Thursday, January 31, 2013

January Monthly Blog Tour

The choice of this painting for January is so fresh despite the fact that it is more than 70 years old. It is timeless and full of fantasy. The colors are lush with the predominance of emerald green, Pantone's color of the year, grounded by the soft flowing linen and the bright pop of lemon zest with the persimmons on the tree.

So many beautiful peacock submissions this month! Blew me away!

Michelle of Concatenation  (above) shares that she stumbled upon the technique for her 'Peacock Pennies' by playing around. I love that! The best things happen by happy accident! We are so happy to have you participating and can't wait to see what you come up with for February!

For another great polymer clay design, be sure to check out Linda of Fresh Baked Designs. I like the soft color palette she used and the nod to the gold leaf in Botke's work. I also like to learn the process behind the project, and Linda shares how she came up with this design.

Sharyl of Sharyl's Jewelry & Reflections and I have a lot in common. We buy beautiful art beads waiting for the perfect inspiration to strike. This beautiful bracelet (above) with soft raku silks and a wonderfully detailed bracelet bar really evoke the colors of the swirling peacock feathers in a stylized manner.

I really like the simple design that Angela Lund-Logan (above) shares with us this month. The bright chartreuse green of the persimmons is what drew her attention and I like the shape of the necklace to let those art beads speak loudly. 

Kim Idalski of Kimi's Jewelry (above) squeaked in at the last minute. We are so glad that she joined us, especially since she has not been feeling well. Being creative and with your friends is a great medicine, don't you think? I am very impressed that Kim made this intricate polymer clay peacock! It looks like it is articulated and has a great movement to it. So regal!

There is a lushness to this bracelet by Beady Eyed Bunny (above). There is a lot to look at and I like how the different elements draw your eye around the piece. The depth of the glass beads, the fun mix of dangles, the beautiful rose stamping all make for a lovely bracelet design.

What comes first? The beads or the inspiration? Mary Ellen Parker of Bee Tree by m.e. answers that question and shares her reasoning behind the choices in the materials and motifs that she used in her fairy tale cuff bracelet.

The shape of the feathers is evident in this pretty necklace from Vera of Designed by Vera (above). I see the eye of the feathers in the glass nuggets and the colors of the persimmons in the beads. A very modern take on peacocks!

Miss Tracy Bell of Copper Glass and Recycled Trash (above) is in the Aspire to Wire eCourse that our new editor Kerry Bogert is leading. I have been avidly soaking up the amazing projects that Kerry has been providing, but Miss Tracy has been so inspired that you can't stop her from making each new thing in her own style! I am equally inspired by them both.Tracy shared this 'Peacock Fantasy' necklace and I encouraged her to submit it to our photo pool for this month. Those peacock beads couldn't be more perfect and I love the inspired wire work.

Welcome Pookledo (above)! She had trouble adding her design to the Flickr pool, but I thought that it was a design worth sharing.  She created a fanciful wired and beaded design with all the colors from the peacocks to the persimmons. We are glad that you were inspired to share your design with us!

I love that people are so inspired by our monthly challenges that they want to challenge themselves to join us for 12 months. That is what Elaine, of Too Aquarius has stated as her goal. I hope that she will be continued to be inspired by the artwork we choose! Not only did she make a lovely bracelet, but she challenged herself to come up with new design for her awesome polymer clay beads in a peacock theme. 

I like that Shaiha of Shaiha's Ramblings tells us that all the ideas she had just couldn't happen. That happens to me all the time! At that point, the best thing to do is to simplify your approach. That is exactly what Shaiha did with her pretty necklace.

Wow. Not only did Autochthonous Evolved (above and below) create an amazing cuff bracelet, but she also tooled and dyed the leather, and made persimmon glass beads!

This is a striking design and I am so glad that she shared it with us and gave us a glimpse of her process. Check it out!

Welcome back, Miss Tari! I think that it has been awhile since we have seen Tari of Pearl and Pebble (above) in our challenge. She was drawn to the swirling water in the background of the painting to ground her piece. Aren't natural stones the prettiest to pair with art beads? The pretty blues and greens are soft and this looks so inviting to wear! 

Elise Thomas (above) brought in so many varied elements of the inspiration painting to her ornament. From the ferns and the flowing water, to the lavender bell flowers and the beautiful handmade glass bird, this is a very lovely ornament!

We are so grateful that Jill Palumbo shares her talents with us. Her design is a symphony of intricately detailed polymer clay, layered with seed beads and semi-precious stones. A finely detailed tribute not only to Botke but Frida Kahlo as well. Check it out!

I am very impressed with people who can see potential in those things that others overlook. But this design by Pam of Re-Maker (above) is more than just taking a discarded thing and calling it jewelry, she transformed this material into something that is truly beautiful and that is an art. Thank you for sharing your art with us!

I really enjoyed reading about the creative decision process that Ghie Malig of Trinket Tales used in her design. She brought in the emerald color of the year, the classy gold leafing that Botke was fond of using, and spikes as a stylized nod to the peacock feather.

Pam of Klassy Joolz (above) found the perfect beads that evoked the intricate details of the showy peacock feathers. It feels like a mini masterpiece, a little landscape in this one bead. That is what I love about art beads... they are tiny works of art and a joy to behold!

I like the way Cate Van Alphen of Fulgorine (above) turned the inspiration into an abstract design for her earrings. The colors in her handmade polymer clay beads pull from the peacock feathers and the bead work helps to put on the show.

Kashmira Patel of Sadafulee...always in bloom! took an abstract enameled piece and really brought in the feeling of this painting. This is such a unique piece and I love the wire work and the multi layered effect. I hope your hand heals quickly so that you will be able to join us again on the monthly challenges!


A few more that I missed. Sorry about that. It was pretty late at night when I was doing this and I am only human. ;-)

Purple Fish Studios (above) made this very romantic necklace from polymer clay called 'Mr Peacock's Ransom.' I love the way the colors in the clay flower are picked up in the ombre ribbon. Very Victorian! And look! I just noticed that the background is a peacock print. Way cool!

Lola of Bead Lola Bead (above) is joining us for the first time. Welcome! I like the texture on the polymer clay that she made and the subtle touch of gold. Those rounds look just like the persimmons and the dainty flowers dangling remind me of the bellflowers. We look forward to seeing what you create for future months!

Beth and Evie of EB Bead & Metal Works (above) are back at work! They created this wonderful enameled tail feather pendant along with some other enamel pieces and of course beautiful lampwork! The colors just sparkle and glow. Check it out!

Skye of Creative Chaos tipped me off that I missed something. Looks like she did everything right in submitting her design, but I just missed it. And I wouldn't want to do that! This pretty handmade peacock focal has a very romantic feel to it and was part of a gift that she sent to our friend Rebecca Anderson. What a lovely present! Thank you for sharing it with us!

Thank you for joining me on this tour around the blogs! I apologize for missing some. There were a lot of entries this month and I do actually go and read every single blog post! Know what would make me deliriously happy? If you put your exact blog URL in the description with your picture at the top! That way I will be less likely to miss it!

Next week we will reveal our challenge for February so stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Chevron Trends

Before I dive into my very first ever Art Bead Scene post, I have to say a huge THANK YOU for the warm welcome y'all extended me last week. I'm excited to share my love of all things beads, color, and fun here. 

Spend just five minutes on Pinterest and you are sure to see something with chevrons. It's a HUGE trend right now in fashion and decor. From shirts to skirts, and mugs to rugs, there are so many ways to accessorize yourself and your studio with chevron. 

I think it's about time we bring chevrons into our handmade jewelry designs as well. Although, it is a trend that hasn't full taken hold of the art bead world, I'm sure that it will soon. And until then, if you go bead hunting, there are a few people that are ahead of the game and offering chevron-esque beads right now. 

To see even more chevron items, check out my pinterest board: Chevron Trends

Monday, January 28, 2013

Featured Designer of the Week-Jill Palumbo

Each week the Art Bead Scene features a Designer of the Week. One of our editors picks her favorite from the Monthly Challenge entries. This week's winner is Jill Palumbo.
Here's what ABS Editor Tari Sasser had to say about Jill's piece:

"This piece is so wonderful in so many ways, the color, texture, beading and all the different elements.
I find it fascinating and fabulous. I really want to touch it. Fantastic necklace Jill!"

Learn more about Jill's necklace on her blog.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Show Me Sunday - More Bird Beads with Rebecca Anderson of Songbead

So we've made it through January with some really spectacular and unusual bird beads being shared here by you - thank you for all your ideas and inspiration! I have also enjoyed my own little trawls through Etsy, discovering new bead artists to share with you. I hope you've found some new favourites amongst the three (yes, three - that's 48 different bird beads in the treasuries alone!) treasuries I created especially for Art Bead Scene. Here's the third - this time, I looked for owl beads too; after all, owls are birds too. I could have kept going with these, I had quite a few more in my Etsy favourites, but here are the chosen beads for this week. A fine selection, I'm sure you'll agree. 

'More Bird Beads Again!' by thecuriousbeadshop

A third collection of handmade bird beads from artists across the world.

Folk Art Birds - Soft Teal a...

Lampwork glass owl bead 96

Southwestern Lampwork Bird B...

Green Bird Beads - Polymer C...

Handmade Owl Bead, Ombre Owl...

Boro Lampwork Bird Bead Blue...

Owl Beads

Sparkling Bling Owl Bead

Wise Little Owl Charms

A Little Owl Bead Sculptural...

Humming bird bead

Bird Beads, Turquoise Bird, ...

Lampwork Owl Bead Lime Green...

3 Handmade Stoneware Beads -...

Polymer Clay Owl Beads - Han...

Flock- handmade ceramic bird...

I sometimes wonder, reading and writing the posts here on Art Bead Scene, how often does seeing beads or components featured here, make you run off and buy? I know for me, discovering and sharing new bead artists is one of my favourite parts of social media. But is it the same for you? Do you get excited to discover beads by artists you've never heard of before. That's one of the reasons I've been creating these treasuries  - maximum bead exposure! But would you rather just see a few, or even just one bead, highlighted each week? Let me know. 

We're now approaching February and so for next week, I'd like to take a sideways step into the world of packaging and presentation. Bags, ribbons, boxes, sticky tape, stickers, do you present your jewellery when you give it to people, or sell it to the public? Leave a link to your favourites here, or at our Facebook page. I know sometimes it's easier to link to something on Facebook than to pop back here with the copied link and past it into the comments. You could even link to a photo of your own packaging - show us how you present it.

And now for the Bead Blogger links:

A Bead A Day 
Do you enjoy altering store bought beads? Lisa's looking for thoughts on the "blue wash" she's working on. Jewelry Making 
Get hammered and make some pretty Valentine's Day jewelry. 

Beading Arts 
Cyndi has been gathering up some of the best business advice that she came across this past year.

Resin Crafts! 
Now that Carmi has a new resin clay to work with, options are endless for mold making!

Snap out of it, Jean! There's beading to be done! 
The Memories and Thanks Blog Hop which was orchestrated by the wonderful Lori Anderson was very moving to participate in. Jean thanks a young friend of her son Robert for her devotion and for everything she has done for Jean's family!

The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton 
Andrew shares three class samples he made using Premium Seed Bead Mixes and peyote stitch.  

See you here next week for some inspiring packaging ideas!

Rebecca is a Scottish jewellery designer, currently living in Manchester, England. You can read more about her and her work at her blog, and see more of her jewellery at She also has a supplies shop at