Saturday, March 30, 2013

Bead Soup Reveal!

First, a big thank you to Lori Anderson for putting this together and a thank you to my partner, Patricia Johnson.  They made this a ton of fun!
I had a ton of fun with this bead soup.  When Patty sent me all of these goodies, my brain exploded with some ideas.  I love copper so the green played perfectly with it.  In fact, you can see all of the fun things I made below. 

This is everything!  Two pendants, one bracelet and a super long 32" necklace.  I tend to love long chains that I can layer with other things.  This is incredibly fun as I've never made a shape like it before. 

Here is my super long 32" necklace.  I used Patty's gorgeous handmade lampwork beads and a few of her vintage beads in a custom setting that I cut and patterned myself.  If you look closely at the dangle at the bottom, you'll get a sweet little surprise.  All of the beadcaps were handmade as well. 
Lesson learned?  USE A PUNCH!  It was a pill getting the circle exactly round with my jewelers saw.  I bought a punch just so I don't have to do that again.  :)
The back of the lampwork focal's setting.  I love the little rosette on the back.  So much FUN!

 Here's the surprise!  I used pennies as the bead cap.  I realized how cool it would be while I was helping my daughter sort her coins and I remembered that pennies made prior to 1982 are pure copper.  These were fun to play with my fire, dremel and dapping block.  Nothing beats stress like playing with metal and tools.

I loved the sari silk and Patty's handmade clasp so I cut the silk in half and braided 4 strands together coupled with a few of her vintage beads and two of her lovely lampworks with some copper chain.  It fits as a cuff beautifully.

I had fun with both of thee pendants each for different reasons.  I don't typically wrap with wire like I did on the left hand side, but it was a fun experience.  I definitely learned a lot.  If you look closely, you'll see I used recycled computer parts to wire wrap some of Patty's vintage beads around.  FUN!
On the right, I riveted a copper blank, washer and sterling heart to one of Patty's silver toned recycled computer parts.  I really love the weight of this pendant.  SUPER fun.  I had a big blast adding a heat patina, stamping and riveting.
I hope you like what I've made.  Run, don't walk, over to see my partner's big reveal.  Remember I sent her this --
I can't wait to see what she's done!  Here are the links:

Take a look at everyone else's blogs for their fabulous designs!  I can't wait to spend some time seeing what everyone else is revealing.  You'll have to either open the page further to see the other blog links OR you can click here.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Boolean Math is Jewelry Inspiration

So for those of you who know me, you know that I teach recruiters how to find candidates online using deep web searching techniques.  I have the best job ever at AIRS and I would not change a single thing.  What you may not know is that I use those same techniques to find inspiration for jewelry.  Pinterest is great, but sometimes the same things keep getting repinned which doesn't do much for my creative juices. 

Instead, I'll usually run a quick Boolean image search in Google or Bing like the below to find like styles to inspire me like the one below.

(copper | 925 | sterling | silver) (forged | riveted | "cold connection") (jewelry | broach | necklace | earrings | bracelet | ring)

That being said, I do love looking at Pinterest.  Who am I kidding?  I can spend HOURS, but I prefer to apply my own Boolean logic to searching.  So, I edited it a bit... (copper | 925 | sterling | silver) (forged | riveted | "cold connection") (jewelry | broach | necklace | earrings | bracelet | ring)

Now I'm getting results only from Pinterest, but I was able to focus my keywords in Google much better than in Pinterest.  Not only am I able to find new feeds to follow, but I can quickly find some beautiful inspiration pieces that don't depend on Pinterest's algorithm.  Fab!

How do you find inspiration?

Incidentally, if you're interested in taking some AWESOME Boolean classes - take a look at our classes at our AIRS Training website.  Happy beading!