Beading, Then and Now

I was trying to clean up/out my jewelry-making area, and in the process, I came across some of my very early work in different areas.  I found some necklaces from when I first started beading; some of my initial tries at viking knit, early bead embroidery and then wire weaving.

I sat down and stared at the pieces (conveniently ignoring the piles of beading supplies I was supposed to be cleaning up) and then picked up some of my more recent examples of each jewelry style.

Wow.  Big difference.

Jewelry Upgrade

The jewelry got me to thinking about how far I had come in many of my techniques.  And when I stared at my current work, I wondered where I'd be a year from now, five years from now, etc.

The way I see it, jewelry is just as much about the journey as it is the destination (i.e., the completed piece).

Save Some Pieces of Your Jewelry!

No matter where you are at in your jewelry journey, same some of your pieces -- especially some of the first pieces in a new technique.  Put them aside to look at later, so you can see the progress you have made!

As you'll see in the following video, some of my first pieces in a new technique aren't exactly stellar.  Yours might not be either, but practice is how we learn and grow.

Then and Now Video

So, here's a video that shows some of my jewelry from when I was starting, and more recent pieces in the same technique.  You'll see the evolution of my work, and some of the items I'm just starting to learn more about.

So....hope you enjoy the video!

Light! Camera! Action! Video!

Ice Princess BraceletTo bead or not to bead, that is the question.  Well, you know my answer -- if it stands still long enough, I bead it!  So naturally I have been doing lots of videos.

Spiraling Out of Control

Lately, I have had a thing for spiral weaves.  From Russian Spiral to Dutch Spiral to Cellini Spiral and Double you sense a pattern here?  Intro videos, project tutorials, I've been spiraling out of control, LOL.  😀

Which is my favorite?  What day is it?  Each day, I seem to like one more than another, and the next day it may have changed.

  • I like Russian Spiral if I want to create something fast!
  • I like Dutch Spiral if I want something with an open, lacy effect.
  • I like Cellini Spiral if I want something with a dramatic spiral.
  • I like the Double Spiral when I want something lush, but not overwhelming.

I've been working on a project using triple spiral - yikes!  And should I mention Peyote Spiral, Herringbone Spiral...what can I say, I like tubular weaves!

New Beads, Old Beads

The photo on this page ("Ice Princess") uses a new bead that I got -- long drops.  They are kind of a cross between a Rizo and a Drop.  In any case, I like them, and I wish I had bought more, in other colors.  (Then again, that's the story of my life!)

And my old favorites - size 11 and size 8 seed beads -- figure prominently.  What falls into the "old but new" category is that in my Ice Princess bracelet, I also use some of the Czech seed beads that have been gathering dust in my bead box.  I love the looks of the Czech beads, but I hate that the bead holes are so irregular.  Well, a Double Spiral is great, because I only go through the "wings" once.  And now that I think of it, I really should try them with Russian Spiral as well!

Video, Where Are You?

Well, I have to offer a video for you to watch, right?  And if you guessed it would be the one for Ice Princess, you'd guess right there as well.

So, sit down, put your feet up, grab something to drink and have fun watching!

It’s Been Way Too Long…

Odd Count Peyote BraceletIt's bee waaaaay too long since I did a post -- sorry about that!  And I have been up to quite a bit!  Part of my issue is that my website had issues (resolved, if you are viewing this, LOL).  Another part is that I have been busy busy busy with doing YouTube videos for my channel called Beaded Jewelry Diva -- which you can find at

I've also got a bunch more ebook tutorials at:

So as you can tell -- lots of jewelry-making goodies!

Published in Artisan Jewelry Times

Woo hoo, I have one of my earring projects published in the online magazine Artisan Jewelry Times --  If you have never seen the magazine, I highly suggest you take a look -- it's quite amazing (even aside from my earrings, naturally!)

What Else?

Last year was a banner year for surgeries -- two hip replacements, so I spent far too much time either in the hospital or recovering from the surgeries.  But it's all good, since I am now free to move around and do things again that I wasn't able to do for far too long.

Plus, with the release from the pain, I have become far more productive when it comes to making jewelry!

SuperDuo RufflesJewelry Trending (Well, Mine at any Rate)

So what have been my trends in the last year?  I did get into the two-hole Czech bead craze, which I haven't yet recovered from, lol.  If you see my channel, you'll see several projects I made with the two-holes.

I've also lately been enamored by spiral rope beading.  In the last few months I've done tutorials on spiral herringbone, flat spiral, the regular spiral stitch, Russian spiral and also Dutch spiral.  And I have a few more ideas in the hopper -- a reverse Russian spiral bracelet, a Dutch spiral bracelet and a triple spiral.

I've also got another stretch bracelet project in the works, as well as a new memory wire bracelet tutorial.  Just a little something to keep me busy!  😀

Oh, and I am getting ready (in the next week or two) to come out with a new Viking Knit ebook.  This one is quite a bit different from what I've done in the past, and I hope you find it interesting.  (I'll do a link to it as soon as I have published it.)

That's All For Now

That, as they say, is enough work (play!) to keep me out of trouble.  Let me get busy finishing up the Viking knit ebook, and editing my stretch bracelet video.  I'll write again soon!

Shibori Silk Cuffs, Part 2

Shibori Silk BraceletI started talking about my venture into shibori silk bracelets in another post, and so here are a couple more photos of my bracelets.

First is a bracelet where the silk forms less of a design element, in favor of rivolis and drop beads.  This bracelet is more textured than the other bracelets.

I also added sequins to this bracelet, as well as some of the Czech Superduo beads.  Glass pearls of various sizes and seed beads make up much of the rest of this bracelet.

I also used a wider color range on this bracelet -- green to pink to purple to amber.

Whisper of MidnightIn contrast, the next bracelet is monochromatic.  The silk was supposed to be more of a contrast, and when it turned out to be less so, I decided that a pallet of gray might be in order.

I had some of those fun peacock rivolis, and figured that they would be a great addition to the pearls and silk.  The peacock rivolis have a more subdued color flash, which gave the bracelet a little hint of color.

Any more to display?  I have some in the works, with different color combos.  Some with dichroic cabs, some with rivolis.

And...I am also working on an ebook that will feature a project made with the shibori silk.  😀

So meanwhile, hope you like these photos, and happy beading!!!

Swarovski 1122 Peacock UNF 14mm Rivoli Stones 1 piece
Swarovski 1122 Peacock UNF 14mm Rivoli Stones 1 piece
Time Remaining: 4d 10h 22m
Buy It Now for only: $1.95
2 Crystal Peacock Eye Swarovski Crystal Rivoli Stone 1122 14mm
2 Crystal Peacock Eye Swarovski Crystal Rivoli Stone 1122 14mm
Time Remaining: 22d 11h 7m
Buy It Now for only: $3.85
4 Crystal Peacock Eye Swarovski Crystal Rivoli Stone 1122 14mm
4 Crystal Peacock Eye Swarovski Crystal Rivoli Stone 1122 14mm
Time Remaining: 16d 11h 2m
Buy It Now for only: $7.50
14mm Chaton Swarovski Rivoli Rhinestone Crystal Passions Elements Package of 4
14mm Chaton Swarovski Rivoli Rhinestone Crystal Passions Elements Package of 4
Time Remaining: 11d 5h 28m
Buy It Now for only: $6.50
4 Crystal Peacock Eye Swarovski Crystal Foiled 1122 Rivoli Stone Beads 14MM
4 Crystal Peacock Eye Swarovski Crystal Foiled 1122 Rivoli Stone Beads 14MM
Time Remaining: 20d 19h 54m
Buy It Now for only: $7.99