Tuesday, February 21, 2017

The Tale of a Tool by Mary Harding

Free form Peyote Stitch necklace by Mary Harding
Earlier this winter when I was working on the above necklace, I was browsing pages on the Bello Mundo site and ended up on their blog looking at the blog post that teaches how to make a Mala necklace and wondering how I would ever make all those tiny knots between the beads.
My previous experience making knots was nothing to be proud of--see below
                                                          Picture of my not so good  irregular knotting

It turns out that far into the post on Making A Mala Necklace, after learning about its history and meaning, I came to the Materials Needed section (for the second necklace discusses, the Amethyst) and tucked in there as the last item was the AWL, a tool noted for being helpful for tying knots. (My experience with such a tool was for making divots in metal .) The word was clickable and I found myself  looking at the tool I will be extolling  the virtues of in this post:
The Tulip Awl
Close up of the Tulip Awl showing how fine the point is and its protective plastic cap

And better yet I had a coupon for 30% off.  ( Bello Modo has sales very often). This awl  has a cushioned grip which is very comfortable and enough heft to be well balanced when you are working with it.

When it arrived I tried it out instantly on the same beads as above (with a thicker piece of waxed linen) to see if my knotting would be improved.
Better but not yet perfect knotting using my Tulip Awl  Maple Leaf Pendant by Mary Harding


The rest of this tale is a list of what else this tool can do:

Undo knots in beading thread and fine wire
Remove stitching  mistakes in bead work i.e. pulling threads (stronger than a needle)
Clear holes in some beads like polymer clay or pearls
Break unwanted beads in seed beading projects
Tie tiny knots in fringe and other places

And

Some Art Beads to enjoy:

Handmade Ceramic Art Beads by Gaea


Handmade Porcelain Ceramic Beads with a crackle glaze  by Mary Harding
                      Handmade stoneware ceramic beads with sprigging by Natalie Pappas NKP Designs


Thanks so much for stopping by today. Please let us know if you have tried this tool in the comment section below. Perhaps you have found even more uses for it.
Mary

www.maryhardingjewelry.etsy.com
www. facebook.com/MaryHardingJewelry

Monday, February 20, 2017

Monday Muse: Tropical Beads

 
As you are reading this I'm floating blissfully to a tropical island while hanging out with 65 creative, beady friends. It's Bead Cruise time!

I've been super inspired by the ocean and our Mexican destinations. Above you can see my latest birds with starfish, shells and coral designs. 

 
These earring charms look like treasures swept along a seaweed current. 

 
 
I'm teaching how to make these sea inspired headpins in one of my classes. Those are Nunn Design copper charms. 

 
Along with all those soft beachy hues, I was inspired by Mexican embroidery. I know I'll be shopping for some fun examples on the islands and taking lots of photos! 

 
I made these pendants inspired by Mexican ceramic tiles. These were my gift to our Bead Cruisers in our gift swag bags. 

Take a mental vacation on Pinterest this week and create jewelry inspired by your dream vacation. 

Friday, February 17, 2017

Perfect Pairings :: Bay Moon Designs + Brooke Bock + Beady Eyed Bunny


Despite not being a big heart fan, that beautiful bauble drew me right in. There is something so cheery about its shape and color. And then I had to take a closer look at those gorgeous rose beads, which I recognized immediately as belonging to Leah Curtis. The unexpected soft blue gives this a more ethereal look. It is simply wonderful and evokes the love that the maidens are showering on the knight in shining armor with their rose petals. 

Featured Designer :: Bay Moon Designs
+
Featured Bead Artist :: Brooke Bock + Beady Eyed Bunny

We are now using Pinterest! 
You can find more details in this post about the exciting new changes,
including a board devoted to art beads inspired by the monthly challenge!
(Ooh! Look! More pretty beads to lust after!)

Pretty please make sure that you post a link in your Pinterest description
so that I have someplace to attribute the picture! 
And don't forget to tell us about those art beads - providing links to bead makers is appreciated!

Deadline February 26th to get your pictures posted to the Pinterest boards for the creation of the Monthly Challenge Recap post for February 28th
TIP: If you upload your photo rather than pin it from your blog or shop, edit the pin (the little pencil button) and add your link as the source. Save your edits. This will allow us to click directly on your photo and go to your blog or shop to read more about your entry. If you don't, I might not be able to access the photo to share it.




Thursday, February 16, 2017

Bead Birthday Wish List

Its my first blog post for ABS and it happens to coincide with my birthday so I decided to share my birthday wish list with you. Whilst I’m primarily a bead maker I still covet so many other peoples work, like most people involved in the creation of jewellery or jewellery components I find it really hard to resist collecting beads that speak to me, even if they only sit in my stash, I know I have collected them and they are there for whenever I decide to put them to good use.

First up and always high on my wish list are these gorgeous woven beads by Rebecca Anderson of Songbeads. I’m really into chartreuse and mustard at the moment and these really fit the bill.

https://www.etsy.com/shop/thecuriousbeadshop?section_id=15545115


Next up, I just can’t resist these perfectly formed little wordy beads from Grubbi Ceramics. Also based in Scotland her beads are filled with charm and fun. 


When I first started out making beaded jewellery I remember seeing work by the amazing GreenGirlStudio. This toggle is so beautiful and it HAD to go on my list. 



And finally who could resist these stunning drops from ClayforaCure. Not only can you buy beautiful components but you know you’re getting to help out a great cause too! 



So, whats on your wish list? if your pockets were deep and money no object what would fill your stash with? 

Tuesday, February 14, 2017


Happy Valentine's Day from the Earring Whisperer! 



I feel as though I should be wearing an eye mask and have a rose clenched in my teeth whilst writing this!

What a perfect day to talk about Love, Passion and ART BEADS!!  

Look at these colors together! The blending of deep red, pink and purple give so much richness and depth! The hearts and sugary discs are free-form and the arrow fletching or tail feathers, have a one-of-a-kind layered patina adding extra life and texture. For fun, I've inverted the hearts to form an arrow head. These earrings have a bit of whimsy, but still edgy!

They are simply constructed; the real work was in the design. Proportion, shape and color are most important in this pair. I also made sure that I wire wrapped heavy, not only for security, but for the overall design, giving the three beads continuity in forming cupid's arrow.

Hope you have a lovely day!

Loralee  <3
    
Loralee Kolton Jewelry
https://www.facebook.com/loraleekolton.jewelry/
www.loraleekolton.etsy.com


Supplies:

1 pair, 16mm  lampwork heart beads.
1 pair, 14mm of lampwork sugar disc beads.
2 pieces of  4mm bi-cone, red or purple Swarovski crystals
1 pair 29mm long, pewter arrow charms.
2 pieces of 20g oxidized wire, appox, 10" long ea. 
2 pieces of 24g oxidized wire approx. 4" long
2 copper earwires

Directions:

1. Start by wire-wrapping the arrow's tail or fletching, making sure to leave an extra long, straight piece of wire extended out.

2.  Add the sugar disc and then a bi-cone crystal. The crystal will stabilize the disc and create a small space you'll use later. 

3. Add the glass heart, making sure to invert it, forming the arrow's head.

4. Make a wire-wrapped loop at the top, still leaving a long tail of wire. Use the remaining tail of wire to run down the back of the heart and then once again, wrapping directly under the heart.  The double wrapping not only looks nice, but it will keep your heart facing forward.

5. Lastly, go back and directly under the disc bead, use the 24g wire to tightly add an extra wrapping between the disc and arrow's tail. Aesthetically, it's more pleasing to the eye to cover up that skinny little wrap you started out with, and, will match the thicker wrapping on the other side of the disc.

Resources:


Lampwork disc beads:  http://www.silverfishdesigns.etsy.com



Sunday, February 12, 2017

Giveaway Winner!!



Divya N

You are the random chosen winner for the ceramic rose bracelet topper. Congratulations and please contact me on facebook with your address! Thank to everyone who commented! 

Happy Sunday to you all!!

Terri Del Signore
artisticaos



Friday, February 10, 2017

Perfect Pairings :: SJDesigns Jewelry + Tesori Trovati


As an art bead maker, you never know where your creations will end up. You birth them, put them out there where they are accepted into the loving homes of jewelry designers the world over. I often wonder what happens to them. So it was a delightful surprise to find that Sarajo Wentling created a lovely necklace with one of my classic Simple Truths pendants that is perfect for the this month's lush painting inspiration. I am bursting like a proud mama over here to see it all grown up! I like the fact that the colors in the bead strands play upon the the variations in the rosebuds. And perfect for the season of love that we are in! 

Featured Designer :: SJDesignsJewelry
+
Featured Bead Artist :: Tesori Trovati

We are now using Pinterest! 
You can find more details in this post about the exciting new changes,
including a board devoted to art beads inspired by the monthly challenge!
(Ooh! Look! More pretty beads to lust after!)

Pretty please make sure that you post a link in your Pinterest description
so that I have someplace to attribute the picture! 
And don't forget to tell us about those art beads - providing links to bead makers is appreciated!

Deadline February 26th to get your pictures posted to the Pinterest boards for the creation of the Monthly Challenge Recap post for February 28th
TIP: If you upload your photo rather than pin it from your blog or shop, edit the pin (the little pencil button) and add your link as the source. Save your edits. This will allow us to click directly on your photo and go to your blog or shop to read more about your entry. If you don't, I might not be able to access the photo to share it.