One of the great things about learning beadwork is the availability of so many cool bead patterns to try. It is one thing to buy a finished piece of jewelry, but quite another to see it and long to make one yourself. This is the lust beaders know well: How did she make that? Can I make that? Often, once you get the pattern, you smack your head and say – “of course! It’s so elegantly simple!” Though frequently the pattern is elegant but not simple and then you are even more impressed, though sometimes also frustrated and, occasionally, weary.
Two designers who never disappoint (as my bank balance will attest) are Sabine Lippert of trytobead and Ella of Ellad2. They have a great feel for design and construction where beads are involved and I learn a lot from making their patterns.
Sabine Lippert's "Radiant Wheel” pendant appeared in the June/July 2013 issue of Beadwork. The pattern can be found here. The component involved beading a bezel, or sheath, around a crystal pointed-back stone and using several of these components to stud a beaded wheel base. It gives the look of a gathered beaded ribbon flowing over and under the crystal settings.
I liked the little stud components and hit upon using them as part of another artist's pattern I was working on, Ellad2's "Anais" brooch, which you can find here.
I found that the studs could lie in a flat row as well as fit around a circle, and they formed a fancy bail on which to hang the pendant. This happens a lot when you consume bead patterns like candy. You get to know a pattern or a component well enough that you start thinking about how it would work with something else.
Here is the result. The Twin bead chain is my own design.