Wednesday, August 30, 2017

New free pattern: Tile Bead Stacker

I launched my free Tile Bead Stacker pattern today and some have asked about the pretty turquoise matte beads with the swirl in the center band and about the new Tile Mini beads so I decided it was time for a blog post!

First off, my free Tile Bead Stacker pattern is here:

There's a downloadable PDF at the end of the step text. You can use 5mm by 5mm Miyuki Tila beads or Tile Mini beads, or full-sized 6mm by 6mm Czechmates (or other brands) tile beads, to create these fun and easy stacker bracelets. Triple the length and make some awesome wrap bracelets. Winter is coming!

Now about those turquoise matte tile beads with the swirl… Technically, they are called 6mm by 6mm “laser etched” tile beads and I have yet to figure out who the manufacturer is. I got mine a while back on Etsy at a lovely shop called The Bead Bungalow. As of this writing, the shop is out of that particular color, but the listing is still up here: Laser Etched Czech Glass Beads - Turquoise Opaque Matte with Rainbow Etched Ammonite Swirl:

This wonderful little Etsy shop still has other laser etched beads, though, and you should be able to see them by clicking HERE.

You can find more if you search Etsy or Google for "laser etched 6mm tile beads”. Yesterday, I found some at and ordered them in some different colors. As with The Bead Bungalow, they are out of that particular turquoise matte but have some other pretty color combos HERE.

And what about about those yummy Bordeaux tile beads also pictured? They are called Tile Mini beads. Note: I originally referred to them as Mini Tile beads but I have corrected that in my web instructions and uploaded a new PDF, although I am seeing other shops list them as Mini Tile beads as well… whatever, I just love them. They measure 5mm by 5mm so they are smaller than the original and immensely popular 6mm by 6mm Czechmates tile beads that have been on the market for a while now. The Tile Mini beads are also more “square” and uniform, in my opinion, which makes them all the more wonderful, also my opinion. 

I got my supply of Tile Mini beads from Donna Manning’s wonderful Etsy shop called Queen City Bead. Here is a direct link to that Pastel Bordeaux Mini Tile bead that I used in the photo above: 
You can find more Tile Mini bead colors and coatings at her Etsy shop and by clicking HERE.

My friend Betsy Ramsey of also has a great selection of Tile Mini beads in as well here:
They are showing up at more and more bead shops so I hope we’ll continue to see more new colors and coatings.

I am in the process of rebeading many of my older Miyuki Tila bead patterns and I’m finding that these Tile Mini beads work beautifully as a Tila bead substitute when you want a two-hole tile bead that is heavier and a bit less delicate than Tila beads but basically the same width and height. More on this later!

Friday, December 9, 2016

New “Mini” Silky bead!

When Linda Genaw of Linda’s Crafty Inspirations first emailed to tell me of a new smaller 5x5mm Silky bead on the market, my first response was, “Oh, dear god, just kill me now….I can understand a 4mm Silky bead—that would be cool—but 5mm? 1mm difference? 1-freaking-mm difference? It is just enough to throw off an entire pattern but serves no other real purpose that I can see, sigh.” 

Then Linda measured them and determined that they are, in fact, a bit smaller than 5x5mm. Betsy Ramsey of hunted some down and sent samples to me and yes, okay, they are adorable!

However, the 5mm Silky beads cannot be substituted for 6mm Silky beads in any of my designs without some tweaks. At this time, I have no plans to tweak all of my patterns that use 6mm Silky beads to accommodate the new “mini” 5x5mm Silky beads but they worked so well with my Silky Squares Bracelet and Earrings pattern that I created what I am calling an “addendum” of substitution instructions. 

 Silky Squares Bracelet and Earrings

For those of you who have already purchased my Silky Squares pattern, this one-page addendum is a free download on the pattern page here:

The addendum is now (and forever) part of the PDF for purchase, which is on sale for $2.50 through next Friday at my website only, Betsy at has the new “mini” 5x5mm Silky beads for sale here:

You’ll find links to exact beads used in the photo above at the bottom of the pattern page but I will also include them here. Note: One strand of 40 “mini” silky beads is enough to make a 7-inch bracelet but not enough for the earrings as well.

Mini Silky Squares bracelet:
• About 400 size 11/0 seed beads: Miyuki #1052 Galvanized Gold
• About 36 size 8/0 seed beads: Miyuki #454 Metallic Dark Plum Iris
• About 36 SuperDuo beads: Pastel Bordeaux
• About 36 two-hole 5x5mm “Mini” Czech Silky beads: Chalk Luster

Mini Silky Squares earrings:
• About 100 size 11/0 seed beads: Miyuki #1052 Galvanized Gold
8 size 3mm fire-polished beads: Czech Iris Purple
• 8 SuperDuo beads: Pastel Bordeaux
• 4 two-hole 5x5mm “Mini” Czech Silky beads: Chalk Luster
• 4 two-hole 5x5mm “Mini” Czech Silky beads: Lilac Luster

Friday, September 2, 2016

New FREE pattern: DiamonDuo Star!

 Free DiamonDuo Star pattern at

Free step-by-step web instructions and a downloadable PDF at the bottom of the page available here (or click on the image above):