Sunday, April 15, 2012

Bangles Bangles Bangles

A few weeks ago I bough Fanciful Devices' Gypsy Bangle Stack tutorial, got super inspired, and...made a ton of ridiculously busy bangles that all managed to clash with each other. This week I revisited them, simplified most of them, created bunches more and ended up with some stacks that I like. I listed 5 yesterday, and Thingette made her first appearance(s) in the shop.

Gilded Grunge Bangle Set
I found that washes of alcohol inks add a lot of interest to beaded bangles that are too uniform for my taste. The ink works a lot better than acrylic washes for sticking to non-porous surfaces like glass. The bangle on the left here is black seed beads and a few larger black and white glass beads. I added a wash of white ink to the seed beads and then a wash of brown over the whole thing. Then I tested it by rubbing it against my jeans and the ink didn't budge. It can be mostly removed with rubbing alcohol, or entirely removed with Pinata clean-up solution, but water and friction don't affect it.

Rose Pastilles Bangle Set

 I named this set "Rose Pastilles" after those weird little candies. My mum used to keep them around, just because of their pretty packaging. I was drawn to them, since they were after all, candy, but they smelled like roses and tasted like what it probably would taste like to munch on rose petals. Terribly disappointing for kid-me. But, I ate them several times anyway. Sugar is sugar.

This is the packaging I remember, but apparently they come in plastic containers now. Bummer. I loved those pretty little tins. Or, maybe they're tin on the top and plastic on the bottom...memories are such fuzzy little things. Anyway, the candies themselves were a really soft pale pink like the button in the bangle set.

Planet Earth Bangle Set

 I think this is the only picture I have with Thingette actually "wearing" the bangles. She looks cooler holding them or hanging them off her fingers.

So, this set has one of my salt-textured beads and on each side is a really, really old nut (as in "nuts and bolts" not "pistachios and almonds".). I never thought I'd be so thankful for my great-grandfather's habit of saving things- like, every little metal piece to everything ever. My shed is full of rusty little treasures. I just wash them up, seal that natural aging in with some wax,  and they're magically transformed from ancient clutter to rustic jewelry accoutrements.

Cherrywood Bangle Set

Doesn't that big focal bead look like a cherry Jolly Rancher? I promise I didn't lick it. But, I thought about it.

Beach Bum Bangle Set
 This one's all beachy and extra grungy. It reminds me of Kim. She is secretly a mermaid and these are her colors.

I took a picture of them all together, too. Just because it's awesome.

Oooh. Aaaah.
Also, some other things (I'm so good at segues).

Remember the cheese beads? Well, they're haunting me. Yep. I threw them out the same day I procured them, but somehow they just keep showing up in my house. I found one the other day on the floor and threw it away and then today there was one just sitting here on my desk... Menacingly. Help.

Yesterday I did some major marathon-like yard sale shopping (17 in one day!) and I got these wine glass marker things (Are these at every yard sale or is it just because I live in wine country? I see these and Tae Bo tapes every weekend).

I liked the flowers, so I took them apart to stash the charms for future use, but ended up putting them to use  within a couple hours as accessories for the updo I gave my niece for her prom. Look how perfect!

I just hooked bobby pins through the eyes of the charms and pinned them in. I'm of the opinion that anything that can be pinned or strapped to a head can be a hair accessory. You know those artist dolls they make for pose reference? Mine has been a hairstyle accessory a couple times. There are pictures somewhere. If I find them, I'll share.

Question time:

Which is your favorite of the new bangle sets?

How do you wear your bracelets? One at a time? Little groups? Big groups? Both wrists or just one?

How do you suppose one kills a cheese bead? Do I need special weapons? Holy water?

Check it out, I have a signature now. That's so you don't get confused who's talking to ya when Kim starts blogging again.


  1. Answer time.
    They are all beautiful but I really like the Gilded Grunge Set.
    I usually only wear one bracelet on each wrist. I've never owned any bangles, but maybe I should change that.
    I hear mice like cheese so maybe you could use them to eat up your cheese beads.
    I love that you have a signature now so I can know for sure who is writing.
    Thanks for sharing your beauty.

  2. Love them Miss Jenna! I just bought the same tutorial. Marina (fanciful) is so very nice. So willing to share! Are you doing Tracy Statler's bangle blog hop? I will reveal my work next Saturday. I started out with all these very simple bangles that looked unfinished to me and now they are completely popping with color and style! Not sure what i will do with all of these but it has been fun!
    Enjoy the day.

  3. Jenna - I bought that tutorial too! Isn't fanci awesome?? I really love the Planet Earth set - those colors are perfect. I made a set of the bangles and listed them, and started on another set, then got sidetracked with another project. I'll come back to the bangles soon though, because they are totally calling to me. I don't typically wear bangles, although I do wear a few bracelets occasionally. I have really tiny wrists, so its very hard for me to wear something made for a "standard" wrist size. They just end up falling off my arm. Anyway, I love the tons of bangles - and you're right, they do look awesome all together!

  4. Thank you all.

    heathenflower- What if the mice eat the cheese beads and become evil poltergeist mice? Can't risk that. I think I'll try staking the beads like they're tiny round vampires.

    Erin- I checked out that bangle blog hop but wasn't sure if I was too late to the party to get involved. I will have to check it out again. Can't wait to see yours!

    Lisa- Hi! Yes, fanci is awesome and hilarious. I was really anxious about oxidizing my own metal and she took the time and patience to talk me into it, which I so appreciate. I also can't fit standard size bangles, but it's because I have tree trunk wrists, so I tend to make my bangles a little bigger because it feels odd to make something that I can't even try on. The great thing about these, though, is they can be re-sized either way with a few creative adjustments.

  5. "It reminds me of Kim. She is secretly a mermaid and these are her colors."

    Yep, the beach bangle set is my favorite! In fact im wearing the perfect outfit to go with those today! My alter ego is a grunge mermaid in disguise as a corp slave! I love them all and I love that you have a signature now to go with your blogs.*cough* make me one too*cough*