Friday, 18 February 2011

Double knotting a necklace

If you want to knot a beaded necklace with semi precious stones, but the holes in the stones are quite large, what's the solution?

I'd got these lovely S-shaped 'slab' beads in dyed turquoise agate (that's an agate dyed a turquoise colour, not huge turquoise beads, BTW!) and was keen to use them.  My favourite thing to make is always a knotted necklace. However, a single knot in the beading thread would just disappear into the rather large bead hole. Thicker beading cord might have been an option, but I wanted to use 6mm howlite beads with a smaller drill hole in between the large slabs - any larger round beads and the slabs might spin or pivot when worn and that's always annoying - so I was a bit stuck.

 I have some pearls which are double knotted, but the knots lie side by side, adding to the length of the necklace.  It looks great with those organic freeform pearls, but wouldn't have been right for this more structured design.

My solution was double knotting.  First, doing a normal single knot close to the bead.  I always use knotting tweezers, as this gets the knot exactly where I want it...

Next, I knotted over the knot I'd just made.  It took a little practice to get the result neat.  The best way seems to be to position the tweezers so that they are at the cross over point in the first knot, and very gently roll the second knot into place, not pulling as tightly as you would for a normal single knot.  Then the second knot was more inclined to sit neatly with a little overlap ...

 I liked the results.  There is still some movement between the bead hole and the double knot around the dyed turquoise agate stones, which adds to the fluidity of the necklace.  A big necklace that it too rigid can be uncomfortable to wear, in my humble opinion.  Also, there is very little pivoting of the larger stone, as the little howlite bead is very securely in place.  And because the knots look like little spacer beads, there's another shade of blue in the design. 

What do you think?

The finished design is in my Etsy shop.

Friday, 11 February 2011

Folksy Friday: Watch the birdy!

A selection of birds today, as the real things have been loud and lively around us this week as the weather gets a little warmer... Click on any of the pictures to go directly to the shops.

Bird print blue birds funky bird

1. This one is called 'Pretty Bird' you can see why by alissha lissha designs
2. Rae Welch has a range of these beautiful paper bird sculptures in her shop
3. Quite a funky bird from tuttTutt

bird earrings Blue Forest Jewellery Bird in the grass bird buttons

4. My own birds in the skies earrings
5. This bird looks very happy in the grass by Chrissys for Cards
6. Classy bird buttons by Amanda Mercer

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

A quick shout out for some good causes...

There are some really good folk around raising money for worthy causes in various ways, and if you're a shop owner, there are lots of ways to get involved.  Here are just of couple.

Donated this bracelet to the BHF sale

Mimi, from Mum4Beads is raising money for the British Heart Foundation.  You can read about her efforts and donate here:

Lots of Folksy sellers have donated items for her event as well.  You can see the Folksy thread about this here.

These larvakite earrings are in the Huskies auctio

Huskies in Need are having a Facebook auction in March.  You can see details here:

There are loads of lovely things to bid for, many of them handmade.  Chris from Chrissys on Folksy has also donated some beautiful handmade cards too.

And a quick reminder that these pink mookaite and rhodonite earrings on sale in my Folksy shop are being sold in aid of Macmillan Cancer Care:

They'd be a great present for mother's day perhaps?

Friday, 4 February 2011

Sport - yes, sport!

So, it's the rugby season again.  Hubbie is watching Wales playing, I am passively listening to the commentary.  Occasionally, if it sounds like a really good match, I go over and watch.  Mostly, making jewellery and being on the PC are more interesting!!

So, this reminds me to give a shout out for my friend and neighbour's football blog. Rishi has been busy blogging about the end of the transfer season.  Check it out:
Us bloggers need to stick together!

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

BESTeam feature October54Gallery on Etsy

Beautiful, isn't it?  This is an example of the stunning photos you can see at October54Gallery on Etsy, this week's BESTeam featured shop.  Anne from Whispering Pines, NC (I bet that's a lovely place!) is responsible for these works of art, and it's no surprise to learn that her work is on display at many local venues too.

I've chosen just three of my favourites from this shop, so as to have them shown to best advantage.  Regular blog readers will be able to see the themes of nature in the ones I've picked.  Click on any of the photos or captions to go directly to the shop and see more.

Anne says that art has always been a part of her life, and living all over the USA as well as time in Costa Rica, has also influenced her artist's eye.  Anne also makes block prints and writes. 

Anne's work has a strong positivity for me, so it was a pleasure to find this quote from Walt Whitman in one of her listings:

Happiness not in another place, but this place...
not for another hour, but this hour.

I love this quote too from Anne's blog:

"The afterthought is good, but forethought is better."
(Norwegian saying)

You can visit Anne's blog here:
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