Friday, October 17, 2014

"Fallen Leaves"

click on image to enlarge


"Fallen Leaves"

When the Shibori Silk Ribbon called "Ombre" arrived from the talented hands of Deborah Weaver ~ ArtisticWeavers on Etsy.com ~ 

here is a link to her shop:  https://www.etsy.com/shop/ArtisticWeavers

I loved the colors so much I couldn't bear to cover up her lovely dyed hues with too many beads.  

Therefore, the bead embroidery on this pendant piece is rather minimal compared to my usual projects.  The colors reminded me of the beginning of Autumn when the leaf colors start to change, and the green leaves fall away.

I gathered together several strands of dyed silk ribbons for a necklace for this piece ~ all the colors of which are present in the dyed Shibori Silk Ribbon.  

The beads are all Japanese TOHO glass, plus crystal cut/faceted rounds, seed beads, with topaz-colored glass drops around the outer edges.  The backing is tan UltraSuede.  Although it does not show, I used Corn Yellow NBB (Nicole's Bead Backing) for my foundation, which is the only beading foundation I will use for my projects. Choose from 16 wonderful colors by clicking on the below link: 

www.http://www.beadwright.com/


Fast forward a few weeks . . . 

Although I was pleased with "Fallen Leaves," each time I tried it on as a necklace I wasn't 100% convinced that I would wear it. It appeared to me as something more suited for decorating a purse.  So ... I visited www.Etsy.com and found Jackie Darling, of DarlingsDesigns ~ Jackie custom-makes fabric purses, and she designed a purse just for "Fallen Leaves."  

Here is the link (below) to her shop. Check out her special hand-made fabric purses, and let her know if you have any ideas that might incorporate a bead embroidered piece of your own. 


Here is a photo of the purse Jackie Darling made for me.  I attached the bead embroidered "Fallen Leaves" pendant to the front of the purse.  I am MUCH happier now with my pendant as part of a practical purse, and I have Jackie Darling to thank for the excellent workmanship of the hand-sewn and custom-designed purse, and Deborah Weaver for the gorgeous Shibori Silk Ribbon that is the basis for my bead embroidered pendant.  


click any photos to enlarge image
~ ~ ~ 



Wednesday, October 8, 2014

"Sun Shower"

"Sun Shower" 

Still having a lot of fun with this Shibori Silk Ribbon ... this one by Deborah Weaver (ArtisticWeavers on Etsy.com) is called Sunset.  I've always loved the yellow/orange colorway, and this ribbon is a very cheerful way to usher in Autumn.

It arrived from Deborah's expert dyeing hands with graduated shades of yellow and orange.  Because I wanted to use a dark copper end closure, and some dark copper metallic beads - I used a raisin-colored fabric dye to add in some dark burnt sienna areas on the ribbon.  Thankfully, I didn't ruin Deborah's great work!  

I'm posting only one photo of this bead embroidered bracelet since it's already flat and can be seen easily.  (Click photo for larger image.) Between the top beaded part and the bottom UltraSuede, I have added the stiffest interfacing sold by my craft store (used for inside cuffs and collars) to give it a nice strength and so it will bend smoothly around the wrist.

The central focal cabochon is a dyed Jasper, as are the three rectangular Jasper stones and round beads on the sides.  In addition to the Jasper I have included cut crystal beads, glass pearls, and a variety of Japanese glass seed beads by Toho.

The beading is sewn onto an orange foundation by Nicole Campanella called NBB / Nicole's Bead Backing. It's the BEST foundation on the market!  http://beadwright.com/   

The edges are finished off with a picot edging that incorporate dark copper cut crystal beads, and the underside is lined with a pumpkin-colored UltraSuede.

~ ~ ~ 

Saturday, September 20, 2014

"Dress Rehearsal"

"Dress Rehearsal"

Bead Embroidered Bracelet 

I've named this bracelet "Dress Rehearsal" in honor of my maternal grandmother whose love of sewing was passed down to me.  She lovingly made many costumes for my mother over the years.  I imagined her working on a similar project for a special costume in time for a dress rehearsal for a play, pageant, or parade.

For a number of months now I've been noticing on www.Pinterest.com these really striking bead embroidered bracelets that feature a swirling, pleated fabric.  It took me a number of clicks and following a few links, but finally I discovered that this "fabric" is called SHIBORI SILK RIBBON

Next, I just HAD to get some and try my hand at beading with it.  OH, is it wonderful stuff!

I firmly believe in keeping my business local and supporting my local bead shop.  But every once in a while, I need something different that isn't carried by my hometown bead shop.  Thank goodness for www.Etsy.com ~ this is where I find out-of-the-ordinary unique beads and beading supplies, and it makes me very happy to give my business to Etsy sellers.

If you are interested in incorporating Shibori Silk Ribbon into your beading designs, I encourage you to give it a whirl.  The silk ribbon is dyed the most delightful colors and arrives pleated.  It's up to you if you want to retain the pleats, or spread them out.   Yes, it takes a bit of patience.   The silk ribbon, I found, has a mind of its own ... it seemed easier to work "with" it than "against" it.

The silk ribbon is first gently tacked down onto Nicole Campanella's beading foundation (NBB), with thread in a color close to the ribbon color. I took tiny little (almost invisible) stitches every 1/2" to 1".  This kept the ribbon from moving around too much, and set the stage for the beading process to follow.
click on any photos for larger image

My bracelet includes a number of "Peacock Iris" iridescent beads, and most have an AB (Aurora Borealis) finish.  The bezeled cabochons are Jasper and glass.  The pearls are freshwater (dyed) and glass.  The crystals are faceted.  The round beads are Jasper, and the seed beads are Japanese Toho glass.  The gold clasp is made in Germany and embellished with iris Hematite cube beads.  Around the outer edge of the bracelet, I have sewn AB drop beads in various shades of turquoise, green, purple, and gold ~ interspersed with a picot edging.

On the underside of the bracelet, a turquoise UltraSuede lends softness against the skin.  This was such a delightful project that I could hardly wait to start another Shibori Silk Ribbon bracelet. Next up: in time for Autumn, the glorious colors of a fall sunset... 

I am always happy to share my sources:
Beads:
BEADS & MORE
215 Water St, Kerrville, TX 78028
(830) 896-9107  Ask for Lizz.
~~~
Beading foundation:
NBB by Nicole Campanella
~~~
Shibori Silk Ribbon:
ArtisticWeavers on www.Etsy.com
Deborah Weaver ~ Email:  DeborahWeaver56@gmail.com





Friday, September 5, 2014

"Cleopatra's Prize"


 

Inpiration:  "The Colors of Egyptian Art"


Leafing through a catalogue recently, I came across an example of Egyptian art.  I cut this part out because I love the combination of colors and wanted to use them in a bead embroidered cuff bracelet project.


I've covered up a part of the writing in the lower left corner to make it less distracting - but the colors are black, terra cotta, turquoise/verdigris and a subtle, light gold color.

The above photo shows the beaded bracelet on the foundation before it was attached to the inner brass cuff.
It's always easier to see the whole design flat like this, instead of wrapped around the circular cuff.   


click on any image to enlarge

The turquoise that I chose for my bracelet is a much stronger color with a deeper intensity than what is shown in the example of Egyptian art above.  I was happy with the colors I chose, and the ones in the example were merely a jumping-off point.  Perhaps at a later date I'll use the same inspiration but choose a true light verdigris and incorporate the light gold, as well.

For now, I liked the stronger palette - and I always go with my first instincts.

The turquoise stones in this bracelet are dyed Jasper. These small disks were arranged flat with a size 15 terra cotta glass seed bead as a "stop" bead to hold them down.  They showed more of the Jasper placed this way, instead of lined up flat, side to flat side.

 I've decided there just isn't a "look" that Jasper can't fill in for - it's been my go-to gemstone for most of my projects.  The central oval cabochon is also Jasper, and this one has a rich terra cotta color that works so well with the turquoise.

The round stones with an orange glow are Carnelian.  This stone marries well with turquoise, as it is a very close complementary color (green-turquoise + red-orange).  In addition, I added in some faceted crystals with a turquoise and gold, and a number of turquoise-colored glass pearls in two sizes.  The rest are seed beads - all glass beads, in sizes ranging from 8 to 15.  The blacks are both the shiny opaque black (Czech size 12) and the matte black (Japanese size 8) for added interest.  Tiny light turquoise seed beads are intersperced in any areas where the round stones left a bit of a gap.

The edges of the cuff are finished off with a picot edging,
and the underside is a very soft teal-colored UltraSuede. 


As usual, my work is hand-sewn and embroidered on Nicole Campanella's NBB, the foundation that is perfect for this work.  There is a brass bracelet blank inside sandwiched between the top beaded part and the underside UltraSuede, which is in a rich teal color.

For more information on my preferred bead embroidery foundation called NBB, please click here:
http://beadwright.com/

Contact me if you are interested in sources for brass bracelet blanks or UltraSuede.


 



Sunday, July 27, 2014

"Enduring"

ENDURING  is my latest bead embroidered piece.  A dear friend gifted me with a long, beaded, lariat-style necklace, and I wanted to create a pendant for it. Although I had several colors and tones of "gold" beads, none exactly matched the ones in the necklace (of course!). So I used as many "gold" colored glass beads as I could in order to trick the eye into seeing these two parts as compatible.

The above photo shows the pendant part up close.  The colors are a little truer to life in this photo - even though I took both photos at the same time from the same place.  

The central stone is a Jasper cabochon with mottled colorations.  The other seven stones that are bezeled on the pendant are also Jasper, in complementary colors.  In addition to the glass Japanese Toho seed beads in various sizes, I have added topaz-color cut Swarovski crystals.

The two beads that hang from the bottom of the pendant are especially unique, and very pretty on both sides.  I didn't want to cover up one of the sides, and they seemed to show best with a little light coming through them, so I attached them as drops.

Click on any photo to enlarge image



The back is finished with UltraSuede in a gold color, with additional peyote stitching around the entire edge to hide any thread stitches.
The bale is a graduated "ombre" design in peyote stitch, wide enough to accept two strands of the beaded lariat necklace.

This bead embroidered pendant was sewn onto Nicole Campanella's beading foundation called NBB in the Hawk Wing color.  If you follow my blog, you know that I won't use anything else but Nicole's product - it's the BEST there is!  You can learn more about it at:  www.beadwright.com



Thursday, June 26, 2014

"The Golden Bee"

~ Bead Embroidered Pendant with Necklace ~


"The Golden Bee" was created to showcase a beautiful rectangular pendant gemstone of pink dyed Jasper and an assortment of similar Jasper organic-shaped stones drilled for stringing into a necklace.
 
The Jasper stone was attached to a white foundation by Nicole Campanella called NBB.  This was before I knew she carried a hot pink NBB in the Tropical Berry color that might have been just perfect.  But with the white foundation, I merely used some liquid fabric dye to get the white NBB the color pink that I wanted.  Now I have the Tropical Berry color in my stash, ready for the next hot pink project.
 
 
Above is a closer view of the pendant.  I've included smaller pink-dyed Jasper stones in two different variations, plus a pink-dyed pearl, marbled glass beads, a hot pink cut crystal, bugle beads, Japanese  glass seed beads in a chocolate brown, gold, hot pink, pearl, topaz, and luster. 
 
The triangular gold piece in the 4 o'clock position is a gold button from my grandmother's collection - it truly resembles a gold nugget. Buttons from the `30's and `40's were so well made and very unique. 
 
Dangling at the bottom of the pendant I have added hot pink crystal bicones, bubblegum pink cracked glass round beads, and cut crystal AB drops in hot pink.  The little gold bee charm, after which the necklace is named, hangs from the bottom as well - it is anatomically correct on both the front and back.
 
The necklace part consists of strung pink-dyed and drilled Jasper stones with one glass seed bead in hot pink between each stone so they will drape well.  A gold chain with an AB pink crystal finishes off the necklace so that it can be worn at various lengths.
 
I seem to be drawn to Jasper ~ the different colors and looks always intrigue me. 
 
click on any photo to enlarge image



Monday, June 2, 2014

"The Golden Hour"


A few years ago I attended an outdoor wedding that became my most favorite wedding of all time.  The setting with a few shade trees was decked out all in white, ecru, cream, and every shade of off-white that you can imagine.  Bleached linen tablecloths draped over tables, mosquito netting ruffled in the breeze, white chairs were lined up 'just so.'  

White iron props were collected and carefully placed: antique urns, bird cages, elaborate candlesticks, lanterns, and gates. The resulting image was perfect peace, serenity, and beauty.

The ceremony was timed to occur during "The Golden Hour."  The sun was setting just behind the bride and groom as they said their vows, and the entire scene was bathed in the most gorgeous golden color!  Everyone looked stunning in this golden glow.  The time was just after 7 p.m.  I noted it on my watch, and remembered it as "The Golden Hour."

Recently I came across an old watch that I kept despite the fact that it was broken - I just couldn't bear to toss it out, and my jeweler assured me that there was no way to fix it.  It's a "skeleton" watch, meaning you can see through it to all the inner gears and mechanisms.  I set it to just after "The Golden Hour" and bead embellished it with golden beads.
The gold beads are in size 6, 8, and 11.  For contrast, I added some chocolate brown cut crystal rondelles and seed beads, then a final round of chocolate brown twisted bugle beads with three gold seed beads as a picot finish on each end.  
The foundation, which can't be seen as it is entirely covered up, is Nicole Campanella's NBB in the Hawk Wing color - which always works well with gold beads.

Above photo shows the back of the beaded watch.  Peyote stitches circle around with added dark gold beads for interest and contrast.  The bail is made of bugle beads + seed beads in the ladder stitch.  You can see the gears in this photo.  The necklace is a simple string of chocolate brown glass pearls.



 

Saturday, May 17, 2014

"Queen's Ransom"


"Queen's Ransom"


Bead Embroidered Pendant and Necklace

click on photo to enlarge

Lately I've seen some really spectacular pieces called DRUZY or druse.  
In geological usage, druse or druzy is a coating of fine crystals on a rock fracture surface, or within a geode.

Most of the ones I've seen are set with a silver-toned bezel ~ and when I saw this one in my favorite turquoise-green shade set in a gold-color bezel ... I wasted no time in acquiring it.  I just knew it would make a very special focal point in a bead embroidered pendant.

Detail below:
To set apart the druzy, I have surrounded it with gold faceted rondelles in a dark gold color.  
The row next to it is made up of turquoise colored glass faceted rondelles with a slight dappling of brownish-gold ~ almost unseen, but adding to the overall look that I wanted to achieve.

This Druzy bezel had two gold "attachments" on either side - probably to make it into a necklace or bracelet very easily.  
I covered and hid both attachments with an additional turquoise rondelle with three size 11 gold seed beads on top.

The bead embroidery is done on Leaf Green NBB by Nicole Campanella.  As always, her beading foundation made the project a total joy.  For more information on this fabulous foundation, please check out:

Several rows of size 11 seed beads encircled the bezel, and the final picot edge features tiny size 15 light turquoise glass beads that are transparent with a gold interior finish.  

The bale is made from a number of gold size 11 seed beads in the "square stitch" pattern, and also has picot edges with the size 15 transparent glass beads in the light turquoise color with gold inside. 

Jazzing up the necklace, I've made three pairs of peyote-stitched toggle bars with an assortment of the beads already featured in the pendant.  These are interspersed with gold spacer beads, finished off with a decorative gold floral cap, and finally adding a gold toggle and ring closure.

While many think of turquoise as best paired with silver, I think the combination of 
Turquoise and Gold is fit for a Queen's Ransom.





Monday, April 21, 2014

"Celebration" ~ Bead Embroidered Cuff Bracelet

"Celebration"



Many times my bead embroidery projects begin with a color choice.  Other times it's a special gemstone cabochon that I want to feature, and then I pick colors to enhance that particular piece.

With "Celebration" I turned to two printed artworks that I have saved for a few years because I loved the color combinations in both paintings.  One painting is by Thomas Cooper Gotch and it is called "The Child Enthroned." This artwork features a young girl wearing an elaborate robe and sitting on a throne with a halo behind her head. (Seen below on the bottom of the photo on the diagonal.)  The other painting is of a mother holding her sleeping infant.  This was a Christmas card, and unfortunately, I do not know the name of the artist or the title of the painting itself. [If you know, please tell me, as I'd love to know the name of the artist or the title of the painting!]



What these two paintings have in common is their similar "colorway."  Both paintings utilize the complementary colors of green and red - and in these two cases, the green leans towards turquoise, and the red leans toward orange.  The addition of a golden yellow and a creamy oyster color add to the harmony.


click on any photo to enlarge

Turquoise-green and red-orange (coral) are my two most favorite colors, so it's no surprise when I choose them for my bead embroidery.  As complementary colors, they sing in the presence of each other.  

The above photo shows the bead embroidered cuff bracelet flat on the beading foundation before it is attached to the brass cuff bracelet.  
Above photo and below photo show the finished cuff bracelet.
The central focal piece is a Jasper gemstone.  It is bezeled with turquoise colored cut crystals, topaz-gold colored cut Czech crystals, and 8 mm golden fossil beads. 

In addition, there are red glass faceted beads in a few sizes, Japanese glass Toho beads, four oval green glass cabochons, ivory luster fossil beads, two vintage green buttons, and four red-dyed Mother of Pearl buttons.

The inside of the cuff is green UltraSuede, and the outer edges of the cuff bracelet are finished off with a decorative picot edge.  

As in my other bead embroidery jewelry pieces, the backing I favor is by Nicole Campanella, and is called NBB.  Here, I used the Green Leaf color.  
For 13 additional colors of NBB, please check out her Web site at 






Saturday, March 15, 2014

"A Moment In Time"

Pompeii, the Roman town buried under the fiery ashes from a volcano eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD is a story that will forever shock and fascinate us.  The terrified residents ran for their lives, but couldn't out-race the sudden and fatal combination of heat, smoke, ash, and burning debris raining down on them.  A few grabbed their most precious jewelry at the last moment.  It would be years later before some of these ancient pieces were unearthed and miraculously preserved.  The amazing fact is that due to certain atmospheric conditions occuring that day, much of Pompeii was captured for us to later recreate and see for ourselves . .   "A Moment In Time."


In my books on Pompeii, the colors from the ruins are my personal favorites : gold, amber, turquoise, red-orange, and copper.  These colors decorated the walls and homes of many citizens of Pompeii, mostly in painted frescoes or in colorful tiles.

Above: Photo from Pompeii wall that survived the volcano's eruption.



Click on any photo for a larger view

"A Moment In Time" is an off-loom beaded bracelet that I made using copper-colored glass Luster cube beads for the majority of the bracelet. These are sewn together using only thread - it is the peyote or gourd stitch that holds them together.  These beads have a very slight pink-orange tone to them and are highly reflective.  Working with them under any source of light was a bit of a challenge - as they almost blinded me, they were so shiny.  It was my first time to work with cube beads, as I generally use round beads. The cube beads lock together in a very satisfying way. 

The central focal part of the bracelet consists of a rectangular Red Creek Jasper pendant, a turquoise Magnesite oval cabochon, and a red-orange Carnelian faceted cabochon.  These three stones were embroidered by hand onto Nicole's BeadBacking in the Hawk Wing color.  After sewing down these cabs and bezeling them with cut-crystal bicones and tiny seed beads, I added amber-colored matte size 15 Delica seed beads around each stone to highlight them.


Although it's difficult to see clearly, I've attached a tiny copper bumble bee that was a gift from my daughter-in-law in the lower right corner of the Jasper gemstone - it is attached with a loop of seed beads so that it can move, as it is anatomically correct both on the front and back of the bee.

The very edge of the bracelet is finished off in a picot edge that features turquoise Hematite cube beads given to me by my dear friend, Linda.  The central picot beads are a Luster magatama or tear- drop bead.  Underneath the middle part of the bracelet, I have sewn a soft, burnt sienna-colored square of UltraSuede.

Although you cannot see it in the photo, the Luster beads that make up the majority of the bracelet are very flexible and drape almost the way fabric does - the movement of this bracelet is fluid as it encircles the wrist.  The closure is comprised of three decorated beaded toggles with three loops on the opposite side which blend in with the rest of the bracelet.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

"Stepping Stones" ~ Necklace Featuring Red Creek Jasper



The gemstone Jasper is playing a starring role again in my beaded creations.  This particular Jasper stone is called Red Creek Jasper, and the colorations of the stones range from a light creamy yellow, to a soft orange, on to a deep red, a gray-green, an olive green, and finally a brown.  Often the stones have most of these colors embedded in them in swirly patterns. 


click on photo for larger image

This necklace incorporates large Red Creek Jasper free-form beads (the long, narrow shapes), as well as a triangular piece in the middle, and several oval-shaped beads besides the round 4 mm, 6 mm, and 8 mm beads.  I've added Yellow Jasper in places to play off the yellow coloration.  In addition, there are a few Agates, and lots of Japanese Toho glass seed beads in olive green, dark taupe, and a creamy yellow - these are in sizes 6, 8, 11, and 15. 

The entire piece was hand sewn and embroidered bead by bead on Nicole Campanella's NBB foundation in the color Hawk Wing.  The backing is a soft tan-colored UltraSuede.  Around the edges of the piece I have added very delicate picot edging with tiny size 15 beads. 

The toggle bar and loop closure is made with seed beads, and I got a little ambitious and made a beaded bead as well.  I'm still working on improving that technique . . .



Here is a closer look at the various colorations in Red Creek Jasper beads. 




"Forest Floor" featuring a yellow-green Jasper focal cabochon on a bead embroidered cuff bracelet.

"Forest Floor" 

click on any photo for a larger image

My attraction for the stone Jasper continues ~ my hand automatically reaches for them whenever I visit my local bead store.  Jasper comes in so many different colors, and combinations of colors, I can't imagine every tiring of it.  This particular Jasper stone with it's bright yellow-greens, dark emerald green "spider webbings", and gray-green organic patches won me over, and I knew I had to make a bracelet with these colors.  It reminded me of the colors one might find on a forest floor.  While I don't have access to an actual forest, I do walk in the woods quite often . . . 

Around the time that I was working on this bracelet, I walked outside on a cold, winter afternoon and noticed on the ground bright green patches of new grass peeking up and growing alongside gray-green pieces of lichen.  It made me think of spring trying to push winter aside.  I was struck by the beauty of the two greens together, and wanted to incorporate them in this piece.


Lichen

As I have done in the past, the first photo of the bracelet (above) shows the bead embroidered foundation flat for photographing ~ once it's placed on the brass blank cuff to become a bracelet, it's harder to see the entire design together.  



Besides the oval focal Jasper cabochon in the middle, I have added smaller Jasper beads in various greens and gray-greens, glass pearls in both green and gray, cut crystals in several colors including a very bright yellow-green, and Japanese seed beads in a number of colors, sizes, and finishes. Some of the smaller Jasper beads are called "Landscape Jasper."  Also included is a small, round, gray-green Agate that is faceted on the top of the stone. 

This bead embroidered cuff bracelet is sewn onto Nicole's BeadBacking in the Chartreuse Shine color ~ a yummy yellow-green color that allows the transparent and translucent beads as well as the cut crystals to show their best.


Above is the finished bead embroidered cuff bracelet.
Around the entire bracelet edge I have sewn a double row of picot edging using Japanese glass drops called Magatamas.  This is the first time I've tried a double row edging, and I really like the way it turned out.

Inside the bracelet is a soft, olive green UltraSuede lining.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ 

"Promise Of Spring"

Because I love this bright, apple-green Jasper stone so much, I made a second bead embroidered cuff bracelet with it as a focal center stone when I discovered another one at my local bead shop, "Beads and More."  I just couldn't resist! (The first one I made to give as a gift.)

The Jasper stone is actually a bead meant to be worn as a pendant - there is a hole on each end lengthwise.  Both sides were equally beautiful - it was difficult to decide which one to show.  



I am calling this bracelet "Promise Of Spring" because I incorporated bright, yellow-green glass beads, as I was out of the "lichen-colored" gray-green stones.  In addition to the Jasper stone beads, I have also included faceted green Jade beads and faceted multi-toned Agate beads.  With spring always on my mind, and in anticipation of it after a long, cold winter, I think of this beautiful yellow-green color as a *harbinger of spring.*  

This image (above) shows the bead embroidered piece on the foundation after it has been cut away from the Nicole's NBB in the Chartreuse Shine color.  These bracelets photograph better flat, as the whole design can be seen at once.  After the beaded foundation is wrapped around a brass blank cuff, [which is sandwiched between the beading and the UltraSuede backing], it's more difficult to see the design - as only parts of it can be photographed at one time.

Here is the finished cuff (below) :

I have embellished the outer edges of the cuff with Japanese TOHO #11 glass seed beads, 
and added a picot edging with green crystal bi-cones. 

The next photo shows the ends of the cuff in an angle that features 
the inner UltraSuede material in a peacock pattern.

For information on the fantastic bead embroidery foundation that I use and highly recommend, please visit:
and discover Nicole's BeadBacking, which comes in 14 colors.  Treat yourself to the best!















Thursday, February 13, 2014

"Coming Attraction"


Going to see a special movie, 
I remember sitting in the darkened theater 
waiting for my eyes to adjust.   
Slowly, my eyes grew accostomed to the dim light, 
and then all the colors sang out.  
The movie screen showed the "Coming Attraction"  . . . 

The beginning of "Coming Attraction" started with the idea of using black beads sewn on a black foundation.  Black is wonderful for showcasing my favorite turquoise color.  But could my eyes adjust to sewing black beads with black thread onto a black foundation?    (Yes!)

I chose two oval magnesite cabochons with black and brown matrix (veining), 
and then added several shiny jet black cabochons, 
all of which I bezeled with seed beads.   
From there, I began a beading journey with texture in mind.  


Above photo shows the finished bead embroidered piece before 
it is attached to the brass blank cuff and made into a bracelet.  

Click on any photo for larger view.

Here are some of the various components in "Coming Attraction."
  • magnesite
  • dyed jade
  • faceted crystal beads
  • glass seed beads
  • bugle beads
  • vintage buttons (3)
  • wool-covered button
  • AB glass 8 mm beads
  • black Lucite flowers
  • turquoise and brown dyed Jasper
  • crystal bi-cone beads in black and turquoise
  • iridescent seed beads
  • black sequins (3)

Around the edges of the cuff bracelet, I've sewn on 
size 11 shiny, opaque, black seed beads 
with an apex of three turquoise AB seed beads in the picot design.


I was delighted with the Midnight Black foundation 
by Nicole Campanella (NBB) ~ 
It was not difficult at all sewing black beads onto the black NBB.  
Discover NBB for yourself by visiting:





Friday, January 31, 2014

"Save The Date"



Who doesn't love receiving a "Save The Date" card in the mail!  Time to pull out your pearls!



What is so amazing about pearls is that they have a chameleon nature to them ~ they look lovely with your little black dress, but you can also rock pearls with a tee shirt and jeans.  It's all about your confidence. My dear friend, Victoria, enjoys wearing her pearls even when playing a fast and furious game of tennis.  My mother wisely said, "If you are fortunate enough to own pearls, wear them often so they will become more lustrous with age."  With that attitude in mind, I've created:  "Save The Date."


Bracelet shown flat for better viewing of design.
click on any photo for larger image

This bead embroidered cuff bracelet lets the pearls run wild.  Two shell pearls are sewn on upside down to showcase their flat side, and not the bumpy, textured side.  An array of glass pearls in various tones and tints, from creamy white to golden, embellish the bracelet along with glass crystals and seed beads in shades of ivory.  Six mother of pearl buttons are added with glass crystal beads in their center.  Six frosted white Lucite flowers are hidden among the beads, each with very tiny pearls for stamens.

"Save The Date" is bead embroidered onto the tan-colored Hawk Wing NBB, and the beads are sewn down numerous time with crystal Fireline Braided Beading Thread for added security.


Nicole Campanella's Bead Backing (NBB) is my #1 (actually, ONLY) choice for bead embroidery foundation.  Order yours in any of 14 rich colors by visiting her Web site:
http://www.beadwright.com/



Photo showing the inside UltraSuede lining of the cuff bracelet, and the tiny crystal beads adorning the outer edges.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

"Journey's End"





My latest bead embroidered cuff bracelet, "Journey's End," is a pairing of the gemstone Tiger's Eye with Amazonite in a turquoise-green color.  I think the two colors are charming together, exhibiting a very attractive warmth.  As it is still very cold this winter, I am drawn to these warm colors.

This is my first time to use gemstone chips in my bracelets.  This overall design is somewhat symmetrical, and the chips add a random look that is unexpected while offering relief from too much pattern.
Above is the bead embroidered top before it is attached to the inner brass cuff and finished off with edging and an inside addition of UltraSuede.



Along with the Tiger's Eye cabochons and beads, and four large Amazonite beads, I have added round gold-colored cut crystals, gold-colored crystal bicones, natural pearls dyed green, and a variety of glass beads for interest.  The beads surrounding the focal Tiger's Eye cabochon are glass Hybrid Picasso beads, which mimic the look of a green shade of turquoise. I have sewn and embroidered the beads one or two at a time onto Nicole's BeadBacking (NBB) in the Leaf Green color.  Each bead is then sewn through again for security and to align the rows of beads.  All beads that protrude from the tops of other beads are sewn three or four times for added strength.


The inside of the cuff is lined with soft green UltraSuede. 
The edges of the bracelet have a 'picot edge' with more 
turquoise-green seed beads, plus several topaz-gold seed beads.

"Journey's End"
Photo below - click on any photos for larger image.


For information on my favorite bead backing, and to order NBB
please check out Nicole Campanella's Web site:

"Journey's End" is in a private collection.