AJE Compononent of the Month – October Reveal

Yes, it’s that time of month again and for this months AJE COM challenge the components we got to work with were these gorgeous earthy fossil discs from Karen Totten of Starry Road Studio. These are right up my street and I chose a lovely chocolate/tan one in the middle of this image.

I wanted to give my design an old or tribal feel and knew I wanted to use leather. I had in mind to use a wire cocoon bead I made years ago and recently reclaimed from an old necklace but in the event it wasn’t substantial enough to balance Karen’s focal. So I started from scratch and made a new one in bronze wire and incorporated a wire bail to attach it.

I wanted to get a layered talisman effect so I added one of my bronze clam shell shards with some tiny seed bead dangles at the bottom.


I was originally going to keep it very simple and use a very thick piece of leather to suspend the focal from but I couldn’t make up my mind on colour so I started playing around with mixing thinner pieces. I used some chunky rustic Czech glass beads to create this woven pattern and made wire wrapped cord ends and a clasp to finish it off.

And this is my finished piece – quite a design departure for me as I don’t usually make short necklaces but it was necessary for this bold focal and I quite like the effect so I think there may be more to come…


Thank you for visiting today and I hope you’ll join me and visit our guest bloggers and the restof the AJE team to see what they have designed with Karen’s beads.

Lesley

Guest Designers
AJE Blog Team

AJE Earring Challenge – Reveal 17, Weeks 35 & 36

Shockingly it’s September 15th, this is my first post of the month and I don’t know which is worse – the fact that I’ve not posted anything or the fact that two weeks seem to have slipped without me noticing…time must have sped up surely?

Blogging is not the only thing I’ve be remiss with and I’m way behind on the AJE Earring Challenge which has it’s latest reveal today. I have however managed to make three new pairs to at least plug the gap a little…

I’ve been feeling the urge to play with sheet metal of late and this autumnal pair feature leaves from my first attempt at fold forming – heat and hammer is a very satisfying combination I must say. The lampwork beads are by Caroline Rhodes.

I love red and black together as the contrast is always very striking so for this pair I teamed the lovely ceramic flowers from Karen Totten with ‘Fallen Angel’ black brass and some tiny Czech glass beads. The name was inspired by the lyrics of the song ‘Red and Black‘ from Les Miserables.

This final pair are just full of fun with the lovely polka dot etched lampwork beads by Kaz Baildon dressed up with some handmade twisted bronze  rings and bead caps by Lisa Quinn and my own bronze ear wires.

All earrings will be listed in my Etsy shop shortly but feel free to contact me if interested.

You can check out what the other challenge participants have been making by visiting the AJE Earring Challenge Pinterest page and you can also see who is blogging about there designs on today’s AJE Blog post.


Lesley

AJE Component of the Month – January Reveal

This month’s components were dished up by Karen Totten in the form of these delicious Pithivier style beads. Gorgeously crimped and puffed, it was very hard to pick just one but in the end I chose the lovely verdigris one top centre.

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As soon as I got my hands on it I new I wanted to team it up with a bronze piece I’d been working on and create a double focal pendant for a necklace. My piece has a very organic feel to it and not only does it pick up the brown tones of the bead, there is also an echo of the leaf motif in the structure of the bronze element too.

I had some heavily veined turquoise nuggets that I thought might be a good match and indeed they were. I love the contrast of these two colours and decided to stick to this limited palette.  I’m having a bit of an affair with wooden beads at the moment and picked out some of my favourite tiger ebony twisted facet and rounds to add some contrast.

My initial thoughts had been for a long necklace with chain but I ended up stringing the beads on linen cord with some tiny bronze cube spacers. The design is fairly simple as I didn’t want to detract from the focal and asymmetrical patterns seemed to do just that. A simple hand forged bronze hook clasp completes the piece.

I played around with the length for a while and eventually settled on quite a
short piece by my standards with the pendant sitting just below
the collar bone where it has maximum impact. I really like this necklace – it’s so wearable and I love the colours and yes… I’m keeping it for myself! Thank you Karen!

To see what the rest of the AJE team and our guest designers have created just use the links  below.
Happy hopping.

Lesley