Friday, October 2, 2020

Inspiration for the October 2020 Honey Do List

Sorry for the slight delay... Eric has taken a vacation (staycation?) week and we've been trying to relax, get to some places before it's too cold, and enjoy any stray rays of sunshine even if it's chilly!

2020 marks the fifth year that my husband Eric has been giving me a design challenge each month to get me out of my comfort zone and to help clear out my bead stash... it's the Honey Do List 2020!  (And today marks the our 19th wedding anniversary!) 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 with us!


Here's this month's inspiration and what Eric had to say about it:


For October I felt like we needed something creepy!  Here is a photo from Kutna Hora, a bizarre bone church we visited in the Czech Republic.  If you don't happen to have any skull or bone beads laying around, you could also just use the goal of something Halloween/spooky for this month's challenge. 

The reveal date will be Monday, October 26th.  To make it super easy for you to participate and share your creations, I'll set up an Inlinkz link up so folks can add their blogs as they are ready.  Just stop by my blog starting on October 26th and join the fun!  I'll leave the link up open for a while... so you have plenty of time to add your links.  (Last month's is still open... check it our HERE.) No blog?  No worries!  Feel free to send me a picture of your creation and some brief comments and I'll happily share in my blog post.  You can reach me at sjdesignsjewelry@gmail.com  The more the merrier, so I hope you'll play along with me this month!

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Art Elements Theme of the Month :: Blue

 


The September Art Elements Theme of the Month is much more wide open than usual... it's all about the color blue!  

I knew that it was finally time to stop hoarding my pair of gorgeous blue jay feather charms from Artisticaos.  What challenge could be more perfect??  At first I thought I'd be able to pair the porcelain feathers wth some new dark blue moonglow lucite... but the two things were just fighting each other too much.  I had to come up with something else lightweight.  A lovely pair of dark blue and grey streaked polymer clay rounds from Humblebeads ended up being just the thing to complete the design.


I had already made up the little moonglow lucite links so I was determined to find something in my stash to pair with them.  Luckily, I had some pretty charms from Golem Design Studio that fit the bill!  (If you aren't familiar with Golem, their ceramic beads and pendants are all carved and glazed by hand.  Amazing!)  

Lastly, a piece that I shared in progress last month for the Mandala theme... but it certainly fits the blue theme perfectly as well!  So here it is all done!  The beautiful cobalt cab is by Jenny Davies-Reazor.  This piece got a little too big for me to be a pendant... so I added a pin back to make it a brooch.


Thanks for stopping by to see what I've been up to.  I hope you like my little foray into the color blue this month.    

Monday, September 21, 2020

Honey Do List September 2020

2020 marks the fifth year that my husband Eric has been giving me a design challenge each month to get me out of my comfort zone and to help clear out my bead stash... it's the Honey Do List 2020!  (And today marks the our 19th wedding anniversary!) 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 with us!


Here's this month's inspiration and what Eric had to say about it:


This flower is from a trip to Florida, ages before the COVID times stopped us from traveling.  I went low key on it to make the flower itself pop.  I like contrast of colors in this one and hopefully it will speak to folks. 

I really think this flower shot turned out pretty cool.  It also reminded me of the mandala-like "Star Flower" enamel pendants that I've been having so much fun making with the last couple of months.  Alas, I didn't have any of those that felt right for this colorway.  No worries, I have plenty of other beads to paw through!  

I was really feeling the earring making love this month and did all my Honey Do making early in the month with three pairs of earrings in one day.  They all focus on the purple, green, and (to some degree) the white from Eric's inspiration photo.

I think I'm proudest of the first pair of earrings which was inspired by a fun tutorial that my friend Cassandra Spicer did for her bead store's Facebook page.  (I haven't had the pleasure of visiting Beads to Live By in person yet, but I've done some serious shopping damage with Cassandra online!!)  Anyway, if you're interested, you can check out her video tutorial HERE.  

I took the idea from Cassandra's project and played around with it using some fun ceramic charms by Lesley Watt.  I had to be pretty careful with my wire wrapping since I was using ceramic instead of metal components, but I got it to all play nice in the end.  (Seriously, the first one was perfect on the first try... the second took 4 tries I think.)  The picture really doesn't do these justice.


Next up, a fun little gathering of beads... a mix of lampwork glass (artist unknown), lucite, and Czech glass on sterling silver.  The bright colors just make me happy here!  And I have to say that I was glad to get to use some new moonglow lucite... it may be my new beady love.  


Last but not least, I did a play on a design I've done a few times with different beads.  I had one last pair of purple, green, and white striped lentils from Golem Design Studio so I figured that I needed to get them out of their drawer!  I used beads from a lovely seed bead mix to decorate the arched ear wires.  


Now it's your turn!  Please add links to/photos of your own creations below.  I love seeing what everyone else is making too!  Check back on October 1st to see what Eric has in store for us next month! 

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Art Elements Theme of the Month :: Mandalas

 
I'm a bit late getting my blog post together, but I still wanted to share what I've been making.  The August Theme of the Month for Art Elements blog and Facebook group was mandalas.  I knew that I had some fun and colorful options in my stash.  I barely scratched the surface, but it just felt good to be creating.

First up, a couple of pairs of earrings featuring fabulous enameled components by Cathleen Zaring of Blue Hare Art Wear.  She calls this style "star flower" but they seemed very mandala like to me!  This first pair may have opened me up to splurging on a bunch of lucite beads.  The beauty of lucite is that you can go chunky without adding much weight.  The enameled charms have some heft to them, so large gemstones or glass would just get too heavy.  But I digress.  This pair has some fun lucite rounds and Czech glass in colors to complement the charms.  


The second pair I made has similar colors but in vastly different proportions.  A much brighter pair for sure!   These have some vintage plastic squared barrels (for lack of a better descriptor) topped with Czech glass.  Turquoise and orange is one of my favorite color combos... so yummy!


I managed to complete a necklace this month too!  Yay!  I love this amazing double sided polymer clay focal by Staci Louise Smith.  I've been holding onto this baby since 2014 when I went to Bead Fest.  I knew I had to design something with this for the mandala theme... spotting the perfect cocoon beads by my friend Anna Pierson of Sagahus Components sealed the deal.  I added in some Dzi agate rounds in a great green and rusty orange-brown as well as Czech glass in a few different shapes and finishes.  I'm especially smitten with the crusty texture on the green rounds.  It's tough to see in the pictures but, trust me, it's awesome!


Seriously, you have to love a reversible pendant!  Both sides are super cool.  Staci gets a real depth to her colors with her polymer creations.


Last, but not least, a work in progress for you.  I needed some calming zen action, so I pulled out my drawer of cabachons and found this lovely cobalt blue butterfly cab by Jenny Davies-Reazor.  The repeating butterfly motif gave it a mandala feeling that I continued on with the surrounding rows of beads.  I'm going to need a quick trip to the bead store for some seed beads to complete my design, but I'm well on the way to a completed project.  I'm thinking this one is going to grow up to be a brooch just because of the size... but we shall see.


Thanks for stopping by to see what I've been up to!  Have a wonderful long weekend my friends!

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Inspiration for the September 2020 Honey Do List

 2020 marks the fifth year that my husband Eric has been giving me a design challenge each month to get me out of my comfort zone and to help clear out my bead stash... it's the Honey Do List 2020!  (And today marks the our 19th wedding anniversary!) 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 with us!


Here's this month's inspiration and what Eric had to say about it:


This flower is from a trip to Florida, ages before the COVID times stopped us from traveling.  I went low key on it to make the flower itself pop.  I like contrast of colors in this one and hopefully it will speak to folks. 

The reveal date will be Monday, September 21st.  To make it super easy for you to participate and share your creations, I'll set up an Inlinkz link up so folks can add their blogs as they are ready.  Just stop by my blog starting on September 21st and join the fun!  I'll leave the link up open for a while... so you have plenty of time to add your links.  (Last month's is still open... check it our HERE.) No blog?  No worries!  Feel free to send me a picture of your creation and some brief comments and I'll happily share in my blog post.  You can reach me at sjdesignsjewelry@gmail.com  The more the merrier, so I hope you'll play along with me this month!

And to wrap things up, here's one of my favorite pictures from our wedding day.  Love you more today than ever, Eric!



Monday, August 24, 2020

Honey Do List August 2020

2020 marks the fifth year that my husband Eric has been giving me a design challenge each month to get me out of my comfort zone and to help clear out my bead stash... it's the Honey Do List 2020!  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 with us!


Here's this month's inspiration and what Eric had to say about it:


So this one is an old picture, but fits the time of year...and the fact that Sarajo is spending her summer days raising a bunch of monarch butterflies from eggs and caterpillars!  So here is some brightness for your jewelry making pleasure.

I never thought I'd be a monarch mama, but here I am.  After my original round of caterpillars I thought I'd be done, but I kept finding more tiny caterpillars and eggs.  So here I am having released 13 butterflies so far with 1 more in chrysalis, and one more decent-sized caterpillar to go!  Guess with our summer plans getting shelved and being at home all the time, I needed something extra to distract me!  

Here are a couple of pictures of two of the six (!!) butterflies that I released this past weekend.  Aren't they just gorgeous?!?


I had the pleasure of meeting up for lunch and some shady bead deals with my good friend Anna Pierson of Saga Hus the other day.  It was so nice to get to hang out and catch up, and get a nice haul of lovely new cocoons to play with at the same time!  
You'll see the fruits of that meeting in most of my designs this month.

The first thing that I made focused more on the colors of the flower blooms and stems in Eric's photo than the monarch itself.  I had snagged this pair of butterfly wing charms from Kristi Bowman when she first started making them.  I paired the charms with coordinating Czech glass and some copper plated flower bead caps.  Kristi's components literally have a glow about them that pictures don't do justice.  


Next up, a super quick earring pair that combines a fun dark maroon and gold set of Saga Hus cocoons with amazing faux tin charms by Humblebeads.  These are super duper light weight yet still pack a visual punch!  I love it when components from two talented friends come together like this.


Eric says that I have to keep this next pair.  I think I just might because they are super cute and go nicely with a sundress I have.  The ceramic charms are from the talented Sarah Kandell of Slate Studios.  Again, I've paired the charms with cocoons from Saga Hus but fancied up the design with some seed bead decorated jump rings for extra movement.  


I couldn't wrap up my creating for this month without making a necklace with an amazing monarch pendant from Humblebeads.  I wire wrapped a fun black and orange piece of Nepalese cane glass and some Czech glass rondelles to make a bail for the pendant.  I knew that I wanted to do beaded links for this design since I wanted to use some more great orange cocoons from Saga Hus.  The funky black glass beads were a gift from my friend Monica Pena of Mariposa Originals Jewelry... I'm kind of smitten with their unique shape!



Now it's your turn!  Please add links to/photos of your own creations below.  I love seeing what everyone else is making too!  Check back on September 1st to see what Eric has in store for us next month! 

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Inspiration for the August 2020 Honey Do List

2020 marks the fifth year that my husband Eric has been giving me a design challenge each month to get me out of my comfort zone and to help clear out my bead stash... it's the Honey Do List 2020!  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 with us!

Here's this month's inspiration and what Eric had to say about it:


So this one is an old picture, but fits the time of year...and the fact that Sarajo is spending her summer days raising a bunch of monarch butterflies from eggs and caterpillars!  So here is some brightness for your jewelry making pleasure.

The reveal date will be Monday, August 24th.  To make it super easy for you to participate and share your creations, I'll set up an Inlinkz link up so folks can add their blogs as they are ready.  Just stop by my blog starting on August 24th and join the fun!  I'll leave the link up open for a while... so you have plenty of time to add your links.  (Last month's is still open... check it our HERE.) No blog?  No worries!  Feel free to send me a picture of your creation and some brief comments and I'll happily share in my blog post.  You can reach me at sjdesignsjewelry@gmail.com  The more the merrier, so I hope you'll play along with me this month!