My husband has since returned from his two week long trip to South Korea. He was 14 hours ahead of me, and we found that our technology wasn’t working for communicating, but he could send me an email. So every day around 9pm (11am Seoul time), he would send me a very short message (he is not nearly as wordy as I am!). Often it would involve the food they ate, but over the weekend he was there, they journeyed into Seoul and explored a National park. He sent me this lovely photo of a pagoda shrine. I love the architecture, the gingerbread detail and the verdigris patina.
When I selected these beads a month ago, I am sure that I had a plan in mind. Aside from the fun and happy colors that reference the inspiration photos, there had to be an idea, right? But I waited until the last minute. So it was sweet serendipity when I discovered that I had actually sketched an idea on the picture! I would highly suggest doing that if you are shopping for beads. Just place the sketch with the beads in a baggie and when you are ready for some inspiration, you will have a map to follow!
So with the Packers on Monday Night, Aaron Rodgers and I set out to make three pieces… earrings, necklace and bracelet (okay, he wasn’t much help, but I thought that maybe his girlfriend Olivia Munn might enjoy wearing them! ;-). I ended up pulling the wrong cord (it was navy blue instead of black and much too thick) and it took a while to play around with just the right combination to make the piece have this architectural flair of an inside out lantern that I envisioned. So in essence, the necklace took me longer than I expected (about four quarters), but I quite like the way it turned out. (And I think that Olivia would look great in it!)
The secret trick to this necklace was getting the silver curved tubes to stay in place. After much trial and error, I figured out that the dyed howlite flowers (some of my all-time favorites from Halcraft) filled the negative space to retain the shape. Since I selected a cord that was far too thick to go through all the beads, I simply wrapped the extra pieces around the beads for a more casual texture. This would have worked well with a thinner waxed linen thread.
As the Packers game was now over (Packers win 38-28 over the Chiefs! Booyah!), I knew that I had to wrap things up…literally! I ran out of steam to make a bracelet with the seed beads that I bought, and use up the remaining four curved tubes that I have, but I think I will revisit that later. However, I knew that I could easily whip up a pair of earrings.
The colors of the crackled matte rounds are like glowing lanterns themselves. I love the texture they impart even though they are smooth. My multi colored strand had these lovely pinks and purples and a soft yellow for contrast. Not exactly a match for the necklace, but similar feel. I managed to find the black waxed linen thread (the one I should have used for the necklace!) and simply tied it all together. The new selection of charms at my Michaels from Halcraft is really quite extensive. I really like these lotus blossoms and decided to just turn them upside down. Maybe I will add a dangle to the bottom. Or maybe not. ;-) I think they are lucky just as they are!
My partner for September is Elisabeth Auld. I have known Elisabeth for many years, our paths crossing in blog hops and elsewhere online. She is a sweet soul with a great eye for color so I knew that she would enjoy working with such a happy palette! Here is a sneak peek of what she is creating….
Be sure to hop on over to her blog and show her some love for taking up the challenge with me!
And now for my friend Erin Strother’s take on this inspiration….and her transformation of these cool sliders into rock chic!
This month’s palette and theme left me drawing a complete blank. (I mean, even more than usual, which is saying a lot.) I had no idea what to do with these colors or visuals, so I just drove mindlessly to Michael’s, wandered up to the “Big Wall ‘O Beads” and stared at it a while. I touched a few beads, hoping some sort of magical idea might shoot through my fingertips and into my brain. But no. Nothing. Then I saw these funky pink “disco Elvis” Sliders. They worked with both the color palette and the visual theme, but I honestly had no idea what to do with them. I picked out some black teardrops on chain to pair with them (still with no real ideas) and sat in my car staring at them for a while.
These beads were so “NOT ME.” What to do? I decided some black leather could punk them up sufficiently, and as I drove home, I designed this piece in my head. (Note: designing while driving is only slightly less distracting than texting while driving, so do not try this at home.)
Shockingly, my initial idea worked pretty well, despite never having done anything like this before. My inner-rocker chick is ready to hit the town. Who’s buying?
I hope that you had fun on our little armchair adventures! I hope that this has inspired you to get out the beads and play with us. The InLinkz code will be open for one week, so join in the fun! I am also on the hunt for the next inspiration to be shared right here on October 7th (and reveal who my new Pretty Palettes partner is! Could it be you?)
Inspired by the luck of the lotus blossom…
May good fortune follow you all your days…
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Fantastic! I love those little metal cages that you made for the beads. It’s a perfect design for those beads. :)
I love the look of caged beads in the necklace. So clever! I know what you mean about sketching. If I don’t note something down right away, by the time I can work on it, the idea is lost!
The leather-and-pink necklace is a stunner, too. I have the sudden urge to go buy a leather jacket just so I can wear that necklace.
Erin your neclace looks fabulous! What a great idea to turn the curved beads into lantern like shapes! And the blue cord gives it that great extra pop of color!
I also love that Erin S. chose such a different and cool route. Very inspiring ?
I, too, love the tube cages you made for the rondelles. And, I must get some cord to try the knotting between the beads because I love how that looks.
And, I love Erin S.’s out-of-the-box piece with the leather and the drop chain. Very cool!