Thursday, January 20, 2011

What's Black and Gold and Red All Over?

This is a slight modification of a Sabine Lippert bracelet design. Sabine is an extraordinary German beadwork and jewelry designer. You'll find many of her patterns at as well as a calendar of her teaching engagements. For this design, I embellished the middle with Swarovski Jet bicones and used Miyuki drops to form a beaded 'prong setting' for the crystals. I have fallen in love with Sabine's intricate beadwork designs and this lacy bracelet is the first of many that I plan to make!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Limon Byzantine and Celtic Flowers

Am I in a citrus-y mood or what? I had started out with the intention that I'd make another Japanese 6:1 bracelet, but my hands had other 'ideas'. I decided that a Byzantine chain, interrupted by Celtic flowers or knots, would be bright, cheerful and not too floral.

I have recently purchased four (4!) books on chain maille. Two are by Scott David Plumlee: Chain and Bead Jewelry, Geometric Connections and Chain and Bead Jewelry, Creative Connections. The other two are Chained by Rebeca Mojica of Blue Buddha Boutique and Link It! by Susan C. Thomas. All three chain maille artists are innovative and exciting designers. Something I admire and aspire to be myself, when/if? I grow up ;P

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Wire Work Newbie Tries Her Hand At A Perri Jackson Tutorial

I am sooooo envious of all the superb wire work and metal artists in our community. I have been admiring the designs of so many artisans, but haven't had the nerve to venture into the realm of shaping wire into intricate patterns and sculptural shapes. Then I happened to find Perri Jackson's DNA Twist tutorial ( and decided to take the plunge. I was skeptical, not about Perri's ability to write and illustrate a tutorial, but about my ability to follow the instructions and replicate the pattern! However, I did exactly as Perri outlined and wound up with my first woven wire pendant. Admittedly, I was afraid to use precious metal wire and crystals on my first attempt, so I used the very inexpensive 'Fun Wire' and seed beads. Hey! Ya gotta start somewhere :P Perri writes her tutorials in such a well conceived and illustrated format, it was a blast from beginning to end!! I think I'll make another one...this time I'm going all in =)

Friday, January 14, 2011

UFO #1

OK, I admit that I have seen more than my fair share of UFOs! All of the UFOs (UnFinished Objects) live on my work bench and make fleeting appearances and then disappear into the cosmos. I made a tentative New Year's resolution: capture any invading UFO that surfaces, quarantine it and probe my bead stash until I find the components necessary to finish it. This is my first 'encounter': a lonely earring without a mate. I was short one of the larger gold pearl beads to complete the pair. After much digging around 'Area 51', aka 'my unlabeled bead boxes', I found the matching bead and made the clone of the first earring. Victory is mine!!!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Florida Orange Juice

It is not even Spring yet, but in Florida the citrus industry is in full bloom! I decided to enter this design into the Florida Beader's Calendar Contest for the February cover. This bracelet is a Japanese 6:1 chain maille weave using non-tarnish silver and tangerine jump rings and is interlaced with sterling silver and Swarovski crystal 'seeds.' Yummy! Ironically, I had a difficult time photographing this piece of jewelry as there hasn't been a lot of sunshine in the Sunshine State lately :P