Saturday, January 11, 2014

Into the forest: A Midsummer Night's Dream

Welcome to the reveal of Lisa's blog hop, Into the forest.

When I registered for this hop was still summer, so of course I promptly forgot about it... but luckily for me one of my guardian angels (Monique) mentioned she's participating in a blog hop on the 11th... which made me think 'wait a minute... am I in it?!' :) Of course I was!

After the mix-up with Lisa's packages last summer, I became more careful - I keep all the posted packages in a box, each in its own ziplock bag. At least I have only one place to check! So I grabbed my packages, spread the beads in front of me and admired them! You can see what I received in my sneak-peak post.

The challenge is supposed to be about forest: organic movement, forest through the seasons etc.

I mentioned before how well Lisa's challenges work for me - for some unknown reasons I simply connect with her choices in an instant. It happened before and it happened again: as soon as I saw them on the beading mat, one thing popped into my mind: A Midsummer Night's Dream. Oh, yes!

The majority of the beads are small, some are tiny seed beads (I believe 15), so I thought some free form bead weaving... that's how I started the spiral rope. As a technique, it works quite well - but I was missing one important tool: a good needle. I only had those cheap 2-fine-wires-wrapped-together thinggie... and the 1" rope you saw in the sneak-peak post took me about half an hour... I wouldn't have minded if it wouldn't have been excruciatingly annoying to get the bending 'needle' through the main beads.

So: it's midnight, and I realize that's not going to work. Now what? How can I use my favourite medium (wire, in case you're knew :) )?! Somehow, when it comes to thinking in wire or metal terms my brain works rapidly and very easily.

Long story short, this is what happened next:

  • I took one double-the-length heavy gauge wire and folded it in two
  • On one side I 'strung' the larger beads, leaving the fold alone, in a large 'eye' form
  • Carefully I wrapped the 2 sides upon each other, and hooked the large ceramic button at the end. 
  • On a small gauge wire I strung all the other beads, in no pattern, no rules manner. All beads have been added: seed beads, glass beads, ceramic, crystals, mother of pearl chips, glass pearls. 
  • I connected the ceramic focal with a wire bail to the wrapped base. 
  • Starting from the 'eye' part of the clasp, I wrapped the long, tiny, beaded wire onto the wrapped base.
The end result? A truly organic and one of a kind necklace: 

A Midsummer Night's Dream: organic, lush, ooak necklace with wire wrapped elements and Marla James ceramic focal :: All Pretty Things

I am ecstatic at how beautiful it looks (I know I am not supposed to praise myself, but I am actually in love with my 'baby' :) ) 

A Midsummer Night's Dream: organic, lush, ooak necklace with wire wrapped elements and Marla James ceramic focal :: All Pretty Things

Forest? check! Organic? check! Having fun? double check! 

Thank you, Lisa, for another lovely challenge. Cheers for a great start of the jewelry designing year!
Thank you, my friends, for stopping by ~ please make sure you visit everybody else to see their interpretation of 'forest'.

Your hostess:  Lisa Lodge, A Grateful Artist

Melissa Trudinger, Bead Recipes
Kathy Zeigler Lindemer, Bay Moon Design
Eleanor Burian Moore, The Charmed Life
Jo-Ann Woolverton, It's a Beadiful Creation
Chris Eisenberg, Wanderware
Christine Stonefield, Sweet Girl Design
Carolyn Lawson, Carolyn's Creations
Janine Lucas, Esfera Travel Blog
Jasvanti Patel, Jewelry by Jasvanti
Shaiha Williams,   Shaiha's Ramblings
Kay Thomerson, Kayz Kreationz
Karla Morgan, Texas Pepper Jams
Veralynne Malone, Designed by Vera
Toltec  Jewels, Jewel School Friends
Christie Searle Murrow, Charis Designs Jewelry
Molly Alexander, Beautifully Broken Me
Monique Urquhart, A Half-Baked Notion
Janet Bocciardi, Honey from the Bee
Dini Bruinsma, Angaza by Changes
Heather Richter, Desert Jewelry Designs
Christina Miles, Wings n Scales
Elizabeth Engriser, Bead Contagion
Alice Peterson, Alice Dreaming
Alicia Marinache, All the Pretty Things <- you're here
Kay Mallery,TBD
Catherine Yvonne King, Catherine's Musings
Alice Craddick, Alice's Beads and Baubles
Ema Kilroy, Ema K Designs


  1. Still in awe of your wire-skills, girlfriend... and it is perfectly all right to love and praise the creations of our hands, right? Beautiful design, and I'm glad I'm not the only one put out by those tiny terrors (seed beads LOL)

  2. I love your creation. Very cool design and wonderful craftsmanship .

  3. wow Alicia this is stunning! what a gorgeous design

  4. Love how this turned out,you did a wonderful job with those seed beads.

  5. Isn't it wonderful when necessity causes us to think outside the box and the result is so beautiful. Great piece!

  6. Awesome as usual! I love how your "accident" turned out! I was trying to do something similar with some earrings...but right now my hands are giving me a fit...carpel I will just admire your work! Great design. Awesome job. Thanks for posting!

  7. I love your necklace, Alicia! I am in awe of your nifty wire skills, (and your ability to work with those tiny beads). I was smiling and saying "yay!" out loud as I read your post. Thanks for being in the hop!

  8. How beautiful!! You're right - forest, organic and what a fun necklace! Thanks for sharing how you made your necklace - I'm going to have to give this a try!

  9. Oh my goodness Alicia - this is absolutely beautiful! I love the organic feel of the design, and the colors are fabulous!

  10. A lovely piece and so fitting to the theme. I love your solution to the needle!

  11. Love it! It's a gorgeous organic necklace and great inspiration- Christie

  12. You created an amazing mix of texture in your organic design.

  13. Love the twisty wire wrapped feel of it. Very sweet. You have a right to be proud of your baby!

  14. Wow..your creation is sooo pretty... I think you got it all perfect to the theme.

  15. Love your blog and absolutely love your necklace. It is stunning.

  16. Brilliant solution! What you did with that wire was inspiring and cool.

  17. I love wirework as my first choice technique too! "Midsummer's Night Dream" is indeed very cool & I agree with you -- how absolutely gorgeous those small beads look embraced by the wire, and how beautifully you've balanced each aspect of the necklace: the pops of creamy white (like snow here & there in the woods!) in the button clasp and within the design as well as the rich glow of the pretty pearls keep my eyes moving fluidly, effortlessly. The deeply colored wire against the gentle shades of lilac, lavender, iris, light purple and white celebrates both beads and wire. Lovely! And indeed, beautiful, beloved and definitely way cool!

  18. This is a very pretty necklace. I love the focal and the way you wrapped everything and wove everything through and around all the beads. Very earthy and organic indeed.

  19. Just gorgeous and very clever! And definitely fits your Midsummer Night's Dream theme!


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