Friday, April 17, 2015

Summer Bead Inspirations

This month’s bead giveaway has been drawn. Congratulations to our winner, and thank you so much for to everyone who entered! This month I asked about your favorite summer inspirations. Lauren had the winning comment, and she lists sunshine in the trees as the ultimate idea starter for summer designs.

There is definitely something uplifting about viewing lush branches on a bright backdrop of blue sky, with plenty of light shining through. These bead picks capture the essence of those carefree summer moments.

Summer Sun Bead Palette

1. Transparent Yellow Miyuki Fringe Drops from

2. Apple Green Two-Hole Piggy Beads from Lima Beads

3. Sapphire AB Tri-beads from Fusion Beads

4. Chartreuse Graduated Glass Heishi from Happy Mango Beads

How do you like to capture the feeling of sunshine in your designs?

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Thursday, April 16, 2015

Work in Progress: Tagua and RAW

There are some pretty exciting colors on my bead tray right now, as I finish up the first of my planned projects for using up some of my tagua slices. I had picked up a few shell charms to go with them last year, and now I’m very glad for the extra inspiration.

The charm I chose for this necklace has a floral design, so I paired the purple up with creamsicle orange and turquoise for a bright spring look. I had planned to use cobalt blue for the third right angle weave chain, but discovered that I had plenty of cobalt iris, which almost perfectly matches that tagua and has a lustered finish that goes with the other seed beads.

Spring Tagua Pendant in Progress

I’m also determined to finish up the emerald medallion with Toho triangles that my helper and I started months ago. Once that’s complete, my bead tray will be nice and tidy for more new projects. While counting all of my seed beads for inventory, I put aside all single packets of leftover Japanese rounds that I’m not likely to purchase again, and sorted them into palettes for color block cuffs. Can’t wait to get started!

What are you making right now?

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

April Bead Stash Favorites

I haven’t been getting quite as much beading time in as I would like over the past few weeks, so I’ve spent some of my days off avoiding more tedious tasks and just stealing a little time with my beads. Rather than finishing up my inventory counts, I’ve finished and started two projects, and I’ve planned out a few more. Since I’ve just finished combing through most of my stash, I’ve got a lot of inspiration to work with this month.

Transparent Ruby Bugles

I’m most eager to work with these amazing transparent ruby bugles. The color is so delicious, like raspberry juice, and I think it will look fantastic with some cobalt blue in a new cuff. I was so pleased with the way the blue satin one turned out, I’ve been excited to make another, and this color is too good to pass up again. The only thing I have to decide is which color of Fireline will look best with the color and stitch.

Czech Glass Face Coins

I’ve been amassing a small collection of coin beads over the last year or so, and I just had to move them to their own spot in my stash to accommodate the different styles and colors. I think the latest addition is these two-tone face beads, though they’ve been around so long I can’t remember. I did start a medallion with one, but it kept getting pushed to the back burner for other things. I’m looking forward to seeing what else they can do.

Blue and Purple Tagua Slice Pendants

Finally, I re-discovered quite a few slices of tagua in my natural beads compartment and had to wonder why I’ve let them go unused for so long. I’ve got a long list of new pendant ideas to help cut them down a bit, although it might be tricky finding ways to use all of the purples. It's not a color I work with often, but the choices were limited when I bought these, and I was pretty obsessed with the style at the time. Hopefully some color inspirations will appear soon!

What kinds of beads are inspiring you right now?

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Saturday, April 11, 2015

Bead Giveaway: Summer Pearls

Summer is just around the corner, bringing with it some of nature’s most fabulous inspirations, like butterflies and trips to the beach. To celebrate, this month’s bead giveaway features two sets of vintage acrylic beads that are perfect for summer designs.

Summer Pearls Bead Giveaway

The first batch includes an assortment of faux pearls and mother of pearl discs in shades of lustrous white and creamy pale orange. There are also a handful of Lucite pieces in creams and grays. This mix would be fabulous for mermaid inspired pieces!

Summer Button Drops Bead Giveaway

To complement the pretty pearls I’ve put together a collection of faceted button drops in aquamarine and pale aqua. The curvy shapes and transparent sparkle of these beads is so pretty – like tropical waters.

How to Enter:

For a chance to win all of the beads shown, leave a comment on this post letting us know what your favorite summer inspirations are for jewelry design. One lucky winner will be drawn on Friday, April 17th.

No log-in is required to enter, but all comments must be made directly on to qualify. Please be sure to leave a contact method in your comment if you do not have a profile with email contact enabled. Incomplete or duplicate entries will not be entered into the draw.

Good luck and happy beading!

Update: This draw has closed.

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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Work in Progress: Tubular RAW

I’ve been away from my workspace quite a bit more than usual this week, with a new work schedule keeping me busy, but the new fringe necklace is coming along nicely. This is how my workspace looked yesterday, and since then I’ve added a button and finished off all the threads on the Montana blue right angle weave rope. Tonight, I’ll be adding the fringe, and I’m really looking forward to trying out the new style that I have in mind.

Tubular RAW Necklace in Progress

I uncovered some new but forgotten shell charms in my stash while taking inventory, so I’m hoping to get at least one new tagua pendant on the go this weekend, if all goes well. Then I might follow a craving for some more bugles.

What are you making right now?

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