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Always Time for Cats

One of my bracelets won a "Polly's Picks" award in last year's Rings&Things design contest.  That's right...last year!  I forgot to share the tutorial with you.  Sorry!

Never pass up an opportunity to combine techniques and imagery that you love.  During my busy days, I sometimes have to remind myself that there are two small furry creatures who share my house and need a turn receiving my attention.  This mixed media bracelet is my reminder  :-)

I used finger-pull sliding closet door hardware to create the cabochons, with epoxy and cat images.  They are mounted on ultra-suede and have embroidery embellishments in the form of cat fur and whiskers made from beads.  The other alternating disks are decorated with watch faces and parts to remind me to slow down and pet the kitties. 

Materials & Tools

Disk and loop bracelet, brass
Watch face parts
Seed bead assortment
Epoxy 330 
Black Nymo thread, size O
Beading needles, size 12
Scraps of ultra suede
Flatback rhinestones
3/4 inch sliding closet door hardware, 3
Cat images, 3

1. Size and print out cat images (or other pictures of your choice).  Cut them out in 3/4 inch circles.

2 . Stack and adhere 4 groups of watch parts and rhinestones, using Epoxy 330.

3. Mix Epoxy 330 and fill closet slides half way.  Let it set for a few minutes and carefully place the images in the cups.  Fill the slides to the top and let them dry and harden overnight.  Epoxy 330 dries quickly, but it's still good to let it cure for awhile. 

4. Glue the slides to small scraps of ultra suede.  Surround each slide with two rows of back stitch, using size 11/0 seed beads in your choice of colors.  Step-by-step instruction for all the stitches can be found in my free e-book chapter on Bead Embroidery Stitches.

5.  Stitch loops and spikes, anchoring them to the inner row of back stitched seed beads.  I used 11 beads in each loop and 6 beads in each stacked spike.  These two stitches, alternated around the circle, give a lot of texture, and remind me of cat whiskers and fur.

6.  Clip the ultra suede close to the outer circle of beads, and stitch a small three-bead picot over every other bead around the circle. 

7.  Glue another piece of ultra suede to the bottom of each embroidered piece to hide the stitches.  When the glue is dry, carefully clip the bottom piece of fabric even with the top piece.

8.  Glue the watch parts and beaded images to the bracelet disks.    

Copyright 2010 Cyndi Lavin. 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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flyingbeader said…
Congrats! and looks like a fun tutorial. Thanks
Cyndi L said…
Thank you Dot!
JoaniB said…
I can't wait to make this! What an ingenious use of unusual supplies! I'm impatient though--I want to be wearing it RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!! It is just so cool! I literally drooled when I first saw it! Much better than chocolate, for me. Keep up the great work, and thanks for sharing your secrets!
Cyndi L said…
Joani, you're really welcome! I can't wait to see the one you make with these basic instructions...I'm sure it will be wonderful :-)
The Beading Gem said…
It's a cat's meow of a project! Just love it! You can tell I am a cat lover. Just off to post it on my Facebook page!
Cyndi L said…
Why thank you!
Unknown said…
Cindi, OMG this is gorgeous and ingenious!!!! I'm so lovin' it. I would love to make one like that. You should sell kits with all the pieces packaged. Thank you for sharing the tutorial. Now it can go on the list of 1 million other projects I want to do.

Hugs...Tracy :)
Cyndi L said…
Aren't you sweet! I hope this project moves to the *top* of your list ;-)
Brilliant, Cyndi! I looked high and low for little frames to do epoxy pieces and ended up paying an arm and a leg at the craft store. Sliding closet door pulls - absolutely brilliant.

The bracelet is wonderful - a bit vintage and a bit steampunk. I can see why it won; but can't understand how you forgot to tell us. Belated Congratulations!
Cyndi L said…
Because I put the information in the wrong!
Eden said…
Sliding closet door rings!! Who would have thought!! You are so inventive and that is a beautiful bracelet!! So neat that you made it with your animal friends too!
Cyndi L said…
Thanks Eden! These little hardware bits are so much less expensive than "real" bezels...but more expensive than the bottle caps that I often use ;-)
Cherie said…
I'm with Eileen - I looked everywhere for little frames and never thought of these door pulls. such a great idea!