MB Designs

Handmade, Woven Crystal and Seed Bead Jewelry

This week is all about Custom Designs!!

custom designed jewelryMuriel BadinelliComment

Black and silver netted necklace

This week I've been working on two custom projects, and I hope you can see from this what a difference the beads make!  They can change the mood, style and degree of formality as the beads change.

The black and silver netted necklace above was designed to be worn as both casual as well as dressy.  You can see it can't you?  with a white T-shirt and jeans as well as a LBD — perfect!

The customer and I sat and discussed what she was looking for, I showed her some samples and then came up with this design.  She was very pleased.


Freshwater pearl statement necklace


This necklace isn't finished yet — look forward to seeing the finished product next week — but it is based on my Turquoise/Coral Statement necklace (https://www.murielbadinellidesigns.com/shopnecklaces/turquoise-coral-statement-necklace).  See the difference in style, even though they are the same design? This one is soft and elegant, while the turquoise is bolder, fun and more casual!

I hope this give you some ideas for your own custom designed jewelry — I'll be happy to help!

'Till next time!

Using Gemstones in Woven Seed Bead Jewelry

Muriel BadinelliComment

Often I use gemstones in my work as a focal bead.  The jasper in the photo below is bead embroidered and attached to a simple peyote bracelet, adding a new dimension and interest to the piece.


In the leather wrap bracelet faceted amethyst beads are used. These beads have a great sparkle to them and lend themselves to a bracelet that wraps around your wrist three times.


This bead embroidered pendant combines a kyanite focal gemstone with seed beads and pearls. Honestly, the only limit to the use of gemstones in beadwork, is one's imagination! Happy beading!

Repurposing Meaningful Objects into New Jewelry

beaded jewelryMuriel BadinelliComment

Years ago my father gave me a necklace, one that I loved at the time, but after a while, it was no longer in style!  It was a beautiful and large cloisonné bead with a peacock design on a silk cord.

Once I started bead weaving, I looked through my things for anything important to me to see if I could give it an updated look.  I pulled out the pendant and thought a beaded bezel would work.

Here's how the pendant looks now...


Now all it needs is a beaded rope!  I love it!!

If you have a piece you would like reworked -- a brooch, and earring or just a bead -- contact me!  I'll come up with a solution for you and I guarantee you'll be pleased!


About Seed Beads

Muriel BadinelliComment

"Seed Bead" is a generic term for any small bead, usually glass, of which there are many types of shapes and sizes. A variety of seed beads are very often used in bead woven jewelry to create design, texture and depth.  Seed beads are also used in combination with gemstones, pearls and crystals as you see in MB Designs handmade jewelry.

Miyuki glass seed beads are considered the world standard for their high quality, brilliance and uniform shape.  About 60 years ago, Seiichi Katsuoka became fascinated by the brilliance and beauty of glass seed beads, so in 1949, he dedicated himself to learning the art of seed bead making.  Seiichi's passion for making beautiful, high quality glass seed beads was passed down to his son, Hiroshi.  Hiroshi added innovation to passion and began creating new types and styles of beads. This resulted in the founding of Miyuki, Japan's first successful mass-producing bead manufacturing company and a favorite of jewelry designers. Since then Miyuki has continued to innovate, and have produced many new and wonderful shapes and sizes of beads for bead weaving handmade jewelry.

What is Bead Weaving?

necklaceMuriel Badinelli
 "Got the Blues" Peyote stitch bracelet   

"Got the Blues" Peyote stitch bracelet


Bead weaving is the use of seed beads (a generic term for any small bead) that are woven on a loom or off-loom by using one or a number stitches.  The techniques for bead weaving were invented long ago by Native American women for decorative adornment.  Many of the original stitches such as peyote and Cheyenne (brick stitch) are still in use today.

Off-loom bead weaving is what I use in creating my jewelry.  Seed beads combined with pearls, crystals and Czech fire-polished beads are stitched together with thread with one or two needles to create the various textures and patterns you see in my pieces — which are inspired by nature and seasonal colors.

Recently I used a combination of bead weaving and bead embroidery to create a necklace I called “Dragonfly Dreamer.”  The focal bead inspired me because the town in which I live is well known for its large variety of dragonflies.  This piece has just been published in the June/July 2018 issue of Bead & Button magazine!

dragonfly pendant-b&b.jpg

I love the challenge of selecting beads, and coming up with a brand new piece of jewelry to wear or to share with you.

Beading is my happy place!