Thursday, March 31, 2016

How to Make Pressed Flower Resin Jewelry Part 1

By on Thursday, March 31, 2016 13 Comments

You can tell I am having a lot of fun pressing flowers and using them in resin jewelry. I found pressing with a microwave was a lot quicker than the traditional method. Now comes the part where I work on getting these dried floral bits encased in protective coats of resin.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Discount Code Correction for Little Windows!!

By on Wednesday, March 30, 2016 0 Comments

Yikes.  We got it wrong!  I mentioned there was a 15% discount code for everything in Little Window's shop for resin supplies.  The correct code is BeadingGem16.  Thanks to the reader who brought it to our attention.

Happy shopping!

Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips 

How to Press Flowers Using a Microwave

By on Wednesday, March 30, 2016 10 Comments

I have pressed flowers before the traditional way - between paper and under some heavy books.  It not only took a long time, the floral colors faded somewhat.  I never knew one could speed up the process considerably using the microwave until I read it in fellow Canadian, Shireen Nadir's excellent book "Resin Jewelry".  I also wrote about her gorgeous Nature Inspired Resin Jewelry here.  The flat effect is very different from the 3D style of real flower jewelry I tried before.   I used crystal cat litter to dry the flowers then.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Statement Tassel Jewelry by Osofree Jewelry

By on Tuesday, March 29, 2016 3 Comments

Trendy tassels go bold and big that is what Arnaz Sunkersett of Osofree Jewelry's latest collection is all about. The Goa Velha, India based designer specializes in boho and tribal statement jewelry. She has created leather tassel jewelry before. Her current statement tassel jewelry is all about cotton yarn, some of which Arnaz hand-dyes.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Winners of Cynthia Thornton's Resin Sculpting and Casting Craftsy Class Giveaway

By on Monday, March 28, 2016 0 Comments

The artistic souls who can see a future in sculpting were most intrigued with Cynthia Thornton's class - the subject of last week's giveaway.  Creating one's own unique components in this way is a huge draw whether or not one is a resin novice or experienced in the technique.  Jean said it for most of us, "Taking resin to the next level and casting are definitely things on my bucket list."

Book Review & Giveaway | Crafter's Market 2016

By on Monday, March 28, 2016 42 Comments

Getting serious about turning your craft passion into a career requires some research and planning. Knowing you have to market your creations is one thing but how to go about it is another. So advice, tips and insider knowledge from those who have been there and done that is not only useful but a time saver.  There is no need to make the same mistakes other new small business owners make.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Wide Bead Wrapped Bracelet Tutorial

By on Sunday, March 27, 2016 4 Comments

The bead wrapped bracelet and button clasp style is wildly popular.  But let's not get stuck with the same single row of beads approach.  I delight in looking for clever variations (see links below).  This tutorial by Karen over on I Always Pick the Thimble,  shows the same style but as a wide cuff.  The tapering is a lovely touch.  As with many jewelry designs, the modeled picture really shows how good it looks worn.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

How to Make a Metal Leaf Tutorial | Tool Use

By on Saturday, March 26, 2016 4 Comments

Leaf elements are wonderful for jewelry designs.  Want to make your own metal leaf in any size you want? James Miller over on Ganoskin shows how to make a metal leaf from sheet metal. His tutorial is largely a pictorial. He shares pictures of the different kinds of tools and how he used them.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Magatama Beaded Kumihimo Bracelet with Snake Clasp Tutorial

By on Friday, March 25, 2016 2 Comments

Do you just grab any clasp to finish up a project? Sometimes it pays to choose just the right one!  I really like this magatama beaded kumihimo bracelet with a snake clasp. The magatama beads certainly look like scales!  The tutorial is by Allison over on Dream a Little Bigger.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Easy Wire Wrapped Memory Wire Cuff Tutorial

By on Thursday, March 24, 2016 4 Comments

Sure, memory wire cuffs are easy to make when it's just the wrap style.  But memory wire can be so much more for jewelry designs.  I have been collecting some fun ideas for years (see links below). Another one for the collection is Cynthia Kimura's tutorial over on Art Beads.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Easy Marbled Polymer Clay Pendant NecklaceTutorial

By on Wednesday, March 23, 2016 2 Comments

Laura Gummerman over on A Beautiful Mess came up with this easy marbled polymer clay pendant tutorial. Beginners can certainly tackle this one. I also like the contemporary style of bail used.  Did I mention before that gold is making a comeback after years of being  in the shadow of silver designs?

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Embroidered Art Pendants by Danielle Clough

By on Tuesday, March 22, 2016 3 Comments

You could say Danielle Clough paints with threads. She is an accomplished fiber artist whose much larger works show incredible depth, texture and color.  Her embroidered art pendants though were her "attempt at disciplining myself to work small."  It is demanding to render the same kind of details to smaller subjects.  As you can see from this selection of my favorites, she succeeds.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Winner of Little Windows' $50 Resin Jewelry Making Supplies Giveaway | Pressed Flower and Sticker Feature

By on Monday, March 21, 2016 2 Comments

Last week's giveaway for a whole bunch of resin jewelry making supplies from Little Windows attracted the attention of those who have pressed flowers before as well a number of resin novices. Then there were Little Windows fans like M Brent Payne who said, "I love little windows resins and molds. And I can always use more." Don't we all?

Resin Sculpting and Casting Techniques | Cynthia Thornton's Craftsy Class Giveaway

By on Monday, March 21, 2016 36 Comments

Clear or simple colored resin work of the kind many of us do is fun (and sometimes frustrating). However, that is not all you can do with it.  In combination with polymer clay work and mold making, the resin technique can be so much more.  Artistic souls will want to learn about how to use this combination technique to make small art sculptures for jewelry making!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Easy Way to Finish a Loom Bracelet

By on Sunday, March 20, 2016 5 Comments

One reason why I am not overly fond of loom projects is the finishing. All those threads to deal with - ugh.  So I am always on the look out for easy ways to finish a loom bracelet. Then maybe I will make more of this style of jewelry.  The latest find is Kristi's tutorial over on What Nots (actually internet archived as the blog has been removed).

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Iced Enamels Embellished Cuff Tutorial

By on Saturday, March 19, 2016 2 Comments

Does torch fired enameling make you a little queasy?  Consider using Iced Enamels instead.  All you would be brandishing is an embossing or heat gun*.   This pretty scrap metal tutorial by Johanna Love over on Stampington shows how easy it is to make an iced enamels embellished cuff.

Friday, March 18, 2016

How to Make Coiled Wire Hinges to Connect 2 Hole Beads

By on Friday, March 18, 2016 9 Comments

This tutorial was inspired by my attempt to wire together some small resin cabochons I had made. I wanted those cabochons to be closer together so these coiled wire hinges were the solution.  I am using those resin cabochons as an example. But you could easily use the same technique for any small two hole beads (resin, clay, glass, metal) you want to link together for a bracelet.

Triple Wire Woven Diamond Earrings Tutorial

By on Friday, March 18, 2016 2 Comments

Beginner wire weavers will love this triple wire woven diamond earrings tutorial by watchmeflyy on Instructables.  It is easy because you get to practice wire weaving on just two lengths of wire which is then bent into a diamond shape.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

How to Make a Floating Butterfly Resin Bracelet

By on Thursday, March 17, 2016 11 Comments

Using stickers for resin jewelry making is fun. There are so many types out there. So here are more of my resin adventures.  For this project I used a set of puffy butterfly stickers.  They were not made from paper so I didn't have to seal them.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

How to Photograph Jewelry Webinar this Sunday | Rise of Smartphone Photography

By on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 3 Comments

My next How to Photography Jewelry webinar is this Sunday at 2 pm EST - here is the signup/register link to be notified of the next one.  There is still space so email me ASAP if you'd like to attend.  I focus on smartphone camera photography because more and more people (77% in the US, 70% in Canada, 66% in UK) have them and they are much, much easier to use. The quality of the smartphone cameras have improved considerably so it is hard to justify buying an expensive dSLR.  Wouldn't spend the money on beads, wire, glass etc?

Nifty Plastic Bottle Cutter for Upcycling Plastic Bottles into Jewelry!

By on Wednesday, March 16, 2016 3 Comments

Upcycling is a great way to reuse unwanted material such as plastic bottles. The Plastic Bottle Cutter is a nifty tool for turning plastic bottles into strips which then can be used in many ways.  As twine, as a rope and also as a craft material.  This French project is still within the fundraising period but the Kickstarter project has already reached more than 20x the original goal.  It is clear many people can see a lot of functional and creative potential in this device.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Fragrance Polymer Clay Jewelry by Lixori

By on Tuesday, March 15, 2016 2 Comments

Russian polymer clay artist, Maksim Mantuli of Lixori,  makes fragrance polymer clay jewelry for women who want their perfume to last longer. His designs are also for those who cannot tolerate perfume on their skins. Not into perfume?  Then perhaps essential oils?

Monday, March 14, 2016

Winner of the Mastering Peyote Book Giveaway

By on Monday, March 14, 2016 0 Comments

Some readers for last week's book Mastering Peyote book giveaway agreed with my observation on the versatility of peyote stitch. It's so much quicker than brick stitch! Ginny said, "Peyote was the first thing I learned in beading and is my go to technique for most everything." But even experienced beaders could learn a few more tricks!

Little Windows' $50 Resin Supplies Giveaway | Pressed Flower and Sticker Feature

By on Monday, March 14, 2016 81 Comments

Resin jewelry making is a lot of fun.  Maybe it is because it is somewhat reminiscent of lab work where I get to measure/weigh out resin and do a little mixing!  But as I found out in the series of real flower jewelry making last year, it is wonderful technique for capturing nature. I previously used crystal cat litter to dry real flowers and dandelion clocks  which were then used to make real flower resin jewelry.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Wire and Bead Animal Art Inspirations and Tutorials by Yulia Chasovskikh

By on Sunday, March 13, 2016 2 Comments

Wire and bead animal art need not be confined to jewelry making.  Scaled up, the work can be used in home decor as sun catchers or as wall art. One Russian wire artist Yulia Chasovskikh who goes by july17_hm, has made a number of gorgeous nature inspired wire and bead art. Shown here are 3 of my favorites.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

How to Bead Crochet a Ring using Elastic Tutorial

By on Saturday, March 12, 2016 1 Comments

Got lots of beads?  Why not make several beaded rings to match different outfits? Here is an easy (if you can handle the fiddly smallness) how to bead crochet a ring tutorial.  It uses elastic for no fuss sizing. The tutorial is by Starmeg over on Craftster . She called it the Amazing Crochet Bling Bling Tutorial!

Friday, March 11, 2016

How an Amazing Medieval Arcade Gem Setting is Made!

By on Friday, March 11, 2016 2 Comments

I am in awe of jewelry designers and artists who can incorporate architectural elements into their work.  Guido Graeff, a German based goldsmith is the latest one I have come across.  (The work of the other outstanding designers in the links below are must see!).  His video shows how he makes an amazing medieval arcade gem setting for beautiful pendants!

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Winner of the Leather Corded Fusion Ties Book Giveaway

By on Thursday, March 10, 2016 1 Comments

Fans of JD Lenzen also known as TIAT on Youtube were pleased to see his new book.  Patricia was one of his fans. She said, "I follow him on YouTube and have watched all his videos. He always makes it look so easy."  What really caught people's attention was the focus on leather.  JB Green  explained, "Much easier than paracord, and with a much greater appeal, also." I totally agree!

How to Add Big Beads to Kumihimo Bracelets or Necklaces

By on Thursday, March 10, 2016 2 Comments

Making kumihimo bracelets is a popular pastime - it is so soothing to do something repetitive.  A good stress reliever after a long day. It's up there with adult coloring books except that with kumihimo, you get to wear the creation afterwards! Need something else to spice up a kumihimo bracelet?

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Easy Wire Circle Ring Tutorial

By on Wednesday, March 09, 2016 3 Comments

Want a fun, funky wire ring to wear?  Check out this easy wire circle ring tutorial by Kimberlie Kohler.  It is a forgiving design in that you do not have to be super neat.   I like the seed bead version although you should practice first without the beads.  Another option is to wire in a larger bead in the middle for an even funkier effect.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Amazing Beaded and Bejeweled Dolls by Enchanted Doll

By on Tuesday, March 08, 2016 12 Comments

Marina Bychkova (Enchanted Doll) is a Canadian artist of Russian descent who makes the most amazing beaded and bejeweled dolls.  It's no wonder her one of a kind handmade porcelain dolls are highly sought after by collectors all over the world.  She makes everything - the dolls are cast from her original sculptures, elaborate costumes, props and even the case.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Winner of Nunn Design's Winter 2016 Collection of Fabulous Findings

By on Monday, March 07, 2016 0 Comments

Why am I not surprised with the large number of entries for last week's Nunn Design giveaway? They are definitely more -ish. The more you see them, the more you want to use these creative findings in your designs!  Kim Stelly said, "I love to make my own jewelry components, so I usually shy away from buying them ready made, but Nunn Designs is one collection that I return to, time and time again."

Book Review & Giveaway : Mastering Peyote Stitch

By on Monday, March 07, 2016 51 Comments

Peyote stitch has to be the most versatile and often fastest stitch in the beading canon.  It lends itself very well to sculptural pieces. This likely explains its popularity. So there is no such thing as too many books on peyote, right?

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Fish Scale Inspired Leather Cuffs Tutorial

By on Sunday, March 06, 2016 1 Comments

This fish scale inspired leather cuffs tutorial by Mikaela Holmes over on Instructables makes used of two layers of different colored thin leather in a clever way. Slits are made which allow sections of the leather to be flipped revealing the the second color.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

How to Downsize Your Ring Temporarily

By on Saturday, March 05, 2016 3 Comments

Got a loose ring? This genius hack from Buzz Feed DIY lets you easily size down a ring with just some hot glue. Work on parchment or wax paper. It's not permanent as you can peel off the glue.  A good solution for rings which you want to wear on different fingers.

How to size down a ring
Posted by BuzzFeed DIY 

This is just a temporary hack.  It won't hurt solid metal rings but it might well take off the plating of cheap rings. So be warned.

There are some other products on the market like the silicone one linked below. However, the best way is to get a professional jeweler to resize rings if you are not a metal smith.

Before You Go:

Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips 

Friday, March 4, 2016

Copyright Guidelines for Crafters and Hobbyists

By on Friday, March 04, 2016 5 Comments

Copyright is arguably a most confusing term for many creative people. Copyright is not a trademark, logo or patent but intellectual property.  We are all inspired by other works.  But where is the line drawn between an original work and a derivative?  This excellent infographic and article by Ginger Davis Allman explains all.  The infographic is the same as what she wrote for polymer clay artists - just the title is different. It gives a clear overview on what is fair use, when copyright is applied and what is unethical practice. The flow chart design helps you decide.


Thursday, March 3, 2016

Winner of the Get It Together Book Giveaway

By on Thursday, March 03, 2016 1 Comments

One of the most challenging things in life is to get it in balance.  This is especially hard for creative souls who must find some time to themselves.  Little Koo shared her dilemma, "I have toddler twins and am now so busy looking after them that it leaves basically no time for any creative pursuits, so I'd love to read the tips on how to find a better balance!"  No wonder  last week's giveaway perked up the interest of many readers.

Book Review & Giveaway : Leather Corded Fusion Ties

By on Thursday, March 03, 2016 57 Comments

JD Lenzen of Fusion Knots  is one of the most prolific (and generous) instructors on Youtube. His Tying It All Together (TIAT) channel has over 400 instructional video tutorials all devoted to the art of knotting.  JD has be knotting for a couple of decades. He was the first to come up with innovative"fusion" knots which mixes different knots, elements and tying techniques.  The International Guild of Knot Tyers have formally acknowledged his tremendous contribution to the craft.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Resin Gemstone Wire Wrapped Earrings Tutorial

By on Wednesday, March 02, 2016 2 Comments

I have all sorts of gemstones. But none in the shape I wanted for the design I had in my head.  So I created my own resin "gemstones" for this wire wrapped earrings tutorial.  The starting inspiration were Nunn Design's small open round bezels which I bought some time ago. I thought it would be fun to suspend Swarvoski montees inside them.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Faux Metal Polymer Clay Jewelry by Adriana Allen

By on Tuesday, March 01, 2016 8 Comments

When I first laid eyes on Adriana Allen's work, I thought these are the loveliest patinated copper and brass jewelry I have ever seen.  I was wrong. These are the loveliest faux metal polymer clay jewelry I have ever seen. She says, "I always try to push the limits of polymer clay. If there are any, I have not reached them yet." . Her creative skill in using clay and paints is simply awe inspiring!