Thursday, June 27, 2013

Artisan Whimsy Test Group Guest Reveal

Well, that was a mouthful, wasn't it? And what is it all about? Well, each month on Artisan Whimsy, a test group is selected to work with 5 separate items from the participating sponsor. And if you've never heard of Artisan Whimsy, it's a wonderful marketplace to showcase your jewelry and creativity, interact with other designers, and a fountain of useful information. Signing up is easy at : 
The sponsor for this month is the wonderful ZNet Shows. The really exciting part for me is that not only did they choose 5 participants, of which I was not chosen, but they very generously sent a package to everyone who stated they would like to participate! Which means ME!!! And some other very talented designers.
And what did we get to work with? Why, some incredible cultured beach glass beads. You would be hard pressed to tell it from genuine sea glass, except for the fact that it is incredibly silky and soft to work with. I know, those are kinda strange words to use for glass, but really, that's how they feel.
Here is the sample image from Artisan Whimsy, showing what we would receive:

The only difference for me is that my string of beads is a soft blue, and the rectangle pendant is the matte white like the smaller ones.

 Just couldn't resist creating a bezel around this cutie.

 Still trying to decide on the rope for it, I think either a St. Petersburg, or a Russian Spiral.

Doesn't this look like a bowtie? I had the best fun making this one, even though it took me way to long, which is why I didn't get to finish all my ideas. There are a boatload of new ideas (for me) in this little cutie.

 The clasp bar itself is CRAW, but the tab attaching it to the band is two sections of RAW, stitched together, like a sandwich.

 The two sea beads with the RAW unit connector sits beautifully on top of your wrist.

 This was my first time creating this kind of toggle circle with twin beads. Had to try twice before I got my dimensions correct, but I really, really love it.

 The middle bracelet is a macrame, with a polymer clay button for clasp.I love the contrast of the rasberry cord with the soft matte blue.
My other pics of the chips bracelet have gone missing, and it is now on it's way to a new home. It was my first make, and I love how it turned out. The chips sit on top of a RAW base, and look like little boats floating on the water.

I love where these beads took me. I love the ideas that sprang up, the creativity that flowed, and the final products. This was truly an enjoyable challenge for me. Thank you to Artisan Whimsy, and ZNET for letting me have such a fun time!
Blessings, Shirley

Monday, June 24, 2013

Goodies from The Beading Room

A few weeks ago, I entered to win a $100 gift certificate for The Beading Room. The giveaway was hosted on The Beading Gem's Journal. If you've never visited Pearl's site, you are missing out. She has some of the best jewelry posts out there. Tons of information, cool and funky jewelry, a bit of a history lesson thrown in there as well. And she has some seriously awesome giveaways. I was so very lucky to win this one from The Beading Room! They are located in Canada, but they ship worldwide.

Now, when Pearl wrote about them, she focused on the wire they have available in their store. So, I was very excited, since that is an area I'm just beginning to explore. But, oh my goodness, do they have so much more than just wire! It was quickly apparent to me that the hard part would be to only spend the $100!!

Wanna see what I picked out? Okey dokie!
Here's the whole Pile O Goodies. Now let's get some close-ups, so you can drool properly.

 I did get some wire, and a pretty copper clasp and some earwires in bright copper. I'm going to play with oxidizing those...

 Several noted kumihimo designers on Facebook use these gorgeous Unicorn Beads in their designs. I've been panting after them for a while, let me tell ya. And that toggle clasp above them is lampwork! Oh so pretty!

I have HANKS of beads!!!! Just seeing '71 grams' written on the bag made me swoon. The far right and middle are both a luscious color called Black Diamond. The tiny charlottes are a purple iris.

 I've heard Druks referred to as the workhorse of Czech beads. And that they are often overlooked. The color on these is so very pretty, and I'm anxious to play with them. I finally have some metal beads! You wouldn't believe how heavy that tiny tube is.  Ok, see the patterned beads to the left? They are MOOD Beads!! How cool is that? My daughter immediately snatched one for herself. Lucky thing I like her...

 Here's a close up of those pretty Druks.

 Love bicones, and I also got that middle package in the Black Diamond color. And some tiny 3mm pearls. Thinking I'm gonna be hanging out with Sabine Lippert's Beaded Fantasies....

Have you ever seen this shape? I think it's very unusual. They are called UFO's. Look at those colors!! Squee!

 I've only made one kumi braid with rattail, and I really wanted to make more. These are each 5 yards. Can't wait to play with them. And I got Anne Dilker's Kumihimo book.

I'm so very grateful to The Beading Room for such an awesome gift certificate. And that they carry such a beautiful and diverse stock. 
Now, if you don't hear from me for a while, you know what I'll be doing.....:)
Blessings, Shirley

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

I'm Fishing!!

So thrilled to announce that I will be a part of Karen William's Fish Friends Design Team!
Karen is a very talented designer, and her fish pattern is just a small (forgive the pun) example of her skill and creativity.
There's  a blog hop on July 13th, and I'm thinking I need to have a giveaway in there as well....stay tuned!

Fish are Friends, Fancy Fish Blog Hop July 13th, 2013

Blessings, Shirley