Saturday, April 18, 2020


Hello hello! Welcome to the 6th Annual Bead Peeps Swap N Hop! I'm Linda - I'm your hostess - so great to have you here!

This year, my partner was the amazing Nadine Edris. We had such a fun time getting to know each other a bit. She loves earthy tones in her jewelry. I love her sense of style and balance in her pieces. Her page is here:  (You can see what she made on this page - with what I sent her)  I REALLY wanted to challenge her to step outta her earthy box....and boy did I ever send her something she'd NEVER used before...icy blues and whites.  Can't WAIT to see her pieces! =)

On to my goodies!  I received a load of GORGEOUS pieces - all with a beach theme.  Now, if you know me - you know my OBSESSION with the beach.  I just LOVE it!  I've been to both oceans, the Gulf, and beaches in Jamaica and Puerto Rico.  I LOVE the beach!  So, this was a fuuuun project to work on.  Nadine included a sweet little bronze charm that she made and it was kinda the jumping off point for me.


If you follow my work, you know that I tend to work in coppers and silvers - but this year for some crazy reason I'm ALL about GOLD!  Yellow gold - white gold - rose gold - all of it!  So, these pieces are my first ever - GOLD pieces.  Crazy, right?  So, I wanted to make the charm a focal, so put it on some GERJUS new paperclip chain but it wasn't quite I pulled out the Mother of Pearl (MOP) pieces she'd sent and found some of the same colored chips in my stash.  I REALLY wanted to pull in some pink to the piece...because of the next piece - you'll see why.  SO, instead of using a traditional spacer (gold) I used hot pink seed beads.  I love that they pull out the pink in the MOP beads, add some pop of color in an otherwise neutral palette, and they won't tarnish. 😇😇 I love how this one turned out.  It's so cute and I loooove the gold chain bc it reflects light, almost making it sparkle.  It's finished with a 2 strand toggle clasp.

Click on any photo to make it larger

One to my "mack- daddy" piece.  This one... this took some planning and strategy.  I found this INCREDIBLE focal by Molly Cooley. I mean - LOOK AT THIS THING!!  It's 2 sided and has a small ray of rasperberry dichro adding that simmer that the sun and clouds will produce.  I just KNEW this was my focal!  Thankfully, no one outbid me.  ;)  So, I got to thinking that this piece would be an AWESOME color block piece. I again when with the gold accents, so it would coordinate with the other piece.  I, also, found in my stash these AHMAZING gold daisy spacers.  I didn't want the whole thing in those spacers - I wanted to use those as a feature, if you will.

I started with pink and gold fumed Czech glass, moved up to a lighter 1/2 pink and 1/2 crystal bead (to reflect the changing of the colors in the bead) and moved to white sea glass to represent the change of colors.  Then I brought out the teals.  OH MY GOSH the TEAL!  I used some of the teal beads Nadine sent, which I LOOOVE (I need some more of those!), and found some INCREDIBLE *matching* Amazonite in my stash (notice the daisies?)!  They are Dakota Stones star cuts - aren't they just *luscious*!?!  Finally, another white and I added the topaz and brown Czech beads Nadine sent, to finish it off, just like the pendant. I had a dilemma - if I make it short... you won't see the teal.  If I make it long...what if I want it shorter?  Solution: A nearly 1 foot long of more paperclip chain with a heart lobster clasp.  I also added dangles of turquoise magnesite starfish, my CLASSIC BLUE 8mm bicone and another pink gold fumed Czech bead.  Y'all - I'm in LOVE with this set.  As you can see below - I can wear the mack-daddy WITH the other necklace or without...and I'm perfectly content with that.

Check out what my other friends made!
2020 Swap N Hop
Non-Seed Partners

Seed Beaders

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Sunday, April 7, 2019

2019 Swap N Hop Reveals!!

Well well well,
Another year, another Swap.  I canNOT believe it's been *5* years!  I need to thank each and every person who is READING and who has participated over the years.  It's been SUCH an incredible opportunity to get to know new people, learn about jewelry, learn about another person, learn about  myself and more than ANYTHING - growing my skillz.  What an adventure!

Now, to my partner!  I had the wild and fabulous Jeanne Parker!  She's from PA and in her past life, she had a family farm.  Since they sold the farm, she takes care of a fellow who is blind and autistic.  She also looooves spending time with her granddaughter.  She has an INCREDIBLE artistic eye!  She has painted, illustrated, done some advertising and now even etches her own components.  (holy jealous, batman!)

For her goodies, I was putting some things away and I found the PERFECT focal!  It was from Grubbi Ceramics and featured a painting of rolling hills, and a farm.  =)  I thought it'd be a great fit!
So, that's what I sent.

Now....what I received?!  Holy MOSES!  I was SOOOOOO spoiled!  Jeanne sent me all KINDS of things!  I will say that I had a hard time finding a theme.... so I pulled a few pieces out and made them work. =)

Click to enlarge
Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

My first project was a bracelet.  Again, I'd found the focal while putting some things away. (LOL!  I put stuff away alot, I guess?!)  But I just LOVE this focal and a few of the pieces Jeanne sent, seemed to match the colors.  The accent beads on the focal were from Jeanne, as well as the clasp.  I had some of the Beadalon artsy wire (I found it chips somewhat easily... so some of the copper shows through) and ended up making the chain.  It seemed to be a perfect match!  So, this was a real stretch for me.  I've made chain with beads before...but never from just wire.  I like it, alot!  So, I may end up doing that more often.

My second project is my piece de resistance.  I fell in LOVE with the flower bead that Jeanne sent.  My problem was that it wasn't really big enough to be a focal, by itself.  SO, I started with the focal and tried to build it up a bit by making the headpin with the big loop, adding a dragonfly from Jeanne and some crystals.  Then it was a challenge to figure out what to do with the focal to really make it shine.  After going through this and that... I found a bag of lucite flowers I'd bought a few months ago...and that's when the project really took off.  From there, I pulled out a Vintaj connector and since it was the wrong color - I painted it.  In addition, I wanted the piece to be a little.... whimsical?  What's more whimsical than white pearl leather, with pastel paints hand applied?  =)

Andy's Garden (
I LOVE it!  I really, REALLY do!  I love the colors, I love how the paint brought everything together AND that I won't be allergic to this piece! ;)

 But really - this piece reminds me of my Grandmother and my Dad.  My Grandma always had a big, beautiful garden.  I remember going out and picking fruits and veggies from there and sneaking cherry tomatoes (because No Grandma..there weren't any out there!).  She grew state fair winning flowers!  My Dad also has an INCREDIBLY green thumb.  He grows gladiolas - usually around 700 bulbs.  He's sold them locally and does it because he loves them.

So, this piece is going to be called "Andy's Garden".

Here you can see the details of the filigree I painted.   I, also, added some light paints to the metallic pearl leather.  The paint ties everyone together, so nicely....AND it's a personal one-of-a-kind finish.  (and SUPER easy to do!) The little rhinestoney part is actually a pearl enhancer... I'm using it as a clasp, here.  (Thanks, Diane Whiting!)

You can see the paint on the leather here (Click to enlarge)

I decided at the last minute to make a pair of earrings, as well.  This is what I came up with....

Yep - just 1.  The other is currently on the other side of the bead room.  ROTFL (No really... ) I'll finish it tomorrow.  The ear wire and bead came from Jeanne, too.  Once I finish the other, they'll go delightfully with both the bracelet AND Andy's Garden!  Hooray!

THANK YOU, Jeanne!  I had SUCH a great time and I'm thankful to have had YOU for my partner!

AND THANK YOU to everyone who played along this year!  I can't WAIT to see what y'all made!  Here's a list of all the friends who played along!

Hostess: Linda Anderson you are HERE!
Non-Seed Beaders

Linda Anderson you are HERE!
Hope Smitherman

Seed Beaders

To be sure you don’t miss out on any of my crazy adventures, you can sign up to follow my blog by email or news servers using the links in the right column of my page. You can also follow me on Instagram or Facebook get updates about blog posts, my latest jewelry designs, show schedule, and other happenings!

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

2019 Swap N Hop Intro post - #5!!!!!

Well friends - here we are again - time for another intro for another partner for the Swap N Hop. It's like the 1st day of school for me - filled with so much excitement, wonder as to what I'll send and receive, what we'll end up making....just an EXCITING time of the year for me. 

You can see my IG feed here: 

I find myself posting my newest pieces on Instagram, as I'm working to build my following there and hopefully open up some new business opportunities. 

FINALLY!  I have a prettied up Brand, new biz cards, new sign, new earring cards...the hole bit!  I've enjoyed revamping my brand to make it more....elegant.  I'm hoping to step up my game this year, by introducing a higher end line, as well as my regular stuffs.  I'm hoping to reach a little higher price point, customer.  So - we'll see how that goes.  It's gonna be a risk...but hopefully one that will pay off!  

1. Why or how did you get started in making jewelry?

I got into jewelry by way of a craft show.  I purchased a beautiful necklace for a family member for $38.  The next week, I saw the same vendor at another show and mentioned that I had purchased a similar piece the week before.  Her response was that they "got some more in".  I thought "I thought you made it"?  A few days later, while at a big box store, I see the same pendant for $4.99.

I went home and found a "how to make jewelry class" that night.  As they say...the rest is history =)  ------> that's my first piece ever 

2. What style(s) of jewelry do you like to make?

It's really important to me that pieces are versatile, so that you can wear it with many outfits vs just 1 piece in your wardrobe.  I love color and I'm trying to start incorporating other materials in to my typical type pieces.  For example: Using fish leather in the necklace on the right.   

3. What materials do you prefer to use (and which ones do you avoid)? 
Typically, I'll use anything from handcrafted lampwork beads, to Swarovski pearls and crystal, to bits and bobs of fabric, to beads purchased at big box stores, beads from tradeshows and anything else I find interesting.  I like things that are unique - be it in color, style, size, shape, sparkle...something interesting.  AND I'm kinda obsessed with handmade beads, right now.  I've also been playing with Patina paints and loving! =)  

Generally, I avoid seed beads and anything that generally just doesn't appeal to me (seriously, no aventurine).

4. Which techniques do you prefer (and are there any that you don't like)?
I like to make many styles of jewelry.  I consider myself a stringer, first and foremost.  I've done pearl knotting, kumihimo, wire crochet, play with resin, some painting and some basic wire work.   

I don't do bead weaving of any sort or anything involving heat.  So, no soldering, lampworking or anything like that....I sure love the pieces - just don't make them. 



5. What colors do you use most, and which do you run screaming from?

 love working with color.  When making a piece versatile, having more colors involved tends to make something easier to wear with many things.  I typically lean to silvers and coppers for metals.  I'd also say that anything with rainbow colors is VERY difficult for me to pass up. ;)  

I've realized that making pieces with 1 color are REALLY tough for me.  Someone suggested I make a black necklace.  I didn't (and still don't know) where to start.  I want to add color! Can't win 'em, all right?

Some other random trivia: 
- I'm a Christian and hope that my light shines bright  each day
- I'm a night owl - that's when I feel the most creative
- I've been in 3 different magazines with 4 published pieces
- I get to babysit 2 of my favorite little people from time to time - they're the BEST!
- I love cherries -  not the flavor - but the shape.  (my biz name is cherryontopdesign) =)
- My favorite shirts are either a deep royal blue or a teal green
- I prefer white chocolate over milk and DEF over dark
- I love to cook and bake - I don't like to clean up the mess ;)
- I'm a pretty decent photographer
- I love PJs and fun socks - I wear them most of the day....every day.
- I've had major health issues for over 15 years
- I'm often the 1%...99% of people have no issues.... I'm the 1% who does =) 
- I love to laugh.....alot.
- I LOVE board games
- I love to plan an awesome party!


To be sure you don’t miss out on any of my crazy adventures, you can sign up to follow my blog by email or news servers using the links in the right column of my page. You can also follow me on Instagram or Facebook get updates about blog posts, my latest jewelry designs, show schedule, and other happenings!