Category Archives: Beads

Bead Soup 2014 is Served!

My partner, Barb Solem, sent me some great soup to work with. Very industrial chic in nature. I pondered and tried a few ideas before arriving at this result:

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I took her amazing metal heart focal and added it to some very heavy gun metal link chain and then added her steel gray wired hook and loop clasp to that. Part one finished. To that I added a chunky, heavy strand that included the soft gray rondelles, the dark gray lava like rounds, interspersing the sparkly spacers…all sent by Barb. I included a strand of BIG Fools Gold nuggets that I got in Tucson years ago and never knew what I’d do with them. Voila! Industrial Chic is complete.

Here’s a few more shots, including matching earrings that used the “spring” connectors that Barb sent.

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Close up of the focal.

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And the clasp.DSC02934 And some matching earrings.DSC02936

 

Be sure to check out what Barb did with the soup I sent to her. You can find her here.

And then check out Lori Anderson’s blog page for the scoop on this year’s Bead Soup Blog Party and a list of other participants!


7th Bead Soup Blog Party Reveal is Here!

It’s finally here! Seems like the time flew by but I managed to get both my creation and my post done while it was still daylight! Here’s a refresher of what my partner, Mallory Hoffman, sent me:

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I thought her Bacon and Egg beads were so cute that I kept the theme going. I used mixed metals: brass wire, copper and brass jump rings, brass chain and lots of dangles. I’ve been making Cork Pendant necklaces for a few months and kept looking for a cork that had a chicken or something “fowl” on it. I ended up finding this one from Rex Goliath Pinot Noir that says “Free Range” on it… a stretch perhaps, but it works for me. BS1 Here’s the close-up shot of my pendant with Mallory’s focals, a cute, tiny crocheted chicken, and various other brass and copper dangles and baubles. I made some of Mallory’s other glass beads into “egg” dangles, too. BS2 Here’s the full shot showing the silk ribbon for the necklace hanging off the toggle that Mallory sent me. I like using toggles this way in front and it makes the pendant detachable, too.

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I hope you’ll check out Mallory’s blog, “For the Love of Beads,” to see what she made with the beads I sent her. And then settle in to check out a couple hundred other participants! You can find the links here at Lori Anderson’s blog. And there will be two more BSBP reveals coming in the next few weeks!

PS. The cute crocheted chicken is by Cori Ruszkowski…check out her work here.


Bead Soup Blog Party Reveal! (almost)

Welcome to 2013….I’ll update where the heck I’ve been in another post, but for now I could have sworn I posted about my Bead Soup Blog Party partner Mallory Hoffman before this. Mea culpa, Mallory!

Mallory is a wonderful online friend and glass bead maker who I’ve known for several years. She was a tremendous help in my booth at Bead & Button last year…my first chance to meet her in person.

This is what Mallory sent me: The greatest Bacon and Egg focal beads along with a silver toggle and various other colored glass accent beads.

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Here’s a sneak peek at what I  came up with! What do you think? 🙂

 

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Check back tomorrow to see the real reveal!


Reveal Time: Mismatched Earring Swap

I met Diana Ptaszynski (Suburban Girl Studio) online and then at BeadFest in Philadelphia this summer. She’s fun, talented, creative, fun, crazy, but did I mention she’s a lot of fun? She hosted a mismatched earring swap among a couple dozen other creative souls and I thought I’d play, too.

The premise was to create a pair of unmatched earrings, that coordinated, but weren’t your typical matching set. Easy, right? Not so much…Fun challenge though and I hope to do it again both in my own designs and it another challenge.

I was paired with Kari Asbury of Hippie Chick Design and she sent me some great earrings! Colorful and textural, and mismatched! You can see what I sent Kari at her blog, but here’s a photo of the earrings I received.

The hoop-style earrings are wrapped with FiberWire from Nellie Thomas of SpinCulture and YarnSweetYarn and carried in Karen Totten’s Etsy store. the cool green and teal coordinates great with these delicate ceramic beads from Nan Emmett of Spirited Earth in a soft purple and deep blue. The colors pick up the tones in the fibers so nicely! The “mismatch” comes with the colors and I love how they coordinate. I’ll be wearing these a lot! Copper wire and chain ties the free-spirited look together.

Thanks, Kari! And thanks, Diana, for letting me play along!

Now take a stroll through the other participants blogs and see what kind of creativity everyone came up with:


In the Pink…

Remember in the last post I mentioned special interest groups and what a large part they play in an online world these days? Well, today’s post is about another one of those groups and the person behind it. A group of us have been planning this “blog-out” for months, and who knew a group of chatty women could keep a secret when they are in and out of pages and groups and walls with the special person, day in and day out!

“In the Pink…” is a reference to one of my favorite people in this world: Lori Anderson of Lori Anderson Designs and the dynamo behind the Bead Soup Blog Party™ (and the soon-to-be-released book based on that HUGE online blog party.) Lori added pink streaks to her hair as a nod to her creative side and it suits her to a “T”. Check the bottom of the page for a photo of my homage to her fabulous pink hair!


This photo was taken in June at Bead & Button…Lori’s hair is longer now, and the pink is such a whimsical touch. I smile whenever I see it!

Let me back up….I have “known” Lori for years–online. I can’t even tell you when we “met”, but we’ve emailed and chatted online for years about making jewelry, books, our kids, and the ups and downs in our lives at different times. We had never actually laid eyes on each other til June in Milwaukee. I knew Lori was going to stop by my booth and yet when she did, it was still such a shock! We both squealed like 10-year-old girls who had stumbled on Justin Bieber concert tickets! I know we hugged and we might have done the jumping up and down thing, too. And then we crossed paths again in Philadelphia at BeadFest and I got to meet Zach, her son. I am as in awe of Lori, the mother, as I am of Lori, the writer and entrepreneur. Though our “real life” time adds up to a few hours, our time as friends adds up to so much more. I consider Lori one of my dearest friends.

A little about Lori

She gets more done than any 3 people I know! Lori is a talented jewelry designer whose work has been published in many magazines over the years. That’s an area that she encouraged me to pursue, as well, and I’m grateful for the nudge.

While I am always making deals with myself to blog more often, Lori is a wizard at it! She is generous with her ideas and suggestions. She coaches people and has written an ebook with blogging prompts to help those of us who struggle with that, and she practices what she preaches: blogging daily and more. Always looking for ways to encourage others to their own success.

That’s the premise behind this big blog party around “bead soup”, started by Lori  a few years ago. We just finished the 6th version of it with 400 participants over 3 different weekends. And because all of those participants (and more) from previous blog hops wanted ongoing connections after the  hop ended, Lori started a Facebook group called Bead Soup Cafe. There are now over 1100 of us (growing each day) who stop in (on Facebook) to hang out, share tips, promote our wares, exchange chitchat, ask questions, find great deals, and bridge the fact that most of us are miles and miles and even oceans away from each other. It’s the online equivalent of the kaffeklatch that my mother and her friends had…groups of friends getting together to share their days. It’s a far larger undertaking than I can imagine, and that’s where this blog hop to Lori comes in….a chance to thank her for all she does and for the great place she’s put together.

Thank you, Lori, for pinking up my life!

For more information on the Bead Soup Blog Party book and it’s concept, check out this link where you’ll meet Lori, too! (Check out the hair!)

And here’s my take on pink hair:

 

To read other stories from others participating in this hop, take a look at these blogs:

Gail Vanderster-Zwang http://angelmoose.blogspot.com

Lea Avroch http://lajewelrydesign.blogspot.com

Leslie Wayment  http://www.aabeadsonline.com/blog

Kelley Katherine Hagerty-Fogle  http://www.mylifeonebeadatatime.blogspot.com

Sheila Davis http://www.stonedesignsbysheila.blogspot.com

Amanda Effron http://craft-o-licious.blogspot.com

‎Solange Collin  http://www.blog.ahowinjewelry.com

Jennifer Chasalow VanBenschoten   http://www.vanbeads.blogspot.com

Isolina Perez  http://IsolinaPerez.blogspot.com

Toltec Jewels www.JewelSchoolFriends.com

Sherri Stokey  http://www.knotjustmacrame.com

Mary Howell Govaars  http://mlhjewelrydesigns.com

Bee Kuhlman http://mixedmayhemstudios.blogspot.com

Lynnea Perry Bennett   http://designsbylynnea.blogspot.com

Alicia Marinache  http://www.allprettythings.ca

Heather Otto http://www.thecrafthopper.com

Kimberly Flood  http://www.goddessesandbeads.blogspot.com

Courtney White Breul http://beadsbybreul.blogspot.com

Marlene Cupo http://amazingdesigns-marlene.blogspot.com

Marianne Baxter  http://www.simplyseablimejewelry.blogspot.com

Mária Horváth   http://horimarikabeads.blogspot.hu

Andrea Beth Trank www.heavenlanecreations.com

Heidi Mansfield Kingman  http://mybeadtherapy.blogspot.com

Emoke Schmidt  http://emoke1.blogspot.com

Sandra MrtzDiaz www.petaloazuljewelry.blogspot.com

Lupe Meter  http://gesmpccorner.blogspot.com

Tanya Boden http://fusionmusebangkok.blogspot.com

Ambra Chicandfrog http://chicandfrog.wordpress.com

Kumi Fisher http://maliekaidesigns.blogspot.com

Sandra Young  http://blog.gypsyroadbeads.ca

Sandi Marinaro Volpe  http://www.sandivolpe.com

Gretchen Nation  http://www.artfoodlodging.blogspot.com

Mimi Gardner  http://www.othercuriosities.blogspot.com

Marian Hertzog http://mhertzog-msplace.blogspot.com

Sonya Ingersoll-Stille http://dreaminofbeads.blogspot.com

Terry Matuszyk   http://pinkchapeau.wordpress.com

Audrey Belangér  http://esperianterra.blogspot.com

Sandra McGriff http://skyescreativechaos.blogspot.com

Shelley Graham Turner http://www.shelleygrahamturner.blogspot.com

Mowse Doyle http://mowsemadethis.blogspot.com

 


Belonging is Good…

It’s a big Internet out there!

Lots to see and find and sometimes you get lost in it! Getting around these days for me means finding like-minded people, as well as those who challenge your creativity, and encourage your dreams.

I belong to several special interest groups on Facebook  and a couple of bead/jewelry forums and they each provide value, friendship and camaraderie, and links to some really good stuff!

One of them is Creative Bead Chat which has over 1000 members; all either jewelry designers, bead makers, component creators or just lovers of pretty accessories. All skill levels and experience make up the group and it’s a good way to learn about techniques, styles, colors, and new products. One of the fun things for me is when I can meet some of the members of my online groups in real life. That happened at Bead & Button in June and again at BeadFest in August.

Groups like CBC have people managing things behind the scenes and out front. Keeping the chaos in check, so to speak. At CBC that group includes these ladies. I met Marla James of Marla’s Mud and Melinda Orr (founder of CBC) of Melinda Orr Designs at bead shows. Karen Totten of Starry Road Studio and I sat at the same dinner one night and completely missed meeting each other…a fact we laughed about after the fact. Rounding out the admins are Keirsten Giles of Lune Designs and Marla Gibson of Spice Box Designs.

Keep up the good work, ladies! I’m off to ship some orders!


Color Me This on it’s Way!

Wow…it’s been a wild couple of weeks…

First things, first. The winner of the free Color Me This sample pack is Melissa Mesara of One-Eared Pig. Congratulations!

I’m headed to Philadelphia tomorrow for BeadFest where I’ll be demonstrating and selling Color Me This Sample Packs and also plain etched sheets (so you can color your own!), plus my new embellished cuffs and some other etched, colorized components. Join me at Booth 555 if you are at the show and say “Hi!”

Color Me This Sample Pack

I’ve got a batch of them listed on Etsy in case you can’t make it to Philly this time. They will ship next week Tuesday or Wednesday when I return home. And later this month I’ll be adding larger sizes of the sample colors that can be purchased singly, as well as some 3-packs. Plus new colors on the way too.

There’s a photo album on my Facebook page where samples of your work will reside. Just post a photo on my wall and I’ll move it to the photo album. I’m excited to see what creative uses you find for the colors. And I’m already getting great feedback about the ease-of-use and results from the initial buyers. Plus, I’ll have feedback about additional sealers that are working for people. That gives some alternatives to my recommendations…people aren’t always able to find PermaLac locally or out of the country.

I mentioned “embellished cuffs” and I’ve been having a blast with them…here’s a couple that I’ve shown on Facebook. They are headed to BeadFest, too. I love the direction they are taking me and can’t wait to continue with them.

Embellished Cuff with Color Me This Turquoise Patina

And here’s another one in more of a steampunk, industrial look:

Embellished Cuff with Color Me This Spruce Green Patina (not released yet)