Our Celtic Stone Art Bead Partner ~ Clay River Designs

Sometimes one of our themes calls out for a certain art bead artist, and Celtic Stone is one of them! Clay River Designs from Colorado was the only choice for us…we’re happy they agreed to the partnership! We wanted to learn more about Fred & Deb Becker & they obliged, making us want to go to Colorado immediately and work with them in this adorable studio!

Clay River Designs is a home-based cottage business located in Roggen, Colorado. Fred & Deb started their bead design business in 1973. With a move to the country, they decided to research niches in the market to be able to work from home. Having a desire to use their joint drawing and design talents, the company Clay River Designs came into being. Using high-fire porcelain they started designing macrame’ beads. Over the years customer requests led them to design jewelry beads and focal pendants, which has become their main product line. They are currently marketing their hand-made products at trade shows across the country, their website, and selling directly to bead shops and jewelry designers.

How often do you get to design jewelry?

We seem to be more centered around designing the bead products we make, but are trying to work in more time to really enjoy the designing process utilizing our beads and mixing them with other complimentary pieces. We feel our porcelain pendants work beautifully with the Vintaj brass findings and accessories.

See what we’ve made using their hand-painted porcelain beads & pendants in our Idea Gallery, like Jess’s Celtic Knot bracelet!

Deb is currently working on a brand new website to make purchasing Clay River Designs even easier! Stay tuned for the launch date! Visit their current website HERE!

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Technique Video ~ DecoEtch & Filigree: Vintage Embroidery Jewelry Set

Want to know a secret? One of the keys to Vintaj style is the intricate DecoEtch details, mixed metals and ornate filigree which make this simple necklace & bracelet design stand out!
You can view the technique video to see how it’s made and then click the link below to see all of the materials used from beadaholique.com.

Click HERE to see details on the products used in these projects!


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30% off FILIGREE & Infinity Diamond / You Pick PROMO!

For all wholesale customers, take advantage of this great deal – 30% off FILIGREE (bulk packages) AND our tiered PROMO (a great way to try out some NEW product!) – valid thru March 1, 2014 – Simply login to your account at Vintaj.com!

Not yet a wholesale customer, Here’s how! Click HERE to register today or contact info@vintaj.com for customer care to help you.

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Follow these links to see what products Jess used to create her beautiful Woven Hearts earrings & Celtic Knot bracelet (seen above) with a mix of Natural Brass & Artisan Pewter.

Happy Shopping & Designing!

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Create Unique Wire Components: Now That’s a Jig!

Our friend, the very beautiful & talented Brenda Schweder developed this handy dandy jewelry tool that works for you. Now That’s a Jig! is a wire workers best friend. It is simple to use and with different attachments you can create nearly any size loop, wrap or design you can think of.

{View Betsy’s Roped Maze bracelet & Watercolor Ring in the Idea Gallery for product links}

The wire artist’s new tool.

An anodized, aluminum wire jig tool that sits tight and stays put. Designed to handle steel wire up to 16 gauge. Tapped holes (400+) and threaded pegs allow your design to stay put and hold up to the tension created by push-me, pull you designing. Benefits include: easy on your hands, works any type of metal, wipe clean surface – use dry erase maker to draw your design and just wipe clean with a damp cloth, no-mar feet keep work surface scratch free, made in the USA.

Basic Kit: anodized jig bed with no-mar feet, 16-peg variety pack including: 6 – 1/8″ pegs; 4 – 1/4″ pegs; 4 1/2″ pegs; 2 3/4″ pegs; information sheet.

{Click above to visit Brenda Schweder Jewelry Etsy shop for all your Now That’s a Jig needs!}

In this video from Rio Grande, learn directly from the inventor, Brenda Schweder, how the Now That’s A Jig™ system came to be. Get an idea of the broad range of work you can accomplish using this “stays put and sits tight” jig. Create chain links, ear wires, clasps and more using this amazing stay-put jig.

You can find all of our Artisan Pewter, Arte Metal, Artisan Copper and Natural Brass wire on our Tools & Supplies page at vintaj.com!

Click through this gallery to see photos of classes Brenda is teaching at Bead&Button 2014 and photos of the jig itself. You’ll love this tool! You can also purchase Brenda’sSteel Wire Jewelry for more ideas and tutorials!

Happy Designing! ~ Jess


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Celtic Stone Giveaway ~ Vintaj & Clay River Designs!

cairn [kairn] :noun: a heap of stones set up as a landmark, monument, tombstone, etc.

We’re building our “cairn,”, our community, with our Celtic Stone Giveaway!To participate in this giveaway for a chance to win this stash of Vintaj metals, pendants & beads from Clay River Designs; we’re asking you to “share the love” on social media!

There are many ways to enter, choose ONE of the following!

Facebook: Like our Page, and/or post about this giveaway. You can also invite your friends to Like our Page.

Twitter: Follow us (@vintajco) and/or tweet “I am sharing the #vintajluv for a chance to win! #vintajgiveaway #celticstone”

Pinterest: Pin or comment on any of the pins in our Celtic Stone Board

Instagram: Follow us (@vintajco) and Like our Celtic Stone Giveaway post!

Idea Gallery: Go to our Idea Gallery and click the Facebook “Like” button on our Celtic Stone Inspiration pieces.

THEN, come back to the blog and comment on this post, tell us how you shared the love! Your comment must be on this post in order to be entered.

*If you are new to our blog, we may have to moderate your comment. Don’t worry, it may not show up right away, we’ll make sure comments that fit the contest rule are accepted!

The deadline for our Celtic Stone Giveaway is Friday, March 7, 2014 at midnight CT. The winner will be announced on Monday, March 10, 2014. Good luck!


Vintaj & Romance…ooo la la

Our embellishments & findings are the perfect additions to any design with a romantic flair! We’ve collected a few of our charms & embellishments to give you some ideas on what you can use to add a personal or loving sentiment to your projects. Fun inspiration for Valentine’s Day designs!

Click through our gallery of inspirational designs from the archives of our Idea Gallery, with tips on how to make your jewelry personal & romantic!

Happy Designing! ~ Jess

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The Winner of our Frosted Forest Giveaway!

We have the most creative blog readers!! Thank you to everyone who participated and shared their “color story!” The winner of this collection of Vintaj Natural Brass, Artisan Pewter, Artisan Copper, Arte Metal AND beads from Bello Modo is….

Julian Yancey
January 19, 2014
“I like to use the marine to antique my jewelry. It works well for an vintage fleamarket find that you need to refresh. Can’t wait to add a little dab of jade to get that seaside blue to add a pop of freshness like a relaxing day at the beach. Just looking at all the combinations of colors the sea has to give.”

Congratulations Julian!

For those of you who didn’t win, we’ll announce our next giveaway later this week!!

**We appreciate your patience! We had technical difficulties with our blog yesterday, when we intended to share the results!**

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30% off “Forest Inspired” Charms & Embellisments and You Pick PROMO!

For all wholesale customers, take advantage of this great deal –30% off “Forest Inspired” Charms & Embellishments (bulk packages) AND our popular You Pick PROMO (a great way to try out some NEW product!) – valid thru February 15, 2014 – Simply login to your account at Vintaj.com!

Not yet a wholesale customer, here’s how! CLICK here to register today or contact info@vintaj.com for customer care to help you.

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Follow this LINK to see what products Jess used to create her Frosty Foliage necklace (seen above) with a patina “frosted” Natural Brass & beads from Bello Modo.

Happy Shopping & Designing!

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Technique Video ~ Textured Impressions: Antique Silver Frame

Vintaj paper crafting with Sizzix 6″x6″ Textured Impressions Embossing Folders is a fun way to create beautiful cards, mixed media, altered art & unique home decor projects. Not only are these embossing folders covered with gorgeous patterns inspired by Art Nouveau, Art Deco & Nature elements, with an all over pattern, they were also designed to create a tiled look and cover large surfaces. When embossing Arte Foil or card stock, you can match up the patterns to make a continuous piece. Another fun way to use the folders is mixing & matching different patterns to create a collage or quilted effect.

This project uses two styles brought together to create a decorative Antique Silver Frame…

Watch and see how easy it is to use Arte Foil, Embossing Folders & Patina in this technique video to create this Antique Silver Frame {that’s my little Livi last June when she turned 1}.

You can also create an Antique Copper Frame using the same dies and onyx patina with the Copper Arte Foil.

Visit our YouTube channel for more exciting paper crafting, home decor & jewelry
technique videos!

Frame features our Leaf Rosette in the corners & Moroccan Fresco design along the edges.

Click HERE for our entire line of Sizzix 6″x6″ Textured Impressions Embossing Folders.

Vintaj Arte Foil available in Silver & Copper by Ranger.

What would you create? The possibilities are endless!

Happy Designing! ~ Jess

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Patina on Unexpected Surfaces: Change the Color of Beads!

A beautiful mix of natural brass, artisan pewter, patina, glass, crystal & hand-dyed silk give this design the perfect amount of dimension & texture with stunning Winter style.

{Frosted Forest necklace ~ Click photo for product links & beads from Bello Modo}

Customize beads with patina! You can brush patina onto many surfaces other than metal. Stipple or dry brush patina onto beads to simply change the color or to create a cool effect…



Betsy did just that by applying a combination of Amethyst, Aged Bronze & Nouveau Silver Patina to the back of the 5x16mm Crystal MA Dagger Beads, seen strung above.

Mix a new color with Patinas to deepen the bottom edges of natural brass Oak Fronds & center of Primrose Petals with Amethyst + Aged Bronze.

Lightly brush either Nouveau Silver or Marble Patina along the top of natural brass Primrose Petals, Oak Fronds & to 11.3mm Large Flat Oval Chain to give your design a frosted look.


We don’t string beads too often, but it’s always a fun addition to our designs when we have just the right beads. Miyuki Tila Beads have two holes so you can get creative with your pattern when stringing. Betsy strung a tiny teardrop above each dagger bead spacing them with the Tila beads. This creates the look of one unique beaded strand using two pieces of wire.

Happy Designing! ~ Jess

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