January Honey Do List Reveal

Almost every month, Sarajo of SJ Designs Jewelry shares a photo that her husband, Eric, has offered up as inspiration for her to design jewelry. She shares this with us and calls it the Honey Do List. I've made more jewelry than I even know using this inspiration from the two of them. Some months I struggle more than others, but this month, I kinda knew what I wanted to make as soon as I saw Eric's photo. 

As usual, it took me almost all month to get around to it, but these earrings were made pretty quickly.

In fact, I got started on them before I realized that they would make a great tutorial on YouTube. So, while they were already in progress, I popped on the camera and shared some of my thought process and how easy these are to create. 

While you don't quite get the optical-illusion-like sensation of looking up into the treetops, I think these earrings still come across quite well as tress. 

And, with the method I used to create them, I can see loads of options with other beads and color palettes. What do you think?

Big thanks go out to Eric and Sarajo for the inspiration this month. Make sure you head over to Sarajo's reveal so you can see what she made, click on the links to the other artists, and/or add your own creation from the inspiration. The linky tool will likely be open most of February so you have plenty of time!

In the CraftyHope Booth at SAA

 I just got back from updating the booth at Southern Antiques and Accents in Fairhope with new goodies. And, I figured you deserved a peek, even if you can't make it to the area to score any of these. Perhaps the eye candy will inspire you in some way. 

The pearl teardrops in these are salvaged and altered for a more aged feel.

Most of the beads in these earrings were also salvaged from old jewelry.

 I had to create something with these thrifted (estate sale) heart beads before Valentine's Day.

You can watch me create these in a reel on Instagram. All the beads are from Jesse James Beads.

There are also a few pieces from my most recent Bead Box reveal.
This may be the only necklace I took up there from the bead box.

These Safari earrings were just one of several that made it up there from the bead box.

I can't forget about this beauty.
And, this necklace from my video tutorial is available. 

One of the big things I just added to the booth are these Jewelry Grab Bags.
As you can see on my little sign, each bag has at least three items handmade by me. And, each bag is only five bucks!

Other new-ish treasures you might find in the booth are Inspiration Jars like this. 
My inspiration jars are full of beads, old and broken jewelry, chain, and other bits. I just have far too much of it to keep for myself. 

In addition to what I've featured here, there are tons of other earrings, necklaces, and bracelets in the booth. 

If you happen to be in South Alabama, I invite you to swing by Southern Antiques and Accents! In addition to my little booth, there are thousands of square feet of other booths full of treasures to be discovered. 

Bead Box 16 - Reveal

It's been about FIVE MONTHS since I shared what I stocked in Bead Box 16 and probably seven months since I stocked it. I'm not even sure how that happened. But, I've finally finished all the designs and am ready to reveal how they came out. 

First, let me remind you that my Bead Box is a simple 17-compartment plastic organizer that I use to stash the elements for one design per compartment and take with me when I travel or just use it when I'm not inspired to come up with something new. I guess I just haven't traveled much and have been inspired by other projects. And, yes, there have been 15 other iterations of this box (I'll link all those below.) For now, let me get to it.

I mentioned in my stocked post that I had sketched out some of these designs - but I currently have no idea where that scrap of paper might even be. So, as I finished up some of these last pieces, I wasn't sure exactly what I originally had in mind. I just let myself be inspired anew by the materials in the compartments. And, it seemed to work out just fine.

This came together exactly as I had envisioned, I believe. I know I worked on this necklace back in JULY!! It's a great neutral piece. 

Simplicity was the key to this one. It was just about making the chain and hanging the shell dangle. Easy enough, and perfect for keeping my hands busy. 

I like that this one has a little more interest to it with the dangles. Oh, and if you have any idea what that stone is that I soldered, would you help a girl out and let me know?

Mismatched earrings aren't usually my jam. But, these worked out to the perfect length with the addition of the Czech glass bead on the earring with the shorter key. 

I have to admit that this bracelet turned out a bit small when it was finished. So I added a short length of chain when I attached the clasp (I do all the finishing touches to these boxes at one time.) I feel like the chain might need a small dangle from the end of it to give it some weight. What do you think?

You wouldn't know by looking at it, but the chain of this necklace is what held me up the longest with this box. I kept toying with the idea of making it a multi-strand chain or a layered-look necklace. Really, the problem was that I was trying to run the chain through the loop on the soldered piece. Once I cut that off and just added a jump ring, this came together easily. 

I'm going to admit to you now, that I'm not sure about ANY of the bracelets that I made from this box (well, the last one might be okay.) This one feels a bit...clunky. I LOVE the soldered heart but am not sure that this bracelet works for it. 

I simply gave up on this necklace. Once I pulled the pendant together, the whole thing just didn't feel like my style. So, I didn't go any further. And, that's okay. 

These feel more like me - sweet, simple, and romantic with gorgeous beads and salvaged elements. I like it. 

These could not have been more simple to put together. And, they almost make me regret putting them in the bead box and taking up a compartment. I think more busy-hands projects might meet my needs better when it comes to this box. I'll have to think about that. 

I am so tickled to have put that lucky duck pendant into a necklace. And, I think it's pretty perfect.

Even when I wrote about these in the stocked post, I wasn't sure how I had planned to assemble these earrings. I have to admit that that's a bit of a relief because I was befuddled by the elements in this compartment. At least they worked out into something pretty!

I did remember what I wanted to do with the black beads and pale blue sequins in this compartment. Those sequins have a LONG history in my stash. I thrifted them ages ago and every time I tried to purge my stash, I just couldn't part with them for some reason. I think it's that color. It's so subtle and lovely. These may look like pretty simple earrings, but I have to tell you - it was a booger to get all those sequins onto the wire. Thank goodness they worked out!

Here's that "last bracelet" that I mentioned before. It's no show-stopper. But, it's a perfectly sweet, great-for-stacking, simple piece. And, I can't argue with that. 

I just read what I wrote about these in the previous post. And, it all still holds true - the tin reminds me of crocodiles and the khaki seed beads remind me of a safari hat. I'll likely call these safari earrings. 

Oh, lawdy, I wasn't sure at all what I was supposed to do with these elements. But, I dove in and made my favorite pair of earrings in the whole box! Seriously.

I'm fairly sure I had intended to hang the little pink beads from the holes in the bottom of the tin. I had the same number of beads as holes. But, I didn't include any headpins in the compartment and was feeling awful lazy and just ready to be done. So, I couldn't be bothered to go find ten headpins. Instead, I just used some of the wire that was already on my desk to wrap the beads to the bottom of the tin. It's something new and adds some neat texture. It works, I suppose. 

And, there we have it - Bead Box 16. I'm not sure how long it will take me to pack up bead box 17, but I don't expect to forgo this practice anytime soon. It's nice having that box available whether I'm heading away from the house or just want something to do that doesn't involve rifling through my entire craft room first. 

If you're interested in seeing any of my previous boxes, here's the full list.

I know I had a few questions for you up there in the descriptions. But, I'd also like to know which of these are your favorites too. 

Easy Chain and Bead Necklace

As a Jesse James Beads Design Ambassador, I receive a ton of fabulous beads, findings, charms, buttons, and chains. But, admittedly, some of it lingers in my stash because it feels too precious to work with, too perfect already. This is precisely the case with the Chain Reaction strands. These strands contain interesting metal links interspersed with wire-wrapped crystals. They can easily be a necklace or a bracelet on their own. So, I struggle. But, in an attempt to push myself this year and be BRAVE (my Word of the Year). I moved some of the chains around on my desk until this super simple design jumped out at me.

The skills needed to make it were little more than knowing how to open and close a jump ring and how to make a wrapped loop. And, I only need a few jump rings, a clasp, and a headpin to pull it together. I'll talk you through it in the video.

The video also contains some real-life moments too: cats fighting, dog barking, and me being unprepared. But, that's how inspired I was to create this piece. I couldn't wait for the "perfect time" to make it work. It had to be made right then!

I've already got a few more ideas of what to create with some of the other many strands of Chain Reaction in my stash. But, I'd also love to know what would you make with this neat chain. You can see a few more examples of it in the video. 

Available on Etsy

 It's been a hot minute since I shared some of what's new in the Etsy shop. So, I thought I'd give you a look. 

Gorgeous Teal Drop Earrings

French Pebbles Necklace

Vintage Spring Earrings

Rustic Flowers Necklace

Boho Brown Earrings

In addition to all the beautiful, unique, and eclectic jewelry; you can find a few assemblage pieces in the shop too. 
All Ears Assemblage Art

Of course, there's also plenty more for you to take in over in the CraftyHope Etsy Shop
So, what strikes your fancy?

DIY Word of the Year Purse Charm

The Pirate Pretties Jewelry Challenge was on my list of Challenges and Inspirations for this month. Angela, the hostess, prompted us to make a purse or bookbag charm with both red and pink. It should also include either silver or rose gold and optionally charms or dangles. If you've been around here much, you know that pink isn't one of my favorites. And, combining red with it felt even more challenging. To top it off, I have never made purse or bookbag charms and didn't know where to begin. Fortunately, I happened to have a set of swivel clasps* in my stash (in SILVER - yay). 

And, I had just received an order of shrink plastic as well as recently picked a Word of the Year: Brave. All of these things culminated in this purse charm. 

Of course, I created a video to show you how to work with the shrink plastic and add the seed beads with waxed cord onto the clasp. 

It really is a super easy project and could be fun for just about any age group. 

Of course, you don't have to use a word for the charm. A simple drawing or stamp with permanent ink would also work. In addition, you can color it in with either colored pencils (like I did) or with permanent markers. It really is a versatile medium. 

Let me know if you have any questions at all about the process!

So, have you picked a word of the year too?

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

January Challenges and Inspiration

With the start of the new year comes a new slew of challenges. And, I don't mean the day-to-day challenges of just making it in the world. I mean, ART CHALLENGES! There always seems to be a plethora of them in January. I can't keep up with them all. So, to keep it simple, I'll share the ones that I'm either participating in or have shared about in the past. If you know of any others, I encourage you to leave information about them in the comments.

  • For my own sake, I should mention my #CraftyHopePrompts challenge in which I am building a prompt deck by pulling three prompts a week, altering a playing card with them, and later creating another project with those prompts. You can watch this week's Prompt Card or go through the whole playlist of videos to learn more. This week, the prompts are Red, Handwritten Letter, and Cheesecloth. 
  • Sarajo is back with a new inspirational photo from her husband, Eric. They call this jewelry challenge the Honey Do List. I think I may already have an idea for this month. But, the reveal isn't until Jan. 30th. And, the linky tool will be open for several weeks after that, if you need a bit more time!
  • Another jewelry challenge is the #PiratePrettiesJewelryChallenge from Angela. This year, it's a "Double Color" challenge in which we are to work with two colors in each design. You can learn more about the challenge in Angela's video. This month, the colors are red and pink, the metal choices are silver or rose gold, the project is a purse or bookbag charm, and the optional fun elements are charms or dangles. The reveal date is the 15th (SOON!) and can be done either in a video on YouTube or on the Pirate Pretties Jewelry Facebook Page
  • I completely missed that this next jewelry challenge was going on and am kicking myself for it. Allegory Gallery has a whole calendar of daily jewelry prompts for their Bead in the New Year 2023. They've done this MANY years before and it's a load of fun. The calendar is on their Facebook page and could be a great inspiration any time of the year. I might even take it on for a February project....we'll see!
  • My art journaling friend, Nina is doing a Clean Slate Journal Challenge this year that involves simply using a junk journal. I just put up my video for it this morning. It was a great incentive to jump into a journal and play.
  • Here's a quick reminder to begin thinking about The 100-Day Project. It's apparently going to begin sometime toward the end of February. Though, an exact date hasn't been announced. I've participated several times before with quite a few different projects and have found that it's a fabulous way to explore something that I'm interested in doing. Last year, it was assemblage art, and I have been loving it ever since. Remember that your project doesn't have to be huge. It can be something small - just a little something you can do every day to be a little creative. Think on it!

And, that's my list for now. Like I said, let me know in the comments if you know of any others. I'd love to at least see the results of the challenges. 

Art Journal and Mixed Media Videos from December

 Happy New Year, y'all!!

I'm hoping to get back on track with balancing blogging and videos and Instagram and all the things. But, we all know it's a tightrope walk. So, I will not promise anything - just my hope. Let me finish last year by sharing the art journal and mixed media projects that I shared on YouTube in December. As is to be expected, the bulk is my #CraftyHopePrompts - a project I created for myself to build up and use a prompt deck. You can learn more about it in the videos. 

Card 10: Flower, Doodle, Napkin

Project 10: Canvas Board Art

Card 11: Stick, Sewing Machine, Gold

Project 11: Found Object Assemblage

Card 12: Sparkle, Watercolor, Cut

Project 12: Gift Tags

Card 13: Indigo, Letter/Number Stamp, Scribble

Project 13: Junk Journal Spread

Because December was a busy month, I only got one other project completed in this realm: my Mixed Media Menagerie art journal spread.

Mixed Media Menagerie December - Art Journal Spread

The card for Week 14 of #CraftyHopePrompts is already up for this week too, if you're interested in playing along. Hopefully, I'll be back here soon with more variety. 

If you wouldn't mind, I'd LOVE to know what you'd like to see more of here. What you're missing from my posts. What you come here for. Let me know in the comments or shoot me an e-mail! 

Once again, Happy New Year!

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