Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Best Use I've Made of a Muffin Tin in Months!

Heather of Humble Beads threw down the creative gauntlet -- fill a muffin tin with the raw materials for 12 projects, and complete them in a week.

As I wrote last time, this was a perfect focusing prompt for me, coming on the same day that I was packing for a long weekend in the mountains. I had been wondering what jewelry-related goodies to take along, so I packed up my muffin tin and hit the road.

Now, I tend to be an improvisational beader, usually surrounding myself with the raw materials and letting the inspiration strike. As I go along, if I need to reconsider the plan, I can always make a quick run back to the bead room to get other beads, different findings, more stringing materials....So, both planning twelve projects and pulling the appropriate bits and pieces for them (allowing for the inevitable "oh, dang, that's not gonna work the way I thought" change of plans), was an even bigger challenge.

Some of these are very simple, which isn't a bad thing. I took the pictures outside of the cabin I was in, so the lighting was what it was (a little shadier than optimal), and I really missed having a display bust to show how the necklaces hang....but hey, I was in the mountains, so it couldn't be all bad, right?

So here are the results -- three necklaces, two bracelets, and seven pairs of earrings. You may notice many of the art beads are the beautiful work of JulsBeads. I'd gotten a great set of earring pairs, and I'd been itching to use them, so this was a great excuse.

JulsBeads focal and faceted glass beads - this is my favorite of all the pieces that I did for this challenge

Furnace glass, macrame, Bali silver

Faceted glass, antiqued silver chain

Amazonite, brass filigree, upcycled vintage brass chain -
my favorite pair of earrings from this challenge

JulsBeads art beads, gold filled wire

Glass pearls, gold chain

JulsBeads art beads, Bail silver

JulsBeads art beads, vintage glass, Bali sterling with vermeil

Swarovski crystals, gold filled rings

JulsBeads art beads, vintage glass flower bead caps

carved rhodonite, vintage glass, brass, macrame

glass beads and about four too few freshwater pearls
This is when I really missed being able to run back to the bead room for a
couple more beads because I didn't pack enough!
(You can't see the other end of the bracelet because a proper lady never shows up
without being completely dressed. Okay, the real reason is that I cropped
the picture so you couldn't see my fingers holding up the pearls
on the incomplete strand...)

I had fun, and I learned a valuable lesson that I can share with you: if you are taking pictures outdoors on the side of a mountain, be prepared to climb down the mountain through the scrub to retrieve the jewelry when it falls off the tree branch you've so carefully perched it on. Dress appropriately...


CraftyHope said...

This would have been the perfect challenge for me too when I went on vacation. however, as I've worked my way through my muffin cups, I keep realizing that I forgot to add a needed item to the cups (jump rings, a clasp, a seed bead or two, etc.) I don't know that I could have done it without a craft room at my disposal.
Oh, and thanks for the tips on mountainside photographing. heehee!

Karin Slaton said...

Mountains and beads! What could be better? My favorite piece is the macrame-furnace glass-silver necklace.

Cillaw said...

I love your title!
Great work and an extra challenge for you by not being able to go and get more or different beads as wanted. I think I bead like you too.

TesoriTrovati said...

I love that you challenged yourself to use what you had. Sparkling results! I think that first necklace is a keeper, and those earrings with the bead caps on Julsbead look like the fresh catch of the day...little fish! And your last line slays me... "dress appropriately"... HA!
Enjoy the day!

Kate said...

I loved that last admonition...dress appropriately. I've SO been there. Awesome pictures, though. Way to go. All your projects turned out beautifully!

Linda said...

I love what you made--it is seriously beautiful! I especially like the first two necklaces! Wow! You concluding comments made me laugh! :)

My Life Under the Bus said...

I too forgot most findings and had just throw in beads and focals in clumps! Beautiful work!

Elysian Studios said...

Simple is good! I love what you've made- especially that very first necklace- the way those beads are arranged by color really complements that focal beautifully! I love how you cleverly hung the earrings from a branch to photograph them- they all looked great!

Holly said...

(still rounding the corner on this challenge... ;))

Oh, my, look at all those awesome Juls beads you used! I love what you've created - everything is just lovely! And yep, this was a fun challenge, wasn't it?