I decided to increase my participation in the online beading community this year - so to start the ball rolling, I joined the Fusion Beads Reader Challenge via lorelei's blog.
Everyone in the challenge had to purchase the same set of basic components.
These consisted of:
1. Olive green leather cording
2. Fire Polished Glass beads, Transparent Gold/Smoky Topaz, and Transparent Green
3. Matte Metallic Teal/Gold Iris Drop Japanese seed beads 2.8mm
4. Tiger Kamagong Ebony Hardwood round beads, 5mm
These all came from Fusion Beads.
|Fire Polished Bead|
Also on the list to buy from Fusion was Matte Dark Hunter Lucite walnut leaf charms - however, due to demand, these were unavailable, so I ended up purchasing matte dark olive Feather leaves, 13x23mm, from The Beadin' Path.
The nominated 27mm Pewter Owl Round Toggle Clasp came from Green Girl Studios
|Owl Toggle Clasp|
The idea was also that we could add components of our own choosing to the mix and create a jewelry item of our choice. I chose to make a necklace.
I chose to add silver cones with a "vine" motif, aquamarine gemstone beads and a gorgeous pod-style borosilicate glass lampwork pod pendant, made by Gail Crosman Moore
(I hope this is correct, I did purchase this years ago, 2004 to be precise, and it has been waiting patiently in my bead stash for it's chance to shine!)
When deciding on my design, I was inspired by the glass lampwork pendant and it's wonderful organic colours. It reminded me of something in a garden that you don't really appreciate until you stoop to inspect a little more closely to see it's full beauty.
It made sense to me to loosely weave the seed beads, aquamarine beads and the olive leather cording together, in a vine-simulation, the leather being the thin tendril weaving it's way through.
These were then all attached to wire which was then threaded through the silver cones.
I found this the most difficult task technically as I had never created anything like this before.
The glass pod was tied through it's embedded wire loop by a co-ordinating green and light brown silk ribbon to the centre of the multiple strands. I may have to change the silk ribbon later on as I feel it may not be strong enough for the long term.
A few leaves and little beads were added to a dangle attached to the pod.
The fire polished beads, separated by the small Kamagong round beads, made up the rest of my necklace between cones and clasp.
The Pewter Owl toggle clasp was attached at the back of my necklace. A shame really because it is too beautiful to be hidden. I do have another of these and next time want to use it at the front where it can be seen.
All in all I feel pretty happy about it. The one thing that I am still thinking about is the balance of the two sections - whether I should have had a shorter length of the central interlaced strands and a longer run of the fire polished beads, so that the larger beads could be seen a little more . Oh well, I'll live with it for a while and see if I really feel compelled to change it.
I learnt a few new techniques along the way and worked with tiny drop seed beads which was also new for me.
It also made me think about colour co-ordination and what is pleasing to my own eye.
Thank you to Lorelei for co-ordinating the challenge, it was fun.
Please take a moment to go through the list below of other participants. I am sure there is a wide variety of inspiring designs. I know I will be spending quite a bit of time looking through all of these great blogs.