I’m soooooo happy to give away a signed copy of Diane Fitzgerald’s book, Favorite Beading Projects, to one of my beady peeps! Tell me how you first got started beading here on my blog and I’ll randomly select a winner TGIF March 9th*


Can I just say every time I’ve bumped into Diane Fitzgerald, I feel I should curtsey as one would in the presence of royalty, such as a queen. Of course I’m usually wearing sandals or Crocs; neither lend themselves well in curtseying not to mention, Diane isn’t decked out in a ruffly, layered, poof skirted ball gown either, so I just say “Hey Diane.” But we all know she is indeed seed bead royalty!

I have the pleasure of perusing through her latest book from Lark due out March 6, 2012, Diane Fitzgerald’s Favorite Beading Projects. With 24 delicious projects ranging from Stringing to Beadweaving; a lovely Forward by the renowned Jean Campbell; and an inspiring Gallery, she finally got me! Diane’s 11th book has captured me with it’s simpler projects and I’ve got a needle threaded with a pile of seed beads ready to start her Diamond Chain Bracelet project before I’ve even finished looking through the entire book! I’ve always admired her innovative and complex designs yet felt afraid to move beyond my safe and beloved peyote stitch to try any of her fancy masterpieces. This book has changed all that for me.

Diane makes it very enticing to dive in and join her on her personal beading path. The quality of the images is spectacular as well as the easy to follow colored diagrams. I also must comment on the friendly font and layout of this book-simply delightful and inviting. I love her wide range of techniques and skill level of the projects presented. Gotta’ go now, Diamond Chain Bracelet is calling me, no wait…maybe I’ll start with Midnight Snowflakes…no wait….

Order your copy here:

*Free book shipped to USA address only.


35 responses »

    • 10 Years ago I quit smoking and desperately needed something to do with my hands. Something easy to pick up, cart around with me, do anywhere, and put away in a single drawer. I was a single mom of 2 gorgeous girls living in a very small house in a beach community in BC. I had made friends with a local shop owner who made the most beauitful suncatchers and crystal necklaces and she suggested I try my hand at beads since I had such an eye for colour and design. She set me up with a starter kit and my girls and I all loved it. It was something we could enjoy together as well as individually. Since then I have evolved into lampwork and wirework, I have a website and sell my stuff on Etsy and my drawer is now a whole room…LOL. I never thought that a nervous distraction would ever turn out to be my lifes passion, and I am eternally thankful to my friend for introducing me…:-)
      Alicia Champ
      Hip Navy Beads

    • I started beading as a result of seeing some very unique handmade beads created by Jobeen Chambers on a little island of Saba in the Caribbean. My husband and I were live-aboards at the time and went cruising through much of the Caribbean in 1999 to 2000. We stopped at this very, very steep island and got off the boat for a tour. That’s when we came across Jobeen. She was a fascinating, eccentric artist from the US living on the small Dutch island. She made lampwork beads that looked as though you could peer inside the ocean and see small creatures. My fascination with beads began that moment. A year later, I flew back to stay a week with Jobeen and learn how to make lampwork beads. I later decided to concentrate on the process of beading versus making beads. I will always appreciate Jobeen’s talent and her glass beads!
      Marilyn Jones

  1. I had always wanted to learn how to make jewelry….I never made the time. About a year after I moved to Connecticut, I heard of a bead shop close to my home….I stopped in…took a quick class on the basics and fell in love! I am still totally obsessed and love it more each day!

    Would love to win this amazing book! Oh happy day!

  2. In 93’/94′, my Mother needed to get a pair of her favorite metal earrings soldered. We stopped at a store that had Jewelry in the name. While she was waiting to talk to the owner; I browsed the store shelves.

    Turned out to be a bead store. I saw a kit for a pair of black/purple Comanche Stitch w/fringe earrings and thought, “I can make that.”

    Made the earrings that night and went back and purchased $80+ dollars in supplies. The rest is history…………..

    Standing joke to this day with my Mother – it is all HER FAULT! LOL

    Candys in Oklahoma

  3. I was at a Spring Fair and saw this booth with incredible jewelry! When the young lady told me she had made it all herself I just couldn’t believe my eyes! I went straight to the book store a bought a lot of beading and jewelry making books 🙂 I’ve been hooked ever since! 8years now!

  4. When I was 18 my grandmother taught me a netting stitch that I practiced obsessively for a while. She tried to teach me bead crochet as well. That did not work out well. The netting stitch though drove me to keep learning and now I am almost 38 and have been beading for 20 years! Probably gonna try bead crochet again soon.

  5. back in 1982 I was in the YMCAs program called Indian Guides with my father. One week our project was on a bead loom, and although my Dad (whio has never done anything like that, craft wise) he read the instructions, and we muddled through it together. It did help he was an engineer because the structure of it was easy for him to understand once he saw the pictures. I havent stopped beading since, and love to try everything that comes out on the market. Truth be told though, seed beads are still my one true love!

  6. Guess I really got started after I moved to Arizona and went to the Tucson bead shows for the first time. Had to do something with all those gorgeous beads I bought, so I started right in making jewelry.

  7. About 10 years ago, my niece sent me a stretchy Christmas charm bracelet. When it arrived, it was stretched out of shape and sagging. I decided I could get some elastic cord to redo. I went to a local store to get some and low and behold, there were beads, beads and more beads. The rest is history, lol. Now my house looks like a bead store. I blame it on my niece. hehehe

  8. I started beading at the age of 9, after I asked my dad what he was doing (he was loom beading); I’ve been beading now for 47+ years! I enjoy both Bead weaving and looming in all forms.

  9. I enjoy creating and about 15 years ago I wanted something special that my teenage daughter and I could share together and spend quality time with and that was jewelry making! We had fun together and did shows and I am so glad we had that time to spend together creating beautful things! It is funny how somethng as small as beads can bring something so meaningful into our lives! Thank you for the opportunity to share and thank you kristal for being such a wonderfully creative person and sharing that love with others!

  10. Like many people, I started beading by stringing beads, but soon felt that it wasn’t challenging enough. I loved the delicate look of sparkly little seed beads, but thought working with such small beads and needle with thread would drive me crazy. I was wrong. Once I started my first project, I fell in love with the process and realized that not only is it a very portable medium, but there is a wonderful zen that I experience when I sit down to bead. Good music, a cup of tea, and a beading project transports me to Nirvana.

  11. My beading story started with a friend making beaded socks for her little girl. She showed me how, and away I went! I’ve had a blast on my beading journey, and look forward to learning much more in the coming years. Diane is one of my favorite authors, and I’d love to win her book!

  12. It all started when my daughter wanted to go to the new local bead store. I signed her up for a kid’s class. I hung around while she was in class, so they included me (smart move) and that was it, I was hooked. I started with stringing…but all the other projects and classes were bead weaving and I had to have a challenge. It’s been one new challenge after another since then! That was 2006!

  13. Growing up in the 60s, I have been fascinated by seed beads since I was young. About 10 years ago, I went to a friend’s birthday party at a bead store and made my first bracelet. I’ve been hooked ever since!

  14. Hi Krystal: So nice of you to do this give-away. As far as how I got into beading, I played with beads as a kid. Then, as an adult, I fell in love again after befriending the owner of a bead shop that opened in my town. A few nights before the shop opened, the owner and some of her staff were inside the shop getting things together and I poked my head in the door and started talking to them. I’ve made so many lovely friends through this hobby and learned so much. I feel so blessed.
    Thanks again, Lissa

  15. When my husband was diagnosed with cancer, many years ago, I decided I needed something to keep me busy as we traveled to and from Mayo Clinic. There was a bead store in Rochester and one in my home town. I took a class, and I was hooked!

  16. Krystal, it is so nice of you to give away this book. I’ve been drooling over it. I have the shaped beadwork from Diane – but I haven’t cracked it open yet. … Should do that…. How I got started: My cousin wore a beautiful crocheted necklace with green/blue pearls. I loved the random placement of the pearls. And it was in “my” color palate. She said her friend made it for her. I knew how to crochet yarn – but never wire. I was struck with a “how did she do that”. Armed with this challenge and the knowledge of how to crochet with yarn, along with my love of pearls. I set out to try my hand at it. *sigh* that was 2006. And I’ve been doing that plus so much more since then.

  17. The beading part of my life started in earnest with a gift from my husband of a pin that was a reproduction in glass of the Hope diamond. Wanting to wear this as a necklace, I searched the Internet for a brooch converter. Accompanying that online order was a small bag of beads, and a silver finding, one suitable for a cabochon stone. Being happy with the new way to wear the faux Hope Diamond pin, I wondered what I could do with this free finding from B’Sue Boutiques.

    At work, a woman in sales had a hobby of making jewelry, and I turned to her for advice. She helped me with this first jewelry-making project and mentioned she was selling her seed beads, findings, books, cording, and thread and getting out of the hobby. Before she broke up the collection of beading supplies at a yard sale, I asked to see everything. We struck a deal and I bought everything. What would the people at B’Sue Boutiques think if they knew what they started with a few free beads and one finding?

  18. I started trying to bead in the 80’s. I was lucky enough to find a bead artist in Oklahoma, who allowed me to learn some of her techniques, looming, and brick stitch. I have since used wire crochet, bead embroidery, free form beading, and any other technique I find to my interest.

    I wish I could find a bead shop that is reasonable to purchase glass beads, and findings. I stuck with this beading interest, because it wasn’t as expensive as some hobbies. Well, now it is getting to be out of my budget. But it is in my blood, and I love it so.

  19. Beading evolved from making wreaths, Christmas brooms and decorated mini-teddy bears to make extra money when I was in High School. (We won’t worry about “when” 😉 A trip to the craft store for supplies one time, and a beading magazine caught my eye…..and that’s all she had to write! I also now make my own focals from polymer clay….I see no end in sight….so I better keep making room! I just took a basic seed bead class this month….and already the stock is starting…lol.

    • I got started beading, because I needed to find a hobby that would be portable, and not be expensive. I used indian seed beads, because that was all that was available at the time.(so happy we now have more to choose from).

      I tried finding books at the library, followed directions and made earrings. I was lucky enough to keep the interest and later found a bead artist, who taught me brick stitch and looming. Now I try almost every technique I can find. Beading has been a love and interest that started over 30 years ago.

  20. Dear Krystal,
    what a nice idea to offer this fantastic book. I like so much Diane’s work. She is very inspiring for numerous beaders and very appreciated in France.
    I started beading tribal necklaces and bracelets on a loom with a maroccan lady when I was 7 in a summer camp.
    During a trip in Venice, 10 years ago, my husband urged me to to take back a manual activity because I did not work any more, the children had grown and he saw that I began to be bored and a little depressed. He offered me a beautiful stock of Murano glass beads and I started to play with. Then I never stop beading with all kind of beads. I try to learn new technics and to progress in my “insane hobby”. I like peyote, RAW, herringbone, embroidery etc.
    If I win your lovely give-away, you’ll can send it to my dear daughter who is a student in UF Gainesville until may.

  21. What a fabulous & generous giveaway! I have Diane’s shaped beadwork book, but have yet to lay eyes or hands on this new one.
    It all started when I was doing a lot of fictional reading. Armed with lots of great books, I wanted to dress them up with a fancy bookmark. I found the cutest beaded bookmarks on eBay, handcrafted by someone, and she was selling LOTS of them.
    With a closer look, I realized that this can’t be THAT hard to do….off to the craft store.
    9 years later, I no longer read fictional books…. I BEAD !!

  22. I first got started beading after seeing a friend’s beadwork. It was so unique that I wanted to learn. I went to a Hobby Lobby and bought almost all of the delicas they had (50% off). I came home and looked on the internet on learning how to bead. I have been beading since then – 2002. My husband, Steve, asked me if he could learn how to bead. I said yes he could. He’s been beading since 2004. It’s great therapy for us.

  23. My beading life spawned from using Mill Hill beads in counted cross stitch patterns. Before I discovered beading I was an avid stitcher then ran across a beading magazine. With all the Mill Hill beads I had accumulated I tried the different stitches, fell in love with peyote, and have barely picked up a cross stitch needle since 2006!!

  24. In the ’70’s I would go to Shipwreck Beads when it was a small bead shop on Mud Bay Flats just outside of Olympia, Wa and spend a drizzly Saturday picking out beads. I usually found my clasps in miscellaneous drawers in 2nd stores. I would use waxed embroidery thread to string necklaces. I moved to Spokane, Wa in 1981 and took up ceramics. Fast forward to 2003, we were getting ready to travel and I realized I needed what I thought would be a smaller craft. It’s true the beads are smaller but that just means you can have more of them.

  25. Thank you for sharing your blog on the Warren County Arts Coucils’ FB page. I will bookmark it for future reference.

    My earliest beading memory is that when I was in the 6th grade, and in a new school because my family had moved in the fall. Somehow I had a stash of seed beads and got some stretchy elastic and started making stretch bracelets. I sold a few to my classmates. Without giving my age, I’ll just say that this was back in the 70s. Over the years I have dabbled here and there with beading, making bracelets, collecting more beads than I’ll ever find a use for, selling a few more things….and so on. My artistic occupation is as a graphic designer and calligrapher though. I need to find a way to marry the two….hmmmm….

  26. I’ve always been a creative person and I think it was natural for me to eventually want to explore beading. I was an adult teenager when I bought my first beads, Swarovski crystals, to make myself a pair of earrings. Over a several year period I would buy more crystals and make more earrings. When I was in my 30’s I discovered seed beads and the love affair began! For a long time I let those tiny little beads intimidate me and I would just stare at them more than anything. I finally decided to take the plunge one day though and I bought a beading magazine. That was all I needed! I still consider myself an advanced beginner but have been working on improving my technique and stretching what I thought were my limited capabilities. I have to thank the MANY talented seed beaders out there for inspiring me and indirectly encouraging me to step up my game.

  27. I started creating my own earrings as a teenager. I used bits of cardboard, wooden shapes, glitter, even paper bags! I still have a few of those that I love to look at and marvel that I was able to come up with something like that. Now I have my own website and make jewelry that I never thought I had in me. I can’t imagine not using my creative energy on creating something fun like jewelry or gifts.

  28. Hi,
    I have been interested in craft since i was a lilttle girl,craft and jewelry making is a part of who I am. If i think of it I have to make it, if I don’t no how to do a design I search until I fine it. I watch youtube everyday to learn new designs, I buy books and download beading projects from many website because I love makng jewelry.

  29. My niece bought me a stretchy Christmas bracelet one year and the elastic was really stretched out too much. I decided I could probably restring it so I went to Hancock’s Fabric to buy some thread and the rest is history. I stood there in awe over all the pretty beads and findings! I am obsessed now.

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