Sending a Cup of Bead Soup to a New Friend

Coffee mug

The cup of soup I sent to my Bead Soup partner.

I am beyond excited to be participating for the first time in the Bead Soup Blog Party. This year is the 8th Bead Soup Blog Party hosted by the intrepid Lori Anderson of Pretty Things Blog. There are over 400 participants from across the U.S. and around the world. Each of us is partnered with another jewelry designer and will be swapping ingredients for making something marvelous, which we will then be sharing on our respective blogs later this spring.

This Party that Lori started years ago is some kind of famous, and there is even a book about it. I’ll tell you more about the Party in a moment. First, let me tell you a bit about my partner.

I was paired with Sue H. of The Bottle Cork and Crystal. We just met online via this Party and already have lots in common. Coincidence #1: Sue used to live very near where I do now.  Coincidence #2: we both live in cities with the word “spring” in name, me in Silver Spring and her in Spring Hill. Coincidence #3: we both like to create jewelry with turquoise, her for a Native American and me a southwestern boho style; but we dabble in many other styles as well. Coincidence #4: her favorite color for beads and things is blue, and I happen to have over twice as many blue beads as any other color.

I will be sharing more about my partner in this international bead-swapping blog-hopping party in a future post, after I pick her brain for details about her story. For now, let me show you a sneak peak of the bead soup ingredients I’ll be sending to her. I had to scramble the photo because I don’t want to spoil the surprise for her. But this gives you a hint of the color theme. I will post an unscrambled picture after I know Sue has received her soup.

pixelated photo of beads

Bead Soup in a blender.

So, what’s a Bead Soup? For this Party, each participant sends a clasp (the thing you use to hook a necklace or bracelet closed), a pendant or focal, and some accent beads. The recipient has to use the clasp and focal in a design, though not necessarily in the same piece. They can add beads and things from their own stash to season the recipe, as Lori says. The final design can be jewelry, or anything else the recipient is inspired to create with the ingredients.

On the reveal day – after we’ve all had time to get creative and make beautiful things we can keep for ourselves, give away, or sell in our shops – we all post photos of our final creations on our respective blogs. That’s when the hopping begins. We visit as many of the other participant’s blogs as we can, leaving comments and admiring the diversity of designs and talent.  The big reveal is scheduled for May 3, 2014.

I am looking forward to learning more about my partner, and the other participants. I just started blogging late last year and have so much to learn. From the chatter on the Facebook page for this Party, I couldn’t have picked a better group, or hostess, for my first blog hop. Stay tuned for more about Sue, the bead soup I sent her, what she sends me, and what we make from it.

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