Monday, December 31, 2018

Honey Do List December 2018

This marks the end of the third 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 2018!  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 this month's challenge I wanted to make folks work with bright colors and designs.  While visiting Sarajo's mom in her hometown of Huntsville, Alabama we happened across this cute decorated alley.  This is why I like just walking around areas with my camera--you never know what you might discover!  

I have to say that it was kind of fun walking around downtown Huntsville with Eric... it's changed a lot since I was a kid and even since he was last there!  There's something to walking around a place with a camera (or with someone with a camera!) and trying to see the world through that lens.  We discovered a lot of cool nooks and crannies, little bursts of art hiding in a town that I've known my entire life.  

I took inspiration this month both from the bright colors of this alley's murals in general and the "Alley Cats" painting in the foreground in particular.  My first design is ALL about bright color!  I've been hanging onto this adorable heart shaped resin pendant with a sweet black kitty from Gaea for awhile.  It was the first thing that I thought of when Eric gave us this challenge.  With all the vibrant colors in the pendant, I decided that the smart thing to do was to start by going through the collection of bead mixes that I've got left over from a bunch of different Allegory Gallery design challenge kits and little gift mixes as well.  I plucked most of the beads that I used in this necklace from those mixes and then added in a few more things to round out my options.  

It's a bit hard to see in my picture (and apologies for the bad lighting... yay Minnesota winter) but the back of the pendant says "wander."  I used some fun new copper plated chain at the back and left it long with no clasp.

With the craziness of the holidays, I really wasn't sure I'd manage to make more than one design this month.  Luckily, I was able to carve out a little last minute making time and whipped up a second necklace!  I've had a sweet floral cat pendant from Golem Design Studio for a couple of years and am happy to have finally made something with it.  I kept this one fairly simple and just made links with Czech glass beads in the colors from the kitty's flowers and added brass chain at the back.  I just had to use a toggle clasp that had a flower similar to the ones on the pendant to complete the necklace!

While I was waiting (in vain) for the light to improve for picture taking, I managed to whip up a little pair of kitty cat earrings too!  I paired some adorable bow-tie wearing cat charms by Anna Bronze with some tiny lampwork beads and little Czech glass flowers.  The ear wires are bronze colored niobium.

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  1. When I first saw the photo, I thought it was some charming alley in Europe. It was fun to find it was in your hometown. I love your creations! My mother saw your post when I was scrolling on FB about materials you had gathered (Gaea pendant and colorful beads) and it's now my mission to score her a Gaea pendant. You had the perfect color beads for the adorable Golem pendant. And the earrings were a surprise; I have never seen those Anna Bronze kitties - so cute.

  2. I've only ever been up to Huntsville a few times, mostly when I was younger and we went to the Space and Rocket Center. I've got several friends up there and am constantly hearing about all the awesome-ness that Huntsville is becoming. I may have to go up there and check it out some time. Your cat-themed projects are fabulous! I especially love that second necklace with the Golem pendant. It's just yummy! Thanks to both you and Eric for the inspiration, though I did struggle with it some amidst the holidays.

    1. Huntsville has definitely come a long way! It's worth a visit for sure... especially if you like beer! Downtown was a bit of a ghost town when I was a teen. The square was mostly seedy bars and bail bondsmen. Now there are great restaurants, a brewery, new shops, and more. :)

  3. As a cat lover I love all three pieces, as each one is differently delightful. The first necklace is vibrant, the second elegant and the earrings plain whimsical. I now wish that I had joined in on the challenge.

  4. I didn't think you would pull it off in time! Well done sweetie!