I was out of commission for about two weeks for my travels and illness, but before I left I went searching for just the right art bead to help me find my Muse for this challenge.
I started with my burgeoning art bead stash. But none of them had the right feel. (What?! But I have a small fortune invested in this horded art bead stash. You mean there is nothing suitably beachy in there?!)
I had grandiose plans to make my own pendant from a deep blue seashell, some feathers and some sand. But I obviously have delusions as to how much time I could actually devote to this challenge in this overscheduled month.
So I went shopping on Etsy instead.
I know. I have said it before that I need to put the kibosh on that sort of thing. But this is serious! I can't enter the Art Bead Scene challenge without a suitable art bead. And I have to enter this totally free and perfectly voluntary artistic challenge with no compensation, right?
Actually, I feel that these challenges have made me a better designer, and I am so grateful that I have found them. I like to stretch my creative wings and this challenge really had me thinking that perhaps I was some sort of flightless bird because it was seemingly never going to get off the ground.
But I persevered and scored a perfect focal when I stumbled upon Copper Art Designs on Etsy. I have been enamored with copper etching for about a year. And I finally screwed up the courage to take a class with Gina Crow at this years Bead & Button. And I have watched in amazement as so many of my friends (like Heather Powers and Melanie Brooks) have been chronicling their own journeys in metal. And I have been so eager to try it again, save for that pesky little time issue. So finding some experts at the most amazing copper art designs (hence their name), I couldn't help myself!
They had a set of mini beach bookmarks that had the perfect wave on them. The dimension is 4x1". But since I don't measure anything (did I ever tell you about the two couches in my basement that will have to be sold with the house?!), and I am notorious for not paying attention to details like that, I barged ahead and bought them. The design was perfect and it was an impulse.While I was in Vegas, the package arrived. Now, I was stumped.
So I have been sitting here staring at them for hours trying to figure out what to do to turn them into a focal for my jewelry. Saw them in half? That would seem obvious, but the artists painstakingly etched a border all the way around and if I cut it the border would look stupid. Cut around the wave? Another brilliant idea, and one I might use with the one with the wave at the bottom, but since it is August 30th and the challenge is over as of August 31st, that idea is dead in the water (pun intended :-).
But then I thought...hey...wait a minute! Why not make this into a bracelet? So I gently rounded the bookmark until it lay comfortably on my wrist. And....then it sat on my workbench for a few more days. Now what?!I don't know how it is with you, but when I am stumped on a design I need to walk away. Move on to something else. Ultimately, I kept making sketches and tossing around ideas in my head all week long. While I know immediately what beads I wanted to use, I wasn't sure at all how to get them attached, much less looking like they belonged there.
And then I spotted my Stretch Magic.
I don't make a lot of bracelets. And I really don't use stretchy material (I kind of liken that stringing material to the stretchy pants I wear when I am feeling all tired and sloppy...it is too easy and not very attractive). I find that I have a hard time with the correct length on bracelets, especially with personal preference...some people like it loose, or tight or jangly or flat! I know that another reason I dislike bracelet making (I am not averse to wearing them) is because there is a math problem in there and maybe that is what confuses me (did I ever tell you that I was an English teacher...precisely so I didn't have to do math!). You know, that the diameter of the beads has to be taken into account because that will impact how a bracelet sits...if you use really big beads, then you need to make the bracelet longer to accommodate. Or something like that. I even have one of those cones that allows you to measure the exact circumference. God, I wish I had paid better attention in algebra in high school. (Or is it geometry?)
"High Tide" is my submission and features this (sort of) found object bookmark turned into a stunning cuff bracelet. And the rolling waves and the spray of the sea is translated with white branch coral, copper spacers and the most unique bead...antique banded agate (so the tag says). It is really rough and light, like a lava bead, and has these really intriguing crackled colors in gray, blue and white.It was impossible to photograph, but I think it works. And I got it done and entered it a the very last minute (it is 11:57 pm as I write this right now!).
Have you ever procrastinated on a project? If so, how long? Do tell! (I will be eternally grateful that I am not alone!)
Check It Out::Copper Art Designs
Enjoy the day!