I wish I could find glass like this from a simple walk on the beach. Thick, rounded, and well tumbled by sea and rocks; matching the size and shape of the beach rocks I love to collect. But, I might take 4 walks on the beach and only come up with one piece like this in either a white or sea foam green. Most of the glass around here is a spearmint green, or brown, and much thinner, and less well tumbled. None of the pieces in my necklace from yesterday have a smooth rounded shape, even though I’m still happy with how it came out.
Check out these beauties. I could look at them for hours.
Lucky for me there are collectors in England who have a chance to visit the beaches along the northeast coast, near where old (1800’s) glass bottle factories would collect glass waste at the end of the day and hurl it off the cliffs into the North Sea. Most of these pieces are at least 100 years old.
And they are the perfect size, shape and color for some new necklaces I have in mind.
Looks like I better order some fresh drill bits and get to work.
The necklace I worked on today is a combination of handmade lampworked beads, (bought from *artists on Etsy) local beach rocks, my own fine silver PMC beads and some local bits of sea glass.
Lampworked beads by Sue Kennedy and Leese Mahoney.
With some of the beach rock beads and glass beads from yesterday.
The hollow rock beads, of fine silver PMC, are from a batch of beads I made a few years ago.
I never did get on the mailboat this morning. I played it safe and stayed home when I started feeling like I was coming down with some kind of bug. I slept and read for the morning and found some energy to work in the afternoon, turning a dumb day into a productive one.
It was easy to feel inspired with ideas when this package of beads from Leese Mahoney arrived in the mail.
I imagine combining some of the “earthy” rough textured beads with some of my own beach rock beads. I finished up a batch of drilling I had started last week, and waxed and buffed the beach rocks.
Holly Kellogg asked what the polymer clay swirl beads looked like after they were fired, so here are two photos for you, my buddy Holly!
Buffing the beach rocks with a muslin wheel got me wondering about buffing some of the polymer beads. I already had a clean (no polishing compound) buff for the rocks, why not try it on the translucent clay to see how it changed the appearance? The photos below are late afternoon shot, done in a hurry, but they show the difference between the un-buffed beads (top row) and the buffed beads (bottom row).
The copper beads I covered with translucent clay were among the most disappointing when I first fired them. After buffing them with a muslin wheel, I really like how they look. Especially the beads with a little white beneath the translucent salmon. When an experiment changes from something I would not bother to repeat, to something I can’t wait to explore further, that’s a good day.
I’ve just uploaded a few new things to my Etsy shop, check it out!
If I didn’t have to go off island (again!) tomorrow, I would stay up later to add more.
And no photos to show for it.
Yesterday, I combined different brands and colors of polymer clay together, working with a variety of green colors. I hoped to get a layering effect with some of the translucent clay. The colors were darker than I expected after firing. Some of the pieces I expected to be translucent were not. I used mostly Premo yesterday afternoon, and one of the alcohol inks I used was a citrus green. After I fired those beads, the light green clay looked like pee! I have forgotten a lot of what I used to know about polymer.
Today, I decided to get a little more organized. I kept the Pardo translucent separate from the Premo translucent. I tinted each one with the same color ink. I made similar earrings to see how the two clays differ. I haven’t fired this batch yet, so I’ll wait to do that tomorrow and take more photos then. One thing I do know, I like the feel of the Premo translucent clay much better than the Pardo. Pardo was dry and crumbly, and took much longer to condition.
In the meantime, I’ll post some photos of lobster bait at the Cranberry Isles Fishermen’s Co-op.
I know. It’s pretty random.
Redfish racks. Yum.
Some bait gets so old, it can’t even be given away!
And some bait gets left behind, unintentionally.
Today I got out some polymer clay so I could experiment with translucent clay and alcohol inks. I wanted to make some beads and earring components to combine with silver, but I didn’t have a definite plan in mind. I spent a good part of the afternoon just conditioning different colors of clay, and I kept getting interrupted by phone calls. (The kind of calls that involve follow up phone calls, like trying to find out the wheel chair accessible van schedule, so I could then call back and make an appointment for a follow up visit with one of Mom’s doctors. It all came together pretty well, as far as rearranging my own appointments and my mother’s appointments.)
Actually it was surprising how things worked out in a way I could not foresee, even though it wasn’t the afternoon I thought I would have.
Last year, in the spring, I went to the Museum of Arts and Design with my friend Susie when I visited her in New York. I had been wanting to see their jewelry collection, and the exhibit, A Bit of Clay on the Skin: New Ceramic Jewelry, sounded like it could be interesting. It was. Even though most of the pieces were things I would never wear, they were fun to look at and the execution was fascinating. They made sense to me, as art.
However, there were a few pieces that just made me think, “Are you serious?” In trying to find something positive, I will say that the pieces balance well.
Even with a lovely explanation of the artist’s intent, I thought to myself, “Really? Uncomfortable jewelry for the sake of it being uncomfortable so we can talk about it?” (I don’t want to even know what she means by “other mysterious waste materials…vaguely repellant…”)
Maybe it’s not so bad that I didn’t have a definite plan of what to make this afternoon.
I’m glad I pulled in at the dock in Northeast harbor before I gave Brenda a ride back to her house. My timing was perfect to get a ride home an hour earlier than the regular Sunday ferry. Thank you Ted and Jeri! There were 9 of us headed home on the Hope.
Coming into the harbor, the Islesford Dock Restaurant looks cold and empty in the off season.
My brother, Steve, arrived for a two day visit with our mom, yesterday. I went to meet him as he came back to the island on the regular 3:30 boat. When I saw the sky looking like this, I kicked myself for leaving my camera at home. I almost never go out the door without it in my pocket.
Lucky for me, Steve knew right where his camera was, and let me borrow it.
Home sweet home.