Are you a beginner in jewelry design and wire work?  Do you like simple but elegant jewelry styles?  Then you might be interested in this collection of projects from Bead Style Magazine, Making Elegant Jewelry for Special Occasions. Kalmbach Publishing recently sent it for review.

The book covers some 30 projects using pearls, crystals, wire and chain. What I liked about it was the light and airy design approach. A chain and focal lucite flower with a simply beaded pearl center was one stunning example of the aesthetic style.

Some of the projects used beading chain which I don't see often in books. As these chains are fine enough to go through beads and tubes, they can be substituted for beading wire in illusion style necklaces. Beading chain is used in this project :

Some of the findings such as the cross tubes shown above might be hard to find.  But there are other projects which introduce the beginner to simple wire work - using pliers or a suitable mandrel to form shapes or twisting wire together like in French beading. The leaf necklace and earrings set is such a standout :

The book may not attract the more advanced jewelry maker. However those just starting out will appreciate the subtle tips on how to play with contrasts - as shown in the crystal pendant necklace on the cover - group beads together in attractive ways and adding just enough accents like rhinestones to make designs more sophisticated.


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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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