Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Baubles and Bangles

As I began this journey into bead art my thought was that I would try every form of beading that I possibly could. Partly to see how I liked it, partly to see if I could actually do it. Of course as I kept reading and learning I found there were probably more forms than I would ever be able to try, let alone learn. That didn't still my spirit. I knew that some of what I tried during this time would not appeal to me -- either the piece I made or the technique I used or both. But, I still felt the need to practice and 'perfect' the craft of beading by trying as many different forms of encrusted beading as I could. Hopefully through this 'study' period my own beading style would emerge.

Jewelry was my next step. This necklace was so much fun to make. I loved working on a smaller piece, something that fit into my hands easily and yet had several different stitches. Also practicing with the cabochon was a delight to these untutored hands. I was able to 'master' caging the cabochon with a lace cage and learned how to make the necklace strand which was a test of my patience.

From necklaces to bracelets. Using a metal cuff as a base I fashioned two braclets, one 1-1/4" wide and one 1" wide. I was very nervous when I put the first one together, using ultrasuede as the backing - but miracle of miracles, it worked!

The bracelets as well as the necklace were a stretch for me for reasons other than the beading techniques -- I am not a jewelry person. I hardly ever wear much jewelry (although I love it) and I am very petite so that large bracelets look out of place on my skinny wrists. The large encrusted necklace has the same effect. So while it was great fun to make these pieces (and very good for my learning curve) I realized that encrusted beaded jewelry is probably not my best path.

"Not on one strand are all life's jewels strung". - William Morris

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