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Bead Bugs

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Bead Bugs

Bead Bugs

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Bead Bugs: Cute, Creepy, and Quirky Projects to Make with Beads, Wire, and Fun Found Objects is written by Amy Kopperude and published by Creative Publishing International. It retails for $22.95 in the United States, L14.99 in the United Kingdom, and $24.99 in Canada. The book is paper back and is made up of 128 pages of how-to text and color photographs. The copyright date is 2013.

The author, obviously, has had a long fascination with bugs and beads. This is evidenced by her year of the bead bug where she made a bead bug every day for 365 days. She even has an Etsy shop, called Atomic Rose where she sells bug accessories and bead bug making kits.

Tools and Materials Section

The "Tools and Materials" chapter provides a list of supplies, tools, equipment, and various materials you will need to make the projects in the book. Most are already going to be familiar to most jewelry makers such as round nose pliers and wire cutters. Some that are a little on the unique side include glow beads, which are described as "phosphorescent beads." These glow in the dark after they have been held under a light for a short period of time. Flat glass marbles are also an item you may not see in too many traditional bead books. It is nice to see that if you are already into make jewelry, especially bead and wire jewelry, more than likely you will have a pretty good assortment of the tools and materials you need to make the book's bug projects.

In the introduction, the author suggests that you can also use a lot of found objects; however, I did not see a large number of what I would consider "found objects" used in the projects. For the Hermit Crab Cage Companion project, you do use a hermit shell, and a glass jar (they type normally used for canning) is used to display bead fireflies in the Jar of Fireflies project. I am not suggesting that you could not use found objects. I am just saying I did not really see this demonstrated to a great extent in the book.

The Book's Projects

There are a total of twenty three projects in the book. Dragonflies, spiders, crabs, and bees are just some of the "crawly" critters you will make. I noticed that they are not all really bugs either. Along with a hermit crab there was also a sea horse ornament project.

Each project has color photographs that show the finished piece as well as step by step images that cover close to every step described in the text part, and the images and text are not only numbered to match one another, but they are position next to each other so it makes a lot of sense to you as you read through each step. I am definitely a fan of the book's layout.

While there are jewelry pieces in her, like a spider pin, there are also lots of other non-jewelry bug projects such as a Mosquito Candle Clinger and Monarch Butterfly Lamp Finial. So there are jewelry pieces, home decor items, and sculptural items, like the Hermit Crab Cage Companion and Scorpion Sand Garden (pictured on the cover). One of my favorite projects is the Ladybug Hair Spirals. They are hair ornaments with a red bead that you make look like a ladybug.

Final Thoughts

You have to admit that a book about making bugs with beads has got to be fun, and Bead Bugs: Cute, Creepy, and Quirky Projects to Make with Beads, Wire, and Fun Found Objects by Amy Kopperude has some quirky projects that are definitely not typical. She has one project where you make a "Slug Hair Comb," so you cannot take this too seriously and obviously are not supposed to. This is a book to just play and have fun with. While I would not go so far as to say these projects are for children (because some of the tools are not child friendly and the focus of this book is not meant to be for children), I think with adult supervision, some of these projects would be fun to do with young people. It might even give them the "bead bug" - pardon the pun - and bring them around to more advanced techniques as they get older.
Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the publisher. For more information, please see our Ethics Policy.

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