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Each week one of our contributors gives you a sneak peek into their studio, creative process or inspirations. We ask a related question of our readers and hope you'll leave comments! As an incentive we offer a free prize each week to bribe you to use that keyboard. The following week we choose a random winner.
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3D Star ornament
I have been trying to create an ornament for Christmas this year. I've been really busy the past few weeks, I haven't had much time. Above is what I came up with.
Cleaned up and drying
Usually I make a mold for all my designs. I tried something different. I used cookie cutters. Easy enough. But they were plain and boring. So I created the circle design on both sides of the both pieces of the star. It was fun and random. I like no rules!
After they were cleaned up they were fired. The clay that looks grey above fires to white. A nice blank canvas.
I make glaze samples using the rejects. I am glad I tried 2 transparent colors. The yellow just didn't do it for me. It is far yellower in person!
This color is called Rich Rust. Glaze is brushed on. I really thought it had more red in it. As you can see in the first photo it leans more towards brown. I am so not a brown person!
The first color is rinsed off and is left in the recesses of the design. Next the transparent glaze is brushed on over the entire ornament.
I have to make more and tweak the pieces. The bottom piece is too wide when the two pieces are put together. I really can't live with that space. Unless I can get that problem worked out there won't be any ornaments to give as gifts this year.
The colors need to be changed also. Being a "Brighter is Better" color person, I'm having issues with this first color palette.
I need to kick it in high gear to get all the problems worked out.
I liked I could make this my own.
Keeping my fingers crossed for the outcome.
*Remember any button can be a pendant or jewelry component.*
My Question is:
What special project or gifts are you making for gifts?
Have you taken something recently and made it your own?
Leave your answer to the question in the comments
Have a great day and a wonderful Christmas!!
Feeling Sassy as usual!
Is it bad to say that winter has pretty much just started, and I'm already over it? Not that I ever need
a reason to dream of warm beaches, but Silke Buechler's shop, CalypsoBeads
, absolutely fits into my daydreams right now.
To see more lampwork goodness, click on over to Silke's shop
The quiet contemplative color palette of the challenge painting sets the mood for this month. But what I love about a neutral palette like this is that it forces you to play with the shapes, textures and scale. This long necklace with the cluster of ceramic beads mimics the arches of the cathedral. The soft hand-embroidered bead by Dawn of LaTouchables makes me think of the simple clothes of the people clustered in the cloister. The pop of orange seems a bit shocking, but it reminds me of the chandeliers lighting the way.
[Dawn's Etsy shop is currently on vacation, but definitely one to earmark for later!]
Just a friendly reminder... We have a slightly new format for uploading your pictures for consideration for the Perfect Pairings each Wednesday, as well as the Monthly Challenge Recap post. We are now using Pinterest! You can find more details in this post about the exciting new changes, including a board devoted to art beads inspired by the monthly challenge! (Ooh! Look! More pretty beads to lust after!)
Pretty please make sure that you link to your picture in Pinterest so that I have someplace to attribute the picture to! And don't forget to tell us about those art beads!
Deadline to get your pictures posted to the Pinterest boards for the creation of the Monthly Challenge Recap post is Monday, December 29th! Get them in early this month! Let's see what you created!
It's that time again, the ABS editors jump in and see what we can create based on the month's challenge
. I'm going to share what I made here on the blog today.
I don't know about you but December is a crazy time of year for me. Between working, selling, promoting, meeting deadlines and then trying to stuff Christmas celebrations in there too I sort of lose my mind. I have two blog hops this week, this one and on Thursday I'm hosting a Michael's Beading Challenge
on my blog. (Play along!)
So I mention all this craziness because adding a blog hop or two during this time of year can actually help you out! You'll create new jewelry to either add to your shop, give as a gift or create something to wear to your upcoming festivities.
Blog hops: helping multi-taskers check off their to-do list!
So if you haven't seen this month's challenge, check it out here
and make plans to enter this month. I love the quiet, hushed tones of this panting and find the arches make my eyes travel down that corridor - you can almost here the chanting of the choirs.
For my first piece I picked a focal that whispered of the shapes in the painting and reflected the muted colors used in the palette. I couldn't help but think of Emily Dickinson's poem, while I made this piece. So my pendant reflects the cathedral that nature creates. I picked beads that had an ethereal feel in color and reflected some of the tiny bits of color in the painting. The gilded leaf and disk beads are Humblebeads
and the ceramic bead is from Earthenwood Studio.
|SOME keep the Sabbath going to church;|
|I keep it staying at home,|
|With a bobolink for a chorister,|
|And an orchard for a dome.|
|Some keep the Sabbath in surplice;|| |
|I just wear my wings,|
|And instead of tolling the bell for church,|
|Our little sexton sings.|
|God preaches,—a noted clergyman,—|
|And the sermon is never long;|| |
|So instead of getting to heaven at last,|
|I ’m going all along!
My second piece is a bit more of a literal interpretation with tiny pewter charms that look like the archways in the painting. These little gems are from Mamacita Beadworks
. The polymer clay beads are Humblebeads
. I kept the design simple with brass jump rings and black steel wire for contrast.
Look what Mary made!
I want you to run over to Mary Hardings' blog
now and see the components she created inspired the challenge this month.
Look what Erin made!
Better late than never! Erin creates a new pendant, component or charm in her Simple Truths line each month inspired by the art we choose for the Art Bead Scene Monthly challenge. This month, Erin actually chose the painting we are using and it was the strong architectural lines that drew her to it. She created these Saenedam Doodle pendants
with a domed polymer clay base in a very heavy antique silver bezel with a patchwork pattern of doodles in spaces that mimic the arches in the cathedral. Each one is different. These are on their way to the Simple Truths Sampler Club members for December, but there are a few extras of these limited edition pendants
And now it's your turn - carve out just a wee bit of time between sipping egg nog and wrapping presents and create something inspired by our challenge! Need some motivation? How about those two $50 art bead prizes? Check out our sponsors