Friday, September 30, 2011

Fabulous Friday Links!

Wow, it's Friday and tonight we've got some great links to peruse!

Check out this great Halloween bracelet made by our fab friend Jean Yates! Scary cute!

Below you will find fall jewelry designs, mother of pearl faves, a great giveaway and more! Enjoy!

The Bead Dreamer
Handcrafted jewelry and autumn looks for 2011 are just perfect together. Charlene shows how.

Beading Arts
Cyndi has a really fun giveaway book with great projects for fall weekends! Jewelry Making
My, oh my, what is your favorite type of mother-of-pearl, natural, colored, bleeched, all of the above?

Resin Crafts!
Carmi has a blog post featuring a resin disaster.

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!
Jean goes back through the mists of time and fondly recalls a favorite bracelet she made using components from two favorite websites!

Art Bead Scene
We are all ready for Fall at Art Bead Scene! Check out the bounty of Autumn beady goodies we found from art bead makers on Etsy.

Cindy Gimbrone Beads
Cindy shares what she made with Cat's lovely etched copper heart.

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles
Melanie starts Etsy Holiday Boot Camp with some goals and promises

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Charming Pearls!

How about a "charm bracelet" using pearls? What would you call that? Charming pearl bracelet?

After reading the comments on yesterday's post, it appears we have a unanimous decision that I should teach a charm bracelet project at craft night!

How would you feel about this? Dangling varying sizes and colors of pearls as the charms...simply pearls! I have had pearls on the brain this week due to the seasonal change.

I'm thinking a gold tone chain with lots of earthy colored pearls. I don't usually go for gold tone, but that's what comes to mind, so I need to think about it for a while. This grouping of glass pearls is nice from

Actually not a long while considering I'm doing this on Saturday! :) Any other thoughts? THANK YOU for your comments, it's nice to have an unbiased committee of blog readers to help fine tune ideas!!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Shout out for Ideas!

Hi guys! I am in need of your assistance coming up with a project to teach at a craft night session coming up on Saturay.

I enjoy teaching mostly earrings and bracelets.

I like teaching things that are fairly simple, but can be designed in many different ways so each person's project comes out a little unique.

Please leave a comment if you have a cool idea! :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Time for Crystal Pearls

This time of year always seems to bring on a hankering for pearls! There is nothing like a perfect Swarovski crystal pearl especially during the change in seasons.

I just popped over to to check them out to see if anything stood out that I couldn't live without.

Here are a couple of finds...

The color on this 11 x 8mm Swarovski Crystal Bronze Pear makes my head spin it's SO smooth! Like that perfect flavored coffee you get once a year that brings tears to your eyes. Okay, that's me, but I bet you get the idea! YUM!

The description on the FireMountainGems site reads:

Regarded as the most magnificent crystal pearl manufacturer, Swarovski's dazzling colors and organic shapes start with a unique crystal core that is covered with an innovative pearlescent coating for a flawless, silky-smooth surface that resists cosmetics, chemicals and perfumes.

The other pearl I noticed is this 6mm round swarovski crystal pearl in CORAL! Wow, I don't remember this standing out to me before. It is SO shiny, the surface looks wet. Amazing!

I'd love to hear about your favorite pearls including where you shop for them!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Etsy Treasury

I just came across a gorgeous and nicely organized Etsy Treasury
on the Art Bead Scene blog! It is awesome and I thought it would be fun to share!

Here is one of the pics above, the rest can be found via this link.

Let me know what you think! Yummy ceramics! :)

Rings and Things Bead Tour

Please do as I say, not as I do!!

It was important for me to share this info with you tonight because I was just heading out to the Rings & Things website to make sure I had the October date on my calendar for their stop in Columbus, Ohio.

Well, I have just been saddened to find it was this PAST Saturday!! Boo hoo...

I was tied up on Saturday, but could have probably made it for the last 45 minutes or so.

For those of you near the cities below, check out this schedule to make sure you don't miss it!!
09/27: Philadelphia (Essington), PA
09/28: East Hanover (NYC area), NJ
09/29: North Haven, CT
09/30: Boston (Burlington), MA
10/02: Rochester, NY
10/05: Denver,CO
10/09: Spokane, WA
10/15: Seattle, WA
6: Mt Vernon, WA

10/22: Bellevue, WA

10/23: Portland (Tigard), OR
10/26: Salt Lake City (Sandy), UT
10/28: Las Vegas (Henderson), NV
10/30: Phoenix (Scottsdale), AZ
11/01: San Diego, CA
11/02: Orange County (Buena Park), CA
11/03: Ontario, CA
11/05: San Jose (Milpitas), CA
11/06: Sacramento (McClellan), CA

Saturday, September 24, 2011

This Week's Project: Gold Pieces & Parts

Here are a few pieces of a project idea that is on deck.

I realized recently that I would like to have a simple necklace that included an interesting pendant made of pearls and crystals.

What crystals you ask? Good question!

I need to visit my local bead shop or craft store this weekend because I can't seem to settle on anything I have in my current collection.

Stay tuned and please share ideas if you got 'em! :)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Bead Blogger Fun & Vintage Bead Winner!

Yay, it's the weekend! :) I have a very important announcement to make...

The winner of the Vintage Bead Collection is Meghan of Nitelily Designs. Yay for Meghan!!

Thanks so much to everyone for stopping by, reading and commenting on last Friday's post.

And now, it's time for Bead Blogger links to start your weekend off with some creative inspiration starting with the Bead Dreamer's mini-book necklace shown here.

The Bead Dreamer
Love miniatures? Charlene takes miniature book components, paper, ribbon and a few beads and makes a mini book necklace. You can too! Jewelry Making
Jazz up your eyes with this beaded eye glass chain tutorial.

Cindy Gimbrone Beads
This week's Tuesday Tangle is about experimentation and trying new designs.

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!
Jean reviews (and holds a giveaway!) of Jamie Cloud Eakin's fabulous new bead embroidery technique book, coming out in early October! And posts a Blythe doll photo, of course.

Art Bead Scene
Shannon shares some tricks of the trade regarding jewelry metal punches.

Resin Crafts!
Resin crafts has a few tips about resin and polymer clay.

Beading Arts
What do you do with copper tube beads? Make a fabulous necklace, of course!

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles
Melanie gets ready to join up in the Etsy Boot Camp and is looking for more recruits!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Found: Giant (Stray) Shell Pearl

First, let me just say I hope I'm not alone...

I just walked into the other room and saw a gigantic shell pearl on the floor behind my desk chair. I mean these things are huge! How is it possible that it was laying there and I didn't see it to pick it up?

Too funny! It's not as though the desk is hidden off in a nice crafting room or something. It's just sitting out in the middle of everything!

Maybe it's just trying to escape from the pack to get my attention so I'll use it in a piece of jewelry! Now I'm thinking I just might have to do that!

Here is a pic of the bunch it was originally paired up with. It is the one on top in this photo, gold toned, but not so buttery colored.

It's actually large enough to be a focal bead for sure. come the ideas!! Have a good one!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Vintage Glass Pearl Leaves

Ooh, I just love these vintage glass pearl leaves! They have matured naturally, not intentionally. They have lived!

They are coming back for more in life and hopefully whoever wins these, along with the rest of the vintage collection of beads up for grabs from, will come up with a new and exciting way to use them.

How fun! This is recycling at its best!

Here's the post in case you haven't yet entered to win! :)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Carved Cabochon

I know a bunch of beadworkers out there who are going to LOVE these vintage carved cabochons!

Make sure you throw your hat in the ring for an opportunity to win these AND a gorgeous collection of other vintage beads at the end of this week from

Here's the blog post, just pop over and make a comment for a chance to win!!

For now, let's just admire this intricate carving! These will look great with amethyst montees and elegant pearls

Monday, September 19, 2011

Vintage Rose Montees

For some reason when I see the word "montee" I have a split second thought about Monty Hall from the old TV show, Let's Make a Deal, before I move onto BEADS!

I don't know why that is, maybe I watched way too much TV as a kid.

Well, I actually know I watched too much TV as a kid, so maybe I've answered my own question! :) Before cable too, kind of sad...

So, back to the beads. Did you know that a "montee" is a glass or crystal rhinestone mounted in a metal setting with holes on the back
for stringing or using as an embellishment. Today's bead is a Vintage Rose Montee/Amethyst Sew on bead.

Now, talk about a Deal to make...

These 8 gems are part of a gorgeous collection of vintage beads from that are up for grabs as we speak.

Visit my post from Friday for details and Good Luck! Here's the entire collection!! Wow! So elegant!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

This Week's Project: Birdie Zipper Pull

I met up with a friend on Friday who happened to be wearing a pair of earrings with a vintage birdie bead and gold coral tube that I had made for her. She said she'd love to have one of these to attach to the zipper of the jacket she was wearing.

She then proceeded to take off an earring and show me how it would look on the jacket and she was RIGHT! It made a huge difference!

Not that it wasn't nice looking before, but something as simple as a couple beads made it look like a more polished and put together little outfit. Hmm..I was happily awed by that.

So, I just threw this together. I'm a little unsure of how to attach it so it's strong enough to act as a pull, however I think she will still grasp the zipper and this will just be a dangly embellishment. So, we'll get the ball rolling with this to start with. :)

Hope you had a crafty weekend and I wish you the best new week!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Peace, Love and Bead Blogger Saturday!

Weekends are great for relaxing and reading blogs! Ahh, nice deep breath...

As usual, our blogger pals below have lots of fun things going on!

First of all, check out some of Melanie's new pendants, aww. Kitty cats that are sweet, but slightly halloweeny! blog hops, metal jewelry tips, patinas and more! Enjoy!

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles
Melanie ponders if her new cat pendant design is seasonally spooky or a year round treat

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!
I love B'Sue Boutiques and Brenda Sue is having a blog hop in October! Come read about it! Jewelry Making
Tammy discusses and provides a tutorial about the dirty side of metal jewelry.

Beading Arts
Cyndi explains how to add a wonderful blue-green patina to copper beads.

The Bead Dreamer
Charlene reviews a book that blends beading and jazz - Bead Riffs

Carmi's Art/Life World
Carmi has links to a mosaics in resin series to share this week.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Fab Friday Giveaway:

This is going to be a great weekend!! Check out this awesome giveaway!

VINTAGE BEADS! How amazing is this collection?!

Our friends Sharon and Jim at have very generously selected some "trendy" vintage beads for you!

One of the reasons I have a soft spot for vintage beads like these is that I can FEEL their mature or seasoned vibe. They have already lived a little bit and are coming back for more! I also see that they can be turned into something fresh and trendy! Sharon mentioned the fall edition of Vogue magazine included very similar amethyst/purple tones. :)

I am so thrilled to be able to offer you the chance to win this collection!!

I love ALL of these beads, but I was first taken by the set of "Amethyst Navette Glass Sew On Jewels"! Then I saw the pearls and I melted...I knew you would too!

If you would like to throw your name in the ring to win this entire collection, just leave a comment on this post. I'll select a random winner next Friday.

Until then, if you want to take a closer look, here are all the bead details so you can zoom in on the site!

8 Vintage Glass Beads. Amethyst Sew On vgb0227

2 Vintage Flower Cabochon, Amethyst Glass Floral Carved gcb0418

6 Vintage Glass Cabochon. gcb0341

6 Vintage Glass Beads. Amethyst Sew On vgb0247

8 Vintage Rose Montees. Amethyst Jewels Sew On vgb0291

12 Vintage Rose Montees. White Pearl Jewels vgb0323

8 Vintage Beads. Ivory Glass Coin Pearls vgp0238

4 Vintage Glass Pearl Beads. Leaves vgp0103

Thanks so much Sharon & Jim!! Read more about this collection on the Bumbershoot blog.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Gears & Donuts

Sorry guys, no actual donuts here, just some pretty cool plastic beads!

I love these "donuts" and when I was picking them out of a big pile of beads, it was like discovering little treasures!

I've always thought it would be fun to make layered dangles out of round donut-like beads, so here's what I'm thinking.

Stacking at least 3 highly contrasting donuts on multi-colored jump rings and using them as charms on a very fun bracelet! These could definitely set a trend for the interesting clicky sound they will make.

What do you think?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Plastic Bead Love

While my crystally flower project is on the back burner, the "Ultimate Plastic Bead Mix" is back in the spotlight! :)

These sweet and sunny looking flowers are very simple, but seem to have special plastic flower powers because you can't help smiling when you play with them!!

If you have worked with plastic beads before, you know they make nice little clicky sounds instead of jingly sounds when they are used as charms. These will be perfect in a charm bracelet.

I can't wait to get this one put together!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Mojo in the Mailbox!

I'm interrupting work on the Flowery Bracelet to mention that my Mojo bracelet came in the mail today, yay!

Yes, as you probably already know, I enjoy a good infomercial... I had actually seen the Mojo bracelet infomercial, but didn't fall for it until a coworker did the Mojo bracelet test on several people after buying one at the state fair.

You probably know how this works, but just in case... You have someone stand on one foot and try to push them a little to see how well they keep their balance. Of course, everyone on the commercial (and in real life) seem to get wobbly when pushed.

Then you have them put the bracelet on and try it again. I'd say about 100% of people are able to keep their balance better.

The question is whether or not it is the placebo effect in action or really the "holographic technology" implanted in the rubbery bracelet. Hmm... the suspense was too much for me to handle and I finally caved over the weekend and ordered one.

So, I've been wearing it for a couple hours and will let you know in a day or so in case you are interested. Here's a pic of the one I ordered. :) Yes, easily entertained, it's okay, I know!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Flowery Design: Preparing for Phase 2

I wore Phase 1 of the Flowery Design bracelet to work today and have to say I enjoyed it! I could probably move on to another project and be perfectly happy with this one the way it is.

HOWEVER, I would like to at least TRY to expand on the idea a little bit by adding additional strands or some other element.

So, I was looking through beads and came across one of my all time favorites, THE GRADUATED SWAROVSKI CRYSTAL, if you think it sparkles on this blog, you have to get some of them to believe the sparkle in real life. Honestly, you can see it catch the light from across the room.

I just made a pendant for a tiny silver chain out of one of these with a giant cream pearl hanging from it last Thursday after sparkling up my watch. I needed something else sparkly to balance out all that watch bling! So, when I was making the simple pendant, I thought, "I've made this before".

Well, now I know why. I have earrings very much like it somewhere in the world. I just don't know where!! Good thing I'll always have this blog to remember these jewelry pieces that sometimes get up and walk away. :)

So, back to the crystal drop. If you have ideas for incorporating it into phase 1, let me know.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Flowery Design: Phase 1

I hope everyone had a fun and creative weekend! It's time to start thinking about the new week ahead.

Before closing up shop I wanted to share phase 1 of my new bracelet project. I have 4 sterling plated daisies with crystals in the center that I have connected with interestingly shaped oval jump rings.

I added beads to memory wire strands and linked them to either side of the flowery piece, then added a magnetic clasp. I'm considering making this a 3 strand bracelet or somehow beading a circle pattern around the flower piece.

So, ideas are flowing, I just haven't landed on the final one yet. Stay tuned and have a GREAT week!!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Peace, Love and Bead Blogger Saturday!

Creativity abounds this weekend! I hope you are able to set aside a little time to work on something fun.

If you are in the blog hopping mood, you are going to love these links!

Our bead blogger friends are sharing metally designs, business advice, steampunk tutorials, book reviews and MORE! Enjoy!

Beads & Books
Michelle creates jewelry with the new Rusty Black metal finish from B'Sue Boutiques.

Cindy Gimbrone Beads
Cindy's got some business advice for you - from one threadkiller to another! Jewelry Making
Fly away with some steampunk inspiration after reading this new pin tutorial.

Beading Arts
Cyndi figures out how to showcase a wonderful lampwork glass pendant and shares the steps with you!

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles
Melanie reviews a gorgeous new metalsmithing book called Hot Connections

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton
Recently, Andrew was interviewed by Kelli Burns of The Hole Bead Shop. Check out the first installment of the interview!

Resin Crafts!
Resin Crafts has a post featuring back to school pencils in resin!

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!
Jean just can't ever get over the stunning beauty created by her British pal, Emma Ralph! if you don't know about Emma, you have a real treat in store!

The Bead Dreamer
Charlene shows how a little paint and an old book make an excellent prop for jewelry photography.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Featured Designer: Skye of Creative Chaos

Happy Friday!

After reading a comment left on yesterday's post by our friend and fellow bead-blogger, Skye, I thought I better get busy working with the plastic bead mix I've been obsessing about for the last week or so and there is no time like the present. :)

When I popped over to Skye's blog, "Creative Chaos", I noticed she has a giveaway up today! Check out this package of wood and shell beads, nice!

I also noticed she had a great, kind of spooky, story about ghosts in her beads! We seemed to be on the same Halloweeny wavelength earlier in the week. If you get a chance to pop over there, make sure you read about her ghostly experience AND check out her jewelry designs and artwork!!

Thanks for sharing Skye!! Have a great weekend everyone!!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Blue & More Blue!

As mentioned in yesterday's post, there were several blue beads in the $2 Big Lots mix that are very different, but have the potential to complement each other nicely.

Here is the next blue bead!

It is a smooth, matte bead that has a subtle blue sky and cloud vibe.

There are so many options for using this one along with yesterday's "gem"! They would look nice strung with spacers, as pops of interest interspersed with chain or on colorful beading wire with crimps on either side to help them stand out.

The choices are ours and that is why I think we all probably love beading!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Pretty Plastic!

Hopefully you will see not only the fun, but the beauty in this plastic bead, just as I do!

It makes me think of a treasure chest full of gems! (and, for anyone else obsessed with the apps on their phone, it also makes me think of the Jewel Craft game!)

I pulled out a couple other bluish type plastic beads from the package that seem like they would contrast well with this bead, so stay tuned for the next couple posts and let me know what you think.

For now, let's just admire this beauty! :)

Oh, I also have breaking news! I just finished supergluing these swarovski flat back crystals onto my rubberized slap watch.

WHAT DO YOU THINK? I can't wait to wear it tomorrow. I just hope 10 hours will be enough time for the crystals to become secure.

We shall see! :)

I'm patting myself on the back for this one in case you couldn't tell! Hey, someone has to do it, right?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Black & White Design Wheels

Hopefully everyone was able to get back in the groove today if you were lucky enough to have yesterday off work, school or other responsibilities!

Guess what?! We are back to what I am now referring to as "The Ultimate Plastic Bead Mix"! Just in case you missed last week's posts, I came across two 50 gram bags of mixed plastic beads at Big Lots!

So, tonight's beads are these black and white wheels that remind me of the "Stampin' Up" rubber stamping wheels that have a handle and an ink cartridge inside so when you roll them onto your cardstock, it rolls on the design!

Very cool! In reality, they are interesting black and white plastic beads!

I was rolling them around with some solid black and solid white beads and they really popped off the table. Actually, I think they would be great with just black beads. Either way, pretty fun!

Now, before signing off, I have a task for you, if you are feeling up to it!! There was a mystery bead in the bead mix package and I am looking for help with identifying it! ANY IDEAS?

Monday, September 5, 2011

Peace, Love and Bead Bloggers!

Holidays are so great!! It's nice to feel a little more rested and have more time to read blogs or create!

Below are some great links in case you have a few extra minutes.

This week our bead blogger pals are creating with resin, focusing on forums and, of course, giving things away! Enjoy!

Resin Crafts!
This week Carmi is making Faux Gems with resin! Jewelry Making
When was the last time you visiting the Jewelry Making Forum? That long ago? Well, here is
some of what you have been missing.

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles
Melanie unloads a kiln fill of new black and white deigns

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton
Andrew announces the (SOLD OUT) Reader's Challenge Design Kit for September! Lots of luscious pale purples and lavenders!

Cindy Gimbrone Beads
Cindy shares some ideas to make your metal money stretch.

Beading Arts

Cyndi shares the work of some amazing bead embroidery artists!

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!
Jean thinks about what it is like to write for Australian Beading Magazine! Many of you have been in her column at this point!

Beads & Books
Michelle shares a strategy for improving her Etsy shop photos.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Ghostly Beads

This seems to be the weekend when halloweeny things start turning up in the stores so I thought it would be a good time to search out some cool beads to go along with that theme.

Wait till you see these!! They are all cool! Some are sweet and others are a tiny bit scary! There are a number of links below that I thought you might like.

I have to admit that I'm still hooked on my 4G android phone and have been spending way too much time each weekend playing with new apps. Well, let me just tell you about the one that has had me intrigued all day today!

Here is called "Ghost Radar" and, you guessed it, the app tracks changes in electromagnetic fields, vibrations and sounds then analyzes them to detect quantum fluctuations...Huh?


All I really know is that it is a very entertaining and even enlightening app. Well worth the 99cents for the version with extra features. :)

So, whether you are REALLY into halloween or the casual trick-or-treat giver-outer, there's always room for halloweeny jewelry!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Featured Designer: Lori & A Cup of Bead Soup

Life is great, I learn SO MANY new things every single day and today is no different!

In the beading world, the most important thing I learned today is that our friend Lori Anderson of the Pretty Things blog is a serious multi-tasker!

She not only manages the "Bead Soup Blog Party" challenge, she also runs a monthly "Cup of bead Soup" program. For the "Cup of Bead Soup" she partners with bead designers who send her beads and she spends all month creating with and blogging about them!!

How cool! Make sure you take a peek at all the fabulous beads she has received AND the awesome jewelry pieces she has created with them. What a fun partnership! The beads shown here are from this month's lampwork artist of Lutka & Co.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Intricate Focal in Plastic

Weekends = Ahhh! While I enjoy having lots of things to do and plan, I also enjoy hanging around with no place to go and no schedule to follow!

Since this is a 3 day weekend, I'm saving our featured designer for Saturday. I was also anxious to share this cool plastic bead tonight!

How cool is this? As I work my way through the 50 gram bag of plastic beads from Big Lots, I'm pretty amazed at how intricate they are! This one is fairly large so it would be a great focal bead, but it would also be fun to make a jingly plastic charm bracelet with all of these.

This could even be nice along with some gold beads on gold bead wire with crimps in between. Endless possibilities!

I hope you all have a fun and crafty weekend! If you find any great plastic bead mixes, please share! :)

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Power of Beads

I wish you guys were all here in my living room with me right now so we could have a session of "ooh-ing" and "ahh-ing" over these miscellaneous plastic beads that I mentioned in yesterday's post!

Seriously! This random bead was just hanging out in a 50 gram package of beads from Big Lots that cost $2.

It's the brightness of this bead that sold me on the package. It's so cool. It would make a great focal bead in either a choker or a bracelet.

I'm thinking the hole in this bead is large enough you could even incorporate this as the focal bead in a hemp cord piece. That makes me happy just thinking about it.

Maybe we should steal the cheese slogan and change it to..."Ahhh, the power of beads"!!

Just looking at them and playing with them can adjust your happiness meter. That's cool!