I have embarked on a mission to use up my two bins (ahem) of ceramic artist components--first up, Jana Bližňáková
of Happy Fish Things
and Happy Fish with Heart
! I decided to knot them--I find knotting so meditative! Needed a little of that.
This was the first one I made
, with one of a pair of Jana's feather/wing-like elements (with their size and lightness, you could use them for fabulous earrings too, but I wanted to make them go farther, and I thought they'd be great in a more petite necklace). I just love the fine black tracery in the glaze. Sublime! I combined it with a pewter heart connector from Happy Mango Beads
, Indonesian glass beads in variegated turquoise (also from Happy Mango--aren't they fabulous? I love how obviously handmade they are), blackstone nuggets, transparent straw-hued Delicas, sterling silver, black Greek leather and waxed linen cording.
Here is the second one--I had these wonderful Czech glass leaves in autumn tones hanging out in my workspace (where did I get those???...) and when I saw them together, I had to do it! I went back to my Happy Mango turquoise seed beads for a splash of matchy-matchy, added a little Red Creek jasper and a couple of carved black horn feathers, and finished the stringing with glossy black 1 mm leather cord and 11/0 matte black seed beads. I anchored the ends to a pair of my hand-textured silver connector rings, adding some nut brown 2 mm Greek leather with my coil ends, and a short length of sterling silver connector chain terminating in one of my hand-forged sterling hook and eye clasps. Sterling silver accent beads.
|Autumn on the Wing|
I also had two of these fantastically delicate cherry-blossom-style pieces of Jana's left in my ceramics bin (I had only used one so far). The glaze on this one
was a bit lighter than the other--a soft teal fading into a diaphanous sea green. It reminded me so much of the sea, I thought some recycled glass rounds with their sea-glass feel would be a nice addition, and I had some in a lovely celadon that went nicely with the glaze. I decided to stay with lighter colors, knotting it all together with Irish waxed linen cording in ivory, and adding Czech Picasso 3-cut glass seed beads in sea green and cobalt blue from Stinky Dog Beads
. For a second it was a tossup between teal Greek leather and this lovely mint -- the mint seemed to make the whole thing pop more so I went with that. It's finished the same as the pieces above, with connector rings, coil ends, and extender chain. (That's a dollop of kyanite on the clasp ring.)
The other cherry blossom was in slightly more saturated, vivid hues of turquoise and teal, so I used bolder colors. I'm obsessed with these Czech "wampum" beads from Stinky Dog Beads
(they make the most wonderfully mellow clacking sound as they move together). I love the Southwest palette! I added black accents to ground it--black Indonesian glass nuggets from Happy Mango (I love the soft sheen on them), more of my 11/0 matte black Japanese seed beads from Fusion Beads
, black Irish waxed linen cording, and black Greek leather--and of course sterling silver (I love that little star jasmine charm--it makes me think of a marshal's badge!). The sweet little Czech glass bird bead is also from Stinky Dog Beads.
I had two of these lovely crackle-glaze medallions in teal and turquoise tones--I love Jana's muted flower pattern, it makes me think of a batik. I thought the vibrant glaze could hold its own against some genuine turquoise, so I went to my favorite blocky turquoise heishi and paired them with garnets--I adore turquoise and garnets together! It's sort of a twist on the traditional Southwest palette, I guess. I love the juxtaposition of the opaque, matte turquoise with the translucent glossy garnets. To bring in some lightness, I teamed them up with vintage Ghanaian glass seed beads in ivory from Afrobeadia
, sterling silver, matte black 11/0 seed beads, black waxed linen cord and black Greek leather.
This is the other medallion. I wanted to go warm with it, so I pawed through my enormous bin of Indonesian glass beads from Happy Mango until I found my favorite ones, in cocoa brown with stripes of pumpkin, saffron and ivory. To echo the teal in the medallion, I added large and small Indonesian glass beads in translucent teal (from Happy Mango Beads) and 11/0 Japanese seed beads in a similar color; and riffing off the colors in the brown striped beads I added more 11/0 seed beads in a warm maize color, Ghanaian seed beads in ivory, a few 8/10 seeds in root beer brown here and there, and deertan lace in a golden buff color. I added a pewter Celtic knot bead from Happy Mango, and finished it off as I did the others, with sterling silver rings, coils, chain and hook-and-eye clasp. (That little Czech glass flower in teal on the clasp is from Stinky Dog Beads
I have more awesome stuff of Jana's left--this is what's on my worktable now: