Tag Archive | White

Moonglow in the Palm of Your Hand

chakra-2aA couple weeks ago, as I was researching for some new projects, I stumbled upon the prettiest cabochons I ever saw:  LunaSoft.

These cabochons have such a beautifully soft and glowing presence about them, they mesmerized me.  When they arrived in my bead shop, one or more of each available color, it was “ooooo” and “ahhhh” non-stop.   It’s one thing to see them in a photograph, and quite another to see them live.

The colors are rich.  The glow is soft.  The backs are metal coated.  The faces feel like they are lightly coated with rubber, or something like it.  The biggest question I had was, “How are they to work with?”

“Wow!” is my answer.

I choose to design a peyote bezel for a pendant using Japanese seed beads and SuperDuo beads, worked around a copper-hued LunaSoft cabochon.  Working the bezel around the cabochon proved to be remarkably pleasant.  I would even go so far to say that the coating seemed to hold the bezel well while stitching.   The way the cabochon seemed to change its glow was amusing.  Depending on how the light hit it, it looked solid, it seemed to glow, or it flashed a rich coppery hue with depth.  I have several more tutorials in the works using LunaSoft cabochons.

Other LunaSoft colors range from reds, to blues, to greens, to oranges, to white and black, and more. At the moment, we have several colors of the round 23mm ones in our bead shop.  I plan to order more in different sizes and shapes to stock in October.  In the meantime, see what’s available now:  CLICK HERE to see more.

If you like something a little different and something fun to work with, I recommend the LunaSoft cabochons, hands down.

If you’d like to learn more about my tutorial, CLICK HERE.

Add some moon glow to your repertoire!

©Susan Marie Molloy, Miss Poppy’s Boutique, and all works within.

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Ruffled Wreaths

RuffledEarrings3aThough it’s still the sweltering dogs days of August, my thoughts have been floating over green pine needles and fresh red cranberries like white snowflakes on a calm winter morning.  I like the combination of pine needles, fresh cranberries, and soft flurries; they evoke winter warmth and hospitality to me.   Besides, thoughts of cooler weather do help during this summer heat.

Some leftover lava red rizo and minty green SuperDuo beads were sitting on my studio worktable in a jumbled pile.  I had some creamy white rulla beads, too, so I added them to the pile.  Beautiful!  The colors melded and played off each other so well, that a new tutorial was in the works.

Developing this new tutorial took a few attempts.  However, how I envisioned the final product was different as to how it came out – ruffled, rather than flat.

It wasn’t a mistake – it was meant to be!  The beads seem to burst like little fireworks, or the hodge-podge orderliness of a cluster of snowflakes.  They are like ruffled wreaths.

My new tutorial is now available in my Etsy shop, Miss Poppy’s  Boutique; cliek HERE for more information.

©Designs by Susan Marie Molloy, Miss Poppy’s Boutique, and all works within.

Dressing Up Your Table with Embroidery

Though I normally have been teaching beading over the past few months, I offered a beginner class on thread embroidery. My students only had to bring their choice of plain cotton napkins, embroidery threads and needles, and I provided the hot iron transfers, iron, and ironing board.

So last week, I hosted this small class to teach a few embroidery basics. My students learned the satin, lazy daisy, and outline stitches, and best of all, we had fun, with childhood stories of attempting embroidery, but not continuing this craft – until now.

We used Aunt Martha’s hot iron transfers, specifically “Assorted Alphabets” #9240 and “New Monograms” #3739.

We took plain cotton napkins and hot ironed the transfers onto the edges of the napkins. Each student placed her monogram and/or flower design where she most creatively thought best.

Following are my finished projects in sets of two. I chose red cotton napkins made in India. I was pleased with my outcomes, though the napkins’ weave wasn’t as even as I liked. It made some of my embroidery stitches a little uneven. Future projects in this vein will be high quality cotton weave or linen.

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I plan on hosting more thread embroidery classes to teach other and more complicated stitches.
©Susan Marie Molloy, Designs by Susan Marie Molloy, Miss Poppy’s Boutique, and all works within.

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

The Importance of Hand Wrapping Your Beads

The Importance of Hand Wrapping Your Beads

By Susan Marie Molloy at Miss Poppy’s Boutique

Many moons ago, when I was just barely venturing into the world of beads, I tried my hand at using wire headpins to connect my beads. It was clumsy, at best, and definitely sloppy work at first. Bending too much or too little, and bending inconsistently gave my work an amateurish look. I even gave up the whole idea of being able to make a circular loop that didn’t turn out oval and went into the easy world of elastic bracelets. Looping and wrapping beads seemed to elude me.

Then something magnificent happened. Gene, from Gene’s Joint, saw that I was struggling with wire wrapping. He offered to take the time to show me exactly how to bend the wire just so and loop the wire around the headpin to make perfectly formed and esthetically pleasing wraps. His patience put up with my continued frustration until one day, I got it – I made professional level wrapped beads!

Indeed, just like everything else, practice is key. It took a lot of beads and wire to get my style down pat – and if it wasn’t for Gene, I might still be making cheesy-looking single loops without the wrapping.

Creativity does not operate within a vacuum. Indeed, the artist pulls whatever he can from the world around him, uses the knowledge and talents from others, and hopefully creates something unique from his own mind and hands.

One of my most fun creations is a pink, red, and white beaded charm bracelet. I took more than one hundred beads in various media (cat’s eye, crystal, vintage glass pearls, glass, crystal, lamp work, Murano glass) and hand wrapped each cluster with gold wire. As you can see in the photograph, hand wrapping gives a clean, finished look. Moreover, hand wrapping keeps the beads securely in place.  Gene even specifically created the hook you see on the bracelet.

I invite you to click on the photograph to learn more about this lovely piece, and to look around my shop for the newest items I listed.

Valentine Pink Bracelet

To see what Gene creates in his studio, visit https://www.etsy.com/shop/GenesJoint

© Susan Marie Molloy, Miss Poppy’s Boutique and all works within.