Sunday, April 7, 2019

2019 Swap N Hop Reveals!!

Well well well,
Another year, another Swap.  I canNOT believe it's been *5* years!  I need to thank each and every person who is READING and who has participated over the years.  It's been SUCH an incredible opportunity to get to know new people, learn about jewelry, learn about another person, learn about  myself and more than ANYTHING - growing my skillz.  What an adventure!

Now, to my partner!  I had the wild and fabulous Jeanne Parker!  She's from PA and in her past life, she had a family farm.  Since they sold the farm, she takes care of a fellow who is blind and autistic.  She also looooves spending time with her granddaughter.  She has an INCREDIBLE artistic eye!  She has painted, illustrated, done some advertising and now even etches her own components.  (holy jealous, batman!)

For her goodies, I was putting some things away and I found the PERFECT focal!  It was from Grubbi Ceramics and featured a painting of rolling hills, and a farm.  =)  I thought it'd be a great fit!
So, that's what I sent.

Now....what I received?!  Holy MOSES!  I was SOOOOOO spoiled!  Jeanne sent me all KINDS of things!  I will say that I had a hard time finding a theme.... so I pulled a few pieces out and made them work. =)

Click to enlarge
Click to Enlarge

Click to Enlarge

My first project was a bracelet.  Again, I'd found the focal while putting some things away. (LOL!  I put stuff away alot, I guess?!)  But I just LOVE this focal and a few of the pieces Jeanne sent, seemed to match the colors.  The accent beads on the focal were from Jeanne, as well as the clasp.  I had some of the Beadalon artsy wire (I found it chips somewhat easily... so some of the copper shows through) and ended up making the chain.  It seemed to be a perfect match!  So, this was a real stretch for me.  I've made chain with beads before...but never from just wire.  I like it, alot!  So, I may end up doing that more often.

My second project is my piece de resistance.  I fell in LOVE with the flower bead that Jeanne sent.  My problem was that it wasn't really big enough to be a focal, by itself.  SO, I started with the focal and tried to build it up a bit by making the headpin with the big loop, adding a dragonfly from Jeanne and some crystals.  Then it was a challenge to figure out what to do with the focal to really make it shine.  After going through this and that... I found a bag of lucite flowers I'd bought a few months ago...and that's when the project really took off.  From there, I pulled out a Vintaj connector and since it was the wrong color - I painted it.  In addition, I wanted the piece to be a little.... whimsical?  What's more whimsical than white pearl leather, with pastel paints hand applied?  =)

Andy's Garden (
I LOVE it!  I really, REALLY do!  I love the colors, I love how the paint brought everything together AND that I won't be allergic to this piece! ;)

 But really - this piece reminds me of my Grandmother and my Dad.  My Grandma always had a big, beautiful garden.  I remember going out and picking fruits and veggies from there and sneaking cherry tomatoes (because No Grandma..there weren't any out there!).  She grew state fair winning flowers!  My Dad also has an INCREDIBLY green thumb.  He grows gladiolas - usually around 700 bulbs.  He's sold them locally and does it because he loves them.

So, this piece is going to be called "Andy's Garden".

Here you can see the details of the filigree I painted.   I, also, added some light paints to the metallic pearl leather.  The paint ties everyone together, so nicely....AND it's a personal one-of-a-kind finish.  (and SUPER easy to do!) The little rhinestoney part is actually a pearl enhancer... I'm using it as a clasp, here.  (Thanks, Diane Whiting!)

You can see the paint on the leather here (Click to enlarge)

I decided at the last minute to make a pair of earrings, as well.  This is what I came up with....

Yep - just 1.  The other is currently on the other side of the bead room.  ROTFL (No really... ) I'll finish it tomorrow.  The ear wire and bead came from Jeanne, too.  Once I finish the other, they'll go delightfully with both the bracelet AND Andy's Garden!  Hooray!

THANK YOU, Jeanne!  I had SUCH a great time and I'm thankful to have had YOU for my partner!

AND THANK YOU to everyone who played along this year!  I can't WAIT to see what y'all made!  Here's a list of all the friends who played along!

Hostess: Linda Anderson you are HERE!
Non-Seed Beaders

Linda Anderson you are HERE!
Hope Smitherman

Seed Beaders

To be sure you don’t miss out on any of my crazy adventures, you can sign up to follow my blog by email or news servers using the links in the right column of my page. You can also follow me on Instagram or Facebook get updates about blog posts, my latest jewelry designs, show schedule, and other happenings!