I do pretty good at answering "clues". My husband seems to think I should take the online test. Thanks for having faith in my brain, I don't have as much faith as him.

- I am bilingual I speak Italian and English. I currently am trying to learn Spanish so that I can be trilingual? or maybe it's multilingual, I think that would be awesome.

- The reason I'm trying to learn Spanish is that when I retire (too long from know) I hope to do so in Costa Rica. It's amazing, beaches and rain forests it's one of the most diverse places on the planet, I would love to live there and the language they speak is Spanish.

- I like things to be simple. I'm not an over the top kind of person. I don't dress flashy, I live in a humble home, I drive a modest car ( but i would love a 69 Chevy Impala or and old farm truck someday), I don't think life is about what you have it's about who you are! Material things just don't impress me that much.

- I'm not a huge fan of the color red. Not sure why I just don't.

- Purple is my favorite color.

- I love to cook. 

-I find washing dishes by hand relaxing.

- I also love to read.

- I also enjoy soft soldering. If it can be soldered I will try to do so!

On to seeing some things that I make....

 Found feather pendant, soldered by me.
 Vintage clock hand earrings.
 Pendant made using broken vintage jewelry bits.
 Necklace made using a vintage projector slide, vintage religious medal and some sparkle.
 Soldered butterfly wing connector, made by be, then beaded.
 Soldered butterfly wing pendant, also soldered by me.
 Religious earrings and bracelets made using vintage components.

See you soon,


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Winter Happenings....

Lots Going on this time of the year....

For me at least. Summer is the time where I can take things a little slower but now I am chugging away at so many things.

-Dilemma there are 2 blog hops that I want to participate in but they are really close to the same time and I'm not sure if I will be able to do both :( So I will have to do some contemplating but I am gravitating to one more than the other.

-Had an amazing show right before Christmas this year. I don't really do shows but the organizer of this one sought me out to participate. It was all local artists and crafters. I worked hard to prepare, but the people were so nice and I sold a ton. I am grateful to all who purchased from me and I hope that you and your loved one's are enjoying my creations!

- My husband is a pretty good guy. Whenever it snows hard he goes out and clears so many peoples snow for them he does my mom's, sister's, neighbor's, my work (so I don't have to) and a couple of others ( he works as a bridge carpenter so when it's really snowy they don't work). This year my neighbor sent these cookies that she decorates as a thank you. They are so adorable!! And delicious. She is very talented.

-We had a beautiful Christmas, it was so relaxed and nice. We did no rushing around. I am truly blessed to have so many people that love and care about me. My son is becoming a fine young man he is so caring and kind and just happy and grateful for anything you do for him, which always makes me want to do even more for him. Here he is too early (he claims) on Christmas morning, he looks like a grown man but he is only 15. I am lucky to be his mom, for sure!!

I asked what gift he liked most of all and he said if he had to pick one thing it was the Full Metal Alchemist Pocket watch. It's from an Anime that we watched together.

- I couldn't leave out this handsome fellow, his name is Dozer and I just love him to pieces he is only a little over a year old but he is a supersized sweetie pie. People are scared of him since he is so big but he is the most loving, gentle and smartest dog that I have been around.

- I always resolve to do things in the new year but this year I decided to do something daily that shows someone, anyone that people are kind and care, whether it be holding the door for someone, saying hello at a passerby, listening to someone who needs a ear, lending a helping hand to someone in need or hugging someone while they cry. I think that if everyone did something like this just once a day our world would just be overflowing with kindness, that's the type of world I would love to live in!!

See you soon,


Monday, August 8, 2016

New Idea...

It's not my idea but a fellow jewelry blogger that I follow does this, I enjoy hers and I think that my blog will benefit from this too. 

She just adds bullet points with some interesting tidbits about whats happening in her life and Viola, an easy and quick post to keep people informed and to let them know you haven't fallen off the face of the Earth.


This summer has been a hot one and super busy too. What I've been up to.

- Work of course, it always seems that I am at work.

-It's been super hot here in Michigan so we have been able to put our pool to good use this year.  

- I convinced my teenage son to not only one but 2 zoo trips. One to the Toledo Zoo and the other to the Detroit zoo.

-We went at the beginning of summer to the Toledo Zoo and it was so chilly that we had to were our jackets most of the day.

- The little one with us is my Niece's little girl Madi. She hangs with us a lot.

- My 15 year old son is working on growing full beard, I call him Wolverine.

- Just finished sanding, painting and updating a headboard for my bedroom and just love how it turned out!

- I have to get this guy ready for driver's training and back to school, he does online high school and excelled so much last year that he's doing it again this year. He went from grades that were toilet bound, to pulling off a 3.3GPA, He made me very proud!
- I have a couple more projects that I am working on, maybe I'll show the progress or maybe even a little tutorial here. They aren't jewelry, but one uses jewelry, and the other is going to store jewelry making supplies.

- Haven't been able to make jewelry for weeks now. I hyper-extended and possible fractured my thumb, the swelling was too bad to see anything on an x-ray. So I have been in this contraption.

-Who  knew you used your thumb for so much? Well, this girl knows now! So there's only so much I can do. Since I can't make jewelry, I decided to clean and organize my studio instead, not as much fun, but I always put that off and if you saw it the way it looked when I started, well I shudder to think, the reaction you would have! Still have a ton to do, but it's getting there!

Hope to see you Soon,


Sunday, May 15, 2016

Bead Peeps Swap and Hop Reveal......

Today Is the day for the Swap and Hop Reveal...

I'm sure most of you know how this works, but if by chance you don't I will give you a quick summary. Our hostess for this swap is the lovely Linda Anderson. She painstakingly matched, everyone who signed up with partners. So then the object or rules are that you send your partner an artisan bead or focal, a clasp and if you really want any beads or other goodies to go along with them and then they create wonderful, gorgeous pieces of jewelry. 

This is the second year that I have participated in this hop and had such a good time last year, that even with my busy schedule and really no extra time on my hands, could not resist signing up! I was partnered with the sweet Susan Kelly . I was so excited when my package arrives, I'm like a kid at Christmas, so I could hardly wait to open it and let me tell you she did not disappoint.  Here's a look see at what Susan sent me.

I must have been a good girl this year, Susan sent me 3 focals, two were lamp work focals and the other was a copper heart with a working spinner!! Some jasper beads, daisy spacers, Greek donut beads, some resin beads, charms, cording and a handmade copper clasp.

Now a few  pictures of what I sent to Susan, just so you know what we had to work with.

All of the focals were made by yours truly. I sent out a couple of my soldered glass pendants one features a real butterfly wing, the other a pressed yellow daisy. The other focal is a druzy quartz stone that I added to a couple of filigrees that I layered. Then a spattering of matching beads and beaded chain that I made using vintage beads, it a color combo that I LOVE!

Just so everyone knows and I love all sorts of beady things, for some reason, I don't gravitate to lamp work beads. I have seen so many that are true works of art and I have seen the amount of talent, creativity, skill and time that goes into them, it's just not my thing. Oh I have many lamp work beads that I keep in their own container, I just NEVER make anything with them. So here I have 2 to work with and I was a little stumped. I thought that there is no way, what the heck am I going to make with theses. So I set my sights on the copper heart focal, I thought yup this is the one I will make something with and guess what that is the one that I didn't use, oh I will I even made a copper heart clasp for it, but I just, as always ran short on time. Let's get real I shopped for matching beads like a minute after my package arrived and you would think I would have started creating then right? Well that would have probably been smart I started the day before yesterday. I know slacker!!! But I work better under pressure, doesn't do much for my stress level, but boy can I whip some jewelry out! 

Okay enough of my yap trapping here is what I made.....

 This is the whole collection so in about 2 days and roughly 4 maybe 5 hours 7 pieces were made.
 These bracelets are bangles that I wrapped in silk, wrapped some wire around and add a couple of the charms that Susan sent me. These will be mine to wear. I love bangles!
 This set is made using the jasper beads and clasp that Susan sent. I had to patina the toggle a bit, it was a bright and shiny copper and I needed it more of an antique copper color. Simple which is totally my style. Oh and I made the copper ear wires, I didn't have anything that suited my design.
 This is the copper beauty that I'm in love with. I'm not even a heart gal, but I am totally a "this" heart gal. This is the heart clasp I made to match. Now I have to make something with it!
 One of the lamp work focals, loved the colors just made and easy beaded chain with a simple pair of earrings to match. These will go to my beautiful momma!! She'll love them! I made these with her in mind.

This is the other focal. It is so pretty on it's own I didn't want to do to much, so that the beauty of the bead could shine. I just added a little chain fringe with a few color coordinating crystal to the end on a super long copper chain.
 Oh and I almost forgot to show the ring that I made from the Czech beads I was sent. I wrapped them to make them into the flower shape you see here.

This is how it looks on.

Thank you Linda for hosting this swap and Hop, I'm sure it was a lot of work. I will now shut up, so that you can visit all of the talented jewelry artists blogs to check out there pretties. Here's a list and have fun hopping!!!!

Linda Anderson
Natalie Davidson

Marcy Lamberson
Kathy Lindemer

Dita Basu Http://
Andrea Glick

Kristina Peck
Shai Williams

Catherine La Vite
Christina Hickman

gloria allen
Teresa Schurter

Maria Rosa Sharrow
Susan Kelly

Jenny Kyrlach
Michelle McCarthy

Terry Jeanette Carter
Lee Koopman

Laurie Vyselaar
Marianne Baxter

Divya N
Kelly Hosford Patterson

Johana Nunez
Kari Asbury

Kristina Hahn Eleniak

Robin Lynne Showstack
Rosantia Petkova

Claire Fabian
Inge von Roos

Rachel Mallis
Sam Waghron

Lori Schneider
Fay Wolfenden


Suse Stelljes
Ginger Bishop

Nelly May
REbecca White

sheila Prosterman

Krafty Max

Renetha Stanziano
Becky Pancake

Katy Heider
Deborah Apodaca

Heather Richter
Tami  Norris

Brandy Scozzari
Catherine King

Kathleen Breeding
Veralynne Malone

Bobbie Rafferty
Lori Blanchard