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Winding Down 2017 and Looking Forward to 2018

It’s been a busy year at Miss Poppy’s Boutique. I haven’t had such a busy year since I opened in 2013, so it’s true that perseverance pays off.

Two of my biggest sellers this year were my handcrafted metal bookmarks and rosaries. There are some left, and since I’m running a 30% off sale (with free shipping) until December 31st, now is a good time to pick up Grab Bag and Christmas gifts. My offer applies to everything, except my tutorials (patterns), which are $4 and under.

My most popular tutorial remains Noelle Christmas Ornament Cover. It’s a steady seller during the year, but from October through February, it sells like gangbusters.

Lately, I’ve been devoting much of my free time working at Poppy and Gene’s Beadery, helping with taking new photographs of beads and supplies and writing fleshed-out product descriptions. A lot of research is involved, from bead hole sizes, how certain beads are manufactured, giving ideas on how to use the beads (particularly in bead weaving), and the like.

What is in store for 2018? Well, I’m working on new tutorials, using some of the new Czech glass beads on the market. I’ll be teaching. And I’m going to make it a point to keep up this blog, at least on a weekly schedule. I’ve been lax in writing this blog, mostly because of the busyness of a long-distance move. No excuses now!

Thank you for a great 2017, and I look forward to 2018 with you.

Happy Beading!

~Susan

©Miss Poppy’s Boutique

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Spring Flowers Bookmark

BookmarkSpringFling2Earlier this year, I won the bead jar raffle at our Bead Society meeting.  At every meeting, members donate a nice bead or two, or some beading supplies, which all go into a huge jar and is raffled off at the start of the new year.  That’s a full year of supplies for a bead addict’s delight!

As I wrote in “Bead Jar Bonanza,” I won that jar this year.  And what I decided to do was make some things from its contents and donate them each month for our Society’s raffle.

For the month of March, I donated my Spring Flowers Bookmark.  I took a metal bookmark, some glass faceted roundels, glass pearls, and Lucite flowers from the bead jar.  I added a singular diminutive clay butterfly bead from my own supply, and the final project is this sweet springtime bookmark.  Each bead was hand wire wrapped on a length of chain.  It’s surprisingly lightweight and is balanced well, too.

The member who won this was thrilled!

I am already working on another creation that I’ll donate at next month’s meeting.  Stay tuned.

©Susan Marie Molloy, Designs by Susan Marie Molloy, Miss Poppy’s Boutique

Up the Beading Road

My beading fascination and business took another exciting turn this past couple of weeks. I am now learning new skills and techniques with beading with threads.

My first project was a simple back-and-forth sewing technique. I used fishing line, cat’s eye beads, and faceted Czech glass beads. I finished it off with a simple silver toggle clasp.

The project went well, and I was finished in an evening.   I wore the bracelet for a few days and decided that fishing line made the bracelet a little too stiff for my liking. I wound up making a similar bracelet for a friend, but this time I used Fireline thread. What a difference! The bracelet was more flexible, lighter, and felt alive. Now I will take apart my bracelet and redo it with Fireline thread.

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This past weekend, I attended a regular beading class. The project for that morning was the Darby Bracelet (pattern created by Deborah Roberti). It featured a ladder stitch, which I wanted to learn.

After having a slow start to the first portion of the pattern and two tear-outs, I was getting the hang of it. I broke a needle in class, and that does happen from time to time.  I took my unfinished bracelet home, and I was finished that evening. I finished the bracelet at home, and by the time I was more than halfway done, I gained confidence and speed with each stitch. It got to a point where I didn’t have to rely one hundred per cent on reading the pattern. In fact, I only heavily referred to it when I added the clasp.

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It turned out well, though I made it about one section too much for my wrist. It won’t fall off, but it could be a little bit smaller. My next Darby Bracelet will take care of that.

I find that threading beads is a nice change from wire beading. I plan on creating a few new pieces for my Etsy shop, Miss Poppy’s Boutique. I believe this new beading technique will be a nice addition to what I offer for my customers.

My finished bracelet.

My finished bracelet.

Happy Beading,

Susan Marie Molloy

For Book Readers

When I read books, I like to have something a little more special to mark my page than a ragged-edge piece of scrap paper, and I think you do, too.

One day I decided that I would make a beaded metal bookmark for myself. It turned out so well that I started making some to sell.

They are a popular item. For starters, I use high quality 14K gold plate and sterling silver plate markers. That’s the simple part. It’s choosing the right combination of beads that sometimes presents a challenge, because I want each bookmark to be as individual and unique as the readers who use them. Therefore, I only use high quality glass, porcelain, crystal, and gemstones, including unusual vintage beads.

Once I decide upon material and color, I painstakingly place the beads in pleasing combinations. Once that’s done, I hand wrap each bead cluster before adding them to the metal bookmark. I like many beads to make the bookmark sparkle and throw off great colors!
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When you visit my shop (CLICK this LINK to Miss Poppy’s Boutique), you will see a couple that are for sale. I do take custom orders, so I invite you to contact me to discuss the possibilities! (Click on any of these three photographs to learn more about the product details.)

I look forward to doing business with you,

~Susan
Owner and Designer at Miss Poppy’s Boutique
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Bookmark Mardis Gras