Spring Bead Challenge Reveal


OK, now I can show you my entries to Crystal’s Bead Challenge. No more sneak peeks. I entered two designs. A copper butterfly necklace set and a blue beaded necklace.

Crystal posted the results today on her blog, Beadhappilyeverafter. There’s some real talent out there. Such pretty jewelry!!

My inspiration came from beads and bead caps I found at Crystal’s Etsy Shop. (You can see what inspired each entrant here in this photo I borrowed from her blog. :D )

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First, let me tell you about my butterfly set.

I gathered what I thought I would use to create my necklace. A bit of this and a bit of that. After experimenting for a couple of hours, trying different colors of beads, I ended up not using all that you see here in the photo.

From this.

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To this.

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Supplies used in addition to Crystal’s bead caps:

  • antique copper butterflies
  • banded agate round beads
  • antique copper star spacers
  • antique copper curved tubes
  • antique copper hammered clasps
  • copper ribbed rondelles (for bracelet)
  • seed beads, size 6/0 (for bracelet)
  • stringing wire

My second entry, a blue necklace, was last minute. I hadn’t planned to make it. But since my beading tools were already out on my craft table, I said, what the heck, “Let’s make something else.” I had been wanting to make something with these two-holed blue beads, just hadn’t decided what. After sorting through my supplies and putting “anything with blue” in a bowl, I got started.

From this…

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To this.

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Supplies used in addition to Crystal’s 2-holed blue beads:

  • an assortment of blue beads
  • seed beads, size 8/0 and 11/0
  • toggle clasp with Swarovski sapphire crystals
  • stringing wire

I really enjoyed participating in this challenge. My creative juices were overflowing. I was relaxed and let my fingers do what my mind saw.

Oh, BTW, guess whose name was picked by Random Generator for 1st Prize? ME!!!
Look at all these beady goodies I won.

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Aren’t they beautiful? Beady Eyecandy!! Can’t wait to get them. I already have ideas. Thanks so much, Crystal.

Also, thank you for hosting your 3rd Bead Challenge. All of the designs are really pretty. I am looking forward to your next challenge.


Go here to see all Bead Challenge entries and the prize winners.

http://beadhappilyeverafter.com/blog/?p=19092

Here is the link to Crystal’s Etsy Shop. She has wonderful products. Check it out!!

http://www.etsy.com/shop/beadhappilyeverafter

Pillowcases and Another Sneak Peek


How’s your weekend going?

Mine has been busy, busy, busy. In addition to the usual stuff (cleaning, watching TV, family stuff, etc), I managed to find time to do a second entry for Crystal’s bead challenge at Beadhappilyeverafter. http://beadhappilyeverafter.com/blog/?p=18920

Here’s the Sneak Peek…

I can tell you that it is a necklace. Light blue is a color I usually bypass. But I like it. Will try to use it more in the future.

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Now that my challenge entries have been submitted, it is back to sewing.

For the next day or two I will work on these.

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Pillowcases. I will tell you more about them later. Who they are for and why I am making them. I think those fabrics will make up cute.

What crafting are you doing? Have a great weekend (what’s left of it). :D

Taking A Timeout For Beads… And A Sneak Peek…


You should see my craft room. It looks like a tornado ran through it and left me trying to figure out where everything goes. It’s a mess!! But it is a wonderful mess.

I took a timeout from sewing/quilting to create my beaded entry for Crystal’s bead challenge over at Beadhappilyeverafter. http://beadhappilyeverafter.com/blog/?p=18920
This is her 3rd challenge. They are fun to enter and you can win great prizes. I won’t show you the finished item… yet. Crystal gets first look. All entries must be submitted by 9pm Saturday, May 12. But I will come back to do a show and tell after she posts the challenge results on her blog.   

Here is a Sneak Peek of my entry.

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I haven’t decided on a title yet. I thought of a few.

  • Madame Butterfly (but with a happy ending)
  • Winging-It
  • Spring Bling
  • Spread Your Wings
  • Beads and Butterflies
  • Come Fly With Me

I have to admit it was nice spending some quiet time just sitting for a couple days working with my beads. It will be hard to store them away until the next time. :(

OK… now back to sewing/quilting. A new handbag and zippered bag coming up soon. :D

My Week With Seed Beads


Inspired by this wrap bangle bracelet I made for the Bead Soup Blog Hop, I spent a full week working with my seed bead stash.

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Yep, I actually did not pick up my rotary cutter for a whole seven days. Just sat and sat and beaded.

First I made this bracelet.

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And then this one.

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I had Brides and the “I Do” Season on my mind when I created this one. Even dragged out my button stash.

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Next, I circled back to the bracelet that started it all. I added a second peyote bail to it. Loving it even more now.

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I think I was probably into Day 3 when I created this red, white and blue one. Still not ready to go back to sewing/quilting.

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And more…..

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BTW, you won’t believe the number of empty bead vials I ended up with. There were even more but I tossed a few.

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I made little containers of “bead soup” by combining my 11/0 seed beads by colorways. Whatever I thought would look good together got emptied into the bowl. What a great way to use up leftovers from other projects!!

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After making this green, gray and black bracelet, I had an idea for a necklace.

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But I couldn’t decide on how to end it. What type clasp to use. I chewed on several ideas and one day when running errands, I remembered these barrel tube clasps I bought a few years ago but never tried.

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Bingo!! It worked. I am just thrilled to pieces how this came out. No matter that this necklace and bracelet took 24 hours to make. I love it!!

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As it turned out, My Week With Seed Beads ended with that necklace. I had a crochet order (which you saw) that I needed to work on. So sadly, I pushed my beads aside. Now, observe how I said that. “Pushed” aside. Not PUT AWAY.

If in a week I don’t have a desire to bead something, then I will dust cover my bead supplies until the next time. Hopefully it won’t be for too long. Need to show all of my crafts some love from time to time. :D

After all, these pearls and jade beads are waiting to be made into a necklace.

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My favorite. Yellow.

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Hubby’s favorite. Bronze.

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I had fun designing and creating them.


These wrap bangle bracelets and wrap necklace are This Year’s Dozen originals.

Please respect Copyright Laws. Do not distribute, copy or post on the Internet without written permission. Thanks.

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It’s REVEAL Time… Look What I Made With My Bead Soup!!


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What fun!! I had a blast coming up with necklace ideas. And I tried them all. I used Soft Flex beading wire because I knew it would retain its shape through all of my experimenting.

I didn’t take photos of each idea I tried. Just a couple. These I liked but after photographing them, I felt they were “overkill.”

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So I took them apart and started over. And that was yesterday, LOL!!

This was my last design. It seemed more balanced.

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I turned this seed bead necklace into a wrap bracelet with a peyote bail. I also made a fun charm bracelet with the leftover beads using macrame cord and chain links but the photo came out blurred.

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I knew I wanted to make at least one pair of earrings, so I set aside these two green beads and the gold spacer beads. They are cute. And lightweight.

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Lisa at Pine Ridge Treasures, my bead partner, will be happy to know I used every single bead she sent. Even added a few of my own, keeping with her color palette.

In case you can’t remember what all she sent, here is a photo. The BEFORE. There’s Picture Jasper, Fire Agate, Porcelain/Ceramic, Sari Silk and a really pretty Melinda Orr clasp.

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Avocado is a color that looks great on me, if I say so myself. I have always enjoyed wearing it. And fire agate. I have quite a bit of it in my own stash. So this Bead Soup was tailor made for me.

Can’t wait to see what all she made with the Bead Soup I sent her. I want you to see it too. So you will have to go to her site for a look see. In fact, there are 200 jewelry designers participating. For sure, plenty of pretty and unique designs. Jewelry Eye Candy to die for.

But first… visit Lisa’s blog and also her shop. She makes beautiful jewelry. I really enjoyed chatting with her during this process. And don’t forget to leave a comment.

For all of the details and list of participants, go to Lori Anderson’s blog, Pretty Things Blog. Maybe next year you will participate.

http://www.prettythingsblog.com/

Let the Blog Hop Party begin. Have fun.


Thanks for hosting, Lori. You made it fun and kept us all informed.

LOVE Is In The Air


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What to do? What to make?

Hmmm. Hearts and Tubes. From Crystal’s shop. BeadHappilyEverAfter. So pretty.

But what to turn them into? As usual, I am late to the party. Only six days until I have to submit a photo of my creation. Now I have to get busy. Oh, I have been thinking about designs. For several weeks. But now, thinking time is over. Fingers must move and get to creating.

I will probably make a bracelet. Sure. That’s what I will make.

Yep. The hearts and tubes will be a bracelet!!

More details and photos in a few days.

Hop on over to Crystal’s site to see what her challenge is all about.

http://beadhappilyeverafter.com/blog/?page_id=17770

http://beadhappilyeverafter.com/blog/

http://www.etsy.com/shop/beadhappilyeverafter

SMILE: Bead Soup Beads Sent and Received


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Oh Wow!! Did I tell you how excited I am about participating in the 5th Bead Soup Blog Party? I was thrilled to find out my name had been picked by the Random Generator. This would be my first time entering and my fingers and toes had been crossed for several days. So when Lori Anderson, the host, e-mailed that I had been selected, my creative brain went on crack overload.

I had an idea on what to send my Bead Soup Partner but still slowly went through my jewelry stash anyway. I had a fun few days putting it all together going… ahhh, hmmm, what if, maybe. I couldn’t show you until now. Had to wait for her to receive my goodies. They were delivered today.

This is what I sent. I am calling my assortment of beads SMILE. Because it makes me smile.

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There’s Jasper, Agate, ceramic and glass beads. As well as Antique Copper. Hope she likes. Can’t wait to see what she creates.


AND NOW ON TO THE BEST PART…..

This is what my Bead Soup Partner sent me. Just gorgeous!!

There’s Picture Jasper, Fire Agate, Porcelain/Ceramic, Sari Silk and the prettiest clasp I have ever seen.

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So many ideas. One minute necklaces are prancing before my eyes. And then a playful cuff bracelet keeps making an appearance. I am sketching ideas as fast as they pop up. Hopefully one idea jumps front and center in the next week. I am anxious to get started. I will let the beautiful Melinda Orr clasp guide me.

My Bead Soup Partner is Lisa at Pine Ridge Treasures. Go. Check. Her. Out. She does beautiful work. She makes a great partner. Love her color palette. Right up my alley!!

Bookmark my blog or better yet go over to my right Sidebar and sign up to receive my blog via e-mail. You don’t want to miss the reveal of both. What I made. And what she made. Can’t wait. So excited!!


Go here for more details and to see the list of participants.

http://lorianderson-beadsoupblogparty.blogspot.com/

Recycle # 3: Thread Spool Fabric Necklace

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The moment I decided to switch to all cotton thread and fondled the spools in the craft store, I knew immediately what I would do with the empty yellow spools. I couldn’t wait for one to get emptied.

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Before long, I had 3 of them, then 4, then 7. I guess I was sewing faster than I realized. I started to collect them up in a plastic bag for when I had a couple hours to play around with a design.

I wanted to use all scraps. Since I had a HUGE pile of them in all different colors, shapes and sizes that I bought off of eBay.

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BUT I miscalculated the width and the strip did not completely cover the spool. So, I will use my “mistake” for something else.

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Starting over, I decided to use one of my pretty batik squares I recently bought.


Here’s what you need to make this necklace.

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  • empty thread spool
  • 5″ by 5″ fabric square
  • batting (a small piece)
  • tiny elastic cord
  • button (I ended up using a larger one)
  • hanging cord
  • needle and thread
  • scissors/rotary cutter

Here’s the process in photos.

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I didn’t take a photo of me sewing on the button. :D

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I love how this turned out and already have the fabric squares lined up to make more in the future. I have lots of the satiny hanging cords. They came in a package of 10. All different colors.


This is a This Year’s Dozen original design. If you make this necklace, please link back to my blog post. Thanks!!

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How To Make A Twisted Herringbone Bracelet

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Just finished this tutorial for a friend who is making lots of pretty bracelets and wanted to learn the Twisted Herringbone stitch.

So… I thought I would share it with you in case you have been wanting to learn too.

You start off with three rounds of the basic Tubular Herringbone stitch. If you don’t know how to make it, do a Google search or check YouTube.

I’ll begin my tutorial at the point the tube is formed and you start stitching the twisted part. And my tutorial shows you how to attach a store bought clasp. Nothing fancy (like mine) to scare you off. :D

To begin, here are the supplies you will need.


TWISTED HERRINGBONE BRACELET TUTORIAL

Supplies Needed

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Size 8/0 Seed Beads (SB)
Color 1 brown
Color 2 cream
Color 3 burgundy

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Beading thread. Fireline, Wildfire or Nymo
Beading needle size 10 (flexible is best)
Nipper tool
Ruler/tape measure/yard stick
Toggle clasp or clasp of your choice
Bead stopper


Getting started. Cut 4 yards of beading thread. Thread needle. Put a bead stopper on one end, leaving a 12″ tail (will be used to sew clasp). Do not knot either end. Will be using the entire length of thread.

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STEP A: TUBULAR HERRINGBONE STITCH

You will begin with 3 rounds of tubular herringbone stitch sewing counterclockwise. (If you don’t know how to make it, do a Google search or check YouTube.)

STEP B: TWISTED HERRINGBONE STITCH

Pull tightly on beadwork to form tube. Rest of bracelet will be worked in tube form.

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You should have three columns. One in each color. Stacks of 3 SB’s.


Round 1

Pick up two Color 1 (brown).

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Sew down into next single SB (brown) and UP through two SB’s IN THE NEXT COLUMN (cream column).

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Round 2

Pick up two Color 2 (cream).

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Sew down into next single SB (cream) and up through two SB’s in the next column (burgundy column).

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Round 3

Pick up two Color 3 (burgundy).

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Sew down into next single SB (burgundy).

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And now… IMPORTANT… to finish this row…

Go up through THREE SB’s in the next column (brown column).

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You have just completed one row of Twisted Herringbone.

Check your beadwork to make sure thread is where it should be and is tight.


STEP C: CONTINUE BEADING HERRINGBONE TUBE

Repeat Rounds 1 through 3 in STEP B until you reach your desired bracelet length. Allow 1 to 1 1/2″ for clasp. Beadwork should NOT reach tip to tip around your wrist.


Extra Notes and Tips

  • Needles:  Using a flexible needle is best. It will allow you to go “down and up” with one stroke.
  • Seed beads:  Select seed beads with the same size so column height will match up.
  • Around the 5th or 6th row, you will see beadwork begin to twist.

This is how it looks at the 2 inch mark.

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Step D: Adding Clasp To The LOOP Portion Of The Toggle

There are many ways to add a clasp. And many types of clasp. This is just a quick and easy way of doing it.

Pinch one end of the bracelet flat between your fingers.

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Line up the 6 SB’s. 3 to the front and 3 to the back. Thread should exit one of the center SB’s. Front or back, doesn’t matter.

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You will use four (4) size 8/0 seed beads for this step.

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A. Pick up one size 8/0 SB (color is your choice) and go through the round hole on the bottom of the “loop” half of the toggle.

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Continue to the OPPOSITE side. Match up with the center bead opposite you.

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Go down 4 SB’s in this stack.

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Do a “U” turn and come go UP 4 SB’s in the stack to the right of it. (Make sure thread is hidden between the beads, pull tight.)

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B. Pick up one SB (same color you selected in A).

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Go through the round hole on the bottom of the “loop” half of the toggle.

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Now go down 4 SB’s in the next column.

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Do a “U” and go UP 4 SB’s in the stack to the right of it.

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C. Pick up one SB (same color you selected in A).

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Go through the round hole on the bottom of the “loop” half of the toggle.

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Now go down 4 SB’s in the next column, do U turn to the stack to the right of it.

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Go up 4 SB’s.

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Now go through the round hole on the bottom of the “loop” half of the toggle.

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It may look messy but weave in and out around the area to tighten it up and “clean” it up. Add extra beads or, if desired, create a fringe with tiny seed beads to cover the “hole”.

That completes one half of the clasp.

Experiment with different clasps and different number of seed beads for different looks.


Step E: Adding Clasp To The BAR Portion Of The Toggle

Pinch the end of the bracelet flat between your fingers.

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Line up the 6 SB’s. 3 to the front and 3 to the back. Just as you did for the LOOP portion. Thread should exit one of the center SB’s. Front or back, doesn’t matter.

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You will use ten (10) size 8/0 seed beads for this step.

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D. Pick up 5 SB’s and go through the round hole on the bottom of the “bar” half of the toggle, and pick up 5 more SB’s.

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Continue on to the opposite side of this bead. Go down 4 SB’s in this stack.

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And wouldn’t you know it!! The last picture showing the “U” turn and back up to the top is blurred. But you know what to do. You’ve done it before. :-D

Tighten up the beads, add extra beads, add a fringe. Do whatever you wish to finish up.

Before doing too much weaving in and out, test the toggle to make sure the bar end smoothly goes through the loop end. You may have to add more than the 10 beads or use less. Try bracelet on BEFORE cutting thread.

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Thanks for making my bracelet.

THE END……


I like to make my own beaded clasp so for this bracelet I sewed two open triangles together. One triangle made with the three seed bead colors and a triangle for the back in solid brown. I added a button to the other end.

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