Monday, December 28, 2009

Cubed Hearts

Well, Christmas is over and we're in the home stretch for the new year. While I was dragging out the Christmas decorations I found my muse. She was napping 'midst the glitter and glow. Suddenly the thought of unakite hearts started swirling 'round in my brain. Hearts? How do you make a heart of cubes, and how is unakite connected to hearts? So I grabbed one of my semi-precious gem references and looked up the properties of unakite. "is said to bring unconditional love of humanity, connection and reunion, and can help with healing of abandonment and separation issues". OK so unakite hearts it will be! It took a while but here's what I came up with.

I finally settled on the beautiful bronze iris seed beads I'd bought way back when I first started beading. They worked up perfectly.

Then I got out my red glass cubes and gold size 11 seed beads to make another pair. The seed beads wouldn't work around the glass cubes although they were also 4mm. I carefully measured both kinds of cubes and sure enough the unakite are just a hair over 4mm. So I went rummaging through old forgotten seed beads and found some size 12 gold beads that I'd bought at the same time I bought the bronze iris. They fit nicely around the glass cubes. I added a dangle of 3mm swarovski bicones and 4mm fire polished rounds.

Now I'm off to see if I can work up the RAW sculptured heart bracelet that I've designed.

Happy New Year!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Beady Bling Bingo

Our first ever Beady Bling Bingo game is underway at If you're not already a member of the forum come join us and join in the fun. The link to the forum is on the homepage of the site.

Happy hunting! Lets play.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Briolettes and Rice Pearls

I'm still doodling with my luscious beads from my November order from ArtBeads.Unfortunately my muse hasn't returned with that idea I had for the unikite cubes, but the briolettes made a gorgeous pendant and earrings set. Yes, both pictures are of the same set. The way they pick up light from their surroundings is fantastic.

I've long been an admirer of Hatsumi Oshitami's modifications to St. Petersburg chain and have worked some pieces using her techniques. I decided to us an inverted double St. Petersburg chain (I think it looks a little like crocheted ripple stitch) to make a partial frame for the briolettes. I extended the stitch a little with some of the 4mm Swarovski bicones so that it would drape around the top portion of the briolette. I hung the pendant from a silver Figaro chain and used silver colored hypoallergenic ear wires for the earrings.

The pendant isn't quite finished yet. I have a sterling silver hook clasp for it, but no silver jump rings. They are readily available locally, but I'm not going shopping until after the first of the year. Christmas shoppers and after Christmas sales shoppers are crazy.

As I told you I was a little disappointed in the peacock rice pearls because the color I received didn't even come close to the color in the picture online. Of course I realize that different browsers show colors differently and some light shows up the iridescence better. Not to be deterred, I found a perfect way to use them. I think they add the perfect contrast to the blues and silver in this playful twist and wiggle bracelet.

When I get a chance to get some silver jump rings, head pins and more silver ear wires I think I'll use some more of that Figaro chain and put rice pearls at the ends of various lengths for a cascade type earring.

I received these beads free of charge from and this is my honest opinion about them. ArtBeads does not pay me to blog about or endorse their products.
On another note, I think I may have another beader on my hands. :) I've been picking my 4 year old grand daughter up after school and keeping her until her mother gets home. Nana's house can get pretty boring, so I went searching and scrounged up some of the older plastic beads I started learning with, and some ponies and crows that my youngest daughter had bought to make dream catchers many years ago. Grand daughter started out wanting to "sort" them, but I found some string that was perfect for her to string some on for a necklace. She's worked on it 3 days now. I think she may finish it Monday. Granted she's got a lot to learn about color and balance, but it just tickles me pink that she wants to do what Nana's doing.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Radiant Hearts Earrings

Well, none of those hearts patterns that I mentioned on November 15th have managed to manifest themselves into beaded art, but while I was doodling with my bead pattern program I accidently came up with this heart design.

I've uploaded it to BeadPatternsBoutique. It's a simple pattern and works up quickly, so if you're still looking for that perfect pattern to bead for someone on your gift list, take a look.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Beads in a Gilded Cage Earrings

I've finished a new earring pattern "Beads in a Gilded Cage" and have uploaded it to
The Pendant isn't really twice as big as the earrings, It's just a close-up picture. In the pattern I've included instructions for all three cages plus instructions for attaching to ear wires and making a simple bail for a pendant. The cage is worked in a simple right angle weave technique and instructions are detailed.

On another note, I told you about the beads I'd gotten free from and had said I had plans for the rose quartz toggle. Well my plan didn't work. The ring is too small to accomodate the beads I needed to use to attach the toggle, so it's back to the drawing board. The toggle in the picture on the Artbeads site is clearly attached with just a stringing material. Since I'm not a stringer I don't have any such material on hand, but a toggle doesn't necessarily have to be a toggle that actually opens. You know what they say about more than one way to . . . Well I won't say any more just yet, but I do have another plan in mind.

Elementry School will be out for Christmas break on the 18th of this month. Depending on when my Daughter in law gets out of her classes I will either be having more time or less time to bead and blog over the break. If DIL doesn't start break as soon as grand daughter does, I'll have grand daughter all day instead of just an hour after school, so if my blog posts get even fewer and further between you'll know what happened to me.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

New Earring Pattern

It's been a busy week getting ready for Black Friday sales and uploading patterns to both and This one is called Elegance Squared. It's a quick and easy pattern to work up and so versatile using a variety of beads it will perfectly accessorize evening wear as well as casual wear depending on how glitzy your bead choice is.

I'm working on another pattern "Beads in a Gilded Cage". It's almost finished and I'll post it here when I get it finished and uploaded.

I have beads from to work up, as I posted earlier. I have a couple of bracelets in mind, but am drawing a blank when I try to translate the ideas into beads. I think I'm just plain tired. Maybe a day or two cleaning house will scare my bead muse out into the open.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

November ArtBeads

I received beads from this week. I'm just now getting around to showing them off.
Starting up in the right hand corner and going clockwise, Swarovski bicones, crystal ab, briolettes in two sizes, gemstone toggles in rose quartz and scenic jasper, peacock rice pearls and unikite cubes.

You just can't beat the sparkle of Swarovski bicones. They light up just about any design. Take a look at my latest design "Elegance Squared" at BeadPatternsBoutique.

These beautiful flat briolettes from Swarovski's "Crystalized" line will become a necklace and earrings when I come up with an unusual way to display them. They absolutely blew me away! I don't have the luxury of a bead store that I can walk into and examine everything, so I'd only seen pictures of these beauties. Look at this picture! These are the same briolettes on different backgrounds. I knew they were designed to pick up light and color from the surroundings, but this is just unbelievable. (Yeah, I'm showin' my "country bumpkin" :))

When I saw the picture of the gemstone toggles I couldn't quite figure them out but they were so unique I just had to have some. I hope you can see the picture clearly. They have holes in the side of the ring so you can fasten your necklace or bracelet without making a bead loop through the center of the ring. It will give a much more "integrated" look. I've already got plans for the rose quartz, but I'm not sure what I'll do with the scenic jasper.
Quite frankly I was disappointed in the peacock rice pearls when I opened them. They looked blue/green iridescent in the picture and they appear almost black to charcoal gray in most light. If the light is strong and shines on them just right they do have a very definite rainbow quality to them, but I couldn't capture it with my camera. Not quite what I expected, but they are pretty. I haven't got any plans for them just yet.

Last but by no means anything to scoff at are the unikite cubes. They are surprisingly uniform for gemstones. I had a cube design in mind when I ordered them, but it has drifted away into the far reaches of my mind so I'll have to try to entice it out (maybe with chocolate?). Whatever I decide to do with them it will be beautiful because the stones are beautifully polished and relatively uniform.

Have you been to yet? If you haven't, get on over there. they're having a 10% off sale until the end of the year. All you have to do is use this coupon code when you order. SCF10P-ARTBEADS-0424

I have received the beads shown above from free of charge for evaluation. This is my true opinion on these products and I am not paid by ArtBeads to blog about them, I just like to share.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

On to the next holiday

I've finished all the family Christmas ornaments, so now I can get started on other things. I've got ideas for hearts whirling around in my brain. I'm just waiting for them to slow down long enough for me to catch one.

I've been so busy finishing up the family ornaments I haven't done much of anything the past couple of weeks. I did get all the ornament patterns up for sale at, so if you're in the market for patterns, stop by and check out all the goodies we have over there. There's so much more than Christmas ornaments.

Have you been to yet? They're having their 10% off sale until the end of the year. All you have to do is use this cupon code to get your discount. SCF10P-ARTBEADS-0424

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Beaded Tapestry Competition

Read any good mystry novels lately? Did they conjure up images in your mind? Silly questions for beaders? Not really. Land of Odds, the creative folks who bring us the Ugly Necklace contest has announced a new competition.

BEADED TAPESTRY COMPETITION The theme for this years beaded tapestry contest will be Mystery Book Covers. Deadline for entries is August 31, 2011 so you have plenty of time to get that tapestry made! There will be two prizes, One $1,000 and one $400 shopping spree, both at Land of Odds.

Check out Beaded Tapestry Competition web site for all the details and get started beading!

There's still time to enter the Ugly Necklace competition too! Deadline is March 15, 2010.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Art Beads Discount

Hey all you beaders, is giving a 10% discount with this exclusive discount code. Discount is good until the end of the year. Just place this code in the appropriate space in your order form to get your discount.

Artbead's friends discount code

Go take a look at all the goodies they have to offer and get a discount on your holiday beading supplies now!

Happy Beading

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Treasure Hunt is having another hunt! This time, you are looking for 3 leaves. They are full images and not hidden in another photo. The leaves will be placed on the site early tomorrow morning (Oct. 5, 2009). You have only 5 days to find all three leaves. Each of the leaves are marked with a number. You must send an email to with the location of each of the 3 leaves by 11:59 pm Central Time on Tuesday night. Place "Treasure Hunt" in the subject line. By finding all 3 leaves, you will have earned the right to be entered into the drawing for the beads pictured in the Treasure Hunt album in the group & in this email. Many will hunt, but only 1 will walk away with the beads!

Here is what you are looking for:

Image by: marie_starrdesignstudio

Here is what you could win:

Image by: marie_starrdesignstudio
Good Luck to all!
Hugs from:
Marie Starr & the Entire Design Team

If you're not already a member of the BeadPatternsBoutique forum be sure to go to and sign up. It's free and there are a lot of great beaders in the group.


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

November BOGO SALE!

I'm having a Buy one get one free sale on my patterns at The BeadCoop all through the month of November.

When you purchase a pattern through The BeadCoop, just e mail me personally at and tell me which pattern you want for free. The free pattern must be of equal or lesser price of the one purchased.

So get beading for all those holiday gifts and ornaments.

Happy, beady Holidays.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Beaded Christmas Ornament Collection

I've been busy finishing up some ornament patterns and uploading them to Bead Patterns Boutique.

I've compiled 4 brick/peyote stitch ornament patterns into one collection and it's on sale. Like getting one pattern free, so if you're still looking for ornament patterns take a look.

I've also been busy making ornaments for my grandchildren. Now I have eight ornaments to go to finish making enough for my great grandchildren. When I'm finished with that hopefully I can get back to the computer more often.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Art Beads Project

I've finished working up all those delicious, beautiful Swarovski components I got from in September. This is a picture of all the finished pieces. Although I got rivoli buttons, I decided to just bezel them instead of using the button feature.

The biggest piece, the necklace, used seven of these components. One 37X25.5 Light colorado topaz fancy octagon which I bezeled using brown size 9 seed beads and iridescent green size 11 seed beads. The bezel is embellished with matte 4mm druks.

Directly below the octagon is a 12mm rivoli button in crystal tabac which I bezeled with green iridescent size 11 seed beads and champaign transparent size 15 seed beads. It is embellished with the same matte 4mm druks as the octagon.

Directly below that I've attached a 20mm triangel ring in crystal tabac with a right angle weave tab and a double string of champaign transparent size 15 beads.

At the top of the octagon I've attached a 12 mm rivoli button on each side. These rivoli buttons are bezeled with green iridescent size 11 and champaign transparent size 15 seed beads and embellished with picots made with the same size 15's.

Two 14mm triangle rings are used to attach the focal point to the spiral rope strap which uses size 9's for a core with loops of iridescent green and champaign transparent interspersed with matte 4mm druks.
A right angle weave toggle and peyote ring serve as closure for this beautiful necklace.

The two 12mm crystal AB rivoli buttons shimmer and dance from their puffed bezel of silver lined saphire size 11 and silver lined clear size 15 seed beads, merrily defying my camera and photography skills.

And finally the 14mm ernite rivoli button glows from its puffed bezel of silverlined blue violet size 11 and gold lined crystal size 15 seed beads. The bezel is embellished with tiny 3mm Swarovski peridot bicones and sports a simple right angel weave bail that allows this gorgeous pendant to be worn on your favorite chain or cord.

These beautiful Swarovski components are much more lovely in person. You just have to see them to realize how they do sparkle and glow.

Hopefully I will have these items in my Etsy shop before the end of next week.

I wrote an article on how to make a puffed bezel, but eHow dropped it somewhere into cyber space. If you see a link to "puffed bezel" in this article in the future you'll know I've retrieved it.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Great Pumpkin Hunt

Come on over to and join in the great pumpkin hunt.

Here are the details:

Come one, Come all and join the fun at! Robin of has donated a wonderful gift pack of 120 grams of size 11/0 seed beads in a fantastic selection of colors! This is a must have! You can see a photo of this gift pack at

Our hunt begins now and will run through the 20th. Winner will be chosen by Noon Central time and end 12:01 AM Central time on October 21 and will be notified the same day. Prize will ship with in 3 business days.

Heres here is what you have to do. You have to go in and find all three pumpkins. Each of the pumpkins are numbered 1-3. These pumpkins are hidden as jewelry photos through out the Boutique. When you find a pumpkin, write down the name of the pattern, and the name of the category in which you found it. You will have to send an email containing the location of each of all three pumpkins. "Location=Category and Pattern Name" to with Pumpkin Hunt in the subject line. Each person that is able to give the correct locations, and gets that email to me no later than 11:59 PM Central time on 10/20/09 will be entered into the drawing to win. The winner will be announced in the BeadPatternsBoutique forum. All non-members can write in and enquire as to the name of the winning party.

Sorry BeadPatternsBoutique Designers, this hunt is for our customers only.

The hunt is on! Click now to get started!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

October Bead Shows - Wholesale and Retail

JustA Tish Designs has posted the October bead shows, so where ever you are there just may be a bead show near you.

via JustATish Designs by JustATish on 10/7/09

October kicks off the holiday shopping season. Trying to think of that perfect gift to make or give to someone? Have a beader on your list who would love a new strand? Have you been a good boy or girl and just need to buy a little something for yourself!! Here it is, here is that chance to shop till you drop, knee deep in beads, findings, sterling, gold, and everything else you can imagine for your beading needs. Trust me, there is nothing better than running your hands thru piles and piles of beads to get motivate, inspired and rejuvenated! Hopefully one is in your area!

Happy Shopping!!

Oct 9-11: CA: International Gem & Jewelry Show: Santa Monica, CA: Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, 1855 Main St.

October 9-10: MA: G&LW Shows: West Springfield, MA: Eastern States Exposition

Oct 9-10: OH: World Gem & Jewelry Show: Columbus, OH: Greater Columbus Convention Center

Oct 10: WA: Rings & Things BeadTour - Spokane bead show: Spokane WA: Mirabeau Hotel Spokane Valley (Ballroom), 1100 N. Sullivan Rd.

Oct 10-11: FL: Jewelry, Gift, Fasihon Accessories & Bead Show: Ft. Lauderdale, FL: The Sheraton Hotel, 555 West Cypress Creek Road

Oct 10-11: FL: Down the Street Bead Shows: Deland, FL: Deland

Oct 10-11: SC: Intergalactic Bead & Jewelry Show: Mt. Pleasant, SC: Omar Shrine, 176 Patriots Point Drive

Oct 16-18: CA: Gem Faire: Del Mar, CA: Del Mar Fairgrounds, Exhibit Hall, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd.

Oct 16-18: CA: International Gem & Jewelry Show: San Mateo, CA: San Mateo County Expo Center, 2495 South Delaware Street

Oct 16-18: FL: Down the Street Bead Shows: Pompano Beach, FL: Elks Lodge, Pompamo Beach

Oct 16-18: IL: World Gem & Jewelry Show: Schaumburg (Chicago), IL: Renaissance Schaumburg Hotel and Convention Center, 1551 N Thoreau Drive

Oct 16-18: NY: The Whole Bead Show: New York, NY: Metropolitan Pavilion, South & North Pavilions, 1st Floor, 125 West 18th Street between 6th & 7th Ave

Oct 16-18: MS: Natchez Gem, Jewelry and Bead Show: Natchez, Ms: Natchez Convention Center 211 Main Street

Oct 16-18: PA: The Philadelphia Gem and Jewelry Show: Philadelphia Pa: University of Pennsylvania,3417 Spruce Street

Oct 17-18: FL: Intergalactic Bead & Jewelry Show: Pompano Beach, FL: Emma Lou Olson Civic Center, 1800 N.E. 6th St.

Oct 17: WA: Rings & Things BeadTour - Seattle bead show: Seattle WA: Seattle Center (San Juan Rooms), 305 Harrison St

Oct 18: WA: Rings & Things BeadTour - Mt Vernon bead show: Mt Vernon WA: Best Western Cotton Tree Inn (Cascade Ballroom), 2300 Market Street

Oct 23-25: CA: Gem Faire: Pleasanton, CA: Alameda County Fairgrounds

Oct 23-25: TX: World Gem & Jewelry Show: Austin, TX: Austin Convention Center

Oct 24: WA: Rings & Things Bead Tour - Bellevue bead show: Bellevue WA: Bellevue Community College, Cafeteria, 3000 Landerholm Circle SE

Oct 24-25: FL: Down the Street Bead Shows: Ft Myers, FL: Clarion Hotel - OLD Radisson Inn

Oct 24-25: TN: Intergalactic Bead & Jewelry Show: Memphis, TN: Agricenter International - (D-wing), 7777 Walnut Grove Rd.

Oct 27-28: NC: G&LW show:Asheville, NC: Asheville Civic Center

Oct 30-31 Nov 1:G&LW show: Orlando, FL: Osceola Heritage Park

Oct 30-Nov 1: CT: World Gem & Jewelry Show: Hartford, CT: XL Center, One Civic Center Plaza

Oct 30-Nov 1: TX: Bead Renaissance: Live Oak, TX: Live Oak Civic Center, 8101 Pat Booker Road

Oct 31-Nov 1: NC: Intergalactic Bead & Jewelry Show: Durham, NC: Durham Marriott Convention Center - (B & C Halls), 201 Foster Street

Posted via email from containerherbgardening's posterous

Friday, October 9, 2009

Bead Patterns Boutique

Have you been to Bead Patterns Boutique? It's a relatively new site with many bead pattern designers participating. All the designers have been super busy making new patterns available to you for this upcoming holiday season. Find patterns for everything from jewelry to tapestries, to ornaments and much more at this wonderful new showplace.

There's a forum for shoppers where you can find updates to new patterns added and just chat with other beaders.

Check it out. Lots of good stuff there.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

New Items from Art Beads

I'd like to pass along an e mail I got from Duchess at Check out the wonderful new fall additions.

I hope that you are doing well and have had a wonderful summer. I've just learned of some exciting news from that I wanted to share with you. First, today we launched our New CRYSTALLIZED™ - Swarovski Elements Innovations line with over 150 new styles of Swarovski Autumn/Winter 2010/2011 crystal products! We have two new crystal colors - cyclamen opal and greige - along with the new crystal coral pearl color, the crystal metallic light gold finish! So make sure to check out the CRYSTALLIZED™ - Swarovski Elements New Additions!

Also, as I'm sure you know, provides FREE Shipping in the US on every order. This is perhaps the biggest thing our customer's praise us for. Next to that, many compliment us for fast shipping. Well, we've decided to make it even faster and have just begun providing FREE Priority Shipping along with a 24-Hour Turnaround commitment on all US orders over $75. You can find all of the details here:

The last bit of news has to do with our four weekly specials. These discounted items are so popular they typically sell out before the end of the week. To make sure more people can get in on the savings, we're now selecting four special product categories and picking several items for each group. You can see all of our weekly specials here:

That's all for now. Please feel free to pass this news on to your beading friends and blog readers.

Have a great day!

Warmest Regards,


Saturday, September 26, 2009

Art Beads

I received my order from Art Beads today. I was going to wait and make something from them before I posted, but these new Swarovski Crystal Components are so beautiful I had to share them in their unadorned beauty. Unfortunately my meager photography equipment and skills do not do them justice.

My order included rivoli buttons, triangle rings and one gorgeous 27X37 faceted octagon all in the new "Crystalized" line of Swarovski components.

I've gotta go now and get started beading. I'll post again when I've finished my projects.

Holiday Shows - Inventory

Some good tips for your holiday craft shows.

via Art Bead Scene Blog by Heather Powers on 9/25/09

It's that time of year again, arts & crafts shows pop up all over world as shoppers seek out unique holiday gifts directly from artists and craftspeople. So let's talk inventory today.

1. Your jewelry will fit in three categories:
*Show-stoppers - those amazing, over-the-top pieces that are higher priced. These bring shoppers into your booth. Display them prominently.
*Necklace and bracelets that are mid-priced, for me those items are in the $45-$75 range.
*Impulse buys - items are usually $25 and under. Here you'll find your earrings and very simple pendants. This is always the bulk of my inventory.

2. The more impulse items you have, the better. While people may stop to see the amazing $300 necklace, they are more likely to pick up something from the other two categories. I make lots matching earrings for my necklaces and bracelets. When someone buys an item, I always point out the matching earrings.

3. Make twice as much as you'd like to sell. So if you want to make a $1000 for a day, you have to have to least $2000 in inventory.

4. Not everything has to be one-of-a-kind and you don't have to put everything on the table at once. Find a balance, too much inventory makes it harder to shop. I make 3 or 4 pairs of the same earring design and in 2-3 different colors. I replace them as they sell.

5. Gifts - think beyond jewelry. People are looking for teachers' gifts, hostess gifts, secret Santa presents, etc. and jewelry may be too personally for these occasions. Bookmarks, ornaments and ceiling-fan pulls are just a few beaded gifts you could create for your holiday shows.

Posted via email from containerherbgardening's posterous

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Christmas Ornaments

I think I'm finished with Christmas ornament patterns for this year. I've uploaded three more to The BeadCoop. The Christmas Elf was from last year. The Christmas Stocking, Sleigh, and Wreath are new.

I can't believe I actually have seasonal patterns up in a timely manner. Usually Christmas is the only season I create specific patterns for and it's usually November before I get them up.

When I was working on a J.O.B. it used to irritate me that merchants had Christmas items out before Halloween, but now as a merchant myself, I understand the rush. Especially for beaded items. It takes a while to make the up, and many beaders do Christmas shows.

Happy beading to you all whether you're beading for shows or making gifts or just beading for yourself!

Thursday, September 17, 2009


I think we all need some inspiration and uplifting sometimes. And just when we need it the most it appears seemingly out of nowhere. If you're not following Drums in the Deep go on over there right now and take a look. Only 2 posts so far, but this is an extraordinary young man. His story touches me so deeply. He has slowly been going blind for several years, but sees it as a way to become something better than he was before.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Tribute to a Star

There aren't many celebrities that evoke this kind of emotion from me, but I'm making this blog post to a true Star-Patrick Swayze. Patrick lost his long battle with pancreatic cancer last night. Patrick was a one-of-a-kind celebrity. He was down to earth, passionate about his work and how it would effect others. He loved acting, dancing, his lovely wife and life on his ranch. I've never known of him to seem that he got a big head over any of his success.

According to his friends and those he worked with, he was a caring and giving in real life as he was protrayed in his interviews. Woopee Goldberg won an Oscar for Ghost, and says she owes it to Patrick because he got her the role. There are many stories of that kind told of this bigger than life celebrity.

He says his most notable line in any of his movies was the one at the end of Ghost when he said in effect in the end love is all that you can take with you. He will be greatly missed.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Cool Finding

Art Bead Scene blog shows a picture of the new cinch finding. A new, simple way to fasten the cord of a necklace so that it is adjustable. I wonder if a two hole button that coordinated with the color scheme would work if the holes were big enough. It sure looks like it would be easier and neater than tying slip knots to make it adjustable.

If this looks like an interesting finding that you'd like to have go to Art Bead Scene for a link to the maker of these little wonders.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Queen of Frog Stitch

{Doffs hat and bows with a flourish!} Meet the queen of the frog stitch! I have been working on a design that I can see clearly in my head, but can't translate it to beads. Sometimes I really wish that math made sense to me. I've known of some bead designers that plot their designs mathematically, then work them. Me? I just struggle with trying to figure out how to get this bead to set in this position in order to off set that other bead.

I've been working on a knot pendant that in my mind looks vaguely like a necktie knot with fringe coming out the bottom to represent the "tail" of the knot. I thought I just about had it this time (third try), but when I held it up it was way too long and narrow and didn't look as much like a knot as I had envisioned it. So, to a third round of frog stitch (rrripit, rrripit)as I take it all out and start over. OK I know the design is flawed, that's why I'm starting from the beginning. Thanks for letting me rant. It helps to clear my mind.

As a reward for your kindness I'll share some interesting blogs I found this morning.
Art Bead Scene shares their designer of the week.
Beadography shares a picture of a lovely beaded vase in progress
And the Rabbit Muse very graciously shares a feeling I'm sure most of us can relate to.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

It was an earring kind of day

I think what caught my eye about this blog were the earwires. From the comments I'm not alone. What do you think?

via The Rabbit Muse by Round Rabbit on 9/4/09

I made approximately 5000 pairs of earwires today. OK, maybe I'm exaggerating but it sure felt like 5000. It was probably more like 50. But still, that's a lot, right?
I've been making more one-of-a-kind earrings lately and I'm having quite a bit of fun with them. Usually I work with the same designs and if they sell I make a million more just like them (yep, I'm in the exaggerating mood) but I need to mix things up a bit. Below is a little sample of what I've been up to. The little turquoise hoops are part of my regular line-up but the other three pairs are true one offs.

I'm curious to hear what you guys think of one-of-a-kinds. Are you more likely to purchase something if you know that there won't be another like it?

They will all be in the shop on Saturday. :)

Posted via email from containerherbgardening's posterous

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Beader in Limbo

Oh Wow! I've been looking through all my beader blogs that I follow and finding some really innovative, creative items and here I sit with a design in my head that just simply won't translate to the beads.

I had started a square stitch heart, but somewhere along the line I keep loosing count and missing an increase. I just got so frustrated I went back to the drawing board and made a brick stitch heart. It was really the idea for the fringe that I wanted to implement.

Since I don't have anything to show you this week take a look at some of my favorite blogs.

Inspirational Beading
A Bead A Day
The Rabbit Muse

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Featured Designer: Adribeads of Budapest

I've been AWOL for a few days now trying to gather my thoughts and get a new pattern ready. I found this at A Bead A Day and thought I'd share. I love recycled items!

via A Bead A Day by Lisa on 8/29/09

What a happy day! It's featured designer Friday!! :)

I've been waiting all week to share these pieces with you. I thought these were clever and extra cool because they are made using a bottlecap as a base.

When I visited the Adribeads etsy site I was intrigued by the color combinations, technique and materials used to turn used bottlecaps into earrings.

The designer of these cool pieces is Adrienn of Budapest.

Adrienn also has a blog where she shares her designs and thoughts behind them.

Make sure you check out her seed bead peace sign earrings too! Another clever design!

Thanks for sharing Adrienn! Have a great weekend!!

Posted via email from containerherbgardening's posterous

Monday, August 24, 2009

Time to Recoup

I've been so busy lately attending to other writing duties that I've spent far too many hours at the computer to even call myself productive. Sometimes it's best to just stop and do something you consider non-productive.

Jean Campbell's blog is always a great inspiration to me. While it is mostly about beading she takes time to talk about daily life and share little tips like this one. "Summer, a Facebook friend, sent me this quote by John Lubbock--so fitting for a day like today!

"Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer's day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time."
I know this, most of us do, but we get so caught up and driven by a project that we work until we're just "working" and really achieving nothing.

I'm trying to rearrange my office so that it is an office/beading studio combined. It will be much easier making patterns as I bead a part of a design, then draw it out on the computer, bead the next part etc.

I was really impressed with the amount of supplies and finished beadwork Lorelei has in a small space by the simple principle of elevate, elevate, elevate. I'm quite challenged when it come to organization and have gotten "half-way there" with my new arrangement several times, then decided another way would be more efficient. If I don't stop changing my mind and just get all my supplies in here, I'm not going to be able to find anything.

Hopefully I'll have something new to tell you shortly.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Button Brooch

via Jean Campbell by Jean Campbell on 8/19/09

I wrote a blog on Beading Daily today entitled 5 Ways to Wear a Brooch. The exercise got me truly jazzed up about making brooches again! Since I don't wear them that often (I'm not a very good wardrobe planner), I never think to wear them. But they work up so fast that they're fun to make. I think I'll need to pull them out of the drawer more often.

Here's a brooch I made last night that I'd like to share with you. Blogger is being naughty and turning all my photos upside down, though, so click here to see the photo-only instructions. Please let me know if you can follow along okay. Enjoy!

Materials and Tools
2' of brass 28-gauge wire
1 green/gold 17mm glass vintage button with shank
1 diamond trellis filigree (Vintaj #F280)
1"x3" piece of brown scrap leather
2 brass 6mm eyelets
1 1/2" pin back
Wire cutters
Heavy-duty scissors
Chain-nose pliers
Ballpoint pen
Eyelet setter
Dremel tool and 7/64" drill bit
Beading awl

Posted via email from containerherbgardening's posterous

Saturday, August 15, 2009

The Muse

Stretch your creativity. Use your imagination. Engage the "Muse". Scarlet Lanson, the nineteen year old contributor of Beadwork Magazine has competitions called Use the Muse. For each competition a component is chosen, a kit assembled and each contestant receives the same identical kit. It's up to the contestant to decide what to do with it. The component is kept secret from everyone but the participants until "The Big Reveal" Check out the last contest winners at her website and join the Use the Muse III contest.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Eye Candy

Yes, today's about the eye candy I've found on other beaders websites and blogs.
Morwyn at Another Country Beadworks does some beautiful bead embroidery. I loved her work in progress. Two very different shaped agates. She also has some beautiful beaded containers. She sells her work on Etsy and has some absolutely gorgeously intricate looking work.

Rowan Devoe at Le Fresne's Castle has a completely different take on beading with no less breathtaking results. I really like her interpretation of Perdita in her latest project.

I'm going to have to keep it short today. Having a little problem with my eye and it's not happy looking at a computer screen.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

New Christmas Ornament

I seem to be breaking records everywhere this month. I've created another Beaded Ornament, the second one this year. I usually only manage to get one pattern a year done.

This one is a six pointed star made with Czech seed beads, 3mm bugles and 4mm Swarovski Crystal bicones. The sparkle provided by the bicones is fantastic in real life but it's hard to capture in a picture without getting a glare.

I used Miyuki bugle beads because they are nice and smooth and you don't have to worry about sharp edges cutting the thread. You may not be able to get them at your local bead shop, but do a search on line. Many online stores carry them.

Of course the pattern is listed at The Bead Coop. Just select The Bead Doodler in the drop down designer window in the search box. It's pattern #19684

So, speaking of patterns, how much do you know about copyright laws as they pertain to beadwork? Go to Jeanette Shanigan's website and take her Copyright Quiz.

Monday, August 3, 2009

What is The Bead Coop?

The Bead Coop is a co-op run website where designers can sell their patterns. Customers get the benefit of instant down-load when they buy any e pattern. One of the original founders of The Coop posted this to our Designer's Group e mail list and I thought you'd enjoy reading the brief history of how the Bead Coop started.

LOL--OMG--you want the good, bad and ugly of the birthpains of the Coop? Let's see, it started with Dawn and I emailing back and forth that there had to be a better way for artists to sell their work and keep more profit for themselves than the "other" option at the time. Jeesh--how long ago now?? We knew what we wanted, just not the how to of how to get the programming done. We found this guy, "fondly" remembered as the Village Idiot to do the programming. (NOT Cujo, this was before him) He built a site that worked, but all the money went through him, he was located kinda near us here in Dallas. We were getting sales, but never saw the money from it. It was hosted on his server, in his house--and amazingly, it would go down at pretty regular times each day. We finally fired him, drove to his house to pick up the money, and the "coop" on files, my dad and son went along. We got it, and found out the down time was him hosting WOW parties there for his friends that ate up all the bandwidth. We tried to figure out how to sort out the mess of files, and in stepped--CUJO!! The real man behind the coop, he took a mess and turned it into the site you all enjoy today--I think we drove him half nuts with our suggestions, ideas, requests, but he always came through with something fantastic for us.

The coop was designed to give artists a place to grow and bloom, and hopefully make a little money as well. It was written right into the bylaws that the members would control the fees charged and policies of the group. I know we always hoped that prospective artists would be judged more for their potential than what they had already done. I'm so excited to look through the pages and pages of designs and see the wealth of artistry and talent represented in so many different stitches and media! A few years back real life just kicked me good, and stomped me down into the ground, and I turned the coop over to the members. Since then, it's been operating on it's own without being "owned" by anyone other than the members. Which is the way it was always intended to be.

I've got about 12 books I think now--several with Design Originals, one with the "Putz Brothers" (Dawn and my code word for these two brothers from CA that we collaborated on a book for that they sold in Target stores I think) several self published books as well. Unfortunately, I'm like you--my vision sucks now, and even simple bead projects are almost impossible to do. Jelcy here in Rowlett gave me a head thing with a magnifying glass on it which helps, but I fondly recall those days I could bead up anything and have no problem seeing even the smallest beads. So its very hard for me to do any beading at all right now. I get people asking me about making up things for them all the time, and I have to tell them I'm sorry, but cant do it. Anywho, my daughter Sarah has been busy being artsy, which got me in the mood to work on some again, and like anything, the more you do the more you want to do!

There were a lot of people involved in getting the coop off the ground, I'm just so bad with names, but it was definitely a group project with a lot of ups and downs. We've just had a lot of really great people pulling to get this going and keep it going, and without all of them, it never would have happened.

That was the beginning. The site has just been revamped to load faster improving your shopping experience, and if you're a designer, it enhances your sales.

We're constantly accepting new designers, so if you have patterns you'd like to put up for sale, go to The BeadCoop, scroll down to Support in the left hand menu, click on Contact Us and let us know. You'll be contacted with details and requirements. Don't worry, you don't have to be "somebody", you just have to have viable, readable patterns. :) Who knows where you can go from there?

If you're not a designer come on by and see what all we have to offer. With so many designers, we have a huge variety of bead design types. You can pay for your pattern through paypal and receive an instant download.

What are you waiting for? Come on in and see what's at The Bead Coop for you.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Premio Meme Award

Wow! I got the Premio Meme Award from Mandi Beads! Thanks Mandi

Mandi makes these luscious bead covered pens and journals to match and sells them in her Etsy shop.

The rules are simple. List seven facts about yourself and pass the award to seven worthy bloggers, so here goes.

1. I'm retired
2. I have 5 children, 12 grand children and 9 (going on 10) great grand children.
3. I was 63 when I taught myself to bead.
4. I have an Etsy shop and am trying to get around to joining the Etsy Bead Weavers street team.
5. I've been very happily divorced for more years than I was married and still enjoying the single life.
6. I'm working on a beading book (bead stitches, tips and patterns)which I hope to self publish within the next year. . .hopefully sooner.
7. I'm a beadwork designer and sell my patterns at The Bead Coop.

Whew! That was hard. I'm so boring I found it hard to think of seven interesting things to say.

OK The award goes to:

Glitter Glow Beading

Artsy In The City

Creations by Robin
Inspirational Beading
Round Rabbit
Cathy Lampole
No Easy Beads

Friday, July 24, 2009

Bugle Snowflake Ornament

This year I've finally gotten my annual Christmas ornament pattern, Bugle Snowflake Ornament, completed in July. I always like to complete a seasonal pattern and have it available early so people can get all those items made up without rushing, but in spite of how hard I try, it's always been August or September before I could complete the Christmas ornament pattern.

I usually make an ornament for each of my grand children and great grand children every year and I have had to start in July to get them all made when I was working. Since I retired I still find if I don't get started in July, I'm rushing like mad to complete them before Christmas.

The pattern is completed and can be found at The BeadCoop. The pattern number is 19562.

On another note, I've had to have cataract and glaucoma surgery this past week, so I haven't been on the computer very much. My blogs have been languishing, but hopefully by next week I'll be back up and running full steam. I appreciate all my loyal readers sticking around during this time.

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Secret to Perfect Thread Tension

Hint, the secret's in the tail! If you're a crocheter you're familiar with the "weave tail through fingers and wrap around the little finger" method of keeping crochet tension even. This works for beading too.

Read the whole article at Beading Daily and see some beautiful, beaded beads that are firm although they are hollow.

Bracelet Giveaway

Round Rabbit is having a bracelet giveaway! Get on over there and read all about it before it's too late.

"Here are the bracelet specifics: Leather band with hand hammered copper end caps. Sterling silver rivets. Porcelain oval component with a copper tag which was hand stamped with the word Time. This piece was wired to the tag and the tag is wired to the leather. Chunky turquoise nuggets accent the tag and the clasp chain."


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