Thursday, May 31, 2012

2012 Destash Challenge Update

Tomorrow I’ll be heading into the sixth month of this year’s beading challenge, which seems like a great time to take stock and get a look at what’s ahead. So far things have gone more than smoothly - I’ve been able to make use of some very random, often irksome beads, and turn them into very satisfying designs. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep this trend going, even though I’ve sort of been saving the worst for last.

There are still lots of ‘good’ things left in my destash tray, but a lot of pieces are still there because I’m just afraid to use them. Some are wacky and weird, and others have simply dropped off of my radar because they don’t fit my current style. The real challenge will be to use these beads in a way that’s still me. Let’s take a look at what I’m up against!

The Focals

We’ve already seen a few of these pieces during the challenge, and I’ve used them successfully, which makes them even more tricky from here on in. I’m waiting for yet another bolt of inspiration to strike, so that I don’t have to repeat an old design. On the other hand, if it isn’t broke…

Destash Challenge Focal Beads

Here we have one heart-shaped nut bead, two rivolis, two of four glass rings, a lampwork spacer, a ceramic round, one of two crystal rondelles, and a Swarovski crystal button. I’ve actually had that thing for years, but I keep forgetting that it’s there, so I’ve never even used it for a color palette, let alone a design. I also have three of the painted shell flower charms, which will probably be the greatest triumph of all if I manage to use them successfully - they’re hideous in a cute kind of way.

The Accents

These beads are actually giving me the most trouble, even though there are plenty of them, so design options are wide open. Pictured above are my two intact strands of crystal pinch bicones, and ironically, it’s the large quantity of them that has me stumped.

Destash Challenge Accent Beads

I also have some top-drilled hot pink shell coins, dusty blue shell coins, a few furnace glass tubes, Czech glass leaves, gunmetal E beads, some Czech clam shells, a sprinkling of turquoise blue pinch bicones, and just a few Czech glass nuggets with a swirly blue and red finish. Not pictured is my huge collection of wood macrame beads, but I'm actually looking forward to using those!

The Seed Beads

Finally, I have a terrifying amount of random and assorted seed beads, custom mixes, and other tiny things. Although the purpose of this challenge is to use up all of these leftover and forgotten beads, I can’t say for sure if all of them will be used by me. Some of them have just exhausted their inspiration in my studio, and I may have to find them new homes before the year ends.

Destash Challenge Seed Beads

This is just a little sampling of the small beads and mixes I have to work with. I combined the last of my beach sand mixture with what was left of my 1.5mm cubes, and mixed together a bunch of random hex cut and triangle seed beads. There’s a small amount of striped Czech seed beads that I collected from a store-bought mixture, and just a few Swarovski crystal bicones in shocking orange hyacinth. I’m also thinking of throwing in all of my 4mm cube beads, which haven’t seen the light in a long time. In front we have the leftover beads from my tribal fringe necklace, to which I added the last few 6/o and 4/o beads from other projects.

After all of the challenge pieces I’ve completed so far, I thought I was on a roll. Looking at all of these beads laid out, I realize I’ve still got a long way to go. Luckily, I still have half a year to get beading! I’m thinking it’s almost time for a bead-collector necklace.

Have you made any destash projects so far? How did they turn out?

Copyright 2012 Inspirational Beading
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  1. I have a suggestion for your pinch beads. (I have an irrational love for pinch beads! They always seem too pricey for what you get but I can't always resist.) Anyway I was planning to use some in a triangle weave, to make a "rick rack" type of bracelet. I'm not sure you would like that style but if you're really wanting to use things up... maybe that will spark an idea for you. I hate to think of those pretties going to waste.

  2. I've been toying with the idea of using the pinch beads with triangle weave or chevron chain. They would look so great with a nice openwork stitch. I just can't decide! I think I like them better as accents, but they do look go when used in a tight grouping.


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