Thursday, September 4, 2014

Moms Night Out

Moms Night Out. Have you seen it yet? If not you are missing out on one funny movie! I was out shopping yesterday and I stumbled upon the movie as I was browsing the isles. I remembered it coming out in theaters and that I had wanted to see it so I took the chance and purchased the DVD. 

Sammy and I sat down to watch the movie last night after Grayson had went to bed. I had to stifle my laughs a lot of times as to not wake Grayson. I really figured that Sammy wouldn't like it but after it was over he actually said that it was one of the best movies that he had seen in a long time.

 As a new mom I look around sometimes and feel just like the main character Allyson. She is a mom to 3 young children, wants a spotless house, and is a germ-a-fobe. As moms sometimes we feel like we have to do it all and if we don't we're a failure. I'm finding more and more that this notion is furthest from the truth and that's what I loved about this movie. I would highly recommend this movie to anyone. 

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Christmas Time is coming, Christmas Time is coming......

Guess what? There are less than 18 weeks till Christmas! Gasp or Sigh as you like but I love Christmas and would have Christmas music playing all the time if my loved ones wouldn't shoot me. I've started working on some new Christmas Ornament Patterns. Here is a sneak peak at my first one. It's called "The Southern Star Ornament." It uses super duos, 3mm and 4mm bicones, and size 11 seed beads. This was my first sample to play with the design. I've started another one in teal and lime green that I'm really excited about. I'm going to write my pattern by that one. This pattern will be for sale on our website starting Wednesday September 10th. I'm not going to do a video for this one but don't worry because I've already got another design in mind to do for a video in October. It will use super duo's too. 

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Graysons 1st Hair Cut

Yesterday was a monumental day at our house. Grayson got his first ever haircut! I've never been one to be superstitious but I can't tell you how many people told me that it was best to wait until after his first birthday to get his hair cut. So we waited. I have to say that I was worried but in the end it was a great experience! Because Grayson has been around her a good bit we decided to let Laurie, one of our employees at the shop who is also a hair dresser,  cut his hair. She did a wonderful job and Grayson loved it. He was quite ticklish though. Sammy doesn't get his hair cut so it was a new experience for him too!

Here is Getting suited up and ready to go. We decided to let Dada hold him while I took pictures.

He loved Lauries bracelet so off it came to give him a distraction.

 A little off the top and sides.

He was one happy boy to get some of that hair off. 

Monday, September 1, 2014

Pattern Writing

 I get asked on a weekly basis about how I write patterns, how I come up with my designs, and why don't I come out with more quicker. I get asked so much in fact that I decided to address it today.

1. "How do I come up with my designs".
A design can derive from inspiration I see online, in life, nature, etc. Basically I get an idea in mind and what beads I want to use. I then go and find the beads, sit at my bead mat and start playing. Designing is a lot of trial and error. You have a design in your head that you want to achieve and have to work and take apart over and over again until you reach your end result. A design can take anywhere from 1-40 hours to complete depending on the difficulty of the project. Once I am happy with the design and have worked out any kinks it time to write the pattern.

2. "How do I write patterns?"
To write a pattern I try to use the same language that I would use if you were sitting right next to me and I was teaching you one on one how to do the project. You have to break down steps so that someone who hasn't beaded a lot can understand what you are trying to tell them. Sometimes I succeed at this and sometimes I miss the mark. I use Microsoft Word to write all of my patterns. A lot of designers like to use Coral Draw to make their diagrams. I find it just as easy for me to take pictures using my digital camera on a macro setting. This is a function that allows you take take good up close pictures. Once I have figured out my design I then come up with a name for it and this serves as the title. I then have to figure out exactly what supplies are needed and how much for the materials list. From there I start on #1 and try to explain how to do the project. As I do each step I take pictures of everything that I am doing. Typing the pattern and taking pictures can take anywhere from 1 hour to 8 hours. Once the pattern is complete I then plug my SD card into my computer and use Photo shop to crop and edit my pictures. Depending on how many pictures I take this can last anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours. Once I am satisfied with the pictures then the process begins of plugging them into the pattern. This process takes anywhere from 1-2 hours to complete. Once all of this is complete I save it as a PDF and then its ready to go off into etsy land or on our website.
(Pattern Picture In Process)

3. "Why don't I out with patterns or videos more often?"
As you can see from the pattern writing, a pattern is a lot of work. An average pattern takes me about 1-2 compete days to finish. Once the pattern is complete then I try to work on the video. The video takes me the total amount of time that it takes to complete the project. Sometimes this is 30 minutes, other times this is up to 3 hours. I make the entire project in the video sequence. Videos are not made at my shop because when I'm at the shop I'm helping customers, putting inventory in the computer, making room for new beads, etc. I have to find time when the shop is closed for the video. Once the video has been completed by me it then goes to Sammy to edit and upload to YouTube. The editing process takes about an hour and then he uploads it which can take an hour or more. So, total process time for pattern writing and video can take 2-3 days.

There are only 7 days in a week so it's become an impossible process for me to crank out a new pattern and video every week since the birth of my son. I love my shop but I love my family more and I try to spend every second away from the shop with them. Before Grayson was born I had all the time in the world and would sit up all hours of the night working but as you know, Life Changes. We can either adapt or suffer and I have chosen to adapt. I still love to bead and I do it as much as I can but at the end of my life I want Grayson to be able to look back and see what his mom was "present" in his life and wasn't always focused on work. You only get 1 chance to do things right.

(My favorite photo from our most recent beach trip)

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Method to my madness

Back on January 1st of this year my main goal was two fold...first, try 52 new recipes and, second, eat at home more to see how much money I could save. While browsing pinterest one day I found a great meal planning strategy. It was a pin by RubyGirl that was a meal planning board where you planned a whole months worth of food and put it on a monthly planner. At the bottom of the planner you added all the recipes for that particular month on an O ring. I went to RubyGirl's website and there was a template you could purchase to get you started. Back in April I decided to give it a try. I was already well on my way to trying all my new recipes but I wanted a way to plan better. So, I purchased the template and haven't regretted it a single moment! It has made my life so much easier.

I built my planner from the template and basically what you do is start out with a calendar white board. I purchased mine at our local Staples. Then you print out the dates and months and add magnetic strips to the back of them so that you can change them monthly. You then print out little stripes of paper that have all of your favorite meals on them and add them to the board. As an extra glittery bonus I took flat back rhinestones and glued them to round magnetic pieces to use as my holders for the meal ideas. Who needs a boring magnet when you can glitterize? RubyGirl also suggested printing all of your favorite recipes on recipe cards and hanging them on the board for easy access. I must admit that the first month or two I was wondering if it was really worth it because I felt like I was spending a whole lot of time getting recipes typed and printed.  Now, almost 4 months later though, I don't know how I lived without this for so long!

This board works out great. Especially on days that Sammy is off or gets home before me because all he has to do it look at the board and see what's on the schedule to eat that night. He then goes right to our little recipe ring, finds the recipe with ease, and cooks us a great meal without once ever having to call me or ask questions. The board also works wonders when grocery shopping. By making out my meals for the month I already have a good idea as to what types of groceries I will need. I simply sit down on Friday night and look at all I plan to fix for the next two weeks. I then go the recipe ring and look to see what ingredients I will need. Once I have a pretty good idea of what I need, I  then look in our pantry to see what we already have that I won't need to buy. This has worked out great in the fact that before I was meal planing like this I would spend $100.00 or more a week on groceries that would go bad because I had no idea what I was going to fix. Now for 2 weeks worth of groceries I am spending less than $60.00 and we pretty much go through all the food that I buy. If it's not on the list, we don't buy it.

Saturday is my grocery shopping day. Right after work on Saturdays my first stop is ALDI, a local discount grocery chain. I get all that I can purchase there and I then  go to Ingles, a larger grocery store, to purchase the rest. At first I was anxious and nervous to try some of the food from AlDI, especially food that I had been used to eating for a long time that was name brand. In the end though I found that most "generic" brand food that I found at ALDI was really good. Now, because of my list, I'm in and out of the stores in no time and I have saved lots of money because I didn't buy name brand. I used to hate grocery shopping but my meal planning and food lists have made shopping a lot easier. Another great reason I love grocery shopping now is because most of the time I go by myself. I stick my ear buds in and listen to my latest book on audible. Before I had Grayson I would sit for hours on end reading but since he's came along reading has gotten complicated. Audible has allowed me to still be able to "read" while I'm grocery shopping, cooking, beading, etc. I found out recently that our local library offers free ebooks that you can "check out" so I'm going to try that out too!

If you've ever thought about meal planning I would highly recommend it. I wasn't disappointed and neither will you! Like I said, the first few months can seem overwhelming and daunting but after you get the hang of it, it works great! I tried to find RubyGirls website so that I could share the link to the food board but it says that the website has been taken down. I hope that you can get the gist from my pictures.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Goodwill obsessed!

They say that the fastest way to start the road to recovery is to admit that you have a problem. Well...My name is Kelly Dale and I'm obsessed with the Goodwill stores. It all started a few months back.

I was sitting at home one afternoon with Grayson watching 19 Kids and Counting. Now weather you agree or disagree with there choice to have so many kids, one thing is for sure...I love their family and christian values. This episode lead me to read their second book which talks a lot about how they are able to live and raise 19 kids. One thing that they spoke about was how they never buy clothes new. They shop at thrift stores for all their goods. I sat and started to think about the last time I went shopping and how much I spent on clothes. Being plus size I have to pay more for clothes and Lord help me if you shop at Lane Bryant or other name brand plus size stores where the cheapest shirt you can buy is $39.99! So, Goodwill shopping started off as a challenge to see if I could find clothes my size and if so how much money could I save.

After my first "real" shopping trip to Goodwill I was hooked. I found quite a few Lane Bryant pieces, a super cute Duck Head polo dress, and a few Cato brand shirts. I got all of these pieces for a fraction of what I would pay for it new. My new yellow Duck Head dress cost me $6.00 and I would have paid almost $50.00 for it brand new. It started out as a once a week trip. Now it seems like every time I pass a Goodwill I have to stop!

Above is the yellow Duck Head dress that I found on one of my first trips to Goodwill. I'm pairing it with white leggings that I found on Amazon, white strappy sandals from Shoe Show, and jewelry that I made. I'm wearing the Lovely Laurie hoops that can be found on my youtube page and a crystal cuff bracelet that was designed by Cathy Lampole. Both are made using Swarovski Turquoise 2xAB crystals.



Tuesday, August 5, 2014

First project from Bead Along Finished!

Knowing that the next few weeks of my life are going to be crazy I sat down over the weekend and worked on the first project from the new Bead Along Book...Shaped Beadwork and Beyond. The Diamond and Rivoli Earrings are found on page 99. The earrings are pretty easy to make and quick. I made the pair in about an hour and a half. All the project takes is two 12mm Rivoli's, size 11 Delica's, and size 15 seed beads. For those of you who are going to do the bead along you may want to take note that there is one thing that needs to be corrected on the pattern. On page 100 Row 8 you will Peyote 4 with A's. The pattern says to Peyote 5 with A's but I made both earrings and you can only peyote 4. 

This project isn't due until August 25th so get busy and then send me your finished project pics when your finished!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Give it up!

While at our local library last week I was browsing through the titles and for some reason this book jumped out at me. For me, it is a fairly short book with less than 200 pages so I figured that I would give it a shot. The book documents one woman's goal to give up one thing each month. She gives up the following:

January - Alcohol
February - Shopping
March - Elevators
April - Newspapers
May - Cell Phones
June - Dining Out
July - Television
August - Taxis
September - Coffee
November - Chocolate
December - Multitasking

I can honestly say that for me the things on her list that I would have the hardest time with would be cell phones, shopping, and coffee. The book really was a good read because she tells you the lessons she learns each month after giving up said object. Most interesting was her Cell Phone month. In our society today I can see how it would be hard for anyone to go without their cell phone for one month. I remember when I was young if you asked me someones telephone number I could tell you without blinking. Now, If someone asked me a number I honestly could not tell you. 

If you had the choice to give up 1 thing for a month that would make an impact on your life what would you give up?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Ready for another Bead Along.....

As I stated in my last blog I finally feel like life is getting back to some type of normalcy. Before I had Grayson we did a few bead alongs and I'm ready to get another one going. For those of you who have never participated in a bead along here are some frequently asked questions:

What is a bead along?     A Bead Along is simply a group of beaders from all over the world working on a designated project all at one time. Everyone works on a project on their own time, with their own color choices for a 2 week period of time.

How does a bead along work?  First of all, buy the chosen book   At the beginning of the Bead Along you will be given a list of projects to complete and the dates that each is to be completed. Once you have the first project done you email me a picture of the finished product. As pictures arrive I will post them here on the blog and facebook page for all to see.

Why participate in the Bead Along?  The whole reason for doing a bead along is to learn new techniques. Beading isn't any fun if you never learn anything new! Doing a bead along pushes you to try new techniques or projects that you may, at any other time, might not choose to do.

What if I don't finish a project before a due date or life gets in the way?  No worries. There is no cost to do the bead along and no penalty if you don't get a project finished on time. If you don't get one finished or you finish late just email me pictures when your done.

Important Notes from Kelly:
1. All pictures are to be emailed to me at You can email them to me at any time.

2. I CAN ONLY POST WHAT YOU SEND ME! If you don't send me your name or picture I can't post it. I had someone get mad at me one  time and tell me that I was prejudice because I didn't list her colors used. I had never met the person or even seen the person before. So PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE understand that if you don't send it to me I can't put the info on the blog.

3. This is supposed to be a fun bead along so don't stress and just have fun learning. I will not be doing video tutorials on the projects because of the design infringement but I tried to pick projects that looked fun and easy but at the same time challenging for some.

Since I am doing a video series on peyote stitch I thought it would be fun to a bead along with a peyote book. One of the best ones out right now is a book called "Shaped Beadwork & Beyond" by Diane Fitzgerald. Diane always does a wonderful job with her directions and diagrams in her books. Her books give an overview of each stitch and then projects so pretty much any beader who can peyote stitch can do all the projects. So, this will be the next bead along book. 

First and foremost, please check with your local bead store to see if they have it for purchase. If not then go to other resources. Here is a list of projects to be done and dates they are due or to be done by:

August 25th, 2014  Page 99 - Diamond and Rivoli Earrings 

September 8th, 2014  Page 112 - Mancuff and M'Lady Bracelet (work on either one you want)

September 22nd, 2014 Page 79 - Rhombo Bead Earrings (If your up for a challenge the necklace for this is on page 74!)

October 6th, 2014 Page 51 - Radiance Pendant (Feel free to make any of her alternatives for this project)

October 20th, 2014 Page 160 - Pentagons & Crystals Necklace (Again feel free to make any of her variations of this project)

November 3rd, 2014 Page 133 - (Saved the hardest for last!!!!) Eye of Apollo Necklace

Remember, you can do any colors and use any type of beads that you want so have fun!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Hello from the a Dale Family

Hello from the land of the Dale Family. The past 11 months have been a learning experience for our family. Sammy and I waited almost 11 years to have a baby so to say that having a baby has thrown our world into chaos is an understatement. We love Grayson more than words can ever explain and it is so much fun watching him grow but it has been a big adjustment for Sammy and I. I guess for me the hardest part for me has been having to figure out how to juggle being a mom, president of our local merchants association, and being a full time store owner. I used to work all day and then come home and work all hours of the night. I was pushing patterns and projects out the door left and right. Since Grayson has come along it's been a lot harder trying to figure out how to get it all done. Thankfully though, I finally feel like I'm starting to get my groove back. I'm not able to get as much done as I used to but I'm getting some done and thats more than nothing. 

Grayson is almost 11 months old, is trying to walk, and finally is starting to have 2 teeth pushing through. He's a happy baby as long as you keep his diaper clean and his belly full. He is in a pointing stage. He points at everything and he is babbling all the time. He can say cat, mama, dada, nana, papa, and is trying to say yaya but hasn't quite got that one figured out. He has our parents wrapped around his little fingers and loves Yo Gabba Gabba. For those of you who have never experienced Yo Gabba Gabba count yourself blessed lol. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Bead Along Pictures

Here are some pics from this bead along and the last bead along. I'm playing catch up!

For the ring I used garnet fringe drops, Miyuki 1.8mm cubes in purple-amber, Delica cylinder beads in Paladium Plated and 15 seed beads in SL Light Amethyst.

For the dainty daises bracelet I used Bicones in bronze, 15's were  Miyuki SL Light Gold, Peanuts were multicolored garnet and Miyuki drop beads in red.
Kathy  SC

 Helen Verhey
Cleveland Queensland Australia .
 6 mm  1 Hole Czech  Lentil   Apollo Gold Beads
1.5 mm  Toho Gold Lined Rainbow Crystal Cue Beads 
11/0  ( Delica ) Miyuki  , Silver Lined Light Bronze seed beads
15/0 Miyuki  Copper Lined Crystal seed beads .

Mary Van Spankeren
Czech mate tiles -  beige picas
11/0 Matte sea foam
15/0 Beige

Yvette C.
Cleveland, Oh
Lt. Aqua 4mm fire-polished beads
11/o silver-lined crystal seed beads
11/o opaque cobalt seed beads
Silver ball & socket clasp

Josephine Lareza Pics

15/0 seed beads - shell pink, japanese rocailles 640A (accent colour)
15/0 seed beads - metallic dark gold, miyuki 457
4 mm pearls - bronze
3 mm bicones - caribbean blue opal
3 mm bicones - metallic light bronze
11/0 seed beads - opaque lustered light blue

Picot Ring
12mm Swarovski rivoli - light rose
4 mm bicones - violet opal
15/0 seed beads - sparkling peony pink lined crystal (main colour)
15/0 seed beads - light rose galvanised (accent colour)
8/0 seed beads - ceylon dusty rose (for ring band)

Fringed Bracelet:
3 mm Swarovski pearl - turquoise
11/0 seed beads - matte metallic indigo iris (main colour)
11/0 seed beads - galvanised burnt cinnamon (accent colour)
15/0 seed beads - matte transparent dark topaz (main colour)
15/0 seed beads - metallic dark gold (accent colour)
3 mm bicones - smoked topaz
4 mm pearls - light topaz 

Victorian Romance Necklace:
4 mm fire polished beads - light topaz
11/0 seed beads - metallic light bronze
11/0 seed beads - semi frosted pea green lined chartreuse
8 mm round bead - black
Drop beads - fire polished drop thru cut 8 x 6 mm - jet/bronze

Monday, February 10, 2014

New fun!

I have something new and fun to tell you about! A few months back I was looking at my Facebook feed and saw a lady talking about making a piece of jewelry from a DIY kit that she receives in the mail each month. After looking I found that the kit she orders is from a company called M & J Trim. It costs $30.00 a month and each month they send you two really nice fun projects to do. I looked back at some past kits and decided to give it a try. My box arrived in the mail 2 weeks ago and upon opening it I was very impressed with the packaging. The two projects for this month were a chain bracelet and necklace. Mom and dad took Grayson out town with them Saturday afternoon so I was finally able to sit down and work on the kit. I had the best time! The Kit was put together well and the projects were good for any level of beader. If you are looking for a fun new thing to do for the new year this is it!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Bead Along Started!

Another bead along has started! Here are the current pics I have received:

Ann Hushagen - Mississauga, ON
I used a luster mix of 4 mm firepolish, Metallic Brown Iris, and Bronzelined Black Diamond (my favorite colour!)


Here are the projects I have completed so far from A Beaded Romance. As you can see, my take on a couple of them is a little different.

Picot Petals Pendant: Size 15 Silver-lined Crystal and Silver-lined Light Sapphire
                    4mm bicone Sapphire
                     Dangle is odds and ends I had hanging around

Victorian Circles Bracelet: Size 11 Silver-lined Smoky Topaz; 4mm FP Silver-lined Bondi Blue

Fringed Bracelet: 3mm Pearls, Night Blue; 3mm Crystal Bicones, Light Sapphire; Size 11 Silver-lined Dark Cobalt and Frosted Silver-lined Light Sapphire; Size 15 Silver-lined Blue and Silver-lined Light Sapphire. For the clasp: Some blackish pearls I had lying around.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Our new life...

It absolutely amazes me how much life can change in 1 year! This time last year I was sick in bed pregnant with Grayson. I had just found out I was pregnant and Stayed sick for the entire month of January. It was all worth it though because now I have 2 Wonderful son whom Sammy and I love and adore. Heir learning how to eat food with a Spoon right now so everyday is a new adventure.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Wedding Show

Today I am setting up at a bridal show in a gown shop right next to our store. I normally don't like to do Shows because tey take so long to prepare for but we get a lot of business from the gown shop so I thought it might get more brides through our doors looking for jewelry. I set up with a small sampling of what a bride might be interested in. I brought a couple of things to work on so I'm hoping that the day will pass quickly.