April 26, 2017

Pretty Palettes April Reveal

Let me remind you the beads that Halcraft sent me to complete the April Pretty Palettes Challenge....

From top to bottom:  

Top: Hematite 2 x 4mm Item # 80315
Amber Dyed shell teardrops Item # 87403
Rhodonite 12mm rounds Item #86559
Reconstituted Turquoise Stone 10mm Item # 87196
Mint Glass 6mm Rounds Item #82672
Acrylic Lentil link Item #87476
Lavender Painted glass 6 x 8mm rondelles Item #84844
Pink Czech glass 6mm Faceted  mix Item #91564

The inspiration this month is this beautiful watercolor inspired print from Heather Powers Art.

Beautiful  colors, a gorgeous flowing floral motif perfect for Spring! Which has finally FINALLY landed in upstate New York, I'm glad to say!

Although we are never out of the woods for snow until Mid May. :)

I sat down with my beads and it didn't take long at all to be inspired! I created a long beaded necklace and popped in a special handmade Bean from Swoon Dimples that reads Grateful. My sentiment - so grateful for Spring!

I used a variety of the beads, paired with some of my own seed beads as filler.  I created an asymmetrical necklace by adding a small section of just the mint green rounds along one section. When worn doubled, it has a pretty cool effect.

This next piece is a bracelet. A double stranded beaded design, with a slight asymmetrical feel that I couldn't really showcase in these photos. One strand was beaded with the Turquoise, and then faceted pink glass, and then the next stranded I started with the pink glass, and ended at the turquoise. And at the center, attached a large jumpring that holds a beautiful pewter Green Girl Studios Button.
The clasp is also handmade on this, from my friend Mary Harding. A ceramic toggle that has the same color palette as the Pretty palettes collection.

And finally a convertible piece! This month they send this Multi strand Link of acrylic lentils. Each end has a large ring, holding all the strands together. Instead of cutting all the strands and unleashing all the beads, I used the link as a way to create a necklace AND a bracelet by using some open ended S hooks I had in stash.

 Here it is as a necklace- where I added some cool box chain around the back. A nice statement necklace that really brings your attention to that gorgeous green!

 When Deconstructed-   I took the 1 S hook off, and the chain off, and left one S hook on one end of the beaded link. And now I have a Bracelet!

I would love to see if any of you participated this month in the Pretty Palettes challenge! Let me know in the comments and leave me a link!

April 11, 2017

Pretty Palettes APRIL Beads

Here is the next installment of the Pretty Palettes Challenge from Halcraft.  If you have a Michael's near you and you are interested in creating with these beads- do it!

The beads are listed from top to bottom:

Top: Hematite 2 x 4mm Item # 80315
Amber Dyed shell teardrops Item # 87403
Rhodonite 12mm rounds Item #86559
Reconstituted Turquoise Stone 10mm Item # 87196
Mint Glass 6mm Rounds Item #82672
Acrylic Lentil link Item #87476
Lavender Painted glass 6 x 8mm rondelles Item #84844
Pink Czech glass 6mm Faceted  mix Item #91564

Some close up shots....

I'm not sure what the current promotion is for Bead Gallery beads, but I'm sure you can find that information online for your local store.   If you feel like you want to play along,  get the beads, and show off your finished pieces on your blog! or Share your pieces on Social media with hash tags #prettypalettes #halcraft #beadgallery

Check back on Wednesday  April 26 for my finished pieces using this inspiring collection!

March 29, 2017

Pretty Palettes Reveal- March 2017- Bloom Where You're Planted

The inspiration photo for this month's Pretty Palettes challenge, is a gorgeous photo of Tulips with an earthy mulch background.  If you are interested in playing along in the future, keep your eyes on my blog- I will be participating next month and will show the beads here as soon as I get them. Remember back in the day when I did the Michael's beading blog hop challenge? This is a bit more organized...the idea is the same. If you can get the beads at your local Michael's feel free to play along and tag your pictures on Pinterest or social media and share the photos on the Halcraft FB page!

 The palette consists of a gorgeous leaf green, deep brown, peach, Red, and Orange .... Love colors indeed!

Here is a shot of the beads that Halcraft/ Molly sent to me!   I'm excited to see a wide range of colors and sizes of beads!  I can't wait to show you what I created...... let's get to it!

First up- A multi strand necklace using the Orange Glass Small Mix, and the Wood Rondelles. When I took the small glass beads off the hang tag, they are all pre-strung on thread so to keep things quick and easy, I attached large brass jump rings to each end of the strung beads, and voila! Half my necklace - DONE! For the back, I knotted linen cording through the rondelles so they lie flat. I used a funky ceramic button from Gaea as the clasp with a bit of leather.

In necklace #2, I used a variation of the Green Dyed Quartzite chips, wood rounds, Orange Swirl Czech glass lentils, and the Orange rounds as a symmetrical beaded necklace and pulled in this gorgeous ceramic pendant from one of my favorite Ceramicists- Eri Pottery.
 Half the fun, I must admit, was styling these photos :)

For this 3rd necklace, I wanted to use those large Ceramic Orange print rounds as the main focal. I separated them with the smaller wood rounds... pulled in some seed beads, and for the back of the necklace used the Quartzite chips, and larger wood rounds. The button is a fun filigree flower in a deeper Orange.   I never knew how much I loved Orange til now! 

And finally a bracelet! I kept with the asymmetrical theme, and used the orange rounds, small wood rounds, Large wood rondelles, and Red dyed Quartzite rounds in a fun but funky beading pattern. I used a pewter toggle from Tierra Cast. The Wood flower focal is from deep stash. To add some movement, I tied some of the green quartzite chips to the ends of the linen cording.
Love this one!

I had such a good time with this Pretty Palettes challenge. 
I hope you all join me next month! I will 
definitely be showing the beads here on the blog when they arrive, and you can
get to your local Michael's stores to get yours!

Happy Beading!

March 25, 2017

Come on In - it's Bead Soup Blog Party!

Welcome to the Bead Soup Blog hop!

If you are new and aren't familiar with the blog hop, here's how it works.  We (the participants) were paired up with a partner and the object of the game was to swap our most coveted hoarded beads, along with coordinating pieces if we chose to.   Once we got the beads in the mail, our only task was to create something using the beads we were sent and to blog about it on Hop day. Which is TODAY! yay!

My partner this go-around was the lovely Ann Schroeder.  You can find her blog and what I sent to her, HERE> ANN'S BLOG ....BUT WAIT! Don't go yet!!  You haven't seen MY piece yet!

So as you can see above, Ann sent me a wonderful assortment of coordinating beads.  The top Left was the Piece de Resistance.   A lovely Ceramic lentil from Joan Miller Porcelain.  She also seen some Wooly Wire, some faceted stones, a lovely handmade hook clasp, Linen cording, Sari Silk, and a couple of strands of glass.

I have to be honest. I procrastinated. I only just created my finished piece, yesterday. YEP. Yesterday!  Nothing like working under pressure eh??

So I sat down this morning, and pulled out my beads.... and let them do the talking. It didn't take long! They had a lot to say!

I created a long Lariat style necklace using the Sari silk, the Joan Miller focal bead, and some of the stones and glass beads. I added in my own wire, and pewter Bird button from Green Girl Studios.

I am on a total bird kick lately so it was not a surprise that I pulled in a bird element for my finished piece. 

Flipping around online today, revealed that there is one overwhelming trend these days that cannot be ignored. The tassel. So I knew I wanted to incorporated some sort of tassel element in this piece.

I used the linen cording, to string the glass bead dangles. And frayed the bottoms of the cording for a bit of a more rustic look- to go along with the Sari silk.  On the ends of the silk, I added wire wrapped beads.

The Focal bead- is strung on the linen cording, and anchored onto the silk with knots.  The bird is anchored above the focal bead, And the silk is doubled and knotted, creating a natural button loop at the end, that attaches to the button at the front.

I wrapped wire around the silk necklace, and thread on a few of the faceted stones, for a little extra interest, and it provides a bit of structure to the necklace itself.

 I really dig it! It's just what I had envisioned and I think I showcased Ann's favorite beads in a unique and funky way! I can't wait to see what she thinks of it ... and I can't wait to see what she created!

Here is the blog hop list!

Happy Hopping!

Julia Lund-Trott
Jean Wells
Joelyn Bissing

March 20, 2017

Laurel's Bead Box- Dreaming of Mermaids

Who doesn't love a curated box of beads where all you have to do is pretty much assemble the beads?! I certainly do because it takes the guess work out of it, makes things a bit quicker,  and easier!

Meet my friend Laurel of Laurel Moon Jewelry. She's the mastermind behind the Laurel's Bead Box- be sure to follow her on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LaurelsBeadBox/

Laurel was kind enough to let me try a box- and she sent me the current blue green Dreaming of Mermaids themed box.  I agreed to review this box because I have been a long time fan of Laurel's etched copper pieces, and you may have seen them pop up in my designs in the past year. I kind of figured whatever it was she had up her sleeve was going to be great, and I was right.

First of all. Get a load of this- it comes in this awesome reusable round box. I LOVE that!

But the magic, is INSIDE!

Taken from the ETSY listing:
This is the special edition "Dreaming of Mermaids" debut box! It contains:

*a handmade ceramic wave pendant by Melanie Brooks from Earthenwood Studios

*a handmade ceramic "Dream" pendant by Diane Hawkey

*a handmade pewter mermaid bead by Green Girl Studios

*a handmade etched copper mermaid pendant featuring an amazing design by Cynthia Thornton from Green Girl Studios and etched by me - Laurel Moon Copper

*an assortment of freshwater pearls

*an assortment of apatite, cooperite, and amazonite semiprecious stone beads

*an assortment of faceted Czech glass rondelles

*an assortment of shell pendants

*an antiqued copper beadcap

*an assortment of vintage German glass beads

*a thread tassel

That's an exceptional collection of components that all coordinate together for the Mermaid theme! I love a good ocean theme, especially in the dead of winter when all I can think about is having sun on my face. This box retails for $40. You could also check out the rest of the Etsy shop to get any other additional beads and components to go with this collection- Laurel has a large inventory of premium beads!

It didn't take me long to get creating with this set, and I sat down and created two pieces so far. I haven't used all of the components yet. I still have a few more things to work with but have set them aside so I could hurry up and get this blog post up. 

I made this necklace first- using the Pewter mermaid pendant, pearls, stones, etched copper pendant, and large shell pendant. I brought in some other freshwater pearls and clasp from my stash to finish the piece off.

This awesome Curlique hook and eye clasp is from Stinky Dog Beads- and I pulled it out and wondered how the heck I was supposed to use it. I think it could be used with leather and some glue. But I decided to use some brass wire and created attachments with wire wraps.

The second piece I created was a bracelet, using the Diane Hawkey Dream charm, and thread tassel. I pulled in some glass drop seed beads, and some glow-y matte sea glass beads from Stinky Dog Beads. The vintage shell shaped button pulls it all together! I really love both of these pieces!

All in all a really fun collection to work with. If you are looking for a bead kit with EVERYTHING you need to finish a piece of jewelry, this isn't it. This is a collection of focals and beads that can be used with other beads and components such as findings and wire- from your own collection- finish a piece(s) of jewelry. But, most of us have this stuff on hand, right?? I think it's a fun way to challenge yourself, and get thinking a little bit outside the box. I probably could have tried using all of the components together in one piece, but instead decided to make several pieces instead. 

There are kits available in Laurel's Etsy shop now ! Snag yours now and be sure to tag your finished pieces on social media #laurelsbeadbox so that we can see all the different interpretations!