Cassie Donlen, lampworking, beads, jewelry, lampwork beads, glass, hoypoloi, glass beadle, glassbeadle


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The October Archive
October 31

Happy Halloween! Hope you are have a gouly day!
Wow! Did you see the final bid for the Ebay auction to raise money for breast cancer research? $326.01 Is that not just awesome!? Scroll down to see the pink lentil for a link to the auction.

I'm getting closer to having the first DVD series completed. We need to refilm one of the beads. I used the rubino oro fuchsia and the camera had a really hard time focusing on the color. But I really want to use that color because it can be tricky to work with and it covers some great encasing tricks at the same time! In the mean time, hubby got a sample of the DVD ready to view on YouTube. The entire session was filmed with a didyium lense to filter out the orange flame.

Look at these acorns! How cool are they?!!!!! My kids had a camping trip two weekends ago with cub scouts and Connor came home with these incredible HUGE acorns. I'm not usually excited about acorns but these were so big and so unique. I kept them on my bead tray just to look at! Finally I couldn't resist! I had to make a lampwork acorn. I have some grand simple plans for these to be made into jewelry! They are wire wrapped with handmade PMC head pins. Actually, my mother was over yesterday and already decided that she had to have 4 of them for pendants for her girls club. Those didn't last long! I couldn't say no because she spent almost 2 hours cleaning beads for me!

Oct. 28: Grand news!!! I'm getting closer to getting caught up on bead orders! I can see the light. Yippee!!! So that means that I'm bringing down the start time for new lampwork bead orders to the 6-7 day mark before I start working. Remember though, it's first come first serve and I can get booked up fast again so if you are on a schedule, don't wait to order.

Okay.... I must admit that I'm really excited!!! We are about 1/2 way through filming my new lampworking how to DVD. It is turning out FANTASTIC! The video quality looks great and the instruction is flowing well. Hubby has started on some of the video editing already and he is doing a marvelous job! I'm hoping to complete the filming in the next few days. So then it will need a few days of video editing and we will be good to go.
This DVD is a first in a series. So this will cover some great bead techniques and reveals all my tips and secrets I've developed and learned over the past 5-6 years of lampworking. I'll give more detailed info when it is ready to be released:-)

Oct. 25: Okay, hubby dutifully pointed out that I did spell compana wrong! It is spelled Con Panna. My spelling lesson for the day although that is in the category of who cares so I probably won't remember 10 min. from now how to spell it right!

I took a few minutes last night to play with my new silver sheet and tools. That silver sheet cost a fortune! I have a small 6 x 4" sheet in the 20g that cost almost $60! The base part of the ring is made with pmc. I ordered these cool circle disc cutters that cut silver sheet and boy are they fun!!! This is my first try at riveting. I think I might be addicted! The bead is a hollow bead that has a silver tube going through the middle which makes the bead caps on each end permanent on the bead! How cool is that? The beading wire slides right through the tube! I better be careful or I will become addicted and all my beads will have these new caps! So I riveted the lampwork disc onto the ring. We haven't covered riveting in my class but we did cut some silver circles. So I guess I finally got brave enough to give it a try or better yet, broke down enough to buy all the supplies I need to really start playing!

October 24: Okay, I realized this morning that I need to stop going to St. Louis Bread Company (also called Panera's). You know how you get on a food kick and cravings? I do that all the time! They have these new panini breakfast sandwiches that taste really good. Well let me back up, before that... they have these incredible orange scones that I'm sure has 1,000 calories and I gobble them down like I haven't eaten in a week they are so yummy! Anyway.... as I'm getting my daily fix, the gal knows me by name. Okay, I have no clue but that just embarasses me or bothers me! Yes, it is great customer service but to think I frequent one place so often that they know me makes me think I gotta cut this out! This just isn't right!

Although, I'm not near as bad as hubby. He drives through Starbucks every morning (wish I would've been the person to come up with their business idea!). He gets a triple compana. Not even sure if I'm spelling it right. I guess it is basically 3 shots of espresso. (If he is having a bad day, he gets 4 shots!) Anyway, from what I understand.... he is the ONLY one that orders these. They all know him and what coffee he wants as soon as he drives up or walks in the door. Shame on him! ha!

Hey, I started my metalsmithing class last Saturday. I think it is going to give me the basics of what I want to know! I spent a small fortune on supplies! So expect to see some fun new things coming. I want to incorporate the lampwork beads with the silver so my goal is to learn to do some bezel setting stuff with the lampwork bead as the focal! Oh boy oh boy!

Oct. 22: Wow! Where did the warm weather go? This weekend was incredible. In the mid 80's. Today it is cold and raining in the 50's. I'm finally starting to feel better and my energy level has come back. Now 2 of the boys have colds and I'm sure it is a matter of time before I catch it from them. I tell ya, I'm the biggest baby when I get a cold. I don't know why but it just knocks me out. So keep your fingers crossed for me. I degerm myself all the time!

There is a great auction going on Ebay right now to raise money for breast cancer research. The proceeds go to the Komen foundation. A wonderful customer contacted a small group of lampworkers asking for donations for this auction. I sent her 3 yummy beads. The auction includes wonderful beads from other well known lampworkers. Here is your chance to get some delights and help support a great cause at the same time:-) Click on the pink lentil to go to the auction.

Oct. 19th: Well there is a birthday boy in the house. My middle child turned 8 years old today! Good grief! Wish I could slow down time! He is so excited. We are having a dress up family party for him tonight. He wanted everyone to wear cosutumes!

Still working on getting my energy level back to super hero levels! Got a ways to go!

Oct. 14: I'm still fighting this darn thing. It's strange. Not enough to knock me out cold but certainly enough to slow me way down. I'm so far behind on orders that I'm still trying to work and make beads. The bead output just isn't running at full speed.
Plus, I'm kind of bummed out because we were going to film my first lampworking how to video this weekend! I was hoping that I would feel better today but with a sore throat, talking just doesn't sound appealing. So we will push off production until next weekend hopefully.

I think my fellow lampworkers will really be excited about the video. There is so much I would love to cover and it just can't be done all in one shooting so I plan to make a series of them. This first one will cover a variety of bead techniques, how to get good heat control which will help with stringer action, encasing, working with reative glass, a quick blip on goldstone, making fun shapes, like cubes, barrels, and discs. etc. Then future videos will dive in deeper with certain themes. Like one with all flowers. Can't wait for that one! One all on disc beads from tiny, big holes, disc flowers, disc with twisties, etc, and one on hearts etc. Anyway... just a small hint of good things to come.

I reached a milestone this past Thursday morning that I wasn't anxious to meet. I knew it was coming.

WARNING.... if you have small children who can read.... have them avert their eyes until you decide if it is okay to read on....

I had to tell Keegan that Santa isn't real. UGH... he had been hinting around since last year but he never directly asked so it was kind of easy to divert the conversation.

This time he point blanked asked me while we were in the car taking Caiden to preschool. I tried the diverstion tactic of we'll talk about it later, but he wouldn't be put off. I usually let the boys stay in the car while I take Caiden into school. So I had Connor stay and made an excuse of why Keegan needed to walk inside with me.

And with a sad heart of seeing the magic go, I told Keegan the truth. He was kind of stunned for the first few seconds but handled it well. I let him know that Christmas was still wonderful and it is kind of like the Polar Express book and movie where it is always in your heart and then made sure to center the conversation around Jesus and what Christmas is really about. It was a really good conversation and all seems to be well. I made sure to point out that "Mom buys great gifts doesn't she!" ha!

So he promised to keep the secret another year for Connor but not sure if he will be able to pull it off. You know siblings.

I don't usually make holiday theme beads but here is a pic of some. I think I am going to write a how to tutorial on making the snowmen beads for the Dec./Jan. issue of Glass Line Magazine. I'm not sure but the deadline is coming up fast so I need to get working on it. In the mean time, I think these will be used for the next free beads contest! I still need them for photos when I write the article so the contest won't be for a few weeks yet.

Oct. 13: Ugh! Lucky me.... I've got a mild case of the flu! It isn't horrible but crummy enough to make me just want to lie around and do nothing. This isn't on my agenda! I'm too busy for this! I've had the chills all night. Even slept with a heating blanket!

I've got in stock the printed silver lentil beads that have both the words and the ones with the flowers. I need to take photos and I will get them added to the supply page. Not sure when. It all depends on when I'm up and about again.

My friend Ann sent me the link to this utube video the other day. For all you mom's out there, you will love it! It is so true! The title is "The Mom song sung to William Tell Overtune with Lyrics" You will have to copy and paste the link. I don't remember how to work it within the html to take you directly to it.

Oct. 6: Whew! That was a busy week! I was a single mom all week as hubby was out of town for 5 days. Between cub scouts, violin lessons, two soccer games, soccer practice, play dates, and everything else that 3 busy boys are into I didn't get a break hardly at all. Whew! Hubby is home and life is getting back to normal again.

Our 10 year anniversary was very low key. I told hubby I wanted to go to Hawaii but then I ended up choosing Disney World over Hawaii and making it a family thing! Just couldn't resist. My mom gave us a great anniversary present. The top of our wedding cake!!! She kept it in her freezer for 10 years!! HA! I wonder how it tastes. I wasn't brave enough to put the icing to my lips. It was a fond memory though!

The shopping cart is fixed on the muckle beads now. Looks like somehow I ended up deleting an entire html line. Who knows how I did that one!
My workshop is a mess. It is really quite boring. Hubby hasn't gotten any further besides getting up the 2x4's to fame in the walls and doing the electrical work. There is no ceiling and no drywall. But as the weather turns cooler and he is forced inside, I'm keeping my fingers crossed he will move in the right direction.

In the mean time, I was at the fabric shop looking for material to make Keegan a Halloween costume. I saw the cutest, brightest, totally girly pink fabric. I loved it. Hmmmm what could I do with it? There are no girls in my house (except me of course!). Hmmmm... I want that fabric.... I know there is something I can make with it! I setteled on a table skirt for one of my workbenches. I still need to sew it. I just pinned it together to see what I wanted to do. I'm going to get some fun trim to hang off the edge. The skirt isn't really practical as I am always grabbing stuff on the lower shelf. There are lots and lots of glass rods on the shelf down there! I should make it a curtain design for easy access.

Oct. 1: Happy October! It will be hubby's and mine 10 year wedding anniversary this Thursday! My how time flies!

I'm frustrated. I can't figure out what I did wrong but somehow I messed up the html for the muckle beads that I added to the page 4 gallery for custom orders. The shopping cart isn't working on any of the options. Thanks Jorja for pointing it out. It took me over an hour to get the whole page made. Then I was goofing up and couldn't get the photos to load. I got that figured out and some how messed up the shopping cart. I'm sure working on it until after 1 a.m. didn't help. I RARELY work past 11pm. Staying up past midnight is unheard of. I guess my mind wasn't working and now I have no clue what I did wrong. One of those simple mistakes that when I have hubby look at it he knows how to fix it in 3 seconds! But he designed my website so I guess he better no what is going on! :-) Now I just got get him to slow down enough to look at the page. I'll get it corrected shortly.

I finally did something that I've been really wanting to do for a few years. I signed up for a metal smithing class. I'm so wanting to expand and do all these cool silver things with the lampwork beads. I've bought some books and can figure out a lot of it but it just seems easier to have someone teach me! The class starts in 3 weeks. Can't wait!