Time for the Bead Soup Party!!

It is finally time for the reveal from all the participants in the Bead Soup Blog Party hosted by the lovely and talented Lori.  My partner was Susan, and make sure you check out the fantastic design she made with the beads I sent her. Grab a large cup of coffee and visit the more than 80 other designers who participated in the party.

Susan sent me a lovely assortment of beads including a beautiful lampwork pendant and coordinating beads she created. I struggled a bit with some design ideas.  I tend to end up making bracelets since necklaces take more time, and I rarely wear them because I have a difficult time with getting the right length for what I’m wearing.

I originally thought I’d try to creatively string the beads, but I never followed through with that idea because it just didn’t seem to be what the beads, or the party, called for.  I wanted to do something a bit more creative. I got the idea of making several different components and linking them together with chain. I found this fantastic textured chain that was made up of unfused links. I also added some perfectly colored Apatite 12mm coin beads to the design.

I wanted to incorporate some of my metal work, so I decided to make a small brass textured heart and rivet on a sterling daisy “Pringle”.  Then I remembered I had some fused components left over from a fusing class I took several years ago.  The organic circle seemed like a perfect fit for the design. It’s kind of an eclectic mix of craft wire, base metal chain, sterling silver, fine silver, and brass, but I’m really happy with the finished piece.

Here's how it started

And here is the finished piece

Another view of the side

The back and clasp

Closer view of the brass heart

Many thanks to Lori for hosting and organizing the event!!

Make sure you visit my soup partner Susan.

Or if you came from her site, then journey on to Melissa, the next designer after Susan or Nancy, the next designer after me.

Have fun!!

Bead Soup: Coming Together

Originally, when I signed up for the Bead Soup Party, I thought I’d have no problem putting together a piece in time for the party.  But then two weeks ago, my entire family came down with the stomach flu at various times for a week, which left me on the couch for several days either nursing a little one back to health or recovering myself. Last week, my youngest celebrated his second birthday, and we had a family party which meant an entire week of cleaning and preparation.

I was in a bit of a panic as the weekend drew closer and I still really didn’t have anything put together.  I started to get the inklings of an idea at the beginning of the weekend and yesterday I visited one of the local craft stores for some inspiration to go along with my idea.  I knew I needed a few more beads, and I found the perfect strand of Apatite that looks like it will do the job.

I also picked up some chain that I discovered this morning are unfused links. These links will be perfect for my design.

This morning, I finally had a few minutes to sit down with my sketch book and put together some ideas.  Nothing amazing, but I think things are finally coming together.

From My Soup Partner

I received the goods from my Blog Soup Partner, Susan Kaplan, several days ago, but I just now have a chance to take and post a picture.

Susan creates beautiful lampwork beads, and I’m lucky enough to receive one of her gorgeous pendants and some coordinating beads. She also sent me some Blue Goldstone, which I’d never heard of before and is a lovely deep blue.  In the yellow tones, she included some amber rounds and some glass beads that are a bit deeper in same color tone.  There were also some fossilized coral pieces and sterling spacers.

It’s a great assortment of beads and a fantastic start on a necklace!  I have to confess that these are just this side of my color pallet.  I love blue and brown together, but I haven’t worked with the more earth tones very much at all.  But I’m loving beads that I probably wouldn’t have given a second thought to before.  It’s so perfect because it meets the spirit of the Bead Soup Party of being inspired by something new.

I have no idea what I’m going to create.  All I can think is to just string them, but I really want to do something more thoughtful. I’m going to go through some magazines and hope to hit some inspiration.

Thanks Susan for the awesome package!!  I hope to do it justice!

Bead Soup Partner “Ingredients”

When I saw the post for the Bead Soup Party, I almost instantly knew what I wanted to send. I bought some fantastic pieces at the Bead Bazaar from Loot! that seemed ideal for this exchange.  I’m also not completely convinced I want to make the bracelet I was originally thinking, so I kind of wanted to see what my partner would do with one of the pieces.

I really wasn’t sure what to pair with the Loot! piece.  I went through my beading stash, which is out of date for my current aesthetic.  Stuff that seemed really great when I bought it seven years ago, shows my immaturity as a jewelry designer now.

I did find a few semi-precious beads that seemed like they would work. A friend on twitter recently sent me some beads, so I added some pieces from her stash. On the Saturday before I shipped the package, I received my lucite order from Beadin Path, and they seemed like a perfect fit!

I’m a bit unsure about what I’m sending.  I had remembered the Loot! pieces being bigger, so I thought about sending two, but the one I really liked didn’t seem to have a complementary piece.  The sets I’ve seen from the other designers are just amazing.  Lots of handmade pieces, and I’m just starting to make components by hand.  Hopefully my partner, Susan Kaplan, will still like what I’m sending.

Bead Soup Party?

I was reading (well, skimming) through some of the blogs I follow, and a post from Art Bead Scene caught my eye about a bead soup party on another blog. I love this phenomenon of blogging. You start out at one blog and before you know it, you’ve nearly clicked your way into a whole other world.

While it might not look like it at first glance, I am just starting up this blog. I am moving some posts from various blogs and consolidating them here. Basically, it amounts to a lot of back-posting since I’ve been in the conceptualizing process for a while. I’m not really at a point where I want to make myself public because honestly, there’s quite a bit of construction still going on.

But I was intrigued by the idea of a bead exchange. I’ve been really working to push my creativity in the last few months, and in the process, I’ve discovered more about my style and pushed myself to be more creative than I thought possible.

So, in spite of the fact that this blog is not quite ready to go “live”, I decided to sign up for the party. I am so excited about the exchange and creating something new. I’m looking forward to the inspiration.

While I’m not entirely sure all of what I’m going to send in exchange. I know exactly what my focal component will be. I hope my partner will like it.