Last year, my husband Eric has decided to issue me a design challenge each month to get me out of my comfort zone and to help clear out my bead stash... and we're continuing the Honey Do List for 2017! I know that I'm not the only one who loves a good design challenge, so I'm hoping folks will continue to play along!
Here's this month's inspiration and what Eric had to say about it:
I finally got set up with winter gear to go out in the Minnesota tundra...then it promptly got into the 60's and all the snow melted. Shrugging it off--and into a light jacket--I took a trip down to the river in Belle Plaine and discovered these melting ice crystals shoved up onto the bank. Not much colorful to take shots of yet but crystals seemed appropriate for a jewelry challenge!
I love the sparkles that Eric captured in this photos. I immediately thought of some of the gemstones in my hoard such as labradorite, some matte quartz crystal, and rock crystal. At first glance, it almost looks like a black and white photo, but there are also some subtle shades of brown/bronze to play with as well.
Post Bead Cruise, I really needed to make a dent in all the beads that I have been neglecting to put away (never my favorite task)... that worked out in my favor for this challenge since I uncovered a couple of things that worked quite nicely! The very first thing I made features one of those little goodies... a fun pair of acrylic connectors by My Elements by Yvonne. (I got these from Allegory Gallery in a destash.) I love the shimmer and subtle patterns in these and they are so light! I made some sparkly little dangles with Czech glass, hematite, and crystal rondelles and used niobium ear wires.
Next up, I went for some of the more bronze and brown tones for a pair of earrings featuring Czech glass and some faceted labradorite rounds. I wire wrapped tiny matte metallic seed beads onto the brass ear wires to add a little more pizzaz! I always end up loving the way this wire-wrapping technique looks, but I curse myself while I'm doing it every time!
Another goody that I unearthed when trying to get things put away was a lovely strand of rock crystal that I picked up in an Allegory Gallery destash. The nuggets are a good size so I decided to use one as the main focal for a long necklace with some smokey Czech glass with a mercury finish. I made a chain tassel with a cone decorated with striations that reminded me of the lines in the crystals in Eric's photo. Left completely to my own devices, I probably would have left the necklace at that. Since I could hear Eric in my mind telling me to do links along the chain, and this is his challenge to me, I kept going.
Last, but not least, I came up with one more pair of earrings for this month's challenge. I made use of two different sizes of matte quartz crystal rounds, some super sparkly crystal rondelles, and some little vintage plastic or lucite (not entirely sure which) teardrops from an Allegory Gallery bead mix that I won. Personally, I'm pretty over ice and snow at this point, but these earrings still make me happy!
For the record, I'm not terribly thrilled with my photos for this month's challenge... the weather wasn't cooperating with giving me good light and I honestly think the white and clear beads were just especially hard to photograph with my iPhone. Le sigh.
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