Friday

BEAD KIT REVIEW


FRINGE CATERPILLAR BRACELET
Finished June 2008
This bracelet was a kit made up by Bead Artistry. They are great at putting together just the perfect colors. Lots of 4,5,6mm beads and crystals as well as interesting natural stone shapes, and enough beads to complete the bracelet were inside the kit. I chose a pinky beige color for my bracelet, and bought the kit before they put in the findings and thread because the colors were so pretty. They are new at putting kits together, so the instructions were a little vague with no detailed photos or examples of what to put together for your fringing. Granted it is a pretty free form design, but if your a beginner it's nice to have guidelines and examples. I took a photocopy of the actual bracelet so I had somewhat of an idea of how they put together the original bracelet. Instead of using soft flex as they suggested as the original base, and then using fireline for the fringe, I used fireline for the entire project so that it would have a more fluid feel to it. It took 6 hours or so to make, and I love the finished results. Photo to come

_ CRYSTAL PIN PENDANTS
Finished - October -2007
First of all I have to say my instructions differ from my friends instructions for the same pin. Steps have been moved around and bead size substitutions were different as well. Not sure which kit came first, but it is something to make note of.

The Crystal Pin Kit by Melanie Potter, which I purchased a few months ago, is a small pin with points of crystals. Heavy and substantial it is a fine beadwork piece! The kit comes with supplies for two, of which I was able to pick my color schemes. I decided on a pearl kit and a crystal kit. The kits are expensive, but I think well worth the knowledge. The finished result of this kit is spectacular I have to say. I decided to make my piece a pendant rather than a pin. Her instructions were very good, although there was just one little part in it, that was a bit confusing, where originally I worked on the front, it was clear to me this was not correct and I took it out and worked it on the back to get it to work up correctly. Correcting it was not a major issue, and honestly it looked good this way too!!(Isn't that how many great new ideas come about?) There were plenty of beads in the kit, and her instructions are all in color. I would give her diagrams a score of 9 out of 10, because there were a few questions of placement...but overall instructions were very good and I was pleased with the ease of the wording. This is not a kit for a beginner however. One or two portions skimmed over basic knowledge of a particular stitch, which is no biggie to me, but if you're a beginner this might be a problem. It took me 6 or so hours each to make. If you do get stuck with this type of pattern, I'm sure she would be happy to help via phone or email. I love my pendant and it certainly would be something to hand down to the next generation as a vintage beaded piece. The only complaint I have is finding more supplies (the crystal drops) to make more. Not everyone carries the crystal faceted drops or the teeny rose montees.BERRY AND LEAF BRACELET
Finished - September-2007
I finished!!! The Berry and Leaf Bracelet kit by Stephanie Eddy is fun and challenging. I had been periodically working on this kit since April. (I've been way busy!!) This is a great kit to pick up, take with you, and put down. Lots of small components that each work up quickly. If you love leaves this is for you!!!! I have taken this project with me on many air trips. Aside from this project, I was able to work on other things and set this one aside. I do love the finished result. The kit had enough beads, good color combination, easy to follow instructions. All beads clearly marked as to which color to use. She includes a photo of an actual size finished base which you may use to measure your wrist. I will say that it helps to have a knowledge of putting together components. There were no instructions for how to put all the pieces together once you finished them all up. The fill-in glass leaves had no instructions on how to put them on, but I had no problem with this since I have used leaves quite a lot in designs, so this is a consideration if you are a beginner. You must rely solely on the photograph in the kit and your own design sense and skills. I placed all the beading components in my own version of what I saw in the photo and how I liked it to look. It worked up great! I made extra components and filled in here and there. I have made other designs of Stephanie's and they are equally beautiful.

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