Hello folks, thanks for joining me again. Last week, Mike and I went to the ballet - he got us tickets to The Sleeping Beauty in Birmingham. To avoid the nuisance of having to find a parking space and driving around the one way systems which are totally clogged up due to repairs and urban regeneration projects, we took the train in to Birmingham and made a day of it. I love all dance forms, and this ballet, with the evocative music of Tchaikovsky is close to my heart. Mike has the music on vinyl which he sometimes plays when we are in the garden and it is quite magical.
Before the matinee they had a short programme about how the show was made and set out costumes and ballet slippers for kids to try on and have their pictures taken. While I waited for Mike to deposit our coats in the cloakroom I saw this young family with their two daughters delighting in the costumes and took some of my own pictures with their permission. These kids were a delight to watch - just look at the expressions on their faces, they were quite the divas!
This pendant has been a long time in the making. I made it bit by bit, gently feeling my way through the mist of a lack of formal design - I started with a butterfly and then added a flower, and then snaky vines and a waterfall of a tassel and created a mini scene from a rainforest, with the butterfly flitting over an exotic flower. I added three rows of crystals and a beautiful abalone clasp and suddenly it was done! As with many other Caprilicious pieces it is a showstopper, for extroverts only!
And if you think my made up flower is a bit strange, check out this flower that grows in the rainforest - when I first saw this picture I thought it was 'fake news' but no, it is called the Hot Lips Flower (Psychotria poeppigiana). It grows on a small shrub that lives under the rainforest canopy. The bright red color attracts birds to pollinate it.
Well, that's all I had time for this week folks. I hope you enjoyed your little read of my ramblings. Have a great week and I'll catch you next Friday, same time, same place.
Hello folks, nice to see you again today. I am in sunny Bristol as you read this, at a NHS conference surrounded by midwives and obstetricians. It has been three days and I will soon be back home with hubby and the cat who are waiting patiently for me.
On Sunday, I shall reveal the new collection for Autumn - showy necklaces that can be worn over winter clothes and sweaters - the Caprilicious Line of Lagenlook jewellery.
I've been hard at work putting this small collection together and as I've made most of the elements myself, I've really enjoyed assembling them. I decided to ask one of the midwives who works in the unit to model them for me and she was happy to oblige. She came by on Tuesday after work, with a bag of her linen dresses and patiently changed outfits and jewellery while I clicked away. She looks fabulous, don't you think??
So, 'what's different about this range?', I hear you ask. Well, for one thing, the pieces are meant to wear with winter gear, although they can of course be worn all year round - in the throes of winter, I usually bundle up in warm sweaters and loads of layers. These can be quite heavy and the last thing I would want is a weighty necklace to make matters worse. Winters are drab and depressing, what with the rain and snow, mist and fog, dry skin, runny noses and frozen extremities. To make matters worse, the clothes are usually dark and monochrome, so the injection of a bit of colour into the proceedings never goes amiss. I always like to wear a vibrant piece of jewellery to brighten up my day and give my outfit a bit of ZING!
So here's a sneak peek at a couple of necklaces I made for the Lagenlook line - the rest will be on show on the website and Facebook page on Sunday the 24th.
In the meantime, I shall leave you with the only necklace I made that does not belong in the Lagenlook Collection. The beautiful agate slab nuggets were sent to me by a friend in a bead swap and I couldn't resist putting them in a necklace. I guess it will have to be worn when warm swaddling isn't a necessity.
The pendant is a work of art with a mosaic of abalone, black lip oyster mother of pearl, and a Siva Eye at the centre. There are some very lustrous beads, pearls, blue agate, blue silvered glass beads, and loads of seed beads along with the beautiful black and translucent agate slab nuggets. I love interesting shaped beads and these are a delight to look at and to touch.
Do come and visit the website on Sunday when the Lagenlook line will be up and running on it's own page.
Have a great week and I'll catch you mext Friday, same time, same place,
Hello readers, and a Happy New Year to you all, and the warmest wishes for love, beauty and fabulousness in 2015. Everyone else has wished you peace and good health, right - but I'd like to add a wish for a soupçon of fabulousness - the quality that brightens up your life and adds a bit of zing- us Caprilicious women need that!
Having been on call on New Year's Eve, I relaxed the next day by playing with clay without any intention of actually producing anything. I just kneaded and rolled and made snakes - just like being a child with plasticine - until I decided to try out the box of coloured chalks that had been delivered to my door just before Christmas. I was inspired to use chalk on polymer clay by a number of artists - it seems to be the latest fad, but no one actually says how they do it - perhaps it is a trade secret.
I coloured the clay discs I cut out with a background pigment, and then added tiny amounts of a contrasting colour - I loved the effect so much, I spent a while ensuring that the pigment stayed attached to the clay.
I tend to take photographs as I go along when I am claying just as an aide-mémoire in case I want to make the same thing again - and to show you part of the process that goes into making Caprilicious Jewellery. I know that quite a few people are curious about the 'how', from the questions I get.
And then I thought, why not put together a mini tutorial?? There were loads of times I would have been exceedingly grateful for a little instruction that helped me to make a cogent piece of jewellery - so it is for beginners I wrote this mini tutorial. I know that a few very experienced clayers sometimes read my blog - it is not my intention to introduce grannies to eggs.
The pigment adheres to the clay if liquid clay is painted onto the clay discs before curing them - this is an alternative way, but it will not give you the shiny and deep effect in the earrings above. However, this method is pretty too and I made some earrings using it.
I play this clip from this unlikely couples' concert in Brussels - you'd never have dreamt of saying Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga in the same breath a few years ago now, would you - yet here they are making sweet music together, and revelling in it. I watched this concert, and loved it so much, I bought the CD - and my motto for this year is.... you guessed it, ANYTHING GOES!!
The Caprilicious women amongst you - and I hope that's most of my readers - will have already recognised that anything does indeed go. Art jewellery is just that - art you can wear - and should be accessible to everyone.
Just to show you what's out there - exciting and new in the use of new materials, I put together a montage for you - click on them to go to their respective websites.
When I last spoke to my mother I asked her what she thought - and she said that although she might not buy my stuff (!) because she's been brought up to buy precious metals, she enjoys the work I put into my pieces, be it wire or polymer clay - now, how diplomatic was that - for someone who's usually as blunt as the back of a knife!
On reflection, I think my mom might be quite pleased with what I make if she took a look at some of these!! I however, want to go as avant garde as I dare - and have been discussing playing with concrete. The concrete isn't bought in a builders yard - it is jewellery grade and doesn't chip. Watch this space...
This is what Nicole Hanna has to say on the subject of 'perception'
When someone says to you your artistry is not real… it’s not “real” wire wrapping, it’s not “real” jewelry… their perception of what is “real” is based on their limited personal experiences as regards the subject in question, likely bred from a similar situation in which perceived opinions were delivered to them in a similarly negative light.
So there, she said it first!! And I say again - ANYTHING GOES, if you wear it with panache and aplomb!
Pixie People Earrings
I seem to turn to my face cane at regular intervals - this time I made earrings from it. Because all the work went into the actual making of the cane, putting the earrings together was relatively simple and they turned out bright and pretty.
I made another WIngs of Love necklace - I just love those beetle wings - the colour is simply divine. I have enough stock of the wings to make one further necklace - I want to take a couple of pieces to my exhibition as they are not widely available there - something entirely new for the good folk of Bangalore, who I hope will love them - perhaps once they get over their initial squeamishness.
This is a replica of a piece I made earlier with turquoise chip nuggets and pyrite - the pendant is similar too. I try not to replicate my designs, but sometimes I love one so much that if I have similar materials in stock my muse will not move me along in another direction, she forces me to make the same thing over and over.
Having been on call on New Year's Eve, I will be working on the first weekend of the year. I hope to start packing my stock for the exhibition, so that I get some sort of a handle on what I have ready, and what I have yet to put together.
I hope all of you welcomed in the New Year with panache, that a lot of Caprilicious Jewellery was worn, and loads of compliments were had. Do send me photographs if you have any.
Here's wishing you all the best for 2015. Have a lovely week, and I'll catch you next week as usual, same time, same place
Hello, fancy meeting you here - yes you, in your statement jewellery by Caprilicious, trying to blend in with the furniture and failing miserably in the attempt. Let me ask you a question - why did you wear Caprilicious if you didn't want to be noticed?? You should have known you'd turn heads - what you're wearing is making you sit up, walk tall and look happy - and that's what people notice about you when you wear your Caprilicious Jewellery.
I love this song - the word 'Happy' is repeated so many times, it's almost an affirmation - all you have to do is sing along.
Affirmations work by breaking patterns of negative thoughts, negative speech, and in turn, negative actions and by helping us believe in the potential of an action we desire to manifest. Try it sometime - acknowledge your own self-worth; and your confidence will soar. Look good, walk tall, feel great - you are a powerhouse; you are indestructible.
This week, I set about remodelling my website - I now have a new page called 'She Sells Sea Shells' - I love shells and abalone, and have a number of pieces that seemed to group themselves together and demand a page of their own, and I gave in.
Two abalone pendants, set in silver were the basis for a couple of necklaces - teamed with Biwa pearls - unusually shaped cultured pearls from freshwater mussels.
First produced in the 1930s in Lake Biwa in Japan, their quality rivals that of cultured saltwater pearls, and they are just as beautiful. I love Biwa pearls because they are so different from the usual image one has of pearls.
Naiads were water nymphs who lived in the most beautiful streams and rivers, and spent their days gently washing the freckles from the faces of the girls who bathed in the water and generally being sweet and gentle - until of course an unwary young man came by - and then they all rushed up and threw themselves at him, until the poor sap was overwhelmed and gave up his life to join them in the underwater world.
One of these is a bit more unconventional than the other - but it's that unconventional asymmetry that makes it a piece by Caprilicious. The colourful crackle agate lozenges go with the lilac Biwa pearls and the abalone - lilac was a colour much beloved by my grandmother - every year my mom bought her a saree in either 'lilac or ash colour', as requested by her on her birthday. Much as I loved her, I wouldn't really want the jewellery I make to be grandmotherly in any way, Heaven forbid!!
Kohima is the capital of Nagaland, a north eastern border state in India, sharing boundaries with Myanmar. When I was little my cousins, with whom I spent a lot of time, moved to Nagaland with their father who was posted there by the Indian Army - they came back with the most beautiful artefacts and shawls - I think some of the artefacts still exist in their house after all of 45 years - I would have loved to go and visit them there, but it never happened, perhaps I was too young to make the journey.
I got the little brass medallions and spacer beads from a vendor in Nagaland and strung a two stranded necklace, with a simple button clasp.
This picture was my inspiration for my next piece - it is made from stock photo manipulation, an art form I recently discovered, by LeeAnne Cortus. In this art form, bits of stock photographs are Photoshopped together to form a coherent picture and you can see more by clicking on the link above.
I went to an all day party on Sunday - Nicole Hanna was celebrating 5000 'likes' on Facebook and handing out wirework designs to party guests all day, one or two every hour. It was a fabulous day, with hundreds of virtual guests held fast in front of their computers. She handed out about sixteen of them - I got all but one, and that was because my cousin phoned me from Toronto and we had a long natter,forgetting all about the giveaway.
I stayed up till 5am on Monday morning - she released one every ten minutes in the last hour, and then fell into a deep and grateful slumber. I made up one of the designs, putting a Caprilicious spin on it and this is what appeared......
I had the design from an earlier giveaway and these were the first pair I made - they went in a diplomatic pouch to live with a nice lady in Bangladesh!
As I've been writing , we've had a minor panic - Wilfred just tried to go up the chimney - all I could do was watch with my mouth open as his brother Charlie chased him up the flue till all I could see was the white tip of his tail. I yelled for Mike (which probably frightened Wilf into going further up into the space) and we had to coax him down with some food - I had visions of having to call the fire brigade and a bunch of men in hob nailed boots tramping all over my floor - and no, that is not one of my fantasies! We've now stuffed the flue with newspaper - Phew!
That's it for this week folks, have a lovely week, and I'll catch you next Friday, same time, same place.
Hello readers, I hope you are all feeling better than I am today - Mike and I have had the flu for nearly two weeks now - I had a week off work and spent Easter in bed. But, things are looking up now, and I am looking forward to the weekend.
This whole week I stayed warm in my armchair, making little bits and bobs with wire and beads.
The Islamic origins of these Moroccan beads are obvious - they come from a shop in Casablanca, as do these pictures of the Hassan II Mosque.
The amazonite slab nuggets in this piece are cut in such a way that when strung, it gives an illusion of there being two strands of beads - a very clever way to cut the stones, as two strands of these undoubtedly beautiful gemstones would be too heavy - and expensive!
The Butterfly's Wedding
I acquired a pendant made of a sheet of mother-of-pearl from my friend BN, and it lay around the house for a while, my house elf moved it from spot to spot - until one day, I decided to make something with it before the elf 'disappeared' it forever! I sat down with it one evening, and played with wire - I meant to cover over the brown markings on the edge of the pendant - to my mind, they marred what would otherwise be a pretty, shiny sheet of MOP. But by the time I was done, I had used the entire pendant as a backing sheet for a profusion of leaves, vines, and tendrils in a fanciful garden populated by crystal butterflies. The piece reminded me of a fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen called 'The Butterfly' - you can read it if you have the time and want to find out what happened - just click on the link - it is the story of a butterfly who was looking for a bride, and the most famous quote from that tale is “Just living is not enough, said the butterfly, one must have sunshine, freedom and a little flower for company.”
I've been experimenting with using donuts as focal beads, held in an asymmetric wire weave, which is harder than you might think. These donuts have no aperture where the wire may be passed vertically through them - the central hole has to accommodate the wire, which has to pass through it gracefully, and yet securely. I tried out yet another method, using approximately four feet of the heavier gauge wire, and twenty feet of the fine weaving wire - and another evening bit the dust! The stone here is a blue agate geode with druzy, which is a coating of fine crystals on the stone fracture surface, in the centre.
More Earrings and a Giveaway
Although I felt better with each day, I hadn't the strength to summon my muse and put her to work - I felt as if I was chasing her all around the room, and boy, was she eluding me.
I gave up in disgust, and made some earrings with ideas I had had earlier, but just not executed yet.
My mother turned 87 on the 22nd - she is fit and well - in fact she's fitter than I am - she walks on a treadmill every day for an hour, and takes painting lessons, to which she has to climb two flights of stairs. On that day, I felt well enough to want to play with clay, and although I didn't spend too much time in my craft room, I managed to make these little sweetpeas, and turned them into earrings that evening. I decided to host a giveaway - yes I know the last one was a disaster, logistics wise, but what can I say, I'm a glutton for punishment. So, the earrings are on Facebook till Sunday the 27th - all people are required to do is to like them and share the image on their page - I will draw the five people who win the earrings from a random number generator.
That's me for this week folks, thanks for stopping by, have a great week and I'll catch you next Friday, same time, same place
Caprilicious is all of two years old, today -thanks to all of you for your interest and making this such an enjoyable journey. I hope you like reading the blog, looking at my images and going along with my thought processes, scatty as they are, and that Year 3 will be bigger and better for Caprilicious, - with both you and I having fun along the way, I don't see why not.
Mike and I went to the Newmarket bead fair - we spent some time mooching around Cambridge, took a little 'chauffeured punt' on the river Cam, and spent an enjoyable weekend with our friend BN who lives in Cambridge. I have enough gemstone bead stock to last me a long, long time, but I couldn't resist a few beautiful lamp worked glass beads - I know how difficult they are to make, and some of the beads were simply beautiful - it seemed a shame to leave them behind. I don't know what I shall do with them - they don't fit anywhere in my jewellery box - but they were calling out to me, and sad person that I am, I can never resist a call from a pretty thing.
Wire hair combs caught my eye at the bead fair, so the first thing I made when I got back was an embellished hair ornament - I think it will look very pretty of an evening, with an upswept hair do - an anti Rapunzel moment.
Before we set off to Cambridge, my fingers were twitching so hard, I gave them some wire to keep them quiet - sometimes it's almost as if they have a mind/persona of their own, and need to keep busy - Oh well, I suppose that's a harmless enough addiction. These pendants with wire, druzy and semi precious gemstones appeared overnight - simple designs to keep the old fingers happy................
The copper wire used here was coated with a non tarnish 'enamel' and the yellow fire agate bead suits the coppery browns of the wire - a simple, but effective pendant on a co ordinating organza necklace.
Bluish - grey and orange are a great colour combination, and the pendant is very striking. I wired the focal piece with the wire embellished druzy to one side of the frame, leaving a bit of negative space as a counterbalance - this also made the focal stand out from the frame, giving it a three dimensional effect.
The Birthday Necklace
I plan to make a necklace every year to celebrate Caprilicious' birthday - something a bit different - perhaps with an expensive focal - something to set it apart from the rest. Last year I made a necklace with a Ghau box and coral beads - it now lives in India, and by all accounts, it's new owner loves it.
This year, I picked a pendant with ammonite fossils, a Shiva eye and abalone, set in sterling silver as the focal piece. Loads of pearls and an abalone clasp later, it turned into a statement piece, well worthy of being in the category of a birthday necklace.
Pearls are the symbol of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love - pearls were tears of joy that she shed when she was born from sea froth and they translate easily into the symbolism of love and beauty. Aphrodite's followers call her Pearl, or Pearl-of-the-Sea, and she is also known as Venus - who is depicted as being born out of a shell, not as a baby, but a fully grown adult, very naked woman - the epitome of beauty.
And this is the necklace by which I chose to wish Caprilicious a happy birthday in 2013!
When I look back over the last two years, it makes my heart glad - making one-of-a-kind jewellery has led me to all you one- of- a- kind people; and when you reach back out to me, it gives me a warm glow inside - a heady feeling - and it spurs me to want to make more stuff so I can reach more of you.
I have met some fabulous people along the way through Caprilicious - some in person - Maria, Bernadette, Ben amongst others; and some in the virtual world - Lucy, Eilidh, Sravasti, Reshma, Shruthi and Mortira, Linda, Pearl - I would never have 'met' you if not for Caprilicious; people from the polymer clay world - Allison, the Carlton cottage gang - so many of you have made an impact on my life and way of thinking.
The number of people I can reach out to depends on me, and what I make - a friend suggested I should buy in more of my components, or get someone else to make my designs up for me ' if not, it will only ever be a small business/hobby ' he advised - but, no, I think the greatest pleasure is from knowing that most of my pieces come out of my hands - be it from polymer clay, wire or from my kiln - I pick my own beads, and make my own jewellery the way I want - and those of you who like my creations and are kind enough to want to wear them will be friends for life.
So, Happy Birthday Caprilicious, and catch you sweet readers, next week, same time, same place
Hello readers, I trust you have all had a good week. The flowers are a-blooming and everything looks so pretty when we walk into our garden or drive around town. The warmth of the unaccustomed summer sun in the UK has brought out the romantic in me and this mood has touched all that I have made this week.
I had a bunch of coloured baroque pearls and I strung them onto mono filament invisible nylon, using jeweller's glue to get them to stay in place. Of course, the nylon had a mind of it's own, so did the pearls, and as for the glue - let's not even go there - a few newly invented swear words later, this necklace appeared - my husband wondered whether I was developing Tourette's syndrome and I had to take time out to reassure him that it was all for real and the air around me wasn't blue due to a psychiatric disorder. I had to prise my fingers apart after soaking them in warm water to take some pictures of my latest creation.
Anyway, it was all worth it in the end, and I can present Summer Holiday...............
This is an ideal piece to carry away on holiday, light and pretty, and with so many colours, it will go with anything - Summer Holiday seemed apt.
The next piece was almost to claw back the now distant memory of our holiday in the spring, and Peter Cincotti's rendition of I Love Paris says it all. Romance was firmly back on the agenda.
Shiny heart shaped Czech glass beads, little crystals and rose quartz wired onto a torque sit around the neck in this piece like a garland of flowers. I didn't put any crystals at the back of the necklace - the stiffness of the torque would cause the wired flowers and leaves to dig the wearer in the neck - who wants that in the heat of a warm summer evening, when this piece should really float elegantly around the neck? Not me, that's who!
Peacock from the Ocean
Abalone or Paua is a snail, found in temperate waters around the world from the genus Haliotis ( no, not Halitosis - pay attention now!), meaning 'sea - ear'. It has a flattish shell, which is dull on the outside, and beautifully coloured on the inside, with a mother of pearl nacre. The snail has a strong foot, and clings to a rock surface on the ocean bed, and has to be prised off - this can be extremely difficult, and I was surprised to read that divers have perished in the attempt.
"Abalone grip so hard that unless you catch one by surprise, you are unable to pry it off the basin. Divers used to drown while collecting abalone . . . a diver would pry an abalone loose, stick his fingers under the shell to lift it and then in surprise and pain when the ab clamps down would drop his ab bar. At that point, there would be no way to get his hand loose and he would drown. (Tank diving is illegal when gathering abalone.)"
This is called the 'Abalone's Revenge'.
One question - how does one catch an abalone by surprise?? - there is no mention of this anywhere - maybe you have to leap out at it from behind a rock, all guns blazing?? Clint Eastwood, eat your heart out!
Red Abalone are harvested mainly for the Sushi restaurant trade - males and females are put into large tanks on moonlit nights ( they prefer to mate on full moon nights), with soft violin music, candlelight, and a bottle of wine (yes, joke!).
An Abalone Farm - a far cry from 'bring on the violins'!
They produce baby abalones, which are collected and given a diet of kelp smoothies and snail spaghetti, which is a slurry of bran, seaweed and other nutrients made into a dough, extruded through a pasta machine and baked, to help them grow till they are large enough to be eaten. The shells are used for jewellery, but have to be ground and polished by experts as the dust is very toxic, and causes lung diseases.
No wonder then, the shells are expensive - however, the colours are so beautiful, I am sure you will agree it is worth all that trouble. I made a polymer clay ruffle bead in abalone colours, and put a necklace together. The colours are gorgeous and I could only hope that my ruffle bead would be up to the task of complementing the abalone shell beads - what do you think??
This necklace, made with crystals and diamante encrusted spacers, has been one of Caprilicious' more successful designs. It has been reproduced in quite a few colours, and at the jewellery party at my friends place, the hostess picked it up almost immediately - when she showed it off to her friends, they fell in love with it, and I had orders for the same piece, having asked her permission first, of course. I sent off for strings of crystals and spacers and clasps, and I made the first of the necklaces on order this week. Fortunately, I have the design and the suppliers written down, and this is one of the few that can actually be remade.
That's about all I have had time for this week folks, it looks like another scorcher here in the UK over the weekend. Have fun, and I will catch up with you next week, same time, same place
Hello everyone, the honorary employees of Caprilicious Jewellery ( Mike and I ) celebrated the first birthday of the company with a couple of mince pies donated by a friend!
I had this Ghau box that had been clamouring for attention, and a hundredweight of beads accumulated so that I could have every conceivable type of coral and turquoise to go with this - I wanted this to be a pièce de résistance. I did not wish to think later on that I should have used this, or that shape of bead - so I collected coral and turquoise in different shapes, colours and sizes, over the last few weeks. I think I have done the Ghau box justice with the necklace that finally emerged. I took my inspiration from ancient Aztec jewellery, with coral and turquoise - the Aztecs used silver a lot, probably because it was so abundant in Mexico - I think they might go a bit pale and gulp, if they looked at the price of silver today!!
As the Ghau box is a dull gold colour, I matched it with gold tone stardust beads - I love those stardust beads, and buy them all the time in preference to plain silver or gold tone ones - they have a sandpaper like surface, and gleam gently in the light - much prettier and more subtle, I think - texture is very important to me.
The only other piece I have had time to put together this week is one I called Deep Purple - I used to listen to that band all the time in my misspent youth. It is made with different colours of purple crystal, teamed with silvery crystal beads and a lovely abalone shell clasp. The crystal tear drops I so love fill the bottom row of the necklace, and shine in the light due to the AB coating. Purple is a colour that gives a regal feel to the wearer, and this necklace is no exception. It can be worn in three ways, depending on the position of the clasp.
Have a lovely weekend people - I shall be slaving away, working at the day job all weekend. Catch you later, same time, same place,
Last week, as I posted, I was turning over the question of what to do with my wire lace peacock - it started life as a pair of Peruvian threadwork pendant/earrings, which I embellished with crystals and put together with some copper wire and yet more crystals to make a peacock - but I didn't quite know what to do with it - I threw the question open to a couple of jewellery makers groups - one in the UK, and the other predominantly with members from the USA - and having got loads of inspiration and ideas, decided on a simple handmade chain incorporating pearly beads and crystals to match the peacock, and to hang it asymmetrically. In folk art, peacocks are often drawn looking backwards at their tails - this may be because they are vain creatures, but the artists use it as a symbol of renewal as the feathers are renewed each year.
I made my peacock look back at its tail feathers too - I loved the curved shape it gave the neck - and it was lovely to be able to bend wire in the direction that it wants to go for once! I titled the piece Scherezade as it seemed to be so 'Arabian Night's Dreams', with its brilliant colours - and I love the haunting music by Nikolai Rimsky - Korsakov. I think the dancer in the ballet below might have worn this piece! The design seemed to flow - all I had was the bare minimum of an idea and my box of crystal beads, and one thing just followed the next till I felt as if I woke up and the finished article was staring me in the face - maybe I didn't make it after all and it was the elves that visited in the night - however, Santa's grotto, this ain't!
Once this piece was finished, I felt drained - it had absorbed all my creative energies and I turned my thoughts to simpler pieces that give me just as much pleasure. I had a few pendants and pieces of polymer clay I had made earlier, so I set about making them up into items that were wearable.
I like my jewellery to tell a story - as if you haven't guessed by now from reading my blog! I continually research my inspirations on the internet, gathering ideas and stories poetry and music, as the piece comes into being.
I made a water lily, on a lily pad out of polymer clay - hadn't quite decided what to do with it, but realised that by a happy accident, I had put in a fold over in the leaf that could be used as a bail. The two wires I had cured into the piece so I could attach it to something then became redundant - so I cut one off, and attached a little lamp worked glass and bead dragonfly to the other, which I coiled into a spring, so that the dragonfly appeared to be hovering over the waterlily - from that idea it was easy to take it further, into creating a lily pond with fish and snails and dandelion heads - I let my imagination run riot - and turned out a pleasant and summery piece with a three dimensional aspect to it.
Flowers in a Tornado
I have had these tornado beads for ages - I made them up from a tutorial by Lisa Niven Kelly of Beaducation, and I love their organic shape - it struck me - I mut be the only person - or one of a minute number of people - who needs a tutorial to make a messy bead - most people have to learn how to make their jewellery neat and tidy, but I had to do it the other way around! I paired them with some lucite beads and knotted waxed blue cotton for a light and pretty summer necklace. However, mindful that summer is a time for sun tan lotion, perspiration ( ladies glow! - I am told, but lets call a spade a big shovel here) I put wire in at the top, to keep the look pristine for longer! I made earrings to match too. It is a tangled necklace - but I have a secret weapon to keep the threads from turning into a hopeless knot - large safety pins! - placed strategically across the strands will allow transport of the necklace, completely safely, without the nuisance of untangling it each time it is worn - of course you have to remember to put the pins in when you take it off.
I had an abalone shell pendant set in Sterling silver, and I made up a little necklace in complementary colours to go with it - am wearing (test driving) it at the moment, and it feels just right around the neck. Some lovely zebra dyed blue howlite arrived in the mail, and I couldn't wait to use it, it was so pretty - I had a pewter dragonfly clasp that I was keen to use, and as it was meant for two strands, the howlite was put together with opaque blue seed beads, chrysocolla rectangles and silver coloured spacers, with a dangling dragonfly to match - there are earrings to go with this piece as well, on some lovely extra long surgical steel kidney wires - cant wait to see how they will go down.
I want to say a special thank you to those who write on the Caprilicious Jewellery Page on Facebook and leave comments on my website/blog - your encouragement means a lot, thank you very much. Also, those who have come back to buy a second piece from me - I often wonder whether you liked your jewellery if you don't write back - but when you buy a second piece - I am sure you did! My pieces of jewellery are like my little babies - and I send them out into the world - I can only hope you love them as much as I do - am I being fanciful?? and a bit overly sentimental, bordering on silly?? -almost certainly, but then I am new to this and am not blase' as yet - please forgive my enthusiasm :)
Catch you next week with another instalment of the Caprilicious Blog