Friday, July 31, 2015

The Jenny Monthly Challenge - July Reveal

Wow, it is the end of July... and, even though I started late, I was able to finish my challenge on time. Hurray!

As a refresher, this was my challenge:

...or, rather, my challenge was to make something using materials found in each of those baggies. (For information about the origin of those baggies, go here.)

Now, my first thought was to make one giant piece using all the required components... but I ended up making something different for each bag instead. I'm not upset, though--I think everything turned out well.

So, without further ado, here is what I made!

Bag 1

That was what was in the bag.

...And this is what I made!

I knew that I wanted to make this necklace as soon as I saw the components. It's simple and elegant. At first, I felt like perhaps it was too simple, but then I realized that I like it just the way it is.

Bag 2

Again, the above picture shows what was in the bag...

And these are what I made!

I saw those shell charms, and just knew I had to make earrings... And, since I couldn't decide which design I liked better, I decided to just make them both!

Bag 3

What a lovely collection!

...I decided to just focus on one strand of gemstones, so I picked this lovely set of prehnite teardops to work with:

My original plan was to make something simple and elegant.

And then I remembered that I had green pearls that would match very nicely. And then I thought about adding other summery colors... perhaps yellow and blue, like the earrings I made from the previous bag?

And, since I had so many pearls, why not make it a bit longer?

And so, this was born:


Giant long tassel-y wire-wrapped summer-bright goodness. 

...complete with matching earrings!

I like bright colors... but, I have to admit, that is certainly the brightest thing I've made in quite some time. Not complaining! Just amused, and happy that I got to tap into my more vibrantly colored side. Apparently it was time to celebrate summer.

So, there you go! That's what I made for July's challenge. Thank you so much for stopping by... Have a wonderful last day of July, everyone!

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Wednesday's Worktable

So, what's on my worktable this week? 

My most recent color obsession! 

(Seriously... I think this is the fifth or sixth thing I've made with these colors in the past week and a half. Heh.)

Red and brown and bronze and copper, with a hint of tan.

This is quite the eclectic mix of materials, as well... From top to bottom, there is: leather, shell, mixed materials (bone, copper, resin, jasper, ceramic), glass, dyed quartzite, brecciated jasper, and metal.

Using these materials, I've already started on a tassel necklace. (To be fair, I actually tried another design first, but it didn't look right. Apparently, the call of the tassel is strong right now... I decided to stop fighting it.) 

And! For something completely different, stop by on Friday for the reveal for my Monthly Challenge! The color palette is quite different... although I suppose it's not too late for me to change that. ;)

I hope everyone is having a lovely week! Happy Wednesday!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Wednesday's Worktable

After a few weeks of being stuck in a creative lull, I seem to have hit my stride again... And as a result, there are many many things on my worktable today! Hurray!

Some background: last night, I went to a metal stamping class at my local bead shop, A World of Beads. Surprisingly, it wasn't my idea to go--I got invited by a friend. And what fun! It was the first actual jewelry-making class I had ever attended... It was happy to just sit back, relax, and learn. I didn't have the be the expert, I didn't have to answer questions... I got to be the student. It was lovely.

...And, as you might imagine, the things on today's worktable all stem from what I made during the class.

Oh, look, it's my name.

That is my practice piece--my first attempt at metal stamping ever. Not big or showy, but still cute. And the letters are only slightly crooked! I call that a win. 

This piece is now sitting happily on my craft table, staring at me and challenging me to make something with it. It's actually quite dainty, which is surprisingly difficult for me right now--I seem to be on a big-and-bold kick. We'll see what I come up with!

I made two other pieces at the class... Both of which I have already turned into jewelry.

Next up, a bracelet bar...

...that was turned into this:

...and serendipitously matched something else I had already planned to make, even though I didn't make the (obvious) connection until this morning. So, here is the matching necklace that is currently underway:

What's red and gold and stands for courage?
...Yeah. That.

And the last piece that I stamped is pretty special. I saw the blank, and immediately knew what I wanted to make with it.

...You can see my copper piece in the background.

I was so inspired that when I got home last night, I immediately started working on this necklace:

For reasons why this combination is important to me, you might want to check out this post. (Cliff note version: copper and key and leaf and purple and green and storyteller = reference to a story I'm writing, and is subsequently very special to me.)

I am extremely happy with how this necklace turned out... and, those lovely purple beads are actually also from the same bead store, just purchased at a different time. 

So, ta-da! That is what is currently on my worktable... Many wonderful projects, and so many ideas for new projects! When money allows, I would love to get the supplies to do metal stamping on my own...Until then, I can just dream (and plot and plan) about all the projects I will do. Fun times!

Thanks so much for reading... Take care, everyone, and have a wonderful Wednesday!

Friday, July 17, 2015

The Jenny Monthly Challenge - July Edition

Golly, July has certainly been an interesting--and busy!--month. It's hard to believe that it's already halfway over!

...It's also hard to believe that I haven't even started this month's challenge yet.  Yikes!

So, you might be asking, just what is my challenge for this month?

This is my challenge for this month!

That? Is my July shipment from Bargain Bead Box.* It's a new monthly subscription that I signed up for, where they send you over $40 worth of beads for under $20. 

You don't know what you're going to get--but oh, what fun! I like the surprise!

Look what I got this month!

Bag 1

Bag 2

Bag 3

So, my challenge?

Is to make something with materials from each bag. I am not going to try to use everything--not by a long shot, I'm sure--but I want to make sure that each bag gets represented. I also don't know if I'm going to incorporate them all into one piece, or into separate pieces, but figuring that out will be part of the fun!

Come back on Friday, July 31st to see what I've made!

...And that means that I better start working! With so many lovely things to choose from, this should be fun!

This company didn't ask me to blog about them... I just have had such good experiences with them, and their sister site BeadBoxBargains, that I cannot give them enough good press. They have amazing customer service, good products, quick shipping, and wonderful deals. They are, hands down, one of my favorite resources. 

...And now I get a monthly shipment of happiness from them. Wheeee!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Wednesday's Worktable

So, the main project on my worktable this week is a little different...

...and that's because it isn't beading--it's knitting!

While digging through my stash this week, I came across this absolutely gorgeous designer yarn that my mother bought me a few years ago. It's one of those things that I've been holding on to for just the right project...

And I decided that it wasn't doing anybody any good just sitting there.

So, I decided to make a scarf out of it. A simple garter stitch scarf. Not the most daring design, perhaps, but it will be fuzzy and soft and beautiful--and whenever I wear it, I will think of my mommy.

...And that is a happy thing.

Happy Wednesday, everyone!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Wednesday's Worktable

Here it is, yet another Wednesday!

And that means that it's time to share what's on my worktable!


Hand-cut drops paired with crystal clear chips and silvertone metal... Not exactly bright and summery, I suppose--and not the most photogenic thing I've ever worked on--but still fun nonetheless. Reminds me a bit of rain... And since it's such a rainy day, that seemed quite fitting.

My idea is to make a tasseled lariat with these materials... Which will involve lots and lots of fiddly wire-wrapping with 26 gauge wire. But! It should look lovely... If it turns out the way I expect. Heh. That's always part of the fun, creative process!

So, there you go... That's what I'm working on. Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope everyone has a lovely day! 

Oh, and don't worry... I haven't forgotten about my Jenny Monthly Challenge for this month. I actually have two different ideas I'm toying with--I'm just waiting on something before I decide which one to go with. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Hello, July! ...and Wednesday's Worktable

Happy July, everyone!

Today's worktable is a little bit different... I'm in between projects, so I've been straightening up my workspace a bit. It's always fun tidying up in preparation for another round of creativity! 

Sorting through colorful cane glass beads.
Bright and summery, perhaps I'll use them in one of my next creations.

This 26 gauge brass wire exploded out of the package.
I was able to salvage most of it, but yeah. That was a fun tangle.

Project leftovers!
It's always fun looking at the few odds and ends that are left,
since it reminds me of all the cool things I've gotten to make.

So, there you go... Just a little glimpse into my creating space. We'll have to see what sorts of projects July has in store--so many pretty beads, so little time! 

I hope everyone has a wonderful July!