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.


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