Sunday, November 30, 2008

Put Down the Liquids - Before Reading This Site

For those of you who revel in the English language - or even if you don't - you may have noticed that English takes a lot of abuse and keeps on ticking. Mostly, the meaning survives - but sometimes, the mangle-age of the language pushes it into the realms of the incomprehensible, and the hilarious.

Check out this site - Engrish Funny that documents signs and packaging from far-away lands. Oh, and if the signs weren't funny enough - read the comments. ;-)

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Sample sale continues

Quick note - the sample sale will continue on Sunday - just in case you missed it!

Sneak Peek at Next Week

s19048 Glass Drops - 6 x 9 mm Pear Drops - Teaspoon of the Mediterranean (strand 25)Droplets - fat little drop beads - in
Teaspoon of the Mediterranean,


s19049 Glass Drops - 6 x 9 mm Pear Drops - Mermaids Kiss (strand 25)
Mermaids Kiss,

s19052 Glass Drops - 6 x 9 mm Pear Drops - Mithrail (strand 25)Mithrail, and more!

Friday, November 28, 2008

See our Samples

video
We've mentioned that we are having a sale tomorrow - all the staff here make jewellery - if you didn't make it before you start working here - you soon are! (Staff frequently attend the in-store classes - sometimes, we have to schedule an extra class so that you can take the classes too!)

So tomorrow's sale features our own creations, samples make to demonstrate new products and techniques, colour combinations - or just made on the spur of the moment - "oooo - I know what I could do with that!"

And after a while, it accumulates! So here is an opportunity for you to stock up on Christmas presents! It's all handmade, but you don't have to do the work yourself! Enjoy our little preview video - and then come down tomorrow! Buy pre-made, or be inspired!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

To our American friends of course! We had ours a month ago, and are already in the throws of the holiday season. My kids insisted on putting up our tree last weekend. My 5 year old wanted to do all of the decorations herself. She did a pretty good job, and even had a stool to get to the top of the tree.

Enjoy your long weekend! It's a good time to plan out what gifts you'll be making this year. I've highlighted below some of our more popular designs from our inspiration pages. These make fabulous gifts for the women on your list. What woman doesn't like jewelry?

Some of the components may not be in stock, but this should get your ideas flowing. Here you can find our complete list of Inspiration ideas









Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Handmade is Best of course!

Gift giving can be a difficult thing. You may have many different types of people to buy for--the picky person, the one who has everything, the short person, the tall person, the mother in law and so on. The answer to this problem is making something yourself. Even if it is not their favourite colour or shape, they are guaranteed to love it. A handmade gift means that you took the time to think if them, pick something out and put it together. It is, if nothing else, made with love.

If you are having trouble finding inspiration, classes are of course the solution to your problem.

As always we have tons of great stuff coming up. Nadine's Bloosom Brooch class on Saturday November 29th

Amy's Learn to Make Glass Beads weekend class November 29th and 30th



Charmed I'm Sure with Heather Bell Denison November 30th


Spiral Rope Lariat with Cindy Vroom December 4th

We have a really exciting two day class with Heather and Jennifer coming up on December 6th and 7th, Intermediate Art Clay Intensive Weekend.


That only takes to the beginning of December--you should check out the rest of the month!!

I also have to apologize for a typo last week. Laurie-Anne Clinton's YoYo Leaf Bracelet was not up on the site when the blog was posted. It is now and it is gorgeous!


So remember the motto--Handmade is Best!!

Happy Beading

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Flameworking

The Toronto Star had a nice little article on flameworking yesterday in a special section on Continuing Education. The article focused on Sheridan College in Mississauga, but still - it's nice to see something you love featured.

BTW - Flameworking = lampworking = torchworking = wound glass. It's all the same thing. Originally - glass was melted over small oil lamps - hence the older name "lampworking." Torchwork or flamework would be more accurate, but the name "lampwork" does seem to hang on. Wound glass describes the process of winding it off the rod of glass as it melts - as opposed to "blown" glass - which is - well - blown! Of course - to make it more confusing - you can blow glass - on a small scale - in a torch.

I will be teaching a Lampworking (Flameworking/Torchworking) 201 class starting in January - it is already half sold - but if you have started lampworking (Flameworking/Torchworking) and want to go further, and love the structure of having one night a week devoted to the torch! - then email us for details. We'll be focusing on more sculptural forms.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sample Sale On Saturday


I know, normally I post some helpful tip on Monday about making jewelry. But, have you ever wondered what actually happens to all those items that we make, and display in the store? The Inspirations? The samples? The demos? The how-to stuff?

Well, it accumulates. Piles up. Fills drawers. Boxes. And, it's now time to share the wealth.

This Saturday, one day only, we will be having a "sample" sale - a sale of our samplers, our one-off creations made to showcase a particular bead or technique. Some of them we don't have on display any more because they are made with components that we just can't get any more.

Remember this one - "Antique Treasure"? We ran out of the beads shortly after posting it - figures. Anytime I really like something - it disappears off the market, and that's not just beads, but everything from shampoo to pizza brands. Anyway - you all loved it - and now - one of you can be lucky enough to own it! (It's tarnished a little - it's sterling after all! You might have to be prepared to give your new-found treasures a polish. A reasonable trade for being able to buy that piece you've been wanting for so long.)

Or, just come out for a chance to examine all these treasures in person - see them in their glory one last time.

I have personally found a staggering pile of stuff for this sale - some of my stunning gemstone pieces - featuring amethyst and rose quartz, and some of the silver pieces from I did in the metal clay. There will be a pile of the "cubic bling bling" bracelets too! Jen and the rest of the gals on the staff with have stuff there too - so come on down. Get yourself a little something for Christmas - you can always wrap it and put it under the tree labeled "from Santa."

Or "from a secret admirer." ;-)

Saturday, November 29, 9 am to 5 pm., at the store.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

loldogz and lolcatz

Flat out - one of the funniest websites ever. Ihasahotdog.com. No, seriously, and if the dogs don't do it for you - try the cats at icanhascheezburger.com.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Sneak Peek at Next Week

s18988 Stone Beads - 6 mm Rondelle - Lapis Lazuli (strand)Lapis - Lapis Lazuli - my favourite stone - just look at these - 6 mm rondelles and 6 mm faceted rondelles.s18990 Stone Beads - 6 mm Faceted Rondelle - Lapis Lazuli (strand) Yeah - there's some other stuff too. But who would notice while being seduced by these beauties?

Friday, November 21, 2008

Happy Friday!

Get your flu shot! My family is still battling some nasty bugs. The flu that took us down last week has now morphed into pneumonia for my poor husband, I'm dragging his butt to the doctor today. Men think they're invincible. He's horrendously sick, but when you suggest the doctor, of course he says he's perfectly fine, and healthy as a horse - then starts in on a hacking fit - sigh

So I'm cocooning at home this weekend to get some stuff done around the house, and my daughter wants a craft weekend. I'm not sure yet exactly what she has in mind. I'm planning on working on some projects for our 12 days of Christmas inspiration projects, but then I was thinking it would be nice if some of the projects were a little more inclusive. There are of course lots of other holiday celebrations at this time of year. I would love to hear your suggestions on beady projects that we can include from other faiths.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Swarovski Re-Branding - What used to be Swarovski is now CRYSTALLIZED

We received the following communication from Swarovski earlier this week - which is announcing, in short, that Swarovski wants to create more of a distinction between it's crystal ornaments business line - the Swarovski stores and the crystal figurines and their own line of jewellery, and their components business - the beads, pendants, rhinestones and other beady items.

As such - we are being told to change the way we present our Swarovski-made items. Rest assured, that when we now talk about CRYSTALLIZED(TM) - we are still referring to the same quality and sparkle that you have come to adore from these crystal beads.

Any of you who make jewellery for resale will want to know about this - as it may effect the way you label and market your items.

This overview chart of what's out and what's in will make it clearer. If you want to read the full text of their communication, it is here.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Something Old Something New....

There is excitement in the air here at Beadfx and it is not the thrill of the upcoming season either, it is buzz of exciting new and old classes!! We have a beautiful new project coming up December 20th with Laurie-Anne Clinton, from Unicorne Beads, the YoYo Leaf Bracelet.

The Bird's Nest ring has become the talk of the town lately, so we will be offering that workshop again Thursday December 11th from 4-5:30pm. This is a great day to come by because it is also Open Beading Night from 6-8pm. Please remember that Open Beading Night is a free night but we ask that you call ahead and sign up first.

The 2009 class schedule should be up on the site sometime around the end of November to the first week of December. Keep your eyes for some great new classes.

If you are looking for something other than shopping to do this weekend we have a lot going on. Cindy Vroom's Ric Rac Allure,

Stephanie Dixon's Multistrand Necklace still has 2 spots available

And for the avid Art Clay lovers we have a special Metal Clay Play Day on Saturday November 22nd from 5 to 9pm!!

As always there is still lots more going on, check out the site for the full class schedule.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Metal Clay Playday

Yes, a playday for adults. Once a month or so, a group of metal clay addicts get together to work on projects in the company of other metal clay addicts. We make stuff, we chat, we eat. We probably gab and goof off a lot more than actually make stuff, but that's part of the fun. If you've tried metal clay before, and would like to join us, please have a look at the class schedule and see if there is a date coming up. We'd love to have you join us!



Monday, November 17, 2008

Making Glass Beads - Making a Dichroic Glass Bead

video
OK - here it is - had to shorten it and try a bunch of stuff to make the file small enough to upload. But, 'tiz done. Only took a day to shoot and two full days to edit. Anyone want any video edited - I'm charging an arm and a leg - per minute.

For those of you who have never seen "lampwork" beads being made - I hope you find this useful and educational. For those of you who do make beads - I hope that you get something out of it too.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

How a Glass Bead is Made - An inside look at Lampworking

I have a video to show you this morning - as soon as I can render it in a size small enough for online viewing. Be with you shortly!

Or, the way everything happens with video - sometime today. ;-)

Seedbeaders get Respect (Finally!)

So, you've spent the year, on and off, making a truly fabulous and elaborate seedbead creation. You know the type - a big, frothy concoction with bezel set stones and every stitch you can name in it. You can't count the hours you've spent on it - You gave up around 500 and you know that it was only a third done then. You've invented half of it, had to pull parts out and start again. But now it's done, and you've worn it for the first time to rave reviews - but then your non-beady friends want to know how much you'd charge to make them one too. You're trying to explain that while there is only $20.00 worth of beads in it - they can't afford it. You sigh, realizing "Seedbeaders don't get no respect."

So, hopefully - checking out these seedbead artists that do get some respect will make you feel better, and encourage you to go on to the next over-the-top project.

Found these in the "Mostly Glass" Art Gallery.
There's some pretty serious other artists listed too - including a veritable who's who of torchworked glass. Their mandate is "Unique Art Work, technically challenging"

Check it out! and note the prices on those seedbead extravaganzas. Now - isn't that inspiring!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Sneak Peek at Next Week

s18944 Freshwater Pearls - 9 mm Potato Pearl - Bronze (strand)Coming at ya - Pearls. Be the girl with the pearl - or the goil with the poil, if Vermeer was from Joisey. Most of these are large. Big. Humungous. Lots of drama.s18974 Freshwater Pearls - 14 x 11 mm Potato Pearl - Ivory (strand) Total Drama Pearl Island.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Found on etsy


Oh my goodness, I know this has absolutely nothing to do with beads....and believe it or not, It's not food either. They're bath bombs! The rest of her items look pretty cool too. How do you not eat them? Here is her etsy site: Moonsharvest



Another artist that I've always admired is Star of The East - She hails from Turkey, and creates the most beautiful Sea Urchin jewellery. - Can you tell I was working on my christmas wish list yesterday? :-)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The flu

I have nothing exciting to talk about today at all. In fact, I'm under quarantine. A bug that started at my daughters school, has spread like wildfire. One of her teachers likened it to a bomb going off. Every student, every teacher, and every parent has been hit this week. Here, it's spreading slowly. I thought we were over it, but Isla now has it. Anyway, I'm staying away at the request of my staff. Although, I'm seriously going stir crazy...but taking out all the staff, and in store customers at once is probably not the best idea either ;-)

hey, maybe I can finally get my home studio cleaned up! Unfortunately, we'll have to reschedule the class that I was supposed to teach at 4. I'm sorry, I know....but you REALLY don't want this bug.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

So Much to Do, So Little Time

There is so much coming up in the next month and a bit and I am having a hard time deciding what to talk about this week. I have to admit that I am in the gift giving mind set right now and I think we have some great classes that can help you out with this. These projects are sort of the quick and easy way to get your shopping done, with very little stress, while still being able to feed your beading addiction.

Our Make it and Take It's begin this week and there is still time to get into Nadine's awesome Pod Earring class. These projects are super fast and fabulous of course, they are the kind of thing you can whip up in a weekend and get almost everyone done who is on your list.



Marilyn Gardiner's Japanese Takara Necklace is also a stunning gift, a little more work--maybe something for the extra special person on your list.



Stephanie Dixon's Wire Bead Crochet basics class is full on the 22nd, but the Multi-Strand Necklace on November 23rd is not-YET! I saw this sample on the weekend at the Bead Fair and it is totally fabulous.


Cindy Vroom's Ric Rac Allure bracelet class is a really funky project coming up on November 22nd.



Our own bead diva, Nadine Foskin, has her beautiful Bloosom Brooch class coming up on the 29th of November, which is also the day of our sample sale--come by and double you pleasure!!


There is so much more going on and I recommend that you check out the site and take a few classes. Even if you are not in the gift giving/making mindset yet, you should come by and have some fun.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

An Invitation from Heather Bell Denison

You are invited to an open house for Fine Silver Girl, Heather Bell Denison, on Wednesday November 12th 2008!!


48 Woodington Ave Toronto Ontario
9:30am to 2:30pm
7:30pm to 9:30pm

View Heather's handmade fine silver jewelry at FineSilverGirl.com

Heather Bell Denison is one of the Metal Clay instructors here at BeadFX and this would be a great opportunity to see some of her work, meet her in person and start some of your holiday shopping.

Treasures for Trash

I pay my bills online - and of all the utilities and credit cards and bills that come through my door - one, ONLY ONE, has a system smart enough to recognize this - and not send me an envelope to return my payment in. The rest send envelopes - mostly printed with "security" patterns inside. Have you ever looked at these patterns? I hadn't! Aren't they handsome?

But this lady has looked at them, and what's more - she's making buttons out of them! And quite fabulous they are, too. She reports that she had found at least 80 different designs - and she now has bigger projects in mind!

So - she's putting out a call for your used or addressed security envelopes - mailing envelopes with printed patterns inside (to prevent holding it up to the light and seeing the contents.) She's even willing to trade finished buttons for piles of envelopes. Get more details from her blog.

Reduce, Re-use, Recycle!

Oh, and the single company smart enough to not send an envelope? Royal Bank Visa. Kudos to you! They sent a notice after the third straight online payment in a row, saying that if I needed an envelope again, just to call them. Come on, the rest of you - how hard would that be?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Beady Graph Paper

Have you thought about designing your own patterns for peyote (gourd) stitch, or brick stitch, or square stitch? Are you thinking that some specialty graph paper might make it easier?

There are a bunch of free graph paper resources online! Check these out!

  • Graph paper by Shala Kerrigan - lots of different styles here, including brick, peyote, (2 and 3 drop for both, and triangle weave with bicones. Hmmm - that looks interesting.
  • Graph paper in PDF format for Peyote, Brick and Right Angle Weave, seed beads and cylinders from Black Giraffe.
  • This inspiring Chevron Design graph and Victorian Lace graph are available on this Needlepoint site. I'm not much of a bead-weavy kind of gal - but these are more like elaborate stringing projects. I could do this!
Just print what you need, as you need it!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Another Time Sponge: Take the Test

Here we have yet another time sponge - a website that sucks up spare time like a like a super shammy demonstrator soaking up spills.

HelloQuizzy.com - chock full of quizzes - personality quizzes ranging from the sublime to the ridiculous! From the "Keirsey Bates MBTI personality test" to the "Are you actually a pirate test?" - whether you are looking for deep insight or some mindless fun - there's something here to amuse you. If you want to know if you could spot a serial killer, or find out how hedonistic you are, or find out what colour crayon you would be, if you were, in fact, a crayon.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Sneak Peek at Next Week

s18856 Stone Beads - 10 mm Round - Pink Crazy Lace (strand)Hey - it's that time again - time for a new stone of the month! Okay - could somebody please explain to me where these months keep going? Anyway - Pink Crazy Lace - yummy happy pink. If this weather keeps up - we won't need happy colours to keep us cheerful, but the odds of that happening are . . . ooooh, slim to none. And Slim just left town. This is Canada, after all.
s18906 Swarovski Vintage - 10 x 15 mm Jewel Bug - Creased Oval Connectors (Article 3219/4)  - Emerald (1)
Also - more "Jewel Bugs" - these fun two-hole beads are Vintage Swarovski - yes - even though there are no facets - these are Swarovski. See how nice they look in Cynthia's Jewel Bug inspiration? Now we have a colour range. Doubt that we can restock these, however. Git 'em while they're hot!

Friday, November 07, 2008

Toronto Bead Society - Fall Bead Fair

Don't forget - the Toronto Bead Society Bead Fair is this weekend - located here:


View Larger Map

Over 50 vendors of hand-made jewellery and bead supplies - a diverse marketplace for bead enthusiasts. Classes too. Bead there or bead square!

Downtown Toronto YMCA
20 Grosvenor Street
Sat Nov 8 10am - 5pm
Sun Nov 9 11am - 5pm
Admission:
$8 for a two day pass
$5 for a one day pass \

TTC-able, or parking across the road if you arrive early enough.

Hope to see you there!

Craft Site

I just found this neat craft site which has tons of jewelry related projects. I believe all of the projects are submitted by viewers, including a bunch of links to craft videos. This will be especially handy for those of you looking to do crafts with kids. Or just big kids like us :-)

http://www.craftbits.com

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Handmade Nation


On the way home last night after picking up the kids, we decided to hit chapters for a looksee. I wasn't really planning on buying anything, but Dan was looking for a particular book. Going to Chapters with my kids (other parents may be luckier with better behaved children) is always an experience. One parent stays in the children's area, trying to watch them as one stays put reading books, while the other (who has the attention span of a gnat) runs around causing havoc.

I decided that I should get to look first since we only get about a half hour before the smallest one has exhausted her store of good behaviour. And Dan knew exactly what he wanted anyway :-)

I came across a book that I vaguely recognized the title on. Handmade Nation. I remember reading quite some time ago about a documentary that was scheduled to come out sometime in 2009. This is the book that will go along with it.

This is all about the current culture of craft, and the DIY era. Craft is being redefined by a younger generation. Technology, politics, idealism, feminism, and an in your face punk rock attitute, are completely changing the way we view crafts. Handmade is no longer viewed as a poor cousin to high end commercialism.

Teenagers, through to 30 somethings are embracing this new attitude towards craft, and they're bridging the gaps between craft and art. One facet to this new group of crafters, that has not been seen before is the community. Online, and in person groups are being formed in record numbers. From Stitch n' bitches, general craft groups, societies, to online forums, they are sharing their craft. Successes, failures, how-to's, marketing lessons, and so on, is being freely shared through these groups.

This book tells the story of 24 crafters. Get a glimpse into their studios, and their businesses. It's a fascinating read for anyone interested in this sorta thing.

(no we don't carry this book...sorry!)

Here is a snippet of the upcoming documentary Handmade Nation by Faythe Levine.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Fun in the Fall

It is nice right now, but before we know it it will be cold and gloomy outside. The fun of Halloween has passed and we are starting to look to the upcoming holiday season. But that does not mean that we cannot have some fun at the same time!
I did not put up much that was new this week, but that does not mean we do not have tons of great things on the go. November is packed with classes and workshops that should not be missed.
We have three Cindy Vroom classes:
Ric Rac Allure bracelet


Spiral Rope Lariat

And the fabulous Beaded Beads, you will some knowledge of peyote stitch to take this class.


Amy Waldman-Smith has an introduction to lampwork weekend coming up November 29th and 30th and a new one listed on the 13th and 14th of December.


Lots and lots of fun metal clay classes coming up including the intensive weekend on the 6th and 7th of November.

There is still room in our Make it and Take workshops. These are free workshops, you pay for the materials.
Dwyn has a five hour introduction to lampworking class coming up on the 25th of November.




There are also a few metal clay play days and some Marilyn Gardiner classes coming up.



Hope to see you at one or more of these classes!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

In the Pink

On Wednesday (tomorrow) - our new Swarovski colours, Dark Indigo Blue and Indian Pink will go live on the website. Jen mentioned them a week or two ago, but I wanted to show you the Indian Pink in a comparison shot, so that you could see the difference between it and the Rose and the Padparadscha. It really does fall smack dab between these two colours.

The Padparadscha is a more orangey colour - true to it's namesake - the sapphires from Padparadscha - and the Rose is a pretty, girly pink. The Indian Pink is a more intense colour.

You can design something really firey and hot and intense with this colour!

I think I might use all three of these colours together (with maybe some Light Rose too!), and throw in something dark for contrast - maybe the Dark Indigo Blue - I think black might be too stark - maybe not - and see what I get.

How will you use it?

Monday, November 03, 2008

The Future of Bead Shows

Last month, we asked our fearless beaders this question*:

It used to be practically impossible to find out new sources of beads and new products without going to shows. Now, just about everything is available online. How important do you think bead shows are and will be in the future?
The response is a resounding "Very Important!"

While a handful of you felt that bead shows have, or will shortly out live their usefulness - most of you felt that bead shows are, and will continue to be an importance source of inspiration, a great way to find new sources and new products, and a fabulous way to connect with other beaders.

Quite a few of you admitted that while you had never actually been to a bead show - you would love to if there was one close!

Lots of you love the experience of seeing all the beads in person and in one place. In particular, you really like to see and handle the stone beads and pearls in person before purchasing.

Several of you raised another important point about shows, Julie put this best:
... for us Canadians, a show gives us the opportunity to see a variety of suppliers in one place where things are priced in Canadian dollars - no need to wonder what today's exchange rate is to calculate the price. Or worry about the shipping method and shipping charge.

While lots of you love the convenience of shopping online, many, many of you talked about being able to touch the beads, get a sense of the size, the sparkle, (hello fellow Swarovski lover!), the weight. I loved what Susan had to say:

... But I just love to be able to fondle them. Whoops! my naughty secret is out! Is there anyone else who just loves the feel of the hanks through their fingers and the cheeky way delicas pour onto your workspace!!!

Right on Susan - I am so with you on that!


Helen also talked about the whole experience of going to a bead show:

The bead shows, to me, have been a fantastic place to visit. You feel like you've gone to a bazaar in some exotic country, and you didn't even need your passport!! It's everything that you have imagined in the world of bead/jewellery making, and it's all under one roof!!! It's like being a kid again at Christmas! I had the pleasure of going to the Oasis [Bead Show] in Toronto, both the Spring and the Fall show. I'm still drooling over everything I saw there (and bought!!!) It's wonderful to know that there are so many with creative talents.
Other mentioned being able to wear and show off their creations, and others mentioned being able to see other people's creations too. Seeing things in 3-D is not the same as seeing them on the net.

Mary made this important point, succinctly.

Beads are tactile!

Christine summed it up nicely:

I love bead shows. Nothing beads seeing the items in person. Plus there are the classes to take, people to meet...it is social as well as commercial!

So, in short - you told us that beads are both tactile and social - touchy-feely beads!


If you are looking for a show near you, try these resources.

For Canadian Bead Shows

For U.S. Shows



*Each month, we have a contest, and we ask an optional question. Check out our question this month and every month, and get a chance to win!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Cranky Customer

Misery loves company. Does customer service, or the lack thereof, make you crazy? For instance, do you want to strangle your car dealer or quietly hack up the local computer sales geek into tiny little pieces? If you hear "your call is important to us" one more time, are you going to scream? Well - this site may not solve your problems - but at least you know you are in good company. CrankyCustomer.com - not random whinings, but well-thought out and well-documented cases of customer complaints. You are not alone.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Funny Site of the Day

Ok, so we don't have a funny site every day, but this one makes up for it. You just gotta love Rick Mercer. Enjoy your morning coffee while looking through the photo challenges on his blog. Viewers have downloaded images of our political leaders and past hopefuls, and morphed them with photo editing software. Some of the entries are absolutely hilarious, and be prepared to waste a bit of time - there are a few years worth of submissions.

http://www.rickmercer.com

Sneak Peek at Next Week

Fabulous Firepolish - some of that yummy, yummy limited edition faceted firepolish. s18868 Firepolish - 11 mm Faceted Donut - Lost Civilizations (strand 25)s18875 Firepolish - 10 mm Spiral Barrel Cut - Butterscotch Opal (Strand 25)s18880 Crackle Beads - 8 mm Faceted Round - Vampires Dream (strand 25)Soooo nice. Limited Quantities!