Friday, October 4, 2013

Lightening Round!

My latest design for Znetshows was a quick-turnaround lightening round to showcase the beautiful crystals and silver-plated findings that are available from Znetshows.  They had each designer choose two crystal strands and we were sent those choices plus some really nice silver-plated keychain clasps.  For this piece, I used the truly more beautiful than could be photographed, Chinese crystal, glass-nuggets in Sahara green (it seems like that color is sold out, but you can see all of the rest of the lovely colors and treatments for these crystals, here).  The minute I saw these crystals, I thought "macrame!"  I used some waxed linen thread and metal "e" beads in bronze to complement the crystals.  The crown charm that I added at the bottom is an antique that I was given by a friend that I have been waiting for the perfect piece to use on.  I think this is it!  I also choose another crystal, but you will have to wait until next week to see the pieces that I made with those.  If you haven't already done so, go check out the selection of beads, findings, crystals and other pretties on the Znetshows website.  Their prices are fantastic and their customer service, superb!  You won't be sorry.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Orange Crush

I really love this bracelet, created for this last round of the Bead Soup Blog Project and now available at my online store.  Just click here, and it can be yours!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Do Be Do Bead Do's New Online Shop

Come visit Do Be Do Bead Do online at my new location on Squareup, where you can now purchase my designs online.  I'll be slowly uploading designs previously seen here on the blog and new things as they are made.  Shop Do Be Do Bead Do

I'm very excited to finally have an online shop on a site that I can believe in and feel good about. 

Friday, July 5, 2013

Znetshows Design Team Beachy Theme Partner Challenge

The newest Znetshows design team challenge was a unique one.  Each of the Znetshow's designer was paired with another and we each chose beads from Znet's extensive stock of beads, pearls, stones, sea glass and metals for each other to design with, using the them "Beachy."  I was paired with Cynthia Machata and she had Bill at Znetshows send me a beautiful selection.

The first piece that I created, Sunset Beach at Sunset, used the pearls (BDS1923-07), crystals (RS144-123) and antique copper base metal spacer beads (M0191-AC), plus a copper toggle that I had in my stash.
This necklace, the second piece, Mermaid's Memory, is made of the two different colors and sizes of cultured sea class (S03-46FIVE and S04-B47FIVE), wired into links with the beautiful aqua tera jasper (BDS1886-02), and made into a long 24" chain, which closes with a beautiful morning glory and vine clasp (M0314-AS).  For the pendant, I used one of Znet's mini-conch beads in blue, one of my shell pendants in polymer clay and enamel, a silver sun and wind charm and a tiny bottle filled with mermaid's tears (ok, seed beads).

This was a really fun challenge, as I really like to design with beads that others have chosen for me.  I hope that I have done my partner and Znetshows proud, this round, and am looking forward to the next.

Head on over to Znetshows or click on any of the product code links to go shopping.  Znet's website is like going to a bead show from your computer.  

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Welcome Back and Thanks for Commenting

I'll get down to business, the winner of the earrings pictured below, is Susie of the blog, Vintage Susie & Wings.  Send me an email with your address and I'll get these out to you post haste.
As for the sale of my pieces, I'm trying to decide how best to offer my jewelry for sale.  I'm not happy with Etsy or Ebay, and Wepay is just too finicky for my purposes.  Anybody reading this have an idea for me?  There must be a way to sell directly from the blog at the click of a mouse, no?  I will gift anybody who can help me set this up with a $100 gift certificate towards my pieces (and free shipping) for their time and expertise.  Thanks, loyal readers and fans!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Pull up a Chair, Soup's Ready!

Welcome to the 3rd reveal of the 7th Annual Bead Soup Blog Party!

Before I begin with my reveal, I want to thank our hostess Lori Anderson for all of the work she has done for this event.  Faced with terrible pain and health concerns, she still managed to get all 500+ participants organized and worked diligently to keep this party going.  Thank you, Lori, we appreciate and admire you more than you realize.

For this round of the party (this is my 5th time participating), Lori paired me with Suzann Sladcik Wilson, the very talented writer and designer.  Suzann even sent me a copy of her new book (autographed, even) along with a very generous selection of beads.  Unfortunately, I did not take a photo of the raw materials before I immediately started creating.  There was lampwork, a wonderful pendant that she made, shells, silver, ceramics and glass beads.  The clasp was an adorable daisy.  When I saw the lovely polymer clay pendant, I knew that it deserved something "big."  I decided to make a bead-embroidered cuff bracelet to highlight the lovely flower.  I used three different sizes of seed beads, little 11s, some 8s and little squares.  I also added some sterling leaves and flowers (the flowers were also from Suzann, the leaves I picked up at my favorite bead store).   I've never attempting something like this before, and many hours later, I finished this cuff:

When I started the design process, I had planned on mounting the finished embroidery onto a brass blank, but instead I just lined it with black ultra-suede and added a silver clasp from my stash.  I am IN LOVE with this bracelet and very proud of myself for completing it.  

Because it was so time-intensive (and I seriously doubted I would be able to finish it in time for the reveal), I decided to use the lovely lampwork that was in the ingredients to make this bracelet, you know, just in case.
I added the glass rondelles and used the silver accents clasp that were in the mix.  I also made a pair of dangling earrings, adding the round blue ceramic beads that Suzann included in the mix of soup ingredients.  I wired them together with some emerald ab crystals (it's hard to tell from the photos, but the center of the  lampwork beads are clear, emerald glass -- amazing) from my stash finished them with simple sterling fish hook ear wires.  I'm really happy with this set, too.  It's amazing to me how much my skill level has improved since participating in this blog hop!

I still had quite a bit of cultured sea glass (in fact, I sent some to Suzann in her soup ingredients) left over from the Znetshows design team challenge that paired wonderfully with the (huge) strand of shell chips that Suzann sent.  I made this bracelet and earrings to match with those components and some tiny crystals. Until just this minute, I hadn't realized that I used copper findings in the bracelet and silver for the earrings.  Oh well, separates!  Because of that little whoops, I am going to give the earrings to one of the people who take the time to comment on this post.  If you'd like the earrings, come back next week to see if you have been chosen.  In fact, if you like my facebook page or become a new follower here, let me know that you have and I will enter you twice.

So, there you have it.  My designs.  I'm really proud of my work this time around.  It might sound like a bit much to some, but the Bead Soup Blog Parties have changed my life.  I've been made a member of the design team for Znetshows and I've been challenging myself more and have been focusing on my finished pieces instead of bead making.  In fact, I will be showing at a Summer Art Walk in Monrovia this year, and I am in the development stages of a new way to offer my pieces for sale online (instead of etsy).  If any of my readers have any advice for me, I sure would appreciate it.  

I am honored to be among the 500+ talented designers who have participated in this event.  Please take some time to visit the other artists who have contributed their stash and designs to this wonderful event.  You can begin here, with Suzann and then continue with the list, available here.  

All of these designs will be available for sale within the next couple of days.  Please come back and visit next week, if you are interested.  Thanks again for stopping by, pour yourself a beverage and enjoy some more soup!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Seventh Annual Bead Soup Blog Party, but, I Plead the Fifth

I've come to look forward to the annual Bead Soup Blog Parties like the holiday that it deserves to be.  I plan weeks in advance what beads I want to send, change my mind and plan again.  Then I start pulling the beads from my stash.  I usually start with something that I've made, be it one of my polymer pendants, or a set of beads or both.  Then I start to pull other ingredients for the soup that my partner will make with the selection.

I've recently decided to focus more on designing of finished pieces than making polymer components.  I so enjoy the design process, even if I do things a little differently.  Most designers that I know start by sketching out their designs on paper.  I hold the beads in my hand and sketch in my head.  After I get a design made in my mind, I lay it out on my bead board or mat and go from there.  I love that beads and wire and other bits and bobs come together to make something beautiful. 

This round of bead soup is the 7th party.  It will be the 5th time that I've participated.  I can't wait to see who, out of the 500 or so designers I get paired with and what they do paired with DoBeDoBeadDo.  Stay tuned to this spot for work in progress and then come back on April 13th for the final reveal.  Thank you to my readers for sticking with me and for all of your wonderful support!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Me, on a Design Team? YES!

I was very excited when I was contacted by Bill Zhang from Znetshows to participate in Znetshows' design team for the upcoming Tuscon bead shows.  Thrilled is more like it.  Bill selected 25 designers from Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Blog Projects to be on the team.  He sent each of us a very generous box of their new sea glass components (and other things like crystals and brass components) and asked that we create as many projects as we wanted, photograph them and send them back to him in a little over a week.  I received beautiful deep red and orange glass.  I made the three pieces that you see here.  The necklace to the left with the red sea glass pendant, is my favorite.  I used my polymer clay beads in the design and wire wrapped crystals and the brass that Znet sent into the piece.  It looks lovely on the neck.  The other two pieces are more playful and beachy.  I really love how they came out, but unfortunately they weren't chosen to be shown in Tuscon.  I really need to figure out a way to take better pictures, because I'm sure if the selection committee saw the pieces in person, they might have made the grade.  The experience was a good one, though and got my pliers all warmed up for the upcoming Bead Soup Blog Party, No. 7.  It will be my 5th party!  I've already put together my soup and am just waiting to see where the package will go.  Thank you so much to Lori Anderson and to Bill Zhang for having asked me to participate.