Monday, January 6, 2014

WELCOME 2014!!!

Hi everyone,

Ummmmmm, yep you are at the right place!!!  It's a new year....a new beginning, for me....and a new 'look' for my blog as well.  Do you like the new look?  :)

Well, I'm a few days late with the Happy New Year, but I'm very pleased to finally leave 2013 behind and begin a new journey.  It's a bit out of character, for me, to share much of my private life with my readers because it's much more inspiring, for me, to share all the exciting things (old and new) in the awesome world of Parchment Craft.....but, this is one time (and most likely the only time) I will share what has 'really' been going on with me over the past 18+ months.

All of you who have followed me loyally, and those who have purchased my Ebook, "Parchment Craft Etched Glass Technique", know that I had polio (something the young people of today have never heard of) when I was 8 years old.....a loooooooong time ago because I'm a senior citizen now!!  Anyway, without going into boring detail, I'll simply say that it destroyed the nerves and muscle in my right shoulder and as it would happen, I'm right handed....lol   As I have gotten older....and then even oldER....all that damage became very difficult for me to 'adjust' my life around and eventually I found that using my right arm for some of the parchment techniques became unbearable so I had to slow the one thing I loved (parchment craft) down to a crawl, which I began to do in the middle of 2012.  This is why those of you who "used" to look forward to a new, exciting post from me, on a sort of regular  basis, were seeing less and less of me through the remainder of 2012 and then into most of 2013.

During these 18 months, I have, unfortunately, had several more health issues to deal with (acute sleep apnea and macular degeneration in my eyes, plus I've had some 'mini strokes' during these months as well).....which have required more 'life adjustments', as I call them, and the most difficult one for me has been the diagnosis of Fibromyalgia.  I know a lot of my parching friends, around the world, also have this very painful disease and they have found ways to deal with it.  I have been, and continue to be, in the ongoing process of 'learning how to combine my Post Polio Syndrome AND the new Fibromyalgia.  Both diseases are similar, in a lot of ways but the Fibromyalgia has been a very difficult challenge for me since I was diagnosed late last spring.  As I stated earlier, other health issues (the 'old age' ones!!) are now mixed amongst these two debilitating health matters, so I literally have had to learn how to 'navigate' my life, all over again and that is what I have had to dedicate my life to these past months. 

The learning process will never be over, but I believe I am now ready (or at least ready 'enough!!) to get back to my beloved parching, so let's get with it and get back to having some fun.....

It seemed like it took me 'forever' to make this project.  I titled it Diamonds and Pearls and I challenged myself with this piece because solid embossing is now very, very difficult for me to do, so instead of worrying over making a white work piece in solid embossing, I simply chose to make "pearls" everywhere!!!  

Diamonds & Pearls

The center of each of the flowers has a szarwoski crystal in it, but they do not show in the scan. :(  I did photograph it, as well, but the stones still wouldn't show nicely.  Here it is all tucked into a simple frame for hanging!!

Diamonds & Pearls
Framed

Now, I'm sure there are probably plenty of folks, out there, (who might have arthritis, or other debilitating/painful joint issues) who have already discovered it is easier on your dominant arm/hand to make lots of "pearls", instead of solid embossing, on our parchment projects, but it was an 'ah-ha' moment for me, when I thought I'd give it a try on this project!!  Solid embossing, for me, has always been difficult to do because I can never seem to get all of it to be the same 'whiteness', but now this works perfectly, so I'm going to continue to make projects using another of 'my own' techniques!!  :)

So, now that you all know how I made my own version of Diamonds & Pearls, here is the pattern and I'd love to see how any of you would complete it.....

Diamond & Pearls Pattern

It is a graphic image I have had for a very long time and it was fun putting it to parchment.  Give it a try and see where your own creative 'eye' takes you!!  Good luck and enjoy.  :)

Happy Parching,
    Vickie