Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Pretty Palettes :: June 2105 Sunshine & Saltwater

Oh, how I love June in Indiana! The kids are able to enjoy going to the local pool and the days are long and filled with lots and lots of hot weather fun, like exploding water balloons on the trampoline!

Erin chose a really fun palette for this month's Halcraft Pretty Palette challenge (here's a link to learn how you can play along!), and it is centered on these cute illustrated surfboards out of the Pottery Barn Teen catalog:
Beachy fun from the PBTeen catalog inspired this month's Pretty Palettes challenge
I wanted to mix things up a bit this time and decided not to go with a jewelry project this month.  I figured these surfer girls might need something cool to use to keep their stuff together while they're out and about. I'd seen so many cute large totes at Target that were just begging for a tassel, so I made a project that can be a key chain (just attach your keys on that ringy thingy) or you can attach it directly to a strap on a bag. 
Color inspiration for Pretty Palettes
I love the large lobster clasps with the swivel mount. They're great for things like this, and they're relatively heavy duty, so they can stand up to a surfer girl's abuse. I actually use one on my purse and just hook it onto the loop of the zipper pull. I never have to search for my keys that way! This is also perfect for a beach bag, as everything small (and important!) seems to fall to the bottom, and who wants to use up beach time searching for your keys? Not me!

To make the tassels on these I used various materials. The first on the left uses natural hemp , the second and third both use bamboo cord. I love the look of the variegated cord in the second tassel. The third tassel uses different colors off the same card of cording.

I used 20-gauge Artistic wire to connect the tassel to the clasp and string the beads. I've seen these made with cord, but wire's stronger, and these little guys are going to get heavy duty work done at the beach, where the corrosive elements will eat up fiber. 

I stacked up some of my favorite Bead Gallery beads, starting with the large wooden disks. These were especially nice because their large holes cover the wrapped loop of the wire, making it easy to cozy the beads right up to the tassel.

To finish it off, I found sea life charms in the Charm Gallery area of Michaels. On the end cap near the beads there are a bunch of sea life charms as well, which is where that sweet sand dollar on the right came from. They're a great deal, as you get quite a few charms all connected to a chain. 

Just open the jump ring and BAM! You've got a pendant! Be sure to check that out, as these charms might not be around in the fall.

I love what Erin and the rest of the gang have been doing with their versions of the June Pretty Palette challenge. To follow along, just click the link here! 

Monday, June 1, 2015

Tassel Crazy!

I've had a LOT of fun lately making necklaces.

I'm not sure if it's the knotting, the tassels, or the gorgeous focal beads, but these things are a blast.

Today my knotted tassel necklaces were featured on the Halcraft USA blog!  I made a step-by-step tutorial with photos to help everyone learn how to make these beauties. All you need to do is start with some of Beadalon's silk, your favorite round beads, a few focals, and some leather or embroidery floss to make the tassels. Bang! Instant fun!

You've got to get out there and make some of these yourself, I tell you. Just the tassel making alone had me. I want to make tassels out of any and every fiber I can get my hands on!

To make your own tassel necklaces like these, visit the Halcraft USA blog!