Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

Clay and Metal Blog Hop

Widgit5 Metal and Clay

It’s reveal day for Lisa Lodge‘s latest blog hop, the Clay and Metal Blog Hop. This time, she’s chosen to send all of the participants something from Sharyl McMillian-Nelson, who works with both polymer clay and metal (hence the name!), with each of us receiving either one or the other, plus some coordinating beads. Sharyl has recently opened a new store online to focus on her polymer clay and metal components, called Metapolies. You can find it in two places, Etsy and Artisan Component Marketplace, a fantastic new online market for beautiful components (stay tuned, as I have plans to write more about this site soon!).

These are the polymer clay charms I received, a pair of long rectangular matchstick-shaped charms that are the colour of nougat, with soft purple stripes across them. I do like the asymmetry of them, enhanced by the purple stripes that continue across both matchsticks. I also received some clear faceted crystal rondelles, but in the end I didn’t use them as to me they didn’t really go well with the organic shades of the matchsticks.

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Because they are made of polymer clay, and therefore so light, I decided to make earrings with the matchsticks. I softened them further using a Czech glass table cut flower, and used waxed linen to tie the two components together and then to the Vintaj brass earwires.

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Thank you Lisa for sending me this challenging pair of charms, and thank you Sharyl too! And as this is a blog hop, here is the list of participants. Please pop over and have a look at their blog posts!

Your hostess: Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist

Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes <– YOU ARE HERE!

Jo-Ann Woolverton, It’s a Beadiful Creation

Carolyn Lawson, Carolyn’s Creations

Shaiha Williams,   Shaiha’s Ramblings

Toltec Jewels, Jewel School Friends

Heather Richter, Desert Jewelry Designs

Marybeth Rich, A Few Words from within the Pines

Kim Dworak, Cianci Blue

Karen Grosset Grange, Ginkgo et Coquelicot

Ann Schroeder, Bead Love

Lisa Prewitt Knappenberger, LiRaysa Designs

Carol Briody, A Beads Life

Miranda Ackerley, MirandAck

Kari Asbury, Hippie Chick Design

Susan Anderson, La Main Tresor

LeAnne Loftus, First Impression Design

Leithleach Seodra, Alainn Jewelry

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Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

Summer Colour Inspiration Challenge

PicMonkey Collage_SJ_Summer Color Inspiration Challenge_2013

Welcome to the Summer Colour Inspiration challenge, hosted by Sharyl McMillian-Nelson. My apologies to Sharyl for being a day late with this, I think I took on too much this week with 3 challenges in a row! Anyway, I got here in the end.

Sharyl provided us with a beautiful set of floral photos to use as inspiration for the challenge, asking us to pick one for our inspiration. I picked number 7, a beautiful combination of deep fuschia pinks and violet, with a touch of lime green foliage.

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I had a few strands of glass and dyed stone beads in pinks and greens that I wanted to use, and while digging through my art beads I came across a gorgeous boho polymer clay owl made by Martha Eason of Menagerie Studios in just the right shades.  With so many bright colours, simple seemed best so I strung a repeated sequence of beads and added some sari silk woven through the chain.

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Thank you for the challenge Sharyl, I loved the colours I had to choose from! And here are the other participants:

Sharyl McMillian-Nelson     Sharyl’s Jewelry   Hostess!

Kashmira Patel   …..    Sadafulee…always in bloom!

Lisa Lodge   …..   A Grateful Artist – Pine Ridge Treasures

Tanty Sri Hartanti   ….   TJewellicious by Tanti 

Kathy Lindemer ….  Bay Moon Design

Laren Dee Barton … Laren Dee Designs

Melissa Trudinger  … Beadrecipes <– YOU ARE HERE!

Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

21 again—Seasons Blog Hop

Today is the reveal date for the Seasons Blog Hop, a challenge put together by Lisa Lodge of Pine Ridge Treasures and the blog A Grateful Artist. Lisa’s blog hops start with a kit especially created by Lisa containing unique combinations of beads, findings, pendants and art beads.

In this blog hop, Lisa asked us to create jewellery that fits one of these two themes:

A season of the year—Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall

A season in your life—for example, first love, collage days, and so on.

My kit was lovely, with a couple of filigree components and bead caps painted a deep, almost iridescent blue by Sharyl McMillian-Nelson, and some coordinating beads in blues and creams, as well as a couple of small silver keys.

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The keys made me think of turning 21, a rite of passage into adulthood for my generation here in Australia that these days has largely been replaced by the 18th birthday celebrations. The keys are significant—symbolising opening the door into your future as an adult.

My own 21st, back in the late 1980s, came at a turning point in my life. I was in my last year of my undergraduate university degree (molecular and cell biology, in case you’re wondering), and applying for graduate school positions in the USA, where I moved a little more than a year later.

To celebrate my 21st birthday, I had a lovely big party with all of my friends and family around me. Here’s a picture of me, I look so young!!

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But my jewellery, well, that was less than inspired. It looks like I am wearing a chain with a small charm on it—if memory serves me rightly, it’s a pair of theatrical masks. The earrings are a bit better—moonstones set in silver dangles (I still have them although they need a good clean!). The bracelet was a present from family friends, a gorgeous silver bangle that I wore frequently for many years.

So with my blog hop kit I made some earrings and a necklace to wear with that lovely blue dress!

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I used almost all of the beads that Lisa sent me. I wanted to use the filigree bead caps but I couldn’t get them to work properly with my design. And the silver tubes didn’t get used. I had a bead mix which contained the same blues as the cubes and big bead in my kit, so they filled out the necklace. I added some silver bead caps and textured silver chain to finish off the necklace.

Thank you Lisa, for such a fun challenge!  And please take some time to have a look at the other blogs, there are some really lovely pieces!

Hostess: Lisa Lodge, Grateful Artist

Kathy Zeigler Lindemer, Bay Moon Design
Cassi Paslick, Beads: Rolling Downhill
Stephanie Sanner Haussler, PixyBug Designs
Leah Mifflin Tees, My Beady Little Eyes
Karin Slaton, BackStory Beads

Audrey Belanger, Dreams of an Absolution
Lori Jean Poppe, Lorillijean Creative Corner
Karla Morgan, Texas Pepper Jams
Christine Stonefield, Sweet Girl Design
Eleanor Burian-Mohr, The Charmed Life

Alicia Marinache,  All the Pretty Things
Veralynne Malone, Designed by Vera
Kay Thomerson, Kayz Kreationz
Mary Govaars, MLH Jewelry Designs
Toltec Jewels, Toltec Jewels for Jewel School Friends

Lennis Carrier, Windbent
Erin Kenny, Beadifultherapy
Tanya Goodwin, A Work in Progress
Cilla Watkins, Tell Your Girlfriends
Renetha Williams Stanziano, Lamplight Crafts

Christie Searle Murrow, Charis Designs Jewelry
Sierra Barrett, Giraffe Can Has
Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes <<– YOU ARE HERE
Shirley Jones Moore, Beads and Bread
Dawn Horner, Northern Adornments

Charlene Bausinger Jacka, Clay Space
Tara Plote, The Newbie Beader’s Blog
Candida Elkins Castleberry, Spun Sugar Beadworks
Miranda Ackerley, Daze and Days