Today is the first day of the Unexpected Findings Book Blog Tour. This week some of the contributing designers and I will share a bit about our projects in this new book. And there are prizes! Read on ...
Behind the Scenes
Here are a few behind-the-scenes moments from making Unexpected Findings:
Too Many Michelles. My editor's name was also Michelle. This made for some confusing moments: "I thought Michelle was working on that part!" I tried to always say "my editor" when writing emails to the contributors. I didn't want them to think I was that weird person who talks about herself in the third person. "Michelle thinks we should ..."
Too Many Erins. There are three Erins in this book (Erin Strother, Erin Prais-Hintz, and Erin Siegel). That also made for some potentially confusing moments when I was sharing projects with the Interweave team: Erin made that necklace ... no, not that Erin ... not that one either ... the other one.
Sorry, Conan. I'm used to having my project names changed by magazine editors, so I wasn't surprised when my book editor wanted to change my original name for the Metal Mixology bracelet. I originally named that one Conan, a play on the word "cones" (as in, bead cones). It's a bracelet could be worn by a male, although I'm not sure if it would be better suited for Conan O'Brien or Conan the Barbarian.
California Dreamin'. At the photo shoot, I watched the staff take tons of potential shots for the book cover, including the one on the left. (I added the text myself.) As I was writing the book, the California Poppy necklace pictured here was the one project that I kept hearing would definitely, certainly, absolutely be on the cover. And it wasn't! That was just fine with me, but it was a surprise when I saw the final cover for the first time (pictured below, at right).
That California Poppy project is one of my personal favorites because I grew up in California. It also caused the most teeth gnashing. I shared a version of this project in my book proposal. The Interweave team asked me to make a minor change and I broke a big metal component in the necklace when trying to rework it. Twice. Arggh! It was a good thing in the end; I came up with a much stronger design using a different component. This final version of the necklace is going to last forever!
About the Book
Here's what my book Unexpected Findings will give you:
- A Focus on Ordinary Findings
There's been a huge growth in jewelry findings in the last few years. Some of them are very specialized. For example, did you know that there is a special bail that you can buy that works specifically with one shape of Swarovski crystal? While I think specialized findings are cool, I wanted to focus on the ones you probably already own: those toggle clasps, jump rings, eye pins and other findings that are crammed into your studio.
- 50 Projects for Different Budgets & Design Styles
Some designs are studded with handmade art beads or sterling silver components; others use less expensive components, such as washers from the hardware store. With ten designers (plus me), you'll get a wide variety of design styles in one book.
- Quotes & Inspiration from Designers
I asked all the designers to think about when they were starting out making jewelry. What did they wish someone had told them? What did they want to share about using colors, organizing beads, or other essential jewelry making tasks? My editor let me know early on that there wasn't room for this in the book (I was already way over page count!), so I was delighted to discover that she and the art team found a way to make this happen!
- Tons of Tips
I love learning beading tips that make my jewelry better. There is a tip on nearly every project page in this book.
- Lots of Names for Findings
As a former librarian, it drives me a little crazy to see that so many different shops and designers call the same finding by a completely different name. For example, a wire guard (or wire guardian) may be also called cable thimble. I've tried to give you at least some of the different finding names so that you will have an easier time finding them.
- A Twist on Project Variations
I asked the contributors to make variations of projects by other designers rather than their own. I hoped this would inspire some extremely innovative work and it did. Many variations in this book go way beyond "use blue beads instead of red." I hope they'll inspire you to make your own creative leaps!
Unexpected Findings Giveaway
What is a party without a fun giveaway?
$50 (Fifty Dollars) Etsy Gift Card (1 prize)
You can spend this on anything offered at the many individual shops on Etsy. This could be fabulous art beads, cool jewelry findings, a hand painted coffee mug, a knitted scarf ... whatever you want. (Note: Not all Etsy shops accept gift cards, so if you win, you may want to do a search for those that do.)
Fun with Findings Kit (2 prizes)
You can win some of the exact findings used in the book, plus a bunch of other findings that I thought were cool. (I ran out of room to add all the page numbers to the photo!) Prize packs include everything pictured here: jump rings, head pins (handmade by Miss Fickle Media and C-Koop), filigree links, clasps (hook-and-eye, ball chain, lobster), bead caps, cord ends, and more!
Second Prize (3 prizes)
To play off the "unexpected" in my book title, three winners will receive a small mystery pack of findings (valued at $8). No photo or preview ahead of time. It will be a surprise!
This giveaway is open to all visitors except the book's contributors and author (me). Contributors are welcome (and encouraged!) to comment, but won't be entered in the drawing.
One comment per person per blog post for a maximum of eight chances to win if you visit and comment on all eight book-related posts during the September 15-19, 2014 period.
We'd love for you to help us spread the word on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest. No extra entries, but lots of good karma!
I will contact the winners by email this weekend (Sept. 20-21) and post the winners here next week (Sept. 23). Remember when you comment that I'll need an email address to contact you if you win.
Blog Tour Schedule - September 15-19, 2014
Monday, Sept. 15
Michelle Mach - YOU ARE HERE
Tuesday, Sept. 16
Wednesday, Sept. 17
Thursday, Sept. 18
Friday, Sept. 19
Denise Yezbak Moore
Thanks for checking out Unexpected Findings. Have fun hopping this week! Be sure to check in next week to see who won the random drawing!