Are you like me, somewhat set in the usual choices of beading wire colors?  Well, it really is time to break old habits and explore new beading wire frontiers! 

Colored beading wire is not new.  But what got me excited were the fresh and innovative designs in this new book sent to me for review by Kalmbach Publishing. Show Your Colors: 30 Flexible Beading Wire Jewelry Projects is by Sara Hardin Oehler (of Softflex's "Ask Sara") and Jamie Hogsett who is also a Softflex education coordinator.

This book is really "thinking outside the bead" as both designers take full advantage of the flexibility and yet firmness of medium weight (0.019mm) beading wire. The colors of the bare wire are definitely part of the designs.
The book is divided into 5 chapters which feature different ways to use the wire :
  • Not So Simply Strung
  • Beyond Illusion
  • Knitting Spool
  • Sculptural
  • Braiding and Weaving
Some of the looped designs like the Dark Lady necklace and crimped illusion style of the La La Lu are easy to do and a good place to start.

La La Lu Necklace
The designers also show several  novel ways to use up beading wire scraps as shown by their sculptural earrings below.

Mermaids Earrings

Am I Blue Earrings

I also liked how they incorporated different kinds of jewelry findings into their designs like the Bang Bang bracelet below which uses weaving.

My favorite part of the book though has to be the chapter on using knitting spools. The resulting beaded designs are colorful and could either be very structured or informal as shown by the designs below.

Long and Winding Road Bracelet
Silkwood Bracelet
Click here to see a detailed preview of the book.

This book is wonderfully inspirational and will suit all levels of beaders.  The designs are easier to accomplish than those in the outstanding Jewelry for the New Romantic book I reviewed before which featured more involved uses of beading wire.

Before You Go:
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM