Category Archives: Design Challenges

Brown and Crystal bracelet

Brown and Crystal Bracelet. Image copyright © Rose Rushbrooke.

This is a piece I made during June Huber’s Masterclass at the 2014 Bead & Button Show in Milwaukee, WI.

Seed beads and fire polish crystals, finished with a slide clasp. Modified right angle weave – an extremely useful technique.

The bracelet is 7 inches long from end to end.

Braided Coral Bracelet

Braided coral bracelet. Beadwork - square stitch, fringing, and stringing. Image copyright © Rose Rushbrooke.

Braided Coral Bracelet. A second piece made from the box of beads from the 2014 TOHO design challenge. This piece came together so quickly I could hardly believe it. Sometimes it happens this way – not often enough!

This is what it looks like opened up:

Flat view of Stone Tile Superduo Clasp Bracelet. Image copyright © Rose Rushbrooke.

Very pretty and delicate. And I loved how the colours worked.

TOHO 2014 Challenge

Fuchsia Necklace by Rose Rushbrooke

Fuchsia Necklace by Rose Rushbrooke

TOHO offered a box of beads at the Bead & Button show and I signed up. This is one of the pieces I made – a fuschia flower necklace. You can see what other beaders created – 2014 TOHO challenge.

Below is a closeup of the fuchsia flower.

Fuchsia flower pendant

Fuchsia flower pendant

And this is the chain and clasp.

Chain and clasp for fuchia necklace

Chain and clasp for fuchia necklace

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 – What I Made

These pieces are designed for the 2014 Bead Soup Blog Party 8 organised by Lori Anderson of Pretty Things. The reveal day is here. And these are the 2 pieces I created around the bead soup sent by Sally Russick.

Stone Tile Superduo Clasp Bracelet

Sally sent a ceramic decorative ring made by Jenny Davies-Reazor and I made it the focal of this bracelet.

The bracelet includes a tube of SuperDuo two hole beads in a really pretty stone colour, I used all of them except one! The spotted tile beads came from the stash I won from a Bead & Button magazine competition. Using peyote stitch I incorporated some brown size 8/0 picasso seed beads to make the bracelet strip. The toggle is made with the last 6 tile beads. Seriously – there are none left!

This is what it looks like laid out flat:

Flat view of Stone Tile Superduo Clasp Bracelet

Here are views from the back and top:

Back view of Stone Tile Superduo Clasp Bracelet

Top view of Stone Tile Superduo Clasp Bracelet

Close-up of Stone Tile Superduo Clasp Bracelet claspAnd a close-up of the clasp.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The bracelet is 8″ long from the tip of the toggle to the clasp, and is 1″ wide. It fits a wrist diameter of just over 7″.

She also sent a Swarovski crystal and sterling silver clasp and these shiny bronze coloured dagger beads. So I found a range of silver seed beads in different sizes and some Czech fire polish crystals and made a cubic right angle weave beaded bead necklace.

Silver and red dagger beaded bead necklace - cubic right angle weave bead stitch, made with seed beads, daggers and crystals

The necklace is designed around this Swarovski crystal and sterling silver clasp.

You can see the cubic right angle weave chain which is made with a spiral pattern of gunmetal and silver size 15/0 seed beads.

Silver and red dagger beaded bead necklace - closeup of Swarovski crystal and sterling silver clasp

Here’s a closeup of the crystals in the beaded chain.

Silver and red dagger beaded bead necklace - close up of chain

The beaded bead is made with six sections of embellished cubic right angle weave joined with dagger beads.

Silver and red dagger beaded bead necklace - close up of beaded bead

Extremely fiddly to make but worth the effort.

The necklace is 25″ long.

Go and see what Sally made out of the bead soup I sent her – The Studio Sublime.

To see more work from the many jewelry artists who joined in go to this list – Bead Soup Blog Party 8 participants.

And for fun, go see what we made for last year’s party.

Speaking with Color – Margie Deeb’s Bead & Button magazine competition

Bead and Button magazine April 2014 issue

It was very exciting to get an email from the editor of Bead & Button magazine letting me know my necklace was one of the pieces selected for Margie Deeb’s competition ‘Speaking with Color’. The winning photos are in the April 2014 issue.

Blue and copper snap clasp necklace. Beadweaving - glass spike bead, Swarovski crystals and pearls, and seed beads - image copyright © Rose Rushbrooke

Instead of the necklace fastening at the back of the neck, a secret snap clasp is used inside the focal. This necklace is made with a Czech glass spike bead surrounded with seed beads and a tiny smattering of Swarovski 2mm crystals to catch the light.

The chain is a diamond shaped stitch using seed beads, delicas, and Swarovski pearls.

Here’s a full size picture of the necklace:

Blue and copper snap clasp necklace. Beadweaving - glass spike bead, Swarovski crystals and pearls, and seed beads - image copyright © Rose Rushbrooke

The chain is approximately 25 inches long.

Here’s the clasp unsnapped.

Blue and copper snap clasp necklace unsnapped focal - image copyright © Rose Rushbrooke

I was very pleased to receive a bag of beading goodies, a book from Margie Deeb, and a year’s subscription to Bead and Button magazine. So worth making the piece.

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 – what we got

The 8th Bead Soup Blog Party is in full swing and Sally Russick and I have already exchanged soup mixes. Lori Anderson paired up the seed beaders early on and we got a head start in mailing out our packages.

This is what I sent to Sally:

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 mix

  • 3 different sizes of seed beads in various shades of blue;
  • a lovely handmade copper clasp from Patricia Healey;
  • cloisonné enamel beads in medium blue;
  • swarovski pearls in dark lapis;
  • vintage beads in various sizes and shapes, chocolate and dark blue;
  • oval shaped striped glass beads in various browns;
  • press glass star beads in browns;
  • fire polish crystal rondelles in blue and crystal;

and a handmade focal bead – an earring design from Laura McCabe’s Masterclass book.

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 focal

When the box arrived from Sally I had to stop and admire how she wrapped the packages before I tore into them.

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 - bead soup package from Sally Russick

And look at the beautiful mix she sent me:

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 - bead soup mix from Sally Russick

  • 2 flip top tubes of size 11/0 seed beads in bronze and cream;
  • a flip top tube of ivory bugle beads;
  • a tube of SuperDuo two hole beads in a really pretty stone colour;
  • a tube each of lime and bronze delicas;
  • a string of small daggers in bronze;
  • 3mm Czech firepolish beads in a subtle teal;
  • a really pretty vintage Swarovski red crystal and silver clasp;
  • a spool of C-Lon beading thread which I have never used before so am excited to try;
  • a key hole polymer clay focal bead in dusty blue;
  • a ceramic decorative ring by Jenny Davies-Reazor;
  • and an organic bronze clay focal by Staci Louise Smith.

Holy C**p!

Well, that lot should keep me busy for a while…..

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 is here!

Bead Soup Blog Party 8

Here we go again. This is the 8th year for the Bead Soup Blog Party and my second year. I hesitated before I filled in my info as I wasn’t sure I wanted to take on the commitment. But for goodness sakes, why not? It stretches me, gives me design ideas, makes me work to a deadline, use colours out of my comfort zone. All good stuff. And on top of all this I get to meet a whole range of seed bead weavers and learn stuff.

Am now looking forward to finding out who my partner is, and sorting through my boxes (and boxes, and boxes……!) of goodies to put together a soup mix to send.

Masterclass with Marcia DeCoster – craw bracelet

Craw bracelet designed in Marcia DeCoster's Masterclass

Craw bracelet designed in Marcia DeCoster’s Masterclass

Here’s the finished craw bracelet from the Playing with Possibilities Masterclass with Marcia DeCoster. So pretty. And easy to wear. It’s made with size 15, 11 and 8 seed beads, Swarovski crystals, and a snap for the clasp. Marcia wrote about it on her blog.

The bracelet is based on two of the components from her bag of possibilities. The craw and romantica pieces. I mirrored, enlarged and striped the craw component, and used the romantica piece to embellish the top. The romantica is used to cover the snap closure – see the picture below.

Snap clasp of Craw bracelet

Snap clasp of Craw bracelet

As an added note to this post: we spent the weekend with friends who live by the inter-coastal waterway. While we sat on the dock, swinging our legs and chatting I felt a sliding on my arm and out of the corner of my eye saw something slip into the water. I looked at my wrist – it was bare. My lovely bracelet had disappeared.

I’m so glad I had these great pictures, it hasn’t gone completely. Lesson learned – make sure the snap is a stronger one than Michael’s offer, and add a proper safety chain to precious jewelry.

I intend making this piece again, slightly different and of course, with the above safeguards.

Safety Harbor Library ‘Chair-ity’ Fundraiser

Our lovely library in Safety Harbor, Florida is having a fundraiser. They decided to get local artists to decorate a chair to be raffled. So here is my chair before:

Safety Harbor Chair-ity fundraiser chair

Safety Harbor Chair-ity fundraiser chair

And here it is after:

Front of decorated chair

Front of decorated chair

 

Back of decorated chair

Back of decorated chair

I rough cut some of my hand dyed fabric into squares. Using Paverpol I layered them onto the chair using the traditional nine-patch quilt block pattern. I cannot tell a lie – some of the fussy cutting to fit pieces into awkward places….. well, language please.

Do go and look at all the brilliant decorated chairs for the Chair-ity Fundraiser. The drawing for the raffle is taking place on April 19th during Library Week.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7th Bead Soup Blog Party – Reveal

A lovely assortment of soup mix from Shirley Moore – Bread and Beads blog. See the original boxed soup in an earlier post.

This is the first time I have taken part in Lori Anderson’s Bead Soup Blog party and I am sooooooo GLAD I did. She wants us to challenge and stretch our design selves and it sure worked. Learning new ways to use colour, specially colours I am not fond of, new stitch combinations, and new shapes.

I have said it before, and no doubt I will say it again – BEADWORK IS THE MOST UN-DOING-EST CRAFT!.

Summertime Necklace

Summertime Necklace - beadwork, herringbone, peyote, square stitch, donut, magatamas.

Summertime Necklace

Pendant of Summertime Necklace

Pendant of Summertime Necklace

I can’t tell you how many times I reworked the pendant on this necklace. And I love the end result. Emerald green is the Pantone colour of the year but damn, it’s a strong colour to work with.

What do you do with a donut? They are just so round! After much scouring the internet, beading books, and magazines I discovered netting. OK – step 1, net the donut.

Got to do more than that. Mmmmmm…….

After many interations the focal donut bead became a netted flower with inside embellishments of emerald green silver lined magatamas. Never used those before. And a peyote bail to slip over the twisted herringbone chain.

Clasp for Summertime Necklace

Clasp for Summertime Necklace

Rope embellishment on Summertime Necklace

Rope embellishment on Summertime Necklace

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can you believe it? Shirley gave me EXACTLY the right number of emerald magatamas to include in the rope embellishments and to go around the toggle. How could she have known? Just love the way the toggle balances out the pendant.

The necklace is approximately 31 inches long from toggle to clasp. It’s a long rope and the pendant hangs quite low.

Purple Netting Necklace

Purple Netted Necklace

Purple Netted Necklace

Now purple is not a favorite colour of mine. I like its effect, its meaning and how it works with other colours. But I seldom if ever, wear it or use it in my decorations. So this box of purple/lavender shaded beads slightly floored me.

Pendant of Purple Netted Necklace

Pendant of Purple Netted Necklace

The look of netted beads appeals so here they are together in one hayuge lump as the focal point of this necklace. They feel substantial and weighty. To keep the netting going I used some peach pearls, jasper semi-gemstone beads and some of the soup seed beads. To continue the sides of the necklace I transitioned to tubular peyote and spiralled some size 8 seed beads around the core.

And then Shirley did it again. She read my mind and sent me EXACTLY the right amount of crackle lentil beads and 2 extra gemstones so I could string the rest of the necklace. Isn’t she brilliant!?

Clasp for Purple Netted Necklace

Clasp for Purple Netted Necklace

The clasp came with Shirley’s soup mix and is made by Sharyl’s Jewelry. The bright copper complements the purple/lavender, browns/creams theme of the necklace.

Look at that! One lavender pearl left to put onto the other side of the clasp.

Guess what? I’ll probably wear this as it looks so interesting.

Lavender Pearls Bracelet

Lavender Pearls bracelet

Lavender Pearls bracelet

This bracelet is a simple design – beaded components stitched onto a band. It is made from some of the extra beads in Shirley’s mix. Having already used the focal bead and clasp I wanted to make something else.

Lavender pearls bracelet open view

Lavender pearls bracelet open view

The band is done in peyote stitch using the twin beads from the soup mix, with size 15 seed beads filling in the gaps. I calculated how long the band needed to be and then stitched 4 rows.

Lavender pearls bracelet component

Lavender pearls bracelet component

Lavender glass beads are encircled with seed beads and tipped with fire polish beads – brick stitch around the center. The lavender pearls are in the mix too. So I was able to use two things from the soup.

The purple/violet colour family is out of my comfort zone. This really made me stretch my colour chops. But in the end the amber/peach glow around the lavender, along with a tiny accent of lime greens worked.

And I find I wear the bracelet a lot. I think it makes me happy!

All together this was a great experience. I made some pieces I would not have made otherwise. Used colour schemes I would not have thought of without this outside nudge, and came away with some great additions to my jewelry box.

The only thing which was a bit stressful was the timing. This blog post was written while I was in America. All the pieces had to be finished and photographed early as I left for England on March 27th. Yikes! It cut my time short by a few days.

So worth it.

Go here to see the list of the other 1st reveals – http://lorianderson-beadsoupblogparty.blogspot.com/2013/03/7th-bead-soup-blog-party-first-reveal.html