Tag Archives: gold

Dangly Turquoise and Moonglow Earrings

 

Turquoise and moonglow earrings

 

it feels like it has been a year since I have posted anything on this blog, well had I waited a few months it would have been a year I guess: D

Not good! So bad that even my parents gave up on reminding me to update the blog.it seems that something always takes precedence over doing this and to be honest today is probably the first day in 4 months that I have absolutely nothing to do or think about.

I have been busy with work and I started taking a few beading classes here and there to learn about bead weaving as opposed to bead embroidery which I usually do and I have to say I really enjoy it .my latest obsession is making Cellini spirals but I will talk about them hopefully very soon in a new blog post.

so before I move on to showing my woven pieces I am going to show you one of the last bead embroidered pieces which I actually sold a few months ago as well!

While looking through Etsy I fell upon these golden yellow moonglow squares that I just had to have. I knew exactly what I wanted to do. Dangly earrings!

 

turquoise and moonglow earrning

For the earrings I used a teardrop turquoise cabochon as my main focal point and did a simple gold and turquoise bezel. As always to make the piece sparkle I used the smallest size of crystal chains that I had. I had thought of finishing the piece after adding the chain but when I thought about it the piece looked too small and finishing the edge after the chain with any kind of edging would show pieces of the backing, which I don’t like.

turquoise and moonglow earrning

 

I ended up adding a row of stacked turquoise and gold beads to make the piece larges and cover the backing so that when I do the edge you cannot really see any of the lacey’s stiff stuff.

Once the piece was done I did a simple picot edge all the way around and added a loop with size 15 beads in order to be able to add the moonglow stone and the earring hook. And voila the earrings were done!

 

turquoise and moonglow earrning

 

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Leather,Gold and Turquoise Bracelet

turquoise gold and leather bracelet4

Merry Christmas everyone!

I hope you have all had a wonderful and special day today. I for one took this day to rest and clean up my flat! Here is the thing; I believe I might be the only person in the world that goes to work on their day off because they just enjoy being around the people that they work with. And since today was the only day that no one was going to be at work I had no choice but to sit around the flat and get some of my own work done!

turquoise gold and leather bracelet3

I love my co-workers they are fun, funny and they make me feel less alone in this world and I love spending every single minute that I can with them! So since I have started working at this place I think I have only not gone to work on my off days to hang out maybe just once or twice. But whenever I go for a couple of hours I make sure to take some of my beading to get done over there which for me feels like killing two birds with one stone; not only do I get to have fun but then I am doing something that I love to do on my time off anyway.

turquoise gold and leather bracelet6

So last week when I was there for a visit I had taken this huge 2-inch turquoise stone to do some beading on. My aim was to either turn it into a brooch or a necklace. But as soon as I took the stone out of my bag to start my work my manager asked if the piece was I was working on was for her. To be honest I had already made her something for Christmas with gold and turquoise charms (knowing that she loves anything turquoise) but when she started dropping hints that she wanted the stone I was working on as a bracelet then I just had to do it.

turquoise gold and leather bracelet7

The problem is she has teeny tiny wrists and the only way I could make a bracelet for her without measuring her wrist was to make a bracelet using a bracelet base.

I have seen a lot of these bracelets using bracelet bases but I have never done it and my manager had a very specific design. She wanted a gold bezel on a leather base and nothing else. So something very simple and for those of you who have seen my previous work you know that I do not do subtle. Restraint is not something I exercise much of in my beading!

turquoise gold and leather bracelet8

My other problem was that I only had a few hours to make the bracelet. Our office party was on Saturday and she started telling me about what she wanted on Thursday afternoon so this piece was done rather quickly because I had already decided to make a whole load of muffins and chocolate mousse to take to work on Saturday, thank god I had Friday off so I could get everything done

Doing a bezel is easy and it doesn’t really take me that long. I glued my cabochon onto a faux leather piece, which was all I had and did my rose gold and gold bezel. The main struggle with this bracelet was figuring out how to use the bracelet base and how to bead around it and I didn’t find it that easy to do.

turquoise gold and leather bracelet

I bought a bracelet base from Michael’s that had a flatter top, which was somewhat perfect for the huge turquoise stone because it gave it more of a flat base to sit on. The only thing with the bracelet base was that it was not a solid bracelet base so in order to stop the filigree pattern that the bracelet had from showing through once the leather was glued onto it I also used a layer of Lacy’s stiff stuff so that the pattern of the bracelet would stay hidden.

turquoise gold and leather bracelet9

I glued the leather with the beaded turquoise stone on to the bracelet and trimmed around it, I cut another piece of leather and glued it to the inside of the bracelet and trimmed that as well .if I had time I would have waited a while for the glue to dry off before starting to finish the edge but I just had to get it done so I could wrap it and go to bed, so I set out finishing the edge. The one thing about working with the faux leather that I didn’t like was that the stitches were very visible and that doesn’t sit well with me. Since making this bracelet I have made another one for myself, which is a little bit different, and I have use Ultrasuede in that one and the stitching is not visible at all and I love that. I will share pictures of that bracelet in another post having said that I think I need to do more stuff with leather backing so that I could get comfortable with and make my stitching on leather nicer and neater. If any of you guys have used a bracelet base and know of an easier way to trim and finish the edge please let me know, I really need some help in that area!

turquoise gold and leather bracelet2

I finished the bracelet around 1am and went to work the next day at around 7:30, suffice to say I was beat but the look on her face when she opened and saw the bracelet was all worth it.

So anyway I hope you guys enjoyed looking through the pictures of this bracelet too and hope you have had a wonderful Christmas!

turquoise gold and leather bracelet1


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Pink Bollywood Inspired Earrings!

 

Today was my day off from work which means I have been up since 9am running around trying to clean up the flat and run errands, suffice to say that today was crazier and busier than my days at work so I thought I’d finish off the day by writing about one of the crazier pieces I have done.

Crazy in the sense that I am not a pink lover, I have never been but I had such an urge to do a pink piece that it took me by surprise. I think it was because I had been looking at Indian saris and watching Hindi songs on Youtube for some fabric research I am doing, that I got overexcited by all the colours and sparkles and pink saris that I just had to make something upbeat.

One of the songs that I looked at is called “nainon mein sapna” from a movie called Himmatwala. I have not seen the film but all the colours in the world seem to make an appearance in this song. All the jewelry, the colours and sparkles, the song and dance is enough to overload the senses but I cannot help but feel cheerful when watching this clip and these earrings where somewhat inspired by the colours, fabrics and jewelry in this song and these outfits in particular.

 

I was surprise to see that I had pink beads in my stash. Not only that, I had the same pink beads in both size 8/0 and 11/0 which was a welcome surprise. Since this is bollywood inspired I went with the biggest crystal cabochon that I had which were this 30mm teardrop shaped sew on swarovski crystals that my mom had got me a while back.

For me the colours in this piece were crazy enough that I just didn’t feel comfortable doing much when in came to the design which is ironic since this was the perfect opportunity to go completely bonkers on the design since it was inspired by all the flash of bollywood but I just couldn’t bring myself to go too crazy.

I think it was fun stepping out of comfort zone but this is not something I think I can do all the time. Even though I am glad I did it I cannot imagine doing another piece this bright, at least not for a while! hope you guys have had a lovely , fun-filled weekend !!

 


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Black Wings Bracelet

 

 

I have been so busy this week work and I have to admit I love it, I love that feeling of having some sort of purpose but it seems like I can only do one thing at a time and I have really been neglecting my home life and my social life. Also I am so tired by the time I get home that I have been going to bed at around ten. I have always been a night owl, going to bed at let’s say  5 am is nothing new to me, I find it easier to work during the night, less distractions and all that but now I cannot wait to crawl into bed!

So lately in my beadwork I have been more and more into tightening my colour palette and not using every single bead I possess in every piece. I know I tend to get a little bit overboard with my bead usage. So I set out to only use three colours with this bracelet: red, gold and black. Also for backing I used black Ultrasuede tacked onto Lacy’s stiff stuff.

I really liked the way that the hex cut beads looked in my last bracelet and since I have a huge package of those I decided to use those beads as the main body of my piece.

As always I started with my bezel and then moved on to the wing portion, which I had already mapped out on my backing. In order to get the piece as symmetrical as possible I did one side first and then moved on to the other so I could make everything match. So the number of beaded lined on each side is the same.

I was really happy with how things were looking after the first couple of black rows but I wondered if the piece would look very flat by using only black. So I decided to incorporate different types of stones in the same colour palette. Luckily I had just enough red fire polished beads to finish this bracelet off .so I decided to use them to separate the black sections.

I also didn’t want to use any other cabs but then I decided I needed to. The red cabs that I used are Mexican opals in dragon breath. I loved the colours of these. They are a nice red but in a certain light they look somewhat blue but when I glued them on my backing, which was black, they completely lost their appeal. But since I didn’t have any other cab that would have worked I decided to draw around the cab and cut the Ultrasuede up so that I could glue these cabs on to the Lacy’s stiff stuff. Once the cabs were glued onto a white background they got their blue tint back. I am just glad that the whole thing worked otherwise I would have had to undo all the work and start all over again.

I kind of only noticed the red lights on the model’s face when I was done with the piece, it kind of looked like the red cab underneath it was the cause of all the red lights on her face and I really liked that.

Once the body was done I decided to not add any decorative edge as I thought the piece looked fine as it was and the good thing with a decorative edge is that it can be added whenever, so if at a later time I think it needs it I can go back and do that without any problems. To finish off I added a gold clasp to the bracelet and it was all done.


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Crystal Skull brooch

A friend of my mom had asked me to make a turquoise necklace and earring set for her and yesterday while I was there showing her the samples of the things I had made for her and she asked me why I liked skulls so much. I have thought about this so much, because I don’t like anything gory, or scary but I keep getting asked why I like things with skulls on them and I really have no answer for it.

I really don’t know why I like them so much. All I know is that I liked skulls way before I started worshipping anything Alexander McQueen makes with skulls. I find it a little odd that my family and friends prod me this much about my love of skulls saying weird things are but you are so normal why would you like skulls, as if people that like skulls are in someway abnormal! But I have stopped trying to explain why I like things with skulls on them. I think it’s a same as someone liking pastel florals. I don’t like floral patterns in general (unless they are very sharp and modern which is rare but it happens) but then I wouldn’t go around and say “seriously what do you see in florals, florals are frumpy!

But it’s a matter of opinion and taste and we are all entitled to them. But for this piece I had an agenda. I had been thinking about how feasible it was to make a bead embroidered piece while incorporating small cutouts in the process.

For this piece I went with an image by Tom Bagshaw titled “Lucky 13”. The beading design mimics the flourish that is drawn underneath the skull. I did a couple of sketches to get the placement and the sizing of the curlicue design right so that when the beading was being done it would look continuous.

I also had to plan out the size of the cut-outs to keep them to a size big enough where I could go in with scissors and make the cuts and have it make the impact I want as well as for it to be small enough to be cohesive with the piece.

As you can see it is doable but I did find it difficult to cut into the piece and be aware not to cut any of the threads. I took my time cleaning the edges and getting as close as I could to the edges when I was making the inside cuts.

Once it was done I drew the outline on my Ultrasuede so I could make the cuts before gluing the suede to my piece which made things a lot easier and only had to do a little it of touch ups to get just right.

To clean up the edges I went around the piece with size 11/0 seed beads but I used size 15/0 for the edges of the cutouts. I did a crazy stacked edging on the top part and if that wasn’t enough I went with a dangly Swarovski crystal on the bottom.

Even though I know skulls are not really something most of you guys are into, I still hope you enjoyed the piece! 😀

LIST OF MATERIALS USED:


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Lady with Dark Hair Pearl Necklace

Can you believe the weekend is over? I spent the whole of Saturday waiting for a package that never arrived and then after doing my weekly shopping I decided to go through my scrapbooking supplies and see what I could get rid off. Suffice it to say that by the time I looked through just half the stuff I had I was a little bit ashamed of myself for spending that much money on things that I don’t use. I love paper but I am no scrapbooker .I think I need to find a way of selling all the dies and punches and stamps I have accumulated in the past year. There is no point in them just sitting in drawers.

But before the weekend is over I want to at least get one post finished in order to achieve one positive thing. So this post is about one of my earlier pieces, which means it was done roughly 4-5 months ago when I was in my resin cabochon-making phase.

There are a few setbacks to these resin cabochons. First of all it takes a long time for them to get made and you never know if the finished product is going to come out perfect (without pesky air bubbles or watermarks) until it is all done and over. Another thing that can go wrong with the cabochons is the thickness of it.

For my pieces I used to do a thin layer, put the picture in let it cure for 12 hours and then add a layer of black. But after a couple of uses my molds became a bit lopsided so some of the cabochons were thicker on one side and thinner on the other even though I tried to get it as level as possible. This means that when it comes to bezeling the piece it would look weird. And no matter how much I sanded the piece I could never get it completely even which is why I ultimately switched to clear domes.

This resin cabochon was made using a painting by Harrison Fisher titled “lady with dark hair”. The cab that I had made was too thick so I had to come up with a way of covering the sides and at this point I was only doing stacked bezeling and hadn’t learnt the how to do peyote stitch bezel .so after the initial two stacked rows I decided to add the one thing I go to when I can’t find a bead that works: pearls.

I went through the size 15/0 beads and came out ever 8 beads to add a 2mm pearl stacked with a size 15/seed bead. Once I had gone all around the piece I only had to go through one of the size 15/0 beads on top of a pearl and start adding size 15/0 beads to close the gap between the beads and form a bezel around the cabochon.

After I was done with the main piece I made two other smaller pieces to match the main piece and I just had to connect everything together. I made a simple chain with the beads and pearls that I had used in the main pieces and attached a spring clasp. Unfortunately I didn’t know how to attach clasps back then and you can see that I have gone around the loop of the clasp with thread a few times to secure it on and I don’t like that I can see the thread .so next time I go back home to visit my parents I have take this necklace from my mom and fix the clasp issues.

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Amethyst Purple and Crystal Earring

I don’t know why but lately I have been really into making earrings. I think it’s probably because they are quicker to make and I am less afraid to use colour in smaller pieces than I in bigger pieces. To be honest I am not sure. I was never much of an earring wearer to begin with. I am more of a bracelet and ring person but I am not sure if a bead-embroidered ring would work.

When I was putting together pieces that I could use in earrings I came across these wonderful faceted square Swarovski crystals that my mom had sent me. The good thing about them was that they didn’t have any holes for sewing through in them, bad thing about them was that they had a faceted back and I was bit iffy about using them.

So the challenge for this piece was gluing the faceted piece to the backing. I had read in the dimensional embroidery book that the way to use these types of stones was to use some sort of air-dry clay under them to make some sort of a setting. I was a little apprehensive to be honest about how to actually do it but after doing more research and finding no other method I decided to just give it a try.

The book says to use air-dry clay and the only type that I found on the day that I went to Michaels was the Martha Stewart’s crafter clay, which is very puffy and kind of reminds me of marshmallows. I made small balls and put the stone on top of the clay ball and pushed it down onto a flat surface to make the setting that the gem would sit in and trimmed the excess clay. Once the clay was dry I checked to see if it was actually stuck to the gem and I found that I could easily peel it back. the thing is that once the bezel was done , the gem would have been completely encased in the beads and would not have fallen out but just to be on the safe side I decided to  glue the stone to the setting and then sanded them a little so that the setting would be as thin as possible and then glued it on to my backing.

Once that whole section was done then it was off to doing the bezel work and the beadwork. For these earrings I went with a gold and bronze palette to compliment the vintage purple cabochons.

 

The thing with beaded earring as I found out is that they are very lightweight. I usually don’t wear earrings because after a while my ears start throbbing but I have been really comfortable with the beaded earrings that I have made for myself. I think it is probably because there is no metal setting involved in making the earrings, which makes the pieces very light and hence comfortable to wear.

LIST OF MATERIALS USED:


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Sailor Girl

I would like to start off by saying that this piece turned out to a bane of my beading existence. I had wanted to do something with this painting from Mary Jane Ansell for a while and I thought it would work perfectly with the swarovski crystal chains that I had ordered. This piece is from her “The beauty of the Hours” series and is titled “Girl in a cocked hat”

I glued the piece on the backing and did the initial bezel. I decided to do a row around the bezel with the navy blue beads I had used in the bezel to make the crystal chain pop a little bit more. And then did another row with the same beads after I had sewed on the crystal chain. So far so good.

I started this piece right after I had done my Maleficent bracelet so I was pumped. That piece had come together so nicely that I wanted to replicate that experience. That’s when I decided to turn this piece into a bracelet.

Since I had planned this piece as a brooch I had glued it to a small piece of backing which meant that the bracelet would have to be made of separate pieces. But that was ok. I drew out the shape I wanted the sides to look like and went looking for stones, cabochons and other beads to use in the piece. And I had nothing. Well I mean I had stuff but nothing that would go with this piece.

So I went online in search of blue stones. I found some blue opal stones on the website where I had purchased the crystal chains so I thought they would be a good a choice. While I was at it I went on my favorite website for buying seed beads to get some that might help the process along.

So at this point I couldn’t really go any further with the piece. I had to wait until I had all my pieces so I could start up again. Leaving a piece half finished is never a good idea. I lose my train of thought and my groove and it’s always a little hard to get back into that exact same frame of mind to finish up a piece. But I had no choice, I moved onto doing other pieces.

A week or so passed and I got my packages but I really wasn’t feeling it so I didn’t go back to the piece. But the fact that it was unfinished kept nagging me so I gave in and decided to just finish the piece and be done with it.

I glued on the blue opal stones I had purchased for this piece and started doing the same bezel as I had done around main focal image. It took me a couple of tries to get an even number around the piece in order to get the bezel done but I finally got there. I followed the same pattern as the main image and added the pearl and goldstone.

This is as far as I had planned but when I put the pieces next to each other it was so obvious that the piece would not fit around my wrist. So I had to add more.

Initially I thought I’d do a row of bugle beads all around the piece. I had seen it done and I though how hard can it be, the answer was very hard. I just could not get the beads to sit right, there were unsightly gaps and they just look weird . So I thought why not just use seed beads. But on second inspection I found out that I had run out of the navy blue seed beads I had used in the piece.

Argghhhhhhhhhhhh!! This is the point at which I started thinking this piece just does not want to get made!

The right thing would have been to order the blue beads but I was just really frustrated with the piece at this point and I didn’t want to have to wait another week or so for beads. I decided to use what I had instead.

Once the few rows were added I was thinking surely it will fit at this point. But alas it was not to be. So I started adding other elements. I mean at this point I just had to laugh and go with it. Ok maybe had I planned things better or if this pattern was what I had in mind I would have been ok with it but since I had to keep adding and adding things just to make this bracelet reach the 7.5 inches I needed for it to fit around my wrist, everything felt like an afterthought.

I cut the pieces out finished the edges and connected them together. And wouldn’t you know it, the damn thing still didn’t fit!!

I mean the process I went to through to finish this piece was so ridiculous that it makes me laugh. I have done enough beading now, not to have to repeat these basic stuff over and over again to get it right but with this piece  I had to rework every element over and over just to get it somewhat right!

All in all I am at peace with this bracelet, its not one of my favorites but I don’t hate it now as much as I did when I was making it. But I am sure glad it’s done

LIST OF MATERIALS USED:


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Gold Sparkly Earrings

One of my proudest moments in the bead embroidery journey was when I finished my first bracelet. I just kept thinking that making a whole beaded bracelet was going to be such a huge ordeal and what if I don’t like the piece and what if I can’t do it and all that. It is funny that I am always one of those people who tells everyone to try something and if it doesn’t work out they will know for sure but I seem to not want to take my own advice. I mean giving advice is so much easier than taking it , right!

But I am glad I started making bracelets and its ironic that the reason that I like making bracelets now is the exact reason why I avoided them in the first place. Now I like having to spend time on a piece for more than a day or so, because the process is calming and it gives me time to think and plan new pieces in my head. Also because there is more space to fill out with beads I get to experiment more with different techniques and shapes, which I normally don’t do on smaller pieces. And sometimes when I am experimenting with the patterns on a bracelet I get inspiration for other pieces.

That is exactly what happened when I was done making the Golden Cicada bracelet. I loved the sides of that bracelet and when I was looking at it I thought why don’t I just turn that shape into earrings.

Good thing was that I still had enough of the material to make a pair of earrings and because I had already made that pattern once the pieces came together all too quickly.

For me these type of projects are the stuff I like to do when I am not inspired to make anything new but I still don’t want to sit around and twiddle my thumb. The pattern is already there I know what beads I am going to use so I don’t have to sit around for hours trying to decide which beads would work well together which is my main obstacle when planning my pieces

But having worked with this pattern twice now and liking how it turns out I know now that if I were to change the colours and use different beads it would still give me something unique. That’s the beauty of a good pattern and a pattern you like to work with!

LIST OF MATERIALS USED:

 


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Gold and Pearl Cameo Shoe Clips

I had a really exciting Friday!  About two weeks or so ago I decided to put up some of my stuff on Etsy for sale and one of the pieces (the blue dichroic glass brooch from my last post) got sold on Thursday and needless to say I was chuffed to bits! I love Etsy and I buy a lot of things on there but I never ever thought one of my things would actually sell on there! So I have been pumped all weekend running around the flat organizing pieces, planning new things, photographing some stuff and all that good stuff  and I think I worked myself into a little frenzy cause now I am utterly exhausted and I haven’t even done much!:D

So as I am sat here watching practically every show that is premiering here on TV this evening I thought I would write a short post about one of my older pieces, the last of the three set of shoe clips that I made for my mom.

If you guys remember my the Crown of Ms.V brooch then this set of shoe clips will look familiar to you. My mom loved that brooch so when she purchased these cameos I decided to turn them into shoe clips for here following the exact same pattern as the brooch but upside down meaning that the crown part was on the bottom of the piece instead of the top. I don’t think I was following any sense of logic when decided to invert the pattern, I think I just wanted to see what it would look like!

My mom loved the clips, but then again she would love anything with pearls on it, but she told me that she has used it a couple of times at parties which makes me excited that she is getting some use out of them!

On another rather random note, ( since I am writing this on a sunday evening but posting it monday morning )I am so excited for the season premier of Revenge this evening, only because this is the first time I am actually getting to see a series on its actual premiere date. Back in the UK series tend to be shown rather a couple of months later than they premiere over here and I am always a season or so behind anyway. but lately I have been catching up on all my series and I have been thinking of doing a series of pieces based on the characters from the TV shows. I have a character in mind from the American horror story, I think it will turn out cool but we will see. Hope everyone had a nice weekend! If you read this let me, which shows, you are looking forward to watching this season ?

LIST OF MATERIALS USED:


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