3/28/2018

THE EASTER BUNNY LIVES!

Oh, the colors of Easter and spring... pastels all around.  Such yummy eye candy delights.  I really enjoy making seasonal pieces - I get into the mood of the colors, the weather, the fun and thus motivation of it.  Sometimes I'm truly amazed at what I did a year ago, or a few years ago, as I'm constantly evolving -- changing my methods, my likes, and my abilities.  This wonderful bunny pendant is from Ashley at Summer Wind Art and it's so perfect for my Easter necklace this year!  He's been safely held captive in one of my "stash" drawers.  It was past time for him to emerge.  :)  I added some copper wire wrapping and some dangles in czech glass (flower cap) and swarovski crystals.  Perfect!  Then for the necklace I strung green square czech glass and square puff blue angelite (I believe... although the strand wasn't marked, so that's my guess!) with some czech rondelles and size 8 sb in-between.  





And now for some Easter ear candy...Nothing too hard or serious, just lots of fun and bright color.  And what's Easter without bunnies and carrots dangling from your ears?  










BALLOONS AND OTHER PURDIES!

The Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic, and this darlin' friend of mine who kept encouraging me to start attending that celebration with our grandson, is the inspiration behind this wonderful creation.  Aimee has always loved the balloons, and she finally got me hooked.  So, a few years ago when I saw that Bo Hulley was making these incredible balloon pendants, I immediately knew I had to have one.  Bo is not making beads now, so this balloon took on a very "secure" life thereafter - mostly staying securely in my bead room :) Ha!    It has also taken me a few years to "feel the creativity" of properly accentuating the pendant with beads that make it stand out.  A light bulb went off while watching a Heather Powers Bead Table Wednesday video on how to make this wire component.  I really love the hammering of metal and the process of creating your own form.  No one makes one the same way, so "original" still applies to the finished product.  Happy Birthday Aimee!!!  I hope you enjoy it and feel the balloons soaring above every time you wear it.  

The earrings are the modified St. Petersburg stitch, and I originally posted a Halloween set on October 24.  I love that the earrings are light on the ear lobe and also the way they drape so nicely.  






3/15/2018

MOTIVATING EARRING DESIGNS

A wonderful advantage to beading and creating jewelry --  of all shapes, sizes, colors, and methods -- is that I get to be my own guinea pig and wear and appreciate my own "blood, sweat and tears."  :)  These earring designs are fab - the first a combination pattern from several seen on Pinterest, but w/my own adjustments and unique color combination (of course)!  I don't usually use silver or stainless, because I just prefer the warmth of copper or bronze, so this was a very fun change and they came together beautifully -- and they're quite large -- which makes them perfect for long hair.  

And so the stitching continues... including wonderful time with my beading friends who help keep me motivated, and who freely share their ideas, designs and colors with me.  We are all so different, yet we share a mutual love for this creativity thing... it is a P R I C E L E S S bond and always wonderful, healing time.  



And, the lovelies below, from a Fusion Beads Inspiration Project.  I purchased some of the materials for these, but slightly varied the bicones, and added a fire polish instead of another component at the bottom.  It was a bit more challenging than I thought it was going to be.  And, inserting the stones after wire wrapping the frames almost didn't happen.  Bit of frustration for me trying to get the stones to stay in so I could bend the four little prongs in.  Oh my, but so well worth every moment.  The colors are absolutely scrumptious on these - they SCREAM SPRING as you can see when the sunlight hits.  



The pic below shows my wire wrapped earring wires a little better.  Love incorporating beads to my wires.  It brings everything together for a coordinated design.



3/02/2018

BRICK STITCH ON WOOD!

I found these wonderfully designed wood rounds somewhere... can't even remember where, but I was trying to come up with a new idea for earrings, and these popped out at me from my rather large stash oh beads and stuff!  I wondered what I could do to jazz them up a bit, and brick stitch came to mind.   These are not for the faint of heart as they are a statement in size alone, but so light you don't even know you are wearing them.  I knew someone special who could carry these off... and by golly, she sure does!  

The first pic is a bit dark, but it highlights how the blue/green transparent 8.0 seed beads at the top pop in the light.  I also added some Vintaj paint to a few of the spokes for additional interest and to draw your eye to the wonderful design.  Love how these turned out!




2/28/2018

STITCHIN' EARRINGS!

It's a great time of year (especially since we seem to be experiencing more wintery weather now than we have all season!!) for bead stitching, which translates to fun/colorful earrings and dangles.  Peyote and brick stitch are a nice change of pace, and so versatile - large, small or somewhere inbetween, with just about any design.  Add some fringe to finish the project off, and oh my my... Well, give these a look see and let me know what you think.  A variety of color and size, and all very light on the lobes.

The next two earring designs are my own -- but there are so many variations out there on many different sites or in magazines, the ideas are only as narrow as your own imagination.  I'm especially proud of the first pair - the turquoise and copper.  I started stitching and came up with the design as I went, so it's a JDreams original!  The fringe really makes the design.  The purple color combination is hard to miss, a bit less dramatic design and smaller size, but still gives an incredible pop of bright.







A side by side shot to provide sizing perspective.


 And, below, I thought this view from the end of the fringe was a cool shot!  The turquoise earrings have Super Unos at end of fringe, and the purple earrings have small drops.  I love the change in look by altering one thing (or a few!).




Next, earrings using instruction and design from Jill Wiseman called Russian Leaf.  I struggled with this design at first - it called for 6 lb fireline, but the earrings would not hold any shape - very flimsy - so I ended up cutting up the first earring and redoing it using 10 lb fireline, which was much better and held the dome shape.   

I make all my own earring wires, mostly using copper wire.  Copper is my metal of choice.  And, the wires below are fun with a bead wrapped on top for a bit of extra, and to coordinate with the 6 mm fp in the earring design.




And, last, but certainly not least, this beautiful design from Robin Smith and Linda's Crafty Inspirations blog.  I didn't even notice there was a heart in the original design, but I added a few seed beads here and there to shore up the tension and there it was... one of my most favorite things - hearts!  These are so dang fun.  I added the raku looking rounds with the 4mm marbled fire polish and I think they truly make the combination stand out.





2/16/2018

Creation Post Valentine's Day!

I meant to post my latest Heart creation on Valentine's Day, but time would not allow, so here it is a few days late.  Better late than never... My friend Judy get's full credit for the idea.  She had made herself a lone heart necklace, so I copied her idea, made it bigger and lopsided, and changed directions four times.  She also had the best idea to peyote stitch a link for the necklace, so I did the same, using several colors to tie it all in.  I have to say that CRAW stitch is so much fun to twist and turn... and then to embellish, which helps stiffen up the shape.  And to think I was afraid of this stitch just a month ago.  Time and practice heals all fear!!  I added a gorgeous red sari ribbon for just the perfect softness and finish -- love me some ribbon!  Thanks Judy for sharing your awesome idea. 




And to finish it off, some darlin heart earrings I made a year ago.  These go perfectly with this necklace.  I used 16 gauge patinaed copper wire to form the heart shape, and then brick stitched around the heart.  


2/05/2018

CRAW STITCH MASTERED!

I have struggled with the CRAW stitch, but "by George, I think I may have got it" - FINALLY!  It clicked while making these gorgeous earrings, from a  Jacqui Higgins pattern, which was featured on the cover of the February 2018 issue of Bead & Button magazine.  My first pair was stitched pretty darn tight for the first round of CRAW (it's true, I am a tight beader... imagine!) and fitting the beads in on each subsequent pass became a challenge.  So, note to self, this is one pattern to lighten up a tad.  I did feel a good challenge calling me onward, as I knew I could do better with my tension, so I tried again using a multi colored 11.0.  This second pair below was stitched looser, and the subsequent rounds of beads fit together better.  Yeah!  I also didn't have the spiky buttons called for in the first pair so I substituted small drops.  In the second pair I had ordered and received the spiky buttons (Fusion Beads).  They do give a different, more elegant look at the top.  Also, the pear bead choice makes or breaks the overall look.  A very fun pattern indeed.  I love both my color choices for these beauties.  Whadyathink? :)  






1/30/2018

RAKU WINGED HEART.

More raku!  I love it -- and what's better for Valentine's than a big heart with so many beautiful colors pouring outward from the center.  The colors of the glaze truly do change with the light.  You'll see that in the pics below.  Unfortunately, this is the last of my Dragonfly purchased rakus... boo hoo.  It's also part 2 of my last post - more wire wrapping to embellish, encompass and compliment a flat back medallion with no holes.  I added a necklace of wonderfully dyed siri ribbon from LaShell (Etsy shop) in two coordinating colors and tied it to a clasp on the end.  Very easy and soft to wear.




This next pic highlights the change to more copper/orange tones, with the purple and blue at the top.  Ooh la la...