Monday, October 22, 2012

Forest Fantasy Mixed Media Art Charm Necklace

Lovely Em models the completed necklace.
A couple of months ago, a dear family friend asked if I could please create an "over-the-top mixed media necklace with art charms, in forest green, deep blue, and plum purple."
Tierra Cast toggle with seed bead/faceted Czech glass bead section.
Though I don't do many necklaces in general, and it has been AGES since I've done any mixed media work (I've been really focusing on my lampwork beads lately), I couldn't bear to tell her "no can do." So I pulled stuff from my stash, took pics and sent them to her to see if I was on the right track...and I was.
Pressed glass flower dangles and upcycled necklace chain.
But inspiration was elusive - I knew I had *most* of the elements I needed, but what about the design? I didn't have a clue where to start, and it felt like something was missing anyway, so what's a girl to do? Go on an inspiration hunt, that's what!
Ribbons and recycled (fair trade!) sari silks wrapped with 19 ga. annealed steel wire & connected to upcycled necklace chain.
The center of the ribbon section features one of my lampwork beads strung onto the blue and green sari ribbons - I love how this turned out, and I think I'll make more lampwork beads with holes big enough to fit multiple ribbons. :)
The other end of the ribbon section - also finished with a wrap of my beloved 19 ga. annealed steel wire
Poring through my stash of jewelry magazines and surfing my favorite jewelry sites, I found some mixed media necklaces I liked. Made rough sketches of my favorites...and then I really looked at them. As I didn't want to copy someone else's work, I decided to focus only on my favorite element of each piece.
The center of the necklace front - how it all comes together.
I made a list and rough sketches of each of those favorite elements, pulled the ingredients from my stash, ordered a bird connector from Bello Modo, and then started laying things out, playing with texture and color, and trying to get it just right.
The charm cluster: custom art charm by C. Hansen using Vintaj Arte Metal blank, Vintaj patinas, paper, chalks, & sealer; one of my lampwork hearts, one of Peg's sparkle-icious dichroic glass cabochons, a cute little beach stone, and more of the adorable pressed glass flower drops.
Once I started placing components here and there, the necklace came together amazingly fast - it was one of those takes-forever-to-get-rolling/comes-together-at-light-speed things.
Bead links made with 19 ga. annealed steel wire, Czech seed beads, and Czech glass beads.
I'm *really* pleased with how it turned out, and even better, my client LOVES it! win/win!

The bird connector was originally brass-tone, but that didn't work with the color scheme, so I used my new Vintaj patinas on it - love the results! (I *need* Vintaj patinas in lots more colors!)
Now that I've gotten my feet wet with this design concept, I think I'll try making more mixed media pieces using this strategy. Stay tuned for pics!
The view from the other side. Please ignore the messy kitchen counter!
How the charm cluster hangs when it's worn.
Another view of the whole necklace.


6 comments:

Dana said...

Love your design and all the components. I think you did a smashing job and your client is very lucky to get something so wonderful.

Christine Hansen said...

Dana, thank you for your very sweet comments! It was definitely a challenge, but I *love* how it turned out, and I think I'm ready to start doing more pieces like this. It's fun to do something a little different now and then!

Cassi said...

That is beautiful. I love the charm cluster, and how you hung it from the necklace. Gorgeous colors, too!

Christine Hansen said...

Cassi, I really appreciate your kind words about my work - thank you! My client chose the colors...but they're some of my favorites as well.

April Grinaway said...

Love it !

April Grinaway said...

Love it !