Wednesday, August 26, 2015

CC7A :: Colorful Chaos

Our CC7A team is back to creating after a summer hiatus. This month Monique is hosting and she picked a beautiful photograph of St. John's in Newfoundland that she titled Colorful Chaos.  

I didn't realize that the picture was North, in Canada. With all those colors I thought it was somewhere South, perhaps in South America. But I bet all those colors are beautiful peeking out of the snow in the dead of winter!

St. John's is said to be the oldest settlement in North America dating back to 1494 when John Cabot (a Venetian explorer) and his son Sebastian sailed into the harbor. And for the next 300 years this migratory fishing town turned into a strategic port that the French, Dutch and English continually battled for control. It ended with the French and Indian Wars in 1762 where the English successfully defeated the French in the battle of Signal hill and the French turned the city back over to the English.

I checked into why a Northern city might be painted so colorfully? It is an area called Jelly Bean Row. Tourist will ask to find the street or row where these house are, but it is a generic nickname that refers to all the row houses in the downtown area. Some say that they were originally painted so the fisherman could find their way home through the fog, which is a nice thought but not accurate. You can't see much through a dense fog no matter the color of the house.

They are actually the result of a revitalization began in the 1970s to the downtown in an effort to preserve the heritage of the houses that we're falling into disrepair and heading for demolition. One guy can be credited with the colors: David Webber, the Heritage Foundation Executive Director. He painted a sample block in bright colors. From there it spread like wildfire with people painting over the drab, dark colors of their houses and adding all kinds of fancy trims as well. At this point the majority of the downtown is decked out in these bright colors.

I got a little distracted in figuring out some history behind this picture, that I need to get to my project for this post! I went with the center colors in the pallet: orange - red hues. I love this piece of deep, cherry sea glass. I did another pattern with this red sea glass a while back that had an Egyptian feel to it. The red does sort of look like a burning sun hanging over a desert. I took some thick copper (14 gauge) and happily twisted and hammered away. Then shaped it around the glass so I could wire it in place. But first I dipped it in patina and tumbled it. I love how the tumbler takes the shiny edge off and buffs out the scratches from all my hammering. Last part of the design is a soft leather strap in the back that holds the necklace from shifting around too much.

And now on to all the rest of the CC7A artists: Monique (this month's host), Alicia, Christine, Therese and Sally

19 comments:

Duni said...

I love colourful houses! Thank goodness they revitalized the area :)
Beautiful pendant! I don't come across red sea glass often.

Jacquelineand.... said...

I always enjoy the informative tid bits you include in your posts. The cherry sea glass is extraordinary, and the necklace is spectacular... I can see it easily becoming the focal point of an outfit.

JoJo said...

Newfoundland has been on my bucket list forever. My husband hates cities and I told him that I just want to take a pic of the colourful houses and then we can head for a more rural place to stay. Dying to see Gros Morne National Park on the west side of the island, and the icebergs drifting down from Greenland on the east side.

Monique (A Half-Baked Notion) said...

I am loving both the amazing necklace design, and your great details about the colourful houses of this special place, Cynthia :)

Miss Val's Creations said...

These piece is a stunner Cynthia! My mom's parents are from Newfoundland who later migrated to Boston. They went to visit and stay with a cousin they never met before. My grandparents both grew up in quiet coves. The people are incredibly friendly and welcoming. They adored it! Someday I will visit too.

Christine Altmiller said...

Thoroughly enjoyed your St. John's history. I would love it if my area was this bright and colorful :-)
And your necklace...well, you know I adore your Ra piece and I feel the same about this too! This is a great style for you. MORE!!!!

And some day soon, I will be able to read your posts about your vacation! I will relish every word.

Karin Slaton said...

That colorful chaos of dwellings is an incredibly interesting scene. And your writing made me feel like I was living their history instead of sitting at my kitchen table mid-2015! Nothing dominates like those earthy orange-reds, and I think your piece has an almost sacred feel to it. Love the idea of the stabilizing leather.

BeadedTail said...

What a pretty place to visit and what a beautiful necklace! I love what you did with the copper!

Claudia Aguilar said...

I always like looking at what you ladies come up with! I peeked a little :) That deep cherry
color is gorgeous!

Therese's Treasures said...

Hi Cynthia,
Wow I knew the houses were colorful, but the history behind the colors is fascinating, thank you for researching and sharing. I love your necklace the design and color is just gorgeous.
Therese

Veralynne Malone said...

It's always great when people take care of our history and want to revitalize an area. I hate seeing places decay. I really love the red color in your necklace. It is such a rich color. And the wire work around it is really beautiful. Great job.

Janet Bocciardi said...

I've never seen such a rich shade of red sea glass! It's gorgeous. I love your setting - vintage looking, but modern, too. Awesome!

Becky Pancake said...

Hi Cynthia, Your necklace is beautiful. It's simple, clean, elegant lines make it a real attention getter. I really enjoy all the information you include in your posts.

pasqueflower said...

Beautiful pendant! Those colorful buildings could brighten a long, cold winter.

Memories for Life said...

What a fun city! I just love all the color!
And your necklace is great. I love the custom copper piece :)

Amy S. said...

Hi Cynthia! It is so neat to get some background information. You really did your homework and how very interestesting to learn about St. John's!! You paid tribute to the colorful palette perfectly. And might I add, I love your metal and wire work! Bravo!

Anna said...

I enjoyed reading a bit of the history of this town and its colorful houses, Cynthia. Was definitely surprised to find it in the north, but living in the frozen north myself, I can imagine how welcome all the color is in the winter!!! This necklace and your recent designs are all lovely! You're so creative...and productive. Happy creating to you :)

Marcela Gmd said...

Lovely!!!!

Marcela Gmd said...

Thank you so much for your comment and for your friendship!!!!:)))
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