Sunday, March 23, 2014

New Pendants and Some Fun

Yesterday I spent a few hours in the workshop making up a few new pendants. I had one final (for now) jigsaw puzzle pattern to try out as well as a new heart and star. I of course went with my hammered finish but for the heart I didn't think it would suit so I gave it a nice high shine polish instead. I'm glad I did. I think it suits the piece much better.

Later on I spent some time with my two little cousins making bracelets. They really need no help with this at all now. I cut the elastic and tie the knot thats all they want me to do. They both love to lay out the beads and play around with the order the want to put them in before stringing them which is fantastic to see them at 5 and 6 doing.

I think I will be stocking up their bead box for their birthdays next week. The box they have has suddenly gotten very empty and I'm afraid they will start "shopping" in my bead stash.

Friday, March 21, 2014

Jigsaw Puzzle Piece Pendants

Today I tried out some pieces I had been wanting to make for a while. I had these sketches in my book for a while and finally got around to making them. I made three different pieces in Aluminium, Copper and Brass. I'm really happy with how they turned out. Again I've used my hammer finish which seems to be my signature finish at this point. I may as well just embrace it. I have a few more patterns I want to try out now as well so I you may be seeing them soon. 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

My Pendant in Beads and Beyond Magazine

I recently sent a picture of my copper flower pendant into Beads and Beyond Magazine. It was inspired by a tutorial in the magazine a few months ago by Joanne Tinley. I loved how it had turned out and wanted to share it and they printed it. 

I also won a £25 voucher for Beads Unlimited so I can't wait to go on a little shopping spree soon. Look out for my post when I have have decided what I want to get. 

Monday, March 17, 2014

Ana Has Received The Bead Soup

I got a message from Ana to tell me that she has received my bead soup. I'm so happy she finally got it. And she likes it which is the main part. So I thought I would share a picture now of what I actually sent seen as you have all only seen a blurred picture so far.

I added some copper wire and head pins to match the copper toggle (that I love). I love the colours together in this soup and I cant wait to see what Ana makes.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Beads & Beyond Giveaway

Beads and Beyond Magazine are having a giveaway to celebrate when they hit 2000 likes on facebook. They will give away 5 design packs each containing a co-ordinated selection of beads and components to five fans for a mini design challenge and all you have to do is lke their facebook page to be in with a chance of winning. Click here

Friday, March 14, 2014

Rain Cloud Pendant

I recently picked up the April issue of Make & Sell Jewellery Magazine and there was a feature called "Make a statement with Weather Motifs" which included a tutorial on making acetate rain cloud earrings. Being me and having to use a bit of metal and change things just a little bit I used aluminium and a few extra beads along with a bit of chain to make mine. I also made it a pendant instead of earrings. 

I'm really happy with how it has turned out and will be wearing it very soon I can imagine. I have a few more ideas to play around with the theme so hopefully I will have a few more pictures to share soon. 

Saturday, March 8, 2014

The Bead Soup I Received

So I think its time to show off what I got in the Bead Soup package from Ana. There are so many pretty beads I don't know what I'm going to make yet because I have so many different ideas. Thank you again to Ana I love all the beads and hope you like what I have sent to you (when it arrives). 

I think these are my favourite piece's of all. I can't wait to use them and wear them. I've never worked with anything like this before.

And of course this again is the beautiful gift Ana sent to me. Please find Ana's Blog here. And visit her shop here to see more of her work. 

Friday, March 7, 2014

I've Received My Bead Soup

This morning I got a lovely surprise in the post from Ana, my bead soup has arrived already. I will be sharing pictures of it all over the weekend. But I wanted to share a picture of the beautiful gift Ana added to the package. She has sent me a lovely pair of earrings and a bracelet. I am going to love wearing these so thank you Ana so much I love them.

I have sent Ana's bead soup already so I hope she will have it early next week. Now I just have to figure out what I'm going to make with the lovely beads she has sent to me.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Bead Soup Sneak Peek

I wanted to upload a little sneak peek of what I am sending to Ana for the Bead Soup Swap. When she has received it I can show a picture of everything but until then this is all I can show.

I am sending it out tomorrow and I can't wait to see what Ana makes with it.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

My Bead Soup Partner Is....

I found out this week that my partner for the Bead Soup Blog Party this year is Ana from ACBeads. I spent today at my favourite bead shop picking up a few extra bits to finish off my bead soup that I will be sending to Ana this week.

Ana is in Portugal so hopefully the package will arrive quickly. I hope she likes what I have picked out as much as I do.

I will post a teaser picture as soon as I have sent the package and a picture of what Ana has sent when I receive it.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

How To: Metal Stamping Tutorial

I have made quite a few pieces using metal stamping over the last few years so I wanted to put together a simple little how to for anyone thinking of giving it a try. The piece above shows the names of someones three children and a Swarovski Crystal to represent each of their birthstones.

What You Need:

A set of metal stamps (available in various types from many differen online shops)

A heavy hammer

A Sharpie (I use black most of the time but you can try any colour)

Metal blanks (available in different metals shapes and sizes on the internet)

A Metal block for hammering on

1: After selecting out the letter or number stamps you need lay them out in order on the table so that you don't mix up the order. I'm showing the stamping here on the wooden bench but you should be using a metal block.

 Start with the middle letter or number you need and position it in the middle on the piece. I find it easier to work out wards then which keeps the word or name centered.
2: Strike the top of the stamp with the hammer directly down first then slightly tip the stamp to the top and then then bottom striking each time. This makes sure the letter is more indented. Removing the stamp after the first strike will make it harder to get a clean letter imprint as you  may not line it up exactly right again. 
3: Using the sharpie cover across the letters making sure it goes into the groves of the imprints.

4: Quickly wipe away the excess marker using a damp tissue is needed. The letters are now more visible.

These pendants make a great gift or can be added to bookmarks, keychains, etc. Let me know in the comments below if you have tried this out and ho you got on.