Monday, 29 August 2011

What went wrong?

When I showed my 'creation' to friends, most were full of praise for the items.  Frankly, this is what most of us are yearning for.  LOL.  That is why we always show only those we think will receive a lot of 'Oo's and 'Ah"s.  Thick skinned, huh?

Anyway, not all my work is presentable (perhaps 50-50).  Even if it does look good, it may be flawed when it is worn.  

This is one of the first few earrings that I made.  The beads were salvaged from a piece of old jewelry.  Beading can go GREEN too!!!  My daughter, Yuan, liked it a lot and has worn it a few times.  However, I noticed the shape of the loops were different each time she wore it - sometimes rounder, sometimes more elongated. What went wrong?

I think it was the material which I used for the loops - Tiger-tail wire.  Tiger tail is Nylon Coated Stainless Steel Jewelry Wire.  It is easily bendable thus each time Yuan handled it while putting it on, the loops were accidentally being altered.  There is yet a solution for this problem.

I have the same problem with this pair of hoop earrings:

What went wrong? I think I did not harden* the hoop enough so that the shape would not change.  (* by hitting it lightly with  hammer)

Look at this lariat necklace which I made for a friend:

Unlike  typical necklace, a Lariat does not have a clasp; rather, it is characterized by one long strand that can be tied or wrapped in a number ways: 

My friend has lost the lariat and it was due to design failure!  What went wrong?  I think the elements which I used for the drops (the metal leaves) were too light.  The lariat untied by itself and slipped off her neck.
Sigh, these were lessons learned and hopefully I can remember to apply them in future projects.

Friday, 26 August 2011

Failed Project

I love beading.  I like the technical part.  I can take up most of the challenges as long as I can gather enough instruction.  What I drag is the design part.  As I have mentioned before: I am a good copycat but lousy in terms of creativity. LOL.

Look at the two items below and see how badly I failed in the design:

At first I thought black would go well with red but then I found out not in this case.  The dagger coral could be the culprit.  It spells violence.  The black is too much of a contrast so the 'bloody daggers' actually stand out fiercely.

In beading, perhaps pearl is a safer bet.  It goes with almost anything.  It looks good even by itself:

I made this for a friend and she received a lot of complements.  There was no effort in designing and the difficulty level was zero as I just needed to put together the elements.  Sigh. There is no work satisfaction here.  The success was due to the pearl and not my work! Sad.  

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Have Earrings will Travel!

What is this? Earrings-in-process? Failed earrings projects? No, no, no.  These are my interchangeable earrings which can be put in a small pouch for light traveling.  The loop lever back earrings can be worn by itself or pairing with any of these wire looped beads as shown below:

Look at that, I have six pairs of earrings to match with my clothing for any trip!  Vanity, vanity!  I am one of those who feel naked without wearing any accessory, be it earrings  necklace or bracelet. :-)

These are simple, easy to make earrings.  Though they are my beginner work, but I have not got tired of them.  I like the red one (bottom right corner) in particular.  

It is a beaded bead, by accident, using Tubular Herringbone stitch (I think).  It started off as a trial stitch for a rope.  I did not continue it as the color was too bight for me. I ended it after seven to eight rounds and thought it would look nice as a beaded bead for earrings.  It turned out to be one of my favorites!

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Ruby Zoiside Encounter

When I first entered the beading world, I was greeted by Seed Beads, followed by Glass Beads and Crystals.  They have helped me churned out a lot of satisfactory pieces of jewelry.  Few years later, Ruby Zoiside was introduced to me - my first encounter with Gemstones.  Since then, I have never stopped looking out for pretty yet affordable gemstones.

Look at these beautiful Ruby Zoisite beads - such rich color!  They are all from a single necklace which I bought and it was too long for me.  I took out ten beads and use them to make two pairs of earrings and a chain-bead necklace.  I kept the style simple because the beads were so pretty that I did not want to create any distraction.

Monday, 22 August 2011

Malachite and Rhodonite Earrings

Though I like natural gemstones, I am quite clueless as to their names.  I have heard about those precious gemstones like diamond, ruby, emerald and sapphire. I have also heard about those semi-precious ones like amethyst, citrine, opal, onyx and Jade.  I may even be able to identify them or their look-a-likes by their colors (Haha, how ignorant I am!).  However, there are a lot of unique looking stones which I really need to google hard to find out their actual names.  The green stone named Chrysocolla in my previous post is one of them.

The stones that I used in the two pairs of earrings below are also new to me:

Malachite - Herrigbone weave


The Malachite earrings were made with the instruction from Eni Oken at  The stones are pretty but the wire wrapping? so-so. Hey, that was my first attempt so I have excuse not to have done it well! LOL!  

Any way, it is a mistake using these beads for earrings because they are too heavy.  May be I will wire wrap a few more of the beads and use them to make either a bracelet or necklace together with these two wire wrapped beads.

I was not sure if the pink stone in the bottom picture was Rhodonite or Rhodochrosite.  I googled the names and found a good description to distinguish the two: 

Differentiating Rhodochrosite and Rhodonite
There is a very simple way to differentiate rhodochrosite and rhodonite, despite their very similar colors. Rhodochrosite is usually found with white banding throughout, sometimes with other colors as well. Rhodonite, on the other hand, is found in more of a flat color, sometimes with black inclusions.
My conclusion - Rhodonite!  The cost of it also confirmed it is Rhodonite as Rhodochrosite is more expensive.

The earrings were not mis-matched as it seemed.  This one of my favorite style - asymmetrical.  Below are two others of my earlier asymmetrical work:


The pink pair was made using leftover beads.  My friend likes it so it is hers now.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Chrysocolla Necklace N Aventurine Earrings

While I was in Beijing last year, I bought a whole lot of natural stones/beads from the famous Pearl Market.  I am not an expert in stones so I could not tell if they were true natural stones. Nevertheless I just got to have them because they were so beautiful.

Some of them were not very common (to me) and I have difficulty identifying them.  This greenish big bead is one of them:

I think this may be Chrysocolla (enhanced).  The sales person told me that the color was not of original and it has gone through some enhancement process.  But what the heck - I just love it.

After weeks of straining of my non-creative brain, I came out with this long necklace:

The smaller green stones could be Green Aventurine, which were given to me by  Jezamine - a dear friend residing in Ottawa.  These stone chips are not easy to use as they are of irregular shape.  I also made a pair of matching earrings using the chips:

I like the earrings more than the necklace as I find that the latter is a bit too heavy in look.  

Mmmmm.......natural stones are just beautiful!!!


Friday, 19 August 2011

Wire Work Challenge

No, I have not been busy beading that I have no time to update my blog.  Neither have I fallen sick.  I have been trying to take photo for some of my latest works with my new little camera! I'm still struggling with it but will try to seek help from my fellow beader friends from Beading Daily @ .

Beading with wire is so fun because by twisting and turning the wire, you can come up with surprising design.  My friend Sally has given me two pieces of glass stone and challenged me to use it creatively.  Ta da, and here they are:

The green one is a failure as I did not end it nicely at the bottom where the black bead is.  I like the other one (orange) so much that I made it into a short necklace:

Oh I'm so pleased with myself because I have gone beyond my own standard.  Haha!

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Wire Work - Earrings

After 6 to 7 of no-beading years, the beading work of a friend's daughter has brought my interest back. Instead of seed bead beading, I have begun to try my hands on wire work.  The above earrings are only a fraction of what I have made.

During those crazy days, my mind was full of beading, beading and nothing but beading.  Though I was just making the earrings simply by matching different beads and other components, the possible outcome was endless.

I got hooked on beading!

My beading appetite got bigger after few months of doing simple wire looping, I ventured into wire wrapping: 

.....and also other wire techniques: 

I like to bead but what am I going to do with so many pairs of earrings?  Of course I kept some for myself. Some were given away as gift but most were donated to my church for its Church Building Fund Raising event.  Not bad huh? At least the work did not go to waste. 

Monday, 15 August 2011

Beadweaving - Choker

Zulu Beadwork

After my first attempt, I was so encouraged by the result so I did a few more pieces.  These were done few years ago and were copied from books except for the last one at the bottom.

Loom Beadweaving

This pair of earrings is to match with the green Off Loom Choker below.

Off Loom Beadweaving is quite obvious that I am not a creative person.  What a vast difference as compare to the other three designs!  I cannot recall but I might have used peyote stitch here and varied it with different bead size.    

Sunday, 14 August 2011


Lady in Black
This was my first attempt on beading and it was copied from a library book.   It is a Flat Peyote choker (even number).  The color chosen for the daisies is not bright enough so the flowers do not stand out - this is bad.

The seed beads used were of craft quality and I thought it was all right as long as the work is at hobby level and not for sale - until and unless my skill is upgraded where consistency is there. However,  I was so wrong.  Cheap beads give me problem because the size of each bead is not consistent.  Help! I'm stuck with a whole lot of such beads!