Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

The Haberdashery Blog Hop: Signups open now

If you’ve been a reader of my blog for a while you know I join lots of blog hops and challenges, it’s a way of making me stretch myself and try new things. Anyway, I’ve had this idea in my mind about a blog hop for quite a while now, and I think it’s time to put it into action!

So, without further ado, I’m introducing The Haberdashery Blog Hop (or Haby Hop for short, we Aussies like to nickname everything)!

Haby hop button

(you can use this image as a blog button, just copy the image to your own blog!)

It’s time to pull out your ribbons and buttons, trims and fabric scraps to create beautiful and unique pieces of jewellery. Pinterest is a fantastic source of ideas—take a look at the board I’ve been putting together for some stunning examples, and a few tutorials too. It can be as simple as adding a beautiful ribbon or scrap of sari silk to your necklace or bracelet, or a complex collage of beads, buttons and more.

Haby hop inspiration
Some examples of jewellery I have made using sari silk ribbon

Take yourself off to your local big box craft store or fabric store and peruse the goodies there. Op-shops and thrift stores can also be a good source, particularly if you like vintage buttons and ribbons. Raid your mum or grandma’s sewing box (or your own if you are a craftaholic). Look for interesting scraps of lace, unique buttons, felt flowers, yarn and embroidery silks, zippers, anything you can incorporate into jewellery! Think of unusual ways to incorporate your finds, and stitch, embellish, string away!

Haby hop supplies
From top left, clockwise, my great aunt’s button jar, a selection of ribbons and fibres, lace ribbon from the scrapbooking aisle, a fabulously decorative (and very large) button.

Some books with good ideas include Lorelei Eurto and Erin Siegel’s book Bohemian-Inspired Jewelry and Melinda Barta’s Custom Cool Jewelry.

To sign up, email me at melissa_trudinger at yahoo dot com, with your blog name by July 1st. I’ll send out a reminder email a week or so before the hop, and a list of participants too! The blog hop itself will be on Saturday August 2nd, so you have all month to create something fabulous!

I’m excited, are you??


Winners are grinners

I’ve had a pretty lucky run in the last month or two, with my name being pulled out of the hat three times for various things.

First of all, I was fortunate enough to win one of Pearl Blay’s giveaways from her blog The Beading Gem in a redraw when the first recipient did not get back to her. I won $40 to spend at Etsy shop Beadeux, which supplies laser cut blanks for cross-stitched pendants. I chose a rainbow cloud kit, plus a couple of different options for pendants. The kit is great, as it provides embroidery thread and a needle, as well as the suggested pattern, allowing me to get started straight away. I should point out it has been years since I have done any embroidery! But this kit is very straightforward and simple to do and I am already planning what to do with the other blanks. Now, if I could just see to thread the needle!

Beadeux collage

Then I won a draw from Art Bead Scene‘s monthly challenge, which turned out to be two fantastic lampwork beads from The Art of the Bead, Chris Thommen’s shop showcasing both her own and other artists’ beads. The glass donut is by Lea Zinke and the heart is by Susan Elgar.


And finally, I also won a house bead from Tari Sasser of Creative Impressions in Clay for commenting on her recent Art Bead Scene Studio Saturday blog post. Isn’t it sweet?


Thank you very much to all of the blog hosts and donating artists, I will be putting my winnings to good use!

Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

The Ocean Blog Hop

First up, I’m sorry I’m a bit late to the Ocean Blog Hop, a combination of busy times at home and some struggles with the muse mean I’m late to the party. Well, better late than never.

Of course, there shouldn’t really be a need for excuses, as Lisa Lodge, the host of the hop, sent these beads out months ago. Look at what she sent me! Cultured (aka faux) sea glass in two shades of blue as well as orange, vibrant orange impression jasper, tiny mother of pearl heishi and some brass starfish, fabulous stampings that look like coral and some tiny brass beads and a clasp!


So the first piece I made I’ve called Washed Up. It uses some of the irregular sea glass links and the orange beads. I wanted to use an art bead in this piece and I found a great ceramic shell link made by Michelle McCarthy of Firefly Designs, that I think I got in a destash from Lisa a while ago. I tried to use brass link the beads together, but the holes in the sea glass weren’t quite in the right places to hold a jump ring, so I ended up using waxed linen, which kind of reminds me of rope or fishermen’s nets on the beach. I added some barrel-shaped sea glass beads in a lighter blue (that I also got from Lisa) and some orange sea glass rounds.


Then I made some earrings using the brass starfish, and some large aqua blue sea glass charms I got from Lisa a while ago. Very simple, but they didn’t really need anything else!


My third piece is a necklace, although it started out as a bracelet! I’ve called it Out on the Reef. The brain coral stampings are used to connect a little twisted strand of beads. The mother of pearl heishi beads remind me so much of those shell necklaces I used to wear as a kid, and I love the contrast of the deep blue glass and the orange impression jasper. I toyed with using chain for the back half of the necklace, but in the end I used a gorgeous blue sari silk ribbon (from Etsy shop Ribbons and Silk). The blue sea glass shard on one side balances the clasp on the other side.


Thank you Lisa for the lovely selection of beads to play with, I’m looking forward to the next hop in a couple of months! Please take some time to look at the blogs of other participants in this hop!

Ocean Blog Hop June 14th Reveal:

Your hostess: Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist

Carolyn Lawson, Carolyn’s Creations

Ev Shelby, Raindrop Creations

Toltec Jewels, Jewel School Friends (Posting Later)

Karla Morgan, Texas Pepper Jams

Ema Kilroy, Ema K Designs

Candida Elkins Castleberry, Spun Sugar Beadworks

Catherine Yvonne King, Catherine’s Musings

Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes <– YOU ARE HERE!

Shaiha Williams, Shaiha’s Ramblings

Chris Eisenberg, Wanderware (Posting Sunday)

Eleanor Burian Moore, The Charmed Life

Kay Thomerson, Kayz Kreationz

Jill Bradley, Chat 2 Jill

Rebecca Ednie, Eclectic Endeavours

Ocean Blog Hop May 31st Reveal:

Your hostess:  Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist

Christie Searle Murrow, Charis Designs Jewelry 

Kim Dworak, Cianci Blue

Marybeth Rich, A Few Words from within the Pines

Karin Grosset Grange, Ginkgo et Coquelicot

Candida Elkins Castleberry, Spun Sugar Beadworks (moved to June 14th reveal)

Veralynne Malone, Designed by Vera

Monique Urquhart, A Half-Baked Notion

Katrina Taylor, I Wanna Go Out

Mary Ann Macri Jacobs, Trucksville Crafts

Jeanne Steck, Gems by Jeanne Marie

Ann Schroeder, Bead Love

Kathleen Breeding, 99 Bottles of Beads on the Wall

Marianne Baxter, Simply Seablime Jewelry

Terri Wlaschin, Dances in Fog

Margaret Pelech, Margaret Pelech’s Ocean Blog

Jo-Ann Woolverton, It’s a Beadiful Creation

Kathy Zeigler Lindemer, Bay Moon Design

Heather Richter, Desert Jewelry Designs

Andrea Glick-Zenith, ZenithJade Creations

Beads, online shop

Facebook auctions are live

In the last few months, a number of Facebook groups devoted to buying and selling jewellery and supplies have popped up. This week marks the debut of the Aussie Artisan Jewellery Buy and Sell group, which as the name suggests, will provide a marketplace for Australian jewellery designers to showcase their wares.

It’s a straightforward concept with an auction approach to selling. The designer lists each piece with a starting price and a Buy it Now (BIN) price and gives a time and date for the auction to finish. Then potential buyers can bid until the auction ends or the BIN price is reached.

Here are the pieces I’ve listed today. If you click on them, it should open up the appropriate photo in Facebook! They are available until Sunday 15 July at noon Australian Eastern time. And the prices are listed in Australian dollars, but don’t let that stop you from bidding. One other thing—I will always post at the most inexpensive rate available, but due to the fragile nature of the components, I have to package them as securely as I can.



Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

Bluebird of happiness necklace: the Blu Mudd Challenge

If, like me, you are still working your way through BSBP8, click here for my blog post!

A bit over a month ago, I was lucky enough to sign up for Blu Mudd challenge number 4. These challenges are hosted by Moriah Betterly, the ceramic artist behind Blu Mudd, a source of delightful pendants, beads, bracelet bars and toggles. The challenge is simple: to design a piece with the kit sent out by Moriah, using all of the components supplied. Today, pieces by 28 designers went up on Facebook, so now we can look at all the designs and vote for our favourites—the designer with the most votes will receive a $50 Blu Mudd gift certificate!

Moriah sent each participant the same pack:  a pendant featuring a pale blue bird perched on a branch, a toggle clasp in the same oatmeal glaze as the bird branch,  and four coordinating blue beads. The blue is more of a pale aqua, robin’s egg blue.

Blu Mudd Challenge components

I toyed with the idea of doing two necklaces, using the toggle as a focal for the second, with the idea that they could be layered. But in the end I went for the simpler option, and kept all the beads in one design. I added some large Czech faceted rounds, in a Picasso finish natural colour, as well as a solid and translucent aqua to intersperse with the lovely tubular ceramic beads. I strung these on waxed linen in a natural colour, with three strands of Picasso aqua-green seed beads between each larger bead. No wire was harmed in the making of this necklace!!!

BluMudd challenge may2014

Now, if you’re on Facebook, please take a moment to go there and vote for my design by clicking LIKE. You can leave a comment there too, but only the LIKES determine the vote. This link will take you to the main album, while this link takes you directly to my picture! You can vote for more than one design, but only once on each design! Thank you!