Sunday, April 8, 2012

Cup of Bead Soup Reveal with Barbara Bechtel of Floridity

If you've been a follower of my blog, you're familiar with my Cup of Bead Soup project.  For the past year, I've purchased beads, sight unseen, from various bead makers and tasked myself with creating things with components I didn't choose myself.  It's been a fantastic way to push my design skills and break out of making the same old/same old.  In essence, it's a one-woman-production of the Bead Soup Blog Party.  I changed it this year to include three additional designers, the same set of beads, and made it a mini-hop.  Each Cup of Bead Soup, you'll have the chance to sign up to participate and be chosen randomly.

To remind you, these are the beads that Barbara Bechtel created:
I made three pieces, and the necklace and bracelet used techniques I'm not familiar with.  I really wanted to try and push myself.
First the necklace:
The ingredients:
* Barbara's key pendant and two of her faceted beads *
* Three handmade lampwork glass beads by me *
* Czech glass beads in pink and purple givre *
* Thai spacers *
* A Mamacita bird bead *
* A Pacific Opal Swarovski crystal *
* Purple waxed linen * 
* A handmade clasp by me *
I'm definitely not used to how to manipulate waxed linen in this way, especial with the pink beads whose holes would only allow one strand through, not both.  I used lark's head knots to connect any of the rings and made three knots between each bead.  
Now for the bracelet.
The Ingredients:
* Two of Barbara's faceted beads *
* One of Barbara's beads I'd been hoarding *
* A vintage key *
* Oxidized wire *
* Purple waxed linen *
* Teal suede *
* Large link chain *
* Pewter toggle*
* Aluminum jump rings *
I've never laced suede through chain, ever.  I'm not sure I did it quite right and I had no idea how the pros finish it, so I made two triple knots of waxed linen at each end.  I added the key to pull it together with the necklace. 
One of the reasons why I used such heavy gauge wire to link the beads is because the links of the chain aren't soldered, and due to the difficulty of opening and closing edged (not round) rings, I knew I needed wire that wouldn't fall through.  For the same reason, I was careful to use a heavier gauge jump ring to connect the toggle ring and bar.  I connected the key with waxed linen to pull in color.
And now a simple pair of earrings:
The Ingredients:
* Barbara's charms *
* Lampwork drops by Unicorne Beads *
* Sterling silver jump rings and ear wires *
I loved the texture of the charms so much that I didn't want to over do it.  I had these leftover lampwork drops from ages ago, and it goes to show you, leftover beads can TRULY be used even years later!

The other three designers you MUST visit:
 Here's a collage, a piece from each of us:

Barbara will now be selling a limited number of the bead kits you see above -- 
only 16, and they'll be first come, first served, 
so be sure to visit her store 


  1. Beautiful. I am in love with the necklace, the colors and textures. I love the waxed linen. I am finding that I love that more and more but am afraid to use it.....

    Beautiful pieces!

  2. Love your pieces Lori! Beautiful work as always!
    I adore that heavy oxidized chain and wire in that bracelet!!! So cool!
    I too have been working with cord and thread lately and am never too sure how to finish it off!! But I do love the pops of color that it can add!!!
    Thanks Lori for hosting yet another awesome challenge! I have so much fun working with Barabara's beads!

  3. Love the colours, I'm such a fan of these sea greens and deep teals.


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