Thursday, April 12, 2012

Enchanted Tree Beads

A friend of mine suggested we take our daughters to a story telling day at our local theatre.  It was great! There were 5 local authors and whilst we sat back and relaxed, they told us wonderful stories about fairies, dragons and enchanted forests.  We really enjoyed the whole experience.  However, whilst one part of my brain was enjoying the stories, the other part was in a creative frenzy of inspiration..... The next day in shed/studio/shed I started making these.....

I decided to name the beads after places from the stories.  Therefore this bead is called Holford.  I must admit this wasn't my first attempt at an Enchanted Tree Bead.  This was bead number 4 and I will show you my journey in a minute.  I wanted my trees to be on bright colourful backgrounds and have magical swirling branches .... that could come out and grab you as you passed ..... I wanted the leaves to be spherical explosions of colour complimenting the background colours and adding to the magical, enchanted feel of the stories. 

This was my first attempt at an Enchanted Tree.....

I was fairly pleased with the result but I am also very critical of myself.  In my mind I had a very specific image of what I wanted the tree to look like and although the branches of this tree are swirly, they are not swirly enough.  This basically comes down to stringer and heat control ...... practice! Also when I placed the dots for the leaves I placed some of them too close together.  When I heated the leaves some of the dots merged into one. I wanted them to be separate.  Finally, the background didn't work.  It looked too messy and there wasn't any depth to the bead...

Second Attempt ..... Watchet

I worked harder on the background for this bead.  I mixed up some frit in colours that would compliment the blues that I had chosen.  It has given more depth to the bead and made it all the more interesting.  I quite like this tree, it has a good shape to it and fits on the bead quite nicely.  The leaves are all separate little bursts of colour and haven't all melted into one enrormous blob of glass .... great! But can I re-create this bead?

Third attempt ..... Morte

Yes and No!  The background is fairly similar but the tree itself is quite different.  Much more swirly!  These are quite big beads to make and it is difficult trying to stop them from cracking (I lost a couple today) and I want to make the actual bead shape a bit more interesting.  I want to make them more elongated and 'tree shaped' and have the tree wrapping itself around the bead.  I will need to develop the leaves more, possibly change the shape a little and definitely change the colours.

You can find my Enchanted Tree Beads for sale in my shop on Etsy -

Sarah xx 


  1. I love seeing the creative process . . . the last bead is defintely the best. I really look forward to seeing the next batch.

  2. Replies
    1. Thank you so much! I love making them and I think that comes out in the beads....xx