I recently left my nice secure job as an instructional designer to work on my PhD in Chemistry. Yup, I'm pretty much insane... but I hope it turns out that I'm insane in a good way. Whenever I have time, I like to create pretty pretty things with beads, crystals, and found objects. My jewelry making lets me keep at least a little bit of sanity in the crazy academic world. I hope to open an etsy shop soon, and maybe a real store at some point. However, time is at a minimum right now as I try to pass my classes, teach labs, grade homework, and conduct research.
My big project this weekend was a beach-themed necklace using some of the sea glass I collected while visiting my family in Maine. I began by selecting the piece of seaglass I wanted to use from my stash. I just loved the triangular shape of this piece of sea glass.
After selecting the piece of sea glass and shells I wanted to include, I had to figure out how to include the seaglass in the necklace. Since I found the sea glass myself, it didn't have a hole in it and I didn't want to try drilling it myself (I'd rather practice on unimportant pieces of glass before I work on something I'd hate to see break). I started by trying to create a bezel for the glass, but I ended up making the bezel too small and it looked too heavy. I really wanted something light and beachy. I came up with this free-form-weaving net. I thought it went with the whole beachy theme... like the glass is caught in a fishing net.
My next challenge was figuring out how to incorporate the shells and really create the feeling of the ocean. I selected my colors first. I wanted to work from the dark blue of the deep ocean to the aquas and greens of shallow water and the reef. I created mixtures of each color and faded them together. Finally, I sprinkled some shells
throughout the mixture. I then used a freeform beading technique to create a really substantial necklace to balance the size of the pendant. I wasn't sure how the necklace would turn out, but in the end, it is my favorite piece I have created to date. I think it really invokes a feeling of the beach. It's really organic with all shapes and sizes of beads. I accomplished what I wanted to even though I didn't know exactly where I was going when I started. Everything came from the one piece of glass I found.