Friday, February 24, 2017

Swap n Hop 2017 - The Goodies Arrive and Partner Reveal!

I recently signed up for round 3 of the Bead Peeps Swap n Hop. In a bead swap participants are paired up and send each other a little stash of beads to work with. Then, on a specific day, everyone posts on their blogs what they made with the stash they were sent and we all "hop" around to each others' blogs oohing and aahing over the results. It's loads of fun and a great way for a beadworker to force themselves out of what they typically work with, be it color or type of beads. This year I was paired up with Renetha Stanziano of Lamplight Crafts. She is extremely talented and it was fun to see that she has also done a Beadwork Magazine reader's challenge and participated in Jean Power's secret beadalong last summer. One of the cool twists this year with the Swap n Hop is that we can make something with the same supplies we sent out to see what each of us does with the same materials. I'm happy to have enough matching supplies to what I sent Renetha that I will be able to make something too that "matches" what she makes. In the past with bead swaps I have always felt jealous of my partner because by the time I'm ready to send out my package, I'm in love with what I'm sending and want it for myself. So, keeping some for myself to use is the best of both worlds!

I was excited to see what Renetha sent me in the mail and excited to see that there was just so much variety in her stash. It's almost all different focal beads, so the first thing I need to do is decide which to use first. My hubby really likes the big glass donut at the top of the picture, while I love the giant swirly focal in the bottom left. Of course, lately I've been tending to want to attach everything to some beading foundation and a piece of silk, so we shall see. The reveal date is April 8th, so check back then to see what I made; it's a secret until then!

Check out Renetha's work HERE.
See all the fun goodies Renetha sent me!!

This is the stash I sent to her. I have an near identical, slightly smaller clasp and duplicates of everything else. Orange and red are not my normal colors to work with, so it will be fun!

Monday, January 16, 2017


I really love making cuff bracelets. On the flip side...I never wear them myself. I have these little chicken wrists and the big ones are always just too big for me. So, I started making thinner cuffs like the chartreuse one on the right and someday, I'll make one just for me.

Thursday, January 12, 2017


The holiday season was really busy, so I didn't have time to do any beading. Now I have more time, but my inspiration is lacking. Finishing this will be my first goal for the year. I also have another book fan art design in mind and just ordered some silk tonight to use in it. That will get me motivated!!

Saturday, December 3, 2016


I made this pendant over a year ago and really love the beetle look to it. At the time, I didn't know what to do for a chain, so I strung some large black fire-polished beads with turquoise 8/o seed beads and called it a day. The problem was, with all of those fire-polished beads (6mm-10mm in size) the necklace was just so heavy and I didn't like it. This fall, I decided a re-do was in order, so I made a spiral necklace with two-hole triangles and I like it much better. This re-do is now up in my etsy shop if you want to take a look. (Oh, and I think, if you flip the pendant upside down, it kind of looks like a muppet.) :)

Friday, June 24, 2016

Book Fan Art

So, I read a lot. A lot. Last year I read The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo and fell in love with the world she created in the story. One night I saw a basic charm bracelet someone had made on Etsy that was fan jewelry for the book. That was all the inspiration I needed. I bought myself some similar charms and designed this necklace. The shape of the pendant pays homage to the onion top buildings on the cover of the book and within the story, and each of the charms represents a mythical creature the main character seeks to amplify her power. The main character is a Sun Summoner, represented by the yellow and the antagonist is called the Darkling, a man who summons darkness, hence all the black.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Teacher gifts

I think my kids' teachers may be spoiled. Why buy them an end of the year gift when you can make one yourself?

Sunday, May 15, 2016


Here we are's reveal day!! Yay! Way back in, gosh, January I signed up for another round of the Bead Peeps Swap 'n' Hop. For one of these hops, participants are partnered up and send each other a bead soup. Then, before a certain date the participant is to make something with what is sent and reveal it in a post on their blog on reveal day. This is my 4th swap of this sort and each time I have found a way to push myself and make something that I didn't expect.

 This time I was paired up with Deborah Adpodaca and she sent me a soup inspired by the ocean near her in sunny Florida. Here is a link to her blog. Let me tell you, those beachy tones made me feel warm when I received them in the middle of winter! As it turned out, I was in the middle of a few projects when I received what she sent, so I had to hold off and finish those up before I could move on. I try not to stop in the middle of something and don't have many UFOs hanging around because of it. Even if I don't love what I'm making, usually by the end either I do, I've learned something from finishing it, or someone else loves it. ANYWAY, here is a reminder picture of what I sent her, followed by a picture of what she sent me.
What I sent to Deborah: Shibori Ribbon, Lampwork beads and a yummy clasp 
What Deborah sent me.

As I was designing, I found that the focal that Deborah sent to me,was going to be a challenge simply due to its size. Actually, as soon as I saw it, I knew I was going to be making a larger necklace. Since I'm obsessed with Shibori ribbon (Seriously, I have more colors than I could probably use in all of the projects I could make in a year and just ordered more at my son's T-ball practice this morning! I can't help myself!!) I knew that needed to come into play as well. I typically order my ribbon through Glennis Dolce, the maker of this wonderful ribbon, or Aria Design Studio who also sells it (and by the 1/2 yard too, which means I can buy even MORE!) I just fell in love with the "Oil on Water" colorway and once it arrived I knew that it was meant to be with this big focal. As it turned out though, many of the seed beads were just a little "off" with this ribbon, but I was able to use some of the awesome twisted brown bugle beads she sent. I was hoping to use some of the big white beads because they reminded me of the bubbles in the focal, but the contrast against the blue silk was just too great. 

As I worked, I planned on it to be much more wavy and not as symmetrical as it ended up. The beaded rope was a challenge for me only in that I had a hard time figuring out what to do for that piece of the necklace. I used the "Briar Rose" spiral stitch pattern with two hole triangles that I picked up from my LBS (the pattern and the triangles). The two hole triangles really complement the triangle shape of the focal. End result: I love the whole thing! Even still, I'll be posting it to my Etsy site soon. 

The mess to clean up before my next project can begin!!