Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The First Snow - Entry for Etsy Bead Embroidy Guild December Challenge

Winter Wonderland Etsy Bead Embroidery Guild Challenge
My oh my what a busy month December is!  As part of the Esty Bead Embroidery Guild, we were posted with the challenge to create a piece inspired by the theme, Winter Wonderland.  

To me, winter speaks of simplicity, elegance and a monotone color palette.  There are shades of silver and white dancing in snowflakes and sticking to tree branches.  But when you look at a landscape as a whole, it's blends together in a monochromatic picture.

I created a necklace that offers the same simple elegance!  I call this bead embroidered necklace "The First Snow."  The pendant features a sparkly Swarovski flat-back crystal.  It's sparkle is completely reminscent of the "diamonds" that sparkle on the first snow of the season.  You know when you first look out the window before the dogs go out or the kids tromp through the beautiful, fluffy white snowy carpet.  Those little snowflakes that capture the light and sparkle like diamonds.
The First Snow - Click to enlarge photos

I kept the necklace simple to really allow the pendant to be the star of the show.  Classic pearls and fire-polished crystals bring in the hues of white and silver with that touch of sparkle.  I hope you can see my interpretation of a Winter Wonderland.  This piece was custom designed for a Christmas gift and the recipient was delighted to have such a special creation.

To check out the rest of my fellow artisans on the Bead Embroidery Guild, visit their website or check out the fan page on Facebook!
Dawn Doucette is a jewelry artisan that creates one-of-a-kind beaded jewelry out of her studio in Southeastern Wisconsin.  Dawn really loves bringing personality into each of her designs.  To see other work created by Designs by Dawn Marie, check out her website: or visit her Etsy Store:

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Winner Winner - Chicken Dinner - or how about earrings instead

Earrings... how did we get from Chicken dinner to earrings?  Heck, I don't know... it just sounded good.  But what I DO know is that I've got 2 winners for Designs by Dawn Marie Earrings!

Last week I did a dual blog giveaway with my good friend Sky Purington.  I was giving away a pair of earrings on each of our blogs as part of her "What Every Woman Wants" Christmas giveaway.  So without further adieu, here's the winners.

On Sky's blog, I created these great turquoise magnesite and chocolate wire earrings.  The winner of these earrings is Veronica Scott

On my blog, I gave away a pair of custom earrings featuring some gorgeous artisan lampwork beads by my good friend Juli Cannon of Julsbeads.  The winner of these fabulous earrings is Erin Prais-Hintz of Tesori Trovati.

Ladies, send me your mailing addresses and I'll get these right out to you!

Thanks to all who participated!  I love meeting new people and I've met some wonderful jewelry lovers with this giveaway!  Hope you wrap up 2011 in grand style!


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

What Every Woman Wants Giveaway

The twelve days of Christmas are full of presents... so to is this blog post!  I have the joy of partnering with a dear friend of mine again this year for her "What Every Woman Wants" giveaway!  

Sky Purington is a fabulous author... if you love Celtic romance, throw in a dash of ghost adventures you'll love Sky's books.  This year for the event, I wanted to host two giveaways.  One is going to be on Sky's blog and one is right here on this very post!  Keep reading to see how you can win these GORGEOUS earrings and then hop over to Sky's blog to enter to win that give away too.  (AND she's giving away a $100 Amazon gift card to someone at the end of the event!)

Up for grabs is this gorgeous pair of earrings.  I truly love these beads that were handcrafted by the wonderfully talented Juli Cannon of JulsBeads.  After purchasing a set of these and making an incredible necklace (that sold) I had to get more of these awesome psychedelic ribbed rounds.

The earrings are accented with light amethyst and crystal AB crystals.  Finishing off these beauties are sterling silver fishhook style ear wires.  SO you like them?  Are you drooling?

To qualify to win follow this blog (upper left corner of your screen... yep, click follow) and leave a comment letting me know you did.  If you already are a follower, that counts too.  (Heck, I might even kiss you for that!)

Sorry so short, I'm off to do some Christmas-ing today with Chris' mom.  It's the prep part of cooking for Christmas Eve dinner.  SO.... one last thing, the deadline for this giveaway is December 23rd at 12:00 a.m. EST.  If it's 12:01... so sorry!

I hope you are enjoying this holiday season.  Merry Christmas with Love!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Beauty Without Mittens!

This morning I woke up to the most pure, gorgeous blue sky and sunshine.  Yes it was a bit chilly, but I couldn't pass up an opportunity to capture the beauty around me from the dusting of snow we had Friday night.  Sunshine and frost make for beautiful photos AND great inspiration on a grey day (which I'm sure we'll have plenty of in the winter months to come.) 

So here's a few of my snapshots really capturing the beauty of our morning.
See the moon?

It's supposed to be warming up to 40 as the day goes on, so with this sunshine, these beautiful frosted trees will melt off by noon.

My plan for today is to start wrapping Christmas presents.  I have a few orders that will ship tomorrow (Priority so I'm sure they'll arrive at their destination this week) and then I'll be finished with a wonderfully busy holiday of custom orders. 

The Christmas gifts we have purchased have spent the last month socializing with each other on our dining room table.  The beauty of having 4-legged kids is that they can't see up on the table (nor do they care, because our presents don't smell).  So in all honesty, they are safer there where the dogs can't have a festival unwrapping everything when I'm not looking.

But in an effort to be more organized and have less procrastination, I've decided not to wait until Friday to wrap everything.  Have you ever run out of gift tags and had to run to Walmart on the 23rd of December?  I did last year and it wasn't pretty!  So I'm not going to be that woman this year.  I love giving... I love the wrapping of gifts you know are going to put a smile on the face of those receiving them.  I love knowing each gift comes from our hearts and that alone makes it special.  There will be a few HUGE surprises this year that I look forward to seeing. 

Are you Ollie Orangized or Patty Procrastinator this year?  I got two new rolls of wrapping this year (which makes the process so much more fun).  One of which contains pictures of puppies... coincidentally it was purchased because one of those puppies looks just like Bella - imagine that.  LOL

Have a wonderful Sunday and a very blessed Christmas week!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Really Pantone - Tangerine Tango - REALLY

Image from Pantone Facebook Page
If you know me, you know Dawn doesn't do orange (much).  The only thing I do orange is eat them (and preferably without seeds.)  So imagine my er, uhhh, delight when I read that THE color of the year is Tangerine Tango.  It's not a subtle, stand in the corner orange... NOPE!  It's a bold, shut the front door orange!

For me as a designer, if I'm playing in Pantone's sandbox, I guess it's going to be another color challenge.  A whole year full of color challenge.  But seriously, tangerine tango?  Honestly, I usually do my own thing anyhow.  I can't help it I'm married to turquoise and purple (swoon.)  But my creative muse also dances when I pull those colors out of my bead boxes.  So in all honesty, I pay attention to the predictions, but I don't base most of my creations on that alone.

I truly love my friends that love orange.  Our differences make us more fun.  And what they design with orange always amazes me.  Mainly because I just don't think like that.  I cannot wait to see what new Pantone inspired pieces are designed by my friends and what they pair Tangerine Tango with to really create a special look.  After all, orange is truly a happy color.  And we all need a little more "Happy" in our day!

So while I finish a few special orders from Santa Claus, I'm putting my plan together for 2012.  In that plan, is to challenge myself to incorporate Tangerine Tango once in a while.  Who's going to tango with me?

Hope your day is fabulous!  I'd love to hear what your plan is for 2012!  Hard to believe it's less than 3 weeks away... zoinks!

Here's my Orange inspirations and the pieces I've created using orange!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Spreading the Love for a Fellow Artisan in Need

Being the season of giving, I want to share with you an event taking place across several blogs right now that is really, really special.

The event is called Artists Helping Artists!

A fellow artisan has recently experienced a life changing situation.  Litterally the world has been turned upside down for herself and her children.  Which would be pretty if you lived in a snow globe, but we don't.  In addition to being emotional, it's been a true challenge getting her business sorted out so she can continue earning a living to feed her family.

So a group of wonderful artisans have banded together to create an event to help out this truly special artists.  Each of these artists have created a special piece (or pieces) of jewelry that you can bid on with all proceeds going to help this artist and her family.  Below is a list of participants.  Won't you please take a moment to visit the blogs and if you see a piece you like OR you'd like to give as a Christmas gift, put a bid on it.  Your bid is helping a wonderful woman, artisan and mom rebuild her family.
Marie Cramp & Lori Anderson
Barbara Bechtel
Erin Fickert-Rowland
Amanda Cargill Austin
Rebecca Anderson
Shannon Iko Chomanczuk
Jennifer Justman

Have a wonderful weekend and keep spreading love!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Santa Asked for My Help - How Could I Say No

Starting on December 26th, I will have oodles and caboodles of new jewelry from Designs by Dawn Marie to share with you.  Why?  Because Santa sent me a Facebook message and asked that I help him create some really wonderful surprises some women that are on his "Nice" list this year.  I couldn't say no, I mean come on... who could say no to Santa?

So I've been a busy little elf working away in my studio.  And I've created some really wonderful and in several cases sentimental pieces of jewelry that are going to be Christmas gifts.  I'm amazed at how many husbands have contacted me asking me to design special pieces of jewelry for their wives.  I'm touched and honored - and I totally give those guys props!  They are listening to what their wives want AND not waiting until the last minute to hit up the Five & Dime.  Kudos men... you know who you are. 

I would totally love to show you pictures and share... BUT I'm not about to ruin any surprises!  So if I have to have patience, so do you. :O)~  Na, na, na, Boo, boo! 

For those husbands, daughters, mothers and girlfriends that would like to give the give of artisan jewelry, I've added a "Christmas Gifts" section to my website.  All of these pieces are finished and ready to ship.  So if you need to give a gift to the boss's wife at an unexpected dinner party before the holiday, check out that section of my online store!  I'm also happy to gift wrap as a courtesy... just let me know you want it wrapped and consider it done!

Hope you've been having a fantastic holiday season!  Spread love, spread smiles and create cheer!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

A Peek Inside the Artists Brain

Okay, if you don't want to tour the grey matter between my ears... step away from this blog post now.  BUT if you're crazy (just like me) and you want to see my thought process when creating a piece of bead embroidered jewelry... stick around. 

On Wednesday, I participated in a fantastic challenge... The Challenge of Color blog hop organized by Erin Prais-Hintz over at Tesori Trovati.  Throughout this challenge I learned many things... I took risks and those risks were rewarded with a beautiful finished product.  When I finished my beaded cuff bracelet, even I stepped back and commented, "Wow, I didn't know I had it in me!"  Who would have thought!

So in an effort to document my process throughout the design of this embroidered cuff (now available in my online store), I took pictures throughout the process and put a video together.  It'll show you how I design and where my brain and the beads play together.  Remember though the beauty of bead embroidery is that every person is unique and so are your works of art!  Design what you dream!

For Supplies:  I use Nicole's Bead Backing from Nicole Campanella (The Beadwright).  I tried Lacy's when I first started and was not happy as it kept "frizzing" and "fuzzing."  I purchased this druzy from a seller on Etsy.  Both offer SUPERB service! 

Well... that's a tour through my brain.  Hope I didn't lose you in the process!  Have a terrific weekend and live an inspired week!


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