Wednesday, February 29, 2012

I'm in Love with Metal Beads!

I've always been a fan of jewelry designers who have used metal beads in their designs.   Metal beads come in all the standard sizes of seed beads (size 15, 11, 8 and 6)  but are made of metal instead of glass.  They are sometimes made of a base metal and then plated with a colored finish - like 24k gold or silver.  Others are made from the actual metal - like copper and zinc.  They are very uniform in size and shape, making them delightful to work with in bead weaving projects.

Beadsmith recently formed a group of beaders on facebook (in which I was included) and challenged us to create jewelry with the metal beads they provided.  Here's the first bracelet I made with the metal beads.  I call it my Metal Bead Sampler Bracelet because it uses all of the fourteen different metal seed bead colors.

I created a tutorial for this bracelet and it is available for purchase in my Etsy shop and in my ArtFire shop.

The 2nd bracelet I created has a zig zag pattern.  I'm currently working on a tutorial for this bracelet which I call my Metal Zig Zag Sampler Bracelet.  It also uses all 14 colors of the metal beads.

Cynthia Newcomer Daniel, another member of our Facebook Group created and designed a Best Friend Bracelet.  I purchased the tutorial from her Jewelry Tales website and fell in love with the design.  Cynthia's Best Friend bracelet combines metal beads with Swarovski crystals and is so gorgeous!

I used Cynthia's pattern to create a slightly different look.  I wear this bracelet all the time and love it.

 Using Cynthia's pattern as inspiration, I created another bracelet using my own design.  I call this one Rhapsody and hope to have the pattern available soon. 

I'm full of ideas for using the metal beads in new designs.  I'm just lacking in time - a common malady for all bead weavers.  I wish there was a cure.

Happy beading to you all!