Venice Please

Long ago, in our early 20’s, my husband and I backpacked around Europe and visited Venice.  I wasn’t working with beads then and was completely unaware of Venice’s long tradition of exquisite glass making.  Now, I wish I could return to Venice, please.  I’d visit all the old glass blowing shops and go out to the island of Murano, to which the members of the ancient glass blowing guild retreated to guard their glass trade secrets.

Here is a slide show with info and pictures about the Venetian glass tradition.  Murano Glass Ancient Tradition   It is produced by a Venetian glass company and obviously they hope you will make a purchase, but the slide show and YouTube clip on this site are fascinating and show how the glass is made.

purple and orange ventian glass earrings

Venetian glass earrings

I recently purchased some contemporary Venetian glass beads from DaviniaDesigns.  This artist went to Italy to study traditional glass making.  She met her husband there and now calls Venice her home.  She has her glass studio right in the heart of Venice.  I bought four pairs of beads from her.  Today I’d like to share the first set of earrings I’ve made from her gorgeous beads.

Purple and Orange Venetian glass earrings

Purple and Orange Venetian glass earrings

I paired the Venetian glass with Swarovksi crystals and sterling silver.  I totally fell for the ridges on these beads.  I just think they add so much texture and interest.  The perfectly parallel ridges contrast so nicely with the more organically placed swirls.  Thinking of those lovely swirls made me decide to call this design “Venetian Swirl“.

Purple and orange Venetian glass earrings

Purple Swirl Earrings

One Crayon Color Challenge

Add Spice To Your Life With Orange

I love color!  The tagline for my business is:  Luscious Color.  Lasting Quality.  Its  color that makes my heart sing!  So when I read that Sally Russick, of  The Studio Sublime ,was hosting a color challenge blog hop, I signed up right away!

While playing with some crayons, Sally got the idea to host this color challenge.  Participants each chose one color to work with – and one color only! We could use all shades and variations of our chosen color, but  no other colors.  For someone who designs for the joy of rich color combinations, being confined to just one color was, indeed, a challenge.

I chose the color orange and had the good fortune of having been given a number of orange art beads recently.  I received orange spacer beads from Erin Siegel in a bead swap at the Philadelphia Bead Fest in April.  After the bead swap we had a drawing for door prizes and I won the fantastic orange polymer clay heart by artist extraordinaire, Staci Smith. The two enamel beads near the pendant are by Barbara Lewis of Painting With Fire.  There’s also one small lampwork bead by Radiant Mind.  The remainder of the necklace consists of artisan and commercially produced ceramic beads, handmade Indonesian glass, pressed glass, copper and brass.

handmade orange necklace

“Orange You Glad I Love You?” necklace

I wanted to challenge myself a bit, so I strung the pendant and beads on cotton cording.  I’ve only done a few necklaces and earrings with cording and I’m having fun experimenting with it.  I’ve recently started making some of my own clasps.  The clasp on this necklace is hand formed and forged of brass and it hooks into an orange resin ring.

handmade orange necklace

“Orange You Glad I Love You?” necklace, with handmade clasp

I haven’t had time to add this to my shop yet, but if you are interested, contact me or leave a comment below.

Thank you, Sally!  This was a great idea for a challenge!

handmade orange necklace

“Orange You Glad I Love You?” necklace

The links to all the other participants are listed below.

Hosted by:

Sally Russick


Therese Frank

Rochelle Brisson

Lisa Lodge

Malin de Koning

Bobbie Rafferty


Linda Landig  You are here!

Cherrie Fick

Beth McLarnan

Cece Cormier

Renetha Stanziano

Tanya Goodwin

Jean Welles

Amy Severino

Rebekah Payne

Lola Surwillo

Judy Turner


Jennifer Justman

Rose Brisson

Kim Bender

Heather Powers

Shelly Joyce


Cherie Reed

Rebecca Anderson

Hope Smitherman

Patti Vanderbloemen

Michelle Buettner

Alicia Marinache

Charissa Sloper

Sonya Stille

Maria Grimes

Nancy Saccoccio

Sandi Volpe

Joanne Tinley

Catherine Pruitt


Mary Harding

Karin Gilman

Jayne Capps

Lorelei Eurto

Melissa Meman

Alice Peterson

Jenny Davies Reazor

Cynthia Machata

Melissa Essenburg

Regina Santerre

Lauren Streets

Elizabeth Auld


Tracy Mok

Jennifer Judd Velasquez

Marti Conrad

Lori Anderson

Donna Bradley

Courtney Breul

Linda Younkman

Susan Kennedy

Lisa Liddy

Tracy Stillman

Dawn Doucette


Diana Ptaszynski

Shannon Chomanczuk

Janice Everett

Karen Williams


Kashmira Patel

Heidi Post

Birgitta Lejonklou

Holly Westfall

Karin Slaton

Long Linked Necklace

I finished the necklace I blogged about for Bead Table Wednesday (BTW).  I’m slower at wire wrapping than I wish I were, but I love how it turned out!  It’s rustic, varied and each bead is interesting–not only that but it has my favorite color, rust orange!

long necklace with gunmetal chain, ceramic, glass, felt and carnelian

Organically shaped ceramic beads, handmade felt beads, African beads, glass and carnelian are all hand-wired to gunmetal colored chain.  There is no clasp, as the necklace is long enough to just slip over your head.  This Chain Necklace is now available in my shop.

long hand wired necklace

Gunmetal hand wired orange and black necklace

Fall For These – Autumn Necklace Collection

I’m starting to put away my summer clothing.  “Goodbye sleeveless tops.”  “See you later lightweight capris.” Are you getting out your fall clothing, too?  It’s sad to let go of the last days of summer, but o-o-o, I so love my rust-orange v-neck sweater and the marled violet sweater with flecks of turquoise, yellow and green.  To ease our transition into fall, I have put together a great collection of necklaces that can add an extra spark to your autumn outfits… and make it a little easier to let Autumn back into your life.  Click on any of the pictures below, if you’d like more information about the necklace.

Fall For These

A lady picked up this necklace, at my last art show, and commented, “You can just look at this necklace and see the high quality.  Your work really stands above the other jewelry that’s available here or at most shows.”

Love this one!  Garnets and carnelians are so rich together!

The hand-wired, banded sardonyx kite-shaped pendant is really outstanding here.

The orange beads, with the swirly copper highlights are antique, mouth-blown Venetian glass.  Really unique!