A Note About Copyright

I hold the copyright to all images on this blog, unless otherwise noted. Please do not reproduce them without my permission. If you plan on using my material in another blog, I'd be delighted, but please notify me before you do so, and, of course, link back to me. Thank you.

December 31, 2012

Holiday Greeting Card

This step by step tutorial will demonstrate how to make a personalized zig-zag greeting card.

Christmas greeting card tutorial

December 9, 2012

Christmas Sale 2012

Hello, my friends,
I've got some very exciting news: next 24hours* you have a chance to save 50% on everything at AroundBeads and GoodWeather shops.  Get one-of-a-kind handmade jewelry, tutorials, eBooks, and more for half price! Just use coupon code MERRYXMAS at checkout (press “Apply shop coupon code”).
After these 24 hours, you still can save on your orders- use coupon code MCHNY20 for 20% discount. This coupon valid until December 31st!
Get Your Package by Christmas!
I ship everything the same business day! You will get your package on-time for Christmas**, so you can finish up stocking stuffers, re-stock for the holidays, or give yourself a special Christmas present! Just make sure to order this week, by December 14, to ensure I can place your order for before-Christmas delivery.
*December 9th, 2012, 08.00am (EST) – December 10th, 2012, 08.00am (EST)
**International delivery may vary.

November 19, 2012

Thanksgiving Day Tutorial Giveaway!

Thanksgiving Day Giveaway!
If you are jewelry making lover and would like to try some of my jewelry tutorials, welcome to this giveaway ;) The winner will be able to choose any 4 single Jewelry tutorials from my AroundBeads shop.

 Go to my Around Wire blog for more details. 

November 5, 2012

2013 Tucson Jewelry Classes at JOGS

Are you heading to the JOGS (Tucson Expo Center) for the 2013 Tucson Gem Shows? Come take a jewelry making class with me. I have a few classes for you to choose from, so follow the link, choose a class and a date and I'll see you in Tucson! Classes will be Feb. 1 - 12.

Take a Class at JOGS in Tucson, Arizona!

You can see all the classes and days I'm teaching here: http://jewelrytools.com/albina
Plus, I have discount codes you can use to save on taking class!

  • Buy 1 class, get $20 off: AM1320
  • Buy 3 classes, get $75 off: AM1375
  • Buy 6 classes, get $175 off: AM13175

October 14, 2012

Buckwheat Kasha with Meat

The National cuisine week has ended and I am so excited to try some new recipes.

Last week  I decided to try one of them, with buckwheat. Originally, it was published on JaneBoFelt blog, and she used white mushrooms (Boletus edulis) for her dish. My family (especially my husband) loves meat, so I made my buckwheat kasha.

I used:
1 medium size onion
2 medium carrots
1lb of pork (cubed)
1 cup of buckwheat grains
2 cups of water
2 TBS of vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon of salt

1. Chop onion and carrots. Slightly fry them with 1 tbs of oil on the frying pan.

2. Replace carrots with onion in a warm dish. Set aside.
Add 1 tbs of oil to the same frying pan, add cubed meat and cook it for 2-3 minutes on each side.
 3. Add buckwheat grains, salt, and water.
 4. Cover the pan, bring to the boil, and cook on the low heat for  20-25 minutes, till the buckwheat absorbs the water.

Enjoy the healthy meal!

September 15, 2012

Salted Salmon

One of my favorite Russian cold collations is salted fish. Actually, Russians eat dried salted fish (any kind of river fish) with beer, salted herring, mackerel, and so on. Here, in America, I make my own salter salmon.
It's easy to make and it tastes great!
All you need is: fresh salmon fillet, salt, sugar, and spices.
Wash salmon fillet, dry it with paper towel. Remove any fish bones.
Mix salt and sugar (3:1)  in a bowl.
Rub  salt mix generously on both sides of the fish, using more on the thicker end of the fillet. Add cloves, paper corns, bay leaves.
Wrap the salmon with plastic wrap, sealing the edges securely, then wrap it in a second layer of plastic wrap because fish can "spring a leak."
Place fish in the refrigerator for 3 days.
After that, remove the wrap, bay leaves, cloves, paper corns. Slice fish thinly and serve as is.
Also, you can sprinkle salmon with a little of  oil (sunflower seed oil is my favorite) and onion rings. 

PS. My mouth is watering while I am typing this recipe :) 

August 15, 2012

New Life of Old Tires

Recycling is a great way to give a new life to the things people don't want anymore. My father is good at inventing things that are practical. He made a wash stand for their garden out of 2-liter plastic soda bottles. He also made a sauna oven out of metal barrel and built a green house out of old window frames.
This year I visited my parents again (in Russia). Now, they have new  "flower-beds" that my dad made out of old tires!
The tire has to be turned inside out (I do not know how he did it). The top can be cut out.
Also, this "flowerpot" can be painted. Add some soil and plant your flowers in. That's it!
But wait! You can go more "fancier"- make a swan!

 I wish I had a garden here :)

April 25, 2012

Case for Knitting Needles

You know I love to knit. I do not knit as much as I make jewelry. My jewelry tools are more or less organized. Every tool has it's own place, but not my knitting tools. They can be in the cup with pencils, in the box with yarn, or somewhere else. I needed to organize them too! And I did!
I spent all day doing this important job. My husband was not allowed to disturb me. Dinner was cooked by him as well ... OK, at least he started it :))
Did I mention I made two cases? To make the first one, I use my hubby's jeans (his price for dinner) and piece of colorful fabric with butterflies. I bought that fabric years and years ago to sew something good for my daughter, but I did not. I killed It took a half day, probably, to finish this first case. It has 28(!) pockets where you can put long and short items (needles, crochet hooks, scissors,  brushes, rulers, etc)

April 23, 2012

Playing with Polymer Clay Again

Last weekend, I bought 'Premo' polymer clay because it was on sale at Michael's- for only $0.99. Well, I needed to make something with it. My 7 y.o. daughter helped me rolling clay in my pasta machine. Conditioning clay, to be exact.
To make long story shorter, I will show you my results. OK, not every single item ( I made 7 pairs of earrings, 3 pendants, and dozens of buttons.)
This pendant reminds my Picasso's art. Don't you think? My daughter sees olives, ham , fried eggs and peacock feathers. Hm-m-m... Did I feed her?

March 23, 2012

Zigzag of Luck

Hooray! I just got the Step by Step Wire Jewelry magazine with my article in!
I submitted my design of Zigzag of Luck
April-May 2012 issue.

March 21, 2012

Knitted Cup Cozy

I love hot tea. My husband likes iced tea. My friend loves hot cocoa. Often, the beverage cools down/warms up too quickly. Now, the problem is solved!

Hand-knitted cabled cup cozy will keep your drink hot (or cold), and keep your hands comfortable. It wraps around your coffee or tea mug and closes with a button.

This cup cozy stretches to fit most sizes of cups and mugs, including travel mugs. Keep a cup cozy in your bag, so you won't need to use a disposable coffee sleeve.
A perfect gift for everybody.

If you have some basic  knitting skills, you can knit your own cup cozy. Follow along with my tutorial to make your very own! 

March 7, 2012

Happy Woman's Day!

March 8th  is one of my favorite holidays. It is officially known as a International Women's Day. It is loved by many and is widely celebrated in Eastern Europe.
Most of my followers and readers of this blog are women. So, my friends, I want to congratulate you on this beautiful Day!

This day only, on March 8th, I have a SALE at my GoodWeather and AroundBeads shops. Use promo code HAPPY20 to get 20% off on any item!

January 15, 2012

Grandma's Garden- Crayon Art

It's hard to find a good present for our grandma (actually, she's my mom, but Anya's grandma).
"I have everything," she says always.
Ok, we will not buy a present, we will make it!
My mom has a beautiful garden in Russia. She grows everything there: potatoes, cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, cabbage, apples, strawberries, black and red currants, gooseberries... and it's not all. Her favorites are flowers. Her garden is full of flowers.

My mom's birthday is in February. No flowers yet :) Well, we will give her a garden of flowers made of...crayons!
To make a piece of art, we used canvas (12"x12"), crayons  (we used 3 boxes to pick only greens), artificial flowers, glue gun and hair drier.
Glue crayons to the edge of canvas with a glue gun.
Turn canvas upside down so crayons are pointing down.

January 10, 2012

Upcycling Sweaters. Part 2 - Coasters

I made a lot of stuff out of felted sweaters: bags, gadget cases, little cute toys ....And I had a lot of small scraps that I felt sorry to throw them away. What else could I make out of little pieces? Well, they are not tiny-little, something about 4"-5" (13cm) across....
Coasters!!! They do a fantastic job protecting your furniture from those inevitable water rings made by our drinking glasses and coffee mugs. Right? So, I made coasters, and they are double sided!