Studio Saturday with Erin Siegel

Welcome to Studio
Saturday! Each week one of our contributors gives you a sneak peek into
their studio, creative process or inspirations. We ask a related
question of our readers and hope you’ll leave comments! As an incentive
we offer a free prize each week to bribe you to use that keyboard.
The following week we choose a random winner.

This week’s winner is Kayz Kreationz.
Congratulations! You have won a set of bittersweet disk beads from Heather Powers of Humble Beads.
  Send Heather an email with your address and
she will get your prize out to you soon.
This week we visit the studio of
Erin Siegel of Erin Siegel Jewelry

Hello! Right
now, I’m working on magazine submissions. Today, I invite you inside my
studio to take a sneak peek at the materials I’m creating with for the
Spring 2014 issue of Jewelry Stringing Magazine!
It’s time to submit jewelry designs for next year’s Spring issue, now.
And yep, I’m actually sharing with you exactly what I’m working on for
the pieces I plan to submit to the magazine. That might seem kinda crazy, but I embrace the idea of freely sharing information that might help someone else find success in getting published. I thought it’d be fun to do a little show and tell to give you a glimpse of my process. I hope this information will help other designers feel
more confident about creating jewelry for publication.

Getting your jewelry published can be a tricky thing. Personally,
I find that challenge fun! There’s absolutely no guarantee that
anything I make will be selected. All I can do is try my best to follow
the magazine’s guidelines, let the themes and color palettes provided
inspire ideas for my designs and stay true to my own style, esthetic and creative process

Jewelry Stringing is one
of my all-time favorite beading magazines. I’m intrigued and captivated
by the themes and color palettes the editors come up with to
inspire their contributing designers. Come join me now and get a taste
for what I’m working on and my process for creating jewelry pieces for
this particular magazine. I hope to inspire you to work on your own creations as
well and submit your designs.

Jewelry Stringing
provides guidelines, themes and color palettes for each one of their
upcoming issues. You can find the full details and guidelines for
submission here. I’ve provided some of the information for the Spring 2014 issue here in this post.

first theme and color palette for Spring 2014 is “Soft Jewelry”. (The
following description is taken from the guidelines on the magazine’s
Soft Jewelry

ribbon, cord, thread, embroidery floss, and fabric are most commonly used as
stringing materials and structural components in jewelry pieces, but they also
lend themselves to creative and compelling focal elements. Submissions in this
category will range in style, but they should all include fibers, textiles, or
leather as a prominent design feature. Consider highlighting these materials
through techniques like knotting, braiding, and wrapping, or incorporating
current trends like fringe or tassels into your designs.
See their Pinterest inspiration board for
this palette at:
So, here’s what I’ve chosen to work with for this theme:

you can see, I’ve matched up pretty well with the first two colors in the palette
provided. You do not have to use all the colors in the suggested palette, but at least one color in your design should match up. I chose these African trade beads in “Teal” from Ornamentea.com.
For additional color, texture and the fiber elements needed for the
theme, I hand-knotted the beads on multiple strands of Irish Waxed linen
cord in “Sunflower”. Then, I’ll pair the knotted beads with some brown
Greek leather cord to complete the design.

second theme and color palette for Spring 2014 is “Spring Greens”. (The
following description is taken from the guidelines on the magazine’s

Spring Greens

If there is one color that ubiquitously
represents springtime, it has to be green. Fresh leaves sprout from the trees,
grass peeks out from beneath snowdrifts, and budding shoots speckle our garden
beds. From subdued mossy shades to high-energy lime tones, each piece in this
category will celebrate spring in all its green glory.
See their Pinterest inspiration board for
this palette at:

Here are some materials I’ve chosen to use for this palette and theme:

 Shimmer Floss Ribbon, Czech glass beads, Irish waxed linen and a gold button.

I’ve got some hand-painted Shimmer Floss ribbon in “Grandma Moses” from Ornamentea.com, green, faceted Czech glass beads, Irish Waxed Linen in “Dark Forest Green” from Jewelry Accord and a matte gold button from the fabric store.
In this palette, I did want to match up with as many of the green colors as I could. The hand-painted shimmer floss helps me pull quite a few of the green
tones in the palette with just that one element. I’ll pull in the
darkest green color with the waxed linen cord. Then, I’ll pair the
fibers with the contrasting finish of the faceted Czech glass beads and
the button for balance and interest in the piece.

third theme for Spring 2014 is “Monochromatic”.  (The following
description is taken from the guidelines on the magazine’s website.)

In honor of our annual color issue, we
are inviting our contributors to create monochromatic pieces in the color of
their choice. While creating a piece in a single color simplifies the process
of selecting color-coordinated materials, it makes the other design elements of
the piece more visible. Balance, proportion, and symmetry are often
accomplished through clever color combinations. Without the aid of a varied
palette, designers must rely on their other skills to create well-executed,
interesting, and attractive jewelry. We know that you are up to the challenge,
so pick a color and show us what you’ve got!
See their Pinterest inspiration board for
this section at:
Below is the color I’ve decided to go with for monochromatic:

Grey Opaque Matte size 8 seed beads from ShipWreck Beads.

Grey. Might not seem too exciting. Why in the world would I choose grey
out of all the beautiful colors of the rainbow? Well, the design I want
to make for this category will be elegant, sophisticated  and a
little bit moody. That description could not be farther from how I would
describe my usual style. I’ve decided to go in this direction because
the color and look I have in mind is a total deviation from the esthetic
I would normally create. It’s fun to try different styles and show some
range in my work. That is very exciting to me! 🙂 I’m going to
incorporate these opaque, matte grey seed beads from ShipwreckBeads.com
into my jewelry piece by stringing them on multiple strands of grey waxed linen cord.
The multiple strands of these seed beads will provide texture and visual
interest to a monochromatic design.

but not least, the fourth theme for Spring 2014 is “Bead Soup”. (The
following description is taken from the guidelines on the magazine’s

Bead Soup

contrast to the previous theme, the pieces in this section will be packed with
colors-the more the better! We are challenging you to use as many different
colors as possible in your submissions for this category, but be careful that
you aren’t sacrificing cohesion or wear-ability for variety. Tip: Successful
“bead soup” pieces often have a unifying characteristic that runs throughout
each design (ie: consistent bead size, shape, finish or material; a repeated
technique; a specific theme or motif; etc.). 

See our Pinterest inspiration board for this section

Here are some beads I pulled from my stash for this category:

Seed beads from ShipWreckBeads.com and a handmade ceramic bead set by Keith O’Connor.

One hank of “All Mixed Up” size 8 Czech seed beads from Shipwreck Beads
and a graduated ceramic bead set from ceramic artist, Keith O’Connor. I
can’t think of a better way to get more colors in than these fantastic
seed bead mixes! They remind me a lot of the African “Christmas” or
“Love” trade beads, which would also be a great choice for this theme.
If you take a look at the Pinterest board for this category above, there
are images of African beadwork. So, obviously those would be an ideal

I hope you’ve enjoyed following along with me on my journey to creating jewelry for the Spring 2014 issue of Jewelry Stringing
magazine. I want to inspire you with ideas that you can use in your own
jewelry. If you’d like to try submitting your designs, here is the
deadline information and submission guidelines you’ll need to know:

E-mailed pre-submissions are due September 26th, 2013; physical submissions are due October 10th, 2013.
For the rest of the submissions instructions and specifics, please read through the Contributor Guidelines in their entirety here.

Do you submit your jewelry to any beading magazines?
Would you like to see your designs published? 
Why or why not?

“Envious” Color Cord Mix from Jewelry Accord

a comment answering any of the above questions and you will be entered for a
chance to win an Irish Waxed Linen Cord Color Mix courtesy of the Jewelry Accord shop on Etsy!

By the way, this green color cord mix from Jewelry Accord would be an excellent material choice for jewelry project submissions to the  “Spring Greens” color palette shown above!

Happy Beading!

Erin Siegel is a jewelry designer, beading instructor and co-author of
the jewelry book, Bohemian-Inspired Jewelry: 50 Designs Using Leather,
Ribbon and Cords. To find out more, visit her blog: Erin Siegel Jewelry.

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16 Comment

  1. Divya N
    September 14, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    I love submitting to jewelry magazines because they have specific guidelines that make you create something thats different from what you usually do – be it new materials or combinations. Plus the attention is great, I loved being featured in 101BNE this year

  2. Karen Totten
    September 14, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    Great color palettes and textures! I can't wait to see what you make.

  3. Erin S
    September 14, 2013 at 4:47 pm

    I publish a lot–I always submit to Stringing, but I MUCH prefer their old submission format, which allowed for complete creative freedom. I don't mind working with a theme, and I don't mind working with a color pallet, but if I have to do both at once, I find it incredibly limiting. And it really shows in my work. I have had a much harder time getting anything accepted in the past year. I am submitting 2 necklaces and a couple pairs of earrings for this issue. Maybe I'll have better luck.

  4. Cynthia Deis
    September 14, 2013 at 5:32 pm

    Those ideas are fabulous…and now I know what NOT to submit! ;-0

    I know they love your work, and rightfully so.

  5. Patty
    September 14, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    I haven't ever submitted anything, but that's not to say I won't in the future. It's kind of intimidating!! Your spring greens are gorgeous. 🙂

  6. thecolorofdreams
    September 14, 2013 at 11:01 pm

    I love the shimmer floss ribbon! I had a pair of earrings that were requested by a magazine, but they were not selected to be published. I guess that I was discouraged by that and have not tried again.

  7. Susan Delaney
    September 15, 2013 at 2:04 am

    Let me first say that this was a wonderful blog post. Beautiful, generous prose. I loved the way you accepted the four challenges, all of which were going to stretch you.

    I have begun to take on challenges, like the ABS monthly challenge, and others. My first challenge was very painful, but as I continue to accept challenges I see how much I grow with each one and I seek them eagerly.

    Your post showed me a whole new type of challenge: creating pieces for magazine themes. I am excited at the thought of beginning to add these challenges to my monthly growth.

  8. Sarajo Wentling
    September 15, 2013 at 2:51 am

    I would love to get something published but I haven't taken the leap to try yet. This is my first year really making my hobby more of a real business, so I'm going to cut myself some slack… I've accomplished so many goals already this year already!

    I think that part of the appeal of getting published would be wider exposure of my work… and (and I know this sounds cheesy) it would make my mom super proud!

    I love how Susan equates the submission guidelines to other design challenges (which I may be addicted to!). Maybe looking at it that way might help me make the leap.

  9. Kristen
    September 15, 2013 at 12:02 pm

    Twice I have submitted my enameled components to Stringing for the yearly buyers guide and got accepted. Very exciting! (My bracelet bar clasps are #5 on page 13) The beads you have chosen for the soft color palette are beautiful and the design specs are right up your alley! Good luck.

  10. Saraccino
    September 15, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    I would love to see my work published but I never submitted anything yet. I am still a little bit struggling and I need more confidence. Also… I create next to my normal work and working in research quite often makes my schedule unpredictable… that makes is difficult to keep to deadline 🙂

    But it is on my to-do list (ever growing) since one or two years, just have to do it and try!

  11. Cathy's Fiber Expressions
    September 16, 2013 at 12:48 am

    I'm too much of a newbie to submit–my work is very derivative at this point.
    I enjoy your work and appreciate this post.

  12. Shel
    September 16, 2013 at 1:50 pm

    Erin, you always have such great information and you share it in such a way that truly encourages people to step out of their box and 'go for it' – I admire that in you!
    I've submitted many designs to various magazines – some got accepted and some did not. With magazines doing their best to keep things fresh and new, it's rather a 'luck of the draw' type of thing, and I understand where you're coming from when you say you like that part of the 'challenge'. Oh, and I love that you picked the muted shade of gray for your monochromatic color – fabulous! Thanks for such a great article!

  13. Ann
    September 16, 2013 at 7:13 pm

    I have done blog hops, but never submitted to a magazine. Probably because I feel that my work is not professional enough. Crazy, but that is it!

  14. Shaiha
    September 16, 2013 at 7:41 pm

    I am just now getting to the point to where I would be comfortable apply to magazines. I think my biggest hang up would be having to write up a tutorial. I tend to design as I cook with a dab of this and a bit of that.

  15. Carolyn
    September 17, 2013 at 3:34 am


    I have never submitted anything but would like to in the future. I love to do challenges and blog hops so will have to think about submissions in that way.

    Thanks for the chance to win some cording from your shop.

    [email protected]

  16. Debra Gibson
    September 19, 2013 at 2:32 pm

    I have never submitted any of my work but I hope to do so one day. I have a blog and I post on Facebook. Thanks for the chance to win! I love Erin's work!

Comments are closed.