4 Days Working on One 2-Toned Design

I knew I wanted something different from the other triangle bracelets I made. And I wanted to experiment with the design.

After making six triangles in brown and beige 8/o seed beads, I got busy working on placement. Arranging. Rearranging.

First was brown on top, all triangles facing left.

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Half facing left, half facing right.

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Half with brown at top. Half with brown at bottom.

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Alternating the top and bottom colors.

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Even a necklace got tossed into the mix.

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After trying to stitch the triangles in a couple of the designs above, I finally decided on this look. Kind of looks like leaves. I took a ton of photos, but the beige seed beads came out yellowish. I’ll have to retake them.

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The chocolate Swarovski pearls, pretty though they were, ended up back in my stash. I tried and tried. But could NOT get them connected inside the triangle without a lot of beading thread showing. I tried a bead cap. I tried adding seed beads top and bottom. I tried a beaded fringe. You could still see my stitches above and below the pearl.

So…. no pearls. Maybe with smaller ones, it might have worked.

And you know what? I am so proud of myself. I thought of driving to the craft store to buy smaller pearls, but talked myself out of it. Make Do. Make It Work. Those are two things I have been repeating to myself lately. Use existing stash.

I always take notes as I create and I couldn’t believe it had taken me four days, on and off, to complete this bracelet. But it did. I am pleased with the end result so I guess it was worth it.

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More Triangles In Royal Blue and Hot Pink

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This is what I have been working on for about a week. Making one triangle at a time. Taking my time. Can’t rush creativity.

I made the hot pink bracelet exactly like the orange and black one I showed you. But wanted something a bit different for the royal/black one.

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Don’t know if you can see it, but there is beaded fringe along the inverted “V” shape of the first triangle and also along the bottom edge of the last triangle.

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The clasp is a string of round black glass beads that the beaded toggle bar inserts into. Kind of different, huh? And that is exactly what I wanted. Different.

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Earrings have the same round black beads.

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Here’s the pink set.

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These are works-in-progress. Not sure yet where I am going with them.

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How To Make A Beaded Toggle Bar

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Beaded toggle bars are easy to make. Even if you don’t know the peyote stitch that well.

One thing I suggest. Do resist the temptation to continue from your beadwork directly to the toggle bar. Always end your current thread. And start with a fresh thread to connect the toggle bar.

Reasons?

  • you make a mistake on placement and need to undo it
  • bar is too large or too small and you want to remake it
  • need to change the number of beads leading to the bar
  • etc, etc.

If you had continued with the same thread as your beadwork, you could possibly ruin your item trying to make these changes. Been there. Done that.

This is what works for me. And I have tried various combinations of seed beads/rows.

Using 8/0 seed beads, gauge how many you will need. I have tried 14, 16, 18 and 20 seed beads.  Peyote for 4 rows. Meaning when you count the beads at the top and bottom, you count 4.


Instructions for Beaded Toggle Bar

Step 1

String 20 seed beads. I used size 8/0. Add a bead stopper.

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Step 2

Beginning on the end opposite the bead stopper, working upward, start adding beads.

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Continue adding beads/rows until you have 4 beads at the top and 4 beads at the bottom.

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Step 3

Pinch the beadwork together between your fingers. I used a metal clip to illustrate the folding of the beads.

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Step 4

Begin to sew the sides together.

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Zip up the sides by sewing into ONLY the high beads. Those sticking out further. Go from one side to the other, going upward. I like to reinforce the beadwork by going up and down the entire length of the toggle bar with the working thread. Also going up and back down with the tail thread. Try to come out of the same seed bead with both threads. CUT BOTH THREADS.

This is how your beaded toggle bar should look after sewing the sides together.

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Step 5

Once finished, one last thing to do. Insert a piece of inexpensive wire. Artistic Wire, I think mine is called.

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Push it through the toggle bar almost to the end. Cut wire, file any burrs, now push the rest of the way. This extra step strengthens your toggle bar. The wire is in tight enough, no need to worry about it coming out. (You could sew a tiny 11/0 seed bead on the ends.)

Step 6

Connect toggle bar to your beadwork.

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You decide how many seed beads are needed to comfortably go through the other end of your clasp.

OK. Now go get your bead stash and try making this toggle bar. And pocket the money you would normally spend buying commercial clasps. Enjoy!!


Supplies/Tools Used

  • Fireline beading thread
  • size 10 or 12 beading needle
  • 8/0 seed beads
  • 2″ piece of 20 gauge Artistic Wire
  • bead stopper
  • wire cutter
  • ruler

If you need help with the peyote stitching part, see my blog’s sidebar under Tutorials. Lots of help links there.

My “Ready For Halloween” Triangle Bracelet

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Still working on triangles. I wasn’t too excited when I started off. But now I like them.

The pattern I was following (in Beth Stone’s More Seed Bead Stitching book) said to use 11/0 seed beads. I used 8/0 instead. I like working with the larger seed beads. And in black and orange. I was thinking Halloween.

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These have holes in the center.

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I made a few. Had no ideas. Made a few more. Tried to assemble them in various ways. But only liked the staggered look. One fitting inside the other.

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Ended up making 10 triangles.

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It was kind of tricky sewing each together but if you know how to peyote then you know that I went in and out of the high beads to connect them. From the tip down to the 5th or 6th bead on each side.

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For the toggle, I made a black seed bead toggle bar. It fits inside the center of the last triangle.

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Did I make earrings? You betcha.

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Inspired By Crystal To Make This Crystal Bracelet

Inspiration comes from many places. Something you read. Something you saw.

For my new bracelet it was both. Something I read AND saw. At Bead Happily Ever After. Crystal’s blog. She makes really pretty jewelry. She’s the one I told you about with the jewelry giveaways.

Anyway, she posted this blue crystal bracelet on her blog a week or so ago.

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(I stole this image from her blog.)

Isn’t it beautiful!! So sparkly and delicate looking. You want to just look at it all day. Well, I wanted to do more than that!! I wanted to MAKE MY OWN.

So…. off to You Tube. Anything you want to make is on You Tube. Found this video on the Flat Spiral stitch. Demonstrated by one of Auntie’s Beads designers. Easy to follow along. Watched it twice.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oiB_PID3sC4

Gathered up my Swarovski crystal stash. Didn’t have enough of one color so I went with multi-color crystals.

And created these. Bracelet, earrings and ring.


BRACELET

First off. Started with the bracelet. It was easy to make. I ended one side with seed beads to loop around the toggle bar.

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Other side I made a peyote bail to loop around the crystal ring.

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It is so light on my wrist. I could wear it all day. Even though these are crystals, which shout dress up, you could wear this with your favorite jeans. Dress up. Dress down. Goes with anything.

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EARRINGS

OK. I told you the bracelet was easy. Earrings. Not so much. I made them 3 times. And took them apart 3 times. Just wasn’t coming out the way I wanted. First time. 2 crystals dangled under the bottom. You can imagine anything you want here. LOL!! And I wanted the direction of the seed beads to arch UP on both sides. Not down on one and up on the other. Which meant I had to “turn” my work in the middle. Tried it. So-so. Not balanced when I folded the ends up.

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Next day. 3rd try. Still not right. But getting there. Finally on the 4th try I got it to look like I wanted. I ended up NOT adding crystals to two of the beaded arches under the bottom.

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RING

By now I knew to “turn” my work in the middle so arches would match up on both sides. Also knew what to do to create the peyote band from making the bail for the bracelet clasp. So, the ring was easy.

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I really love the flat spiral stitch. I know. I know. You have heard it all before. I guess there isn’t a beaded stitch out there that I don’t like!! Try it. You may love it too.


Go here to read all about Crystal’s bracelet. Leave a comment while you are there to be entered in her giveaway. Maybe you will win something. Good luck!!

http://beadhappilyeverafter.com/blog/?p=13070

Memory Wire, Copper and Peyote Tubes

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I am on a copper kick. I bought a bunch of antique copper beads from Fire Mountain Gems and Beads a couple years ago. I used a few here and there. But mostly I just enjoyed looking at them. In the bag. Until now…..

I made two bracelets and two pairs of earrings.

One bracelet has a wire bangle with screw on beads on the tips. The other one, I cut two lengths from the memory wire coil and combined them. I wanted a sturdier, single wrap around the wrist. Not multiple spirals like you usually see made up.


This first one has peyote tubes made from pretty matte amethyst seed beads. Lots of antique copper beads. I only had one bead like that lavender glass one. I am sad I didn’t have more. I like it.

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I am thinking about buying some copper spray paint to paint the balls on the tips. The silver stands out like a sore thumb. Have any of you tried painting metal findings with any success?


These earrings go with the amethyst and copper bracelet.

Here’s a picture of the supplies I used. Inexpensive copper colored wire. Copper earwires.

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For this next bracelet, I used painted wood beads. This is the one with the doubled memory wire. I dangled two filigree charms on the wire tips.

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I have a bunch of memory wire. I didn’t even make a dent in my stash. So… my plan is to make up a few more. Until I get bored and move on to something else.

Do you like working with memory wire?

Still Hot Where You Are?

Autumn is only a few miles away. It will be here before you know it. Until then, think dark colors to cool you off.

Here’s my latest. Using black, bronze, carnelian and topaz. With a hint of summer. Ivory, black and white.

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There’s a bit of everything in this set.

  • gemstones: carnelian (red agate), banded agate
  • wood
  • glass: rondelles, faceted, round
  • seed beads 8/0
  • pony beads
  • leatherlook black beads
  • metal accent beads

Different beading techniques: Stringing, memory wire, beadwork (peyote tubes)

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Some beads are probably older than you. Have had the ivory wood beads since my early macrame days back in the 80’s. Leftover from making Christmas wreaths. The round black faceted glass beads are from my “just learning to bead” stage from four years ago. The newest beads are the topaz glass rondelles.

Can you believe, with all the beads I have accumulated, I can still pick up each one and remember where it was purchased. And most times, I can pinpoint the timeframe when bought.

I can tell you where each item in this set came from. Munro Crafts, JoAnn’s, Michaels, Fire Mountain Gems and Beads, Etsy (destash). Probably the same places you shop.

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Have you started your fall projects yet?