Friday, August 31, 2012

post bead soup glow

I'm basking in the glow of the aftermath of BSBP! I'd like to thank all of those that left me such nice comments on my Bead Soup Blog Party post. I am sorry to say that I have not had a chance to visit most folks, but will work on it in the coming weeks.

I thought I'd show you some other things that have not made onto the blog yet. These are two necklaces I finished recently.

The first is an enameled flower, made using the rubber O-rings. I'm really happy with the O-ring solution. The red beads are the same ones I sent to my bead soup partner - they are vintage Czechoslovakian glass beads, and 2 striped seed beads, just for fun!
I had this next focal semi-assembled for at least a year (or more), sitting on the desk, waiting for the muse to show up. It's mother of pearl with a Vintaj dragonfly. The tear drop drops are also mother of pearl, and the other beads are faux pearls. I had a bag of mixed aqua beads, and these were all in a little bag on the desk. I don't even remember where they came from. But, they finally caught my eye on the same night the focal did, and here's the result.

Have a wonderful holiday weekend everyone!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Bead Soup is served! Hope you're hungry!

Lori Anderson has hosted the Bead Soup Blog Party for several years now, and I was always wanting to jump in - but this is the first year I finally did! I was hesitant, I guess, because I was a little afraid. Afraid I'd run out of time. Afraid my soup ingredients would be too much of a challenge. Afraid I wouldn't measure up. You name it, I was afraid of it. But Lori added later reveal dates, so I felt comfortable with having lots of time. And as for my other fears, well, they were unfounded. My partner is Jennifer Justman, a Super Mom and a talented artist and an all around nice person. Please check her out - she's really fantastic (blog)(etsy)! I already blogged about the gorgeousness she sent me, so we won't re-hash it.
I set out to try to use ALL my soup ingredients. I almost did it!

Here's what I made:
I made the main dish first. I used the Marsha Neal Focal and the clasp that Jenn made for me, along with the Fallen Angel Brass filigree, chain and bead caps, one of the pieces of sari silk, red agate beads, and some of the little orange beads, pumpkin jade - they are really pretty! I made the wire bale and 2 connectors out of black annealed steel wire. I realize now that I did not get a good shot of Jenn's clasp - sorry girlfriend!
Marsha Neal focal, red agate, pumpkin jade, Fallen Angel Brass (including the clasp Jenn made), sari silk.

A closer look at the focal! I made the wire bale.

I knotted the sari silk (which is heavier than most, and knitted!) to resemble chain links.
I had thought that I would use more of the green beads in the main dish, but it just didn't come together for me. Since I leave my unfinished "thoughts" on my bead desk, I just happened to notice that the fire agate beads in my soup ingredients looked fantastic with this Humblebeads focal I had laying there, so, I made this simple necklace. I really love it, and now I'm in the mood for fall weather.
A simple necklace. Humblebeads focal, Fire Agate (from soup) with Trinity bead caps and Vintaj chain.

A closer look - the Fire Agate looks perfect with that focal!
I don't make bracelets very often, because I don't wear them. I guess I find them too distracting around my wrist. These green beads were so pretty from every angle, I knew I did not want to partially cover them up with my usual bead caps. I just wire wrapped links, and attached them to make a bracelet.  They are Jasper, according to Jenn. I also used the Fallen Angel Brass butterfly and jumprings (from my soup), and Vintaj clasp.
I wouldn't get any work done with this on my wrist!!

The beads are really fantastic close up.
 I made a second bracelet. I had just received an order from Vintaj with the Asian frame, and thought it would make a pretty bracelet component - I bent it slightly to curve around the wrist. I managed to use the Red Agate and Adventurine beads from my soup. The bead caps are from God knows where - sorry!

The Adventurine beads fit perfectly in the Asian frame.
And of course, there are earrings....
I picked the 2 agate beads with the most banding. Those darn round beads roll, so you can only see the banding in one bead...
Pumpkin Jade and Red Agate - simple, but they have lots of swing!
Another pair of earrings...
Even simpler, for those that like smaller earrings.
And another pair, a little more elaborate.....
These are Adventurine, with Vintaj flowers.

I have some sari silk left over that I'm saving for other projects. And there are 2 Adventurine beads and a couple jumprings left over that will find their way into future designs.
Thanks Lori for being a helpful and inspiring host.
Thank you Jenn for my wonderful ingredients. I've enjoyed our new friendship. I can't wait to see what you made with the soup I sent you!!
Please visit Lori's BSBP blog for the list of participant's to see the other fabulous creations!!

Thanks for visiting my blog!
(Forgive me for posting early. I can't post on Saturday, and I don't trust Blogger's scheduling feature. It has let me down in the past)

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Floral Cascade is up to interpretation

By now, if you're a jewelry designer, you've bought, or read, or at least heard about Barbara Lewis' book Torch-Fired Enamel Jewelry: A Workshop in Painting with Fire. After all, it was the #1 craft book on Amazon last year. I have definitely been bitten by the enameling bug, as you already know if you've read previous posts here on the blog. In her book, she has a necklace design called "Floral Cascade". The following is my interpretation of it, sort of. I must also give a shout out to my friend Cynthia Johnsrud of Ornamental Style, because she also did her own take on the design, which is really what gave me the inspiration to try this design. Thank you Cyndi and Barbara for all the inspiration you've given me.

I used cotton cord instead of wire for the "tendrils".
I made beads in various shades of aqua and blue. I think Barbara's necklace was multi-colored and has the bigger beads at the top and the smaller beads at the bottom....but I gotta be me ;-)

Come back on Saturday to see my Bead Soup creations for the third reveal of the Bead Soup Blog Party hosted by Lori Anderson!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!