Saturday, 17 September 2011

Waiter, there's sand in my soup

Well, didn't that come around quickly! I'm really looking forward to having a swim around in all the other soups over the next few days, but in the meantime...

For those not 'in the know' - the bead soup party is a global affair organised by the fabulous Lori Anderson. Its organisation is no mean feat with almost 400 participants this time. Basically we are partnered up, swap beads, make our creations and reveal. It's a great social, a creative challenge and much more!

You may recall that the lovely Saskia sent me these beauties all the way from Germany:

They include a shaped shell pendant, rectangular shell beads, shells, a fancy silver toggle clasp, wooden beads, sodalite chips, a heart charm, a fish charm, the cutest little wire sea-horse, a wire fishy and more! And here's the here's what I cooked up:

I used the shell pendant and beads and the wooden beads and wire dangly that Saskia sent along with some shell and bronzite beads from my stash. I have used wire to join them. I also added a couple of silver tube beads and some chain and a few wee garnet danglies on the pendant.

I think this has a real sand-y beach-y feel.

I learned a lot doing this. I learned that I tend to prefer to work with a limited range of colours in each piece. Mixing the blue and pinks and brown seemed a step too far out of my comfort zone. Although I know others could have done a fab job with those colours. I'm happier mixing metals. I think this is my usual style, maybe a bit more elaborate. Also it is slightly assymetric because of the different wooden beads either side of the pendant. I am a bit of a control freak so ANY assymetry is a major deviation! I'm really pleased with that though, I think it adds character.

I had also intended to use the lovely blue lampwork beads and charms that Saskia sent (including that soooo cute little wire sea-horse) to make a blue sea-themed charm bracelet, but it just hasn't happened yet. I'll post a photo on the blog when it's done though.

I hope Saskia likes what I did with her soup ingredients. I hope you do too !

A few more pics:

Now, why not visit the other bead soup partiers and view their creations, it's truly inspiring - you can find the full list at:

Monday, 12 September 2011

More crafty-fairy-ness

Here's a pic of my stall at the Uppermill Craft Fair yesterday. Over 200 people through the door and the event raised over £450 for Oldham Cancer Support Centre. The highlight for me was meeting loads of lovely local crafters and I hope to see them again soon at future events. My only regret was that I was doing the stall on my own this time and so I didn't get a chance to go right round the fair to see everyone. Next time. Cherry events (Vicky and Melissa) did such a fab job organising the fair and were fabulous hostesses too, well done!

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Uppermill charity craft fair - this Sunday

I am really looking forward to the craft fair at Uppermill Civic Hall this Sunday. Not only is it supporting a fantastic charity, it is featuring some really great local crafts. As well as jewellery, there's knitwear, clothing, cupcakes, soaps, bags, accessories, facepainting and more... I've been following one of the organisers, Sewabee's, blog this week which features some of the crafters. I know already I will be bringing some of their goodies home with me (except maybe the cupcakes, I doubt they'll last that long!). Come along!!

Friday, 2 September 2011


I have been so busy making for craft fairs recently that I have not been making much for me. Well, that stops here. Haha. I am going to be a bit indulgent now for a while and make myself some holiday jewellery. (But still ask me if you see anything you want, I do commissions you know ;-) Or you can very easily make this one yourself. OMG, is this my first tutorial?...

This opal chip and pearl memory wire cuff is lovely and easy to make. You need - about 4 coils of bracelet size memory wire, round nosed pliers, memory wire cutters, opal (or other) chips and pearls (or other beads).

Make a loop at one end of the memory wire using your round nosed pliers (orient it sideways so it will sit flat on the wrist). Thread on some chips and then a pearl, some chips and then a pearl and then, when you have as many coils as you want (or run out of chips!) cut the memory wire and make another loop at the end. Remember to use special heavy duty memory wire cutters so you don't ruin your regular wire cutters.

There, that was my first tutorial. Not great, next time I will do it properly and include pics... going to do some basic metalsmith tutorials soon, just getting in gear.