Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Sj Designs Honey Do Challenge: August 2016...

I don't often times get to participate in other people's challenges, even if I want to.  Sometimes there is just so much to do in a day that it's hard to find time to work on my own projects... however... when Sarajo announced the inspiration for her August installment of her Honey Do Challenge, I knew that I had to make something!  If you're not familiar with Sarajo's Honey Do Challenges, her husband Eric gives her a photograph every month to use as inspiration to use up her bead stash and push her creatively.  Sarajo invites other artists to play along and join in on the festivities.

Photo of pitcher plants at Spruce Flats Bog taken by Eric Wentling.
Sarajo and her husband Eric, came up for Creative Camp over the summer and I directed them to one of my favorite places in the area: Spruce Flats Bog.  It's this little magical area, that you get to by wandering along a wooded path dense with ferns.  It's dark in the shade of the canopy.  And then all of a sudden, there is bright light and a clearing with a wooden boardwalk... going off into a sea of grass.  Studding the landscape are clusters of carnivorous plants.  There are actually two carnivorous plants that thrive here, where little else does.  Sundews and sarracenia (pitcher plants) grow in patches along with giant cranberries and cotton grass.  The sundews are quite petite, but the pitcher plants are showy with their garnet reds and peridot greens.  Eric snapped a picture gave it to Sarajo for the source inspiration.

Originally, I thought that I was going to dig out this beautiful sterling silver bead by Anne Choi.  Anne and I both share a love of sarracenias and this large focal bead would have been perfect for the challenge.  I got bewitched by it though and couldn't stop admiring it all on its own.  So I didn't end up making anything with it yet.  I still might... you never know!

This is the bracelet that I did end up making for the challenge.  I love this design.  Bracelets are sometimes a tricky sell.  They have to fit perfectly.  This design allows many sizes of wrists to fit and has a little decorative flair with the dangly bit at the end of the chain.  It features a mix of dyed raspberry jade, hessonite garnets, rhodonite garnets, tumbled serpentine, copper, and polymer clay by me.  For the little dangle at the end of the adjustable chain, I added faceted green amethyst, watermelon tourmaline, more garnet, and vintage Czech glass.  I use a swivel lobster claw clasp to make it easier to put the bracelet on and prevent the beading wire from twisting over time.

I worked on several different versions of these polymer clay beads.  At first, I wanted to play with translucent clay, but the color contrast was too subtle and I really wanted the beads to POP like their source inspiration.  So, I ended up making some canes that were mostly opaque with a little bit of shimmer.  I quite like them and think they capture the colors of the pitcher plants perfectly.

I had fun playing along and hope to participate again in the future!  If you want to see what the other participants of the challenge made, CLICK HERE.


Windbent said...

Lovely color combination and movement. I love your gemstone choices and those polymer clay beads are works of art all their own. I totally want some.

Ann Schroeder said...

Really beautiful bracelet. I love the style with the dangle and the practical wearability thought that went into it by making it adjustable by size as well as prevention of damage from the swivel clasp. Beauty and practicality together - perfect.

Mary Harding said...

I really like the way you got the greens and burgundies to stand on their own in your beads. Beautiful. Happy to hear there are other admirers of pitcher plants. What a wonderful place to have nearby to visit!!