And now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for! The Bead Soup Blog Party Reveal! First, I just want to send Lori Anderson, our Bead Soup organizer, a hearty thanks for all her hard work to make this such a fun experience!
If you’ll remember, my partner, Karen Firnberg, sent me a giant cup of bead soup. I was totally spoiled with three focals and tons of beady goodness. Lori left me a comment urging me to make more than one piece for the challenge, so I took up the gauntlet and made…wait for it… FOUR necklaces! So bear with me. This will be a long post.
necklace one: the safe bet
I call this necklace “the safe bet” because when I first opened my soup, I was immediately drawn to the metal drops that came to Karen from another friend who was de-stashing her own bead collection. I couldn’t wait to pair them up with the jasper beads which were so earthy and rich with texture. To keep the weight of the necklace down, I used large lightweight wood washers and bamboo tube beads. All in all, this necklace came together very quickly and painlessly. Very much in my ‘wheelhouse’ or style I’ve been working in lately. And better still, I have a gazillion of those metal drops left to play with.
necklace two: the octopus
We were supposed to use a focal and the clasp that our partner sent us, and this necklace is the only one where I used both together. Karen is a whiz with seed beads. I am not. This necklace ended up being my most challenging. I was determined to try a multi-strand piece, and quite honestly, nothing I paired this big, lovely, bold focal up with worked until I decided to combine the antique copper tube beads with the bamboo. I think this necklace is crazy, and certainly made me crazy while I was working on it. I love how it turned out though. It reminds me of an octopus with its eight trailing
tentacles bead strands. But it was just what the soup was supposed to be—a creative challenge with a focal and clasp I might not have picked out for myself.
necklace three: color coordinated
This third necklace needs to be restrung. Shhh…don’t tell anyone. I messed up the bead pattern right at the clasp, but as I’m finishing this blog party at the eleventh hour, I didn’t have time to re-do it. Ahem. Anyway. Karen sent me another interesting but challenging focal to work with on this one. After many false starts, I went with a monochromatic brown scheme that drew inspiration from the colors in the lamp-work focal. This is another piece that I supplemented with beads from my own stash. Am I a bad Karyn for doing this?
necklace four: anemone
Last but not least, focal four, a lovely anemone lamp-work that I could stare into forever, but was so hard for me to design around! This necklace also had many flops along the way to this incarnation. I knew right away I wanted to use the carnelian rounds to pick out the lovely oranges inside the focal. The shell sticks were chosen to go along with the sea-theme of the focal. I hope the final result looks like something you’d wear at a tropical beach.
I really, truly, want to thank Karen for spoiling me so nicely with this soup. I have SO many beads left to play with, and I hope I did her focals proud. The process was surprising to me. I really wanted to try and use up everything that Karen sent me, but I found myself making different choices in response to the focals I was given. For example, Karen sent along a lovely mix of orange, red, and yellow seed beads of various sizes, and no matter how I tried, I just couldn’t work them into a design I was happy with. Was this a failure on my part? Are the beads just waiting for the right focal to come along? Let me know how well you integrated your soup beads into your designs. And I’d love to know which necklace you like the best!
the rest of the hop
And now, the rest of the Bead Soup Participants. I can’t wait to dive in and see what everyone else made!
Click here to see the bead soup blog party list, or use the links below: