Tag Archives: swarovski crystals

Crystal Chandelier Earrings

crystalchandelierearring

One of my coworkers has a bit of a problem with the back of my bead embroidery pieces and no matter how many times I explain to him that this is the way to finish off the back of bead embroidery he still says well why don’t you cover the back of the piece with beads too. It might all be well and possible to cover both sides of a bead embroidery piece (not that I see the point of using up beads for the back of a piece) but in order to address this issue I just decided to give beadweaving a go. Kill to birds with one stone: learn a new technique and have the backs of the work covered in beads so he would stop going on about it! 😀

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The piece I am covering in this post is not my first attempt at beadweaving a piece together (I started with simpler bezels) but since this piece is made specifically for someone and I have to give it to them tomorrow I decided to write about this one first .

a few weeks ago a colleague of ours from our corporate offices asked me to make her a clear crystal chandelier earring and I said ok. Twenty minutes later she gave me a call and insisted that I should make the chandelier earrings look sexy too! Now I have no idea how to make earrings look sexy so I was a bit stumped at this point and to be honest with you because I had no idea how much she was comfortable paying for the finished piece I didn’t want to go on a crazy bead shopping spree (which I am really good at) and spend loads of money on crystals and beads. So I was very adamant on using whatever I had.

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I was lucky to find some swarovski crystals in my stash that I had completely forgot about and put together all my beads in the clear and silver family in front of me and started to play around

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I started this piece by bezeling the oval piece first. I do have to say I am really bad at finding out how many beads I need to start with so I went with a Ladder/Brick stitch technique I learned on the bead and button website to start the bezel for this piece which made it a little bit easier to do. It is frustrating getting the stone to sit in the bezel and not move around when you are trying to capture it in the bezel and this is probably why bead embroidery to me is still so much easier to do. At least with bead embroidery your stones don’t keep running away from you every two seconds.

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Once the bezel was done I added a row of seed beads around the bezel to allow me to do the decorative edge. Nowhere is where the fun kind of started. I have never used superduo beads before and I was itching to incorporate them somewhere in my work so after each bead that I had added to the outside edge of the bezel I added a silver superduo bead. Once I stepped up to the top hole of the superduos , I started adding faceted silver beads which helped with the extra sparkle I was looking for and then I covered those beads by going around one more time and adding size 15 seed beads to give it a more finished look.

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To make the piece in to a chandelier type earring I started adding the bicone drops on each side and the bigger crystal drop in the middle to finish it off. To me this was enough to make the earring pass of as a chandelier earring.

Now bezeling the square swarovski crystal on the top of the piece was a whole different story. I had so many problems with this piece I was ready to throw in the towel. What made it worse was that I was so engrossed in figuring out how to bezel the damn stone that I forgot to make any notes on what I was doing so when it came to bezeling the second stone I had no idea what to do again which made it even more difficult because I had to make sure that the piece matched the first one I had made so that both earrings would look exactly the same. I kept referencing my first piece and in the end I just had to try and make at similar to each other, as it was humanly possible

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I have to say both earrings don’t look exactly the same but the discrepancy is so small that it can be overlooked. I have already shown the picture of the piece to the person I have made these for and thank god they liked it cause otherwise I would have had to redo the whole thing .i just hope that they like the piece when the see it in person tomorrow.

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Anyway I hope you guys really enjoy this piece too and that it can inspire you guys to make something sexy too: D

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Classic Turquoise Brooch

classic turquoise brooch

I just got back from spending two glorious weeks in England with my family and friends. After the few weeks I had had at work this was all I needed. To spend time with people I loved and leave all the drama behind.

I spend my two weeks stuffing my face with yummy food and running around London and Brighton in the cold weather wearing two coats on top of each other like a mad woman trying to see all of my friends and family. My whole body hurts from running up and down the tube steps and I feel a little bit sleep deprived but this is the type of pain that comes from having too much fun and that ain’t bad.

classic turquoise brooch

I had taken my laptop with me with the aim of updating my blog, but who was I kidding I don’t think I even turned my laptop on once while I was there and that’s a little bit shameful!

For the past few months I have been thinking more and more about making pieces that are more classic looking and wearable and as much as I love doing more elaborate pieces and using art images in my work, I know that I cannot in reality sell those pieces .so I have been aiming at making let’s say more sophisticated pieces that can be sold without any copyright problems and all those sort of things.

classic turquoise brooch

A few months ago as a thank you gift for a friend of my mom I decided to make a turquoise brooch. I love turquoise and as you have seen if you have looked through my blog, you see that I use them quite often. I needed to make something elegant and not too over the top but I didn’t want it too understated either. That is not me at all.

The turquoise cabochons are beautiful on their own so after doing a simple bezel I just needed something to add a little but of sparkle to the piece and then it would be done.

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The swarovski crystal chain that I used is the most beautiful crystal chain that I own, I love this chain so much that it physically hurts me when I cut it up to use. I guess it hurts me because I can’t seem to get it anymore for the price that I got it for. I was lucky though that the lady that sold it to me on Etsy was kind enough to sell me some more from her private stash.

I find that when I use the chain in a piece my work is really done and I don’t feel the need to add more. So once that was added I finished off the piece with a simple picot edge.

classic turquoise brooch

My friend wore this brooch over a black dress at wedding and she got quite a few compliments which led to a few people asking me to make one for them and as soon as I get my hands on some of these cabochons I am going to start making more of these brooches to put on my Etsy shop. I hope you guys have enjoyed looking at this piece and I hope you are all doing well!

classic turquoise brooch


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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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Vintage Green Earrings

When I first decided to do bead embroidery it was all because of a video on Youtube by Beadaholique. I didn’t know anything about bead embroidery even though I had done a lot of just random beading at my fashion jobs .i really didn’t have a clue where to start so I went ahead and bought the stuff that was mentioned in their video plus some vintage German cabochons that they had on their website. I loved the German cabs I got from there specially the green and purple ones I had purchased. Since they only had a limited number of cabs left and these were vintage stones I decided to go ahead and buy out the rest of the green and purple cabs that they had in stock. i am so glad I did because they haven’t restocked these cabs again and I haven’t been able to find them anywhere even though I have been looking constantly.

Out of the two cabochons I would have to say that the green one that I have used in this piece is my favorite but I had the hardest time matching any colour bead to it.

The cabochon has a unique teal/turquoise colour and I have quite a few different beads that fall in that category but none of them looked anything special next to the cabochon. None of them added anything to the piece and I thought maybe I was going about this the wrong way.

The cab has a nice shine and effect to it and the beads I was testing around it, all had different shiny effects on them and so maybe that was the problem. Too many different finishes were clashing with each other.  I went with a matte finish bead in the end that was close enough to the main colour of the cab.

I think the matte effect of the bead helps in that they make the main cabochon stand out even more. But I needed to use another type or colour of bead to make the piece more dimensional and interesting and none of the blues and teals were doing that so I decided to see if metal colours would work.

I don’t have an innate way with colour and matching colours is my main headache when it comes to any type of designing whether it is beadwork or if it is fashion design work. So after doing little samples with gold/silver and bronze, I settled with bronze and loved how the piece turned out.

For the edge I did the all too popular picot edge but I really though the piece deserved a little bit more so I decided to experiment with filling out the space between the size 11/0 beads of the picot edge.

I was going for a rounded effect at first. I found out that adding four size 15/0 seed beads between each size 11/0 beads would just lie flat .in the next step I added five which I found with a little but of manipulation would make these pointy shapes and I was really excited about so I scraped the idea of having round loops around the earrings and went with this pointy edge.

I was going to keep these earrings for myself but I decided to list them on Etsy and I was glad and really surprised when they got sold. Good thing is I still have a few more of the main cabs left so I can make more of these if I ever wanted to!:D

            LIST OF MATERIALS USED:


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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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Sparkly Turquoise Earrings

Ahhhh what better way to spend a Saturday evening than sitting down and watching My Fair Lady? As I am writing this, poor little Eliza is trying to pronounce words beginning with H and setting fire to things! What joy.

My favorite part of the movie has to be the embassy ball with that amazing crystal necklace! Which brings me to today’s little beaded piece, which is a mixture of turquoise and crystals.

The idea for this came from my turquoise bracelet which I had made a long while ago. I was really happy with how the beads and crystals worked together so I decided to make a pair of earrings to go with the piece.

I didn’t have any more of the green crystal pieces I had used on the bracelet so for these earrings I substituted them with a pair of turquoise cabochons and for the bottom part of the earring I used a larger swarovski crystal stud earrings which I cut the backs off in order to use as the focal component.

Hope you guys are having a wonderful weekend and If anyone is interested in these earrings they are available on my Etsy.

LIST OF MATERIALS USED


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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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Blue Goldstone Earrings

 

True to form I managed to waste my whole Saturday, I had so many plans. I think it’s because I heard back from one of the jobs I had interviewed for and I was told that I was overqualified which is the most bizarre explanation for not giving someone a job ever in my opinion! After reading the email in a half asleep state this morning I decided to take a portion of the day and wallow. I mean no one should start their Saturday with this type of email. So I moped about for a while going through the 7 stages of grief but apparently It took more than a few hours to get over the news because I suddenly looked at the clock and its now nearly 1:30 in the morning. Nooooo!!

I might have wasted my whole day but I am not going to waste my night so I have decided to write up a quick post.

A while back I shared pictures of a piece I had made which I had yet to finish. You can see the original post here.

I finally decided it was time to do something with the piece and even though I had originally made the pieces for gloves, in the end I decided it would be best to make them into earrings.

I used crafters ultimate glue to glue the piece to Ultrasuede making sure to glue a couple of millimeters away from the edge. This is so that the needle could go through the backing and the Ultrasuede easier but if you decide to do this and get glue to the edge don’t worry the needle still goes through, it might need a little bit more coaxing at times but it will go through,

I was thinking of doing a clean edge around the piece but since I had used bigger beads in my last row of beading I thought that doing a clean edge might look a little bit weird so I opted to do a sunshine edge and do a basic picot edge to finish the piece off.

LIST OF MATERIALS USED:

10mm SURGICAL STEEL GLUE ON EARRING POSTS

FIRELINE THREAD 0.006” IN SMOKE GREY

BLACK ULTRASUEDE

CRAFTER’S PICK THE ULTIMATE GLUE


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Ms.Pemberton Brooch

 

I love the days when I get home and I see packages by the door and you know those packages contain something you really really need!!! I finally got my threads and I have become a beading machine.

All the planning I did last week has really helped move things along. I had done all the sketching, I had chosen which cabochons would go with which design. I had even listed beads I wanted to use on the pieces.

For the first piece I am using another Lori Earley drawing and this one is called “Ms.Pemberton” .how regal is that!

I went with a sapphire blue and black theme. I did a stacked bezel around the focal image and then did a row of alternating faceted glass beads and swarovski pearls.

I wanted the next rows of beading to snake around all the new cabochon and larger beads that I was adding and that needed a little bit of planning as the inside row of beads becomes the outside row when it snakes around the smaller cabochons so in order to get it right I did both the blue/sapphire row and the black row at the same time.

I also used a Copic marker to darken the top two beads a little bit since they were transparent and against the backing they were looking more sky blue than sapphire blue. Colouring the backing and the backs of the beads helped make it a darker colour.

To finish off the piece I went for a free form stacked edge followed by a drop formation on the bottom.

 

LIST OF MATERIALS USED:


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