What a Beadmaker Wears

Over the years, I've made a name for myself - in the bead world, at least - as one who makes flower beads. I do other things too, but the flowers are what I'm known for. I like making them. And I stopped trying to stick to "real" flowers long ago, realizing that any flower I think I invent already exists out there somewhere, so matter what colors or how crazy looking. But as much as I like making the flower beads, they aren't what I tend to wear.

I wear my own beads all the time, but usually not the ones I put out there for the world. I prefer to wear simple strands that celebrate light and color. One great bead is a wonderful thing, but I prefer to wear a necklace that's more a sum of the parts. I also have and wear a lot of silver jewelry. Plain silver makes my heart sing. I wish I was a silver smith. I've tried, but I didn't love the process, so I leave that to others. The silver is great with any of my beads, whether they're simple or extravagant, and it doesn't make me look all matchy-matchy. I do not like tidy little sets of jewelry. I like to mix it up.

This is my favorite necklace of the moment. It's been my favorite for over a year. It goes with almost anything, in a chameleon-like way. The colors are what I call "desert canyon" colors, which is a soft blend of greens, blues, browns, pinks, and purples. It says "southwest" to me every bit as much as turquoise and silver do, but in a quieter way. The beads are made one at a time, like everything I do, and then cleaned one at a time, which is the not-so-fun part. After that, they're sorted and strung on wide, soft silk ribbon, with a simple sliding bead closure that gives me adjustable lengths. It's strong and supple and smooth. And something I didn't think of a year or so ago when I made it, it's completely yank-able, which is an important feature with my grandson Jacob in our lives now.

You know how I feel about custom orders... something like, Run away! Run away! But when a friend asked me to make something simple and earthy for his daughter for Christmas, I immediately thought of my necklace. And thoughts being what they are, one leading to the next, it wasn't long before I thought if I like this kind of necklace, and someone else is asking for one, than maybe a few others would like this sort of thing too. I do realize that not everyone loves flower beads.

So I made three necklaces last week, that will appear in my BeadShop today. I added some silver beads to the mix, because I had them on hand. Wear a simple pair of silver hoops with one of these, and you're practically perfect. (Excuse the excessive use of my own face here today - I was the only model I had yesterday, and my hair was in a fairly good mood...) And, if the question is, can you wear more than one of these at a time, well of course you can, dear. Take it from this old granny.


  1. "What a beadmaker wears..." I thought you were going to talk about wardrobe. LOL! I'm getting ready to do a post about the clothing that an independent craftsperson wears.

    Love the new necklaces - they're absolutely stunning.

  2. This is why I love my Grateful bracelet so much!! I wear it ALL the time, it goes with everything and I just adore it, simple and gorgeous....I am a metalsmith and have worn the same 15 silver bracelets on my left arm for over 20 yrs. I don't take them off, ever....yes it did create a huge drama the last time I flew(2009)and so I won't be flying again any time soon(I don't mind taking the bus)Hope I don't ever need surgery!! hahaha
    Gonna have to save up for a while so I can buy a necklace to go with my bracelet...
    I too create pieces that I personally wouldn't wear, but someone will...
    By the way, you are beautiful!!!

  3. Haha Zoe! My clothes are really nothing to talk about. It's all in the accessories!

    Sharon - I used to wear an arm full of silver bangles. My daughter called me Jingle-Mommy when she was little, and she liked always knowing where I was. And... I do sometimes trade beads for silver... :o)


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