Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Too Much Stuff

Our ocean shipment finally arrived so I've been swamped finding a home for all my stuff for lack of a better word. I had my own idea of how I would unpack and dove into it without any thought beforehand. I would start in a room and unwrap items and either put them away or set them somewhere. When that room became overwhelming, I moved to another room and did the same thing.

My husband thought I should open and put away one box at a time but I disagreed. I felt I needed to see everything before I could decide where it should go. He was also at work most of the time so I proceeded to follow my pattern. It left the whole house a mess.

The first order of business was to find our mattress pad and sheets. We weren't going to sleep on air mattresses one more night. It had been seven long weeks.

We also didn't know that the day our shipment arrived, it ended up being 97 degrees. I thought it was a little hot but we were so busy we didn't pay attention. Then at 7:00 that night, Curt (hubby) decided to turn on the air condidtioning after seeing the evening news. We had air coming through the vents but it wasn't cold. Luckily, it was only a fuse and he was able to run to the hardware store and fix it.

I missed Louie, our cat (actually our son's cat) while we were in South Korea and yes, he only has three legs. He loved playing in the paper and boxes and found a home in one of our dresser drawers.

He also approves our the new queen bed for our guest room. We bought this before the move so that people would have a place to sleep when they visit. It turned out that my Korean girlfriends spent the most time in this bed. We would have a lot of great sleepovers. I miss you Hannah, Hellena and Jennifer!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Polymer Clay Flower Magnets

I love to find a craft project where I don't need to go out and buy 1o or more materials. I have an obscenely large collection of craft materials that I have accumulated over the years and although I love my local craft store (just ask my husband) I have too much stuff. So I'm working on some projects to share with you that will not cost a fortune and you find a lot of the supplies around your house like this first project.

Doesn't everyone have some artificial flowers around their home? Here's a fun thing to do with them:

Polymer Clay Flower Magnets

Copywrite Becky Meverden 2009

Polymer clay: transparent, cadmium red, white and black
Round toothpick
Artificial flower
½” round magnet
Wire cutters
E6000 glue
Plastic straw, optional
Circle template, optional for measuring ball sizes

Pink: Mix a 1/16” cadmium red ball with a 3/32” white ball

1. Condition clay according to manufacturer’s instructions.

2. Use the wire cutters to cut flower at the base. Separate the petals and choose one for the magnet.

3. Head: Flatten a 7/16” transparent ball. Eyes: Flatten two 3/32” white balls into teardrops. Press the narrowest ends together slightly and press onto the head. Pupils: Roll two 1/16” black balls and press onto eyes. Eyebrows: Roll two 1/16” transparent tapered logs and press around the upper half of each eye.

4. Nose: Roll a 3/32” red ball into an oval and press onto head just below the eyes. Mouth: Press half of a straw end just under the nose and remove. It leaves a great smile. A toothpick can also be used to indent the mouth. Use a toothpick to indent each end of the mouth. Cheeks: Flatten two 1/16” pink balls and press onto both ends of the mouth.

5. Bake in a preheated 265 degree oven for ½ hour and let cool.
6. Glue head to the center of the flower and let dry.
7. Glue magnet to the back of the flower.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Cell Phone Charms from Korea

I bought a bunch of Korean maedeup cell phone charms at the Dongdaemum Shopping Market shortly before our move back to the States. This was the first thing I purchased during my first trip to Korea. I had it on my Korean cell phone (hand phone in Korean) and now have it on my U.S. cell phone. It has held up really well with all the abuse it gets. I've put some of them up for sale in my Etsy store. I bought so many things during our stay in Korea. Our ocean shipment is coming this Tuesday so we'll see if I recognize everything I had bought.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Carol Duvall Show

I was very lucky to be able to appear on HGTV's The Carol Duvall Show for ten season. Twice or even three times a year, I would fly to Burbank, California to tape segments for the show. I would always carry on the plane what I needed in order to demo my projects. I was also able to sharethe experience with my husband who was able to travel with me for all my tapings. All my segments were projects in polymer clay.

Linda did the hair and makeup. She was fantastic and such a sweet girl who always had bright smile to greet me.

This segment I was demoing a turtle eraser clay project. You also had to make additional projects for the show to give the viewers more ideas.

Remember Carol's sock monkey in some of the opening scenes? This is one of the puppet masters.

This was a photo holder and it even turned into a book with Leisure Arts.

A picture of the set.

This was polymer clay covered votives. I was demoing the octopus.

Ian was the stage manager and he always made me feel at ease.

Kellly, the teleprompter girl. I've never seen anyone type so fast.

Sometimes there was time between segments during which Carol and I could engage in some girl talk. She gave me great advice and I took to heart everything that she told me.

Picture being taken for the HGTV website.

I was lucky enough to be in two of Carol's Live Christmas Shows. They were so much fun because it was the only time the show had a studio audience.

One of segments I did was a snowman beadpen.

Here is a picture of the audience at one of the Christmas tapings.
I miss those days and I'm so glad the Carol and I didn't lose touch through the years. In fact, she wrote the foreword to my book that will be out in September.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Ocean Shipment is Coming

We have been home from South Korea for just over a month now sleeping on air mattresses while waiting for our ocean shipment. I just was notified that the shipment is going to be delivered May 15th. Thank goodness! I haven't been crafting at all but cleaning the house. It's a perfect time since we were gone almost two years to take a good look at everything and pitch or donate stuff. I am also giving the house a good cleaning including the closets and cupboards.

I did order myself a Mother's Day present. Thank you Curt! I ordered a Paragon kiln so I can continue my chilbo (Korean enameling) here at home. My chilbo teacher put together a wonderful folder of information (although it is in Korean) with lots of pictures. I used to make glass beads so I had a kiln but it had a bead door which would make it difficult to use for chilbo.

I also have a bunch of unfinished maedeup (Korean knotting) jewelry waiting for me to complete. I started a lot of projects in Korea thinking I would work on it on the plane ride over (never did) and also once I was home. One of the things I love about maedeup is that even if you are interrupted for a few minutes to a few months, you can pull and it out and continue like you never left it. I do miss it like a good friend.

Monday, May 4, 2009

A New Chapter

I spent the last 21 months living in South Korea and learning as much about their culture as I could. I fell in love with Korean knotting called maedeup and took classes until I left just a month ago. I was lucky enough to have an American publisher who believed in me and maedeup. The picture above sums up how I spent most of 2008. My first maedeup book!

It will be out September 2009 but you can pre-order it through Amazon by clicking the picture on the right. I never imagined how much work this would be since it is not my first book but my ninth. It was so different from what I usually write that I found it difficult at times to come up with the words to the step by step pictures. I knew what the picture was showing but how do I say that in English?

Also, having spent all my time where the primary language is Korean, my English had taken a beating. I had become used to speaking slowly and using simple words as much as possible in order to be understood. Even English words like hamburger are pronounced totally differently in Korea.

I'm glad to be home but I find myself missing Korea more and more each day. I learned a lot about the culture and the people during my stay. I also learned a few Korean crafts which I will share with you through this blog.
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