Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Copper and Bead Bracelet

I made the above bracelet as a gift for someone very special. It was the first time I have created an entire bracelet with copper wire. Copper is pretty popular now as it is a less expensive alternative to sterling silver, which is off the charts expensive these days. I used three different gauges of copper wire, which I purchased at the hardware store. It was a dream to work with.

The beads are a collection taken from my stash of treasures and include carved antique ivory, pearls, turquoise, crystals, leaf and dagger drops, and a few other elements. It was very fun to create and I want to keep playing with the copper.

I've been asked to talk about my process, and it may be best if I talk about it piece by piece. I can't say that my inspiration and the actions that follow are always the same, though I often begin a session in the studio with feasting my eyes on inspirations from my library of books or looking at blogs and web sites of beautiful artwork. Sometimes I spend a little time cleaning up the area where I am going to work, or putting things away. You might say I putter around for a little while before I get right to it.

With this bracelet I knew I was going to work with copper. I knew I wanted a fall color scheme, so I shopped my stash and gathered the beads -- ivory and crystals and leaf drop beads. I pondered those while I made jump rings for the project, which I hammered flat. I also made a clasp with a large carved ivory bead on it, which I thought would look great with the other ivory beads. Next, I created the links and put them together with double hammered jump rings for best durability. The fun part came with making the various dangly elements, and for those I went back to the stash and found the dagger drops and some small AB crystals. The round turquoise beads were the last element to be added. A blue-green accent was not what I envisioned in the beginning, but with the encouragement of a friend I gave it a go and really liked the added depth and how it picked up the tiny blue notes in the AB crystals.

Finally - I tried it on and it was way too big! I removed the clasp and created a smaller plain one, it's just right now. The clasp I made at the very beginning will be part of a future project.

Sometimes I'll let something sit for a while, and later will find things to add or will want to take something away, but this one is finished I think. Just need to wrap it and make a card!

1 comment:

  1. Very VERY pretty! I adore copper and I love everything you mixed with it...someone is getting something quite special :>]]