Friday, 31 January 2014


Ball-chain - seriously, where have you been all my life?! Over the past month or so I have completely fallen in love with the stuff. I think it started when I treated myself to this necklace, from Kylie Parry ~

Of course, I've seen ball-chain used before many times, and even had some myself....but something about the combination of Kylie's beautiful ceramic bird and the antiqued copper chain just seemed very, very lovely to me....

I've started searching out ball-chain all over the place. Look at what came in the post yesterday from Big Bead, Little Bead ~

These two lovely brass chains are vintage, dating from the '50s or '60s. I adore it and it's lovely chunkiness! Trying to decide whether I want to patina it further to make it a little darker.....

Here's the 3.2mm Vintaj ball-chain I bought a few weeks ago - still larger than the chain in my KP necklace. 

Here they all are with some 'standard'-sized ball-chain (2.4mm), from Smitten Beads. Yep, I bought a lot of their ball-cain up well as the vintage/Vintaj brass chains, I have antique copper/silver finish. 

Daftie that I am, I forgot to buy ends when I bought the Vintaj stuff, so I had to order some separately. They arrived yesterday, so I can get going now. I don't have any ends for the huuuuge 7mm chain, so I need to work out ways of finishing the ends nicely....a little challenge for me. Expect to see this chain cropping up a lot in my designs over the next few months...

Another bunch of yumminess that arrived this week was this lovely pile of ribbon, from Linens by Sabine, thanks to a link from Lorelei Eurto. Thank you Lorelei! I can't wait to create something with these lovely, vintage-style natural fibre ribbons. I used to use ribbon in my work loads and over the past year or so, that has changed. I've lost my ribbon mojo....but I'm hoping to find it again, with the aid of these. I treated myself to Erin Siegel's  webinar (yes, that is a word!) on Fibre Findings and Finishing Techniques to help me get going again. I can totally recommend it, if you are looking for practical ways to incorporate fibres, ribbons and yarns into your jewellery. Erin's instructions are clear, and you can pause the video on any of the slides to see exactly what she's talking about. I know I'll be referring to it frequently. 

Watch this space to see ball-chain and ribbons in action in some Songbead jewellery soon!


Anonymous said...

I've recently fallen back in love with ball chain myself. Seeing all the fancy chains companies have been putting out recently, ball chain just seemed so "uncool" and basic. I credit Vintaj with making me love it again. There is something so simple and pretty about a pendant on ball chain. Especially the copper and brass colored ones!

Ailsa Jackson said...

Oo I'm recently new to ball chain - I love it. Not sure why I hadn't used it before!
I have recently seen a tutorial for creating different ends for ball chain - will see if I can find it for you!!

Anna Weller said...

First and foremost ball chain puts you in mind of the corporate identity chains and badges that I suspect we have all had to wear at some place of work or function over the course of our lives!

As soon as you've put this memory out of your head you are left with a beautifully simple chain with a lovely repeating pattern that can be used alongside so many different things . . . and that's before you get into adding patinas and finishes :-)

Anna @ Big Bead Little Bead


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