I’ve always felt that my journey through jewelry making has been very organic. I started making jewelry when I needed “quick, easy and cheap” Christmas presents for my family about 5ish years ago. Little did I know the journey I’d be thrust into. Simple stringing was my choice for that time, but my mom quickly sent me a jewelry making book that included an amazing bead weaving pattern – and I started out on my first bead woven piece.
Since then I’ve taken on bead weaving and wirework, have made my own cabochons and am looking to make my own metal components soon (just need a saw, and hammer and….everything!)
But I’ve found my greatest leaps and achievements have been through challenges. If you make jewelry and have never participated in a challenge – any challenge – I urge you to do so. It pushes your boundaries and makes you think of designs that you wouldn’t have before. Which brings me to this post.
This challenge was issued by Sarah Rose who runs Jewelry Because, you can read about her great mission here. What was the challenge? Create a necklace that represents your personality. When I first read this I was leaving one store at work to drive for another – and driving is often where I come up with some great ideas – so I thought really really hard about it. What did I come up with?
So how the hell was I going to make this into a necklace? I really had no clue – but everyone really wanted to see it! So I felt compelled to at least try.
So I sat down again, this time at home, and put a lot of thought into it – what was my personality? Ask my cousin or my sister, and they’ll tell you I’m crazy (if you saw any of our videos from my summer vacation you’ll see this). Ask my coworkers and they’ll tell you I’m kind of quiet and do what I need to do to get things done. Ask some of my friends and they’ll say I’m an animal lover, or a badass biker, or a great jewelry maker. But who do I feel I am? I’m all of them!
So this is what I made: (I’ll explain all the parts and pieces and why I chose them after the pics)
The gem in the middle is a gorgeous piece of laboradorite with a lot of hidden flash (like me!). The shape of the stone represents both my tough side (sharp edges) and my flashier side (hidden yet out in the open at the same time).
The “softer” side of my personality is represented by some shibori silk and a pewter angel wing (everyone calls me Raven). A little bit of flash/surprise is thrown in with the delica beads that color shift. The simplicity of the design also shows me as even when I “dress up” it’s simple, very little makeup, very little time spend on my hair.
The “tougher” side is shown through the leather and the dagger(supposed to represent a horn). The leather is a recycled/upcycled leather vest because I ride motorcycles (hubby just bought me a new one for our anniversary!!)). The delica here also have some flash – and that was on purpose, because sometimes even when being badass you want to look good. (I beaded my name for my leather (see below)). Notice that the shape of each side also shows these elements – rounded/soft, pointed/tough.
Since the necklace is split down the middle I decided to do that with the clasp as well – the soft side is the ring, in the flashy delica. The bar is 2 daggers – pointy and lethal! lol
The “tough” side necklace is made up of daggers and a lampwork barrel. They’re wrapped with black permanately colored copper wire. The wraps are very rustic and elementary, a far cry from the usual neat and smooth wrap I usually go for.
The “soft” side necklace is labrodorite coins (purchased from Sarah herself) – again they have that surprise flash at unexpected moments – interwoven with random seed beads – you never know what you’re going to get!!
Each of the elements in this necklace was chosen with great care – and I believe is ME, very much so that duality that sometimes I can never even reconcile myself.
Do you have that duality? Could you see yourself in this necklace?
So what does my personality look like?
life * love * beads