Saturday, 10 May 2014

Bead Soup Blog Party 8 REVEAL!

Well, it's here folks, the moment you've all been waiting for! Well. maybe not all of you but with over 500 participants in this years Bead Soup Blog Party there are a fair few.

Firstly I would like to say a huge thanks to Lori Anderson, founder of the Bead Soup Blog Party who has managed to run the event (with a little help from some friends) despite struggling with ill health.


For those of you who don't know what a Bead Soup is you can read all about it here:

I love doing the Bead Soup Blog Party as I find it really stretches me to use beads and components that I wouldn't normally use, last year was my first time and I was teamed up with a lady from Canada If you would like to see what I made then here is a link to my blog post:

This year I have been teamed up with Sam Waghorn of Pale Moon Creations who lives in the UK. Here is a reminder of what she sent me and a link to the blog post I made about getting them:

The gorgeous copper work is by Sam herself. Sam told me the focal, the cute little bead caps and the ring were made using deco emboss folders on her Vintaj Big Kick.

The green starfish pendant, beads and cream toggle flower came from Grubbi and the urchin beads from BlueberriBeads.

Rustic freshwater pearls, butter jade chips, vintage coral and puffed agate coins. I had so much fun with these. I always try and use as a much of the soup as I can and a lot of the items I made almost made themselves. You know when you have that perfect bead that has been kicking around forever just waiting for the perfect project, well that is how a lot of my creations came about.

I started with those cute little bead caps. I wish I had taken a close up of them as they are just yummy! A short while ago I was playing around and made these yellow glass discs, had no idea what I was going to do with them at the time but they were just crying out to be used with these bead caps and Sam's gorgeous headpins.

So first up is this pair of earrings, they have a lovely movement to them as I made them so that the disc's and bead caps could spin freely. I used a pair of Sam's headpins to make the earwires.

I had some more discs left so I made this necklace to go with the earrings using the gorgeous antique copper textured ring that Sam had made and these have movement too. I found this antique brass chain in my stash that has little disc's on it and seemed to go perfectly to hang the pendant from and then I took the last disc I had and made it into a little clasp. I just love the contrast between the dark antique copper and the yellow.

I have to say that the next piece was a real challenge for me. I loved the rectangular antique copper focal with the embossed fern design on it and had a rough idea of how I wanted to use it as soon as I saw it but I had one little problem. Sam hadn't put any holes in it and I couldn't see any other way of hanging it. I did ask Sam's advice about this and she said that she hadn't been sure that I would use it and offered to send me another one with holes in but I told her I would have a go a drilling them myself and I managed to do it! I did a blog post about how I did it and you can read about that adventure here:

I would love to say I came up with this design all on my own but the truth is I love scouring charity shops for unusual designs and components that I can break up and use with my own beads and that is how this necklace came about.

The necklace is pretty much the same as it was when I bought it but with a few modifications. I loved the leaves and thought they went very well with the focal. I thought about hand painting them with patina to match the copper but decided that I liked the contrast of the steel colour.  The necklace originally had amethyst coloured beads on it and I couldn't decide at first whether to go with the amethyst or change to amber. I made 2 batches of glass leaf headpins but still couldn't decide. I had some family come over to the Isle of Wight where I live and asked them what they thought and they said go with the amber so that's what I did! I think it was the right decision, what do you think?

Ok, next up is a bracelet. I have to say I am not a big fan of freshwater pearls, I think it is the rustic nature of them that I don't like, the fact that they are not all the same shape offends the perfectionist in me. Funnily enough I had them in my last soup as well and I am ashamed to say that I ended up making a similar bracelet to the one I did last time. My excuse is that someone liked that bracelet so much they bought it at fair I did so there's no harm in making another one.

This time I used Sam's amazing bead caps but I took two and turned them so that they faced each other and put them in between each of the pearls, I got the idea from the way Sam sent them to me. I picked out several of my lampwork beads in ivory and amber colours and added some of my new butterfly wing beads made using gorgeous Double Helix silver rich glass. I then took some more of Sam's bead caps and added a little pearl to the centre and wire wrapped all the beads onto some Vintaj antique brass chain. I finished the bracelet off with one of Sam's lovely textured clasps.

The other beads I were struggling with a bit were the urchin beads from BlueberriBeads. Obviously a sea theme was called for so I trawled through my stash and found this antique bronze fish lobster clasp and starfish charm. I found some of my glass beads in earthy colours and used some of my Saki spacer beads to cap them. Then I made them all into a handbag charm just for a change.

I'll come back to the other urchin bead later.

Still on the earthy colours I had this egg shaped lampwork bead in my stash that was made using ivory glass that has been wrapped in silver leaf and then fine silver wire. I love that each side has a different colour and I must have another go at replicating it. Anyway there it has been for about 2 years sitting in my stash and I also had this Saki toggle clasp and spacer beads that I bought at The Gathering last year all just crying out to be used with these puffed agate coins and some more of Grubbi's ceramic beads. This bracelet virtually made itself!

I decided to use some more of the puffed agate coins to make a couple of pairs of earrings. The first  pair I made I used some of my butterfly wing beads made using an Effetre glass called Cool Kiwi and I used a pair of Sam's headpins as well.

The second pair of earrings I made this time with a pair of my etched glass rings and some Vintaj leaves. I also used another pair of Sam's headpins.

Now, let me see what else was there? Oh yes I know, the gorgeous ceramic starfish focal from Grubbi along with some of her beads. A seaside theme was definitely called for and this was another of those moments when I had the perfect glass bead that I had made a couple of years ago sitting in my stash. I made this one using enamelled stringer and have since tried to replicate it with no success - I must have another go. It reminds me of a watermelon or beach ball and the little pieces of coral that Sam sent me just picked out the orange nicely. I also had these cute little discs and headpins that I had made and some matching spacer beads.

I used some of my Fibrewire and some gorgeous hand dyed silk sari ribbon from Smitten Beads to connect the starfish focal and my lampwork bead to one of the discs. I used the sari ribbon to connect to 2 more discs and then used my disc headpins through the centre of the discs and wire wrapped all the components to create the chain. I used one of Sam's hooks and wire wrapped some little seed beads to it and then took another one of my disc headpins to make the clasp. I must admit it was nice to be working with some bright colours after all the earthy colours of the previous pieces.

Now, I still had another of those urchin beads left and I didn't want to do another earthy coloured piece so I had a look through my stash and found this red hollow glass bead that I had made and a headpin which had a turquoise frit decoration. I decided to try and tie in the bead a bit and used some patina to decorate it and then connected the three together using the wire of the headpin.

I was quite pleased with this chain design I came up with using some cotton cord and glass donuts from Smitten Beads and finished it all off with one of my glass rings to make the clasp.

I think we are nearly there but I still have a toggle bar and some headpins left that Sam has made for me.
I had this big hole ring bead that I had made and discovered that the toggle bar was a perfect fit to make it into a toggle clasp. I used some matching purple spacers beads that I had made and some cute ceramic coins from Smitten Beads which I strung together with some waxed linen wire from The Curios Bead Shop. To finish it off I made a spiral and some bellflower headpins. I think this is one of my favourite pieces of the lot.

And then to finish off I made a couple of pairs of earrings to use up the last of the headpins using some lovely daisy beads from Bo Hulley Beads, some Czech glass from Smitten Beads and my own headpins.

And this is all that I have left.........

.......didn't I do well?

Many thanks for to Sam for her wonderful soup. I hope she enjoyed using her soup as much as I enjoyed using hers and I can't wait to see what she has made.

Now don't forget to pop and see what Sam has made and please leave us both a comment.

You can visit all the participants (but you may be a while lol!) by clicking on this link:

Thanks for looking.

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