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Rachel Nelson-Smith's Bead Riffs: Jewelry Projects in Peyote & Right Angle Weave (Beadweaving Master Class Series) Hardcover – September 6, 2011

4.6 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“With 23 innovative designs, Bead Riffs: Jewelry Projects in Peyote & Right Angle Weave pays homage to author Rachel Nelson-Smith's dual love of jazz music and beading. Follow Rachel's precise instructions or make like a jazz artist and use her 'Riff It' sidebars as inspiration for your own improvisation.” Beadwork magazine, February/March 2012 issue
“This is an incredible book! These constructions are solid and sensational, a true reflection of their creator. We can all learn a great deal from this young genius. Look through the book, indulge your wonder, and then have a blast with the projects.” — Alice Korach
“Rachel Nelson-Smith has one of the most unique creative voices in beading. Rachel possesses exciting skills in design, a sophisticated color palette, and an eye for detailed illustration—all of which make this book a visual treat as well as an invaluable learning resource!” — Marcia DeCoster
“This well-written, beautifully photographed, and easy-to-understand primer not only serves as a text for inventive projects but gives insight into Rachel’s process and her creative gift. A worthy read for all beaders.” — Joyce Scott
“What a refreshing take on beadwork! You will love Rachel Nelson-Smith’s unique point of view. It’s pleasing to the eye and will make you long to hear her sing while you bead the projects in this innovative book.” — Jeannette Cook
“Amazing jewelry ... a lot to offer the bead weaver.” (5-star review) — About.com Jewelry Making

About the Author

Rachel Nelson-Smith is one of the world's most popular beaders and teachers. She is the author of Seed Bead Fusion and examples of her vibrant work have appeared in numerous publications, including Masters: Beadweaving. Her designs have been showcased at national bead shows, including the Bead&Button Show and Puget Sound Bead Festival, and she teaches workshops across the country. Rachel lives in Santa Cruz, California.

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Product Details

  • Series: Beadweaving Master Class Series
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Lark Crafts (September 6, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: 1600597831
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 8.8 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #708,755 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Marcia Decoster on August 25, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Rachel's Bead Riffs presents 23 beautiful projects combining Right Angle Weave and Peyote stitching in well thought out designs. There are many exquisite projects to choose from and Rachel gives us three examples of color use for each of the projects. Rondo is a stunning choker, and Night in Tunisia is a personal favorite.The Nightingale earrings made of 2mm Swarovski Elements are and excellent use of sparkle and the Dolled Up Bracelet uses Rose Montees cleverly sewn at the ends of peyote tubes. In Billie's Bounce Rachel uses the thread as part of the design element for an interesting effect. Cocktails for Two is an other personal favorite. The illustrations are well done and their is much here to increase your techniques and provide you with beautiful jewelry.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Rachel Nelson-Smith's Bead Riffs has something for everyone. A Jazz theme runs through the book inviting you to sit and absorb it for a while. I have browsed through it a few times now and every time I find something else I want to try. Bead sellers should see a spike in sales after people purchase this book.

Rachel has a sense of color that is matched by very few. She has included five color ways to help beaders in their color choices for their own projects. What a nice touch. They are named Nature Girl, High Times, Stagelight (a favorite), Softly (another favorite) and Blue in Green. The instructions are well written and illustrated. Most of the beads she uses are easily obtained and may already be in the beader's stash.

Projects run from the simple to the extravagant. Among the more simple pieces are Billie's Bounce (which uses contrasting thread and embellished wheels), Fly Me To The Moon (I love the Stagelight color way version of this) and High Style (I see so many possibilities for this one). The more extravagant pieces include Dolled Up (one of my favorites) and Jazz (a scrumptious statement piece). Other favorites of mine are Phraseology (great contrast, texture and color play in this one), Birth Of The Cool (very wearable, lots of color and texture) and Cocktails For Two (I see so many options for making this).

I highly recommend Bead Riffs and think you will enjoy it, too.
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Format: Hardcover
Rachel Nelson-Smith has been beading for a very long time, she also sings jazz. This book is jewelry inspired by her love for jazz music.
After you read the introduction, there is a 20 page set up section which explains the tools and supplies as well as being a primer in the techniques used in the jewelry. One of my favorite parts of the set up is a photo of the color palettes she works in. The instructions are clear with diagrams as well as photos that use contrasting color beads to show how things are joined together.

Most of the jewelry in the book is built from a single needle right angle weave base. It creates the frame work for embellishment which is done in netting and peyote.

The projects are separated by type rather than by technique. So the first project chapter is Necklaces. The ornate layered collar "Jazz" is a project easy to get enthused about because the embellishment has so much room for personal expression. My favorite is "Fly Me To the Moon" with it's beaded donut.

Rings and Earrings puts on the glitz and sparkle with dimensional encrusted pieces that make use of rose montees and other kinds of sparkly. The Billie ring, named for Billie Holiday would make an amazing cocktail ring.

Bracelets are my favorite kind of beading, and the Bracelets chapter is my favorite. Dramatic cuffs and lots of sparkle. My favorite bracelet is the "Something Cool" with rivolis, drops and size 15 beads.

Recommend for advanced beginners and intermediate beaders who really love sparkle and glam. This book is full of that sort of beadwork. Drama rather than delicate, it's statement jewelry that is still very wearable. It is part of Lark's Beadweaving Master Class line.
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Format: Hardcover
Blending a love of jazz and a love of beading seems to be a perfect idea as the author, Rachel Nelson, points out in the introduction. As in jazz, improvisation in beading is something to be celebrated and embraced. The 128 page book is built around 23 of the author's beaded jewelry designs based on right angle weave and variations of tubular peyote stitch. Hence the distinctive subtitle of Jewelry Projects in Peyote & Right Angel Weave.

After the brief introduction to Rachel Nelson-Smith's Bead Riffs it is on to "Chapter One: The Setup." Starting on page 10 through texts and pictures the chapter explains the materials needed and their various types, the threads involved, tools required, and techniques required. This leads into detailed instructions on how to do the "right angle weave" of various types. Mixed in with pictures of various results are pictures of the author and her bandmates making music to reinforce the basic idea of the book that jazz and beadwork both require the same skills and inspirational artistry.

Once you have mastered the basic ideas in Chapter One it is on to the actual projects. Those begin with "Chapter Two: Necklaces and Pendants" on page 33. The projects such as "Polka Dots and Moonbeams" (pages 34-37), "Rondo" (pages 44-47) and "Fly Me To The Moon" (pages 69-72) and others all have a musical tie in. Each project has a small introduction that explains the reference of the title, a list of supplies, techniques required, and a description of the finished size of the object. Each project has a picture of the finished item as well as several close up pictures of various detail elements along with detailed instructions.
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