Friday, December 11, 2015

ZnetShows Cultured Sea Glass - Not Just for Jewelry!

A few months back, I was presented with a challenge by ZnetShows to create something with their lovely line of cultured sea glass that wasn't jewelry.

Two ideas came to mind: Christmas ornaments and place card holders.

My stash of cultured sea glass is pretty decent from past design opportunities.  So for my first ornament, I dipped into my stash and selected the peridot colored tusk shaped cultured sea glass and the peridot colored leaf shape cultured sea glass beads! It has been years since I tried to do any netting on an ornament and all I remember was how I kept scratching the finish with my needle when I tried.  I didn't have that problem with the clear glass ornament!  Here is the result of my first attempt.  Basically it was just some free form netting with the leaf shaped beads, seed beads and then I added the tusk beads as fringe:

 Next up it was time to play with the red coin puffed cultured sea glass beads.  Again, I used a clear glass ornament and did some free form netting with amber colored silver lined seed beads and 4mm Tiaria Chinese crystal bicones:


The place card holders were a little bit more of a challenge and there were a few 'fails' along the way.

I used the large starfish cultured sea glass bead for the first one, and worked a free form cubic right angle weave (is that even a thing?) to make a stand for the starfish.  Then I worked several tight rows of peyote in graduated sizes to hug the starfish opposite the stand.  It worked!

For the next place card holder, I used the bottom drilled shell shaped cultured sea glass beads.  First I sewed them together with fireline, adding a row of seed beads in between the holes of the shells  Then I wrapped a row of the pearl colored seed beads around the base of the two shells and through the seed beads that were already there.  I went through this base row of beads several times, and then started doing a circular peyote around and around and around, increasing sporadically, which ended up creating a ruffly effect.

The shells were a little floppy so I added a few peyote rows on the exposed sides of the shells.  It didn't help, and i didn't really want to cover up the pretty shell, so I added a tiny dab of glue between the shells about 10 mm from the bottom and that worked like a charm!


It was a lot of fun working on these ZnetShows cultured sea glass projects!! I enjoyed the free form process quite a bit! Don't get me wrong, there were plenty of times throughout the process where I pulled out a stitch or two and tried a new way, but it's fun to see how well the different bead-weaving techniques shaped into the items I had in mind.

6 comments:

  1. Those are exquisite Amy. Wow. You do the best work.

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  2. these are all so fun! the ornaments will no doubt look gorgeous on the tree with the lights shining through the beadwork! a total show stopper! and those place card holders - how clever!

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  3. You ornaments are so pretty and festive! But those place card holders are such a unique and supercool idea!!! Imagine having Bernie and Jane seated at your table...What a dinner that would be!

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  4. I love your ornaments, Amy! And the place card holders are so unique! What a great idea! I hope your holiday plans are going smoothly and that you have a very merry holiday!

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  5. How pretty are those place card holders! I would never have thought of that but what a great combination of the beauty of the sea glass with the whimsical seed bead stitching. I am guessing you were hosting something special and these were probably a great personal touch! I always find the engineering of pieces to be so interesting, especially to see how artists solve construction challenges. Thanks for sharing the details of your process. Hope you have a wonderful holiday, Amy!

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