Wednesday 31 December 2014

Karma Beads ~ Budget, what budget?!

From a flirtation with a catalogue back in early April, to photographing Karma for Fashion Week in May, to dipping my wrist into the Karma line with a preloved opportunity back in August and now jumping right in with a beautifully timed set of discounts from one retailer in October!

Display Bracelet - April 2014

Alas, there was quite a wait as nearly everything I wanted was out of stock.  However it didn't really take that long (although it felt like forever whilst I was waiting) and finally in November I was looking at a rather large pile of Karma beads, stoppers and a free jewellery box... it was quite a good package!

The start of my Karma bracelet - August 2014

I mentioned when I wrote about Karma back in August that I wanted to finish the design of my first bracelet before I bought all the beads.  Ignoring my usual, but mismatched, ooh shiny approach; I planned to buy multiples from the start with this brand.

My repeated beads are the matt obsidian beads and the karma bead stoppers which I am using as spacers, and both of these are at the lowest price point of the Karma range.

I've discovered I have incredibly expensive tastes with Karma beads as the ones I am naturally drawn to start at about £70/80 and just keep rising... so I'm curbing that inclination at the moment (as well as chasing the discounts) and going for something I've got more chance of affording so I can finish my bracelet.

I bought one matt black textured bead - the Shanghai bead.  The pattern shows up better in a photograph than with the naked eye, I'm not sure whether that's just this particular bead or all of them in general as I only have one so far.

The other main difference is in the size of the beads, Shanghai is 1.1cm in diameter, whereas the plain matt obsidian beads are 1cm in diameter.

Of course no Karma bracelet for me could exist without the skulls, it was after all what caught my eye in the first place!

TS Karma Skull Stoppers

TS Karma Stoppers - Skulls vs Patterned

First up were some Skulls Stoppers, although I'm using the smaller ones as spacers, I wanted a showcase pair for part of the bracelet!  The Skull Stoppers are actually bigger and chunkier than the others I've been using so that's worth bearing in mind when you're buying.

Next in my package of lovely beads was the Small Skull Bead.  The bead is 0.9cm diameter and the way it is cored at a slight angle it fits as a "slim" bead on the bracelet - I did consider the large skull bead (which is 1.1cm in diameter) but I was worried it might be too big for my design and/or make my 18cm bracelet too tight.

I bought the Karma bracelet preloved and I guessed at what my correct size was.  In Trollbeads I wear a 17cm chain with a 2cm lock so I'm hoping that as Karma has smaller beads, that the finished bracelet will sit in roughly the same place on my wrist as my Troll bracelet does, providing I don't overfill it with large beads that is.

Finally, saving the best until last, is the bead that has always been top of my Karma Wish List right from the start, simply called Skulls Bead!

Skulls Bead is also 1.1cm in diameter and here it is shown below in a comparison shot with the other round beads in my package of "Budget, what budget?!"

So how is the bracelet looking now, did I manage to complete the design?

Sadly not quite, but it is definitely looking more like the finished article I have in mind... and I do have a £9 off voucher for my next order!

My almost finished Thomas Sabo Karma Bracelet

I'm so close now I'd really like to finish this design so I can wear the full version.  I think I might need to replenish my bead budget a bit more before getting my final 2 beads... watch this space, hopefully won't be long now!

I'm actually surprised I've lasted this long before I broke...
What was your last budget breaker?  What temptation caused you to stray?!


  1. I love your bracelet! Karma seems to have great texture on their beads, so you get a lot of "oomph" in a small space :) My wallet cringes every time I see a Karma bracelet :D Can't wait to see what your last beads will be. Based on the design as it is, I assume another matte textured bead and a silver?

    I think my last budget buster was the five Ohm beads I ordered in the summer. I'd had a few on my wishlist for a while, but then the bacon bead came out and the dam broke. Of course I love all the beads that I got, so definitely not a regretted purchase. But not exactly planned at the time ;)

    My last temptation was the TB bangle promo this month. I had it all in my cart and was going through the checkout when I stopped myself. I want a second bangle, but planned on getting it next year. But then I figured that I was silly not to get the promo with the free stoppers and glass bead. But, when I added it all up with tax (or the exchange rate of ordering from the U.S.) it wasn't really as great a deal for me.

    This bracelet is really so lovely though. I may have another temptation soon! (Between that and Story, this may be really quite bad for my wallet! :D)

    1. Thanks Tracy! Yep you've guessed correctly, another matte textured bead and a silver... as I'm doing this all online (chasing the discounts) I'm doing a bit of guess work on how many I need so was hoping that only two more are needed ;)

      I think you've captured the essence of Karma, you do get a lot of "oomph" in a small space, the bracelet is quite delicate compared to my Troll creations, but still packs a punch. The only drawback is that some of the details get a lot more lost with the naked eye than with a camera, but that doesn't make them any less good! Also this might the *age* of my eyes too... trots off to ask a 20yr old...

      I am seriously considering whether to effect a ban on jewellery buying in January (bar a few exceptions, I still have 1 more navy galaxy to find etc) - there are so many collections having their debut in January that I could seriously spend a ton, but I'm wondering if some retrospective buying is more in order? Haven't made up my mind fully and still contemplating my New Year's Bead Resolutions for 2015 so watch this space.

      Ohm was almost my last budget buster, I ended up not buying any of the LE Christmas beads because I wanted 5 seriously and couldn't get just 1! I have 3 Troll bangles and do contemplate selling 1 of them from time to time, but I love the convenience of having 3 and I did pay a good dicounted price on my 2 extra ones so figure they are still a great investment!

      I like my Karma bracelet, am interested to see where this path leads me in 2015 :)

      Mars xx

  2. I love your Karma bracelet! It's absolutely gorgeous. I hope you get your last 2 beads soon and can wear the full creation.
    Also seems like there is always some promo going on somewhere to tempt us with buying more beads. :)

    1. Thanks Enaktra, me too!

      Yep I've been ignoring all the promos and sales at the moment (apart from ones where I have an ongoing project) to try and avoid temptation. Let's see how long it lasts ;)

      Mars xx


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