Tuesday, 30 June 2009

A Bracelet and Earring Set - C&G

...Without the earrings, which have yet to be made! I will post those when they are done. It is made up of square stitch, which I hate, but we have limited patterns to make the six sets from for the final work on the course.

Saturday, 27 June 2009

Just Playing Last Night...

I was trying something with tubular herringbone and came up with this! It would need to be supported by an inner bead as the work does collapse but I am amazed that this was the result of just playing with beads.

And Another One, In Reds

This one uses 3mm pearls instead of facet beads, so is slightly less sparkly. The mix of colours was really lovely. I am thinking of making another one in greens, but am having a rest from this for a while!

Saturday, 20 June 2009

The Finished Thursday Night Project

I am so pleased how this turned out! I have worn it and lots of people have commented on it. I have decided to write the pattern up and send it in to a magazine to see if they are interested.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

The Thursday Night Project - 17 June

This is a design that I thought up today, based on a 'loop-di-loop' pattern that was in a very early issue of Bead Magazine. Instead of just doing loops of beads, I have done one row of strands with facets on, one row of leaves and the obligatory row of loops. It all blends in nicely and is actually fairly substantial to hold. As you can see from the bottom picture, I have not finished the toggle fastener, so that is what I intend to do tonight.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Labradorite Bracelet and Earrings

This set has been made for someone in particular, but I won't say who as she reads this blog.

This one is going to Max's teacher at the end of the year. She is a lovely teacher and I have had a fair amount to do with her as I help out one morning a week. I was making her a beaded bookmark, but I know she loves jewellery, so have decided on this. Now I am doing the whole, 'Is it too much' thing that I did with her present at Christmas! It cost £12 to make, which is more than I would normally spend, but then, what else can you get for that? A bunch of flowers and box of chocolates?

The labradorite coins look lovely with the silver findings and it is a really weighty piece.

Tuesday, 16 June 2009

Dismantling UFOs

I decided to get rid of the unfinished objects that I knew I would never really get around to finishing. So, I spent a couple of hours cutting the pieces up, to salvage the beads. I put them in a tin and was so shocked at how many beads there were that I thought I should confess on here!
It is so easy to see a pattern in a magazine that you think you would like to try, or think up a new stitch to put together. Half way through the piece you think, 'I really can't be bothered with this any more. I'll finish it another day...' Hmmm, as if!

Saturday, 13 June 2009

C & G Course - My Own Projects

We have reached the point in the course where we have learnt all the stitches and have completed all the artwork side of things. The rest of the time is now for us to continue with making our pieces for judging. These pieces need to be the following:

6 necklace and earring sets (one necklace must be netting, and one oat spheres)

One lariat at least 32" long

Two amulet bags, one netted and one tubular peyote

One major piece - a shaped object or anything to show our skill.

For my main piece, I have decided to make a cross-stitch pattern into a square stitch picture. I was originally going to work three photographs into cross-stitch patterns and convert the colours into delica beads. However, the photos that I have chosen needed too many colours and would have cost too much. I am going to make the picture in cross-stitch instead, and may do one of the three photos in beads at a later date.

Instead, I found some lovely little charts of seaside pictures in a cross-stitch magazine. Here is one of the charts worked up in beads...

I am not a big fan of square stitch because I always seem to make it look wonky somehow - as you can see, this one does too! I have also managed to break one of the beads, so it is likely that I will think of this one as a practise piece and will work it up again.

This is going to be my lariat. It is twisted herringbone stitch and I have tried to choose colours that I would not normally put together!

Friday, 12 June 2009

6 Unimportant Things I Love

I have been tagged by Woolywotnots...


1 Would probably be chocolate. I don't particularly like the good stuff, Cadbury's is good enough for me. I love the texture, the smell, the taste...

My favourite would have to be Maltersers, Flakes, Mars Bars, Ripple, Revels, Double Decker...

...Well, a girl needs a choice doesn't she!

2 The Cinema - Nothing better than watching a good film on a full size screen. Keanu definitely looks better even bigger!

I love the big seats, the pic 'n' mix, the trailers, the ice-cream, even the sweet-wrapper rustlers.

3 Blog-hopping - There is definitely something really rewarding about finding a new blog that you didn't know about and seeing what other people do with their crafts. I usually start with the blogs I love already and then choose one from their list of recommendations. Then, from that blog, I choose one of their recommendations and so on. I have found some wonderful crafters this way. Give it a whirl if you don't already do this.

4 Beads - say no more!

5 The Saturday Times cryptic crossword. Often lasts me the whole week and very satisfying. It is about 3 times the size of the normal one and it keeps my brain working. Once I have finished that, I do the massive Sudoku puzzle, although I normally get too carried away and end up messing it up.

6 Cats - They make me so happy. It's a shame that both Mark and Max are allergic to them. Who wouldn't love this...

Isn't she beautiful!? She is my Mum and Dad's cat and very easily frightened, especially around Max. Some people dislike cats because of their look of superiority but I think they are just lovely. Mind you, any cat that is lucky enough to get their paws under the table at my parents' house WOULD look smug! They get the best seat in the house and are adored constantly...

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Framed Picture

Here is the multi-media picture that I blogged about a few weeks ago. I have mounted it on some thick watercolour card and put it in a lovely frame that I bought in The Range. I think it looks lovely now it is all finished and really hope that my friend likes it as much as I do when I give it to her.

Herringbone Bracelet

This bracelet is an old favourite and you will see lots of other examples if you care to look back far enough. It is a herringbone base which have made in 8° seed beads. Then, you work in all the gaps with 11° seed beads. I thought that this colour combination with the texture looked a bit like the back of a crocodile!
I am also happy with the loop and toggle. I am finding it almost as easy to whip one of these up now than to use a metal toggle. I do think that the finished effect is a little more 'hand-made' than chic but I do like to see it sometimes as toggles don't always suit the look of the beading.

Tuesday, 9 June 2009

And Another...

This time it is made in 8° beads. I decided to use a bead instead of a toggle for the closure.

Finished Bracelet

I think it is pretty.

Tealight Is Now Finished!

It actually looks very pretty. I am not 100% happy with the base when you look at it from the inside, but, let's face it, there will normally be a tea-light in it won't there!

St. Petersburg Stitch

The latest issue of Bead & Button magazine has this great stitch in it, which I think is amazingly effective for how simple it is.

First I tried the single row, to keep things easy. After several changes of beads, I came up with this bracelet, which is very simple but also classy I think. I made the toggle and loop closure in the same colour beads, but smaller, so as not to draw attention away from the main part of the bracelet.

Then, I decided to try the double stitch version. It is still mid-production, but the general idea can be seen. You work a chain in single stich and then go back to the beginning and add the second half. I have made this version in 11° seed beads, but would make another in larger beads as this is taking ages!

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Garden Swap

I finally sent my goodies to my swap partner. I am sorry it took so long Paula, and I hope you like them. I didn't send anything edible as I know it is frowned upon in the US - I also almost sent you seeds!

I sent Paula some beautiful wool for her knitting, a rubber stamp with 'English Country Garden' on it, a plant sprayer and the beaded flower that I blogged about a couple of weeks ago. I am afraid that I took the soaps out before sending as they weighed a ton and had to be posted to the US (blush - sorry again Paula!) The flower just needs a chain or ribbon to be hung from and it can also be turned into a hair accessory or brooch.

Tea-Light Holder

I saw a tea-light holder in The Beader's Bible, by Dorothy Wood. I liked the look of it, but the instructions seemed a little difficult at first glance (mainly because of the way they were set out). I thought that it wouldn't be too difficult to try one for myself, and that at least it would be my own design that way. I got started, initially with a herringbone stitch pattern, but then discovered that I couldn't work out a way to make a flat bottom in it.
Next, I came up with this design (above), using tubular peyote which transforms into herringbone to form the ruffle on the top. I was fairly pleased with it, but realised that I had a split where I had started a new thread. I wasn't as happy with the colour mix as I could have been, so I cut it up to re-use the beads for something else.

I decided that peyote was the way to go for the body of the piece as it was easier to work a bottom from that stitch. I thought that a softer ruffle might be nicer, so I incorporated ogalala lace stitch into the top. I haven't worked the bottom in yet but you can see the general idea from this picture.

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Peyote Bracelet

This bracelet idea came to me from a picture in a book I own by Carol Huber Cypher. I took the basic idea and made it my own, using buttons made for me by Gill at Hollingdale Designs. The finished result is lovely and really original. I love the hex beads in the work, giving it a bit of sparkle and bling, and Gill's buttons really make it look quirky.

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

My 'Baby' Boy...

So, last night, my little boy (nearly 8) came home from Beaver Scouts looking like this! Brilliant face-painting I thought and he was a bit annoyed to have it washed off almost immediately. Notice that he still has one of his top front teeth in this picture...

He went to bed and, half an hour later, Mark and I heard, 'MY TOOTH HAS COME OUT!' (which actually meant he had forced it out - with a fair amount of blood). What a difference a day makes! He is now lisping nicely which I find rather cute.

My 'baby' is no longer a baby, toddler, pre-schooler or infant schooler. He is a junior with 4 adult teeth and two gaps soon to be filled.

Monday, 1 June 2009

Ooh, Super Macro Setting!

Super-whizzy! Some plants from my garden and a reeeaally close close-up of some beading I am currently working on.

New Camera!!!

Mark has been listening to me moaning about the old camera for weeks now. Yesterday, while we were in town, he asked for some time to look in some gaming shops and surprised me later, having sneakily bought me a new camera! It is the Canon PowerShot A470 and seems really easy to use. It is very similar to the old one, as that was also a Canon. Even a technophobe like me can use it! It has a lovely large screen and I am really looking forward to showing you the results on this blog!