Art Jewelry Elements’ September reveal!

Its the end of September already!?!?

Welcome – its the reveal day for the CoM over at Art Jewelry Elements blog! This month we are working with bronze clay bead caps from our one-and-only Lesley Watt! When I saw them I had a brainstorm. One of those far fetched, push the boundaries ideas that leaps to your brain fully formed. An idea that challenges you to go beyond your current level of experience. Lesley very graciously send me 2 – as the grand plan/challenge/hare brained scheme… required 2. 

Lesley CoM

I am not done. (ArtBLISS happened. More on that tomorrow!) 

Sketch CoM1

The original plan, a sculptural piece – build a polymer pod with a flanged lid, using the bead caps as ends. They are organic, and so perfect… I have never build hollow forms in polymer before… 

Sketch CoM2

The revised sketch – only using one cap and drawing more inspiration from the shape of a poppy pod. I decided I would like the piece to be wearable, and researched Japanese inro boxes. The tops slide up the cord from which the piece is worn, allowing access to the interior. 

polymer inro 

the pod

The pod form in cured polymer. The color Lesley sent me is a gorgeous muted eggplant, inspiring a palette of olive greens, yellow ochre and the eggplant color. At ArtBliss I was in a polymer class with the inspiring Christine Damm and I spent time with the charismatic Erin Prais-Hintz, both polymer influences of mine. So I feel primed to get back to this ASAP!

the top

The lid… 

Wip Sept CoM

Here is a picture for scale.  I have to address the lid, I think I will drill into the sides horizontally and insert wire/wrapped loops. Paint, patina, Gilder’s paste…. Fall is in the air, crisp cool air comes inthe open windows, leaves are starting to turn.  A perfect time to work on a fall themed organic pod form! 

Lesley – I am so sorry I did not have it finished! I hope I will make you proud regardless! Thank you for a gorgeous piece – I look forward to adding color – and I  will post pictures ASAP! In the meantime – please check out the work my friends and colleagues created!

Here are the links to the other artists participating this month: 

AJE team

Lesley Watt   

 

 

Feeling festive! The November AJE component reveal!

 Its hard to believe we are on the cusp of December. I just posted the Art Jewelry Elements December Component of the Month – my turn next, and its hard to think about that reveal being on New Year’s Day!!! But I digress, and get ahead of myself…

For the current month of November, filled with fall leaves, and roasting delicacies… we have this harbinger of the season to come… a bronze clay snowflake from member Lesley Watt in the UK. 

Lesley's snowflakes

I immediately wanted to make it spin, to wear it on a long necklace over a tunic sweater… but the actual size was larger than I expected. I think my design is similar to what I had imagined, but as I started creating a new idea formed… I was working in polymer as time was limited, so earthenware clay was out. No time to make it, dry it, fire it, glaze it… you get the point. I wanted to frame it with an ornate, even Victorian type pattern… 

 sketch and front view

… but when I put the polymer and the flake together, I needed a visual rest to focus the eye on the snowflake. I used leather scraps in a deep teal, wrong side up, and the color picked up accents in the polymer very well. The back is dealt with as well, since both sides of an ornament are on display: 

sketch and back view

Te leather and polymer “snowflake” button also camoflauge the wires where the front bead is attached. 

AJE CoM November

I had been reading and re-reading some seasonal folklore on the plants holly, ivy, and mistletoe for my AJE Holiday Open House posts. It was so much fun to create polymer leaves and bead berries. I even have extra – perhaps a sprig for my lapel? The snowflake theme had me feeling very festive, and I made a few additional polymer snowflakes. I think a give away is in order! 

Winners will be randomly selected – 2 winners – from comments here and  on my Facebook page (Please leave an email in your comment so I am sure to find you if you win!) Let me surprise you with a pair!

snowflake earrings

Happy Holidays! I am starting to think about decorating the house….

But wait! There is more… My team members offerings: 

 

OH! Dont forget! This is the last day to enter for a free Labyrinth Component of the Month! ANd I have 5 to give away! The post is here: December CoM at AJE. 

AJE CoM

BeadFest – these are the people in my neighborhood

My first Beadfest as an exhibitor has come and gone. It was most definitely worth the days spend firing and glazing in a frenzy! I had a wonderful time – seeing my pieces well received, meeting new friends, catching up with old friends. And I managed to fit in a little shopping and a bit of barter (tomorrow’s post). For now – a recap of the booth, and a few of my neighbors. I regret not taking more people pictures…I seem to have focused on the beads. 

My booth

high fire and words

"Mythic Nature" series

Lunar Hare

Lampwork lovelies from my neighbor Sue Kennedy of Sue Beads

 Sue Beads

What patience! Hundreds of raku beads from Amy at Xaz Bead Company

Xaz Bead Co.

One of a kind ceramic focals and buttons from Mary Hubbard at White Clover Kiln.

White Clover Kiln

Green Girl Studios – pewter charms, buttons, pendants…

Green Girl Studios

Lampwork from Heather of HBM Studios. 

HMB Studios

Lampwork focals from Anne of Gardanne Beads. 

Gardanne beads

The show was great, although long hours on one’s feet. The atmosphere was very invigorating, and creative. I am thrilled to be part of this community; I am very glad I took the leap and applied. Although it seems very quiet here at home, alone – I am full of ideas and energy – so thank you friends!

 

 

 

Treasures delivered…

Over the last few weeks the postman has been steadily delivering magical packages to my door. Well, my mail box anyway. Thought today was a good day for “Show and Tell”. 

First up – Staci Smith. Her shop is chocked full of goodness. She works in a variety of materials: fabricating components and jewelry, sculpting in polymer and bronze clay, silks, sea glass… but thoughout maintains her sense of style. It’s gypsy/folk/tribal/boho if you ask me. And I quite like it! We had a chance to trade…so I selected the “Moon Baby” focal and she selected other treasures to surpirise me. (Sorry for the pix. The moon baby and discs on the lower left are a dark peacock patina that is gorgeous in person. )

trade from Staci

Then there arrived a sweet package from Australia! I have followed the blog and shop of Penny at Sparrow Salvage for years. She has a finesse at upcycling materials that never ceases to amaze. Her style is very gypsy/tribal/boho and I have wanted a piece forever. Recently Penny had a series of traumatic events in her life and I was happy to help out with a purchase, however small. Check out her shop, make a purchase, show some support for a fellow self-employed jewelry artist!

Sparrow Salvage earrings

They are definitely shoulder dusters! I look forward to wearing them at my next festival!

Sparrow Salvage earrings2

Imagine my luck – when I won a give away. You know the type – like our FB pageSecret Scents is line of perfume lockets by Mystic Memories. I was familiar with them because my friend Brigid Ashwood is one of their featured artists. So I left a comment, and Fortune smiled… Its really a lovely piece and smells fantastic. I like the idea of wearing it choker length on velvet ribbon. Suits the locket well. And great packaging too!

Secret Scents locket

And last – but definitely not least: BUTTONS! Cindy Wimmer (Sweet Bead Studio and ArtBliss) is hosting a button challenge blog hop. I am partnered with Sandi Volpe – who treated me to this lovely package…

sandi buttons1

and this treasure trove of possibility. Vintage buttton covers, tiny antique buttons, lovely earthy colors, and the sculptural button bottom right? She cast that one. I see a female form in there. Its calling my name. 

detail buttons1

The hop reveal will happen here and on my colleagues blogs on May 13th. Stay tuned. I have ideas flitting around my head. The possibilities are endless, really. 

detail buttons2

 

There IS one more thing I wanted to mention in this epic post. Sandi and I have nearly met… We both attended ArtBliss workshops last year, hosted by Jeannette Ryan and Cindy Wimmer. (Yes, the button hop Cindy.) This weekend long art/jewelry retreat is held in Northern Virginia/DC in late September.  This will be its third year. It is a great weekend of learning, sharing, immersion, socializing, creating, and camaraderie. I have made great friends there that I look forward to see every September. If you are interested in lampworking, metal smithing, polymer… check out the classes. Registration is open!

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