Thursday, 30 July 2009

Sunshine on a rainy day ...

Following on from my 'Hello Yellow!' blog entry, I've finally made myself a piece of yellow jewellery to wear. I wanted to make something really bright and cheerful to make up for the wet weather we are having here in central England right now - so what better than a sunflower?

Jean Power's new blog 'Colour Challenge' really got me thinking about why I haven't used many yellow beads in my work so far and so I bit the bullet and chose the brightest of yellow cylinder beads to experiment with. I also used a lovely shade of shiny brown beads for the centre and bright green beads for the stem and leaves. This is quite a departure from my early work which was often in muted shades of pinks and purples with dark greens, but hey - if nature can do it, why can't I? I'm really pleased with the way this has turned out and although it's only three inches high, I managed to squeeze in forty-eight little petals and broke three needles in the process! I've made two of these so far, one is for sale in my Etsy shop and the other one is for me - it makes me smile every time I look at it and I'm hoping it will spread a little happiness when I wear it out and about.

Friday, 17 July 2009

Creative beading ...

Well I had great fun with my new size 15's and used them to create a last minute entry to the British Bead Awards . I was working under pressure as the closing date is today but I'm fairly happy with my entry, although the idea has a lot more mileage in it when I get round to it. So of course I can't show you pictures of my entry yet but I do have things to share.

Yesterday I received my complimentary copy of the new book Creative Beading Volume 4. This is an annual that is brought out by the publishers of Bead & Button and includes "The best projects from a year of Bead & Button magazine". I had known for some time that my foxglove necklace 'Floral Fantasy' was going to be one of the projects in there, but I hadn't expected it to be such a lovely substantial hardback book. There are lots of great projects in there and I think it will make a nice coffee table book for me, but I may have to leave it face down as my foxglove design is featured on the back cover!

I've also had a good week on Etsy with my work appearing in three treasuries. The first two were created by the lovely Cheryl of Littlestone Design and featured Supernova Choker and Poppy Supernova Choker along with all sorts of gorgeous items. Thank you Cheryl! The third one was created by Etsy seller Moon Over Maize and includes my Poppy Pin - thank you!

Right now I'm off to work with some bigger yellow beads and get working on an idea I had when I wrote my Hello Yellow post. Suddenly Delicas seem quite huge!

Friday, 10 July 2009

Fifteen Flowers ...

My recent work on a new range of floral earrings meant I needed to make much smaller flowers than normal. I find it quite a challenge to get in lots of detailed shaping and still keep the flowers dainty enough to be wearable. Last weeks bluebells were made using size 11 cylinder beads and each bluebell is only 1½cm high. This lead me to want to make not necessarily even smaller flowers but to be able to get more detail in - hence I have splashed out on some delicious new size 15 seed beads in a range of gorgeous colours. As you can see, pinks and greens are the predominant colours I have gone for and these tiny little beads look as though they will be perfect for my future experiments with all things floral. Looks like I will finally have to give in and wear those glasses I have been avoiding for months though!

On the subject of bluebells, it's expired now, but I managed to create another Etsy treasury this week 'She sells bluebells' - which of course I do! I am not comfortable including my own work in treasuries and so I searched for other artist's work with 'bluebell' in the title and look what beautiful items I came up with!

Friday, 3 July 2009

Late bluebells ...

The bluebells here in England this year put on a real show and my favourite area of woodland was covered by a scented carpet of them. I had never really thought about beading them before, but when I bent to look closely at them, I was fascinated by how delicate each little individual flower that goes towards making up the total impact is. I went against the country code and picked a couple of stems (in the name of art you understand!) and kept them in a small vase in my studio so that I could follow them as closely as possible. Of course the real bluebells have all gone now, but finally, after nearly two weeks of trial and error, I have some little beaded bluebell earrings to show you.

I chose a semi-matte cylinder bead in a cobalt blue with an AB finish,which seemed quite close to the colour and feel of a real bluebell and added three of them to each earring to create a cluster. Once again, I have used long sterling silver earwires so that you get a lot of movement when you are wearing them, just like my 'Swingin' Poppies' and I've also added to the series by creating some 'Swingin' Daisies' too.

All three pairs of earrings are for sale in my Etsy store.