Feb 262015

This week I’m going from one extreme to another. Since dragon #6, Rosalita, took SO long to make, I decided to go for a much smaller scale this time around.

To learn why I’m making a dragon every week check out this post on Errol, dragon #1, for the details.

Meet Frodo and Sam.

dragon #7 & #8 Frodo & Sam (1)

Click on any of the photos for a closer look.

Since Rosalita took over 2 weeks, I was one dragon behind. So I made a pair for you this week.

dragon #7 & #8 Frodo & Sam (2)

The “cabochons” are actually the two halves of a glass bead I  made when I was first learning to lampwork. I let it cool off too quickly and it cracked.

dragon #7 & #8 Frodo & Sam (3)

The original intent was to make a pair of earrings, but they ended up too big. They’re 1 1/4-inches tall and 1-inch across. (Rosalita’s head is bigger than that!) The little dragon’s head’s are only 6mm (1/4-inch) long.

dragon #7 & #8 Frodo & Sam (4)

A dusting of Perfect Pearls gives them their shimmer. I had thought to antique them to bring out the details, but kinda like that you have to look for a moment to realize that they’re dragons. :-)

If you’d like to keep up with my dragon creations this year, I’ve made a Thursday’s Dragon Pinterest board just for them.

Feb 212015

Sorry folks that I’m over a week late with dragon #6.  But  now she’s done, finally!

To learn why I’m making a dragon every week check out this post on Errol, dragon #1, for the details.

dragon #6 Rosalita 1

Click on any of the photos for a closer look.

As you can see, Rosalita has climbed up on top of the castle to take a closer look at the first open rose of spring.

dragon #6 Rosalita 2

This project is one that’s been in the back of my mind for a long time. Ever since over a year ago a friend gave us a cylindrical tin of tea bags…

This one, to be exact.


…every time I looked at it I pictured a castle turret with a dragon climbing on top.

dragon #6 Rosalita 3

The tin is 2 1/2 inches in diameter and 6 inches tall, but I never imagined the project being SO HUGE.

Well, huge for what I’m used to. The finished sculpture is 14 inches from the base to the top of the flagpole.  (The flagpole is a toothpick, just to give you an idea of scale.)

dragon #6 Rosalita 4

The stone work, windows and turret top alone took a week.

dragon #6 Rosalita 5

Then it was time to start on the dragon.

dragon #6 Rosalita 6

Somewhere in the middle of the project it became “that danged dragon” (or slightly stronger words which I shall not repeat.) :-D

dragon #6 Rosalita 7

I got discouraged along the way, but decided not to give in to the temptation to rush just to get it done. If I did that I knew the outcome would certainly be disappointing.

dragon #6 Rosalita 8

Yesterday (Friday) I finally got to the final details: the base, the door, the wings and the flag.

Yes, I made a rose cane just for the flag. I used an excellent tutorial over at Polymer clay central by Leigh Ross for the rose and the leaves.

dragon #6 Rosalita 9

It was quite a trick figuring out how to make the cane into a flat flag with the cane showing on both sides, but it worked out.

Some things I’ve learned in the past two weeks:

  • Things always take longer in reality than you might think. (Well, I knew that one already, but this really drove it home.)
  • Creativity is sometimes just plain hard work!
  • My favorite parts of sculpting are adding texture and detail, so sticking to a smaller scale would be wise from now on.
  • Baked polymer clay can be heated with a heat tool (like scrapbookers use for heat embossing) for about 15 seconds to soften it. It will then be flexible enough to slightly reposition. This was how I got the dragon’s feet to cling to the tower. That and super glue.

Gosh, there were a lot of other tips and tricks I utilized or figured out, but that’ll do for now.

On to dragon #7, which I can promise you will be a lot smaller!

If you’d like to keep up with my dragon creations this year, I’ve made a Thursday’s Dragon Pinterest board just for them.


Feb 052015

Sorry folks for the late dragon post this week. My youngest son recently moved back home and we now are back to a full house. It’s not a bad thing, but it certainly has messed up my equilibrium. I really need to start on these dragons sometime before Wednesday night!

Click on any of the photos for a closer look.

Dragon #5-Renatta the Red 1

Anyhow, meet Renatta. I’ve had in mind to make a red dragon with red and gold mica powders for some time now. I wanted to name her Renatta, which is a form of the name Renee, a character in a book series by one of my favorite authors, Robin Hardy.

Dragon #5-Renatta the Red 2

I love how the candlelight plays off her wings and her sparkles.  The Interference Red Perfect Pearls have a really pretty iridescent pink/red look in real life.

Dragon #5-Renatta the Red 3

I also like that she works with or without the candle holder.

At some point I want to make her a treasure chest, or something interesting to put in that space where she’s looking.

Dragon #5-Renatta the Red 4

Although they’re not perfect, I do like how the wings came out, especially the translucence.

Dragon #5-Renatta the Red 5

It was fun making a slightly larger sculpture than I usually do, as I got to spend more time on details like the toes and the horns.

Dragon #5-Renatta the Red 6

I also did some different details on the tip of the tail.

Now it’s time to start on #6!

If you’d like to keep up with my dragon creations this year, I’ve made a Thursday’s Dragon Pinterest board just for them.

Happy creating all. :-)

Jan 292015

Meet Armida, dragon #4 in my year-long series. She’s tiny but tough, and to judge by the state of that cage, she’ll be busting out any time now.

Click on any of the photos for a closer look.

dragon #4-Armida the small armored one (1)

To learn why I’m making a dragon every week check out this post on Errol, dragon #1, for the details.

This week’s project was less about creativity and more an exercise in architecture. I really should have  built that cage over a form, but the idea in my head seemed like a pretty good one.

dragon #4-Armida the small armored one (2)

You know how that goes. It seems good until you try to make it work. :-\

dragon #4-Armida the small armored one (5)

The dragon was made by building a two-part cast of a dragon charm out of Easymold Silicone Putty. I learned that if you coat the first half of the mold with Vaseline, then the second half won’t stick to it, so you can separate the two parts. Pretty cool! (You can see what I mean and how to do it for yourself in this helpful video.)

Much of the cage is held together with super glue, which now coats my fingers. Thankfully, none of them are stuck together. :-D

dragon #4-Armida the small armored one (4)

So, all that to tell you that making Armida was quite an adventure, but I learned a lot.

I’d thought to make it as a necklace pendant, but it’s really too big and bulky, not to mention fragile, so she’ll just keep company with all the other dragons.

dragon #4-Armida the small armored one (3)

If you’d like to keep up with my dragon creations this year, I’ve made a Thursday’s Dragon Pinterest board just for them.

Have any of you made yourself challenges for 2015, creative or otherwise? How’s it going?

Happy creating!

Jan 222015

Meet Bernadette, dragon #3 in my 2015 challenge to make a polymer clay dragon every week.

Click on any of the photos for a closer look.

dragon #3-Bernadette (1)

To learn why I’m making a dragon every week check out this post on Errol, dragon #1, for the details.

If you are familiar with other dragons I’ve made, you’re probably wondering why there’s such a stylistic departure this week.

dragon #3-Bernadette (3)

Cartoony is definitely not my usual approach. However, I’m participating in the Polymer Clay Adventure this year and want to put the classes to good use.

raccoon by katie oskin

Last week’s class was taught by Katie Oskin, and she did a great tutorial on an adorable raccoon in her usual cute and very cartoon-like style.  (Similar tutorials can be purchased at her website, KatersAcres.com. If you like this style, you should also check out Parker’s Tutorial Club.)

After studying her construction, I decided that if I changed just the tail, the head and added a few details, I could have a dragon.

dragon #3-Bernadette (2)

Doncha love Bernadette’s pretty pink manicure?

dragon #3-Bernadette (4)

And that gleam in her eye… what IS she up to?

If you’d like to keep up with my dragon creations this year, I’ve made a Thursday’s Dragon Pinterest board just for them.

Happy creating!

Jan 152015

Meet Ferdinand, dragon #2 in my 2015 challenge to make a polymer clay dragon every week.

dragon #2-Ferdinand the Bullseye (1)

Why am I making a dragon every week? Well, this post on Errol, dragon #1,  ‘splains it a bit.

dragon #2-Ferdinand the Bullseye (3)

Why is this guy call Ferdinand the Bulls-Eye? Well, if you’ve played in polymer clay, you probably recognize the pattern on his body as “bulls-eye cane.”And then I got a little silly with the name, remembering the children’s book, “Ferdinand the Bull.” :-)

dragon #2-Ferdinand the Bullseye (4)

I did extruded bulls-eye cane in a hexagon shape. It basically means you stack circles of different colors into an extruder.  When you cut cross-section slices of the extruded piece, all the colors are in rings. So cool.

If you’d like to see the process, Bettina Welker has a great photo tutorial.

dragon #2-Ferdinand the Bullseye (2)

Besides, “Ferdinand” means “daring, adventurous” and doesn’t he have that sort of gleam in his eye? And just where is this mysterious black sand island? Hmmm….

Happy creating, all!


Jan 132015

Happy What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday everyone!

2015 01 14 woyww chocolate box class

Today’s desk shows me starting work on a new class over at CraftArtEdu.com. That white box in the top left is where I take the photos for each step-by-step shot. I love my mini Gorilla-pod tripod for my camera, cuz it lets me position it at exactly the right angle. Of course the camera isn’t in the shot, it’s in my hand, taking the shot. :-)


Remember these from last February? This is what I’ll be teaching in the class, how to make several different types of miniature chocolates from polymer clay. It should be fun!

jungle baby quilt (1)

Those of you who stopped by last week wanted to see photos of the finished baby quilt. Here it is, all done.

jungle baby quilt (2)

I just love that jungle print, so cute, and the prairie points added a bit of time but are a nice touch.

Wondering why I’m posting photos of my desk? Well it’s What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday, the day we all go visiting the creative spaces of creative people all over the world. The blog link party starts at Julia’s.

Happy creating, all!

Nov 042014

Happy What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesdayeveryone!

2014 11 05 woyww autumn doll

Today’s desk shows, that although I spend a lot of time thinking, planning and designing my own projects, sometimes it’s nice to take a “brain break” and work on a kit, or a project already thought out by somebody else.

autumn doll sandrates

A month or so ago Sandrartes posted this adorable Autumn doll polymer clay tutorial on her YouTube channel. She was so utterly cute, that I decided to make my own.

2014 11 05 woyww autumn doll close

I’ve decided to prebake her in sections, just to keep from messing up parts I’ve already done. That’s one good thing about polymer clay, you can bake it as many times as you need to.

Next to do is her shirt, I’m thinking purple instead of Sandra’s green. We’ll see.

So, that’s what I’m up to, listening to one of the Outlander books and making a polymer clay doll. A relaxing time, indeed!

The crazy busyness will catch up to me tomorrow, no doubt. :-D

In the meantime, if you’d like to see what’s on the workdesks of creative folks from all around the world, be sure to check out our weekly blog hop party over at Julia’s.

Happy creating!

Oct 282014

Happy What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday!

2014 10 29 woyww october tim tag

Today’s desk is full of all sorts of crafting goodies, and every one of them was pulled out just for the Tim Holtz October tag.  Yes, this desk was completely empty when I started.

Has anyone ever added up the price of all of the supplies Tim lists that you need for a single tag?  That would be interesting… and probably shocking, lol.

Anyhow, I got over running out to buy everything needed for a tag a long time ago. Now I just wing it with my own supplies.

spring dogwood tim tag (1)

This month I did wing (wung?) it so much that my tag is for an entirely different season. I’m not particularly fond of Halloween, or fall, for that matter, so spring birds and flowers it is.

spring dogwood tim tag (3)

Anyhow, I do love how the Ransom Alpha Parts look painted with the Distress paints. (Picked Raspberry is the main color I used, with dabs of Wild Honey and Broken China.)

spring dogwood tim tag (2)

The little sprig of flowers in the right is from the Nature Adornments, also painted with Distress paints then lightly sanded. The dogwood flowers are from the Butterflies & Flowers Stamp & Die set.

So, that’s all I’ve got today. Sorry if it’s strange to see a spring project two days before Halloween, but I’ll bet our friends Down Under understand! ;-)

If you’d like to see more creative spaces, check out our weekly blog hop over at Julia’s. Happy creating!

Sep 092014

Happy What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday once again! I trust all of you with kiddos are back into the school time swing of things. For the past several years when this time rolls around I just smile a little smile to myself and thank the Lord I’m done with all that.  :-)

I homeschooled my boys from Kindergarten on up and don’t regret it one bit. It’s one of the most worthwhile things I’ve done with my life.

But, it’s so nice to have more time now for creative pursuits.

Speaking of which….

2014 09 10 woyww polymer clay sea glass, pods, mistakes

…. my desk today shows several polymer clay projects. (Click on the photos for a closer look.)

In the upper left is a page from Christi Friesen’s book FlourishIt’s the section on pods, there’s one I’ve started on the white tile in the middle. More to come.

In the center right, behind the pasta machine is a cautionary tale: DON’T BURN POLYMER CLAY. Yup, I zoned out and set my oven at 375° rather than 275°. It’s rather fascinating how they all puffed out and grew into something resembling prunes (they were the same size as the beads on the white paper on the left when they went into the oven.) But we definitely could have done without the toxic fumes, which is what happens when you burn polymer.

So, don’t do it. K?

faux sea glass polymer clay

Here’s what my properly cured faux sea glass beads look like. I’ll have a video up on Monday showing how to make them and how to make a bracelet from them.

In the meantime, be sure to check out what other creative people are up to this Wednesday by joining in the blog party over at Julia’s. You will certainly be inspired and may even learn something new. :-)

Happy creating!