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Showing posts from December, 2013

Merry Christmas to all!

Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade beaded jewelry , wearable art , beads , jewelry , necklace , mixed media , beading

Bye for awhile!

I'm taking a week off to spend with these people...can you blame me?  :-)  Be good while I'm gone, and get all your New Year's art resolutions in order! Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade beaded jewelry , wearable art , beads , jewelry , necklace , mixed media , beading

Yay for Barbara!

Congratulations to Barbara, who won the three strands of large glass pearls for herself and her daughter!  Yay Barbara!!

Bead Journal Project: December 2013

Single St Petersburg Chain, in progress So last month, I showed you the Double St Petersburg Chain Stitch in its embroidered form.  I was really happy with it, and decided to see if I could come up with a way to add the Single St Petersburg Chain Stitch to embroidered pieces as well for the last month of the 2013   Bead Journal Project .  By adding a bezel to the central cabochon and keeping the stitch fairly small and tight, it ended up being a very cool type of fringe.  Since the pieces were small, I ended up making two of them with month: The central bead cabochon came from   The Best Beads . Bored By Back Stitch  will teach you how to create twelve different bead embroidery motifs, using nine different beadweaving stitches.  Learn how beadweaving stitches can be morphed into beautiful bead embroidered motifs, created to surround and enhance your cabochons or accent beads. The specific motifs you will learn are designs that use embroidered forms of

Bead & jewelry blogging round-up!

A Bead A Day Have lots of beads, but no new ideas? How about making a sparkly beaded pendant and finish it with a simple ribbon? Resin Crafts Blog Pop by to see the famous "A Christmas Story" leg lamp turned into a pendant made of resin! Make some adorable wine charms that you can also add to your Christmas tree. Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done! Do you remember the old TV ad, "Time to make the donuts"? Jean had that running through her head when she wrote this piece on making the jewelry and photographing it !

Super-fast and easy jewelry projects to the rescue (because you waited too long again!)

I know, I know!  You don't have to make excuses to me...I'm in exactly the same boat, because every single year I promise myself that THIS YEAR will be different and I'll start early to make my gifts, but do I listen to myself???  Nooooooooooo! So here are the fastest and easiest project tutorials that I've posted over the years.  Each one will take you under 20 minutes if you've got all the right materials and tools handy.  If not...well, I can't help you there! The world's easiest earrings Large bead necklace with pendant A sparkling pin Kidney wire earrings Wire-wrapped beach rock The simplest pendant necklace Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade beaded jewelry , wearable art , beads , jewelry , necklace , mixed media , beading

Recent publications: December 2013

The Jewelry Maker's Design Book: An Alchemy of Objects: Techniques and Design Notes for One-of-a-kind Jewelry ... by Deryn Mentock How to Make 100 Bead Embroidery Motifs: Inspiration and Instructions for Plant, Animal, Abstract, and Icon Designs ... by Genevieve Crabe Bead Embroidery (Essential Stitch Guide) by Shelley Cox Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade beaded jewelry , wearable art , beads , jewelry , necklace , mixed media , beading

Holiday tutorials from SoftFlex

Many of you probably know Sara Oehler, aka SoftFlexGirl.  But did you know she's a whiz at making Christmas ornaments and decorations from beads and craft wire?   These are all fast and easy, for when you're running out of time... Beaded holiday ornament using bead wire Craft wire Christmas tree Beaded ornament cover Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade beaded jewelry , wearable art , beads , jewelry , necklace , mixed media , beading

Snowflake pendant or ornament

Snowflake ornament wire forms are a lot of fun to bead up and hang on a tree at Christmas time, but they’re also fun to bead up and wear! To make a snowflake pendant rather than an ornament, I chose the smallest size forms available, but you can easily use the larger ones and clip off the excess length with wire cutters. This pendant looks equally good hanging from a matching beaded necklace or from a plain silver chain. Try different color combinations too: who says that snowflakes have to be blue and white? The step by step photos that I've included use a different color combination, mostly so that the beads would show up better in the photographs, but wouldn't it be fun to have snowflake pendants in lots of different colors? Materials & Tools 4 ½ inch snowflake wire forms 28 gauge silver-toned craft wire, about 3 ft 6 each of 6 different beads, graduating from 2mm to 12 mm (36 beads total) Size 11/0 seed beads in matching colors 6 silver-toned m

Bead & jewelry blogging round-up!

Resin Crafts Blog If you want to know how you can wear a beautiful paper package...come see the Mariage Frere Tea necklace! Carmi's Art/Life World Organizing a blog hop is a big job. When you have fabulous results like this are excited to share! Come see the Dazzle-it Tassels blog hop for inspiration! Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done! Jean explores what's new at one of her fave sites, Beaducation! Jewelry Making Are you ready for Santa? Get ready with these cute holiday earrings. Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade beaded jewelry , wearable art , beads , jewelry , necklace , mixed media , beading

Gift books for the holidays

Last year I shared a list of books with you that I still think is pretty stellar (as in, "I worked really hard on it!").  I would still recommend all of last year's picks if you don't already have the ones you want, so what I'm going to do this year is just list out the books that are new this year in the various categories that everyone seems to like! My top pick for everyone: Suzanne Golden Presents: Interviews with 36 Artists Who Innovate with Beads For Beginners: Do you know someone who wants to get started with beading and jewelry making? These are all good books which teach the basics of their various media.   I Can Right Angle Weave  by  Mabeline Gidez   I Can Herringbone   by Melissa Grakowsky   Simply Stylish Crystal Jewelry  by the Editors of BeadStyle magazine   Project: Earrings  by Kalmbach Press Multistrand Jewelry   by the Editors of BeadStyle magazine Bewitching Bead & Wire Jewelry   by Suzanne Tourtillott The Mis

Book review: The Missing Link

May I just say...this book is awesome!  If you've gotten bored with adding the same old links over and over again to all of your jewelry projects, you're going to be amazed and thrilled with Cindy Wimmer's new book, The Missing Link .  Published by Interweave/F+W Media , and listing for $22.95, this is the book that both non-wireworkers and beginner wireworkers have been waiting for.  The focus is on the 30 original and beautiful links that you'll learn how to make in ascending order of difficulty.  And then the fun really begins!  But first, the basics... The first section of the book contains the necessary and important information needed on types of wire.  Since people are using many more metals these days, both for cost-cutting and for looks, it's important to know the properties of the metals that you may not have used before.  Cindy has information on metals, wire gauges, shapes, and hardness.  Then she follows with the low down on the minimal basic tool

Book review: Shaped Beadwork and Beyond

Diane Fitzgerald has been very prolific this year, and each volume has been better than the last!  My previous favorite is Shaped Beadwork , so I was thrilled to receive the new Shaped Beadwork and Beyond , published by Lark Books .   Forty new projects, not to mention variations too numerous to even count. Diane again focuses on three-dimensional geometric peyote stitched shapes, taking basic shapes introduced in book one in lots of exciting new directions.  No matter how complex the projects seem, they are made up from component parts that are clearly illustrated and explained. Look at that gorgeous star on the front cover...wouldn't you LOVE to have some of those on your Christmas tree this year?  There's still time... After a chapter on the basics, Diane covers triangles, teardrops, beaded beads, bezels, pointed ovals, and concludes with a chapter full of miscellaneous three-dimensional projects for good measure! Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade bea

Yay for Alicia!

Congratulations to Alicia !  She is the winner of the box of acrylic display pieces from Achieve Display !!

Book review: Jewelry Photography

My friend Elaine Luther is a woman of many many talents.  You've seen her work featured here when we've devoted a month to metal clay.  In fact, her resource list is one of my most oft-consulted links that I return to time and again since metal clay is something that I only occasionally play with. Well, Elaine has also compiled a wonderful resource for anyone who is dissatisfied with the state of their own jewelry photography.  We all know it's tough to photograph those small shiny objects, but we hate to think about putting out big bucks to hire a professional.  Elaine has advice for you to do it right all by yourself, and she even lists where you can get the materials you need.  And...I think she's nuts...her booklet is only 99 cents!  It is designed for a Kindle, but you can use the free version of the Cloud Reader and read it right on your desktop.  Check out Jewelry Photography: You Can Do It!  by Elaine Luther.   Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , ha

Giveaway: Glass pearls in bright red and green

I've got three strands of big, brightly colored glass pearls that I just know I am never going to use.  But maybe one of you would!  These came from Auntie's Beads a few years ago, and the Christmas colors caught my eye recently.  It's time to release them back into the world and see what happens! ***Giveaway Alert!!!*** What I've got is a strand of 16mm beads in green, a strand of 14mm beads also in green, and a strand of 14mm beads in red.  These are BIG who would like to have them?   Please read this carefully!   Leave me a  comment here and  include your email address .  If I don't see your email address, I won't be able to contact you.  No contact, no win, and I simply have to go on to the next person.  You are welcome to spell it out if you'd prefer, for example, cyndi at mazeltovjewelry dot com.  If you tweet or post on Facebook or other social spots about the contest, you can leave a second comment and be entered twice!  Deadline

"Christmas Memories" pendants

"Christmas Memories" pendant, larger than life size to show detail The great thing about green computer circuit board is that there’s still so much of it sitting around, out of date and useless, just waiting to be made into something else. And since it’s already green, why not use it as the base for Christmas Trees? If you don’t happen to have any old circuit boards lying around your house, just ask your friends ~ you’ll probably have boards coming out your ears by the end of the week! Materials & Tools Green circuit board Broken rhinestone and other jewelry, charms Two-part epoxy Hang tag with single hole Jump ring Sharpie pen Jig saw or coping saw File Heavy-duty wire cutters Mixing cup and stick for epoxy Chain nose pliers 1. Cut a classic Christmas tree shaped triangle from the circuit board. You can create a paper pattern, draw the shape on the circuit board or just cut freehand. I like to gently round the bottom edge of my tree, but it’

Bead & jewelry blogging round-up!

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton Sometimes you win. Sometimes you lose. Here's a collection of recent "beautiful losers" by Andrew. Carmi's Art/Life World  Phoomph. Not just for sewers. It is an ideal product for jewelers too! Resin Crafts A set of quilting themed rubber stamps create interesting jewels when you stamp them into resin clay! Art Bead Scene Check out this month's challenge piece - the vibrant Winter Landscape from Wassily Kandinsky. Brandi leads us through it's rich and saturated hues with her Palette post. Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!  Interested in a beautiful jewelry design technique? Jean reviews Rebecca Ann Combs' book, Kumihimo. Basics & Beyond Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade beaded jewelry , wearable art , beads , jewelry , necklace , mixed media , beading

It's not too early to start...

More ideas to make your holiday gift giving all handmade this year! Click  tutorials  to see the rest. Leaf and vine earrings by Rena Klingenberg Kidney wire earrings by Rings&Things Copper bangels  by Monsters Circus Technorati Tags: bead embroidery , handmade beaded jewelry , wearable art , beads , jewelry , necklace , mixed media , beading

Book review: Making Chain Mail

I have really fallen in love with Kalmbach's "The Absolute Beginners Guide" series, and the most recent addition is no exception.  Lauren Andersen has written Making Chain Mail Jewelry for the series, and if you've got chain maille on your list of techniques to master in 2014, this book is a great place to start.  Check out this statement by Kalmbach: "Open.  Close.  It's that easy!"  It is, yes, they are right.  But in Lauren's capable hands, you see how opening and closing jump rings can become an art form! Crystal Cross bracelet It's so easy to follow the instructions in this book.  The photos are very clear, and different colors are used in the basic instructions so that you can easily tell how the rings are being manipulated.  You will learn seven basic weaves and then use them to create 18 beautiful chain maille projects, some super-simple and some which will challenge you to move ahead. So pick up your jump rings and two pai

Yay for Nancy!

Congratulations to Nancy Varan!  She is the winner of  Project: Necklaces !

Giveaway: Acrylic pieces from Achieve Display

1059 Acrylic Risers In late October, I introduced you to a company that specializes in display pieces for jewelry businesses (as well as other industries),  Achieve Display .   1338 Winged Earring Display Holder    1339 Slant back Earring Stand  Next week, I am going to send out a package to some lucky winner which will include a set of the small clear acrylic risers shown at the top of the post, a set of 10 of the winged earring displays in black acrylic, and a set of 10 slant back earring displays , also in black! ***Giveaway Alert!!!*** Would you like to win this selection of display pieces?   Please read this carefully!  What we want to know from you is what jewelry or bead display piece you've looked for and have been unable to find.  Maybe it doesn't even exist yet.   Leave me your answer  here and   include your email address .  If I don't see your email address, I won't be able to contact you.  No contact, no win, and I simply have to go

Hanukkah earrings

This pair of earrings is made in the traditional blues of Hanukkah, but when you see how easy they are to make, you might just want a pair in every color! The major materials you’ll need for these are paper and a disposable plate. You can choose scrapbooking paper, wrapping paper, or plain printer paper that you paint ~ I just recommend that you keep it lightweight. Your disposable plate can be either plastic (no foam) or the paper kind with the waxed finish. Materials & Tools Lightweight decorative paper Acrylic paints (optional) Paper or plastic disposable plate Waxed paper Liquid Laminate by Beacon Silver leafing pen Charms Ear wires and jump rings Sharpie pen Scissors Cosmetic sponge Awl or nail Chain nose pliers 1. Gather all your materials and tools. If you are going to paint your own papers, do that now, or else gather three coordinated colored papers that you wish to use. I used a single sheet of scrapbook paper and added thin washes of a