Monday, February 1, 2010

Book Spotlight: A Bead in Time

A Bead in Time - Lisa Crone

Beader’s block is a predicament that can effect all beaders at one time or another. One day, you’re breezing through projects, and the next you’re completely stumped for inspiration. Sometimes this occurs when we’re not sure what colors to use, or because we’re tired of using the same old techniques. Many beaders flip through back issues of magazines, searching for that creative spark. In her book, A Bead in Time, Lisa Crone reminds us that inspiration can be hidden in the things that we see every day.

In her warm and friendly written voice, Lisa guides designers through a creative journey from photographs, to the daily commute, and on through the unexplored aisles of the craft store. Each chapter begins with an overview of combining inspiration themes with techniques and materials. The 35 fun projects are divided into four categories: Metro Mixes, inspired by architecture and interior design; Outdoor Ideas, inspired by nature and all it’s beauty; Life’s Pleasures, with pieces that resemble comfortable locales and delicious treats; and Funky Finds, a look at how unique objects and materials can make for stunning jewelry designs.

A Bead in Time is a must read for anyone who enjoys designing jewelry. In addition to a wealth of advice and tips for designing memorable pieces, each project encourages creativity and experimentation. Even expert beaders will be delighted by the jewelry projects, which include stringing and wirework techniques, with a bit of light bead weaving as well. It’s a great introduction for beginners, as well as a valuable resource for intermediate beaders.

Each of the 35 tutorials includes step-by-step color photographs, and a tip for finding your own inspiration within the same theme. These tidbits are also great reminders of the beauty that is all around us, from our favorite foods to familiar neighborhood settings. With Lisa’s encouragements, readers will discover a new wealth of motivation for creating.

A Bead in Time - Lisa Crone

My favorite project from A Bead in Time is “Summer Salad”, which incorporates a thrift store find into a delightful bangle. This design proves that with the thousands of bead styles available, it is possible to recreate almost any object in the universe and make it wearable.

I was also tickled by “Ribbon and Chain” which inspired me to keep an eye out for interesting jewelry materials. The very next time an object strikes me as beautiful, I will really examine it’s potential as a beading component.

“Box of Chocolates” is also an eye-popping design. Imagine using bicone crystals to recreate the familiar crinkled paper in a tray of bon-bons! The result is an instantly recognizable bracelet that is fun and wearable.

If you find yourself bumping into beader’s block, A Bead in Time is an essential resource. It’s not just a collection of projects and techniques, but a guide to creative design that will help you to keep your creative to-do list full. For daily inspiration, stop by Lisa Crone’s blog, A Bead a Day, with new projects, beading ideas, and fabulous materials to spark your imagination.

I would like to thank North Light Books and Lisa Crone for allowing me to preview A Bead in Time. Inspirational Beading has not received paid compensation for featuring products in this blog. I have shared my honest opinions and enthusiasm about this book.

Copyright 2010 Inspirational Beading


  1. I am anxious to get a copy of this book. Well written and thoughtful review! I am suffering a bit from Beader's Block right now. But it is mainly since I moved to a new house, new studio and everything is in such disarray and temporary. I don't know where anything is!

    My guess for the monthly theme is FAIRY LOVE.

    Thanks for sharing your inspiration! Enjoy the day!

  2. Thanks for that review Mortira, it's always encouraging when a respected member of the beading community endorses a publication.

    Lisa's book was only released here in the UK a few days ago so I'm hoping it's here in the morning!

  3. Hi there, thank you so much! My eyes are tearing up right now, I am just sincerely so happy that the intent of the book came through. When you work on something in bits and pieces for so long, you begin to wonder if it will make sense to other people! You and your beautifully written post have just made my week!THANK YOU!

  4. Wonderful review...I just received my copy in the mail yesterday and because of previous commitments was only able to quickly flip through it...I had to take the time to at least do that!!!

    I will delve into it today!!!


  5. Great review! I just loved Lisa's book too. You are so right about the way this book shows you how to find your own jewelry inspiration from drawing on your surroundings. That is what I felt was the most valuable thing about the book when I reviewed it. Lisa makes you look at your world in a whole new way!


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