Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Art Bead Scene Challenge: August 2014

This month's inspiration art, "Indian Rug (or Red Slippers)" by Anne Redpath for the Art Bead Scene Challenge caught my eye immediately.  I think it was the pop of red mixed in with the teals and chartreuse that got my attention... that mix is one of my all time favorites.  You can read more about the art and the artist over on the ABS blog HERE.

The Indian Rug (or Red Slippers), 1942 
by Anne Redpath
I ended up choosing a great bead from Heather Powers of Humblebeads for my focal.  I love the abstract floral feeling to it and how it brings in several of the colors from the painting.  I added a mix of charms, including flowers and leaves to mimic the rug's pattern and colors, to a jump ring with some brass nuggets.  I tied on the little Czech glass flowers with a tiny bit of red waxed linen for just a tiny pop.  

Sometimes less is more, but I decided to make the necklace a little more interesting by adding some glass and gemstone links along the chain to complete the look.

Monday, August 25, 2014

New Earring Monday: Weeks 33 & 34

This week I'm sharing a couple of pairs of earrings that I just made as special orders for two different people.  Both involved embossing and painting Vintaj Altered Blanks with my Big Kick machine, but I think the similarities end there.

First up is a pair that I made for a co-worker to go with a bracelet she bought from me a while back.  She's a person who is seriously into statement earrings and can pull them off.  I adapted a design that I originally learned from the Vintaj retreat I attended a few years ago.  Since she wanted BIG, I added dangles to give them more oomph.

My second pair is one that I made as part of a set for my eye doctor for a wedding.  I actually made a couple of different versions and this was the pair that she did not choose... so these little guys are still looking for a new home.  I love how bright the cobalt blue paint is (although I had my first ever mishap with the Vintaj patinas while making them and inadvertently painted part of myself and my clothing) and how the polished brass pops.

Just for fun, here is the necklace that I made for her... Now it's back to work for me!  Thanks for stopping by and I hope you all have a happy Monday! 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

30 Words: Taking the Plunge!

Like water rushing over falls 
I am taking the plunge. 
Charting a new course 
Down the river of life.   
Not entirely sure where 
it will take me, 
but excited nonetheless.

The premise of 30 Word Thursday is simple... take a photo, write 30 words (no more, no less) and post it each Thursday.  This is a blog hop hosted by Erin Prais-Hintz over on her blog Treasures Found, pop on over there to see her post for this week as well as links to the 30 Words from everyone else.

So as to not freak anyone out, I suppose that I should explain my 30 words this week.  After over 15 years working as a public librarian, I've decided to step away from my chosen career to pursue jewelry making full-time.  I will always be a librarian at heart (and have the diploma to prove it!) but feel that it's time to make a change and see where I can go with my art.  I'm so lucky and thankful to all my friends and family who have been so supportive to me in making this tough decision...  I'm especially fortunate to have the love and support (and maybe the firm push) from my sweet husband.  I couldn't ask for anyone better to share this journey with!

And as an additional p.s., this photo was taken by me on my iPhone at Gooseberry Falls State Park in July 2014.  

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Playing with Pearls and Brass

I've finally gotten around to playing with some of the other new to me Vintaj Natural Brass pieces in my stash.  What all these items have in common, other than being brass, is that they called out for multiple bead dangles.  It was thinking about that feature that got me diving for my box of pearls to play with!

I started with a Fanned Boho Filigree piece that was just calling out for some little reddish coppery pearls (who knows what the original color was really called, but they're pretty!).  I kept this one really simple with just the pearls hanging from all the connection points on wire wrapped head pins.

I'm almost always compelled to create earrings to go with the necklaces I make so that my customers will at least have the option of buying a set.  This time I made two pairs with the same batch of pearls.

One using the Metamorphis brass drops:

And one with the Bohemian Teardrops:

I also found a few strands of multi-colored pearls that I've had since my very early days of beading and had never even cut open.  I decided that playing with some of these bright, colorful pearls would be fun.  So far I've only made this one pair of earrings with lime green and teal pearls but I will be doing more.

Finally, this one isn't with pearls, but another variation with the Fanned Boho Filigree and Fluorite.  I love this one so much that I might have to make another one to keep for myself!

I'll have all of these for sale during the Art Wander (although if you are dying for something now, let me know!) or at Unearthed Arts.

Friday, August 15, 2014

We're All Ears: August 2014

This month's inspiration piece for the We're All Ears challenge on the Earrings Everyday blog is, well, inspiring!  This is a collage of photos of one of the installation art pieces by Gabriel Dawe.

:: Source ::
Dawe created this amazing textile sculpture from miles of sewing thread wound around hooks or nails on wood.  I can't even begin to imagine how long it took him to make it!  In a way it reminds me of the album cover for Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon, especially the top picture because of the triangle shapes... but I digress.

Inspired by the use of thread, I decided to try and make something with waxed Irish linen threads.  I recently expanded my stash of waxed linen so I had a rainbow to choose from!  I ended up using a mix of teal and greens in four shades.  Having some bright blue mixed in would have been more true to the inspiration, but I don't have any of that in my stash yet... next order!

I had lots of ideas of how to use the threads and at first thought I'd do more of a true tassel look with a cone of some sort...  But then I changed my mind and decided on a simpler approach and just tied the strands around a jump ring in a big lark's head knot.  For an extra punch of color I added a table cut Czech glass flower in avocado green.  That has nothing to do with the inspiration, but I love the way they look with the colorful threads so I'm going to call artistic license on this one!  I really wanted to something more geometric, but just didn't have anything that worked in my stash and no time to shop.

This is a blog hop.  You can check out the creations that this art inspired in the other participants HERE.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

30 Words: New Pretties

I am such a lucky girl to get 
such gorgeous new pretties 
for my birthday.  
My special sweetie knows 
that the way to this girl’s heart 
is often through beads!  

The premise of 30 Word Thursday is simple... take a photo, write 30 words (no more, no less) and post it each Thursday.  This is a blog hop hosted by Erin Prais-Hintz over on her blog Treasures Found.  Click HERE to see her post for this week as well as links to the 30 Words from everyone else.

For my 40th birthday, my sweet husband got me a year's subscription to Erin's Simple Truths Sampler Club and I couldn't be more thrilled with my first two months!  Erin hasn't shared with the world what she did for June and July (or I missed it in the hustle and bustle!) but I had to share because they are amazing!!

Monday, August 11, 2014

New Earring Monday: Weeks 31 & 32

So, truth be told, I'm kind of starting to panic about being able to make enough jewelry for the three day long Art Wander that I'm a host site for this year.  Gulp.  Double gulp.  I know that I still have a little over a month and a half to go, but I also have a day job.  As a result of my freak out status, this week's New Earring Monday will once again feature some variations on theme.

I decided to revisit an earring I designed in response to the Earrings Everyday blog We're All Ears Challenge back in April.  You can see the originals in my post HERE.  Anyway, I really did like the way the filigree rings looked with the little bird stamped coin beads so I decided to play with some other colors.

I also wondered how the coin beads would look paired with more rustic looking hammered rings.  Here are a few different versions of that design.

Thanks for stopping by!  Hope everyone has a great week!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

30 Words: Feet on the Ground

Sometimes I wonder 
if I really have 
my feet planted firmly on the ground... 
I have to give a look 
and double check 
that I haven’t floated off 
into unreality.

The premise of 30 Word Thursday is simple... take a photo, write 30 words (no more, no less) and post it each Thursday.  This is a blog hop hosted by Erin Prais-Hintz over on her blog Treasures Found.  Click HERE to see her post for this week as well as links to the 30 Words from everyone else.