Nov 172017

If you watched my video about my trip to the bead show, then you’ll know that I was quite impressed with the luminous jewelry kits created by AnglerFish.

I wasn’t able to pick up any of the product at the show, but then the folks at AnglerFish agreed to send me a kit in exchange for a video review. Yay!

ff led jewelry cover

Of course, even though I received this kit for free, all opinions stated are my true and honest feelings.

In today’s video I will show you:

  • Everything that comes in the kit
  • How to put together your first test necklace
  • How to choose the best glass beads for illumination

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By the way, some of the beads that I show in the video and think won’t work actually will!

This is a very cool tip that I found later in one of the PDFs:

If you use a piece of a white straw on the inside of the bead hole, it will help defuse the light. And there’s even a bit of a straw included in your kit.

I will demonstrate how that looks in my next video and I’ll show you how to string a bead on the pendant style LED without having to glue it in.

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This would be a great unique gift for someone who has everything and loves to make interesting jewelry.

AnglerFish has a lot of helpful resources at their website, including:

  • Support by way of PDFs and video tutorials
  • A blog
  • Gallery full of inspiring photos of luminous jewelry.

Don’t forget that you can purchase all of the components individually and make even more necklaces, all interchangeable with the one powered clasp!

Enjoy the video and happy creating.

Watch the How to Make Luminous Beads & Jewelry-Light Up LED Necklaces-Friday Findings video at YouTube.

Nov 142017

Do you have a box full of broken jewelry or perhaps a pile of pieces for one reason or another you just don’t wear anymore?

I certainly do, and my box is quite full!

beaded illusion necklace cover

In today’s video I will show  how I take one of my earliest pieces of jewelry and give it a makeover.

You’ll also learn a cool way to string a bead soup assortment of beads onto monofilament cord and create the illusion of floating and beautiful rippling bead strands.

Along the way you’ll learn how to use bead tips to finish your necklace and a few ways to fine tune the adjustments.

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Beaded Illusion Necklace-Seed Bead Jewelry Tutorial video at YouTube.

Nov 102017

In all the years I’ve been making jewelry I’ve come across the term “rolo chain” many times, but have never bothered to look it up until now.

ff rolo chain

What I found out was that, no, it does not refer to the Rollo Candy made with chocolate and caramel.

Mmmmm… caramel… chocolate…

Oops, sorry, got a bit distracted there!

ff rolo chain fmg

Also, the term rolo chain can be spelled  with a double “l” as in “rollo.”

Finally, and most importantly, although there is a basic understanding of what rolo chain is there are many, many variations. I will show you a few of these in the video.

ff rolo chain artbeads

The common theme I see among all the variations is that the inner shape of each link of rolo chain consists of flattened, rather than round wire.

Here are links to the chains I showed in the video and a few of my favorite places to buy jewelry chain:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the What is Rolo or Rollo Chain? Friday Jewelry Findings Tutorial video at YouTube.

Nov 072017

With Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s coming fast upon us, opportunities for gift giving and the need for quick and easy gifts abound.

Easy Tassel Pendants cover

These easy tassel pendant necklaces are the perfect thing to whip up as a thank you gift for a hostess, or a quick gift for an unexpected guest.

Change up the materials (perhaps a leather tassel?) and you could even have gifts for guys, such as key chains or rear view mirror dangles.

Easy Tassel Pendants insta

As I mentioned in the video, (twice in fact, lol) I had SO much fun going through my beads and trying to find ones that would work for this project.

I hope you have just as good a time creating yours!

Tools and Materials:

You can always just leave a long length of cord for typing in a bow around the back, but you have a few extra minutes, cord ends or ribbon ends are a much neater finish:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Easy Tassel Pendant Necklaces-DIY Jewelry Gifts Tutorial video at YouTube.

Nov 032017

For some time now I’ve been debating whether or not to invest in one of the Lucy Clay slicers for polymer clay.

I don’t do a lot of caning, so I haven’t gotten in all the practice that would make me a proficient slicer of beautifully thin, even slices.

ff mini slicer

Which is sort of annoying, because whenever I do take the time to make a cane I end up wasting a lot of it!

In today’s video I show you how to assemble the Mini Slicer and the other things I ordered from the Lucy Clay Store.

One thing I realized is that in these days of the Internet everywhere:

One should not rely solely on the printed instructions, but go check out the YouTube tutorial as well!

Here are links to other videos about the Lucy Clay Mini Slicer that you might find helpful:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the How To Assemble the Mini Slicer by Lucy Clay Polymer Clay Tools-Friday Findings Tutorial video at YouTube.

Oct 312017

Inspiration comes from so many places: nature, the work of other artists, color palettes and the like.

I’m often inspired by materials, especially when somebody has put them together in a way I wouldn’t have thought of.

fall harvest bracelet cover

This wire wrapped bracelet, full of Czech glass beads, was inspired by a strand of beads in a recent Dollar Bead Box called “Fall Harvest Mix.” 

This bracelet is fun to wear, as several of the beads are drilled off center, making it easy to fidget and fiddle with them!

Something about the matte finish of the beads made me think of candy corn, so I had to run out yesterday to get some just for this photo shoot.

Do you love or hate candy corn? I love it until I’ve eaten too much, then I hate it… and myself, lol.

You may find these videos useful in making this bracelet:

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Fall Harvest Bracelet-Wrapped Loop Beaded Jewelry Tutorial video at YouTube.

Oct 272017

In these days when so much of our business is transacted online it’s nice to sometimes be able to see and handle things before we purchase them.

This is especially true when it comes to the supplies we use for our creativity. Although we can look and see how lovely they are online it can be difficult to get an idea of the scale, it’s also fun to be able to touch and run our hands through them!

bead show haul cover

Last weekend I was thankful for the opportunity to attend the 39th annual Bead Affaire bead show in Watertown, MA.

While at the show I took video of several of the tables and exhibits for you. So today’s video is a tour of a small portion of the show and at the end I’ll show you what I purchased.

Here are links to the artists and businesses that I showed or mentioned in the video:

Have you ever gone to a bead show? What was your favorite part of being able to attend?

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the A Day at the Bead & Jewelry Show-A Bead Affaire in Watertown MA-Friday Findings video at YouTube.

Oct 242017

These polymer clay pendants with phrases are so much fun to make, and so very satisfying because they say exactly what you want them to say!

If you want to get even more words to fit onto your pendants, just use slightly smaller images and really squeeze all the letters in together, not worrying about where the line breaks are.

The results will be interesting to look at, as it won’t be as readily apparent what they say, but will require the viewers to look a little bit more closely.

turn of phrase pendants pt 2 cover

You’ll notice from the cover photo that I ended up using the nativity stamp after all, and was very pleased with the results.

Sometimes if you’re unsure you just have to go for it and see how it turns out!

If you find there are areas you aren’t thrilled with, such as the little flower in the upper left of my “give thanks” pendant, feel free to add sculptural elements to embellish and cover up.

The little flower I used (you can see it in the cover photo) is perhaps a bit big for the pendant. It was just something in my stash, but I think I need to sculpt one that’s a bit more in proportion.

To color the flower that the bird is holding I used a tiny detail brush dipped in water and then in a little bit of Inka Gold. It worked great for adding color and a bit of shimmer to small areas. (Gotta find more opportunities to play with those!)

Don’t forget that any projects decorated with Gilders paste should dry for at least 24 hours. Then you can buff them to a nice sheen. The product directions say to wait 12 hours but I have found that often that isn’t enough, perhaps because I put a lot of layers on mine.

Tools and Materials:

  • Metal bezels
  • Polymer clay
  • Rubber stamps or cling stamps
  • Letter stamps such as this metal stamp set
  • Index card
  • Needle tool
  • Opaque pigment inks such as chalk inks
  • Clay blade
  • Detail paint brush
  • Paint thinner or mineral spirits
  • Inka Gold
  • Gilders paste

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Turn of Phrase Pendants Part 2 of 2-Polymer Clay Jewelry Tutorial video at YouTube.

Oct 202017

Why did you first create something?

Was it because you wanted something you couldn’t afford to buy in a store?

Or was it because you had an idea you wanted to bring to fruition?

Or perhaps you needed something very specific that couldn’t be found anywhere else.

ff diy multi strand findings (1)

Although we all have our own different reasons for creating, rather than just buying, the end result is that that creative freedom over our designs is an enticing thing.

Even though I have bins full of multi-strand findings, today I decided to make my own with wire… mostly just because I had an idea in my head and I wanted to see if it would work out.

Using a wire jig is perfect for this type of project because you can easily make multiples, as many as you want. Be sure to watch the video for tips on how to get the most smooth and consistent results with a wire jig.

I think it’s becoming a trend in my videos lately that towards the end I have some interesting random thought which then becomes the seed for yet another video.

Seems to me like a good way to work.

They say you can’t use up creativity, and I’d say they’re absolutely right!

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the DIY Multi-Strand Bracelet or Necklace Finding-Wire Jig Jewelry Tutorial-Friday Findings video at YouTube.

Oct 172017

It’s always nice to wear pretty jewelry, and even sometimes interesting or unusual jewelry.

Then there is the jewelry that’s meaningful, perhaps because it came from a loved one or has special memories.

turn of phrase pendants pt 1 cover

Today’s project makes jewelry that is meaningful in a different way. By using words and images that resonate with you, you can make your piece completely unique and special.

These pendants would also make one-of-a-kind, meaningful gifts for friends and loved ones.

The materials list for this project is long, so I suggest while you have the supplies out you make several. This gives you an opportunity to experiment with different shapes, phraseology, colors and finishes. Along the way you’ll find some pieces that you like more than others and get practice with the techniques.

Tools and Materials:

  • Metal bezels
  • Polymer clay
  • Rubber stamps or cling stamps
  • Letter stamps such as this metal stamp set
  • Index card
  • Needle tool
  • Opaque pigment inks such as chalk inks
  • Clay blade
  • Detail paint brush
  • Paint thinner or mineral spirits
  • Inka Gold
  • Gilders paste

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Turn of Phrase Pendants Part 1 of 2-Polymer Clay Jewelry Tutorial video at YouTube.

Watch Part 2 of the Turn of Phrase Pendants.