Happy Springtime, our dear friends! Read in April's issue of
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Clear quartz is the universal stone. Everyone
should have one! It is a pure and powerful energy
source. It receives, activates, stores, transmits,
and amplifies energy. Stimulates brain functions
and activates all levels of consciousness. Excellent
for meditation. Brings harmony to the soul. Zodiac
signs: all of them.
Diamonds are forever
As well as
clear quartz, a gemstone for April is diamond. Diamond
(from the ancient Greek ADAMAS, meaning unbreakable,
proper, or unalterable) is one of the best-known and most
sought-after gemstones. Diamonds have been known to
humankind and used as decorative items since ancient times;
some of the earliest references can be traced to India.
Diamond's hardness and high dispersion of light - giving
the diamond its characteristic "fire" - make it useful for
industrial applications and desirable as jewelry. Diamonds
are such a highly traded commodity that multiple
organizations have been created for grading and certifying
them based on the four Cs, which are carat, cut, color, and
clarity. Other characteristics, such as shape and presence
or lack of fluorescence, also affect the desirability and
thus the value of a diamond used for jewelry.
The carat weight measures the mass of a diamond. One carat
is defined as 200 milligrams (about 0.007 ounce avoirdupois).
The point unit equal to one one-hundredth of a carat (0.01
carat, or 2 mg) is commonly used for diamonds of less than
one carat. All else being equal, the price per carat
increases with carat weight, since larger diamonds are
both rarer and more desirable for use as gemstones.
Clarity is a measure of internal defects of a diamond called
inclusions. Inclusions may be crystals of a foreign material
or another diamond crystal, or structural imperfections
such as tiny cracks that can appear whitish or cloudy. The
number, size, color, relative location, orientation, and
visibility of inclusions can all affect the relative clarity
of a diamond.
The most fine quality as per color grading is totally
colorless which is Graded as "D" color diamond across the
globe which means it is absolutely free from any color. The
next is very slight traces of color, which can be observed by
any expert diamond valuer/grading laboratory.
Diamonds, which show very little traces of color, are graded
as E, F, G or H color diamonds. Slightly colored diamonds
are graded as I or J or K colors. A diamond can be found in
any other color also other than colorless. Some of the color
diamonds such as pink are very rare diamonds and are
Diamond cutting is the art and science of creating a
gem-quality diamond out of mined rough. The cut of a
diamond describes the manner in which a diamond has been
shaped and polished from its beginning form as a rough
stone to its final gem proportions. Often diamond cut is
confused with "shape".
The most famous use of the diamond in jewelry is in
engagement rings, which became popular in the early to mid
1900s due to an advertising campaign by the De Beers company,
though diamond rings have been used to symbolize engagements
since at least the 15th century. The diamond's high value
has also been the driving force behind dictators and
revolutionary entities, especially in Africa, using slave
and child labor to mine blood diamonds to fund conflicts.
Fashion Colorworks 2010
One of the contest jurors, Kerrie Slade, said, "Now, there are lots
of good reasons to have a go at this contest, not only is it a great
personal challenge to work in set color combinations, but it's free
to enter, it's open to international entrants, judging is from photos
only (so you don't have to worry about packing and posting your
creation) and there are prizes to be won - how many beading contests
can say all of that?" The contest continues, you can submit your
entries for the Fashion Colorworks 2010 Beading Contest until June 15.
We are looking forward to seeing your amazing beaded objects at the
Our featured artist today, extraordinary beadworker Beverly
Choy is from Richmond, Texas. Beverly started beading back in
2001, about a year after she had been diagnosed with bipolar
disorder. Her mom had a container of beads for embellishing
her sewing and Beverly looked at them and asked if she could
borrow the container for a few days. Beverly had a tattoo of
a koi fish in mind and knew nothing about bead embroidery or
beading, but she knew she wanted to bead one. Four days later,
her fish was done and she was absolutely hooked on beading!
Beverly says, "I spent the next year learning everything I
could online, then started finding magazines and books at
the local bead shops. Talk about being in heaven! I
progressed into making beaded collars, teaching myself
different techniques, finding out what worked for me and
what didn't, but bead embroidery remained my favorite for
I now have two favorite techniques, bead embroidery and freeform. I think I
moved towards freeform because my thoughts aren't always organized enough
to stick with bead embroidery all the time. It was a struggle to do freeform, at
first. It's not easy to give up the structure and symmetry, but the longer I
practiced freeform, the more I began to love it and the more it helped me get
through the days where I couldn't focus on any one technique.
When I need inspiration for a piece, I love looking at ladies blouses and outfits.
There are also the fabrics at the stores that inspire me. Some of the colors that
are put together can be outlandish, but when transferred to beads, they are
absolutely stunning. Looking at the beadwork of other beaders is also a great
way to get inspiration. A lot of times, seeing someone mixing certain
techniques together will give me idea's for a piece of my own.
Sherry Serafini's "Mermaids Attire" brought tears to my eyes when I first saw it.
It was just such an explosion of techniques and texture, toned down with the
completeness of turquoise being the overall color, that I was just overwhelmed
with ideas. Laura McCabes' work is so intricate and structured. Heidi Kummli's
use of earthy colors and her vision of nature are just exquisite.
The bead embroidery techniques of Robin Atkins grabbed me when I first found
her and I still go back and have to check her books out for inspiration. There are
so many beaders that visit Beki Haley's forum "All About Beads" and post their
works, that it'd be impossible to list them all here. Everyone shares their finished
work and is so helpful to those who are just learning, that it's a treat to log in
Full article by Beverly Choy
Gallery of bead artwork by Beverly Choy
Do you get tired of wearing gold jewelry? Don't you want
a beaded necklace? Are you looking for unusual piece of
jewelry? Ok, buy or create a Steampunk article!
Steampunk is a sub-genre of science fiction and
speculative fiction, frequently featuring elements of
fantasy, which came into prominence in the 1980s and
early 1990s. The term denotes works set in an era or
world where steam power is still widely used - usually
the 19th century, and often Victorian era England -
but with prominent elements of either science fiction
Steampunk has a bit of an obsession with time. As such,
watches of all types, including wristwatches and
pocketwatches, are popular. In fact, clock parts are
often used in the construction of individual pieces of
steampunk jewelry. Gears and watch hands are used to
decorate larger pieces. Old-fashioned keys are also
very popular, as are bits of antique cast-offs, such
as pill cases, thread cutters and tiny knives.
Although it does exist, you will rarely find colors
such as gold or silver in steampunk jewelry. In order
to reflect an antique feel, steampunk avoids the use
if these bright, new colors. Instead, favored colors
are brass, bronze, copper and dark silvers such as
gunmetal, brushed aluminum and titanium. Black and
white is not popular; ecru, rich browns and shades
of gray are much more common.
If you're thinking of creating steampunk jewelry and
looking for some parts, you can surf well known suppliers'
websites, for instance,
Artbeads.com. Much more parts you can find on Etsy,
my favorite seller is
And the latest good news for steampunk jewelry makers -
Soft Flex Company announced another Flex Your Creativity
Beading Contest! The company is looking for Steampunk
designs using its beading wire. All entries must be
received by September 1, 2010, and prizes are exciting.
Enter Soft Flex Company Contest
Inspired by flowers
Born in Belorussia, Angelika Motzkin lives in Ashkelon,
Israel. She graduated from the College of Arts with a
degree in Crafts, and then worked as a teacher. Angelika
made a great success, and already in 1980s took part in
many national and international exhibitions. She learned
many techniques, but beading. In early 1990s Angelika
moved to Israel, and was enrolled in another College
of Arts, in the city of Ramat Gan, where she improved
her crafting skills.
Angelika felt free working with different media and
continued teaching. She found in shops a lot of new
unusual materials and wanted to try everything, one day
beads caught her eye, and she fell in love with beading.
Angelika was lucky enough; her first tutorial in beading
was the infamous "White Russian Beading" Book by M.
Anufrieva. Learned main techniques, being a creative
person Angelika soon started her own designs.
Except beading and crafting, Angelika has one more
passion; it's her small flower garden. And there is
no wonder, that flowers inspire Angelika, giving her
themes for her beadwork. Another source of Angelika's
inspiration is the nature of Israel, its history, and
everything else associated with that.
Once Angelika created a collection of jewelry featuring
caves, jugs, sand, and pitchers. As a rule, Angelika uses
pastel tones, her favorite color is green and any shades
of green. She likes the sea, and features it in many
works using pearls, shells, and corals.
Angelika spend much time teaching other beadwork lovers,
she helped many talented designers, one of them is well
known in beading world
Miriam Shimon. Angelika says, that she is grateful
to Gloria Landau, the owner of the shop
who supports her in learning fashion trends and in
researching new materials for beading.
Angelika took part in many exhibits in Israel, Russia,
and Ukraine. Last year Angelika was juried into the
Bead Dreams final in Seed Bead Jewelry category, and her
Opal Fantasy Necklace was exhibited in Milwaukee, WI.
Angelika says, that one of her greatest success is the
exhibition in the Tokyo Municipal Museum in Japan in
2009, where three her beadworks were showcased.
We wish Angelika further success!
Gallery of bead artwork by Angelika Motzkin
Bead artwork. Natural harmony jewelry
Step by step
Another small tutorial by Victoria Katamashvili
is about netting base embroidery. "It's as easy as one-to-three,"
says Victoria, and your plain bracelet transforms into
attractive piece of jewelry!
Tutorial by Victoria Katamashvili: Netting base embroidery
Netting base embroidery on bracelets by Victoria Katamashvili
International Gem & Jewelry Show
Columbus, OH - May 7-9
Marlborough, MA - May 7-9
Santa Monica, CA - May 14-16
Chicago, Il - May 14-16
The International Gem & Jewelry Show offers the greatest selection and lowest prices on
diamonds, gold, silver, beads, and more. Choose either costume or fine jewelry from more
than 350 exhibitors from around the world.
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