Saturday, May 10, 2014

It's The Bead Soup Block Party 8 Reveal!

Thanks to Lori Anderson the organizer and founder of the Bead Soup Block Party. She tirelessly matches people around the world to trade beads and they make fabulous jewelry with what their assigned partner. Then we have a big reveal date and we get to hop all the blogs to see who made what and with what.

One of the things that I was the most excited about in getting my Bead Soup Partner 

was her love of recycling!!!! 

What Patricia sent me.

 I absolutely adore that about her.  Looking at my soup she has all these components that she pulled out of an old printer and even used some of the enamel in the printing ink to use in the lovely fused glass bowl that I now have on my jewelry desk to hold beads.

What I added to the mix. Plus a little more that I didn't get photo'd.  Just not that organized.

In the spirit of recycling and following Patricia's lead I dug in to my recycling drawer.  Looking for older beads, necklaces etc.....that I can add to the mix of what she sent.  So here is a photo of most of what I added to the mix.  Unfortunately sometimes I don't know what I am going to add until I put it together, so not all beads that I added to my Soup are shown.

I used Patricias lovely large lampwork bead as my color palate for the first set of jewelry I made.  The lampwork had a celestial feel to it, note the galaxy looking swirl in the large lampwork bead.  I took my lead from that.  I just so happen to have a old necklace in my junk drawer with a celestial feel to it.  So I dismantled that and pulled some moon and star shapes out of it.  I added some holes to some of the moon pieces so I could sandwich the large bead in between.  The Chain, Faux Cinnabar, Blue and Red Sponge Coral, Clay beads and Red Coconut Chips are all from old jewelry.  I added some Dumertierite, Kyanite and a Quartz dagger from Dakota Stones.

This necklace hangs asymmetrically and I added multiple dangles at the bottom of the lower moon to assist in its balance.

The bracelet I used her handmade clasp I believe made with aluminum from a printer her lovely lampwork and natural Coral.  I added the Red Sponge Coral, Faux Cinnabar, Metal Beads all from recycled jewelry pieces. The Kyanite I added was from Dakota Stones.

I made the following earrings with Paticia's Lampwork and some Dumortierite and Kyanite from Dakota Stones.

Now the soup got really interesting!!!!!!!  What to do with the gears and those very stiff aluminum sheets.  I just happen to be so lucky to coordinate the look of the following pieces with Stinky Dog Beads.  She happened to email me around the time as I was contemplating my next Bead Soup Pieces and I asked her what she thought of adding to my mix.  I told her what I had left to work with. So she sent me those vanilla Czech Glass Beads and some lovely Greek Mykonos Charms that I used in this piece.

I made a coordinating bracelet with Patricia's gears and at the base for the focal and her lovely lampwork at the center.  The large bead caps were from Michaels and some more of the vanilla Czech Glass from Stinky Dog Beads along with the Greek Mykonos dragonfly.

I had all these really lovely Red Coral and Natural Coral pieces and originally I thought I would use the gears.  I decided to go back to some of my roots as a jewelry designer and make a earthy chunky statement necklace with a messy layering of these beads on chain.  I added the quartz daggers from Dakota Stones and the Red Czech Glass, chunky chain were from Stinky Dog Beads.

I made a coordinating bracelet with bead caps, Coral Chain, Greek Mykonos from Stinky Dog Beads and added one of Patricias Natural Coral beads.  I added the chain and lobster claw to the mix.

I am pleased with the outcome of what I made. Not sure which are my favorites.  I suppose the biggest challenge for me was working with the recycled metal pieces but 

If you are interested in some of Patricia Johnsons Glasswork and Recycled Bits you can find her on Etsy. Just click the below link.

To find my jewelry for sale go to the following link on Etsy.

Want to Hop All The Beads Soup Blogs and see what creative genius is spread across the country.  Got to the following link below.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Krista Artista Gallery Trunk Show in Picturesque Anoka Minnesota

I recently had a trunk show 
Anoka Minnesota.  

Anoka Minnesota is a lovely blue collar river city with picturesque bluffs and an old world feel. 

 I have been in this gallery under a year and I have developed quite the following up there.  I guess it is not surprising when you look at the community.  I love it!  They have all kinds of lovely little shops, antique, clothing boutiques just my kind of shopping place.  It is alluring to the eye.  So I made some jewelry for my new trunk show that is alluring to the eye.

Good Morning Sunshine Necklace - Sold

This was the necklace I wore to the show and this was my favorite one so I kind of shed a tear when I sold it.  I know though it is in the hands of a very appreciative owner.  Just this year I have begun my goal into making some of my own jewelry components.  This is a long necklace and that copper swirling shape is one I have been remaking and playing with in different styles.  This is my first long necklace and I think it works quite well.  Although it is asymmetrical the balance of the swirl is offset but the Titanium treated Druzy at the side.  I love the cheerful feel of the necklace.  Brings that fun song to mind, "Because I'm Happy" by Pharrell Williams.  It is how I felt when I made it.  I added some really fun lampwork beads by studioJules, 2 types of corals, Greek Mykonos and Sunstone.  It's a Happy Necklace.

It is refreshing to see people get my earthy interesting style.  I live south of the river, southern metro area and lets just say these ladies like their bling.  Blingy Jeans and Blingy Jewelry.  Nothing wrong with a little sparkle but sparkle really isn't my forte.  I love very earthy, textural jewelry that focuses on stone and mixed media.  I love to incorporate lampwork beads in my work.  The necklace below is my Wigwam Necklace.  Working with some very flowing copper shapes that I made and adding my unique bent to it.   The lampwork is from Donna Millard and is gorgeous!!!

Wigwam Necklace

I added some really great stone into this design.  The AAA quality Kyanite is from Dakota Stones as is the Angelite and Bronzite Nuggets.  I also added some Ostritch Egg Shell beads, wood and a super spikey pendant from Scorched Earth.  This is really a fun and sexy necklace on.  

African Trade Beads Necklace

Not everyone is into long necklaces so I had to make this short tied necklace that has been in my head for quite sometime.  I purchased these lovely Blue and White African trade beads at the Rings N Things show.  I wanted to make a necklace with my twisting tying technique but without the large pendant.  So this is a spin off of that style.  This necklace has some brass beads to the front but at the back I added some fine silver bead caps and clasp from Hill Tribes Silver.  I twisted in some bone and Lapis beads from Dakota Stones.

Of course I made some earrings to match!!!!!!!  But I am all about the necklaces!  I could make them 24 hours a day.

None of the jewelry here is in my shop yet.  I will be adding styles like these to my shop the week after Mothers Day.

The one thing that I really like is how the styles you come up with can spin off into similar pieces and that is what I have going on here.  Cant wait to delve in and make more longer styles with the copper!!!!!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Pendant Grouping Jewelry

I am always interested in taking materials and attempting to use them in atypical ways.  You can see what a typical design would be, all the pendants grouped together.  I am drawn to the unique and atypical uses of materials.  I can't tell you how many times I have ogled over a designers jewelry and said now "Why didn't I think of that"?  I love to see those designers work.  Seems that they just have a special place in their brain for that type of creative thought.
I strive to be one of them!!!!

So I received these really lovely pendant bead sets by Jeff Elvin of Dakota Stones and he asked me to  come up with with some designs for him.  Jeff was launching them to his website and he wanted a few designs to show his customers how they could use them. What I love the most about them was the rough hammered surface. It also has a smooth surface to but I only see myself using the rough surface.

With this necklace I used all 5 of the pendants in the grouping. I love Game of Thrones and new season was airing soon and I was thinking about Khaleesi. I made some copper accents, added some Brecciated Jasper and Greek Mykonos and tied it all up with waxed linen.  I primarily tie all my jewelry and I am always looking for different ways to added the texture of tying into my jewelry.  I did a tying technique in between my copper points.

Lapis Necklace - SOLD

I was really excited that these pendant groupings came in Lapis and couldn't wait to get my hands on those for my Between the Lines collection that is one of my newer styles this 2014. Here I used only 1 of the pendants.  I do have to tell you if you are planning on tying it is helpful to have an 
This is my go to tool!!!!!  I bought mine at Rio Grande but you can find them and extra bits on Amazon.  All of the stones are from Dakota Stones and the lampwork is from Outwest.  Good part about this design is that now I still have 4 LAPIS PENDANTS LEFT!!!!!!

I have an obsession with peachy coral and that has been going on for nearly 2 years.  I love Sunstone, Moonstone and Fossil Coral.  I used all 5 pieces in this Fossil Coral Set.  Added some Sea Urchin, Wood, Greek Mykonos and Pink Agate.  This was an interesting design to tie as I had to start from the clasp and move in from their to do that tying technique at the pendant.

Some simple designs with tying in Lapis and African Turquoise.

I love Dakota Stones for many reasons really but this is a big one.  They have so many beads in the same type of stone in odles of shapes, drills finishes you name it.  I am a very textural jewelry designer and they are a stone lovers dream come true and personally they do it like no other.  Here I used one of the pendants in Rough Sunset Dumortierite.  They recently came out with these great rectangle beads in matte and glossy finishes and in many types of stones.  I added one of them here and was fortunate enough to have some nearly identical Lampwork by Bokamo Designs.  I also added Sunstone, Lapis, Jade and Greek Mykonos.  The clasp and copper bail were handmade by me.

Made with Red Creek Jasper, matte carved Amazonite, Brecciated Jasper, Wood and Lampwork by Bokamo Designs.  One of my friends called it Lyrical and I think she got that right.

Another very Tribal piece using African Turquois Pendants.  Here I use only 3.  I added Rough Carved Onyx, Greek Mykonos and some handmade copper components by me.

Butterflies From Heaven Necklace - Mine

I know my mom was smiling down on my from heaven as I made this necklace.  She loved butterflies!  This one was made with Amazonite, Carved Matte Amazonite, Greek Mykonos, Lampwork from Firelily and some fancy wire work made by me.  For now this one is mine.  I will be making some for my shop.  I have a few kinks to work out.  One of my favorite colors!!!!!

Many of these designs can be purchased here or click through the links to the above necklace.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Dakota Stones Warehouse Sale

For a couple reasons really 

1:  They're our local wholesaler and I will do everything I possibly can to support them. 

2:  They really do have some unique and high quality stone beads.  You will find one type of stone in MANY cuts, drills and shapes.  They're a jewelry designers dream come true for making fabulously textural jewelry.

3:  I love their staff.  They have always been very warm and friendly to me and very supportive of my work. 

4:  They listen!!!!  I have asked for things and discussed trends in stone and jewelry with Jeff Elvin (Owner)  and he has always come through!

4:  They are 10 MINUTES from my home!

Do I work for them - The answer to that is no -  I am not on their payroll but I do help & support their efforts as they support mine.  A symbiotic relationship.  I believe in them and as a designer I will shout it from the mountain top because they deserve it!!!

Did you know that they are starting a Beading Ambassador program.  YES they are looking for talented jewelry designers who have a passion for stone like me!!!!

So I know some of you are wanting that CODE that Dakota Stones gave me just for my online friends.  

Here it is use 


at checkout for 4 hours only on April 27th from 10am - 2pm.  

This is a stand alone discount and not on top of other discounts.  Plus they are a wholesale only account so if you don't have an account set one up now before the sale.

Make sure to check out their new 5 piece pendant set and big hole beads!

So get busy and make some great jewelry with Dakota Stones!!!

You can find Kristin Oppold's work on Etsy under YaY! Jewelry.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Belle Armoire Jewelry Magazine - Kristin Oppold's Designer Collection

I suppose if I was a new jewelry artist I would wonder how someone would get on the cover and secure the Designer Collection 

Belle Armoire Jewelry Magazine

Diamond in the Sun Bracelet

What I can tell you is that it was a complete shock. I do believe my planning and processing went a long way in establishing myself here.  I will share that with you.  I will also share with you all of my suppliers at the end of this blog.

My dream magazine!  
Everything about it is beautiful from its photography, thick pages, creative inspiration and well written tutorials.  When I bought my very first magazine.  I remember saying WOW and thinking to myself I can really gain some inspiration from this magazine.

On the shelf at Barnes & Noble

I knew at some point that this magazine was going to be a lofty goal of mine.  I didn't delve right into it though.  I studied the magazine and I remember thinking that if I am going to send them anything it is going to have to be completely unique and innovative in todays jewelry design market.  Many of my really good jewelry designs have been formed out of my lack of technical skills and training.  My Between The Lines Collection was completely born out of that....simple frustration.  If you have read my interview you will know that the formulation of this idea came originally from my first Bead Soup Challenge, where I received a long lampwork bead from my Bead Soup Partner Julie Bowen.  I didn't know it at the time but this whole line of jewelry began to formulate in my mind from that challenge.

The idea popped in my head that I could do so much more designing BETWEEN 2 LINES.  It was exciting when I realized how much was really possible.  So I put this away in my mind for 6 months, playing with it there until I had time and the right opportunity to put my fingers to work.  I knew right away that this line would be for Belle Armoire Jewelry.  I also knew that I wanted it for either the Spring, Summer or possibly Fall issue.

If you are thinking of submitting don't go it alone, talk to people who have been in the magazine.  I received some invaluable advice from Erin Siegel one of my new jewelry artist friends from Facebook.  She told me they liked collections.  When she said that, I knew I was on the right path and that I was going to go as big as I could with it.  So I made a few pieces, photo'd them and sent them to Cynthia Leven the Editor.  She got back to me literally in 1 hour and said YES to please send them in.

Sprigs of Spring Necklace

This was the very first piece I made called Sprigs of Spring. It was made with some great Artisan Beads and stones.  The gorgeous etched lampwork beads were from Donna Millard Glass Beads.  I added some Peridot from Rings N Things and some Canadian Jade from Dakota Stones.

Sometimes you need to add a little wonky and whimsical to your jewelry.  So I came up with Spring Cleaning.  I knew I wanted to play with some asymmetry between the lines and did that with some large chunky chartreuse Czech Glass Beads. And added some of Outwests  and Tanya Mcguires Lampwork.  I played around with some rings and spacer bars for the clasp.  I made a matching bracelet with Tanya McGuires Lampwork.

Apache Moon Necklace 

Apache Moon Necklace and Earrings was my favorite of the collection.  I loved the kaki Outwest Circle that I paired with Donna Millard Glass beads and the Scorched Earth long Raku Pendant.  What was really fun was adding the extra texture to the front of the necklace.  I made this design asymmetrical with Peridot from Rings N Things and Carnelian from the G&LW Gem and Lapidary Show.  I made some fun waxed linen tied earrings to match.

Apache Moon Earrings

So I kept making pieces and she kept responding back with positive feedback.  After awhile I decided I better quit bugging her and send her some surprises to.  LOL

Diamond In The Sun Bracelet
On The Front Cover

When reviewing all of the pieces I was putting together I thought I better make  a bracelet.  So I played around with putting one of Dakota Stones Russian Amazonite Beads suspended Between The Lines and did some interesting tying with chain and waxed linen.  This was on the front cover of the magazine.  I didn't even know I was to be on the front cover until I saw the add on their website.  I remember I kept looking at it and said to myself.  Is that mine?  When I realized yes that it was mine I started jumping up and down on my bead screaming as my family was running in to see what was wrong.....
All I can say it is thrilling to see your work on the front cover.  My family soon realized I wasn't in distress and went about their merry way unimpressed.

Chillin Chic Layered Necklace

I was thinking about making a choker....not really sure how that would turn out.  I went for it anyhow.  I added some rough edged Agate.  After it was made I was wishing I was younger and didn't have a 50 year old neck somewhat hidden underneath.  I decided why not add some removable layers to it so you could wear it as a choker alone and or add some layers if you wish.  The key to making a choker is all in the does need to fit snug so it doesn't tip.

I went to my first Bead and Button Show in Milwaukee in 2013 with some dear friends of mine.  I bought a strand of rough cut Rubies.  It was the most expensive strand of stone I have ever purchased.  I really had no idea of how or where I was to use it.  I often use a color wheel to help me with color choices.  I knew I wanted to use the Rubies and I went online to see what style of jewelry people put rubies into.  I saw that the Egyptians used Rubies and often time used bold color choices .  So I decided to add some Kyanite to the mix of color.  This is an odd color choice for me mixing the 2 but as in all things experiment.  I made a pair of earrings with 2 spacer bars with the Rubies and Kyanite beads sandwiched in.

One of my love affairs in color over the last year has been peachy coral.  This necklace and earrings that I called Kahiko (Ancient Hula Dance) combinations came from some fun lampwork I bought from Bubby McGurk Beads.  I added Kyanite, Pink Agate and Fossil Coral from Dakota Stones to the mix.  I played with some texture at the bottom of the necklace and at the end of the strands before the  chain.

This was it.  This is what I sent. 


 I got the email asking if I was interested in a technical article.  Of course was the answer.  At this time in my life.......chaos was occurring.  We were selling our house.  We were buying a house and I was cleaning a very messy house that we purchased plus I was recovering from frozen shoulder syndrom.  I was packing up my studio for 2 months to get my house sold and I was waiting to hear from Cynthia Leven on what pieces she had chosen for me to do the tutorials on.  Thankfully I had done all the tutorials on all my pieces before sending them as I knew the chaos in my life was about to get worse.  I emailed her a couple times with the response.  
"I can't decide, I like them all".  
I am saying to myself....Thats a good thing, but the clock was ticking and the movers were scheduled and chaos was ever closer.  I knew I would have to edit many of my tutorials.
During my move in I got the email.  We have a proposition for you.  

Would you be interested in having the Designer Collection! 

I was floored!  You see this was the first time I had ever submitted to them.  I was in a daze.  The second questions was do you have anymore in this collection that you can send us.  
I said yes of course knowing that I would be able to squeak a few more designs out.

Koi In Abstract Necklace

So I sent them Koi in second favorite.  I hand drew and etched a Koi Fish and patina's with Vintaj  Metal Patinas.  Added more of Donna Millards Lampwork beads, Bamboo Coral, some Chrysoprase, Carnelian and Jade from Dakota Stones. The bone beads were from a old necklace and I added some wood twigs from my favorite local bead shop, Taylors Falls Bead Store. I had this piece in my wardrobe.

Beachside Baby Bracelet, Necklace & Earring

The last set of jewelry I made, once again thinking of my gaps in the collection, I added a mid length necklace and a little Minnesota.  My friend Jeff Plath at Taylors Falls Bead Store drills these great Basalt Beads from the shores of Lake Superior so I added one to a necklace.  Jeff  taught me how to drill stone and that opened a whole avenue for me in jewelry design.  So when I can I try to use my little Minnesota when I can.  I added some shell from a recycled necklace, Jade and Greek Mykonos.  The bracelet I added a Sand Dollar, Greek Mykonos, Basalt and Shell.

All of the jewelry in this collection were made with Spacer Bars from the Industrial Chic line by Susan Lennart Kasmer.  The majority of the chain used in these pieces were all from the Garland Chain Company and Rings n Things.   All of it was tied with waxed linen and my hand dandy Dumont Tweezers, my go to tool.  I can't leave out that as a person who ties most of my jewelry I could never live with out my Electric Bead Reaming tool by Eurotool.  I could never live without that.

My suppliers links are listed below for your shopping pleasure.

To get your copy or subscribe to Belle Armoire Jewelry Magazine Click the Link Below

A special thanks to the following 

Erin Siegel - for the great advice, encouragement and friendship

Julie Bowen - for sparking this line with that long lampwork bead at 
Bead Soup 7 Block Party

Cynthia Leven - for getting my vision and seeing this lines potential and showing it to the world

Rice' Freeman Zachery - for making the interview fun and easy, 

Tom Oppold - my husband for supporting my crazy creative self

Kate Oppold - for her good eye when I questioned some of the designs even though she didn't like them all.  "Mom Thats Weird"

Artisan Whimsey Group Members - for your continued encouragement, education and making me feel relevant

Janet Holter - Mom thanks for being my cheerleader from heaven - I love you and miss you dearly

I can now die a happy woman!