A few more new things…

Oh dear! My poor blog is getting a little forgotten in the flurry of bead making—so sorry about that! I've mostly cleared off my tables from record keeping and I'm steadily working away at that ever-growing mound of unpainted beads. Here's a little peek for you of what I've finished recently…

First up, I'm making dragon shields again! This lonely stamp had probably been sitting unused for nearly two years. Dragon shields are a little tricky to make and take quite a while, but I've always loved the end result and it's good to be back at it again. I'll be trying some new colors shortly…

I've also been doing some more work with my new rustic copper brown color…

These new ferns will be perfect for autumn designs! If I can squeeze in enough time, I have a necklace design in mind with one of these ferns and a sleepy chipmunk… and possibly a few other new beads… maybe I'll even write a tutorial. :-)

Of course, I had to make a few of my rectangle Queen Anne's Lace pendants in copper brown too!

And some inside-outside beads.

I painted a few extras in dusty denim blue.


And… I almost forgot! Have I told you all that I'm making grey foxes now?
Yes, I really am!

They've been on my to-do list for practically forever and I finally decided it was time. Besides, red can get just a little tiny bit boring after a while… but don't worry, red foxes aren't going anywhere.

I really should make an arctic fox next, don't you think? Winter isn't all that far away!



And in other sleepy critter news, I'm now making fawns with a vertical hole to give you a few more design options.

So, what else is new? Let's see… all my speckle beads are back in stock…and turquoise ponies are finally back too!

See everything new (and old) in my shop here.


Back to bead making I go… Have a lovely day!


On AJE Blog ~ Record Keeping

Hello again! Today you'll find me buried beneath a mound of papers… I'm in the process of putting together paint color and technique records for each of the different beads I make! It's a long and somewhat dull task, but I'm happy that I'm finally getting down to doing it. Keeping those favorite beads in stock is going to be so much easier now!

Join me on AJE blog and tell me your thoughts on record keeping—do you love it or hate it? Do you need it or are you able to work without it?

Share your thoughts here.


Happy Saturday!

Pretty Palettes Reveal!


I was beyond overjoyed and so very honored when Erin asked me to join her for July's Pretty Palettes challenge on Halcraft USA blog. I had no idea what her chosen palette would be or which beads I would be using, but really—who can turn down an opportunity for more beads? Yes, I've walked through the bead gallery aisles of Michael's far too many times wishing that all the beads were mine… I know I'm not the only one! So, there was no other answer but "yes!".

When my packet brimming with beads arrived a few days later, I knew for sure that I had made the right choice—Erin has a way with colors that always makes me smile and I loved the bead mix she put together right away.

Come see what I made…

I immediately saw Erin's bead mix divided into two themes—one mainly golden and another in the grey-green and blue. For this necklace I went with golden beads, only accenting it with the other colors. I've titled it "Gilded Daydreams".

One of the first focals that came to my mind as I started to plan my designs, was this earthy golden face by one of my favorite ceramic bead artists, Birgitta Lejonklou. For so long I've wanted to use this focal, but each time I pulled it out, the design didn't work out quite right and I put it back—I'm so happy it has finally found the perfect home!

I wanted to keep with the earthy feel of Birgitta's focal and also add some richness to it—the gold fluted rondels were perfect for that. Between each one, I used a tiny grey iris seed bead to keep with the grey from the palette and for movment—each seed bead works like an itty bitty ball-joint.

To echo the rustic nature of Birgitta's focal, I chose this waterworn creek pebble from my little collection. It's been sitting on my shelf waiting for me to take the time to drill a hole in it ever since I first used a pebble in a necklace earlier this month. It's rather soft (as far as rocks and pebbles go) so drilling was fairly easy, but as this was my first time drilling a pebble, I was nervous the whole time that I would ruin it! Very happily, I did not! So many happy memories are connected to my ever-growing pebble collection and so adding this one into my necklace really is an extra special touch for me!

Next I borrowed stole these two fabric covered bead cords by my mom from her cord stash for another rustic element. I'm loving the contrasts of this necklace! Soft fiber with hard crystal and stone… coarse texture with smooth… bright and shiny with dark pearlescent hues.

I went with a random look for the entire necklace—I used all the gold rondels, a handful of the citrine chunks, a few scattered peacock pearls and green glass faceted beads, and then I sprinkled in three glass art beads by MonasLampwork for a little extra surprise and sparkle.


This necklace was still in progress when I came up with another design in a totally new direction…

This time, a bracelet—my inspiration was the soft lavender-grey pearls from Erin—they look so very much like rose petals! And so I went a little more feminine and vintage-style with this design. I used the lavender pearls and three of the citrine chunks… and everything else came from my own stash. I'm calling this bracelet "Sweet Flower Petals".

I used one of my sleepy flower garden bunnies dressed up with a vintage floral cotton print. I strayed just a little bit from Erin's palette and I used a short piece of rosy pink gauze ribbon for an extra pop of color and to hide my crimps…

And also in pink—tiny aurora borealis faceted czech glass between each pearl. Pink is never my first choice, but I thought it added a nice touch to the design and it was fun to see it take on a more romantic and feminine look.

I picked one of my own polymer roses to add a tiny bit of rustic-ness—I can never leave rustic behind for too long!

For the clasp, I used a vintage mother-of-pearl button from my Grandmother and made a loop from seed beads and czech glass flower beads.


I was down to the wire for time (read the day before this reveal!), but I had one last idea and happily it flew together faster than the first two designs!

This time, I went for the more grey-green and blue theme—I used the remaining peacock pearls and citrine chunks, a few faceted green glass beads, and four of the rhinestone rondels… and some more things from my own stash. I've titled this one "Wildflower Morning". My very favorite mornings have always been the misty-grey ones and I love watching the mist rise as the sky brightens, the lengthening sunbeams catching on the dew drops and gossamer—it's a magical few moments!

For my focal, I chose one of my own pressed flower polymer Queen Anne's Lace pendants and paired it up with one last bead from MonasLampwork and a single green glass faceted bead. Tied together with hemp, I made an elongated focal—I do like long necklaces and long focals!

At the back of the necklace I used tiny rainbow colored seed beads between each citrine chunk.

And for my closure, I made another vintage button and loop clasp.


And there you have it—three new creations, each with a slightly different feel, and what fun they were to make!

Thank you so much Erin for such a wonderful time and an artfully selected bead mix that was the fuel for these new creations! And thank you to the rest of the Halcraft team for sponsoring such great creativity!

Be sure to stop by Halcraft blog to see what Erin made with this very same bead mix…