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I’m having a great time again this year with Allegory Gallery‘s prompts to Bead in the New Year. Here are my makes for week three.

Day #13 – Let’s see something you made with ceramic beads

I’m a huge Gaea fan and have a lot of her work to choose from. I happened to use something I got more recently. 

This is her heart pendant and several ceramic beads. I strung these on waxed linen with matte amazonite rounds and faceted garnets. I finished it off with a copper clasp, also by Gaea.

Day #14 – Break out the polymer clay and make something

I’m going to have to catch up with this one later. I always have to work myself up to breaking out the clay. But I’ve got ideas percolating.

Day #15 – Organize at least one part of your craft area

I didn’t have a lot of time to work on things this past week, so I decided to clean a critical yet quick part of the studio. Here is a before picture.

I get out boxes of beads and supplies and as I work, they pile up around my chair. It’s a tripping hazard and just bad all the way around. Even though I tend to want to clean up my work surface first (and it needs it!) this was really the best use of my limited time.

Now I won’t trip and get injured. I’ll live to make another day. I am going to devote some time to my work surface this weekend. But it’s so difficult to focus on that when there are so many ideas to bring to life!

Day #16 – Use the 2020 Pantone Color of the Year: Classic Blue

I’m surprised how excited I’ve been about this color since I’ve long considered blue my least favorite color. Also, when considering ideas for this project, it was nice to see how many things near the color of Classic Blue I have. I had two other ideas, but ended up with this sweet, fun necklace. The peachy ceramic bead is by Gaea, but I got the bird pendant in a destash and don’t know the artist. The larger blue beads are vintage lucite, so it’s all nice and light.

Day #17 – Focus on metal as the main element in a new creation

I used a chain from Miss Fickle Media I have had for over five years. It is hammered brass with verdigris patina. So beautiful. I considered pairing it with leather in the back, but I decided to go a different way with this batik ribbon I got on a package from Starry Road Studio a while ago. Simple, and let’s the chain be the star. 

Day #18 – Utilize natural materials to make something

I had decided when I saw this prompt to make something with cowrie shells. Divya of Jewels of Sayuri often uses cowrie shells in her jewelry to beautiful effect. She wrote a post about cowrie jewelry that talked about some of the positive symbolism and myths regarding cowrie shells such as feminine power and warding off the evil eye. I also saw something about shells being in fashion in the coming season, and I had the opportunity to get a nice bag of cowrie shells last year. This was the perfect opportunity to use a few of them!

Mary Redman gifted me with her beautiful polymer clay shell pendant. I nestled it between some shell heishi beads, fun gold shell sequins and the cowrie shells. I just love how it turned out. It makes me want to walk on the beach (unlikely with all the snow we’ve gotten this week!)

Day #19 – Construct a non-jewelry piece using beads

My cat, MooKitty, isn’t much for toys. But I did notice that when I happen to lean over her and my necklace or bracelet dangles, she bats at it. So I thought I should make her a toy that I could pretend was a necklace. I used cotton cord and crocheted beads. 

At first I put it around my neck and leaned over her, and she wasn’t interested. But it was a really fake way of hovering over her which she probably didn’t like. So later I just held it up. Her hunting instincts ignited and she had fun batting at it for a little while. After she “caught” it, she didn’t want me to take it back. That’s a success! And a good use for some of these crocheted beads I have never found a good project for.

To see what others are making or join in, visit the Allegory Gallery Design Challenges Facebook page.