Jun 19, 2014

The Ocean Blog Hop Jewelry Reveal

Come, let's dive in! 

The ocean is a sanctuary. Like the wild beasts of our planet, the living ocean

is a great balancer, beholding well-being so that always all is well on planet Earth. 

Photo taken at Disney's Wild Kingdom hotel -- from our room's balcony!

The specialness of the ocean is magnificent; just as the specialness of jewelry artists in our hop today makes each participant a gift.  One of those participants is Chris Eisenberg of Wanderware. Chris shared the exquisite goodness of the ocean in a two minute video with our FB group. 

Please, give yourself these two minutes to feel the wonder & love of that 
which creates universes and that which creates the ocean: 
that wonder & love is for & by you, too.

Lisa Lodge of Pine Ridge Treasures asked us to celebrate the ocean in design. Through her FB page for Pine Ridge Treasures, she creates bead mixes for purchase, offering several mixes for blog hops each year.

For our theme of the ocean today, Lisa sent out blue/green kits and orange/sand kits.
The kit I received is easily the most beautiful Lisa has yet to make for a blog hop:

Abundant  fire polished crystals of all sizes, tranquil blue cultured sea glass focals & rounds, sea shell opalite, nautical navy blue rondelles, white matte seed beads, & a substantial, quality clasp & dolphin pendant!

I wanted to do the beads justice, to show my thankfulness for the beautiful beads in my jewelry design. I wanted the magic & mystery of the ocean to come through  my jewelry, with the feel of moonlight across the waves, soft rolling water,splashing & spraying, full and tranquil beneath the pull of the moon.

Living near the ocean reminds us of our magnificence, makes us feel our worthiness, value and goodness.

Living in Orlando, we are so close to the ocean our air smells like salt water. It was the first thing I noticed & was in awe of years ago moving here: the soft breezes across the peninsula are so clean and pure, as we are surrounded by the water. The Atlantic ocean is just a 20 minute drive away, as is the Gulf of Mexico.

Singing praises to the ocean and Lisa's lovely beads, I am still not done creating jewelry. When our internet went down the day before the hop, I decided to embellish my beadwork even more, and I began creating two more designs. I made chainmaille and ran out of rings. I made earrings to photograph the blue and green flowers my daughter gave me for the hop. I'm still not done with several other pieces, but below is what I completed so far. Because the opalite shells are amazing, and it's one of my favorite glasses to use, opalite jewelry is forthcoming; likewise, the soft cultured sea glass focals and components call, as do the green crystals. The white seed beads allowed me to go with a completely different colorway (purple and orange!), and the theme allows me to create with lampwork art beads that have been just waiting to become jewelry!  I am moved to go where the beads & colors & theme takes me, and I'm excited by the works in progress. I love being so inspired! Thank you Lisa and blog hop artists. :)


Full of Czech matte AB seafoam green fish beads, various Czech lavender seashells and sapphire stars, Swarovski lilac bicone crystals, faceted teal & indigo crystal rondelles, lavender glass pearls, blue  glass drops and natural red coral, this Holiday ornament was created for the Bead Soup cafe challenge -- but wasn't entered. I wanted to share it for our hop because  it hasn't really been seen. I love it! To me, it is an ocean celebration & joy! :) 


St. Petersburg & Odd Count Tubular Herringbone with Swarovski crystals, Czech stars & shells, fire polished crystal, 22k gold charlottes. Focal by Lennis Carrier of Windbent

Another beauty from beloved Lennis Carrier, the brass rose is for my mom, Rosella.

THE WAVES take on more meaning & love with Czech shells gifted to me by beautiful  Jill Bradley.


Byzantine maille with fire polished crystals, stardust rings & silver rings, dolphin pendant & clasp.


Sterling silver whale charms, MOP discs, silver rings, cultured sea glass. 

The rich blue mother of pearl coins gifted from the lovely Robin Reed
caught my eye after the earrings were complete. Remaking the earrings,
the mother of pearl  fit perfectly inside the silver links, meant to be.
The earrings move like mobiles! 

Current reveal (June 14) artists of the Ocean Hop:
Carolyn Lawson, Carolyn's Creations
Ev Shelby, Raindrop Creations
Toltec Jewels, Jewel School Friends
Karla Morgan, Texas Pepper Jams
Ema Kilroy, Ema K Designs
Candida Elkins Castleberry, Spun Sugar Beadworks
Catherine Yvonne King, Catherine's Musings
Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes
Shaiha Williams, Shaiha's Ramblings
Chris Eisenberg, Wanderware
Eleanor Burian Moore, The Charmed Life
Kay Thomerson, Kayz Kreationz
Jill Bradley, Chat 2 Jill

I also wanted to include Ocean Hop May reveal artists:
Christie Searle Murrow, Charis Designs Jewelry
Kim Dworak, Cianci Blue
Marybeth Rich, A Few Words from within the Pines
Karin Grosset Grange, Ginkgo et Coquelicot
Veralynne Malone, Designed by Vera
Monique Urquhart, A Half-Baked Notion
Katrina Taylor, I Wanna Go Out
Mary Ann Macri Jacobs, Trucksville Crafts
Jeanne Steck, Gems by Jeanne Marie
Ann Schroeder, Bead Love
Kathleen Breeding, 99 Bottles of Beads on the Wall
Marianne Baxter, Simply Seablime Jewelry
Terri Wlaschin, Dances in Fog
Margaret Pelech, Margaret Pelech's Ocean Blog
Jo-Ann Woolverton, It's a Beadiful Creation
Kathy Zeigler Lindemer, Bay Moon Design
Heather Richter, Desert Jewelry Designs
Andrea Glick-Zenith, ZenithJade Creations

Jun 7, 2014

Choosy Chicks Choose Chicklets Design Challenge Participating Artists

Choosy Chicks Choose Chicklets Challenge (c5)
Participating Artists

Guest of Honor & Featured Artist:  Susan Kennedy

Sue Kennedy's blogs:                               SueBeads...A Beady Girl's blog
                                                               Art Jewelry Elements
Sue Kennedy's website                            SueBeads
SueBeads Art Beads                                SueBeads


Toltec Jewels                                           http://www.JewelSchoolFriends.com


Linda Anderson                                       http://fromthebeadboard.blogspot.com/

Jennifer Reno                                           http://jenrenjewelry.blogspot.com/

Shirley Moore                                          http://beadsandbread.blogspot.com/

Kristen Stevens                                        http://kristen-beadjourney.blogspot.com

Marybeth Rich                                         http://forestofjewels.blogspot.com

Jael Thorp                                                http://jaelsjewels.blogspot.com/

Melissa Trudinger                                     http://Beadrecipes.wordpress.com

Andrea Glick                                            http://zenithjade.blogspot.com/

Nan Smith                                                http://wirednan.blogspot.com

Blanca Medina                                         www.peru-medesigns.com

Shai Williams                                            http://shaihasramblings.blogspot.com

Carolyn Lawson                                       http://Carolynscreationswa.blogspot.com

Rana Wilson                                             http://Ranaleadesigns.blogspot.com

Robin Reed                                              http://willowdragon.blogspot.com

Robin Showstack                                     http://heartsdesiresjewelryforyou.blogspot.com/

Sheila Prosterman                                     http://catswithbeads.blogspot.com

Karla Morgan                                          http://Texaspepperjams.blogspot.com

Kari Asbury                                             http://hippiechickdesign.blogspot.com

Kelly Rodgers                                          https://www.facebook.com/BeadinBlackBlue

Jayne Capps                                            https://mamasgottodoodle.blogspot.com/

Mischelle Andrade Fanucchi                    https://micheladasmusings.blogspot.com/

Heather Richter                                       http://desertjewelrydesigns.blogspot.com

Chris Eisenberg                                       www.wanderware.blogspot.com

Kathleen Breeding                                   http://www.zibbet.com/99BottlesofBeadsontheWall

Linda Landig                                           http://lindalandig.wordpress.com

Crystal Thain                                           http://beaddragons.blogspot.com/

Cheri Reed                                              http://creativedesignsbycheri.blogspot.com

Heather d-Entremont                               http://frugalmadougall.wordpress.com/

Dini Bruinsma                                          http://angazabychanges.blogspot.com/

Lori Schneider                                         http://www.beadaddicted.blogspot.com/

Tammy Adams                                        http://www.paisleylizard.com/blog.html

Melinda Orr                                            http://bandanagirl.indiemade.com/blog

Lennis Carrier                                         http://windbent.wordpress.com/

Cynthia Machata                                     http://antiquitytravelers.blogspot.com

Elizabeth Hodges                                    http://thewhisperingseas.blogspot.com

Debbie Rasmussen                                  http://kepirasmussen.blogspot.com/

Tanya McGuire                                       http://tanyamcguire.blogspot.com/

Charlie Jacka                                          http://clay-space.com/blog/

Ev Shelby                                               http://raindropcreationsbyevelyn.blogspot.com/

Sharyl McMillian-Nelson                        http://sharylsjewelry.blogspot.com/

Jasvanti Patel                                        http://jewelrybyjasvanti.blogspot.com

Thank you everyone for joining in! It looks like we have 20 44 artists participating!*
 I'm excited and looking forward to your designs and art. The link to the C5 Sign Up post
 (with dates, blog hop buttons/badges, info on our theme, etc) is here: 

You will be receiving an email from me when I mail your beads, and another email in early July reminding you of the challenge. A week before the hop, I'll email the final participants list. 

Also, if you are interested in adding more chicklets (or any style SueBeads! :) to your design, Sue Kennedy of SueBeads has generously offered a discount to artists in the challenge. 
C5 Artists may email me at toltecjewels (at) aol.com for the coupon code.  

Have fun designing & creating with your chicklets! Happy Summer! 

*If you would like to participate but missed the sign ups, you're still welcome to join the blog hop!  Grab some fabulous SueBeads chicklets, create a delightful design, and hop along! 
I'm happy to add you to the participating artists list. Just email me to let me know you're joining in: toltecjewels (at) aol.com

Jun 6, 2014

Choosy Chicks Choose Chicklets ... SueBeads Chicklets, That Is!

Help! I saw the cutest new beads ever: chicklets!
And now, I need your help.
My house is full of chicklets! 

I'm looking for 20 jewelry designers to give my chicklets a good home in a delightful design for a fun & summery blog hop featuring the new chicklet lampwork beads by SueBeads

Each designer will be mailed their very own chicklet -- free of charge -- to make something really delightful! 

The theme of our challenge: Choosy Chicks Choose Chicklets! 

Designers are welcome to create any style of jewelry or art inspired by their bead. They are also free to use additional SueBeads chicklets in their designs if they wish. 

On Sunday August 3rd, we'll blog hop and show each other our great taste with designs made using our handcrafted SueBeads chicklets! It will be a wonderful summery treat! 

After the hop, we'll have a drawing using random.org & one lucky participant will win a $25 gift certificate to Happy Mango Beads! 

Featured Artist & Guest of Honor: Sue Kennedy
Etsy: SueBeads
Website: SueBead
Blogs: SueBeads 

Our Blog Hop Badge/Button:
(take your pick -- click to enlarge & save)

To join in the fun, please email me with 
your name, blog url & snail mail address
with "C5" as the subject line:

Limited to 20 choosy designers.

Sign ups are closed. Thank you everyone!
View the List of Participating Artists 

Toltec Jewels is an author by day, jewelry maker by night. Her literary work is housed by the San Francisco MOMA 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 arts. She is happiest making handcrafted jewelry with her entire family, snuggling with her doggies and grandkids, sewing, singing, reading, and learning more jewelry techniques. 

Jun 2, 2014

The 411 on Design Challenges & Blog Hops

There are so many wonderful jewelry arts events 
going on now, I wanted to share them with you. 

On Jewel School Friends

I decided to host a few more design challenges after the wonderful time we had in The Color of Dreams Blog Hop featuring Color of Dreams beads. I'm working out the details now for the next challenge featuring lampwork art beads by SUEBEADSAgain, I'll mail out beads free of charge to 20 designers and we'll have a blog hop, "Choosy Chicks Choose Chicklets" to see what everyone created.  Watch for sign ups in June with a blog hop in July/Aug!

Look for my SueBeads Design Challenge in June

Next, I'll feature the art beads of Suburban Girl Studio with the nautical theme, "Come Sail Away" -- again, the challenge & blog hop will be open to 20 designers. Look for sign ups & a hop in late summer.

Look for my Suburban Girl Studio Design Challenge in July

Our third design challenge & blog hop will feature Nic Nac Beads, possibly with a butterfly theme. Sign Ups will open around August with a hop in September (or we'll go Nov/Dec)

Look for Nic Nac Beads Design challenge in August

And finally...
Sign ups are now open for
Sign Ups are open now! 
A Home & Hearth, Craft, Jewelry, Bead & Creative Challenge.

This is a very fun blog hop & the sign up list filled up fast! I had limited the number of participants, but decided to include all artists who wish to play. 
You'll find details about the hop and the participants list here.

On Facebook & More:

 Don't miss the  "My Country" Blog Hop hosted by my friend Nan Smith of Nanmade Handmade. This is the second year for the hop, and it is a good one! Sign ups close on June 10th. 

 You'll also enjoy the 13th FB Bead Soup Cafe group "Blogger/Non-Blogger challenge: 
"Age of The Dragonfly"

The hostess for this round is Krafty Max, who inspires us to create jewelry with beautiful dragonfly photography by Ambers Art Alley. Designers may create based on subject matter, colorway, or any inspiration. Also, artists are not limited to jewelry but may create in any way they wish. Artists sign up by adding their name to the FB document at The Bead Soup Cafe, and have until June 28th to add a photo of their design to the group album. The winner becomes the next Blogger/Non-Blogger hostess, and picks the theme for the 14th challenge. Members of  the Bead Soup Cafe on FB may join in. 

And Browse the Beauty of a Gorgeous Design Contest!

Vote now for your favorite design in the Blu Mudd 4th Challenge on FB. You won't want to miss this group of talented designers' creations & the beautiful art beads of Blu Mudd ceramics by Moriah Betterly. To vote, simply browse each photo in the album on Blu Mudd's FB page and "like" your favorites! You may like and vote for as many designs as you wish. The design with the most likes on June 7th at 10 PM Eastern will be announced as the winner of a $50 gift certificate at Blu Mudd.

I simply love this art bead challenge!
 Each artist was given a focal, clasp, and tube beads at a reduced price to create art jewelry. This round, 28 artists came together. Here are some of the splendid designs by participants:

Shirley Moore

Lennis Carrier

Sherri Stokey

Ingrid Anderson

 Jami Shipp

Kelly Rodgers

Andrea Glick

Janeen Burlingame 

  Marybeth Rich

 Melissa Trudinger

Aren't the designs beautiful? And these are just a few of the 28!
So, have fun looking through the album at all the jewelry art. You're free to vote happily: you can like as many as you like! 

Blu Mudd Design Album

Toltec Jewels is an author by day, jewelry maker by night. Her literary work is housed by the San Francisco MOMA 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 arts. She is happiest making handcrafted jewelry with her entire family, snuggling with her doggies and grandkids, sewing, singing, reading, and learning more jewelry techniques.