Monday, January 31, 2011

Mending a broken heart

With Valentine's Day coming up I thought it would be a good idea to list some heart-themed rings.
What I didn't think was how challenging it would be. My beadwoven rings are created with a circular peyote stitch, which starts in the centre and increases towards the outer edge. By using different colour beads at different stages I create the various designs. I don't work from any patterns and just experiment with ideas as I go along. Trying to make a non-circular design in a circular weave is pretty tricky.

 This was my first attempt. Tops are too pointy!

 Second attempt. Love these two colours together but they are all wrong for this design, which needs a strong contrast. I couldn't see what I was doing and it ended up being too lumpy around the edges.

 Third attempt - success! Still not perfect but this is as good as it gets.

So here it is. There will be only one Valentine's contribution after all. After spending a whole afternoon trying to figure this out I've decided to put it into the too hard basket. Definitely a one-of-a-kind creation!
Back to flowers, stars and circles.

Monday, January 24, 2011


This is what I've been waiting for! A heavy padded envelope was waiting for me at the front door this afternoon with an absolute rainbow of Japanese seed beads.

Like so many other crafters I know, I source most of my supplies from overseas. When I first came to Australia from Africa I was thrilled by the selection of beads available in bead shops and used to spend hours just browsing the many colours, shapes and sizes. Fortunately I have a sister who enjoys this activity as much as I do.
But even the best bead shops could not compare to what I found online. America is a treasure trove for crafters. It's probably a good thing I don't
live there!

The downside of course is waiting for your parcel! But for now my wait is over and when I tipped all these bags of beads out of the envelope I almost got a creative anxiety attack.
So many colours! So many options! Where to start? When to start?

If you don't hear from me for a while at least you know
what's keeping my busy.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Playing in 'my creative space'.

Thanks to a link shared by Kellie Christie - the original button jewellery designer and now also button maker - I've decided to show you what
I'm working on today.

In between the housework, filing and grocery shopping I've started another beaded ring. Still waiting for a long overdue delivery of hundreds of brightly coloured seed beads so I'm using what I have at the moment.

This post will be linked to Kootoyoo where players get to do a bit of show and tell every Thursday, so if you're making something why not play along!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

BrisStyle's Handmade Heart beats for Queensland Flood affected Communities.

With heartfelt acknowledgement of our fellow BrisStyle members as well as all the Queenslanders who have been affected by the recent floods, we have put our crafty goodness towards raising funds, as well as awareness of those in need.

Visit the BrisStyle Blog to see hundreds of amazing items that BrisStyle members have donated to raise funds for the Flood Appeal.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

NEW designs for 2011

 Towards the end of last year I learnt how to make a beaded bead.

A wooden bead is used as the core, which is then 'wrapped' in seed beads using circular peyote stitch. Any size bead can be used and on its own looks great as a pendant. A whole lot of beaded beads strung up also make a very striking necklace - watch this space!
But as most of you will know, rings are my thing and I had to find a way to use my newly learned skill to create a wearable ring. A bit of internet searching turned up the perfect size cabochon and then the fun began. Working out the right amount of increases and decreases to match the curve and size of the cabochon was trial and error. For every successful ring I've produced I've taken apart at least three!

But I think I've got it now and have been having such fun experimenting with different colours to create patterns. The possibilities really are endless and there are not enough hours in the day for me to try out all the ideas I have! I went on a rather large seed bead shopping spree (how good is the Aussie dollar right now?!) which I hope will be delivered very soon, so expect to see a lot more fun designs in my Etsy store.