Artists Spotlight - Delicate Sparkles

Donna Saunders works with seed beads, with patience and artistry she links together tiny little splashes of colour to make extraordinary and beautiful things. She has been making jewellery since her teens including peices for her GCSE art exam.

I just love this stylish blue necklace, the titanium Drusy cab came from Designer Cabochons. Donna explained - It's blue (my favourite colour) and sparkly so how could I leave it there? This piece is all mine! I decided just to make a simple bezel for it out of Delicas and put it on a spiral rope which I made with Swarovski crystals in Montana blue. The clasp was experimental. I'd never made one like that before and I'm really pleased with how it turned out.

I also smply adore this delicious seaside themed cuff. Donna told me that the cuff came about when She was on holiday in St. Ives and found the tiny little Miyuki cubes in the right colours for the sand, sea and sky in GJ Beads' shop. Donna made this cuff whilst sat on the beach and the little starfish on it were made using Lynn Davy's tutorial.

My last selection is from Donna's current gorgeous range of Rivoli Flowers. The inspiration for this beauties came from another Craft Pimp Forum member, Catherine, who showed her a similar flower she'd for a hair slide last May. Donna had made herself a sunflower cuff  and wanted a necklace to go with it. She has since many different colour ways as she matches the beads to the silk strings from Diane at SowZerE. Donna is currently in the process of turning this project in to a kit.

To get the latest news and an eye full of eye candy check out Delicate Sparkles Facebook Fan Page and Facebook Shop. You will also find the latest updates and news from Delicate Sparkles on Donna's blog

I asked Donna what aspect of beadwork did she most enjoy? Her Reply?

At the moment I'm really enjoying beadweaving and bead embroidery (I've just got Sherry Serafini's new book and that has definitely inspired me) and I'm looking forward to the Bead Retreat I've organised with some friends for next month. We all get together and just do our own thing and maybe learn from someone else if they're doing something you want to know about. It's all very informal but lots of fun!  I'm also planning to convert my garage into a beading studio so I can give classes and am really looking forward to getting stuck into that in the next few weeks.

Jolene x


Artists Spotlight - Ruthies Ramblings

Today I have the pleasure of blogging about an amazing beader, Ruth Duck.

Ruth had her first experience of beading when she was little and told me that she had been taught by her mother to make a daisy stitch chain with picots when she was four. After a long break Ruth rediscovered her early fascination for beading about three years ago when she went through an arch she hadn't been been through before at her local craft centre and found her local bead shop. It was like walking into Aladdin's cave and Ruth left there that day with an armful of beading materials and beads and treasure.

cuff6I really like this cuff bracelet and amazingly Ruth had only tried bead embroidery for the first time about three weeks before making it. It was her entry for a Making Jewellery magazine bracelet competition and it took second place. When I asked Ruth about the inspiration behind the design she explained - The coin came about because I was skint at the time and didn't want to fork out for a cabochon.

Ruth designed the pattern for this delicious peyote cuff one day when she was bored at the day job. She describes this Celtic cuff as a cow to work out but even worse to stitch. Since then Ruth has moved on to using computer software to design new patterns for her peyote work but her designs will always start out on paper first.

 This necklace is a real work of art. I asked about the inspiration behind it's creation and Ruth said - I’ve always like Egypt (used to have a bright yellow bathroom with Egyptian stencils all over and full of cheap and nasty nick knacks although the camel was rather cool) and I got a book out of the library about jewellery design through the ages, just to get an idea of the thought process behind designing a piece and there were some lovely Egyptian pieces. I had an idea to create a beaded Egyptian style piece and Google some images for inspiration and spotted the piece I made out of gold and enamels. bead embroidered pendent based on ancient Egyptian jewellery design. The polymer clay scarab was created by the very talented Caroline Harvey. In total this beautiful embroidered bead necklace took about 9 months from idea to completion.

Visit Ruthies blog and flickr to find out more about Ruth.

Jolene x


Colors of Sunrise

Colors of Sunrise is a stunningly curated treasurey by of gipsy spirit with the most gentle and serene colour soft pastel colour pallete.

I was thrilled to see my Palma Violets bead set featured among so many other lovely hand crafted goodies. I'm particularly drawn to those very pretty edible butterfies (and how could I resist!) by Lisa G of Sugar Robot

Gypsy Sprit has an indisputable amount of good taste an style. Check out a few more of her collections (images clickable) above and you will see just what I mean. Thank you ever so much for the feature,

Jolene xx

Cheeky Bead Gallery 3 - Tattoo beads

Firstly a quick shout out for Craft Pimp.....Do you create with polymer clay? Why not enter our *all about FIMO® Competition* on Craft Pimp Forum with monthly prizes donated by STAEDTLER (UK) Ltd.

And now a quick cheeky gallery of some of my latest inspiration and beads. This gorgeous pram blanket was a gift to my son Ethan from my good mate Tam. It is the jumping off point for my first bead series, Tattoo Beads. These beads use three intricate canes based on the butterfly, scarab and bird that you can see in my son’s baby blanket.

I hope you enjoyed looking at my pictures.

Jolene x


Artists Spotlight - Curious Cat Creative

CJ is a skilled artist specialising in leather work. My current  favourite CJ piece are these lovely decorative leather flowers with ting ting. They have been handcut from quality leather, tooled, dyed and finished. The large flower is constructed from 3 layers!

Being as I am fascinated with the imagery of butterflies it was impossible for me not to choose this elegant necklace in dusky pink as one of my featured images. It is so pretty and absolutely me!

This bag shaped bag tag tickles me too. I am such a fan of this kind of gentle but elegant pictorial humour. You can find out more about CJ and her current projects on Facebook

Lastly here is a picture of CJ hard at work which I have naughtily stolen off of CJ's blog. If you fancy a laugh, read this!

Jolene x

Artists spotlight - Smitten Kitten

Nicola describes herself as a devoted hobbyist, keen crafter, passionate about making clean cut simple stylish jewellery.

I love this Fiery Dragonfly, it is part of a  hugely successful series of stunning cluster pendants that Nicola has a talent for creating.

Aside from pure eye candy, Nicola also shows off the funky fun side to her designs. These tweety bird earrings inspired by the popular "Angry Birds" game are so cute.

I'm also loving Nicola's more serious side. Glam Rock in Schwartz is a tasteful little number which would be equally at home with a flirty little black dress or looking cute and moody next to jet black painted finger nails.

To see more from Smitten Kitten check Nicola out on Facebook and on her beautiful and interesting blog and on her own website SmittenKitten.de too.

Jolene x


WIN! WIN! WIN! with Brand New *All about FIMO® Competition* on Craft Pimp with monthly prizes donated by STAEDTLER (UK) Ltd

I am so thrilled to be able to share the news that I have just launched an Brand New *all about FIMO® Competition* on Craft Pimp Forum with monthly prizes donated by STAEDTLER (UK) Ltd.

I am a huge FIMO fan as you may have gathered from my blog and can't believe how excited I am to be able to share this news and project, there will be a prize up for grabs every month now up until Christmas 2011!

Come and join the fun!

Jo xx

Please obtain full instructions/safety leaflet and stockists from STAEDTLER (UK) Ltd.

For more information and project sheets:
T: 0845 600 5930


Sunday Finds - Miniature Marvels

I have been tweeting a fair bit lately, promoting Craft Pimp and being all around generally nosey. It is amazing the amount of talent there is on display through various links to listings and blogs to be found when you dip in more than just a tentative toe in to the tweet stream.

I have also found it wonderfully surprising how nice people are when you are brave enough to say hi. One such lovely tweeter is marottesud. I knew the moment that I saw these miniature dollhouse books that I had found my first Sunday Finds find.

These deliciously tiny books are such a treat that they make me hope that my Daughter grows up to want a dolls house when she is older. I would love to have an excuse to play with one again and help her kit it out in lavish style.

Other than a love of reading another one of my loves is Sushi. This foodie treasure is a proper visual treat and would grace any sophisticated table. This miniature marvel has been hand crafted by minihandmade. Best not go look around in this Etsy store if you are offended by calorie free sweet treats, pies and puddings.....

My last choice is another miniature corker. A beautiful hand-stitched doll house carpet in 1/12 scale by smallworldstitchery. The design contains Chinese symbols that represent luck, longevity and happiness. It boggles my mind how each and every tiny stitch is so very perfect!

Jolene x


Artists Spotlight - Dizzy Kitten

Dizzy Kitten, otherwise known as Kayleigh is a fellow polymer clay addict. She has a real knack for combining zingy colours to create bold and vibrant jewelery designs. You can find out more about Dizzy Kitten by following her fan page, Kayleigh's Craftyness on Facebook.
This picture below shows a range of Kayleigh's whimsical toadstool necklaces which are very cute indeed!

And these pirate cats really capture the sense of fun that Kayleigh brings to her creations which brings her critters to life.

To see more visit Flickr and Dizzy Kitten's Arty Farty Stuff.

Jolene x