I just received my advance copy of The Best of Step by Step Beads. That's my necklace on the cover, I'm so very pleased to report. Although I came up with the concept of "Java Jive" first, the actual necklace was largely designed around the festive set of lampworked beads by Jenn Kelly of CaliGirl Art Glass. This was my second attempt to use these beads. Want to see the first? Here you go:
Pretty horrible, eh? Especially given the high quality of the components (the pendant in this necklace is by the fab Alicia Abla, even). I had been designing jewelry for about 4 months at the time I strung this piece back in 2007. I made it originally to enter in Art Bead Scene's Monthly Challenge.
Even at the outset, I was pretty dissatisfied with this design and stuffed it into my beading drawer (I only had a few small drawers of beads back then - oh, those were the days) then promptly forgot it. When I started sketching the concept necklace "Java Jive", I remembered Jenn's beads, unceremoniously cut the original necklace apart and ended up combining them with my own simple fine silver components and the super-cute lampworked coffee bean beads by Kristine Dery of Krissy Beads. Ultimately, I came up with a new design that I liked so much I actually wore it myself (and still do). The project appeared originally in the January 2009 edition of Step by Step Beads and was my first placement in an Interweave Press publication. I can still remember how exciting it was to receive copies of that issue in the mail. (I know, I know, it wasn't actually all that long ago, but it seems like a long time now...)
Anyway, I think this is a decent example of the rewards of going back to the drawing board when you're not happy with your work. While we may enjoy believing that great designs spring fully formed from a designer's head like the goddess Athena, fully armed and ready to do battle, in practice (for me, at least), this often doesn't happen. As I've said before, everyone has their bad design moments - some more than others, sigh. It's important to recognize them, think about them and strive to move beyond them - which, of course, everyone does, eventually. Please don't let these times get you down - they are, like everything else, part of the process and a learning experience.
As for me, I couldn't be happier with the end result of my struggle to showcase these lovely beads. It's also nice to be able to raise my glass one last time to the excellent Step by Step Beads. My editor told me that they refer to the cover shot artists as their "cover girls", and I'm so happy to be joining the ranks of them here.
I am an intellectual property lawyer by training and have a background in English Renaissance literature. I love science fiction. I primarily watch Sesame Street these days and find myself humming "Pop Goes the Weasel" at odd moments (guess why). I can happily eat ice cream in the middle of winter when the wind chill is 20 below 0. I have been making beads and designing jewelry since 2007.
2010 - Winner, First Place, British Bead Awards, Other Finished Bead Jewellery 2010 - Winner, Second Place, British Bead Awards, Metal Clay Jewellery 2010 - Winner, Second Place, Bead Dreams, Metal Clay
2010 - Grand Prize, Gold Medal Winner, Fire Mountain Gems and Beads, Metal Clay, Metal Beads, Wirework and Chain Jewelry-Making Contest
2010 - Finalist, Bead Star, Stones, Plastics and Designs with Heart Categories
2009 - Winner, First Place, British Bead Awards, Metal Clay
2009 - Winner, Second Place, British Bead Awards, Beyond Glass, Handmade Beads and Components
2009 - Winner, Second Place, Bead Arts Awards, Necklace
2009 - Finalist, Bead Dreams, Metal Clay
2008 - Finalist Fire Mountain Gems and Beads Beading Contest, Metal Clay
2008 - Finalist, Bead Star, Pearls
A word about copyright
As indicated in the copyright notice, the contents of this blog are copyright by me. To the extent that instructions to make jewelry, beads, knit items or other instructions are included in this blog, they are free for you to use to make the projects for personal use. They should not be used for commercial purposes, ie, to make items for resale.