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Hip to be square

I have had these square Swarovski components hanging around for a while. Actually, I cleaned up my studio in a spring cleaning phase and put them away, then forgot I had them (which is why I generally don’t clean up). Anyway, I got them with the intention of making them into toggles, but I wasn’t sure how the crystal would hold up to wear & tear so I did a series of pendants with them (Click here and here to see).

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Sparkly heart

I’ve had the pattern for this puffy heart for a while, but didn’t try it until today. It is woven with no less than 73 Swarovski crystals (light rose satin) and took me about half a football game (my new time unit) to finish. It was easier than I expected and looks even prettier in person. Now I want one in every color!

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Woven crystal bracelet

Fresh from the workbench…
It’s the class sample for a new offering in October, but I had to share it now because it’s so sparkly and new. I looked at some patterns for weaving crystals and seed beads and, not having the patience of a real seed beader, decided to make up something simpler, quicker, and easier. I may move on to more challenging patterns, but for now the focus is still on the ingredients: Czech rounds, Swarovski bicones (that color is Smoky Topaz 2AB), and seed beads.

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New classes

The Springy Links class is new this month and has been going well. July is kind of a short month since I’ll only be teaching 3 weeks, so I’m rolling out some new classes in August.

The Beaded Branches technique is a neat way to make bead-wrapped pins, pendants, and barrettes look more full.

Crystal Ball Earrings are fun to make. You can make a loop at the top, or just string or link the ball in a design as a bead.

A new chainmaille class is the Caged Crystal Chain Weave, which is made of rings interlocking around a strand of Swarovski crystals.

I think I’m as excited for new class challenges as my students are!

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One of my new favorite colors is that of a padparadscha sapphire, a bright pinky orange. The ideal color of a padparadscha has been described by some as the marriage between a Sri Lankan lotus flower and a sunset. This photo above is of my Tropicana rose this morning with one of its first flowers of the season. Swarovski makes a wonderful padparadscha color in their crystal beads, too. I am seeing this color a lot this spring, from geraniums to polo shirts. I especially like it with apple green.