Make it a Double…….or even a Triple!

No I haven’t hit the gin……yet……I am actually talking multi-strand gemstone necklaces.  Often I am a ‘less is more’ advocate, but every now and then I veer towards ‘more’ also being more!!

Two recent creations include this double-strand blue and white striped agate statement necklace.

Blue Agate Double Strand Necklace, blue and white striped agate necklace, double stand bib necklace, blue statement necklace, handmade necklace, handcrafted gemstone necklace,

Statement Necklace of Blue and White Striped Agate in a Double-Strand Bib Design – created by Big Skies Jewellery

I am totally in love with the agate beads in this necklace.  I have used them previously and when I saw them again at the bead shop recently, I snapped them up.

Blue and White Striped Agate beads, blue gemstone beads, blue beads, agate beads, marquise beads

Gorgeous Blue and White Striped Agate Beads

My other creation was this blue imperial jasper triple strand statement necklace:

Blue Imperial Jasper Triple Strand Necklace, blue statement necklace, chunky gemstone necklace, blue necklace, imperial jasper necklace, handmade necklace, handcrafted gemstone necklace

Chunky Gemstone Necklace with a Triple Strand of Blue Imperial Jasper Beads – created by Big Skies Jewellery

The beautiful abstract patterns that nature paints on jasper are amazing; each stone is unique and beautiful.

Blue Imperial Jasper Triple Strand Necklace, blue imperial jasper beads, jasper, blue gemstones,

Bright Blue Imperial Jasper Beads

Find Big Skies Jewellery on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/bigskiesjewellery

Shop Big Skies Jewellery on Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/bigskiesjewellery

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New Bead Candy!

Last Sunday, my kind husband took me on a day’s tour, from the south of Johannesburg to beyond the north of Johannesburg, of my favourite bead and gem stockists.  He then finished it off by treating me to a tasty prawn curry!  Perfect day 🙂

Here’s a little taster of some of my new bead candy:

Pyrite, pyrite with a titanium finish, pyrite beads, pyrite bead string, natural pyrite crystals

Natural Pyrite crystal beads, with a Titanium finish

I love these Pyrite beads – they have a Titanium finish which I have never seen before, fascinating!

anthophyllite beads, anthiophyllite, clove coloured gemstone, anthophylite, anthophyllite bead string

Faceted rectangular Anthophyllite beads

This is a very unusual clove-coloured fibrous mineral called Anthophyllite.  I can find very little information on this stone – but I will keep searching and hopefully do a blog post on it later.

Lapis lazuli, natural lapis lazuli, lapis lazuli beads, lapis lazuli bead string, blue beads, blue gemstone,

Chunky round Lapis Lazuli beads with flecks of golden Pyrite

Gorgeous chunky natural (untreated) dark blue Lapis Lazuli with flecks of golden pyrite – always beautiful.

Kyanite, kyanie beads, kyanite bead string, gemstone beads,

Dainty round Kyanite beads

For some reason Kyanite just speaks to me….

Botswana agate, botswana agate beads, botswana agate bead string, striped agate beads, brown gemstone beads

Botswana Agate oval beads

And finally another favourite of mine to work with – silky smooth Botswana Agate.

Plenty here to keep me busy for a while!

Find Big Skies Jewellery on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/bigskiesjewellery

Shop Big Skies Jewellery on Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/bigskiesjewellery

Don’t Be Scared of Colour!

Creative Colour Combinations

Don’t be afraid to try out new colours and colour combinations, you may just be surprised by how effective an unexpected colour choice can look.  Accessories are a perfect way to experiment with different colour ideas and trends.

Handcrafted gemstone necklace, gemstone jewellery, green agate, black onyx and cream coral necklace, handmade gemstone necklace, onyx necklace, coral necklace, agate necklace, emerald green necklace

Gemstone Necklace – designed and created by Big Skies Jewellery

This new gemstone necklace design in emerald-green, black and cream is probably not a colour combination you see very often, but I think the result looks so elegant and sophisticated. The gemstones featured are a sparkly faceted green oval agate focal bead, glossy round black onyx beads and cream coral beads that have been irregularly planed on their surface.

elegant handcrafted gemstone necklace, gemstone jewellery, green agate, black onyx and cream coral necklace, handmade gemstone necklace, onyx necklace, coral necklace, agate necklace, emerald green necklace, chic gemstone necklace

Agate, Onyx and Coral Necklace – $38 from Big Skies Jewellery

This necklace design is perfect to wear with a variety of wardrobe options – over a polo neck sweater, under a collared blouse, with a plain black scoop-necked T – the choices are many.

Handcrafted gemstone necklace, gemstone jewellery, green agate, black onyx and cream coral necklace, handmade gemstone necklace, onyx necklace, coral necklace, agate necklace, emerald green necklace

Green, Black and Cream Gemstone Necklace – designed and created by Big Skies Jewellery

Perhaps also think about the colours of the clothes you already have in your wardrobe too, maybe there are some new combinations you could put together to give existing clothes a new lease of life!

Most importantly, just have fun and play with colour!

 

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Follow Big Skies Jewellery on Twitter: @bigskiesjewel

Shop Big Skies Jewellery on Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/bigskiesjewellery

Happiness is….New Gemstone Bead Strings

Looking at this little lot, I must have had a secret yearning for more colour in my life when I went bead shopping!

Gemstone bead strings, agate beads, dyed agate bead strings, red coral, green jade, semi precious beads, pink stone beads, purple stone beads, blue stone beads

New Gemstone Bead Strings at Big Skies Jewellery – Dyed Agates, Green Jade and Red Coral

Most of these beads are dyed agates, but at the top you will see some green jade and red coral.

Happy days!  Roll on the weekend…. 🙂

The Fairest Cape

This time tomorrow I shall be on my way to Cape Town for the weekend. It is a two-hour flight from Johannesburg – time enough for a nice cold glass of white wine between ascent and descent.

View towards the Lion's Head - Cape Town, Cape Peninsula, Twelve Apostles, Lion's Head, the Cape

View from Chapman’s Peak drive on the Cape Peninsula looking back towards the Lion’s Head, with the Twelve Apostles coming into view on the left

Sir Francis Drake, the celebrated English navigator, wrote of the Cape: “This Cape is the most stately, and the fairest cape in the whole circumference of the earth…”

Table Mountain from Blouberg, Table Mountain, Cape Town, Blouberg, Cape Peninsular, the Cape, South Afrca

View from Blouberg across Table Bay towards Table Mountain and Cape Town

Home to the famous landmark, Table Mountain, the shores of Table bay are where South Africa’s recorded history began on Christmas Eve in 1652, when, Commander Jan van Riebeeck, his French wife, young son and a small party arrived.

Cape Peninsula 1

View along Chapman’s Peak drive on the Cape Peninsula

Cape Town is also home to one of my favourite shopping streets – the Main Road in Kalk Bay – it’s cobbled streets offer a variety of arts & crafts, pottery, unusual antiques, book stores, jewellery stores, curios and bric-a-brac shops. A shopper’s paradise!  There is also my favourite rock shop, Rock Chic in the fishing town of Hout Bay.  And let us not forget Cape Town is next to the Cape winelands…..yes, it is going to be a good weekend!

View of Table Mountain from a restaurant in the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town, Table Mountain, Table Bay, South Africa, the Cape

View of Table Mountain from a restaurant in the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront

I am looking forward to purchasing some unusual and eye-catching gemstone focal beads from Rock Chic.  Here are some of my necklaces in which I have used the gemstone beads I bought on my last visit.

Grey agate bib necklace, gemstone necklace, agate beaded necklace, handmade gemstone necklace, handcrafted gemstone necklace, handmade jewelry, gemstone jewelry, bib necklace

Grey Agate Gemstone Necklace $50 – from Big Skies Jewellery

Black Tourmaline, Natural Pyrite and Carnelian Statement Necklace, gemstone jewelry, gemstone necklace, handmade gemstone necklace, handcrafted gemstone necklace, black tourmaline necklace

SOLD – Black Tourmaline, Pyrite and Carnelian Gemstone Necklace by Big Skies Jewellery

Tribal Bostwanan agate, red coral, silver and chain gemstone necklace, red coral necklace, gemstone necklace, gemstone jewelry, tribal necklace, chain necklace, tribal jewelry, agate necklace

Tribal Red Coral and Botswana Agate Chain Necklace $45 – available from Big Skies Jewellery

Tribal Pyrite, Crystal, Citrine and Sunstone Necklace, gemstone necklace, gemstone jewelry, tribal necklace, chain necklace, handmade gemstone necklace, handcrafted gemstone necklace,

SOLD Tribal Pyrite Crystal, Citrine and Sunstone Gemstone Necklace by Big Skies Jewellery

Agate Slab Bib Necklace, Agate bib gemstone necklace, bib necklace, gemstone necklace, gemstone jewelry, handmade gemstone necklace, handcrafted gemstone jewelry

SOLD Agate Slab Bib Necklace by Big Skies Jewellery

 

Big Skies Jewellery on Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/shop/bigskiesjewellery

Big Skies Jewellery on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/bigskiesjewellery

Graceful Grey Agate….New Necklace Design

I love to work with beautiful gemstone beads. I personally select all the stones for my handmade jewellery, and specifically look for beads with an interesting shape or unusual cut. They range in finish from rough and natural, to faceted gem-quality stones.  They are all distinctive and unique – just like each of us.

Grey agate bib necklace, Botswana agate, gemstone necklace, handmade necklace, grey necklace,

Beautiful Grey and White Striped Botswana Agate Beads

I individually selected each of these fabulous grey and white striped Botswana agate slivers from a shop in Hout Bay in Cape Town. 

Grey agate bib necklace, grey gemstone necklace, statement necklace, bib necklace, handmade gemstone necklace, 2013 necklace design

Grey Agate and Quartz Bib Necklace designed and created by Big Skies Jewellery ($50)

I have combined the agate slivers with lovely graduated faceted grey cloudy quartz beads to form a full string of gemstones, highlighted by a scattering of antique silver-toned metal accent beads.   The necklace closes with a fancy shepherds crook hook, which can be used in conjunction with the extender chain to adjust the length according to what you are wearing.  The extender chain has a cloudy quartz gemstone bead charm to finish it off.

Grey agate bib necklace, gemstone bib necklace, handmade gemstone necklace, statement necklace, grey stone necklace, 2013 necklace design

Beautiful and Unique Gemstone Necklace by Big Skies Jewellery

Jewellery design is not only just about colour – it’s also about pattern, texture and very importantly, balance.  Each of my gemstone pieces is carefully designed with balance and harmony in mind; my goal being to make the wearer feel beautiful and special.

My handmade jewellery collection contains something for everyone – from earthy casual designs to dressy high-end pieces for special occasions.  To view my designs, please browse through my collection on Etsy.

Blue Skies

The bright blue in the agate beads used in my latest Etsy listing, reminds me of the lovely blue skies we have here in South Africa. As we move from a summer of rainfall into the dry winter, our skies are so clear and deep blue – not even a hint of a cloud.

Blue and White Agate Slice Necklace, blue and white striped agate, agate beads, blue gemstone, blue beads, blue stone

Blue and white striped agate bead

Blue and White Agate Slice Necklace, blue and white gemstone necklace, blue agate necklace, blue handmade necklace, blue bead necklace, bib necklace, gemstone necklace

Blue and White Agate Bib Necklace $32 by Big Skies Jewellery

If you would like to see this necklace and more beautiful and unique gemstone necklaces and jewellery, please browse the Big Skies Jewellery Etsy shop.

I would love to see you on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/bigskiesjewellery and you can follow @BigSkiesJewel on Twitter.

True Blue – Statement Necklaces

It was a blue weekend at Big Skies Jewellery – a royal blue ocean agate and deep blue turquoise weekend to be precise!

Two blue gemstone statement necklaces were added to the Big Skies Jewellery range this weekend.  I love creating statement jewellery –  my favourite thing is to work with beautiful bold gemstones; I just can’t resist them!

Turquoise and Chrysocolla Focal Bead Statement Necklace, Gemstone Statement Necklace, Chunky Blue Necklace, Bold Turquoise Necklace, Turquoise Jewelry, Blue Statement Necklace

Turquoise and Chrysocolla Statement Necklace by Big Skies Jewellery – $45

This statement necklace features rich blue reconstituted turquoise beads with a chrysocolla focal bead of mixed dark blues and greens.  The antiqued metal filigree beads and motifed bead caps are all highly decorative and have unusual shapes and patterns.

Chrysocolla Oval Focal Bead, Chrysocolla, Blue and Green Gemstone Bead, Blue Gemstone Necklace, Big Skies Jewellery

Blue and Green Chrysocolla Focal Bead

This second statement necklace features a luscious full rope of royal blue ocean agate faceted beads alternated with antiqued silver filigree cylindrical beads. 

Ocean Agate Statement Choker, Blue Statement Necklace, Chunky Statement Necklace, Bold Gemstone Necklace, Blue Necklace, Agate Necklace, Statement Jewelry

Royal Blue Ocean Agate Statement Necklace by Big Skies Jewellery – $80

This gemstone necklace looks absolutely beautiful on – very rich and luxuriant, perfect for a special occasion!

Ocean Agate Faceted Beads, Blue Agate Beads, Silver Filigree Beads, Ocean Agate Statement Neckalce, Chunky Blue Gemstone Necklace, Faceted Agate Beads, Blue Beads

Faceted Royal Blue Ocean Agate Beads

Both these statement necklaces, plus many more, are available in Big Skies Jewellery’s Etsy store.

Join Big Skies Jewellery on Facebook for daily updates including behind the scenes peaks, designs in progress, new beads and findings, funnies, links, listing previews, etc.

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Jewellery Making – Behind the Scenes Peak – “The Bead Stash”

All beaded jewellery makers have a “bead stash“.  Here is the most treasured portion of mine – my gemstone bead boxes.

 
Red Coral, Blue Quartz, Turquoise, Agate and Blue Imperial Jasper, gemstone beads, gemstones

Red Coral, Blue Quartz, Turquoise, Agate and Blue Imperial Jasper

 

Amethyst, Tigers Eye, Agate,  Aventurine, Amazonite, Labradorite and Malachite,  gemstone beads, gemstones

Amethyst, Tigers Eye, AgateAventurine, Amazonite, Labradorite and Malachite

   Crystals, Mookaite, Citrine and Sunstone,  gemstone beads, gemstones

Crystals, Mookaite, Citrine and Sunstone

 

Fire Crackle Agate, Sardonyx, Pyrite, Onyx and Agate,  gemstone beads, gemstones

Fire Crackle Agate, Sardonyx, Pyrite, Agate and Onyx

 

Turquoise Howlite,  gemstone beads, gemstones

Turquoise Howlite – in all shapes and sizes

 

Crystals, White and Cream Howlite and Lemon Quartz,  gemstone beads, gemstones

White and Cream Howlite, Lemon Quartz and various sizes and shapes of Crystals

 

Rose Quartz, Cherry Quartz, Coral and Garnet,  gemstone beads, gemstones

Rose Quartz, Coral, Garnet, Agate and Cherry Quartz

 

Onyx, Quartz, Hematite, Blue Goldstone, Snowflake Obsidian and Agate,  gemstone beads, gemstones

Blue Goldstone, Grey Quartz, Hematite, Onyx, Agate and Snowflake Obsidian

 

These are a sight that literally make my heart sing….. having them all lined up like this, I feel like a kid standing in front of the pick ‘n’ mix at a sweetie store.  (It does also make me think that I may possibly have too many beads…….these are just the gemstones……)

See the finished jewellery pieces in my Etsy shop!

Join Big Skies Jewellery on Facebook for daily updates including more behind the scenes peaks, designs in progress, new beads and findings, funnies, links, etc.

Follow Big Skies Jewellery on Twitter: @BigSkiesJewel

 

Handmade Jewellery Projects for the Weekend

Blue-grey crystal bracelet, wedding bracelet, sparkly bracelet, crystal bracelet

Blingy Blue/Grey Crystal and Diamante Bracelet

I am well-known for having multiple projects on the go…. My creative process tends to follow the path of doing all the fun stuff such as designing and stringing the piece, and then putting off the more mundane task of finishing it off – adding the chain, clasp, securing the beads, etc.

The process is also somewhat dictated by the light source – I tend to create and design during daylight when I can see the colours at their best and truest, and then finish off the pieces at other times when it doesn’t matter if I use artificial light.   

Turquoise howlite and chunky silver statement necklace, bold silver and blue necklace, gemstone statement necklace
Funky Turquoise Howlite and Silver Tube Statement Necklace

 

 

 

But, there comes a point, where I HAVE to finish off my assembled projects before I can allow myself to create new ones. Pictured here are some pieces due for completion this weekend.

  

 

Ocean Agate Choker Necklace, Blue Gemstone Necklace, Agate Jewellery, Gemstone jewelry
Blue Ocean Agate Choker Necklace

 

 

Visit the Big Skies Jewellery store here.

Aquamarine bracelet and necklace set, gemstone bracelet, blue bracelet
Aquamarine Bracelet and Necklace Set