Navigation Menu

Collecting seashells on the beaches of Sanibel, Captiva and the world

Shellebrate Thanksgiving Day

Posted by on Nov 26, 2015 in Beach Holiday, Shell Art, Thanksgiving, Turkey Wing | 10 comments

Seashell Thanksgiving Turkey wings

Gobbling up this shellicious day with gratitude for y’all.

Wishing you the yummiest of TURKEY WINGS to all.

 Happy Thanksgiving!


Read More

I’ve Got A Crush On Shellcrush Drift Shells

Posted by on Oct 1, 2015 in Decorate with shells, Make Seashell Stuff, seashell decor, Shell Art, Shell crafts, Sunsets | 12 comments

shell beach with ocean

Sanibel has had so much rain in the past month, we’ve had flooded streets, yards and parking lots. Now that we have had a few days of sunshine, we are finally drying out. It’s so refreshing to be on the beach without the threat of a thunderstorm and to enjoy the site of shells and beautiful skies.

pink sunset beach seashells

I’ve found mostly shell crush (broken shells, bits and pieces), drift shells (smooth beach worn shells) and Sanibel’s most common shells (CLICK HERE  for the top six shells) but they remind me I should start some shell craft projects using the same shells that are on our beaches in SW Florida all the time.

sea foam and sea shells on sanibel island

I’ve always wanted to do a frame like this as friend Rhonda makes …

shellebelle's drift shells

But after having lots of home improvement projects this summer, all I want to do is enjoy walking the beach to unwind and to admire all of these beautiful shells (broken or not!) and the landscape that surrounds them. Beach therapy is the best therapy on the planet.

shell crush on sunset

Read More

Gone Extreme Shelling- Across the World

Posted by on Jun 15, 2015 in Decorate with shells, Indo Pacific shells, Okinawa Japan Beach Combing, Shell Art, Shell crafts, Sunsets, World shelling | 27 comments

Beach combing in Okinawa Japan for seashells and sea glass

Shellzam!  These are some of the unbelievable shells and bling we’ve found on an extraordinary shelling trip to the other side of the world from our home on Sanibel Island, Florida. Yes, Sanibel is the the most amazing place on the planet for beach combing but when you’re extreme shellers like Clark and me…

Extreme shellers Pam and Clark beach combing Okinawa Japan

We’ve got to explore the awesome beaches around the globe.

Explore the beaches of Okinawa Japan for seashells

Stay tuned for all of the details of our amazing beach combing adventure…

Seashell crafting with a darling Okinawa shell and sea glass sign

in Okinawa, Japan!

okinawa sunset spider conch sea shell

Read More

2015 78th Sanibel Shell Festival

Posted by on Mar 7, 2015 in 78th Sanibel Shell Festival 2015, Freak Shells, Junonia, Sailor's Valentine, Sanibel Shell Fair and Show, Shell Art | 21 comments

junonia shell at Sanibel shell festival show 2015

If you found a perfect JUNONIA on the beach the second morning of vacation on Sanibel, would you let it out of your site for the rest of your trip? Not Tim from Ohio! He told me about his treasure find after I met him while at the Sanibel Shell Festival and was able to show it to me since he had it stashed in his pocket. He said he couldn’t bear to part with it yet. LOL

Junonia at shell show

That started off my day at the Shell Festival off with a smile but after seeing beautiful works of art like these, it was hard not to keep that smile going.

seashell flower box

Gorgeous pieces!

Seashell flower bouquet Sanibel Shell Festival

I loved this miniature seashell doll house shell shop.

miniature shell shop doll house Sanibel Shell Festival 2015

Of course its always breathtaking to see the Sailors Valentines.

Rhyne Saliors valentine Sanibel Shell Festival Show 2015

rams horn sailors valentine

seashell sailor valentine sanibel shell festival 2015

My favorite shell exhibit of the entire show was in the “Freak” category. It’s a shell with 2 apertures. Yes, I said TWO openings … its like this shell is a Siamese Twin.  I was stunned and amazed and I still am. It was so hard to get a good photo to really show both openings but you can see on the far left there is an opening with an operculum and then you can see the more obvious lip and opening. Wow! Can you imagine? So cool.

2 aperture freak shell

I had the best time browsing the exhibits and meeting other shellers like Cheryl and Pam (Brett Bailey’s sister) who showed me a very cool juvie MILK CONCH they found at the Sanibel Lighthouse area. But…. Pam didn’t have her shell in her pocket like Tim did (heehee), the shell was on her phone. “Ring. Ring. Ring… Hold on, I need to get my Shellaphone….. Shello?” hahaha

cheryl pam brett bailey's sister

The festival is like dialing a shellafriend….  Shellekelle, me and Christine Florida shell girl had a great time hanging out and catching up. They are such cutie shellooties!

Shelly Pam Rambo Christine Sanibel Shell Fair Festival

It was a great weekend…

78th Sanibel Shell Show Festival Fair 2015

But now its back to the beach tomorrow for some real shelling time and our iLoveShelling cruise to Cayo Costa with Captiva Cruises. So excited because we had some good winds yesterday to hopefully have thrown some treasures up on the island for us. Hope to see you there!

pam rambo shelling trips


Read More

How To Use Seashells For Gift Tags

Posted by on Nov 25, 2014 in Decorate with shells, Disk Dosinia, Dosinia, Shell Art, Shell crafts | 24 comments

Using seashells for gift tags

With Thanksgiving and the holidays upon us, I’m getting excited about get-togethers with friends and family to celebrate the season of giving. But since I’m not a good cook, this means I also start to panic thinking about “what to bring” as a hostess gift – especially on Thanksgiving weekend. Hmmmm…. Bingo! What better “thought” from the Rambos (or any other beach comber) would be to give a gift of shells as a thank you? Doesn’t everybody love shells? My fave part of the whole gift is the packaging so I’ll show you how I easily I made a beautiful coastal package without drilling any holes in any of the shells. I’m tickled with my fall-ish colors I used to wrap up this small package tying seashells as a gift tag and adding beach bling to add that flavor of a coastal feel.

How to use seashells for gift tags

I got this idea from Alyson E. on iLoveShelling Facebook page last year after she saw my post about hundreds of DOSINIAS at Lighthouse beach. She showed a picture of the gift tags, earnings and ornaments she and her daughter make out of them- brilliant. I’ve been collecting them ever since for shell necklaces and gift tags of my own but if you’ve been on the Sanibel beaches in the last month, you’ve seen lots of DOSINIAS again.

Dosinia shells on a Sanibel beach

Yes, they are just white CLAM shells but I can’t help but pick them up…. just in time for the holidays.

bag of Sanibel shells with dosinias

I choose the shells that have the pre-drilled holes in them to bring home. (You don’t know why the holes are in these shells? Check out my post What Makes The Different Holes In Seashells – its fascinating!)

using natural drilled shells for gift tags

After the shells have been rinsed and dried, write your note with a magic marker inside the shell.

writing on seashells

You can use twine, raffia or any other thin string to thread through the hole in the tip of the shell.

threading a seashell for gift tags

I added a beautiful yellow “harvest” SEA WHIP to brown craft paper to start the fall color theme but couldn’t help myself… I had to add something aqua. I just had to so I added aqua raffia as a base to hold everything together then twisted a WORMIE in through the knot of the DOSINIA shell. For this package, I found a similar size DOSINIA to put a cover on the gift tag. I don’t know, I just thought it looked so cute- like a little secret you have to peek inside to see what’s there.

tie sea whips and seashells to gift packaging

To finish the look, I added an OLIVE shell with the tip missing like I use in making the OLIVE string bracelets and then tied on a SAND DOLLAR- easy peazy since there are lots of holes to choose from- heehee.  Lastly I added a wider ribbon to hide all the knots in the raffia. It’s done! I didn’t have to cook a darn thing and my friend will have something to keep after the holiday is over.

Using seashells for gift tags

Wondering what my “thought” is inside the beautiful package? My friend loves pink so I put one of my photographs with pink hues on an easel along with more beach bling. I think it will make a pretty little vignette somewhere in her house or office. I hope she likes it!

sea urchin vignette

I’m very thankful I can share this love of shelling with you and I also hope this will give you an idea or two of how you can use some of those shells you’ve collected over the years.

Or… if you want more ideas of how to find different shells, join me on one of my iLoveShelling Shelling Adventures! CLICK HERE for more info.

pam rambo shelling trips

Read More

2014 Sanibel Shell Festival

Posted by on Mar 10, 2014 in Sailor's Valentine, Sanibel Shell Fair and Show, Sanibel Shell Festival 2014, Shell Art, Shell crafts, Shell Shows | 28 comments

francis tammaro cameo engraver on helmet shell

This was not just the Sanibel Shell Festival this year, it was a fabulous FestiShell!

jingle shell craft flower

There were so many treasures from the sea made into beautiful works of art.

treasure from the sea valentine sanibel shell festival

But not only were there beautiful shells and gorgeous art pieces, I had a blast seeing so many of my shelling buddies… like the Shellucky Luckett Ladies Lois, Ginger, (me), Martha and Janet. They are so much fun!

iLoveShelling shellucky luckett ladies with pam rambo

I also got to talk to the editorial director and craft guru of Martha Stewart Living Hannah Milman along with Dr Jose Leal of the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum.

hannah milman with jose leal at sanibel shell museum

Of course I love to see shell art that makes me smile like this seashell box with beach combing Birth Of Venus at the center.

birth of beach combing Venus Heather Strawbridge

This shell box was done by shell crafter Heather Strawbridge…

seashell artist heather strawbridge at shell festival

The miniature shell craft pieces were amazing…

peter gabel miniature shell art craft

This mind blowing miniature shell exhibit won the artistic People’s Choice award for obvious reasons. Shell artist Peter Gabel points out a few details to an amazed Hannah Milman.

hannah milman looking at miniature shell art by Peter

For all of you mini shell lovers out there, you will surely love these sweet creations.

cheryl witten miniature seashell craft sanibel festival

Cheryl Witten got a blue ribbon for this tiny shell flower arrangement.

cheryl witten miniature shell art crafter

While scoping out the exhibits, I ran into Shelling Sistah Diane Parr and her fiancé Eric from New York. So nice to finally meet you, Diane!

diane parr eric visit sanibel shell festival from new york

It’s always fun to see Captain Brian and more shelling friends Lynn (St Thomas), Laurel (CA), and Anne (MN).

laurel ca, lynn vbi, anne mn, capt brian

The sailors valentines seemed more magnificent than ever this year.

karine almir sailors valentine shell festival

Karen Almir won a blue ribbon for her single medium valentine.

karine almir sailors valentine sanibel shell festival

Victoria Ross (Sanibel- right Vicki? ) won a blue for her gorgeous valentine. Congrats!

Vicki Ross sanibel shell festival 2014 blue ribbon

There were so many different shell flower arrangements to be stunned and amazed by. Marvin Hennemann made this one completely out of SEA URCHINS and their pieces.

urchin shell craft with ingredients

Fun piece Marvin!

marvin hennemann ky shell crafter

Every year I enjoy learning about other aspects of shelling.

rachel fields natural pearl exhibit

Rachel Fields won a blue ribbon for her awesome display on natural pearls.

rachel fields natural pearls display sanibel shell festival

This New Zealand shell scientific exhibit won a special merit award for education.

new zealand shells kris roger woods

Scientific Division judge Gary Schmeltz (left) with Roger and Kris Woods (who flew in from New Zealand) pose with the other distinguished Scientific Division judge Harry Lee.

gary schmeltz Roger Kris Harry Lee sanibel shell festival

 I’ve shown some shell art the last few posts so I wanted to show you some of the artists that make these incredible pieces. This is Ruth Bulger with her “You Are My Sunshine” Sailors Valentine

ruth bulger shell art crafter you are my sunshine

Nancy Goes made that beautiful shell necklace

nancy goes 2014 sanibel shell festival seashell artist

Audrey O’Donnell made the fabulous RICE SHELL arrangement

audrey odonnell blue ribbon shell artist

Pam Boynton said she was very honored to have seen my post with a photo of her “Love And Be Loved” Sailors Valentine… especially after reading Skip Collins’ comment “Love and Be Loved is about the coolest thing I have ever seen, well…Shellwise”. She thanks you Skip!

pam boynton shell valentine 2014 sanibel shell festival

I wish I could have photographed and met all of the exhibitors because there were so many more that were awe-inspiring like every single piece by David Rhyne…

david rhyne madame butterfly sailors valentine

So I hope to see you again next year on Sanibel or maybe even at another shell show.

seashell craft flowers sanibel shell festival

Until then, I’ve got to get back to my first love…  the beach. i Love Shelling!

first love shell valentine shell craft

Read More

Pin It on Pinterest