Honey Do List November Reveal

I really love this month's inspiration photo from Sarajo and Eric of SJ Designs Jewelry for their Honey Do List challenge. It's moody and dark and mysterious.


I have to admit that it took me a little while to get to this challenge even though I saw the photo at the start of the month and adored it then. As soon as I took a second peek, I got to gathering and making. The first thing that struck me was the darkness of it, so I knew I needed black. Then it was the...pointiness of it - the beak, the feathers. So, I dove into my stash of chandelier crystals for a dagger crystal to use as a pendant. 


I found this plastic variation that had apparently been an earring. It wasn't quite "dark" enough for me. So, I altered it with black alcohol ink. 


 It's kinda hard to see, but I just dripped some of the ink down sections of the "crystal" so that the black only covers some of it.


From there, I collected beads that went with the dark, goth look I wanted.


I kept to a simple palette of black crystals and pearls along with clear crystals. I also added a real chandelier crystal connector that would be used to help complete the pendant and give it a little more weight. Then, I began making the chain.


I used some cleaned and sealed annealed black steel wire to connect the beads via wrapped loops.  This made up the front part of the chain for the necklace. I finished the back of it with gunmetal chain. 


I have to admit, it's exactly what I wanted. 


I'm actually kinda relieved that I found the plastic "crystal" so I didn't have to try the alcohol ink technique on one of my real crystals. And, getting to upcycle a salvaged earring is great also!!

Thanks as always to Sarajo and Eric for the inspiration for this necklace. I'm anxious to see what Sarajo and any other participants made. Check out her SJ Designs Jewelry blog. If you're inspired by the photo, make something and make sure to share it on Sarajo's reveal with the linky tool. She'll have it open for several weeks. 


Etsy Sale

 Starting today and running through the end of the month, there's a sale in the CraftyHope Etsy Shop!



Whether you're shopping for stunning necklaces
Gypsy Layers Necklace

Flirty cute earrings,
Delicate Teardrop Earrings

One-of-a-kind bracelets,
Woodland Brights Bracelet

or quirky Assemblage Art
Mushroom Dwelling Assemblage Decor

for you or someone dear to you; you'll find an array of options in my Etsy Shop

I encourage you to shop now while the sale is on and before the holiday rush gets too crazy!

November Pirate Pretties Jewelry Challenge Reveal

The fifteenth of each month is the reveal day for the Pirate Pretties Jewelry Challenge. This is a birthstone challenge from Angela of Pirate Pretties Jewelry. She sets several criteria that include the month's birthstone color(s), metal type options, a project type, and optional fun elements. For November, the colors are citrine or yellow topaz, the metal types are gold or bronze, the project type is earrings, and the fun elements are sun, moon, and/or stars. This is what I created with these prompts.


I was totally surprised at how quickly these came together once I discovered the citrine drops in my stash. I went straight for the sun connectors that I knew I had and found the rings nearby in the same drawer. Both of those elements are from Patina Queen


I am well aware that I would have NEVER combined these elements without this challenge. The colors are too...matchy-matchy for my usual tastes. But, they work wonderfully in these earrings. That's the beauty of challenges like these. They help you think beyond what you would usually do. 

Of course, I created a video of the quick process of making these earrings


What would you or did you make for this challenge? 

How to Wire Wrap a Briolette (Teardrop Bead)

 It's been a minute since I added to my Jewelry-making for Beginners series. As I was working on another project (stay tuned for that reveal!), I realized that I've never shared the basics of wrapping a top-drilled teardrop bead, otherwise known as a briolette. 


The tools, materials, and steps are pretty simple. 

Start with your briolette, some wire that fits easily through the hole in the bead, wire cutters, chain-nose pliers, and round-nose pliers. 

From there, insert the end of the wire into your briolette. You may only need an inch or so coming out the other side (depending on the gauge of the wire and the depth of your briolette's point.)

Bend both ends of the wire up and over the bead so they cross.

From the point where they cross, bend your short (tail) end horizontally and the longer end vertically.

Wrap the tail end around the other end a few times, then trim the excess.

From there, you're basically going to create a wrapped loop. Start by bending the wire horizontally just above where you wrapped the tail.

Using your round-nose pliers, create a loop.

Finish by wrapping the wire around the previous wraps, just below your loop. Then, trim any excess wire. 

You can make your wrapping as simple or elaborate as you wish. 

There are some very cool ways to make the wrapping more decorative. However, that's not really my style, and I just wanted to share the simplicity of this technique. You can watch this whole process in my video. 

And, please let me know if you have any questions at all!

November Challenges & Inspirations

 Can you even believe that it's November? Where has the year gone? Let's not ponder that too long as there's still so much to do. Right now, I'm talking about the challenges that I enjoy participating in each month. It's time for me to round them up and encourage you to join in with some of this inspiration.


  • The first thing that comes to mind is my own mixed media prompt challenge - #CraftyHopePrompts. It's a weekly opportunity for me to create using some of the supplies in my stash. You can get a better idea about it in my latest video: Mixed Media Prompt Card Week 6. There are a variety of different ways to play with this challenge. I hope you'll ask me if you have any questions.
  • Now, the challenge with the soonest reveal date is the Pirate Pretties Jewelry Challenge from Angela of Pirate Pretties Jewelry. This is a birthstone jewelry challenge with four guidelines: use the birthstone color of either citrine or yellow topaz, include gold or bronze metal, make earrings, and (optionally) incorporate the fun elements of sun, moon, or stars. The reveal date is the 15th on YouTube and/or in the Pirate Pretties Facebook group
  • Another jewelry challenge is the Honey Do List from Srajo and Eric of SJ Designs Jewelry. Eric shares a photo he's taken to inspire Sarajo, and she shares it with us. The November inspiration is moody and mysterious. I love it! She's set the reveal date as Nov. 21st. However, the link tool is usually open for several weeks after that, if you're running behind. 
  • I love the #4Core challenge from Ina Solsbery. She offers up the challenge of using four core ingredients in a mixed media piece. This month, those are 1-remake, redo, reinvent something (she explains this in depth in her video), 2- add something that flies or represents flight, 3- triangles, and 4- submit before & after photos to her email (in the video description).
  • There's also Mixed Media Menagerie from Laura, Nicole, and Erin. This is an art journal challenge in which you incorporate their three prompts into your work. This month, the prompts are earth tones, gouache, and toothbrush. You can share your results using the hashtag #MMMNov22 on social media. 
I know there are a few other challenges I'm leaving out - Halcraft's pretty palettes and a few others, I'm sure. But the ones above are the ones I'm most likely to participate in. What about you? Is there anything that will spark your creativity, in particular, this month?

DIY Earrings with Dollar Store Rub-On Transfers

When I saw the cute rub-on transfers at my local Dollar Tree, I knew they were perfect for more than just paper crafts. And, I was right. It was easy to transform them into super cute earrings.


I simply used the bottom of one of my old cookie tin containers, added the transfers to the tin, and cut circles around them. From there, I punched a hole in each of the tins and added some UV resin.


Oval jump rings were used to connect the altered circles to another altered piece of tin that has post-earring findings adhered to them. 


And, that's it! Simple, pretty floral earrings made with rub-ons from the Dollar Store and old tin. You can watch my full video tutorial on YouTube. 


Let me know if you have any questions. 
Have you found a fun use for this type of transfer? I just used some also in my Beware Spider Webs Necklace too. I can't wait to experiment with them more. 

The Sharing Season - Big Announcement

 Y'all, I'm a little bewildered that I'm included in this amazing group of artists for a fun mixed media play date.


YES! Here's a little information about The Sharing Season Art Play Date from The Ugly Art Club.

It's the Season of SPLENDOR & SHARING & we invite you to join us in a handmade gift workshop that'll knock your elf socks off. It starts as a 4-hour live workshop & spills over into a bunch of pre-recorded lessons. The first 4 hours are with TUAC founders, Tiffany, Kristin, & DeeDee. The pre-recorded sessions will include the live session, but also extra content from some previous Guest Artists of TUAC!
-Lisa Goddard
-Kiala Givehand
-RobenMarie Smith
-Ali Manning
-Leaca Young
-Hope Smitherman (ME!!)
-& Jennifer Stone

It's all about handmade gifts & gift-giving & we couldn't be more excited to share with you! It's $24 to purchase the course ahead of time, & will be $34 after the live session has ended. Even if you can't make the live portion, it's a $10 savings to purchase beforehand, & you'll still GET the live session, just as a replay.


Doesn't that sound like fun!? The live play date will be December 4th. So, you have just over a month to get the discounted deal. I'm so looking forward to it and hop you'll join us. Make sure to click here to join in


Art Journal Videos in October

 If you're interested in my Mixed Media and Art Journaling endeavors, I like to do a monthly roundup of what you may have missed over on the YouTube Channel. For the next year or so, it looks like these roundups will consist mostly of my new #CraftyHopePrompts series, which has me working on building and using a prompt deck for the 52 weeks in a year.

Let's begin with that, then get to what else I created in October.

Week 1 Card - Silver, Geometric, Hole Punch


Week 1 Project - Tags

Week 2 Card - Gelli Print, Letter/number sticker, Junk mail 

Week 2 Project - Art Journal Spread

Week 3 Card - Spray Ink, Collage, Cardstock

Week 3 Project - Shadowbox

Week 4 Card- Feather, Watercolor Pencils, Mark-making

Week 4 Project - Junk Journal Page

I've already revealed the week 5 card/prompts but will save that for next month's roundup. I have created a page here with the weekly prompts and links to the videos if you'd rather keep up that way. I'll try to keep it updated. 

The only other art journaling video that I shared on YouTube was my contribution to Mixed Media Menagerie.

Art Journal Pages for Mixed Media Menagerie


That was it for October for the most part. Make sure you're subscribed to the CraftyHope YouTube channel and hit the bell icon so you get notifications when I post new videos. You don't want to miss anything, do you? 😜

October 4Core Challenge Project Reveal

I've mentioned the 4Core Challenge from Ina Solsbery several times in my monthly challenge list. It's one that I really love. Each month, Ina issues a mixed media art challenge that must include four core (4core) ingredients. Your medium can be anything, 2D or 3D.  This month, I went for a necklace.


 Ina's four prompts were: 

  1. Aware Beware Danger
  2. Crackles, Rips, Broken, or Damaged
  3. Crescent or half-moon shape
  4. Spider
I began by recognizing that the spider prompt was going to be tough for me as I'm arachnophobic. So, I let that slide, figuring I could come up with something later. In the meantime, the crescent shape occupied my mind. I realized that I still had a few golden brass crescent connectors from Patina Queen in my stash. With that, it was easy to recognize that I needed to make jewelry. 

So, I stuffed some dandelion fluff into a small glass jar that I altered with alcohol ink. The fluff kinda looks like spider webbing, and I made a label using rub-ons with the word beware on it. I soldered the jar closed and added an arc of wire to help connect it to the crescent. The label was altered with inks and crackle paste to complete all the prompts.


The chain of the necklace is a simple metal chain to which I added a few gold beads on gunmetal wire - to get the mixed metal look of the pendant. 

It's a darling necklace, just perfect for spooky season! To get a better idea of how the pendant came together, you can watch my Beware Spider Webs Necklace video on YouTube. 

And, don't hesitate to let me know if you have any questions!
So, how would you have handled these four prompts?

Honey Do List October Reveal

I've missed out on a few more of the Honey Do List challenges lately from Sarajo and Eric of SJ Designs Jewelry than I would like. So, I made sure to give myself a little time this past week to look at and create from the photograph taken by Eric. If you're unfamiliar with this challenge, let me quickly explain. Sarajo's husband, Eric, gives her a photo each month as inspiration. She shares it on her blog for anyone else looking for a creative spark for jewelry-making. I've loved this challenge for years as it has often pushed me to think outside the box. This was one of those times!


The above bracelet is what I created after studying the below photo from Eric (and Sarajo).


It was the bold pink, bright yellow, and subtle brown of the photo that stood out immediately to me. And, for some reason, I wanted all that on a bracelet (not my usual jam). I decided that some of the brown would best be represented in antiqued brass. Then, it struck me that I could emboss a Vintaj blank and color it with Vintaj Patinas* in Ruby and Citrine so that it would include all three colors. I even found a Vintaj embossing folder that had pinecones on it. 


Alas, this uncolored back side showed the impression more than the colored front. So, I played with beads I had gathered and found that a wood coin bead worked well to accent and distort the image on the front just enough. Some meticulous (for me) wirework attached the bead to the focal.


From there, it was just a matter of attaching the beads to one another with eye pins. Actually, I only had to do that on one side. The yellow and brass filigree portion was simply a length of chain that I cut down to size. 


As always, I encourage you to head over to SJ Designs Jewelry to see what Sarajo created from the inspiration. As well, you may find links to other artists and what they created. If the image inspires you as well, the linky tool should be open for several weeks so that you can contribute to the challenge also! 

Thanks to Sarajo and Eric for another inspiring challenge. It definitely pushed me a little creatively. What's not to love about that?


*As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Thrifty Thursday

I'll admit that this isn't really much of a thrifty post as it is a happy mail unboxing. But, since I didn't pay anything for it, it was thrifty... My mixed media artist friend, Nina Fickett, sent me another package of awesome this week. 


As she mentioned in her note to me, these treasures would be good for either my jewelry-making or assemblage. For a better look at all of it, watch my Thrifty Thursday video.


I am definitely blessed with some amazing friends! Thank you, Nina!! 

Honey Do List November Reveal

I really love this month's inspiration photo from Sarajo and Eric of SJ Designs Jewelry for their Honey Do List challenge . It's mo...