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Simply Gemstones: Designs for Creating Beaded Gemstone Jewelry Paperback – July 14, 2009

4.4 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Nancy Alden's gorgeous book offers over 50 simple designs that you can create using magnificent, colorful gemstones--and at a fraction of the cost of those department store beauties! The best part: No fancy techniques needed! If you know how to string and crimp, make a wire-wrapped loop, open and close jump rings, and knot thread, then you can make every piece in this book." --Bead Design Studio Magazine

About the Author

NANCY ALDEN is the author of Simply Pearls, Simply Silver, Simply Gold, and A Touch of Glass. She is a jewelry designer and the cofounder of the Beadworks Group. Visit them online at www.beadworks.com.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Potter Craft; Original edition (July 14, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307451356
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307451354
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.4 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,009,994 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book has nice pictures and pretty necklaces, earrings, and bracelets. However it is only a basic stringing book. The stones used for some of the projects are just very expensive, like the lorimar necklace that I evaluate around $600 to make, the tourmaline briolettes necklace, the blue green tourmaline necklace, and so on. Blue topaz chips of the size and quality she shows for one necklace are almost impossible to find even when you live in NYC and go to bead shows or on line. Nancy Alden could have suggested equivalent stones such as crazy blue agate for lorimar. She also provides no references for web search. Her explanations about gemstones and basic techniques can be found for free anywhere else and she could have used some of the pages to offer more challenging pieces, such as wire/chain gemstone necklace as can be seen on etsy. In summary this book is just OK.
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Format: Paperback
If your tastes in jewelry is along the lines of Ross-Simmons and money is no object, then you'll love this book.
Nancy Alden uses the most basic of jewelry-making skills to highlight the gemstone designs in this book. There are selections in the usual semi-precious stones such as Peruvian Opal, Labradorite, Turquoise, Jasper and lots of Tourmaline. Then there are stringing projects using Ruby (not Ruby Quartz), Larimar, Sapphire and even rough Diamonds. The earrings have a matching necklace or bracelet counterpart.
As usual with most Potter-Craft books, there are excellent photos of the finished product with clear, well-written instructions on the following page. Visual learner will not find step-by-step photos. The techniques, which are in Nancy Alden's other books, are found in the back using line illustrations.
The rating gets 4 stars instead of 5 because if you want to splurge and make these designs, you need to know where to get them. Here are a few (besides Firemountain); Softflexcompany.com, and BeadsofCambay.com (probably the best source for precious gemstone beads).
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By Linda Lee on September 10, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Already owning "Simply Pearls" by Nancy Alden, I was very interested to see that she had published "Simply Gemstones". I was pleasantly surprised with my purchase of this new book. It has some very inspiring ideas just like the earlier publication and again it attempts to "stretch' the reader/beader by encouraging him or her to try new combinations and seek out new discoveries such as Larimar.

I must admit that I have never really followed her designs to the letter, but instead have been inspired by them to develop my own approach. The author encourages her readers to do just that. I have already made a lovely necklace with lapis lazul using the cover design as my inspiration. I am very pleased with the result.

The earlier book had a gallery page showing all the designs covered. This section has not been included in the current publication and I think it suffers as a result because you cannot see all the designs at a glance.

I would recommend this book as a source and inspiration to people like myself who enjoy stringing and want to be challenged rather than to stay in their comfort zone!
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Format: Paperback
No question about it this book is simply gorgeous. I agree that some of the projects may be cost prohibitive, but if this book inspires you it's really done its job. I can't wait to put my own twist on some of these designs.
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Format: Paperback
SIMPLY GEMSTONES: DESIGNS FOR CREATING BEADED GEMSTONE JEWELRY tells how to achieve a high-end look in creating gemstone jewelry, offering a guide to creating over 50 earrings, necklaces, and bracelets. Color photos of finished products accompany construction methods, materials, and tools tips on each facing page, making for a fine craft guide for any collection strong in jewelry making.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I agree with just about everything that the reviewers before me have stated. This book has beautiful photos. The projects are very simplistic stringings, but the results are sophisticated, and in some cases stunning. I've purchased many craft books and often find that I only like one or two items in the book - I would consider making and wearing the majority of the pieces in this book. I've also purchased several gem and semi-precious stone books, and I think this book is great for discovering some new stones that you may not have thought of using before.
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By piano on December 29, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Love the book. Beautiful inspiring designs. Very many styles for many different tastes, from delicate to bigger beaded. The book could benefit from including more instructions and pictures, although those are widely available online. Graphical representation of projects could help also, similar to those that are used in beading magazines. Overall, the book is inspirational, educational, and enjoyable, and each piece is beautifully presented on photos.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The pictures are fantastic but I can tell you what is in this book in just a few sentences: Get a headpin, put a bead on it, make a loop then stick a finding on that. For earrings do it once per ear; for bracelets and necklaces, do it a few times. Be fancy. Put a bead cap on it.
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