Monday, November 21, 2011

Funky shell bracelet

My sister is fond of bright colors and lots of them.  When I saw the bright colored shell strands at Hobby Lobby, I knew I had to make her a funky bracelet out of them, and picked the perfect 70s-esque clasp to go with them, which also suits her.

Name: Funky shell bracelet

Price: $10 to $15 (custom project for my sister)

Length: approx. 8"

Sparkly multi-strand necklaces

I was searching for ideas for my sister's birthday this year, and asked her if there was anything in particular she wanted.  I gave her the FusionBeads inspiration projects page, and she sorted through and sent me the link to the Sensational Olivine Necklace.  I made it for her, but the magnetic box clasp I bought from Hobby Lobby for it (as FusionBeads' one for the project was out of stock) didn't work, so I bought an extender chain clasp for it instead.  Then I made her a bright orange one too, which goes with her quirky personality, and for the Frankfort show Dan made a lavender one since he'd helped me with the olive one for Margot's birthday.  Yet another project that's very easy to customize into any color(s) you want!



Name: Sparkly multi-strand necklace

Price: $25 each (olive and orange custom projects for my sister; tanzanite donated)

Color: olive; orange; tanzanite

Length: adjustible; ranges from 18" to 22"

Jasper and Swarovski necklace

A few years ago, I found this piece of brown zebra jasper at Von's in West Lafayette and decided to challenge myself to make a necklace with it.  It sat in my bead box for months, until I finally purchased a bunch of Swarovski crystal pearls on sale to jazz it up.  This was the result.  I recently redid it to have a better clasp.

Name: Brown Zebra Jasper necklace

Price: $25 (reason: Swarovski pearls) Donated to the Dan Bollock charity fundraiser 3-02-12

Length: 16" plus 1" pendant

Swarovski right angle weave bracelet

The moment I saw this project on FusionBeads, titled Denim, I knew I had to do it no matter how much it cost me.  Working with 4mm crystal bicones is a lot different than working with seed beads!  I love the way it turned out though, and I really love right-angle weave because it is sturdy, yet flexible, as you can see in the picture.  The bracelet took 97 beads of two colors, and 98 beads of the middle one.  I actually had to make the bracelet a little shorter than the project due to the fact that a single bicone hadn't been drilled, so I couldn't use it.  That made it impossible to finish one row, as the bicone's color was in the middle of it and there wasn't time to order another one.  The bracelet has a magnetic cylinder clasp, which was something I'd not used before either, and I really like it.  One of the great things about right-angle weave projects is they can be customized into any color mix you want!

Name: Swarovski right angle weave bracelet

Price:  $35 (reason: tons of Swarovski crystals, time, and effort used; personal collection)

Color: 3 shades of blue

Length: 7.5" long, 1" wide

Right angle weave bracelets

Over the past few days, I've gotten three right-angle weave bracelets done.  Starting the pattern is a bit of a challenge, but once you're to the repetitive part it goes really fast.  Ironically, the first one I started was the last one I finished (the night before the Frankfort show) because a bead broke and I had to take a bunch out to fix it.  My thread wasn't coming out even, so I gave it up and started the purple one I posted months ago.  In between, I did a forest green one.  All three were inspired by a project on FusionBeads, using peanut-shaped seed beads.  Now that I've got the pattern down with the supplies they used, I'm going to try different beads and see what happens.  The picture really doesn't do the colors justice.  The pattern is so easy to adjust into different colors I could probably do just about anything anybody could want.

Name: Right angle weave bracelet

Price:  $15 each (reason: time and effort used; purple sold to Donna V.)

Color: blue iris (top); purple iris (left); forest green iris (right)

Length: approx. 8"; can be made to suit

Multi-strand spiral necklace

This is one of the two multi-strand seed bead necklaces I did for the Frankfort show.  The other one, done in autumn colors, I didn't get a good picture of before it sold, though I will be posting another when I have the time here.  Each strand (there are 7 per necklace) is hand-strung with the colors randomly, using size 10 and size 8 seed beads--which took a loooooong time given the length.  I then put bead cones over the ends and twisted the strands so they formed a loose spiral necklace rather than leave each free like other multi-strand necklaces I've done.  They were a looooot of work, but well worth it!  For the Frankfort show, I also made matching memory wire bracelets, which sold quickly; copies will be under my 6-loop memory wire bracelet post when I have the time.  This style is great if I use mixed bags of colors, or wanted to do strands of different colors, or what have you.

Name: Multi-strand spiral necklace

Price: $25 (reason: time and effort used) each

Colors: Mardi-gras mix; autumn mix (didn't get a picture of, sorry!)

Length: 22"

Yellow jade necklace

This necklace is one I did for Mom.  I had made her a yellow and gray pearl necklace to go with a skirt she had, but the yellow was too bright.  She liked the clasp, though, and I reused it for this piece for her as a replacement.  Yellow jade is hard to find (I usually come across lemon or honey jade), but I located some 6mm yellow jade on FusionBeads.  Mom wanted me to do the simple sterling dividing beads with it the way I'd done her watermelon tourmaline necklace, so this was the result.  She likes her necklaces long, too, which I kept in mind.

Name: Yellow jade necklace

Price: $30 to $35 (custom project for my Mom)

Length: approx 22"

Yellow jade illusion necklace

I'm a growing fan of yellow jade.  I like it far better than lemon jade, which has a greenish cast to it, or honey jade, with an orange cast.  Yellow jade is a soft, buttery yellow, which has made it popular with my Mom.  This necklace is actually a was originally done years ago on stretchy string, which made it difficult to keep from tangling.  I redid it for the Frankfort show on fishing line, and made it longer (it used to be about 18").  I used yellow jade cubes, white rice pearls, and seed beads.

Name: Yellow Jade Illusion Necklace

Price: $10 (materials, time, effort)

Length: 22" necklace, 3" dangle

Blue lace agate necklace

I made this necklace a few months ago and have gone back and forth about whether or not to keep it.  I really like the subtle patterns of blue lace agate and absolutely love the pendant.  Blue lace agate ranges from frosty blue to sky blue to almost white.  I collect polished stones, and one of the first six I ever got--purchased at Von's by Dad for me on my first visit when I was at the most 8 years old, 6 for $.50--was a blue lace agate wedge (the others were carnelian, quartz, rose quartz, aventurine, and amethyst, and started my tradition of purchasing stones on special trips).  I got quite nostalgic while working on this piece.


Name: Blue lace agate necklace

Price: $25 (reason: amount of stone used)

Length: approx. 20"

Blue lace agate earrings

I made this pair of earrings a little over a year ago.  I like them because they have a Celtic feel to their appearance, and I've always been a fan of the subtle patterns in blue lace agate.  They were originally made for my Mom, who really liked the silver bangle when I made my sister her yellow Swarovski wire-wrapped earrings for Christmas, but they just wound up too big for her taste when I showed them to her.  The rounds are 6mm and 4mm.

Name: Blue lace agate earrings

Price: $10 (reason: bangle pricing)

Length: 1.5"

6-loop memory wire bracelets

I made a bunch of 6-loop memory wire bracelets for the Frankfort show, and they were easily my bestseller.  When I have more time, I will post the different patterns and varieties in this same post, as all non-fancy 6-loop bracelets will cost the same amount.

Name: 6-loop memory wire bracelet

Price: $8 each

Color: blue/purple/pink; mardi-gras; greens; autumn; lavender bugle; blues; as requested

Length: 6-loops

Peridot Necklace

Just noticed the peridot necklace wasn't posted...could've sworn I uploaded it with my last series of posts.  Anyway, I don't work a lot with gold; silver seems to go so much better with more things.  But I'd always kinda wanted to do a necklace with the soft beauty of pale yellow-green peridot, and I knew if I did it would have to be with gold.  The two just seem to go together.  The peridot beads are tiny!  They're 3mm rounds, divided by gold-filled metal beads.  I like how it turned out, despite its simplicity.

Name: Peridot necklace

Price: $25 (reason: peridot is fairly expensive, as are gold supplies)

Length: 20"

Peridot Earrings

This is another pair of earrings I took to the Frankfort show.  I made them as companion pieces for the peridot necklace I did earlier.  These earrings are tiny!  The peridot rounds are only 3mm, with gold-filled rounds above and below, and on gold-filled wire and earwires.  The entire earring, from height of earwire to tip of dangle is a little less than 1".  I was worried about losing them before I even got them to the show and I think they were too small to be noticed on my table.

Name: Peridot earrings

Price: $8 (reason: gold-filled wire)

Length: less than 1" total

Aventurine Earrings

I don't do a lot of earrings yet, as I'm not comfortable enough with my skill at them, but this is a pair I took to the First Baptist Church craft show in Frankfort November 19th.  I made them to go with the aventurine cross-weave necklace I did a while ago.  They are 6mm aventurine beads with size 15 seed beads on sterling silver.  Very simple.

Name: Aventurine Earrings

Price: $10 (reason: sterling silver)

Length: approx. 1" from tip of dangle to height of ear wire loop

First Baptist Church in Frankfort Craft Show

Saturday, November 19th, found my sister and me at the craft show held by First Baptist Church in Frankfort from about 8:30 to about 2:30, hoping to sell some of our work.  My sister, the photographer who has the blog and business Whimsicals by Margot, took a bunch of her beautiful photographs as 8x10s and several calendars.  We shared a table.  As this was our first show, we didn't expect to sell a lot, and we didn't--most of the booths there were more crafty things than artsy; we probably would've sold more had we been at an art show.  I sold three necklaces, four memory wire bracelets, two pairs of earrings, and got custom orders for another necklace and pair of earrings.  My sister sold most of her calendars.  One of the necklaces I sold Dan made--a big square Paua shell pendant strung on two strands of apatite, broken up with blue shell 6mm and 3mm sterling beads I didn't get a good picture of since my camera died.  Below is a picture of the pieces I took to the show.  Just above the Paua shell necklace is a spiral multi-strand seed bead necklace in autumn colors that also sold.  This was taken at about 2am show day, while Dan was finishing the copper Dutch Spiral bracelet, and right before my camera died.

Copper Dutch Spiral Bracelet

Two days before the Frankfort show, my boyfriend Dan was helping me with some final project finish-up by working on a second Dutch Spiral bracelet.  He'd chosen vivid dark red twisted bugle beads that were longer than what we usually use, and had made it all the way to the clasp, only he forgot to add a piece and would have had to take the entire thing apart and start over.  I told him not to worry about it and just start on a different one so he wouldn't want to throw the redo out the window, so the night before the show he started in on this beauty.  Again, he picked out the beads himself from one of the sites I recommended to him, and he finished it at 2am on show day.  I think it's one of my all-time favorite pieces.  This and his aqua version were the talk of the Frankfort show.  He's just purchased more of the copper bugles with the intention of making me a choker to match.  Isn't it beautiful?

Name: Copper Dutch Spiral Bracelet

Price: $15 (note: instead of Swarovski bicones, he used sterling silver stardust 6mm rounds)

Length: approx. 9"

Aqua Dutch Spiral Bracelet

And here is the finished product: Dan's first Dutch Spiral bracelet!  He used aqua twisted bugle beads and silver metal seed beads, aqua Swarovski bicones, and a silver leaf clasp I had in my findings box.  It was the talk of the Frankfort show!

Name: Aqua Dutch Spiral bracelet

Price: $15 (turned into a gift for Dan's grandma for Christmas, 2011)

Length: approx. 9.5"

Dan's first major project!

Like I've said before, my boyfriend has discovered he likes to assist me with jewelry projects.  With the Frankfort show approaching (was the 19th), he asked if there was anything else he could pitch in and do while I scrambled with a bunch of pieces and was also working my hiney off with this year's National Novel Writing Month quotas (more on that on my writing blog).  I told him I would teach him the Dutch spiral if he wanted, and he liked my Twisted Sister version so much he agreed.  We went to one of the local stores and he picked out the supplies himself, then, after a confusing start--which happened to me when I first learned, too--off he went.  I had to document the event for posterity.  And, in his defense, he does a wonderful job!