Today’s my stop on the Bead Soup Blog Tour! If you’re new here, welcome. If you’ve been here before, awesome to have you back.
If you’ve been following along on the blog tour, or have heard me mention it a time or two before, by now you know that the fabulous Lori Anderson asked 25 different jewelry designer friends to contribute to her first ever published book, right? And you know that I’m super proud to be one of the contributors? Excellent!
What you may not know is that Bead Soup is based off of Lori’s massive blog hop by the same name. During the blog hops, jewelry fanatics across the world get paired up and exchange a focal, a clasp, and coordinating beads that their partner must use to create a new piece. It’s an exciting blog hop, since there are so many different results. It’s fun to see what people work up.
It’s also an awesome way to challenge yourself when it comes to designing jewelry. In a design or color rut? Swap beads with a friend. Seeing what someone else chooses for me to work with never fails to get my muse talking.
I got a chance to preview Bead Soup before it hit stores, and it most definitely captures the spirit of the blog hop. Lori channeled the energy and creative exchange right into book form, and expanded the theme of soup with cute touches like “ingredients” and “from the pantry” notes.
As for my contribution, I was paired with Lori herself, and the beads she sent immediately got the ideas flowing. In addition to being yummy (I love gems!), they were a color combination I didn’t usually work with, which was exciting to explore. I also wanted to challenge myself a little more, so I opted to do a bracelet, something that I never really focused on when I had my jewelry shop (I was all about the earrings and necklaces). And with one look, I knew exactly how it’d all come together. Don’t you love when that happens?
We’ve been asked to keep the final projects a surprise, but I can show you a quick sneak peek:
I wanted lush, I wanted it to be wearable, and of course it had to have my clusters in there somewhere. I also wanted it to be a versatile design, one that you could use with any kind of bead, but I was worried that people wouldn’t get that. I shouldn’t have worried, because as an extra surprise (at least for me!), Lori made an alternate bracelet with my tutorial, and trust me when I say it turned out beautiful. It’s right next to mine in the book (page 17, if you’re curious), which I think really shows off how you can use the same steps with different beads to get two completely different, but gorgeous, results.
Knowing that I’m not the only one who likes to work with color, I sent Lori a variety of beads for her to play with but I had no idea what she ended up making. No one knew what their partner had made, so it was exciting to flip through my copy of Bead Soup to see not just my project, but Lori’s and everyone else’s projects, too. Waiting over a year for the reveal was hard, but worth it, I think. It’s fun to see it on bookshelves!
As for the experience of contributing to a published book, Lori made it oh so easy. Knowing a little of what it takes to put together a book like this, I’m so proud of all of the work Lori did.
And I’m so happy to have been a part of Bead Soup! Especially since I now know who the other contributors are – fantastic ladies who you see all over jewelry circles. I’m not going to lie, I had an idea of who might be involved and I didn’t want to embarrass myself, and in print form no less. But everything came together beautifully, and it’s pretty cool to pick up one book and see so many different styles in one place. I think Bead Soup is perfect for beginners, intermediates, and those with eclectic and varying tastes.
What do you think?
To celebrate, I’m giving away a Bead Soup of my own! I have extras of some of the exact beads I used in my project, so I’m sharing those along with extra beads to replicate my Bead Soup project. This little set of beady goodness includes:
A pair of praisolite nuggets*, a pair of dark pink freshwater pearl sticks*, a pair of faceted crystal quartz semi-rounds, a pair of smoky quartz faceted ovals, a mini strand of faceted prehnite rounds, a half strand of pale green aventurine smooth rounds, and a full strand of creamy white freshwater pearls. (The * indicates the same beads I used in my project.)
To enter, simply leave a comment about your favorite project in Bead Soup or which project you’re most looking forward to trying (if you don’t have the book yet, you can preview it over on Amazon). If you tweet about this giveaway, pin a photo from this post on Pinterest, or Facebook share it, leave another comment with the status/pin/share link for another chance to win.
The giveaway is open to any and all, including international friends, and will close on Sunday, October 7th, at 10pm EST. I’ll choose a winner and post it on October 8th, and every comment here automatically gets entered into Lori’s grand prize giveaway (which will be announced on the 8th, too).
Full Blog Tour
Don’t forget, there are bunches of other giveaways going on this week as well, so here’s the full Blog Tour details in case you missed one:
Monday, October 1st
Tuesday, October 2nd
Wednesday, October 3rd
Thursday, October 4th
Friday, October 5th
Saturday, October 6th
Sunday, October 7th
Monday, October 8th
Lori Anderson, Pretty Things Blog – Grand prize giveaway!
Good luck and thanks for stopping by!