Sunday, August 30, 2009

Tutorial: The Under 15 minute Botanical Silk Corsage Bracelet

Well, like I mentioned on my website a few days ago, I had such a blast in Philly that I brought home the flu too. So I took Tuesday to Thursday off from the studio to rest a bit, worked on paperwork and updated the site with the Botanicals catalog. (Not really resting but... not in the studio in the 100 degree weather.) You can now find photos of the 23 (and I'm not done creating more yet) Botanical colors now available. There are some limited edition colors made from rare production glass rods from my vault. I still have more rods to go through so who knows what floral colors will turn up next. Stay tuned!

So at Philly Bead Fest I was showing off my "Under 15 minute" Botanical Silk Corsage Bracelet. I am sure you can utilize this idea for other types of beads/materials but the bracelet turned out so beautiful using silk ribbons from my friends, Fran and Judy, of Class Act Designs. Simplicity is the key here, not only in materials but in techniques. Sometimes you don't need to employ seedbeading and hours of labor to make a wonderful "instant gratification" and "I am DONE?" piece of jewelry. The flowers on THIS corsage will live forever and a perfect gift to make for yourself (or someone special). I used the Professional Precision Tools for the wrapped loops.

Here goes my first free online tutorial!

All you need to make this wonderful corsage bracelet is three 6mm Swarovski Margarita crystals (Crystal AB is what I used); three 1.5" headpins, three Botanicals (I used BT005 for this sample), three 8/o seed beads (or any leftover bead about 3mm for cushioning between the wire and Botanical flower) and one silk ribbon from Class Act Designs (or similar product). Make shank buttons as shown above using the wrapped loop technique.

Carefully slide the three Botanical buttons onto the silk ribbon. Center the three as best as you can, visually. I spaced mine about 1/4" apart. You are done making the bracelet! Walla.... really? Yes you are REALLY done.

To wear the bracelet, center the flowers on your wrist. Wrap ribbon around your wrist, criss-crossing through the center to lock the flowers. Wrap ribbon as much as you'd like around your wrist until there is just enough remaining ribbon to create a square knot. Then tie a loose but secure square knot. Don't knot so tight that you can't undo the bracelet later. Lastly, tuck the knot under one of the ribbon wraps to hide. If you practice, you can tie the bracelet around by yourself without any help.

There you are! Wear and enjoy the bracelet. Make a few more as these make wonderful quick gifts that won't break the bank.

Disclaimer: Dependent on how proficient you are in making wrapped loops, creating the button shanks may take you longer than 15 minutes but that is an average. You may also want to periodically iron your silk ribbon so that the ribbon lays flat with each wear.

So go have some fun with the Botanicals! Look below at some of the bracelets I've made recently! (No, they were not all for me)

Using Botanicals Item #BT013

Using Botanicals Item #BT014 Limited Edition

Using Botanicals Item #BT004

P.S. Talk about ambidextrous. I took all the photos above with my left hand while my right wrist was being modeled!

Until next time,

Bead Simple but Creatively

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