Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Inspired by Reading: The Night Circus

Loved it! One of my favorite books! So much to be inspired by, as well!

I chose The Circus itself as my inspiration for my necklace. The black and white tents are portrayed by these amazing black and white bicone Czech glass beads I found at In between the tents is the black night sky plus two tiny Swarovski red crystals to represent Widget's and Poppet's bright red hair.

The Circus was all laid out in circles and the tents themselves were circular. The next picture is of the following tents recreated in bead form:

  • The white rose represents the performers OUTSIDE of the tents, one of whom is always given a rose by someone every night
  • The Illusionist - the square Swarovski representing Celia's black silk top hat
  • The Cloud Maze - the opal and white represent the layer upon layer of the clouds
  • The Hall of Mirrors - two different metallic coated square beads (plus a red crystal to represent the Reveurs)

The next picture expresses the following tents:

  • The Pool of Tears - the smooth black stones that are tossed in the pool shown in another circle
  • The Stargazer - the tent that is only open on clear nights to be able to see the stars in the sky
  • The Ice Garden - the AB Swarovski drops I Fell In Love With from Allegory Gallery represent the tent where everything is frozen in ice


Here it is all in one picture:


But wait... that's not it! Check out what these participants made with "The Night Circus" by Erin Morgenstern in mind:

Ann Schroeder

Eric Wentling

Sarajo Wentling

Jeanne Steck

Marie D'Onofrio

Alison Smith

Andrew Thornton, Terri Greenawalt, Dawn Berkebile, Amy Roadman, and Laurel Ross



Halcraft Pretty Palette Challenge

Thanks to Erin for hosting this Challenge on Pretty Palettes :: August Reveal - Halcraft USA. I always enjoy searching out the beads that she finds and trying to find the exact same ones to use. Then I split them with Laurel and we start creating. This time I had some lava stone from Allegory Gallery already so we used it. The rest of the beads are all from Michaels Stores. Here is the inspiration picture and the bead picture from Halcraft USA.

Fairy chimneys formed from volcanic rock, rise to the sky and have been carved out for churches, homes and hotels over the centuries.


Neutral tones play with textures for the August Pretty Palettes inspiration.


I made a wire wrapped dangle bracelet. It is reminiscent of the landscape of Cappadocia, Turkey and its fairy chimneys that are made from volcanic ash.

Take a look at the Pretty Palettes :: August Reveal and see what all the other designers made from the same inspiration!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Andrew Thornton's Dreaming Tree Challenge Reveal


This challenge I decided to use the chips on the strand from the kit and nothing else. So I was on a mission to find interesting ways to use chips in designs. I came across a designer on etsy, TesoroDelSol and I really loved her scalloped chip necklaces. So in her honor, I tried a smaller version.

I love finding new designers and designs while working on these challenges. Thanks to Andrew for putting these kits together!

Hop around and show some support to THESE fabulous designers...

Tammy Bowman

Gloria Allen

Michelle McCarthy - Playing with Clay

Ann Schroeder

Dolores Raml

Shaiha Williams

Andrew Thornton, Nancy Noyes-Ward, Laurel Ross, Cheryl Lee Tucker, Dawn Berkebile, and Melissa Wynne





Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Jade Challenge!

Andrew Thornton (The Writing and Art of Andrew Thornton) had this amazing faceted round dyed Jade for sale at Allegory Gallery (Allegory Gallery — Store Home). We all fell in LUV with it! It was cotton candy colors in two different sizes.

Soooo, Laurel bought one strand of each color, then gave me half... Then we BOTH gave Zach all that we had left when we finished our projects. So we kind of had an impromptu "Jade Challenge by Friends of Allegory Gallery". (no, this group doesn't exist... you can't join... I just made it up right now)

So here's what we all made...

First up is Zach's piece:

He strung a super long necklace with awesome triangle silver spacers and clear faceted rounds.

Next up is Laurel's necklace:

She also strung a looooong necklace and she used beautiful Czech glass and a Saki clasp.

And here is mine:

I made a beaded tassel and knotted mine on silk thread (and managed to find yet another reason to use a Green Girl Studios piece!)

Thanks Andrew for inspiring us and having such amazing beads to work with!


Thursday, August 6, 2015

Inspired by Reading: Swamplandia! By Karen Russel

For this months book project I focused on the color purple, the trees in the swamp, and the alligators.
Ossie wears a purple turban, a purple skirt, and a purple ribbon in her hair. Purple is often associated with Spirituality, Faith, Magic, Mysticism. It is associated with the seventh chakra located at the crown of the head. This is the chakra of connection to ones spirit.
The swamp cypress trees with their visible roots above the water line are described throughout the book. As well as the melaleuca tree, the invasive tree that was planted with hopes of a brighter future but all it did was take over like a cancer.
And of course who could forget the 'Seths' , all the alligators, that the story has. These are the lifeblood of the Bigtree families survival in the swamp. They are the only reason Swamplandia! Theme park exists.

I used artisan made wood beads, purple glass triangles, purple and green Czech glass rondells, purple alligators and a decoupage wood artisan focal the reminded me of the swampy trees and roots. Oh, and an alligator clasp!
Thanks Andrew! For a fun meet up and book club night.
Here are the participants for this month.

Andrew Thornton, Amy Roadman, Dawn Berkebile, Terri Greenawalt, Laurel Ross, Nancy Noyes-Ward, and Marie D'Onofrio

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Halcraft Pretty Palettes Challenge Reveal

I have been very behind in posting! Make sure to hop around to see the others that are posted on Pretty Palettes :: July Reveal - Halcraft USA.

Here's Erin's inspiration...

Here are the beads from Michael's ...

Here is my Aurora Necklace ...


Thanks for looking!