beading, beads, crafts, flower beads, jewelry, jewelry making, Moss Rose, moss rose bracelet, tutorial, vintage beads
The Moss Rose Bracelet, inspired by an antique tea set from my Grandma, is finished and I love it! It turned out even better than I expected. ..happy smile…
There are three things special about this bracelet. First, the colors truly say Moss Rose.
I was working from my stash of beads from French General, A Gilded Life and vintage beads and wasn’t sure I had all the right colors. Without intention, my love of Moss Rose must have influenced my purchase of beads over the years because I just happened to have the right colors. How cool is that! I had dark mossy greens, deep pinks and the perfect little dusty lavender cone flower beads. I was most particular about the white beads, which had to look like old white china. I didn’t have any rose beads but that was ok since all I really needed was the impression of a rose. I used Lucite trumpet flower beads with a bead calyx and that worked well.
Second was the movement of the bracelet. Necklaces lay fairly still around the neck but bracelets have to move. They need shimmy and jingle, drape and sway, elegant like ballet. Bracelets need movement just distracting enough to be noticed. The Moss Rose Bracelet does exactly what I hoped it would do; the roses and leaves drip down and sway gently against my arm.
Third and best is how much the bracelet makes me think of my Grandma and my mom. Some of the beautiful china-white beads are from a broken necklace that belonged to my mom. So special. ♥
Even though I’m making a few of these bracelets to sell in my Etsy shop, I want to share how I made some of the components. I have not included directions for making the small clusters of purple flowers because some Moss Rose patterns do not have these flowers. But you can see how they were constructed by looking closely at the photos.
Make the “roses”
To make a rose, prepare the wires for the flower centers.
1. Bend 1/4″ at the end of a 2 1/2″ piece of jewelry wire.
2. Hold the bent part of the wire in round nose pliers.
3. Coil the wire using the round nose pliers. As the coil is formed, you will have to move the bent tail out of the way until a full coil is formed. It’s hard to explain but you’ll see what I mean as you bend the wire.
4. The finished coil, ready for seed beads.
Add about 8 seed beads to the wire.
1. Slide the beads onto the wire and into the coil.
2. Make sure all the beads are in the coil and then bend the tail of the wire over.
3. Use needle nose pliers to fold the tail tightly around the wire as shown. Cut off the short tail close to the center wire using flush cutters.
Shown here are all the steps to make a flower center.
Prepare the beaded Calyx wires.
Start with a 1 1/4″ piece of wire.You can use head pins for this but I didn’t have enough so I made my own by tightly folding in 1/16″ of wire at the end. Two calyx wires are used for each rose and one for each rose bud. I varied the length of these to make the mossy roses and buds more realistic and natural looking. The color of green seed beads are placed in a light to dark to light pattern on each wire.
[NOTE: The photos show the way I made the wires first. But I had a few broken seed beads when I twisted the center of each calyx wire after the seed beads had been added. The better way would be to form the center loop first, then slide beads onto each side, and then fold the tip of the wire in to secure the beads. I don’t have photos of bending the wires that way but these photos will give you an idea of the finished product.]
The components to make a rose are two calyx wires, a trumpet bead flower and a round beaded wire center.
Slide the calyx wires one at a time down over the flower. Twist a little tighter to make the calyx secure. That’s ok if they move a little. Remember, if you twist too tight, you might break some of the seed beads. It might be easier to make these directly on the flower wire so as to avoid any seed beads breaking. I will probably try that next time although this worked well enough.
I finished some of the flowers with just a wire wrapped loop. But others I added seed beads to make a slightly longer stem before finishing with a wire wrapped loop.
Make the rose buds
1. Make Calyxes as above, one per rose bud.
2. Slide a pink seed bead and then a 4 mm round pink bead on a 2″ wire with folded end or use a head pin. Then add a dark green seed bead. Slide the prepared beaded calyx wire over the round bead as you did for the flowers.
3. Add more seed beads to the wire and finish with a wire wrapped loop. I slightly spiraled the calyx wires around the 4mm bead.
Make the rose leaf clusters
Oh my goodness, I got so excited the night I figured out how to wire these! I was shutting down for the night and was staring at my work table, not seeing the beads. I was actually praying for some family members in distress and not even thinking of beading. Then all of a sudden I figured out how to wire the leaves together so they would dangle the way I hoped. God is so cool to give us ideas when we least expect it.
1. Prepare the center bead by sliding a seed bead, then a pressed glass leaf bead, then another seed bead on a 2″ wire with folded end or head pin. Finish with a wire-wrapped loop and set aside.
2. Cut a 3″ piece of wire and bend at a 90 degree angle as shown.
Slide the center bead you made down to the angle in the 3″ wire.
Slide a leaf bead on each side of the center bead.
Fold the wires toward the center of the two beads. The wires will cross over. Where the wires cross over, twist the wires together at the top, as in photo 3. Be careful you don’t twist too tight or you may shatter the leaf beads. I didn’t break any but I know that’s a possibility if you make the twist too tight.
3. Cut one of the wires with a flush cutter as shown so you have a single wire remaining. The twist should be tight so that it will fit inside a bead in the next step. Click on the photo and then click the number link at the upper left of the photo to view the original size image to see a close up of the construction.
4. Slide a larger bead with a hole big enough to cover the twisted wires. Add a couple more seed beads on the remaining wire. Finish with a wire wrapped loop.
The Moss Rose tea set I have has a delicate border of gold, much of it worn off by age. I duplicated that touch of gold by using Rub n Buff and a stiff brush to add a touch of gold to the some of the white beads and wire findings on the bracelet components.
Here are the beads all ready for assembly. I moved them around on the table a bit until I came up with a design I liked. I ended up not using the little white doughnut beads but it was fun to have options.
The bracelet is finally assembled using jump rings to attach all the pieces together.
Thank you for visiting my blog. I truly appreciate it! Blog readers get just little glimpses into our lives; they see splashes of color, tangles of wire, components lined up but not always connected. I really appreciate your faithfulness as I figure out how to make this blog better for you.
In the beginning of this blog, I didn’t have any readers at all but merrily posted away like a little bird chirping in a forest. Then I went through a rough time after breaking my back and getting major surgery, with its months of medicated pain management. Over the past year my posts weren’t always happy. But I have come to value life and the beautiful people in it more than ever.
This blog is for you. Like tending a garden of roses, I’ve done some weeding and deleting here. What is left are posts I hope have value, and the ones written when I did my best to be brave. I’m learning how important it is to stay true to the sparkling things in life and share the best. I guess we all grow in grace like that. I want to give you something good because your presence here reading my blog is a gift of pure grace. Thank you.
May grace adorn your life, with all the splendor you hoped for.
Love to you, my dear readers!