Sunday, March 23, 2014

And the color is....

 And todays color is ..... YELLOW!

I am working on a new bead embroidered bracelet!
I have been putting it off for too long! I have so many really great focals for the center of bracelets, I needed to start putting them to good use! So here is what I am working on:

My work space! I don't really follow any set pattern when doing bead embroidery. This is my process:
1. I choose a focal for the center of the bracelet. In this case I picked a beautiful, hand painted Czech glass button!

2. Next, I pick out seed beads, and other embellishmen to compliment the focal. Here, my focal is yellow, red, orange and green with gold accent. I picked out seed beads in opaque yellow, transparent  yellow ,trans red, trans. orange, opaque medium green, trans. med green, and silver-lined topaz in 11/0 seed beads and silver-lined topaz in size 8/0. I also picked yellow pressed glass flowers, green pressed glass leaves in two sizes, white, yellow and orange glass hearts, brass daisy spacers and brass round "studs". 

I had a number of other glass beads out, but ended up not using them.

 3. I bead a bezel on the focal. I used 8/0 "gold" around the button and then rings of the other colors (except red) and ended with 11/0 "gold" as the final ring.

4. This is where I start adding embellishments and see what happens! I added glass flowers and leaves around the button. I penciled in a vine on either side and added the "gold" studs. In the center of the studs I added a vermeil bead cap and a red seed bead.

More leaves and heart beads that look like flower buds!
  I added daisy spacers with yellow, red and orange seed beads in the middle (not pictured) . Now I am working of filling in the rest with green. I had to order some more trans green seed beads, so I have to stop til I get them!

The backing is yellow microsuede and I will be mounting the bracelet on an aluminum bracelet blank, backing it with more yellow microsuede and edging it with silver-lined topaz seed beads. I can't wait to see how it looks when it is all done! I will post more about this tomorrow! Have a great night!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Beading needles and new projects...

It has rained all day, so it was a good day to write a log entry and work on my latest project!  I found this pattern on a blog called Beads Magic. This is a necklace called "Teresa".
The original necklace is done in black white and gold seed beads. I decided to try it with Spring colors and this is what I came up with!

 The pattern on the blog was just drawn out diagrams with no real instructions or list of supplies, but it was not too hard to follow. I made my own drawing for the blog pictures!

And  I designed a pair of earrings to go with the necklace!

I am enjoying working on this necklace! It looks floral and great for Spring!

In the past couple of days, I have been working along and all of a sudden my needle breaks! Annoying! Well, I decided to say a little about beading needles here for new beaders who might experience this!

I use a size 12 beading needle. I find that most of what I do requires many passes of thread through the beads, and a larger needle just would not work. 
I use two brands of needles. Each brand has it's issues and I will share this with you.

The first brand I use is John James.

 These needles are English nickle-plated steel needle. They are very good quality and have a larger eye that is easier to thread. They are the more expensive of the needles that I buy.
 The issue with these is that they seem to break easily!
If you put too much pressure on them or bend them too much, they just snap! I use these with projects that I know I won't have to do a lot of manipulation of the needle.

 The second brand of needles I use is Lance.

 These needles come from India and are also nickle-plated steel. They are much thinner than the John James and that must be why they are much cheaper! 
The issue with these needles is that they bend out of shape very easily. This keeps them from breaking as easily as the John James. You can straighten they  by holding near the eye with flat nose pliers and then pull the needle between your thumb and finger.  They usually don't stay straight for very long, but you can still work with them curved!

I switch between the two needles depending on the project and they seem to work well for me!

I am going to go back to working on my necklace and blog again later!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

 Okay! I am back and ready to post again!

I have not posted on this blog for many years. I am not in good health and much has happened since the last time I posted. I won't get into all that! Everyone has their own lives to worry about.

I have decided to get serious about my beadwork again and one way to do that is to post my "works in progress" here!

Right now I am doing bead weaving again. I am trying to get a collection of "Spring" jewelry together to post in my Etsy shop. Here is what I am working on right now:

So here is the work space set up for my "Spiraling into Spring" Necklace and bracelet set.

This is a spiral rope with 8/0 yellow core beads, and a combination of  3mm opaque white bugles,8/0 pink opal beads, 10/0 2 cut Sol Gel beads in Kiwi green, and 11/0 yellow-lined crystal seed beads. I am using white Nymo thread size D and a John James 15 beading needle.

                               Spiral taking shape

Here is the bracelet that is already done:

I am really happy with this pattern! I love the spring pastel colors. I should be done with this tonight. I am going to try to list the set in my shop ( tomorrow! 

I am really enjoying beading again! My next big project is to do inventory of my stock. I have moved since my last post and I have jewelry supplies in boxes. I need to get it all organized again so I know what I have to work with!

I hope everyone enjoys the pictures!