I just love Therese's focals, and this one is particularly beautiful with blue foil just under the glass surface which gives such a glow to it. I wanted to use colors in the beading that would bring out the blues and let the focal still stay center stage. I used muted blues and black, and a pattern that Christine recently shared with me (she featured it on her blog a few weeks back). I love this pattern! It uses three stitches; ladder, brick and then a whip to line the edges. I doubled the pattern and it turned out just fantastic in this choker. The back uses black velvet and a double loop belt closure so you can adjust it to fit just right. When Therese described her outfit for her wedding, I pictured this piece as something that might match up - she'll have to let me know how close I came (LOL).
I also created 2 other pieces using the crystals. First I made a bracelet using Kelly Wiese' Beaded Allure book. I've used this pattern before and really enjoy the rhythm of the stitch. But I have to say this time around it took me several tries (aka ripping out the entire pattern more than once), much swearing and a broken needle before I found that rhythm. The gold beads are just large enough to swallow up the seed beads throwing off the count in the pattern all over the place (insert another swear word). So I ended up improvising using a combination of stringing a loop of seed beads and coming back through the gold bead to pick up the thread on the last loop like you would for brick. A bit wacky - but it worked! It was a bit of a photo challenge to show just how much this one sparkles ... oh that Therese loves her bit of bling! This one is for you my friend.
Finally, I'm very proud of these earrings. Not because I made them, but because they are my daughter's first creation and design. She came to me after I heard an excessive amount of tapping in my studio and handed me the earwires and asked "is this right?" I did not show her how, she just figured it out on her own. I think she has it in her blood. She and I talked through the design and then she directed me on making the crystal and owl drops. I think they are just fantastic, and I can't wait to see what she designs next.
Now to see what the rest of the artists did with their stash from Therese: Alicia (our host), Christine, Emma, Monique, Sally and Therese.