September 19, 2014

Featured Designer: Martha Thomas

I love seeing what my customers make with their Humblebeads! Please don't let your art beads stay hidden away in boxes, pull those treasures out and make something to wear or to give as a gift.  

Art beads are happiest in fresh air being admired by all!

I thoroughly enjoy seeing jewelry show up in my Facebook feed that feature my beads! I'm always thrilled at how clever designers are and love seeing all the different ways my beads are used. If you share something on Facebook make sure you tag me either as Heather Powers or Humblebeads. Or share your creations directly on my Facebook page

Martha Thomas of Martha's Ruby Acorn is one such designer who brightens my day every time I see one of her jewelry creations sporting a Humblebead! So much so, that I just had to share some of my favorites with you.  Enjoy the eye candy! 

A bright and sunny Van Gogh Sunflower Long bead is paired up with lampwork glass and lush silk ribbon.

Humblebeads Bittersweet disk beads are paired with pearls. I love the little touches here like the bead caps on the bottom of the pearls and the pieces of wire curled into tendrils.

One of my favorite pieces from Martha pairs up my Peacock bracelet cuff with a few peacock Humblebeads disks and complemented by a rustic bit of silk ribbon for a very bohemian effect.

Martha is really strutting her stuff with the peacock theme - I love it! Here the peacock pendant is paired with lampwork beads, peanut seed beads and accents of Czech glass. Isn't using the waxed linen a great way to showcase those lampwork beads.
This necklace exudes happiness! The Humblebeads Rainbow Butterfly is set among Czech glass flowers and lampwork spacers in this colorful creation. Notice the colorway on of the peanut seed beads? I love that little touch!

This pair of earrings really caught my attention. What a great way to make tiny charms get noticed! Great mix of materials with the leather, waxed linen and metal findings. 

 Martha used a few beads from one of my Blooms & Birds sets to create this fun bracelet. Very clever asymentrical design here using the bead color to unite the three larger elements and even though they are very different they have have the same visual weight which makes this bracelet a very pleasing design.

H: Martha how long have you been making jewelry and what's the story behind your business name?

M: I've been making jewelry for about eight and a half years now. I never tire of playing with textures and colors. The name for my shop came about like this . . . I love the simplicity of acorns, as well as the saying: inside every acorn is an entire forest. To round out the name I included my birthstone: ruby. And voila! Ruby Acorn was born!

 You can find Martha's shop at Martha's Ruby Acorn on Etsy.

Thank you Martha for sharing your creations with us!

September 17, 2014

Scholarship Winners

First, thank you to everyone who wrote in and shared your story with me. It's brave to throw your hat in for a scholarship like this and I wish I could give one to everyone who entered.

But I did the best I could and decided to offer three full scholarship for my Polymer Clay Design Bootcamp instead of just one.

All the entries were placed in a bowl and Jess drew out three random winners.  Here they are:

Jennifer Trujillo 


For those who didn't win, I could feel from your emails that you are ready to start creating more and was hoping this was going to be a push to get you going.  And I think it should be, even if you didn't win. I think those who entered realize they would really love to learn to make beads or improve their skills. Beadmaking is crazy fun, who wouldn't want to do it! 

There is no shortage of tutorials and inspiration online, so head to Pinterest, YouTube or google Polymer Clay Bead Cane Tutorials and grab your clay - make some time for yourself and explore one new cane a week, just like it's a real class. Or find a polymer clay book at your library and go through a few of the projects for your 'class'. Have fun and get creative!

September 15, 2014

Scholarships - Giving and Getting

Huge news - I'm giving away one scholarship to my online Polymer Clay Cane Design Bootcamp!

I will accept entries today and tomorrow only. The drawing will be Wednesday morning.

Rules to Enter:
1. You must have a finanical need. You don't need to tell me your story or prove it, this is Scouts honor kind of stuff - you know your situation. You also don't need to be in poverty to qualify. You might be a mom on a limited budget, someone retired or maybe a recent big expense is keeping you from investing in your creative pursuits.

2. You are willing to follow along with the class and do the assignments with the group each week. Even though the class comes with lifetime access, I'd like the winner of the scholarship to be someone who wants to do this really bad, right now. Because I know how that feels!

3. You have the supplies or means to get them before class starts. You can see the supply list here. For the first week you'll need clay in Navy blue, white and antique gold.  

4. To enter send an email to with the subject Scholarship. Hurry!!! 

And now let's dish on another scholarship!

I'm very thankful for my business and it is the main income for our family. With our upcoming move, there is a something I really, really want but it's just not in our budget at this time. (See, I do get it!)

You may or may not know that one of my dreams is to illustrate children's books and products for the gift, paper and decor markets. You know, fun things like journal covers, holiday cards, fabric, etc. You can see my portfolio here.

There is an art class taught online by one of the top agents in this field, this is a dream art class.  So I'm asking those who I have inspired over the years to consider giving me the gift of inspiration and helping me take this class.

I have a scholarship campaign to help me reach my goal! Every donation adds up and I'm at 25% right now. Click here for more details.

Thanks for stopping by today!

September 14, 2014

Humblebeads In Action

Finally got my jewelry making mojo back after Bead Fest, I found time this weekend to make a few pieces with new Humblebeads and beads that I picked up at the show.

The iris bracelet above pairs up my new beads with a new instant favorite - White Clover Kiln! Mary makes beautiful round ceramic beads in colors that look like we sat down and made beads together. Humblebeads and White Clover Kiln - they were made for each other! The bracelet is knotted on metallic colored leather cord. 

I painted these new leaves to look like weathered patina. I paired them up with a faceted bead from Firefly Designs, a raven from Diane Hawkey and a round bead from White Clover Kiln. This stacked totem pendant was also created by knotting beads on leather cord. (Notice a theme?)

And finally I took the Art Bead Scene's monthly challenge. You can see all three pieces that I made here and read about the art beads featured.

My Etsy shop is filled with new beads from Bead Fest, be sure to stop by and see if something catches your attention.

Lots of new adventures on the horizon, including moving into a new house with a bigger studio. Yeah! It's only about 10 minutes away, but a move is a move.  Boo! Hmm, I need to hire someone that could pack, they would know exactly how to organize my random junk and could weed out all the things we don't really need. Oh wait, that's like a fairy godmother, not a mover.  Well, that would work too!

My fall is crazy with creative goodness:
HumbleHoliday - Pet ornaments, decor and holiday cards coming soon.
Polymer Clay Cane Design Bootcamp - starting this week!
Inspired by Nature Fall Retreat - I have two openings due to a cancellation.
Baltimore Bead Society Workshop and Presentation in November. Details soon.

August 22, 2014

Bead Fest!

It was a crazy week to finish getting ready for the show. You'd be suprised how many steps go into each bead and when one is making hundreds of beads in a week it does take a village or at least the inhabitants and visitors of one Michigan farmhouse. I had lots of helpers last week. I'm thankful! 

I have so many new beads for this show. I'd say over half my booth are new beads! Like these leafy pendants and of course I made disk beads to match. 

I made a new batch of bonbon beads that are featured in the current issue of Stringing magazine in a project by Lorelei Eurto. 

A new batch of autumn inspired bird totem sets. 

On our drive over here to Philly we saw the leaves are already starting to change and my booth is definitely reflecting the change of seasons. 

The drive was long but beautiful through the hills and valleys through Pennsylvania. 

If you are going to Bead Fest stop by to see me and say hello at booth 559A! 

And for those not going, I will list the new beads a few days after I return from the show.