Friday, August 31, 2012

Inspiration Friday Night!

Instead of "football Friday night" how about "Inspiration Friday night?" Sounds good to me! If you are a football fan, how about both! :)

I LOVE looking back over the last week to see what our friends have been up to. Please join me on this little inspirational journey...

First up from Michelle Mach at Beads & Books...Check out her blog to win a copy of this great book: Japanese Bead work Jewelry Making 
Dig around in your jewelry box for those hoop earrings that need a little jazzing up.

Art Bead Scene 
School season is almost here and that inspired Erin to blog about some of her favorite creative classes she has taken over the years.

Beading Arts 
Cyndi shares her thoughts on Kim St. Jean's magical book, Metal Magic!

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles 
Melanie makes lemonade out of lemons, or at least out of clay slabs that got too dry, and creates new pendants in the process

Resin Crafts! 
A litte paper and paint can result in a wonderful Frida pendant!

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done! 
Jean discusses the worldwide jewelry, mixed media and Blythe doll project which she has been involved in throughout 2012, and invites you to follow its progress!

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton 
Andrew announces the future plans for Allegory Gallery and the NEW annex space!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Trip to the Beach

The first ever trip to the ocean with my family still sticks in my memory. I had no idea what to expect. It was the summer after graduating high school before leaving home for college.

We drove and made many stops along the way including Myrtle Beach, Busch Gardens, Disney and Epcot Center. The final stay was for several days on Sanibel Island in Florida.

By then I was already sunburned and had picked up several souvenirs. The one I remember the most was a bracelet. It was a one strand bracelet of puka shells and I LOVED it.

These white seed beads really reminded me of those shells, but most importantly, they reminded me of the unusual WHITE sand beach on Sanibel. To me this takes me right to Sanibel every time I have put it on since I made it.

Thanks Cousin Corporation for this great, memory inducing experience.

Can I just say that I can't get enough of the seed beads? I posted a pic recently of the multi strand package that includes white, off white, clear, ebeads and tiny seed beads. So fun to work with!

By the way, check out Cousin on Facebook for weekly bead giveaways!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Sanibel Blue

Bring on Sanibel Island!

This bead is going to be the focal on the bracelet I'm sharing later this week.

So, if you were reading last weekend, you know I have some great white seed beads that are very reminiscent of the white sand beaches!

The contrast between the white and the bright blue makes it easy to visualize the beach at Sanibel, yay!

I needed a vacation in the middle of the week...ahhhh. I can almost hear dolphins playing nearby! :)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Know How to Bauble?

After yesterday's post on the 12 bead bauble, I wanted to share a couple other options for the bauble.

I think it's quite magical and it doesn't hurt that I learned it from a fellow beader on a bead cruise six or seven years ago...

I have visions of sitting in the lounge, looking out the window at the ocean with the sun shining in and a bunch of beaders sitting around with all their bags, cases and beads.

It was just a little bit of heaven!

If you want my home spun instruction sheet, I'll email it to you, just let me know. One day I'll really have to share a video of the magic.

You can pretty much use any seed bead, bicone or round in any size.

Once you get your bauble made, you can slide a chain through it like I did with yesterday's project, or you can use it as a pendant, earring or lanyard dangles or a bracelet focal.

I love the simplicity of the bracelet above which is just one strand of memory wire. Easy, dainty and sweet!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Ode to the Sunshine State!

I was thinking of writing a poem to accompany this piece to represent my feelings about the fabulous state of Florida!

However, I will spare you all since that's not necessarily my strong suit. :)

Instead, I thought I'd explain why this Florida inspired project for the Cousin Corporation is based on the SUN!

While the sun was shining strongly in Ohio today, there are several months of winter doldrums when we don't see the sun at all!

It's amazing how that can affect your outlook on life.

It's something many people don't even realize! It's a thrill to be able to escape during snow and ice in Ohio and head to sunny Florida.

It is rejuvenating and magical and while the blues of sky and water are next on my list of Florida goodness, none of it is possible without sunshine!

This shiny gold chain did not need much embellishment because it is SO shiny!

The bauble is the 12 bead right angle weave using faceted 8mm Champagne Crystazzi rounds AND the rhinestone rounds.

This is definitely a project to try if you haven't made the bauble before! Let me know if you need instructions and I'll head to the archives. :)

By the way, the earring focal is the "golden" bead I mentioned last week.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

It's Craft Night!

Yay, I'm heading out to craft with friends and family. Taking these great white beads from Cousin because they shout SANIBEL to me!

Sanibel Island, Florida to be exact. The white sandy beaches there are so special.

Gotta run, more on this later! :)

Friday, August 24, 2012

Weekend Links of Inspiration!

Happy Friday, yay!

There is just nothing like it...ahh, FREEDOM!

Are you ready to get creative?

Well, inspiration has arrived! :) Enjoy...

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton
Want to win a prize? All you have to do is help spread the word about the Weekend Intensive with Gail Crosman Moore! You'll be entered to win some fabulous goodies! Jewelry Making
Tammy takes a look at a new book about making rustic-style jewelry.

Art Bead Scene
A guest blogger post by artist Kaushambi Shah shows the innovative ways she displayed her art history inspired jewelry in a large office space

Beading Arts
Cyndi has reviews of the best books out there on working with metal clay.

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles
Melanie shares some rusty inspiration from her recent vacation

Resin Crafts!
Recycled resin! Carmi gets loads of suggestions about how to redo a resin bracelet into a necklace!

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!
Nothing is more delicious than a THIRD helping of bead soup, when it is cooked to perfection by Lori Anderson as Hostess, and her fellow participants in the 3rd Reveal of Bead Soup Blog Party 6! Check out the sumptous delights! WOW!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012


What a great word! In this case it not only refers to the fact this is 14k gold plated, it is also the perfect slang term to describe it!

Used as slang, the word "golden" means "of good quality. Also used to describe something that one is proud of."

This bead is GOLDEN! :)

You know, one of the best reasons to have a blog is to indulge your silliness!

This is actually a Cousin bead in the "GOLD Elegance" line. There are 4 of these in the package, so I am definitely thinking a pair of earrings. Maybe a pair for me and a pair to give away!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

October Bead Fest!

Just in case you are looking for some fab jewelry making fun in the fall, Bead Fest Texas is scheduled for October 26-28!

Here's an overview and a link for all the details just in case you are ready to register...(lucky!)

"Now in it's third year, Bead Fest Texas brings a unique combination of jewelry making education and great shopping to a location conveniently located midway between Dallas and Fort Worth.

80 workshops cover the entire world of jewelry making from bead stitching to metalsmithing

100 booths offer a wide variety of jewelry making supplies, beads, tools, gems, stones ad more. Expo admission is FREE with the purchase of a workshop

Demos, book signings and more"

Monday, August 20, 2012


Taking a moment for a memory...

It's funny how memories sometimes get skewed over time.

I was "remembering" a Florida sunset on the Dolphin Sunset Cruise.

I thought for sure the sunset was a red as these beads. I finally found the pictures online in my Walgreen's album and interestingly, it was not as red as I remembered...

HOWEVER, it doesn't diminish the great memory and I am still kind of seeing it more red than the photo shows. :) It's MY memory after all!

I am pretty sure it was in February and even though it was a beautifully sunny day, the air was chilly out on the sunset cruise.

Ahh, thanks for taking this trip with me down my semi-real memory lane!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Sunshine Day

My Florida project is taking shape! Here are a couple of the Cousin Corp. beads that will be showcased.

I guess it's pretty obvious that it is inspired by SUNSHINE!

These are so sparkly and, worked into a bauble, will really give a sunshiny effect!

So, speaking of "Sunshine Day"...I happened to catch a snippet from the Brady Bunch movie this weekend. Can you guess which part? :)

Here's a link to the original Brady episode, just in case you can't help yourself! Oh so good...

Stop by on Sunday to see the final sunny project! :)

My Fellow Creative Circle Ambassadors

I hope you are all having a great weekend! I always think having time to play with beads is like the icing on the cake, yum!

I wanted to take a few minutes to share a little info about my fellow Creative Circle Ambassadors.

There are five of us and I've just added their links to the right sidebar in case you are interested in what they are creating.

We will all be given a project a month by the Cousin Corporation. It's always fun to see what people create especially when they are using the same materials.

Below is a little about each and pictured above is Gail's first Florida inspired project.

Suzette Bentley
Suzette is a self-taught jewelry designer and is the inspiration behind Ellie’s Bijoux, her online jewelry gallery. Her creations have received rave reviews and she has recently been published in Bead Trends, Bead Style and Stringing magazines.

Gail Devoid
Gail started beading by learning how to loom with beads. Along with a variety of seed bead stitches, she is proficient in bead crochet, chain maille weaves and wire wrapping. Her first magazine article appeared in Issue 4 of magazine. recognized Gail as a designer in May 2006, naming her Designer of the Month. She also co-hosted a live Internet radio show at called The Jewelry Connection.

Shelly Owen
Shelly began creating jewelry in the early 1990s after being inspired by a high school project on recycling. She started out by recycling old broken jewelry and repairing a favorite piece. She then created pieces to give away as gifts, which later turned into requests for handmade items for friends, family and special occasions.

Patty Squillante
Patty has been fascinated by jewelry making for as long as she can remember. Jewelry making is very uplifting to her, providing a greater sense of purpose. Beading and instructing are her passions. Her mission is to demonstrate to others that making jewelry is rewarding and ever-evolving. Patty is grateful for her students because they allow her to share her passion with them.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Peace, Love & Bead Bloggers!

Yay, Happy Friday!! Let's make it a creative and sparkly weekend. We have the power! :)

I'm starting off the weekend by checking in with some of our other blogger friends to see what they've been up to! Please join me! Jewelry Making
How do lampwork artists decorate their beads? Here are a few methods many of them use.
Art Bead Scene
Heather shares some invaluable tips on organizing and preparing for a bead retreat

Beading Arts
Have you gotten into metal stamping yet? Come and see how easy it is to make a word-inspired necklace...

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles
Melanie shares her thoughts about reclaiming difficult words and how it inspired her new line of pendants

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done!
Jean reviews a wonderful book! Melanie Doerman's jewelry design book, The Art of Forgotten Things--how lovely!

Resin Crafts!
Carmi has a two part blog post showing you how to use a box tea came in and turn it into jewelry.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Come on Weekend!

Who is ready for the weekend? ME TOO! :)

There is just nothing like two whole days of freedom or even just the feeling that I could pick up beads and go wandering through containers and packages for as long as I want.

Sometimes during the week, I get creative thoughts early in the morning when I'm supposed to be on the treadmill or in the shower or getting my shoes on to get out the door...when all I want to do is stay in jammies and play around!

There are plenty of times when I have to scold myself to get focused. Trouble is there are bead containers everywhere! :)

So, once the weekend gets here, it's time to start creating my Florida inspired piece, yay! Just look at these great "ocean" beads!! I can see the white bubbles sitting on top of the fabulous blue water...ahh!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Floridian or Just Cool?

Today's bead creates an "ooh" - "ahh" response! Like fireworks!

There is something so cool about the depth of the glass and the colors, (ooh ahh)...see!

Not sure this is Floridian, but it's COOL! My wheels are turning now...

How about you?

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Inspired by the Sunshine State

There are SO many wonderfully inspirational colors, textures and places in the beautiful state of Florida!

I was just taking a trip down memory lane looking through photos of various trips to Florida or layovers in Florida...

Ahhhh, I feel like I just got back from vacation! :)

Here's my list of faves:

  1. Palm Trees (yay)
  2. Sunshine most of the time
  3. THE OCEAN! (beautiful and meditative)
  4. Sandy beaches...Sanibel!
  5. Oranges (so healthy!)
  6. Key West (FUN)
  8. Gorgeous sunsets
  9. Sweet friendly dolphins

Love it all! At this point, the Florida inspired project could take any direction! Glad I have time to ponder.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Capri Blue Bead Party

These watery capri blue beads look like they are having a party and I'd LOVE to have an invitation! :)

I try pretty hard not to say "yummy" in relation to beads too often, but please forgive me here, these are so yummy. The watery-ness and the deep color just makes me happy!

I'd love to hear your go-to emotional response word when you see a bead that brings happiness to your heart or tears to your eyes. It's okay, you can admit it here on A Bead A Day! You are among friends.

For me, it's "yummy" or honestly, just "mmm"! How about you?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Beads on Deck

These are the first beads I pulled to consider for my Florida inspired project. I have been going through a right angle weave phase for, oh I don't know, seems like years! :)

Top drilled beads like these teardrops feed right into the right angle weave obsession! There are 17 on this strand. Can you see them in a chunky bracelet cuff? ...I know!

I'm still putting beads aside, so stay tuned throughout the week for more! If you have ideas, don't hesitate to share!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

New Adventure Jewelry

As mentioned in recent posts, I'm so honored to have been selected as one of five "Creative Circle Ambassadors" for the Cousin Corporation.

This is the inaugural year for the Creative Circle program and they have done an impressive job of pulling all the details together and welcoming us to the family...yes, I have some new cousins, yay!

My first official jewelry making assignment is to create a piece using only materials from the giant box of beads they sent me AND...using the state of Florida as inspiration!!

Wow!! If you have my book you know I'm on cloud nine. However, before I could get started, inspiration got the best of me!!

I discovered these great beads that are very similar to the color of the Cousin logo, black findings and black wire and knew before I could get started on the Florida project, I needed a bracelet to represent the Creative Circle adventure!

So, here is my first UNofficial project using only materials from the box and I had a BLAST making it! This is already feeling like a bracelet I don't want to take off because of the meaning behind it...yes, I have been known to sleep in newly made jewelry when that happens! I am not afraid to admit to nerdy jewelry making behavior.

I hope you are also having a creative weekend. As always, please share what you are working on by leaving links in the comments. :)

Friday, August 10, 2012

Peace, Love & Bead Bloggers!

Yay, Happy Friday! It's a great feeling to be on this side of a fun weekend, it's just getting started!

If you are looking for inspiration...look no further! Here are some great links to check out!

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done! 
Jean is VERY excited that the 2nd reveal of Lori Anderson's 6th Bead Soup Blog Party begins on Saturday, Aug. 11, this week! Check her blog for the deets! <--cool word for details! Jewelry Making 
New for August, another interesting designer interview, this time with Kathy Pines of World Wise Jewelry.

Art Bead Scene 
Take a tour of the many blogs and jewelry creations that were inspired by our Picasso challenge last month!

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton 
Exciting news! Andrew announces a Weekend Intensive with Gail Crosman Moore in Ligonier, Pennsylvania! Four amazing classes with this supremely talented artist and jewelry-maker!

Beading Arts 
Cyndi has gathered up all her favorite resources and tutorials on working with metal clay. Do you have any more to add?

Beads & Books 
Michelle shares some tips for designing jewelry with bright colors.\

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Ready to Wire it Up!

Oh yeah, black beading wire! I'm getting close to selecting all the bits and pieces I need for my Cousin signature piece that I'll be making over the weekend!

I can't wait to give you the scoop and show you all the goodies I'm digging through this week, it might bring you to tears like it did me!

So, I had some inspiration while driving to work today. A lot of times I get inspiration when driving or getting ready for work because it's easy to get into a meditative state. THAT's what causes inspiration to flow!

When it comes, I have to remember to remember it! This time I focused really hard and visualized it to create a strong memory. That was easy, now I just have to find a few sparklies to include and put it together! FUN! Can't wait to see it materialize!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Oh, So Royal!

Okay, when I discovered these beads after choosing the black findings featured yesterday, I KNEW I needed to make a royal Cousin inspired jewelry piece for myself before starting on anything else.

Actually, I felt like doing a little jig. When I feel like doing a jig, that leads to laughing, then endorphins begin to activate and it's a happy moment!

I'm still processing the fact that I'm one of the 5 Cousin Creative Circle Ambassadors. :) Yay!

I can't wait to see what else I "NEED" to include in this piece. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

"I feel special" Jewelry Findings

I have lots to share about my first official assignment for the Cousin Corporation as I mentioned in yesterday's post, but I keep thinking it would be fun to have a signature piece of jewelry to represent this new journey!

Knowing how things work when I get a bee in my bonnet, that's what I'm going to do over the next couple of days.

So I just pulled out some cool pieces from my fab box of supplies and interestingly these black findings were the first thing that caught my eye.

There have been times when I thought, "gee I wish I had black jewelry findings for this project" and now I do! Yay! I feel really special to have so many cool things to experiment and create with, but more on that later.

For now, yay black findings, you have found a loving home!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Newsflash!!! Exciting New Adventure...

I have some super-exciting news to share with all of you today. It feels like there should be a drum-roll here...

I've been selected by the Cousin Corporation to be one of their five Creative Circle Ambassadors! YAY!

I am honored and unbelievably thrilled to be chosen and can't wait to start sharing new products, projects and my behind the scenes journey with you!

It's already been an uplifting experience. I keep having jaw dropping moments as I feel the overwhelming kindness and welcoming from the Cousin family.

They have just posted the official announcement on Facebook and their website, so check it out if you get a chance. You'll find out who the other four Ambassadors are and what's going to happen through this program over the next year. FUN stuff!! I'm so glad to have you to share this adventure with! :)

Cousin Facebook
Cousin website

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Beads, Baubles & Jewels TV Update

Did you know the TV show Beads, Baubles and Jewels is now broadcasting shows online each week?

Just go to their website, to watch.

As a PBS show, it was not always picked up in my area, so this is a GREAT opportunity to see your jewelry making friends and learn new techniques!

I originally came across the show on my local channel and it was played early on Saturday morning.

For me, that is the perfect time to watch, so that's when I now watch online too! The episode I was on last year is going to air online beginning this Friday. :)

Just to give you an idea of what you might find on the show, here's our friend Katie Hacker, who hosts the show, demonstrating a multi-strand necklace.

She's a great host with a calm and easy going nature.

Katie is perfectly at home in front of the camera and makes it fun for the series of guests who come through the studio. She uses signals to let you know if you are rambling on too long or need to stretch it out.

Thanks, Katie, for being you! :)

Colorful Pebble Beach

Our little turtle is now sitting atop his colorful pebble beach on my wrist! Aww...he's so cute to look at from that vantage point. :)

The perfect bracelet for a summer weekend! Sure to attract a second glance.

I'm so glad our little friend chose these colorful beads. I had to use quite a bit of restraint from making this a little more adult or mainstream, but it wasn't my choice, so I went with it.

I hope you are all having a creative weekend!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Peace, Love & Bead Bloggers

Happy Friday!! Here's some inspiration to get your weekend started! :)

Beading Arts
August is Metal Clay Month on Beading Arts!!

Earthenwood Studio Chronicles
Melanie shows off her Bead Soup blog challenge pieces that combine her ceramics with Shaktipaj components.

Art Bead Scene
The inspiration for August's Monthly Challenge is a Winslow Homer painting of a watery sea scene Jewelry Making
Catch up on some of the latest talk over at the Jewelry Making Forum.

Resin Crafts!
A two part series about resin and ink results in a spectacular necklace!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Swarovski Elements Design Contest

For all of you fabulously sparkly designers who LOVE working with Swarovski elements, make sure to get your designs entered in the contest by 9/30/12!

The grand prize is, hang on to your hat, $1,000 gift certificate!

Oops, I think I zoned out for a minute thinking about all the amazing things you could buy at for that amount!!

Head on over to FMG for all the details. Below is an excerpt:

Be the next Grand Prize Winner and Internationally Published Designer-Artist in the Fire Mountain Gems and Beads SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS Contest. Let your brilliance shine with over-the-top designs incorporating Swarovski Crystal.

As one of the largest and long-standing suppliers of SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS, Fire Mountain Gems and Beads offers a brilliant selection of colors, cuts and color and design inspiration to create your winning piece."

GOOD LUCK everyone! :)

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Perfect Contrast

Another turtle pick! I'm sure that makes LOTS of sense if you haven't read the last few days of posts!

Our little turtle friend has picked out such cute, colorful and cheerful beads. The milky white in contrast to the bright red flower shape is so awesome! :)

This one could easily have gotten lost or overlooked, but on A Bead A Day blog, each bead gets its moment in the spotlight!

All together now...aww!