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Archive: November ’11 on The Blog

Shell Pearls at Lima Beads

Posted by Kevin on November 23 at 12:51 pm

Shell pearls are an alternative to cultured and glass pearls. They look and feel more genuine than glass pearls and offer the consistency of size and color that can be difficult to achieve with cultured pearls. Shell pearls exhibit the weight and feel of a natural South Sea pearl. They’re available in an array of beautiful colors.

Shell Pearls

Shell Pearl BucketsHow they’re made

The production process for shell pearls is similar to the process that crystal companies use to make glass pearls. The major difference is that glass pearls have glass in the center and shell pearls have a solid carving of real seashell at their core. Stone cutters cut and polish pieces of this giant shell until they More Shell Pearlshave a perfect shape (10mm round for example). Once the piece of shell is finished, they’re ready to coat it. The coating, which is made in the USA, contains genuine mother of pearl that has been ground into a fine powder. This mother of pearl content is what gives shell pearls their deep luster. The coating process is what differentiates some shell pearls. All Lima Beads shell pearls have a thick multi-layer coating that ensures durability and high luster.

Great things about shell pearls

Shell Pearl Core

The core of a shell pearl

Genuine look and feel: Because they have a real seashell at their core, shell pearls look & feel more genuine than glass pearls.

Resilience: Shell pearls are more resistant to sweat, perfume, and other contaminants that commonly affect cultured pearls.

Availability: The controlled manufacturing process ensures that we can continuously restock items in the same shapes and colors.

Shop our Shell Pearls >


Holiday Hint #7: Christmas Tree Jewelry

Posted by Ali on November 23 at 11:53 am

This post is part of a series for the 2011 Holiday Season… Follow along on the Holiday Page!

We are always so focused on making jewelry for ourselves that we might forget to make jewelry for our tree! I wanted to make garland for our tree, so I took 2 different spools of hemp and cut 13′ lengths of each. Knot a loop at the end to be able to secure to a branch. Randomly string on large crystals or large sparkly beads by knotting them on each side. As you go along about every 10″ or so, knot a couple scraps of ribbon to add some fullness and contrast to the sparkle. It’s easy and super quick! Your tree jewelry will look beautiful on your tree or wreath–or you can give it as a gift. (I’m keeping mine!)

Handmade Holiday Garland

Handmade Holiday Garland

Holiday Hint #6: Lists, lists, lists…

Posted by Ali on November 22 at 11:44 am

This post is part of a series for the 2011 Holiday Season… Follow along on the Holiday Page!

If there is any time to turn into a crazy list maker, now is the time. Those magnetic pads for your fridge are great. I make lists for everything this time of year. Between Thanksgiving being next week, preparing Christmas presents, getting ready to decorate the house, entertaining, and going to holiday parties I have no time left right now to process a complete thought or idea … so I make lists.

I have a list for:

  • what I am making for Thanksgiving dinner
  • what I need to make each of the dishes and what I need to purchase for them
  • who is getting a gift & what they are getting
  • what I need to decorate inside
  • what I need to decorate outside
  • what craft projects to do with the kids
  • whom to make cookies for
  • … and the lists go on

Any other list makers out there!

Holiday Hint #5: Never Get Caught Empty Handed

Posted by Ali on November 17 at 05:01 pm

This post is part of a series for the 2011 Holiday Season… Follow along on the Holiday Page!

Have you ever been in the unfortunate situation of being the recipient of a gift without having anything to give in return?

Make a few extra gifts to have on hand. Keep them in your car, or in your purse. Everyone likes a simple pair of sparkly earrings or a “match everything” multi color bracelet. These gifts can even be made with your extra beads and findings, so you don’t have to spend more money than you have to!

Holiday Hint #4: Handling “Helpful” Kids

Posted by Ali on November 10 at 12:24 pm

This post is part of a series for the 2011 Holiday Season… Follow along on the Holiday Page!

I am always trying to find a spare second at home when I can try to be creative. Lately this task has become even harder with Payton not consistently taking an afternoon nap and Christmas gift creations looming. She loves to try an help me make jewelry, but isn’t always all that helpful, so I came up with something easy for her to do at my desk while I work on my own designs – button jewelry. I have a couple cigar boxes full of vintage buttons with big holes that make it easy to string hemp or twine through. She loves this because they are colorful and sparkly and she can do it all by herself. I love it because she stays preoccupied so that I can think straight and design something myself.

Payton's Vintage Button NecklaceHere is a necklace that Payton made the other day. I made a loop clasp for her to put the final button through as closure.

Materials needed:
2′ hemp or twine
old buttons or even big hole beads

Holiday Hint #3: Hang your Ornaments in Style…

Posted by Ali on November 03 at 01:42 pm

This post is part of a series for the 2011 Holiday Season… Follow along on the Holiday Page!

One of the things I don’t look forward to during the holidays is reaching my hand into that dreaded box of pointy ornament hooks, only to stab myself and ruin the spirit. This year, I’m taking a different route using some beads and leftover Artistic Wire.

With just a few inches of Artistic Wire and some sparkly helpers, you can hang your ornaments in style. Check out the tip on making ornament hangers on the Tips & Techniques page!

The Results Are In!

Posted by Matt on November 01 at 02:41 pm

I think the scariest thing about these Fresh Pick Challenges is how creative our customers are! When Steve gave everyone the ability to create their own Fresh Picks, we weren’t sure how it was going to go. I think this goes without saying, but it’s been wildly successful.

Here are the four lucky Fresh Pickers who came out on top of the latest Fresh Pick Challenge:

Best Composition: Artful Accents’ “October Skyline

We had a hard time picking just one for this category because there were so many picks with great composition. The more I look at this pick, the more I like it. You can tell just how much care went into picking each and every product. Just look at how that Lillypilly Verde Patina Copper Sheet works so well with the Red Creek Jasper!

Best Use of Color: D Gooding’s “PumpkinHead is Snoring

I would bet that D Gooding was taking a shot at the “Best Story” prize for this one. Even though it was a finalist for that category, we really liked the bright, pumpkin-esque colors. If you haven’t already read the story, I suggest you give it a read.

Best Story: Kitty Chicky Cat’s “origami garden

“The perfect hostess; gentle as a dove, with the willow’s grace, welcoming as a warm embrace. Yet she is mournful as the wind that ever caresses her dwelling place and cold as the stars that light the eyes of her pretty face.” This story literally gave me the chills. I think I’m going to have nightmares about being folded up into a pretty little lily…

Top-notch storytelling aside, this is a great-looking pick!

People’s Choice: Mary S – Sweet Chick’s “Pumpkin Vines

I’d have to agree with all of you on this one! Great composition, great use of color and beautifully crafted. We’ve come to expect this level of creativity from a seasoned veteran like Mary. She has almost 350 Fresh Picks under her belt!

The winners will receive their $25 Gift Certificate code in an email from me within the next few hours. If for some reason you don’t get the message, just let me know in the comments.

Again, we really appreciate everyone who contributed to make this contest so successful. Hopefully, we’ll have another one of these up our sleeve in the coming months.

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