Making Elegant Jewelry for Special Occasions is a collection of simple and beautiful projects by a bunch of designers. The focus is elegant, classy designs that could be worn on formal dressy occasions. Classic, simple designs that shine, they are made with crystals, pearls, and metal findings and beads.
It's a very nice book for beginners. Especially for beginning beaders who aren't interested in seed beads but want to make beautiful simple jewelry.
The introduction explains the basics of bead stringing and beginning wire work. How to tie a surgeon's knot, to turn a loop,make a wrapped loop and a simple bail for a top drilled bead, as well as an overview of necessary tools.
The designs themselves are mostly very conservative. Using quality beads and findings, they are necklaces and bracelets that will never go out of fashion. A necklace like Sara Strauss's asymmetrical Pearl and Chain could be worn by a bride, and be passed down to her daughter to wear to prom.
The chapters are divided into Crystals, Pearls and Wire. The projects are almost all fast, in an evening projects.
Crystals has designs that range from lightweight, airy designs that would suit a teenage young lady very well to bold, sparkling designs that wouldn't look out of place on a red carpet. Favorite in this chapter is Focus on Simple Elegance, which combines chains, crystals and a crystal filigree component into a dramatic necklace which would pair with office professional clothing but would look gorgeous over a little black dress as well.
Pearls, my personal favorite, has instructions for knotted strand of pearls. The classic 3 strand pearl choker, and more delicate designs that use pearls as accents. My favorite in this chapter is Pearl and Chain necklace mentioned above.
In wire, wire takes the stage with beads. There are instructions for a simple hoop earring that could easily become a favorite quick project. Other simple and pretty wire projects fill out the chapter, ending with my favorite project, the Suspended Briolette necklace which combines wire components, crystal beads and briolettes into a lovely pendant.
A good book for beginning beaders. The classic designs make them great for gifts, weddings, and formal occasions.
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