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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Bracelets for a year challenge

So, like I said I set myself a challenge, and this involves making (at least) one bracelet per week for the 52 weeks of 2012, and so far, I am on target. The first 2 weeks I made bracelets from beautiful hand-crafted lampwork beads made by the very talented Nikki at Bastille Bleu Lampwork (week one), and the equally talented Lorraine at Lorraine Dowdle Creations (week 2) The work of both these talented artists can be seen on Facebook, and also on Etsy. They each have their own websites as well.

Week one incorporated HoPpY the frog, some matching flower beads, and copper, all brought together into a beautiful and rather special little bracelet. It has now sold, and I have to say, I am a little sad that HoPpY has gone.

Week 2 is a beautiful bracelet, using a set of 3 gorgeous beads made by Lorraine. They have purple, pink, and green as main colours, with a couple more colours thrown in. To me, it looks like sea creatures caught up in the glass. Again, this one is sold. The first person to see it, bought it. She is a friend of mine. The bracelet is made with the beads wrapped in sterling silver. I would have been very happy keeping this one for myself ;-)

For the third week I made 2 similar bracelets, similar in the way that they each used 8mm Swarovski pearls, an 3mm  spacers. The first used tahitian look pearls with sterling silver beads and clasp, the second used rose pink pearls with copper spacers and clasp, making two strikingly different bracelets. They are both for sale, the silver for $30, and the copper for $15. Yes silver is that much more expensive, I can see why there are lots of artists out there using alternatives to silver these days. For me, I only just started using sterling silver anyway, so I have not had to adapt too much.

Week 4 was a challenge in itself. I decided to get my wigjig out, and try to make some fancy links, as shown on 'wigjig.com' The lnks worked well, but the bracelet was a little on the large side - about 8.5 inches, hehe. So I turned that into a necklace, and using the same type of bead made a bracelet with one bead, and 3 strands of silver plated chain, with a fancy silver coloured clasp and I loved the result. The beads are red faceted glass - nice for valentines day.

For week 5, I used up some old chain links that I bought a long while back to make Alex's hearts bracelet (see post written on         ). I added a clasp in the same gunmetal colour, and hung a lampworked glass heart from it. The heart was purchased from Bastille Bleu, the same person who sold me the beads for my HoPpY the frog bracelet. It is a simply made bracelet, that, in my opinion, will give its wearer many favourable comments, and a whole heap of pleasure.

Here is the  bead in close up - I am sure you will agree that it is lovely.

And so we come to the current week. I was feeling a little uninspired to begin with, so when I went up into my 'studio' - did I tell you that I now have a studio? well, its a space behind a curtain in my spare room, more than a studio, LOL, but its what I like to call my studio - feels a little more special that a closet then, hehe.
Anyway, where was I - Yes, a little uninspired - faced with a wall of recently purchased beads and wondering what to do with any of them, so I plucked these rectangular beads from the wall. I love the mixture of greens and beige in them, and put them together using silver plated wire, and 6mm twisted jump rings. From the jump rings I hung Swarovski bicones in two sizes (4 and 6mm) and two colours. I cant remember what the beads are, they are dyes something - I need to take a trip to the beadshop, and find out - oh woe is me!!! I will let you know as soon as I get it checked out - unless of course any of you know. Well, here is the finished item.

More next week. X

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