Philadelphia Bead Fest, 2008

this morning i got up nice and early to drive an hour and a half to Philadelphia to take a class with Tracy Stanley, called "Simply Charming Bracelet" - where we learned to create our own personalized charm bracelet by stamping messages on metal and turning them into charms. We made our own chain and finished it off with beads and assorted charms. (although i am still working on mine). Tracy is from the Seattle area and has been teaching for years. she's a great teacher and i really enjoyed this class; she's funny too. i added it at the last moment and i am glad i did. i'll show my piece later when i've had a chance to complete it. my bracelet was themed around family. i also met a really nice girl in class, my seatmate, Tabitha, from Conneticut. We are going to share a room tomorrow night so that i don't have to drive home late. saturday i take a jewelry class with Cheryl Strait called Found Object Jewelry 101.

i decided to purchase some tools from Tracy and she gave us a brief introduction to various types of hammers and their uses. she's selling a really cool line of texturing hammers made in Vietnam that she sells on her website. they are a little pricey, but well worth the price. i just loved them and the effects the give. the chasing hammer is to die for. check them out at :

Frietz Texturizing hammers -
Finally a well crafted hammer. beautiful and functional as well.
These little beauties are so exciting. Each hammer is work of art. They measure 9” tall, so they are portable.The handles are made of Padouk wood, a member of the rosewood family.They handles are small and so smooth. The heads are made of steel and each head is different.
i also bought a couple of other tools, my favorite being a little basket/strainer to put your small items in and then just lower the basket into a blackening agent. very cool!