I almost missed Elena Kostrikina's store, BeadOnline. At first glance, I thought this talented German artisan's shop was full of beautiful crystal brooches.  I was not wrong in that she uses crystals but every brooch is beaded!  

She deftly uses not just seed beads and crystals but she also includes mounted crystals and cup chain to great effect. Her shop offers both tutorials and kits

As you can see her inspiration comes from historical motifs such as the fleur-de-lis and the Maltese cross as well as royal brooch designs, medals and orders. The winged brooches are spectacular! You can see the historical inspirations of some of the symbols Elena uses in the historical section below. 

Just an amazing designer. 

Historical Emblems

Fleur-de-lis means flower and lily in French. It is an old heraldic symbol used by many European nations, notably by the French monarchy back when there was one. 

Coronation of Louis VIII and Blanche of Castile at Reims in 1223

The Maltese Cross, a distinctive cross variant, is also another heraldic emblem with a long history. It is widely used today but it is most associated with the Knights Hospitaller, a medieval and early modern Catholic military order. 

Grand master Pierre d’Aubusson & senior Knights Hospitaller circa 1483

Cross of Order of Saint Stanislaus (Poland)
Picture credit 

Order of St Stanislaus (Imperial Russia)
Picture credit : Robert Prummel

This crowned double eagle diamond encrusted brooch with spread wings (circa 1800) below - the Badge of the Order of St Andrew - was once a military decoration worn by Russian tsars, their families and nobility. It sold at a Sotheby's auction back in 2008 for $3.6 million

Picture Credit 

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Original Post by THE BEADING GEM