Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Magnet Clasps - Where to buy them cheaply



I'm often asked where I buy my magnet clasps. I had a really good Chinese source for them a while back but that eBay shop no longer has them. I've since found another shop on eBay that has nice ones and I've ordered them from best-love-u365 quite a few times. Their shipping is free and relatively fast compared to other Chinese shops I've bought from.

The Chinese magnets may not be as strong and reliable as more expensive clasps that you can buy elsewhere, but the price from China can't be beat and they suit my budget perfectly. Because they're so inexpensive, I expect some imperfections. I sometimes have to re-glue some of the magnets over time. Since I have no experience with expensive magnet clasps, I can't say if this is more of a problem with the cheap ones from China or just the way that they all are. The problem seems to be that they don't always put enough glue on the magnets to keep them from failing. My husband re-glues them for me and he says that the bond is permanent when he's done with them.

I'm updating this post because all of the other links that I had in my previous were dead except for the one I mentioned above. I did a search on eBay and found several others that have the same kinds of clasps that I've been buying. Note that I have never purchased anything from any of these shops except for best-love-u365.

While doing my search, I noticed that several of these shops, including best-love-u365, are now selling a new style of clasps that I'd like to try. They're pretty and I'm hoping that they will be as nice as the "striped" ones that I usually buy. I'll try to remember to post back once I've tried them. This is what the new kind looks like:



Although several shops have these, only three on the list have them in bronze. They are century-jewelry, changchul-0 and jewelry1995-1. jewelry1995-1 doesn't have a photo of the bronze ones, but they are listed and show that they're in stock. On Sunday morning I ordered some from changchul-0 in bronze, copper and dark silver. They shipped them that night. We'll see how long they take to get here. I've had packages from China arrive in less than two weeks and others that took several weeks to get here. I did get a tracking number with the order but not all Chinese shops on eBay provide one.


SOURCES FOR MAGNETIC CLASPS

best-love-u365

better-us818

lhk3902

fc19851233

mybead88

century-jewelry

Crafts-Wholesale

changchul-0

jewelry1995-1



Monday, January 16, 2017

3D Peyote Triangle Earring with a border


  • 15/0 seed beads Miyuki "Light Bronze" (457L)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Metallic Light Bronze" (DB22L)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Matte Blue Grey" (DB301)

I showed you a pair of these earrings in the same colorway the other day HERE. I wanted to try an idea that I'd seen on Pinterest where someone had added a border around the edge of some similar triangle earrings. Theirs actually had an inner and outer border but I thought I'd keep it simple until I figured out how to do it. Below you can see today's earring next to one of my first triangle earrings which doesn't have a border. I'm not sure which version I prefer. I think it might depend on the main color of the earring whether I want a plainer earring or not. In any case, I'm still experimenting to figure out which rows to add the border to. In this sample, I added a row of bronze beads to the last row on the front of the earring and also in the last row of the back.

You can watch Kelly's YouTube tutorial HERE.

I've been busy making a lot of "Russian Leaf" and "Peyote Triangle" earrings but it might be a while before I can take photos of any of them and blog about them. As of this morning, they're saying that we won't see the sun until Friday. I will keep my camera ready though just in case the sun comes out for a few minutes.


 

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Bracelet of the Day: Lucy - Gold & Purple


LUCY BRACELET
  • 11/0 seed beads Toho "Antique Bronze" (223)
  • 8/0 seed beads Toho "Antique Bronze" (223)
  • Smooth SuperDuo beads "Matte Golden Olive"
  • 8mm 2-hole Candy beads "Matte Golden Olive"
  • 4mm druks "Milky Alexandrite Moon Dust"

This is the last "Lucy Bracelet" made with Candy beads and smooth SuperDuos. Read my previous posts for information about places to find these Candy and smooth SuperDuo beads.


You can download the free "Lucy Bracelet" pattern from THIS post.



 

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Bracelet of the Day: Lucy - Ivory & Gold


LUCY BRACELET
  • 11/0 seed beads Miyuki "Light Bronze" (457L)
  • 8/0 seed beads Miyuki "Light Bronze" (457L)
  • Smooth SuperDuo beads "Ivory"
  • 8mm 2-hole Candy beads "Matte Gold aka Metallic Flax"
  • 4mm Czech pearls "Gold"

This is the third "Lucy" made with Candy beads and smooth SuperDuos. I've got one more to post tomorrow. 



You can download the free "Lucy Bracelet" pattern from THIS post.



 

Friday, January 13, 2017

Bracelet of the Day: Lucy - Dark Green


LUCY BRACELET
  • 11/0 seed beads Miyuki "Dark Bronze" (457)
  • 8/0 seed beads Miyuki "Dark Bronze" (457)
  • Smooth SuperDuo beads "Patina"
  • 8mm 2-hole Candy beads "Red Luster Matte"
  • 4mm druks "Bronze Antique"

Here is another "Lucy" with 8mm Candy beads and smooth SuperDuos. I have two more colorways that I will blog about tomorrow and on Sunday.


You can download the free "Lucy Bracelet" pattern from THIS post. You can buy Candy beads and smooth SuperDuos at Supply Emporium and Red Panda.



 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Russian Leaf Earrings - Matte Blue Grey

RUSSIAN LEAF EARRINGS
  • 15/0 seed beads Miyuki "Metallic Chocolate" (461)
  • 8/0 seed beads Miyuki "Metallic Chocolate" (461)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Metallic Dark Copper Gold Luster" (DB1002)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Matte Blue Grey" (DB301)

As I mentioned in my post on Monday, HERE, I learned to make these by watching Jill Wiseman's YouTube video tutorial which you can watch HERE. Jill also has a free PDF tutorial that goes along with the video that you can download HERE. Although I did show you a sample of this colorway on Monday, this is the first complete pair that I've made. I made them with seven rows which makes the smallest size earrings. As I mentioned before, the smaller you make them, the better they hold their shape.


EARRING TIP

Here is a tip for making the earrings a little stiffer and it also helps to give them more of a 3-dimensional shape. After completing an earring, I weave around the inside and outside perimeter going as close as I can to the edge (but not through the accent beads). As I'm running my thread through the beads, I keep gently tugging on my thread to pull the beads closer together like a drawstring. If you try it, you'll see that doing this also pulls the earring into that pretty mounded shape. Don't pull too hard though or you'll warp the earring. If your earrings are super soft, go around twice. Using this technique, I was even able to firm up the larger sample earring below. It's still a little soft, but you should have seen how it looked before I did this. It was originally so soft that I could have folded it up.



  • 15/0 seed beads Miyuki "Light Bronze" (457L)
  • 8/0 seed beads Miyuki "Light Bronze" (457L)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Metallic Light Bronze" (DB22L)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Opaque Antique Rose aka Opaque Wine" (DB1376)

I made a sample of a nine-row earring as directed by Jill's tutorial so that you can see all three sizes next to each other. Note the difference in the size of the center holes. The bottom part of all three earrings is the same size. Only the top changes when you make fewer rows.


  • 15/0 seed beads Miyuki "Dark Bronze" (457)
  • 8/0 seed beads Miyuki "Dark Bronze" (457)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Metallic Bronze" (DB22)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Opaque Antique Rose aka Opaque Wine" (DB1376)
  • 11/0 Miyuki Delica beads "Opaque Mulberry aka Opaque Dyed Dark Purple" (DB662)

I've finally worked out how to embellish the earrings with contrasting beads. Once you know how to add the "V" shaped outline, it's pretty easy to fill the bottom point with another color as you see in the photo above. When I have some time, I will type up the instructions for adding the accent "V" and will post it here.

While taking apart my samples, I noticed something interesting that I wanted to show you. The differences between the three earring sizes isn't all that apparent when you're looking at the finished earrings. However, take a look at the photo below and you can start to see why the shape changes so much each time you omit a row. The original size earring on the far left has all straight rows without any curves. The other two examples show that as you omit rows, the shape starts to curve on the sides. Oddly enough, when I reduced it to seven rows,  the top of the earring starts to spread open wider again. The medium size sample is actually the most curvy of the three.


You can buy Delica beads at Red Panda, Aura Crystals and Supply Emporium on Etsy.

 

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

A New Look for Lucy

 
LUCY BRACELET
  • 11/0 seed beads Miyuki "Dark Bronze" (457)
  • 8/0 seed beads Miyuki "Dark Bronze" (457)
  • Smooth SuperDuo beads "Picasso Collage Mix"
  • 8mm 2-hole Candy beads "White Travertine"
  • 4mm druks "Opaque White Picasso"

Claire from Supply Emporium on Etsy sent me a surprise goody package last week. Two of the things in the package were these Candy beads and these colorful smooth SuperDuos. The SuperDuo color mix actually contains some beads that are the same color as the Candy beads but I decided not to use of those in this bracelet. However, they gave me the idea to combine the Candy beads and SuperDuos. I had a feeling that the "Lucy Bracelet" pattern might work with these beads and I'm so glad that I was right! It's still good old Lucy but with a fresh new look.


You can download the free "Lucy Bracelet" pattern from THIS post. You can find the Candy beads at Supply Emporium HERE and the smooth SuperDuo mix, HERE. Claire doesn't have these druks in stock but I found some at Red Panda, HERE. Claire does have a few more colors of the smooth SuperDuos. To find them, do a search in her shop for "smooth outline superduo". Red Panda has them HERE.