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Archive for the ‘beads’ Category

Welcome to 2012 – I’m still here, although still without pottery classes. I am finally getting round to making actual jewellery from my left-over beads and pendants, like this necklace made from emerald clouds glazed beads and silver effect spacer beads, which I just need to attach the fastener to.

I’m so pleased with it that I’m thinking I’ll get some more of the silver beads and do another one – I think I have enough blue beads for a chocker and the silver should set them off nicely.

Aside from jewellery making, I’ve been trying my hand at knitting, something that I can handily do at home unlike my beloved pottery. I’m making a little bag in King Charles Brocade stitch at the moment, to practice knitting and purling and reading a pattern. I’ve managed 3 pattern repeats so far:

I’m really quite pleased with how it’s turning out given I haven’t knitted since I was 12 and then I only made garter stitch squares for blankets.

This year looks to be a year of more varied crafts – I’m not going to be back at pottery classes before April at the earliest from the looks of things, I’m determined to master the knitting enough to make some wearable garments, I have fabric offcuts and want to learn to use a sewing machine, and I have a big event coming up at the end of the summer which is also calling on my crafty skills (these silk flowers may well give you a clue on that front).  So now I’m seeing the drawback of intending this to be a specifically pottery-based blog. I don’t know whether to give it a make over or just start again from scratch since I can’t change the name. If there’s anyone still reading this, what are your thoughts?

Check out what everyone else was making yesterday as part of Making Monday on Natalie’s blog!

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I had great fun playing with porcelain before my classes finished – it takes patterns pressed into it really well because it is so fine in texture and the white body makes a great base for colour. These are my two favourite creations: an ivy leaf pendant coloured with a mixture of underglaze paints and copper stain, and some beads with teal spirals carved into them. I’ve been getting plenty of wear out of both of these.

Porcelain ivy leaf pendant and carved spiral beads

They weren’t all I made though. I have a pile of other pendants and buttons just waiting for good homes, which will be going up on my stock page this week. Here’s a sneak preview for you:

Porcelain pendants and buttons

Some are decorated with underglazes, while the small leaf buttons and pendants are made using coloured porcelain. The textured rectangular buttons and pendants were all made by pressing different designs of lace into the clay. You can click on the photo to look at them in more detail.

If you’re interested in what other people have been making, check out the comments on Natalie’s latest Making Monday post.

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Handmade bead necklace

This necklace arrived with its new owner today. It’s a mixture of plum beautiful, raspberry ice and sparkly burgundy glazed handmade beads, threaded on beading nylon with a silver lobster clasp. It’s been much admired already and I seem to have a waiting list of people who want something similar, which might take a while to get through given how labour intensive hand crafting and painting beads is! Still, the end product is worth it I think.

I may be short on beads but I have plenty of pendants left if anyone wants one. I’m going to be updating my stock page soon (although everything pictured is available, I just have more stuff that isn’t up) and I’m offering free postage for all jewellery orders of £10 or more so why not treat yourself or a loved one.

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Crystal glazed heart pendant and bead necklace

Crystal glazed heart pendant and bead necklace

This is the best picture I’ve been able to get of my latest creation (I need to invest in a better camera for close-up work or bribe a friendly photographer to assist me!).  The title just seemed obvious, particularly as the space connection is two-fold; the crystal glaze I used is called ‘Milky Way’, and I was watching old episodes of Babylon 5 as I was doing the wire-work to put it all together. I’m really pleased with this, the glaze is beautiful (unfortunately, the photo really doesn’t capture the depth of colour) and my wire-work has really improved with practice!

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new_necklacesI’ve been busy making some wire-work and bead jewellery recently; shown here are the green & sliver bead set (necklace and bracelet) I’ve made for my Mum, a little heart and bead pendant, and a collar inspired by Native American jewellery which I made by pairing some wood-effect beads someone from my pottery class donated as she had no use for them, and some of my ‘harvest time’ crystal glazed beads. As promised, I’ve also got around toSmall goblet photographing my new smaller goblet design. This first one is glazed in transparent and albany stoneware. I love the albany glaze; it comes out almost irridescent, dark, dark shiny brown on its own, or a rich toffee colour over transparent, and I made use of both effects here.

Also new around here is a self-portrait of yours truly on the ‘About’ page, sporting my lovely ‘Emerald Clouds’ bead choker, which is probably my favorite of the jewellery pieces I’ve made so far.

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Crystal glazed beads and pendants

Crystal glazed beads and pendants

College went much better this week – my teacher was back, the kiln was fixed and my beads had been fired – hurray! I spent part of the evening finishing making up some more pendants and handily got a lesson in wirework from one of my class mates, who runs a craft shop, so now I have more crystal glazed pendants with beads attached and this time they are also handmade ceramic ones rather than glass, and I’ve also added ceramic beads to two more of the stoneware hand painted pendants.

Painted tile pendants with matching beads

Painted tile pendants with matching beads

So I’m almost set for the event at the weekend – I need to pop out and buy some more leather thongs and then I’m meeting up with Amy this evening for her to pick out the items she wants for her stall. I even have a set of rather nifty colour flyers for her to hand out to promote this site. It’s rather exciting really!

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Green beads and pendants

Green beads and pendants

One of the great things about ceramic glazes is that they never come out exactly the same twice. Recently, I had a batch of Emerald Clouds glazed beads and pendants that came out particularly well. It’s hard to capture the colour well in a photo because they are so glossy, but if you are familiar with malachite I’d say that is probably the closest thing to the colour of this glaze. I was so pleased with these that I don’t think I’m going to part with the bead choker or the oak leaf pendant (probably not a good attitude for making money, but hey, this is my hobby first and foremost so I want to enjoy the pretties myself!).

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