Battle News and Fatigue

So, I have been super busy of late.  I attended the Big Bead Show in April, spent a weekend with great friends beading, eating, drinking and laughing.  I had another magazine article to submit which will be out soon in Making Jewellery magazine – this one involves Liberty Bias Ribbon and beads 🙂 and I had a huge project to complete for a bead competition.

I went away for a weekend with some beady pals in the Peak District (had a great time and hope to repeat it again next year), had a few days at home over half term with my son Sean, and spent some time in Calais/Boulogne as well.  In between the fun stuff I was working the day job and after that I was manically beading.  I took a last-minute slot in the Battle of the Beadsmith competition that is run via Facebook.  It’s a bit odd though as there are no prizes as such, but you do get to see lots of lovely beading from all over the world, in different styles and colours 🙂

I had been collecting my pieces for an idea I had around the name Rosina for over a year, Rosina was my nan’s name and I wanted to include wings and have an ethereal look to piece as my nan is with the angels.  I also thought it would be nice for all the other people I know that are dealing with the loss of loved ones past and present to see how I channeled my feelings into a piece of jewellery.  My friend Catherine Homer helped with the naming of the piece and my thanks to her and my good friends Hilary and Stephanie too who kept me company on Google+ whilst I beaded and they suffered the glare of my red hair and root regrowth on their screens.

Below is a photo of the finished piece – Rosina Seraphim.  If you would like to learn more about the Battle you can join the page on Facebook to see all the other creations, I believe there are over 170 bead artists competing this year.  I wish all of us competitors lots of luck and if I do make it though any of the stages I will be a very happy lady.  I pushed myself to create something original that was my design, ideas and I pushed myself technically as well.   I learnt a lot along the way, not least that I need to replenish my stock of KO thread now, lol.  No needles were broken during the making but the metallic soutache is a challenge I am not sure I will be repeating.

Rosina Seraphim

Here are some more photos of my work in progress, it did change quite a lot and I have yet to get around to recycling the pieces I didn’t include, I guess I am waiting on inspiration to strike as to what I could use them for, so if you have any ideas please do let me know.


WingsSmith’s Beaded Creations

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Happy Dancing!

I am so happy right now.  I have just had my latest tutorial published in Making Jewellery magazine (May 2013 issue) – it is called Emerald City and is a simple beaded design for beginner beaders.  A photo of the design is below 🙂

Cover Photo


Next month’s Bead Magazine issue will feature another tutorial of mine, the Woodland Cuff.  This one is bead embroidery and is aimed at intermediate beaders.  A sneak preview of the piece is below.

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I just came back from spending the weekend at Sandown for the Big Bead Show where my local Beading Group – Medway Beaders – had a stand displaying our collective works.  The show was great fun and I had a fabulous weekend away with some good friends, good food and a huge amount of giggles too.  I cannot wait till October for the next Big Bead Show where I will be a trader selling my handmade art glass cabochons.

Last bit of good news is that I will be taking part in a challenge for Beadwork magazine (US published) – I have been sent a package of beads which I have to make into something wonderful ahead of a short deadline and then later this year for the Oct/Nov issue you will all get to see what I did with the beads I was sent.  I can’t share photos of what I was sent, but they are sparkly, made me speechless when I opened the package and I really cannot wait to get some ideas flowing and get making.


February 2013 Already!!!

Hey, well it would appear that my resolution to blog more regularly was a little failed, lol. I promise to try harder.

I have been very busy though and working on lots of new jewellery designs and ideas.  I am also currently working on workshop ideas for a local gallery and also am pleased to say that my local bead group – Medway Beaders – will be at the Kent Bead Fair in March which takes place at the Ashford International Hotel, as well as at The Big Bead Show in Sandown in April.  We’re going to be exhibiting some of our finished jewellery items and also hopefully sharing some work in progess with people who are keen to know more.

I have been interested to see all the new types of beads that have been released onto the market recently – twins, superduos, spikes, gum drops, rizzo’s, rullas and probably a couple more I have missed or forgotten about.  I have so far not given into temptation very much, I did get some spikes but have yet to finish the project I bought them for, so I will try to do that next week whilst on leave and blog about those.   I did however give in last week and place an order for superduos – specifically to work on a tutorial – Helena – by Jennifer VanBenschoten.  Jennifer is one of the contributors to Beading Daily and also has designs in the beading magazines frequently.  Jennifer’s blog is here and you can purchase the tutorial from her Etsy store:

I very much enjoyed playing with the superduos I ordered, I love the Picasso colour of the ones I chose, and I paired them with matt gray seed beads and a deep red 3mm glass bead.  The finished necklace is totally fabulous and I now need to go buy a new top to show it off 🙂

The tutorial was easy to follow using the written instructions, and the photos were also useful in working out which direction I should be going.  It is a lengthy tutorial, but although the finished result looks very complex it wasn’t too hard to complete, thanks to the necklace being made up of several components and then brought together.  I also asked a question about the beads in the tutorial as I was struggling to find 3mm druks in the UK, and Jennifer go back to me very quickly with suggestions on alternatives.

I think I may have to buy some more superduos and work on a pair of earrings to match.  Below is a photo of my finished necklace.


Until next time, TTFN


Book Review – Showcase 500 rings

Hello everyone, I hope you all have had a great festive season and if you have been able to take time off to be with family and friends, and that you have made the most of that precious time.  It has been a while since I last blogged, and my life moves at a fair pace sometimes and I really need to diarise a monthly blog update – maybe that should be my resolution for 2013?

Anyway onwards, firstly I am having a sale in my cabochon shop on Etsy – 50% off if you enter the code given on my home page:

Secondly I have had time this week to properly look at one of the books I was sent to review.  Lark Jewelry & Beading’s – Showcase 500 rings.   Wow, such a massive book and such amazing beautiful rings to look at.

You can find a copy of the book at Amazon, and I would really recommend it – such fabulous pieces to look at consider.  -

One of my favourites is on page 312 and is a set of wedding rings in yellow gold and palladium by Sakurako Shimizu – they are simple and elegant and so, so beautiful, Sakurako has a blog here

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The book is jurored by Bruce Metcalf and I am in awe of how he managed to decide which rings to include – I like almost all of the 500 rings inside the book.

On page 253 is another favourite of mine by Sun Kyoung Kim, called Between Two.  It is a ring designed to be worn by by two people at once.  I love the romantiscm behind this one.  You can read a bit more about Sun’s ideas behind her work here:,_Sun_Kyoung.html


My last favourite I want to share is by Kim Eric Lilot and is called Tribute to a Genius.  It is in fact two rings and I adore both of them and even though I usually prefer white metals, I would wear both of these rings in a heartbeat.  You can see more of Kim’s work here


I hope that you have enjoyed my review, get yourself a copy, add to a wishlist or let that special person know ahead of your birthday, anniversary or just for a treat – you won’t be disappointed.

Take care of yourselves and your friends and family.


WingSmith’s Beaded Creations

Good news

I am now allowed to publicly announce that I am a finalist in the Bead Show Awards that take place on 20 October at Sandown.  The competition is hosted by Bead Magazine and is usually of a very high standard, so I was stunned when I found out I had made it through with one of my entries.  One of my good Virtual Friends – Nicole is also a finalist.

I can’t share  photos of my entry until the weekend, so you’ll have to be patient a little longer.

When I get bored I google myself, and today I found a link to a German blogger who had made some of my Pearly Charm Beads (published this time last year by Bead Magazine)  I really like the colour choices the blogger made and even though the translation wasn’t great I think she liked the pattern.  So far with this post and the previous one here – that makes 2 I know about blogging on my tutorials – such a strange feeling to find them randomly.

So onto the rest of the week and the weekend… even if I don’t win my category I will still be so pleased to have made it this far.

Book Review Time – Sabine Lippert’s Beaded Fantasies

Hello everyone… it has been a busy few weeks with  lots happening.  I had a holiday, I had shoulder surgery and have been at home recovering.  Due to the surgery I haven’t been beading very much, and what I have done has taken 3 times longer than usual as I keep having to take breaks.

On the upside, I have finally gotten around to reading some of the books that Lark have kindly sent me to review 😉

The first one I am reviewing is Sabine Lippert’s Beaded Fantasies.

I did actually buy a copy of this before my review copy arrived and I actually made one of the designs from it too… I made Verticals – photo below.


Now onto the book.  I mostly enjoyed this book, the diagrams and photos are clear although at time the instructions are not so easy to follow for complete beginners.  Thankfully I could understand most of the designs, although I have only made the one.    I really like the way that chatons and rivolis are captured to show more of the crystals, although I have yet to try it out and see if secure.   I have found in the past that customers tend to fiddle a lot with their jewellery, and as such I am not sure whether this technique of holding in the crystals would stand up.  I will try to get my hands on some chatons to try it out, I think I would like to try the Three Crosses Necklace first – the simplicity and elegance of that particular design really appeals to me.

The book is a glorious riot of colour and beautiful beads and crystals and is lovely to read, there are a lot of tips and new techniques for me to try and I look forward to being able to get stuck back into it very soon.

You can buy your own copy of the book at Amazon –

Or if you pop along to my beady page on facebook – and help me get up to 800 likes I am giving away this review copy to a random fan.  Get over there…

Oh dear, its been a while….

So sorry, haven’t posted for months, but time flies when you’re having fun!

Work was busy, life was busy and in between I did get some beading done.  Here is what I have been working on…  I have also been trying to build up stock and images for my new range of glass cabochons, more of those below.

This bangle was made using directions that Jean Power sent me and I hope it will be featured in a forthcoming book of similar geometric techniques.

I made these earrings for myself and they are teeny, weeny swarovski 10x8mm crystals that I beaded around and added to earring loops, they are my current favourites.

As part of Operation Tackle That Bead Stash I am participating in Bead & Button’s Bead It Forward project – people from all over the world bead up small squares of fabric and they are sewn together to make quilts and are auctioned in aid of Breast Cancer Research charities.  Such a brilliant idea and I have made a couple already 🙂

I mentioned earlier my new venture into glass cabochons, and you can see lots more at – but here are some of the types of images I use and also a finished piece – my peacock necklace using one of the cabs.

Also mid August I had some shoulder surgery done and although I was out of action for a few weeks I am back in 90% motion again, and I think beading and creating is great physiotherapy!