Purple Rain Design Challenge

Winner will receive a $50 Bead Inspirations gift certificate!
Submissions are due by noon (PST), Thursday, June 30, 2016.

Our inspiration for this challenge is also a tribute to the artist known as Prince (1958-2016). Whether you would also like to pay tribute to Prince, just love the color purple, or are intrigued by a challenge, here’s your chance to show your creative spirit with inspiring jewelry of your own design. Using ANY purple or garnet colored beads from Bead Inspirations including Amethyst, Ametrine, Garnet, Czech glass, Swarovski Pearls, Fresh Water Pearls, and Crystals. You may also be inspired by other purple components or supplies like purple leather or purple patina paint! We challenge you to design your own piece of jewelry to enter into our contest. Grab your bead tray, tools, and findings, because it’s time to start creating!

To enter our Design Challenge: Email submissions to create@beadinspirations.com and include the challenge name in the subject line.

Read our contest rules for more info.  Shop our purple beads online!

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Memorial Day Weekend Classes in Alameda

We’ve got something fun happening every day this weekend. Check these out &
sign up to reserve your spot!

Saturday: Flat Strap Bracelet, with riveting, eyelet-setting, leather stamping

Flat Strap Bracelet & Earrings
Flat Strap Bracelets
leather stamping
Design your own unique bracelet using leather, cork, or cotton flat straps.
Learn to rivet, and make eyelets in any of the flat straps. Learn to stamp leather!
No previous experience needed. Taught by Suzy Schuman.

Sunday: Coiling, Weaving and Wrapping Class

Learn how to beautifully coil, weave, and wire wrap stones to create your own
beautiful, unique pendants. With these techniques, you will take your wire wrapping
skills to the next level and be amazed at the professional pieces you create!
Prerequisite: Student must be very comfortable with the basic wire wrap. Taught by Roberta Miller

Monday: Tin Cup Necklace Class

Make the “Tin Cup” necklace sported by Rene Russo in the movie Tin Cup! In this new exciting class, you will use silk thread bead cord with beads and crystal beads to create the illusion of a floating bead necklace. The possibilities are endless and the result is amazing! Taught by Dona Fisher.

Where: Bead Inspirations
1544 Park Street
Alameda, CA 94501

Sign up today to reserve your spot!

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Design Tip: Use Bead Caps!

If you’ve you are designing jewelry and want to make your design really pop: use bead caps! If you peruse
our necklace design ideas, bracelet design ideas, and earring design ideas, you will notice a lot of bead caps and spacers. My favorite designs use a lot of bead caps. Below are some samples of some jewelry designs
using bead caps.

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Filed under Creativity Tips, Jewelry Design Ideas, Tips, Tips, techniques & tools for jewelry making

Beautiful Zipper Pulls

Robbie came into my Alameda bead shop with 3 dresses with zippers down the back.  With her arthritic hands, she finds them difficult to pull up and down with the tiny little zipper pull that comes standard on the zipper.  She talked with a friend about a possible solution and they thought that putting a loop of some type on the zipper instead of the standard zipper pull would be better, and that Bead Inspirations might have just the thing.  Then she could use a hook to pull it up and down.  So we looked through our toggle clasps and Vintaj components section to find some things that were decorative enough for the dresses.

I attached them with a jump ring over the existing zipper pull.  For the silver toggle ring, we used the nice heavy rhodium-plated jump ring.  With the Vintaj components, we used the Vintaj 7.25mm brass jump ring.

On one of the dresses, the neckline had a lot going on, so she didn’t expect to wear jewelry with it.  So we added a little decoration to the zipper pull.  We used the Vintaj Waterlily Pendant, added Vintaj Brass Fine Ornate Chain and crystals.
It was fun to help her with this creative solution. Robbie’s going to look great in her new dresses at her upcoming events!

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Vintaj Arte Metal Jewelry Designs

Vintaj Arte Metal is a ferrite-based alloy.  It is 100% nickel and lead free compliant just like the Vintaj Natural Brass line.  Eco-friendly, “green” processes are used to age both metals which include rubbing with natural oils to achieve their unique color and luster.  No environmentally harmful chemicals are used in our process.   These are not plated in any way, but left in their natural state.
Key to My Heart Necklace
Violet Garden Necklace
The necklace above features the following Vintaj products: ADP0007, ADP0023, AP0018, C4H10, CH30, CL45.

Altered Daisies

Antique Coin Bracelet – Designer: Mackie Mullane. Components include: Ancient Chinese Coin, AHW018, ADP0025, CL0004, JR60, JRD10. The Antique Coin can be secured with Vintaj Bronze 24g wire or Artistic
Wire Gun Metal 24g wire
. Use an embossing die or embossing folder to create the embossed effect.

Sweet Lovin Necklace – Designer: Rose Noble. Components include: AHW018, ACL50, CHW0008, VPK34827,
CHW0004, Petite Etched Cable Chain, DP0005, P290. Use the 1/8″ metal letter stamps or select another cool font!

The necklace above, designed by Wendy Mullane, uses the following Vintaj Brass and Arte Metal components:
Bamboo Bezel Large Pendant, model no. 9317
, Deco Vines Filigree – wrap, model no. 6971, Bird Charm, model no. 6938, Nail Head Rivet 1/4″, model no. RV010, Round Keyhole Decorivet, model no. 13040, Crimp End 8mm, model no. 7856, Suede Cord – Dark Brown, model no. 5226, Jump Ring – 7.25mm, model no. 5638.

Copper Fields
Vintaj Jewelry Design - Purple Pansy
The necklace above, designed by Mackie Mullane, uses Vintaj Patina Kit – Antique Window, Vintaj
Arte Metal Nouveau Floret ADP0002
, Vintaj Scrolled Filigree Ring, Vintaj Delicate Crest Filigree.

Rock On

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Sara Pedersen taught her first class here at Bead Inspirations, teaching students how to make the Wrap Bracelet in our Alameda bead shop.  The class was full of jewelry making enthusiasts and people made really cool bracelets!  Here’s some samples.

Janice used all components from Bead Inspirations.

Janice used all components from Bead Inspirations.

Janice is regularly in our shop looking for beading supplies.  Her project included the Tierracast copper plated leaf button, 2mm brown leather cord, and 8mm round jade beads (only available in our Alameda bead store).

Diane used 1.5mm brown leather with water agate beads.

Diane used 1.5mm brown leather with water agate beads.

Diane from San Francisco used 1.5mm brown leather with 6mm faceted water agate beads (only available in our Alameda bead store).

Maureen is using this adorable chihuahua button as her clasp.

Maureen is using this adorable chihuahua button as her clasp.

Maureen from Walnut Creek let me know today that she has a chihuahua and has bought some of our chihuahua charms.

It was so fun to see everyone’s projects, unique and beautiful.  Sara will teach the Wrap Bracelet Class again on Saturday, November 2, for those who didn’t make it today.  Sign up and reserve your spot before it fills up!

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Leather Debut!

We’ve been enjoying making creative new leather bracelets at the Leather Debut Free Make & Take! There are more chances to make leather bracelets for Sunday & Monday.

Setsuko hammering leather bracelet
Leather Bracelets by Setsuko and Shino
Setsuko and Shino added personal touches.
Leather Bracelets by Vicki and Cindy
Cindy added some unique embellishments on the red bracelet. Vicki added some decorivets.

Leather Charm keeper Necklace by Judi
Judi created the charm keeper in red leather with gold findings.
Leather Bracelets by Zanella and Ainsley
Zanella is working on a Lazy Zig-Zag Bracelet with gold and brass oxide findings.
Ainsley showed what to do with the D-ring sets.

Leather Bracelets by Gypsy & friends
Gypsy & friends made these three bracelets above.

Check out our new selection of leather straps and leather findings, with an introductory sale of 10% off our already low prices! Saturday, Sunday, Monday August 31, Sept 1 and 2, 2013 in our retail & webstore.
Frequent Beaders get up to an additional 5% off. No further discounts.

Times for Free Make & Take

Saturday 12-2pm
Sunday 1-4pm
Monday 2-5pm

The first 20 people on each day will get a free make & take project! Choose from either the necklace or the bracelet. The free make & take project includes the leather, rivets and clasp to complete the project shown. However, it does not include embellishments or charms. If you arrive after the free make & take projects have been claimed, you can still participated, but will need to pay for the materials, which are just over $7 and on sale!

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