Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Purple Petal Palette Pickle

After months and months of thinking I'd magically "find" the time to get my full line of kits and tutorials on my Creative Pursuits shop and on my Etsy shop, I finally decided to get organized and just do it.  I made a chart and scheduled a handful of tasks each week.  If I can keep up with it, it'll take me until September to get it all done.  (I hate to say it, but I'm already a little bit behind after only one week.)

The first designs I decided to do are Ever-Evolving Spiral and its offshoot, Let's Shag, Baby because they are among my newest designs and weren't on my site at all.  I have the website shop pages up (see the links if you're interested), and I'm hopeful that in the next few days the Etsy listings will be up.

While I was doing that I remembered that I owed you a blog post.  When I posted about the Ever-Evolving Spiral that only used the first thickness to match a top (click here to catch up), I said, "Recently I bought a whole bunch of beads to match a top that needed the perfect jewelry, but that turned out to be more difficult than I thought it was going to be.  I'll show you that and give you a new tongue twister on Tuesday."  Um, that was about 10 months ago.  Oh, dear.  Now, I never did say which Tuesday, did I?  Today's Tuesday!  I think that counts for something.

Anyway - here's the tongue twister: Purple Petal Palette Pickle.  It really is a bit tricky to say.  Try it.  I'll wait...

Here's the top I was talking about:

It's very loose, soft, and flowing, and the fabric is thin, which is nice for warm days.  I like the 3/4 length sleeves, but I'm not fond of the elastic.  That may have to go at some point.  The deep scoop neck is perfect for a full Ever-Evolving Spiral necklace, but the colors turned out to be hard to match.

When I bought the beads, I thought I had a perfect combination:  permanent finish metallic lavender 8/0 seed beads, white 11/0 seed beads, opaque amethyst luster SuperDuos, and matte crystal AB Rizos.  I started stitching, and it was awful.  The white seed beads took over the whole piece.  I started experimenting with purples, but they were all too harsh for what I wanted.  None of them were "soft and flowing."  I had been looking only in my 11/0 rounds because I like those best for spirals, but I was desperate so I looked in my Delicas.  They're cylinder beads that are great for peyote but can be a little blocky in a spiral.  I found the perfect color, though, so I decided to live with a little blockiness.

After all that, it still didn't look quite right.  The core was too "Hey!  Don't ignore me!"  For a project like this, I wanted the core to blend in.  Soft and flowing...

I tried a bead that I've been having problems finding again, and it was perfect.

Here's my trial piece:

You should be able to click on it to see a large version.  At the left you can see the white seed beads and the different purples I tried.  At the almost-halfway point you can see the change to the blockier Delicas, and the core changes about 2/3 of the way in.

Here's a closer-up picture of the core change:

I know... It's subtle, but I really like the final result.

Since I had less than a hundred of that core bead left (8/0 Matte Crystal AB - #131FR for those following along), I needed to hunt them down.  Not only did I want them for this project, but I wanted to make this into kits for both designs.  Also, I love this color for spiral cores.  It doesn't detract from the other colors, helping them to look their best.  I found them (whew!) and was even able to get a few large bags, so I should be set for a while.

Here are the finished pieces:

I like Ever-Evolving Spiral for necklaces and Let's Shag, Baby for bracelets.  Rizos can be kinda pricey, so there's no sense spending a lot of money just so a bunch of them can hang out in my hair.  My hair is unappreciative of pricey beads.

So, how does it look with the top?

Not too bad!  I've had a lot of compliments on it.  I did change the name from "Purple Petal" to "Lilac Blossom" because it was more soft and flowing.  When I wore this to Steve's work picnic, my friend Kat (who works for the same company) said it looked like lilac blossoms.  I guess I picked the right name!

And here I am in the top and necklace:

I'm wearing the bracelet, too, but I couldn't figure out how to show it in the picture without it looking stupid.  Also in this picture you can see my new haircut and my new glasses.  In case you're wondering, yes, my glasses are purple.  They even have a bit of fanciness and bling on the temples.  The most important thing about them, though, is that they're not making me want to tear my eyes out of their sockets, which is a huge step above my first pair of new glasses.

I do wish I had made the necklace an inch or two longer.  There's still a lot of my chest showing with this neckline.  One of these days I'll remake it.  Yeah, I don't think so, either.  It took me nearly 10 months to get to this blog, and I have a huge backlog of not-already-done things that need doing as well as a few things that need fixing.  Not to mention that chart of website and Etsy tasks that need doing.

So that's my purple petal palette pickle.  If you'd like to make your own Lilac Blossom necklace and bracelet, please check out my shop pages: Ever-Evolving Spiral and Let's Shag, Baby.  If you get the tutorial for Ever-Evolving Spiral, you will not need the one for Let's Shag, Baby.  It's the same technique but slimmed down for just the one thickness.

If you get the tutorial and choose your own colors, I'd love to see them!  E-mail pictures of your final pieces (perhaps with you wearing them?) to traci@creative-pursuits.biz, and I'll feature you in a blog post!  It won't take me 10 months to post it.  I promise.

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