I really like what is called Steampunk jewelry and will be making some to sell on my Etsy site "Jewelry Jeans" soon. I just finished making a piece for myself and was amazed at how much it "told about me" when I was finished. It takes a while to search out the pieces you want. Each piece will be different. I am going to make a different necklace chain for the piece using "gunmetal" which is a grey color and will fit the piece a little better.


I now have 3 Etsy shops... My daughter thought it would be better to do it this way than everything on one so: has handpainted items, wallets, my handpainted jewelry kits, and misc. painted items. are handmade jewelry items using handmade Moretti glass
lampwork beads or polymer clay. are small handpainted canvas pieces as well as some of
my favorite photographs for sale, suitable for framing or matting and framing.

Erin, from Colorado just finished redoing my banners and advatars for me. They are all the same but different and I am delighted with her work. This helps tie everything together.

If you haven't been on Etsy....and have a few minutes wander around...there are some extremely talented Artisans on this site. All of my gift giving is done through the Etsy vendors. I love handmade and supporting the individiual artists this way.

Make your Own " Brushy Basin"

Make your own "Brushy Basin". I have been using mine since developing it in

I love my basin. I researched and have really "honed" it for durability. The brushes can be purchased at: and the item # is: CA201. The pair are $1.60 or buy a dozen #CA203 for $7.90. (these are out of Canada). These brushes are soooooooooo soft and kind on your brushes. There are 1, 440 bristles per each 2" x 3" brush. No more ruined brushes. I have shown the top and bottom of the brushes . There are vent holes so no "gunk" gets trapped. These are the surgical brushes used by a lot of surgeons that I used to work for years ago.

The basin can be purchased at the following stores: Fred Meyers, Food for less, Ralphs, Frys Market Place, Save Mart Suerpmarkets, King Shoppers, Sweetbay, and QFC (Quality Food Centers. The Item # is CHN-2950 3 section 2.1 Quart SUBLBC14-055. And the mfg. is Cleverware out of Vernon, CA. and the phone number is: 1-866-981-1400 if you want to purchase by a lot of 48. If you can't find one at your local store ask for a manager and see if he will order them for you. They come in bright pink, neon green, and bright sunny yellow.

The glue I have used is: Welder. It is a contact industrial strength adhesive which can be purchased at many stores in the hardware/glue section. ie: WalMart, Lowes, Home Depot, Ace Hardware, etc. Don't try to use an "alternative" glue. Please use only the glue which I have listed for the ultimate "staying" results. REMEMBER: read the how to use, and warnings on the back of the tube before using. The tube is bright red with black and white lettering. The glue is clear and dries clear. I have intentionally left water in a "test" basin for over 2 weeks and it has not loosened the glue so for me that is "satisfaction" but I recommend emptying after each days' use. One of the advantages of the brushes I use is if your brushes should ever loosen up or come out: Peel off the glue and reglue. It will be good as new.

TO GLUE: I run a good sized bead line of glue around the bottom rim edges (all 4) of the brush and press to the bottom of the basin. Remember this glue dries clear so don't worry a whole lot about excess that may ooze out,,,but make sure that you have enough on the edges. Do not press hard, just set the brush down and lighty press. I would let this "set up" and dry for a good 2 days before using the basin. I put a brush in the biggest of the sectioned basin and the section adjacent to the first one. (See photo) I use the larger section for the first "clean" of my brush as I am painting, (I put a little of the Avalon Glycerine hand soap mentioned previously in my blog in this section). The other section with the brush is for rinsing and the 3rd brushless area is my "clean water" before reloading my brush with color. I have been making, using and selling this basin for years....and I absolutely love it and I bet you will too.

My only caution to you is to MAKE SURE THAT THE WATER COVERS THE BRUSHES COMPLETELY or when you clean your brush you may get a little

Also the top of this basin can be used as a neat "wet palette".... Snap the lid on and it is a small storage center if you are using it as a travel basin.

So make yours soon and enjoy the pre cleaning of your brushes. I find that my brushes last longer, and do not "splay" out or get ruined as they did with the
basins with the hard ridges in the bottom. You won't believe the difference.


My website is launched and up although we are encountering a few "missing components"...sigh..... I am sure Michelle is also glad that the most of it is "behind her", so she can get her webiste up and running also. The site will be easy to maintain (since Michelle will have to do it) and hopefully will be a successful venture and adventure. So keep checking back to see the finished product and things that are added as we go along.

I really appreciate Michelle giving up free time; of which she has little, to help
get this up and running for me...I don't think there is much she doesn't know and
I am every grateful for her expertise and knowledge as I get older and things
become more complicated for me... Thanks honey.

Oh, nearly forgot. The website is:



Brush Cleaner

Tonight I was in a hurry to clean one of my stipple brushes and grabbed the pump bottle of
hand soap that was on the ledge... Imagine my surprise when I scrubbed the brush on my hand towel and it was so soft. I don't think I have ever felt them like this before and it worked just wonderful when I began to paint. Soft stippling which was great. Mistakes are sometimes "good things". The name: Avalon Organic Lavender Botanicals Glycerin Hand Soap....and it is hypo-allergenic. The website is at: I also use the hand cream which I really like...but NOT for brushes gang.... I think I have found myself a new brush cleaner.... Happy Painting.

Dynasty Micron Mini Brushes

Perfect for the small works of art done on any surface are the new line of mini Micron Brushes by Dynasty. They are great They can be purchased at
Quality is top of the line, with snap, and wonderful fatigue reducing fatter handles. They are a real pretty burgendy red and you will LOVE them.....

Sunflower in Freezing Fog

This is one of my sunflowers from last season. I am glad
now that I did not cut the heads as this is one of my favorite
Freezin' Fog photos... I have had this enlarged and plan on
matting and framing this one along with 2 other FF photos.
I love the way the background "mottled" in this one and it
will help me when it comes to doing painted backgrounds for
color reference, tree shapes, etc.

Brenda Harris Mediums

I have been using Brenda Harris' mediums for about 3 years and every week I find some way
different to use them to make what I want to achieve a tad bit quicker/easier.

There are 3 products.
White Blend
Clear Blend
Slow Blend

The Slow Blend acts much like a retarder of sorts and the open time can be as long as an hour. It is to be used for FINAL layers and details. The Slow Blend can be reactivated with a damp brush. I use this medium a lot, and in different ways. It is a fun medium to "play with".

White Blend is a Titanium White pigmented medium. It is slow drying and will change the value of colors. I love to use this instead of white when I am painting skies, water, etc.

The Clear Blend does not change the color value of your paint and is used for transitioning colors, softer edges etc. The medium can be added to the paints or by you wet on wet blending. If desired you can thin with water. Also works beautifully for glazes and washes. It
provides slower drying but does not have the increased open time that is found with the Slow Blend. This can be used when additional layers are to be done/added.

According to Brenda these mediums are compatible with all acrylics. I have used them with DecoArt, Matisse and Liquitex with no problems. I have a few Jo Sonja paints that I got in a starter kit so one day soon, I will see how the mediums work with this.

Brenda uses a sea sponge for a lot of her work....and her results are really quick and beautiful.
There are times when I use small pieces of a sea sponge instead of a scumbler/dry brush if there is a specific "look" I want or am having difficulty with a brush but I use brushes for the majority of what I do. I guess I am "sponge challenged"....LOL... However; sponging may be just what YOU are looking for...

If you want to see some of Brenda's work or order some of her mediums, see her pattern packets, videos, and read more about her go to"


Freezing fog on a pine tree bough.