Saturday, 31 January 2015

Art Bead Scene Jan Challenge

One of the things I have decided to take part in for 2015 is the Art Bead Scene Challenge.  If you are not familiar with Art Bead Scene it is well worth taking a look.  It is a blog run by art bead makers and users and there is always something to learn.

One of the features on the blog is a monthly challenge whereby a piece of art is displayed for the month to use as inspiration for bead and jewellery design.  

This piece is called 'Imagine Tomorrows World' (orange version), 1998 by Friedensreich HundertwaserI had to look at the picture a couple of times before deciding how I was going to tackle it.  There is quite alot going on in terms of shapes but I decided to go with colour.  I couldn't choose between the black dark section and the brighter orange so I made two beads.  The orange won the day with black being used for the cord and connector ring.  The words in the title of the piece inspired the sputnik type shape.  All in all I am quite pleased with how this one came together.  Can't wait for the Feb challenge.

January Component of the Month with Art Jewelry Elements

There is a blog I like to follow called Art Jewelry Elements and each month they have a giveaway.  Imagine my excitement when I received an email from Linda Landig telling me that I had won the component that she had donated to the January challenge!

Before I reveal  what I made and explain how I put it together, I have a little story to tell.  I spent most of December telling myself that it will take a while for my component to arrive as it was Christmas so postal services were busy and Linda lives in the states so my prize had a way to travel.  I waited very patiently, eagerly checking the mail daily.  Mid-January arrived and I couldn't wait any longer so I contacted Linda to let her know I hadn't received anything. 

Linda was upset to hear that I hadn't received the component and very kindly offered me a replacement.  I was upset to not be able to take part in the challenge.  So, I had a little sulk then came to terms with the disappointment.

Fast forward a couple of days, I was just arriving home from work.  A lady wandered onto my drive with two beautiful dogs, one of which is an irish Wolfhound!  She asked if my house was number 71 and was my name Yvette to which I answered 'yes'.  She then proceeded to take an envelope from her bag and launched into an explanation of what had happened.  This lady also lives at number 71, different street obviously, AND she happens to make jewellery.  So, when an envelope turned up with 71 on it, from the states she just opened it up thinking it was something she ordered.  Not until a day or two later did she realise that the package was not hers.  With the hectic festive season and then illness she hadn't managed to try to track me down until last week! Am I glad that she went to the effort to find me!  I should say at this point that the lady in question is Sue of Visionari, she has beautiful artwork and jewellery for sale.

This is the piece that I won!  Isn't it stunning?  I had some ideas swimming arouund in my head while waiting for it to arrive.  I had thought I could make a macrame necklace using ivory and what little amount of neutral toned beads I have.  The brief was to bust some stash so no buying more beads.  However, when I fnally got my mitts on it I decided that too many beads would totally detract from the beauty and rustic feel of the piece.

This is what I made.  It looks kind of simple and I didn't bust much stash in the end.  To be honest, I would have been happy to have the pendant on the leather with nothing added but where is the challenge in that?

I did find this a bit of a challenge.  My usual colour pallette is much more vibrant and I was resisting the urge to make anything too busy reminding myself that in this case less is more.  However, I was under a tight timescale and after having this sitting around as a mock-up for a couple of days I decided to go with it.

The lampwork glass disc and the purple etched bead are my own creations.  The other beads are from Smitten Beads.  I made a macrame bail using some C-lon cord with some little pink beads to finish the ends.  The pendant is threaded onto a long piece of leather thong which can be knotted at the desirable length for easy wear.

I hope you like what I made.  Many thanks to Linda for a gorgeous pendant.  I hope to be able to take part again sometime.  If you would like to see what the others made please follow the links below.

AJE team: 

Guest Participants ( aka winners)
Samantha- Wescott Jewelry
Nikki - Silver Nik nats
Yvette - Blue Kiln Beads

Bonus participants! 

Friday, 23 January 2015

New Year = New Diary

I've had a Filofax for a long time but for the past couple of years I have bought a diary feeling that my Filofax is a little boring.  While being off work I have been surfing the net, especially Youtube, looking at art journals which led onto looking at how others use their planners/Filofax.  This resulted in a little Filofax makeover.  I have lots of scrapbooking papers and a beautiful set of Project Life Olive Edition papers, so I gathered my glue, my old Filofax diary dividers and set to.

 Ta da!  I am so pleased with how they came out.  I didn't take a before shot but they were a very boring cream card.  The one mistake, you may have spotted it, is that the August card is covered on the wrong side.  I got abit carried away and by the time I noticed my error the glue had dried.  I need to rectify it by adding more paper on the correct side but that can wait.

I also have a penchant for washi tape and something I saw during my surfing sessions was the use of Washi tape on the edge of pages to beautify a book.  My Filofax is the personal size, its small enough to fit into a handbag and is great as a calendar size but sometimes the pages are too small for jotting lots of notes and ideas when out and about.  I decided to make some pages that would let make more notes on a page.
A piece of lined paper with a piece of plain paper and I could, if this isn't large enough, add another sheet which can concertina and fold in.  I just love the colour the washi tape edges give.
Another nifty tip I picked up is using the little pockets you can get for Filofax as mini stationary cases.  I decided to use the credit card holder to hold some mini post it notes.

Oh yes, and a new pen was required.  I couldn't resist this pen and pencil set from Whsmith, they fit perfectly into the pocket.

If you have been inspired to update and breathe abit of life into an old Filofax/planner here are some links

Here's to a colourful and organised 2015.