Friday, September 28, 2012

New Leather Bracelet Tutorial

I promised this tutorial a while back and kept pushing it back on my blog topics list. I figured it was past time to share it, but I just couldn't (COULDN'T) write it up with all of the writing that I have been doing lately.

As I reviewed the pictures I realized that they speak for themselves, so you know what? I am just going to post this tutorial with a few prompts. Click on each picture to enlarge.

I really love how these bracelets turned out. They are a great companion to my wrapped bracelets tutorial. I had a lot of the materials in my stash. I picked up the leather cord at my local JoAnn Fabrics store. The wire I used for the beads was 24-gauge, but 20 to 26-gauge will work just fine.

If you have questions on specifics, post 'em in the comments and I'll get back to you.

Materials. I used 2mm leather for the base and 1mm for the wraps.
Use whatever you like. It doesn't make much of a difference.
Cut about 4" or so for the wraps. About 12" for the main bracelet.
Make the wraps tight!
To close thread the end through the loop and tighten.
and tighten...
...until the loop pops under the wrap. Pull on both ends to finish tightening.
Let the glue dry and snip off the ends of the cord.
I used a knitting needle that was slightly larger than the cord
as a mandrel for the wire beads.
Twist ends to close.
Snip ends and tuck in twist.
They slide around on the cord.
Make a bunch.
Make a sliding adjustable knot.
Wrap the cord around twice.
Poke the end of the cord from the left and through the loops to the right.
Repeat with the second end of the cord in reverse.
Add a bead to each end and tie a knot to secure.
That's it!
Make a bunch and enjoy!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Hola! FREE Micro Torch Basics Class.

¡Buenos dias! I am back from my trip from Mexico and I can't wait to share what I learned. So many traditional Mexican jewelry-making techniques, designs and materials... My head is bursting.

More on all of that great stuff later on the blog. (I gotta TON of pics to download.) Right now I want to share something EXCITING that happened while I was away.


It's FREE!!! That's right! No charge and you can watch it again and again and again. All you need to do is sign up and become a member of In my class you'll learn how to use a butane micro torch PLUS how to make a couple of my favorite ring projects. I walk you through each step on using the torch, setting up a safe workspace and other tips and tricks so you won't be afraid to turn on that torch and get started.

The class is broken down into five separate lessons so the class is easy to navigate and presents techniques in easy to follow portions.

I am so super-proud of this class and so happy that students are enjoying it. Are you new to Craftsy? You can learn all about their online classes here. You can check out my activity and projects on the site by following my profile.

Things don't stop there, though! I have a second class coming up in the next couple of weeks... stay tuned, I think you are going to like it. 

Now go forth and fire it up!

Monday, September 17, 2012

A Giveaway Winner and Offline for a Few.

Congrats to Julie!!!
The threw her hat in the giveaway ring, since she said that she was feeling lucky...and she was lucky indeed.

Julie, you have won my latest prize package!

 Email me at kate at kate richbourg dot com to confirm your mailing address and I'll get this out to you ASAP.

Also, just another quick thanks to all who have send beads for my super secret project. They have begun to arrive and they are just perfect. Thanks!

And I am going to be off-line until after September 26th as I am doing a bit of travel and jewelry-scouting without internet access... I'll see you when I get back.

Friday, September 14, 2012

I Am Amazed!

Catching up on my blog reading this morning, I popped over to Sweet Freedom Designs, my BSBP-P (that's Bead Soup Blog Party partner) to see what she had been up to and OHMYGOSH... I mean I saw the reveal and all and marveled over the pretty pieces... but it has not ended there!

That crafty lady is a super prolific and talented beader as well as a great educator. Hop on over to her blog and read her five (FIVE) detailed posts on how she created all of her Bead Soup Blog Party. (This link goes to the fifth project with links to each of the others.)

I am so inspired.

Here is just a hint of the lovely things she posted...

Project photo from the Sweet Freedom Designs Blog.
Those wire wraps are so perfect, they make my heart sing. If you are looking for some beading inspiration this weekend, look no further. Thanks for sharing, Sweet Freedom, I love each and every one of your pieces.

P.S. My giveaway is still going on over the weekend... and THANKYOUTHANKYOUTHANKYOU for your kind responses to my super secret project. I'll be accepting commitments for bead donations though the weekend with beads to arrive by September 25th. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

One Last Celebration Giveaway...

As you know, August was a crazy month for me as I was constantly on the road. I was also giving away some cool prizes to celebrate my 20th Anniversary as a Jewelry Educator and I got a little busy being in so many airports and all that I did not give away as many things as I planned.

But since this is my Birthday Week and I have the last round of prizes waiting eagerly on my desk to go a new home let's fire up one last celebration giveaway.

Here you go...
Some of my favorite things: New Metal Patinas courtesy of Lisa from Metal Me This; a lovely toggle clasp that I designed courtesy of Jess Imports; copper wire solder, patterned brass sheet, Pro Polish Pads and my very, very, very favorite Xuron Max Flush Cutter all from my Etsy Shop.

Whew! Quite a haul. And it's easy to win. Just leave a comment below letting me know you are in with a way to contact you. If you want to put your name in the running more than once, just share the giveaway on any of your social media outlets and come back here and comment with a link. Leave a comment for each social media share.

You have until Monday morning to enter. So happy 46 years to me and cheers to all of you for your kindness and interest in what I do. I am a lucky gal.

And P.S. I am still taking bead donations for my super secret project. Thanks to the many of you who are sending beads over, I really appreciate the response!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

I'm Asking For It!

September is in full swing and I have a really cool super-secret project on my plate. So basically this is a post that's going to tell you nothing about it.

Nice, huh.

What I can tell you is that it involves BEADS. You know, those shiny round things that you can string to make adornments. No fire, no heavy equipment and tools... JUST BEADS!!!!

What I can tell you is that the project is going to be really cool, created with an iPad in mind. It's gonna be a great reference for the bead community and I am super excited to get the project underway. It will be live for the public in mid to late October.

I am putting a call out for help from all of you. I need bead donations. If you have some beads around that you are ready to unload I would love to have 'em. I am not talking strands here (though I could use 'em) I need those leftovers from a project. The few leftover from the strand, the strays, the unused focal beads. That's what this project will rely on. If they are mixed up then all the better! Just pour 'em into a baggie, pop 'em in a padded envelope and send them over. It doesn't have to be a huge amount and variety is key.

Kinda like this.
If you are game, send me a message using the email link on this page.  (Some of you have had trouble with my email address, so here it is spelled out... kate (at) katerichbourg (dot) com ... I'll send you my address AND you will get a copy of the "super secret bead project" when it is out as a thank you.

I'll need these by September 25th. Thanks in advance for your help!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Two Quickies...

Hey Gang! Just popping in to say hi and shout out a couple 'o cool things.

Cool thing #1:

My latest article for Jewelry Making Daily. Learn all about using the indispensable Dremel tool to make a quick and cute riveted pendant. If you don't get their newsletter, I recommend it. There is a LOT of great info that goes right into your email box about jewelry making and metal work. I am so proud to be a regular contributing blogger for them.

Pile up the blanks, texture and rivet together!
Cool thing #2: is having a sale on all of their sterling silver blanks. Have you checked the price of silver lately? It's starting to creep up so grab this opportunity. It's the perfect time to get some supplies and try out your Dremel tool.

See you later this week. I have a trip update and a giveaway (delayed to be sure, but worth the wait!)