Sunday, November 27, 2011

Art Bead Scene's November Challenge

The Art Bead Scene blog has been a huge source of inspiration for me lately. They run monthly challenges and I knew when I saw the color palette for this most recent one that I had to participate.

I've been drooling over folk art and nature-inspired jewelry lately and these colors just screamed, "Make something folksy!".

Can you hear the colors screaming? No? It's just me? Hmmm...

So, here's what I came up with for my entry.

Unfortunately November has been devoid of good natural light for photos, so this is the best I could do. The detail shots are clearer.

I made all the beads except for the malachite chips, which I never would've thought of to go together with a folk art theme if they hadn't just been set on my table near enough to the other beads to make me take a second glance and consider pairing them. I love it when that happens.

This little bird is directly inspired by Heather Powers' little bird beads. I love that such a simple shape can so clearly represent a bird. However, I'm not so good at keeping things simple, so I etched designs into my little birdy. I think it adds to the folkish feel, but detracts from clarity of the fact that it is indeed supposed to be a bird.

The surrounding round beads are my first attempt at fabric-covering beads. I used a few different prints from my collection of vintage fabrics, including one that used to be the upholstery on my great aunt Ada's favorite chair. I love that I got to incorporate a little piece of her into this necklace.

I made this long bead with a feather design wrapping around it to offset the bird, and also to introduce more texture to the necklace as a whole. I wanted a good mix of different textures in this piece, which I think I achieved with the stringy seed pod beads and the smooth malachite and the torn fabric edges.

I think I'll be keeping this necklace for myself, but definitely incorporating similar parts into future items for the shop, so stay tuned.


  1. Hi Jenna, I love your folk art style approach on this months challenge. Your beads really are super nice! I love the bird especially, and the long feather and the stringy green beads. All the pieces come together wonderfully!

  2. What lovely beads You made !! The feather one is stunning and the bird is gorgeous!A very nice entry for this months challenge :)

  3. Miss Jenna, I am so glad that you created this lovely necklace. I love the folksy feel to it. And I think it is great that you were inspired by our own Miss Heather Powers to make that bead but you really made it your own with the special touches of the etching. But that feather bead makes my head swoon! I want one of those! Will you be making any more?
    Check back later today for the blog hop - I am a bit behind today!
    Enjoy the day!