Saturday, December 6, 2014

Bead Hoarders Blog Hop REVEAL!

So here it is, girls - the day you've all been waiting for 
 the REVEAL of our pieces made with our bead HOARD!   

My story may be a bit different than the rest of the hoarders.  I DO admit I have my own hoard.  I've been beading for over 20 years, AND owned a bead shop for about 4 years as well.  
I have a ton of beads, but as EVERY serious bead hoarder knows - there is always room for more.
And that's where this story takes a bittersweet turn.
You see, this blog reveal isn't just about MY hoard - but it's a tribute, story and reveal that includes the hoard of a very special friend and (sort of) family member.
Colleen Beach was one of my bead shop customers.  She was a crafter of ALL things, and as far as beads - she LOVED seed beads, especially Delicas.  Colleen also happened to be the maternal grandmother of two of my husbands nieces, so it was sort of a 'catch up on the kids' friendly get together whenever she came to visit.

Sadly - Colleen passed away early last year.  
Upon taking care of Colleen's things, and cleaning up her home, the girls finally had entry into the room in the house that had once been forbidden - the craft room.
It seems that Colleen was a CRAFT HOARDER.  Of all kinds.  Fabric for quilts. Yarn. Yarn.  More Yarn.  And BEADS.  Glorious, beautiful, unopened tubes and bags of beads.  I know she had a plan in mind for at least some of them, but just as with the rest of us - if not - there could be a use for them someday.
My nieces were given the task of emptying this room.  Finding homes for the fabric. The yarn.  THE BEADS.  And luckily, LOVINGLY - they thought of me.  When they invited me over to give me 'some of Colleen's beads'  - I NEVER expected this

 These boxes, PLUS a shoe box were FULL of bag upon bag upon bag of DELICA beads in every color of the rainbow, as well as bugles, size 15's, vintage CHARLOTTES and some other gloriously delightful items that I didn't think to photograph at the time.

This was just ONE bag of seed beads, czech glass and pearls purchased from our local bead store - T&T Trading - all of them brand new, never opened.

I also found some absolutely spectacular semi precious stone - jasper, a gi-NORMOUS piece of Lapis, and some other lovely bead related items as well.


I could not believe that those girls (and probably Colleen herself) had chosen to gift me with these wonderful beads.
There was so much beauty in this gesture, that I felt I needed to share my good fortune - I put together a box full of items from Colleen's hoard, as well as my own - and had a 'Pay it Forward' give away a few months back, giving some of them to another passionate beader,whom I hope in turn, chose to pass some on to yet another.
THEN - to TOP this - a wonderful fellow beader Renetha of Lamplight Crafts, asked if I would like more for the hoard, as she was destashing as well.  WELL, What kind of a hoarder would I be to say NO to a bead? NEVER did I think I would receive such beautiful things from Renetha as well - much much more than I ever expected.  So beautiful.  
So I've included a few things - mostly seed beads - from Renetha's 'hoard' as well.

SO - without further ado -
Here are the pieces that I have created for the 
"Bead Hoarders Blog Hop"
BOTH are my "Enlightened Denim" bracelets - each with a very different style:

The centerpiece of this one - "Olive Branch"  is from MY hoard, as well as the teardrop piece at the bottom (the 'newest' member of the hoard-those were purchased this past October).  The gorgeous pearls, and all of the seed beads came from Colleen's hoard.  The denim I seem to have a hoard of as well; once my friends and family started seeing what I was doing with them - they contributed piles and piles!

This next one is by far one of my favorites that I've done in my "Enlightened Denim" line.  Walking on Sunshine.  Bright.  Colorful.  SUNNY.  Again, the focal - the Cubic Zirconium dragonfly, is from MY bead store hoard, as well as the yellow quartz flowers, and the button closure.  The seed beads are a mixture of both Colleen's and Renetha's, all peachy and perfect.  The Shibori ribbon was given by Renetha, and the zipper was also among the items from Colleen.
 But I think the ULTIMATE hoarded item I used in this piece is the little VINTAGE sterling silver
and flower pendant from our local favorite antique shop The Little Red Schoolhouse.  Circa probably the 50's or 60's.  :)  

The pieces that I make that include the little zippers are my most popular pieces.  I have just ONE zipper of about a dozen left.  I've found fun and creativity in creating with each and every one.

I am going to refer you to Lori Anderson's blog for the list of other bloggers.  I hope you can visit them all over the next few days.  I KNOW there will be some magnificent art work in there....

Here's Lori's blog address:

Pretty Things

Peaceful beading,


Terri said...

These are awesome!!! do really good work!

coolmoon said...

Thanks, Terri. It is my life, and my passion.

bead addict said...

You've made some lovely pieces here. What an honour to inherit such a stash. I think a persons bead stash is like a reflection of their design soul and so to get to work with
your friends materials and remember her in that way, is such a lovely thing to do.

Unknown said...

Such a treasure trove - and what a unique way to create beautiful bracelets!

Janine Lucas (Esfera Jewelry) said...

What a beautiful story. And what an honour to receive such a beautiful stash. And oh my, your designs rock. Love love love them.

coolmoon said...

Thanks so much everyone. I can't tell you how good it feels to be able to use these beads this way. I know Colleen is smiling with every piece I make. Glad you all enjoyed the story....

Tammy Adams said...

What a lovely story. And both bracelets are wonderful. I love the way you use denim with the beads.

coolmoon said...

Thanks, Tammy! I noticed on many of the blogs that we'd both made similar comments to things - great minds! I couldn't comment on yours though - bummed.
So far I am impressed with everyone's unique work. Nothing was just simply strung, or if it was, there was a reason and a story behind it. Love that.
Still have about 1/2 the bloggers to hit - not everyone has posted yet.
Another day. Another pot of coffee!

Unknown said...

Wow, what a collection of charming treasures ! Very nice work here !

KJ said...

What great gifts and a treasured rememberance. Marvelous creations. Enjoy your new jewelry and the memories they bring. And thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a comment. I am hopping with coffee at hand as well.

baymoondesign said...

Your pieces are unique. I love the denim and seed beads. Well done!

Unknown said...

Very creative. I especially like the green one.

Kelly said...

Thanks for the story behind the beads. I'm sorry you lost a friend, but I'm glad she thought of someone as creative as you to gift her stash to. There is something wonderful about creating with beads that mean something to you, isn't there? Above finding them pretty or useful or a good find. Your pieces are just stunning,fun,colorful and unique. AND inspiring. Greatly done.

Unknown said...

Your enlightened denim is fabulous! I especially like the first one with the lovely green. It's just my cup of tea.
Thank you for the lovely memory you shared of Colleen. Sorry for your loss but you have a wonderful way to keep her memory alive in your art!

fay ................................................... said...

My fav is the lime green & denim. such a great combo.

Lori Anderson said...

I'm so sorry about Colleen. And owning your own bead store had to have been both a blessing and a curse -- all those beads and no time to play!

I truly love what you made -- very creative and unique!

Thank you so much for participating, and don't forget to post your pieces in the special Pinterest board,, and join the Facebook group (also welcome to your friends) -- hope to see you at other hops!

Hannah said...

Beautiful! Thank you for sharing your work and the story with us. I love the multimedia aspect of your work.

Anonymous said...

What generous friends! You are one lucky lady to have received all of these beads. Love your bracelets They are so unique.

Roxanne Mendoza said...

Love your denim bracelets! They are so pretty!

Thanks for sharing your story about Collen. It was very lovely. So sorry for your loss.

Unknown said...

I had a dear friend pass away a few months ago and her husband entrusted our little group, Women on the Fringe, with all of her craft items. While there were very little beads, I value what I received from her and have worked it into my stash of stuff. So your story was very touching.

I just love your denim cuffs!!!

Divya N said...

What a story, I hope that you and the other person who received some of the stash in the giveway will enjoy it and make beautiful things in your friend's memory

coolmoon said...

Thanks so much everyone, for your kind words. I am truly blessed to have all of these wonderful beads to play with. I know Colleen is loving every unique piece I make with them.
It's interesting that I was gifted with her stash within a few months of starting my "Enlightened Denim" line of jewelry (there are earrings and a few necklaces done in denim too!) It's nice to be able to offer my pieces to my customers for a little less than I normally would - simply because all of the items used to make them were gifted to me.
Have fun hoppin' everyone! See you in BSC!

Maria Rosa Sharrow said...

Looking at all those tiny beads gives me a panic attack I have great respect for seed beaders. I'm not sure what I was expecting when I saw all those little tubes of beads but what I got what not what I expected. I love your use of denim to make those cuffs and the super creative way you embellished them with beads.
But the story behind the beads makes me think that each piece you make will be a legacy!

Kepi said...

Absolutely stunning and brilliant use of denim. A true beautiful memorial to Colleen. Awesome designs.

Donetta said...

I love everything about this post...from the gorgeous pieces you made, to the backstory. You truly honored your sweet friend, and used her treasures to create new treasures. Well done!

Unknown said...

What a lovely story and beautiful bracelets!

Liz said...

Oh my goodness, I love these amazing bracelets! The story was enjoyable as well. It us would wonderful that you were able to use some of her treasures and honor her with such gorgeous creations.

Jo-Ann said...

Wonderful story and amazing beadwork!

Becky Pancake said...

Hi Sheryl, I am sorry to hear of the loss of your friend.Your pieces are all wonderfully creative. Great job.

Unknown said...

Thanks for sharing your story. May bittersweet inspiration find you creating many great new pieces while you fondly remember your friend. Like that green bracelet.

Lisa said...

Positively fabulous work!