Saturday, December 14, 2013

Holiday Ornament Swap

Sally Rusick of Studio Sublime organized a lovely event:  a Holiday Ornament Swap.

As luck would have it, I was paired with the talented Lori Finney. She's not only creating gorgeous beaded items, she does it for a great cause, the National Inclusion Project. This organization's mission is "To bridge the gap that exists between young people with disabilities and the world around them. We partner with communities and inclusive programs creating awareness about the possibilities that inclusion can bring."

Not only talented, but Lori leaves about an hour an a half - let's say 2 hours because it snows - away from me. Why do I tell you this?! Because I am very sad to say, but our good ol' Canada Post failed miserably this time. Due to some completely unforeseen conditions (like being dead sick for almost a week) I delayed the finishing of the ornament and I sent it last week, thinking as we are only 2 hours away, 10 days is more than enough to get it there, right? Wrong! Can you imagine a postal service who cannot deliver a letter (letter!) in 10 days?! To add insult to injury the same postal service just announced they have revenue loses (you'd think?! with such record, no wonder!) and they'll cut jobs, services (they will not deliver to each house anymore, they'll implement community postal boxes) *and* they'll raise the stamp to $1 (right now it is 63 cents). I think I'm going to build myself a delivery company :)

Anyhow - the rant is off... sorry, Lori, again!

Moving onto the pleasant business - I've received Lori's ornament a few weeks back and I am still in awe!

It's hard to take a picture of pure sparkle, but I keep playing with my icicle and cannot stop smiling. As I already told Lori, I'm thinking of setting it on a simple chain and wear it! It's crystal clear and so lovely! Add that gorgeous snowflake disk and you have perfection! Thank you, Lori, I'll cherish it forever!

I've had a hard time deciding what to make. I thought of this and that, but there was nothing that would define me. And I wanted it to be truly unique and beautiful. And one day it just hit me... so Lori's ornament's journey began.

First, I took a sheet of copper and snip-snip-snip it into shape. Then I took copper washers and stamped them. More copper washers and the stamped one - all soldered to the shape. Filed everything, tumbled and buffed. Then came the fun part. I have tried to use glass - not really like enamel (which is very fine powder), but small pieces of glass who would get melted much like enamel. Problem #1 - the darn thing won't stick. After some quick email conversations with the lovely lady where I go to learn new techniques or just my future (she 'reads' in the coffee - long story, for another time) I tried again. Nope, not much improvement.

Then I got sick and couldn't get to Dee's studio to get from her what I'm doing wrong. Almost 10 days passed until I was able to get there - and understand how to successfully 'stick' the glass where I wanted it :)

Back in my own studio - more filing and buffing, more soldering, buffing, tumbling. The last part came - epoxy and a couple of crystals... And by now you're probably wondering "what in the peaceful world did she make?!"


OK, ok, sorry - but I did make the envelope too :) Just recently I figured out that finding a nice looking envelope is more time consuming that making your own. With the help of an old envelope, a ruler, some nice scrapbook paper, and a cutter - I ended up with this sparkly cutie.

What was in the envelope, you ask? This:

Well, in my defence - this is handmade too! Stamped and embossed by William, and put together by me (including the snowflake punch :) ).

OK, seriously now - this is the ornament:

The glass has some nicer colour in real-life (it looks muddy in here, and a couple are muddier than I would have preferred), and the 2 crystals (the O in Lori and the 0 in 2013) are sparkling nicely.

I hope the envelope will get to Lori soon - I was quite happy with the idea. Maybe it's not perfect, but it's sure made with a lot of love!

Until then - I would like to wish everybody Merry Christmas! Or if you don't celebrate it: Happy Holidays! Or simply: a wonderful winter! :)

Thank you for stopping by and please make sure you check everybody else, including my wonderful partner, Lori.

Lori Finney and Alicia Marinache <-- you're here


  1. Oh heavens my friend! What a wonderful ornament! So very, very special. I'm so glad you're feeling better now. And the postal system is a bear, no matter which country...
    This was such a fun swap, wasn't it?

  2. Ohhh, Alicia, it's beautiful and absolutely perfect for sparkly me!! The love you put into that is just amazing! I will have to shoot someone at CP if they've lost that!!

  3. Lori's icicle ornament is sooo pretty! Love the icy sparkles.

    Here's hoping the post will come through 'rain or sleet or snow'. You put such work into your ornament.

  4. The links to here from peoples blogs seem to be broken. Yep Canada Post is wonderful! If you prebuy rolls of stamps it will only be jumping to 85 cents not $1.00. You could have walked it there in 10 days.

    The ornament you received is very similar to one I got! They look great hanging on the tree with the light reflecting off of them!

  5. I really hope your Post comes through for you both. I just love the sparkly ornament she created for you and the thought and work you put into the ornament you made is amazing! I would put the piece on a chain and wear it all the time!

  6. What pretty ornaments you both have created, Alicia! Don't get me started about Canada Post... grrrr!

  7. Beautiful ornaments from both of you. I am always surprised at the varied creativity we all have. And the mail right now isn't that great in the US...been waiting on package from Washington State for almost a week....but I guess you don't want to run the possibility of people getting hurt by being out in the bad weather....

  8. Totally coveting your sparkling white rope - TRULY! Sorry you have been ill ... the ornament you made her is spectacular! Hope her ornament arrives soon!! I feel the same way about the USPS - but, I will keep my comments to myself! :) Merry Christmas!

  9. OOooooo sparkly!!! I quickly clicked on the photo of the ornament Lori made for you, I had to get a look at the beautiful seed beading! Sorry to hear that you got sick in the middle of things, but when you finally got back into your studio and the glass sticking, the ornament that you created for Lori is GREAT! I bet it sparkles like crazy when the light hits it.

    Alicia, THANK YOU so much for participating in the swap and I would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas!!!

  10. Both of them are very beautiful and oh yes, I believe it about the post. It's not always that much better here! I know she'll love it, and your golden icicle is fabulous.

  11. A beaded icicle is such a great idea and Lori made it so beautifully. I would be sitting there looking at it for hours as well. :) I hope Lori receives your ornament soon. I know she will love it.

  12. Your icicle is beautiful. Lori had a unique idea. I like how you personalized her ornament. Great job Alicia. I am glad that you are feeling better now.


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