Saturday, May 24, 2014

Waxed Linen Jewelry Blog Hop


So, you may have noticed that I'm a total sucker for a design challenge or blog hop.  That seems to be a universal truth about me so when Diana Ptaszynski of Suburban Girl Studio announced that she was hosting a Waxed Linen Jewelry blog hop I had to join in!  Diana was inspired to host this hop after rooming with Erin Siegel on the Bead Cruise this year.  Truth be told, even though I have had some waxed linen in my stash for a while, I hadn't used it other than to tie simple dangles on something until the Bead Cruise myself.  It was taking Erin's macrame bracelet class that really turned me on to this versatile and colorful material and I've been working more of it into my jewelry designs ever since.

I had such good luck with the waxed linen bracelet I made a couple of weeks ago, that I decided I wanted to make a bracelet for this blog hop too.  I actually ended up making a couple of them that can be worn together or separately.  I might actually be getting over my weird bracelet aversion!

First up I started with a super simple design based on a tutorial from Lesley Watt of Thea Jewelry and Thea Elements.  You can find that tutorial HERE but you have to scroll down a ways... sorry I couldn't manage a direct link!  I was intrigued by the fun textured look she achieved just by alternating seed beads and jump rings.  I decided on a dark purple waxed linen and brighter purple luster seed beads.  I went with copper jump rings because that's what I had.  For my clasp I used a little glass button from Unicorn Beads that I won in a Vintaj give away a year or so ago.


I'm happy with the way that first bracelet turned out but I wanted to do something else that showcased the linen cord a little more.  I've been enjoying looking at the pictures Erin has been sharing of her stacked bracelets so I decided I wanted my second look to be something that could be worn with the first one.  Oh, and I needed to incorporate an art bead.  Game on!

I picked out a large polymer clay lentil bead by ArtsyBecca that I got as a door prize on the Bead Cruise because it had a nice mix of colors including some purple.  There is also some pale blue green and a nice metallic sheen to it.  I paired it with some rainbow fluorite and little square copper plated spacers.  I chose a toggle clasp from TierraCast that mimicked the patterns in the focal.


I still have some issues with bracelet balance so I'd love to hear your thoughts and suggestions.  I'm also not sure about the best way to knot the clasp on the end.  I started with a larks head knot on the one end, but the toggle bar side just doesn't do exactly what I wanted it to.  I had to add a few overhand knots at the end to make it long enough for me and to allow the bar to pass easily through the ring side of the clasp.  So, again, any tips would be greatly appreciated!

Here's my finished "mini-stack" on... I think they look great together or alone!


As a P.S. to this post, I'm also sharing a bracelet that my friend, and Bead Cruise room mate, Kathleen just made with waxed linen.  It's a pattern of her own design.  I'm super happy and impressed by the way she has embraced the beading life!


And now for all the blog hop fun!  Lots of folks participating in this one so have fun bopping around seeing what everyone made.

Diana Ptaszynski (our hostess!)
Kelsy Vincent
Susan Kennedy
Linda Landig
Kashmira Patel
Jenny Davies-Reazor
Vaness Gilkes
Sandy Huntress
Kay Thomerson
Sarajo Wentling (that's me!)
Kari Asbury
Rebecca Anderson
Melissa Trudinger
Ann Schroeder
Shai Williams
Blanca Medina
Cheryl Brown
Johana Nunez Rivera
Lori Bowring Michaud
Kelly Morgan
Barbara Bechtel
Kristen Stevens
Heather Boardman
Janet Bocciardi
Kathy Lindemer
Lesley Watt
Susan Kolovson
Jayne Capps
Michelle McCarthy
Cynthia Deis
Karla Morgan
Erin Siegel
Becky Pancake
Kelly Hosford Patterson
Sharyl McMillan-Nelson
Inge von Roos
Carolyn Lawson
Linda Younkman
Sandi Volpe
Toltec Jewels
Michelle Mach
Jen Cameron
Dorothy Winchell
Darlene Mansue


30 comments:

  1. Your bracelets are beautiful! I have been wanting to try that Lesley Watt tutorial, and your beautiful bracelet just encourages me!

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    1. Thanks Ann. You should totally do it! It was so fun and easy but looks really rich. I'm all eager to go buy more jump rings, buttons, and larger seed beads... oh and some spools of waxed linen!

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  2. I love that we've both turned into waxed linen lovers after the cruise. Super cute bracelets!!! Make MORE! Thanks for participating!!!

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  3. Both your bracelets are great and I especially like them together. I love how you pulled out the purple & copper colors from the lentil focal bead.

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  4. Hi Sarajo, I have been eying Lesley's tutorial too. I like the design of it. The copper pairs very well with the pretty purple. The second bracelet is great too and it does make a nice stack. The square copper beads in it do match your clasp perfectly. I like Kathleen's simple bracelet also. Thanx for sharing.

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  5. I love your bracelets, they are so colorful and look fun to wear.

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  6. I love your bracelets! They are so colorful and look fun to wear.

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  7. I'm glad you enjoyed the goddess bracelet and it looks great teamed up with the second lovely design...great variety in your work.

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  8. Love the bracelets!! Thanks for the links to the tutes, too. As for how to get more length - you could string some size 6 seed beads on the linen before the knots and toggle.

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  9. Love the bracelets! They are so cute together and apart.

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  10. Love your bracelets together. That first one is really cool. I will have to check out that tutorial. Thanks for sharing!

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  11. Love that stacked look and both of your pieces are really great and look cool together.

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  12. I love your bracelets! They go very well together & you have no problems with bead balancing! You did a great job. :)

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  13. Love your mini stack! Very colorful. Your friend, Kathleen's bracelet is great too!

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  14. I love the design and colors of your bracelets. They are perfect together. Your friend's bracelet is a great design too.

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  15. Love that tutorial from Lesley. It's brilliant in it's simplicity, but it looks complex and so interesting. I think that's why its been so popular for her. I envy that just a little! Your two bracelets look really fantastic together. It makes my heart so happy to know you found my bracelet stacks inspiring! Thank you. I so enjoyed having you (and Kathleen) in my class on the Bead Cruise. Thank you so much for signing up! You really impressed me with your knotting skills. You are a complete natural.

    Okay, so you asked for some advice about making bracelets, so here it goes. Balancing bracelets can be a really tricky thing. Probably the trickiest in jewelry-making. I know some very experienced jewelry designers who actually avoid making bracelets for this reason, but there are lots of different things you can do depending on the style of bracelet you are making.

    #1 Make an adjustable clasp for your bracelets. This works well for bracelets you want to be close-fitting. If the bracelet has a perfect, snug fit to the wrist, it is more likely to stay in place and keep the focal part at the top of the wrist. There are several ways you can make bracelets adjustable: You can use a chain extender, you can create multiple loops for a button closure bracelet or you can create a sliding knot closure for your bracelet.

    #2 Put more weight at the clasp. A common thing that happens with bracelets is the focal or top of the bracelet is the heaviest part causing the bracelet to spin and the focal to fall to the underside of the wrist. To prevent this from happening, string heavier beads at or near the clasp or try to make your focal beads the lightest beads in your bracelet design. Another option is to add beaded dangles or a tassel or something at the clasp to add weight to keep the bracelet in place.

    #3 Make the clasp the focal of your bracelet. Instead of fighting to keep the clasp on the underside of the wrist, work with it and actually make the clasp the focal of your bracelet design so you want it on top!

    #4 Make your bracelet pretty from end to end and every angle. This is one reason I really like button clasps and beaded loops for the button. If you consider every part of your bracelet design and have something interesting happening at every section of it. Then no matter what part is facing up, there is something pretty to look at!

    As for knotting cord to a metal clasp, I use a "Slip Knot" to secure cords. I do have instructions for this in one of my macrame tutorials, but I can send you a few pics of the process for that.

    I hope this helps you some!

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    1. Wow, Erin! Thanks so much for all the great tips. I'm looking forward to taking another class with you on the 2015 Bead Cruise. I promise I'll keep playing with waxed linen and other fibers in the meantime.

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  16. I love how your 2 bracelets look together. I always struggle with attaching the 2nd half of the clasp too. You're not alone!

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  17. Love the stacked look you've got there, looks great. And your second bracelet looks very well balanced to me.

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  18. Really like the metal accents on these two bracelets. They look great together!

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  19. Great bracelets SaraJo! I love Becca's beads, you did a great job showing it off!

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  20. Beautiful bracelets! I have done Lesley's design before and it is a cute fun little bracelet. Your friend Kathleen's bracelet is beautiful too love the design.
    Therese

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  21. Your bracelet designs and colors are yummy. I especially like the one with the big bead for a focal. Nice jewelry.

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  22. Fun! That's a really great mix of colors you've used. I love that you shared the photo from your friend, too.

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  23. Love the second bracelet with the Arty Becca focal. I'm a big fan of her beads. I actually own a set I've been hoarding. The colors and textures flow beautifully throughout the bracelet.

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  24. Both bracelets look great. I love the pattern on the first one and the button closure. The focal on the second is so pretty and you highlighted it very nicely by using beads with colors in the focal.

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  25. I have been planning to use Lesley's tutorial forevvvah! I love your version of it, and would like to know what size beads and jumprings you used.

    About the second bracelet, those rainbow flourites are SO pretty! I usually don't like the cord showing through beads like this, but its a neat design element in your bracelet...looks great!

    And tell Kathleen her design is super cool! I love it and I think she should sell tutorials :)

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  26. Beautiful! Lesley's bracelet tutorial is fabulous indeed, but you took it to an entirely new level with your choice of luster beads & cord! The color looks so good with copper, and it is a gorgeous bracelet! Your art bead bracelet is also wonderful, and they look great together! Love that you shared the stack & love your marvelous jewelry designs! Bravo for your (and your friend's!) bracelets ! Happy Hopping! ♥ Rita

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  27. Both great designs! I love the tutorial by Lesley.

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