Monday, February 28, 2011

Paper Crafting & Jewelry: Katie Hacker

This is the workshop I taught at CHA last month. It was so fun to see those crafty ladies make this project! They were up bright and early at 7am on Sunday morning to cut, glue and bead their way to personalized jewelry. Give it a try!

Making Personalized Jewelry with Katiedids™ Creative Components
By Katie Hacker for Beadalon

Katiedids 2-hole 25mm round component #356B-530
18 rose 6/0 Toho seed beads
.018" diameter SilveRose™ Beadalon 7 # JW03SR-0
Silver 4mm round solid ring #314B-166
Silver fancy bail #327B-035
Silver (thin) head pin #312B-013
Silver lobster clasp #315B-007
Silver extension chain #324B-010
4 silver #2 crimp beads #JFC2S-1.5G
4 silver crimp covers #349B-010
Optional: 12mm acrylic dome, paper image & dimensional glaze or resin

2 Katiedids 35mm rectangle #356B-514
12 rose 6/0 Toho seed beads
2 silver (thick) head pins #312B-113            
2 silver round/oval hinge earrings #308B-150/154
Optional: patterned paper & dimensional glaze or resin

Round nose pliers
Chain nose pliers
Wire cutters
Mighty crimping tool

Combine scrapbooking paper or photos with Katiedids™ Creative Components and Beadalon SilveRose™ beading wire for stylish jewelry that's easy to make.

For the Necklace:
1. Spread a thin layer of dimensional glaze on the back of the acrylic dome and press the dome onto the paper image. Set it aside to dry.
2. Pass a thin head pin outward through the upper hole on the Katiedids circle component. Make a wrapped loop to attach it to the loop on the bail.
3. Cut three 16" lengths of SilveRose beading wire and string the bail onto the center of the wires.
4. On one side of the pendant, string a seed bead onto each wire. Hold the wires together and pass them through a solid ring. Repeat the pattern five more times.
5. Repeat Step 4 on the other side of the pendant so the necklace is symmetrical. Adjust the beads so the pendant is in the center.
6. Attach a crimp bead and crimp cover to each end of the beaded section to hold it in place.
7. At one end of the necklace, hold the wires together and pass them through a crimp bead and the small ring on the lobster clasp, and back through the crimp bead. Crimp it, then attach a crimp cover.
8. For the other end of the necklace, pass through a crimp bead, the first link on the extension chain, and back through the crimp bead. Crimp it, then attach a crimp cover.
9. Use wire cutters to cut a 6" length of SilveRose beading wire. Choose 18 seeds that are uniform in size/shape (this is called culling). String the seeds onto the wire and pass the wire end through at least half of the beads again to form a circle.
10. Pull the circle tight, test to make sure it fits inside the channel on the circle component and then cut off any extra wire.
11. Trim away any extra paper on the image under the acrylic dome, then glue the acrylic dome and the beaded circle into the pendant; let it dry.

For the earrings:
1. If desired, cut a piece of patterned paper or photo to fit inside the Katiedids rectangle.
2. Use dimensional glaze to glue paper in place, let it dry.
3. String six beads (or as many as desired) onto a head pin.
4. Pass the head pin through the upper hole on the rectangle and make a wrapped loop to attach it to the loop on an earring.
5. Repeat Steps 1-4 to make a matching earring.

• To settle the beads into the channels, turn the component upside down on a forgiving surface and press down. Or, you can use nylon jaw pliers to gently press them into place. 
• Seed beads can be irregular, so cull them to make sure they're uniform in size and shape.

Making Wrapped Loops:

Bend the wire in a right angle

Use round nose wires to make a loop

Wrap the extra wire around the base of the loop

    Thursday, February 24, 2011

    Playing Around: Leslie Rogalski

    Do you play with materials and not care about "finishing" something? I do this all the time. Play for play's sake can lead to learning what works, what doesn't, what you like working with. One thing leads to another, and another, and maybe even to a good design idea or engineering solution that you CAN use in a finished piece.

    Here's an example: I found a leftover piece of hollow rubber tube in a bead box. (You know how things migrate out of their proper places!) For reasons I never question, I started to play with it. First I wrapped a bit of 24g Artistic wire around it. Then I strung wire through it. Next I strung an orphan big-holed bead onto it (a Paula Radke bead). Eventually I had this completely random but intriguing snippet. I pinned it to my cork board where I put things like this, my experiments and inspirational stuff. It started to collect a bit of dust before I really noticed it again.

    A few months later I started working with more intent on designs using wire and rubber O-rings. The first snippet on my board caught my eye and well, long story short, here's what evolved:

    So when you play, PLAY. Don't try to make "something". Be fearless, nothing is wrong or a mistake. Bead, take stitches out. Wrap, uncoil. Hammer, straighten. Be generous with your materials. Save everything and look at the bits and pieces often, because you never know when one thing will lead to another!

    Leslie Rogalski
    Beadalon Design Team Member

    Monday, February 21, 2011

    Interchangeable Pendant: Katie Hacker

    Here's a quick idea for an interchangeable pendant. The bail clips onto ribbon, chain or any type of stringing material so you can easily switch the pendant out. Attach one to the front of a handmade card for a quick, last-minute gift!

    1. Start by passing a head pin outward through the upper two holes on a Katiedids™ Creative Component #356B-526.
    2. Make a wrapped loop to attach the head pin to a removable bail #353B-010.
    3. Cut a 4" piece of .015" diameter Beadalon 19 silver color and pass it under the head pin.
    4. String fifteen SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS 4mm black diamond rounds onto the wire and pass the other wire end through the beads in the opposite direction to form a circle. Press the beads down into the channel on the component.
    5. Use E6000 to glue a crystal flower into the bezel in the center of the component.

    Katie Hacker
    Beadalon Design Team Member

    Thursday, February 17, 2011

    Chainmaille Bridal Jewelry: Lauren Andersen

    I am currently working on the instructions for this gorgeous pearl and chainmaille bridal jewelry set. By using different elements, you can completely customize the look of your chainmaille. Here I have used tiny drop-shaped pearls and have woven them right into the weave.

    The chainmaille weave is called the Barrel Weave. It’s a variation of the European 4-in-1 Weave. Once I have completed the instructions for this weave, they will be available at

    Look for this necklace to be featured in an upcoming Beadalon ad in Martha Stuart’s Wedding magazine!

    Lauren Andersen
    Beadalon Design Team Member

    Monday, February 14, 2011

    Chainmaille & Crystal Earrings: Lauren Andersen

    This is a fun, sparkly project that would make a perfect gift for Valentine's Day. Each of the ladies in my family received a pair of these lovely Byzantine chainmaille weave and SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS Baroque Crystal earrings for Christmas. I made my earrings using several different colored crystal baroques and then wrapped them each and did not put names on the packages.

    When it came time for the ladies to open their gifts, each one got a different color crystal and then they began to trade with each other for the colors that they liked! We all had so much fun!

    The earrings are very easy to make. Take a pair of ear wires and work your section of the Byzantine chainmaille weave directly off of the wires. Attach a Baroque Crystal to the end of the weave using a jump ring. Repeat for a matching earring, and then you’ve just created a gorgeous pair of blingy earrings using one of my favorite techniques!

    The instructions for the Byzantine chainmaille weave are in my book “Basics of Chain Maille,” available at your local bead shop or on my website

    Lauren Andersen
    Beadalon Design Team Member

    Thursday, February 10, 2011

    Keep Your Knots Knotted: Leslie Rogalski

    I am a totally devoted fan of WildFire™ beading thread, and use it exclusively. One of the things I like about it is its ability to hold a knot. When I heard someone claim their knot came undone, I figured it was probably the knotting method and not the thread. In all my work and years of beadweaving and stringing and more, I have never had a WildFire knot misbehave, or Dandyline™ either for that matter. Here are my tips for securing a knot in WildFire or Dandyline:

    1. Leave yourself several inches to finish off the thread. Do this anytime you need to end or add thread. Trying to knot with an eensy tail is frustrating. Six inches is minimum.

    2. Secure the thread in several places before you knot. I call these "anchor hitches." These help distribute the pull on your thread so the tension is not all on the one final knot.  First, exit the beadwork after your stitching is finished (Figure 1, showing odd-count peyote). Weave back into the beadwork along the thread path and make a half hitch around an existing thread between beads. Choose a place that is inconspicuous. Weave through a few more beads and make another half hitch. Two anchor hitches are usually enough, but in stitches that may be loose such as right angle weave, make a few more anchor hitches.

    3. Three hitches.  Choose another inconspicuous place for your final knot. If possible, place it next to a bead whose hole may be large enough for you to use to hide the knot. Make three half hitches around the same thread, with the last hitch consuming the first two made.

    Don’t trim next to the knot! This may be a leading reason knots come undone — do not trim right next to the knot. After your final knot don’t cut the thread. Weave the tail back into the beadwork through several beads and try to pull the knot into that big-holed bead, if possible. As you weave the remaining thread through the beadwork feel the tension as this new pass of thread fills the beads. This tension helps secure your thread even more (just be careful not to break your beads by forcing the needle through if it is too snug). Once you've secured the thread, it's safe to exit the beadwork and trim.

    Glue? I rarely use it for beadwork, but if you feel better, just a dab. Why knot?

    Leslie Rogalski
    Beadalon Design Team Member

    Monday, February 7, 2011

    Free Beading Pattern for Bridal Jewelry

    Girl with a Pearl
    By Katie Hacker for Beadalon

    .015" diameter silver Beadalon 19 JW14S-0
    silver medium curb chain 340B-030
    silver elongated cable chain 340B-010
    12 silver #1 crimp beads JFC1S-1.5G
    12 silver lines crimp covers (variety pack 349B-101)
    12" freshwater pearl strands: 5x6mm amethyst rice, 5x6mm white rice, 6mm white potato, 6mm amethyst potato, 8mm white potato
    2 white 12mm round glass pearls
    4 silver 8mm jump rings
    2 silver 18mm bead rings
    silver 3-loop end bars
    silver 3-loop end bars with clasp/extension chain attached

    2 loops of bracelet-size memory wire
    32 silver eye pins
    leftover freshwater pearls from the necklace: 5x6mm amethyst rice, 6mm white potato

    2 silver 25mm kidney ear wires 308B-310
    2 silver medium ball head pins 312B-253
    2 white 12mm round glass pearls
    2 silver 18mm bead rings

    Round nose pliers
    Chain nose pliers
    Wire cutters
    Crimping tool
    Memory wire cutters

    For the necklace
    1. Cut a 8" length of beading wire and use a crimp bead to attach it to a loop on the end bar. Attach a crimp cover. Pass it through 7" of pearls. Crimp to attach it to a loop on the other end bar. Repeat this step to connect two beaded strands to each loop on the end bars.
    2. Cut two 7" lengths of elongated cable chain and one 7" length of curb chain. Open the end links to attach an elongated cable chain to each of the outer loops on the end bar. Attach the curb chain to the inner loop.
    3. Place a 12mm pearl in the center of a bead ring and pass an eye pin through both items. Make a simple loop. Repeat this step for a matching pearl/bead ring link.
    4. Connect two jump rings to each silver bead ring.
    5. Cut six 3 ½" lengths of both styles of chain.
    6. Assemble each side of the necklace as follows: Use a jump ring to attach the end bar loop (on the beaded section) to a silver bead ring. Attach another jump ring to the silver bead ring and connect it to the loop on a pearl/bead ring link. Use another jump ring to connect a silver bead ring to the other end of the pearl/bead ring link. Gather three chains of each style together and use a jump ring to connect them to the last silver bead ring. Open the last links on the chains and attach one of each style to a loop on the end bar/clasp.

    For the bracelet
    1. String an amethyst pearl onto each eye pin and make a basic loop. Adjust the loops so they are facing the same direction. (You don't want one loop facing the front and one loop facing the side.)
    2. Make a loop on the end of both pieces of memory wire.
    3. String a white pearl onto each wire. String an amethyst pearl link onto the wires by passing one wire through the upper loop and the other wire through the lower loop.
    4. Alternate white pearls and amethyst pearl links until all of the white pearls are strung.
    5. Loop each wire after the last white pearls, making sure that the beads are snug.
    6. Open a loop on the last amethyst pearl link and connect it to the two lower loops on the end of the memory wire.
    7. Connect the other end of the amethyst pearl link to the upper loops on the end of the memory wire.

    For the earrings
    1. Place a 12mm pearl in the center of a bead ring and pass a head pin through both items.
    2. Make a wrapped loop to attach the beaded dangle to an ear wire.
    3. Repeat Steps 1-2 to make a matching earring.

    @Katiedids™ by Katie Hacker for Beadalon
    All Rights Reserved, for personal use only

    Thursday, February 3, 2011

    As Seen in Harper's Bazaar: Fernando Dasilva

    My book, Modern Expressions: Creating Fabulous and Fashionable Jewelry, (North Light Books 2010) is featured in the "Hot List" of the February issue of Harper's Bazaar.

    It's an honor to have my first solo book mentioned by a magazine of such importance in the fashion industry. Thank you HB and I hope I can still wow you with my creations.

    Thanks to Sarah Reynolds, the marketing manager with F+W Media, who has been a great partner in turning my book into a hit.

    Who would guess that a guy who loves fashion magazines and is constantly inspired by his favorite issues would be reading about his work in the pages of one of those very same magazines? So amazing!

    -Fernando Dasilva
    Beadalon Design Team Member