Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Heirloom Bracelet

Wearing this bracelet, each bead's story comes back to me. It is like picking the patches on one of my grandmother's quilts. Each piece a reminder to her of the dress it came from or the pillow's from long ago that match. Instead, I remember the necklace I made for my mother at Christmas, and my very first tradeshow, my husband in tow, carrying all my purchases! On this bracelet, every bead has a story, and I didn't even realize it!

You see, I heard about a beader that wire-wrapped one of every kind of crystal she had ever had. and this piece of jewelry now spanned a good 20 year career. The amazing discontinued colors of Swarovski crystal, sparkling all around. It is a tale in the beading community.

This sparked an interest, that wheedled in my brain. Then it became a splinter, bothering me until I had to make it! I started with a unique square chain. I really like that the links are nice and large for the wire-wrapping.

I thought about clumping the colors together, but I wanted each bead to stand out. Below you can see for yourself what the different layouts look like.

I ordered round sterling wire in 18g, 22g, and 26g. Then I cut them into headpin lengths. I started with the largest beads and worked my way down.

This project did take me a few days. Wire-wrapping takes longer than a regular eye-pin, but I love how it's so much more secure. Instead of every color, I just started off with my blue collection {my favorite colors} and I really love how it has developed.

If you are interested this bracelet is for sale for $110.00. If you are interested in a bracelet like this, I'd be happy to walk you through the ropes, or construct it for you. Just contact me at joy@joyfulsparkle.com for details.

To View or purchase my Handcrafted Jewelry <--click here.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Beader's Muse

My New Year's resolution was that in 2009 I would eat more vegetables and enter my first beading competition.

Thanks to Scarlett Lanson, I felt that I could enter a low stress beading competition on her site http://www.thebeadersmuse.com/.

It was really difficult for me to try and use one particular beading element and create something really fresh and new. Since the element was a brass filigree piece, it was going to be a fresh new piece anyway... since I usually stick to sterling.

Next was finishing up the necklace. Then photographing the thing on a nice clear sunny day. Of course, I needed to name the piece, and then we were given the opportunity to write up 100 words on our inspirations.

I was surprised by the aspects of the competition that actually didn't involve beading!

Let me know what your competition experiences are like!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Marketing, Scary?

"In these tough economic times" Ugh! If I hear those terms again, it will be way too soon! As with most, the times have struck my family, like all others. I am planning my largest garden, ever, and am composting to keep it humming along. I am faced with obstacles to get back to school this fall... as a direct result, I have decided to join Naomi at http://ittybizspeakeasy.com. This is sort of an experiment. If anyone can help me get the bus rolling- She can!

And away we go!