I have had a fabulous ceramic heart pendant by Maku Studio for several years. I have long considered it one of my most precious art beads. I couldn’t imagine what beads I would use with it. But I have gotten some great gemstones lately. I enjoy the Dakota Stones live sale on Monday evenings. I bought some large nugget sapphires and thought they would go great with the pendant. I was right.
I wanted to add metal accents just like the pendant has metal accents. I thought of round beads I had in the Ancient Relic patina from Supply Your Soul. Perfect. I also used tiny brass ox spacers. I knotted the necklace on grey waxed linen.
This post isn’t actually about the traditional idea of using found objects. But my sister was chuckling yesterday when we were on FaceTime. I was in my studio sort of cleaning as we talked, and I picked up a baggie from my table and said, “Oh look!” as if it were a long lost item. Well, other beaders know much of our stash can feel that way when we “discover” it while cleaning.
I had an idea of a pendant to use with some gorgeous faceted mother-of-pearl beads I got. While looking for it, I saw a rabbit pendant I got years ago from Hidden Ridge Studio. I thought the rabbit would look good with some of the mother-of-pearl and the background color of the pendant would look great with some mixed tourmaline coin beads from Dakota Stones I had on my table. Finding this perfect match prompted the post title!
The tourmaline came strung banded, and I separated each color section with a couple of MOP beads. I added a lampwork and silver clasp from Earthshine Beads. This is a really fun necklace with a definite Spring vibe. I’m so looking forward to warmer weather. I hope I see bunnies hopping around enjoying it.
Candie Cooper and Cynthia Thornton collaborated on a project. Candie designed a beautiful wing and Cynthia carved and cast it in pewter. (It came with a connector that I will use in another design.) I got a beautiful strand of large and lovely lapis cubes from Dakota Stones recently and was looking for a special pendant to use with them and there was the wing!
I used a clear crystal Candie included with the pewter pieces to make the pendant. I used some vintage half coated crystals as spacers. They have the most wonderful colors. The back of the pendant is beautiful too. It has a tiny heart.
This is a lovely necklace that feels great on. I love knowing two wonderful artists collaborated on the beautiful pendant.
I got this great soldered glass cab – a pink heart – by Denise Peters Galloway of Crystal Emporium. I probably would have just hoarded it for a long time, but in a recent Dakota Stones order, I got some coated rose quartz rondelles and tiny faceted tourmaline. It was all on my table when I was cleaning up, and I thought they would be pretty together.
The rondelles are a little more pink than they show in the picture, but I’ve taken photos on different backgrounds and can’t get the color right (and can’t correct it with software.) I like the coating on the rose quartz because it echoes the sort of metallic pink of the pendant cab. And then the beautiful tourmaline spacers bring in just enough different and darker colors.
Cleaning up has many benefits, including helping creations come to life!
I haven’t spent enough creative time, and I’ve missed blogging too. They go hand in hand as I like to document the things I’ve made. To ease back into it, I made a couple of kit projects. I don’t do a ton of kit projects. I do like kits, but more generally design kits such as the ones Allegory Gallery offers, where you take the materials and do what you will. But sometimes an actual project kit strikes me. And I find I’m really liking Candie Cooper‘s kits. So first, one of Candie‘s.
I bought this in December and just didn’t get around to using it until now.
I thought it was cute and fun, and I think she was having a sale after Christmas. I’d been eyeing it, so I bought it. In her project video, Candie mostly talked about it as a package topper or possibly an ornament. At first I wasn’t going to put patina paint on it, but why not? The thing I love about Vintaj patina paints is that they dry so fast. Otherwise I wouldn’t want to use them as often. I’m less patient with stuff that has to be done in steps with waiting time in between. I used the verdigis and made it look a little older and well-loved. I always think that gives things personality and a story.
Here are two photos of the finished product: one in the light box and one hanging in my studio. I didn’t end up using the larger pink pom-pom. Candie called the pom-poms in the kit Hill Tribe. They are super high quality and soft. I don’t use pom-poms often, but honestly I’m ruined for other pom-poms now. I’m going to keep it up year-round as just a fun embellishment.
Next up, I got a memory wire bracelet kit with some braided leather and TierraCast findings and some Dakota Stone beads when Goody Beads and Dakota Stones were doing a live during the recent The Great Bead Extravaganza – Tucson Experience. I don’t make a lot of memory wire bracelets, partly because I don’t have the strength to properly bend the ends, so mine are always janky. There is a special tool for it that could help, but I do not need another tool that I won’t use often. The kit came with heavy duty memory wire, TierraCast findings (curved tubes, spacers, end caps and a charm) and braided leather. The samples were made with the addition of a combination of size 6 and size 8 round gemstones. The kits and a variety of bead strands were being sold. I chose a kit with some brown leather and silver findings. I bought 8mm mookaite and 6 mm crazy lace agate. I thought those stones looked great together and also with the brown leather. Very boho. I added an enameled peace sign charm, and a couple of jump rings and headpins for my dangles.
I really like how it turned out despite my bad loops. One tool I did invest in is a leather cutter. Tory from Goody Beads said it is important to get a nice clean cut on the leather so it doesn’t ever fray. Wow! I love the cutter. It sliced the leather like butter. I can definitely use this going forward.
There were a number of leftover materials, so I made a fun second single wrap bracelet. I used some of the memory wire and one of the curved silver tubes. I added a coiled piece of the new multi-color Artistic Wire in the silver/gold/black colorway. I spied some wooden beads laying on my table so added those, as I do. Then I got out more wooden beads, a glass hoop (the yellow between the two wooden rounds on the silver tube) some multi color O ring metallic spacers and a little wooden animal.
I got the wooden animal and the patterned wooden beads from Andrew Thornton: Project Destash. Also, Andrew Thornton recently did a video tutorial showing a coiled wire project. Then, he used coiling (with one of the multi color wires!) in a Beadalon Designer Challenge to make a really cool necklace. (You can still vote through February 19, 2021 by clicking on the link and liking the picture.) When Andrew showed his coiling technique, I remembered that long ago my dad gave me an Artistic Wire Coiling Gizmo. I fished it out of a drawer and used it to make my coil. It was fun! I will use it again.
The two bracelets stack well together. It’s difficult to stack them flat for a picture, but I’ve been wearing them, and they look and feel great on.
I had a lot of fun with my creative pursuits today. I also started a project for a design kit. I had several other things I wanted to work on, but those have to wait. Maybe I will get to them tomorrow. Thanks for reading!
I’m starting to take stock of what I have for the upcoming Artists for Animals Auction. I had made a bunch of things for the spring, but that one ended up being canceled due to the pandemic. I’ve made a few more things and will combine them all to have a decent showing. Let’s take a look.
These happy mod earrings with vintage hoops are so fun. I hope someone likes them as much as I do!
This turned out so great, I kind of wanted to keep it. But I hope it can raise some good funds for the kitties! All of my sales will go to Madison Cat Project, a great organization that rehabs cats and finds them home as well as provides affordable spay/neuter services. The kitty charm is from Inviciti.
I could not get a good photo of this necklace; I’ll have to keep trying. But it is so pretty, especially on. I’ve noticed a lot of people on TV wear “y” style necklaces, and I always like them. So I made this one with a lovely bronze heart by Andrew Thornton. So sweet.
Speaking of Andrew Thornton hearts, here are some pretty polymer clay ones with metallic highlights. I love this charm and have used it several times in different pieces. I’ll have to decide if these need something else, but a favorite earring style of mine is hoops with art beads. Simple and beautiful.
Here is another simple pair of earring, but the kind of thing one could wear all the time. These gorgeous hoops are by Miss Fickle Media and the gemstones are from Dakota Stones.
Here is a lovely cat necklace with a bunch of mostly Czech glass beads, just the sort of thing I’d make for myself. The bone pendant is from Allegory Gallery.
These funky earrings are cool with the vintage colored and textured metal. I feel an ’80s moment coming on!
Last but not least, here is a sweet wooden paw pendant from Allegory Gallery with some gemstones – I think jasper and moonstone.
That isn’t the last of what I have for the auction, but the last of what I have easily found to post here! I’ll work on getting it all together and ready for the auction. Tune in on the Artists for Animals Facebook page starting November 2nd. There are a lot of artists participating and a variety of handmade things (not just jewelry). It’ll give you something pretty to focus on that week!
I was originally going to make this necklace with carnelian colored glass beads and the vintage green sequins. However, when I was looking at the gorgeous Mary Harding pendant I chose, I couldn’t ignore the tourmaline cubes from Dakota Stones sitting nearby. They were such a beautiful match!
I added a dark green Swarovski crystal cube to the pendant and a silver and peridot clasp, which I got from Famous Vintage Bead Hoard Liquidation Destash along with the sequins. I like the contrast of the rustic pendant and oxidized wire with the gemstones, crystal and clasp.
I wrote in a previous post about trying to come up with delicate necklaces that layer well. I probably could have found things that worked among the many, many necklaces I already have. However, why do that when I could make more? So I came up with a set I really love.
I might make the necklace with the pendant slightly longer so the colored beads show more under the shorter necklace. I’ll see, but I love how they look together.
I wanted an extender at the back of the crystal quartz necklace, and chose the same beaded chain that I used at the front of the pendant necklace. Those beads are similar to the darkest of the cacoxenite.
The lampwork pendant is special to me. When I was young, I longed for the beautiful things I saw in magazines (like the jewelry I now make!) But I lived in an area where there was mostly mundane mass produced items, at least as far as I knew or had access. My older sister had moved to Philadelphia, and I went to visit her. Oh, what an adventure! I loved her neighborhood, her apartment, the radio station she listened to (the first time I heard Trip Shakespeare and probably any indie station). It was the first time I had (or heard of) a quesadilla. Anyway, I digress. We went to a little boutique, and I bought two pair of wonderful earrings, the kind I had always dreamed of. Wearing them made me feel like the fancy and fabulous person I knew I was! This drop was on one of them, and I’ve saved it for something special.
This set is perfect for some of the lower necklines of the dog days of summer. If you are in a region with hot weather, stay cool and, everywhere, stay safe.
Necklace by Heather Powers from her book Beautiful Elements
The book shows how to make the leaf toggle/focal (it’s easier than you might think!) But I couldn’t wait to make this necklace. I saw those center drilled stick beads and thought of some center drilled African turquoise sticks I got at a bead show some years ago. I picked them up while hovering in the Dakota Stones booth waiting for someone else to put down some gorgeous apatite rough nuggets so I could buy them (she did and I did). I liked the turquoise, but it was an unusual shape for me. Here was an inspiration for how to use it!
I wanted a focal that made a statement like this leaf. I decided to look in my stash of treasures by Erin Prais-Hintz that I’ve been hoarding. I suspected I’d find something perfect, and some of them should see the light! I was rewarded with with this amazing pendant.
Erin always packages things really beautifully and includes information like the name of the piece, which was on the card this was attached to. I very carefully saved it so I would have it for this blog post. That was weeks ago, and now I can’t find it (until, I’m sure, I push the publish button on this post!) Anywho, I believe this is patina mixed with resin, and it is just gorgeous. There are little touches of pink, and I used this bead my sister’s girlfriend gave me that is the exact right color. I love that. (Thanks, Lisa!)I also loved using the three Czech glass petal beads that echo the shape of the pendant. The pewter clasp, by Inviciti, has a similar shape too.
I am so pleased with this necklace and that I’ve got some experience using a bead shape that I had trouble with before. That will help open up my designs. Look for more projects from this book in the future.
I’ve been keeping myself busy making during the pandemic because that is my relaxation. It helps to keep stress at bay as much as possible. I have a necklace and a bracelet to show this post.
I saw a rice pearl wrap bracelet recently. I think someone might have been wearing it in a show or in a picture. I can’t remember. But I thought that would be a great way to use some of my glass pearls! I miscalculated the length, so I converted some of the strung area into the loop for the closure around the Czech button. It’s very fun!
This necklace had dual inspiration. One is a necklace I saw by Candie Cooper and the other is a necklace Kayla was wearing in a Dakota Stones live video. Kayla’s necklace used a wooden pendant from Allegory Gallery, and owners William and Andrew shared that.So not only did I get an idea for a relaxing necklace project (I have lots of wonderful Allegory Gallery wooden pendants), but also this alerted me to the fact that Dakota Stones is having live sales on their Facebook page that even retail customers can join. Their website is wholesale only, so this was very exciting. I had planned to visit them at the Madison Art Glass and Bead Show that is now rescheduled for November. This was just win-win all the way around.
I watched another live Dakota Stones sale after the one with this necklace where Kayla was wearing another great, inspirational necklace. You’ll probably be seeing a necklace based on that one soon. Also, I must mention that Allegory Gallery has updated its online store. They are starting out by listing some really great inspiration kits. They will be adding more items over time, including wooden pendants that are artist collaborations that I’m excited about. They have done those before, and they’ve always been wonderful. However, if you are interested in current wooden pendants or anything, contact them because they are happy to ship.