Sunday, May 22, 2016

Book Spotlight: Convertible Crystal Jewelry

One of the best things about making your own jewelry is the ability to make it versatile and even interactive. It can be as simple as designing three necklaces to be layered together, or making a variety of focals to pair with a favorite rope stitch. Once you’ve finished making a piece, the real adventure is in how much fun you can have wearing it. In Convertible Crystal Jewelry,author and Swarovski Elements Ambassador Diane Whiting offers a beautiful selection of adjustable, mix-and-matchable projects for beaders of every skill level. Each one features gorgeous crystals and new ideas on how to make the most out of your beads.

There are 25 projects in all, each one using a mix of components and techniques to help you build and test your skills. There are designs for stringing, knotting, wirework, ladder stitch, peyote stitch, and so much more – each one more inspiring than the last. Diane’s projects make great use of the crystals and other components to create beautiful, versatile jewelry. There are beaded focals to wear with your favorite necklace base, necklaces that can become bracelets, tassels that can go anywhere, and two-tone bracelets that you can flip to match your mood. Many of the projects are created with ingenious techniques that spark so much inspiration, such as layering pairs of crystal flatbacks to make two-tone rivolis!

After a quick overview of materials, the projects begin, starting with a super easy lark’s head necklace for showcasing your favorite big-hole beads and Swarovski Elements fancy stone pendants. The difficultly increases as you go - the final projects feature more advanced techniques like beaded bezels and tubular right angle weave. Each project includes a materials list and step-by-step instructions with clear photographs to guide you through the design. There are also tips for adding even more variation to your finished piece, including ways to mix and match components from other projects to create something totally new. My favorite design is the Tila for Two x Two reversible cuff that looks gorgeously slinky and fun to weave.

If you’re looking for ways to revitalize your jewelry stash, Convertible Crystal Jewelryis sure to provide lots of inspirations. Many of the projects can even be converted to dress up your existing pieces and make them new again.

Happy beading!


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Copyright 2016 Inspirational Beading, Kalmbach Books and Diane Whiting

Inspirational Beading has not received compensation for reviewing this title, however, actions you take from this post can result in a commission for Inspirational Beading.

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