Bead Box 12 - Stocked

I am tearing through these Bead Boxes lately. Before I finish this one, I thought it would be best to go ahead and share how I stocked it. 

Let me first explain that my bead box is a simple plastic organizer with 17 compartments. Into each compartment, I place most of the elements for a jewelry design. This is the twelfth iteration of this box. I'll have links to all the others below. Here's what I've stuffed into this version.

I made this riveted tin piece a few weeks back but wasn't sure what to do with it. When I started stocking this box, I made sure to include it. I simply added some black faceted beads and cultured sea glass beads that will help transform it into a necklace.

I've got several little baggies of gemstone chip floating around the craft room. I thought it might be fun to try to incorporate them into some handmade hoop earrings. This copper set with the mother-of-pearl chips is my first design with this idea.

The idea of adding a bunch of fringy beads around a bracelet bar got into my head so I rolled with it by prepping some tin from my stash then grabbing coordinating seed beads.

Here's another hoop and chip design. For this one, I've added a couple of handmade resin charms. 

I had a bowl of prepped tin pairs set aside, waiting for something like this. This set was hand-painted and just needed coordinating beads. 

These were also set aside and waiting. I picked out some gold beads that match the gold dots (hard to see in the picture) on the tin but will use gunmetal pins to mix up the metals. 

 A few soldered ceramic shards have been stashed away too. This pretty blue and white one will be paired with matching blue faceted beads, off-white faceted beads, and a couple of blue and white floral beads to make a necklace.

While searching for elements to inspire designs for this bead box, I opened a drawer in my bead cabinet that holds pendants. The large crystal and black acrylic key slid next to each other when the drawer was moved, and I decided it was a match. I dipped into my bead soup to pick out a bevy of brightly colored beads and buttons for the chain.

Initially, this design was going to be something to do while I took my niece to get her Covid-19 vaccine, but I didn't get to it. So, the vintage skeleton key and beachy blue and gray beads ended up in the Bead Box instead. 

This metal feather was unpainted in that pendant drawer. I fixed it up with a few Vintaj Patinas. When I couldn't find beads to go with it, I made my own by adding more of the Patinas in the holes of the clear crystal beads. A few basic silver-tone beads round out the design for this bracelet. 

I've been messing around with UV Resin a bit lately so when I unearthed these double-sided bezels, I decided to use more Vintaj Patinas, the resin, and some book text to create little charms. They'll be connected to form a bracelet. 

I've been holding onto this laser-cut octopus from Allegory Gallery for far too long. It really only needs some simple embellishments. So, I chose tiny matching wood beads and some aqua-colored cultured sea glass beads.

Not too long ago, I picked up a few locker tags. I've curved this one to make a bracelet bar and will be adding a few black and red beads to make the chain for a bracelet. 

Yeah, you see the embroidery floss. I'm going to make tassel earrings with the reproduction clock hands and crystal beads. 

Those two soldered bubbles with faces were in my stash. Something called to me to pair them up for the pendant of a necklace. I added a few light pink beads and some crystals that will make the necklace chain. 

While making my tissue paper earrings, I wondered if I could use the UV Resin in other open-backed elements. So, I tried with the petals in these decorative keys. It worked! I'll be adding some peridot chips to finish off these earrings. 

Lastly, I had another few bits of tin and a couple of beads. I know I had a great earring design idea, and I'm hoping I sketched it out. But, for the life of me, I can't remember what it was. Here's hoping it comes to me soon because I'm inching closer to finishing this box already. 

If you're interested in my previous boxes and their reveals, here's the full list. 

I'm working my way through this box faster than the last one, I think. But, I won't complain. Staying busy and getting some jewelry made is always a good thing. Which of these are you looking forward to seeing completed?

Peek at My Week (April 18-24)

There was a lot in the works this week. Take a peek.

While doing some yard work on Sunday, I caught a glimpse of the red flash of berries and discovered our first patch of ripening blackberries. They grow wild here and are really a nuisance because of the thorns, but the berries are so tasty that I can't help but get a little excited. 

Once the yard work was done, I couldn't bear to sit in the house on our first nice day in a week (SO MUCH RAIN!) So, I took my beadwork outside to enjoy the weather. 

Monday was a standard, get-things-done day full of errands and whatnot. I did decide to try something new on the bead table though! (It didn't work out but has spurred some other ideas.)

Since the weather has been so nice, I started the day with a walk in the neighborhood. I was rewarded with finding loads of beauty and a patch of ripe blackberries on the side of the road. Of course, I picked a few before heading home. 

Those roadside berries were easily worked into my breakfast!

We were happy to see that the nice weather brought out the concrete guys to finish framing up the foundation of the new building. In the evening, we met a few friends (and bumped into a few others) for dinner at an outdoor venue. 

My plans for Wednesday included helping a friend set up her own Facebook Page for her art then visiting with my mom for a few hours. Since I knew I was going to be out of the house most of the day, before I headed out I did a little prep-work for a soldering idea I had. 

I worked on adding copper foil to those bubbles and a few ceramic shards on Thursday but had to put them aside after a while because I had a lot of tasks on my list to get to including making the cake for my niece's birthday. 

Friday was FULL of activity.

It began at 5:30 in the morning with us waking to the dog barking and someone knocking on the door. The concrete guys were back to pour the slab. That was great news, but we didn't know they were coming and they couldn't get to the framed area until we moved our cars. We were frantic and there was a line of trucks down the street trying to get in our driveway. 

At the end of the day, we had a concrete foundation! Now, we have to wait for the metal to come in, and they have no idea when that's going to happen. sigh.

The frenzy of the morning and the hum of trucks in the yard left us exhausted all day. I stayed at my desk and worked.

I finished copper foiling all the pieces to be soldered but knew that I wasn't in the right place mentally for soldering so I put it aside for the next day.

Instead, I played in a couple of art journals with some paint and other mixed media supplies. I'm really happy with the results.

In the evening, I got my second wind as we headed out to celebrate my niece's 21st birthday.
It was a long day!

Saturday's stormy weather gave me a chance to recover from the day before. 
I worked my way through the You, Me, Same 3 reveals.

And, I soldered almost all day long. 
I'm in love with how some of these pieces turned out. My original idea that had spurred this soldering stint didn't work out, but another technique I've been wanting to try did. So, it was a win. And, a couple of the ceramic shards have already sold to an Instagram friend. Woohoo! I'm actually considering opening a section of my Etsy shop to selling some of the pendants and charms I made (soldered, resin, tin, etc.) rather than hoarding them away for my own designs. What do y'all think of that? I'm toying with a couple of ideas related to that but would LOVE your input. 

Here's some of the inspiration I found over the week:
I hope you found something to inspire you in that list. I know I've been feeling uber inspired myself. What have you been making lately?
Have a fantastic week!

In the CraftyHope Etsy Shop

Sometimes I'm really awful about promoting the jewelry I make and sell in the CraftyHope Etsy Shop. Today, I invite you to take a look at the shop by giving you a taste of what you'll find there. 

Boxed Owl Earrings

Candy Earrings

Tin and Loops Bracelet

Dark Assemblage Necklace

Green Stardust Earrings

Beachy Crystal Necklace

You'll find those and so much more in the CraftyHope Etsy Shop. If there's something you've seen here on the blog but it's not in the shop, feel free to ask me about it. 

Chain Link Earrings Part 2

Who doesn't love a simple pair of earrings. And, with just a few skills and materials, it's so easy to make your own in a flash. I created a whole collection of earrings inspired by the large links of chain I found in my stash. 

It was obvious to me that those chains would never work their way into necklaces or earrings. But, they might be perfect in some easy earrings. So, I've started a series of Chain Link Earring tutorials that work their way from easiest to harder. The two pairs of earrings in this second installment require just a few materials and some basic skills. 

The actual tutorial for this second part is a short YouTube video on How to Make Chain Link Earrings: Part 2

Here's a look at the two pairs that you learn to make in the video. 

This first pair involves hanging a bead charm inside the chain link.

I show you how to wrap the bead on the headpin and connect the ear wire.

Actually, those are the same two skills you'll use for the second pair as well.

But, in this pair, the bead is hung from the bottom so the wrapped loop is formed on the chain-link itself. 

Easily, these hanging styles and beads could have been swapped to make completely different-looking pairs of earrings. They're so simple that you can make a handful in no time at all. 

Please let me know if you have any questions about these tutorials I'm always excited to help other creators learn to create beautiful jewelry. 
Have fun!

Peek at My Weeks (April 4-17)

While I usually do these roundups weekly, we started vacation last weekend, and I wanted to hold off on my peek. Today is the last day of our staycation, and I just can't stand the thought of putting a peek off any longer. So, here's a look at the last two weeks. 
Sunday was Easter, and we weren't expected at my mom's until after noon. We had a slow-moving morning, but I still went out to kick the bamboo. While out, I spied these two shapes (above). At first, I thought it was some kind of wasp nest remnant, but on further inspection, I realized that they're decaying seed pods from a Sweetgum tree. I kept them to possibly use in an art project at a later date. 

At my mom's, she was still frantically trying to get lunch made and had my niece add the frosting to our traditional strawberry cake. For some reason, it's always a mess no matter what my mom tries to do. Despite the toothpicks, the cake layers still slid. And, then my niece added ALL the icing which pooled and dripped from the cake plate. In spite of the way it looks, it was delicious along with the rest of the meal. 

Monday was nothing special of a day really. 
While Pat took Zoe out, he found this little gem of a rusty keyhole and surprised me with it. That man really knows me!

I struggled with what to do the day (besides grocery shopping) and landed on an idea from my list of busy-work tasks I keep on hand.
I cut down old belts to make cuff bracelets. I've actually always struggled with cutting the thick belts but saw somewhere that using a rotary cutter would work. It totally made the task so much easier!! I had this pile in no time. 

It seems that I spent a good portion of Tuesday working on making and business-related tasks. . .after dealing with the bamboo. That time outside always gives me a chance to discover the beauty in nature. 
This little spiral vine caught my eye.

Before long, I headed to Southern Antiques and Accents to update the booth with a few new pieces.

Then, I focused on those cut belts and turned them into bracelets.
Adding snaps is always a bit finicky, and I did waste a few, but now I have a good stack of leather cuffs to accent. Yay!!

On Wednesday morning, I was drawn to the dewy blueberries.

A few hours later, Pat and I headed out to get the first doses of our Covid-19 vaccines. 
After that, we waited around almost all day for the concrete guys to show up to work on the building. They were four hours late and only worked for two hours once they did get there. This whole process is breaking our hearts as it moves at a snail's pace. 

This is what our dirt pile looked like Thursday morning pushed around on the old slab. 

While checking the mail a few hours later, I spied these tiny blooms.

I spent much of the day watching art videos and eventually worked on some of the techniques that were taught.

I got my chores and a few other tasks accomplished on Friday but seemed to be focused on the natural world as my camera roll was full of pretty outdoor pictures. 
This fungus on a downed limb had me tromping out into the briars to get its picture. I think they look like little rainbows or seashells. 

Our big Japanese Maple has been in bloom, and the tiny flowers always mesmerize me. 

Speaking of blooms, I've never seen these little buds on the Horsetail reed before. Aren't they cool?

That evening, we met a few friends for dinner and drinks. In the wee hours of the morning, a horrible thunderstorm rolled through the area, and I woke with a bit of a hangover from the margaritas and lack of sleep. But, it was Bead Soup Swap reveal day, so I occupied myself with hopping through the participants and making sure my post was up.

I also found some buried treasure when I willed myself outside for a bit. 
Treasure may be a bit of a stretch. It's really just an old, rusty hedge trimmer.

And, I made sure to take in the glory of the many colors on the Japanese Maple tree. 

This post wouldn't be complete without a cute kitten picture.

I spent some of Sunday hopping back through the Bead Soup participants I had missed.
And, I discovered a patch of honeysuckle in the yard. 

Since it was the start of our vacation week, we kicked it off with a sunset ride on a friend's boat up Fish River.
The river was eerily calm and perfect for getting some reflection shots. 

On Monday, I took my niece for her second vaccine. Back at home, we fired up the grill for the first time to make sure the day had some sense of vacation to it. 

Tuesday was a friend's birthday and we headed down to Pirate's Cove for lunch and Bushwackers.

After we left there, we took a bit of a detour.
We ended up taking a peek at Bamahenge! It's a full-scale reproduction of Stonehenge. The area also boasts dinosaurs, Greek statues, and a "Lady of the Lake" (which we didn't go see because we're pretty sure the hurricane damaged her.) After that, we took another Fish River boat ride before having dinner with the same friends. 

Wednesday was mostly about catching up on errands and a few chores in the morning. That's also when the rain returned.
And, it's rained every day since. It put a real damper (literally) on our staycation. But, I stayed busy with making art and watching art videos.

As it rained pretty much all day on Thursday. I sat on the couch more than I really should have. But, I chalked it up to vacation. 

I finally started working on the altered-book journal for the Transformation class from Tiffany of Southern Gals Designs. 

As we watched TV in the evening, I worked on these flower fairy doodles that have become a bit of an obsession. 
Pat told me that I need to learn to draw arms, and now that's messed with my head and my process. Dang!

It rained much of Friday, finally clearing up for a little while in the afternoon. As the rain kept me inside, I searched for something to keep me busy. 
I decided to tackle one of the items on my list of jewelry techniques that I've been wanting to learn: sawing metal. Y'all, this skill has intimidated me longer than I care to admit, but I bit the bullet and went for it. I still have loads of practice that I need to do, but it doesn't seem as intimidating anymore. Whew!

When the rain cleared for a bit, I ran a few errands and stopped in the parking lot to take a picture.
I can't help it. I have to capture the beauty that I find no matter where that may be. 

Saturday was utterly dreary as it rained ALL DAY LONG. I barely got anything accomplished as I spent a good portion of the day on the couch. We had dinner out with a friend to get out of the house and enjoy something about the day. 

Here's some of the inspiration I found over the last two weeks. 
And, that was it for the weeks for me. The sun is actually out today so we're going to tackle a few yard chores before the grass gets too high to mow. HA! I hope you're well and enjoying the spring weather. What creative activities have you been up to?

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