27 February 2012

Color Inspiration from Fusion Beads

"It is not the form that dictates the color, but the color that brings out the form." ~ Hans Hoffman

FusionBeads invited me to be part of their new Blog Partner program. 

For February they sent me a colorful mix of Swarovski crystals as part of their kick-off to the Pantone color forecast. 

The mix that I received is called Fruity*. The colors are blue zircon, chrysolite opal, Indian pink, sand opal and sunflower. Woah! These are bright and fruity and full of fun! But they are also way far out of my comfort zone. But that is okay, because sometimes I need a good kick in the pants with a colorful boot print and this is just the kick that I got.

{February Simple Truths Sampler Club limited edition - find out more about the club here}

When I first opened up the package I happened to have one remaining charm from the February Simple Truths Sampler Club left on my bead table (sometimes I can't count correctly when I make them ;-). This month was a lovely lotus blossom with a message from Rumi - "let the beauty we love be what we do." While each one was slightly different, this particular one had a soft blue background and a bright pink bloom. 

Humblebeads work magically with my 'simple truths' pendants. I was quite surprised to find that I had some of Heather's disk beads in blue, pink and yellow. From there the design came together quickly. I fished out some of my favorite chain of all time (I got this so long ago and can't even recall where, and these are almost the last links that I have!). I used some wire to wrap some of the links with the tiniest of the Swarovski crystals in 3mm. 

I also discovered that I had some silks in those same fruity colors, so I knotted them to the back of the piece to make it more comfortable. I used some Vintaj Flourish bead caps to hide the knots.

{Let the Beauty We Love available on Etsy}
But after I finished this one, I realized that I didn't use all the crystals that I was sent. I don't usually make crystals the star in a design. They are more like the best supporting actor role.

So I pulled out the blue zircon, chrysolite opal and the sand opal and noticed that they worked really well with a lovely pendant and charm set that I had from Marsha Neal.  I pulled out the blue wire from my Soft Flex Trio Egg Hunt. I wove the wire alternating various crystals through some chunky rings and some dottie rings that I had lying around. I finished the necklace with a few strands of brass chain studded with more of the crystals. To make it a set, I created some kicky earrings with a load of tiny 3mm crystals wire wrapped to some chain with the charms below. I think that I am jealous of all those about to embark on the Bead Cruise, so I called this "Island Escape."

{Island Escape available on Etsy}

And yet, I STILL have crystals left! FusionBeads was so very generous! So I decided on one more piece, a bracelet. I have been inspired by Kerry Bogert's book Totally Twisted (and she is working on her second one - can't wait!) so I thought I would make a piece that is a nod to her Bang Gals bracelets. 

I have had this lovely glass focal bead from KelleysBeads for far too long. I don't even know what possessed me to order it as pink is truly not a color that I embrace. Not only did I get this big focal bead, but I also bought a set of smaller spacers that coordinated. All I can say in my defense is that when I commit to buy I really get committed! I pulled out a few more things that went with this pink palette: dottie glass bead from JulsBeads, polymer clay bead from Jeannie Dukic, yellow ceramic bead from Splendid Loon Studio. I twisted some colorful wire in baby pink, peridot green and bright fuschia. But wait! Where are those crystals? I knotted and wrapped some sari silk and ribbons in coordinating colors and then overwrapped them with gold filled wire and some of the remaining crystals in pink and sunflower yellow. I call this bangle "Spring Fever" and I plan to donate it to a fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Club coming up next month.
{Spring Fever}

Thanks for joining me on this first FusionBeads Blog Partner post! Looking forward to what goodies they will send me next month!

*FTC compliance disclosure: the '*' items mentioned in this post credited to Fusion Beads were provided as a promotional gift for review or design purposes.

Be sure to come back on Wednesday, February 29th for the reveal of the Challenge of Music hop. I expect it will be quite a rockin' party!


KayzKreationz said...

Those all turned out really great. I love all the colors. And I love the color pallette, especially the Tangerine Tango that's popular this year. Congrats on the Blog partnership.

Alice said...


I love all three pieces, and couldn't pick a favorite if I had to!

I adore the Fusion Beads crystal mixes and have more than my fair share of them. They are so versatile and can be tucked into tiny places, or used as the star of the show.

Congratulations on being chosen as a Fusion Beads blog partner!

Kathleen Lange Klik said...

Gorgeous Erin! I feel immersed in Spring just looking at them. I like the different elements such as silk and wire that you incorporated. My favorite is island escape. I too would love to be heading off on the Bead Cruise...one of these years...

Designs by Dawn Marie said...

All so different, all so gorgeous! Your symmetrical asymmetry is just breathtaking! You always captivate me with your design style!

I "met" Fusion beads when I needed some Swarovski sequins for a Sherry Serafini class I took. Nobody else carried them. So we had our first "date" and I'm all McSwoony now because everything I got was gorgeous, packaged well and arrived quickly! SO happy you are on their design team! You did this mix of colors extremely proud! Great designs Erin!

Courtney said...

Beautiful work. I would never know that these colors are not your forte. So bright and happy.

Marcie Abney said...

This is so inspiring. I'm always stumped with what to do with Swarovski Crystals. I'm not used to so much bling, but I think you came up with a great solution to tone down the bling with the use of the fibers and brass. The pieces really look great. Congrats!

Therese's Treasures said...

Your work is always so amazing to me I love all three pieces you did such a wonderful job with using the crystals so that accent and not over power your designs. My favorite is the first necklace it is so pretty.

Erin S said...

Nice job, Erin! this color combo would have been way out of my comfort zone too, but you really pulled it off looking like this is where you always live. That is the always the sign of a great artistic eye.

SueBeads said...

You have been one busy girl! They are all gorgeous! Congrats for being picked by Fusion beads - I love them!

jeanniek said...

I heard somewhere that your designs are like a symphony of movement and beady composition. So true. I love that you use so many art beads in your designs. My problem is I don't have the time to be on line and shop. I need an shopping assist.
We'll meet back here on Wednesday.

Pips said...

I am in love! With all of them (but Island Escape is my favourite!). What amazing work work you have done din all the pieces!

Kristen said...

I totally second Jeannie's comment about your creations! How awesome for you to be chosen for their design team. They have no idea how lucky they are. I do shop there as well and have not yet been disappointed!

Tracy Statler said...

Congrats Erin! Your pieces are very special. You used those crystals and really made them work perfectly with your special style. I LOVE the spring fever bangle - so fun!


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