Archive for November, 2009

Twilight?

November 30, 2009

A new necklace I made this evening. It has been inspired by the twilight-inspired jewelry I saw on Art Bead Scene some days ago. I haven’t read the books or watched the films, I guess I’m too old for teenie romance. I would probably have loved it ten years ago, though.

The necklace also features a heart charm by Lynn Davis, which I won on a Studio Saturday drawing on Art Bead Scene a while ago. It has been sitting in my stock waiting, and I always wanted to do something dark and romantic with it… Here’s a closeup on the pendant (I believe it’s resin), front and back:

I like the result, except maybe for the dark jumpring in the bottom. It’s bit dark to take good photos at this time, but you get a rough idea what it looks like when worn. (EDIT: you can now see a higher resolution picture on my DeviantART gallery)

Also, Erin’s first challenge has been announced: use something from a hardware store. The half-finished necklace that has been lying around for months was going to have some washers – maybe that’s a sign. On the other hand, I’d like to include something a little more unusual. I’ll have to see what my hardware store has, they seem to have everything from beads over polymer clay to scented candles, but I’m not so sure they have the stuff they _ought_ to sell. I don’t think we have a little shop as an alternative around here, though, so it will have to do.

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Matter of Taste

November 29, 2009

Those are two beads my mom gave to me last week – she reassembled an old necklace, made two new ones of it, and these were left over, apparently she didn’t like them. Too much bling. She also apparently hated the wavy silver discs I used in my Luna Moth bracelet. What do you think (about either)? Love them, or hate them?

These two might find their way into a pair of earrings soon, as are some other pairs of beads from my storage. I have no new beads to show you, even though I was at the craft store yesterday, since I’m still on a bead diet. I just bought some black papillon rocailles and tiny red beads (hopefully they’ll appear in two  projects very soon).

I’m still not inspired, but Erin of Treasures Found is going to announce the first in a series of weekly challenges tomorrow, so I hope that will spark my imagination.

Reworking old stuff

November 28, 2009

I am still uninspired, so instead of creating anything new, I repaired a necklace that broke a few days ago. I keep the whole bunch on a hook, and sometimes they entangle 😦

While I was at it, I decided to replace a flimsy claw clasp with this decorative pearl clasp. I think it fits perfectly into this necklace design… Now that I look at it, I can imagine the black frill part as a bracelet as well. I guess my brain is still wired for bracelets 😉 Anyway, when my motivation returns, I will make more of those frill beads (they’re polymer clay).

My Muse is away for the holidays…

November 27, 2009

… or dead, or in a koma. Anyway, I feel totally uninspired and unmotivated. For the last few days, I had some stuff already thought out, I just had to string it. Now, the only work in progress left is a necklace that needs more handmade beads. But I don’t feel like making beads. So what do I do? Stuff that has worked before will work again. I made this necklace that is the third in a row, all similar, but each a little different.

You can see the first one on DeviantART, that one was sold a while ago.

The second one had a flower in the center like the new one, but a beaded dangle like the first. Just only one, that ended in a spiral. I didn’t take a photo of it, unfortunately. It was my christmas present for my boyfriend’s sister last year.

And the new one, I think I’m gonna keep. The leaf dangle makes it look similar to the earrings you can see in my avatar, but wearing both together would be too much.

Buggy Bracelet IV – The Luna Moth

November 26, 2009

Again a bracelet inspired by Silver Parrot’s cool challenge (even though it’s now over), and again without any of my handmade polymer clay beads. I think I like the soft pastel colours of this one. Inspired by the Luna Moth (Actias luna) in this picture:

I know that the shade of green is very different, but I’ve seen many Luna Moth pictures that had more the shade of green that you can see in the jade beads above. I’ve never seen one of these in reality, as they only live in North America, but they sure are beautiful animals, whatever their real colour is.

Fruity Lariat

November 25, 2009

This is the Lariat that matches the bracelet I showed you yesterday. It is still missing a final dangle, however – I need to find something heavy, so that it hangs better. Amazing, so many beads in the house, just not the one I need. Maybe a black glass drop will work. I have to go back to the crafts shop on Friday anyway – I hadn’t noticed that one of the clasps I bought for my bracelets was already broken. I hope they’ll take it back.

Also, I actually did it – I bought a pair of earrings, just to take them apart and make Lariats. But when I saw a pair that had four (!) lovely brushed silver dangles, I just could not resist. Here’s what they looked like before:

Is my work an impovement? I honestly don’t know, but I like the cheerful bonbon colours with the silver. Plus I don’t wear earrings.

Buggy Bracelet III – The Caterpillar

November 24, 2009

Even though Silver Parrot’s bracelet challenge has officially ended, I have made another bracelet inspired by the photos she posted – this time without polymer clay. I like the colour scheme, so I plan on making a matching lariat today – I won’t be able to post it before tomorrow, it is too dark now to take pictures. This bracelet was hard to photograph as well, I had to tweak the colours in photoshop, trying to get the colour of the gemstone beads quite right. The jade is still not green enough, the aventurine too red (same beads as in the butterfly bracelet), the turquoise a little too intense, and I can only hope that I didn’t turn the background too yellowish.

The inspiration for the colour scheme was this caterpillar of a Swallowtail butterfly (possibly Papilio polyxenes or Papilio joanae? I’m not sure):

Btw: the winner of the bracelet challenge has been announced yesterday, it’s Emanda with her lovely beetle entry!

There were a few more participants at the last minute:

I had a lot of fun playing along with so many talented people, and I loved seeing all the different entries. Now who posts an earring challenge? 😉

Buggy Bracelet II – The Butterfly

November 23, 2009

I made another bracelet inspired by Silver Parrot’s challenge – even though I can enter only once, and it ends today anyway. I am really fond of how the colours of this one turned out. But it was hard to get the fit right… I used a bronze toggle first – too short. Then I made this hook clasp from copper wire – still a little too short. In the end, I just added some extender chain, so now I can wear it, and I will! I ended up using my new bronze metal core beads, which I had already shown you – I didn’t intend to, I wanted to use some bronze connectors, but it just didn’t look balanced.

The bracelet was inspired by this picture of a Spicebush Swallowtail (Papilio troilus):

This butterfly lives in North America and happens to have pretty interesting caterpillars – they are first very small and brown, later they turn green and in the end they are yellow-orange, just before they pupate. But the funniest thing: they have a swollen thorax with very realistic eyespots, as you can see in this beautiful photo. For human eyes, I think this makes them look incredibly cute. In the eyes of a bird, it makes them look like a small snake 😉

Spicebush swallowtail caterpillar (Papilio troilus), ursprünglich hochgeladen von Michael Hodge

Bead Diet

November 22, 2009

I have been to the craft store yesterday, but I did not buy anything spectacular I could show you today – I am on a “bead diet” until christmas. I had to buy findings (chain, jump rings, clasps…) anyway. It is hard to go to a craft store and not even take a look at all those beads, because I would inevitably take some home. The idea is to use up beads from my stash, so I have room for new things – I may buy beads for a specific project I have in mind, if it also includes some of the beads I have lying around. So I did buy a few staple beads: jet swarovskis in 6mm to try them with my new variant of metal core beads, more golden spirals so I can make a matching necklace and earrings for my beetle bracelet, and a few tiny wood beads for the next bug bracelet I’m planning to create.

No new photos, so I’ll just show you my main stash. It is a wooden box with a glass lid and a single drawer.

The top layer is used mainly (but not exclusively) for gemstone beads and pearls, to the right are some seed beads:

The drawer is used mainly (but not exclusively) for metal beads and charms, as well as wood beads, to the left are swarovski bicones. In the top middle cubicle I store all single leftofer beads:

Glass beads in red and blue, the two main colours I use, are stored separately, and so are art beads.

Finally, please go have a look at the newest bracelet challenge entry at The Joy of Nesting: it is inspired by the butterfly and includes the birthstones of her kids!

Monogram Pendants

November 21, 2009

The bracelet challenge continues, and as there are not so many participants, I’ll link them all here:

Jen Judd has made a green one inspired by the Luna moth, with a very beautiful handmade polymer clay link!

Artisan Clay has made a three-stranded one inspired by the colourful caterpillar!

… and since Lorelei is Lorelei, she did all five, and they’re all awesome!!!

I have nothing new to show, as I’m away for the weekend and didn’t bring my beads. Now that the celebrations have ended and all the guests left, I think I’ll just show off something I made over the last few days:

I don’t know what to do with them yet, maybe I’ll just attach leather cords. I didn’t choose the most common letters for the example picture, but I do have the whole alphabet. They are faux stone, and a little work-intensive, as I have to paint the letter by hand after antiquing, so that it stands out against the grey decoration (the first trial appeared like just a black square, even from a small distance). I think they might work nice as connectors as well, and maybe I’ll try making faux bronze ones.