Sunday, July 29, 2012

i heart macro: Pretty in Pink

Photos of summer flowers taken this July in Colorado and at home in Kansas ~ all pretty in pink!

#6:  "In the Pink" Spirea

Thank you for stopping by to see 
pictures of pink petals 
as you tour the lovely photographs 
at Studio Waterstone for this week's

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You can be pretty in pink too!

Spring Flower Earrings in Pink

 through end of July 2012!
25% OFF when you 
use this code at checkout:

Amount will be deducted 
after you enter the code.
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Saturday, July 28, 2012

Sale, Blog Hop, and More

Three quick things for Saturday:

1)  I'm having a sale through the end of July.  25% off all earrings when you use this code at checkout:   EAR25.   You must use the code to activate the discount.  Prices will be changed at that point.    No limit!   Earrings can be found on this page of the studio!  

2) The 1st Reveal of the 6th Bead Soup Blog Party is now underway!   You can hop on at any of the participant's blogs and find the list.  But a good start place is with the event hostess, Lori Anderson's blog, Pretty Things!   Congrats to any and all who participated this round!   If you'd like to add a comment here with your blog URL, please do and we'll try to make a special effort to visit your blog!  There are many, but it's always so impressive to see what everyone has done!

3)   A few weeks ago I wrote a blog post expressing my fascination with numbers--specifically 111 # of Facebook participants and 88 Blog followers.   It was nice that no one joined while the story was up, but I thought I'd mention you are now free to tell your friends they are welcome to join us in either spot!  Ha!  Hopefully we'll move on to some more interesting numbers!   

You all have a good day!   

Sharyl ~ Sharyl's Jewelry

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

NKP Designs Presents: A Fundraiser for Philip Pappas

Mother and son, both struggling to beat cancer at the same time.   It sounds like a story you would read in a newspaper, in some other place, happening to people you don't know.   

But the truth is, many of you do know Natalie Pappas, bead designer from NKP Designs.   And some of you will know that she and her son shared this experience last year.   Both are doing well, but son Philip was left with very high uncovered medical expenses.  He is still trying to pay his parents back for his medical bills, and has put together this fund raiser.   To read more, please visit Natalie's blog  for NKPDesigns.

To help in the project, Natalie has donated one-of-a-kind pottery mugs she has recently handmade to be auctioned.  They are gorgeous!   (Each is different, but one sample is shown below.)

Blue Yumoni  Mug

There was a local event on July 21, but still time for the rest of us to participate  in online bidding for mugs!   All details are included here.

There is more info about:

  • Philip
  • photos of the mugs
  • how to place a bid for a mug

We wish Natalie and Philip good health and very best wishes on the fundraiser!

Sharyl ~ Sharyl's Jewelry

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Photo Credits:

All by Natalie Pappas of NKP Designs. Used by permission.

Purple Lavender Textured Ceramic Beads from NKP Designs:

Blue Yumoni Mug for Auction:

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

July 25th--Why is today important in my world?

Today is July 25th.   

I've been dreading it.

But as with most things I dread, now that the time has arrived, I realize it's not so bad.  For now, for a while, the worst is over.   

The significance of the date?   If you guessed  that it's the deadline for quarterly sales tax submission in the State of Kansas, then behold, you'd be correct!    

For small businesses here, the 25th of the month following a quarter is when retail sales taxes are due to the Kansas Department of Revenue.   And glory be, mine are done and on their way!   For the first time, it took me about 1 1/2 hours rather than weeks to do.  I had good notes from the last filings.  And hopefully all is in good order.  The routine gets easier and faster...once you know what to do.   Until then,  hassle and heartache can't begin to describe the experience!  

I'm not one to fuss about the actual paying of taxes.   Far from it. I think taxes serve a valuable purpose.   I've only fussed that the processes seem needlessly cumbersome at times, ...but again, it gets easier once you've done it right once.   

So I bring this up not to complain, but as a note to new folks starting their businesses that State and Local sales taxes are something to keep your eye on.   I had my own set of misperceptions about how and when these would be handled.   The thing I did right was to collect the sales tax in the first place.   I won't even list the things I did wrong!  :-)

If you are starting your business,  make sure you know if you need to collect sales tax in your state, under what circumstances, and if so, how much.  Then find out when and where and how to submit them.  In my state, whether you pay taxes varies according to whether sales are made wholesale or retail.   It varies when selling online if the buyer is from my state or another.  There is a State tax and added to the State tax is a local tax.   The amount of sales tax varies according to the city from which the item is purchased.   

The good news?   ArtFire does much of the hard work for me.   (If you have a storefront, it may do the same for you.  Check it out though, don't assume or you may owe taxes you have not collected.)   I only need to make sure I'm keeping on top of sales made outside of ArtFire and that I'm using the most current sales tax charts.    

I'm not sure it's so easy though once you start making mega-sales and doing a lot of selling locally.   It may become a time-consuming task again at that point.   (I'll gladly worry about that when it happens!)  

In the meantime, if you would like some info on this topic, here are a few starting places:

The U.S. Small Business Administration   (a great site for all topics regarding starting and maintaining a small business)

The Tax Foundation   (This site is full of fun facts, comparison charts between states, etc.   Dated 2011 though so may be a little behind)

Also, look for your State website, then the Department of Revenue, Taxation, or whatever name they've chosen to call themselves, and get the real scoop on what you need to do.  

I'm no tax expert.   (Ask the folks at my Department of Revenue, they'll tell you!   :-)   My first couple of attempts required numerous e-mails and several phone calls.   I had about $3 to pay, but an overdue notice waiting for me for $500.  Not a good way to start.) 

But it gets easier, I'm happy to say!     ...And now that mine are done, I can wish you all a happy day and I can get back to the fun part--making jewelry again!  

Sharyl ~ Sharyl's Jewelry

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Graphics Credits:

Yellow Nervous Smiley:

Blue Confused Smiley:

Green Embarrassed Smiley:

Yellow Studious Smiley:

Purple Side Grin smiley:

Green Upset Smiley:

Yellow Winking Smiley:

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Tuesday, July 24, 2012

ABS Challenge July 2012: Picasso's Acrobats

This month's Art Bead Scene Challenge focuses on the work
of Pablo Picasso, 
"Two Acrobats with a dog," 1905

For more information on Picasso's "Rose Period" and this painting, please visit the ABS website.

The clothing of the circus performer is significant.
As noted on the ABS page, "The harlequin, a comedic character usually depicted in checkered patterned clothing, became a personal symbol for Picasso."  The colors and diamond pattern will also be the focus of my entry this month.

In designing this piece, I went for several shades of bluish-gray (although they look more gray here), along with antiqued silver and the brass-tones found in the acrobat's leotards.   There is also a spot of black, also appearing at the top of the earrings as an accent bead and on the upper body of the adult acrobat's costume.   

The diamond shape is repeated throughout the components.

The art beads are 
Deep Slate Square Pottery Beads, 15mm, and Blue Grotto Square Pottery Beads, 15mm, both by on of my favorite artisans, Cindy Kovar of Captured Moments.

The brass components in the middle of the design were cut and embossed by me.   

I purchased the gray dangles on the end.  They are brass and were finished in gray, but I buffed slightly to give it a more aged look and to allow some of the brass color to come through again.

While the circular patterns used throughout the design, hoops and loops going in several directions,  do not appear in the painting, but they do remind me of the acrobats' work!

Thank you for stopping by for the July Art Bead Scene Challenge!   

     Sharyl McMillian-Nelson ~ Sharyl's Jewelry

P.S. You can view other entries at the ABS Flickr page.  There will also be a Blog Tour of participant entries on Aug. 31st!  

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Friday, July 20, 2012

Number Pattern Fascination: Time to be Grateful

Look what time it is!!!

I love number patterns and always have.  Don't ask me why.   When the clock turns to 12:34, I'm excited every single time!   Same is true for 11:11.  10:10?  You betcha!   3:33...great thrill!    (Am I easily entertained or do I have a compulsion?   I've never really wanted to know since I derive such pleasure from my fascination with number sequences!)

I'm looking forward to December 12 this year (12/12/12), but we've have other good ones in the last few years too:   (01/01/01 and 11/11/11, for instance)

So I can't help but be intrigued by a few statistics in my own world at the moment:

  • Facebook Fans:   111
  • Blog Followers:    88
As you might guess, I just love it when this happens!   :-)

Here are a few other statistics and "fun facts" to know and tell, even if their number patterns are not so exciting:

In all, I've written 207 blog entries since publishing my first on June 16, 2011.
182 of those have been published.
(Sort of makes you wonder what happened to the other 25!)

My first entry was called, "Jewelry Design - My Unique Philosophy."    Although I'm a little embarrassed of some of those earliest blog entries, I have to admit that this particular one sounds like I could have just written it.  Every bit of it is still true, and that's likely because it is not much impacted by trends and fads, but it is at the core of what I believe and do.

When I started, I personally welcomed every new member to the blog!   There was a "Welcome" sign and I would tell a little about the person if I could find the info online.   I wanted to encourage conversation and a feeling of community on this blog, and welcoming and introducing new people seemed like a good start!    It think I made it to around 25.   Then Blogger went wacko, kept removing and adding people at will, and I could no longer tell who was really here and who wasn't.   I had to stop for a while.   By the time it was fixed, we had gained quite a few new members and it was hard to figure out who was new and when they came.   So, I'm sorry, but my individual  personal welcomes came to an end then.  

I do still want you to know though, that whatever the situation, no matter how much we grow, and no matter how cool the number sequences, :-)...   I continue to appreciate you being here very much.   Your readership, comments, and support mean so much to me!      You've helped me learn about jewelry making, beads, photography, tools, workspace, techniques, business, and so much more!   I hope you have gained something from being here too.

You helped me decide to open a store on ArtFire!

Did you know I now offer
a line of
"Components by Sharyl?"

It's been a little over a year now, and I hope you'll stick with me for another year.   Please tell your friends.   Contribute as much as you would like to.   Contact me if you are interested in being featured or have a topic you would like to see discussed.   

Hieroglyphic Numbers, Anyone?
(See why I need your feedback?!)

I'll keep looking for interesting things for us to look at and learn about.   ...and all the interesting number patterns I can find!   ;-)  

Happy July!  Stay cool!

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Graphic Credits:

Sharyl's Jewelry Logo:  by Andrew Nelson c. 2011

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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Showing my Colors: Orange and Blue

Back in April, a "Sun and Sea Side Challenge" was announced on the "Creative Beat Chat" Facebook group, and I jumped at the chance to be a part of it!   The rules were simple--create jewelry using the colors orange and blue and ivory/white.   (This was a secondary challenge to one where beads were given away.  

In this side challenge, we used our own beads.  I actually volunteered for this one.  I had just been on this orange roll and had several sets of orange beads to choose from.  And I nearly always have a stash of blue!   I found some ivory and was good to go.  For once, I would not have to order beads to participate!   I even had art beads I could include.   I was ready to begin!

Shortly before, there had been a "stacked bracelet" challenge.  I hadn't heard of this until it was over, but had the opportunity to admire the results.  I decided to give this style a try with my orange and blue. 

I had a stacked layer bracelet (3 bracelets actually) created and ready to go by the next day.   I have seldom worked with such speed and vision!   Then began the long wait...

I was like a kid in a car on a trip across country.  "When's the reveal date?" repeated often can begin to sound like, "Are we almost there yet?"   The date was always so far off in the future I didn't bother to memorize it.   I just asked again every few weeks.

Then one day, I heard it mentioned when the date would be--in early July.   And of course, I was planning to be out of town on vacation.   I'm guessing they had the event, but I never saw any of the entries, and never posted my own.  (Bummer...)

So, rather than pout (it's so unflattering),... I decided to share it with you all.   :-)

Some of my several varieties of orange-colored beads,
along with blue beads
and a ceramic art bead in ivory and blue by 

Natalie Pappas of NKP Beads.

This was a first attempt at bending a brass cuff.
It was easy,...way too easy.
The brass was too lightweight.
I could bend it into place
and just as easily bend it out of its shape too!
The funky kimono look I tried over the brass cuff
tied the colors together of all 3 bracelets,
but didn't do much style-wise.
I later decided it just didn't belong in the set.

A third bracelet, similar in style to the first...
Both of these are made with memory wire.
This time the blue is turquoise 
and the orange is lighter 
and mixed with some yellow.
There is another of Natalie's wonderful beads,
and a small round copper charm I made 
attached to the back of the bracelet.

Finally, I added these earrings in turquoise,
denim blue,
and bright orange colors,
wrapped in bright copper.

The full bracelet set as I once envisioned...

Then later, with the "kimono" cuff removed, below.

If you did a piece for this challenge too, please feel free to provide a link to it in the Comments section.  I would love to see what you created!   Thanks and have a good week!




Sunday, July 15, 2012

i heart macro: Rocky Mountain High - Part 2

Last week, I showed you some photos from the wedding of our nephew and our mini-vacation in Breckenridge, Colorado.  This week there will be more of what I found on a short walk near our cabin-resort.  

# 20:  Hiding in Quiet Space

Along with all the flowers, I did sneak a tiny mushroom in there... it was hiding under a bush and caught my eye!

Hope you enjoyed the nature tour of Breckenridge... and hope you enjoy the rest of your day!

Be sure to visit Lori Plyler's "Studio Waterstone" for more photographs!

15% off sale this weekend only!  
July 14-15, 2012
To learn more, please visit this blog entry or go straight to the online store 
to see the selections.  
All items, including 
new jewelry and 
are on sale!

Image Credits:

Photos by Sharyl, July 2012

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Weekend Surprise Sale!

Not new, but finally listed!
If these look familiar to you, here is why....

I was busy Friday making jewelry and adding new items to "Sharyl's Jewelry!"   

To celebrate, I decided to have a sale and surprise even myself!   :-)     

So it's 15% off each piece of jewelry and/or component in the studio this weekend only (July 14-15)!   

Hopefully this will keep you out of the heat, and shopping in the cool, without even getting in a hot car!  

Here are a few things you can find there:

Jewelry by Sharyl:

Peaches & Raspberries Memory Bracelet

Copper dangle earrings with orange jasper stones

HOPE Bracelet in genuine bright copper
(Ceramic "HOPE" focal by Cindy Kovar of "Captured Moments"
Gray lampwork bead on dangle by Lisa of "Art by Lisi")
25% of price paid on HOPE jewelry will be donated to organization
assisting in research of Rare Disorders.

Components by Sharyl:

Earring Components--Embossed Brass

Earring Components--Stamped Copper

Stamped Copper Pendant with Artisan-made Button
(Button handmade by Fey Designs.)

Hope you'll stop in, check out the sale prices (already marked down), and enjoy!   
Happy weekend!

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All jewelry photos by Sharyl, 2012.