Thursday, September 29, 2016

AJE September Tree Challenge Reveal

The theme challenge of the month over at Art Jewelry Elements was 'trees'.  I was delighted that Caroline chose trees for the month of September. Trees happen to pop up quite often in my work.
I also happen to take a LOT of pictures of trees. They are a constant source of inspiration.
What's not to like about trees? They are beautiful during every season. In fact, I think during winter they might just be at their most beautiful.
If you read my last post, you saw that I ordered some fabulous jewelry elements from blueberribeads.
The first thing I made with trees in mind were these cute little earrings using the gingko leaf headpins. I paired them with Czech glass beads and some copper washers that I distressed and aged. Can't wait to wear these!!
Gingko Headpin Earrings
                                                Trees and leaves and acorns-oh my!!
Trio of Tree Themed Necklaces

The next tree piece I created was the necklace (above left & below) using a gorgeous porcelain tree pendant made by Caroline over at blueberribeads. I wanted to showcase this lovely pendant so I didn't want a lot of busy beading on the necklace itself. I did use some smooth black river rocks that I drilled holes into and threaded the rocks with a couple of matte green jasper beads between them. I used two pieces of dyed silk fabric that I ripped to size in a shade of green that complemented the pendant.
Porcelain Tree Pendant Necklace

The next tree related piece was also one of Caroline's cute little gingko leaf beads and one of her acorn pendants (above right & below). I also didn't want anything heavy or busy to distract from the focal bead & acorn so I threaded the acorn pendant on copper wire and up through the bead. Then to add a little more green I hung some green Czech glass beads from the copper wire holding the acorn. I used the same green Czech glass beads to thread onto C-Lon bead cord and crocheted the necklace.
Gingko Leaf Bead With Acorn Pendant Necklace

Next up for my tree inspired pieces was a piece of copper etched with a leaf that I hung from African Opal beads knotted on waxed linen (above center & below). I added the little fetish turquoise bird just for fun.
Etched Copper & African Opal Necklace

Of course I couldn't do a challenge without doing some bead embroidery so I decided to use this Chinese Paintbrush jasper cabochon that looks like a landscape. Remember when I said I love trees in winter? Well, to me this looks a bit like a forest where the trees have lost most of their leaves. And because I just love those little acorns that Caroline made I wanted to dangle an acorn from this pendant. It was the perfect color and acorns are a promise of rebirth, growth and potential. Perfect to hang from a forest that has lost all its leaves.  I attached the beaded pendant to a piece of driftwood and created the necklace from Chinese Paintbrush jasper coin shaped beads knotted on waxed linen.
Chinese Paintbrush Cabochon With Acorn Pendant
Chinese Paintbrush Jasper, Acorn & Driftwood Necklace

And last but not least........I received this lovely 'Greenman' cabochon from Jenny Davies-Reazor and naturally he needed to be included. So I started some bead embroidery around him and lots of fringe that hopefully mimics foliage. I am sorry I didn't get to complete a necklace using him but it's on my to-do list.
GreenMan Pendant

I have so many tree inspired necklaces, art quilts and felted pieces that I created previously I might just have to do another blog post on tree related art.

Thanks for stopping by. Please have a look at all the participants for the tree theme challenge this month.

AJE Team
Guests

Until then, live your life creatively~
cathy




Saturday, September 17, 2016

Creative Impulse

Have you ever had such a strong desire to create that you had to drop everything else you were doing and just go for it?
I had an episode like that recently. I recently joined the team over at Art Jewelry Elements blog.
I ordered some beautiful ceramic components from Caroline Dewison at blueberribeads. Caroline is a
fellow member at AJE. As you can see she makes gorgeous pieces! Check out her website.
I was thinking about the September tree challenge over at AJE when I placed this order.
When I deposited this package of goodies on my work table the raku bunny bead called out to me- use me first please!!  In spite of working on 14 other things at the moment I just had to create something right then and there with that rabbit.
I began pulling out an assortment of beads, wire, chain and some hand dyed silk fabric and ribbon.
I was so excited about the color of the silks bringing out the rusty color of the rabbit. I knew it had to have a tassel hanging from it.
First Version
The above photo is the first version. I really like it but the soldered copper pipe that I used as a tassel cap was a little too overwhelming for the raku hare. I wanted the tassel to complement and enhance the color of the raku glaze not overpower it.  I also thought the silver solder was a bit too much with all the copper & rust. So I brushed it lightly with some copper alcohol ink. Meh...Still not what I wanted!
Soooooo...
Second Version
I found a vintage copper filigree cone in my stash to use for the tassel. It is not nearly as bold. Now the raku bunny bead is the star of the necklace instead of the soldered copper pipe.
I finished the necklace off with some textured black resin tube beads, copper beads, seed beads, copper wire and copper chain. I also added some smaller copper chain in with the tassels and attached a metal leaf, metal acorns and one of my polymer clay headpins from the August headpin challenge.

Close up of first version

Close-up of second version
Looking at these photos I still like the soldered pipe version but the copper filigree cone is a better fit for the look I was going for. What do you think?

This necklace looks like fall with those bronze, gold, copper & purple colors. It also reminds me a little of witches and sorcery! I never imagined having a rabbit as a familiar but it's possible.

After creating this necklace I was able to move on to all the other projects that are in various phases of development. I am working on several pieces for the tree challenge. Check it out over at AJE and join us. You still have time.

Until then-live your life creatively~
cathy