Thursday, March 14, 2013

Thank you Christine Altmiller!

I have met some wonderful beady friends through social networking such as blogging and Facebook.  One of these very special friends is Christine Altmiller of One Kiss Creations.  It is because of Christine's co-sponsorship of a bracelet donation blog hop to the Rare Foundation's 7000 Bracelets of Hope Campaign in 2012 that I have donated many bracelets to this wonderful organization.  Thanks Christine!
Christine always writes the sweetest comments on my blog posts.  Recently, she commented that she loved my wire work, especially the swirled link chain that I have been obsessed with lately.  So, I wrote her back, told her to give me her address and I would send her one.  She had an even better idea - let's swap jewelry! 
Now, unlike Yours Truly, Christine is an extremely talented bead weaver extraordinaire. In addition to hosting and participating in several blog hops related to this gorgeous art form, she and Therese have a monthly challenge  where they use the same beads to create their own designs.  I cannot even fathom threading a needle and weaving these teeny, weeny, tiny beads to form such beautiful wearable art!  Anyway, this is what Christine made just for me!!!
Look at this fantastic bezel around a rock that Christine picked up at the shores of Lake Michigan!  In her own words, she "picked the rock for the sneak peak inside the opening."  How many people do you know can pick up a rock and see the gorgeous beauty?  A true artist sees the beauty in nature, as she did here!
The back of the focal is as beautiful as the front! 
The chain is stunning - it is made with garnet and citrine - in my mind, I imagined myself counting beads, dropping beads, stringing the wrong bead, becoming upset, tearing it get my drift here....
Look at this toggle!!!  In her note, Christine named all the stitches she used to create this beautiful piece and I still have no idea how she made this toggle (or any of it!)  Isn't this amazing?!
This necklace is the perfect length - and I gravitate towards darker colors as well.  It is absolutely beautiful!
Not only did I receive a stunner of a necklace, but she made me these gorgeous matching earrings which she calls "Feather Earrings" - THE PERFECT SIZE EARRINGS FOR MY LITTLE EARS! (I did not mean to shout - but I am excited!)
The best part of this "trade" is the new friendship I have formed - I am so deeply grateful - I have few "live" friends and I cherish the friendship I have formed!  I feel so blessed!
Now - I will repeat that I am not a bead weaver - so I made Christine a necklace with a gorgeous piece of jasper - landscape jasper to be exact.
I made the bail with the two-tone coiling technique I learned from Kerry Bogert.
I made some rolled beads (actual name is Cocoon Beads) as Christine commented that she likes those!  Of course I added some swirled links (thank you again Kerry for the tut!)
The coordinating jasper beads have a wonderful, almost tubular shape to them.

I added an awesome twisted wire copper clasp made by Marie-Noel Voyer- Cramp
I had a hard time picking an earring design...
So, I just sent two pair!
I made Christine's set during a very troubling period - my niece had just lost her four and a half year golden retriever Daisy.  Daisy was a very intricate part of my life.  When my first dog, Abby passed away nearly 3 years ago, Rachel had moved close by and I took care of Daisy (with my remaining boy, Sam) during the day Monday-Friday (like a doggy day care!)  Daisy became Sam's rock - as he just was not the same after losing his litter mate sister, Abby.  After Sam passed away last June, Daisy would come to keep me company twice a month - in addition to weekend jaunts with her cousins in my yard.  Her illness was quick - and the 10 days she was sick, which included surgery, was very hard on everyone in my family.  To this day, I still cry for Abby, Sam, and now Daisy.  Daisy was truly an Ambassador of Love.  There is NO LOVE like that of a Dog.  I love you Daisy - and I miss you - and I thank you for being in my life for the short time you were here!
Daisy and Sam
Thank you again Christine, and thank you for stopping by!


  1. What a beautiful post about friendship and love. Jewelry you both made is so fitting for these strong feelings. I can feel the caring in each bead you showed. Gorgeous.

  2. Beautiful pieces on both sides - with a lovely story! I am glad you found some peace in making your gorgeous set, it shows Abby, Sam, and Daisy's love for you and yours for them.

  3. You are so right, Christine is an awesome beadweaver, and that is a stunning necklace she created for you. I love the St. Pete earrings, gotta go talk to her about those!
    Your pieces are such a lovely statement to your skill, it is such a joy to wear my bracelet! (I was showing a newbie some basics, and took several pieces to show her. As I pulled your bracelet out of the bag, she grabbed it and said, oh yes, that's my favorite!)
    I am so very sorry about Daisy and Sam, and glad you were blessed with their love.

  4. I understand what you say about beadweaving - I admire what I see but it's not something I do - I could see myself just as you described you - dropping things, etc! What she made is gorgeous - I am sure you will so enjoy wearing it knowing the story and person who made it. I love what you sent her - I have never seen a landscape jasper like that - just beautiful. I know how much you miss your dogs - animals do become our family.

  5. What a lovely friendship! Christine is a very caring person. That is evident in reading her blog. You both made gorgeous pieces of jewelry to show your affection for each other. What a wonderful tribute to you both.

  6. I too love the friendships I have formed via social media. Love what both of you created. The "chain" part of the necklace Christine made you is really amazing....LOVE IT! I also LOVE your rolled beads, amazing. How did you make those?

  7. Patti~your post made my day! And your jewelry makes all my days more beautiful since I have received them :-) Thank you so much for all your kindness here and in e-mails and for cheering me on. It means so much to me. I LOVE wearing what you sent me. It has heft and beauty and warmth and lovely details. This was such a fun swap! I hope with each passing day, you remember the lively times with Abby and Sam and Daisy, and less of last days. Dogs want nothing but love and play from us...what a gift!

  8. Both are so beautiful in their own way!! I haven't done wirework in awhile and am inspired by yours to get back to it.

    I am fortunate to have an online friendship with Christine, too. She's real and generous...

    I am so sorry to hear about your losses. Their names remind me of my Springers. I still miss our Sam and cuddle my 10 yr old Daisy in hopes I'll never lose her. Hugs.

  9. Hi Patti,
    So that high pitched sound I heard all the way in Alabama must have come from you and our mutual friend Christine when y'all opened each other's packages. What Christine sent to you is gorgeous, in a style that is all Christine. She has a knack for picking out some very interesting rocks, and her bead weaving is top notch. When I saw what you sent to Christine my jaw dropped it is also gorgeous and you nailed her personality in the pieces you sent to her. Your wire wrapping skills are totally awesome. I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I know just how much our four legged friend pull at our hearts. They maybe gone from this world, but they will always remain in your heart and memories.

  10. Such a lovely tribute to Christine and her amazing bead weaving skills. I love how she incorporates stones that have such unusual beauty into her work. Christine is an amazing person and she makes you feel good no matter what! Yours are gorgeous as well. I signed up for Kerry's class but haven't done any yet....I really need to get going! Looks like you learned some more tricks and your work is always lovely. I am a dog lover too and know what you all have gone through. I have lost a Golden Retriever, a Rottweiler and a Boxer and every time it gets harder. Dogs love us even when we are having a bad day and they never question why. Undoubtedly they are the best friend we can have! I feel for your sadness and loss.

  11. Oh my, what wonderful work from both of you! Great exchange!
    Condolences on the loss of "your" puppy :-(

  12. Patti - you do such beautiful wirework - truly beautiful. So wonderful to send not one, but two pieces to Christine! and her beadwork always, always blows me away. I talked her into showing me how to bezel. So let's see if I will be able to do this finally!

  13. Thank You for sharing these beautiful works of art. You both are so talented and I really enjoy viewing these pieces. The beadwork around the rock is really amazing and I agree that it would be difficult to work so many beads and to create such a beautiful pattern. Bravo, I say! Your wire work also is a thrill to see and I love what you did with the earrings. It is a pleasure to see. Many thanks and looking forward to more to come! Is that bread baking, I smell????

  14. What a beautiful friendship . And sorry for your loss.