Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

Seashell in the surf necklace: The Sea Shell Design Challenge

My friend Rita, aka Toltec Jewels, has been on a roll with challenges featuring her favourite artist beads recently. The Sea Shell Design Challenge showcases a pretty ceramic scallop shell pendant made by Michelle McCarthy of Firefly Design Studio. Rita sent out a dozen or so shells to a group of us and challenged us to make something!

challenge photo

The shells came in a variety of hues—I believe mine is the one at the top right. In person it’s a lovely weathered bluey-green colour. Digging through my stash I found a variety of pretty Czech beads in a spectrum of blues and greens that reminded me of the ocean, from the waves breaking on the sandy beach, to the deep water. And I also found the perfect clasp, a copper starfish!

Seashell necklace collage

The reveal within our Facebook group was yesterday, but I thought I would share what I made with all of you too. Thank you again Rita, for a delightful challenge, and your continued generosity to your fellow beaders!

Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

Anchors Aweigh!! Design Challenge and Blog Hop

Rita, aka Toltec Jewels, from the blog Jewel School Friends has set up another design challenge, this time using sweet little pairs of charms from Diana Ptaszynski’s Suburban Girl Studio, featuring anchors in a soft shade of blue. And with typical generosity, she gifted all of us doing the challenge with the charms, many thanks Rita!

anchors

Now aren’t these sweet? Diana makes lovely ceramic beads and pendants, some in earthenware and others, like these, in porcelain. I’ve a few pieces from her in my stash.

I really tried to come up with a design incorporating the anchor charms that wasn’t earrings, but it seems that these charms were really determined to dangle from ears. And I tried a few other earring designs before deciding that simple was best. I paired the charms with blue lampwork beads from Lisa Anderson and hung them from silver-plated lever back earwires.

IMG_8157

There are 25 artists taking part in this challenge, please take the time to visit a few other blogs if you can! And thank you again Rita, for a fun challenge! I’m looking forward to the next one in a few weeks.

Participating Artists
Featured & Honored Artist:        Diana Ptaszynski
Diana’s Shop:                           Suburban Girl Beads
Diana’s Blogs:                          Suburban Girl Studio
                                                 Art Jewelry Elements
Hostess: Toltec Jewels              Jewel School Friends
Bobbie Rafferty                         Beadsong Jewelry
Chris Eisenberg                         Wanderware
Heather Richter                          Desert Jewelry Designs
Michelle McCarthy                    Firefly Design Studio
Kathy Lindemer                         Bay Moon Design
Dini Bruinsma                            Angaza by Changes
Cynthia Machata                        Antiquity Travelers
Kathleen Breeding                     99 Bottles of Beads on the Wall
Linda Younkman                       Lindy’s Designs
Robin Reed                                Artistry HCBD
Marla Gibson                              Spice Box Designs
Gina Hockett                               Freestyle Elements
Renetha Stanziano                       Lamplight Crafts
Marianne Baxter                          Simply Seablime Jewelry
Christina Miles                            Wings N Scales
Marybeth Rich                            A Few Words from Within the Pines
Shai Williams                             Shaiha’s Ramblings
Cheri Reed                                  Creative Designs by Cheri
Monique Urquhart                      A Half-Baked Notion
Jennifer Reno                             Musings of a Crafty Jenny
Shirley Moore                             Beads and Bread
Tammy Adams                           Paisley Lizard
Melissa Trudinger                       Bead Recipes
Jill Bradley                                  JillyBeads
Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

Choosy Chicks Choose Chicklets Challenge

If you have come to my blog for the Haberdashery Blog Hop click here.

If you have come to my blog for the Summer Carnival Blog Hop click here.

cccc design challenge button orange frame

It’s been a weekend of blog hops and challenges, and lots of beads. For my third blog hop of the weekend (which I am posting a day late, sorry!), I present to you the Choosy Chicks Choose Chicklets Challenge … C5 for short! For this challenge, Rita, aka Toltec Jewels, generously sent out dozens of chicklet-shaped, flower-stamped, lampwork beads made by the talented Sue Kennedy of Suebeads.

Now I tossed around several ideas for my bead, which is a lovely deep orangey-red colour. A bracelet seemed obvious, I could do the art bead and seed bead on waxed linen combo that is so popular right now, thanks to a tutorial by Lorelei Eurto in BeadStyle magazine a few months ago. But I don’t always want to follow the obvious path.

So I did what I always do in these situations and had a good rummage through my stash. Some Czech flowers in coordinating colours. A couple of spacer beads from Suebeads in turquoise and orange. And a ladybird charm from Jennifer Heynen. I wired them up to form a long dangle, wire-wrapped a handful of orange and yellow translucent Czech rounds and made a long necklace with antiqued copper chain.

Ladybird flowers collage

Well, that concludes my weekend of blog hops and challenges! I’m exhausted, how about you? And I’ve got lots of hopping ahead of me, I hope you’ll hop along too!

C5 ARTISTS:
 
Guest of Honor & Featured Artist:  Susan Kennedy
Sue Kennedy’s blogs:                               SueBeads…A Beady Girl’s blog
                                                                 Art Jewelry Elements
Sue Kennedy’s website                            SueBeads
SueBeads Art Beads                                SueBeads
Hostess:
Toltec Jewels                                           http://www.JewelSchoolFriends.com
Artists:

Linda Anderson                                       http://fromthebeadboard.blogspot.com/
Jennifer Reno                                           http://jenrenjewelry.blogspot.com/
Shirley Moore                                          http://beadsandbread.blogspot.com/
Kristen Stevens                                        http://kristen-beadjourney.blogspot.com
 
Marybeth Rich                                         http://forestofjewels.blogspot.com
Jael Thorp                                                http://jaelsjewels.blogspot.com/
Melissa Trudinger                                    http://Beadrecipes.wordpress.com
Andrea Glick                                            http://zenithjade.blogspot.com/
Nan Smith                                                http://wirednan.blogspot.com
Blanca Medina                                         www.peru-medesigns.com
Shai Williams                                           http://shaihasramblings.blogspot.com
Carolyn Lawson                                       http://Carolynscreationswa.blogspot.com
Rana Wilson                                             http://Ranaleadesigns.blogspot.com
Robin Reed                                              http://willowdragon.blogspot.com
Robin Showstack                                     http://heartsdesiresjewelryforyou.blogspot.com/
Sheila Prosterman                                     http://catswithbeads.blogspot.com
Karla Morgan                                          http://Texaspepperjams.blogspot.com
Kari Asbury                                             http://hippiechickdesign.blogspot.com
Kelly Rodgers                                          http://www.facebook.com/BeadinBlackBlue
Jayne Capps                                             http://mamasgottodoodle.blogspot.com/
Mischelle Andrade Fanucchi                   http://micheladasmusings.blogspot.com/
Heather Richter                                       http://desertjewelrydesigns.blogspot.com
Chris Eisenberg                                       www.wanderware.blogspot.com
Kathleen Breeding                                   http://www.zibbet.com/99BottlesofBeadsontheWall
Linda Landig                                           http://lindalandig.wordpress.com
Crystal Thain                                           http://beaddragons.blogspot.com/
Cheri Reed                                              http://creativedesignsbycheri.blogspot.com
Heather d-Entremont                               http://frugalmacdougall.wordpress.com/
Dini Bruinsma                                          http://angazabychanges.blogspot.com/
Lori Schneider                                         http://www.beadaddicted.blogspot.com/

Tammy Adams                                        http://www.paisleylizard.com/blog.html
Melinda Orr                                            http://bandanagirl.indiemade.com/blog
Lennis Carrier                                         http://windbent.wordpress.com/
Cynthia Machata                                     http://antiquitytravelers.blogspot.com
Elizabeth Hodges                                    http://thewhisperingseas.blogspot.com
Debbie Rasmussen                                  http://kepirasmussen.blogspot.com/
Tanya McGuire                                       http://tanyamcguire.blogspot.com/
Charlie Jacka                                          http://clay-space.com/blog/
Ev Shelby                                               http://raindropcreationsbyevelyn.blogspot.com/
Sharyl McMillian-Nelson                        http://sharylsjewelry.blogspot.com/
Jasvanti Patel                                        http://jewelrybyjasvanti.blogspot.com
Beads, Blog Hops and Challenges

Long hot summer just passed me by … the Summer Elements Blog Hop

Today is the reveal date for the Summer Elements Blog Hop, hosted by Toltec Jewels on the Jewel School Friends blog. Now, while it’s winter down here in Australia (and boy oh boy, it’s definitely winter here this week!), the summer has started in the Northern Hemisphere and after the winter they just had, I’m sure it’s welcome! As for me, I’m already wishing it was summer again!

Anyway, the brief for this blog hop was to share something that celebrates a favourite element of summer—Air, Water, Fire, Earth or Spirit. The hop is not restricted to jewellery, it could be  about a jewellery creation, pretty photos, a summer recipe, a campfire song, a craft, family memories, a poem. I thought I would share a couple of things inspired by the summer elements Earth, Water and Spirit.

First of all, summer food! One of my favourite things to do on summer weekends is to get together with friends for an afternoon barbeque, lots of wine, the kids playing cricket or splashing through the sprinklers, lazing the afternoon away. And this salad, from a blog post last year, is a perfect accompaniment. Made using freshly-picked corn and tomatoes from our summer veggie patch, it embodies Earth.

IMG_1019

Then there is the music that reminds me of summer, embodying Spirit and evoking an instant mood. The Style Council’s Long Hot Summer takes me straight back to the long summers of my teenage years. The Kinks’ Lazing on a Sunny Afternoon is a classic. And in this dreary Melbourne winter weather, The Mamas and The Papas classic California Dreaming fits my mood, I miss summer!

Still, I can make jewellery that reminds me of the summer, and especially that all important element of Water. This little set, using a seahorse pendant from SlinginMud, reminds me of the beach.

Summer Seahorse Collage

And here are my Tropical Sunset earrings, with lampwork beads by Genschi. Swarovski crystals, and a sweet little silver palm tree bead.

IMG_5198

Please visit the other bloggers in the Summer Elements Blog Hop!

Toltec Jewels (Hostess)     http://www.jewelschoolfriends.com/
Marlene Cupo                   http://amazingdesigns-marlene.blogspot.com/
Cheri Reed                        http://creativedesignsbycheri.blogspot.com/
Ailsa Cordner                    http://www.bramalfiebeadsetc.co.uk/
Robin Reed                       http://willowdragon.blogspot.com/
Nan Smith                         http://www.wirednan.blogspot.com/
Sherri Stokey                     http://www.knotjustmacrame.com/
Christie (Charis Designs)    http://charisdesignsjewelry.blogspot.com/
Carolyn Lawson                 http://carolynscreationswa.blogspot.com/
Susie Harris                        http://jewelleryjunkie.blogspot.com/
Andrea Glick-Zenith           http://zenithjade.blogspot.com/
Nelly May                          http://smellynelly.blogspot.com/
Melissa Trudinger               https://beadrecipes.wordpress.com/  <- YOU ARE HERE
Dini Bruinsma                     http://angazabychanges.blogspot.com/
Kathy Lindemer                 http://bay-moon-design.blogspot.com/
Cory Tompkins                  http://tealwaterdesigns.blogspot.com/
Robin Reed                       http://willowdragon.blogspot.com/
Gina Hockett                     http://freestyleelements.blogspot.com/
Karen Martinez                 http://www.fairiesmarket.blogspot.com/
Liz                                    http://beadcontagion.blogspot.com/
Jasvanti Patel                     http://jewelrybyjasvanti.blogspot.com/
Solange Collin                    http://www.blog.ahowinjewelry.com/
Gerda                                http://gerdascraftsblog.blogspot.com/
Karla Morgan                    http://texaspepperjams.blogspot.com/
Anindita Basu                     http://alankarshilpa.blogspot.com/
Alicia Marinache                http://www.allprettythings.ca/
Andrea Trank                    http://heavenlanecreations.com/
Mischelle Fanucchi             http://micheladasmusings.blogspot.com/
Tanty Sri Hartanti               http://tjewellicious.blogspot.com/
Shaiha Williams                  http://shaihasramblings.blogspot.com/
Mary Govaars                    http://mlhjewelrydesigns.com/
Becca Sirevaag                  http://godsartistinresidence.blogspot.com/
Lennis Carrier                    http://windbent.wordpress.com/
Regina Wood                     http://www.gina-design.blogspot.com/
Sue Kennedy                     http://suebeads.blogspot.com/
Kathleen Breeding             https://www.facebook.com/99BOBOTW