The sun is out, school is over for the summer (except for jewellery school) and, if you are like several of the jewellery school team, you are beginning to think about packing for your holidays.
And with us that doesn’t just mean picking out shorts, sundresses or the perfect shoes for a holiday night out, we’ve also been planning what will go in our holiday jewellery making kit because holidays are the perfect time to fit in some quality making time without the usual cares of the world getting in the way.
Obviously big silver or resin projects aren’t exactly practical for a trip away but there are plenty fun projects to be made with a smallish selection of beads and tools that will still leave room for (some) clothes in your suitcase. And making jewellery on holiday means you can have new look every day (or night).
1. Pack a full set of pliers. Some people favour mini plier sets for travelling but they can be harder to grip so you may find it better to have a little extra weight and be more comfortable with your tools.
2. Beads in a variety of sizes. You can’t really get anywhere without them and they’ll fit in all those odd-shaped spaces in your case.
Bring a selection of beads to make striking necklaces and fun stretchy bracelets
3. A selection of stringing materials – a roll of tiger tail and one of elastic beading cord will come in handy. You can experiment with multi-strand necklaces and make fun stretchy bracelets to wear to the beach.
4. Gold and silver-plated wire. Experiment with making your own findings, charms and wrapping beads. Practice making coils and spirals and using them to wrap beads or as charms and spacers. You can find useful video tutorials here.
Mastering simple wire coils means you can make interesting pendants and earrings like this (follow tutorial link for details) and relaxing on holiday is the perfect time to perfect your technique.
Friendship bracelets are both a great holiday make and holiday look.
6. Fine wire (0.3mm) and crochet hooks or a French knitting bobbin. If you enjoy knitting or crochet, why not try it with wire or tiger tail (a lot less sweaty than wool at this time of year). Several coloured crocheted wire chains with beads twisted together make striking statement chokers or try French knitting with this tutorial.
French knit necklace
Crocheted or knitted wire offers the opportunity to create flexible 3D effects
And finally don’t forget your bead mat – beads escaping onto the beach, off a balcony or into the pool is not what we wnat to see.