Saturday, August 24, 2013

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: the reveal

Hello and welcome to the 'Summer Color Surprise' blog hop, hosted by Lisa of A Grateful Artist.

Lisa came up with a neat system: she creates surprise packages and sends them away to the participants - and so far I loved each one I've participated in (even the very first one, which proved to be a true emotional / mental challenge, but which in the end I loved to pieces!)

The summer has been crazy and I barely set foot in the studio - so when I went to grab her package... I found this:

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: ceramic, antique bronze :: All Pretty Things

I have a confession to make: I believe I switched the packages for the Summer Color Surprise and her Seasons blog hop... If you recall, my 'Seasons' package contained gorgeous lavender colours, all summer and happy! and all one colour :) This package contains 2 colours, neither representing summer...

But - since they are both from Lisa, I hope she'll forgive me!

I brought the beads downstairs (it's still too messy in the attic) and I stared at them for a little bit. Mixed and matched them, re-mixed and matched them until an idea formed... actually 2 ideas:

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: ceramic, antique bronze :: All Pretty Things

I definitely need better pictures of the first pendant - I'll have to add probably leather to finish it - and then at least I'll be able to drape it on a neck-form. Until then - you'll get the concept: wire, wire, and more wire :) Each heart is 'strung' on a wire that's been hammered down to act as a natural end, a bead-stop, (on the central component) a spiral, and another bead on wire. The 3 components are then 'strung' together with some of the tubes, and some of the wood beads on 2 wires twisted together (to create a more heavy support wire).

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: ceramic, antique bronze, ooak pendant :: All Pretty Things

It looks like my original intention, doesn't it? I was quite happy with the result, so I moved onto the main piece.

Isn't it lovely when the muse is home and helping? The next focal almost created itself - I had this idea of using a 2-level combination, for a more interesting look. Originally I thought the top part will be a straight wire - however, when I added the main component and the glass beads - they would simply not stay put, the main components begged for a more comfortable setting. I had to listen :)

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: ceramic, antique bronze, ooak pendant :: All Pretty Things

At this point I have to admit I was so pretty-pleased with myself, I was ready to wear it! But it needed a chain and it had to be special and matching. First I created the beaded components (with the ceramic 'tubes'). Then I had to put it down for the night and come back next evening - trying to figure out the links in between. I had limited wire widths to work with (20 ga and 24 ga in round, and 21 in square) and no matter what I thought of, I knew it won't keep everything together: I needed some sort of a wrapped link.

Out came the jig (I *must* get myself a good one, really started to hate the cheap plastic one!) and the infinity links where born (I am not happy with the middle part, where wires are wrapped... but it will have to live this way, it is a messy wrap 'by design' :) )

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: ceramic, antique bronze, ooak pendant, ooak necklace :: All Pretty Things

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: ceramic, antique bronze, ooak pendant, ooak necklace :: All Pretty Things

The 'hook' is made of the twisted square wire, and beaded too, to blend in nicely.

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: ceramic, antique bronze, ooak pendant, ooak necklace :: All Pretty Things

 And a view of both pieces:

Summer Color Surprise blog hop: ceramic, antique bronze, ooak pendant, ooak necklace :: All Pretty Things

I can proudly announce I used *only* beads from Lisa! All I added was the wire (antique bronze) in the above-mentioned gauges.

I can also admit that had I have used them a couple of months ago, in the Seasons' blog hop, I would have probably just wire-wrap them simply... So maybe it's fate I switched the 2 packages, because this is one of the best designs that I've created so far: I am simply in love not only with the piece itself, but with its flow, its general idea, and very proud of the multiple level focal on the necklace!

Somehow Lisa's packages just bring something new (and always the best!) out of me every time - she has the magic touch! Thank you, Lisa, it is a true pleasure to be invited to your virtual parties.

Thank you for stopping by - and please make sure you visit all the other participants. It promises to be a nice summer day (with some early hints of autumn, sorry!)

Your Hostess: Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist

Chris Eisenberg, Wander Ware
Audrey Belanger, Dreams of an Absolution
Mary Govaars, MLH Jewelry Designs
Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes
Monique Urquhart, A Half-Baked Notion
Beti Horvath, Stringing Fool
Charlene Bausinger Jacka, Clay Space
Tara Plote, The Newbie Beader's Blog
Renetha Williams Stanziano, Lamplight Crafts
Leah Mifflin Tees, My Beady Little Eyes
Kathy Zeigler Lindemer, Bay Moon Design
Toltec Jewels, Toltec Jewels for Jewel School Friends
Molly Alexander, Beautifully Broken Me
Alicia Marinache, All the Pretty Things <- you are here
Laurie Vyselaar, Lefthand Jewelry
Eleanor Burian-Mohr, The Charmed Life
Julie Lockhart, Copar Aingeal
Dolores Rami, CraftyD's Creations
Elizabeth Bunn, Elizabeth Beads
Mowse Doyle, Mowse Made This
Veralynne Malone, Designed by Vera
Candida Elkins Castleberry, Spun Sugar Beadworks
Shaiha Williams, Shaiha's Ramblings
Christie Searle Murrow, Charis Designs Jewelry
Andrea Glick-Zenith, ZenithJade Creations


  1. Beautiful Alicia and I love your wirework!

  2. I love your design, Alicia, and strangely these colours DO remind me of summer, a big flower that Mum used to grow (maybe tiger lily?)

  3. I think your beads you were sent def says summer. I love that color. and your set is gorgeous.

  4. Love, love, love! Alicia - your wire wrapping is awesome. The pendant with the copper spiral beads next to it is too cool. You hit it out of the park. Thanks for being in the hop!

  5. lovely colors and beautiful design - perfect for the impending fall!

  6. I like seeing your planning process and love what you did with the beads. Your wire work is cool!

  7. What beautiful pieces - I really enjoyed reading through your creative process! :)

  8. What a gorgeous necklace! I am just in love with the focal...well actually both focals.

  9. I have to love that necklace because I wear that color often. I also bought the swirly metal components on my own. The necklace looks like you made it for me. Well done! WE both have good taste.

  10. Great pieces! The colors and the wire really are great together. Thanks!

  11. Great job! I love the uniqueness of the multileveled second focal. Sometimes mix ups happen for happy reasons :) Christie

  12. Love the colors! Perfect for Indian summer! Fun pieces!

  13. Alicia, you are so talented! Beautiful, both pieces.

  14. Your pendants are breathtaking! I love them! Such talent! Great job!

  15. Loved your creative process of these and the outcome is awesome. Love the colors and all the pieces you created.

  16. Alicia, I almost mixed mine up too! :) I had to send pictures along to Lisa to ask which was which... lol

    I agree, this is the most sophisticated, coolest and most beautiful wire art jewelry! Fabulous designs, to the moon creativity! Wow and wow. Not only gorgeous, but very original, true art!

    I love everything you created!


  17. Nice designs. Thanks for sharing that information. I have used bead gel but never distressed it before – your painting is filled with so much color and texture. These necklace designs are looking beautiful. I like these designs.


Thank you for sharing your thoughts! I appreciate and love to read your comments!