Dancers’ skirts: Art Bead Scene April challenge

At the last minute I have managed to put something together for the Art Bead Scene April challenge, which features a painting by French Impressionist Edgar Degas as our inspiration. I’ve always loved Degas’ art, and to me this painting captures the dynamic beauty of ballet contrasted with the endless waiting behind the scenes.

april 2014 - degas palette

Swaying Dancer (Dancer in Green), 1877-79, by Edgar Degas. Pastel and Gouache on Paper 26″ x 14″ (66 x 36 cm). Palette by Brandi Hussey

I was browsing through one of my favourite ceramic beadmaker’s pages—Peruzi— when I came across a pendant that matched the dancers’ tutus almost perfectly, right down to the flashes of browns and oranges in the blue-green skirts (it’s kind of dark and rainy today, so the photos aren’t the best, sorry!).

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To go with the pendant I selected a collection of beads in blues and blue-greens, ambers and peaches, knotted with denim blue and orange waxed linen cord. Some little dangling flowers in translucent blue-green and peach at the junction with the chain remind me of ballet skirts.

Dancers skirts necklace

I’ll be adding this blog post to tomorrow’s Art Bead Scene monthly challenge post, so pop over then to look at what other people have been inspired to make this month. And make sure you come back on Saturday for my BSBP8 reveal!

 

BSBP: The other soup!

It’s just over a week until the BSBP reveal. So excited! Not that I’ve finished my pieces, far from it! But I thought I would show you what I sent my partner Sandra Wollberg. It took a quite a while for my bead soup to reach her, in fact, I was thinking I would have to send another soup! I don’t think she was quite so worried though, turns out some strike activity at German airports may have slowed it down a bit.

I took a while putting together this soup. It had to have some beads Sandra might not have been so familiar with, and it definitely had to include at least one Aussie artist. And Sandra and I have overlapping tastes (especially when it comes to Czech glass), so I had to try to challenge her at least a little! In the end this is what I went with.

Bead Soup sent

As you can see, there are multiple possibilities in this soup, with both a cool and a warm colour scheme. First of all, the focals. The big blue/gold pendant on the right hand side is from Peruzi, my favourite Aussie bead artisan. I love this pendant, but I have never been able to come up with a design for it other than knotting it onto a large piece of ribbon or cord, so I am intrigued to see what Sandra can do with it (and I was very amused to see that another bead soup this year also uses this focal).  Immediately to the left of this focal is a second ceramic pendant by Michelle McCarthy of Firefly Design Studio. It’s a lovely cheerful yellow tree of life. And just for fun I threw in a third focal, a faux sea glass seashell in a deep red.

I included two clasps in my soup—a gorgeous handmade copper Deco rose button-style clasp by Rebecca Anderson, and a silver-tone leaf-shaped clasp. I popped in a couple of other silver-toned beads and a braided ring, and some copper headpins, and double-ball-ended headpins made by Tanglebeads.

As for the rest of the beads, there are a variety of Czech beads in different shapes and colours, including some intriguing twisted lozenge-shaped beads in a deep red, some faux sea glass in orange, frosted and opaque white, and two big amazonite nuggets. The big swirly orange bead is from Puddle Glass Art, a local lampworker.

Of course, there is ribbon, a lovely sari silk ribbon from Ribbons and Silk on Etsy (also based here in Australia), which I used to tie up the box.

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The reveal will be next Saturday, 3 May. At this point I anticipate that my post will go live mid-afternoon on Saturday (when it is midnight on the East Coast of the USA), at the official start time for the hop. Come back then to see what Sandra and I—and 500 or so other jewellery designers—have made.

 

 

Birds and Berries: We’re All Ears April Challenge

It’s time for the monthly We’re All Ears challenge reveal from the Earrings Everyday blog. This month’s inspirational image is taken from the pages of a Pottery Barn catalogue, a table setting that features sweet stylized birds and a wealth of green leaves, yellow berries, olive oil and green olives.

potterybarn_skylark table

Among my collection of beads I have some tiny brass birdies, which I wire wrapped onto tiny brass nests. I dangled some yellow and green berries, as well as some green leaves from pale yellow waxed linen. Most of the beads as well as the linen came from the most recent (to me) kit from Rebecca Anderson’s Curiosity Club.

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Visit the Earrings Everyday reveal post for links to everyone else’s designs.