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The latest Allegory Gallery Design Challenge hosted by Andrew Thornton is Lunar Eclipse, with a kit inspired by smoky quartz.


If you read this blog, you know I love these challenges and participate every time I can.  The kits are limited, and they go fast!  Sometimes I miss out, but even then it’s so fun to follow the hop and see what everyone has made.

Here is Andrew’s picture of the kit because mine turned out all grainy:

lunar eclipse kit by Andrew Thornton

Photo by Andrew Thornton

I decided to use Andrew’s picture of the Mystery Component too, an item handmade by Andrew that remains secret to all except those who get a kit until it is publicly revealed on his blog. I really love the design on this one!


Pendant and photo by Andrew Thornton

Often, when I see the kit, at least one idea pops fully formed into my head.  This time it was a bracelet.  I’m not sure what did it, but I envisioned making dangles to hang along a flat leather bracelet strap.  It could have been this project by Erin Siegel that has been floating around in my brain since I saw it.  I hadn’t consciously thought of it at first, but as I was making the bracelet, it came to mind.

BeadLove Lunar Eclipse bracelet long

I was thinking about different ways to add a clasp to the bracelet and decided to order some of these TierraCast Rock and Roll Strap Tips connected with their compression rivets.  I love these leather ends!  They look so clean and are a nice part of the design.

BeadLove LE bracelet 2

This bracelet is a lot of fun.  It has a ton of movement and sparkle.  All of the beads are from the kit.

I decided to use the mystery component knotted with the smoky quartz rectangles.  I wanted to infuse some more color, but what?  I thought about using a color or colors from the Pantone Color Forecast for Fall 2015 that Andrew talked about on his blog post for this challenge.  But of course as I went to look for beads, something else hit my eye.  I saw some small, jewel tone Czech cathedral beads that I thought would be fun.  I decided on a double strand necklace and paired the jewel tones with a metallic bead similar to the colors in the pendant.

BeadLove LE MC necklace

The pendant, rectangular quartz and waxed linen are from the kit.  It turned out nice as far as color and style, but I will be taking it apart and re-knotting it.  I know I will never be happy with how the beads by the pendant clump together, and unfortunately I didn’t realize how I could remedy that until I was done.  But, I learned something, so score one for this challenge!

My second necklace went through a few iterations, but the work (and re-work) was worth it.  This simple, elegant version is much nicer than the two fussier versions I tried.  I used one of the faceted metallic rounds, the glass cylinder beads, and some of the bicone spacers from the kit.  I swear I have a whole bag of those glass cylinders, but when I looked for them I found a barrel shape instead.  I think the cylinders might be lurking somewhere, but since I was already remaking for the third time, I took the design path of least resistance and just used the barrels.  I think the different shapes actually add a little interest.

Lunar EC Fringe gull

I knew I wanted to make some sort of fringe.  When I looked for a connector with enough loops at the bottom, I found this wonderful crusty lavender patina piece.  I got it in a mixed batch destash.  I love those; they always have great random stuff I didn’t even know I needed!  I was originally going to add seed bead fringe as well using kit beads, but the chain looked better alone.  I added some purple bicones to the ones from the kit to tie in the lavender and some darker purple waxed linen that I had in 5-ply for the heaver beads.

LE fringe close 2

I had a few other ideas, but I had to stop here because I have four blog hop reveals this month, and I need to keep moving to make sure I don’t get behind. But this kit was a blast!  Andrew’s kits make me a better designer, no doubt about it.  Thank you so much, Andrew!

Please visit Andrew’s blog to see the full list of participants.  It’s always fun to see what everyone made using the same starting point.