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Monday, May 25, 2015

Two Necklaces and a Bracelet

With various projects that aren't related to beads (and, well, my job), I didn't have too much time for beading during the semester.  Now that the semester is over, I think I've made up for lost time.

The first project I finished was one I had been thinking about for a long time.  Scott got me a wonderful, large, colorful pendant as an anniversary gift a few years ago.

I loved it, but it took me a long time to figure out how to use it.  I think very large pendants usually benefit from being surrounded with large beads and design elements.  At the same time, I didn't want the surrounding beads to detract from the pendant.  I ultimately ended up stitching beaded triangles in colors that complemented the pendant, and stringing those in sections along the sides of the necklace.  Other beads include vintage black glass beads; drop beads in clear, yellow, and brown glass; and large pink seed beads. I think the beaded triangles add a lot of visual weight without actual weight, which makes me happy when I wear the necklace.

Sorry for the questionable photo--I miss my light box!

The next necklace I made incorporated a small octopus pendant made by Cynthia Thornton that I had been unable to resist.  This pendant posed a different design challenge.  It is fairly small and dainty, and I didn't want the surrounding necklace to overwhelm it.  However, I didn't want the necklace to be underwhelming, either.  My compromise was to include a double strand section at the front of the necklace.

The beads I used are labradorite "chip" beads, which are much prettier in person than in these photos.  I often find chip beads difficult to work with because of their irregular shapes, but in this case, they helped me achieve the natural look I was going for.  The octopus rests on a small length of chain (from my chain scraps, yay!).

The most recent thing I made was a narwhal bracelet.  Green Girl Studios makes wonderful metal (mostly pewter) beads.  My favorite ones feature animals, and I was very excited when they came out with a narwhal design.  Because of the placement of the holes, I thought a bracelet made the most sense.  I decided to dip into my collection of vintage glass beads and made lots of wired dangles with those and purple niobium headpins.  This was my first time working with niobium, and I liked the contrast of a type of metal I think of as a more modern design element with my vintage glass beads.  Also, I tend to hoard my vintage glass beads, and it was oddly liberating to use so many on one project.

Wishing everyone time for the hobby of your choice!

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