Sunday, August 13, 2006

Dude! I'm Beading

It's been almost three years since I started collecting beads and tools, but did I have anything to show for it? Sure I do. A couple of stitch markers! That is until this weekend.

With the rag rug samples finished took the table loom back to the basement (on the pool table, where else?) and cleaned off the dining room table. It actually looked like a dining room for about 5 minutes, then I brought up all the beading supplies and started working.

Fortunately I didn't see the mistake on the right until the next morning, so I went to bed happy. I wanted to use a magnetic clasp (we are supposed to have break-away lanyards) but was worried it was too heavy. I was able to put the clasp on and secure it with those nifty little Beadstoppers. I attached a key (because I know it's heavier than my plastic id) and wore it around the house for a couple of hours. When I was sure it would be secure I fixed my mistake and added the clasps. This picture, taken this morning in daylight, shows a truer color.

My learning style involves gathering all the resources I can find and then reading, rereading, and reading one more time. Three years of this and I think I'm ready! So I took out a kit for a Serpentine Necklace. I'm not sure I'd wear it - it's very sparkly and if you know me at all you know I don't do sparkle. However, it was an EXCELLENT pattern. Well written and easy to understand. It also had very good illustrations. If you are a first time beader I would encourage you to try one of her kits. She walks you right through the process.

Here's a close up. While my daughters fight over this, I think I can adapt this to use with matte beads, using only half the width of the design.

Now a question. I have two pairs of earrings that I love. They are metal discs, the one on the right seems to have a glaze over copper, I think. I vaguely remember glazing copper disks in high school art class.

Do you know what these are called? What would I ask for? Every catalog and website I use has plenty o' sparkle, but I'm having trouble finding elements like these. I found two bead stores that are fairly local so I can try there too.


  1. Wow, very pretty! Might make me consider starting to collect beads (which I've been able to resist so far. Buttons however, are another matter.)
    I'd better start with something easy though. How did you make your stitch markers? Are they in your archives somewhere?

  2. Oh, boy I recognise that syndrome! It was about the same length of time for me. But once I started, I had to be dragged away from the table kicking and screaming, just too much fun.
    Pretty stuff.

  3. Simply stunning! Especially love the earrings....nicely dangly but not too...Yum!

  4. Katherine3:27 PM

    Check the Fire Mountain catalog--they have a bunch of matte metal elements you might like. Some have nice patina, others, I think are painted or enameled.
    They also have matte surfaces beads in many sizes, and a lot of the semi-precious gemstones aren't very sparkly, but have very nice colors/patterns.
    Have fun! It's every bit as bad an addiction as fiber--and you can combine the two!

  5. Katherine3:30 PM

    Oh, yeah, one more possibility--Fimo/Sculpy--you can do all sorts of nifty things with this stuff, and it can be made matte, rather than shiny.
    And you can get etching stuff--I think it's sulfuric acid, actually, you dip shiny glass in it and it comes out matte. You have to be very careful using it, of course, and I wouldn't have it in the house if I had children around, but it will do the trick.

  6. Try . They are in NYC, catalog of wonderful metal thingys, tools, etc.
    Also, you can by sheet copper, fume it with a torch, and cut shapes. There are disc cutters (Try Rio Grande for jewelry suuplies).
    Or, you could collect pennies, foreign coins, old coins. Coin shops usually have less-than-perfect for by-the-pound prices. Then you can pound them with a hammer (or! buy a pennie squisher).
    enabler extraordinaire

    or sheet copper and a disc cutter (
    Or coins! and a hammer or a rolling mill.
    Hope this goes through: my last comment came up *error*

  8. Try - They seem to have a pretty comprehensive range.

  9. What beautiful beading!!! Would the last items be something called "tiger eye" ?

  10. Didn't it feel great to play with beads again??

  11. Very pretty stuff! Beading is not something I have yet succumbed to...
    Glad your headache finally went away. Hope your wheel is behaving better these days. Enjoy your time before school.

  12. the serpentine necklace is beautiful! great job! :)

  13. I made that serpentine necklace in several colors! Love Dragon's designs too, and especially the kits, they are wonderful. I wear mine quite often, it sits great around the neckline.