Thursday, April 30, 2015

Squares...Because Even Round and Round Girl Needs A Break Sometimes

When Cynthia  and I got together for the Innovative Bead Expo several weeks back, I got these little flat square hematites.  Cynthia gave me these blue rounds and the bugles in both bracelets.

I like the look of these squares.  The first attempt was made with delicas,but the hematites demanded a little less structure than that.

Spring is creeping in.  Still no flowers, not even the bulbs.  But it now looks as though there will actually be warmth. How about in your neck of the woods?

Sunday, April 26, 2015

CC7A April Hop

Alicia of All the Pretty Things put together another series of small Hops for the seven of us.  We are basing our work on our own photos.  To kick it all off, Alicia sent us this photo for inspiration:

At the same time this new series of hops were getting underway, Liz of Bead Contagion sent me a few very bright beads to play with ~ oranges, yellows, blues, greens.  Little did I know they would be the primary focus for a few of these monthly hops!  

Bracelet and Necklace together.  There are little green O beads between these really cool orange beads that may or may not be shells.  Very Easter Egg, yes?  

Close up of the bracelet.  Bright Spring Happy Colors! 

The necklace on Fleur

As you can see, I went full tilt with the color!  And why not after a long white winter?!
(it was still snowing as of two days ago )

Please go visit the six other participants.  Their blog links their photo months are listed below:

Alicia ~ April

Therese ~ May

Sally ~ June

Monique ~ August

Cynthia ~ September

Emma ~ October

Me ~ November

Friday, April 17, 2015

Therese's Lapidary

Therese of Therese's Treasures has been doing her own lapidary work and making cabs.  She had a giveaway for those that signed up for our A Time To Stitch Seven : Bead Embroidery.
Click here to see the giveaway cabs.
And click here to see her latest creation for the butterfly hop.  Jaw dropping beauty!
Who wants to be able to purchase these beautiful cabs?!  I do!  Therese, be sure to let us know when you set up a shop for these gorgeous stones!

Therese sent me a Candy Stripe Jasper cab.  She said when she was making it she thought of me because in her eyes, it looks like an Indian blanket.  I used that note as my color inspiration.  I was going to embroider it (due to the upcoming hop and due to Therese's love of embroidery), but in the end, I stayed true to myself instead.  I hope you approve of how I handled this lovely stone, Therese!

When worn, the neck strap develops a nice, unexpected twist in it, so it looks like a rope.  

All Picasso beads ~ rounds and twin hole 

In making this necklace, it occurred to me that one of the main reasons why I avoid embroidery so much is because I have the need to see the backside of stones, beads, metals.  I will flip a piece of jewelry over and look at what is going on "underneath" before I take in the front side.  

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Pepita Birthday Butterfly Hop

Alenka of Pepita Handmade in Slovenia is hosting a Hop today.  The rules were simple : make something with a butterfly theme.
 I signed up and my mind was blank.  Totally blank.  As fate would have it, I met up with my bead buddy Cynthia, we went to a show, and I got these cool components from Kabela Design for my butterfly necklace.

I should have taken a photo of the completed piece before it went to the chop.  I made little cocoons.  But it was awkward and the proportions were all wrong so it had to go.  This was my second design and I love it!
Fleur wearing the Butterfly 

For these flowers, I did designs on each side of the metal so if is twists, there is no wrong side.  On this side, I put teardrops.  

And on this side, I made a seed bead design.  

I put large Matte beads in these other flower components.  I put the components back to back to there is no wrong side for them either.  I did a spiral for the chain.  

Cynthia gave me this button clasp before I bought the metal components.  I thought it was pretty but wasn't sure what I would do with it.  When the necklace came together, all I needed was a clasp and that is when I remembered receiving this little beauty!  Thanks Cynthia!

Butterfly :-) 

I made two-sided earring with the leftover flower components.

Happy Birthday Alenka ~ sending you loving thoughts for a happy, healthy year!

Please go see all the other Beautiful Butterflies :

1. Alenka (Pepita) - hostess -->
2. Monique (A Half-Baked Notion) -->
6. Christine Altmiller -->
8. Dini Bruinsma -->
9. Cynthia (Antiquity Travelers) -->
11. sheilaposter -->
16. Ana (ACBeads) -->
17. Jasvanti Patel -->
19. Nan Smith -->

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Behind the Scenes

 Magic doesn't just happen.  Well...sometimes it does, but not with my highly inspired necklace for Liz's Winter Blues Blue Goldstone Hop.  
 Upon receiving those magic donuts, I sketched out 6 different necklaces and settled into the one on the left.  I hated it the moment it was done.  I was channeling such a beautiful but brief event in my life and the translation went pretty far wrong.  I was wondering if I chose the wrong man.
I decided to be rational and sleep on it.  Before my head hit the pillow, I came up with a different idea I was SURE would work.  In the morning, I was hesitant to send Old Blue to the chop before I KNEW the new idea would work.  I ventured into my frigid workshop to collect some beads to make a sample necklace ~ the necklace on the right.  I was quite confident this was the way I wanted to go, but needed input before the chop.  So I got my cell phone, snapped the photo below and sent it to Cynthia. She gave positive feedback about both.  So I went for it...TO THE CHOP!

Using the above as my model, the below necklace came to be and did wind up possessing all the symbolism and emotions I was hoping for ~ waves, sound, water, sparkle, movement, peacefulness, and so on (as endless as the lapping waves themselves).

It is always hard giving a completed piece the chop.  There is always the nagging thought of "SOMEONE will want it, even though I think it is ugly."  But it is best to follow your gut when it comes to those pieces that just are not right.  A few times I didn't follow my gut and let the less than inspiring pieces remain as they were.  When I brought them to shows, I put price tags on them that said "Name a Price"  My very first tila bracelet sold that way.  The guy who bought it was giddy at the idea of it and looked at all my price tags to see if they all said that.  He only found one other with such a price that day :-)

For the sample, I will be naming my own price for the tag.  This is definitely one I kept whole because the sample turned out to be a keeper too.