I was expecting to see great things in the Beadwork magazine 15th Anniversary Beaded Bead contest, but, wow, the creativity of the entries really blew me away! I've always been fascinated with beaded beads, and I was really eager to see how folks would put together their beaded bead jewelry using these designs from some of my favorite bead artists.
I really wish that I could have done a feature on every single entry, but that would have made for one long blog post. Instead, I picked my three favorites to share with you. Enjoy!
Abundance by Mary Yaeger
|Abundance by Mary Yaeger|
Reminding me of everything for which beads make me thankful was Mary Yaeger's beautiful necklace, Abundance. The beaded beads in her horn-of-plenty focal piece blend in so well, you have to look twice to see what they are! Mary's sculptural bead-weaving techniques were positively flawless in this beaded bead necklace, and the color palette was exquisite.
Mary created this piece to reflect the abundance of creativity and enthusiasm of the Beadwork community. She created the beautiful leaves in her beaded bead cornucopia using matte hex-cut seed beads in two sizes. Assembling this intricate beaded bead necklace was also made easier by her use of a cloth-covered styrofoam mannequin that she rescued before it found its way into a dumpster!
You can read more about Mary Yaeger's beadwork on her blog, animary.
Nine Pickles by Tanya Goodwin
|Nine Pickles byy Tanya Goodwin|
The colors in Tanya Goodwin's beaded bead necklace, Nine Pickles, are what caught my eye. Assembled with handmade lampwork glass beads by Donna Millard, the color palette Tanya chose is both subtle and elegant. This is a beaded necklace with versatility — I think it would look just as good with jeans and a t-shirt as it would at a special occasion or for date night.
Tanya designed and named this piece with some help from her five-year-old daughter. Together, they decided to use the five beaded beads to re-create our solar system, including the red spot on Jupiter and the Earth's north pole. The sun on the toggle clasp pulls it all together beautifully.
You can read more about Tanya and her work on her blog, A Work In Progress.
Beads Make Me Happy by Katie Dean
|Beads Make Me Happy by Katie Dean|
Beads are supposed to make us smile, right? And that's why I loved Katie Dean's beaded bead necklace, Beads Make Me Happy. There were so many things about this necklace that made me smile: the bright colors, the asymmetrical design, the beaded strawberry and peppermint candy beads, and of course, the pendant.
Katie started working on the beaded beads as a little creative break from creating her own beading projects, which include beaded bead patterns, and she decided that she wanted her finished beaded bead necklace to reflect her personality. That fun pendant? She created that when she realized that after ten years of struggling with a serious chronic illness, it was her beads that gave her a form of therapy and helped her find peace after her diagnosis.
You can find out more about Katie, her beadwork, and her inspirations on her website, Bead Flowers.
What's In Store for Beadwork Magazine in 2013?
If you loved the 15th Anniversary Beaded Bead Contest, you'll want to make sure you subscribe to Beadwork magazine in 2013. You'll get more innovative beading projects from the Designers of the Year, but also fascinating bead artist profiles, the latest news and reviews of beads, tools, and beading books, and helpful instructions for basic beading techniques that you can use to create amazing beaded jewelry.
Subscribe to Beadwork magazine today, and see why I think it's the best beading magazine around!
And make sure you get the February/March issue of Beadwork magazine to see the winners of the contest!