|One of my favorite necklaces!|
The photo above is one of my favorite necklaces, made of hand-carved African sandalwood beads. I have a necklace similar to this one that I've worn for years, and the sandalwood beads just get more beautiful with time. This one was extra fun to make because as I chose each sandalwood bead I soon discovered there were about five different artists who made them. I could tell by the shapes. One of the artists was a true perfectionist, and his or her beads are perfectly round, smooth, sanded, and the holes were cleared out nicely. Another carver's beads reflect their maker by their shape, which is a little bit like a cone, fatter on one end than the other. Some carvers may have been young, because their beads were a little bit unpredictable, and the holes were full of wood shavings. It is like the artists left fingerprints as they created their beautiful beads. It was like working with friends to string them.
This necklace is punctuated with African hand-carved bone beads that have been dyed beautiful, soft colors, and different types of silver metal spacer beads. It's strung on FlexWire, and crimped three times for strength. The best part of it that I get a kick out of is that I was having such a good time I kept stringing until it reached 106 inches! So you can wrap it around several times, giving you many options on its length as you wear it.
The other fun part of this necklace is that when I finished it around 2:30 in the morning, I got all inspired to tea-stain it. So there I was in the kitchen, tip-toeing around to get hot water and several tea bags - used PG Tips, "England's best tea since 1930" for its gorgeous dark color. The beads gently soaked up the color after I stirred them around for a little while. Delicious.
The brown hand-carved beads that you see on the glass in front of the earrings were fun to work with too. Same artists - these beads started out unfinished and I took them down in the basement last year and dipped them into a can of rich, dark wood-stain. I stirred them around and let them sit to dry on cookie sheets. Went downstairs several times per day for days to roll them and change out the parchment they were sitting on. I let them dry for a year, cause I wanted to make sure they were dry inside the holes before using them. When I strung them, again on FlexWire, I mixed them with beautiful hand-carved, dyed long bone beads that have the rich dark brown and a bit of beautiful gold in them. This necklace goes around about twice.
I made an effort this year to design earrings that could go with my necklaces, but not be too "matchy-matchy." Let me know how I did.
|Pure unfinished sandalwood|
|Hawk Inspired Petrified Wood Necklace|
|The Fun Corner|
|Cloisonne Bracelets and Necklaces|
|Heaven and Earth Necklace and Blue Dichroic Cabochon Necklace|
|Handmade One-of-a-Kind Lampwork Beads with Fluffy Dangles|
The two necklaces to the right are also my very favorites. I wanted to WEAR them! I wanted to KEEP them! But I said NO, you have too much jewelry and now you have to share! So here they are. I wanted to keep them affordable so they come on dark black lace leather, which you can make any length you prefer, with a simple knot in back. I LOVE these and I think you will too. Lots of earring choices to go with them. The pink one on the left reminds me of the fascinating ebru painting we learned at the museum a while back. Very cool.
|Bottom Shelf - Choose your own cab and have your necklace custom made!|
This year I'm trying something new. On the bottom shelf of the display case on the right is a whole lot of fun. I've brought in a ton of cabochons for you to choose from to have a necklace custom made. You can choose from three styles - the style like the Muchas that includes a peyote stitched border and fringe and seed bead necklace chain, or a simpler style with just peyote stitching and border on a black leather necklace, or one in-between with the cab, the peyote stitching and border, and fringe, on black lace leather. Comfortable price ranges - GORGEOUS cabs. They include square summer cabs, fairytale cabs, and some really beautiful Madonnas. Turnaround time should be about two weeks and I can contact you to discuss colors. Don't forget to ask to look through these cabs, you might just fall in love. Options rock!
Check out our new sculpture that's been installed in the tiny magical Sharon McCarthy Garden, "Warrior Knight Seeking Balance" by Jeanne Stevens-Sollman. It's absolutely enchanting.
|Warrior Seeking Balance by Jeanne Stevens-Sollman|