Welcome to my
Perfectly Imperfect Life..........

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Abalone Suncatcher

I have a ton of gorgeous Abalone Shells ~ squeal!
My brother-in-law goes Abalone fishing :)  :)  :)
I've had some for years and used them for just about everything, from guest and bar soap holders, trinket dishes, catch all's, holders for rings while washing dishes, jewelry, sponges, change, sea shells, sea glass...you name it, I've displayed them any way I can. Not all at once mind you! LOL

I've always wanted to do something crafty with them.
Carved out bits of time here and there and did!
An Abalone Sun Catcher  

I had an idea of what I wanted it to look like and just kind of winged it.
I receive them cleaned, but did give a gentle scrub with toothpaste and toothbrush.
They all are so gorgeous!

Abalone Shells naturally have several holes in them for reproduction and breathing. Which is nice making some of your work already done for you if you want to make something with them in which you need holes.
I wanted to hang strings of beads from these holes but needed a way to stop them from falling through.  I chose crackle glass beads that were larger than the holes, brought 80 lb nylon fishing line up through the hole in the shell, added a crimp bead then the crackle bead, inserted the end of the fishing line down into the same crimp bead. I then tightened up the fishing line around the crackle bead and crimped the crimp bead. (photos down below) This keeps the crackle bead in place.

Once those were secure I turned the shell over to add an aqua bead and a crimp bead which I crimped. 

This kept the crackle and the aqua bead tight together while 
I strung the rest of the line.

I strung my chosen beads onto the nylon line.

Here 4 strings of beads are done, just one more to go!

Next I needed to figure out how I was going to hang it.
I decided I needed 2 holes to run through nylon line to make a hanger.
I got out my Dremel and slowly made 2 small holes at the top of my Abalone Shell.

I poked the nylon line from the outside to the inside
and added a crimp bead and an aqua bead,

then poked the line back down the hole returning it to the
 outside through the crimp bead which I crimped.

I added beads to the nylon line hanger. 
When done I poked it through the other hole I drilled,
 added a crimp bead and an aqua bead, 

then poked it back down the same hole into the crimp bead

 and crimped it on the outside of the shell.

The beads inside the shell holding the hanging line.

I decided it needed a little more sparkle.
I added my Grandmother's Aurora Borealis clip on earrings, a brooch, and a couple other pieces from her jewelry that I thought would look good.

I used GE Rainproof Silicone for the adhesive. At the time I wasn't sure if it was going outside or staying in and I know GE Silicone can handle any weather that gets thrown at it, at least in our climate. 

Here it is all done!

I love the way it turned out. 

It ended up staying in the house by the West window,
so when the Sun comes in, the house gets a Rainbow effect! :)

Heart strings were touched when I used Grandma's jewelry.
So glad I thought of them.
They look much better on my Sun Catcher than in my drawer!

This little "charm" hangs from the middle bead string.
I know it must come from a piece of Grandma or Mom's jewelry, just not sure exactly what it is. Maybe an old pendant?  It's been in my bead tote for years. It's metal, maybe brass? and what has what looks like Mother of Pearl inset on the bottom.  No markings. Reminds me of Art Noveau.  
Glad I could finally put it to good use :) 

If you enjoyed this post, you may enjoy these 

Fun with Fingerprint Drawing

Find more fun posts here 

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

What to plant in July & August?


Summer is here but will soon be over!  
Regardless of where you live, 
there are a few crops you can count on to withstand cooler temps, 
frost, and even sometimes snow. 
Having a thriving vegetable garden doesn't have to end when summer does. 
With a little bit of planning, and preparation you can grow vegetables well into the winter months or even year round if you live in a warmer climate down south. Vegetables you can plant now will only become sweeter and more delicious if they go through a frost!

Grow a Fall/Winter Harvest 

When a frost comes into contact with a lot of these cool-season vegetables
they naturally react to the cold and produce extra sugars which can 
make some of the more bitter tasting vegetables taste rather sweet. 
Prepare NOW to have the garden you've always wanted during Fall/Winter! 
With these crops, put the fear of your plants being damaged or 
destroyed aside. When Winter weather rolls around, 
these vegetables will grow well and actually THRIVE!


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