Monthly Archives: May 2010

Tool Time Tuesday – Full of Holes

Most people aren’t that fond of their in-laws and luckily, I am not one of those. I love my in-laws. Most of you know that my Father-in-Law is the one that built the majority of my studio . He is amazing when it comes to stuff like that. They flew in last week and already we have begun excavation in our garden area for our new fire pit, power washed the deck and are ready to stain it, painted part of the front porch, spread 5 cubic yards of mulch, put down fertilizer and over-seeded the lawn, tore apart one kiln to see if we can repair it or not and then installed a new power cord on another kiln. That was just the last day and a half. We will be painting our two-story foyer, the rest of the front porch, staining the deck and installing the fire pit and pavers in the garden….. and the list goes on and on. But I must say, that I am the most excited over the kilns! I will be selling the Paragon kiln, much to my dismay, due to it being a 220-volt and I don’t have an extra one that I can use in the house. The kiln hasn’t ever been used, though it is a few years old. Someone is going to have fun with that one.  But be watching for some kiln maintenance and tool tips coming up in the near future as I continue to prep and get my enameling set up finished.


So I am one of the fortunate people to grace the pages of a new book called 30-minute earrings. A couple of weeks ago I got my advanced copy and I LOVE this book. It is full of some great ideas. Now, keep in mind, this book is NOT written for beginners. That is part of what made writing my project fun. It assumes you already know what you are doing when it comes to soldering, drilling, manipulating wire and can read instructions. I believe it will be available June 1st if it isn’t already.

I am project 26 on page 60. My earrings are also on the spine of the book and on the Introduction page.  YAY!

Tool Time Tuesday – Full of Holes

Now, on to our real reason for this fabulous post. Today was hard to come up with a topic. I have several topics that I am writing on and it was just a matter of which one I wanted to post. This summer should be full of some good information and resources. But I particularly like today’s post because it is full of tools that I am using a LOT right now, particularly since I have been doing so much with cold connections lately. I have had a lot of requests on which tools to use for making holes in my metal. Of course you have your old stand by, the flexshaft or drill. While I do A LOT of drilling, sometimes I will bypass it if I can use one of my punches. It is much faster to just punch a hole than it is to work my way up through drill bits.

I decided to show my EuroPunch hole punches (4 shapes/sizes), 2-hole
punch (aka helicopter punch) and my scary punch. EuroTool just came
out with a tool that is very much like the “scary” punch. They are
great, though a little bit scary. HA! I will explain it all, just keep
on reading.

All of these tools work great in gauges 20 and below. But I wanted to see how they would work in gauges 20, 18 and 16. Sorry, I didn’t clean the metal, just pulled it out of my scrap and metal box.

The first punch is a newer tool, they just came out in February. It is a square punch. It measures 1.5mm x 1.5mm. It is great for decorative holes and I use it for that purpose all the time.

Just place the tip where you want to punch and squeeze the handles together. Depending on the gauge, you might have to give it quite a bit of power. The punch tips can break, and it comes with a replacement tip…. just be sure to remember where you put it when you get the tool in case you do need to replace the tip.

As with any punch or cutters, it would probably be best to add a little bit of lubricant to your cutter.

Here is my pretty little square hole. Fun huh?

They also have an oval punch. 1mm x 1.7mm. Used just the same way as the square punch.


They have two sizes of round punches; 1.25 mm (small) and 1.8mm (large) These are great for a number of uses, but I most often use them for decoration or when I need to place a bail hole or something like that. I only wish they had punches that corresponded to American Wire Gauges. That would make life nice!


Okay, so here are a couple of pictures from the front and back of the piece with just the four hand punches. Notice that on the front (first picture) it does leave a little bit of an indent on my piece. This is from when you finally get your piece to go through the metal it closes pretty fast and you have a little bit of clean up to do.

The back is quite a different story. The round punches don’t leave TOO much to clean up, but you can see here in the picture, there is a little. The square is AWFUL. It leaves a really sharp back. I usually just grab a file and knock it down to make it smooth. Still, it is worth it to have the ease of the holes and coolness of the shapes.

This little tool is perhaps my favorite tool for making holes. There are some great upsides to it and a couple of things that I wish I could change. This is a 2-hole punch and you can also see why some people call it a helicopter punch. There are two different sizes of holes that this tool makes. Here is how I remember which side is which. The Silver side is the small side. S stands for Silver and Small. This side will punch a 14 gauge hole (PERFECT for rivets!) The Black side is the Big side. B stands for Big and Black. It makes a 10 gauge hole (Perfect for my 3/32 tubing.)

I like to start by marking where I want my hole, place the punch on the table while I get everything aligned and then twist just until I have my piece in place.

Then I pick my piece up and begin to drill through the metal. You can’t really tell by this picture, but my index finger keeps the piece from twisting around as I drill through.

When removing the metal it is very important NOT to pull it off. Keep un-drilling until your piece falls off. If you pull your metal off of the punch, then you risk breaking it. Fortunately, if you do happen to break it, then you can get replacement parts for it.

I should have gotten in a little closer, but the last two holes are made with the two hole punch and they are much cleaner than the hole made with the plier punches.

This actually called the Power Plier Punch, not the scary punch. The reason I call it the scary punch is because it takes quite a bit of force to get through the metal (in thicker gauges – 20 is EASY) and you can easily pinch your fingers with this one…. I have a few times.

The great thing about this tool is that it punches 7 different sizes; 3/32, 1/8, 5/32, 3/16, 7/32, 1/4 & 9/32.  To remove your metal from this punch, just open the punch all the way up and your metal will pop off.

To start of, I place it on the table, get things lined up and ready to go.

Here, I have left the bottom handle on the table to use as leverage. Notice the placement of my fingers on the top handle. KEEP THEM OUT OF THE MIDDLE! If you don’t, you will certainly feel some of the pain I felt the first couple of times using them.

I only did one size hole (1/8) of the Power plier punch, but you get the idea. Again, I am left with a clean hole. The hole that gets punched out of this can be used in other projects, but be aware, this one will have a little dimple in the center it because of the shape of the punch.

Okay, this last picture shows my results with 20 gauge copper. I didn’t anneal the copper piece, It isn’t dead soft, but it also isn’t full-hard. So it is probably more 1/2 hard than anything, or perhaps just a bit softer.

I tried again on 18 gauge and 16 gauge, below are my results and thoughts.


I was actually really surprised by the 18 gauge. I didn’t think my little EuroPunches would do well with it, but in the end, they did go through. The circle punches worked the best, with the oval second and the square last. Again, there is a bit of clean up to do. I did have to apply quite a bit of power to get the punches to go through and was prepared for a broken tip, but I didn’t break any.

The two hole punch and power plier punch did a great job as I knew it would.

16 gauge is really thick! I didn’t expect my 2-hole punch to go through it. I tried it first with the black side (10 gauge) and it did actually go through, but it was difficult to get it to do it. I then tried the silver side (14 gauge) and didn’t get very far before I decided to stop. I could tell that I wouldn’t get through it and would only end up with a broken tip. So I have a nice indent, but that is all.

The third hole/indent came from the 1.8mm EuroPunch pliers. I didn’t get very far with this one at all. The dent isn’t even all that deep. HA!

The PowerPunch did a great job though I had to put a LOT of pressure onto this tool to get it to go through. But I also ended up with the prettiest little round disc that I am sure will find its way into my pieces somewhere.


The EuroPunch pliers have said they will go through 18 gauge metal, and they certainly lived up to that claim. However, I don’t think I will go above 20 too often. I would just rather play it safe with them. But at least I know it can if I need it to. The tools run between $15 & $17.

The two hole punch is rated to go through 20 gauge. I use it to go through 18 all the time. But I do take it easy when I am working with 18 gauge. Don’t twist to quickly and it should be fine. This tool runs about $24 and worth EVERY PENNY!

I didn’t try the Power Punch on anything higher than 16, but it went through easily enough, I am almost sure that I could get through 14 gauge if I really wanted to. This tool is only about $40, so it is quite affordable.

We only need 5 more subscribers before I do my celebration giveaway. We are so close. So spread the word if you know of anyone who might find the Tool Time Tuesday posts useful.

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Tool Time Tuesday – Butane Torches

A week sure seems to fly by so quickly anymore. Today was my youngest daughters last day of preschool for the school year. I am totally not ready for summer vacation. My oldest has only 13 days left, yes, she told me that a couple of times today. Both are excited to be home for the summer. Little do they know I have a lovely daily chore and educational goals list for them both. hahaha But there will be great rewards if they do all that is on their list.

Well, here we are for another Tool Time Tuesday post. When I teach soldering classes people often ask which torch I prefer or suggest. As you already know I am a total tool junkie. I have 4 varieties of torches that I keep on hand, and just this past week, I added one more. YAY! I love tools!

Today’s Tool Time Tuesday Post is about my three varieties of Butane Torches. I also have an Acetylene/air torch and oxy/propane, but my butane torches are what I use 98% of the time. It is so much easier to grab one of these than it is to sit and get the mixtures right or turn on all the knobs to get the other torches going.

These are my three torches. Listed from left to right: Blazer Micro Torch, Blazer Spit Fire; Jumbo Torch.

I learned to solder on my Blazer Micro torch and have had mine for 5 years now. I will swear by that torch and it is the one that i have provided in my kits and classes for years.

The SpitFire is a new torch. My friend Jeanette at just began carrying these in her shop. I hadn’t ever tried one so I ordered it so that I could do this Tool Time Tuesday and compare them. I also did some price checking on this one and she had a great price compared to other places I looked.

The Jumbo Torch is a newer one for me. I have been using this one for about a year now and I am LOVING it. I also offer this one if my students want to buy a good torch. More often than not, they usually end up getting both torches, and with fairly good reason.

I decided to try a couple of different tasks with these three torches. I also knew that the Micro torch would fail in a couple of them because I have tried them many times before and I know what the torch is capable of and what it isn’t.

The Tasks:

  • Solder a Bezel
  • Solder a bezel to a large back plate
  • Solder a large/thick ring
  • Ball up the end of a 14 gauge copper wire
  • Ball up the end of a 20 gauge copper wire


In the first task I wanted to solder a bezel to fit an 18x25mm stone. The bezel is 3/32 high and 28 gauge thick. This seems like it would be a fairly easy task, but sometimes soldering a bezel closed that is this open can be tricky.

Both the Micro torch and SpitFire did really well. They soldered the seam closed within 20 – 30 seconds. The jumbo torch soldered the seam within 10 seconds.


The next task was to solder the back-plate onto a 22 gauge sheet of copper. I have marked the sizes of the sheets so you can see what I am working with. I already knew beforehand that the Micro torch would not be able to do this, but I tried it again anyway.

The results: Both the Micro torch and SpitFire failed miserably. They didn’t even come close to getting the solder to flow before the piece was too oxidized. Nor would they have ever gotten the solder to flow. Their flame, while very hot, is just too small to hold the temperature on the entire piece to get things to flowing point. In both cases,  I called in the Jumbo torch to finish the job while the piece was still warm. The Jumbo torch got the solder to flow, but not completely as the smaller torches had oxidized the backplate too much.

On the piece done just with the jumbo torch I was actually surprised by the results. While it certainly got things hot enough to flow the solder, it actually oxidized before the solder could flow completely. So while the solder did flow in all three pieces with the jumbo torch, all had to go back for a second round of soldering. This is actually not atypical for me when I am working on larger pieces.

In all cases I was using a paste flux with hard solder.


The next task was to solder some rings. I uses these bands for my spinner rings. So that is what these three are destined to be. The bands are all 10 mm wide and 20 gauge. So we are talking some good amounts of silver here. They are different sizes and that did make a difference.

The Micro Torch soldered the seam closed after about a minute and a half. I started with a sheet 10mm wide by 58mm long.

The SpitFire began to flow the solder, but it didn’t complete the flow before oxidation wouldn’t allow for it to flow. I started with a band 10 mm wide by 64mm long. I believe this made all the difference in this piece flowing. The flame is certainly hot enough, but again, because it is such a tight and concentrated one it can’t keep the temperature on the entire piece long enough for everything to get to temperature at the same time.

After pickling the piece clean I gave the SpitFire one more chance. It was feeling pretty bad that it didn’t get the job done the first time and certainly felt up to the challenge of getting it done completely. So after about a minute and a half the solder flowed beautifully into the seam. It might have been that I didn’t get the piece fluxed well enough the first time and oxidation set in before the solder could flow.

The Jumbo torch had no problem with this at all and the seam was closed within 30 seconds. Again the band was 10mm wide by 66mm wide.


The final task was to ball up the end of copper wire. Sterling always balls up for me really well, even when I am using thicker gauges. But I really wanted to put the torches to the test and decided on copper. You need to get copper much hotter before you can get it to ball up on the ends. The first task with the copper was with a 44mm piece of 14 gauge copper wire. That is a pretty tough challenge. I already knew that my Micro Torch wasn’t up to the task, but I made it push through it all the same.

The Results: 14 Gauge
The Micro Torch gave it a pretty good shot, but failed in the end. I was able to get the surface to go molten, but just couldn’t get that desired ball to form.

The SpitFire had me really excited. The wire was bright red, the surface was flowing, but the ball just never formed.

The Jumbo Torch had a nice little ball on the end of the wire within 10 seconds.

The Results: 20 gauge
In this task all three torches walked away with a great self esteem.

Both the Micro torch and SpitFire had a ball in the end of the wire within 15 – 20 seconds. The Jumbo torch did it within about 3 seconds.

So how do they really compare? What do I recommend?

You have just read my results of testing these three torches. As stated before, I knew going into this that the Micro Torch would not be capable of some of the tasks. I didn’t know what the SpitFire was capable of so I decided to push the limits.

Why is the Jumbo Torch able to do so much more? Well, both the Micro Torch and SpitFire have a smaller more concentrated flame. The SpitFire is able to concentrate its flame even more than the Micro Torch. The Jumbo torch has a much broader flame. You are able to change the size of the flame. This is a great feature if you work with fine delicate wires and also larger pieces.

Each of the torches allow you to change and control your flame type and oxygen flow. Both the Jumbo Torch and SpitFire have safety levers on them which take a bit to get used to, but I like that they are there. The Micro torch doesn’t have any safety switches allowing you to lock it from being accidentally turned on.

The Jumbo Torch and Micro Torch hold more butane than the SpitFire. I can usually solder several large pieces before refilling the canister. I am not quite sure how long I can solder with the SpitFire yet. I was able to get through all of these exercises and it is still ready to go. All three torches use refined butane and it is readily available at grocery stores and hardware stores. It is the same kind of fuel used in the butane lighters.

I have found that my Micro Torch is great for pieces that are no larger than 1 1/4″ x 1 1/4″. It seems that it holds the same for the SpitFire as well. The thing I really like about these torches is that because the flame is so much tighter it is easier to control. It takes longer for the piece to get up to temperature and while learning that is very important. It gives you a chance to really get a feel for the temperature changes in the metal. You can see things warming up, the flux changing phases and finally your solder flowing.

My Jumbo torch is great for larger pieces. I have done pieces up to 3″ x 3″ with layers. The flame is much larger and can get your piece to temperature quickly and hold it there while the solder flows. With smaller pieces it goes really fast. Sometimes that is nice, but when I have students using it to learn on, it is kind of frustrating because it happens so quickly that they don’t get the chance to really see all the temperature changes. At first, they tend to over heat and sometimes that means melted silver and bezels.

I use both the Jumbo Torch and Micro Torch about the same amount. I always solder my bezel wire with the Micro torch. Any time I have fine wire designs or open wire designs I do it with the micro torch because I have more control. When soldering a bezel onto a back plate or working with layered objects and larger items I use my Jumbo torch.

I am very excited to use this little SpitFire torch a bit more. The flame gets really tight and REALLY hot. You can also soften the flame a bit so that it is pretty comparable to the Micro Torch. So with that feature, it may actually be a bit more versatile than the Micro Torch. I am going to play with it a little bit and see if it will work to do some of the torch fired enamels. That will be in a future Tool Time Tuesday however.

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I have some great pieces to show in the next couple of days. I hope to have a post tomorrow or the next day with some new designs. Have a good night everyone!

Tool Time Tuesday – E3-Etching Kit by Sherri Haab

I was just going through some of the statistics on my blog. This is my 200th post. WOW! I guess I can be downright chatty sometimes.

Today’s Tool Time Tuesday features a product developed by Sherri Haab. This is a great alternative to etching without Ferric Chloride. It is almost as easy to use and better for the environment as well.

When you order the kit, it  comes complete with: E3 Etch Controller unit, Stainless steel pan,
Electrolyte compound, Copper sheet, Copper jewelry blank, Aluminum
Electrodes, Spacers and 12 ready to use images, Plus full instructions.

Full instructions on how to set  everything up and use it all are included in the kit. Most of the items can also be purchased separately for when you need to replenish various items. You should also know that the kit above will etch brass and copper, but not silver. To etch silver you will need to buy an separate stainless steel pan and silver nitrate solution. Other than that, everything is done the same way for all three metals.


Here I have chosen two pieces of copper. Both are 18 gauge copper. Both are in need of a good cleaning.


I have used a good friend of mine, Bar Keepers Friend, to clean the metal. I LOVE that stuff. Just a little bit of water and a dusting of the powder and the tarnish disappears without scrubbing right before your eyes. If you haven’t already added it to your studio, go get some. It is only about $2.50 at my grocery store and is next to the Comet or AJAX cleaners.

I have also lightly sanded the pieces to give them a bit of tooth for the resist to adhere to. In this picture only 1/2 of the oval piece has been sanded.


When I am working on these projects I like to work on this non-stick craft sheet. It protects my surface from the resist, water, chemicals, heat, etc. It was about $12 – $18 at my local craft store and worth every penny.


This is a new resist that Sherri suggested I try. It is a thick water based paint. She said it holds up great as a resist and rubs right off once you are done. The only problem with it is, I am not very handy when it comes to free-handing my designs, particularly with thick paint.

There are other things you can also use as a resist and I will be doing a couple of future Tool Time Tuesday posts on some of them including a UV Film, PNP Blue, and a couple of others, so be watching for that.


Okay, don’t say anything about my lack of free-handing abilities. It is what it is and at least it is done.  HAHAHA
Here I have just painted on the resist with a tiny paint brush. I have also painted the outside edges and the connector holes to protect them from the etching process.

Next, you want to heat set the design. This isn’t a necessary step for all resists, but for this paint, it is. I just used a little heat gun for about 60 seconds to set the designs onto the metal.


Next, we need to attach the aluminum electrode. This electrode must be touching the metal, but we don’t want it to touch the etching solution. So  I have taped it onto the piece up to the point where the protective sleeve is. The kit includes two coated electrodes.


Next, I use the little foam spaces to keep my piece up from the bottom of the pan. You don’t want your piece to touch the sides or bottom of the pan as it will interrupt the electrical current and won’t etch. My solution here is a bit “used” and it will still work just fine. I will pour it through a coffee filter into a glass jar when I am done. This cleans out any of the debris and allows me to store the solution until I am ready to use it again for the next round of etching.

The solution is made with Copper Sulfate and distilled water. The solution lasts a long time and there is enough in the kit to make several batches.

This is the little controller that Sherri and her husband came up with. The red end attaches to the electrode connected to the metal. The black end clips onto the stainless steel pan. When you plug it in, a green light appears to show that you have power. Once you hook everything up, the little red light will also light up indicating that you have a current going through your electrode and pan.


I didn’t like how close my piece was sitting to the bottom of the pan. I am using a piece what was domed and it was just a little too close. So I used a pair of chopsticks that haven’t been separated yet to hold things up a little bit more. You need to ensure that the entire face of the piece is submerged. If it isn’t, it won’t etch. Notice that the red electrode is attached to the aluminum wire and the black to the pan.

Depending on how deeply you want your piece etched, you can leave your piece in for longer or shorter durations. I have left this piece in for 30 minutes.

When I pulled the piece out to check after 30 minutes, this is what I had. Notice that part of the resist has moved. It held well enough while I wasn’t disturbing it, but once I pulled it out, part of it moved away. This is both good and bad. It would be bad if I wanted to place it back in to continue etching. But it is also good, because it is easier to remove when I am done.

This is what it looks like once I have removed all of the resist. Now all I need to do is add a little bit of LOS and polish it up and I will have a great focal piece.

Here is a bracelet that I did a couple of weeks ago. It was my first experience in using the etching system. It took a while to do as I could only do one piece at a time. But I did experiment a little and attached the red end of the controller to two electrodes at once and it seemed to work really well. Sherri and her husband are currently working on a system where you can etch larger or multiple pieces at once.

The bracelet is also currently for sale in my Etsy shop.   The resist for the bracelet was a paint pen by Sharpie. Regular sharpie markers and solvent ink don’t work as well with this method of etching. They don’t seem to hold up quite as well. But the paint pens were kind of fun, plus they come in various widths.

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New Pieces, Student Projects and May Class Schedule.

This schedule took me a bit longer than anticipated to get together. But I am finally done with May’s schedule and have a good start on Junes. I am in talks with a couple of shops for June and as soon as those are firmed up, I will get the rest of that posted and begin on July. I am hoping to offer some enameling classes in July, so keep your eyes open for that.

I forgot to get a picture of the fold formed pendant for next weeks class, but I will have that up by the end of tomorrow. So check back if you want to see that picture.

We have been having fun in some of the classes here in the past couple of weeks and I thought I would share some of the student pieces that have been made.


These were made during our tab setting class where students work with a jewelers saw. I love how differently everyone’s pieces turned out so differently.


These are called turtle settings. They are soldered in the back. Again, so much fun to see the creativity of the students.


This is another one of my pieces. I had something entirely different in the middle, but it just didn’t work out. The design was done with my new prismacolor pencils on acrylic. As soon as I get the center piece sealed with a layer of lacquer I will be posting this in my shops for sale. That will happen this next week.


This is a fun little project. It is made with telescoping rivets. I will be teaching this one coming up in the next couple of weeks.


Last night I played in the studio with Riley. We made our own filigree wire by twisting two wires together and then running it through the rolling mill to flatten it. I hate that when the picture is larger than life, you can see every little flaw that you can’t see when it isn’t this large. HAHAHA


This sweet ring is a new addition to my class schedule. They are spinner rings. They are so much fun to make and even more fun to wear. I love how comfortable this ring is.


This particular pendant is a little over the top, but it is a solder free turtle setting. I will be teaching it this next week. Probably not quite so busy in the class, but the concept is still the same. It is a great unique setting for those not wanting to use solder or torches to create a setting.

And here is my schedule for May and part of June. I have not included any of the Open Studios or Day classes yet. So keep checking my schedule for any changes. As always, requests are welcome. To see class descriptions and pictures, please visit my website.


May & June 2010 Schedule
Location Date Time Class Cost


6:00 – 9:00pm
Solder Free Turtle Settings
6:00 – 9:30 pm
Fold Formed Pendant
6:00 – 8:00 pm
Ohio JMAG Brain Bender *FULL*
12:00 – 1:00 pm
Intro to
Riveting Earrings
1:30 – 2:30 pm
Intro to Riveting Pendant
3:00 – 4:00 pm
Intro to Riveting Earrings
6:00 – 8:00 pm
Ohio JMAG Meeting – Edy Beady
6:00 – 9:00 pm
Braided Bracelet
6:00 – 9:00 pm
Spinner Rings
6:00 – 9:30 pm
Bezel Set Pendant
10:30 – 12:30 pm
Riveted Earrings
1:30 – 3:30 pm
Riveted Pendant
6:00 – 9:00 pm
Filigree Pendant
6:00 – 9:00 pm
Piercing (Pre-req for Tabs)
6:00 – 9:00 pm
Piercing (pre-req for Tabs)
6:00 – 9:00 pm
Tab Setting
2:00 pm
Ohio JMAG Social – Canal
Fulton Glassworks
6:00 – 9:00 pm
10:30 – 1:30 pm
Cone Earryings and Lily
2:00 – 5:00 pm
Forged Leaf Pendant
Bead Shop
10:00 – 2:00 pm
Layered Rivets Pendant
Bead Shop
4:00 – 8:00 pm
Tube Set Pendant

* Some materials not
included. Please see the class description or shop for details.

** Please contact the store for class Price

Payment must be received in full
to guarantee your space. All materials and use of tools are included in
the class fee, unless otherwise noted.

Custom classes available by
request. Contact me at:

Events and classes this week – May 4 – 9th

Well, I had the very best of intentions for the weekend. On my list of things to accomplish were getting my schedule for May and June out, Finish sorting and repackaging all those enamels, pricing and listing enamels and copper for sale on my sites and a few other things including cleaning the house, etc. . What happened? Well, I got totally wiped out with one of the nastiest colds I have had in a long time. I actually canceled classes and didn’t even turn on my computer for 4 days. Yes, it was that bad. But today, I am feeling human again. I am working on my schedule now and hope to have the final schedule for May and June by the end of this week. I am just working with the shops where I teach. With that said, I do have a couple of classes this week.

Thursday, May 6, 6:00 – 9:00 pm  – Victorian earrings. I haven’t done this one for a long time.
Saturday, May 8, 9:00 am – 1:00 pm – Layered Riveted Pendant

Special Events starting this week:

As many of you know I do a lot of work for the Preeclampsia Foundation in helping to raise awareness and funds. I never want another mother or father to go through what my family went through due to non-education. I never knew how serious preeclampsia was until it took the life of my daughter. It still frightens me how serious things were even for me. It is sad to know how many women lose their lives to this awful disease. More women will be affected by preeclampsia then will be by breast cancer.

This week begins many walks that will be held in honor of all those that have been touched by preeclampsia. One walk in particular will have several of my angels and the preeclampsia pins I designed. This one will be at Crown Point Shores South, San Diego – May 8th – Registration begins 8:30am – Ceremony begins at 9:30 am.

I believe the angels will be auctioned off and the pins for sale. I have only 2 left here in my own personal stock for sale. Hopefully I can get some more. They are sweet gifts as the design is just full of love.

There are many walks being held on different days. Please consider supporting this great cause by participating. To see if there is a walk near you, please visit The Promise Walk for Preeclampsia Website .

I would like to share a poem that I wrote around Kelsi’s 2nd or 3rd birthday.


Imagine a healthy 28 year old woman
Imagine the shock of an unexpected pregnancy
Imagine the happiness when Riley found out she was going to be a big sister
Imagine the excitement of early pregnancy
Imagine the doctors visits and tests
Imagine the fright of an irregular test result
Imagine learning it is a GIRL
Imagine learning that things might not be all right
Imagine the nervousness and sleepless nights
Imagine the prayers for a healthy baby
Imagine the first bump from within
Imagine a growing belly
Imagine those pesky stretch marks
Imagine an increase in blood pressure
Imagine more blood work and monitoring
Imagine the headaches
Imagine 23 weeks into the pregnancy
Imagine Christmas day with friends and family
Imagine the pain of that night
Imagine waking with a blood pressure of 170/110
Imagine the lab results showing bad liver function
Imagine the doctor’s face after the ultrasound
Imagine learning your baby will be born within a week, 4 months early
Imagine the emergency c-section
Imagine the cry of a 24 week old baby
Imagine, 13 ounces and 8 1/2 inches
Imagine watching your baby lose her fight
Imagine saying the words to stop the machines
Imagine holding her as she leaves this world
Imagine the grief and sorrow

Imagine the determination that no mother will go through this due to a lack of education!

Until the day I die, I will continue to do what I can to make sure people are educated about preeclampsia, its signs and symptoms. Thank you all for allowing me to share Kelsi with you all.

From here on out the price of my angel tutorial is $10. I will be donating a portion of funds from this tutorial to the preeclampsia foundation so that they can do everything possible to educate others and fund research.

Tool Time Tuesday is being written by my friend Jeanette at As soon as she is done I will get it posted.