Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Which fabric to choose for shibori flower project?

I want to make a non-wearable piece, just a pretty bead and embroidery picture, and I'm having trouble deciding which fabric should be the background.  I started out with a whole bunch of fabrics and narrowed down over a few hours.

The two contenders are both pieces of muslin that I free-style marbled years and years ago.  As you can see, the one above is subtle and doesn't interfere with the focal pieces.

BUT, the other has more of the colors of the flowers in it, and seems to be a slightly better match, although it is a busier pattern.  Which would you choose?

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Monday, July 21, 2014

Bead Journal Project: July 2014

I am very very excited about this new piece that I did for the Bead Journal Project this month!  I have been looking for other textiles that would give an organic look to my work like pleated shibori silk ribbon does, and I stumbled upon metal mesh ribbon.  Not that the two look alike, that's not what I mean.  I was looking for that organic quality that the silk has, and the metal mesh ribbon seemed to be a distinct possibility.  You can stretch it and bend it, pinch it and fold it, stick stuff inside it, and best of can easily stitch through it.  So here is my first attempt, in all it's turquoise-y glory!

I need to thank Fire Mountain Gems for sending me the metal mesh ribbon to experiment with.  All of the beads and the ribbon that I used, except for the focals, can be found at the link above.



Copyright 2014 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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Friday, July 18, 2014

heART beats from other blogs!

Carmi's Art/Life World
It is wonderful to see how a bit of fabric ribbon and a button can be featured into a new beaded cuff.

Resin Crafts Blog
There are inexpensive bamboo tiles that can easily be turned into wearable jewels with some simple resin application techniques.

Mixed Media Artist
Cyndi is head-over-heels in love with a new book on reclaiming and upcycling textiles!

Crafty Cupcake "Recipe" Calls for Styrofoam and Glue
Not only are they cute, these cupcakes are fun to make. They’re guaranteed to be sugar-free, gluten-free, calorie-free and cute as the dickens.

Back to Amigurumi
Crafty Princess is loving amigurumi again with this new project that was a tad challenging.

Fire Mountain Gems and Beads

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Beads from

I received a wonderful package of buttons and beads from Bead & Button Company, UK.  They are a leading shopping site in Great Britain, located in North Lancashire.

The soft colors of these buttons and the seed beads reminded me of a special piece of pleated silk shibori ribbon that I've been hording...time to break it out, I guess!  In a few weeks, I expect to have a project to show you.

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Monday, July 14, 2014

Royal Pearls necklace

When I found these pretty gold-plated filigree rounds, I knew that they were destined to become the delicate supports for a pearl necklace. I chose rose hued fresh water pearls, but you could substitute whatever color you wanted, or use completely different beads instead!

Materials & Tools 
22 mm gold-plated filigree rounds, 9
Fresh water pearl, 35
2mm gold-plated rounds, 56
2” gold-plated head pins, 19
24” of 24 gauge gold colored wire, cut into 3” pieces
12” gold-plated stringing wire, .015” diameter
4 gold-plated crimp beads
Gold-plated chain, 3 - 4”
Gold hook
Wire cutters
Round nose pliers
Flat nose pliers

1. Slide a pearl and a 2 mm gold-plated round onto 18 head pins. Create a wrapped loop with each so that there are 2 dangles hanging from the bottom of each of 9 filigree rounds.

2. Connect the filigree rounds together as follows: Turn a small wrapped loop around the upper side hole of one filigree round using a 3” piece of 24 gauge wire. Slide on a pearl between two gold rounds, and create another wrapped loop around the next filigree round. Continue connecting in this way until all 9 are linked.

3. Cut your piece of beading wire in half. Crimp one piece to each outside filigree round. Add 3-4 inches of pearls and 2mm gold-plated rounds. I alternated 2 gold-plated rounds with each pearl.

4. On one end, crimp the wire around a hook, and work the end back through the last two gold-plated rounds. Clip the wire end off close. On the other end, crimp the wire around a length of chain to make the necklace adjustable. Make sure the chain links are big enough to accommodate the hook.

5. Create a dangle with the last head pin, sliding on a pearl between two gold-plated rounds. Wrap a loop around the free end of the chain. You can wear this necklace snug like a choker, or longer if it suits your clothing neckline.

Copyright 2014 Cyndi Lavin. All rights reserved. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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Friday, July 11, 2014

heART beats from other blogs!

Crafting Discount Alert!
Get 25% off a cool Hobby Holster with this discount code good until the end of the month

Mixed Media Artist
Are you interested in wearable art? Cyndi has gathered a number of her tutorials that will move you beyond just jewelry!

Art Bead Scene
Check out Kylie Parry's beautiful post on summer inspiration!

How to Make a Page Map Card Unique to You
Page maps, layouts, or sketches - whatever you call them - are a great way to: 1. Learn basic design principles; 2. Come up with a quick design on the spur of the moment; and 3. Observe how other artists interpret the sketch - honestly, no two are ever alike.

Creative collaboration helps raise awareness and funds for a worthy cause.
Andrew participated in the Beads of Courage Design Challenge. Check out pictures from the Bead&Button Show and see images of his finished piece.

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Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Jewelry business tips for the summer

If you treat your jewelry making as a business, then you know that there is never really any time of the year that is "time off".  I've gathered up a few posts that I think are especially helpful, so maybe you'll sneak in some business strategizing at the beach!

Is it still worth starting an online publication today?

10 Things you're doing wrong with your craft photography and how to fix them

Designing an MBA
How to improve the SEO for your online store in less than 5 minutes

Jewelry Making Journal
Tips I wish I'd known

Luann Udell
The Numbers Game

Beading Daily
Set your jewelry business up for success

Professional Artist Month
10 Tips for improving your art sales

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