Maryhardingjewelry bead blog is about making ceramic beads and other jewelry components out of clay and sometimes about how to use them in jewelry.
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
Beaders Go Green
Isis Saturday Knitting
Many thanks to Isis our magical teacher.
Monday, May 26, 2008
Ceramic Bead Making Class Day 2
We all sat around two tables up in front of the entrance to my studio. This seems to be a great spot since there is electricity and we have quick access to my studio in case we need something.
Sally Hartman stopped by and made some oak leaves and fired a couple of beads. She makes lovely smoke fired earrings out of these leaves.
Here is a bead rack after the beads were quenched in cold water and the straw and sawdust rinsed off. You can see that there are some beauties there.
These are some of the raku beads (many went unphotographed since I was so busy I forgot to do it sooner) after they have been scrubbed with Ajax and dried. They are being photographed in the late late afternoon sun. I pulled the last load of beads out of the kiln about 6:00 PM. We had started at 12 Noon. Wow are those colors great!! Everyone made great beads. What a wonderful day we had. I am so glad that we did this!!
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Jennifer Heynen's book Ceramic Bead Jewelry
This is a wonderful book and especially so because of Jennifer's friendly and enthusiastic voice which comes through on every page. Her excitement about working with clay is catching.
The book covers all the basics of making clay beads and will be a great help to anyone starting out in ceramic clay. I found the directions easy to understand and was pleased to learn some new things myself. I was especially happy to find a very easy way of making molds and plan to try it this week. Her directions for making bead shapes is also easy to follow and had some new ideas for me.
The second half of the book is devoted to making jewelry. She has 30 different projects for the reader to make. Again the directions are simple and easy to understand and the jewelry is original and looks fun to wear. I especially like the Multi Strand Bracelet and the Square Bead Bracelet.
I hope all of you who are new to ceramic bead making will take a look at this great book which is the first major publication on the subject.
Congratulations Jennifer. We at BOC salute you and your achievements.
You can read more about Jennifer on her blog at her website and her Etsy Store
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Art Bead Scene Collaboration Exploration
Here I have wire wrapped the Humblebeads with copper wire and copper flowers. I love the way the copper contrasts with my large round bead's shades of green and brown. The brass colored chain seems to pick up colors in both of our beads.
Here Heather's lovely disk beads and long tubes pick up the colors in my Thistle pendant. The dark green fiber chain complements her beads well. See what I mean about delicious colors!!
A close up of the Clover Pendant necklace.
The freeform peyote stitch necklace I began first and finished last. I actually worked on all 4 pieces at the same time so that I would be able to have some of Heather's beads for each piece. I figured the peyote piece would use the most and that seems to be true. I don't have any of her beads left over. I struggled with this piece and had to add a pendant to the front that was not one that others had. I love the way the colors have gone together on this piece and I totally enjoyed making it once I was over the hard part. But that seems to be the way it is with freeform. Always a point in the piece when I think I will have to throw it away (figuratively) and then if I persist and wait a while it will come together.
Close up of the peyote necklace.
Wednesday, May 07, 2008
Ceramic Bead Making Class
These are pictures of from the ceramic bead making class I taught last Saturday. These are shots from Day One. Students are working in low fire white ceramic clay so that they will get good, bright results when they glaze their beads and pendant. We made beads, pendants, toggle clasps, and links with high temp wire.
Here are the flatter pieces, links, toggles, pendants. The large flat piece in the front has markings from a beautiful sea urchin from Belize. Students were so inventive and extremely engaged in their work.
Here is the class set up in our Barn Studio. There is a wonderful view of the now green, green pasture out these window. I like the class size around 4 students and that is just what we had. Plenty of time for everyone to get the attention they need and plenty of room at our long table that hails from another ceramic studio begun many years ago at the Handweaving Museum in Clayton. We got this when they were remodelling several years ago.