AJE Component of the Month – November Reveal

The components for this months challenge come in the form of these lovely beaded hoops from the seriously talented seed beader Kristen Stevens. Once again I forgot to photograph my own beads but they were the same as the purple pair in the centre of this picture.

Since they came in a pair I decided pretty quickly to make earrings but I wanted to try and do something a bit different. They’re very light and quite flexible so I began by looking for something that might give them a little more rigidity and structure. Whilst rummaging I came across my pot of copper washers and found some that the hoops sat quite nicely inside and I started to think about ways to attached the two elements – a little wire wrapping seemed in order.

I decided I wanted integral ear wires so I began by soldering some copper wire to the washers. I then had a bit of a ‘what if’ moment and used some solder paste to give the washers a more grungy, industrial look by dotting it around, melting it and then hammering it for a more battered look… I like this look a lot and I wish I’d thought to take process pictures but I always forget when I’m experimenting. I also punched a hole in the washers opposite the ear wire.

Next I had to attach Kristen’s hoop and this proved a little tricky. Because they didn’t fit snugly to the washer so it was difficult to keep them aligned – I kept wrapping too tightly and pulling the hoops to one side. Eventually I managed to get a more even and relaxed tension which held the hoops centred where I wanted them. Some ‘messy’ wrapping took care of the excess wire and created a contrasting accent.

For a little flourish I found some crystals that matched the colour of the hoops and added them to the bottom of the washers as dangles. Finally I formed the integral ear wires and here we have the finished product…

Because it took me a few attempts to get the wrapping right I did take a
bit of the surface colour of the hoops but in actual fact I really like
the effect and I think it works well with the grungy theme.

Many thanks to Kristen for providing up with such great beads to play with. Please use the links below to see what the rest of the team and out guests made for this challenge.

Lesley 

Cindy Martin Shaw
Shai Williams
Karen Martinez

Linda Landig

Caroline Dewison
Francesca Watson
Jenny Davies-Reazor
Lindsay Starr
Jennifer Cameron

AJE Component of the month – November Reveal

The components we got to work with for this months challenge were a pair of the beautiful beaded beads made by the AJE ‘Queen of Seeds’ Kristen Stevens…

I chose a pair of lovely cinnamon coloured beads but I was also fortunate enough to do a little bead swap with Kristen so I actually received a whole selection of beads in beautifully coordinating tones and, because they went so beautifully with one of my patinated bronze leaf connectors I decided to use some of these too.

The beads reminded e of hedgerow fruits in various stages of ripeness and I wanted to try and portray that sense of abundance your get when everything is coming to fruition. I decided on a double strand necklace and combined Kristen’s beads with a selection of matching Czech glass, including some gorgeous vintage bronze faceted glass barrels.

The back of the necklace is made up of 2 strands of farfalle beads in a dark aubergine and olive green and a handmade bronze wire clasp. the final touch is a tiny flower bead hung from the bottom of the leaf connector.

I apologise for the photos not being the best in the world…for some reason I had great difficulty getting ‘unfuzzy’ photos and I can only put it down to my broken ankle…that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it.

I hope you’ll join us in our little blog hop to see what the rest of the team and our guest artist did with Kristen’s wonderful beads.

Special Guest
Alice Alice Dreaming
AJE Team
Lesley