This turquoise pendant is echoed with repousse in silver, part of the beyond-bead-trunk-show from Mary Ellen Beads Albuquerque.

Beyond a Bead Trunk Show

“Story is a butterfly whose wings transport us to another world where we receive gifts that change who we are and who we want to be.” 

–Harley King

The gift of adornment continues to transform me as I connect with beads and all elements of jewelry. During my bead journey I’ve uncovered a passionate curiosity to learn all manner of related elements, a process that is dramatically expansive for creativity. It’s as though I’ve become a new person, one with a new heart-felt appreciation for the maker process and the artist that lives in each of us.

White bronze clay for example fascinates me. After several classes, (Read about one of my earlier adaptations in this post) I’ve begun to experiment with creating my own findings. In this picture you can see one of my handmade clasps of white bronze clay. I’m as proud as a new mother of this effort. (NOTE: The story of my kiln work and other precious metal clay happenings is yet to be revealed.

This white bronze clasp, part of a coral necklace was made by Mary Ellen Merrigan and is part of her Beyond a Bead Trunk Show for Mary Ellen Beads Albuquerque
© 2019, Mary Ellen Merrigan, White Bronze Clasp

Metal Adds to Bead Possibilities

For the past few months I’ve explored metals such as copper, silver and bronze using a torch, wire wrap techniques, wire weaving, and other options. 

It’s now easier to imagine how I might incorporate metal into my own designs and use it to enhance my beloved beads. In the necklace below I used repoussé (a technique in which the metal is hammered from the reverse side) to echo the shape of my cabochon. The results were gratifying because I met my goal even though I did not yet feel comfortable with the technique.

This turquoise pendant is echoed with repousse in silver,  part of the beyond-bead-trunk-show from Mary Ellen Beads Albuquerque.
© 2019, Mary Ellen Merrigan, turquoise repoussé

Show Incorporates New Themes

Join me from 11am – 6pm on Friday, May 17, 2019 for a trunk show in which I display my new beyond a bead work at Silk Road Connection, in the Promenade Shopping Center, Eubank at Spain in Albuquerque.

As I love to quip, “I never meet a bead I don’t like.” My love of beads only grows as I learn more about their history and properties. 

Vintage African trade beads inspire and uplift me. A dear friend brought me a gift of glass beads from Johannesburg. My delight as I added complimentary beads from my stash was unparalleled.  Venetian glass, vintage hard-to-find skunk beads, vaseline beads, feather glass… I can only imagine the delight of a collector with this creation.


Red Sky is inspired by vintage African trade beads, part of the beyond a bead collection  trunk show by Mary Ellen Beads Albuquerque.
© 2019, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Red Sky

Multi-strand Necklace Statements

Another favorite combines traditional pearls of various shapes and sizes with amber, a treasured stone known for creating comfort and well-being in the wearer.


A 9-strand pearl and amber necklace is part of Beyond a Bead Collection in a trunk show by Mary Ellen Beads Albuquerque.
© 2019, Mary Ellen Merrigan, 9-strand pearls and amber

Multi-strand delights found my workbench this spring. The joy of asymmetrical assembly keeps each necklace fresh and new.


These multi-strand necklaces combine comfort with dramatic looks in a beyond bead trunk show from Mary Ellen Beads Albuquerque.
© 2019, Mary Ellen Merrigan, Multi-strand options

You will see these and many other surprises during my trunk show.

Details for Beyond a Bead Trunk Show:

Who: Mary Ellen Merrigan of Mary Ellen Beads

What: A collection of my new works

Where: Silk Road Connection

When: 11am – 6pm, Friday May 17, 2019

Why:  The synergy of creation beyond a bead generates creative joy

Please stop and visit. You may find a treasure you’ve been looking for!

“Similar to a butterfly, I’ve gone through a metamorphosis, been released from my dark cocoon, embraced my wings, and soared!” 

–Dana Arcuri, Reinventing You: Simple Steps to Transform Your Body, Mind, & Spirit

Can I count on seeing you at my Beyond a Bead Trunk Show?

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