I'm a retired teacher and antiques dealer turned writer and now NEWBIE jewelry designer. I have three children's books published and have written hundreds of articles. I started creating jewelry by repurposing antique drawer handles and vintage enamel broaches like these below.
Jean Yates told me about Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Party and a whole new world opened up. My partner, Lauren Potts sent all sorts of beautiful handmade beads, silk scraps, and wonderful accessories in my bead soup.
I began to explore. First I made a copper bracelet with the purple lampwork beads, copper clasp and silk scrap. I had all sorts of problems but I managed to put this bracelet together by wrapping the wire around the silk. Sorry for the poor photo. I discovered that I need a better camera for photographing jewelry!
Next I made a necklace using the Russian amazonite and riverstone round beads, champagne colored pearls and the hand-dyed silk that my partner did herself. As you can see I need to learn better jewelry making techniques but I do love the shape of the necklace. Don't you love that handmade focal? I had trouble with fraying silk so I coated it with a paste. Any other suggestions??
Next, I made a flower out of the beige silk Lauren sent and sewed it onto two bangle bracelets I had made. I copper-colored some flowers and added tiger eye beads from my stash as well as some turquoise accent beads.
I think this bracelet says, "Spring," with all its flowers. The focal reminds me of a nest of bird eggs??
I like this next necklace the best. I used the gorgeous druzy agate focal and an assortment of beads that mt partner sent. It's my first attempt at a wrap. I need practice. I also learned and used alcohol inks to age the copper.
With the extra week we had, I made one more necklace. I used a piece of filigree to create a focal with the vintage glass beads, smokey quartz and miscellaneous filigree that Lauren sent me.
Here's the full necklace. I really like this one too. So how did I do with my first Bead Soup? I learned sooooo much. I also made many new friends. Now I have to work on my technique. I have so much to learn!!!