Etsy Shop Update

My Etsy Shop has been open for just about a month and so far so good. I’ve made three sales, added some bead, crystal & pearl snowflake ornaments and had to adjust how I do my listings. I still haven’t fine-tuned the latter, but I am sure I’ll get it eventually. This is the issue… the necklace from my first sale came in different colors, I thought by listing each of the colors when one was purchased that color would be eliminated from my inventory, unfortunately I had listed my quantity as 1 so the necklace was then sold out, so I had to readjust the listing and the others that I had set- up similarly. I had a similar issue with my following sale of 2 snowflake ornaments… I had to manually remove them from my inventory. So, I have some research to do on listings.

I also ran my first sale over Black Friday weekend and promoted Small Business Saturday. And that’s pretty much where I am.

Here are the Snowflake Ornaments:

If you’re interested in one of the ornaments or are looking for a piece of jewelry for yourself or someone else on your list check out my shop: CraftedByFran

Etsy Shop – CraftedByFran

After making jewelry for a few years and creating pieces to give as gifts, sell to friends and at a few local craft fairs, I finally decided to open an Etsy shop. Truthfully, I’ve been thinking about it for a while but held back because I thought it would be difficult.

So, what did I think it would be difficult? Figuring out shipping costs for one. I did a little research and discovered that this stumps many would-be Etsy sellers. There were a few other things as well: the whole creating a listing, taking good pictures, do I have to give my pieces “names?” And a few other silly little things. In the end, I am opting to offer free shipping and decided not to give most of my pieces a name since they are one-of-a-kind. And after creating my first listing and learning how to navigate the process it became a lot easier and not as daunting. Let’s be honest, trying anything new is a learning process. Soon enough I’ll learn what works and what doesn’t. There is one thing that always gets me… Tagging. Which ones work best and which ones don’t. I have that same issue with my blog posts sometimes.

Below is the link to my shop. Feel free to like a piece, like my shop or maybe you’ll find something perfect for you.

Etsy Shop-CraftedByFran

Here are a some of the pieces available now:

 

Statement Necklaces

With Summer finally here and temperatures on the rise it’s the perfect time to start wearing amazing necklaces that the world can see. Wearing a beautiful necklace that’s covered by a coat keeping you warm during the colder months is just not cool. I recently made a few necklaces that are worth showing off that I would like to share with you today.

Up first… Statement pendants that I picked up at my local craft store that I accentuated with beads, crystals and metal beads to create one-of-a-kind necklaces that can be worn with a tank top and jeans or dressed up for a more formal occasion.

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Next, two multi-strand necklaces that have instantly become two of most favorite necklaces I have made. I especially love the silver-tone necklace as I used a variety of stones in different colors so the necklaces can be worn with multiple outfits.

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And finally another multi-strand necklace made with Tila beads, seed beads, stones and crystals. I came across this pattern a while back and had been eyeing to make it for a while. I ordered all the beads and stones to make it and then let it sit for a while. I’m happy that I finally got around to making it though as the final piece is definitely not something you see everyday.

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Now onto making more pieces…

Bead & Yarn Project Round-Up

Hope you all had a good weekend! So, as of late most of my posts have mainly been focused on the “spatula” part of the title of my blog, but, I definitely haven’t forgotten about the “bead” nor the “yarn” part. Hence the Bead & Yarn Project Round-Up title of this post. I tend to work on these projects without taking the time to take pictures of the process or the progress so today I will be sharing with you pictures of the final product.
 
Up first two yarn projects…
 
This is a clutch I crocheted following the Candy Color Clutch pattern from Lion Brand Yarn using their Bonbons Yarn in Nature. While the pattern called for using simple buttons that would need a crocheted button cover, I opted to add a little pizazz to the clutch and used gold-toned buttons instead. The pattern was super simple to follow, but, I did find it a little annoying to change the color of the yarn every two rows, but, the final look was worth that extra work.
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Up next, a baby blanket. The Dreamy Lace Baby Throw – also a Lion Brand Yarn pattern – which I used Pound of Love yarn (also from Lion Brand) in Honey Bee. This pattern was also quick and easy to follow, the one thing that concerned me was adding the shell border, but luckily I was able to add it without incident.
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And now on to the bead pieces…

My new favorite beads to work with are SuperDuo beads. The beads have two-holes so you are able to create some pretty cool earring and bracelet designs.

Like this bracelet…

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These earrings…
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Or this earring and bracelet set…
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Another two-hole bead that’s been fun to work with are Tila beads and CzechMates Two-Hole Tile beads.
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I’ve also finished a few crystal embellished seed bead bracelets. These are probably one of my favorite bracelets to make because even though they do require a bit of work to complete, you can play with all kinds of color combinations to create a very unique and original bracelet.
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The cross-weave bracelet using bugle beads, pearls, seed beads and crystals.
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The same bracelet but with an embellished edge comprised of seed beads and drop beads.
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Some ladder stich earrings.
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And finally, a cube and crystal bracelet.
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Hope you enjoyed looking at these items as much as I enjoyed making them. Have a great week!

A Quick Multi-Strand Necklace

During a shopping trip to my local A.C. Moore I came across this pendant while perusing the jewelry section that immediately caught my eye.

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I knew that I wanted to use it as the focal point of a multi-strand necklace. At first I wasn’t sure what type of multi-strand – all chains, a combination of chains and stones or all stones. After attending a bead show and a few trips to A.C. Moore  and Michaels I was able to find strands of stones that perfectly complemented the colors in the pendant.

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I started off by laying out the strands using a multi-strand bead board.

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Once I had them strung on beading wire I haphazardly intertwined the three strands.

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I actually got these three hole end bar links on clearance at Jo-Ann’s (what can I say I’m a craft store junkie) and they ended up being just what I needed for this necklace. It’s not pictured here, but, I attached a toggle using jump rings to the single loop side.

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To attach the pendant to one of the strands I created a messy wire wrapped loop .

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And as simple as that the necklace was done.

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Tiles, Tilas & Triangles

While round seed beads are fun to work with – they are versatile and offer a uniform look to most jewelry pieces – sometimes it’s nice to try out different shapes and sizes to get pieces that are unique and more intricate looking.

One such bracelet is the Tila Token bracelet by Marcia Balonis that was featured in the June 2012 issue of Bead & Button Magazine Bead & Button Magazine. When I started working on this bracelet I went by the material list that came with the pattern; 5mm Miyuki Tila beads, Size 11 Japanese cylinder beads (Delicas) in 2 colors and Size 15 seed beads.

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Things were going well through the first few steps…

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But when I started to add the Tila beads they weren’t lying flat and although it’s not pictured here I was having a hard time keeping the Delicas close together on the sides of the bracelet. I tried restarting the bracelet a few times but in the end decided to try it with different size beads altogether.

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I opted to go with Czech Tile beads, Size 8 seed beads in 2 colors and Size 11 seed beads. Czech Tile and Miyuki Tila beads are similar in that they are square beads with two holes but they differ in that Tila beads are 5mm and Tile beads are slightly larger at 6mm and are more rounded around the edges and corners. Because of that roundness I prefer the look that Tile beads give a bracelet over Tila beads.

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I started off by working in ladder stitch to create the first two rows of the bracelet.

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I then switched to flat herringbone stitch to create the next few rows and to add the Tile beads throughout the bracelet.

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This was actually the first time I used the herringbone stitch and while it took a few minutes to get the hang of it once I did the bracelet came together rather quickly.

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To complete the other end of the bracelet I once again worked in ladder and herringbone stitch and then attached a magnetic clasp and the bracelet was done.

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Using the same Czech Tile beads again – along with Size 11 seed beads – I created a bracelet I will call Squared V’s.

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I knew that the bracelet was going to be four tile beads wide so I began by stringing the following pattern for my desired length: one seed bead, one Tile bead, eight seed beads, one Tile bead, one seed bead, one Tile bead, eight seed beads, one Tile bead, etc. Once I reached by desired length I went in the opposite direction and sewed through the Tile beads adding seed beads by one where my starting point was one seed bead and decreasing by one seed bead where my starting point was eight seed beads.

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I kept this pattern going adding the Tile beads where necessary and it wasn’t long before the bracelet was done. FYI… The greatest amount of seed beads between your Tile beads will always be the number wide of Tile beads you want to use times two. For example, if you only want your bracelet to be three Tile beads wide the greatest number of seed beads used would be six, if it was five Tile beads it would then be 10 seed beads. I then added seed beads to the ends to attach the clasp and the bracelet was done.

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Since I did have some Miyuki Tile beads sitting in my stash waiting to be used I decided to make a few more of these bracelets.

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And finally I used Triangle beads to create a pair of earrings that I came across in the April 2013 issue of Bead & Button Magazine under the pattern called Triangular Opulence by Ana Rao. To be honest I am still on the fence as to whether or not I like them. I am thinking it has something to do with the color; I opted to buy clear Triangles to make them since I figured I should stick with something neutral. I guess I should have gone with something bold instead. Along with the triangles I also used 11mm crystal drops, Size 11 seed beads, and Size 11 cylinder beads (Delicas) to make the earrings.

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Using the ladder stitch I stitched together six triangles to form one unit and then stitched four more triangles to that unit to add on a second unit. I then added triangles to each of the end units, once again via the ladder stitch.

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Once the base was done it was time to start embellishing it. I started by adding the crystal drop.

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I then stitched a Delica bead to the front of each of the triangles and a Size 11 seed bead to the two centers of the base units. I attached an earring finding to the top and as simple as that the earrings were done.

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The Great Gatsby Inspired Bracelet

If you haven’t seen “The Great Gatsby” I highly recommend it. After watching it I actually regretted never having read the book. I was supposed to read it in high school but after reading a page or two I opted to read the cliff notes instead. It’s probably one of the few cliff notes I have ever read as I have always enjoyed reading, but that was just one book that was impossible for me to get in to. I thought for a second of reading it now but that regret soon subsided as my previous sentiments were validated by many… the book is boring. Baz Luhrmann apparently took some liberties in adapting the book to the big screen.

The movie has inspired a new wave of fashion trends especially in jewelry. Just check out the new collection from Tiffany’s, which is gorgeous but out of most peoples price range. I suppose jewelry made by the company 1928 Jewelry will be experiencing a surge in sales now as it’s a little more affordable. The jewelry from that era was more like pieces of art more than anything else. A friend of mine came across a bracelet/hand ornament on M&JTrimming’s blog that was inspired by the piece Carey Mulligan’s character Daisy wore in the movie that she liked and asked me to recreate.

The supplies: a yard of pearl rosary chain, a pearl and rhinestone applique and a clasp.

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To begin I made the actual bracelet part first. Since the pearl rosary chain is connected by interlocking eye hooks I was able to connect the chain to the clasp without the use of jump rings which gave it a much cleaner look.

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Next, I used fireline to sew one section of pearl chain to each end of the applique.

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I then made a ring with some of the chain and attached it to one end of the applique.

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I then attached the other end to the bracelet and voila, as simple as that a Great Gatsby inspired bracelet.

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