Today is the big day!! Time for the reveal of the 8th Annual Bead Soup Blog Party! This has been such a fun experience I am a little sad to see it over. I have been anxiously awaiting revealing the pieces I created, looking forward to hearing what you think. But, I will miss the excitement of putting together a soup for my partner, waiting for my soup to arrive, chatting and getting to know everyone in the Facebook group and finally, working on creating pieces that I have just fallen in love with.
Before I begin the reveal, I want to give a big shout out to our hostess, Lori Anderson at The Pretty Things Blog She took on this Herculean task of partnering up almost 500 people as well as communicating with us all through the process. She made me feel that I was just as important to this party being a newbie as anyone else and I always felt welcomed. Everything she did would have been very difficult for anyone, but considering what she is going through in her life while doing all this is amazing. Thank you Lori, for all you have done to make this happen.
If you remember, a few weeks back I posted a sneak peak at my soup sent to me by my partner, Melissa Nehls Packer over at Melissas Cheap Frills It was great to get to know her and to put a soup together that I hoped would challenge her as well as work with other things in her stash. She sent me the wonderful soup in the picture above and in the closer up photo here.
I put my soup away for a few weeks while I worked on a few other projects I had on my list and started really focusing on it about three weeks ago. At first, I really was overwhelmed. I loved all the colors and the beads that Melissa had sent me. Her handmade focal made me so very happy! Why was I overwhelmed then? Because I was afraid I couldn't do all these beads justice. Or that other designers in the party would come take a peek at what I created and not think it measured up. After talking to a few of my beady friends though, I realized that those were unfounded fears and took the jump to start creating.
|Coming together on my work table|
|Tea Time Delight|
I took the fantastic black floral barrel beads, crystal spacers, blue glass rounds and the larger of the two clasps Melissa sent me and put them together to create this necklace. While I was studying the beads from the soup on my bead board, I kept feeling an Asian inspiration. Peeking into my stash, I found these wonderful cherry "quartz" chips and my inspiration kicked into overdrive. I love the way the pink and red hues in the glass chips picked out the flowers in the large beads. Adding the blue glass beads adds a nice contrast to the cherry chips, and I used two siam colored faceted rondelles to set the barrel beads off from the body of the necklace.
When it all came together, I can imagine a woman having tea on a large balcony overlooking a beautiful tropical landscape. Somehow, I always come back to my love of history and vintage, classic looks.
Here is a closer look at the focal Melissa made for me. I fell in love with the wonderful little bird the minute I pulled it out of the packaging and I new I had to make a very special necklace for it. The resulting piece is my signature piece for this blog party. I was able to put together several different pieces that all highlighted the sweet bird, but I kept taking them apart again. I really wanted this necklace to be different; to stretch me creatively and to definitely take me outside my design box. After all, that was the whole idea of the party to begin with. Melissa had sent along some beautiful beads in my soup, and they all just worked together so perfectly. Here, let me show you.
While this necklace is outside of what I design in a lot of ways, it still has that classic, vintage touch that speaks very much of Forest of Jewels. The main difference is I went asymmetrical. I never do that!! But the large white floral bead along with the pink glass beads really deserved a lot of attention too. I just didn't want to take anything away from the bird focal, so to make both aspects shine, I separated them and give them each their own special spot on the necklace.
I used the aqua glass rounds that Melissa sent me as the transition part of the necklace. I added aqua spacer beads and light rose crystal rondelles to capture the color of the bird in the focal. The reminder of the necklace is made of clear crystals and glass pearls in pink and pistachio green. Finally, I used the second clasp that was included in the soup. This piece would be perfect for a garden party or a summer wedding, and I can see the wearer in a soft pastel or white dress walking across a perfectly manicured lawn enjoying her special day.
But wait...there is more :) Well just a little bit more. I made earrings to match the necklace.
This photograph gives a really great look at the detail of the pink glass beads I was given. They are very lovely! The earrings are made from components included in the necklace, clear crystal bicones, the pink glass beads, aqua crystal spacers and aqua glass beads.
I have absolutely loved working on my designs and it was a pleasure to get to know so many talented jewelry artisans throughout this experience. Again, I want to thank Lori and Melissa for all they did. I hope that there will be more blog hops hosted by Lori in the future. I would love to participate. Thank you for stopping by and taking a peek at my designs. There are over 460 other participants, so please, over the next few days stop by their blogs and see what they designed. You can find them all listed here:
8th Annual Bead Soup Blog Party Participation List