Beading and Other Things I Like to Do

This is my “everything” blog. Of course I read quite a bit, and love to write, but sometimes words overwhelm me. I need to take a break from the literary scene and do something different. Most of you know I paint in watercolors and oils. Not often, but the urge strikes now and then. It is messy and takes a lot of time. I also like to garden.

Looking for a hobby? I have another hobby. I like to make jewelry. Years ago, I only wore fine jewelry and would dare not wear costume jewelry. Then I found the Bead Bar. It is a place in College Park that stocks drilled stones and gems like jasper and amethyst, turquoise and sterling silver, pearls and polished woods. I use a lot of  lapis lazuli because it looks so nice with jeans, but it is increasingly hard to find. They also carry Swarovski crystal but I don’t use them much because they look fake, to me. I like to use things that look natural.

They have classes at the Bead Bar. I learned pearl wrapping from a little Japanese girl and love the colors found in freshwater pearls. I made this tiny bracelet for my granddaughter for being such a good girl at the fall festival. She hasn’t seen it yet. Pearl knotting is the most durable as the wire-tipped silk thread they are strung and knotted on is strong. It is not difficult, but it is tedious and time-consuming.

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Wire wrapping is really hard and extremely time consuming. This technique was taught to me by the owner of the Bead Bar. She’s really good at it and crafts some truly special items. Mine are fairly basic. This hard wire is more durable than soft wire, has to be twisted and shaped with tools, but the connections are a bit clunky. These are made with polished woods. I love the long and dangling earrings. Woods are great for fall wardrobes.

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What I finished up today was a turquoise and sterling silver necklace. This is the mess I had when I forgot to fasten the clasps on before I crimped the ends. I had to restring it. (Old age memory.)

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Here is the final product. This is the easiest form of beading. Select your strings of beads, get a bit creative and string them up on the soft wire. This is the least durable as the wire tends to break at the crimp over time. It’s fairly easy to restring them, so not a problem if you can collect your beads. Kind of tough if a necklace breaks in the car.

beading 002

I don’t make a very good neck model, but this is how it hangs. I love turquoise with a coral-colored shirt. If you are looking for a hobby that will give you hours of joy and provides rather instant gratification (unlike writing), this is a fun one to have. I think I have an original piece of jewelry for every outfit I own now. This one would have looked just as nice with three instead of five large pieces of turquoise. I get carried away.

beading 004

What do you do to take your mind off of work and relax?

Do you have a hobby?

Do you enjoy artistic endeavors?

40 thoughts on “Beading and Other Things I Like to Do

    • Thanks. It’s hobby jewelry. Fun to wear a while, but not really professional quality for sale. I have made a few pieces on consignment for folk. That’s like work though, more fun as gifts 😉

    • Travel is something I look forward to when the RS retires because I don’t really like traveling alone. Enjoy the time away. You must have blown some of that cool air this way, we woke up to mice temps this morning. Playing with the grands and hugs 🙂

    • Turquoise isn’t cheap as stones go. I can get a long strand of graduated sized drilled tear drops when they have it, but it will cost $200.00 plus depending on quality of color and inclusions of other minerals.

  1. These are so pretty! I especially like he wood beaded ensemble and the turquoise necklace. I did some wire wrapping today — my hands got tired and I had to stop when the twists started looking like garbage. I’m afraid I’m going to have to take the whole necklace apart and start from scratch. It was too primitive and inconsistent , even for a Bohemian look. Thank you for sharing this; I like to see what others do. 😍

    • Thank you 🙂 That’s exactly right. It is mindless repetitive handiwork with not much thought required. So, requiring my attention, it is does relax and separate me from the deep thinking. Thanks for coming by.

  2. Lovely jewelry, Susan! I really love your granddaughter’s bracelet. I don’t think I’d have the patience to do this type of thing. (As for the vision–I wear bifocal contacts.)

    Sometimes I cook or bake to take my mind off of work during the day, and I go to they gym, too. 🙂 I’d like to get back to playing the piano (just got it tuned), but I’m not sure that will happen! I like to read and watch certain TV shows, and my husband and I go to movies and the theater fairly often.

    • Thanks Merril! I love to cook also, but not one for much baking, Me at the gym? Ha!

      I always wanted to know how to play the piano. I can recall when EVERYBODY had one in their home. You like the cultured events that we have so little of. Most of our theater in Orlando is comedy.

      • Well, you swim, Susan, and I don’t. I have to go to classes, or I wouldn’t work out much at all. 🙂

        Comedy is good, too. We actually just saw a play that was very funny–perhaps “cultured,” but it had a lot of physical humor, too. We are fortunate to live in area with so many great theaters and museums.

    • Thank you, Ali. They are relatively simple techniques, it is just a matter of learning how to use the tools. Check and see if there is any sort of bead store near you, they always offer classes. They want you to buy more beads 🙂

      • If only! I live in the back of beyond of rural Ireland, we don’t have broadband, public transport, or a decent supermarket, never mind anything as exotic as a bead store, lol! I’d have to travel to Dublin… which aint gonna happen! So I’ll just admire yours instead!

  3. Very nice…it’s also nice to see another side of someone I met through blogging. I have far to many hobbies I’m afraid but I like the idea of perhaps doing a blogpost about them.
    Thanks, Mike

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