But today, on presenting it, I realized something more important: that jewelry is not merely for adornment. It’s original purpose was talismanic: to protect the wearer and bring her strength of spirit. To heal those who look to her. When you assemble the polished bits of earth that make these beads, you imbue them with patience and care that transfers to the wearer.
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
There are some amazing berries outside the wonderful café where we go- I’ve never seen berries change colors as they mature the way these did. In a few weeks in late October, they traversed the spectrum from green to purple to red.
Just like those berries, the little flower beads in this necklace are “color change” beads: in daylight- they reflect green, and in incandescent light, they reflect red, changing like the ripening berries. And those round green agate beads are the precise bayberry color of the new berries.
Now, my friend made a sad confession: necklaces give her claustrophobia.
How sad- not to be able to bedeck onself. Jewelry is, above all, a proclamation of one’s unique spirit. Inner beauty worn outwardly. I hope for my friend that she will conquer her fear, change like the berries, and take on the color of her own beauty.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Beads teach us things. Patience, for one thing. The pendant in this necklace was once a lovely pin, given to me by The Muse (everyone should have one- but no one has a Muse as fine as mine!) years ago. It stopped being a pin after much fond wear, when it’s pinback fell off. Fortunately, it was not lost; I saved it as a flat object for a long time deciding whether to repair it. I never repaired it, because in time it came to me that it would be happy as a pendant if only I could find the right beads. This all happened years before I was able to bead- I was gathering elements for this piece a long time.
What happened when I finally came to the making of the necklace is it’s own story. Three times I strung the multi-strand necklace, and each time something went awry. It was like a tale from the Brothers Grimm- first the strands tangled so badly I couldn’t find the ends when it came to stringing the clasp. I re-strung it a second time and strands broke at the last moment, after crimping and trimming. On the third attempt, true to legend, I found success.
Is there magic in the third try? Perhaps. Or maybe it is that by the third time you do something, you’ve learned to adjust to the trials you’re about to meet.
For me, this was discovering that there is a sequence in which each step must be done. Beading is a linear process. You cannot reach the middle before you secure the beginning. The order in which beads come together is partly design, and partly fortune. You keep repeating it until you get it right.
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
We think we're in control. [We're not...we just have to go with the flow and enjoy the ride.]
Sunday, September 30, 2007
Monday, September 3, 2007
This pendant was picked out a long time ago- almost at the beginning of my bead obsession. But because of its auspicious history, it was going to have to wait a long time till the right beads came along. For one thing- the colors are a bit unusual- a very crisp green and a deep bluish purple- like the colors of ivy with intertwined morning glories. Come to think of it, the climbing tendrils of ivy are certainly the natural inspiration of our love of spirals- a metaphor of delicate strength that grows by inverting and inserting itself into the difficult and rocky places. That’s what this necklace of icy green bracket-shaped table-cuts and intense cobalt coins means: passion and perseverance.
Sunday, June 24, 2007
This Dichroic pendant changes color dependent on the angle of incoming light. It’s predominantly a deep meditative cobalt with metallic highlights, just the right color for eliciting one’s inner gift of healing. It celebrates good health news for the loved one who will wear it.
Thursday, May 31, 2007
I took a long time off from beading, awaiting a miracle…and one came to me. Someone loved was lost, and greatly feared for. This is the product of the tears and prayers and hope gathered from the wonderful creatures (including a few humans) around me. I had been dreaming, yearning for her safe return, and the power of those feelings took shape in the cascade of bead droplets. Those six pearlescent drop beads are antique Czech wedding beads my muse found for me on the day after Christmas this year. He also gave me the silver prayer ball whose chime tolls softly with the touch of the surrounding diaphanous crystals and labradorite. Labradorite is perfectly symbolic here: a sallow, shadowy grey shifts to gleams of blue iridescent flash- the pure color of joy.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Friday, April 13, 2007
This piece took a while to envision and then materialize. (There were lots of little seed beeads to manage in this one!) On the second or third time it was worn, it had a terrible accident in which it caught on something immovable, which unleashed the energy of a million little E beads and all the dangles, all of them flying away from each other like the Second Big Bang! I gathered up what I could and put the pieces away for a long while. But hope springs eternal, doesn't it? They all came together again in a new life, with a lovely bead toggle, and maybe even better than in their previous incarnation.
Those gold-drizzled Indian rounds rise randomly through the pink gold seed beads, like bubbles fizzing through a glass of champagne! But all the effervescence leads back to the dichroic pendant, whose colors shimmer and change like peacock feathers in sunlight.
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
This piece commemorates an important date, celebrated on a bridge, with some of the greatest people I know. The Kazuri beads both look and feel like river rocks sleek with spring water.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
The ancient Sumerians wore neckwear like this on their way to pick reeds from the bank of Euphrates. Those were the days! Well, maybe they didn't actually have Venetian foil glass tubes back then, but can't you just see the Queen of Sheba wearing this while nibbling grapes and falafel?