Sep 29, 2012

Sequintastic September Blog Hop and Reveal

Welcome to the Sequintastic September blog hop hosted by Sarah of  "Saturday Sequins"!

When I saw Sarah post the idea of creating with sequins, I was excited to join in because the hop allowed us to create anything with sequins, not only jewelry. This sparked wonderful ideas of embroidering again as I had years ago, creating sequin embellished quilts, and giving a go at making cool sequin jewelry.

I began with a big bowl of sequin soup and three projects in mind:

1) embellish a beautiful bag gifted to my daughter for her birthday with hand embroidery and delicate, lovely AB sequins and beads

2) create a fantastic I-don't-care-if-it's-a-cliche-cause-I-know-I-look-festive-and-feel-like-a-hoot pretty sweater with an embellished Christmas tree made entirely of stacked sequins

3) create hand-sewn vintage cotton drawstring bags, embellished with sequin flowers, to hold the various colors of gemstone and bead treasures for my wonderful partner in the Pantone Fall /Winter 2012 Colors Bead Swap (the awesome Lori Anderson!! :)

And then I got the flu ....
I haven't had the flu in years, and it really knocked me down. It took a week and a half of my precious beading time. Chills, a terrible cold, and a painful cough. With it being so early in the season, I know many others have also been unexpectedly hit with the illness, and so first of all, I wish everyone well!

So I'm trying to be proud of my accomplishments, however simple. I love to quilt, and in many ways not completing my three projects (plus a sparkling surprise quilt thrown in) is a little disheartening. But I thank Sarah for the inspiration, the fun of the projects, and all the ideas. With Sarah's Sequintastic September blog hop for inspiration, it just might be a Sequintastic Holiday at my house too! Now that I've begun crafting with sequins, I'm happy to keep on sparkling up my world.

I started by creating  hand-sewn bags from vintage cotton fabric: a happy, Floridan pattern in orange and pink with cute lady bugs for good luck.

I spent several nights watching "Little House on the Prairie" while sewing as if I lived in one: very s-l-o-w-l-y by hand. And while I occasionally thought about how easily and quickly I'd have sewn my vintage cotton bags using my beloved, sophisticated modern machine, I enjoyed the ritual. 

I created split sides and added a wide drawstring of organza ribbon to open and close the bags easily.

I added sequin flowers in pink and orange to embellish the bags.


The vintage cotton felt good to hold and sew, and smelled so nice and clean washed up and ironed. The rhythm of the stitch work was meditative and the bags were made with love, imperfect and yet with care. I enjoyed creating them.

The blossoms have lots of dimension, and can be easily be made larger or smaller, using various sized sequins. The seed beads make the simple flowers bloom. The sequintastic flowers could be used in so many ways: in floral motif jewelry, as hair accessories, to sparkle up clothing. 

The tutorials I used to create the sequin flowers are "How to make sequin flowers Part 1" and "How to make sequin flowers Part 2"  by Susi of "sillyshysushi" on youtube. I used 8mm sequins and size 6 Czech silver lined seed beads.

Thank you for sharing a Sequintastic September Saturday blog hop! Enjoy the wonderful sequin creations from all the participating artists:)



Karen W...




Dawn Marie...
























Rita...    < --  You are here :)

Namaste, 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.

She is also the creator of Jewel School Friends, a community of expert and emerging jewelry/ bead artisans taking inspiration from each other and Jewel School. JSF features jewelry designers and bead artists, and supports entrepreneurship for independent artisans. Join her at Jewel School Friends on Facebook for Beads of Courage fundraisers, blog hops and giveaways, and of course beautiful gems, beads, and jewelry by the jewelry arts community.


  1. So sorry you have been ill - the flu is awful, for sure, and I am hoping you are feeling better! Your bag is SWEET and I love the sequin flowers! I actually liked this video and I appreciated where she had a hard time with the beads going through the needle - it made it more realistic for what would happen to me if I tried this! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I am now recovering from my flu, so I totally get how you felt last week. But your bags are lovely and the sequins flowers you made are so nice! Sometimes take it slow is the best option.


  3. Oh my goodness, Rita! You were ill and still managed to create something so pretty! Sewing in general, and small things like sequins and seed beads strike fear in my heart. Great job. BTW, my favorite show growing up was Little House on the Prairie. :-)

  4. Oh thank you Patti. She has some little troubles in her video, and keeps on keeping on! lol. I appreciate your kind comments - YOU are a beautiful blooming flower! ;)

  5. Ambra, oh no, you too? that flu was tough, and yet you made such gorgeous chandelier earrings -- wow!! You are awesome. thank you for always being there and creating beauty!

  6. Lisa, watching "Little House" now, I think it's intense.. lol! I was surprised. I remember when my sis and I dressed up as the Ingalls sisters in bonnets and all to celebrate the bicentennial, the spririt of '76! We would've been good friends as kids :)xxoo

  7. Oh so pretty. Love your color palette and fabric choice. The split sides with organza is simply genius giving extra layer of pretty. The sequin flowers jazz it up and hanstitched just makes it much more special! Love!!

  8. Sorry to hear you've been ill. You still managed to make something beautiful for the blog hop. Those flowers are so cute and the bags looks very pretty!

  9. Is there NOTHING that you can't do?? Love the little bag & that you handstitched it makes it all the more special. The little sequin flowers add just the right amount of pop!

  10. Thank you so much for the kind comments and encouragement :) I was almost embarrassed to put up my little project, lol, but I'm glad I did now:) Gracias!

  11. I'm so sorry you got sick! This has really been a month for it, hasn't it?

    I love your sequin flowers, and thank you so much for posting the videos, too. I'm going to have a look at them later tonight.

    Thank you so much for participating! You did a great job. It's looking more and more likely that I'll host another challenge in April, and you're definitely invited to join! :)

  12. I'm so sorry you got hit by the bug, and hope you're feeling better. I love your ideas, and can't thank you enough for posting the video on making the sequin flowers. I'm so glad to have been a part of this hop, to see all the cool ideas for sequins. :)

  13. I adore those flowers! Absolutely adorable.

  14. Sorry you have been sick. I am just now getting some kind of bug. I am going to sit down and try those videos... I love the flowers. great job.

  15. Rita, I just read your comment on my blog this morning. You made my day. You are so sweet, truly!
    Ok those sequin flowers are so stinking cool I can't take my eyes off them. I wish I had time to watch the video, but I think it's best to leave the sequin flower making to the expert!

  16. I love the dimension to your sequin flowers, and thanks for sharing the tutorial. When I started reading your blog with all the projects you had planned I thought you must be super woman to get it all done! Shame about the 'flu, hopefully you are feeling better now.

  17. Hi Rita,
    Sorry you were feeling ill glad you are feeling better. The bag is very pretty with the sequin flowers in pink (my favorite color) and orange. This is a very cute idea.

  18. Hope you're feeling better!!

    I love your beautiful bags--thank you for including the video on how to make the flowers! I also enjoyed reading about your experience while sewing--the scent and feel of the cotton; reading about it began to put me in that meditative space:)

  19. Love that, Rita! The flowers are so cute!

  20. You really had some great ideas and there's no shame in being held back by the flu. That stuff's NASTY! What you did create is really neat. I love the meditative images you conjured with this process and your sequin flowers are really amazing! Well done!


Gracias for your comments and for visiting! I appreciate every word :)
Namaste --