10850106_10205552041388846_2368424658190003187_nI’ve been invited to participate in Toho Beads Challenge 2015!  A few weeks ago I got the most spectacular set of beads in the mail.  Its a fabulous collection of copper, violet and greens.  possibly one of my very favorite color selections ever.

My finished piece will be on display in the Toho Team Challenge case at Bead & Button 2015 (in the lobby in June).   I can’t tell you what it will look like, though… because I have no IDEA!  Actually… I have a little bit of an idea since I was so inspired by these colors that I’m already about halfway finished.  But I can’t tell you – its the worst!  I’m terrible when I have an exciting secret.  I also hope to be doing a demo late Sunday afternoon at the Toho booth at Bead & Button!

This is the third year I’ve participated in the invite-only challenge.  I CAN show you the two previous challenge pieces, though.


In 2014, the selection was a fascinating combination of metallic blues and pinks with some transparent yellow topaz.  This photo doesn’t show the metallic blues as well as it ought to…

I decided to NOT make a piece of jewelry since I thought that making something else would make it all stand out a bit more.  I had a lovely handmade (not by me) basket that had been gathering dust around my house and decided to give it a new life with some wired ribbon and a lot of peyote stitch beadwork.  The finished piece is about 6″x6″.  This piece is still in Japan.  I believe it is currently on display at the Toho Museum of Glass in Hiroshima.


The previous year was a really yummy combination of wines and olives.  I’ll tell you what – I never would have put these colors together beforehand and now I absolutely adore this combo and use it ALL the time.  Speaking of wine, did you know that the 2015 Pantone color of the year is a wine red called Masala?

I ended up making two separate purses from this colorway…  The first was the Toho Challenge itself.  Again, I tried to stay away from a piece of jewelry.  This purse was one of the first pieces I did with wired ribbon and beads.

The second was a slight variation, made in 2014 for a class I taught in Georgia in February.

I’ll be teaching this purse at Bead & Button 2015 as a class.  There are only 12 spaces available and registration opens on January 6th (I think).  Here’s the link to the class page:  http://www.beadandbuttonshowstore.com/b151575.html