SMP Craft
19 Feb

CRAFT FASHION ALERT: PARACORD Jewelry + Free Project Downloads!

Fashion Week in NYC officially ended yesterday and since paracord (aka parachute cord)–one of the most forgiving, fun, and affordable materials to design and craft with–was noticeably absent (Wha?) from the runways, we’re having our very own mini paracord design showcase here!

To kickstart the Friday fun, we’re giving you TWO (2) FREE PROJECT DOWNLOADS from Made in Paracord: 25 Great Jewelry, Accessories, and Home Projects to Knot by Caitlin Wynne:

Download for free here, the SIMPLE NECKLACE and the BRACELET WITH BLING!

SimpleNecklace_image

Free Project Download: Simple Necklace from Made in Paracord

 

BraceletwithBling_image

Free Project Download: Bracelet with Bling from Made in Paracord

Want to make more with paracord? All of the projects in Made in Paracord are modern, fun, beautiful and require virtually no skills. Create your own pieces to keep or give as a handmade gift!

Maybe this plant holder?

PlantHolder

DIY Paracord Plant Holder

 What about this pot or pencil holder?

PotPencilHolder

DIY Paracord Pot or Pencil Holder

Or this chair… which I’m dying to make myself…

Chair

DIY Paracord Chair

Look! A dog leash!

DogLeash

DIY Paracord Dog Leash

 Find these fabulous, affordable, simple paracord craft projects and more in Made in Paracord–at your favorite bookseller:

Paracord cover

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Powell’s Books

Happy weekend crafting!

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1 Jun

Goodreads Giveaway: Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelry Makers

Did you grab last week’s Freebie Friday project from the fantastic book Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelry Makers? If you did, I bet you’re ready for more. And you’re in luck, because we’re giving this bad boy away!

No other book currently available focuses on the use and application of ready-made settings, which are most commonly used by jewelers today. Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelry Makers not only shows you how to use and incorporate these settings into existing designs but also teaches you how to make settings from scratch. Also included is an overview of tools and materials, accompanied by an in-depth guide to choosing and evaluating a variety of stones. The second part covers the range of settings available—from bezel to prong to snap settings—and uses step-by-step instructions explaining how to set cabochons, faceted stones, and other variants. A handy section in the back contains care, maintenance, and repair advice, plus a gallery of gorgeous finished pieces.

This book combines everything you need to know about this specialized craft all in one place, making this an indispensable reference for beginners and professionals alike.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelry Makers by Melissa Hunt

Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelry Makers

by Melissa Hunt

Giveaway ends June 05, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

 

Or if you just can’t wait, buy it now.

Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelry Makers

Barnes & Noble
Indiebound
Amazon
Books-a-Million
Powell’s Books


Check out our June and July titles:

3D_LoomKnitting-100x140 3D_LoomKnitting-100x140

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30 May

Freebie Friday: How to Bead with Wire

When I was a kid one of my favorite things to do was make my own jewelry. Granted, they were all pretty similar looking (i.e., multicolored beads herded onto a piece of string), but they were mine, darn it, and if Etsy had existed back then I would’ve had a shop set up in no time.

Luckily there are lots more options for us grown-up crafters, and I’ve got a quick and easy FREE PROJECT for you that clearly explains how to use wire (not string!) to make your own beaded jewelry.

Here’s a pretty example from our book Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelery Makers.

Birch wood and glass beads threaded with wire. Bracelet by Lucie Veilleux.

Birch wood and glass beads threaded
with wire. Bracelet by Lucie Veilleux.

 

Clear step-by-step illustrations combined with concise instructions and practical advice make this book an invaluable reference for professional jewelry makers, students, and (yep) Etsy sellers.

Green fluorite stones wrapped in sterling silver wire. Earrings by Erin Staples.

No other book currently available focuses on the use and application of ready-made settings, which are most commonly used by jewelers today. Stonesetting not only shows you how to use and incorporate these settings into existing designs but also teaches you how to make settings from scratch. Also included is an overview of tools and materials, accompanied by an in-depth guide to choosing and evaluating a variety of stones. The second part covers the range of settings available—from bezel to prong to snap settings—and uses step-by-step instructions explaining how to set cabochons, faceted stones, and other variants. A handy section in the back contains care, maintenance, and repair advice, plus a gallery of gorgeous finished pieces.

Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelry Makers combines everything you need to know about this specialized craft all in one place, making this an indispensible reference for beginners and professionals alike.

Stonesetting for Contemporary Jewelry Makers

Be sure to check back in on Sunday for a chance to win a copy on Goodreads!

Or if you just can’t wait (and who can blame you?), buy it now.

 Barnes & Noble
Indiebound
Amazon
Books-a-Million
Powell’s Books

Check out our May and June titles:
3D_GameDay-206x3003D_FloralKnits-206x3003D_LoomKnitting-100x140

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21 Feb

Freebie Friday: Ladder Stitch Beading

Today’s official FREEBIE DOWNLOAD is a tip on ladder stitching!

bbpdf060878lrgvia bnb.jewelrymakingmagazines.com

I used to make necklaces and bracelets all the time as a kid. Now I can have that same fun and sense of accomplishment – but create something I’d actually wear!

Just like having an expert on call 24 hours a day, 200 Beading Tips, Techniques & Trade Secrets provides the answers to any beading questions or dilemmas you might have.

Whether stringing, wiring, or beadweaving, step-by-step photographs, diagrams, and clear instructions will guide you through each stage of your work. The techniques are organized in the order you need them when making a project, from using the right tools and materials to finishing tips for neat, professional results–or you can dip in for help with a particular problem.

Whether you’re using large glass beads, crystal, or seed beads, using wirework techniques or stitches, making jewelry as gifts or to sell, 200 beading Tips, Techniques & Trade Secrets has all the answers!

9780312587475_FC

Barnes & Noble
IndieBound
Amazon
Books-a-Million
Powell’s Books
Walmart

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30 Jul

The Simplicity and Elegance of Bead Crochet Jewelry

 

 

Bead Crochet Jewelry (click on cover to buy)
An Inspired Journey through 27 Designs
by Bert Rachel Freed and Dana Elizabeth Freed
$22.99/$26.50 Can.
144 pages, trade paperback with French flaps

Bert and Dana Freed are a mother-daughter design team and the authors of our new book Bead Crochet Jewelry, which features a stunning range of 27 designs, showcasing a dazzling use of color and texture for jewelry that looks elegant and intricate. The projects range from simple single-crocheted strands of beads to impressive rope-like circular crocheted pieces.

Here are four different designs for the Bang-for-Your Buck Necklace, using alternating beads and single crochet stitch.

 

Bert and Dana stopped by our office recently to conduct SMP’s first-ever Lunch & Learn. Armed with a trunk full of spools of cord, beads galore, and their handy Confetti Chain Stitch Necklace kits (sold here) they showed us just how easy it is to create your own beautiful beaded creations.

Circular crochet is used to make up the necklace and chain links in the
Linked-Together Necklace

 

I have to admit that when I was first working on the book, I thought that the projects might be too difficult for me since I’m just a novice crocheter. The idea of pairing my mediocre crocheting skills with beadwork (something I’ve never done before) sounded intimidating and overwhelming. I’m happy to say that I was proven wrong.

At the Lunch & Learn, Bert and Dana passed out crochet hooks, strands of cord, and little packets of beads in an assortment of colors, shapes, and types. The first step was to figure out in what order to strand the beads on to the cord. This was the most challenging and fun part of the lesson. With the beads spilled out in front of me, the possibilities were endless! In the book, Bert and Dana extensively cover how to work color into your bead crochet projects, and really encourage you to play and experiment with the color combinations of cords and beads. They explain how different-colored cords produce a variety of results when paired with different beads. Below are two examples of the same color of beads being used with three different color threads, but look at how different the results are:

After divvying up my beads into families of colors and stranding them, I was ready to start crocheting. Bert and Dana went around the room and guided everyone through the easy steps of making a single crochet stitch, then moving the beads one-by-one up the cord after each stitch. So easy! Even the complete beginners in the room got the hang of it! I was so excited by how simple it was to make this necklace, I couldn’t wait to get home finish what I started. End result?

The finished product!

 

I love my new necklace and I’ve been getting tons of compliments every time I wear it out. Who knew that all it would take was one night of single crocheting in front of the tv? It really went that quickly! I love the combination of the beads and how each one is different from it’s neighbor.

Now my next project is to tackle circular crochet, so I can make one of the fabulous rope-like pieces in the book. I’d like to start with the Center of the Universe bracelet. I love the look of the spiraling colors and the central focal bead.

Center of the Universe Bracelet

A close up step-by-step photo of how to do circular crochet

I started practicing the circular crochet technique after I finished my necklace. The step-by-step photos in the book really make it easy to follow all the steps. The photos clearly reflect the placement of beads on the cord, and what your hook should be doing at each interval. It makes it impossible to get lost in the process.

Now that I’ve got this new technique under my belt, I can’t wait to start playing with bead combinations and making up brand-new pieces of jewelry that I know will garner more compliments from friends. I think I’d better start clearing out another corner of my craft closet to make way for my new obsession!


 

Leaves and Daggers and Drops, Oh My! Lariat

 

The Dana Bangle

 

Luster-and-Cluster Necklace

 

Forget-Me-Knot Bracelet

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CAUGHT CRAFTING: SMPCraft’s Spotlight on NYC Crafting

SMPCRAFT #CAUGHTCRAFTING Thursday morning, Astoria, Queens. Accessorizing with a lovely temporary floral tattoo she learned to make from DIY Temporary Tattoos: Draw It, Print It, Ink It by Pepper Baldwin!

PROJECT OF THE MONTH: JUNE DIY Father’s Day Gifts to MAKE NOW

PROJECT OF THE MONTH: JUNE DIY Father’s Day Gifts to MAKE NOW

Father's Day is less than three weeks away -- Sunday, June 19th in the U.S. -- just enough time to start prepping for what would make dear old pops feel loved....What dad, what MAN, wouldn't want to get a bright red tool box full of homemade BBQ, bacon, and chili flavored chocolate? Or a handmade Paracord hammock? Does he play golf?--hand dipped tees? Does he like to hike? Enjoy nature and the great outdoors? How about homemade beef jerky? Or does he enjoy watching sports--Remote Control Cookie? What about beer? One of the coolest new items coming out of Japan is a Frozen Beer Slushy Maker by Kirin Ichiban that perfectly pairs with the DIY black and tan soap! Scroll and click for more homemade DIY Father's Day gift ideas sure to make pappy happy! Hashtag #SMPCRAFT #DIYFATHERSDAY!

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