Aug 29, 2012

Bead Table Wednesday: Rosaries, Ireland, & Facebook Shopping Finds

It's Bead Table Wednesday, and here is a look at what's on my bead table this week: rosaries and green beads (with some really cool green wire for an ombre viking knit I so hope to complete before the due date Saturday!) galore in honor of Ireland.

Preparing for Two Blog Hops

First on my bead table are rosaries. Margareta Saari of Mags-koru (my BSBP6 partner from Jyväskylä, Finland) and I are hosting a Blue Moon Rosary Challenge on August 31. Two more artists have joined us, and everyone but me has experience creating exquisite rosaries. This will be my first handcrafted rosary ever, and I'm excited. On my bead table are the rosary beads Margareta sent me: beautiful mystic topaz beads and blue quartz beads. Doesn't the soft blue remind you of the Heavenly blue of the Madonna's gown? 

 I decided to make a cross for my rosary, and it's been a big learning experience. I'm creating a cross by Iza Malcyk of Warsaw, Poland, and my wire weaving just wasn't what I envisioned. Much like crochet or sewing, I wanted uniform, lovely weaves, but couldn't get them right. Expert artist Perri Jackson of Shaktipaj Designs appeared like the coolest angel on earth with her amazing tutorial, "Wire Weaving Basics" -- she has graciously taught me the techniques I was longing to understand. Even if you have some experience, I recommend reading her basics. I also found a tutorial of the 3 main weaves (under-over and more ;) from Instructables. I'm making another cross, but here is my first attempt at the Iza Malcyk cross, missed "stitches" and all:

 I'm also participating in the Challenge of Travel blog hop on  Saturday, September 1st, and my bead table is covered in every shade of green beads, including Connemara marble, just like Ireland. I like the color green! I'm trying two new tutorials for my Irish jewelry: a Celtic cage and an ombre form of Viking knit. Going green is lots of fun.

Now, my big adventure: Facebook Shopping!
Last week I shopped Facebook and to my delight, not only found rare and special beads, but did so at bargain prices for top quality and beautiful products while supporting artists. Shopping Facebook was a treat in Indie shopping: I'm glad I gave it a try!

My first try at Facebook shopping was a beautiful experience of unique drusy quartz shopping! I received many incredible drusy stones, including a star cut drusy and drusy moons, my dreams. Here the two beautiful crescent moons the shop keeper, friend Julez Jewelz  held just for me, remembering I'd asked her about celestial shaped drusy in the spring. Now that is customer service! Here, I've added them to my round drusy that is the same beautiful navy blue (much richer blue in person). They make a gorgeous triple "Blue Moon" symbol, don't they? Julez Jewelz is a rock star!

 In addition to shopping Julez' page, I also shopped with "Cooper Rocks" on Facebook for her infamous copper splashes. Although I wish I had a command over fire, I don't, and so I leave painting with fire to artists aligned with the torch. I'm in awe of them, and it's easy to see why: check out the array of colorful copper splashes! 

I also shopped a Facebook friend-of-a-friend's de-stash sale! Syke of "Creative Chaos" shared the super sale at "Yours, Mine & Ours" -- and man oh man was it awesome! I received two huge bags of great bead motifs: wings (shown above with my cross) and the totally cool Aztec beads I've been wanting for ages. I'm simply shocked by the amount of beautiful beads I received, and very grateful! Thank you, Skye and Debbie :)

I was also inspired by Margareta's gem collection, and purchased my first ever Turritella agate focal from "Apostles Gemstone" on Facebook. The shop not only had rare green Czech dagger beads and the coolest  Slovakian pumpkin beads (I'll share next week :) but fine gem beads as well. This is a 40 x30 focal. And I was surprised to see when photographing, it's even top drilled! The fossilized jewel will make awesome, spirit empowering jewelry. Buying from "Apostles" is a gift!

 Etsy Treasures

I have fabulous Etsy finds on my bead table this week. First, I have Lisa Libby of "Metal Me This" custom blended patinas!! They are gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous, and I'm dedicating an entire blog post to them later. Lisa gave me permission to share a picture from her "Metal Me This" Facebook page , so I'll give you a sneak peek here. These are the etched bangles Lisa makes and the colors of her patinas she custom mixes. Aren't the flower bangles exquisite and beautiful? And aren't her custom blended patina colors amazing?

Metal Me This Flower Bangles

In addition to handcrafted patinas, I have the most colorful polymer clay buttons on my bead table by Shelly Graham Turner of Tori Sophia (lucky me, she is also my blog hop partner in the upcoming Holiday Bling Blog Hop :). 
My beloved new buttons!

And my first ever sari silk -- recycled and fair trade from Painting with Fire. More on these treasures as I think about what I'll be creating, but here's a look. The sari silk is called "Dragonfruit"!

 And a Quick Tidbit from Zibbet:

I enjoy shopping the new Zibbet (taken from the word exhibit). Pine Ridge Treasures has the most beautiful bead mixes she shares as a de-stash from her bead table. I love it when Lisa has a new kit for sale. They always rock! My latest treat is lucite flowers, and Lisa made the kit special for me, with purple flowers! Heavenly, isn't it?

Well, there's my bead table this Wednesday. Hope you enjoyed sharing in my stash and Facebook shopping with me. What's on your bead table? 

Big Hugs, TJ

Toltec Jewels is an author by day and jewelry artist by night. Her literary work is housed by the San Fransisco MOMA in a permanent collection of mixed media art and is published internationally in popular magazines, literary quarterlies, and university publications. She has won a number of awards for both her literary and jewelry art. A gemstone collector and jewelry lover, she makes handcrafted jewelry with her entire family. Her store offers small gemstone bead mixes for complimenting art bead jewelry.

She is also the creator of Jewel School Friends, a community of expert and new jewelry artisans taking inspiration from each other, Jewel School, and jewelry art culture. Jewel School Friends features jewelry designers and bead artists, supports entrepreneurship for independent artisans, and hosts community events, challenges, and fundraisers. Join her at Jewel School Friends on Facebook artist features, youtube tutorials, networking, sales & coupons, blog hops, give-a-ways and of course, beautiful jewelry!   


  1. My goodnes...your table is FULL! :) Your cross for your rosary is EXCELLENT! I love it! I can't wait to see your completed rosary! I have Jodi's book Weave, Wrap, and Coil and have made quite a few of her projects. Have not done in it a while....must get back to it as I love the affect! I am going to The Netherlands for Erin's Challenge of Travel - can't wait to see both of your reveals!

  2. Thanks for encouragement with my cross, Patti! I just completed my second try at the cross, and my weaves are looking much better ... yay! LOL. Can't wait to travel with you to the Netherlands! How fun we both took Erin's challenge! Enjoy the rosaries tomorrow, and see you on Saturday as we circle the globe :)

    Big hugs,

  3. Me too, Color Of Dreams! Isn't Lisa awesome? -- and I love love love your gorgeous "Color of Dreams" clay beads!! I'll be shopping with you soon to feature your beads as a prize for "October Fest" !!! Love your work :)


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