Aug 012017
 

This lovely plover bead has been sitting on my studio table for way too long now. I’ve enjoyed looking at it but it was high time it got made into something wearable!

beach scene necklace cover

This bead was made by Shannon Vickers of Blue Blazes Lampwork.  You can also see what she’s up to on her Facebook page.

Many of you have told me that you enjoy the tutorials where I explain the design process. That’s why today’s video is longer than usual.

Let me know which you prefer:

  • shorter videos
  • or more of my rambling about design.

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Beach Scene Necklace-Lampwork Focal Bead Jewelry Tutorial video at YouTube.

Jul 252017
 

I had prepared a completely different project for you this week: something involving handmade lampwork beads, lots of dangling wire wrapped components and a variety of interesting features to accent a large glass focal.

However, when it came time to sit down and record the video I just didn’t feel like it!

rose blush necklace cover

Instead my mind turned to a photo I had just come across on Pinterest of a very simple, yet elegant necklace. I then went digging through my stash to see if I could find two connector pieces to hold the multiple strands together. The ones I had in mind ended up not working, but I came across these pieces left over from another project.

As I mentioned in the video I recently re-organized all of my beads and findings, sorting them not only by color as they have always been, but also by type.

It’s only been a week or so since I’ve finished and I’ve already found the system to be much more useful in finding what I need and also seeing all the different sizes and variations I have of any one type of bead, such as these rose quartz beads, I found to my surprise I had them in 8 mm, 6 mm and 4 mm faceted (which I ended up not using in this project.)

You can add as many strands as you like to this design, just be sure to test out the lengths before you finish up your connections so that everything drapes nicely inside each other.

Tools and Materials:

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Watch the Rose Blush Necklace-Rose Quartz Statement Jewelry Tutorial video at YouTube,

Nov 092015
 

turquoise nugget necklace

This week’s necklace has a subtle southwestern vibe. It started with the chunky turquoise nuggets, and then I found a pendant in my stash that accented them perfectly. Or perhaps I should say they accented it. Either way I think the combination is wonderful, and as bold as the necklace is, it went together very quickly.

It’s funny how finding all the right components for a design goes sometimes. I had hurt my back and had a rough several days of it. When it was time to plan my next video I quickly pulled out these pieces without much thought or really caring how well it all worked.

Then, after the necklace was done, I looked at it and said, “Love!”

I’m wearing it now as I type. 🙂

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Turquoise Nugget Statement Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials

  • 45 mm flower pendant
  • six turquoise nugget beads, 10 mm to 30 mm across
  • 6 12 mm spiral cage beads
  • six eye pins
  • chain to finish your necklace
  • clasp

Tools

Directions

  1. Slide an eye pin through each of the turquoise nuggets and use round nose pliers or One Step Looper to finish other ends into a loop.
  2. Use the loops to connect spiral beads with nuggets, alternating. If necessary cut a small piece of necklace chain to hang pendant between two center nuggets.
  3. Attach lengths of chain to either end of necklace and attach clasp to finish.
Oct 262015
 

tigers & pearls necklace

I have always loved tiger eye gemstones. Something about their sparkly, swirly depths is fascinating, and being a cat fan I’ve always kind of been intrigued by the name, too.

These tiger eye dagger beads are quite dramatic all by themselves and it didn’t seem like I needed to get very complicated when designing with them. Just a few sparkly crystals and some antique white pearls seem to set them off perfectly.

The drama is increased here simply by using three nearly identical strands. But like I said in the video, if you want to keep it simple, just make one.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Tigers & Pearls Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials

  • 18 inches of tiger eye dagger beads
  • 39 inches of pearls
  • a few 4 mm crystal cube beads
  • six wire protectors
  • six crimps
  • six crimp covers
  • two bead cones
  • two eye pins
  • two 2 to 3 inch lengths of chain
  • lobster clasp
  • 3 26-inch lengths of bead stringing wire

Tools

Directions

  1. Onto each piece of bead stringing wire string 6 1/2 inches of pearls, 6 inches of tiger eye dagger beads and another 6 1/2 inches of pearls. Intersperse crystal beads with tiger eye beads as desired.
  2. Finish all six ends by siding on a crimp and a wire protector, sliding the wire back through the crimp. flattening with crimping pliers and covering with a crimp cover.
  3. Slide one end of each strand onto an eye pin, then slide eye pin through a bead cone.
  4. Create wrapped loop with remaining eye pin wire attaching loop to one end of a length of chain. Repeat to finish other end of necklace attaching lobster clasp to one end of chain.
Jun 152015
 

ammonite necklace.jpg

Last week I showed you how to wire wrap an ammonite so it could be used as a pendant.

This week we’re finishing up the necklace by adding tourmaline beads and Swarovski crystal dangles to the bottom of the ammonite, plus more tourmaline beads, brass beads and chain for hanging.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Ammonite Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • wire wrapped ammonite
  • 19 7mm x 10 mm oval tourmaline beads
  • 22 3mm brass beads
  • 12 4mm Swaroski bicone beads, crystal clear
  • 2 8-inch pieces chain
  • lobster clasp
  • 1 or 2 jump rings
  • 8 crimp beads
  • up to 8 crimp covers
  • bead stringing wire

Tools:

  • One Step Crimper (or your preferred crimping method)
  • wire cutters
  • chain nose pliers

Directions:

  1. Arrange the 12 Swarovski crystals and five 3mm brass beads into three rows of different lengths and patterns.
  2. Slide a crimp bead onto bead stringing wire, then slide the wire through one of the wires going around the bottom of the ammonite. Slide the end of the wire back through the crimp, pull snug and crimp. Add a crimp cover if desired.
  3. Slide on one row of Swarovski crystals and brass beads, then add a tourmaline bead. Slide on a crimp and crimp, adding a crimp cover if desired. Trim excess wire.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 to add two more dangles to the bottom of the ammonite.
  5. Slide a crimp onto bead stringing wire, slide wire through end link of one of your lengths of chain. Slide wire back through crimp and crimp, adding a crimp cover if desired.
  6. String remaining 17 brass beads and 16 tourmaline beads in an alternating pattern onto bead stringing wire.
  7. Repeat step 5 to add remaining length of chain.
  8. Slide ammonite pendant onto necklace.
  9. Use chain nose pliers to open a jump ring and add to end link of one chain and a jump ring. Close securely.
  10. Add a jump ring to other end of chain if needed.

 

Jun 012015
 

art glass lentil necklace

I picked up this huge lampworked glass lentil bead at a bead show last October. It was made by glass artist Ann Conlin.  We’re often so impressed with these large focal beads, but then it can be a dilemma what to do with them.

In the video I give you several ideas and then show how to put together these multiple strands with bead caps.

So don’t be intimidated by the giant focals, they can make quite a statement!

Enjoy the video and happy creating. 🙂

You can watch the Art Glass Lentil Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 37mm diameter lentil shaped glass art bead
  • 15-inches each of seven strands of beads
  • 7 20-inch lengths of bead stringing wire
  • crimp beads
  • 2 bead caps
  • 2 eye pins
  • 2 4-inch lengths of chain
  • lobster clasp
  • jump ring

Tools:

  1. String 7 1/2-inches of beads onto each piece of stringing wire.
  2. Finish one end of each wire with a crimp and a small loop of wire, trimming off excess wire. Open loop of an eye pin and place all wire loops into it. Close loop securely and slide on a bead cap to cover.
  3. Use chain nose pliers to grasp wire just at point where it exits bead cap.  Bend wire at 90° angle.  Grasp bend with round nose pliers and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a loop.  Reposition pliers to finish loop.  Slightly twist loop open and insert end link of one of the pieces of chain. Close loop and hold with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to wrap remaining wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in end.
  4. Gather all wires together and slide through art glass bead.
  5. String remaining 7 1/2 inches of beads onto each wire and repeat steps 2 and 3 to finish other end.
  6. Add a lobster clasp to one chain and a jump ring to the other to complete your necklace.
Dec 012014
 

There’s an interesting story behind how this necklace got started.  I have mentioned that I teach jewelry making at my local Joann’s store. We were having a demo day where we show samples of our work and the teachers are available to talk to prospective students.

It was a two hour event and it seemed like a good idea to be working on something jewelry-like while sitting there, so I threw together a kit of a a few tools plus these pink shell beads, some crystals and some head pins.

fuchsia finery statement necklace

When I came home from the event, I looked at my 12 hot pink & crystal bead dangles and said, “Huh.” So hence, the trip to the craft store that I mention in the video.

The rest of it came together pretty much the way I explain in the video: add some clear crystals to bring out the crystals in the nest, add mixed metals to compliment the nest, the bird, etc.

I think my favorite part of this necklace is the addition of the little pink Swarovskis to the nest. Dunno why, but they make me happy. 🙂

fuchsia finery statement necklace close up

This is my usual design process, btw, I rarely have a specific thing in mind when I begin but just pick a starting point and go from there.

How about you? Do you work from sketches or some kind of plan? Or do you use a different type of process?

However you work, happy creating!

Enjoy the video! And if you make a project based on this tutorial, please feel free to share photos in the “Your Creations” folder at my Facebook page.

You can watch the Fuchsia Finery Statement Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

This list is what I used, but I hope you’ll search your stash and your local stores and find items that perfectly suit YOU. 🙂

  • 13 dyed pearl beads, 10mm- 16mm
  • 4 6mm opal Swarovski crystal bicone beads
  • 5 4mm clear Swarovski crystal bicone beads
  • 13 head pins
  • 1 bird’s nest & bird mixed media pendant
  • 28 6mm faceted Czech clear crystal beads
  • 28 6mm antique gold bead caps
  • 14 6mm antique gold plated fluted beads
  • 4 15mm copper gears
  • 4 8mm oval jump rings
  • 4 crimps
  • 4 crimp covers
  • 2 wire protectors
  • bead stringing wire
  • 2 12mm copper plated cage bead
  • 2 7-inch lengths copper chain
  • lobster clasp
  • 4 jump rings
  • 3 4mm pink Swarovski crystal bicone beads

Tools:

See the video for complete directions.