50 designers challenge - Part 1
Updated: 06 February 2012
Just how many ways can you use the same spring themed pack of beads? We have over 100 great jewellery designs to share with you…
Just how many ways can you use the same spring themed pack of beads? We have over 100 great jewellery designs to share with you…Janet Sherret
INTRO As part of our 50th issue celebrations we decided to give you, our lovely readers a chance to enter our ever-popular ‘Designer Challenge’ feature. We choose 50 lucky names from the hat of readers who had expressed interest in joining in. Those 50 readers were each sent an identical pack of beads and findings, kindly supplied by Beads Unlimited and asked to create two pieces of jewellery. Here we can proudly show you the results. Unfortunately one parcel got lost in the post so we have the results from 49 readers, and Beads Unlimited kindly sent us another pack so that the final entry has been created by us, your editorial team, Michelle and Becky!
We’d like to thank you all very much for taking part, the results show a wonderful diversity of ideas and designs. I’d also like to thank all of you who have so generously allowed us to sell on your jewellery in aid of The Winnicott Foundation, a charity that looks after premature and poorly babies. We’d especially like to thank Janine Eden of Reading and Ros Wyvill of Redhill for their very kind contributions to the charity. And finally I must mention our youngest entrant; Bella Rubens of Twickenham who did a terrific job, especially as she is just 11 years old. We really loved your stylish earrings and pretty bracelet. Well-done Bella!
One photo from each entrant has also been featured in the March issue of Beads & Beyond Magazine Click here to purchase this issue.
I was delighted to be chosen to take part in the 50 designers challenge. I love pink and green together and was inspired by the beads to make a necklace and charm bracelet with an 'Enchanted Forest' theme.
I made the charm bracelet using the curb chain supplied, I added the lampwork rose beads, pink pearls, wire beads and three colours of the larger flowers with seed bead 'stamens' using the headpins to wire wrap. The forest creature charms were from my own supplies.
The necklace was made using the wire and crimp beads supplied. I used the mint green, green and pink pearls along with the seed beads and wire beads supplied and added a couple of the pale orange pearls for an extra burst of colour. The lucite leaves add to the forest theme, the focal was made using some of the smaller flowers and a lampwork 'fairy house' as well as a fairy charm (both from my own supplies). The leaf toggle clasp is from my own supplies also.
Spring flowers – Thread a green seed bead onto a headpin or eyepin followed by a lucite flower and leaf. Make a loop. Repeat this to use as many flowers and leaves as you require. Thread a pearl onto beading wire, followed by two jump-rings and repeat. In the centre add a small silver spacer bead in between four flowers then add a cluster of flowers to a jump-ring and thread onto wire then repeat with silver spacers and four flowers. Then continue threading the pearls and jump-rings. Attach to a chain and fix a clasp.
Longer evenings - Cut the chain into six lengths of four complete links and two longer lenghts at your desired length. Make 11 eyepin links, thread with beads and pearls, with daisy spacers in between and end with a loop. Attach to the chain with jump rings. Add a large silver ring to attach both sides together. Attach three beaded links to the ring and attach a short length of chain to each end. Attach the two longer lengths of chain to the last beaded links and fix a clasp.
Wired flower pendant - I used 0.5mm wire to connect seven pink pearls in a flower shape - I first connected six of the beads into a circle by threading both ends of the wire through the end bead and pulling tight using the ends to fasten a seventh bead in the middle. Both ends of the wire were wrapped around the wire between beads and snipped off. I then threaded a seed bead and a green spiral bead to six head pins, making a loop on each and attached to the flower with jump rings. I made three pairs of beaded links, thread on eyepins, two with seed beads, two with pink pearls and two with wire beads and seed beads. Connect these together and thread on lengths of chain, adding a clasp.
Asymmetrical chain and ribbon necklace - I attached two different pink silk strings to a piece of chain and added a clasp. I joined the three lengths together with a few jump rings along the length, attaching some to the chain and both strings, some to the chain and one string. I made a mix of flower and leaf dangles, attaching them randomly around the necklace, attaching them with jump rings to the chain and/or the strings to allow for some movement.
Thread various beads onto eyes pins to make links and join together to make a chain. Add a short length of chain to the centre and add floral dangles to the chain. Add more flower and leaf dangles in between some of the beaded links. Finish with a clasp.
Thread nine headpins with seed and coil beads, put through evenly spaced chain links. Underneath add glass bead, finished with a loop. Attach Pearls and flowers to these loops. And further wire and seed bead dangles to the flower centres. Add side lengths of individual pearl links and chain, finishing with a clasp.
My initial reaction on opening the packet that came from the postie, with all the goodies enclosed was “Wow what a lovely collection of colours and textures”. I started by laying the goods out and messing with the possibilities in my mind. The eyes said use all the colours and shapes in a necklet, but I wanted a cuff bracelet to be the focal point. I ended up with a draping necklet and some earrings and a cuff.
The spring and summery colours lent themselves to a drape in necklet with buds and flowers made with headpins. Loose lenghts of chain were hung at each side and a headpin link was used in the centre to join the two chain drapes.
The earrings were made with the lampwork bud beads thread on a headpin then the off cuts of chain threaded onto it interspersed with the leaves. It was plain and simple but with a light feel of movement like the floral and fauna of the seasons.
The cuff was made with two loops of 0.60mm silver wire cut to size then threaded with the beads. Eyepin links threaded with flowers were used to join the two loops of beads, threading through the chain in the centre of the two flowers, creating a draped effect to match the necklet.
For each earring I used three graduating lengths of vintage silver chain attached to a glass foil bead and a lucite flower. On each end of chain I attached using eyepins a green faux pearl and Lucite leaf dangle for a dramatic shoulder grazing pair of earrings.
To create the choker I arranged the beads into an arrangement I liked together with five graduating lengths of chain. I then cut a 15" length of tiger tail and strung on the beads and chain as per my arrangement. A clasp and extender chain was added for adjustment.
The first piece is a single strand chain necklace. The flowers were constructed using wire and attached using jump rings. The green coil beads were thread onto head pins, joined in pairs and attached to the chain between the flowers using individual plain loops.
The second piece is a double strand necklace combining a chain strand and strand made of beaded links. A mixture of pearl and glass beads were threaded on wire, and wrapped loops used to join the links. Beaded dangles were added to the chain strand and a few beaded links were added too, to break up the chain.
Green pearl chainmaille bracelet - The chainmaille links are made of eight pairs of jump rings. Attach each pair to each other and the eighth pair to the first, creating a link. Create three more. Thread eight green pearls onto eight eye pins, trim and create a loop. Attach two pearls to each chain mail link in the main body, and one pearl between the end chainmaile links and the clasp.
‘Chain cage’ pearls and flowers necklace - Thread two size eight seed beeds, a small flower, two more seed beads, a large flower and then a leaf onto a headpin and create a loop. Attach the flowers to three uneven pieces of chain to create a drop. To make the chain cages, thread a pearl onto wire, thread the wire onto a ‘double loop’ of chain, and loop once more. Attach more chain and add a clasp.
I loved the collection of beads in the designer pack. The pretty flowers and fresh colours looked so nice together and I love working with lucite flowers, so this challenge was a real pleasure. The quality of the beads, chain and findings made creating my pieces so enjoyable. I did not want to stop at two pieces, so I made a pair of earrings to compliment both of my designs.
Flower bouquet - Using eye pins, two seed beads and a large flower, turn a double loop, repeat 12 times. Repeat with a small flower and one seed bead.
Form these into groups of one large flower, one small flower and one leaf each joined by a split ring. Use three of these groups looped together for the centrepiece on a 21" length of chain, add the remaining groups evenly along the chain. Using the wrapped loop method, add rose beads and wire beads between the flower clusters.
Pearls and Roses - Using eye pins, create beaded links using ten pink pearls eight green pearls and nine rose beads. Cut the eye pin to length and form a loop on the other end attaching to the next beaded link as you go. Join these together in groups of three beads (5 x pink/rose/pink, 4 x green/rose/green).
Join these together with approx 3cm of chain between each group of three beads. Attach 7.5cm of chain to each end. Add a split ring and clasp.
Dancing Flower Ladies Necklace - Cut a length of chain and attach a clasp using jump rings. Take five headpins and lay out as follows: one headpin with three lucite flowers, seed bead, coiled wire bead, and three seed beads for a “stem”, the other four headpins should have two lucite flowers, one seed bead and one coiled wire bead. Attach these to the chain with the longest at the centre, with two of the others at either side.
Roses and Pearls Bag Charm - Cut three lengths of wire approximately 10.5cm long. Fold these in half over the loop of a swivel clasp. Crimp to secure and thread on one glass rose bead. Crimp to secure. On each length of wire now protruding from the rose bead attach a series of pearls and seed beads. Crimp each bead in place, leaving room for the seed beads to move but secure the pearls. Crimp at the ends and trim off the excess wire.
Daisy ring pendant - Wrap 0.4mm wire around a 30mm closed ring, add a small flower, a clear seed bead and double back through the flower bead. Continue to wrap the wire around ring adding a total of 12 flower beads and seed beads. Leave a small section of the ring uncovered. Attach three 7mm jump rings and thread through a pink suedette cord. Add cord clasps and 5mm jump rings. Attach a flower charm and a trigger clasp.
Green ripple necklace - Thread 30cm of wire with a crimp and a 5mm metal rose bead, then feed the wire back through the crimp bead and attach a crimp cover. Push the wire through the ribbon. Thread on a green pearl, wrap ribbon over, pierce with wire and add a rose bead. Repeat with seven pearls and six rose beads. Add a ribbon clasp, jump rings and attach a trigger clasp.
Cluster necklace - Cut a piece of chain 27cm long. Thread 16 pearl beads onto individual headpins, then attach in clusters of four at intervals along the chain. Thread two seed beads onto a headpin, followed by a large flower bead and attach to the chain. Thread a small flower bead onto a looped headpin and attach to the chain. Thread a leaf onto a jump ring and attach to the chain. Repeat the last three actions a total of 23 times and attach randomly between the pearl beads. Attach a jump ring either side of the chain and thread through 28cm of ribbon, so it is folded double, enclosing in a flat ribbon clasp. Finish with a jump ring either side and a necklace clasp.
Beaded necklace - Cut a piece of wire 55cm long. On one end, attach a horseshoe protector and a jump ring. Secure with two crimps. Measure17cm along the wire and attach two crimps, then alternate ten round flower beads with eleven green coiled beads. Attach another two crimps and finish by attaching another horseshoe protector 17cm long the wire with two crimps and a necklace clasp.
Pink Dangles Necklace - Cut three generous lengths of beading wire. Thread on 14 pink glass beads adding a jump ring between each bead, let them fall into the centre. Plait the beading wire to desired length, add on a crimp bead followed by your chosen fastening, fold over and crimp closed. Add a crimp cover for a professional finish. Repeat on other side. For the centre dangle: take a headpin and thread on one bead, turn a loop. Take an eyepin and thread on two beads, turn a loop. Attach the first headpin to the eyepin. Take another eyepin and thread on one bead, turn a loop. Join all the links together with the final link attaching to the centre jump ring. Repeat for the other dangles using less beads and attaching either side of the centre dangle.
Flower Charm Bracelet - Cut an 18cm length of chain and add on your chosen fastenings. For the flowers, thread a seed bead onto a headpin, followed by a flower bead and turn a loop. Repeat with varying sizes of flower beads. Attach your flowers to the chain by carefully opening the loop, linking on the chain and closing tightly. For the dangles, link a few flowers together as if making a daisy chain, adding a second flower to the link of the first.
Heart and Flowers Necklace - Using one generous piece of beading wire, add three glass flower beads let them fall to the centre. Pick up another bead and take both wires through in opposite directions to form a circle. Turn to the right so that one of the wires is pointing upwards and the other one is pointing downwards. On the ‘down’ wire pick up two beads, add a third bead and cross both wires through it in opposite directions. On the ‘up’ wire pick up two beads, add a third bead and cross both wires through it in opposite directions. On the ‘up’ wire thread on five wire coil beads, loop over the next bead and feed the wire through the top two centre beads. With the ‘down’ wire pick up one wire coil bead and feed the wire through the lower right bead. Continuing with the ‘down’ wire pick up one wire coil bead and feed through the lower left bead. Pick up another wire coil bead and feed though the left centre bead. On the ‘up’ wire pick up five wire coil beads, loop over the next bead and feed through the centre left bead. The two wires should now be exiting the same bead in different directions. Pull the threads tight to create your heart. Keep threading the wires back through the beads so that they exit at a point where you can then carry on stringing your necklace. Complete by adding your desired fastening and a beaded dangle.
Spring Flowers Necklace - Make three daisies using 25cms of 1mm wire. Use one daisy as the centre of the necklace and attach an asymmetrical chain of lampwork beads and wire daisies using wrapped loops to two of the petals. When each side measures 15cm attach 13cm of chain and add a clasp. Create two clusters of lucite flowers and leaves, attach one to the daisy focal and the other to one side of the chain.
Garden Fresh Bracelet - Cut two 80cms lengths of 0.5mm green cotton cord, tie each on to a toggle clasp at mid point. Knot on a selection of lampwork beads, glass pearls, coiled metal beads and seed beads leaving some gaps for movement. Continue until each thread measures 15cm. Thread the remaining cord through the toggle bar and tie cord ends. Add a dab of glue to secure knots.
Spring Flowers Charm Bracelet - Cut a piece of chain approx 17cm long and attach a lobster clasp to close. Make beaded dangles by threading individual beads onto headpins and turning a wrapped loop to close (use green pearls, pink flowers and glass floral beads). Put individual petals onto jump rings. Attach one dangle or petal to each chain link using jump rings until the entire length of chain is full.
Spring Flowers Earrings - Thread a deep pink flower, a pale pink flower and a white flower on individual headpins and turn wrapped loops at varying distances from the flowers (one immediately above, one approx 5mm and one approx 1cm above). Attach all three to a jump ring, attach three more jump rings in a chain to this ring adding a petal to each jump ring. Attach an earring wire to the final jump ring, repeat to create pair.
Meadow necklace with detachable pendant - The necklace was woven with two strands of beading wire threading alternate loops of pearl/glass bead/pearl with seed bead/metal bead/ seed bead. Reducing the outer loop to two pearls while working round the necklace and then taking the two threads through the seed beads and metal beads to finish. The flower pendant is made by weaving the beading thread through the flower beads, then three seed beads and threading back through the seed beads, working the petals into a ball shaped flower.
Cuff bracelet - The chain was cut into five equal lengths. A lattice was made using a large jump ring with a seed bead to join the chain pieces. The lattice was opened up by spacer bars, created using the eye pins and pearls.
Two strand spring bracelet - Cut two pieces of wire and join using a necklace end. On both strands thread a pink pearl and a seed bead. On one strand thread a spring, seed bead, spring, seed bead, spring. Repeat on other side. Join and thread on both strands a seed bead, glass bead, seed bead. Repeat (alternating between pearls and glass beads). Finishing by joining the two strands using a necklace end and attach a clasp.
Lucite flower necklace - Join three 12mm jump rings together using three medium size jump rings at each join. Make three different colour combinations of flower and leaf dangles. Thread each group of three flowers and leaves onto a small jump ring and then thread through a set of medium jump rings and close. Thread onto a chain with a lobster clasp at the back.