Monday, January 29, 2018

SJ Designs January Challenge

I love, love, love bracelets and think I'm getting near to having more of them than I do earrings!  Not that I get to wear them lately - with Baxter in his "land shark" phase, pretty much any jewelry that dangles is out.  As are skirts, loose pants, long cardigans, coats, gloves ..... I'm looking quite rag tag in my torn puppy jeans and coat.  But I will hopefully, someday, be back to wearing jewelry again, so I made a bracelet for this month's challenge as a reward for making it through all that puppy nipping!

For January, Sarajo's husband Eric went full out colorful with this gorgeous photograph he took of a lorakeet.  You can read what he wrote about this month's challenge photo here.

Eric Wentling
I've had six sets of round and square beads sitting in my studio waiting for rainbow glazes and this was the nudge I needed to get them finished.  They're terracotta and I glazed them in the majolica tradition - first with a white satin glaze and then topped with several coats of overglaze.

I love rainbows and these turned out just as I had pictured - not something that's been happening regularly lately!  Next I needed to decide how to put some together and after several starts I wasn't completely happy with, I decided on this ...

The birds are copper mass produced beads I've had forever and the black beads are glass.  Sets of the rainbow beads are not up in my online store yet, but should be sometime tomorrow.  

I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to get any beads entered in the Art Bead Scene Studio monthly challenge after several kiln mishaps, but I just squeezed in these beads from sprig molds I made with lavender from our farm.  

They have multiple layers of stain and are finished with a clear fired glaze.  Several of these are up in the store now at  Below is the inspiration photo for this month and you can see how others interpreted it here

Spring, Frances MacDonald, c.1900-1905, watercolor on linen.
And be sure to stop by Sarajo Wentling's blog here to see the gorgeous pieces she was inspired to make (the colors are so beautiful!) and what jewelry others made.

Happy Creating!  Deborah


  1. I love your rainbow beads and the colorful birdie bracelet you made with them! As the proud owners of 3 new kittens, I hear you about wardrobe choices. I've been sporting all my best sweatshirts and soft pants lately... nothing razor sharp kitty claws might snag and ruin! Someday they'll calm down a bit. Thanks for playing along with us this month! Check back on February 1st to see what Eric dreams up for us next.

    1. Thank you! Three new kittens sound wonderful - so much fun!

  2. Fantastic colors on those beads! This turned out great.