Sunday, February 28, 2010

Bead Blogger Updates, Devo & Solar Stars!

Here we are, it's Sunday and time to gear up for another week. I was just listening in the car to Devo's "Whip It".

What a great song on many levels... You might be wondering, "what is she thinking?"...actually, I never realized what the song was about. The novelty of a band with odd instruments and what looked like upside-down flower pots on their heads sort of overshadowed the music itself when I was in a more youthful time.

However, the words below definitely helped me today and I will continue to use this song as an anthem for overcoming adversity! How Cool!

Here are some of the lyrics:
When a problem comes along you must whip it; before the cream sits out too long you must whip it; when something's going wrong you must whip it now; whip it into shape ; shape it up get straight ; go forward, move ahead; try to detect it; it's not too late ; to whip it ; whip it good when a good time turns around; you must whip it; you will never live it down unless you whip it; no one gets away until they whip it; i say whip it whip it good i say whip it; whip it good!!

I also encountered another way to overcome adversity today... the solar STAR! I found this at our local Meijer grocery store today. It is SOLAR powered!!

If you have a Meijer store, make sure you get one of these, they are so sparkly and fun!!

All your troubles or areas you might be feeling some adversity in will melt away when you see the colors it cycles through at night, red, green blue...ahhh! Beautiful!! It is dark outside now and I'm telling you, this star is gorgeous!! :)

In preparation for getting inspired and starting another new week, I hope you will join me in a quick trip down blogger lane to see what everyone has been up to... Jewelry Making Tammy got the 411 on some very cool new metal stamps. Though these can also be used with clay as well.
Art Bead Scene The Art Bead Scene begins a new monthly feature - the ABS Carnival Blog! Let the Carnival begin!
Barbe Saint John - New Jewelry from Forgotten Artifacts Bopping Along the ICE Resin Blog hop - My resin version of Little Egypt.
Beading Arts Do you want to try lampworking? Cyndi's been busy at the torch again.
Carmi's Art/Life World Carmi uses a candy mold to make a new resin pendant.
Cindy Gimbrone aka The Lampwork Diva Cindy takes a bead shopping trip to the Great White North and almost passes out!
Studio Chronicles Melanie unleashes her grumpy feelings with a little rant and a bead sale! A mystery package is the catalyst for this creative challenge. Up for it? You could win a free book!
Lorelei's Blog: Inside the Studio Lorelei had a chance, a while back (2008) to have a nice little interview with etsy seller, Patina Queen! This is Lorelei's wire supplier, and she ROCKS!
Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done! jean is breathless with delight when she receives a gift from her friend the artist Lisa Kan!
The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton Andrew shares his feelings about the awesome new Spring issue of "Stringing" magazine.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

This Week's Project: Electric Sparkle & Shell Pearls Bracelet

This week's project incorporates several of the shell pearls and the ELECTRIC SPARKLY beads I received in a surprise bead package from Rings & Things last weekend.

As I mentioned earlier in the week, I received these beads as part of the Rings & Things blog partner program.

I was gathering materials earlier today so I could sit down to create something and discovered this PVC bracelet band that I found in the bargain bin and blogged about last summer.

I was thinking it would be fun to wire some of these beads to the band in a random design. Not surprisingly, my random idea flew out the window for a more structured design.

I think the flower-like form is pretty cute and after wearing it all day, I have pretty much formed a loving bond with it. :)

I caught a glimpse of it on my wrist in the hall mirror a few times today and it makes me smile. As always, that equals success in my book!!

I have also posted a picture of the earrings I made for a coworker to accompany a bracelet she asked me to fix that she had bought on vacation.

I stole a couple of the triangular shell beads from her bracelet so she would have earrings too and it just so happened I had received these special beads in the mail!

The sparkle on these electric beads is really amazing. My coworker wore them all day on Monday and every time I saw her, I saw the sparkle! It was great! I even heard her get some unsolicited comments about them!

I hope everyone is getting in a little bit of fun and crafting this weekend! The snow is falling AGAIN pretty steadily right now... One day soon I NEED TO SEE GREEN!

Take care!!

FTC compliance disclosure, notice of material connections: the items in this post from Rings&Things were provided as a promotional gift as part of the Blog Partner Program for review or design purposes. More info about the Rings & Things Blog Partner Program

Friday, February 26, 2010

Featured Designer: Kellie Christie

Happy Friday!! I wanted to let you know I have found a sure fire cure for the winter blahs....Kellie Christie button jewelry!

Even if you thought your cheer and joy had made a mad dash to a warmer climate, I promise it will return as you look through Kellie's button jewelry collection!! Talk about cheerful!

The first thing that caught my eye was the fun and whimsical styling of Kellie's button jewelry.
Creativity is such a unique quality in each individual. You can give five people the same beads, buttons, craft supplies, etc. and you will end of with five completely different outcomes. I just love this adorable collection!
You can visit Kellie's blog to see pictures of her adorable and yes, cheerful, table display.

In her profile, Kellie mentions that she is from Brisbane, Queensland, Australia and received a Bachelor of Fine Art degree from Queensland College of Art. Her background is in fine arts and graphic design and she's been designing jewelry for 6 years.

I just know you will enjoy this trip to happy, cheerful land!
Thanks so much Kellie for helping me with my winter blahs and for allowing me to share your wonderful work!!!

Thursday, February 25, 2010


This mix of gray/blue/purple, etc. shell pearls are so smooth and have a sophisticated feel to them. When I opened the surprise package from Rings & Things, these pearls were packed in a zipper baggie with some extremely SPARKLY faceted rondelle beads. I immediately opened the package and poured them all out onto a white surface. It was definitely an "Ahhhhh" moment.

What a fabulous combination!! The bright blue of the sparkle bead really gets your attention! I learned in yesterday's comments from Dave at Rings & Things that the rondelles are called ELECTRIC SPARKLY beads. (seriously!)

Anything with the word "sparkly" in it must be a good thing! Both the purple from yesterday's post and the blue are FABULOUS! As I said yesterday, these beads stand out from across the room.
I can't wait to show you the earrings I made with these electric beads! I used a bead from a bracelet a coworker needed fixed so they would match.

When I took them to her on Monday, she had on a light tan colored blouse with a few dark stripes in it. I would never have guessed how great these dark colors would look with tan! Wonderfully complementary!

I hope you are all getting ready for a fun and crafty weekend, I know I sure am! Take care! :)

FTC compliance disclosure, notice of material connections: the items in this post from Rings&Things were provided as a promotional gift as part of the Blog Partner Program for review or design purposes. More info about the Rings & Things Blog Partner Program

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Sparkle Time!

I wish I could have taken a better photo of these faceted rondelle-ish irridescent SPARKLES!! They are quite noticeable from across the room!!

I LOVE the fact that Rings & Things paired them with the butterscotchy shell pearl mix posted yesterday! It makes perfect sense!
The purple with a bronze-gold shine around the edges really stands out!

Even when held in my hand together the contrast makes me smile and when the light hits, the brightness of the pearls and the sparkle of the rondelles are gorgeous!!

I enjoy making bracelets, but these beads are going to have to become part of a necklace, but FOR SURE worked into earrings!
Heck, with these beads, one pair of earrings would be enough of an accessory to make you stand out in a good way!
What do you think?

FTC compliance disclosure, notice of material connections: the items in this post from Rings&Things were provided as a promotional gift as part of the Blog Partner Program for review or design purposes. More info about the Rings & Things Blog Partner Program

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Like Butterscotch!

Ooh, these colors are just so yummy! I realized when the word "yummy" came to mind, I was thinking about butterscotch! I was wishing I had some instant pudding, but I also like the idea of a no-calorie jewelry snack!

These shell pearls are amazing and now I wish I had them in every color!! Thanks to Rings & Things, now I know about them!!

Sometimes I wonder how would anyone know about every bead and finding out there! It would seem impossible... That's what makes blogging and reading blogs so fun and so valuable. I can't even guess at how many new and interesting products I have come across in the last couple of years thanks to fellow bloggers!

So, back to the beads at hand... I think these would be so adorable clustered together in a dangly pendant with each shell pearl hanging at a slightly different length. Either a ribbon, cord or chain would make a great necklace for something like that. OR, maybe even a necklace that incorporates ribbon, cord AND chain!

The possibilities, as always, are only as limited as your imagination!

FTC compliance disclosure, notice of material connections: the items in this post from Rings&Things were provided as a promotional gift as part of the Blog Partner Program for review or design purposes. More info about the Rings & Things Blog Partner Program

Monday, February 22, 2010

Backward Bead Post

I received a FABULOUS surprise package of beads from Rings & Things this weekend as part of their blog partner program! YAY!! How exciting, I love bead surprises!

These beads are so great and while they are fabulous by themselves, they make such an amazing impact grouped together. So, instead of posting one at a time until the weekend, I thought it would be fun to just WOW you right up front because that is how I felt when I opened up the package.

I will then pull out the similar groups individually so you can see how pretty they all are through the week. It is a slightly different approach for me, but I'm sure you can understand how the beads made me do it! :)

I also wanted to take a few minutes to thank everyone for playing along in yesterday's challenge to guess the meaning behind the bracelet I made on Saturday. There were lots of great guesses and some sweet stories too!

The winner will receive a random bead mix of pieces and parts that have been showcased here in the past. The winner and "answer" to the challenge were just updated in yesterday's post.

I hope you are all having a great week so far!! :) If not, think SPARKLE...that usually helps!

FTC compliance disclosure, notice of material connections: the items in this post from Rings&Things were provided as a promotional gift as part of the Blog Partner Program for review or design purposes. More info about the Rings & Things Blog Partner Program

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Bracelet Project & Bead Blogger Fun

During my book signing at Ally Beads yesterday, one of their customers who is new to beading, mentioned a particular type of necklace she was going to make.

Once I had a chance to look at the beads that went into the necklace, I thought it would be fun to make it into a bracelet.

I wouldn't have guessed the meaning behind it if I hadn't been told and thought this might make a fun challenge here.

So, if you are the first person to identify the type of bracelet I was going for here, I will happily send you a random bead mix of miscellaneous pieces and parts that have been previously showcased on Abeadaday!

I'm working on sharing the bead love, while reducing the amount of space needed to house all my cool stuff! :) It's a win-win situation!

I can't wait to hear your thoughts! If you ALL "get it" I will think, gee I must have been living under a rock or in my very own bead-bubble again!

If you are the first to get it right, I will contact you through your blog, website or email address. just wouldn't be Sunday without taking a few minutes to load up on inspiration from our fellow bead bloggers below:

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done! Jean is embroiled in a conundrum--help a girl out!
The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton Working with Jill MacKay's new line of decorative bezels, Andrew experiments with resin and takes advantage of the bezels' deep walls.
Art Bead Scene Art Bead Scene teams up with Margie Deeb for a color challenge.
Beading Arts Cyndi's new bead embroidered necklace has everything but a name!
Cindy Gimbrone aka The Lampwork Diva Inspired by the color of summer gardens in a seed catalog, Cindy creates a new bead.
Earthenwood Studio Chronicles Celebrate the many uses of Ice Resin with Melanie's blog latest blog series which highlights some of her newest works
Jean Campbell Jean reviews Margie Deeb's (pretty fabulous) Spring/Summer 2010 Color Report.
Jewelry & Beading Have you heard of Zulugrass? Find out about the wonderful industry that's helping to support the Maasai, and enter to win a piece!
Lorelei's Blog: Inside the Studio Lorelei is still a little nervous to try her hand at using resin. But the pendant in this necklace turned out nice at any rate. Jewelry Making Tammy reminds you about a thriving jewelry community and how to keep up with news on her site.
Carmi's Art/Life World Carmi restrings a strand of cheap plastic beads with a wristlet. Repurposing is great!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Blog Trading

I was SO excited when I saw this bracelet on the blog of one of my favorite friendly bloggers, Tish McDermott ("Just A Tish"). I really wanted to buy it because, in rare situations, there are certain things that I just have to have!

When I saw it, I remember going through a rendition of Elizabeth Barrett Browning's, "How do I love Thee? (Sonnet 43)".

Here is my version:

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

1. I LOVE the brown hemp cord used especially against the cute light colored flowers.
2. I love that the flowers make me think of Hawaii (which I've always wanted to visit)
3. I LOVE the chain that was used to give it a bit of an edge while still maintaining a girly vibe.
4. I love the great shell beads that bring thoughts of ocean breezes...

Basically, I love this bracelet!! After mentioning to Tish that I'd like to buy it if possible, she suggested a trade. She thought a random mix of beads would be fun to receive, so random it was!! Hopefully she actually finds something fun to play with!!

THANKS TISH!! It came today and I just absolutely adore it!! :)

Thanks also to everyone for your encouragement and for those who were able to stop by the bead shop to chat and allow me to sign their book, A Bead in Time. I had a great time and will keep you posted on future events and giveaways!!

Friday, February 19, 2010

A Bead in Time Book Updates

Since I have my first book signing tomorrow, I thought I would commemorate this moment by sharing one of the book's project photos with everyone.

Oh, how I wish spring would arrive early... Just in case it isn't going to happen in the next few weeks, I selected the bright yellow dandelion project to show you here.

It had just turned to spring when I was working on projects for the book. In my neighborhood you MIGHT see an occassional dandelion, but most people prefer not to have them.

I am a real pushover for the underdog in any situation and was determined to find a yard full of them to photograph. After driving around town, I discovered that a local school yard was covered in them!

Most projects in the book have the inspiration photo I used to create each piece. So, here is the "ode to the dandelion" project. I had never worked with these brooch forms before and it was lots of fun!

I also wanted to take a moment to thank the following individuals who have been so kind as to post new reviews of the book.

Dave Robertson of Rings&Things in Spokane, Washington. THANK YOU Dave!!! :)

Davinia of Deez News from Australia who was one of the recent giveaway winners. She had some very kind words to share! THANK YOU!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Silvery Toned Spacers

These simple, inexpensive silvery toned spacers that came in the Big Lots bead kit are pretty adorable.

I'm not sure if I would use them as demonstrated on the box, but like the cuteness and brushed silvery look for use in another project.

Once the netting, shown earlier in the week, is "stuffed" with the beads, you could sew on a spattering of sparkly crystals to the outside.

Sounds good in theory, but I think it is one of those trial and error situations!

I hope everyone is having a great week, one more day till the weekend arrives!

If you are going to get snowed in this weekend, don't forget to pick up milk, bread and BEADS! :)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Intuitive Beading

I have been tempted to read the instructions that came with the bead kit I've been sharing this week, but it's more fun to figure it out. The pieces provided are pretty intuitive once you start handling everything.

I like this clasp and believe it is meant for a 3 strand necklace, however, I'm thinking "bracelet" because I am going to need to see all of this when it's done! The dangle is my favorite part!

At first glance, I wondered how the netting was going to be attached to the clasp. Then I saw the little crimpers with jump rings.
Okay, makes sense! Let's get ready to bead!

Oh yeah, there is one more piece to the puzzle...spacer beads!!
Stay tuned for those tomorrow and that will round out the entire $3 kit.

I hope you are all having a great week!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Intrigued by Bead Netting

Isn't this interesting!? As I mentioned yesterday, I found a $3 bead kit at Big Lots and this is the netting that came with the pale green glass pearls.

I'm amazed there is so much of it and very intrigued to start playing with it.

It seems very crafty and I could really use a good craft to do right about now!

Being able to freely express yourself creatively seems to help keep the flow balanced, sort of like "in with the good air, out with the bad".

I'm not sure how far this material stretches and if I can fit just one bead at a time in the little tunnel. How fun this is going to be to experiment with!!

I like the silvery tint to the netting that will complement the pale green in an interesting way. I greatly enjoy making jewelry for myself that I know will be a conversation piece.

I noticed someone looking at my wrist today and even though I had on the most sparkly piece of jewelry I have ever made (using 140 6mm crystal ab2x swarovski bicones), she didn't comment.

I think it was too pretty and perfect... Maybe it was too expected or maybe she had seen it many times before and it didn't make her squint her eyes and do a double take. People do like that.

So, maybe that's my next jewelry making mission...dare to be different! :)

If you have any cool netting ideas or experiences with this material, please share!!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Discount Bead Kit

Yes, I do seem to spend more than my fair share of time at the local Big Lots... First of all, it's right around the corner from home. Second, there is a canned product that is $.89 cheaper than anywhere else and supplements my diabetic dog's meals. It also doesn't hurt that they have lots of crafting materials from Martha Stewart products to BEADS!

I have seen this bead kit before, but for some reason the soft green glass pearls were appealing to me this time around. The $3 price tag didn't hurt either.

I believe someone recently mentioned in a previous post comment that they might use netting with large glass pearls. This kit just happened to have netting included which sounded like fun!

So, for the next few days I will share the bits and pieces that were included in this $3 find.

Since it was the pale green pearls that sold me on it, I thought it would be appropriate to show those first! There are 3 different sizes of pearls which will be fun to work with. I also wanted to show a bit of the box which has a picture of what a finished product could look like.

I hope you are all staying warm and safe! Mother nature seems to think we are enjoying these weekly white-outs and provided us with at least another 6-8 inches of snow today... We're hopeful the freeways will be cleared by rush hour! :)....fingers crossed!

This Week's Project & Bead Blogger FUN!!

Today's post is a combination of "This week's project" and "Bead Blogger Fun"!

I've been thinking of many ideas for using the fabulous handmade beads that were sent to me by Mikki of the Beaded Carpet. Here is the original post from a week or so ago.

It just so happened that the same day I received the surprise beads from Mikki, I also received a HUGE spool of white hemp cord. When I saw them sitting next to each other, I started thinking I'd like to use these things together.

I can't wait to wear this somewhere and I have sort of a rhetorical question that I just couldn't help but ask...WHY DOES JEWELRY MAKING HAVE TO BE SO MESSY!?? Maybe it isn't and it is actually me....?

Have a wonderful week everyone!! Below are some fun filled links to kick off the new week!! Take care!

Barbe Saint John - New Jewelry from Forgotten Artifacts Avoiding work by showing off some new jewelry pieces and other eye candy
Lorelei's Blog: Inside the Studio The connection you can have with a customer, is a treasure. Collaborating on a necklace, Lorelei and JoAnn create a wonderful keepsake.
Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done! Book review by jean: feel like learning new techniques? Try this new text with fab photos!
The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton Using components from, Andrew creates a Valentine's Day worthy necklace named, "Not Without". Jewelry Making Ever thought of applying for a jewelry making grant? If so, here is news about how to do so as well as some important tips to follow.
Art Bead Scene Art Bead Scene Unveils the February Monthly Challenge - Luna Park by Vestie Davis.
Carmi's Art/Life World Carmi attempts to explain how one necklace turns into two.
Cindy Gimbrone aka The Lampwork Diva An addition to the Grunge Bead Series - Grunge Faux Bois!
Earthenwood Studio Chronicles Melanie shows off the necklace she made for the Bead Soup Party: a delicious blend of stone, pearls, glass, ceramic, and brass ingredients.
Jean Campbell Jean did a little product scouting in Tucson...check out her favorite finds!
Jewelry & Beading Cyndi has a great giveaway going on: TWO gift certificates for Murano glass jewelry!!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Dice-Like Lampwork Cubes

Today's beads are the cubes I mentioned in Thursday's post.

They very nicely complement that adorable lampwork heart with the raised dots and flourishy-leaf design.

Rather than just straight stringing, I was thinking it might be fun to do a right angle weave somehow using jet black bicones...hmm. Something to think about!

Another option would be a 3 strand bracelet with the heart and cubes strung in the center and a couple outer strands of bicones and other complementary beads.

I noticed that posted LOTS of great heart designs on their facebook page if you are still looking for ideas!

Have a great evening!! This week's project has been moved to tomorrow's post so I could squeeze today's beads in before Valentine's Day! See you soon!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Featured Designer: Kim Smith Charm Bracelets

We made it...!! Yay! Safe, sound and happy the weekend has finally arrived!!

If I could jump in the air and click my heels together, that's what I'd be doing! Instead, I'm celebrating with some lowfat popcorn :)

I'm so glad it's Featured Designer Friday....finally!!

During a phone conversation with a coworker earlier this week, she mentioned the bracelet she ordered on Etsy had arrived and next time I was in her "neighborhood" to stop by.

It took us a while to connect, but we finally had a few minutes to take a break together to admire it!!

WOW! I was so impressed with this bracelet that I think my mouth might have hung open for a minute before I could speak. All I could say was, "wow"! No wonder she was so excited about it!

The bracelet was covered in a number of different shades of yellow beads and flowers. We were in awe of the adorable flower pieces and how the designer used seed beads on the inside of the flowers was so clever!

The price was just as awesome and when she told me it came all the way from the UK, I thought that was doubly cool! A nice reminder about how the internet has brought us all so much closer!

I immediately knew I needed to contact the etsy seller who made the bracelet and ask if I could share her work today. I was so glad she agreed!

Kim, of Kim Smith's Charm Bracelets, currently has 49 charm bracelets listed in her Etsy Shop!!!! She has played with color in such fun ways and I'm really so taken with these great flower beads!!

In her profile, Kim said she is inspired by anything from her garden to wallpaper, fabric, absolutely anything and loves experimenting with different color combinations.
I've posted just a few of my favorites here, but there are so many wonderful color mixtures, you've just got to pop over and take a look if you have a minute!

Kim also has a facebook fan page that has her fabulous bracelets splattered all over it, so nice and cheerful!
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Cool Black & White Lampwork Heart

You can't miss the raised up dots on this great lampwork bead! They are so adorable!!

In fact, these fun designs are on BOTH sides of the bead! I also like the balance between the dots and the little flourishy-leaf.

It is beads like this one that makes me wish I had some glass and a torch. The only down side to that would be that my husband and dogs might never see me again!

Now if I am obssessing with beads, I can still be in the same room with everyone else. I can't wait to show you the cubes that go along with this heart bead, but that will have to wait until another day!!

Friday is almost here, ahhh....can't wait for that sigh of relief at the end of the Friday workday!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Watch or No Watch?

I've recently been thinking about going back to wearing a watch...

It's been many years, probably 4 or 5 since I have worn one. I am pretty good at keeping tabs on the time. I think I might have developed a 7th sense :)

On one hand I think it will be fun to design a watch band for it and on the other hand is the concern that I will rely on it too much and then it will rule me! (like coffee!)

I'd love to hear your thoughts on that and get some cool watch ideas just in case!

My first thought is to use a couple strands of stretchy cord with a variety of colors and maybe even a random pattern.

I once saw a freeform peyote watch in a magazine that was VERY cool, but I have never successfully pulled off freeform peyote. I have a tendency to want to stick with some kind of pattern.

I can't wait to hear your ideas!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tiny Beads...Big Fun!

It looks like I am having a mini-fixation on yellow this week! Hmm, could be the fact we had another full day of snow!

It was very pretty watching it from the 22nd floor of my building as it covered everything in sight!

These are the tiniest of tiny yellowy-orange beads that have a matte finish. I am guessing they are about 5mm, but flat as little pancakes!

The one hole at the top of the disc provides so many opportunities for FUN! They can be used as tiny dangles or bunched together they will fan out in different directions creating a festive vibe!

How fun would these be combined with black cording or wire? Like tiny little smiley faces!! I'm afraid I would be tempted to add little dots for eyes and a nice big smile!! :)

What do you think?

Monday, February 8, 2010

Warm Summer Sunshine!

Dare to dream!! Here is my thought...On the count of 3, everyone conjure up a wonderful memory of a perfectly warm sunny day!

Maybe if we all focus on warmth, this snow storm that is supposed to be coming by morning will just hang out in the clouds and dissipate....

In the mean time, try focusing in on this great sun-shiny yellow shell bead. This came from Joann, Etc. and I believe it was in the button aisle!

As I was looking through photos, I also came across these funny paper earrings that I made a couple years ago. I wish I knew where they were now. They are full of imperfections, but that is what makes me laugh! I loved them and wore them A LOT!!

Okay, one more time, THINK WARM SUN-SHINY DAY!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Peace, Love & Bead Bloggers!!

I hope everyone is getting themselves dug out of the large mountains of snow that have fallen in the last few days!!

Regardless of the fact I know it is winter, it is always amazing to see it fall and fall and fall with no end in sight!

As long as you know all your people are safe, groceries are in the fridge and there are plenty of beads to play with, it is not a horrible thing!

So there lies the silver lining... forced hibernation takes the guilt out of hanging out and skipping the usual errands or scheduled committments. More time to BEAD!

There is so much going on out in the beading world with CHA just a recent memory and all the great reports back from Tuscon trickling in here and there. Sunday is a great time for catching up with fellow bead bloggers and I'm looking forward to checking out all the links below.

I hope you will join me!! HAVE A GREAT WEEK!! :)

Katie's Beading Blog Katie introduces her new line of findings: Katiedids™ Creative Components. Look what you can do!
Lorelei's Blog: Inside the Studio Lorelei's blog has a new look. And she heads to cooking school!
Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!
Kim Miles! Who makes prettier Valentine's day, or "just for yourself" gifts than Kim? Wait til you see what she has up her sleeve...the Ace of Hearts, so to speak! Jewelry Maing Catch up on the latest jewelry web news from contests to free tutorials with this handy list of links.
Barbe Saint John - New Jewelry from Forgotten Artifacts Are you a follower? Barbe has a giveway for her blog readers.
Beading Arts A beautiful glass bead becomes the focal point of a Valentine's Day necklace!
Art Bead Scene Searching for a way to achieve an etched metal look? ABS has a free tutorial for you!
Strands of Beads Melissa is giving away a $25.00 gift certificate from this week!
Carmi's Art/Life World Carmi did "knot" stress out making this new necklace!
Cindy Gimbrone aka the Lampwork Diva With the help of Vintaj brass, Cindy whips up a set of tethered butterfly earrings with her bronze floral charms.
Earthenwood Studio Chronicles Melanie reveals the delicious ingredients she received for the Bead Soup Party.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

This Week's Project: Bright Red Stoneware

This week's project is a necklace incorporating a bright red stoneware pendant from

I originally thought about beading the entire necklace, but then I saw the midnight black econoflex beading wire... I love using this in necklaces because it allows the pendant to stand out!

I just happened to find a heart & arrow toggle clasp to finish it off which made me happy!

As usual, my use of beads often has to do with the supply available.... Since I had these 6mm black diamond bicones in the same container as the red bicones, when I ran out of red, it made sense to use them. :) I just love swarovski crystal beads...what would I do without them? Let's hope I never have to find out!

I have one more adorable stoneware pendant left from It's the small swirly one...!!

I was going to make it into a dangle on a bracelet when I realized it would be nice to share the bead love.
If you would like to use it in a project and wouldn't mind if I shared a picture of it with everyone here, let me know in the comments and it will be sent to the first person who mentions they would like it!

I hope everyone had an opportunity to see the sun today, it was GREAT! I think it might have helped to melt a little of the 10-12 inches of snow that has fallen since yesterday. Yay!

FTC compliance disclosure: the item in this post from was provided as a promotional gift as part of their bead blogger program for review or design purposes.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Featured Designer: Mamasakio Jewels of Creation

This week's featured designer, Mamasakio, really caught my eye with her lariat necklaces. Not only are the colors and materials striking and voluminous, they can be worn in a number of ways.

They can be worn as a lariat, wrapped around the neck with the dangles coming down either side of the neck like a scarf, OR having one as a center hanging lariat with the other dangle off center.

So cool!!

She also has so many fabulous rings that are very diverse, from some that look like fireworks exploding to some like this turquoise ring that are chunky and fun!

Mamasakio, otherwise known as Shirley, also features earrings for every design taste and color combo.
I recommend checking out her etsy shop if you have a minute! Her motto reads, "DARE TO BE DIFFERENT. DARE TO WEAR MAMASAKIO." I love it!

I hope everyone made it home safely with all the snow, slush, ice and rain.

Have a great weekend! If you find yourself hibernating, it's a great excuse to spend hours with beads!! Have fun!!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

"Beads in Time"

I want to warn you up front that you might need a tissue...I did!

I probably should have waited until the weekend to blog about these beads since they have only been in my possession for a few hours.

I haven't really processed how special they are or gotten over the emotional experience, BUT I just couldn't wait to share them!

These beads came in the mail today as a surprise from my friend and fellow bead blogger, Mikki Ferrugiaro of the Beaded Carpet.

When I saw her name on the package, I started tearing at it trying to get it open before I even took off my coat and scarf.

I left a huge pile of torn box and bubble wrap in my wake and finally got to see what was inside and my jaw dropped open!

The letter inside was SO SWEET! Mikki said she was proud of me and, in keeping with the message in my book, wanted to help me remember this time. She made beads inspired by my book cover!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Oh my gosh! She has called these "Beads in Time". Awww!!

She has taken polymer clay and you can see in the focal bead and the two beads to either side that the clay is wrapped around what looks like coral. I have no idea how in the world she did this, but it is the coolest thing I have ever seen, the colors and beachy vibe are PERFECT!!

Mikki, I'm sending out a great big hug!!! I am just so in awe of your creativity, thoughtfulness and generosity!! THANK YOU!!

Okay, tissue please....!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Crackle Bead = Sparkle!

When I looked at these beads, the word "sparkle" came to mind. What I meant to think was "crackle", but what kept coming out was "sparkle".

These crackle beads are so great and will be a perfect complement to any white beads or crystals. They really look like tiny crystal balls!!

AND, they are VERY sparkly, almost like they have glitter inside!!

I love the idea that the crackle is made just as it happens with ice cubes. They are taken from the molten glass stage into a cold bath which makes the glass crack. Simple concept, who knew! Oh, I just had another design thought.

How about taking colorful softflex wire and creating a multicolor band with all clear crackle beads!!

I hope you are having a great week so far!!