Sunday, October 31, 2010

Colors of Fall - Purple Orchid

Today I unveil, the first of my designs for 'Colors of Fall' series, showcasing jewelry made by fellow shoppers and design partners. I chose the Pantone 2010 'Purple Orchid' for my palette and particularly like how they described it as purple leaning to fuchsia, an unexpected choice for fall bringing magic and vibrancy to the season. Oh my, the possibilities...

For my purple beads, I choose these beautiful Batik Beads, handmade by Kristal Wick, by rolling a length of beautiful silk batik into a scroll. I placed a pair of these tubular beauties asymmetrically along a length of gold-fill chain.  The chain comes down in a Y with another purple bead dangling at the end of it. And its the fall season, the leaves are turning golden, yes, even here in Florida! So what better to mark the season than a yellow bronze golden leaf pendant and some gold Swarovski crystals.

Purple Orchid - Magical and Vibrant!

The matching earrings are made with 1/2 inch Batik beads dangling from a pair of light circle ball-end ear wires.  

This is the first time I have worked with fabric beads and I must say I enjoyed it and will certainly go back for more... Check out the selection of batik beauties in a variety of colors and also the selection of Sassy Silkies, each bead hand painted with a positive message, I think they would be great for holiday gift jewelry.

Disclosure: Some of the beads described above I have received free of charge from
I have been asked to review these beads/supplies and give my honest opinion of them.  I am not being paid by for my endorsement of any of the products received and reviewed in my blog postings.

Monday, October 25, 2010

And the winner is...

Using a random number generator the winner of the $25.00 gift certificate for beads of their choice from is Boot-C from Mamas got to Doodle

Congratulations to the winner and a big thank you to every one who participated. Boot-C commented that if she won her choice of beads, she would choose snake beads. The original snake beads were actually made from the vertebrae of snakes, but the modern version is made of glass!

Enjoy Boot-C, can't wait to see what you make with them...

And a very big thank you to for the $25.00 gift certificate giveaway, and a wonderful introduction to the beads of Africa!

The Bead Chest is a leading online retailer of trade beadsmillefiori beadsKrobo beads, and other great glass beads.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Beads From Africa And A Great Giveway!

While you and I play and create and make a livelihood with our beads, I wonder how many of us realise the profound influence beads have had in the history of our world.

Take beads from Africa for example. Back when European explorers, traders and missionaries were venturing into the African continent, one of the important items they took with them was beads. Beads, mainly of glass, were used as gifts or for barter and trade. Glass beads were exchanged for water, food, gold, ivory, and many such commodities and sadly also for slaves.

We have all heard of African Trade Beads! Today these beads are valuable because of their age, their historical significance and their beauty. Recently I checked out the collection of African Trade Beads for sale at  So much history, so much variety, aren't they beautiful?

African cultures that used beads in their everyday life, opened up to these bright and colorful European beads, and are now known by such joyful names as Christmas Beads (I think they are called that because of they remind one of colorful Christmas decorations) and Wedding Beads (a gift to brides on their wedding day). What fun designs come to mind when I see these colorful beads!

Multi-colored Christmas Beads
The Bridal Mali Wedding Beads

Today, beads made in Africa are a product of their environment and are often made from natural material such as wood, seed, shell, bone, and recycled material such as glass and paper.

Check out this video report that CNN made of What I would give to walk through a bead market in Ghana! Wouldn't that be an adventure?

If you are like me and enjoy working with such exotic beads, you don't have to travel to Africa. You got to look no further than Their store carries a wide variety of colorful beads from Africa, both those used for trade and those made there. The selection of beads span the vast African continent from Ethiopia to South Africa, and from Mali to Ghana. Check it out for yourselves.

And now for the Great Giveaway! has generously agreed to give a $25.00 GIFT CERTIFICATE to shop their store for beads of your choice. 

To get your name in the draw you have to leave me a comment on this blog before the 24th of October.

  • I would like to know if you have used African beads in any of your jewelry designs? If yes, let me know what kind. 
  • Then visit and tell me if you had your choice, which would be your favorite strand of beads?
  • If you blog about this giveaway to tell all your friends about it, you will be entered  twice.

Please make sure I have your email address to contact you if you should win this fabulous prize.
Don't miss this chance to purchase some exotic African beads and add a new look to your jewelry designs.
The lucky winner will be announced on October 25th.

African beads for sale!
The Bead Chest is a leading online retailer of trade beads, millefiori beads, Krobo beads, and other great glass beads.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Were you born in October?

If you were born in October, a very Happy Birthday to you and a very Happy October to the rest of us.

Read all about this necklace and earring set with a Boulder Opal pendant and white keshi freshwater pearls and round faceted smoky quartz beads. Interested? Let me know.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Good Bye Summer, Hello Fall!

For the second morning, we Tampa Bay residents woke up to a cool 65 deg. F.
Slept last night with the air conditioner turned off and the windows open... very nice.

As I resized a bracelet for a client, I thought, this bracelet says it all.... 
Good bye Summer and hello Fall.

Enjoy the weekend!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Happy October! And the winner is...

Happy October! 
Can you believe it was 65 deg. F this morning in the Tampa Bay area?

Today I name the winner of my Necklace Giveaway!
chosen by the Random Number Generator...
And the winner is Dawn Marie of Designs by Dawn Marie.
This happpens to be a special week for Dawn Marie, she also celebrates her birthday.
Happy Birthday Dawn Marie!

Thank you everyone, who visited and commented on my giveaway. Your experience and insights into the use of Facebook to promote your business will be put to good use.

Watch for another exciting Giveaway, coming this weekend.
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