Funky Chunky Bead Stash Jewelry!

paper bead earring 5

They’re BIG! They’re BOLD! They’re COLORFUL! And best of all, they USE UP BEAD STASH BEADS!

wire crochet necklace

I came across some paper beads from when I FIRST started beading. I remember we went camping, and I brought paper, scissors, markers and glue with me…and sat in a tent for an entire day while it rained and made a ton of paper beads. So I remembered seeing these Anthropologie inspired earrings all over Pinterest some time back and got out some wire.

paper bead earring 5

paper bead earring 4

paper bead earring 3

I’m not very good with wire. These earrings are pretty big. But they sure are colorful! And I’m not afraid to wear big colorful earrings every now and then!

paper bead earring

A few weeks ago I got an email from Auntie’s Beads touting Karla Kam’s one millionth view on her video for bead crochet. So I gave it a whirl!

wire crochet necklace 2

I used wire that was bigger than recommended. Well, that’s all I had on hand. But I did manage to use up a bunch of blue beads, including a few packages of cute lampwork beads that were in the dollar markdown bins at Walmart.

wire crochet necklace 4

Aren’t they groovy? Every time I see a bag of lampworks in the markdown bin I can’t resist. Anyway this necklace is REALLY REALLY BIG. I’m not sure if I will ever have the motivation to wear it. Maybe with a white t-shirt and some sort of cardigan. In winter. Maybe.

wire crochet necklace 5

Yeah, that’s a big old heavy necklace. But it was fun to crochet with wire and beads. Maybe if I get smaller, thinner wire I would like it better.

Sunflower Earrings – Rivoli, SuperDuos, and 11/0’s

sunflower earrings 12

Week two of messing around with the assortment of Rivolis that I bought reminded me of this pin that I have had on one of my boards for a while. It is a MUCH simpler way to encase a Rivoli as opposed to peyote stitch. The ingredients for each earring are: 24 superduo beads, one 14mm Rivoli, and a handful of 11/0 seed beads. NOTE: Do NOT use 11/0 cylinder beads. Only use Toho or regular Chinese glass seeds. I found out the hard way that 11/0 cylinder beads yields bad results. Behold:

11/0 Cylinder Beads results in an earring FAIL

11/0 Cylinder Beads results in an earring FAIL

sunflower earrings 2

On a yard of thread, string 12 superduos with a seed bead between each one. Go through the first superduo to make a circle and knot the tail piece to hold it together. Move your thread up to the top hole of the superduo you are at. Go round the circle adding two seed beads between each superduo, going top hole to top hole all the way around.

sunflower earrings

Next you need to add another superduo on top of each superduo in the circle. I just kinda came out of a top hole, went through the bottom hole of the new superduo, then back through the top hole of the one in the circle again. Go through two seed beads to get to the next superduo and repeat all the way around.

sunflower earrings 3

Move your thread up to the top hole of the new superduos you just added. Then add a seed bead between every OTHER superduo. This is what is going to allow it to cinch up around the Rivoli.

sunflower earrings 4

Place the Rivoli face down into the center of your circle. Holding it centered with your fingers, pull the thread tight to cinch up around it, and tie a knot in your thread to hold it in place.

sunflower earrings 6

I added a little extra beading to the back of my Rivoli to hold it in place better. This was not on the instructions in the web page that I referenced above, but I am still so nervous beading around Rivolis, and it seemed a bit loose in there. So I added three seed beads between each of the seed beads on the back of the Rivoli (the seed beads that were between every OTHER superduo that were added in the last step).

adding three seed beads between each of the seed beads on the back of the Rivoli

adding three seed beads between each of the seed beads on the back of the Rivoli

I then added one more seed bead between the center seed bead of each set of three that I just added. Just to make a little net of beads for the back.

sunflower earrings 8

The final step, before adding the earhook, is to weave your way back to the top of the piece where there is a row of two seed beads all the way around, these beads are between the two sets of superduos. Go through the first set of two, add three seed beads, and go through the next two on the circle. This makes the little petals of the flower. Do this all the way around.

sunflower earrings 10

Add the ear hook, I came out of a center bead of one of the petals, and added a seed bead, a superduo, another seed bead, a jump ring, a seed bead, back through the other hole of the superduo, a seed bead, and then back through the bead in the petal. These earrings took me about fifteen minutes to make each one. They are so easy! I didn’t really try to color coordinate this, it was more just grabbing some beads that were handy. But now that I see how cute and easy they are, I am going to make a few more pairs in some great colors!

so sparkly!

so sparkly!

Here is one with blue rivoli, blue and clear superduos, clear 11/0's on the flower and blue 11/0's for the petals.

Here is one with blue rivoli, blue and clear superduos, clear 11/0’s on the flower and blue 11/0’s for the petals.

sunflower earring blue 2

And I reworked the pattern to fit a 12mm Rivoli instead of a 14mm….it takes 9 Superduos instead of 12. Here is a pair using a green 12mm Rivoli, some green and red Picasso superduos, and silver and red 11/0’s.

sorry for the bad lighting.  As usual.

sorry for the bad lighting. As usual.

sunflower earring green red

And here is one using an 18mm Rivoli. It took 14 Superduo beads instead of 12. I haven’t decided whether to use it as a pendant or make another for a set of earrings. Maybe both!

18mm Rivoli

18mm Rivoli

Sunflower earring Pink 18mm Rivoli and gold seed beads

Sunflower earring Pink 18mm Rivoli and gold seed beads

I ended up sharing a cab with a stranger while wearing these earrings, and she exclaimed “Wow! Where did you get those earrings? They look like they are from India…did you get them from India?” I never thought about that, but I guess they do kind of look like they are Indian!

Sparkly!

Sparkly!

Resin Bezel Earrings

drying in a Styrofoam wreath

drying in a Styrofoam wreath

I came across a Pin that involved bending wire into a shape, placing it inside an earring bezel, and covering with resin. So I went online and found a package of fifty 20mm silver leverback earring blanks for under $9. They came last week, so I got to work!

The 20mm earring blanks

The 20mm earring blanks

The first thing I tried was bending some cheap, colorful wire into spirals. I glued them into the blank and filled with resin. Aside from a few tiny bubbles, they came out very good!

resin earrings 19
resin earrings 4
resin earrings 5

resin earrings 14

These were so easy! And the colored wire is the cheap stuff from Walmart that I got in the dollar bin. So next I used this Dicro-ISH paper from Little Windows that I am in love with to fill a few bezels. Lovely, as usual with that DicroISH paper!

they were wet in this picture...I had rinsed them off.

they were wet in this picture…I had rinsed them off.

All you do with the paper is cut a circle to fit, crinkle it up, unfold it back into a circle, and insert in the blank. Actually, you should put a bit of resin in the blank first and then slide the paper circle into the resin. Otherwise sometimes you get an air bubble under the paper and it looks terrible.

resin earrings 6

I then had read a post about putting your scraps of the dichroic paper into a coffee grinder, so I used about four different colors of paper and it came out so pretty!

dicroISH paper scraps, run through a coffee grinder, then placed in a bezel with a silver wire swirl in it.

dicroISH paper scraps, run through a coffee grinder, then placed in a bezel with a silver wire swirl in it.

The last thing I tried was tinting some translucent clay with anywhere from one to five drops of alcohol ink to make a sea glass like stone. It was a rousing FAILURE because even the bit with just one drop of ink in it was far, oh so far from translucent. So I glued the finished stones into a bezel, put a wire swirl on top, and painted some resin on top.

resin earrings 18
resin earrings 17
resin earrings 16

I’m not done with these yet – painting on the resin is harder than filling a bezel.

Fan Earrings

fan earrings 6

I have been stalking the beautiful tutorials of Ellad2 for quite some time now, and decided to purchase one for a lovely pair of fan earrings.

fan earrings

They are actually quite easy to make, the base is made of 8/0 seeds and superduo beads. My problem was, I only had 6/0 beads, which kinda threw everything off.

fan earrings 3

After making the inner loop, you then add rows of 15/0 seeds inside.

fan earrings 5

Her instructions called for a 6mm center bead, but as my dimensions were all off by substituting 6/0 for 8/0, I ended up using a bigger center bead.

fan earrings 8

The fans are made with some 3mm bicones. The earrings are lovely, and I immediately ordered a bunch of 8/0 seeds so that I can make them PROPERLY. The fans tended to curl up instead of laying flat, which I think will be remedied when I use the correct size beads.

fan earrings 9

I couldn’t wait for the new beads to come, so I made a second set in green and gold. I HIGHLY recommend any tutorials from Ellad2, they are super cute, and have very clear instructions and pictures to guide you along. There’s even a few “freebie” tutorials hidden on the site as well!

UPDATE:

Okay so my beads all came, and now I have proper 8/0’s and all sorts of new colors of superduos. But guess what? They are still curling up at the ends.

fan earrings trio

But I think I know the culprit – the monofilament. I need to be using a needle and beading thread.

green Picasso superduos and 8/0's...green 15/0's...purple 3mm bicones...and an 8mm purple glass center bead

green Picasso superduos and 8/0’s…green 15/0’s…purple 3mm bicones…and an 8mm purple glass center bead

gold superduos and 8/0's...clear 15/0's...red 3mm bicones....and an 8 mm red glass center pearl

gold superduos and 8/0’s…clear 15/0’s…red 3mm bicones….and an 8 mm red glass center pearl

gold and rainbowy gold superduos... turquoise Picasso 8/0's...red 3mm bicones...gold 15/0's...and a peachish 6mm center glass pearl

gold and rainbowy gold superduos… turquoise Picasso 8/0’s…red 3mm bicones…gold 15/0’s…and a peachish 6mm center glass pearl

Yes, I am going to try again with some beading thread instead of the monofilament and I think that will cure the curls.

UPDATE:

I pulled out the very first pair of fan earrings I had made tonight, took one apart, and redid it using the PROPER materials – 8/0 beads instead of 6/0s, a 6mm center bead instead of a 10mm, and beading thread instead of monofilament. All I can say is, WOW!

The old earring

The old earring

Reworked earring

Reworked earring

When I made these earrings I was pretty new to bead weaving and hadn’t even started using needle and thread yet. What a difference a few months of practice makes!

side by side

side by side

Polymer Clay Orange Flower Earrings

orange flower earrings 11

I bought an orange and yellow dress, and wanted some earrings to go with it. That’s the best part of making jewelry….you can tailor make anything you want to match just about anything! So using this tutorial from 2 Good Claymates for Polymer Disk Earrings, I got out my yellow and orange clay and had at it!

orange flower earrings 4

I made a yellow and orange skinner blend, and cut out some flower shapes, trying to use the most swirly parts of the clay sheet. I then made a flower impression in the pieces, first trying out a texture sheet that I had but ultimately using a picture frame to make deeper, more impressive impressions.

I used this plastic picture frame to make texture in polymer clay.

I used this plastic picture frame to make texture in polymer clay.

I tried three different mediums to add some pizazz to them – a bronze pearl-ex powder, some brownish acrylic paint applied and then wiped off to leave paint in the impressions, and some pearl pearl-ex powder. I HATED the acrylic paint one, it looked terrible I threw it away. The bronze pearl-ex one was okay, but I liked best the pearl pearl-ex powder. After baking, I made another set of flowers in the same size to apply to the backs to hold the eye pin in.

this is the one with the bronze pearl-ex powder.  Meh.

this is the one with the bronze pearl-ex powder. Meh.

On the advice of the 2 Good Claymates tute that I linked to, bending the eye pin into a squiggle helps to hold it in place – makes a ton of sense as a straight pin, as I have found out the hard way in the past, can slide right out of the hole. So after squiggling up my eye pins, I put the back pieces of clay on to the baked front pieces .

A squiggly eye pin trumps a straight eye pin every time.

A squiggly eye pin trumps a straight eye pin every time.

The tutorial I was kinda following used a plastic net to texture the back, I used this strange plastic piece that I seriously found on the ground a few months ago and thought “I have no idea what this is, but it would make a good texture!”

they mysterious plastic texturing piece

they mysterious plastic texturing piece

textured backs

textured backs

After trimming around the flower petals to make the two sides fit together, I baked again. The big question afterward was: brush on some resin, or just brush on some Finish floor wax? My husband, who probably just wanted some dinner, suggested I just Finish them and be done with it, so that’s what I did. If I make them again, I may try to brush on some resin to make them shinier and sturdier. But a quick addition of an ear hook, and that was that! I may add a dangly bead or two in the future, but for now I am quite pleased to have some yellow and orange earrings to match my yellow and orange sundress!

EDIT: I made some resin last night for another project, and decided to add some to these earrings. I love the way resin acts kinda like a magnifying glass of sorts when put on top of a piece of polymer. Anyway they came out super shiny, the design and the colors seem more amplified, and they are definately more sturdy.

orange flower earrings resin

orange flower earrings resin 2

“Miracle” Hugs and Kisses Earrings and Pendants

magic hugs kisses pink brown 3

So I got an email from Auntie’s Beads about some sort of “stranded” sale (strands of beads) and I ended up buying a whole, whole lotta those Miracle Beads, which are actually really neat and fun to work with. All day, as I sat on my bed beading and had all my miracle beads laid out, my husband kept commenting: “Wow…those are some cool looking beads….Come over here and look at them from this angle…..What the heck is in them?…..no, really..come over here and look from THIS angle!”

pink bead on the bottom of the dangle.....

pink bead on the bottom of the dangle…..

As you don’t get too many beads in a strand, I tried to find a project that didn’t use too many of them, and this video of “Hugs and Kisses Earrings from Alicia (Beadiful Nights) looked like a good quick project. As I am going on a cruise next month, and just bought a boatload of summery dresses from my local thrift shop, THREE of them in pink and brown colors, I decided to go with that color scheme. These pieces each used one pink 8mm bead, two pink 6mm beads (plus one for the dangle), four brown 4mm beads (plus one for the dangle), 2 6/0 seeds, and a handful of 11/0 seeds, which I happened to find these rainbowy brownish pinkish ones in my seed bead bucket.

and a brown bead on the bottom of the dangle.  Duh!

and a brown bead on the bottom of the dangle. Duh!

Being the semi bonehead that I am, and trying to watch the movie “The Runaways” while working this project, I finished my earrings only to find that I made one with a pink bead on the bottom, and the other with a brown bead on the bottom. Oy. So I ended up making two sets of earrings and two pendants. Which was fine, because these work up in about twenty minutes tops. Super easy! I will probably do a matching bracelet later this week as well to complete the set.

magic hugs n kisses pink brown

Here is another set that I made in blue:

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IMG_20130410_182602

Polymer Clay Molded Flower Set

flower mold set 2

Last week at Hobby Lobby I picked up a package of Sculpey Mold Maker, then came home and scoured the house for something to mold. First I made a mold of a piece of coral that I had found at the beach and made a resin copy, which came out pretty cool! Then I came across an acrylic flower bead, which came out even cooler!

acrylic flower bead, Sculpey mold maker, and resulting mold.

acrylic flower bead, Sculpey mold maker, and resulting mold.

As I have never made a mold before, I find myself wishing I would have coughed up the extra five bucks to get the two part clay, the one where you mix the two clays together. The reason I say this is because as you can see, the mold is already cracking all over! I have no idea whether this particular brand of mold clay is supposed to come out rubbery, or hard. I don’t know whether I overbaked it, or underbaked it. The clay is actually still a bit soft and bendy, even though I baked it for forty minutes. But now it has cracks all over it!

molded flower earring

molded flower earring

I used some silver colored polymer clay, and baked them. After they were cool, I brushed on some light blue acrylic paint, and then wiped most of it back off. After that dried, I rubbed some copper pearl-ex powder on them, and finally finished them off with a few coats of Finish.

the finishing touches

the finishing touches

So they came out looking like old metal. I had poked holes in the clay before baking, so I used a simple jump ring combination to hang them on a rubber cord and some ear hooks. Wore the set to work today with some faded jeans and a white shirt and it looked very nice!

The finished set!

The finished set!