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EJR Beads Archive - Autumn / Winter 2007

More witterings on from Autumn and Winter of 2007 and early 2008.

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 27th January

Want free beads? 

 

ugly lampwork beadsOf course you do. But even if they are a bit ugly? Well that is a dilemma of course.

I had such high hopes for these beads. The design sort of worked in my head. In reality though I was underwhelmed. Let's face it - they are mingers.

But rather than bin them,  I thought I would run a little prize draw. Anyone who fancies adopting these brutes is welcome to put their name into the hat.

To enter, simply email me with the subject line "bead giveaway" and write your full name, postal address AND email address  in the body of the email. This is very important, entries that don't include that info in full will not be included in the draw.

I won't store or use your info,  I just don't want to be faffing around trying to find all the contact details for the winner once the draw is over. Much easier and quicker if you can just be sure to include that info for me from the get-go.

Closing date is Thurday 31st of Jan and I will pick a winner at random on the 1st of Feb.

 

flamenco tab art beadsMaybe though you want to buy some prettier beads instead? Well who could blame you?

How about these then? Some slinky Flamenco tabs worked in beautiful greens and browns. All the beauty of seaweed without the sliminess, risk of tiny crabby creatures or yucky salt smell. Just perfect!

I will be listing these lampwork beads and more over the course of the evening, so please keep your eyes on the online store.

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 24th January

 Braggin' innit! 

 

Christmas Card by Jennifer Blunden

 

This is a brag about some lovely things I have been sent recently. So, obviously first and foremost its a big fat brag about how lucky I am to have them. But of course, it is also a brag on the very talented ladies who made the items.

Firstly check out the wonderful Christmas card sent to me by Jennifer Blunden.

Jennifer does the most wonderful paintings. The characters she creates are so ethereal and dreamlike. When my mother saw this card she basically stole it. I told Jennifer, who kindly sent Mother one too, so my own copy is now safe! Woo hoo!

 

 

Lynn Davy Beadwork  And if that was not enough, look what else arrived in the post for me the other day. Sent by the talented Lynn Davy (Click here for Lynn's website, and then click here for her new Etsy store!)

This beautiful bracelet feels so nice on the wrist. Really slinky and silky. I love the mix of colours and the vintage buttons are so quirky and very "me". Lynn added a note saying something to the effect that if I didn't like the bracelet, I could hang it up in my shed to frighten the spiders.

All I can say is the spiders can bugger off and find their own cool accessories thank you very much. This bracelet is going nowhere near my shed!

 

antique trade beads at ERJ Beads  So do you think I have just been mooching about, receiving cool gifts like royalty and being fanned and fed grapes all day?

As if!   I feel I *should* be treated in such a manner, although sadly one cannot get the staff.

So instead, I have been cleaning lots of lovely lampwork beads today. Hopefully will have those up in the online store over the next few days. I have also been adding a few bits and bobs to the store. Look for the new issue of Crafts Magazine and also some pretty new additions to the Trade Beads section. Yum.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 21st January

 New beads ahoy!

 

There are new beads everywhere today! At least there will be.

Firstly, I have listed a new lampwork auction over on eBay. It is a set of my graphical tab beads, started at the usual ridiculous 99p,  but if you want to see them you will have to go take a look. Just click here or search out my auctions by my seller id, ejralph.

Remember there is no reserve on this auction - whatever the final bid is, that is what they will sell for. So don't forget to get your bid in early. You will kick yourself if you forget!

polymer clay art beads by Emma Ralph

 

I also have some new lampwork beads and polymer clay beads to list later tonight.

Here is a sneaky preview of one of the polymer sets - all I can say is they will be up in the store very soon so please keep checking back.

 

jewelry artist magazine

 

Also you might be interested to know I am stocking a new magazine at EJR Beads.

Called Jewelry Artist, it is published in the US by the people who bring out Lapidary Journal. This magazine is focused on traditional jewellery making techniques such as silver-smithing, stone setting etc although there is a fantastic advanced metal clay project in there too.

If you are already learning jewellery making or just want to pick up some new skills - it is a great introduction!

Look out also in the store for the latest issues of Bead, Ornament, Beads & Beyond and many more.

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Saturday 19th January

 Beam me up!

 

If you had been wondering why I was so quiet, all I can say is that so far 2008 is not going according to plan!

I won't bore you with the details, but mechanical failures abound right now with every bit of equipment I own deciding to die on me it seems. Much the same can be said for my own sorry bones. I seem to be constantly under attack by something or other (latest assailant was some rogue gluten that found its way into my diet and left me near-death for the last week!)

Everyone I speak to says the same - there is just some really mischievous muju going around at the moment. Everyone seems to be having a frustrating start to the year.

So, instead lets just focus on the good.

I have a couple of sets of lampwork beads due up in the store early next week, and also some polymer clay beads. The poly beads are not finished yet so they will be few days longer. I shall also try to get the last of the Lampwork caboodles  up for sale shortly too.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Saturday 12th January

 Pretty Poly, Pretty Poly!

 

 

polymer clay beads by Emma RalphWho's a pretty boy then?

Yes, some new polymer clay beads are up in the online store, finally! They are the first creations to come out of my new dedicated polymer clay and ceramic room. Oh it is so nice to have some space to work. Maybe when I get a little more organised in there, I can show you some photos.

Meanwhile one of the cats has made the place her own. I found her asleep on a towel that was already covered in glass beads. Must be like sleeping in your bed on top of a layer of small rocks. Cats are weird.

Hopefully some more Lampwork caboodles will be listed later tonight too - but don't hang around, they sell out ultra-quick! I am also going to put one of the larger caboodle sets on eBay later today too, since I haven't much else to do today.

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 8th January

 Caboodles are up!

 

lampwork bead caboodles Remember I said I would have oodles of caboodles? Well the first few have been listed today in the lampwork beads section of the online store

These are some of the leftover beads I have accumulated throughout the year. Some may be seconds - those have minor flaws that bar them from my regular sets but they are still too good to just bin! Or they might be very boring spacer beads just testing out colour combinations and so on. Some are simply beads left over from other sets - true orphans.

Either way, each caboodle has a fantastic mix of beads at a crazy price.

So don't delay, get your caboodle today!

And don't worry if they sell out before you get your paws on them. I have a few more caboodles to list over the next few days.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 7th January

Oodles of Caboodles!

 

I am starting to make some headway moving into my new studio room. But I admit, progress is slow. After all, firstly I need to fit in moving around all my other work. Secondly there is little point in just moving stuff across from one place to another. It needs to be sorted out too. It is taking an AGE!

In sorting stuff out,  I have found so many things I forgot I had. I also found the energy to deal with this year's lampwork orphans. You know, all those beads left over from other sets or beads that are not quite perfect but still too good to bin.

I have been putting them into colour families and making up oodles of caboodles to list in the online store over the next few weeks. I know you all love a good caboodle! They are a great way to snap up a collection of lampwork beads at a fantastic price.

So, if the sunlight is on my side, I should make a start on photographing those tomorrow and have some to list by the evening I expect.

What else can I tell you today? Oh, I know. I have an award from the lovely Jean Yates. How sweet is that?

 

Jean also wrote lots of lovely things about me on her blog. Is she trying to butter me up do you think? So I will give a good review for her now published book, Links? Ha ha ha - only kidding Jean!

I know her book will be fab anyway. So she wouldn't need to butter me up for that. I think in truth we are just buttering each other up a lot lately because we are friends, care about each other and both had a rather rotten 2007.

But its nice to be buttered up by friends every now and then isn't it! So thanks Jeannie!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Friday 4th January

Happy Noo Year!

 

lampwork glass beads on ebay.co.uk

 

Happy New Year everyone.  I do hope you had a good, relaxing break over the holiday period. Here at EJR Towers it was all go and now I seem to have flumped at bit. Still, even though it has been blinking cold lately, I have managed to get out into the shed a teeny bit to make some beads.

Firstly, there is one large-ish set of beads up at eBay for your perusal this week. Click here to see the beads, or just search out my seller ID ejralph

Called Colour Study (because that is exactly what it was!), the auction is up at a silly 99p start with NO RESERVE! Don't forget to put your bid in early because it is just a 5 day auction this time. Who knows, you could snap up a bargain!

Oh and if you are outside the UK,  remember I am more than happy to ship overseas and welcome your bids ;-)

 

lampwork glass beads at EJR Beads I also have a couple of small lampwork sets to list in the online store later this evening.

Here is a sneaky preview of one of them - Steel Bubbles. Worked with gorgeous seeded glass, these Ice beads have a gorgeous steely grey-blue colour. Very grown up!

They and another wee set will go up in the online store later this evening.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Saturday 29th December

*** Online Store is open again! ***

 

We rose at 6 am. We worked through until 6 pm. We shouted. We spent some time shaking in the corner and going a strange pale green colour. We got close to divorce (more than usual). We had moments of great optimism and moments where all hope was gone. But by golly we did it!

The online store has been upgraded and is back online with a fresh lick of paint. It has a slightly nattier banner, some format changes here and there - but by and large is the same shopping heaven you know and love. Only just a little bit better from a nerdy, behind the scenes point of view. (Don't forget to hit your refresh button to make sure you are seeing the up-to-date store)

Hurrah!

Now, I need to rest and regain my composure. Tweaking your online store is really scary and not good for ones mental health!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Friday 28th December

*** Stop Press! ***

*** Online Store will be down for maintenance! 29/12/07 ***

 

 

The online store will be down for maintenance tomorrow, Saturday 29th December.

Hopefully we will be offline only for the morning, but things might take a little longer. If all goes to plan, you should see a spanky new EJR Beads store when we are back up and running.

Yes, the store is having a bit of a facelift to make it fresher and funkier for 2008. Mostly this means boring "behind the scenes" changes. So the shop won't change beyond all recognition. It should be just as easy to use as before only hopefully a little better and quicker. But it should also look a little easier on the eye too!

All the while we are working, the store will display a "closed for maintenance" sign. As soon as that is gone and you are able to see the store again, it means we are up and running and you can order as normal. If you see the closed sign, do remember to hit your refresh button periodically to see if we are back online. Oh and if you notice anything weird or buggy, please do email me and let me know!

Thanks for your patience -

 

 

Studio Update: Friday 28th December

Phew!

 

Well that is Christmas over and done with then! I had a good, relaxing time. I got a handbag that looks like a pug dog, a heated back massager (yum...toasty!), something or other to do with saving puffins (an eco-charity gift thingamajig), a new teacup and of COURSE some satsumas! I am sure tradition dictates tangerines or something, but everyone knows that satsumas are the ONLY small citrus fruit worth bothering with.  Oranges indeed are not the only fruit. Satsumas are. They rock.

I might also have got a large tin of chocolates...I couldn't possibly comment.

But now of course it is back to work. Actually, work continued all over the Christmas break anyway really. Mr Man and myself are busy working on some improvements to the online store. We should be ready to roll those out sometime in the new year, I will keep you posted. Suffice to say, it might SEEM like I am sitting on my bum doing nowt, but I promise you we are working very hard on giving EJR Beads a bit of a facelift!step by step beads magazine 

 

Meanwhile, I *still* haven't had chance to make any lampwork beads. I am going seriously nuts being away from beadmaking so long. I have some ceramic beads to get up in the online store soon though. I promise those will be up either tomorrow or the day after.

I am also in the process of moving my ceramics and polymer clay work into a new room, so I will have a whole new studio to work in. So, as you can see, I am busy beyond belief, but have pretty much nothing to show for it!

However, there are some new reads up in the Books & Magazines area. New issues of Craft Stamper (with a really cool free rubber stamp) and Step-by-Step Beads are now up.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Saturday 22nd December

Can't wait!

 

links by jean yates Now that I am on my Christmas break, it gives me chance tell you some of the stuff I have been meaning to mention for ages. In this case Jean Yates' upcoming book - Links. Look at these lovely cards her publisher has made to promote the book!

Links is due out early next year. It will be fantastic. I am so excited about this I could simply pop. I am more excited about her book than I was with either of my own!

Why? Well firstly Jean is a dear friend who I admire as greatly in a personal capacity as I do professionally. Too many people in this life go around running others down, dishing out negativity and nastiness. Why? Probably because of their own inadequacies I guess. Jean is the opposite. She raises people up. She is one of those people that makes you feel you can achieve anything. What a gift that is.

 

So I am excited about her book because I know that unique energy will come across in what she shares with the reader. Yes, on one level it will be a fantastic jewellery project book. But I feel Jean will make it so much more. She will show us just HOW she finds her inspiration, how she makes emotional and mental connections when coming up with a design. Or in other words how she uses links!

fire mountain gems mousematI get so many emails asking about these issues - how does one come up with an original design. How do you design work authentically and from the soul etc? I think Jean will probably have a very good stab at showing you just how. Other jewellery project books give you fish. Jean will teach you how to fish.

So, I am excited about that. I like nice people. I like it when good things happen to nice people. It's that simple really. Does it help that my beads will be on the cover? Well of course it does. I haven't totally transcended the ego yet ;-)

Talking of ego. Jean and I both got a boost the other day to find we have been turned into mouse mats!

Fire Mountain Gems did an advert recently featuring one of Jean's stunning bracelets using some of my polymer clay beads . Now they have turned that advert into a mouse mat. Well, its not everyday you get turned into a mouse mat is it!

SQUEAK!

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 20th December

Ho ho ho!

 

That is it. I am officially on my Christmas Hols. Although quite how a beadaholic with no life is meant to enjoy a week away from work is beyond me. We both know I am kidding myself really. Hey - maybe I will finally finish dealing with the Bookcase from Hell that I started last Chrimbo? Nah.... as if.

Lets face it. Life will be much the same as normal for the next week, except there will no runs to the post office and more playing of Tomb Raider on the X-box 360. I expect my chocolate-consumption will stay pretty level. Currently this is at "high" and in January I hope to bring this down to "moderate", although both terms are delightfully subjective.

I am sorry I didn't get the latest ceramic beads up and listed before Chrimbo. I sort of ran out of time there. But at least you can expect some new art beads once I open back up next week.  If the weather warms up a bit, there might be some lampwork too!

As I said before you can still place orders online throughout the festive season. Just be aware they won't ship now until after Christmas. So if you get one too many pairs of socks this year or yet more revolting little scented candles, just turn your frustrations into positive action - buy yourself your own ideal beady pressies instead.  Who needs Santa when we have Visa?

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 17th December

Christmas "Closing"

 

EJR Beads will be closed for the Christmas holidays from the 20th through to the 27th of December.

UK Customers: If you need your orders sent before Christmas, please place them no later than Wednesday 19th December. If they are urgent, please consider upgrading your postage to Special Delivery, as no other postal method offers a guaranteed delivery date. You can do this by visiting the "Insurance for Orders" category of the online store, prior to checkout. Thanks!

 

I will be leaving the online store open throughout the Christmas period, in case Turkey-munching gets too much and you feel the urge to bead-browse. So you are still very welcome to place orders and if you need to email me about your order or anything else, don't feel shy. I will still be working much of that holiday week, using the time to catch up on all those jobs that need doing. So please don't feel you will be disturbing me. The only difference is that orders wont be shipped out during the week we are "closed".

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 16th December

Lazing on a sunny afternoon!

 

What a lovely Sunday it is here. Beautiful blue sky, not a cloud to be seen. Only a kestrel high up, being chased out of town by a crow. Poor kestrel. Mind you the other day I saw kestrel chasing a buzzard out of town. I guess if you live by the sword you must also die by it.

A little closer, the holly tree has a new resident. A beautiful redwing. He is munching through those berries like they are going out of fashion. I wonder where he has flown in from? Somewhere pretty cold I guess if he chooses to come to England for his winter hols!

So, sunny it may be - warm it ain't. Nearly 3pm and the frost is still going strong in the shadows. I tried to make lampwork beads the other day when it was as cold as this. I spent all day in the shed and only got 6 beads made. Pathetic waste of time. So have decided that until this cold snap has finished snapping I am going to stay indoors and work on other stuff.

This means I should have some ceramic beads to show you shortly! Hopefully early next week they should be up in the online store.

Other good news - I am taking over another room to use as an indoor studio. This should help matters a lot. I am getting so crowded whenever I am working indoors now. One small desk just wasn't cutting the mustard really. So a whole room where I can work ceramic and polymer will be fantastic! I can't wait! I toyed with the idea of moving the lampwork studio indoors too. But it seems a lot of hassle to set up safe gas supply, ventilations etc. I am sure that shortly we will have a FABULOUS spring and summer anyway and I will be loving Shed Life again.

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 11th December

Eek-a-Mouse - part deux!

 

Part two of the rat story is very brief. Ratty was caught in a humane trap with the aid of raw bacon (I was all for using a traditional cheese bait. I was overruled). Ratty was then released into a field to start a new life in the country. All's well that ends well. I am sure we are MEANT to kill them, but hell will freeze over before I have Raticide on my conscience I'm afraid.

 

Anyway, enough rodent tales. (or is that tails?). You really came here to find out about beads didn't you?

Well, some new lampwork beads are waiting in the wings and ready to go up in the online store. Probably this evening after I have had my dinner. Until there, here is a sneaky preview of what is to come!

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 3rd December

Eek-a-Mouse!

 

A wah do dem indeed. Guess what happened today at EJR Towers?

I walked down the stairs and, near a pile of laundry ready for the machine, I saw Popsie our fat cat. She had that look on her, cat owners know the look. The look that says "I have a creature here somewhere, just need to work out where I put it down and then I will show you!"

I looked around, expecting to find a mouse.

I didn't.

I found a RAT!

A very brown, very leapy, very alive rat!

 

So, what do you do when you find a live rat at the bottom of the stairs? Well I did what any self-respecting woman in her mid-thirties would do. I screamed loud and hard for my mum.

Who, as luck would have it, was actually in the kitchen making some stained-glass biscuits.

Because she was doing this, she was bashing up boiled sweets with a hammer, so it took a while for her motherly instincts to kick in and come save me (a little too long if you ask me...)

She vanishes again.

She returns with a NET! Where she found a net I have no idea. I didn't know it was there. She disappears around the corner, in pursuit of the rat. I hear squeals from the rat. I hear squeals from mother. Then silence.

She returns with the rat in the net and long story short, it gets chucked out the back door.

 

Is there NOTHING mothers can't tackle???

 

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 2nd December

They is up!

 

 

 Some new lampwork beads have just been listed! You know where to find them by now I am sure?

 Why here of course!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 29th November

Nearly there!

 

It's nearly the weekend thank goodness! I need a break just to get over yesterday. I managed to get out and do most of my Christmas shopping. Got some great pressies, some silly pressies and of course some pressies for me!

If you have been good also and deserve a little treat, don't forget to visit my auctions. They are ending very soon and you wouldn't want someone picking up one of my Dichroic focals for 99p now would you?

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 25th November

Ooh sparkly!

 

Hi everyone, I do hope you are having a nice weekend. I am mooching about enjoying doing nothing. Even the cat seems to know its a Sunday. She has been fast asleep on the chair all day. I wouldn't mind, but I know this means for sure come 3 am she will be wide awake and desperate to get across just HOW much she loves me with head butts and loud purrs!

dichroic focal bead on ebay  I did do something vaguely useful though. I popped another couple of 99p auctions  up on eBay.

This time some dichroic focals. They are very freeform in shape. That is fun to do, and quite liberating really, especially when like me you are used to making regimented sets of beads that all have to match. Just getting back to playing with the glass has been cool.

I also have a few more ceramic beads to list sometime in the next few days. Including some fun pendants, but more about that anon!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 22nd November

Finally!

 

ceramic beads by Emma Ralph

 

 I finally have some new lampwork beads  and ceramic beads  to show you! The sun came out long enough yesterday morning for me to take some snaps.

The ceramic beads are already up in the online store. The lampwork beads will be listed sometime this evening, so please do keep checking back (what can I say? I need to eat my dinner at some point you see! A hungry Emma is a grumpy Emma.)

deco lampwork beads by Emma Ralph 

And I also have a new auction up at ebay.

Inspired by Art Deco Vaseline glass beads, these beads sure are bright and then some! In fact, I rather suspect they will be a bit of a Marmite set.

But it is a set of beads I have wanted to make for such a long time, so I am glad to have done it. I just wished I could have captured some of the cool geometric shapes of the beads in this set a little better. Still that should be a nice surprise for whoever is brave enough to bid for them don't you think?!

 

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 20th November

Another Grey day!

polymer cafe magazine

 

I still haven't been able to photograph the new beads. It was so dreary today I had to put the lights on at 2.30 pm!

It was one of those boring "indoors" days for me today. Where I have to catch up on boring chores. So that means cleaning yesterday's beads, bisque firing some ceramic beads, packing and posting orders of course and finally the dreaded accounts!

It is me, or does each month-end come around quicker and quicker? It always seems that no sooner have I finished up one months accounts, paid the bills and waded through all the other paperwork than there I am again doing it all over anew before I know it.  Mr Man also has a VAT return we need to do (we meaning me) and I swear we only did the last one two hours ago!

bead magazine 

 

This of course is the very boring side of being self-employed. I wonder if I could claim reflexology as a business expense? I could do with a good foot rub to perk me up a bit!

Anyway. Enough of me, What is new???

Well, as you can see we have the new issue of Polymer Cafe magazine in stock.  And indeed the latest issue of the UK bead magazine Bead. You can find both in the Books & Magazines category in the online store.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 18th November

Grey day!

 

I have some lovely new lampwork beads  and ceramic beads  to show you, but the weather is too pants for me to photograph them well. Rats!

Hopefully tomorrow the lighting will be a little better and I can get them up and into the online store. Meanwhile, don't forget my latest auction ends soon!

 

Another new addition to the store - large kidney wires. These are great. They are oversized kidney wires available in a bright and antique copper finish. Quality nickel-free plating allows them to match your copper wire and bead designs but still be nice and comfortable to wear without any green marks!

To see these and our other copper-finish earwires, just visit the online store.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 12th November

Sneaky Preview!

 

Well bead-fans. I hope you had a good weekend?

We had a lovely, relaxing time. We went for a spot of bird watching on Saturday. Didn't see a great deal, unless you count a small cluster of Snipe all camouflaged in the grass. We did, there were 13 of them! Silly long-beaked freaky birds if you ask me, but very endearing.

On Sunday we walked up to the War Memorial on the green by the post office. There was a small service there which was nice. Afterwards a nice walk with the dogs, where Trixie resumed her squirrel interests.

But did I get any beads made I hear you ask? Well yes.

Firstly, there is a new auction up. You will need to click the link to see it, but its a corker of a set. Lots of lovely tab beads that would work brilliantly as focals I think. What is more, I started the auction at a 99p with no reserve, so there is every chance you can snap them up for a song - so long as you remember to put your bid in!

lampwork beads by Emma Ralph 

Also, there are new lampwork beads  and ceramic beads to list in the online store.

They will be listed over the next couple of days, but the set shown is a little sneaky preview for you. No, you cannot email me to reserve these beads. Not until they are showing the store - so you will have to just keep your eyes pealed!

 

 

Studio Update: Saturday 10th November

Here I am!

 

Did you think I had fallen off the face of the earth? Me too. I had a good look down the back of the sofa though and found myself. Plus 1.28 in loose change. Woo hoo!

Sorry to take so long to update this page. It has been one of those weeks again! I managed to get out into the shed though so should have new lampwork beads up in the online store in the next day or two. Also, some of the long talked-about ceramic beads should be ready soon.

I have some in the kiln as I write, busily enjoying their glaze firing. I have been playing around again making my own glazes with oxides and stuff. Heaven only knows if I will make some cool colours or just poop. Usually its poop. You would think I would learn and just stick to the commercially available glazes, but no - I am a sucker for experimenting.

What else can I tell you?

Well, the post seems to be finally back to normal. Items are arriving more or less as you would expect for First Class mail. There are still some problems in London, since the Streatham sorting office are on unofficial strike. So there are still a few problems with backlog from the strike, but for the most part I think we are through the worst. So again please accept my  deepest and biggest thanks for your patience. You have all made an old beadmaker very happy!

And of course this also means its the perfect time to do your Christmas shopping now before the rush starts. Why not pick up an Art Clay Silver starter kit for your nearest and dearest and steal it back when they are not looking? Or maybe a slew of back-issues for your beady friends so they can have a relaxing Christmas read with their feet up after the turkey dinner? Heck, you could even give someone one of my books for Christmas. I know I did, ad nauseam!

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 29th November

Nearly there!

 

It's nearly the weekend thank goodness! I need a break just to get over yesterday. I managed to get out and do most of my Christmas shopping. Got some great pressies, some silly pressies and of course some pressies for me!

If you have been good also and deserve a little treat, don't forget to visit my auctions. They are ending very soon and you wouldn't want someone picking up one of my Dichroic focals for 99p now would you?

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 25th November

Ooh sparkly!

 

Hi everyone, I do hope you are having a nice weekend. I am mooching about enjoying doing nothing. Even the cat seems to know its a Sunday. She has been fast asleep on the chair all day. I wouldn't mind, but I know this means for sure come 3 am she will be wide awake and desperate to get across just HOW much she loves me with head butts and loud purrs!

dichroic focal bead on ebay  I did do something vaguely useful though. I popped another couple of 99p auctions  up on eBay.

This time some dichroic focals. They are very freeform in shape. That is fun to do, and quite liberating really, especially when like me you are used to making regimented sets of beads that all have to match. Just getting back to playing with the glass has been cool.

I also have a few more ceramic beads to list sometime in the next few days. Including some fun pendants, but more about that anon!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 22nd November

Finally!

 

ceramic beads by Emma Ralph

 

 I finally have some new lampwork beads  and ceramic beads  to show you! The sun came out long enough yesterday morning for me to take some snaps.

The ceramic beads are already up in the online store. The lampwork beads will be listed sometime this evening, so please do keep checking back (what can I say? I need to eat my dinner at some point you see! A hungry Emma is a grumpy Emma.)

deco lampwork beads by Emma Ralph 

And I also have a new auction up at ebay.

Inspired by Art Deco Vaseline glass beads, these beads sure are bright and then some! In fact, I rather suspect they will be a bit of a Marmite set.

But it is a set of beads I have wanted to make for such a long time, so I am glad to have done it. I just wished I could have captured some of the cool geometric shapes of the beads in this set a little better. Still that should be a nice surprise for whoever is brave enough to bid for them don't you think?!

 

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 20th November

Another Grey day!

polymer cafe magazine

 

I still haven't been able to photograph the new beads. It was so dreary today I had to put the lights on at 2.30 pm!

It was one of those boring "indoors" days for me today. Where I have to catch up on boring chores. So that means cleaning yesterday's beads, bisque firing some ceramic beads, packing and posting orders of course and finally the dreaded accounts!

It is me, or does each month-end come around quicker and quicker? It always seems that no sooner have I finished up one months accounts, paid the bills and waded through all the other paperwork than there I am again doing it all over anew before I know it.  Mr Man also has a VAT return we need to do (we meaning me) and I swear we only did the last one two hours ago!

bead magazine 

 

This of course is the very boring side of being self-employed. I wonder if I could claim reflexology as a business expense? I could do with a good foot rub to perk me up a bit!

Anyway. Enough of me, What is new???

Well, as you can see we have the new issue of Polymer Cafe magazine in stock.  And indeed the latest issue of the UK bead magazine Bead. You can find both in the Books & Magazines category in the online store.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 18th November

Grey day!

 

I have some lovely new lampwork beads  and ceramic beads  to show you, but the weather is too pants for me to photograph them well. Rats!

Hopefully tomorrow the lighting will be a little better and I can get them up and into the online store. Meanwhile, don't forget my latest auction ends soon!

 

Another new addition to the store - large kidney wires. These are great. They are oversized kidney wires available in a bright and antique copper finish. Quality nickel-free plating allows them to match your copper wire and bead designs but still be nice and comfortable to wear without any green marks!

To see these and our other copper-finish earwires, just visit the online store.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 12th November

Sneaky Preview!

 

Well bead-fans. I hope you had a good weekend?

We had a lovely, relaxing time. We went for a spot of bird watching on Saturday. Didn't see a great deal, unless you count a small cluster of Snipe all camouflaged in the grass. We did, there were 13 of them! Silly long-beaked freaky birds if you ask me, but very endearing.

On Sunday we walked up to the War Memorial on the green by the post office. There was a small service there which was nice. Afterwards a nice walk with the dogs, where Trixie resumed her squirrel interests.

But did I get any beads made I hear you ask? Well yes.

Firstly, there is a new auction up. You will need to click the link to see it, but its a corker of a set. Lots of lovely tab beads that would work brilliantly as focals I think. What is more, I started the auction at a 99p with no reserve, so there is every chance you can snap them up for a song - so long as you remember to put your bid in!

lampwork beads by Emma Ralph 

Also, there are new lampwork beads  and ceramic beads to list in the online store.

They will be listed over the next couple of days, but the set shown is a little sneaky preview for you. No, you cannot email me to reserve these beads. Not until they are showing the store - so you will have to just keep your eyes pealed!

 

 

Studio Update: Saturday 10th November

Here I am!

 

Did you think I had fallen off the face of the earth? Me too. I had a good look down the back of the sofa though and found myself. Plus 1.28 in loose change. Woo hoo!

Sorry to take so long to update this page. It has been one of those weeks again! I managed to get out into the shed though so should have new lampwork beads up in the online store in the next day or two. Also, some of the long talked-about ceramic beads should be ready soon.

I have some in the kiln as I write, busily enjoying their glaze firing. I have been playing around again making my own glazes with oxides and stuff. Heaven only knows if I will make some cool colours or just poop. Usually its poop. You would think I would learn and just stick to the commercially available glazes, but no - I am a sucker for experimenting.

What else can I tell you?

Well, the post seems to be finally back to normal. Items are arriving more or less as you would expect for First Class mail. There are still some problems in London, since the Streatham sorting office are on unofficial strike. So there are still a few problems with backlog from the strike, but for the most part I think we are through the worst. So again please accept my  deepest and biggest thanks for your patience. You have all made an old beadmaker very happy!

And of course this also means its the perfect time to do your Christmas shopping now before the rush starts. Why not pick up an Art Clay Silver starter kit for your nearest and dearest and steal it back when they are not looking? Or maybe a slew of back-issues for your beady friends so they can have a relaxing Christmas read with their feet up after the turkey dinner? Heck, you could even give someone one of my books for Christmas. I know I did, ad nauseam!

 

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 30th October

Here we go!

 

 

At last I have some new lampwork beads up in the online store!

Remember to hurry if you want to buy a set - they really are all sold on a First come, First served basis. Which means whoever's completed order and payment comes through first gets the beads!

If you prefer a more leisurely experience with your beads though, you might be interested in my new ebay auction. A set of fun, colourful beads up for a silly 99p start! Surely you won't want to miss putting in a bid for those!

 

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 28th October

Where did the weekend go?

 

I have no idea where the weekend went. It seems to have flown by even though with the clocks changing, we got another hour in bed.

 

Well, the good news is that the backlog of mail is now being delivered with earnest. Most of you waiting have now received your delayed orders. If you are still waiting though, please be patient, I am sure your order will be with you shortly.  The big problem now apparently is that Royal Mail can only release a certain amount of the backlog each day. This is because of health and safety and how much weight the postmen and women are allowed to carry. Which I suppose makes sense.

I just wish that Royal Mail would be honest about the problems. It makes it seem like us sellers are lying when they will not admit to the backlog and the delays in delivery over the last few weeks. They have even stopped franking some post, which I am sure is a vain attempted to hoodwink us into how long the post has been in their hands! But maybe that is me being too cynical. Maybe it is just to speed up the processing of the backlog? Lets hope so!

It has been a nightmare time for sellers though. This article in the telegraph says it all really.  No joke, my panic attacks have started again and I am sure it is because of Royal Mail. Never have I had to reach for my Bach Rescue Remedy so often ;-)

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 25th October

Getting there!

 

Hurrah!  Royal Mail are starting to work through the backlog at last.

Items posted on the 10th, 11th and the 17th (although also other days around that time) were the worst affected by the strike. Many items from that time are only now starting to arrive with customers - even though items posted after that time have arrived promptly.  This is not only my findings - reading the discussions on ebay, it seems everyone's post from those days had fallen into the "black hole"

But the post IS getting through now. I am getting more and more emails from customers saying their items from that period have arrived, so they are definitely making headway with that backlog.

If you are still waiting on a parcel from then, I am sure it will be with you shortly and can only ask you to be patient just a little bit longer - these really are exception circumstances.  I have worked in mail order all my working life and have never known delays like this, even at Christmas time.

However, clearing the backlog is affecting the speed of recent post too now. So items posted in the last few days are now taking longer to arrive again - on average 5 days.

There are many discussions about the postal strike and delayed mail on the discussion boards at eBay.  I feel so badly for some of the full-time traders on ebay right now. They are in the same boat with their post, with buyers are starting to leave them negative feedback. So all I can say is if you are waiting for something you bought on eBay, spare a thought for your sellers - they are having a rough old time of it right now!

 

 

Studio Update: Wednesday 24th October

Thank you!

 

I know that some of you are still waiting for packages sent out around the time of the Royal Mail strikes. Unfortunately it seems Royal Mail still have not cleared the backlog from that time - it is driving me to distraction. Here is what they say on their website about it

"There is no strike action currently taking place, and we are making good progress in getting our services back to normal as quickly as possible. There is a build-up of mail that will still take some time to clear, which we are clearing in the order in which we received it."

The problem we are facing is that Royal Mail will not consider any item as "lost in the post" until at least 15 working days have past since the due delivery date.

So it appears they are taking full advantage of this window of time, as specified in their normal terms and conditions, to clear the backlog. Items are starting to filter though, but they are making the most of that 15 working days to process it all. I have every faith that items will be delivered by that time though, purely because I don't think RM would want to deal with the floods of claims that would come in!

But as it stands, until 15 working days have passed I am not yet able to chase up your orders - be they sent Recorded delivery, parcel post or whatever. It appears, as patient as you all have been, my hands are tied and I need to ask you to be patient just a little longer. And patient you have been. I cannot tell you how much I appreciate how understanding and kind everyone has been over these delayed items. Yet again, I am so happy to be working with beady crafty people! You guys rock!

 I have learned my lessons from this though - next time there is a strike I think I will just not post out anything in that entire week. To say I am disgusted with Royal Mail over this would be an understatement.


 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 23rd October

Fingers crossed!

 

I woke up today and felt a little better. So finger's crossed this cold is finally on the way out. I still have not managed to get out and make any lampwork beads though. Maybe tomorrow. I know I said the other day that I would make beads or die trying. I just realised that if I did try, I probably would have died and I am too young and pretty for that!

easy wire magazine from beadwork 

So I wimped out and stayed inside for another couple of days. I have however had the most fun time ever making some ceramic beads. So it hasn't been a total waste of time.

So what else is new? Well, we have a new special issue magazine in from the Beadwork people. It is called Easy Wire, and as the title suggests is perfect for beginner wire-workers.

You can find this mag in the Special Issues area of the Books & Magazines category in the online store. Don't forget that many of your other favourite reads have had new issues in lately too!

 

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 21st October

ARGHHHHH!

 

Can you believe it.  I am getting worse not better! Evil cold. My trip down to Waitrose just now really was a trip.

I am getting soooo bored. Tomorrow I am going out into that shed and I am gonna make some beads or die trying. Enough is enough - I am desperate to play with glass.

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 18th October

How long?

 

What is it with this cold? I might be through the worst of it, but still feel like death warmed up! If you or your family have this horrid bug, my sympathies to you and get well soon! My brother has just made me one of his smoothies to bolster me up. It has all sorts of fruit in it and his secret ingredient of prunes! Only trouble is, it is starting to set in the glass I think. Maybe we have found a new modelling material - watch out Fimo!

So anyway due to this cold, I still have not made any lampwork beads. I have not even looked in the shed for nearly two weeks now. Instead I have kept myself nice and warm inside and continued making some ceramic beads.

Ceramic beads take a long time. At least they do for me since I make them so sporadically that first and foremost I always need to remember where I put all my supplies and how I actually do it! Then I have to build up enough beads to make it worth firing the big kiln, then they need to be glazed and fired again. It is a creative kafuffle alright. But an enjoyable creative kafuffle. So hopefully sometime in the next month you might finally be able to see the fruits of my labour. Just don't hold your breath!

beads and beyond magazine

 

So what is new online in the EJR Beads shop then?

Well, the new issues of Beads & Beyond is now in stock.

The first issue of this magazine proved so popular that I had to up my order with the publishers. The magazine focuses on beads of course. But using them for a wider range of projects, not just jewellery.

So although there are some great jewellery features in the magazine, you will also find ways to incorporate your favourite beads into home decor items, gifts and so on.

All in all, a very interesting new approach to our favourite craft. And because it is a UK-published magazine, very relevant to us British beaders too!

 

victoria and albert magazine

 

Also new in the Books & Magazines section of the store is the latest issue of the V&A magazine.

This is the magazine published by the Victoria and Albert museum in London. As you may well know, the V&A museum focuses on the history of costume, adornment and fashion primarily. They have probably the most comprehensive collection of historical clothing in the world I will bet. And their jewellery collections are to die for!

Their magazine focuses on their exhibitions and other interesting related material. In this issue, an in-depth look at the history of Couture for instance is fantastic. Equally interesting, the book reviews, profiles and so on. If you cannot get to London, this really is the next best thing. If you can get to London - well the V&A mag will let you know all the latest not-to-be-missed goings-on!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Sunday 14th October

Woooooo!

 

I pulled through. That was one nasty cold! What a horrid weekend I had, unable to get up and in such pain. All my family have had this cold and have decided it was the worst cold we ever did meet. (Or maybe we just forgot how bad previous ones are?)

I am calling the cold "Wannabe Flu" as it obviously had ideas above its station.

Still I got to sit in bed last night and watch the rugby. I didn't think we would win against France to be honest, but woo-hoo! Very looking forward to the final next weekend. I also managed a little bit of beadmaking today. I fiddled around with some ceramic clay for a while, which was fun. I am absolutely itching to get out and melt some glass though. I haven't made any glass beads in over a week now and I going some serious cold turkey!

Anyway, don't be alarmed I promise to have new lampwork beads to show you soon, and in the meantime don't forget my auction ends in just a couple of hours!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Friday 12th October

Woe is still me!

 

The cold is still making me feel miserable. I am such a lightweight, I know. But in my head right now I should be lying on a reclining bed, being fanned and fed grapes and being told to "hold on just a little longer - we can't live without you"

It is utterly baffling to me that instead, I am being mostly ignored and told such obvious lies as "well, its only a cold - you will be better soon"

Talk about a world gone crazy....

To take my mind off of this disgusting neglect, I have put a wee set of lampwork beads up in the online store! Oh, and don't forget my eBay auction either - it ends in a day or two!

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 11th October

Woe is me!

 

Art Jewelry MagazineMy cold is worse. A lot worse.

As regular readers of this page know, I am not a patient patient. Whingeing, moaning, snuffling and crying are usually my first line of defence when I feel poorly. All washed down liberally with a huge helping of self-pity.

But doesn't listening to your favourite bead-peddler whinge make you want to rush out and read Art Jewelry magazine? If so, read on. The latest issue has just arrived and is now up for sale in the Books & Magazines section of the EJR Beads Online Store.

Please just note that I will not be shipping out any orders today. The post has already been taken down as I had to take advantage of a lift from Mr Man earlier this morning. So any orders placed this afternoon or this evening won't be sent out until tomorrow now.

Snuffly sniff....

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 9th October

Slow Coach!

 

My apologies to those of you waiting for me to list new art beads today. I am sorry but I just didn't get everything done in time, so they will be listed tomorrow evening instead now. You can blame the weather for conspiring against me (I couldn't take any nice photos half the day because of the dull, horrible murkiness). Or you could blame my cold for slowing me down. Or you could just blame me for being a slow coach and throw eggs at me (Cadbury's Mini Eggs preferably)

arthouse sra lampwork by Emma Ralph 

BUT....

I did list me a new auction on the UK eBay site.

This is a lovely set of my Arthouse beads, worked in browns and blues.

I enjoyed every moment working on these beads. It was one of those sets that just seemed to come out exactly as I had envisioned it. Which is quite rare. So often designs mutate somewhere en route from head to hand with me!

The beads have been listed with a 99p start as usual, but this time there is a reserve price set. That reserve is lower than my normal website prices for a set this size and complexity though so please don't be scared!

 

Remember this auction will end at the weekend. So if (unlike me) you have a life away from Beads, don't forget to put in your maximum bid nice and early and let eBay Proxy while you Foxy!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 8th October

More Strike!

 

Because Royal Mail are still on strike for today and tomorrow, there will be no orders shipped out until Wednesday. And even then please bear in mind that the post goes early on Wednesdays. So any orders received up until 10 am on Wednesday morning will ship out on Wednesday. Orders received after 10 am will ship Thursday. Pants isn't it. I know, but it cannot be helped.

The enforced break from packing orders though has been useful in some ways. I have finally got around to finishing off the next article in my Selling Your Handmade Jewellery series of articles. This one, Selling Your Jewellery Part 1, looks at getting ready to start selling. It is the question I get asked most about selling - "how do I know if i am ready?". So I have tried to look over the foundations of what *I* believe makes for successful sales. I hope you find it somewhat useful.

New art beads are being photographed today and tomorrow. My little experiment in where I list the art beads didn't work. So when they are finally listed in the store for sale, it will be in the old, usual place.

I was hoping the experiment would cure this problem we have of the store not updating itself quickly enough when two of you are trying to buy the same art beads just moments apart. But alas no. I will just have to hope this problem gets fixed when we update the store towards the end of the month (Yes, Mr Man has promised me an ickle upgrade - so if there is anything you absolutely HATE about using EJR Beads online, why not email me? I cannot change a great deal about how the store actually works - that would require too much custom work on Mr M's part. But some of the layout stuff and other minor changes might just be within my awesome powers. You never know.)

jewelry crafts magazine 

Meanwhile, do you wanna know what is new at EJR Beads?

Of course you do.

Well firstly there are some new issues up for many of the titles in the Books & Magazines section. Such as the lovely Jewelry Crafts magazine, Craft Stamper and more.

There have been stock replenishments also to some of the other categories. You will need to browse them, since only new products show in the new products list - not refils on old ones!

So check out the Tools section for example. I have restocked the Makin's cutters, pushmoulds etc. Great to use with polymer clay and Art Clay Silver. Also look in the modelling section there for some new clay products, namely Amaco pasta machines and Fimo brand cutting blades.

turquoise egyptian beads 

The Papyrus collection has also been restocked.  I just love these European pressed beads. They are so snazzy for creating something a little bit out of the ordinary.

Also look out for restocks in the Niobium Findings and Trade Beads categories too! Yes the Titanium earwires are back!

 

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Wednesday 3rd October

Strike!

Because Royal Mail staff are on strike for the next couple of days - there will be no post tomorrow or Friday. Sorry about that, but these things can't be helped. I will try to get any orders out to you on Saturday morning. So feel free to place your orders as normal, just be aware that delivery times might be a little longer than normal and we can do no special delivery parcels now until Monday. Thank you all for your patience - hopefully the disruptions won't be too noticable!

However, every cloud has a silver lining. I have a lot of restocking to do in the Online Store, so that will give me a couple of days free to get on with that. And then you get to have a nice long browse and see what is new, and what is back in stock. Anything you have been waiting to see come back in? Well check over the next couple of days as it might well re-appear!

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 2nd October

Funky Cold Medina!

 

 

Berber glass charmsAh, showing my age there aren't I!

Medina - is a new collection of pressed glass beads I have put up in the Online Store. I have selected some lovely beads for this collection, all with the aim of bringing to mind the rich exotic colours of North Africa.

I particularly love these Berber charms. They are so cute - perfect for wire-wrapping into earrings or working in your beadwork designs.

 

lampwork beads by Emma Ralph Also up today - a new auction on ebay!

This is a set of beads inspired by antique Venetian foiled beads. Using real gold leaf, they really to shimmer and scream opulence! Perfect for some over-the-top Christmas party jewellery I reckon!

I have listed this set at a crazy 99 p start. So head on over to ebay and search me out by my seller ID ejralph or be lazy and click here.

Don't forget to put in your bid now....!

As for my lampwork glass beads. Please note that I have temporarily moved where I list new Art Beads.  The pages look the same, but have a different address, due to some really boring technical reasons that I won't bore you with. But right now, this is not a permanent change.

 

 

So, if you are using a bookmarked page to view my lampwork beads you won't see the new art beads visible on that particular page. Instead for the next week or two, you need to find your way to the new page instead to be sure of seeing the latest beads.

How?

Simple. Just look to the menu on the left-hand side of any page in the online store, and click on Beads by Emma. This is where I am listing new beads for the moment.

Please don't change your bookmarked pages yet. As I said, this is a temporary move. I will let you all know if it becomes a permanent change.

So long as you navigate via the menu to find my art beads, you won't miss them. You will still have to worry about other people pipping you to the post on purchasing them though - I canne change the laws of physics.

 

 

Studio Update: Wednesday 26th September

Amber Shipment in!

 

amber chip beads  Yup - the Baltic Amber section at EJR Beads Online is officially restocked. I got in a lovely shipment of Baltic amber chip beads today and had great fun stroking and caressing them all this morning - and they call this work?

Not only are there chip beads in a variety of shapes and colours, I also have new stocks of the popular screw clasps. These clasps are ideal for your amber creations of course, but also they are perfect for any customers who have metal allergies and need a hypo-allergenic necklace clasp.

 

Want lampwork beads instead of amber? Well check out my auction! Oh and keep an eye on the store as I have the odd set to list over the next day or so too.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 24th September

Autumn Already!

 

lampwork glass beads by Emma  Ralph  I woke up this morning and Autumn was certainly in the air. It was blowing a gale outside and so dark and rainy I had to check it wasn't still the middle of the night. Yet now, its gorgeous and sunny with a blue sky. Oh I love our weather, its always so unpredictable!

So to complement today's autumnal feel, I have listed some very season beads in the Lampwork Beads section of the online store. For example, this lovely set of Leaves and Ice beads.

Oh and with any luck, I hope to have a new auction up later today too!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Wednesday 19th September

Brave New Emma!

 

Oh I was brave at the dentist today. I had a filling and I didn't squeal much at all. I didn't even bite Betsy this time ;-) Frankly, the only bit that hurt was the bill. OUCH!

Anyway, so I have been so focused on the upcoming dental thingy that I sort of forget that life continues after. I hadn't really planned anything much for this afternoon, which is just as well since i have been incredibly lazy and done nothing except buy out Marks and Sparks food hall for yummies and taken the dogs for a walk. So not an especially productive day!

Anyway, whilst I have your attention, I would like to have a little rant. In fact, I am thinking of starting "Emma's Rant of the Week" on this page, because I am getting to that age now where spleen-venting is quite an enjoyable pastime.

But today's rant is pretty simple. Please don't email me asking lots of questions if your email don't work!

Ack it drives me potty to spend ages answering emails only to have them bounce back at me as undeliverable. I am always happy to answer your emails as best I can, but please make sure your email address is working first! Sometimes I even get follow up emails from people accusing me of being horrible for not answering their first email! Its so annoying, because when I write back to say "hey dudette - I *did* answer you" - that one bounces back too! Sheesh as the Americans would say.

Ah....what a lovely rant. We must do this again sometime, don't you think?

What? No?

Ah come on now..... you know you enjoyed it.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 18th September

New auction!

 

There is not a great deal to report today. I have been busy in the studio, but won't have any new beads to share for a day or two yet I'm afraid. Still, there is a new auction up on eBay for you to check out -  click here to see!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Thursday 13th September

New things!

 

Well, you will be pleased to hear I went to the quacks about my poor tonsil. Turns out I also have infected sinuses (which I suspected) and so am officially poorly and officially deserving of much sympathies.

Well, ok - that is probably milking it somewhat. I am on antibiotics for it all and don't feel particularly bad at all. But just don't tell Mr Man that, as I have a nice little racket going here. I have already scored a box of Roses and a big bar of Galaxy chocolate this week.

 

So anyway, you don't care about tonsils and chocolate do you?

You care far more about beads I'll wager. Well, I have listed some new lampwork beads in the online store today. A couple of the sets have gone already, but there is still one left. And what a cutie it is too.

And if you miss out on beads in the store - well don't forget to check on my ebay auctions!

 

Also, you might be pleased to hear the latest issue of Bead magazine is now in stock

This is the much awaited issue 6, containing articles on "buying from abroad" (a bad idea as I will starve and obviously we can't have that), an intro into making polymer clay beads and much more.

This issue contains a cool article on making felted beads - which looks like great fun!

Find this and other great magazines in the Books & Magazines section of EJR Beads Online.

 

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 11th September

Ow - again!

 

I really am like Typhoid Mary this year, I have a new owwie. An infected tonsil. It has been ok the last 2 or 3 weeks. It was just quietly going about its business of being an infected tonsil without giving me too much trouble. But in the last day or two it has started to get sore, so it's off to the docs for me tomorrow to get some medicine about it!

Luckily it didn't stop me enjoying my weekend. It was the Banstead Countryside Day! Brought to us by the same people that leave goats called Elvis around grazing on our commons.

Banstead Countryside Day is brilliant. Brilliant because in all honesty its just a little bit crap. But crap in a good way mind. Remember the fair on Craggy Island in Father Ted? Well, its a bit like that.

My favourite line from the official programme was "We have a crocodile for the day!" This turned out to be a baby Cayman but you can't have everything can you.

I bought a nice mug from the pottery lady. We watched a bird of prey demonstration, there was a tent full of butterflies and a stand over-run with ferrets. The fun just kept coming. 

 

I also saw some great traditional crafts being demoed too - everything from spinning to charcoal making. Oh, and a lady from the fostering people hugged me and tried to make me foster a kid. (All because a balloon popped and I didn't freak out too much. No, I didn't really get the connection there either. )

Plus - of course, as I do each year, I won myself a "Don't badger the badger" badge and pencil from the badger people.

Pure class! You couldn't make it up.

 

It was almost a shame to get back to work really, after such a heady afternoon out in the world with real people. But EJR Beads doesn't run itself you know. It might appear that way, but it takes hard work to maintain this level of amateuristic blather you know.

 

So what news on the beady front? Well, I have been in and out of the studio over the last couple of days, so you can expect some lampwork beadies up soon. (soon being about Friday at this rate though).

Meanwhile I have a little auction running at eBay again. Another 99p starter so why don't you click here and check it out?

 

The other great news to share is that we have a new British bead magazine!

Beads & Beyond is published by Traplet, the people that put together Craft Stamper magazine. They are nice people who make nice mags, so I was delighted to hear they would be bringing out a bead-read too.

Beads & Beyond, as the title suggests, looks beyond just using your beads to make jewellery.

So the premier issue has projects as diverse as creating beaded bikinis, lampworked wind chimes and other home decor items. But there is also a whole load of jewellery related stuff too, from metal work and how to create with Art Clay Silver, to lampworking, stringing and more.

It really is an excellent read for a first issue. I am very impressed.

 

You can find Beads and Beyond in the Books and Magazines section of the EJR Beads Online Store.

 

 

 

Studio Update: Saturday 8th September

Lovely snoozy weekend!

 

Ah, it's nice to have a lazy weekend isn't it. I have been doing very little today that is work related. Not of course unless you count going to the art shop to buy some backing papers (I want to photograph some new projects for my Tutorials page, and do you think I could find my backing papers for photography? Could I eck as like. Still, its always good fun mooching about in the art shop looking at colourful things isn't it. So hardly a chore.polymer cafe magazine 

So with any luck, there should be some new tutorials up soon. I want to show you some ways to use the Adirondack Alcohol Inks with Fimo polymer clay first, and then I have some ideas for a wirework project too. Fingers crossed I might even get around to doing them all this century too!

Other than that we have just sat around eating M&S chocolate sundaes and watching sitcoms on the telly. It's a hard life isn't it.

In regards to shop news, which I am sure you will find more interesting than my face-scoffing exercises, you might want to know that the new issue of Polymer CAFE magazine is now in stock!

Oh, and don't forget my ebay auctions end soon!

 

 

 

Studio Update: Tuesday 4th September

Noo Auction!

 

Lampwork beads at auction!  I put a couple of sets of my lampwork beads up for auction at the UK ebay site. What is more - they are starting at just 99p!

So go and put your bids in early. You  might be having too much fun kicking around the autumn leaves later in the week and forget. You wouldn't want someone else to sneak away with the bargain of the century now would you! Not when that could be you ;-)

 

Click here to see the auctions, or search me out at ebay using my seller id ejralph.

 

 

 

 

Studio Update: Monday 3rd September

Crazy New Idea!

 

When you all email me saying "All your lampwork beads are always sold, how can I get any?" - I do listen you know! I might SEEM like a cloth-ears with very little useful to say, but the old grey matter has been ticking over nonetheless and wondering how I can make sure everyone gets a fair crack at the whip.

One thing I have done is start listing the odd set of beads on ebay. You can find the auctions by searching out my seller id ejralph. Mostly I am listing on the UK site right now, but not ruling out the US site. I hope to have auctions running regularly, although lately everything went to pot a bit as I was off colour for quite a few days.

Anyway, the latest crazy idea I have had is Emma's Lampwork Lotto. Click on the link to see more about that. I really hope that I have explained the idea well enough, but if you have any questions just drop me a line!

Oh and as for new lampwork in the shop? I have some beauties made, just need to photograph and list them. Hopefully tomorrow or the day after!