6 tips for taking great submission photos

Posted 3 hours 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...

New Matubo seed beads

Posted 2 days 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 ...

Items to bead besides jewelry

Posted 3 days 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...

What kind of button are you?

Posted 11 days 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-...

Same design: Different colour, different look

Posted 11 days 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 ...

How a design develops: Using beaded beads

Posted 14 days 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, ...

The inside scoop on what it takes to be published in "Bead&Button."

Posted 15 days 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...

New bead shapes from Sabine Lippert

Posted 16 days 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...

Book Look: Seed Bead Stitching

Posted 17 days 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...

Findings: What are they used for?

Posted 17 days 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...

New design critique column

Posted 24 days 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...

Outside looking in: An insightful view of the "Bead&Button" office

Posted 26 days ago by Cassie Donlen
As I’m well into my third week here as associate editor for Bead&Button, I can happily sum up my entire experience thus far with just one word. Wow! It’s amazing how such a small word like “wow” can express how I’ve felt during my short time here. Having been a contributor to several beading magazines and jewelry-making books throughout the years, I thought I had a pretty decent grasp on the publishing side of the beading industry. In some sense this is totally...

It only feels like goodbye

Posted 26 days ago by Stacy Werkheiser
Who were you seven years ago? I was a student on the cusp of my MA in professional writing, still living at home, but certain that my big break was right around the corner. And it was -- quite literally! I discovered Kalmbach Publishing Co. in my home town, and when I learned about their beading books and magazines, I knew that was the place I had to be. I had never done any beading before, but I was steeped in crafting experience. I was certain I could learn to love this art, and the fine folks...

4 ways to use bead soup

Posted 26 days ago by Mortira vanPelt
Pre-made bead soups and seed bead blends are a fantastic way to add exciting color palettes to your beadwork, and making your own can be even more fun. Mixing together several different bead colors and styles into a coordinated blend creates a sense of whimsy, or an organic flair that can’t be achieved any other way. It’s also a great way to use up leftovers or add new life to a color that’s been forgotten in your stash for awhile. One of the most popular ways to use bead ...

Charm bracelet techniques

Posted 28 days ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
The second bracelet I designed was a copper one. I called this one “The Love of Butterflies”, and I used a few wire working techniques to make sure the charms were secure. Since copper is not as strong as silver or gold, I wanted to be sure to wire wrap as much of the wire as possible instead of using simple loops. To do this, I put all the heart charms on a spool of 18 gauge copper wire. I then made a wrapped loop at the end of the wire (being sure to make sure I caught the hea...

Discovering new jewelry techniques

Posted one month ago by Julia Gerlach
I've been working for Bead&Button for nine years now, and with all the projects I've made it's not often that I come across a technique that is totally new to me. But the "Metal and leather bracelet" free project by Marla Salezze that just went up on our website this week presented something I haven't done before. No, it's not the woven bracelet part. Rather, the bracelet features a customized button made with a button blank, a small amount of epoxy clay, and an image transfer. Image trans...

Designing a charm bracelet

Posted one month ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
While designing this week, I made notes of a few rules that I needed to follow to make the charm bracelet that I was working on turn out the way I wanted it. I called this one “The Love of Dragonflies” (Figure 1). The first thing that I did was pick out my clasp and attached to the end of the chain that I was going to use, and then measure it to my wrist. I then added about half an inch to the length of the chain to make sure that I had a charm bracelet that would be musical. I ...

New face at Bead&Button!

Posted one month ago by Julia Gerlach
You may have noticed the announcement that Bead&Button is hiring. Unfortunately, we’re not adding staff, rather we’re replacing Jane Cruz who decided to take a different job. We miss Jane but wish her happiness in her new endeavors. And now, after six weeks of searching, I’m delighted to introduce our newest associate editor, Cassie Donlen. Cassie has been working as an independent artist within the beading community for the past 12 years, making and selling lampwork bea...

Samunnat and Kazuri beads

Posted one month ago by Kerrie Slade
I was recently introduced to the beautiful hand made ceramic Kazuri beads made in Kenya and the stunning polymer clay Samunnat beads made in Nepal. You may already be aware of the story and perhaps you have even used the beads in your own work, but it was new to me and once I learned the background and saw the beads, I was happy to lend this initiative my full support and help to spread the word. Both of these small businesses were set up to help disadvantaged and vulnerable women escape...

Having fun with beads

Posted one month ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
The social aspects of beads include wearing them to show rank, to show class affiliation, and to show wealth. Another less weighty aspect is to just have fun showing what you can do with beads and then sharing this with others. There are several beading groups in which one can get involved. Most states have a beading society or two. If you have a local bead store, you can participate in contests, or enjoy a get-together and bead with people who are sure to become friends. If you do not ha...

Win our Wirework sweepstakes!

Posted one month ago by Stacy Werkheiser
Here at Bead&Button, we're hard at work creating our next special issue, Wirework Fall 2014, and we're even calling for submissions for Wirework Spring 2015. Whew! That's a lot to handle during the dog days of summer, so we decided to have a little fun. And what's more fun than giving away FREE stuff? Nothing! That's how the Wirework sweepstakes was born. Enter the sweepstakes here. At the end of the entry form, you'll have a chance to win more entries by sharing the sweepstakes with friend...

Summer peyote necklace tutorial

Posted one month ago by Mortira vanPelt
When summer is at its peak, many jewelry lovers are on the lookout for lightweight designs that won’t interfere with staying cool and comfortable. This might mean going for a simple pendant and chain, a bit of macramé, or a few beads on a strand. But there’s no reason why we can’t have our summer jewelry, and do a little beadwork, too! A single beaded bead is all you need to make a really eye-catching summer necklace. Your favorite design plus a few accents, and y...

Metallic suede and polychrome finish

Posted one month ago by Connie W
The metallic suede and polychrome finish have been very popular. Theses finishes are available on more of our favorite bead shapes with a few new colors added in. The metallic suede finish is now being offered on fire polish, mini daggers and SuperDuos along with three new colors. A new color has been added to the polychrome finish called Copper Rose. This color, along with others, has been expanded to include fire polish, CzechMates bricks, and triangles. Look for them at your local bead ...

Knots for continuing your working thread

Posted 2 months ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
Most of my work, if I have to start a new thread, I will weave in the short working thread back into the bead work, doing half hitch knots along the way. Then, with my new working thread, I start back in the bead work and go forward doing half hitch knots until I come out of the bead where I started. This works great for peyote stitch, brick stitch, and other weaves where following the thread path and doing your knots is an easy thing to do. However, there are sometimes when doing so is n...

New Pip bead from Preciosa Ornela

Posted 2 months ago by Kerrie Slade
We are living in exciting times in the bead world with an ever increasing choice of new bead shapes appearing on the market and the latest bead to be released is the new Pip™ bead from Preciosa Ornela. I was lucky enough to be involved in the process which lead up to the final launch and I learned that a lot goes on behind the scenes before a new bead shape is released. It actually takes many months of testing and fine tuning before the finished product reaches our stores in th...

Bead publishing blunder

Posted 2 months ago by Julia Gerlach
In the August 2014 issue, we published a lovely bracelet called “Floral Fireworks.” Within days of the issue hitting mailboxes, we received many notes asking if we had made a mistake. Clearly, our readers queried, this is Laura McCabe’s “Cherry Blossom Bracelet”? Upon inspection, we noted that the two designs are indeed remarkably similar. When I asked our contributor about the origin of her design and whether she had been influenced by McCabe, she replied “...

Different wire working techniques

Posted 2 months ago by Dr. Gail H. Devoid
I can remember the first time that I saw someone’s wire working on a pendant. I had been seed beading for about three months and had learned how to make simple loops well enough to do earrings. But when I saw this fancy wire working I thought to myself, “I never will be able to do that!” Well, I was wrong. I took some time to research how a wrapped loop was made and took the advice in one article that said before I would be able to do them nicely I was going to have to...

Bicone or bacon

Posted 2 months ago by Connie W
Autocorrect and beading can have some funny outcomes sometimes. Our Editorial Assistant Lora Groszkiewicz recently noticed, when she would type in bicone, as in bicone crystal, it would automatically change to bacon!  Unfortunately, she didn’t notice the change right away, and when working on the online resource guide, bacon went out in place of bicone for one of the projects. An observant contributor noticed the unusual item listed and questioned Lora. After a laugh and a few baco...

Are you a messy or neat beader?

Posted 2 months ago by Marcia DeCoster
A while back my house was full of beaders, and my usual trays of in-progress projects (and past projects and future projects) were around and the thought was that I must have spilled my trays. There was much empathy for my 'situation'....having 'spilled' all those trays and now needing to sort them, ha! The truth is I am a messy messy beader. To the right is a typical tour around my studio of bead trays. It is part of my design process to be messy, at least that’s my story. ...

Publish your wire and chain mail designs!

Posted 2 months ago by Stacy Werkheiser
I know what you're thinking -- this is the Bead&Button website! Why would Bead&Button be looking for wirework and chain mail jewelry to publish? Well, I'm glad you asked! Twice a year, the same editors who bring you Bead&Button, Art Jewelry, and Bead Style put their heads together to create Wirework magazine. It's devoted to jewelry made primarily with wire and chain mail, often with beads mixed in. In fact, we're working on Wirework Fall 2014 right now, and whose pendant is current...

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