Friday, May 17, 2013

New additions to the Sea glass collection

I need to update my tools, you can see the tool marks on my swirls :(
but since I made them for me, I guess I won't return them, lol

Sea glass tusk stud earrings

The studs are at an upward angle on purpose. I tried a straight out 90 degree stud, curved ear wire, french style ear wire, and straight slanting down stud, and this slightly upward angle was the only way to keep the top heavy cultured sea glass tusk from leaning forward at a steep angle. 
Each earring is wrapped in one solid four inch piece of 20 gauge copper colored art wire, which includes the ear wire stud. 
I'm going to do a few in sterling silver as soon as I replace my stash of 22 gauge, 20 gauge is just a bit big. And these tusks come in different lengths and shapes and some have holes that run along the longer side of the tusk, so that the flatter side would be in the front, making it possible to play with the wire placement.

right side view/left front view

Crocheted cuff bracelet

It's weird, but I like it. you might recognize the technique, I used to do this with wire wrapped rings and 34 guage wire. I thought the white crochet thread was much more nautical looking with the sea glass starfish buttons and sea glass bottle ring. If I could read or write a crochet pattern I'd share this. I'm working on another with an orange sea glass bottle ring with the same blue glass rice pearls in this bracelet. The reason I didn't share this on Monday is because of all the was done...except for the strings sticking out all over. I love to crochet, but I hate tucking in the strings, it's stupid, I know. 

It closes with tiny little buttons on the back. I'm going to have to get more of these rings, i have sooo many ideas...seriously, there are endless possibilities with these beautiful beads.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013 30 Challenge

Back in April I was working on my main BSBP7 piece and decided I wanted to take it apart and start new, and use some links that I had made a few months ago to go with links I was making specifically for the piece. They were in a box my sister had given me to keep and carry my finished old matchbox car box my nephew never used. I went looking for the box and over the course of two days went from bewilderment to complete insanity. I called everyone who might have seen it. Then made an album on Facebook (which I then shared ALL over facebook) of the pieces that were in the box. I was heart broken. I seriously believed someone had come into my apartment and stolen just my finished pieces of jewelry. I shared the album on the Bead soup cafe group page and Bill Zhang of, among a few others, offered to send me beads to help me rebuild my collection. I told them I was ok in beads, just really upset at losing my collection, I received the beads a few days later anyway, and I think two or three days later I found my collection...under a chair I recall looking under at least twice. Weird. I felt terrible though, so I offered to pay for them, and he suggested a challenge instead:

Five designs in thirty days.

A reminder of what Bill Zhang of sent me to work with.

This one was supposed to have all kinds of dangles off the bottom of the bottle top ring, the blue shell and some shards, but when I did that, it just wasn't what I was picturing, so I took it all off and decided to see what it would look like wrapped in shells...I like it. There's so many things you can do with these glass bottle rings. The spiral cord is dyed nylon cord in a spiral knot and wire wrapped in 24 gauge steel wire.

I LOVE the large holes in these square concave pendant beads, you can string all kinds of cords and even ribbons and fabric strips into them, and they're available in large and small. I had orginally came up with this on Earth Day, but then set it aside when I realized my upcycled strips of rayon fabric weren't long enough. I used square knots to hold the beads in place, and that got a little tricky since I started in the middle and worked my way out on each side. I kept getting myself turned around and one side the beads were turned backwards because the cord had to be folded in half and not pulled all the way through bead, but instead the cord through the loop you create. I found if I lay the cord and all the beads face down, and then feed it through the bead from the front, it was easier to keep them all going the right direction. I was going for minimalist art deco, but I also wanted it to be more casual than dress, so I used a natural cotton twine. Then I wire wrapped the ends and made a hook and eye clasp out of 20 gauge copper wire.

This set I did Sunday night, I had sat down to finish another piece, which is still unfinished, while watching Firefly on DVD (why did I never see this show?) So, those are bead caps. Aren't they pretty? I've had them for a while and couldn't find anything I liked them for because if you put them on the ends of beads, you only see the outer edges, I didn't like that. And these marquise spindle pendants are just beautiful in the light, you can't see it as well here, but these have a little bit of a yellow swirl in them too. I made bead links out of the opaque tangerine Tiaria Chinese crystal rondelles, I loooove how bright they are! The pendant moves freely on the middle length of chain. The earwires are my first attempt at this kind of earwire.

I had to add some bead weaving, though I actually should have had several. I abandoned two pieces, one halfway, the other nearly complete (don't ask me, I have no idea). I'll finish them though, and make another post, this one's already late. 
This bracelet is my version of the ombre craze going around right now. It's done in a right angle weave, but I had to add some seed beads to hide the thread, because the 8mm Chinese Crystal rondelle beads were actually a little too big for this stitch, it worked out, though in retro I might have used a like color seed bead with each section, instead of clear all the way through. 

This piece is why I don't have more pieces done...I started it on Earth Day, and just couldn't put it down. I kept adding and subtracting from it. It's made from an upcycled skirt that I loved and wore two or three times before someone said..."Klaudete, you look ridiculous in that skirt." So, I packed it away with other scrap materials and clothes made from fabric that I loved but wouldn't be caught dead in...I think it was in my craft bin for at least 20 years, lol. I just took one small section off and got tons of 'ribbons' from it. this is six strips, tied about eight inches from the end, knoted in a square to flatten and even out the fringe and then braided for the necklace end. I wire wrapped the end of each fringe and added opaque brown, clear tangerine, and silver Chinese crystal rondelles in 4mm and 8mm...and just kept adding; tusks in cherry red, a large shard pendant in cherry red, and a top drilled free form flat sea glass pendant in tangerine. By the time I was done, the fringe section alone was six inches. I wire wrapped the ends of the braided section, and originally only had the 4mm silver tiaria chinese links at the top, making it a twenty inch necklace with a six inch beaded fringe. So then on Sunday night I was just looking at all the finished pieces and, I don't know, I guess I thought it wasn't I added five inches of beaded links and five inches of chain. This crazy thing is 21 inches from clasp to the bottom most bead, doesn't even need the clasp to be honest

Well, that's it so far. I do have two more finished...sort of, so I'll take photos of those tomorrow and post again when I can.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Blog hops and challenges

I've found a new love in the world of jewelry making: blog hops and jewelry making challenges. No surprise really, I've always been more productive under pressure, and I know how counter productive that sounds, but it seems to work for me...

If you'd like to see the results of my latest challenges, stay tuned, I'm revealing what Bill Zhang of sent me back in April, this Monday, May 13th.

A little reminder of the gorgeous beads sent:

A little peek I was able to sneak in using Twitter

I'm also using some of the beads from this challenge for another challenge I'm participating in from the Bead Soup Cafe Group on Facebook, and I'll reveal that on Monday too.

Lori Anderson of Pretty Things, and the author of the Bead Soup Blog Party, announced yesterday that she'll have a list of the BSBP7 contest winners soon, so don't forget to have a look at all the gorgeousness from this year's reveals. You can get the blog lists here. But the contest is based on the pieces posted to the Pinterest board here. And let me tell you, there are some absolutely fabulous pieces from this challenge, soooo much inspiration. 

See you on Monday for my reveal!!!