Saturday, October 6, 2012

REVEAL DAY: Holiday Bling Blog Hop

Created by Rita of Toltec Jewels

It's finally here...REVEAL DAY for our Holiday Bling Blog Hop!

What is the Holiday Bling Blog Hop you ask...

Back in August my friend Marlene Cupo and I were talking the holidays, yes in August! What can I say, we are proactive! We wanted to swap ornaments. Then we decided to open it up to our other friends so everyone could have some fun,  and HBBH was born! The plan was to partner up people and the partners would then decide what they'd exchange – could be handmade ornaments, jewelry, decor, whatever – it just had to be Holiday themed. With all of our diverse backgrounds we said they could choose any holiday, but it should be a winter holiday. Examples given were Chanukah, Christmas, Kwanzaa , Ashura, Bodhi Day, or Boxing Day.  

After signups the partners were assigned. I was very lucky (did I tell you I have great bead Karma!) and got partnered up with Rita of Toltec Jewels! Turned out that Rita is THE Queen of Christmas. She loves the holidays and goes all out! She has SEVERAL trees decorated throughout her home.  So CHRISTMAS as our holiday choice was a no-brainer.

After some discussion back and forth it was decided we would exchange window ornaments! Hmmm, what the heck am I going to do? Off to the library I went. Loaded with about a dozen books on holiday decorating I began my research. First thing I discovered was that holiday decorating books are probably the largest, heaviest books in the library. They are NOT make for reading in bed!
So after reading book after book I still didn't have a clue, and since I don't have Martha Stewart on speed-dial I was at a standstill (story of my life!).

What to do?  DING! Go back to one of my former haunts - stained glass! Hmmm... I don't have any of those tools anymore. AH-HA but I do have some clay! See I may not always have an idea but I AM resourceful so I knew that once I was on a path I'd figure out how to get it done.

First I went online and googled "christmas coloring books" under images. I chose a picture I liked - this one ------>>>>

I extruded some black clay and used it to outline the design. Once the whole image was outlined I baked the clay. Then I filled each cavity with translucent clay. Around the outer edge, the background of the image, I filled with translucent clay mixed with bits of silver leaf. Just to give it a little sparkle. Within the designs I gave each section its own texture. I embellished some: drawing in the veins in the holly leaves;  building up the bulbs to give them a rounded appearance; adding embossed designs to differentiate the two bulbs.

Then I baked it again. This was a pretty tedious process so I did take shortcuts! I SHOULD have really colored each clay before I filled the cavities, creating a richer color but I didn't - not this time around anyways! I ended up 'painting' the finished mini-window (6"x6") with alcohol inks. The colors weren't as pretty as I had expected. The translucent clay kind of dulled them, but it was acceptable for a first try - I guess.

Here are a few pictures of the finished product...


Wasn't 100% happy but I put hours into it, so I sent it along to Rita.

AND then Rita sent me her holiday bling...and it is BLING!

I opened the package to find my very first 2012 Christmas card!!

Then I peeked inside the box... red and green loveliness!

Look at this beautiful holiday windchime! Isn't it the cutest, blingy-est, holiday birdy-est thing you ever did see? AND it sounds great and bling-bling-blings in the sunshine!!

And then on top of that, she sent me a cute little change purse with a chainmaille Christmas tree charm inside. SHE MADE THAT! Amazing, right?!
Man it's only October and I am already have a grand start on a beautiful Christmas (my first one without snow too! I'm gonna miss NY!)... so a special thank you my friend Rita!

Oh don't be sad and feel left out... we can't have that!  St Nick is joining in the fun and will be giving out gifts to three randomly-picked HBBH participants.  BUT in addition, ONE lucky blog reader will also be receiving a gift. To enter just leave a comment below.  When you comment, make sure your email is attached, or add it to your comment. Winners will be chosen and announced here on October 20th, so come on back!
Now GO, look at what everyone made and exchanged...go on, get some inspiration because the holidays ARE right around the corner!

PS: Due to unforeseen problems, some of our participants did not receive their goodies in time for this hop. Please check back later for an update on their blog.

Michelle Fanucchi
 Monique Urquhart
Therese Frank
Heather Otto
Jo-Ann Woolverton
Linda Florian
Debbie Rasmussen
Alicia Marinache
Ginger Bishop
Lo/  Lynn Jobber
Leanne Loftus
Rita/Toltec Jewels
Shelly Joyce
Shai Williams
Lori Bowring Michaud
Lennis Carrier
Marla Gibson
Mary Howell Govaars
Linda Younkmann
Shirley Jones Moore http://​www.beadsandbread.blo​
Melinda Orr
Marlene Cupo
Shelley Graham Turner         YOU ARE HERE right now!
Sonya Stille
Dyanne Cantrell
Anindita Basu
Dee Elgie
Gina Hockett
Lori Jean Poppe
Charlie Jacka
Stephanie Stamper (Woods)
Mary Hicks, Shannon Hicks

And let me be the first to say...HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!


Ginger Bishop said...

This was a brilliant idea! No matter how it turned out on my end I'm very glad I got to be a part of it.

Marlene Cupo said...

Shirley, that wind chime is amazing. Gonna look and sound great in your new home. And you know I love the stained glass!

Therese's Treasures said...

Hi Shelley,
First let me say thank you to you and Marlene for a great challenge I enjoyed playing along and getting to know my partner Alicia better. I love what you made for Rita and in turn what Rita made for you both are beautiful and I bet they really catch and throw the light around.

Marla said...

This was such a fun hop, Thank both you and Marlene for hosting it! I do hope yall will consider hosting more! I want one of your dream catchers Shelley! It is awesome! So creative! And that windchime you received it pretty darn amazing as well! Seriously! Can you make me one of those dream catchers?

Cindy said...

Shelley, what a fun blog hop concept! I like the way you started it early enough in the season so that people can get in that mindset and start get their creative juices flowing before the holidays....I'm always one step behind and things don't kick in until it gets much later in the season and I start to feel a bit stressed over it, then time to make anything handmade is limited. So just look at these amazing gifts you exchanged! Your window pane is, what a labor of love to create the outlines and fill in each section - I am SO impressed!!! It is beautiful! And I love the wind chime you received - just love wind chimes. Thanks for sharing - what a great idea!

AntiquityTravelers said...

What a fun hop you guys put together! I'm enjoying jumping around to all the blogs and getting into the spirit a little early :)

Shirley said...

Girl, you are just too creative! That is a STUNNING piece! I couldn't even think of something like that, much less all the time you put into it.
I had a great time with this hop, thanks so much to you and Marlene for thinking of it, and letting us all come and play!

Mary Hicks said...

Oh, all of the pieces on this blog hop are stunning! Thanks for hosting this blog hop, and thanks for sharing the beautiful work on your blog as well as Marlene's for those who are kind of homeless in the blog world! Please enter me for the drawing as well!

Linda Y said...

Thanks Shelley for such a fun hop. Christmas is one of my all time favorite holidays and Christmas decorations and ornaments are one of my favorite things. These both are AWESOME. I love them both. I love what you did with the stained glass piece and the wind chime. I wouldn't have thought of either of those. You both are so clever.

Toltec Jewels for Jewel School Friends said...

Wow!!! I'm delighted to learn how you created my beautiful suncatcher! Shelly, it's so nice, my daughter thought it was made from a craft kit or something seriously! lol, don't anyone let Shelly fool you -- it's very well done and so gorgeous! When I found out it was clay, I was shocked, thinking it must be resin. The sun light here in Florida just shines through, and the colors are brilliant and rich! I don't know what your Holidays are like, but they would be great to sell :) I'd love to give one to my daughter. Thank you my friend! And I'm just saying thanks to you & to Marlene too for this wonderful start to the Holidays. My holiday spirit is happy (a miracle considering some family things, right?) and I'm grateful for the GIFT of the HBBH :) AND grateful for the gift of my suncatcher! So, no blog hop gifts for me -- I have already gotten them! xxoo

Freestyle Elements said...

Shelley, thank you so much for letting me part of this blog hop---it was my very first one! You guys are so inspirational, and giving of yourselves, I hope to one day give back as much as is/was shared with me! Love the windchimes, so unique! And I can't imagine the hours you spent making your design! Thanks again,


The Creative Klutz said...

Thanks so much for hosting the blog hop - I had a lot of fun participating =)
Lovely swap pieces - the holiday windchime is so inventive and I'm amazed that you can make a suncatcher from clay, the details on it are fantastic =)

Sherri Stokey said...

Great hop, Shelley! Love the chimes Rita sent. And your ornament? PERFECT - very cool technique!

Micheladas said...

Shelley thank you soo much for cohosting such a fun hop. I had a great time. I love the windchime and ornament you got. I love the sun catcher you made. great idea. I dont know if my email is with my blogger.. so here it is.. thanks again, Mischelle

Sweet Freedom said...

Your stained glass is amazing - designing it from scratch - in all the hops I've ever seen, I have never seen stained glass. Kudos! And I love the whimsical wind chime you received!

dreaminofbeads / SAS Jewelry Designs said...

Oh my I just love love love love what both you and your partner awesome. Thanks for hosting such a fun blog hop.

Skye said...

Sorry I was too busy to join up for this >.< Maybe I'll be able to jump in next time !

Dyanne said...

Skinny girl here - stopping by to say THANK YOU for hosting such a fun blog hop! If you ever get rid of those chimes HOLLA at me! LOL! And please teach the ways of polymer clay!

Alicia said...

Shelley - thank you and Marlene for hosting this exchange and allowing us to be part of it: I had *tons* of fun!

Your decoration is lovely: the use of polymer clay is such a clever idea, as it will be much lighter than stained glass! And Rita's gifts to you are gorgeous too - I am sure they'll be loved for years to come!

Hopping through today (we just came home last night :))

Heather said...

I LOVE your "stained glass", Shelley!! The colors look just fine to ME! Thank you for letting me participate in this hop-it was fun and I loved seeing Christmas come early for all the participants xo

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Oh Ginger, sorry things went a little off course..but Santa still has you on his list!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Marlene! Thanks for co-hosting with me. You make a great REGIS..cause I am the cute, perky and skinny Kelly with the hot husband! LOL!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Thank YOU Therese for participating!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

I will make YOU anything Marla! You were my very first Swap hold a special place in my heart. AND your jewelry holds a special place in my jewelry box. HEY, I am about due for a new piece, whatcha got for me?! xxoo

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Cindy, I can sooo relate. EVERY year I collect ideas and have all these intentions, NEVER get it done. I usually end up running around last week before(heck, I'm lying, its the last day). I AM really, really, really going to try to get some homemade presents done this year! LOL

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Its so true. Hopping around DID get my creativity flowing! SO many nice designs, ideas I would have NEVER though to get to work on them. LOL

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Shirley! Thanks for joining on the fun! Hoping to do another round for some who missed out (and after seeing all our loot got very jealous! hahaha)

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Mary you are definitely in the drawing. We are so happy to see all the really beautiful items that were swapped - very creative bunch!!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Everyone who participated was very creative and put love into their exchanges. The holidays always bring out the best in people and even in October this rang true. LOVE the beautiful goodies everyone made!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Rita, I LOVE my windchime. Several people have offered to 'take it off my hands'...I have just given them one of those looks, out the side of my eyes, you know the one! BACK AWAY from my windchimes! I LOVE it! Again, thank you soo much.

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Gina, for a "very first post on your very first blog, and your very first blog " - YOU DID GREAT! Now keep it up! JOIN some more swaps, looking forward to what you do!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

LO, thanks for participating! That bracelet is to DIE for. GORGEOUS!!!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Thanks so much Ms. Sherri!!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

You are officially entered! Thanks for your kind words too!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Oh thank you! I tried, wasn't exactly the quality I was striving for, but I am always very critical of myself. Guess compared to my REAL stained glass it will never be as vivid but it was fun. I will just have to keep working at it.
Going over to look at your blog some more - I saw kiln pictures and I LOVE kilns! Thanks again for your kind words!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Thanks Sonya! I love the Christmas-y jewelry set you made. That bead weaving is so amazing and is truly Holiday bling!!!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

We'd love to have you and your creativity!! You are entered in the raffle drawing!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Hey there! BACK AWAY from the windchimes! (Slaps hand!)...I do love them, so festive and the sound is sooo pretty! As far as polymer clay, I can't teach you much, I was just playing around with an idea. Have to work on it some more.
THANK you for participating Dyanne!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Thanks Alicia. Yup much lighter but no comparison, I LOVE stained glass. I have alot of 'perfecting' to do but it was a start.

Thanks for participating..round 2?!

Shelley Graham Turner said...

Heather~ love, love, love your piece, but you already heard me say that huh? Getting ready to send off my driftwood for you to do what you do so well - bling it up!!! XXOO

Lisa Posthumus said...

Hi That little tree ornament is so cute. I wish I would have had time to join this one, I love Christmas!! I usually make ornaments every year.

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing...

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