Mother of the Bride

IMG_3593This is the companion necklace to Wedding Bells.
It is was made for the Mother of the Bride.

Weddings are such happy occasions!


Wedding Bells

IMG_3590I am so excited!
Today someone is being married, and they are wearing this necklace.

They requested a commission after trolling through my blog, selecting the Necco Wafer style, but in their color way.  Fabric samples were sent.  The bride is wearing a gorgeous peach satin gown with ecru lace overlay, which this necklace will compliment most appropriately.

Congratulations A, and all the best to you in your new lives together!

Vintage Verdigris

IMG_3560Fresh from a steamer trunk

I suppose using vintage and fresh in the same sentence has the grammarians rolling their eyes, but there you go.  A necklace that breaks with convention.  New bead shapes combined with an old beading style.

The new shapes are tila beads and super duos, the tilas in a matte khaki and the  luminous super duos forming the body of the band.  These are stitched together with bright bronze 15°s and accented with bronze tortoise shell daggers.

The stitching is peyote, which made me very nervous.  The way the beads are laid out, there isn’t a good way to put in any knots or ties for stability.  Should the thread break (a rare possibility) I didn’t want the beads to run helter skelter away, so some experimentation was required.  I finally managed it – not optimal, but functionally acceptable.

The two holes in the tilas and super duos drove me absolutely nuts.  The tilas in particular would flip one way, then flop another.  Finally, I reached a beady groove, that zen state where all the beads behave themselves.

Sour Razzleberry

IMG_2937Shades of lime, pink and purple.  Toss in some magenta and blue, and another confection is born!

These are part of the same group of buttons as Sour Blueberry and Sweet Hearts.  The last of them too.  This will probably also be the last button bracelet for a while.  I feel I’ve gotten them out of my system.  At least for now.

Loops and loops of seed beads in blue.  Silver-lined magenta with blue drops and, of course, the buttons.  A dark lobster claw clasp hooking into some purple rings.  Good enough to eat!

Anything Goes

Goes with Anything

I finally finished this bracelet last weekend.  All it needed was a closure, so of course it sat around for weeks waiting patiently to be clasped.  Finally, it’s done!

I think the colorway, a dove grey and ivory goes with anything.  Long time readers may recognize that this is a duplicate.  I have made this exact bracelet, in this exact color before.  The original was absconded with by GrandMeow, so I decided to make up another for moi!  I found that I missed having something so neutral to wear.

Circular herringbone stitch with size 8 Toho triangles and grey drops, sealed with a nice strong magnetic clasp.  Much easier to close one-handed.  Toho triangle beads have sharper angles than the Miyuki, and I like them better because of this.  I have read that Miyuki has come out with sharp triangles as well, but haven’t been able to find them locally.  Sharp triangles – I wonder if that means they’re snazzy dressers?

Daggers, Drops and Drips

No, not the weather, though it continues to be colder than usual for this time of year, but the last of the Daggers, Drops and Drips Necklaces.

The large photo doesn’t do them justice.  The top one is almost a dark jade colorway (better photo at left), while the middle reminds me of lemonade, being mostly clear with some small bright highlights.   The lower one is a tortoise-shell colorway, with some AB finish on the drop beads.  That’s Aurora Borealis in bead finish lingo.

For now, I think I’m done with this pattern.  I still have to put clasps on these, but that is a simple enough thing to do…whenever I get around to it.

Sometimes these projects are more about the doing than the finishing.  Do you ever have that happen?  I was going to say problem, but then thought, why would it be a problem?  Wouldn’t it be part of the creative process, working on one thing sparks ideas for others, and off you go, onto the next latest and greatest.  Perhaps it’s only a problem when the unfinished pieces outweigh the finished ones.

Jelly Bean Bracelet

There was absolutely no sewing happening at Casa Thunderpaws this weekend, however that does not mean needle and thread were idle.

I finished this bracelet, which is based on a pattern  from the February 2010 issue of Bead & Button magazine.  I used size 8° seed beads for most of it, and then large jelly bean drops for the accents.  If you look closely there are also orange sherbet colored 11° seeds as a picot edge.

The edge picot shows up better when you look at the back.  It’s a basic herringbone stitch done length-wise instead of width-wise.  So, you decide on the length of the bracelet first, then work upwards along the long edge.  This is a  different method of execution than most pieces.

I had thought to use solid yellow beads, but when I put them together, I realized they were not the same shade.  I used them anyway, and think they give the piece a subtle flair.  (That’s my story, and I’m stickin’ to it!)

Once the base is completed, you come off the edges and make 2-bead fingers, then fold them over and tie them back into the base with the drops.  Clear as mud? Yeah, I thought so too.

This shot comes closest to the true color of the jelly bean fringe, but it’s still not quite right.   To describe them in beading terms: they’re transparent neon orange with an AB finish.   You could sew them on a hunting vest and be seen for miles!