I got into jewelry making partially because I love jewelry. So every year, for my birthday, the holidays, and sometimes gem show if I have time, I make sure to create something really special for myself. Well, Tuesday is my 25th birthday, and tonight is the joint celebration for my brother and I (his birthday was this past Weds), so this weekend I decided to bead something beautiful to wear to dinner. The result is the "Beautiful Brown Birthday Bauble." I might eventually give it a more flowery name, but I am a fan of alliteration!
I'd recently received the gorgeous dark topaz faceted glass cabochon and accompanying seed beads in a bead swap, and I'd also recently noticed that I have some beautiful brown clothes, but all of my brown jewelry is actually mostly green with brown accents. Not a surprise, but also not acceptable.
Due to its transparency, the cabochon really looks best with an open-backed bezel, so I opted for this style. I love the look of netting (it's one of my favorite stitches), and it has the added benefit of working up very quickly. I think it took me about two hours to do the bezel itself. I decided to add the flat-backed coppery pearls for some extra pizazz.
Originally I'd intended to do fringe along the bottom, but I really enjoy the double-focal look that some artists get by either attaching two cabs, or using a cab and a pendant. When I found the brown leaf bead by Wolf Song Designs in my collection, I knew this was the route I had to go. The fact that I love leaves certainly helped the decision along. The twin swags also hold beads that are found in the neck strap.
The neck strap itself is a single strung strand using a variety of beautiful topaz-hued beads, including Czech glass and citrine, as well as the pearls that I used in the bezel. It's not visible in the picture, but I finished it off with a vermeil double-leaf clasp. It's strung on golden SoftFlex, which helps give an inner glow to the transparent beads.
All in all, I'm very pleased with the results! I wouldn't mind trying the same technique in different colors, perhaps even substituting vintage nailheads for the flat-back pearls.
Today's Cool Thing is this absolutely awesome mosaic Day Of The Dead box. I really love the decorated skulls associated with Dia De Los Muertos, the juxtaposition of bright colors and something that is normally a little creepy. And of course, mosaics are just cool.