Saturday, October 5, 2013

Studio Saturday - Humblebeads

Welcome to the last Studio Saturday post! 

What!!! I know! But don't worry - we are still doing studio posts they will just now pop up on Friday since we know everyone is off enjoying life during the weekends!

We have several new changes happening here at the ABS that we are so excited about and hope you'll love the new format too.

Monday - Rebecca will be sharing links and great finds with you.
Tuesday - watch for free tutorials every week from the ABS editors and guests.
Wednesday - Erin will be presenting Perfect Pairs - formerly known and the Featured Designer of the Week.  She will be highlighting her pick from the Flickr group and sharing information about the designer and bead artist.  (Sometimes it's the same person!)
Thursday - Great new posts from the ABS team.
Friday - Inside the Studio - formerly known as Studio Saturday. Enter to win our weekly drawing before you run off to play for the weekend.
Saturday - Art Bead Round Up - take a moment from your busy weekend to see what beads we are featuring for the weekend.
Sunday - We are taking Sunday off and encouraging you to spend some time that day creating!

The first week of the month join us for our new challenge and winners from the previous month. And Erin will be hosting a blog link party at the end of every month for those who participate in our monthly challenge.

Now back to this week's Studio Saturday!  First, it's been a few weeks since our last studio visit with Erin SiegelSusan Delaney was our randomly picked winner and will receive an Irish Waxed Linen Cord Color Mix courtesy of the Jewelry Accord shop on Etsy! Susan please email Erin to receive your prize!

Welcome to the Humblebeads studio today!

The photos above feature work I created for the Bead Chat Magazine's October issue.  And it got me thinking about challenges, homework and assignments.  And how very much I love a good challenge, blog hop and theme.  And how rarely I join in and what to do about that!  Some of my favorite pieces of jewelry have been from challenges. 

One thing I've worked into my schedule is committing to creating a free project every month based on the Art Bead Scene's challenge. Visit me on Tuesday to see the first one!

Tips for joining challenges & blog hops and how to get the most of our them.

1. Subscribe to your favorite blogs that host regular challenges, like the Art Bead Scene, the Bead Soup Party and Treasure's Found.  I recently disovered Blog Lovin as a super easy way to follow my favorite blogs.

2. Pencil in those dates - deadlines can help really bring out the creative muse - but if you don't write them down somewhere it's hard to remember them.

3. Take great photos of your challenge piece and when you post about them, share about your creative process or inspiration.  

4. Get social - be a good participant and visit blogs on the hop or challenge.  It might not be possible to visit all of them, but be sure to check out a few new ones.  Share your favorites on social media and don't forget to share your entry on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instragram - but not all on the same day - spread the sharing throughout the week and at different times for maximum coverage.

5. Why join a monthly challenge or blog hop?  It's a great way to connect to the beading community, share your work with new people, increase visitors to your blog, you'll have new jewelry made and possible a new source of inspiration after the event. 
These are some beads I've pulled that match this month's theme! 

So this week I am giving away a $25 gift certificate to  
All you have to do is leave a comment and we'll pick one random winner on Friday's new Inside the Studio.

What makes you want to join in a blog hop or challenge?  
Is it the theme, prizes, exposure,  you adore the host? (hello Erin?) 
And if you are feeling really chatty - what stops you from joining a challenge or blog hop?


Alice said...

Gorgeous pieces! I love the new lineup here on ABS and I can't wait to see what wonderful things are in store for us readers!

And I would love to be the winner!

Sarajo Wentling said...

I have to admit that I've become a bit of a challenge addict! Most often it's the inspiration piece or theme that hooks me. I love having a starting point to jump off from... sometimes that's much easier than just starting a design completely from scratch. I've found that these challenges also have a tendency to push me out of my comfort zone as a designer/artist.

I've been most regular with the ABS monthly challenges and Andrew Thornton's Inspired By Reading Book Club (I'm a librarian so it's kind of perfect for me!).

Most often the thing that stops me is timing (or just a lack of time in general)... although sometimes either the inspiration piece just doesn't call to me or I don't have something that fits already in my stash.

I would be thrilled to win a gift certificate to buy some of your lovelies... fingers crossed. Thanks for the chance!

Kym Hunter Designs said...

You mentioned several of my reasons for joining a blog hop/challenge. The theme will definitely pull me in, but the dead line is a major factor and my cause me to not participate. The ABS challenges are good for me, not too rushed. I usually love the art work piece and immediately have design ideas, but there have been a couple of times that the piece just didn't inspire me. I love the challenge piece for this month!

autumndawns said...

I agree that entering the ABS monthly challenge gets me creating pieces I might not do otherwise. I like that the challenge starts with a piece of art. Thank you for the opportunity to share my work and meet other beaders.

Ann Schroeder said...

Beautiful necklaces and inspiration beads! I like to enter challenges because it encourages me to make something that I otherwise probably wouldn't end up making. Having an encouraging and welcoming space makes me feel like I can enter a challenge (Sally Russick is good at this as is Art Bead Scene). The feeling that I won't be able to come up with something "good enough" keeps me from entering more challenges.

Kristina said...

I love the necklace and the ginkgo beads. I've not actually participated in a blog hop or bead soup, but it's on my list of 101 goals in 1001 days. I do love to look at what people can come up with though. It's a great way to be inspired.

KayzKreationz said...

I join because I like the theme and/or the designer and want to see what they will create. But, of course, prizes don't hurt either. LOL

freshbakeddesigns said...

I might join a challenge because of the inspiration the ABS monthly fine art. Or it might be a technique Sally Russick's challenge with cabochons or the Love My Art Jewelry's boot camps.
Love your newest fall jewelry pieces, Heather!! Such subtle forest colors.


beadrecipes said...

I join blog hops I am interested in, and ones that I think will challenge me! I've got a few regular favourites -- Miss Erin's challenges are fabulous, Lisa Lodge's blog hop kits always challenge me to use components I wouldn't necessarily pick, and I've really enjoyed delving into jewellery history for Leah Curtis's History Hops. I'm trying to do as many of the Art Bead Scene challenges as I can, and of course Lori's BSBP is one of the year's highlights. Right now I'm looking forward to the Holiday blog hop season getting started!

Angi said...

I recently joined my very first blog hop. I'm so nervous but excited at the same time. I joined this challenge for a number of reasons. First off - For the experience. I want to begin selling my jewelry online. I think the blog hop will help me feel more secure in putting my designs out there. Another reason I joined is I am an avid reader of jewelry blogs. I have learned so much from each and every designer, so I am hopping these very designers will help me with some constructive criticism or encouraging props.

Pretty please count me in for this amazing giveaway! Thanks!

Angi Mullis

Maneki said...

I enter challenges and blog hops because I like the theme, either because it's so "me" and instantly makes my brain buzz with ideas or because I find it a good, exciting challenge. Like when I signed up for Erin's challenge of colour and picked bright yellow because it's a tricky colour for me or when I signed up for Sarah's Sequintastic September because it inspired me to use my almost forgotten sequin stash. I tend to come back to those annual challenges because I find they have a good balance of pure creative joy (as I like the theme) and being challenging, pushing me to try something new. It's fun when a challenge pushes or inspires you to do something you wouldn't have thought of otherwise!

With Erin's latest challenge of travel, I was really inspired to share all sorts of things about my home region and the idea of reading about new places enticed me as a human geographer. With themes like that it's hard not to sign up, even if I managed to sign up to three challenges/hops with reveals within one month.

Prizes are always interesting, especially if it's something like the gorgeous art beads here on ABS, but not the most important part. In the end, it's the theme and reveal/deadline date that make or break it. Especially the dates as time seems to fly and other things get in between. Ages ago I did all sorts of challenges, big and small, and entered contests but these last few years other things have demanded my attention and time.

With blog hops I prefer ones that aren't too big, e.g. I love Bead Soup Blog Party but hesitate to sign up because the size of the blog hop overwhelms me and I feel bad if I don't visit everyone...

CraftyHope said...

I'm not sure how to answer this one. I can say that it's not usually the 'prizes' that get me interested in a hop. The theme is often important as there are some themes that I know I can't work with and end up scaring me away. I love the community of a blog hop. But one of my favorite things is the general challenge of the thing. I like giving my creative juices a workout and seeing what I can come up with when I'm working with something I may not have picked for myself. It's a bit self-indulgent, but that's my greatest motivator.

Bead-Mused said...

Hey Heather ~
I've participated in Bead Soup Blog Party twice. I joined to "meet" other beaders. When I work at home it's easy to become a hermit so any interaction with people who do the same thing is good. And, OH! - the eye candy on the reveal dates cannot be beat.

Now, that being said DEADLINES are so very important & the really creep up on you. You absolutely MUST make smaller deadlines to get you to that bigger deadline or your finished product will be, well let's just say my last one didn't go as well as I would like for it to have.


kimmykats said...

Looking forward to your posts this week! Love blog hops...getting to see all the beautiful creations.

Charlotte said...

For a chance to win free Humblebeads, I'll mention that I don't use art beads very often, but I use the Challenge palettes as inspiration for non-art-bead pieces.

sandi m said...

The new ABS lineup looks great! ABS had always been the first blog I look at every day.

Regarding challenges, my main reason for not entering is that I don’t have a blog - why?- that’s another story. But IF I did, I would select those designers’ challenges that interested me.

Heather, love your owly bead board. You have a way of just making elements go together. Perhaps a tut in the future on your design approach?

Susan Delaney said...

I have grown tremendously from the challenges I've entered, something that I hadn't predicted.

Your beads send a wave or relaxation through me every time I see one (or more).

I am crazy about gingkoes, too. My entry for this month's challenge has my version of gingko leaves. When I saw that owl in a gingko tree I knew what I'd make.


Carol D. said...

Like the new posting schedule.
I don't join very many blog hops but when I do it is to meet new jewelry makers and see all the eye candy.

Susan Lloyd said...

thanks for always showing beautiful designs and beads for our inspiration.

UPON A HILL said...

Loving the new lineup! Look forward to seeing what is coming! Such eye candy today!

ACBeads said...

I'm new to blogging and haven't joined my blog hops and challenges but when I join is because I like the theme, already have some coordinating beads and love seeing what others make. Your beads are to die for!

Meadowland Designs said...

I must confess that the lovely prizes do have something to do with my taking the effort to enter a challenge... =)

I enjoy challenges because:

- they limit the materials I can use
- force me into new color experiments
- and everybody else's take on the same inspiration is fun to see

I don't always participate because:

-I didn't find out about it until late
- I,.. I forgot about the challenge until much too late
- didn't have one of the required materials
- no time...

Thanks! ~ Catherine

Despina said...

for me, it'd be the chance to create something with materials I haven't chosen (therefore, out of my "comfort zone"), and to see and evaluate my own creativity after seeing what other people have come up with using the same ingredients as a starting point


Susan Lloyd said...

I love your beads and would love to win! thanks.

Becky Pancake said...

Heather your beads are inspiring. I love to do challenges. Them make me think and use my creative muscle. I join them as often as I can.Thanx for a change to win some of your wonderful goodies.

Mitzie Crider said...

I want to join one because everyone raves about them and they're very inspiring. I haven't so far because have a day job and I'm trying to establish my jewelry business including preparing for three shows. Not enough hours in each day. Thanks!

ac3e186c-325b-11e3-ba6e-000bcdca4d7a said...

Love humble beads. Would love some new inspirational beads!! Fingers crossed. J

ac3e186c-325b-11e3-ba6e-000bcdca4d7a said...

Love humble beads. Fingers crossed. Thanks for offering gift certificate. J

Kathy Lindemer said...

I love to participate in blog hops. I meet new Tristan's and always learn something new.

Sandy Kershner said...

I love to read the blogs and see all the designs ideas, new components and tutorials so I can learn more and more. I really want to try and enter the challenges and maybe I can build up my confidence!

Creations by Kari said...

Would love to win some of your awesome beads!

As I don't have a blog and absolutely can't stand writing, am tech backwards, it's a major deterrent to my participation in lots of the challenges. Also my health has not been good, so it has limited my doing much at this time.

Besides that, I often think how much fun it would be to participate in various challenges/blog hops. I love when there is a creative theme, cool bead giveaways, swaps, and kits are always fun too! Love when you are forced to use materials/colors you might not otherwise use, and love seeing how creative people are in their finished pieces. :)

Creations by Kari said...

Would love to win some of your awesome beads!

As I don't have a blog and absolutely can't stand writing, am tech backwards, it's a major deterrent to my participation in lots of the challenges. Also my health has not been good, so it has limited my doing much at this time.

Besides that, I often think how much fun it would be to participate in various challenges/blog hops. I love when there is a creative theme, cool bead giveaways, swaps, and kits are always fun too! Love when you are forced to use materials/colors you might not otherwise use, and love seeing how creative people are in their finished pieces. :)

Debra Gibson said...

I just recently started doing swaps and I hope to enter the ABS someday , I do have a blog as well it's been a learning experience. I have several blogs that I follow because I learn so much from them.
Thanks for the chance to win ! I love Humblebeads !!