Lots of FUN with Beads! Watercolor Locket Palette Necklace, Boho Wrap Bracelet, a Handmade Travel Journal & More!

Hi friends! I have been having so much fun with jewelry making lately! And I have a lot of project ideas to share today! This blog post is sponsored by Solid OAK Inc. They have gorgeous jewelry making supplies and great prices, and they are giving my blog readers 20% off their orders of $10 or more with coupon code FRUGAL20 through 8/31/18. They also offer free USA shipping over $50 (after discounts) or a USA $5 flat rate shipping below that amount. They do ship worldwide and international shipping rates apply. First up is a project that has gotten a lot of attention from my Instagram followers today: A watercolor locket and travel journal!


When you open the locket you have paints and a small mixing area and the back of the watch charm is another mixing area.


I used white duct tape for the mixing area (my hand cutting skills are remedial LOL!) but you could also use white nail polish for that!


Think of all of the fun to be had here! I though with this project it would be easier to show you how to make it in a video rather than writing, so check out this tutorial on making the watercolor palette and watercolor book!

Supplies for the watercolor locket and book set:

  • Metal book locket
  • Long chain
  • White polymer clay (Sculpey 3)
  • Watercolor paper 6″x9″ Aquabee scored in half and cut in 3rds
  • Cardboard
  • Vinyl or oilcloth for the cover (you could use felt or leather as well but I opted for a waterproof fabric)
  • Heavy duty hole punch or awl
  • Adhesive sheet like Score tape or Stick it
  • Rotary cutter or craft knife and craft mat
  • Scissors
  • Bone folder/butter knife or score pal
  • Satin, cloth, elastic or preferred cording 
  • Octopus eye pendant for closure
  • Waterbrush
  • Copper wire for attaching the mermaid pendent to the waterbrush
  • Bird charm with flapping wings
  • Clock charm (back was used as 2nd mixing area)
  • White duck tape or white nail polish for making the mixing areas

As for the 4 colors I picked to go in my minimal palette, I went with Phthalo Blue, Hansa Yellow Light, Quin Magenta and Burnt Sienna as I can mix what I need from those.


This next project was fun and I learned a new way to make a bracelet!


I have typically shied away from stringing projects with small beads because my eyes would get so strained, but I recently discovered the magnifier in my “third hand” tool was perfect for helping me see the tiny bead holes. All of the instructions for this bracelet came in the box with all of the supplies for $10… you can’t beat that! Since I didn’t design it I am not sharing a tutorial. Besides, I couldn’t explain it as well as the instructions in the kit.


A clip board held my project taut so I could easily wrap the strings and beads around the main cords. This triple wrap bracelet kit contains everything you need to make this bracelet along with really detailed instructions (that I am saving to use with some of my stash!) The only other thing I needed was nail polish to stiffen the ends of the thread so I could bead without a needle. It took me about 3 hours to make this bracelet while watching TV. I am going to use bigger beads and maybe only do one wrap when I try it again with stuff from my stash. One change I made was adding this charm to the end of the bracelet, and I did trim my cords because I have a small wrist and there was too much excess (and I am keeping this bracelet for myself!)


This final set was really fun, and all it took was a couple of deer antler charms for the earrings and elk skull pendant for the necklace, some fine gold chain, a few headpins and jump rings and a clasp and some stone beads from my stash.



  1. Cut chain to desired length.
  2. Slide chain through antlers and secure the charm in the center of the necklace with a jump ring.
  3. Attach clasp to chain ends.
  4. Slide the beads you want to use on headpins and make simple loops. Attach them to short pieces of chain from 1/4″ to 1/2″ long and then attach those dangles to the chain between the antlers so the beads dangle under the dear head.

I hope you give these projects a try, and visit our sponsor Solid Oak Inc for your jewelry supply needs! Remember to use the coupon code FRUGAL20 for 20% off your order over $10 now through 8/31/18. Oh, one more thing, I also wanted to let you know that they are hosting a social sharing contest through the end of the year, people can post their projects made with Solid Oak products on social media for a chance to win one of three $50 gift certificates! All the details for the contest are here.

Steampunk Inspired Octopus Multi Strand Necklace with Peter Pan Style Collar Tutorial

Hi friends! I have had the supplies to make this design in a basket on my table for months!

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I love how the center pendant and 1 3/4″ length difference between strands gives this necklace a “Peter Pan” style collar look. It is sweet and bold yet casual enough for everyday. I used a mix of glass and acrylic beads to keep the necklace light and comfortable. All of the large faceted beads are acrylic and the rest are glass and stone.

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This is the type of project that’s perfect for using up odds and ends from past projects. Since I store my beads by color it’s fun to rummage through my “bead soup” and pull beads that will work together. You can make this necklace using any kind of pendant you like and use colors that you prefer. It is the perfect excuse to dig out your beads and play! Watch the video for full step by step instructions and helpful tips!

Supplies: *Affiliate links used

1. Cut 2 pieces of 24″ beading wire. Add one wire through the pendant and string on a crimp tube bringing it close to the pendant and crimp to secure, repeat with the other wire.

2. Slide a large hole bead over both strands of one wire then separately string beads on each strand of wire. Make sure one strand is 1 3/4″ longer than the other. Your short strand should be around 16″-18″ if you want the peter pan collar look or longer if you prefer. Secure each strand with a crimp tube.

3. Repeat for the wire on the other side.

4. Add toggle clasp.

Other Tutorials you might like based on this technique (Slide show of linked projects below): Multi Strand Necklace (double strand connected at clasps), Triple strand necklace (Funky tutorial with DIY hot glue beads), Multi Strand Bracelet, Continuous Loop earrings (make with scraps of beading wire you cut away) and if you need more help with basic techniques you can check out my basic beading techniques video that has a time-stamped index so you can jump to the technique you need.

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I hope you give this fun necklace project a try! I love saying “Oh, I made it!” when someone asks me about a piece of jewelry I am wearing beause that lets you inspire others to create! Let’s spread some craftiness and til next time happy crafting!

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All the Techniques to Make Most Beaded Jewelry in one Video!

Hi friends! I am so excited to share this video with you today! I compiled the most used techniques that you will need to make almost any beaded (strung) jewelry project in today’s video! I wanted it to be like a class that you can return to time and time again. That’s why I also included time stamped links to each technique in this blog post. You will be able to jump to the technique you need to know. I hope it is helpful to you!


I know this is a long video but I didn’t want to sacrifice techniques just to fit it into a short YouTube friendly video length. I do have a favor to ask though, if you like long, in-depth videos such as this please watch, like and share it. That way YouTube will see that content like this has value. Thanks so much! And now on to the video!

*Please note this video is a beginner introduction to jewelry making and does not cover bead stitching. If it did we’d be here all day LOL!

For your convenience I have time-stamped the techniques in this video for easy future reference. I hope you find this helpful and if you have any questions let me know in the comments!

Basic tools and supplies overview 2:43


  • #1 12:25 How to remove a kink or bend from a headpin and straighten wire.
  • #2 13:20 How to make a simple loop
  • #3 How to open and close a jump-ring. 15:10 Opening a jump ring. 16:08 Closing a jump-ring
  • #4 18:03 Adding an ear-wire to earrings
  • #5 19:20 How to make a wrapped loop (more secure than a simple loop)
  • #6 22:30 How to measure and cut chain
  • #7 24:49 How to attach clasps (for bracelets and necklaces)
  • #8 Techniques for working with chain: 27:27 How to attach chains. 30:22 How to make a chain tassel
  • #9 32:09 How and why to use bead caps
  • #10 How to attach crimp beads: 33:00 How to attach a crimp bead with any pliers and use a crimp cover. 35:52 How to attach a crimp bead with crimping pliers

I want to thank our sponsor Annie’s Simply Beads Kit-of-the-Month Club! I really enjoyed putting together the jewelry set I was wearing today. Join now and get 50% off your first month and 3 free gifts! Use coupon code “FRUGAL”.


Would you like to see more jewelry projects on my channel? Let me know what you want to learn in the comments below and til next time happy crafting!

How to Make “Loop” Earrings!

Hi Friends! I hope you are having a good weekend! It is a holiday weekend in the states and many people get to enjoy a long weekend with Columbus Day tomorrow. It Is also a good sale weekend if you are looking for bargains. The thing I love most about this long weekend is that the leaves are in full fall glory. We went to Acadia Nation Park (in Bar Harbor, Maine) yesterday and it was beautiful. I will have to look through the photos I took and come up with a painting tutorial, I think I want to do a palette knife painting of birch trees. We will see! Tonight, though, I am going to share a tutorial on making continuous loop earrings:


These are fun to make and great for using up scraps of beading wire leftover from necklace and earring projects. I am using 7 strand Beadalon wire but any flexible stringing wire will work. Watch the video to see how it is done.


ear wires
small beads
crimp beads
needle nose pliers
flush cutter
clips to keep beads from slipping off the wire, I got a 6 pack at the dollar tree.

It is supposed to be nearly 70 on Monday, I can’t wait to get outside on a warm day, Maybe I will film a tutorial painting outside for you, what do you think? I hope you try these earrings, they are quite addicting to make and I can use up all of those small bits of wire I save after making bracelets. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Weekend jewelry making…

Brrrr…friends, another cold night, it is supposed to be 10 below! Yikes, the chickens will have their heat lamp on all night and I will hunker down by the wood stove. 10 below in March just seems unnecessary. I got to thinking about my crafting habits and I noticed that I rarely make jewelry in the deep winter. I thought it was because I tend to make jewelry for craft fairs or gifts (that’s all done prior to Christmas) but now I think it is because it’s too dang cold in my studio to bead (it’s 52 down there now) and it does not bother me when I am painting, probably because it is a right brain activity so the logical left who says “Dang woman, it’s cold, go upstairs” has no input. Before I ramble any further let me tell you what got me making jewelry this weekend, a very patient viewer wanted to learn how to use acrylic and glass beads together in a design and I thought it was high time I did it!

DCF 1.0

I used Urban Ice beads by Jesse James ($5 a bag at Joanns in store) and a selection of glass beads from Fire Mountain Gems and some cheap “E” beads to make this super sparkly, fairly light weight necklace and while I was making it I filmed a tutorial. This is geared to the beginner so I probably over explain some techniques 🙂

I wish my camera would record for more than 20 minutes…I also wish I was a little smoother when attaching a crimp beads but you know what they say “if wishes were biscuits…” Well, that’s it for me tonight. I actually did another jewelry project this weekend but I’ll save that for another day. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!