Thursday, August 15, 2013


Round 6 of the  Battle Of The Beadsmith'13  has begun

"The only thing sitting on the fence and not making a decision contributes to society is a larger rear end. Gd only knows, we have enough of those around here from what I can see. You best get off of that fence before you split your pants son."

Vote  now!!

 Kris Empting Obenland, Germany

Monday, July 22, 2013

So we have reached the end of Round Three......

The battles in round Three went pretty much how I thought they would except for The Group C Linda Roberts/Helena Tang affair. 

As much as I like Linda's "Crystal Volcano" I thought  Helena's  "Phoenix Collar"  would win the day.What I found particularly interesting about the voting for this battle is how close the voting was from the invited judges/participant pool. Seems like  a number of the voters were swayed by the seemingly more frequent potential opportunities to go out wearing something like "Crystal Volcano".  

Congratulations to both Linda and Helena on a job well done. Beady warriors through and through........


Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Artists That Make the Battle Of The Beadsmith Go

Olga Orlova, Russia (2013)

"Queen of the garden"

Techniques used: Beadwork, weaving, pearlwork, golden embroidery.

Materials used: boulder opals, larimars, Swarovski crystal, Swarovski pearls, natural 
pearls, Preciosa, Miyuki delica: silk, 24K, assorted. Miyuki seed beads 15/0, TOHO seed beads, chezh
seed beads, curl cord, natural silk velvet ribbons.

Size:32х43 cm.

Fabrication time: 2 months.


Well the Battle Of The Beadsmith has finally launched with all the battle of group C posted over at our Facebook group.  

For those of you without faceboook I will try to give you the opportunity to follow along the best I can. Just aren't enough hours in the day.....

Well enough moaning from me there are battles to be waged. 


Group C Battle 32 karen D'Andrea vs Edit Peng


Tropicalkaren Design by Karen D'Andrea

My artistic style is clean, simple, experimental and above all, wearable. 
I love working with tiny seedbeads because of their colors, textures and the vast potential they have for original design. I decided to make a vest because I had never done one (and probably will never do one again, lol).

1. Name of piece - Warrior Princess 
My vest was inspired by the idea of mythic princesses and goddesses wearing armor with "bling". 

2. Stitches used - Bead Embroidery, vest and belt are original patterns by tropicalkaren

3. Products used - size 11/0 Aqua and Blue Japanese seed beads, Swarovski crystal (rivoli, flatbacks and bicones), 100% premium black wool (felted), Fireline, silver belt buckle.

4. Size of Piece - 35" wide and 18" long.

5. Time to complete - 200 hours.


 Edit Peng: Bluebird In Eden

I met beading accidentally in 2007 - and I wasn’t able to leave it any more.
Internet articles and videos helped me to start, I studied some books of beading techniques, then I found beading courses in Budapest.
I made friends with a couple of nice artists. We laughed a lot while I was learning a lot.
I’ve used different creative techniques, nowadays soutache is my favourite one.  

Techniques: soutache
Swarovski Elements: 
caboshon: Pear 24 x 12 mm
Rivoli 12 – 14 mm
Navette 15 x 7 mm
pendant: Teardrop 24 x 12 mm
Hearts 14 x 14 mmMini pear 10 mmbicon 3 – 4 mmmargerita flowers
Czech glass beads: dagger, farfalle, crystal bicon 4 mm, firepolished beads 3 – 4 – 6 mm,
pressed glass beads, pearls 10 – 6 – 4 – 3 mm,
Super Duo
Mineral bead: purple jade 14 x 8 mm
Seed beads 8/0, 15/0
Miyuki delica 10/0
Soutache threads
Monofil sewing threadLeather backing
Size of piece: front part measures 22 x 32 cm
Time to complete: 80 hours (+ many sleepless nights - tossing and turning in bed)

Friday, May 24, 2013

To Model or not to Model? That is the Question....

In the culture I grew up in, involving oneself in spirited theological discussions, and debates was about as common as dog poop on the sidewalks of Paris (and I like Paris). With apologies to my parents, who have invested so much time and effort in me throughout the years, I would like to bring attention to a question of great importance that continues to be debated in the great beading academies around the world...

Do pretty models enhance and elevate, or distract and detract in the photographic presentation of a design? Can a model be so pretty that he or she creates a disconnect with the average man or woman, who may not have the high cheekbones and chiseled abs, but have great personalities?

I have spent many hours quietly contemplating this issue as the battle 2013 fast approaches. The early entries I have received for BOTB13 have been split down the middle. Some of the designs are pictured with models to accentuate scale, while many others do not.  

I have decided this requires much further study.    

What do you think?

Add caption

Monday, May 6, 2013


Kinga Nichols, USA "Fishies" Battle Of The Beadsmith 2012

We get closer and closer to the official Bead and Button deadline. As a matter of fact the wonderful Kinga Nichols, who enjoyed an incredible response to her "Fishies" necklace last year, has already submitted her new design for this years competition..... (few more weeks till the big reveal)

Join the official Battle Group to stay up to date, and involved.