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Kazuri Kritters – from button to brooch

Posted 2 days ago by Kerrie Slade
Following on from my recent work with the polymer clay Samunnat beads from Kazuri West I’ve finally got around to having a play with some of the ceramic items from the Kazuri range. These buttons and beads are all hand made by an inspirational fair trade co-operative in Africa from clay from Mount Kenya. They are then carefully painted one at a time to produce a unique collection of richly coloured beads, cabochons, pendants and buttons in every shape, size and colour imaginable wh...
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Holiday design challenge: Round 2

Posted 4 days ago by Connie W
The Bead&Button staff is getting in the holiday spirit and doing a staff holiday round robin challenge.  Lora (editorial assistant) started us off with a right-angle weave bracelet base of red and green pearls. She hid the base in one of five boxes and we all picked a box at the same time to see whose turn it was next. It was Julia (editor)! She can embellish the base using any type of bead or button, and any type of stitch. Anything goes! When she is done, Lora will hide it in a box...
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Wire wrapping meteorites

Posted 6 days ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
With all the excitement about landing scientific instruments on a comet in the recent news, I thought I would show what I’ve done with things from outer space. In particular I’m talking about meteorites. One of my brothers sells them on eBay, and the smaller pieces he sends to me for making into jewelry pieces. I started doing this wire wrapping years ago, and found that many people were interested in this out-of-the-world jewelry. I hadn’t even taken a wire wrapping cl...
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Learn the basics of three-drop peyote stitch

Posted 7 days ago by Cassie Donlen
Peyote stitch is often considered a beading favorite, but have you ever tried your hand at making a project using three-drop peyote stitch? It isn’t as intimidating as it might sound and is actually quite fun! Here is a short, laid-back video demonstrating the basics of three-drop peyote stitch. The video refers to the Santa Baby bracelet designed by Josie Fabre. It’s an extremely darling design, and I just know you are going to want to make it! And… the pattern is free to re...
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Learn how to make holiday beaded ornaments

Posted 9 days ago by Danielle Barr
The holidays are just around the corner, and whether you want to make beaded ornaments to decorate your own home, or to give as a gift to those you love, our Holiday Ornaments app is the perfect way to get started. You'll learn how to craft ornaments with classic beading stitches combined with your favorite materials — SuperDuos, pearls, seed beads, crystals and more.  You can get the app on Android or iPad, and it includes video tips, interactive illustrations, a...
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Winner of the $5,000 shopping spree is...

Posted 14 days ago by Julia Gerlach
As many of you know, during last month's Visit Your Local Bead Shop celebration, we teamed up with CJS Sales in New York City, who offered a $5000 shopping spree to one lucky shop owner. To determine the winner, we asked you to vote for your favorite shop. And with nearly 5,000 votes cast, we have a winner! Garnering 207 votes, the winner of the Vote for Your Favorite Bead Shop Contest is iBella Beads in St. Louis, Missouri! In addition, everyone who voted had a chance to win one of our weekl...
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BSNH fall 2014 bead retreat

Posted 15 days ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
Twice a year, members of the Bead Society of New Hampshire get together for a bead retreat at The Barbara C. Harris Camp and Conference Center. We enjoy four days and three nights dedicated to beading and teaching each other new techniques. I had wanted to try a 7-strand Kumihimo pattern, and set up my disk before arriving on Thursday, Oct. 23rd. I was also prepared to teach how to use a marudai, and it certainly left me more beading time by having the twelve strands pre-loaded on bobbin...
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Senhoa contest - time to vote for your favorite design!

Posted 17 days ago by Julia Gerlach
Our Senhoa Design Contest has officially closed so now its time to select winners! Three (or maybe four, depending on you!) lucky designers will win Swarovski crystals for their efforts to add new jewelry designs to the Senhoa Collection. A panel of judges will determine a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner but you, dear readers, get to pick the People's Choice winner. Please click here to see the entries and vote for your favorite! Voting ends November 7....
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National Button Day is almost here!

Posted 17 days ago by Julia Gerlach
I do enjoy all those special "holidays" created by enthusiasts to celebrate their interests, such as National Cheesecake Day (July 30), Pi Day (March 14, naturally) and National Mustard Day (first Saturday in August). About once a month or so, I look them up to see what kind of quirky things people are celebrating. Well one of my favorites is right around the corner — get ready for National Button Day (November 16)! To celebrate, I've posted this free bracelet design (with matching neck...
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Getting in the holiday spirit

Posted 17 days ago by Connie W
Last Friday in Wisconsin, we woke up to our first dusting of snow. What happened to our mid 70’s four days earlier? The cooler weather definitely has us thinking about getting our warm sweaters out for the winter. With the holidays just around the corner, it won’t be long before we’ll be wearing those Ugly Christmas Sweaters that have become so popular the last couple of years. There’s even an Ugly Christmas Sweater Day on December 12! The Bead&Button staff thought...
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Using online photo editors to enhance creativity

Posted 22 days ago by Cassie Donlen
As the leaves start changing, the days start getting cooler, and the daylight slips away quicker every evening, I find myself shifting into new creative modes. There is a new energy in the air with every season change. I was a tad slow out of the gate this Fall but finally put up some Halloween decorations last night and made plans to carve the pumpkin and roast pumpkin seeds this evening with the kids. I find it interesting how just pulling out decorations from a storage box gives that little i...
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First annual kumihimo meetup

Posted 29 days ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
In September 2014, twenty enthusiasts gathered in Hyannis, Massachusetts on Cape Cod to have their first annual meetup. Several of the attendees were teachers, and informal classes were set up using a Facebook page. I was happy to teach a few wire working techniques, such as forging a clasp, demonstrating the Conetastic, and making jump rings. I also did a class on how to use a marudai. Ricky and I had never met these people, but by the time the meetup was concluded, I had 20 new friends, ac...
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The 2015 Bead&Button Show commemorative bead is shipping soon!

Posted one month ago by Cassie Donlen
Oh happy day! Even though it seems like the Bead&Button Show was only a few months ago, things are starting to gear up behind the scenes in exciting anticipation for the 2015 show. Every show year, a limited edition commemorative lampwork bead is revealed. The 2015 bead is even more exciting as it’s our 15th anniversary bead and is made by flameworker Andrea Guarino-Slemmons. Working for Bead&Button totally has its perks and getting first dibs on designing with the show bead ...
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How to use orange with elegance in your jewelry designs

Posted one month ago by Mortira vanPelt
Of all the colors that we come to associate with fall, none of them is quite so predominate in October alone as orange. With so much focus on Halloween pumpkins, it’s easy to forget the elegant side of orange. Here are a few classy ways that you can capture this fiery color in your designs. Compliment It with Complements - Pairing your favorite shade of orange with a few of its color wheel neighbors is a great way to tame this often cartoonish hue. Turn up the heat with bold yello...
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New color collection

Posted one month ago by Connie W
The manufacturer of the popular CzechMates series of beads has come out with a new color collection called Halo Ethereal. The soft and warm colors have an opaque core and a shimmery coating that emit a radiant glow. Shown from left to right are: Shadows, Myrrh, Regal, linen, and Celadon. These colors would look great in those fall stitching projects! Look for them at your local bead store or online....
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Enter our design contest for Senhoa

Posted one month ago by Julia Gerlach
If you got the October 2014 issue, you may have noticed the Spotlight on Senhoa, a non-profit foundation that supports survivors of human trafficking in Cambodia. Their programming, targeting at young impoverished women with few jobs options, is supported in part by teaching the women how to make and sell beaded jewelry. Many of the pieces in their collection were designed by their creative director, Jenny Van, who also owns JJ Bead in Huntington Beach, California. You may have seen her designs ...
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Bead-It-Forward project

Posted one month ago by Connie W
Have you started making your Bead-It-Forward squares for next year? Even though Bead&Button is no longer managing the project, it hasn’t gone away. The very dedicated Massachusetts beader Amy Severino has stepped up to keep Bead-It-Forward going. The 2015 theme is animals: “Wild about a finding a cure”. The squares will be assembled into different items like quilts and shadow boxes and auctioned off, with all proceeds benefiting two organizations: The Rays of Hope Center...
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Nominate your favorite local bead shop!

Posted one month ago by Danielle Barr
October is "Visit Your Local Bead Shop" month — and we're celebrating! Kalmbach Publishing's jewelry-making magazines and books have joined forces to celebrate local bead shops everywhere.  Use our Bead Shop Finder to find a bead shop closest to you and look for in-store giveaways, new classes, sales and specials, book signings and trunk shows. In additions to all these goodies, Bead&Button has teamed up with CJS Sales to find out which local bead shop is your favorite. N...
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How I string my beads

Posted one month ago by Cassie Donlen
Take a quick 30 second break to uncover your daily dose of smiles in this short stop motion video I created featuring a visitor that arrived mysteriously on my beading table to help string my lampwork beads.  cs_setInnerHtml('video_011f7469-6baf-47fe-b1e5-24c8ec7e8771',''); Stop motion videos are really easy and super fun to create. Just do a search in your smart phone's app store for free stop motion apps. The possibilities are endless. My kids have spent countless hours creating this ...
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6 tips for taking great submission photos

Posted 2 months ago by Cassie Donlen
My last blog post was an overview on how to submit your designs for publication in Bead&Button. We absolutely enjoy working with new and previous contributors and strive to make the submission process uncomplicated and encouraging. With your success in mind, I wanted to share a few tips on taking quality “submission worthy” photographs of your jewelry.  Photography can be such a frustrating subject for jewelry designers. Let’s face it—jewelry photographs unque...
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New Matubo seed beads

Posted 2 months ago by Connie W
Matubo size 7/0 seed beads are a high-quality seed bead made from pressed glass, and are from the same manufacturer that produces SuperDuos and Rullas. Because they are pressed, they have a very consistent shape and size. There are almost no defects so there is no need to cull your beads and that also means no waste! They measure 3.5 mm, which is slightly larger than an 8/0 seed bead, and have a large 1.6 mm hole with a smooth edge. There are more than 100 colors available and they match the ...
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Items to bead besides jewelry

Posted 2 months ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
Over the last 10 years, I have beaded quite a bit of jewelry. I have enjoyed every minute of it! But what else can we do with these wonderful beads? One of the things I did that was different came through Jeanette Shanigan’s Yahoo group. She challenged us to do something new by beading around a bottle. We spent several weeks searching grocery stores for that one particular bottle we needed for this project. And then once we were ready to go, Jeanette would give us instructions f...
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What kind of button are you?

Posted 2 months ago by Julia Gerlach
My job, as you might expect, involves a fair amount of shopping for beads and buttons. It's a tough life, but someone's gotta do it, right? Well, I was recently looking for a certain button style online and came across the website for the online store Lots of Buttons, which they proclaim to be the world's largest button store. While I was browsing, I was charmed to discover that they have named all their buttons. Not something boring and descriptive, like "antique silver dome" or "plastic 4-...
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Same design: Different colour, different look

Posted 2 months ago by Kerrie Slade
It's not often I make the same piece twice as I'm usually so busy trying to keep up with various beady deadlines that I move from project to project. I tend to spend some time experimenting with beads and then if it looks like a design is going to work, I make one finished piece with perhaps a couple of small sectional samples if I know I am going to need to write the instructions. I've recently been thinking about colour though and how different the same piece can look if you make ...
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How a design develops: Using beaded beads

Posted 2 months ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
Last week I continued my effort to make more earrings for the store. We were preparing metal beads for sale, and of course, I took some to see what I could do with them. The first pair of earrings used copper rondelles with cobalt blue crystals that Perry Bookstein of YorkBeads gave to me last year. “Do what you can with them. Let’s see what you come up with,” he said. “What fun,” I thought. The first pair of earrings used some gold-plated round beads, ...
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The inside scoop on what it takes to be published in "Bead&Button."

Posted 2 months ago by Cassie Donlen
As a jewelry artist, I recognize the importance of the creative journey. It’s a road we have all traveled. Learning and evolving as a jewelry designer can be a challenging yet incredibly rewarding process. Attaining recognition for our personal designs and creativity gives us confirmation that we are, indeed, on the proper path to greatness. Bead&Button wants to help you attain that greatness and help boost your recognition to the next level and I want to share a few tips on discove...
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New bead shapes from Sabine Lippert

Posted 2 months ago by Connie W
Sabine Lippert came up with the idea for the Rizo bead and O Bead, and both have been very popular. Well, she has done it again! She has two new bead shapes that will be available soon in local bead stores and online. The first one is called a Dome bead. Like its name suggests, it’s dome shaped, has a flat bottom, and has one hole near the bottom of the bead. It measures 14 x 8 mm and comes in 30 colors. The second one is called a Dragon Scale bead. This cute little bead measures 1.5...
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Book Look: Seed Bead Stitching

Posted 2 months ago by Danielle Barr
Experimenting with stitches offers new looks for traditional beadwork—and author Beth Stone loves to play! Seed Bead Stitching explores variations on peyote stitch, brick stitch, right-angle weave, daisy chain, and more.  Book Excerpt: Brick Stitch Chain You can make brick stitch rows as wide as you like, or as narrow as two beads. I love making simple two-bead-per-row chains. They work up quickly, and with brick stitch I can use a wide variety of beads.  Two-bead Chain To...
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Findings: What are they used for?

Posted 2 months ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
When I taught beading classes at Michaels, one of the favorites was an introductory class to beading. And the biggest part of that class was taking a look at all the different findings and explaining their uses. Most people are familiar with clasps, so I’m certainly not going to spend much time on that. But there are other findings out there where the purpose is not quite so clear. For instance, going back to ancient times, a multiple-strand necklace employed separators to control t...
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New design critique column

Posted 2 months ago by Julia Gerlach
Are you interested in getting an expert opinion on your beaded jewelry? Want to know if your color choices or bead placement are hampering or enhancing your designs? Wouldn't it be great to get a professional's suggestions for improving a piece that was a disappointment to you? Design diva Margie Deeb wants to help beaders everywhere improve their design skills and is seeking jewelry designs to critique for a new upcoming column in Bead&Button. For your chance to see a review of your work in...

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