Making earrings has never been something I feel I'm particularly good at, so back in 2011, I decided to begin each year with a beading challenge to myself: make a pair of beaded earrings every day for an entire month. It seemed a bit daunting at first, but I invited my beady peeps to join me in the earring making challenge so that we could learn from each other and be inspired!
|Of all the earrings I made during this year's challenge, these three pairs of beaded earrings were my favorites!|
Last year, I successfully made thirty-one pairs of beaded earrings, one for every day in January. It was tough, but it was also a learning experience. Just when I started to think that my ideas had dried up, I found new inspiration and new designs in the most unexpected places. This year, I wasn't quite as successful, ending up with twenty-eight completed pairs of beaded earrings, and three pairs still sitting on my bead tray.
My three favorite pairs from this year's challenge are the brick stitch and chain earrings I made with metallic cylinder beads, a pair of vintage glass cabochons that I embroidered with Swarovski crystal pearls, and a pair of metal mesh roses that I hung from antique brass ear wires with a couple of Swarovski bicones thrown in for good measure.
Your response to the beaded earring making challenge was overwhelming, and I so enjoyed looking at all the lovely earrings posted in the Reader Photo Gallery! Someone even started a thread in the Beading Daily Forums so we could talk about what we learned from the Earring-a-Day challenge, and the responses were quite enlightening.
|I love these Blue Diamond earrings made by Becky Pancake Bead Designs! You can see the full-size photo in the Reader Photo Gallery.|
While most people were energized by this challenge, there were a few who didn't feel quite as good at the end of the earring making challenge. And it's true – if you feel like you have to force yourself to do something, even when it comes to beading, you're not going to enjoy it.
Other (surprising) things that people learned were that they needed to improve their photo taking setups and their beading area setups. Someone else talked about how they discovered that their other crafting projects inspire their beading projects. And I think everyone was thrilled to have a whole new wardrobe of beaded earrings at the end of the challenge!
When you're finished looking at all the beautiful beaded earrings in the Reader Photo Gallery, grab a copy of 101 Bracelets, Necklaces and Earrings through Zinio! You can download your copy instantly on your laptop, desktop or tablet computer and be browsing over one hundred gorgeous beaded jewelry designs in just minutes. Not sure what beading project you want to make next? Check out 101 Bracelets, Necklaces and Earrings and challenge yourself to use new materials or learn a new jewelry-making technique today!
Did you participate in the Earring-a-Day challenge? How did you do? What did you learn? (If you didn't participate this time around, the great thing about a challenge like this is that you can do it any time.) Leave a comment and share your thoughts and experiences here on the Beading Daily blog! And stay tuned for more great Bead-Alongs coming soon to Beading Daily!