Friday, February 28, 2020

My Favorites - Jan/Feb 2020

After a long break, the Jewelry Artisans Community Blog Carnival is back.  We thought that the first month of a new year would be a good time to get started.  Unfortunately, despite our best intentions, we didn't get off to a great start.  Some of us forgot about it entirely, while others were to busy with other things to finish their posts on time.  Our solution - extend our deadline to the end of February.  Clever girls, so clever!

This month's topic is about favorite jewelry we have designed and created.  I had to give this some thought as I have a lot of favorites, but it's impossible for me to name just one.  Then I realized that my favorites represent the stages of my jewelry making journey.

First it was stringing beads together; sounds simple, but I really enjoyed selecting colors that worked together, as well as deciding which sizes and shapes were good matches.  I think mastering bead stringing before moving onto other techniques builds a good design foundation.  It was also during this time that I started painting wood beads to use in my jewelry designs.

Painting beads inspired me to try to combine my love of painting and my passion for making jewelry by painting miniatures and turning them into pendants.  Pairing the pendants with painted beads took my creativity to a new level.  These are some of my favorites:

During this time, I became fascinated with the wire wrapping and wire weaving pieces that I was seeing on the internet.  They were so beautiful and intricate; it wasn't long before I wanted to try.  I quickly found out that working with wire didn't come naturally to me but I enjoyed it so much that I was determined to learn these skills.  After much practice and frustration, I was finally able to produce work that I was proud of.

This spiderweb is a special favorite because it's one I came up with completely on my own.  No looking at magazines, reading books or using tutorials.  I felt really good about this design.

These next ones are the result of using tutorials to learn the techniques.  I am forever grateful to the designers who so generously share their knowledge and skills by publishing tutorials on their blogs or on Youtube:

Eventually, I became interested in working with resin.  The first thing I tried was coating my painted pendants with resin; I was and am extremely happy with the results. 




At the same time, I was trying to figure out a way to incorporate nature's gorgeous fall leaves and summer flowers into my work.  Preserving them in resin seemed like a natural progression. It took much experimenting and many fails to achieve success.  It pleases me no end that these beautiful leaves with their amazing patterns and colors are permanently preserved for people to enjoy.

This is where I am now - still experimenting with resin.  Using leaves, flowers, insects and other natural materials along with small charms, I am creating small scenes and preserving them in resin.  I've just barely scratched the surface and have many ideas in my head.  At the moment, these are my favorites from this period - that might be because these are the only ones I have finished so far!

I guess I'd say that rather than having favorite pieces of jewelry, I have favorites from each learning phase I've been in.  To me, they represent growth as an artist, mastering new skills, learning new techniques and that by looking back and visiting these favorites, enables me to see where my journey has taken me.  It makes me wonder what future work will look like and which ones will be added to my favorites as the journey continues.

To see what other members of the Jewelry Artisans Community have to say about their favorites, please click on the links below:

Ganison Atelier

My Bijou Life


  1. This is a beautiful display of your artistic unique jewelry:)

  2. It's amazing seeing your progress as you learn different techniques. The pieces are like milestones in your journey as a jewelry designer. Wonderful work!

    1. Aw, Togan. Your sweet words do my heart good. Thank you!

      Being able to look back at one's progress and improvement is one of the reasons I always tell new jewelry artists to save their early pieces. It's a real confidence booster to see how far we come in our journeys. :)

  3. Dawn, dividing these into stages is a great idea! I am so impressed by your painted pieces. I have zero talent in that area. And I love your resin leaves! What an awesome idea. They look so pretty.

    1. Thank you so much, Michelle!

      I used to paint large paintings, but was just too tired and busy during my working years to keep it up. When I started making jewelry, painting those minis was a natural fit. They don't take near as long to paint as a full size painting.

      The leaves came to me one day while I was out walking and started thinking how gorgeous they all were and wishing there was a way to preserve their beauty. Resin was a natural next step - but, boy, did it take a long time and a lot of trial and error to figure out how to make it work!

  4. Never mind me, I'm just walking by here to admire all of your beautiful creations (and because I noticed I hadn't commented yet).
    You know there are quite a few up there that are favorites of mine, too! *happy sigh*

    1. Why, you little sneak, sneaking in here like that.

      You know what makes me happy, Cat? Making you happy. ;-)