Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Balloon Boxes with Bubbles

I've been experimenting with my newest beaded bead design, the Balloon Box. I actually made this blue and pink beaded bead a while ago to match some lampwork beads I was incorporating into a necklace. I ended up going with a different beaded bead design for the necklace, so this one became a pendant:

But more recently I came up with the idea to incorporate Miyuki fringe drop beads into this design (maybe it was from all the fun I've been having with Gwen's new Ionic Polyhedra pattern!). By replacing 24 of the seed beads with fringe drop beads, I ended up with these modified Balloon Box beaded beads:

Neat huh? 

Actually, the above two beaded beads have one key difference. Can you see it? 

Look closer... Can you see it now?

Give up?

OK, I'll tell you: these two beaded beads use different sizes of Miyuki fringe drop beads. The one on the left uses the classic 3.4 mm drops which have been on the market for some time now. The one on the right uses the brand new mini drop beads, aka 2.8 mm drops, which became available earlier this year. 

Here's another view of the beaded bead on the left, with the 3.4 mm drops:

And the one on the right, with the 2.8 mm drops:

It's a subtle difference, but it was more noticeable when I was weaving both of these beaded beads; the larger drops make the finished beaded bead look a little bit fuller, and they also cover the thread nicely as well. The smaller drops are a little easier to weave into this design, but more of the thread shows in the finished beaded bead. 

So, for this Balloon Box beaded bead variation, I'm going with the larger fringe drops, which is fortunate because these beads are made in a wider variety of colors and are also more widely available at this time. I made another one of these Balloon Box variations in blue and precious metal colors, to match some "Luna" Venetian beads I've had kicking around in my bead box. 

I'm not sure if this beaded bead quite matches the Venetian beads though; it ended up much more blue than I had planned. 

Anyway, even though the 3.4 mm fringe drop beads worked best for this variation, I'm not giving up on the 2.8 mm drop beads; these are just too cute to keep locked away!  

1 comment:

  1. I think those drop beads are a great improvement in the design. It's funny how little details like this can make a difference. It looks more bubbly with the extra drops, in a good way.


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