Friday, October 19, 2018

We're All Ears :: October :: Plaid


Did you know the first Friday in October is known around the world as Plaidurday?   It is only fitting that plaid is the theme for this October's  We're All Ears Challenge.

When I think of plaid, I also think of Tartans.  
Tartan is a pattern consisting of criss-crossed horizontal and vertical bands in multiple colors. Tartans originated in woven wool, but now they are made in many other materials. Tartan is particularly associated with Scotland.  The Scottish started using their tartans in the 1700s as blankets and kilts. Certain clans of Scots would all get their weaving done by the same weavers which is how the patterns became associated with specific clans. It wasn't until the popular fabric crossed the ocean that the terms became synonymous. Both became associated with lumberjacks... and ultimately hipsters. 
Hipsters Photo by Thomas AE on Unsplash
Hipsters Photo by Thomas AE on Unsplash

When I first read about this challenge, I had to do some thinking to come up with an idea for a plaid pair of earrings. I spent about a week thinking up a plan. I originally thought I would use plaid ribbon or paper to cover the top of a wooden disk or bezel. I did something similar with paper disks in an earlier challenge and I wasn't happy with there being a lack of depth, but I loved how light the earrings were.  I thought I would see how I would like lightweight wood disks.   The wood disks that I located were way too large for me to consider using.

I then considered using bezels.  I wasn't able to find 2 bezels in my collection that were the right size to accommodate a plaid.  I wasn't able to locate any in local stores that I liked so my thoughts then turned to plaid cookie tins. 

Photo of plaid tin by Nonki Azariah on Unsplash
Christmas Plaid Tin by Photo by Nonki Azariah on Unsplash

Surely, there must be some plaid tins somewhere. If I had the spare time, I would have loved to have taken time to poke through some local thrift shops for plaid tins. I needed just one plaid tin to use with my metal disk punch set.  In the meantime, time is marching on.  

I then came up with the perfect plan.  Being sort on creative time this month, I thought that there must be someone who has already done the disk cutting and is selling plaid disks.  I did some searching online and discovered exactly what I was dreaming of.  Perfect except for one thing, the seller was in Ireland.  Being of Irish ancestry, I thought that was really cool and excited for an excuse to buy something from the old country, but I was pretty sure I wouldn't get them in time.  I took a gamble on the postal services and lost.  Ten days for a shipment to make it from Ireland to US is cutting things close even when it isn't holiday time.

Plaid Tin Disks by balancedARTandCRAFT 

I knew exactly what I wanted to do. I wanted to find a plaid tin and cut it into disks and then layer on some copper or silver disks with a rivet to make earrings. The earrings would have Vintaj brass earwires.  I found the perfect plaid tin disks at the shop Balanced Art and Craft in Ireland.

They are just perfect and I can't wait to get them.  Tomorrow will probably be the day I get them.  

I can't wait to see what others have created in the meantime.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

September Art Elements Theme Challenge – Faerie

Riders of the Sidhe (1911), painting by John Duncan
The theme for the September Art Elements Challenge given by Caroline Dewison is to create something from the magical world of fairies. Fairies are called Fae, Aos Si, Elves or Yakshas, Yōsei, and Mogwoi and many more. Around the world, each culture has it’s own version of wee folk, spirits connected to nature. When I think of fairies, I imagine small human type creatures with wings and magical powers. Before beginning my creation for the challenge, I did some research on Irish and Scottish fairy called the aos sí. 

Photo by Jeff Finley on Unsplash 

The aos sí is the Irish term for a supernatural race in Irish mythology and Scottish mythology. They are comparable to the fairies or elves. They are said to live underground in fairy mounds, across the western sea, or in an invisible world that coexists with the world of humans. In the Irish language, aos sí means "people of the mounds" (the mounds are known in Irish as "the sídhe"). In modern Irish the people of the mounds are also called daoine sídhe; in Scottish mythology they are daoine sìth. They are also thought to be the ancestors, the spirits of nature, or goddesses and gods.

wee fairy door by Brooke Boch

I usually think of fairies living in a tiny house with a wee door hidden under a mushroom.  I snagged a door by Brooke Boch of Artistic Endeavors Jewelry and Components  and I saved it for a special project.  

Fairy card by BayMoonDesign

Several years ago I made a fairies card and the I saved it for a special project.

I always save Altoid tins just because I am that kind of person.  I also decided now is the time to use some of my stash for my fairies projects.

Paper fairy and tiny paper flower from card

                      My paper fairies are the perfect size for Altoid tin folk art aka ornaments.

Fairy ornament by BayMoonDesign

My wee door with a leaf over top is the perfect size for this fairy scene.  I had some mushroom card stock that I decided would make a great backdrop for the scene.  Silver trim was added to give the whole scene some sparkle.

side view

This tin can sit comfortably on a shelf or be hung as an ornament.  I added some colorful beads that dangle from the  bottom of it.  The back is covered with the small mushroom card stock.

Front view with dangles

My second fairy ornament makes use of the larger of my caed stock paper fairies and one of the paper flowers from the card.   Once again, I used the mushroom paper for a background.  I added a pretty rose bud and leaf and a few sparkles.  The inside is lined with eggplant ribbon and the outside has gold sequins.

It is really meant to  hang. It has a loop made from purple cord at the top to serve that purpose.

Fairy ornament by BayMoonDesign

I had to add some beads at the bottom to dangle and catch the sun light.

Gold sequins line the side

back side of ornament

For my next tin I am planning to use this photo as my inspiration and built a tiny scene based on her.

Photo by Boris Krizmanic on Unsplash

I am enjoying looking at other creations by talented folks.  You can join me at---

Guest Artists


Art Elements Team

Thanks for stopping by,  Remember we all love comments.

Friday, September 21, 2018

We're All Ears :: September Inspiration :: Ode to Autumn

Photo of fall gourds
Photo by Keilidh Ewan on Unsplash

photo of coffee and tiny pumpkins
Photo by Brigitte Tohm on Unsplash
With the official start of fall, it is only fitting that the We're All Ears Challenge is to create earrings that are an Ode to Autumn.  Labor Day has come and gone.  Pumpkin spice is starting to waft in the air.  I spotted lots of Halloween candy in the store today.  The autumnal equinox is upon us.  
 On Saturday, September 22, both the Northern and Southern hemispheres will experience an equal amount of daylight. For those in the Northern Hemisphere, it marks the beginning of fall.  The daylight hours will continue to shorten until the winter solstice in December. For those south of the equator, it’s the beginning of spring.  Equinox literally means “equal night.” And during the equinox, most places on Earth will see approximately 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of night.

Photo of Fall leaves and woods
Photo by Dennis Buchner on Unsplash

When the days get shorter this is when the leaves start to change colors.  The color change is more dependent on light than on temperature. Temperature and weather conditions can effect the intensity of the colors.  I always associate fall with orange, reds, greens and yellows.  Mother Nature seems to surround us with those colors.  My new Fall earrings are inspired by these fall colors.
Modern Orange Earrings with Leather by BayMoonDesign

These modern orange earrings have pale orange and brown ceramics. The circular ceramics hang below a soft brown leather and orange quartz beads. Copper ear wires are used to bring out the oranges. The orange and brown colors in the ceramics by Marsha Neal Studio make these statement earrings perfect for the fall.

photo of pumpkin by Arnaud Weyts on Unsplash
Photo by Arnaud Weyts on Unsplash

My second pair of earrings have swirls of red, oranges, browns. These reddish orange earrings are made with textured geometric ceramics. The earrings dangle below a copper accent bead. Copper is used in the ear wires and to wrap around the ceramics. I love how the orange color of the ceramics looks with copper.
Reddish Orange Ceramic Earrings by BayMoonDesign

The artisan ceramics are made by Marsha Neal Studio.

Photo by Alfred Schrock on Unsplash

This photo caught my eye.  I love the colors in the leaves pair with the acorn.  I decided these colors would be perfect with purple lamp work that I had.  The lamp work has specks of these colors in it.

Long Colorful Fall Lamp Work Earrings by BayMoonDesign
These fall colors of purple, orange, and green in the beautiful artisan lamp work make a stunning pair of contemporary statement earrings, This modern art jewelry sparkles with the addition of Czech glass beads and copper. The long purple earrings are a perfect gift or fashion accessory.

The lamp work beads are made by a SRA artist Sue Kennedy

Photo by AZGAN MjESHTRI on Unsplash
Photo by AZGAN MjESHTRI on Unsplash

Happy Fall!  

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Art Elements August Theme Challenge

Photo of swirl graffiti by Jason Leung on Unsplash
Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash

The Art Elements Monthly Theme for August 2019 is swirl. Swirl makes a great design element and inspiration. Swirls are found all over from urban graffiti like in the photo above to the creations of Mother Nature found in nature.  Just look at the number of different swirls found in this seahorse in the photo below.

Photo of seahorse with swirls by Jason Leung on Unsplash
Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash
A swirl can also be a thought or an idea.  In the following poem called Swirl by Carl Sandburg,  I think the swirl is a thought of a ghost.
A SWIRL in the air where your head was once, here. 
You walked under this tree, spoke to a moon for me 
I might almost stand here and believe you alive.
Purple and Pink Earrings by BayMoonDesign
Purple and Pink Earrings by BayMoonDesign

These purple and pink earrings are textured ceramic earrings with a pink swirl design. Sterling silver is used in the ear wires and to wrap through the pink and purple ceramics. I stacked some pink and silver Czech glass flowers and faux pearls on top.   These "swirl" ceramics are by 
Jenny Davies-Reazor.  
Light purple earrings by BayMoonDesign
Light purple earrings by BayMoonDesign
These light purple earrings are textured ceramic geometric earrings that dangle below lavender agate beads.  Natural brass wire is used to wrap the agate beads. I used natural brass ear wires on these circle earrings. These earrings hang about 2 inches and are light and comfortable to wear.   The artisan ceramics are made by Marsha Neal Studio.   These are trending circle earrings that you won't find in a department store!
Photo of swirls in rose flower by chuttersnap on Unsplash
Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash

See what others created through the month of August with this swirl theme in mind.

We all love to hear your comments.  Please feel free to comment.