The Beauty of Spring -Freshwater Pearl Handmade Necklace

At the beginning of February I was invited to join the Artbeads Design Partner Blog Program. All I would have to do is blog about the bead products I receive. It was difficult to choose which products I wanted to try out and after a few days of pondering design ideas, I decided to go with some lovely Freshwater Pearls. Of course, I couldn't help but to also get some Swarovski Crystal accents to use in the design.

Freshwater Pearl Dragonfly Charm Lariat Necklace (N099)February was themed as The Beauty of Spring and I was given free reign to interpret this theme in my own creative way. No restrictions (love it!). So my interpretation included a sterling silver dragonfly charm I already had in stock. I chose three distinct freshwater pearl colors: olive, light blue and peacock with a light sapphire crystal for accent. I was especially interested in seeing the luster of the pearls as my idea to include a dragonfly charm in my design, represented to me that iridescent shimmer of the dragonfly.

Using these beautiful pearls and crystals, I wire wrapped them along with some sterling silver rings. The focal dragonfly charm is made even more beautiful as it slips through a hand wrought and hammered sterling silver teardrop loop for a lovely lariat style Handmade Freshwater Pearl Dragonfly Charm Lariat Necklace (N099).

Overall, I was extremely pleased with the products I received. I rarely work with freshwater pearls and the size, shape and luster were right on target for my delicate design.

Disclosure: As a Design Partner of Artbeads.com, I periodically receive products, beads and/or components free of charge. I have been asked to review these products and give my honest opinion of the products...positive or negative. I have in no way been compensated by Artbeads.com for my endorsement as it pertains to the products received and reviewed.

And the Winner is......

Congratulations to LADYPIE for winning the Tracy Iolite Earrings from Jewelry by Jackie!! The winner was chosen by random.org and I didn't find anyway to contact this person, so hopefully, she is following the blog. LADYPIE please contact me no later than February 28th to claim your prize (use the "contact us" link at the top of the page). Should I not hear from LADYPIE by the 28th, another random winner will be chosen.

Thank you to everyone who participated and left comments on Jackie's Jewelry and a big thank you to Jackie for offering her lovely earrings as a giveaway.

NEW Jewelry: Beaded Chain Gemstone Necklace

As it was, I had intended on blogging about this new beaded necklace on Friday. But, Studio Friday consisted of spending just about the entire day trying to figure out computer problems and why I couldn't connect to the internet. Very frustrating to say the least.
Golden Strawberry Quartz Gemstone Bead Necklace (N096)
Golden Strawberry Quartz Gemstone Bead Necklace (N096)
SOLD

It's still pretty cold here in Rochester, New York but with the sun coming out more I was recently inspired to design some beaded jewelry with a lighter feel to it. I've had these Golden Strawberry Quartz gemstones for a while now and I am absolutely thrilled with the finished design.
Golden Strawberry Quartz Gemstone Bead Necklace (N096), shown at a different angle
Golden Strawberry Quartz Gemstone Bead Necklace (N096)
from a different angle

This necklace is the first in a series of beaded chain necklaces that will be designed for the upcoming Spring and Summer months. I had been looking over past designs and have always liked the style of the Peas in a Pod Nephrite Jade Gemstone Beaded Necklace (N049) because it incorporates a little of everything I like: beading, chain and wire wrapping.
Golden Strawberry Quartz Gemstone Bead Necklace (N096), on necklace bust
Golden Strawberry Quartz Gemstone Bead Necklace (N096)
on necklace bust

What is so unique about the Golden Strawberry Quartz Gemstone Beaded Chain Necklace (N096) are the gemstones! In beautiful shades of brown, pink and cream, you can see a mix of bright yellow and orange in the brown gemstone beads. Adding to its' uniqueness is the fact, that no two gemstones are exactly alike.

The Golden Strawberry Quartz handcrafted beaded necklace is accented with an elegant sterling silver chain and circle links (another favorite of mine!) for a touch of modern allure.

Guest Post: Jewelry by Jackie

I was first introduced to Jewelry by Jackie in December 2009. We were both vendors at a local art show and although I am partial to Crystal Allure Jewelry (which shouldn't come as a surprise!), I was immediately drawn to Jackie's collection of fine wire jewelry. I am a beader, make no mistake, but I have also done some wire wrapping. I absolutely love wire wrapping and think it lends a special uniqueness to jewelry design, which is why Jackie's jewelry caught my eye. I especially love the leaf work, which can be seen in the featured earrings on the right. Here is what Jackie's had to say about them:

The Kathy Iolite earrings are one of my favorite new designs. I originally designed them as a birthday gift for one of my best friends. The earrings were such a hit, I decided to post them on my website for sale and name them after her!

As I talked more with Jackie, at the show, I learned she handcrafts each leaf, earwire and head pin using sterling silver wire. Every piece is truly unique and can never be duplicated. Jackie's jewelry has a distinctive look to it, very delicate and modern. My personal fav is the Sterling Silver Leaf Sprig Necklace.

After learning about her unique designs, I wanted to know more about the designer, Jackie Baxter. Here is what she had to say:

I have always been a creative person. My philosophy has been that if I can make it or do it myself, I will. That is why I think I decided to pursue an artistic passion such as jewelry making. I attended SUNY Brockport and majored in Studio Art, concentrating in Jewelry Design. Before that, I would dabble with things found at my local craft store to make interesting jewelry designs. I have been making jewelry for over 10 years now. I love to design unique jewelry for myself to wear, and after enough complements and encouragement from family, friends and just acquaintances, I decided to sell my creations.

She went on to say: One of the things I like the most about designing jewelry is that I can create a completely personal piece of art for a very special individual and they can wear that piece of art. Whether the piece is for a family member, a best friend, or is a sale on my website, I make each piece with the highest quality and intimate attention to detail.

Today, I am very happy to announce that Jackie Baxter of Jewelry by Jackie has personally made a pair of her Tracy Iolite Earrings just for you! (shown at left) To enter this giveaway, simply leave a comment below (feel free to list the item you love best from her online store).

The giveaway closes at 8:00am EST on Tuesday February 23, 2010. The winner will be chosen using random.org and the winner will be announced in a blog post. Feel free to follow Behind the Designs Studio Blog or sign up by email so that you are sure to receive notification of the winner. It just might be you! Good luck!

Sacred Heart Beaded Necklace -NEW

Fourteen Days of Hearts & Love
Part 14 of 14


Happy Valentine's Day!!

Today is a special day for couples all over the world, as many will wed today. So as the old saying goes, "Here comes the bride, all dressed in -Red?!" That's right, red. The red wedding dress is becoming increasingly common in North America. Although it may seem an absolute fashion rebellion, the choice to wear a red wedding dress varies for each bride who takes the plunge.

For some brides, it is mostly cosmetic; they feel they look good in red and want to stand out in the warm, vibrant color that only red can deliver. Some brides will wear red for its' symbolic meaning of love and commitment, or of marriage and motherhood, or for religious beliefs. And still others choose the red wedding dress for traditional reasons relating to their cultural background.

Whatever the reason, there are a variety of ways to incorporate red into your wedding day. As previously mentioned, you could choose to wear a red wedding gown or you could create a red and white theme for your wedding through favors, neckties, flowers, bridesmaids dresses or red accented beaded jewelry.

The warm contrast between red and white is both sensual and feminine. Whether you are getting married or simply want to get your sweetheart something beautiful, you won't want to miss the Sacred Heart Freshwater Pearl Crystal Heart Beaded Necklace Set. Embrace your unique side this beautiful beaded necklace and earrings set.

Designed with a combination of feminine Freshwater Pearls and sensual red Swarovski Austrian Crystals, wire wrapped Crystal Heart Pendant (approx. 1/2" in size) finished with Sterling Silver components.

This handcrafted beaded necklace set is new at CrystalAllure.com.

Hill Tribe Heart Leaf Pendant Beaded Necklace

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 13 of 14


I've decided to showcase the newest heart necklace tomorrow, on Valentine's Day. But the Crystal Allure Jewelry collection is not without other heart jewelry! When I first started these blog posts I thought I wouldn't have enough heart jewelry, but silly ole' me, what was I thinking! And of course, a hand full of other jewelry was designed as I sat in my studio preparing each of these articles. In fact, I even found a necklace I had designed weeks ago, meant to get a picture of it and just happened to uncover it on my studio table as I was "cleaning". Where in my case, in my studio, "cleaning" means shuffling things from one corner to another. Yup, my studio is the only room that looks like a hurricane hit it. Based on the type of person I am, I certainly don't understand it but I just go with it. I have always been a firm believer (and my mother will confirm this) that everything has a place and every place has a thing for it. Organize, organize, organize. Yet, in my bead studio....that rule just doesn't seem to work. An empty table, for me, seems to stiffle my creativity. Strange I know. But, I just go with it (which is probably why you'll never likely see pictures of my studio). :-)

But, alas I digressed. Heart Jewelry. Got it. Back on track.

Green Grossular Garnet Gemstone Heart Leaf Necklace (N085)
On this thirteenth day of Hearts and Love, I wanted to highlight the Green Grossular Garnet Gemstone Heart Leaf Pendant Beaded Necklace (N085). Just as every element of nature comes together, so too did the elements of this necklace. The green garnet gemstone is simply beautiful, beyond words and complements perfectly with the wood beads for a truly nature inspired beaded necklace.

And as ironically as my confession above about a messy studio....well, I just spend a half-hour looking for the remaining green garnet gemstones to get a close up picture of them so that you could truly appreciate what I'm trying to convey in their beauty. But, as suspected I just can't find them. Note to self: clean table. (right).

The heart shaped leaf pendant was handmade by the Karen Hill Tribe in northern Thailand. Using techniques that have been passed down from generation to generation and a higher silver content allows them to easily shape their metal into very different styles. As a result, no two pieces are exactly alike. So even if I ever decided to make a similar style necklace, the heart leaf pendant will be uniquely different than the one shown here.

You simply can't go wrong with this beaded necklace because green and brown are the new "black" of the fashion world!

Unchain My Heart For Eternity Freshwater Pearl Earrings

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 12 of 14


Unchain My Heart Gemstone Beaded Earrings: Jade Gemstone, Rose Quartz GemstoneOkay, okay, I have to admit, I did have a whole other new piece of jewelry to introduce today. BUT, as these things go sometimes, the pictures just were not up to my standards. So I've had to postpone that introduction until either tomorrow or Sunday (the last day of these Valentine Hearts and Love postings).

Indeed, I had already introduced these lovely heart earrings in January, but of all the heart earrings, I find these are my favorite. They have a little sass, a little sweetness and they are oh so beautiful! Although available in both Rose Quartz and Jade, the Unchain My Heart Gemstone Beaded Earrings (E256) are even more unique because there is only one pair available in each gemstone.

If you're anything like me, somedays you feel a little sexy, other days a little sweet. I definately like a variety of jewelry to choose from each day. Most women dress based on how they are feeling that particular day.

New to Crystal Allure are two very different but very beautiful pairs of beaded earrings. Both showcase the beauty and elegance of pearls.

For those days when you're feeling a little sexy there are the For Eternity Freshwater Pearl Berryvine Beaded Earrings (E100-D2), shown below, featuring a rich cranberry pearl.

Feeling a little sweet and angelic? Pick yourself up a pair of the Swarovski Pearl Bali Stack Beaded Earrings (E251).

I have always found my simple stack beaded earrings to be particularly popular, versatile and perfect for a day at the office, carting around the kids or a romantic dinner out.
For Eternity Freshwater Pearl Beaded Earrings (E100-D2)
For Eternity Freshwater Pearl Beaded Earrings (E100-D2)
$21.95
These sexy handcrafted beaded earrings feature a trio of rich cranberry freshwater pearls accented with 14 karat gold fill bead caps and meticulously wire wrapped for all of eternity. Gold fill 14 karat leverback ear wires. Length is 1-3/4" from the bottom of the ear wire.

The Heart of a Survivor (B173-TX)

Whether you have had a lung transplant, heart transplant, or any organ transplant, your body, mind and spirit endure more than some can imagine. It can be physically and emotionally draining leading up to -through -and post transplant. But you do it because you have the will to live and transplant is a gift of life -a second chance.
Organ Transplant Awareness Survivor Heart Beaded Bracelet (B173)
Transplant Awareness Survivor Heart Bracelet (B173)
SOLD

For these reasons and many more, I designed the Organ Transplant Awareness Survivor Heart Bracelet (B173) as a symbol of the strength and will to be a SURVIVOR. What makes this awareness bracelet even more unique is not only does it support transplant awareness but it's also the perfect gift for that special transplant person on Valentine's Day.

Designed with emerald Swarovski Crystals, .925 Bali, accented by pearlized white seed beads and sterling silver heart beads that read, SURVIVOR. This beautiful 7-3/4" emerald green awareness bracelet is finished with a sterling silver lobster clasp and our signature jewelry tag.

Window Heart Earrings Grounded in Tradition

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 10 of 14


While preparing today's post, I had wondered what does the old wedding custom of "something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue" really mean/represent? So I did some research. It turns out the old saying in full reads:

Something old, something new
Something borrowed, something blue
And a silver sixpence in her shoe.


Each item represents a good-luck token, that if given to the bride and carried/worn on her wedding day, her marriage will be happy. "Something old" represents a bride's connection with her family and the past; "Something new" symbolizes optimism and hope for the bride's new life ahead; "Something borrowed" is usually an item from a happily married family member or friend, whose good fortune in marriage is suppose to carry over to the bride's new marriage; and a sixpense in the bride's shoe represents wealth and financial security.

It is the "something blue" that carries a bit of history with it. The color blue has been connected to weddings for centuries. The brides of ancient Rome wore blue to symbolize love, modesty and fidelity. In the Christian faith, the Virgin Mary was dressed in blue, associating the color with purity. And although it would be hard to believe now, with all the choices a bride has for wedding gowns, before the late 19th century, blue was the most popular color for wedding gowns (hence, the proverb, "Marry in blue, lover be true").

When I saw these heart beads (below), three words came to mind: princess, castle, wedding. I pictured them designed with some soft blue Swarovski Crystals and immediately thought of a princess -we all want to be a princess on our wedding day (and everyday if the truth be told!); and the beautiful frosted window heart beads reminded me of regal castle style windows -you know the ones told in fairy tales...where only princesses' and queens live.
Crystal Blue Frosted Heart Beaded Earrings (E200)
Crystal Blue Frosted Heart Beaded Earrings (E200)
$16.95
Beautiful frosted window heart beads are accented by romantic light blue Swarovski Crystals and sterling silver in this pair of handmade beaded earrings. Finished with sterling silver french hook earwires. Length is 1-1/4" from the bottom of the earwire.

The finished design of the Crystal Blue Frosted Heart Beaded Earrings (E200) reminds me of a beautiful bride with a classic wedding style -fit for a princess!

These enchanting pair of earrings are perfect for the Bride-to-be, an anniversary gift or...just because.

Are you looking for a coordinating bracelet or necklace for a complete jewelry set? Simply contact me for availability and to discuss your request.

Does Your Heart Belong To Your Pet?

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 9 of 14


According to a recent poll by Reuters/Ipsos, 1 in 5 adults prefer to spend Valentine's Day with their pet, than with their partner. Who could blame them right? Pets give us unconditional love, they're faithful, snuggly, lovable and oh so adorable.

Would I trade Valentine's Day with my husband for my pet...eh...maybe not? If I was single, I think I would definitely be one of those "1 in 5" people. But, I'm blessed because I can be with both. You can definitely see I am an animal lover and supporter. Which is evident in the beaded lanyard, shown below, as well as, the Animal Awareness Jewelry offered.

Blue Heart Spay Neuter Awareness Beaded Lanyard (L04)
Blue Heart Spay Neuter Awareness Beaded Lanyard (L04)
Designed with two beautiful satin blue lampwork glass heart beads, Swarovski Crystals, Bali beads and an adorable sterling silver paw charm.

This lanyard is not only chic enough for work but the colors are neutral and go with everything.

The light blue color is also the support color for spaying/neutering your pet! You can attach your work keys to the key ring or to the hook.

Most badges can easily slip onto the hook, but if you need a converter, please let me know.

Pearl Heart Dangle Beaded Earrings

Fourteen Days of Hearts & Love
Part 8 of 14


Every year on Valentine's Day, February 14th, thousands of couples walk down the aisle to say, "I Do". Some couples plan their special wedding day a year in advance, others simply decide to get married just days before Valentine's Day. Whether you get married on the sweetest day of the year or not, the universal symbol of love is the heart and pearls have always been a timeless accessory for brides to wear. Pearls are smooth, lustrous, highly regarded for their beauty and are a symbol of femininity. What bride doesn't feel like royalty or a princess in pearls?

Marry together the symbol of love (the heart) with the symbol of feminine beauty (the pearl) and you have a look that is classic, timeless and will never go out of style. For example, have you ever seen wedding photos from the 80's? We all have. Those mile high poof-shoulder dresses, hair permed and/or teased to the sky with cans of hairspray holding it in place. At that time, that was the style of weddings, but to look at those pictures now, aside from a small chuckle or two, they are clearly outdated.
Pearl Heart Dangle Beaded Earrings (E202)
Pearl Heart Dangle Beaded Earrings (E202)
SOLD

I wore pearls for my wedding jewelry and looking back at my wedding pictures, now 8 years ago, I'm so happy I choose a timeless, classic accessory. I, personally, have always thought of pearls as wishes. Seems strange, I know. But when I designed the Pearl Heart Dangle Beaded Earrings (E202), I thought they'd make the perfect accessory to either a Bride, as a Valentine Gift or even as an Anniversary Gift.

I'm also no poet, but I did dabble a little when I was in high school. While pulling together this blog post, I also pulled together this wonderful little poem that seemed quite appropriate for these pearl earrings.

If pearls were wishes,
I'd wish for you,
a heart full of love,
with love times two!

Design details:
A luminous white Swarovski Crystal Pearl features a dainty sterling silver heart charm in these handmade beaded earrings. Sterling silver leverback earwires. Perfect for the romantic bride! Length is 1-1/4" from the bottom of the earwire.

Open Heart Blue Bead and Beach Swirl Lampwork Charm Pulls

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 7 of 14


Sometimes love is as simple and sweet as a heart fluttering beneath blue skies and sparkling stars. Or at least that is how being in love feels -right?! I tried to capture that feeling in the design of this bead zipper pull charm.
Blue Open Heart Starlight Bead Zipper Pull Charm (CPC006)
Blue Open Heart Starlight Bead Zipper Pull Charm (CPC006)
One of a Kind
$12.95
Open your heart to this lovely heart charm pull. Design features a sterling silver open heart charm, faceted vibrant blue glass bead and stardust Pave' style sterling silver beads. Total length is 3-1/4".

Everyone has cell phones these days and what makes this little Valentine's Gift so fabulous is you can easily attach the bead charm to jeans, sneakers, MP3 players, iPods and even use as a purse charm!

Although this next zipper pull charm doesn't necessarily have anything to do with hearts and love, it was too beautiful not to share! It also complements the Teal Crystal Swirl Lampwork Beaded Earrings (EL248).
Blue Swirl Crystal Lampwork Bead Zipper Pull Charm (CPC014)
Blue Swirl Crystal Lampwork Bead Zipper Pull Charm (CPC014)
$14.95

A zipper pull  or purse charm for the beach lover! Design features a blue swirled artisan Lampwork glass bead, blue zircon Swarovski Crystal and sterling silver. Total length is 3".

Love You Conversation Heart Charm Bracelet (BES5)

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 6 of 14


Sometimes it's the little things -those small acts that show how much you love someone. Every now and then you hear a story about a grand expression of love, that it almost became an "event" in itself. For example, those men who go way above and beyond to show how much they love their sweetheart, say by having the electronic billboard at a football game changed (during half time of course!) with perfectly chosen words to express his eternal love. Hmmmm, well I'm guessing that probably cost as much as the diamond ring he is considering buying her.

A sweet gesture -yes! Expensive -oh yes! So why not just show her you love her with a beautiful bracelet, say, with a timeless conversation heart -charm. The best part of her gift? She'll love this tasteful expression of love because it's also zero calories!!
Love You Heart Charm Crystal Pearl Bracelet Set (BES5)
Love You Heart Charm Crystal Pearl Bracelet Set (BES5)
Was $51.95 / Sale $31.55
Don't just tell her you love her -show her and say it with our treasured handmade beaded bracelet and earrings set featuring a LOVE YOU conversation heart charm. Design features red siam Swarovski Crystals and white Swarovski Pearls, sterling silver Bali, lobster clasp and earwires. Finished with a sterling silver LOVE YOU conversation heart charm. Bracelet measures 7-3/4"; earrings measure 1/2" from bottom of earwire.

Wear this bracelet individually or stack it with the Be Mine Heart Charm Crystal Pearl Bracelet Set (BES4) for a chic look.

This Valentine's Day -say it with heart!

Secret Crush Lampwork Heart Beaded Earrings

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 5 of 14


Come on now, admit it. You've had one...we've all had one at one time or another. You know what I'm talking about, that......Secret Crush.

Okay, okay. I'll start us off -Hi, my name is Stephanie and I've had a secret crush. In junior high there was this boy, of course he didn't even know I existed. To this day, I still don't know why (although I suspect there was some conniving with his best friend) he gave me his phone number and told me to call him sometime. Sounds easy enough and boy was I blown away.

So one night I worked up my courage, picked up that phone and made that call. Needless to say, it was an awkward phone call -I'm sure our young ages had a lot to do with it -but for the most part, it was like pulling hair out to make conversation with him. We hung up and that was the end of that. From afar, I still had a secret crush on him, although I had learned that secret crushes are more beautiful than sometimes the real deal!
Secret Crush Crystal Heart Lampwork Beaded Earrings (E219-D2)
Secret Crush Crystal Heart Lampwork Beaded Earrings (E219-D2)
SOLD

With these handmade beaded earrings wear your heart on your ears -and not your sleeve! Adorn your ears with these lovely updated beaded heart earrings. Design features a pair of lovely ruby artisan heart shaped lampwork beads with swirls of white and ribbons of gold, accented with Swarovski Crystals, Pearls, .925 sterling Bali, 14kt gold fill beads and finished with sterling silver leverback earwires. Length is 1" from bottom of earwire.

Psst -get these beaded earrings on sale now, limited time only!

Sending All My Love Red Heart Love Letter Charm Bracelet (B141)

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 4 of 14


Nowadays there are many reasons why your one true love is not by your side -they had to travel for their job; they are serving in the military; they are in another state taking care of family. Regardless of the reason, we all know how heartbroken we are when we are not with our true love.

Love is missing someone whenever you're apart, but somehow feeling warm inside because you're close in heart. ~Kay Knudsen
Crystal Red Heart Love Letter Charm Bracelet (B141)
Crystal Red Heart Love Letter Charm Bracelet (B141)
$39.85
The old saying goes 'absence makes the heart grow fonder'. But what if that absence is on or near Valentine's Day? Why not send her all your love? Swarovski style! Just because you might not be with her doesn't mean you can't show how much you miss her. The Sending All My Love Crystal Red Heart Love Letter Charm Bracelet (B141) says it perfectly with a full strand of deep red Swarovski Crystals and red Crystal Heart Charm, accented with .925 Bali, Heart toggle clasp with a beautiful Sterling Silver Envelope Charm -sealed with two heart kisses! Measures 7-1/2".

Pair this sparkling beaded bracelet with the Hand Stamped Love Crystal Red Heart Charm Necklace (N130) for the perfect gift of love!

Purple Crystal Amethyst Pearl Heart Charm Bracelet (B138)

Fourteen days of Hearts and Love
Part 3 of 14


So what does February, Hearts and Amethyst have in common? My birthday! Yes, today is my birthday and I am making a shameless plug using one of my favorite crystal heart bracelet designs. I absolutely love the color purple, hearts and anything sparkly! I definitely think I was born in the month that most represents who I am.
Purple Freshwater Pearl Crystal Heart Beaded Bracelet (B138)
Purple Freshwater Pearl Crystal Heart Beaded Bracelet (B138)
$33.15
This handmade beaded bracelet features a purple light amethyst Swarovski Crystal heart charm and crystal beads, light purple freshwater pearls, .925 Bali spacers and sterling silver heart toggle clasp. Measures 7-1/2".

Wear this heart bracelet alone or stack it with the Amethyst Freshwater Pearl Crystal Heart Charm Beaded Bracelet (B137) for a lovely feminine look!

Aquarians are one of the most creative and artistic signs in the zodiac (and I'm not making this up just because I am a jewelry designer!). One of the ways that an Aquarian shows love is through creative ideas and once they are truly in love, they are fiercely loyal. Some famous people born in February: Farah Fawcett, Sheryl Crow and Jennifer Aniston, to name a few.

Knowing all this, naturally it would follow that I would design a bracelet, in purple, with crystals and hearts! With this bracelet design you get double the love with both the crystal heart charm and the sterling silver heart toggle clasp. The purple freshwater pearls are such a unique color that I simply can't describe them. But, my partiality towards the color purple makes every shade simply beautiful!

Be Mine Conversation Heart Charm Bracelet (BES4)

Fourteen Days of Hearts and Love
Part 2 of 14


We all remember as children both giving and eating Sweethearts Conversation Heart candies at school. You remember them...the tasty pastel sugar hearts pre-printed with quirky phrases expressing love and devotion. Even today as adults we recognize and associate them as the American icon of Valentine's Day and they are still the best-selling Valentine candy around.

NECCO (New England Confectionery Company) has been manufacturing these lovely candies since 1847 and manufactures over 8 billion hearts each year. The company has since discarded all its previous phrases and updated them with new expression of love, the candies now come in brighter and bolder new colors and there are even new flavors. But the symbolism of this iconic candy is still the same.

I used to love getting Conversation Heart candies as a kid. But as an adult, it might seem a little childish or awkward to give and/or receive a box of these candies as a gift on Valentine's Day. Which is exactly why I designed this one of a kind beaded bracelet in the romantic colors of pink and white with a Conversation Heart Charm that reads "Be Mine". Every woman loves sparkling Swarovski crystals and the tiny conversation heart charm is just enough to express your love.
Be Mine Heart Charm Crystal Pearl Bracelet Set (BES4)
Be Mine Heart Charm Crystal Pearl Bracelet Set (BES4)
Was $51.95 / Sale $31.55
Won't you BE MINE? Say it with heart...and style with our handmade beaded bracelet and earrings set. Design features a beautiful strand of white Swarovski Pearls accented with pink rose Swarovski Crystals. Sterling silver beads, Bali, lobster clasp and BE MINE heart charm. Bracelet measures 7-1/2"; beaded earrings measure 1/2" from bottom of earwire.

Wear this bracelet individually or stack it with the Love You Heart Charm Crystal Pearl Bracelet Set (BES5) for a chic look.

This Valentine's Day -say it with heart!

Guest Post: Heart Throb Necklace from The Beading Gem's Shop

Fourteen Days of Hearts & Love
Part 1 of 14


Hearts. Love. Romance. How can anyone not love Valentine's Day?! In celebration of the upcoming holiday. I plan to showcase from February 1st-14th, 2010, fourteen days of jewelry featuring hearts and expressions of love.

The first in this fourteen part series is the Heart Throb Necklace from the new LIFE COLLECTION by designer Pearl Blay from the Beading Gem. I first met Pearl through her blog The Beading Gem's Journal. I read a post or two and I was hooked, now I visit daily to read her informative and inspiring blog.

For the last year or so, Pearl has posted daily articles, tutorials, jewelry resources and information on her blog -but she never posted about her own designs. I found that quite noble of her especially since most designers love to talk about their jewelry designs! Then finally she announced the opening of her NEW etsy shop and LIFE COLLECTION in support of cancer research. When I asked permission to showcase her work, I was completely blown away when she told me that I, in part, was the inspiration behind her starting an awareness jewelry collection. I just love awareness jewelry -don't you? Jewelry with a purpose!

Upon checking out her new shop, I discovered the Heart Throb Necklace and fell in love! Pearl has hand forged, hammered and lightly hand polished a sterling silver heart pendant and wire-wrapped with a single red Czech glass round bead. The pendant is simply stunning, unique and a beautiful piece for your sweetheart! The best part. 100% of the net proceeds from the sale of this necklace (and other pieces in the LIFE COLLECTION) goes to cancer research!

It's a rare occurrence that a designer can or does donate 100% of the net proceeds, so that is quite impressive. As is her handmade jewelry. Don't forget to check out the matching earrings too.

Here is what Pearl says about her new awareness collection:
Cancer has touched both sides of my family and the LIFE COLLECTION for cancer research project is something I have wanted to do for a long time. The funds will directly benefit the new Beatrice Hunter Cancer Research Institute located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.
http://www.bhcri.ca/

Congratulations on your new shop Pearl!!