AJE Component of the Month – May Reveal

Each month one of the AJE team creates components for the rest of our team and a number of guests to design a piece of jewellery around. This months components were supplied by Sue Kennedy of Sue beads and I got to work with the cute set of chicklet beads second from the left in this picture…

Because these beads are flat I decided they would work well as bracelet focals but as I’ve made a few strung bracelets recently I wanted to do something different. I’ve always been fond of beaded copper bangles and used to make a lot of them so decided to go that route. These bangles are formed around a core of heavy gauge wire but on this occasion however, instead of wrapping the core with wire I decided to try wire macrame in order to get a flat band effect.


I threaded the beads onto the core with some Czech glass and copper accent beads and used 0.9mm copper wire to ‘tie’ simple square knots around it.

The ends of the core wire are looped with a couple of jump rings and a hand forged hook added to complete the bracelet. I used Liver of Sulphur to oxidise the wire and enhance the textural detail.

A fairly simple design but I really like this type of bangle and I think I may be making a few more.

You can see what everyone else made with their components by clicking on the links below and joining us on our blog hop.

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Guests



AJE Members

Lesley

Waxed Linen Blog Hop

Welcome to the Waxed Linen Blog Hop kindly and most ably hosted by the Diana Ptaszynski of Suburban Girl Studios.

I was even later than usual getting my pieces done for this hop to the point where I was still finishing up at 2am this morning so I had to keep them fairly simple. That’s one of the things I love about waxed linen though – it’s very easy to put something simple but eye catching together very quickly.

My first piece is a braided strung bracelet with a lovely pewter button clasp and heart charm from Mamacita Beadworks and rustic blue/grey seed beads from Smitten beads. The tails have been finished with some tiny pewter beads I was given as part of a bead soup four year ago. Very simple but the kind of thing I wear a lot.

My second piece is a reprise of a necklace I made last year with wire wrapped beads but this time I used double strands of waxed linen to string these lovely Czech glass beads – again from Smitten Smitten Beads, The ceramic heart focal is by Karen Totten of Starry Road Studio and the bronze text connector is by THEA elements – that’s me!

the quote is from one of my favourite poems by W B Yeats…

Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

And finally I whipped up a pair of five minute earrings using some red ceramic beads from our host Diana and some cream ceramic discs by me. A scrap of linen, a few copper accent beads and some ear wire and that’s it done…I frequently make earrings like these when I’m about to go out and find I have none to match my outfits.

So those are are a few ways to use waxed linen and I’m sure the other participants will have demonstrated many more so I hope you will join up on the hop using the links below and many thanks to Diana for hosting this hop.

Have a great weekend.
Lesley

Diana Ptaszynski  


Time for a Giveaway…

Ever since I started this blog it’s been on my to do list to set up a mailing list subscription option so that I can keep my followers up to date with what’s going on. Well, three years later (where did that go…?) I’ve finally got around to it and there is now a sign up box in the side bar just beneath my profile.

My plan is to use this very sparingly to give people who subscribe advance notice of shop updates, sales and any special events that I might be taking part in. This probably won’t amount to more than once a month with an occasional extra and subscribers can opt out at any time. The problem now of course is that I don’t have contact details for any of those lovely people who have begun following my blog in those three years so I have nobody to send my updates to…isn’t that sad.

So I need a little help in spreading the word and since you’re all so good at that I think a giveaway is order. The giveaway prize is £30 GBP and free shipping to spend in either of my shops THEA Elements and THEA Jewellery and there will also be a couple of surprise prizes as well.

You can enter the draw by subscribing to the mailing list (the box in the side bar of this blog) and/or sharing this post in your social media networks. Simply leave a comment below letting me know how you have subscribed/shared and I will randomly select the winners on Sunday June 1st, publish the names here and notify them by  email.

I’m also planning to do some random giveaways to subscribers from time to time so thank you for helping me get this off the ground and good luck!

Lesley

8th Annual Bead Soup Blog Party Reveal

Welcome the the 2014 Bead Soup Blog Party and the 8th annual reveal for this event – the brainchild of Lori Anderson. If you don’t know about BSBP you can find out all about it here. Since there are so many participants in this blog hop I plan to be economical with my words and let the pictures do the talking…lets face it that what we all want to see isn’t it…beads, beads and more beads turned into beautiful Jewellery!

My partner for this year’s hop is the talented lampwork artist Maryse Fritzsche -Thillens of Glass Bead Art and this is the fabulous bead soup she sent me all those weeks ago – not just a beautiful selection of her own organic beads but some lovely sterling silver pieces too…

As soon as I got these beads the big focal in the top left of the picture jumped out at me because it reminded of the beautiful Jurassic coastline not far from where I live…

This inspired my first necklace which uses beaded and braided waxed linen to give a layered effect and a curved sterling silver tube reminiscent of the many coves and inlets along this stretch of coastline.

The region is also a renowned site for fossil collecting so the silver spiral shell is a perfect finishing touch for this piece.

Next up comes a bracelet designed to show off the silver focal clasp along with some of Maryse’s lovely sparkling rock beads. I found some silk that matched the beads perfectly and wove this through sections of chain and then oxidised the clasp to knock back the shine. The bracelet is finished with two Hill Tribe Silver rose charms. The cool palette and contrasting materials in this piece give it a mixed organic/urban feel.

With the addition of some Hill Tribe rings and some hammered wire I used the rest of the blue rocks to make a pair of earrings to go with the bracelet…

My favourite beads from the soup were the green/neutral toned rocks and I put some of these together with one of my own bronze leaf focals to make another bracelet. I am completely infatuated with rustic seed beads at the moment so multi strands of these in varying sizes were a no brainer.


The palest of the beads from this set I teamed up with the pretty green leaf headpins and a little ruffle of russet suede to create this fun pair of earrings.

All the while I was making these pieces I was going back and forth to that Silver butterfly focal and trying to do something spectacular with it but I wasn’t happy with anything I came up with. In the end I decided I much preferred it with this very simple treatment of fine chain interspersed with Czech glass beads in graduated tones of blue and amber and a chain tail with matching teardrops.

Although I still had lots of beads to play with that’s where I called it a day but I will of course be returning to the rest of my soup before too long. Many, many thanks to Maryse for sending a bead soup that was such a joy to work with and now I can’t wait to see what she has made with the ingredients I sent her.

And as always, a huge thank you goes to Lori and her helpers for all the hours and hard work they’ve out in pulling off yet another awesome event – very well done ladies (and gent!).
Thanks you for visiting The Gossiping Goddess and I hope you will now join me and the rest of the BSBP participants on our mammoth blog hop using the links below.
Lesley 
Maryse Fritzsch-Thillens                    www.glassbeadart.blogspot.com

Lori Anderson, Hostess     www.PrettyThingsBlog.com

Tina Bosh                                  http://bookbug-somanybookssolittletime.blogspot.com/
Kristina Hahn Eleniak                 www.peacockandlime.wordpress.com
Kari Asbury                               www.hippiechickdesign.blogspot.com
Kris Binsfield                             www.cherishdesigns.wordpress.com
Cheryl Gangle                            www.RockCandyJewelryDesign.blogspot.com
Amber Dawn                             www.InventiveSoul.blogspot.com
Michelle Wigginton                     http://adornedonadelaide.weebly.com/
Kayla Potega                              http://teejewelry.blogspot.com/
Becky Pancake                           www.beckypancakebeaddesigns.blogspot.com
Debbie Rogers                             http://debbiestreasuresandgems.wordpress.com/
Jenny Kyrlach                             www.anafiassa.blogspot.com
Genea Crivello-Knable                 www.geneabeads.blogspot.com
Deborah Read                             www.deborahreadcom.blogspot.com
Julianna Cannon                          http://julsbeads.blogspot.com/
Lisa Liddy                                  www.lisaliddy.wordpress.com
Debbie Rasmussen                      www.Kepirasmussen.blogspot.ca
Iveth Caruso                               www.creativeatelier.net/blog
Rana Wilson                               http://ranaleadesigns.blogspot.com/
Corrie Williams                           http://thecedarbeader.blogspot.com.au
Linda Anderson                          http://fromTheBeadBoard.blogspot.com
Miranda Ackerley                       http://blog.mirandack.com/
Andra Weber                             www.andrasjoyfuljourney.blogspot.com
Loretta Carstensen                      http://www.designsbyloretta.blogspot.com/
Penny Houghton                         www.smellynelly.blogspot.com.au
Tania Hagen                               http://pelimadesign.blogspot.co.nz/
Robin Reed                                www.willowdragon.blogspot.com
Laurie Vyselaar                           www.Lefthandjewelry.wordpress.com
Rachel Baron                              www.rbarondesigns.blogspot.com
Erin Guest                                   www.renlish.com
Emma Todd                                            www.apolymerpenchant.com
Kelly Schermerhorn                            http://meanderingwithkelly.blogspot.com/
Dana Hickey                                            http://magpieapproved.blogspot.com
Rebecca Ednie                                       http://eclecticendeavours.blogspot.com
Marybeth Rich                                       http://forestofjewels.blogspot.com/
Sherri Levinton                                      www.cuttergazette.blogspot.com
RaMona Woolson                                www.jerseygirlsbeadwork.blogspot.com
Jo-Ann Woolverton                             www.Itsabeadifulcreation.blogspot.ca
Audrey Belanger                                  http://esperianterra.blogspot.ca/
Candida Castleberry                            http://spunsugarbeadworks.blogspot.com

Click below to read the full list…


Renetha Stanziano                              https://www.lamplightcrafts.blogspot.com/
Carolyn Chenault                                  www.carolynchenault.wordpress.com
Toltec  Jewels                                        www.JewelSchoolFriends.com
Diana Welte                                            http://lilyweeds.blogspot.com
Jean A. Wells                                          www.jeanawells.blogspot.com
Bev Breisinger                                       http://countryfrogcreations.blogspot.com/
Autumn Adams                                     www.autumndawns.blogspot.com
DiYana Alcalde                                       www.agapecreationsjewelry.blogspot.com
Patty Gasparino                                    www.mylifeunderthebus.typepad.com
Karen Mitchell                                       www.overthemoon-design.com
Regina Santerre                                    http://reginaswritings.blogspot.com/
Dhea Powers                                         http://javabead.blogspot.com/
Jayne Capps                                           https://mamasgottodoodle.blogspot.com
Keri Lee Sereika                                    www.pinklemonade.typepad.com
Melissa Trudinger                                www.beadrecipes.wordpress.com
Elsie Deliz-Fonseca                              http://ladelizchica.blogspot.com/
Jeanne Steck                                          www.gemsbyjeannemarie.blogspot.com
Carolyn Lawson                                     http://carolynscreationswa.blogspot.com
Kay Thomerson                                     http://KayzKreationz.blogspot.com
Maybeline Tay                                       http://thejewelrylarder.blogspot.sg/
Jackie Locantore                                   http://www.artfire.com/ext/shop/blog/MorningStarSanctuaryStudio
D’Arsie Manzella                                   http://thisherenowmamacita.blogspot.com
Jacqueline Marchant                          http://jaacquelinesjewels.blogspot.com/
Lori Bergmann                                       www.LoriBergmann.blogspot.com
Beccy Peterson                                     www.yanasmom.blogspot.com
Katie Nielson-Nunez                           www.Vikingcraft.blogspot.com
Heidi Kingman                                       http://heidikingman.blogspot.com
Andrea Glick                                           http://zenithjade.blogspot.com/
Rose Johnson                                        http://swtrosethorn.blogspot.com/
Nicole Demore                                      http://healingbeading.blogspot.com/
Marti Conrad                                          http://marticsclay.blogspot.com
Marianna Boylan                                  www.stargirlshop.blogspot.com
Mitzie Crider                                          www.needfulluxuries.com
Christa Murphy                                     www.adventuresofwonbeadywoman.blogspot.com
Alisa Siceloff                                           www.armoredmermaid.blogspot.com
Maria Rios                                               http://mlourdes24.blogspot.com/
Tracy Martin                                           www.nutkittensjewelry.blogspot.com
Nan Emmett                                           www.spiritrattles.blogspot.com
Ali McCarthy                                           www.northwoodscreativestudio.blogspot.com
Jennifer LaVite                                      www.drygulchbeadsandjewelry.blogspot.com
Dolores Raml                                          www.craftydscreations.wordpress.com
Valerie Kravette                                   http://gettingabeadon.blogspot.com
Bobbie Rafferty                                    www.beadsong.blogspot.com
Kathleen Breeding                               http://99bobotw.blogspot.com
Kristi Brokaw                                          www.Kristibrokawdesigns.blogspot.com
Lisa Suver                                                http://fanceethat.blogspot.com/
Natalie Moten                                       http://runningoutofthread.blogspot.com/
Jami Shipp                                               http://celebratinglifewithdamamashipp.blogspot.com/
Diana Shiraishi                                       www.JasmineTeaDesigns.blogspot.com
Heather Otto                                         http://www.thecrafthopper.com
Ghislaine Kruse-van Erp                    www.kruseartllc.com
Lisa Knappenberger                            www.liraysadesigns.blogspot.com
Charlene Jacka                                      http://clay-space.com/blog
Patty Miller                                             http://pattymillerbeads.blogspot.com/
Sandi James                                            www.dobedobeaddo.blogspot.com
Marianne Hurley                                  www.Readsandbeads.wordpress.com
Cris Peacock                                           http://crispart.blogspot.com/
Andrea Rivers                                        http://turtlesoupcreative.blogspot.com/
Gloria Allen                                             http://gloriaallendesigns.blogspot.com/
Kandice Seeber                                     http://coloraddictionblog.blogspot.com
Janine Lucas                                           http://www.esfera.me/travel/
Sandy Richardson                                 www.SandyscoloringBox.blogspot.com
Hajer Waheed                                       www.mybeadedworld.wordpress.com
Cynthia Abner                                       http://createdtreasures.blogspot.com/
Peggy Johnson                                      http://charmbarn.blogspot.com/
Tina Holder                                             www.beadcomber.ca
Julie Bowen                                            http://blog.autochthonous-evolved.com
Heather Richter                                    http://desertjewelrydesigns.blogspot.com/
Sarah Strover                                         www.beaupepys.blogspot.com
Kimberly Idalski                                     www.kimisjewelryandgifts.blogspot.com
Sandi Volpe                                            www.sandivolpe.com
Tandra Boyer                                         http://alittleinkalicious.blogspot.com/
Klaudete Koon                                      http://www.klaudetekoon.blogspot.com
Michaela Pabeschitz                           http://der-lamardebonita.blogspot.co.at/
Mea-B. Uebler                                      http://schmuck-der-gut-tut.blogspot.de
Mandi Effron                                          www.craft-o-licious.blogspot.com
Evelyn Shelby                                        http://raindropcreationsbyevelyn.blogspot.com/
Shai Williams                                          http://shaihasramblings.blogspot.com/
Natalie Davidson                                  http://www.northshoredays.com
Evelyn Duberry                                     www.Shebamakeda.com
Cindy Pack                                               http://CindyPack.blogspot.com
Eszter Czibulyas                                    http://bigyogyar.blogspot.com
Sylvia Lupberger                                   http://www.lusyls-kreativseite.blogspot.de/
Divya N                                                     www.jewelsofsayuri.com
JJ Jacobs                                                   www.comingabstractions.blogspot.com
Blanca Medina                                       www.peru-medesigns.com
Ginger Davis Allman                            http://thebluebottletree.com
Chris Eisenberg                                     http://www.wanderware.blogspot.com
Katja Benevol Gabrrijelcic                 http://slovoni.blogspot.com
Jodie Marshall                                       www.marshalljodie.blogspot.com
Margareta Saari                                    http://magsinhelmet.blogspot.fi/
Menka Gupta                                        http://menkag.blogspot.com/
Dian Hierschel                                        www.mydias.de
Kashmira Patel                                      http://sadafulee.blogspot.com
Christina Miles                                       http://wingsnscales.blogspot.com/
Inge von Roos                                        www.ingetraud.wordpress.com
Sam Siegel                                               http://samsbeadshopandjewelry.blogspot.com/
Gina Hockett                                          http://www.freestyleelements.blogspot.com
Linda Newnham                                   http://earth-shinedesigns.blogspot.co.uk/
Enikö Fabian                                           www.perleni.blogspot.com
Dorota Żerańska                                   http://gdymamczas.blogspot.com
Shalini Austin                                         http://jewellery-by-shalini.blogspot.co.uk
Maryse Fritzsch-Thillens                    www.glassbeadart.blogspot.com
Silke Groeber                                         http://just-beads.blogspot.com
Birgit Klughardt                                     www.gitesbeads-gite.blogspot.com
Rebecca Anderson                              www.songbeads.blogspot.com
Niky Sayers                                             http://silverniknats.blogspot.co.uk
Stefanie Teufel                                     http://stefaniessammelsurium.blogspot.com
Rosantia Petkova                                 http://bairozan.blogspot.com/
Alenka Obid                                            www.pepita-handmade.blogspot.com
Jacqueline Keller                                  www.creartelier.blogspot.com
Sam Waghorn                                        http://palemooncreation.blogspot.co.uk
Jackie Ryan                                             http://kydojewellery.blogspot.co.uk/
Kumi Fisher                                             www.kumifisher.blogspot.com
Joan Williams                                         www.lilrubyjewelry.com
Stephanie Weiss                                   http://uniquelymebwd.blogspot.com/
Elsbeth Fuchs                                         www.acrimbolda.blogspot.com
Johanna Nash                                        http://http://firephoenixcreations.blogspot.co.uk
Natascha Marty                                    http://www.sommerlicht.ch
Sarah Goode                                          www.pookledo.blogspot.com
Agata Grygiel                                         http://www.inaurem.pl/
Jeannine Vetsch-Bokstaller                  www.jevebo-art.blogspot.com
Rebecca Sirevaag                                 www.godsartistinresidence.blogspot.com
Magdalena Sikora                                http://www.porannagazeta.blogspot.com/
Ana Krepel                                              http://catspajamas-dogstuxedos.blogspot.com/
Saskia Letta                                             www.puenktliundanton.blogspot.com
Beth Emery                                             www.storiesbyindigoheart.blogspot.com
Lizzie Clarke                                            www.theneedtobead.blogspot.com
Evie and Beth McCord                        http://ebbeadandmetalworks.blogspot.com/
Marcia Dunne                                        www.thealternativefoundry.blogspot.co.uk
Agi Kiss                                                     http://moonsafaribeads.blogspot.com
Esterina Jagiella                                     http://ekleijar.blogspot.com/
Judith Johnston                                    http://www.judith-johnston.com/blog/
Jenny Vidberg                                       http://shymessmycken.blogspot.se/
Klaudia Toth                                           http://www.klaudiabizsu.hu
Merja Sundström                                 http://suntsan.blogspot.fi/
Colleen Vinthagen                               http://www.thewireworkshop.com/blog
Leah Curtis                                              http://beadyeyedbunny.blogspot.co.uk/
Giorgia Rossini                                       http://joyblonde.blogspot.it/
Sandra Wollberg                                   www.city-of-brass-stories.blogspot.com/‎
Annica Larsson                                      http://zestyfrog.wordpress.com/
Johana Nunez                                        www.artincendi.com
Krafty Max                                              http://kraftymax.blogspot.com/
Lori Schneider                                        www.beadaddicted.blogspot.com
Mary Govaars                                        www.mlhjewelrydesigns.com
Mischelle Andrade Fanucchi            http://micheladasmusings.blogspot.com
Maddison Langford                             www.maddy-moo.blogspot.com
Ginger Bishop                                        http://lilmummylikes.blogspot.com/
Birgitta Lejonklou                                 www.lejonklou.blogspot.se
Lesley Watt                                             www.thegossipinggoddess.blogspot.com
Doris Stumpf                                          www.glaszwerg.blogspot.com
Marjolein Trewavas                            http://roomforchangemeuk.blogspot.co.uk/
Silvia Sernicola                                       http://pipa-the-latest.blogspot.it/
Roxanne Blanc                                       http://strikesmyfancy-2013.blogspot.com/
Wendy Chamberlain                           http://wendy-essentialbears.blogspot.co.uk/
Siobhán Keogh                                      www.vovsjewellery.blogspot.ie
Claire Fabian                                           www.saraccino.blogspot.com
Katrin Fenzke                                         http://perlhuehner-schokojunkie.blogspot.de/
Eva Wills                                                   http://quiltingpug.blogspot.com/
Kathy Lindemer                                    http://bay-moon-design.blogspot.com/
Bridget Torres                                        www.shears58.net
Marina Passarella                                 http://annodarte2013.blogspot.it
Christina Hickman                                http://vintagetreasuresjewelry.blogspot.com/
Tammie Everly                                       http://ttedesigns.blogspot.com/
Ana Cravidao                                          http://acbeads.blogspot.com
Keren Panthaki                                     www.vasdea.wordpress.com
Jennifer VaBenschoten                     http://www.vanbeads.blogspot.com
Solange Collin                                        http://www.blog.ahowinjewelry.com
Marina Kosović                                      http://machoopko-design.blogspot.com/
Michelle Tucker                                    www.michelleannstudio.com
Sue Rennie                                             http://moonandsevenstars.blogspot.co.uk/
Claire Lockwood                                   www.somethingtodowithyourhands.com
Barb Solem                                             www.ViviMagooPresents.com
Caroline Dewison                                 http://www.blueberribeads.co.uk
Noemi Baena Roman                          http://blog.noemibaena.com/
Nancy Dale                                              www.nedbeads.blogspot.com
Marsela Schroth                                   www.marselita.de
Amy Severino                                        http://www.amybeads.blogspot.com/
Vonna Maslanka                                   http://justvonna.blogspot.com/
Andra Marasteanu                              http://bijouxdemonange.blogspot.com
Cherrie Warzocha                                www.colorsofshae.blogspot.com
Amanda Wacasey                                www.Mandyinmystic.blogspot.com
Marcy Lamberson                                www.StudioMarcy.blogspot.com
Lisa Johnson                                           http://spudandmrsbutters.blogspot.com/
Gail Vanderster-Zwang                      www.Angelmoose.blogspot.com
Laurie Keefe-Cecere                           http://cecerelyyours.blogspot.com
Asri Wahyuningsih                               http://asribeadwork.blogspot.com/
ChristineMurrow                                  www.charisdesignsjewelry.blogspot.com
Laurie Ament                                         http://isinglassdesign.blogspot.com/
Lilik Kristiani                                            http://pcbylik.blogspot.com/
Stephanie Haussler                             www.pixybugdesigns.blogspot.com
Deb Fortin                                               www.studiok24.blogspot.ca
Kelly Hosford Patterson                    www.travelingsideshow.blogspot.com
Katy Heider                                             www.onthepondcreations.blogspot.com
Christine Stonefield                            www.sweetgirldesign.blogspot.com
Dagmar Liebisch                                    http://kokopellidesign.blogspot.de
Sandra McGriff                                      http://skyescreativechaos.blogspot.ca
Sheila Daniels                                         http://www.cheekymagpie.com
Rossana De Gaspari                             www.Rdegas.blogspot.com
Cory Tompkins                                      Www.tealwaterdesigns.blogspot.com
Sonya Stille                                             www.dreaminofbeads.blogspot.com
Judy Riggs                                                www.rigglettes.blogspot.com
Lora Bright                                               www.labweorc.wordpress.com
Tina Noonan                                           www.wingedimp.blogspot.com
Shawn Price                                            http://silkyshaven.blogspot.com
April Grinaway                                       http://brooklynbeadgoddess.blogspot.com
Cheryl Roe                                              www.beadroe.blogspot.com
Pam Hurst                                               http://pamhurst.blogspot.com
Shirley Moore                                        www.beadsandbread.blogspot.com
Emmanuelle Roué                               www.ashentara.blogspot.fr
Tammy Adams                                      http://paisleylizard.com/blog.html
Kristin Oppold                                        http://www.yayjewelry.blogspot.com
Catie Doman                                          http://drcatie.blogspot.com/
Sheila Prosterman                               www.catswithbeads.blogspot.com
Cheryl Foiles                                           http://cherylsartisticendeavors.blogspot.com/
Stephanie Perry                                    www.mustardbeadbystephanieperry.blogspot.com
Barbara Fernald                                    www.BarbaraSFernald.com
Debi Dufrene                                         http://debideauxdesigns.blogspot.com/
Kathy Stemke                                        http://vintagememoriesjewelry.blogspot.com/
Anne Betenson                                     www.crystalriverbeads.blogspot.com
Chris Haussler                                        http://pixybugdesigns.blogspot.com
Catherine King                                       www.Catherines-Musings.blogspot.com
Andria Poole                                          www.jewelleryartiste.blogspot.co.uk
Sherri Stokey                                         www.knotjustmacrame.com
Sharyl King                                              http://catchenthesun.wordpress.com
Donna Millard                                        http://fyrebeadz.blogspot.com/
Gayle Dyck                                              www.dragonflydreamweaver.wordpress.com
Gen Smith                                               http://www.gennysworld.blogspot.com
Deanna Cox                                            http://deannaaki.wordpress.com/
Beti Horvath                                           www.stringingfool.blogspot.com
Rose Rushbrooke                                 www.roserushbrooke.com/blog/
Arlene Dean                                           http://aglassbash.blogspot.com
Maria Rosa Sharrow                            www.willowstreetshops.blogspot.com
Deborah Apodaca                                www.deborahapodacadesigns.blogspot.com
Veralynne Malone                               www.veradesigns.blogspot.com
Stacy Alderson                                      http://iridalsattic.blogspot.co.uk
Eva Sherman                                          http://evashermandesigns.blogspot.com/
Cassi Paslick                                            http://cassisbeads.blogspot.com/
Cindy Boissonneault                              www.dziar.com
Linda Sadler                                            www.idalouisejewelry.blogspot.com
Louise Glazier                                        http://lilyandjasmine.blogspot.com/
Susan McClelland                                 http://mistheword12.wordpress.com/
Kathrin Lembke                                    http://allesperle.blogspot.de/
SusanneStelljes                                    www.Pearlify.blogspot.com
Terry Jeanette Carter                            www.tappingflamingo.blogspot.com
Susan Kelly                                              http://midlifegreaterexpectations.blogspot.com
Kim Paige                                                 http://www.redtree-studio.com/blog/
Dyanne Everett-Cantrell                   www.deelitefuljewelrycreations.blogspot.com
Annita Wilson                                        http://awjewelryandbeadwork.blogspot.com/
Tracey Leeder                                        http://abeadifulmess.blogspot.com/
Elizabeth Bunn                                      http://elizabethbeads.blogspot.com
Allison Fitzpatrick                                 alspolkadotsandpaisley.blogspot.com
Tania Spivey                                           www.moobiegracedesigns.blogspot.com
Ilenia Ruzza                                             http://ile1974.blogspot.it/
Lauren Potts                                           www.lpsjewelry.blogspot.com
Lynn Jobber                                            http://thecreativeklutz.blogspot.co.uk/
Lee Koopman                                        http://stregajewellry.wordpress.com
Carol Wilson                                           http://jetadorn.blogspot.com/
Elizabeth Woodford                            www.Elizabethcreates.blogspot.com
Deb McKinnis                                         www.willowbridgebeads.wordpress.com
Rochelle Brisson                                   http://www.acreativechelle.blogspot.com
Shari Replogle                                        www.playswithpaper.blogspot.com
Janeen Sorensen                                 www.wildvanilladesigns.com
Kat Barron Miller                                  http://mkpbeadart.blogspot.com/
Elaine Robitaille                                     http:/www.tooaquarius.com
Darlene Fortier                                      www.darliciousrejuvenations.blogspot.com
Leslie Schenkel                                      http://twistedchicken.wordpress.com/
Kym Hunter                                            http://kymhunterdesigns.blogspot.com/
Leslie Wayment                                    http://www.aabeadsonline.com/blog/
Beckie Robison                                      http://spiralfirestudios.blogspot.com
Hannah Trost                                         www.pzdesigns.blogspot.com
Kim Hutchinson                                     www.jumbledhutch.wordpress.com
Liz Engriser                                              www.beadcontagion.blogspot.com
Diah Anggreni                                        https://mymaniks.wordpress.com
Monique Urquhart                              http://ahalfbakednotion.blogspot.com/
Kim Williams                                           www.kimmwilliams.blogspot.com
Theresa Buchle                                     http://www.bead-mused.blogspot.com
Susan Bowie                                           http://susanbowie.wordpress.com
Pam DeBoer                                           http://pamelas-studio.blogspot.com/
Skylar Bre’z                                             http://brisingbeads.blogspot.com/
Janet Loomis                                          www.anvilartifacts.blogspot.com
Tari Kahrs                                                 http://brush.typepad.com/my-blog/
Nancy Smith                                           www.wirednan.blogspot.ca
Erin Grant                                                www.ErinsJewelryCreations.blogspot.com
Barbara Mason                                      www.Adorninglyyours.com
Karin King                                                www.maverickbeads.blogspot.ca
Mary K. McGraw                                  www.mkaymac.blogspot.com
Mandi Ainsworth                                 www.beadcircle.com
Jasvanti Patel                                         http://jewelrybyjasvanti.blogspot.com
Donna Conklin                                       www.PrimaDonnaBeads.com
Karen Jones                                            http://offthetopcreations.blogspot.ca/
Lori Finney                                              www.lori-finney.blogspot.ca
Sheila Davis                                             http://www.stonedesignsbysheila.blogspot.com/
Sabine Dittrich                                       www.perlendschungel.blogspot.com
Helen Simon                                           http://helensharvest.blogspot.com/
Nicole Valentine Rimmer                  www.nvalentine.blogspot.com
Marge Beebe                                         www.rockcreekcreations.blogspot.com
Michelle McCarthy                              Www.fireflydesignstudio.blogspot.com
Chandra Merod                                    www.Junipergoods.blogspot.com
Nancy Olliver                                          http://nancyolliver.com/blog/
Alison Sachs                                            http://beadsbyearthtones.blogspot.com/
Kay Mallery                                             www.kaymreflections.blogspot.com
Beth Petricoin                                        http://createmyworlddesigns.blogspot.com/
Marta Grabalowska                             http://galeriakota.blogspot.com/
Clare Etheridge                                     http://www.catseatdogs.com
Heather Marston                                 http://cswdesignsbyhehe.blogspot.com
Ann Rishell                                              Http://mycriticaleye.com
Cece Cormier                                         http://www.thebeadingyogini.com/
Shannon German                                 www.Missficklemediacom.blogspot.com
Mary Ellen Merrigan                           http://www.maryellenbeads.com
Cheryl Brown                                         www.dragonflybeads.ca
Mary Hicks                                              http://uptwnsh-fallingintothesky.blogspot.com/
Judy Robinson                                       http://judyrobinsondesigns.com
Danielle Kelley                                       http://imbuethemuse.blogspot.com/
Cate van Alphen                                   http://fulgorine.wordpress.com/
Patricia Buchanan                                 www.braceletstoo.artfire.com
Billi R.S. Rothove                                   http://www.billi-rs-rothove.blogspot.com
Laura Blanck                                           www.laurablanck.blogspot.com
Pam Traub                                               http://www.klassyjoolz.blogspot.com
Fay Wolfenden                                     www.torchfairy.blogspot.com
Kristi Harrison                                        http://kristibasket-itsanewday.blogspot.com/
Karen Martinez                                     http://fairiesmarket.blogspot.com/
Sarah Singer                                           http://singingsongsofsixpence.blogspot.co.uk
Megan Tillery                                         http://cherryonion.wordpress.com/
Dana James                                            www.danasjewelrydesign.blogspot.com
Rachel Stewart                                      www.bluefinchjewelry.blogspot.com
Valerie Cook                                           www.kimisjewelryandgifts.blogspot.com
Debra Gibson                                         http://debrasheart.blogspot.com/
Pat Haight                                                http://wigglebuttblog.blogspot.com/
Rachel Stanley                                       www.2catchahummingbird.blogspot.com
Sandra Pendragon                               www.SandraPendragon.blogspot.com
Anja Schultz                                            www.Anjas-perlenwelt.blogspot.de
Sharon Driscoll                                       www.sharondriscoll.blogspot.com
Lecia Woessner                                     https://www.copperroses.blogspot.com
Kitty Durmaj                                           www.perlesandlife.blogspot.com
Donetta Farrington                              http://simplygorgeous-donetta.blogspot.com/
Bonnie Coursolle                                  http://jaspersgems.blogspot.ca/
Laurie Wirth                                            www.mermaidtreasuresart.blogspot.com
Lori Callahan                                           www.Dancingwireandbeads/blogspot.com
B.R. Kuhlman                                         www.mixedmayhemstudios.com
Karin Grosset Grange                         http://ginkgoetcoquelicot.blogspot.fr
Rebekah Payne                                     http://www.treewingsstudio.com/
Lori Bowring Michaud                         http://artfullyornamental.blogspot.com
Jael Thorp                                                http://jaelsjewels.blogspot.com/
Patty Woodland                                    http://brokenteepee.com
Eleanor Burian-Mohr                          http://cornerstoregoddessjewelry.blogspot.com/
Susanna Lehto                                       www.othellehto.blogspot.fi
June Butt                                                 http://www.onewhiteswan.blogspot.co.nz/
Melissa Muir                                          http://Design.kcjewelbox.com
Laney Mead                                           http://laney-izzybeads.blogspot.co.uk/
Tamera Norris                                        www.beadsinspireme.com
Andrea Trank                                         www.heavenlanecreations.com
Catharine Temaluru                            http://ienmaginationsjewelry.wordpress.com
Marie Covert                                          http://thistledown-and-swaddlings.blogspot.com/
Valerie Tilghman                                   www.Artjewelzdimensions.blogspot.com
Jean Baldridge Yates                           http://prettykittydogmoonjewelry.blogspot.com/
Sierra Barrett                                         www.Giraffecanhas.wordpress.com
Patricia Robitaille                                  http://www.banglesandbrew.blogspot.com/
Leanne Loftus                                        www.firstimpressiondesign.blogspot.com
Sally Russick                                            http://thestudiosublime.com
Mallory Hoffman                                  http://rosebud101-fortheloveofbeads.blogspot.com/
Dini Bruinsma                                         www.angazabychanges.blogspot.nl
Marde Lowe                                           www.fancimar.com
Hannah Annear                                     www.quirkyhannah.wordpress.com
Patty Johnson                                        http://patricialjohnsonglassart.blogspot.com/
Valerie Norton                                      www.hot-fused-glass.com
Ann Sherwood                                      http://ann-sherwood.blogspot.com/
Staci Smith                                              www.stacilouiseoriginals.com
Jen Purple                                               www.purplefishstudio.blogspot.com
Ruth Szapa                                              www.trulytrudi.blogspot.com
CJ Bauschka                                            www.Fool4Jewels.blogspot.com
Karla Morgan                                         www.texaspepperjams.blogspot.com
Suz Hamel                                               http://cardandjewelrycorner.blogspot.com/
Laura Guenther                                    www.Blueantiquities.blogspot.com
Elisabeth Auld                                        www.beadsforbusygals.com
Martha Aleo                                           www.ornamento.wordpress.com
Shiraz Biggie                                           www.secretsongdesigns.blogspot.com
Brendalee Astells                                    www.silverbee.ca
Heather d’Entremont                             http://frugalmacdougall.wordpress.com
Kelly Morgan                                          www.silverparrotdesigns.blogspot.com
Lesley Lane                                             http://phoebedreamsjewellery.blogspot.co.uk/
Lori Blanchard                                        www.alainnjewelry.wordpress.com
Susan Kennedy                                     www.suebeads.blogspot.com
Rain Hannah                                           http://honeyandollie.com
Janice Warden Bergeron                   http://thejewelryroom.blogspot.ca/
Melissa Packer                                      www.melissascheapfrills.com
Jana Haverty                                          http://handlcreations.blogspot.com/
Cindy Ritchie                                          http://mooseriverglass.blogspot.com/
Marianne Baxter                                  www.simplyseablimejewelery.blogspot.com
Denise McCabe                                     www.cabewoman.blogspot.com
Sharon Palac                                           www.sharonsjewelrygarden.blogspot.com
Cathy Buckley                                        www.cathybuckleycatsmeow.blogspot.com
Jennifer Van Horn                                http://jennifersjewelsandjunk.blogspot.com/
Crystal Rector                                        Www.autumnskyadornments.com/blog
Susan Walls                                             http://susansartcircus.com/blog
Penny Neville                                        http://copperpennydesigns.blogspot.com
Lisa Cone                                                 http://inspiredadornments.blogspot.com/
Heather Davis                                        http://www.blissfulgardenbeads.com/blog
Michelle Escano                                    www.cabbycaft.blogspot.com
Carmen Lau                                            www.tlemake.blogspot.com
Janet Borzecki                                       www.jaybeejewelry.blogspot.com
Rhonda Hagerman                               http://mustardseedbeads.blogspot.com/
Katrina Taylor                                         www.iwannagoout.wordpress.com
Molly Alexander                                   http://beautifullybrokenme.blogspot.com
Nicole Rennell                                       www.nicolerennell.com/blog
Chris McGilvery                                     www.mmmomentos.blogspot.com
Erin Prais-Hintz                                      http://treasures-found.blogspot.com
Dawn Williams                                       www.sadiejewelrydesign.blogspot.com
Kate Dufour                                            https://mixfolios.wordpress.com/
Robin Lynne Showstack                     http://heartsdesiresjewelryforyou.blogspot.com/
Elizabeth Hodges                                  www.thewhisperingseas.blogspot.com
Cynthia Tucker                                      www.seaofglassbeads.blogspot.com
Adlinah Kamsir                                      http://dreamstruckdesigns.blogspot.sg/
Stephanie Price                                     http://www.stephaniepricedesigns.wordpress.com
Carol Dillman                                          http://dillmansdallies.blogspot.com/
Christine Hansen                                  http://intuitivesparks.blogspot.com/
Andrea Frank                                         http://andreajewelry.blogspot.com
Tracy Stillman                                         www.beadtrilogy.com
Denise Petersen                                   www.reinventedobjects.blogspot.com
Veronica Campos-Hallstrom                 www.clubcreativestudio.com/blog
Madonna Liza Cruz-Comia                http://crazy-notions.blogspot.com
Suzann Sladcik Wilson                        www.BeadphoriaBlog.com
Terri Gauthier                                        http://terrisbloomingideas.blogspot.com
Alicia Marinache                                   http://www.allprettythings.ca
Barbara Bechtel                                    http://secondsurf.com
Hannah Rosner                                     http://goodrivergallery.blogspot.com
Keren von Hoeren                                www.creativeideen.de
Lea Avroch                                              http://lajewelrydesign.blogspot.com/
Maire Dodd                                            http://mairedodd.blogspot.com/

AJE Component of the Month – April Reveal

This month’s components for the AJE challenge were ceramic buttons made by yours truly which could be used alone or as clasps. I love button closures…it goes back to my childhood when my seamstress Grandmother used to make clothes for me that were invariably finished with the cutest fabric covered shank buttons with little brass hooks or embroidered loops. They’ve long been used for jewellery too and I started making them myself in metal clay early last year so, when I was looking for inspiration for this months COM, and came across my moulds I decided to make some up in clay.

The button I chose to use myself is a little round stoneware one with a shell imprint and one of my favourite rustic glazes in a lovely earthy cream with blue green marbling.



I also love ocean inspired jewellery and I knew I had some art beads that would work well with the clasp as well as a matching set of my own stoneware beads in the same glaze plus a lovely sea green. I’ve long been hoarding one of Karen’s little whale beads and this was the perfect occasion to use it along with a cute lamp worked urchin bead from Caroline and a lamp worked soda bead from Jan Onipenco of Molten Mayhem. I also picked out some of my own bronze discs to add some texture and contrast.

I’ve made these up into a bracelet by simply stringing them on waxed Linen with seed bead spacers and finishing off with one of my bronze shell charms and a ceramic charm made with one of Caroline’s tiny birds. I’ve named it ‘Nantucket
Sound’ – I’ve never been there but from what I’ve read it just seemed
appropriate.

I really like how this has come together and I think the button closure gives it a sense of continuity.

Please use the links below to see what the rest of the AJE team and our guests have created with the button closures they were given…


Guests
Johana Nunez
Leah Curtis
Perri Jackson

AJE Team
 Lesley Watt
Keirsten GIles
Caroline Dewison
Rebekah Payne
Jenny Davies-Reazor
Jen Cameron
Diana Ptaszynski
Kristen Stevens
Francesca Watson
Melissa Meman
Linda Landig
Sue Kennedy

Lesley



BEADFEST Bound…!

Since I’ve been part of the online beading community I’ve become friends with many artists and designers from the USA and every year I suffer from acute attacks of envy when they all start preparing to show at or visit BEADFEST in Philadelphia. By comparison with most UK shows this event is HUGE and unlike most UK shows attracts large numbers of artisan bead makers for the three day expo. Not only that – over five days there are literally dozens upon dozens of workshops covering just about every aspect of jewellery making you might wish to try your hand at.

Well this year there will be no envy and no living vicariously through other people’s photos because, thanks to some of my wonderful friends and AJE team mates I will be heading out to the USA on 18th August for a two week trip which will include BEADFEST. I am actually going to be there in person and I cannot begin to tell you how excited this makes me!!!

I can’t thank these guys enough for their generosity in hosting me and helping me organise this trip…

AJE Beadfesters Susan Kennedy, Linda Landig, (Genea Crivello-Knable
photo-bombing), Karen Totten, Jennifer Stout-Cameron, Jenny
Davies-Reazor and Diana Ptaszynski

Here’s a sneak peek at just a few of the things I have to look forward to including my hosts doing what they do best…

Diana’s Suburban Girl booth from Beadfest 2013

And some of her lovely beads…

Jenny and her booth…

And her fabulous Goddess pendants…I wonder if she has one that gossips…?


Jen at her Glass Addictions booth…

And her amazing “Nightmare Insomnia’ beads…

And here’s a selection of gorgeous goodies from some more artisan bead makers…clockwise from the left Joan Miller Porcelain, Staci-Louise Smith – SL Artisan Accents, Genea Crivello-Kable – Genea Beads and Karen Totten – Starry Road Studio.

Green Girl Studios are most definitely on my shopping list…but then who isn’t!

Mmmmmm – pretty!

I think there may also be one or two more of my beady friends and customers around that I might just be able to catch up with in person – how fantastic is that…?! And of course, I will be taking a ‘few’ of my own beads with me too – you can’t go visiting friends and not take gifts can you!

Many thanks to Diana, Jenny and Jen for the photographs

I’m sure you’ll hear more from me about this is the coming weeks as I try not to bore everyone to death in my excitement. Now I need to go and pin a calendar on the wall and start crossing the days off…If you’re going to BEADFEST I look forward to seeing you there!

Lesley

Shop Update

I’m having a little shop update tonight with new bronze and ceramic pieces before I take a short break to work on my Bead Soup and a few other projects. Pop by and take a look at THEA Elements

Cheers.


Lesley

Spring Fever Design Challenge Reveal

Today’s the day we finally get to see what everyone has made with the
beads they received as part of our ‘Spring Fever’ design challenge. To
recap, all the participants were sent a surprise package containing one
of my flower focal sets, one of Caroline’s bird focal sets and a length of sari silk courtesy of Claire from Smitten Beads.
These have now been turned into pieces of jewellery and I for one can’t
wait to see what they’ve become. But first I have to share with you my
own designs…

As always I left this until pretty much the last minute and very stupidly forgot to take pictures of my individual beads…how many times is that now…?

Anyway, for my first piece I decided to work with Caroline’s focal pendant set of a pretty china painted bird and leaf. I started by trying to think of a way to use them independently rather than the set they came as but they really are made for other and look so good together I decided to just go with it. I wired the bird onto a large disc bead to act as a kind of bird table and wired another loop underneath. To this I added the leaf element together with one of my bronze flower charms and some Czech glass flower dangles.

I wanted this to be a long necklace and my natural instinct for this style is to let the focal group do the work and keep the rest very simple but as the host just using a chain for a challenge piece felt like a bit of a cop out so some sort of embellishment was needed. In the end I decided on purple Irish linen woven through the chain and threaded with pearly seed beads.

I love the finished look – subtle and elegant but a bit more eye catching than chain alone would be.

The necklace is completed with hand forged brass ‘S’ clasp and a couple more Czech glass dangles.

Ceramic bird and lead focal beads by Caroline Dewison, Purple disc bead by www.marlasmud.etsy.com, Brass chain, Irish linen and pearlised seed beads from Smitten Beads
Because we put extra sets up for the challenge I didn’t actually get one of my own focals from the original batch and decided I would take something from my stock. Of course, by the time I got around to it I didn’t have a lot to choose from so my focal is more neutral in colour than the other pieces and I was  concerned that it looks a bit more autumnal than spring like. However, since any spring flower that wants to blossom in my garden this year has had to battle it’s way through the untended remnants of last autumn, it doesn’t seem wholly inappropriate…!

Another of Caroline’s birds has found it’s way into this necklace along with one of my bronze flower connectors which acts as a focal clasp.

 The focal elements are accented with ivory lampwork glass, Czech glass and rustic seed beads. I love the earthiness of this  and think it could actually be worn at any time of year.

Ceramic focal, bronze connector and clasp by me THEA Elements, Ceramic bird bead by  Caroline Dewison, ampwork beads by Pebble Dreams, Seed beads from Smitten Beads

I also ran out of Sari silk but I was determined to use all the elements of the challenge so raided my own silk stash to find something suitable. I couldn’t find any sari silk that fitted anything like a spring palette so I picked some pretty hand dyed silk strings instead and used these to create some simple macrame wrapped bangles…

As you can see, I have quite a stash of Caroline’s bird beads so I sat a couple of these in the centre of hoops of 14gauge bronze wire. Starting from the centre and working outwards I worked a square knot around size 5/6 seed beads.

The wire hoop is connected with simple loops and the silk strings tied of and left as tails to give bangles with a fresh fun look… I think I could get addicted to making these!

Hand dyed silk strings by Diane Turton, Ceramic birds by Caroline Dewison

So there you are then…I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing how this challenge inspired me. I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has taken part in this challenge and made it so much fun, and to Caroline and Claire for joining me to make it happen in the first place. I hope now you’ll join me on the blog hop to see the rest of the wonderful designs…just click on the links below to see more.

All these pieces will be available in my Etsy shop shortly but please let me know if you are interested.

Enjoy!

Caroline Dewison – http://www.blueberribeads.co.uk 
Lori Bowring Michaud – http://artfullyornamental.blogspot.com/
Erin Prais – Hintz – http://treasures-found.blogspot.co.uk/

Lesley

New Earring Tutorial…

I’ve just added a tutorial for these earrings to my tutorial page – (see tab at the top of this page) – they’re quick and easy to make and very light and comfortable to wear and perfect for spring and summer.

Lampwork beads from Mermaid Glass

Enjoy!


Lesley

AJE Component of the Month – March Reveal

Time for another AJE reveal and the component we all had to work with this month was a fantastic ceramic Luna Moth made by the lovely Caroline of Blueberri Beads…isn’t it stunning?

I have to say I was a little intimidated by this lovely fella as he is rather large and I was terrified throughout that I was going to drop and break him. Now, he is obviously intended for a necklace…unless you’re really into statement earrings and have very strong ears – and I decided that for me it needed to be a short one, again for safety reasons.

At first when I starting looking for accents I was struggling to come up with anything that seemed to either complement or match but, after a good rummage I found this lovely beaded bead by Malin De Koning…

The purples and golds matched my moth perfectly and I liked the way the blue beads added a little pop of contrasting colour so I decided to try and build on that. Eventually I found a selection of art beads I liked and wired them in bronze to form to different but hopefully complementary sections.

Here you can see ceramic beads from Marsha Neal, polymer clay beads from Rebekah Payne and one of my own patinated bronze rings and hooks. I also found some lovely hand dyed ribbon strings from Sowzere Designs in just the right colours which I plaited and added to the linked elements to complete the necklace – not the easiest piece to photograph but here it is…

I wasn’t sure about how the lovely turquoise flower sat at first but it’s kind of growing on me so I’ve it as is…what do you think?

I hope Caroline thinks I’ve done her component justice and I can’t wait to see what everyone else had made with theirs. You can join me on our little blog hop using the links below.

Guest

The AJE Team
Caroline Dewison – http://www.blueberribeads.co.uk 
Diana Ptaszynski – http://www.suburbangirlstudio.com
Jenny Davies-Reazor – http://www.jdaviesreazor.com/blog
Rebekah Payne – www.treewingsstudio.com
Lesley

Soup’s up – Double Helpings…

The Bead Soup I sent to my BSBP partner Maryse Fritzsch-Thillens in Luxembourg has arrived and I’ve received my mix from her so now I can reveal all…

Maryse told me she had never worked with ceramic jewellery components so I decided to build my soup around that to give her a little bit of a challenge. She also said that she loved flowers, sea greens and muted colour palettes so, after a little thinking I came up with a ‘Seaside Daisy’ collection…


The ceramic focal, bead set and bronze clay heart toggle clasp are my own creations and the bronze wire spiral connectors and twisted wire jump rings were hand made by Lisa Quinn. The sea green crystals and hand dyed chiffon are from Smitten Beads and the little bicone beads are Czech glass but I can’t remember where I got them from.

I really like this mix as it reminds me of walking along the south west coastal path where I
live in Dorset with its sandstone cliffs, deep green sea and abundance of
wild flowers…

And now to the soup mix I received from Maryse – oh boy is it beautiful..? Well here it is see for yourselves…

Just look at this fabulous selection of lampwork all made by Maryse herself…isn’t it glorious! I am totally in love with those little organic rocks lower left and as for the beautiful silver focal and clasp…how spoilt am I!

Now anyone who knows me will be aware that I am more than a little infatuated with the ocean and beach (clue in the picture above) as a source of inspiration for my work. So I am absolutely delighted that Maryse’s soup gives more than a passing nod to that theme in both it’s colour and texture. In fact, I think she may secretly have been in England looking out over the Dorset coastline when she made some of these beads…


www.cotch.net
http://www.bbc.co.uk/dorset/content/image_galleries/coast_gallery.shtml?10

Happy with my soup..? you betcha! I already have some ideas buzzing around in my head and can’t wait to clear the decks and sit down to play. Maryse, thank you so much for your wonderful gift and your generosity – If you find the soup I sent you half as inspiring I will be very happy.

See you back here for the big reveal on May 3rd.

Lesley

Bead Soup off to Luxembourg…

For this year’s Bead Soup Blog Party I have been partnered with Maryse Fritzsch-Thillens of Glass Bead Art, a very talented lampworker from Luxembourg. I’ve just sent my soup parcel off to Maryse so I obviously can’t show you it in all it’s glory but here’s a little tease just to get you thinking…

I made most of this mix myself so I do hope she likes it…

Maryse makes the most wonderful organic beads and I can’t wait to get my parcel from Luxembourg and see what she’s sent me. If they’re half as beautiful as these examples of her work I’ll be more than happy…

You can see more of Maryse’s work at her Etsy shop and find out more about her from her blog.

Once my parcel has arrived at its destination I’ll be back to show you what I sent Maryse and maybe give you a peek at the beads I received before I start working with them.

See you then.

Lesley

Spring Fever Design Challenge

It’s been a pretty tough winter for many of us in all corners of the globe including incredible storms and floods here in the UK and severe and lengthy snowfall in the US and Canada. I usually like the cooler months but even I’ve had enough now and can’t wait for the arrival of spring. So I had a little chat with my mate Caroline from Blueberri beads and we decided it was time to host a ‘Spring Fever’ Design Challenge to help nudge it along it’s way. This is your chance to get some beautiful spring themed beads at a great price and
then show us what you can do with them at our blog hop.

Participants in the challenge will each receive one of these colourful layered ceramic flower focal and accent bead sets made by me

And an adorable painted bird ceramic bead set from Caroline

I’m also delighted that the lovely Claire Braunbarth of Smitten Beads is joining us for this challenge and is contributing these gorgeous lengths of sari silk.

I’m sure you’ll agree with me that these are pretty cool challenge packs and they’ll be available at a cost of £12 GBP plus shipping (£2.50 GBP UK/ £3.75 GBP Overseas) per set to 20
lucky people who will be randomly selected from their comments on this post and Caroline’s challenge post. If you win a spot in the challenge you will receive a surprise package containing one flower focal set, one bird bead set and a length of sari silk which you can use with beads from your own
stash to create as many pieces as you like and then join us for the blog
hop on Wednesday 16th April.

So, do you fancy trying your luck..? silly question – of course you do…! 
All you have to do to enter is comment on this post or on Caroline’s challenge blog post but please note – you must be willing to take part in the blog hop on Wednesday 16th April. There are are lots of ways you can increase your chances
of winning too… do any of the following and leave an additional comment each time and you will get an extra entry for each one:
Don’t forget to leave a separate comment for each method to maximise your chances though!

The draw will close at 8pm GMT on Wednesday 26th February
and I will randomly select and announce the winners on Friday 28th February. Winners will be sent an e mail asking them to forward payment in Great British Pounds to my Paypal address – payments should be made as quickly as
possible to ensure beads are shipped in good time. We will aim to have all packs shipped by Monday 10th March which will allow five plus weeks for delivery and design.

It’s as simple as that so good luck and I’ll see you back here on the 28th and hope you’ll be with us for the big reveal.

Oh, and I’ll also be adding some similar pieces to my shop in the near future so watch out for announcements about that.

Lesley

AJE Component of the Month Reveal – January

January brought with it another opportunity to work with a wonderful component designed by one of the AJE team  – this time a beautiful Polymer Clay aspiration focal from the lovely Jenny Davies Reazor. Jenny created the frames for these pieces by making a mould from an old buckle. She then a added dictionary excerpts which she sealed with resin.

The word Jenny chose for me was ‘explore’ to reflect my current journey in the ceramic clay world – most approriate… and the design I received was the burgundy/blue one at the bottom left of the picture.

I love the ornate style of Jenny’s piece but it wasn’t a style I was used to working with so I was unsure as to where to start – It had holes at each corner so I was thinking a bracelet was the way to go… To get the ball rolling I pulled out some beads in the same colour palette and left them on my desk while I went off to do something else and ponder.

A couple of days later I was trying to tidy up the studio and while shuffling the beads arrange I had an idea and started playing to see if it would work. An hour later this is what I had…

I was not entirely sure about it as it’s not like anything I’ve designed before but I do find it pleasing so I’ve stuck with it. The faceted bronze barrels and vintage Czech glass paired with tiny blue/grey frosted rounds.

The down side of just going with an idea in this way was that I hadn’t thought through the finishing of the piece and having been through everything in my clasp collection I had nothing that I felt would complete the bracelet satisfactorily. In the end I decided it need a bespoke bronze clasp but as I don’t have any other bronze ready to fire I haven’t been able to finish it so my design is incomplete. But I can show you how it looks at the moment…

I decided to make a mould from Jenny’s focal and replicate the frame as a toggle clasp. Once this is fired I’ll try to patinate it to match the focal – maybe in one colour maybe multiples, I’m not sure yet.

Neither am I sure how I’m going to do the bar element yet but I’m thinking maybe wire wrapped with some of the frosted beads…we’ll have to see.

Hopefully my ideas will work and I’ll post the finished piece once it’s done. In the meantimeyou can see what the rest of the AJE team and out guest made using the links below.
Lesley


AJE Component of the Month – December Reveal

Welcome to another AJE Component of the Month reveal which is a few days late as this is actually the last of the 2013 challenges. The components for December were these gorgeous organic swirl beads intricately decorated with tiny dots from Rebekah of Tree Wings Studio. I chose one in russet red like the one in the centre of this picture.

What with everything that goes on it December I didn’t actually start my design until right at the last minute so I had to come up with an idea that was going to work first time. While I was pondering what to do I was staring out of the studio window from where I can see a bit of the woodland that surrounds the area. The sky was that heavy pinky grey colour that promises rain (we’ve already had a ton of the stuff), the branches of the bare tree were stark against the backdrop and a few birds sat huddled together against the elements.

The earthy tones of Rebekah’s seemed to work with this image so I starting picking out some beads that I thought would work with the theme. I settled on a little grey bird by fellow AJE team mate Caroline Dewison along with some Czech glass flower beads. I made a focal pendant by wiring the focal and bird bead together with stainless steel wire and a russet crystal accent bead and hanging it from an antiqued silver ring. I wire wrapped the flower beads and added these to a length of chain attached to the bottom of the focal.

I was really happy with this and finished the necklace very simply by adding a length of leather lacing from Smitten Beads wrapped with more stainless steel wire. The necklace is extra long and slips over the head without the need of a clasp – very casual and very easy to wear.

I love the contrast of the flower beads – they give a watery effect to the piece and the stainless steel has that rain grey feel. I think it captures those wintry colours really well. What do you think….?

To see what the rest of the AJE team and our guests have designed with their component just click on the links below.

Happy hopping!
Lesley

Guest Designers:
Ann – Bead
Love
Melissa – Bead Recipes


AJE Team:
Karen – Starry Road Studio
Kristen – My Bead Journey
Susan – Sue
Beads
Rebekah – Tree Wings Studio
Caroline – BlueberriBeads

Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas…

It’s been a very strange run up to Christmas for me this year…

Having been nursing a broken ankle since early November I haven’t done most of the things I would normally do in preparation for the festive season. On the upside I didn’t even have to consider braving Bricks and Mortar shops – that would just have been silly however, not getting out and about much and being preoccupied with the healing of my ankle has also meant that Christmas spirit has been a bit thin on the ground.

Not any more though – I had my cast removed last Wednesday and replaced with a fracture boot which means I can walk again – Yay! I am also able to walk without the boot although it’s rather stiff and a little sore but I’m doing my exercises and it’s improving every day.

This is a great relief because I’ve been invited to spend Christmas with friends in Edinburgh and I was dreading the travelling if I’d still been in a full cast, but now I am busy getting myself together ready to fly up there on Monday and I’m so excited I can’t wait!

Edinburgh Castle

All the time I’ve had on my hands has not gone to waste though and I have a head full of all sorts of bead and jewellery ideas that I’m eager to get to work on after my break…so much time to make up.

Until then though I would like to say a very big thank you to all my friends, customers and followers who’ve supported me through the good and the bad this past year. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season however you spend it and look forward to seeing you back here before the new year.

Take care and have fun!

Lesley

AJE October Component of the Month Reveal

The components for our regular monthly challenge at AJE (Art Jewelry Elelments) this month were these lovely copper clay Ammonite cuffs by
Kristi Bowman – Gruel…
 
This is the piece I got to work with – so beautifully detailed…

Because the cuffs are quite large and fairly weighty I felt the bracelet element needed some heft to it for balance so lampwork beads seemd the way to go. While rummaging for the right beads I came across some chunky sections of chain mail which I’d taken off another piece with a patina that was a perfect match for the focal.

 I wanted to use earthy tones to complement the ancient theme of the ammonites so picked out some gorgeous disc beads by Kaz Baildon with a stone coloured base with flashes of purples, teals and blues.


The structure of the bracelet is fairly simple with the beads wire wrapped to attach them to the chain and focal. To finish of I added one of my own bronze ammonites and some pretty Czech glass charms which pick out the colours in the lampwork beads perfectly.
And here you have the finished piece – quite subtle with Kristi’s lovely focal as the very striking centrepiece.
 

To see what the rest of the team and out guest designers did with their components just click on the links below….

Guests

AJE Team Members

 

Lesley

Exciting Times…

Well here we are on a bright and sunny Autumn Saturday morning and I find myself with a little time to catch up with some blogging. My posts have been a bit few and far between of late for which I apologise…I have so much on my to do list at the moment it’s hard to fit everything in but, I must try.

It’s almost 4 months since I moved into the new studio and I can safely say getting that done has proved to be one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. It’s just so liberating to have the space to work on different projects and in different mediums concurrently. I have a low boredom threshold so I’m much more productive when I have several things on the go and there is so much cross pollination that my head is buzzing with ideas. I’m even thinking of abandoning my note book and using one of the big blank walls for writing my ideas down…creative graffiti if you like!

My studio Manager Cleo at her work station…

 If you follow me on Facebook or the Art Jewelry Elements blog you might have seen my debut ceramic pieces earlier this week. I’ve wanted to have a go at this for ages but was limited by space and so I thought, a low temperature kiln. But my AJE team mates put me right on this and persuaded me to give it a go and I’m so glad I did – it’s just so much fun and I’m completely hooked and now want to try so many things in this medium…

First firing of ceramic beads…

Because my kiln limits me to low fire clays I went a bit mad and splurged on a new higher temperature one that will allow me to work with porcelain and stoneware and so I’ve been told, get some really exciting glaze effects. Even better – it comes with an enameling collar so that’s another technique I can do more with. Only problem is I have to wait 2 weeks for it to ship from the US which is going to drive me nuts!

Paragon Caldera A

I’ve also been doing a bit more traditional metalwork lately, practising my long neglected soldering skills and trying out some fold forming…

Fold formed earrings available in my ETSY shop

You’ll probably have seen that I got myself set up for etching a few months ago too and that’s also so much fun with so many possibilities.

Etched copper vintage illustration pendants

So what you may ask, am I going to do with all these new found skills. Well as I mentioned I get bored easily and need variety to keep me focused so I’d really like to do more original and one off work with less reliance on commercial tools. I will of course be continuing with my metal clay work but will be selling other mediums alongside it and am hoping to come up with some combined offerings too. And of course, I want this to feed through to my jewellery design…I’ve not done a lot of that lately either but it would great to have mixed media pieces with everything made by me.

Recent bronze component work…

It’s very early days yet but I’m very excited about the possibilities that lie ahead and I’m looking forward to having something to share with you here.

For now though I hope you have a great weekend in the offing with lots of creativity in the mix…

See you soon,

Lesley

Autumn Design Challenge Reveal

Welcome to the Autumn Design Challenge and Blog Hop hosted by myself and Caroline Dewison of Blueberri Beads. Today’s participants will be showcasing designs made with a selection of THEA Elements and Blueberri Beads, beads and components that Caroline and I liberated from our own beads boxes and of course, we are playing along too.

So then, this is the set of Caroline’s beads I kept for myself – a lovely chocolate brown puffy heart and co-ordinating beads in shades of pecan and pistachio…

 

I wanted to pull the heart pendant out of the group and find a bronze component to complement it and since the aim of the challenge was to use our older components I had to have a good rummage in my rather large collection that is a mish-mash of things that may be a bit flawed, a little bit fugly, experiments that didn’t quite work first time around and quite frankly – some things that I have no idea as to why they are there!

I had a vague notion about doing something layered and in a single colour and eventually dug out a couple of text connectors I made way back last year and rejected because once oxidised, the text wasn’t really clear enough against the textured background. It occurred to me that if I clean them up and just left the patina
around the wording they might be OK… why I didn’t think this at the
time I don’t know…maybe I did and just got distracted.

The text comes from one of my favourite poems “He wishes for the cloths of heaven” by W. B Yeats…

Had I the heaven’s embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim
and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,

I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

This seemed an appropriate sentiment to combine with a heart so I cleaned one up and it did indeed come up sparkling so I attached it with linen cord so that it would act as a kind of bail. I made a beaded bronze chain with some gorgeous Czech glass beads that have a gorgeous matte bronze sheen (hard to see here but they look like rough Pyrite nougats) and finished it off with a bronze wire clasp and this is how it finished up…


I like the fact that it seems to feel quite delicate but at the same time has a sense of solidity…

So that left me with the set of beads…I was thinking that a bracelet was the way to go but I couldn’t find any of my own pieces that seemed to work well for that. What I did find was a couple of last seasons leaf clasps that I thought I could maybe put to a new use. As one was green and the other orange I patinated them both in an antique bronze and strung them on waxed linen with the beads along with one of Caroline’s birds and a matching bead I just happened to have in my art bead stash.

I had a hank of tiny aged seed beads that were a perfect colour match so I threaded strands of these through the clasps and plaited them together to create a loose rope. I finished off with brass bead caps and another bronze wire clasp.

The result is a lovely soft autumn hued necklace and I think the leaves look pretty good as connectors…

I had just two ceramic beads left which obviously meant the making of a pair of earrings…I found a couple of flat flower discs and dapped then into bead caps then and added a pair of dagger charms to hang from the bottom. Pretty simple but effective none the less…

So that’s my offering and I hope you like the designs and will join me in visiting all the other participants using the links below… I can’t wait to see what everyone’s done. Many thanks to everyone who has taken part in this challenge and of course to Caroline for hosting with me and providing such lovely beads to work with.

 

Janet Bocciardi –
http://www.honeyfromthebee.com/

Pine Ridge
treasures – http://www.gratefulartist.blogspot.com

Melissa Trudinger –
http://beadrecipes.wordpress.com/

Lesley










AJE Component of the Month Reveal – September

Time for another little tour around the blogs of the AJE team members and guests to see what they’ve done with this months component – my own bursting seed pods…
Well the first thing you’ll notice is that the component I’ve used isn’t one of the colourful ones pictured here. When I made these I had an idea in my head for using two caps to create some sort of collar necklace but, by the time I got around to making it much later things had changed. I’d been busy making new autumn stock for the shop and fallen in love with a chunky pine cone pendant which was demanding to be used.
 Part of the attraction of this piece was the natural kiln produced patina and I decided the pod needed to match and so my design was driven towards a very earthy and muted (even for me) palette. I used the pod to cap a ceramic bead from AJE team mate Diana and attached this to the pine cone to create a focal pendant.

I mixed some more of Diana’s beads with some carved ebony beads that I have a passion for and accented them with tiny brass spacers that echo the texture of the pine cone. On one side I added one of my bronze acorn caps and on the other one of LeAnn Weih‘s gorgeous ceramic birds. The beads are strung on waxed linen attached to a couple of textured bronze ring connectors. and finished with a hand forged bronze wire clasp.

I was thinking of using some sari silk at the back but whilst I was rummaging I came across this lovely printed cotton ribbon from Smitten Beads and it was such a perfect match I decided to go with that instead – I really like the folksy feel it gives. I used a double thickness and a simple capped rivet to join the ends on the underside at the back.

And this is the finished design…

Since the Beatles song ‘Norwegian Wood’ just happened to come on the radio as I was finishing the piece I took it as a sign and decided to make that the name.

I hope you like my design – looking back on the past few COM’s I have noticed a certain similarity in my designs so I’ll have to try and shake it up a bit next time…but I’m happy with this one.

To see what everyone else has done with their components just use the links below to visit their blogs:

Guest designers:

Erin Prais-Hintz – Tesori Trovati
Cate – Fulgorine
Claire Lockwood – Something To Do With Your Hands

AJE team

Jennifer Cameron

Jenny Davies-Reazor
Francesca Watson
Melissa Meman
Linda Landig
Susan Kennedy
Rebekah Payne
Caroline Dewison
Lesley Watt                 You are here!

Have fun!

Lesley