Monday, April 24, 2017

Tips for finding inspiration

Today I'd like to share some tips on finding inspiration,  BUT FIRST, I will announce the winner and monthly feature from "inspiration in everyday" facebook group. The winner for this past month, and creator of the beautiful necklace pictured here, is Sarajo Wentling!!

Here is the collage of what inspired the necklace:

Congratulations Sarajo!! Thanks so much for playing along and sharing your inspirations and beautiful necklaces. Another thank you for being a brave trailblazer as the first person to share in the group!! Your creativity and enthusiasm are much appreciated in this new and humble group!!  
Sarajo made the above necklace along with another one, both inspired by the Meadolaronk Botanical Gardens. You can read her full post about it on her blog at Sarajo's blog post.  Or check out her post on the "inspiration in everyday" facebook group here.
Sarajo your prize is two sets of my feather headpins in your choice of color. Let me know your address and color choices.

The photo below is a photo of the prize for the next random feature who posts on"inspiration everyday".  The winner will be selected at random from those who share their inspirations over the next 4 weeks. Winner will be featured here on the ABS blog and win this bead set. If you have not joined yet - come on over! Click here! Ceramic hand painted birdie bead set.



There is so much inspiration around us and so much to discover in the simple things in life!  In this post I plan to give some tips on ways to find inspiration in everyday.  In a future post I look forward to sharing some ways to act on inspiration!  Here are three different ideas/exercises you could try in order to help spark inspiration.  There are obviously many more ways to find inspiration, and sometimes it just finds you!  But for those times inspiration is not free flowing, here are some things to try. 

- Go for a walk in a place that is new to you
 New things, and new places can often easily spark new inspirations.  As you walk try to view everything you are seeing through the eyes of an artist. How? Pay attention to colors, shapes, textures, images, light, shadows, patterns and combinations. Take with you, a means to gather and collect findings. Maybe it's your camera to photograph these things. Maybe it's a sketchbook/journal  to sketch or write things down.  Or a purse or bag to collect bits of nature that speak to you.  Better yet, a combination of any or all of the above.  I know for me, having a place to put bits of the natural world I like to pick up (usually for pressing into fresh clay), is very important when I go walking in nature (often it's just my pocket).


-  Go for a walk in a place that is NOT new, instead, very familiar
  Look around you trying to see things from a different perspective. Try looking in different directions than usual. Look up. Look down. Bring your camera/phone for the purpose of taking photos from different angles.  You will likely notice things/details you may have missed before!  Slowdown and take in even the smallest details.  Fill your well with wonder and curiosity! The goal here is to look at old familiar things and places in a NEW way!


-  Look through books or magazines, either ones you own, or at/from your local library.
I know it's a less popular thing to do these days, but I still love to go to the library!!  Looking through magazines you own is the most fun because you can rip out pages to keep as inspirations!  It does not even matter if they are magazines or books that normally don't appeal to you, as long as they have lots of visuals. You are looking past the obvious for the purpose of this exercise. This mean looking at what is in the background of the images. Maybe it's the wallpaper pattern or color in an image, or maybe the text that stands out to you.  Be intentional about looking at things within the images that don't first jump out at you. Just take your time and take in as much as you can!

When you start gathering inspirations, try keeping them in one place.  If everything you collect and gather is in one place it will be much easier for you to find when want to refer to them!!
If you are looking for a way to boost your inspiration, I hope you might give one or all of these a try and see what you can come up with!  Maybe it could even lead you to share what inspired you with us at "inspiration in everyday" facebook group!! Wink, wink, nudge, nudge!!

Wishing you inspiration in "everyday"!!
Terri Del Signore


Friday, April 21, 2017

Perfect Pairings :: Michelle McEnroe + Ceramic Beads Art



This is a fun and funky design that features a beautiful ceramic bird pendant that captures my imagination. I like making designs like this because it is a great way to use up all those leftover bits you have lying around, and the colors work with a lot of different parts of any wardrobe. The way the brilliant blue dagger beads undulate reminds me of the way the colors in Gauguin's painting seem to shimmer and move, as they would through the haze of a hot summer day.

Featured Designer :: Michelle McEnroe
+
Featured Bead Artist :: Ceramic Beads Art

We are now using Pinterest! 
You can find more details in this post about the exciting new changes,
including a board devoted to art beads inspired by the monthly challenge!
(Ooh! Look! More pretty beads to lust after!)

Pretty please make sure that you post a link in your Pinterest description
so that I have someplace to attribute the picture! 
And don't forget to tell us about those art beads - providing links to bead makers is appreciated!

Deadline April 26th to get your pictures posted to the Pinterest boards for the creation of the Monthly Challenge Recap post for April 28th.
TIP: If you upload your photo rather than pin it from your blog or shop, edit the pin (the little pencil button) and add your link as the source. Save your edits. This will allow us to click directly on your photo and go to your blog or shop to read more about your entry. If you don't, I might not be able to access the photo to share it.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Making a Ceramic and Silk Ribbon Bracelet

I am always trying to come up with new ideas on how my customers can use my ceramic pieces.  Out of pendants, beads, earring charms and bracelet toppers, I think the bracelet toppers hold the most mystery on designing with them.  I have been noticing how popular silk ribbon is and how it can add texture and color to a design, so I bought some!  I found a great store on Etsy called Color Kissed Silk and I purchased solid colors and multi colored ribbons.  I also had post cards printed up with easy directions for the wearer as well as my business name and information.  I sell jewelry at shows and galleries, so the bracelet and post card will slip into a cellophane wrapper to stay clean and neat.

This is what I started with:

The silk ribbon, my bracelet topper, 2 10mm sea sentiment beads from Michaels, and antique bronze metal toggle clasp, 10mm jump rings, 3mm spacer beads and head pins from Hobby Lobby.

Start by opening the jump rings and putting them through the bracelet topper holes.  Place a spacer bead, sea sentiment bead and spacer bead on each head pin and make a wire wrapped loop.  Put both of these on the front section of the large jump ring before closing it on the side that will not have the toggle clasp.  Before closing the other jump ring, put the round section of the toggle clasp through it, then close.  Tie one end of the silk ribbon around the jump ring with the bead dangles and tie the other end on the toggle bar.  Because the silk would not go through the small hole, I trimmed the stitching off the end and cut a 1" slice up the ribbon so I could get one half through and I tied it twice with knots.  Then I secured each knot with Hypo Cement.

This is the end result:


It is comfortable to wear and will fit all your customers by tying knots in the ribbon if you need to shorten the ribbon to make the toggle clasp close correctly.  I plan on making a nice amount of these for my upcoming shows.  I hope you will give it a try, too!

Michelle from Firefly Design Studio

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

From Inspiration to Bead

Like most creative people I rarely go anywhere without a camera, whether its the one on my phone or my canon, its basically an extension of me. I love taking snaps of colour combinations that inspire me, it might be a cushion in a shop, or a garden full of flowers. I have a long time obsession with things in a state of decay, rusted and patina’d with age and love to translate these into glass, recently I made some hollow beads and attempted some verdigris patterns on them.

This is my inspiration photo:

These are the beads that I made, I love the textures on these, and the variegation of colour. 
Because these beads are hollow I have been able to make them larger without the worry of them being too heavy. 

I think these beads would look lovely with one of these stunning birds from Heather at Humblebeads 

I love the industrial feel of these clasps from Rebecca at The Curious Bead Shop, I think they would go with the rustic feel of the beads brilliantly. 

What would you couple them with?



Thursday, April 13, 2017

I Took the Art Bead Scene Challenge!

I've been having fun creating beads inspired by this month's challenge inspiration. Gauguin's 
beautiful color palette was my starting point for the birds above. I mixed each of the colors in the palette and decorated my birds with island inspired flora. 

My second go-around with making beads for the challenge I went a little more off onto my own with colors but wanted to capture the same wild feel of the landscape.

How are you doing with the challenge? Have you pulled through your stash and started creating? Join in the fun. In case you missed the challenge here are the details. You can find my lentil and disk beads in my Etsy shop.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The flowers that bloom in the spring, tra la,...

Breathe promise of merry sunshine - As we merrily dance and we sing, tra la, We welcome the hope that they bring, tra la, Of a summer of roses and wine, Of a summer of roses and wine. And that's what we mean when we say that a thing Is welcome as flowers that bloom in the spring. Tra la la la la, Tra la la la la, The flowers that bloom in the spring...
by W. S. Gilbert


Hello, from the Earring Whisperer! Thank you for popping in!


I'll admit it, I'm happily a bit of a Gilbert Sullivan operetta nerd....most of you guys are going, huh, a whaa???...lol  My beading buddy, Martha, doesn't care for it, and wants me turn it off when it rolls through the Pandora station on our beading night. Oh, horror!!...lol
Anyway, while playing in the studio stash of beads and thinking of this month's art bead post, I kept pulling out florals and singing the song above. So, I thought it would be fun and interesting to take a grouping of similarly themed art beads and see what combinations I could come up with!

Beautiful porcelain round floral charms by Something To Do Beads; a duo of ceramic kitties by Gaea Handmade; porcelain spikes covered with posies by Kiyoi Design; polymer clay cane spacers by Humblebeads; metal rings of petite polymer roses by Tesori Trovati Jewerly and some hand painted spacers by me....oops, one of my painted beads seems to have rolled out of the shot, sorry..lol



A little vintage flair! Ceramic poise spikes with an iridescent glaze, rhinestone
crowns and altered plastic puff beads that have been hand dyed.

Flower crowns of roses atop the heads of some sweet kitties...why not! I crisscrossed the wrapping on the clear crystal to look a bit like the way ballet slippers are tied.

And, a more modern take by stacking pattern and texture.
Here is where you can shop for some lovely supplies:

Until next time!
Loralee ...
my etsy shop
loralee kolton, artful jewerly in beads

Monday, April 10, 2017

Art Bead Evolutions :: Gauguin's Palette

“Everything in the landscape blinded me, dazzled me. Coming from Europe I was constantly uncertain of some color [and kept] beating about the bush: and yet it was so simple to put naturally onto my canvas a red and a blue. In the brooks, forms of gold enchanted me. Why did I hesitate to pour that gold and all the rejoicing of the sunshine on to my canvas?” ~ Paul Gauguin

The painting for this month is a riot of color. There is a liveliness in the palette, as if each hue were dancing around in the humid air at sunset. I have to admit that at first glance, I actually didn't see all the details...like the trees, the people, the house and the peacocks. I only saw the swaths of color.



So I decided that whatever I made I would concentrate on the color and keep the forms simple. I decided to tackle making actual beads. One of the reasons that I don't usually make many beads is that I find it hard to be consistent. I recently bought several different tools that could help me with that problem: a bead rack for my oven as well as some bead rollers. Knowing that I could make more evenly shaped and sized beads meant that I could focus on the surface treatment. 

These colors swirling around reminded me of that heap of scrap clay that I had sitting there. Lots of ends of creative bursts and projects gone wrong. With polymer clay there is never a need to throw it out. Scraps are my specialty, I just never know what they will become, but it is usually much better than the thing I was trying to make! What to do with all that colorful clay?

So I started chopping. I chopped all the paint colors that Gaugin used in his iconic imagery from the South Pacific.... Prussian blue cobalt blue, emerald green, viridian, cadmium yellow, chrome yellow, red ochre, cobalt violet, and lead or zinc white. Chop. Chop. Chop.

Next I twisted and rolled. Twisted and rolled.

I made a square log and cut it in half...and in half again. This presents an interesting pattern inside. The method I am using is called the Inside-Out or Natasha bead technique (ostensibly for the woman who pioneered it). I have used a similar style before with some pendants, but I took it one step further.

I really wanted to use the bead rollers I bought to make beads with this veneer on the outside, but I couldn't quite figure it out. (Gosh, I hope those bead rollers will not be a bust!)

I decided to go smaller and cut cubes. I had no idea what I was going to do with them. I pinched the ends together to make a bicone shape and rolled into a ball. Pinched and prodded. Pinched and prodded. And rolled into balls.

A little rolling magic created a sort of flying saucer shape that I then flattened. I noticed that there appeared some flower and even butterfly like shapes! Fun! This is still a huge work in progress for me. Here is a little graphic that shows a sneak peek of the process that I am using:




Right now I am merely in the experimental phase. I always aim to learn something new each month inspired by the artwork that we host here at Art Bead Scene. I am just not sure if these will be the final manifestation for the Club selection. I don't know if I want to keep making these this flat and large, but I quite like the patterns that are appearing when I do. I am also not quite sure of the finish of these. I want them to have more of the muted quality of Gaugin's palette, thinking there might be more playing around involved that could include paint and stain. I am happy that they do recall the swirling colors that Gaugin painted his scenes. The only thing is that each one will be completely different. With this technique you just can't quite make the same bead twice. But one-of-a-kind is sort of my jam, so I am okay with that. 

When I get this little experiment done, something along these lines (different shapes? sizes? finishes?) will be on their way to my beloved Simple Truths Sampler Club participants. And there is always room in the Club if anyone is interested in joining. ;-)



Wednesday, April 5, 2017

April Monthly Challenge Sponsors: Firefly Design Studio and T-Beads

We have two very talented artists as our wonderful sponsor for the April Challenge. We will have 2 Lucky Winners this Month!

Firefly Design Studio
Michelle McCarthy is one of the editors here at Art Bead Scene. Michelle creates wonderful ceramic beads and components in her Florida studio. You can see her beads and jewelry in many shops throughout Florida and of course on her website.

Michelle is donating in Ceramic Leaf components (pictured above) valued over $50 for the Jewelry Pinterest board winner. 

Visit Michelle at her website, and Facebook.
: :


T-Beads

Tammy Kerber of T-Beads is a wonderful beadmaker. Tammy began her lampwork journey in 2002. She learned from the best and now makes beautiful beads of all colors and sizes. Please visit Tammy at her website to see all the amazing beads she creates.
Tammy is donating the Beautiful beads (pictured above) valued at over $50 for the Monthly Recap winner.

Visit Tammy at her website and Facebook.

Matamoe or Landscape with Peacocks  by Paul Gauguin

Submit photos of your wonderful Jewelry creations using one or more Art Beads here. Submit photos of your wonderful Bead creations here.

This Month's art has many different elements that can be used for inspiration:  landscapes, peacocks, birds, trees, figures, coconuts, brilliant colors of red, orange, yellow and green.

We can't wait to see where your creativity takes you with the art for this month's challenge! 

**IMPORTANT** Please remember to put APR ABS in the title or tag of your submission(s).  Pinterest doesn't keep Pins in the order they are posted.

Provide us with the artist of the Art Beads used and we always love to know all the materials you used. 

***Art Beads MUST be used in your entry.***

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

April Monthly Challenge


Matamoe or Landscape with Peacocks
Paul Gauguin
1892
Oil On Canvas

About the Art
Gauguin found it constricting to do what other Impressionists did and paint entirely from nature.  Instead, he created a new type of Impressionism (Post-Impressionism) by painting with large, outlined blocks of flat, bright color. 
One thing that separated Paul Gauguin from other artists at the time was that he used heavy outlines in his paintings.  Impressionists blended pieces together to achieve a sense of time in the painting.  Gauguin separated out objects with clear outlines instead. Gauguin painted outlines in watered down Prussian blue. Later the blue outlines would be filled in with opaque colors. The idea was for the dark outline to heighten the intensity of the other colors used.
Something begun (or perhaps, revived from Byzantine art) by the post-impressionists like Gauguin was the use of flat areas of bright color.  Gauguin used colors such as Prussian blue, cobalt blue, emerald green, viridian, cadmium yellow, chrome yellow, red ochre, cobalt violet, and lead or zinc white.
Yet, to say that he never painted from nature would be untrue.  Some of his works exhibit distinct Impressionist styles, even in his Tahitian works.  The color is natural with shadows instead of large blocks of one color and the outline is less noticeable.  In Contes Barbares (Primitive Tales) the flowers in the background are done similar to Monet’s “en plein air” style of painting, despite their outlines.

About the Artist
Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin 1848-1903, the most exotic of the Post-Impressionists, was born in Paris, France. The son of a French journalist and a Peruvian woman, Gauguin spent his early childhood in Peru, attended a boarding school in France, and was a merchant seaman before becoming a stockbroker's assistant in 1871. An occasional painter at first, Gauguin frequented the Nouvelle Athenes Café where he met Pissarro and the Impressionists, whose works he purchased.
Gauguin had married in 1873, and it was not until 10 years later that he decided to give up the business world and devote himself to art. After a period in Rouen where he stayed with Pissarro, Gauguin went to Copenhagen with his Danish wife, only to leave his family forever a few months later. Gauguin was past age 35 and almost penniless, though a loan from Degas, who approved of his theories on the importance of line, permitted him to go to Pont-Aven. At Pont-Aven Gauguin and Emile Bernard would develop Synthetism, a style in which the expression of ideas and emotions are more important than naturalistic representations, and flat color areas reminiscent of Japanese woodcuts are outlined by heavy black lines in the manner of cloisonné enamels or stained-glass windows.
Gauguin, abandoning his earlier Impressionism, painted in this manner and also made ceramics and wood carvings to earn money. These were decorative, finely conceived Art Nouveau pieces, with a symbolism learned from Puvis de Chavannes, whom he had also admired. In 1887, Gauguin made an unsuccessful trip to Martinique to search for a primitive way of life. He spent 1888, the year of his great Synthetist work "The Yellow Christ", in Arles with Vincent van Gogh. This adventure ended in near tragedy, as Vincent van Gogh exhibited signs of madness. Gauguin returned shortly to Brittany before leaving for Tahiti on his constant quest for the simple life and the peace of mind he would never really find.
Gauguin's style, developed in the South, is a fusion of Oriental influences, personal symbolism, strong design, warm color, and musically rich expression that offers a spiritual image of the creative artist constantly seeking the unattainable. Gauguin remained in Tahiti until 1893, when poor health and lack of funds forced his return to Paris. He remained there until 1895, when he again settled in Tahiti. Gauguin's stay there ended in 1901 when he became seriously ill with syphilis and in trouble with the French authorities. He moved to the Marquesas, seeking an easier and cheaper life. His health, unfortunately, deteriorated further, but he continued to paint until he died on May 8, 1903.
-Gauguin Gallery

Our Sponsors
Please visit us tomorrow to see the prizes!

How to Enter the Monthly Challenge:
1. You need to have a Pinterest account. Go get one ASAP if you don't have one already. It's easy, fun and inspiring.

2. Email us at absmonthlychallenge@gmail.com to get added to the monthly challenge board.

Subject: Monthly Challenge Board Request

You will be emailed an invite to the board within 48 hours. Accept the invite and you are ready to pin your entries.

3. Two ways to pin your entry to the board:

Pin your photo from the internet (on your blog, Etsy shop, etc.)

Add your photo directly from your computer


Create something using an art bead that fits within our monthly theme. We post the art to be used as your inspiration to create. This challenge is open to jewelry-makers, fiber artists, collage artist, etc. The art bead can be created by you or someone else. The challenge is to inspire those who use art beads and to see all the different ways art beads can be incorporated into your handiwork.


An Art Bead must be used in your piece to qualify for the monthly challenge.

***Beads strung on a chain, by themselves and beads simply added to wire or cord will not be accepted.***

Please add the tag or title APR ABS to your photos. Include a short description, who created the art beads and a link to your blog, if you have one.

Deadline is April 30th
You may upload two entries per month.


ENTRIES for ART BEAD ARTISTS!


• Beads Makers Pinterest Board - Art beads must be created by you and fit the Art Bead Scene's monthly challenge theme. They can be made for the challenge or ones you have made before. Two entries per month are allowed. 

One entry will be picked by the editors each month for a free month of advertising on the Art Bead Scene. Bead entries have to be pinned by the 30th of the month.

Beads only - do not post jewelry on this board. If a post doesn't fit the challenge it will be deleted.

Monthly Challenge Recap
• Please post at least one single shot of your creation on the Pinterest Board. This will be used to make a collage for the Monthly Challenge Gallery. Every creation will be added to the collage, regardless of a blog post. So everyone gets included!

Your entry must be on Pinterest 2 days BEFORE the recap to be included.

• Be sure to share with us the name of the art bead artist in the description of your photo so that if you are selected for the weekly Perfect Pairings on Friday, both you as the designer and the art bead artist can get the credit you both deserve!

• An Link Up button will be added to the bottom of the Monthly Challenge Recap post. Here you will be able to link up your blog post if you have one.  Be sure to hop around and see all the great inspiration and leave some comment love!

• The Monthly Challenge Recap with Blog Tour will be posted on April 29th.

Monthly Challenge Winners
• One prize winner will be selected at random from all pictures posted on the Pinterest board.

• One prize winner will be selected at random from all blog posts added to the hop for the Monthly Challenge Recap post. So if you want to be in the pool for the second prize, be sure to use the Link button at the bottom of the post to share your process and inspirations!

• Winners will be randomly chosen from all the qualifying entries on February 1st.

Perfect Pairings: Designer + Art Bead Artist
• Perfect Pairings focus on both the jewelry designer and the art bead artist. 

• Be sure to point out all the art bead artists in your work in the description of the photo on the Pinterest Board. Links to their website or shop are appreciated. That way we can all find new art beads to love!

• From all the entries during the month, an editor will pick their favorite design to be featured every Friday here on the ABS, so get those entries in soon.


What is an Art Bead?
An art bead is a bead, charm, button or finding made by an independent artist. Art beads are the vision and handiwork of an individual artist. You can read more about art beads here.

***A bead that is handmade is not necessarily an art bead. Hill Tribe Silver, Kazuri ceramic beads or lampwork beads made in factories are examples of handmade beads that are not considered art beads.

Beaded beads, stamped metal pendants or wire-wrapped components are not considered art beads for our challenge.***

Monday, April 3, 2017

March Monthly Challenge Winners

Congratulations to the March Monthly Challenge winners! 
1 winner was chosen randomly from all the challenge entrants.
1 winner was chosen randomly from the Linked blog entries.
Winner of a month of advertising on ABS from the Monthly Challenge Bead category.
::: 
Our First lucky winner is Sara Jo Wentling of SJ Designs.
She has won a $60 in components and charms from Tesori Trovati
:::
Our Second lucky winner is Sarah Raines.
She has won "Birds of a Feather" pendants and components, valued over $50 from Artisticaos.
:::
Our Winner from the Bead Entries of the Monthly Challenge is Barbara Hanselman of BHClaysmiths.
She has won a Month of Advertising here on Art Bead Scene
Please e-mail an image and link for your ad.
:::


 A huge thank you to and our March Monthly Challenge sponsors!

(claybuttons.com email address is acting wonky) with your information (Name and address) so your prizes may be sent to you.

A Big THANK YOU to everyone who entered this month! We were so fortunate to have so many beautiful entries and experience such creativity from our wonderful readers.

Visit us tomorrow to see what April's challenge brings.

Friday, March 31, 2017

March Monthly Challenge Recap

Ahhhh, Spring! How much I have missed you!

Every day with the lightening of the skies, the appearance of patches of green, the scent of fresh earth and the peeping sounds of our feathered friends all a-twitter I am embracing the changing of the seasons. Even when the wind blows the rain sideways and one moment it will be sunny, the next blustery. Spring is here to stay! (That doesn't mean I am putting away my snow-blower....we can have snow into late May and beyond!).

Isn't it a glorious time of year?


We were inspired by the birds, the nests, the thorny branches, the blue skies and the yellow blooms. Let's see what we created!


Now it is your turn! If you created a post someplace about your creation, be sure to share it here to be in the draw for some great prizes!

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Porcelain Whale Pendant Giveaway Winner!!!

First of all, I really want to thank those of you who joined my facebook sharing group, "inspiration in everyday"! I truly appreciate each of you!! So a big kiss to you all.... MUAH!!! You know who you are;)



The random winner of the whale pendant is Rachel Mallis. Congratulations Rachel!! PM me on facebook with your address and I will send this guy off to you!

I look forward to us sharing the things that inspire us in our everyday lives! Inspiration is truly everywhere!!  Don't forget to share something that inspires you to create!! Once a month someones inspiration will be featured here on ABS blog. That same person will also win ceramic beads from artisticaos!

The prize for April will be two sets of feather earring charms in the colors of your choice!!  If you have not joined the group yet, you can just pop on over here!

Wishing you inspiration in "everyday"!!
Terri Del Signore
artisticaos

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Bead Table Wednesday - Wire Nests

Today's Bead Table Wednesday is a fun and easy way to create a wire wrapped nest for your art beads.

Watch the video here:

I used 24" of 19 gauge steel wire.  Other wire options include 18-20 gauge copper or colored Parawire in the metal tones from Vintaj. I recommend using wire that is 18-20 gauge for necklaces and 22 gauge for thinner nests like the earrings below. 

1. Start a wrapped loop 3" from the end of the wire. Wrap tightly two times and then two times on top of the first wrap to create a messy wrap. 

2. String on your bead. 

3. Create a wrapped loop at the bottom. Wrap tightly two times and then continue wrapping above the loop. 

4. Wrap several times and then begin wrapping the wire closer to the bird. Continue wrapping, working up and down from the bird to the loop until the nest looks full. 

5. Trim the wire at the back of the bead, half way across the bead. Tuck the end of the wire into the nest. 

Resources from the video:
Humblebeads - Birds, eggs and house beads
Gardanne Beads - enamel leaves
Diane Hawkey - word bead
Steel wire - Ace Hardware or Amazon


Tuesday, March 28, 2017

New Beads from Mary Harding Jewelry

                                                        Tall Beads by Mary Harding Jewely

For some time now I have been experimenting and making ceramic beads with the higher fire clay bodies of Porcelain and Stoneware.  Previously I pretty much only used earthenware ceramic clay which is also called a low fire clay.  The picture above features a porcelain bead on the far left the 2 stoneware beads.  I especially like making these beads in high fire clay.  They feel both ancient and extremely durable.  The ability to stamp and draw on all sides of a hollow beads is a skill I learned from the amazing polymer clay artist Claire Maunsell.  She is coming out with an ebook this Spring on surface treatments in polymer clay that you may want to be on the lookout for.  I know I will be. And  she has a great online class  HERE .
I have made a number of these hollow open bottom beads lately as seen below:
 I have been using some texture plates of my own which feature wood structure and plants.  I have also experimented with drawing on some of the details.  Some of the more intricate details are from a commercial stamp.
In this set I experimented with different  surface designs

                                                I especially like these shapes
                                                    More shape experimentation


For coloration, I have used an iron oxide wash
Iron oxide wash--I diluted it with some distilled water  and then painted it on each bead-- using a generous amount and let them dry.

Then I wiped some off with a wet sponge.  This is how they looked when I put them into the kiln for the Cone 5 firing.  They came out a rich deep dark chocolate brown.  See pictures above.

                          Notebook entry for this firing.  I have a small L&L Babydoll  kiln--which I love!!.          

One of the things I have been trying to do consistently is keep a record in a notebook of what I fire in each load and what glazes and process etc. that I used, as seen in the example above.  It is so hard to remember later on.
I also made a lot of hearts that will accompany packages when I send out my work to customers.
These are porcelain.
                                                         Small porcelain heart charms

Now that I have all of these tube beads...what am I going to do with them?   I am planning to  keep some for myself to make  jewelry with.  And some I am saving for the Featured Artisans Trunk Show April 24-April 28 on  the Facebook Group Artisans Create Together.
I am hoping I can come up with a beautiful design with them like Karin Grosset Grange in the necklace below
       Gorgeous  necklace by Karin Grosset Grange  featuring one of my long hollow beads
                                     My dream of how one of these beads might be used!!!

Thanks so much for stopping by today.  See you next month with a jewelry designer interview!!
Mary