Archive | March 2012

laziest blogger ever!

I am sorry folks, I have been very remiss!  My only excuse is that working two jobs has left me with little time to create something to blog about, let alone time to blog about it!

I haven’t however been completely idle.  I did an overhaul of my collection and scrapped anything I didn’t like anymore for parts. and completely reorganized my supplies, which means I can now actually find things when I want them…shocking 😛

I did get some time to make a couple of new necklaces and start another chain maille project.  This was originally going to be a bracelet, but the more I think about it, the more I think it wants to be a necklace as well.  The inspiration came from the focal bead which is a large red cloisonne oval, and the chain maille is antique brass byzantine.

I have to wait to finish it though because I ran out of 6mm brass rings.

I did another couple of stranded necklaces as well.  One of which of course incorporates my favourite cloisonne beads.  The other however was inspired by some beads I came across at the shop.  I was working one afternoon and I was given these beads to string for sale.  Pale mottled blue that reminded me of old china dishes in a way. There was just something about them that caught my imagination and although I did promise myself that I would use up my current stash before buying anything else, I realized I had to have them.  I also got some filigree bead caps that just looked absolutely perfect with them.  I added some tiny fresh water pearls that I had liberated from a previous piece and VOILA!

I have to say I am really quite pleased with how it came out! Princess length and the effect I think is more than the sum of it’s parts, it feels very opulent even though the blue beads are just glass, something about the colour, and the bead caps gives it a very rich feeling.   Also with the green cloisonne and fresh water pearls, I found a really big pearl to put in the middle as a focal piece, I just need a good gold toggle for it.

One of the things I love about beading is that you can draw inspiration from one little thing and from that you can grow something wonderful.  A bead can catch your eye and you just know that you need to make something with it, even if you aren’t sure what that will be right away.

And speaking of that, I think I will go hang out in my workshop for a while.

Cheerio!

The joy of childhood wonder…how ever short the attention span.

I realized this morning that it has been a lot more than a week since my last post.  Admittedly, I haven’t really been doing a lot of beading lately.  Until yesterday when I took my two nieces to the bead shop where I work and letting them pick out beads that they like so they could make some memory wire.  The looks on their faces when the saw all of the beads was priceless.  They were in total awe of the shapes, colours and textures all around them and couldn’t wait to dive right in.  It was interesting to see which beads they chose to make their bracelets. One chose round red beads combined with smaller blue ones for a pattern, the younger just chose random ones.   The eldest also wanted to make a set for her mum, which I helped out with…ok, I did most of it, since the attention span of a 6 year old, is not always particularly long.  Either way, watching the kids have fun exploring the shop was great!

I did also make myself a memory wire bracelet with green beads in the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day, and I also managed to make another really cool bracelet of 9mm black nickel jump rings in the full Persian style, but the middle, I broke it up with a semi-precious donut. I think it might be aventurine, it is a beautiful soft milky aqua.

I don’t have any pictures at the moment, but I will post some as soon as I do.

Till next time!

Back to Basics…temporarily

So I just finished my first 6 day work week. I am completely pooped!  Friday was great though because I don’t start until 2pm, so my friend and fellow beadaholic Megan came over for tea, gossip and beading.  Whilst I awaited her arrival, I decided to use up some of my stash in a simple beaded necklace, 1 strand, nothing fancy.  It had been a long time since I had done something so simple, and forgot how satisfying it can be.  So while Meghan and I chatted away, I made another one.  Then I got ambitious and made a 3 stranded one.  It was nice to work with something other than metal rings for a day.  I am really quite pleased with the results too, 3 very different looks, using cloisonne beads, Swarovski crystals, Chinese crystals, freshwater pearls and left over seed beads.

…and, I just finished another one 😉   We had cloisonne on sale at the shop, couldn’t resist!

Of course, now I am going to sit down to another 9mm black nickel full Persian project…necklace this time…with beads..purple ones.

Tomorrow, Meghan and I are checking out Dragon’s Lair minerals tomorrow.  I have to stop buying until I use up what I have though.  The trouble is, I find something in my stash that I think will be great, but then, oh, it needs such and such to finish it or to go with it…sigh…

 

I am certain that I will be posting tomorrow with pictures of my guilt when I get back from my little “reconnaissance” trip tomorrow.

a busy day!

So, today I worked at the bead shop and on my lunch hour I decided to try out a new chain maille design that a customer brought in, in a book a few months back.  It’s called Candy, and is a very simple design that incorporates glass donuts as well as 9 and 7 mm jump rings.  Like I was saying in my last post, even though it is a very simple construction, the effect is quite dynamic.

I also polished off a full persian in 9mm jump rings, which is quite nice, because it isn’t quite as stiff as rope-like as the 7mm version.

I also managed to finish my in progress crochet project. 

PHEW….I need a break!

A working lunch

So most people sit and chat while they have lunch in the office cafeteria, some read a book, some do a crossword, or in my office, watch soap operas on the big screen.  

Not me!  oh no no no.  I bead…well, more specifically, I make chain maille!  Yesterday I started working on a stainless steel (or aluminum…ok not sure what it is) 6-1 bracelet 4 rings wide.  Today I switched it up, I ate my ham n’ cheese and then started AND finished a simple wedding knot bracelet in black nickel and silver.  I did also carry on some pleasant conversation with coworkers.  

I don’t know what it is about chain maille that I love so much, sometimes I find it zen and easy and sometimes I want to chuck my pliers and all my jump rings across the room in rage, but I keep coming back for more.  I can’t help it.  I love the way it looks, I love the feel of metal on my skin, I love the fact that it can look amazingly intricate and yet be simple, or look simple and be very difficult to construct.   I love that the variations are endless, whether you combine colours, or include beads in your designs, you can use a totally standard pattern and make something totally unique.  

In a fit of nostalgia, here are a few of my very first chain maille pieces and my all time favourite bracelet!

Byzantine

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Queen’s or Box Chain

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and here is my all time, favourite, wear it everyday Celtic wedding-knot cuff!

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Well, back to my crochet, really want to finish it before I start something else. 

Cheers!

Back again, and something to show for it!

Hello All! 

I know, long time no post, but I swear I have been working!  The 12-2 flower demos at the shop went really well and I think I turned a few people on to working with chain maille!  Outside of the demo’s though I haven’t done any chain maille this last week.  I know…there are actually no jump rings in my couch cushions!  What there are in my couch cushions is seed beads, and little chips of blue sandstone…I have made two totally different crochet necklaces and I must say, I do enjoy the process, because you can take the exact same thing, a single chain stitch and make two TOTALLY different necklaces!

1. The Fall leaves Necklace, done on Super-Lon Beading Cord, multi-filament thread with sead beads.

The second one, Starry Night, is made with blue sandstone chips, and glass pearls on 28 guage silver plated wire.  I totally different effect!

While the crocheted thread is soft and drapes nicely, the crocheted wire, is stiff and when braided forms an intricate collar!

Well, that’s it for tonight folks, I have another crochet necklace on the way and then I think I will do something fun with all my little 12-2 samples from last weeks demos.

and now…dinner…

Till next time!